Emperor of the French Napoleon I.

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NEW LETTERS OF NAPOLEON I 29

XL

TO M. FOUCHE, MINISTER OF POLICE.

PARIS, itfh February 1806.

I SEE in your report of I3th January, under the heading
of Deux-Sevres, that Miles La Rochejaquelin, Gibot, and
others, harbour dissident priests. Give orders to send them
into exile, to towns in the Dauphine, such as Vienne, and
let no time be lost in arresting those priests.

XLI

TO MARSHAL BERTHIER, MINISTER OF WAR.

PARIS, %ist March 1806.

I HOLD official documents to prove that War-Commissary
Grobert has received 44,000 francs from the province of
Padua, to buy back the stores of salt and tobacco which he
threatened to remove, that Commissary Massena has re-
ceived 80,000 francs, and Adjutant-Commandant Delort
20,000 francs, from the same province of Padua. Write to
these three officers to pay the sums in question into the
Army Chest within twenty four hours, under pain of a
criminal prosecution, if they make the smallest delay.



XLII

TO M. DE TALLEYRAND, MINISTER FOR FOREIGN
AFFAIRS.

PARIS, 2%fk Febntary 1806.

MAKE known my displeasure at the bad behaviour of the
Zamorra regiment, when crossing the Genoese Riviera, to
the Spanish Court. The regiment killed two gendarmes.
Write to my Minister at Florence, to positively demand
reparation for the death of my two gendarmes, killed at
Rapallo, to desire that six men of the Zamorra regiment
may be shot, and that if justice is not done me, I will send
two regiments into Tuscany, and will have every man of the
regiment they can meet with massacred.



30 NEW LETTERS OF NAPOLEON I

XLIII

TO MARSHAL BERTHIER, MAJOR-GENERAL OF THE
GRANDE ARME.

ST. CLOUD, 'jthjuly 1806.

I SEND you a report, the subject of which strikes me as
being very extraordinary. It seems to me that the only course
is to advise the young lady's father to marry her to General

D . It is that which prudence renders necessary in

such a case. Find out whether General D intends to

marry the girl, and speak to the King of Bavaria on the
subject The father, after making a great deal of noise, will
come to feel that if the matter is not arranged in this fashion,
he will end by regretting it. If it cannot be so arranged,

and if General D refuses to marry the girl, I intend to

put him under arrest. But go about the whole business
wisely and prudently.



XLIV

TO PRINCESS STEPHANIE DE BEAUHARNAIS, ELECTORAL
PRINCESS OF BADEN.

ST. CLOUD, Sttijufy 1806.

I SEND you back a letter from the Margravine of Baden ;
the seal was broken by mistake. I desire news of you.
Was not your health affected by the heat on the road ? Tell
me that you are happy and content.



XLV
TO M. FOUCHfi, MINISTER OF POLICE.

ST. CLOUD, Zthjuly 1806.

I LEARN that Brigadier-General D has arrived in Paris,
at the Hotel d'Angleterre, and has with him Mile Catherine

Eugenia* von E . Are they married or not ? Is the

General in Paris without leave ? I can scarcely allow him
to elope with a girl, in a country where he is receiving
hospitality. Send for him and clear up this business, about
which great complaint has already been made to me.



NEW LETTERS OF NAPOLEON I 31

XLVI
TO M. FOUCHfi, MINISTER OF POLICE.

RAMBOUILLET, \tyh August 1806.

MY intention is, that, if you know where General D

is, you should send for him and question him as to a woman

named K , whom he is said to have married two months

before he eloped with Mile von E. I cannot possibly tie
the hands of justice, and the law must make an example
of so shameful a crime. Is the General aware that the
criminal court will sentence him to the galleys? How
can he have forgotten the laws of honour to such an extent ?
There is something very humiliating to every French soldier
about it all. If you know where he is, take measures to
make a report to me on the subject.

XLVII

TO M. DE TALLEYRAND, PRINCE DE BENEVENTO,
MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS.

ST. CLOUD, yd September 1806.

GIVE the most positive instructions to dissolve that
ecclesiastical academy in Tuscany, and to have the present
Nuncio at Florence, a good-for-nothing fellow, and an enemy
to France, sent about his business. Write to the Spanish
Ambassador about it and let him make a complaint on the
subject to the Court of Etruria.

XLVIII

TO M. DE TALLEYRAND, PRINCE DE BENEVENTO,
MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS.

Note on the present position of my Affairs.

ST. CLOUD, 12th September 1806.

