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our growth, and strengthened with our " I insisted (her birthday fête) on his tast- strength,' until it fully ripened into that settled ing a piece of birthday cake, which had been jealousy which was but too apparent in all the sent for that occasion by a friend from Eng- iransactions which took place between the land, and who, little knowing the strict surveil- individual inhabitants of the hostile countries, lance exercised over all those in any way con- It was, therefore, not without the assistance of nected with the fallen chief and his adhérents, all my small stock of girlish assurance that had the cake ornamented with a large, eagle; I ventured to answer, Oh! he has the inost this. unluckily for us, was the subject of much abominable opinion of you in the vorld ; animadversion. I named it to Napoleon as an says you shut him up for ten years in the inducement for him to eat the cake. saying, 'Il Temple; and there is no end to the barbarities is the least you can do for getting us into such that he lays to your charge. He declared to disgrace. Having thus induced him to eat a us that, on one occasion, they removed him thick slice, he pinched iny ear, calling me a from one cell to another, which had been just saucy simpleton. anil galloped away humming, vacated by the corpse of a man who had shot or rather attempting to sing, with his most himself through the head, and that he met the unmusical voice, Vive Henri Quatre.?". body on the way. Moreover, his gaolers had
not the decency to wash away the dead man's desired me to consider myself under arrest for brains, which had been scatiered on the wall, at least a week; and I was transferred from the but left them there for the special annoyance drawing-room to a dark cellar, and there left of the living occupant. Besides that, he ac- 10 solitude and repentance.”—“I was taken to cuses you of nearly starving him: to such an my cell every morning, and released at night extent did he suffer from want of food, that he only to go to bed. The emperor's great and Captain Shaw, a fellow-sufferer, once amusement during that time wae to converse tore a live duck_to pieces, and devoured it with me through my grated window; and he like cannibals.' The emperor observed, that generally succeeded in making me laugh by it was not to be wondered at that Captain mimicking my dolorous countenance.”— Wallis was so inveterate against him, as he “There was a lady, the wife of an officer in was the lieutenant who, together with Wright, the 66th regiment, a Mrs. Baird, who sung had been convicted of landing spies and bri- and played very well; among her favorite gands in his territories, for which they were songs was a monody upon the Duke d’Enafterwards reported to have been murdered ghien. I learned this, and sang it to Napoleon by his (the emperor's) orders.”—“One Sunday one day at Madame Bertrand's. morning, Napoleon came bustling, in, and pleased with the air, and asked what it was. seeing me very earnestly employed reading I showed it to him: there was a vignette on aloud to my sister, asked what I was so in the cover of the music, representing a man tently engaged upon, and why I looked so standing in a ditch, with a bandage round his much graver than usual. I told him I was eyes, and a lantern tied to his waist; in front learning to repeat the collect for the day, and of him several soldiers, with their muskets that if I failed in saying it, my father would levelled in the act of firing. He asked what be very angry. I remarked, 'I suppose you it meant. I told him it was intended to reprenever learnt a collect or any thing religious, sent the murder of the Duke d'Enghien. He for I am told you disbelieve the existence of a looked at the print with great interest, and God.' He seemed displeased at my observa asked what I knew about it. I told him he tion, and answered, you have been told an was considered the murderer of that illustrious uniruth; when you are wiser you will under-prince. He said, in reply, it was true, he had stand that no one could doubt the existence of ordered his execution, for he was a conspiraa God.'. My mother asked him if he was a tor, and had landed troops in the pay of the predestinarian, as reported. He admitted the Bourbons to assassinate him; and he thought truth of the accusation, saying, 'I believe that from such a conspiracy, he could not act in a whatever a man's destiny calls upon him to more politic manner than by causing one of do, that he must sulfil.”—“When we saw their own princes to be put to death, in order Napoleon after this (his first) illness, the the more effectually to deter them from athavoc and change it had made in his appear-tempting his life again; that the prisoner was ance was sad to look upon. His face was tried for having borne arms against the reliterally the color of yellow wax, and his public, and was executed according to the excheeks had fallen in pouches on either side isting laws; but not, as here represented, in a his face. His ancles were so swollen that the ditch, and at night. There was nothing seflesh literally hung over his shoes; he was so cret in the transaction; all was public and weak, that without resting one hand on a open.”. table near him, and the other on the shoulder With this we conclude our disjointed exof an attendant, he could not have stood. . . . tracts. The volume is adorned by half a dozHe, however, rallied from this attack, to pass en plates from the pencil of Miss Abell
, the nearly three more years in hopeless misery; young lady we have already alluded to as a for it became more evident to him that the songstress of sweet and cultivated promise, anticipation in which he indulged (on first whom we have heard in private society as coming to St. Helena) of quitting the island, a prelude (we were told) to the concert-room. became fainter as health declined and time with regard to the author herself, unlike the wore on."