I HAVE no interest in disturbing the peace of the Continent.
The House of Austria is not in a condition to undertake
anything. Much hatred and rivalry part Russia from Prussia.
The wounds of Austerlitz are still too fresh. It may be pre-
sumed that no considerable body of Russians will enter
4



32 NEW LETTERS OF NAPOLEON I

Europe for some time to come. They might make sacrifices
to attack the Porte; they might keep reserve forces in Poland ;
I do not think they will again venture to send 100,000 men
into Germany.

The idea that Prussia might attack me single-handed
appears to me so absurd as not to be worth discussion.

I cannot have any real alliance with any great European
Power ; that I now have with Prussia is founded on fear.
The (Prussian) Cabinet is so despicable, the King so weak,
and the Court so ruled by young officers eager to attempt
adventures, that no reliance can be placed on that Power.
It will continue to act as it has done ; it will arm and dis-
arm ; it will arm, will lie by while others fight, and will then
make terms with the victor.

All Europe is astonished at Prussia's present armament,
and yet the motive power which, for the last twelve years,
has constantly and solely impelled that Cabinet, has induced
it to arm again. This being so, we must give it full time to
recover its courage, and allow it peacefully to disarm. It
might, however, be, that Prussia, after having taken up arms
in a fright, and being reassured by my condescension, might
become alarmed as to her own strength, and might contract
alliances with other European Powers. The bond would
doubtless be a frail one : yet I must foresee the possibility,
and provide against it.

I must do two things : first, I must reassure Prussia, and
find the easiest possible means of restoring her to her former
tranquil condition ; second, I must, by every means in my
power, reinforce my armies in Germany, both with men and
war material. But these two measures are contradictory.
If they are alarmed by the troops I have there already,
they will inevitably be alarmed by those I may send. Hence
there must be a certain amount of confidence, and also a
little fear, in Prussia's disarmament ; this is the essence of
the language of the country the only real means of touch-
ing it.

M. de Lucchesini's arrival at Berlin will be an event. M.
de Talleyrand must refer to my review of my Guard yester-
day, and of that I held the day before yesterday, at the
camp at Meudon, whence the cavalry have already started.
Let him think over a conversation which, if possible, may
lead up to his getting M. de Lucchesini to write him a note,



NEW LETTERS OF NAPOLEON I 33

giving a positive assurance of the pacific intentions of his
Government, and let him undertake to await his arrival at
Berlin before sending off the Guard ; which I could not do
without informing the Senate and the public. If M. de
Talleyrand prefers it, he will have this note written by the
new Minister, before M. de Lucchesini's departure. This
new Minister will say, that he requests the Emperor will not
take any extraordinary action, until the courier bringing the
answer to Sunday's interview has returned.

My object in taking this step is to change my tone, and
instead of saying * Disarm, or I go to war ! ' which would
frighten Prussia rather too much to say * Disarm, if you do
not desire me to arm still further.' There is something more
reassuring about this form. There is a certain touch of
friendliness in it. We do not want to do anything against
Prussia the action of France depends upon hers. This
proceeding is partly reassuring and partly threatening. The
first half calms her fears, the second rouses them a little.
This middle course will thoroughly suit the Prussian mind.

The manner in which M. de Talleyrand must attain this
result is very simple. He will tell the 'new Minister, or per-
haps the new and the old together (for the matter is so
distinctly national that whatever the opposition between the
two men, they must be glad to join upon it), that ' The Em-
peror thought the King's letter satisfactory, and had sent a
satisfactory reply, when he heard that the garrison of Berlin
had departed, a week, that is to say, after the arrival of the
said letter. Yet the King's letter appeared to show he
had recovered from the alarm he had felt. Why then
continue his armament? Is it not natural to think, when
these preparations are taken in conjunction with the false
report that Russia had not ratified, with the new Minister's
arrival, and the King's letter, that all this is a means of gain-
ing time, so that the Russians may be able to get their army
together? The Emperor, on his own account, is inclined to
disbelieve it, but so many other strange things have come to
pass that this may be the case. He has therefore reinforced
his army in Germany by nearly 100,000 men ; he has called
up all his conscript reserve, and prepared all this year's con-
scripts. He would have called out his two reserve conscrip-
tions, but that cannot be done without a Decree of the Senate,
and the motive for that would have to be explained to the



34 NEW LETTERS OF NAPOLEON I

nation. It is not customary that the Guard and the Em-
peror should leave the country without some explanation.
Yet what can I do in face of the military men who are
pressing for a decision, in view of the simultaneous armaments
of Russia and Prussia ? But on the other hand, if the Em-
peror starts, I have no further hope of peace. Once the
matter has been brought publicly before the Senate, it will be
very difficult to arrange anything. What am I to say to the
Emperor to-day ?' They will say to you what they have
said to me. You will take them at their word. ' Well, write
it down ; I will take it to the Emperor ; it will carry some
weight, for, after all, we are not at war ! ' The document
will run thus : * We, the undersigned, having been notified
by the Minister for Foreign Affairs that His Majesty has
been informed that preparations were still being carried on
in Prussia, after the satisfactory letter brought His Majesty
by M. de Knobelsdorf; that even the Berlin garrison had
started ; that Prussia had, notwithstanding, already been
reassured as to any fear of an invasion by the French Army ;
that many persons were, in consequence, led to believe in the
existence of a secret alliance with some other Powers, which
made it indispensable for the Emperor to complete his
armies by calling out the reserves of his conscription, and
even by sending forward the troops in his capital, which
step would give a false idea of the existing relations between
the two States and tend to impair the harmony between the
two Courts, which has not been substantially destroyed,
reiterate to His Excellency our assurance that the King
of Prussia has no other alliance but that which binds him
to France ; that he is only arming for his own security,
and that he is very far from desiring to commit any hostile
act. And if these assurances do not suffice, we beg that no
strong and overt step may be taken by the French Govern-
ment until after the arrival of the Berlin courier. The
undersigned flatter themselves that when His Majesty the
King of Prussia becomes aware of the peaceful and amicable
intentions of the Emperor of the French, he will hasten to
do everything to re-establish the good understanding so unfor-
fortunately disturbed/ Or let them draw up something of
this nature. The point is that they should make the request
that no operation should be undertaken, till the courier's
arrival.



NEW LETTERS OF NAPOLEON I 35

The arrival of the second courier at Berlin will suffice to
reassure people as to the movements of troops I have already
made. All that will be left will be to let M. de Laforest
know what he should do, a few days later.



XLIX

TO MARSHAL BERTHIER, MAJOR-GENERAL OF THE
GRANDE ARME.

BERLIN, i6th November 1806.

You must reply to General Bisson, that it is quite useless
to remove the Duke of Brunswick's body; such a proceeding
would only reawaken feelings of attachment in the minds of
his former subjects. The result could not fail to be bad.



L

TO M. FOUCHfi, MINISTER OF POLICE.

POSEN, yd December 1806.

I HAVE your letter of 24th November. You must give
the greatest attention to the stoppage of all apocryphal
proclamations and Orders of the Day published in my name.
Several have been circulated already. That at Strasburg,
which makes me say I have duchies to give away, and 100
millions of money for the soldiers, appears to me more a
work of imagination than of spite.

LI

TO M. FOUCHfi, MINISTER OF POLICE.

PULSTUCK, ^ist December 1806.

IF M. Chenier ventures on the smallest sign, let him know
I will order him to be sent to the Isles of Ste. Marguerite.
The time for joking is quite gone by. Let him keep quiet.
That is the only right he possesses.

Do not allow that jade, Madame de Stael, to come near
Paris. I know she is not very far off.

The last bulletins will show you the great successes we
have had over the Russian armies. The supposed treaty of



36 NEW LETTERS OF NAPOLEON I

alliance between Russia and the Porte is an invention. The
Turks entered Wallachia the very moment the Russians
entered Moldavia. Have articles written in this sense, and
dated from Bucharest. The thing is true ; but still public
opinion must be enlightened. Have the same thing done
with respect to Persia, from Tiflis. The fact is, that the
Russian Empire is attacked on every side.



LII
TO GENERAL LAGRANGE, GOVERNOR OF CASSEL.

WARSAW, \-tfh January 1807.

I SEND you details of the offences committed in the country
of Hesse, and which you do not mention in your letters to
me. They tell me nothing. And yet you should have
known these facts, and you should have given an account
of them.

The inhabitants of Hersfeld appear to be guilty. You
will send a flying column of 4000 men, and have the town
thoroughly sacked, to punish the insult offered to the sixty
men of my troops.

You must proclaim an order that all arms are to be given
up, and declare that any man found with arms shall be
punished with death.

The town of Wacht is guilty. Either it will give up the
four principal authors of the revolt, or it must be burnt.

At Eschwege, which was the headquarters of the riotous
gatherings, the guilty persons must be given up, otherwise
the town will be burnt. And also, no matter how, the
captain who was the chief leader must be arrested and shot.