Pretty Besse,” her namesake of Bethnal “I recollect exhibiting to Napoleon a carica- Green, whose travels, we believe extended no ture of him in the act of climbing a ladder. larther than to Lea and Romford, she has Each step he ascended represented some van- seen more of the world than has fallen to the quished country; at length he was seated lot of many women. She has traversed India astride upon the world. Ii was a famous toy; and South America, not in a search like that and, by a dexterous trick, Napoleon appeared of Cælebs, but in one of a more afflicting naon the contrary side, tumbling down head cure, and ending not in the happy style of over heels, and after a perilous descent, alight-novel dénouement. To the sympathy of every ing on St. Helena. I ought not to have feeling heart she is eminently entitled; and on shown him this burlesque on his misfortunes; every ground we once more earnestly recombut at that time I was guilty of every descrip-mend her book. tion of mad action, thouylı without any intention of being unkind; still I sear they were ofien deeply felt. My father, of whom I al. ways stood in awe, heard of my rudeness, and
MAXIMILIEN ROBESPIERRE, share of hostile feeling, and, as a natural
consequence, the spoken and written exFrom the British and Foreign Review.
pression of it. But although we are not 1. Choir de Rapports, Opinions et Dis- surprised at the obloquy heaped upon his
cours Prononcés à la Tribune Nationale name, we should have expected a more cordepuis 1789 jusqu'à nos jours; recueillis rect estimate of his character than has been dans un ordre chronologique et histori- furnished recently in this country by such que. Tom. 1-14. Paris : Alexis Eyme- writers as Mr. Carlyle and Lord Brougham. ry, 1818-1820:
Mr. Carlyle, while he has striven to ele2. Histoire Parlementaire de la Révolu- vate Mirabeau into a miracle of genius if
tion Française, ou Journal des Assem- not of virtue,-a man thoroughly immoral, blées Nationales, depuis 1789 jusqu'en intellectually possessed of a few superficial 1815. Par P. J. B. Buchez et P. C. accomplishments, capable indeed of occaRoux. Tom. 1-36. Paris : Paulin, sional effective bursts of eloquence, but en1834-1838.
dued with little of the real genius of a states3. Papiers Inédits trouvés chez Robes- man,-while he has represented Danton as
pierre, Saint-Just, Payan, etc., sup- not unredeemed by some virtues, and posprimés ou omis par Courtois ; précédés sessing much energy and even generosity of du Rapport de ce Député à la Conven- character-while he extols the eloquence tion Nationale. Tom. 1, 2, 3. 8vo. of Vergniaud and Guadet, though belonging Paris : Baudouin Frères, 1828.
to a party which he deems signally deficient 4. Lord Brougham's ' Historical Sketches in vigor,- has described Maximilien Robes
of Statesmen,'-article Robespierre.' pierre as a "poor sea-green atrabiliar forThird Series. London: C. Knight and mula of a man; without head, without heart, Co. 1843.
or any grace, gift, or even vice beyond comExactly half a century has elapsed since mon, if it were not vanity, astucity, diseased the individual who bore the name of Maxi- rigor as of a cramp: meant by nature for a milien Robespierre,* commenced that dark Methodist parson of the stricter sort, to journey on which he had sent so many. doom men who departed from the written
The time is probably not yet arrived for confession; to chop fruitless shrill logic; forming a completely correct estimate of to contend and suspect and ineffectually him, and of many others who were actors wrestle and wriggle.” in the same great drama. The subject is
“It would be difficult," says Lord Broughone beset with great and peculiar difficul- am,
to point out within the whole range ties; for if Robespierre, instead of his half- of history, ancient or modern, any person century, had "outlived his century," it could who played so great a part as Robespierre hardly be said of him, as of the great poet
with so little genius.” But how can 2 to whom Johnson applied the words, that man be said to have little genius, whose "the effects of favor and competition were speeches went, if not as directly, as surely, at an end,” that “the tradition of his friend to their end as Napoleon's shot,—that end ships and his enmities had perished.” Even being the attainment of the supreme powin the case of politicians in ordinary times, er of the state, during (to use Lord Broughto baffled rivals, disappointed suitors, unsat-am's own words)" by far the most critical isfied claimants, delinquents justly punished, period of French history in any age ?” Inand unprosperous men of all kinds and de- deed Lord Brougham is too great an orator grees, there naturally belong feelings of dis- himself to mistake, as some have done, the appointment, hatred and revenge, so strong value of Robespierre's speeches; and the that their poison circula es through the veins opinion he expresses respecting them of successive generations. But, as a politi- seems strangely at variance with the above cian, Robespierre was far more than ordin- dictum respecting Robespierre's poverty of arily successful, in times any thing but ordin- intellect. Does it then require little genary. A man who wielded a political power ius to produce passages of eloquence posso much superior to that attained by average sessing, according to Lord Brougham's adpoliticians, could hardly escape from his mission, “merit of the highest order," —
passages of the kind “ most surely calcula* His name at full was François Maximilien Jo- ted to awaken, to gratify, to control an asseph Isidore Robespierre. He was entered at col: sembly deliberating on the actual affairs of lege and elected to the States-General as de Robespierre. But when the de fell into bad repute, he dropped it.