You have sufficient forces. If, with a weakness which I
cannot credit, you have sent them to a distance, you must
recall them. You must even ask General Loison, at Miinster,
for the 1 9th Regiment of the Line.

Thus you have two provisional regiments, the Paris Regi-
ment, the Fusiliers of the Guard, and one Italian regiment.
General Thiebault has 1500 men. I calculate, then, that
you must have nearly 10,000 men. Increase the number, if
necessary, and have the country disarmed once for all. Stop
the arms factory at Schmalkalden ; take hostages, and burn
a town or a few big villages. Have the Elector's arms



NEW LETTERS OF NAPOLEON I 37

removed wherever they may still remain ; let all officers
who have not taken service with me be arrested on the spot,
and sent to France.

All this business has been mismanaged. It is ridiculous
that the officers should have been sent by the captains to
arm the soldiers (sic). I have never desired to force them
to engage ; but, after all, this outrage on my arms must be
washed out in blood. If 10,000 men are not enough for you,
I will send you 20,000.

When you have taken all your measures thoroughly, issue
a proclamation. Say I have been shocked by the conduct
of such and such towns. Indicate the men each town is to
give up, on pain of being burnt. Add that the Elector's
House shall never reign in Hesse, for the events which have
taken place are the fruit of the bad impulse it has given to
the public mind. Visible traces must be left, to frighten the
evil-intentioned in Germany. It was thus, by burning the
big village of Bignasco, that I kept Italy quiet, in the Year IV.

You must not hide the truth from me. Make a return
of all the offences committed, with a statement of the men
who have been killed, and report things to me in their true
colours. Certain men, such as the Mayor at Schmalkalden,
have behaved well. Express my satisfaction to them.

Cause the Consistories to write the Ministers that troops
are pouring in, that many more are coming, and that if the
people desire to save themselves from great misfortune, they
must submit, and make known the authors of this revolt.

I see nothing but weakness in your letter of 3rd January.
You say Captain Huscart was forced to take service with the
insurgents. I have never accepted that excuse. No man
ever takes service to command, in spite of himself. He
must pay for his conduct with his head.

The arms may possibly have been taken from Treffurt,
but none the less is it true that the insurgents also seized
the very weapons you sent to arm the soldiers.

I am distressed to observe that you intend to send me
back the troops you have with you. I, on the contrary, am
taking measures to increase their number. No troops of any
sort are to leave Cassel until the affront put upon my arms
is avenged. I can spare 15,000 men at present ; later on,
that might be no longer possible. I expect you to show
activity and firmness. One of my couriers passes through



38 NEW LETTERS OF NAPOLEON I

Cassel every day. Send me a report by every one. Go
so far as to send special couriers, if that should appear
necessary. I long to hear my eagles are avenged.



LIII

TO PRINCE CAMBACRS, GRAND CHANCELLOR
OF THE EMPIRE.

WARSAW, 2.7 th January 1807.

I HAVE your letter of 1 7th. You may possibly hear I
am making some movement : do not be the least alarmed
by that.

If the Prince of Prussia comes to Paris, he must not be
aired about too much, for he is a very conceited young man.



LIV
TO GENERAL CLARKE, MINISTER OF WAR.

LIEBSTADT, 2isf Febrtiary 1807.

THE measures you are taking are insufficient. Write to
Crossen that I have given most positive orders ; that the
instant the Prussian partisans are received into the town, I
shall send a detachment to subject the place to military
punishment. It is their business to ward this off, and to
consider what they should do. As soon as you can send a
column to Crossen, you will require the names of the four
chief persons who have corresponded with the partisans, and
you will do the same thing at Giintersberg and Mescritz (?),
where a courier, and one of the King of Naples' aide-de-
camps, have been stopped. You will have these twelve
persons shot ; and failing that, the towns must be given
over to military punishment. Yon will have the man Koch
arrested. Major Letort did wrong not to shoot him. That
is not the way in which to perform such missions as his.
You will arrest the Burgomaster, and you will have him
shot. You will cause the Commandant of Ciistrin to pub-
lish a proclamation which will not be inserted in the
Berlin newspapers in which he will say that an effort is
being made to disturb the peace of the country and turn it



NEW LETTERS OF NAPOLEON I 39

into a desert ; that every village which harbours partisans
will be responsible for the harm they may have done to
members of the French Army ; and that the Burgomaster
who has not warned the Commandant of his Province, and
betaken himself to Ciistrin, will be arrested and treated as
being in secret correspondence with them ; that the Posting
Master will be held responsible for every courier who is
stopped by the partisans, and has not been warned by him.
I have ordered you to send a detachment to the village
where the convoy was looted, and to lay it under a heavy
fine. Keep up a ceaseless pursuit of the partisans. Prince
Jerome has sent out troops to pursue them, from his side.



LV
TO M. FOUCH, MINISTER OF POLICE.

OSTERODE, \$th March 1807.

I HAVE your letter of 2nd March. You are to see to my
orders being carried out, and not to allow Mdme de Stael
to come within forty leagues of Paris. That wicked schemer
ought to make up her mind to behave herself, at last.



LVI

TO M. DE TALLEYRAND, PRINCE DE BENEVENTO,
MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS.

OSTERODE, ytfh March 1807.

M. DUPONT-CHAUMONT'S letter of i8th March has filled
me with the deepest astonishment. I can hardly believe it.
M. Dupont ought to have sent me the document, 1 so that
I might have gathered some idea "of this piece of folly.
I might expect anything from that sort of conscientious
vermin, but I did not believe I need look forward to such a
ridiculous measure, so opposed to his own interests, and to
those of the Dutch. Write and inform General Dupont, by
special courier, that he is to see the King, and express all
my displeasure, and assure him that if he does not instantly

1 The King of Holland's Decree, re-establishing the nobility.



40 NEW LETTERS OF NAPOLEON I

withdraw his decree, I will no longer recognise htm as
King, as a French citizen, nor as a Prince of my blood, and
that he has perjured himself to the Dutch nation ; that his
kingship has depended entirely on his fulfilling the after-
mentioned conditions. I am writing in very strong terms
to the King of Holland. But I am sorry not to have the
Decree by me for if it verifies M. Dupont's letter, we must
believe the man to be mad.

Write also to M. Dupont to send all the original Dutch
Decrees. Tell him he should write every day, and let us
know everything, good and bad, and the details of the Army
establishment, so that I may form some idea of its capa-
bilities.



LVII
TO M. FOUCIIE, MINISTER OF POLICE.

FINKENSTEIN, igth April iSo;.

AMONG the thousand and one things that come into my
hands with regard to Mdme de Stae'l, this letter will show
you what a good Frenchwoman she is. If it had been
Prince Louis, our furious enemy, and the author of the
loss of his monarchy, she would have spared no pains to
see him. I am resolved she shall never leave Geneva.
Let her consort, if she chooses, with the friends of Prince
Louis ! Paying court, one day, to the great a patriot, a
democrat, the next ! One's indignation boils over at the
sight of all the shapes assumed by this . . . a fright into
the bargain ! I do not tell you of the plans already made
by this ridiculous set, in case, by some good luck, I had
been killed, for a Police Minister ought to know all that.
Everything I hear of that worthless woman shows I should
leave her in her Copper., with her Genevans and her house of
Necker.

Let me know where M. Rippaut, my librarian, is. I gave
him orders to send me the last publications, and information
as to the newest literature. I have no news of him. Is he
dead? or has he gone to the country? That would be a
very convenient way of doing his work. Send for him, and
find out why he does not carry out my intentions.



NEW LETTERS OF NAPOLEON I 41

LVIII
TO M. FOUCHfi, MINISTER OF POLICE.

FlNKENSTEIN, 2lsf April 1807.

You must have a great fuss made especially in the
departmental newspapers in Brittany, the Vendee, Pied-
mont, and Belgium over the persecution of the Irish
Catholics by the Anglican Church. For this purpose you
must collect every incident, so as to paint the persecution
in the most vivid colours. I should advise M. Portalis to
make secret arrangements with certain Bishops, so that
when the articles have produced an impression, prayers
may be offered for the cessation of the persecution of the
Irish Catholics by the Anglican Church.

But the Government must proceed very delicately in the
matter, and must make use of the newspapers without allow-
ing any suspicion of its object to get about. The editors of
the Journal de I' Empire would serve the purpose well. The
cruelty and baseness of England with regard to the Irish
Catholics, who have been, for the last century, in a perpetual
condition of St. Bartholomew (against the Catholics), must
be insisted upon. You must always say ' Anglican Church'
instead of * Protestant ' ; for we have Protestants in France,
and we have no Anglican Church.



Online LibraryEmperor of the French Napoleon INew letters of Napoleon I, omitted from the edition published under the auspices of Napoleon III → online text (page 4 of 34)