* Historical Sketches, Third Series, p. 51.
men ?" Does it, in short, require little gen- around him, an embodied and living lie, but ius to be capable, as Lord Brougham also he believes that the cause which he now adadmits, of putting forth occasional powers vocates is true and will prevail, and he is of oratory, unequalled save by Demosthe- ready to stand by it, even unto the end. nes? Robespierre may have been, most No royal or aristocratic gold can buy him. probably was, a coward; so too was De- The man who, when dictator of France, mosthenes; so too was Cicero, and a boaster lived in a cabinet-maker's lodging in the besides, which Robespierre was not. He Rue St. Honoré, --who, with the disposal had indeed other qualities, not of a magnan- of uncounted millions, limited his expendiimous nature: but that he was altogether ture to eight shillings a day, and left at his “pusillanimous and vile .... beyond most death but a few francs behind him, —could men that ever lived, hateful, selfish, afford to merit the name of “incorruptible.” unprincipled, cruel, unscrupulous ;" that No man can afford to be honest whose (though he might be “one of the most exe- wants exceed his legitimate means; and incrable”) he was “one of the most despica- so far as honesty is a source of power, and ble characters recorded in the annals of our frugality of honesty, the simple habits of race," are conclusio which we deem to Robespierre unquestionably contributed to be entirely contrary to evidence.
the establishment of his power. What did Robespierre accomplish? who are most affected in this way are oraWhat were the deeds that made him power-tors: a conqueror can do without such aid ; ful and what were the deeds that made him but the confidence in, and consequent powhateful ?
er of, an orator depend not a little on the Among the members of the Constituent belief in his sincerity—in his being perfectAssembly there appeared an obscure advo- ly earnest in what he says. Suppose that cate of the bar of Arras, of a mean and re- Mirabeau and Danton were even superior pulsive aspect, a dimimutive and feeble to Robespierre as orators; but suppose at body, and weak health, with a harsh discor- the same time that it was darkly hinted dant voice, and slow, hesitating utterance, that each of them had his price,* what a by name Maximilien Robespierre. The sapping of the foundations of power must son of an advocate, if possible more obscure that have been. than himself, who had quitted France dur But the reason of Robespierre's pre-emiing the infancy of his children, leaving nent power and reputation must be sought them to be educated by charity, his person- for elsewhere than in freedom from pecunial disadvantages were uncompensated by ary corruption, for others (though not all) either wealth or connection. Such being of that terrible Committee were equally carethe gifts which nature and fortune had be- less of money, though he alone had the stowed upon him, it was hardly to be ex- good fortune to be called the “ incorruptipected that the feeble, friendless and ob- ble." Lord Brougham thinks (and Garat in scure advocate of Arras should attract his ‘Mémoires' had long before given nearmuch attention on the stage, until the high- ly the same explanation) that the reason born and the rich, the strong-bodied and is to be sought in Robespierre's early perthe strong-voiced, bad strutted there, and ception of the power of the people, or of the fretted out their hour. Aud assuredly in multitude overawing the people, and of their the drama in which Robespierre had to act, love for extreme courses, in the unhesitaif something beyond mere physical strength ting pursuit of one principle, without deviand courage had not prevailed, the spirit ating to suit purposes of expediency, or which once dwelt in that mean and feeble temporizing to consult prudential views, body could not have left behind it so terri- whether of individual advantage or of public ble a name. Look at the man, and then safety,—and in seeing that whoever outbid turn from him to the patrician Lafayette all others in violence was sure to carry and Lameth, to the handsome Barbaroux, away the favor of the unreflecting multitude. and the brawny Mirabeau and Danton, and
* Lord Brougham says (Second Series, p 271) you might say that the chances against him
that 90,000 francs, paid with promises of more, were the world to nothing - Plantagenet's was Danton's price to the court ; and that Montdukedom to a beggarly denier! But the morin (whose execution he caused) had his receipt peculiarity of that small atrabilious-looking for the money. But in his Third Series, p. 78, man is that he has brains, eyes to see and Lord Brougham says that in the former volume ears to hear, and above all faith in the truth he had expressed himself respecting Danton with
a barshness which a more minute study of his of what he utters. He is ot like many conduct and character made him regret.
[Oct. This view may be correct as far as it goes, His Lordship does not say whence he took but it is a very inadequate explanation of the his report, but as the rhetorical effect is betcauses of Robespierre's reputation and pow- ter brought out in it, we shall adopt it here, er. It is rather applicable to the mushroom premising that there seems to be some typopopularity of vulgar demagogues, than to the graphical error in calling the deputy Dufortunes of the most consummate master of pont instead of Duport, and that it is not the art of wielding (without millitary aid) strictly correct to call him “an adherent of the wild forces of a revolution, that has ap- the Lameth party,” seeing that of the party peared in ancient or modern times. so called, he (Duport) was the head, Bar
In the Constituent Assembly, though by nave the tongue, and the Lameths, who were no means silent or inactive, Robespierre soldiers, the hands. The words in italics are was far from having attained the influence so marked in Lord Brougham's report:of Mirabeau and some others. In fact, he
" Duport used insulting gestures* towards was still struggling with the disadvantages him. He calmly said, addressing the chair, of his position,—the obstacles which nature • M. le Président, je vous prie de dire à M. and fortune had thrown in his way; he had Duport, de ne pas m'insulter, s'il veut rester not reached the turning-point, after which auprès de moi. Then turning alternately to he might have the full advantage of those Duport and the Lameths, he proceeded; "Je gifts which nature had bestowed upon him.
ne présume pas qu'il existe dans cette assemBut even there he not unfrequently dis- avec la cour sur un article de notre code con
blée un homme assez lache, pour transige! played eloquence of no common kind, institutionnel (all eyes were fixed on the party the face of obstacles which it required no of Lameth)-assez perfide, pour fair proposer common strength of will and perseverance par elle des changemens nouveaux, que la to overcome. For his opinions, being ex- pudeur ne lui permettroit pas de proposer luitreme and very decided, and not backed by même (much applause, and looks again directhigh birth, place, wealth or reputation, enneni de la patrie, peur chercher décréditer
ed towards Duport and the Lamethe)-assez could not fail to appear impertinent to a la constitution parcequ'elle meltroit quelque majority of those to whom they were address- borne à son ambition ou à sa cupidité (more ed. He had a trick of saying things which applause)—assez impudent, pour avour aux appeared truths to him, but startling and yeux de la nation qu'il n'a cherché dans la offensive heresies to others. In the debate révolution que des moyens de s'aggrandir et upon bringing up the Report of the Com- de s'élever. Car, je ne veux regarder certains
écrits et certains discours qui pourroient prémittee, upon the mode of presenting the constitution to the King on the Ist of Sep-gère du dépit déjà expié par le repentir. 'Non;
senter ce sens, que comme l'explosion passatember, 1791, Robespierre made a speech, du moins nous ne serons ni assez stupides, ni in the course of which, amid“ applaudissemens des tribunes publiques, et dans une
gislative proceedings. We have been able to ex.
tract nothing either from the Gazette,' the 'Jourpartie du côté gauche, et murmures dans nal de Paris' or the Mercure de France. We les autres parties de la salle,” he called up- have therefore had occasion to refer for matter to on the president to order a deputy near him pamphlets (most of them printed secretly and not to insult him. Lord Brougham's report without date). . Of these pamphlets we have cop of what followed differs slightly both from to the 14th of July 1789. After that time inde
sulted above a thousand for the period antecedent the report in the 'Choix de Rapports' and pendent newspapers were established, but sets of from that in the Histoire Parlementaire.'* ihem are difficult to be met with.' Cases are
known of sonie, of which perhaps but two copies * On the subject of the accuracy of their reports, exist." -- Histoire Parlementaire de la Révolution M. M. Buchez and Roux observe : “We will not Française, tom ii., Preface, pp. 3, 4. exaggerate the difficulties of our task. But silence
* This meets the assertion of some of Duport's upon the subject would justify an opinion that it friends that he did not say a word to Robespierre. had been supposed sufficient to consult the columns « M. Latie. Je jure que M. Duport n'a pas of the Moniteur.' It is indeed a common belief dit un seul mot à M. Robespierre. that this journal contains the most complete col “ Plusieurs membres placés auprès de M. Dulection of documents concerning the Revolution. port assurent qu'ils n'ont rien entendu.”-Hist. Unfortunately the fact is not so. The Moniteur' | Parl., tom. ii. p 391. does not even report fully the debates of the Na The report in the Choix de Rapports' is more tional Assembly. When Robespierre is concerned dramatic : it usually confines itself to saying that he spoke,
Ladie.—C'est méchanceté, une