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DURING THE REIGN OF
An accident which occurred a few steps from the
THE PRISON OF BAYONNE, prison, nearly disconcerted a plan which had been so well conceived, and so far so well executed. At the gate of the temple the commodore, his secretary, the adjutant general, and his assistant, entered a hack: the During the reign of terror any thing sufficed for a driver had been well paid, and ordered to proceed with prison, and almost any body for a prisoner. At Bayrapidity. At the moment of starting, not perceiving onne a chapel had been selected, into which a hundred the stall of a vegetable-merchant, he upset his paniers, or a hundred and fifty persons were crowded. But a and came near wounding a child. A crowd was col- single piece of the original furniture remained; that lected, and already the cry of "to the police” was heard, was the pulpit; and the jailor, a genuine specimen of when the two prisoners, to whom a visit to such func- the provincial sansculottes, ascended it daily to deliver tionaries would have been by no means agreeable, his prisoners a patriotic address. This jailor was at opening each one a door, threw themselves out of the the bottom a brave man; and he treated his prisoners coach, and disappeared with the two officers. A cars humanely enough, provided at the end of his harangues riage, well supplied with horses, waited on the Boule- they shouted with him—“Long live the republic, one and varts. Smith and Wright left Paris instantly, and set indivisible !" off the same evening for London.
One day the jailor appeared in the pulpit at an unuNow for the explanation. The minister of the ma- sual hour. The most profound grief was painted on rine, Pléville le Pley, had been absent some months be- his countenance; the prisoners, trembling, awaited fore on a visit to Lille, for the purpose of conferring some of those notifications of death to which they were with the English envoy, Lord Malmesbury. On leav- but too well accustomed. ing Paris he had placed in the hands of his secretary
“Citizens,” said he, "every thing is destroyed; the some blank signatures for the despatch of business. republic is destroyed : Robespierre is guillotined ; SaintOne of these was adroitly stolen by a Dalmatian Just is guillotined; Couthon is guillotined. Every named Wiskowich; and it was on this paper, stamped thing is destroyed: one no longer knows what saint to at the top with the words ministry of the marine,
worship.” and having the true signature and seal of the minister And in descending he forgot his cry of “ Long live the at the bottom, that the order of transfer was writ- republic
, one and indivisible !” which but few voices would cen.
have repeated after him. The Adjutant General Auger was no other than a third or fourth rate opera dancer named Boisgirard, and his adjutant, an individual of the name of Legrand, a leader of the insurrection of Palluan, of which,
THE FIRST CONSUL, however, he had been acquitted by regular trial, though he had reason to fear, at the time, new prosecutions.
Napoleon, while first consul and emperor, consecrated There was another singular circumstance attending almost every day, when at Paris, an hour or two after this transaction. The expenses of the escape were dinner to familiar conversations, to which but few were paid in advance through the credit given M. de Trome- admitted. The second consul, or the arch-chancellor, lin; but the compensation to be given in case of suc- the minister, secretary of state, generals of the first cess was still to be settled, and the Ottoman Porte was rank, two or three aids-de-camp, and those of the councharged with this part of the affair. Spencer Smith, cil of state, who enjoyed, in an eminent degree, the fabrother to the commodore, was then British ambassador vor of the supreme chief, were of the number. in Turkey: he had enough influence to cause the dancer These conversations were prolonged or shortened as Boisgirard, Legrand and the rest to be entered nominally the first consul had slept more or less the preceding in the service of the Porte. Never, certainly, did the night, or in proportion to the fatigue he had undergone audience of the opera or the national academy of music in the course of the day: they were sad or gay as the suspect that among the dancers who figured before them news of the morning was bad or good. Sometimes the for 1,200 francs a year, there was to be found a colonel conversation naturally terminated when Napoleon, in the service of the Sublime Porte, enjoying a monthly stretched on a sofa, fell asleep. allowance of 900 francs.
One evening the first consul (he was still so at this The morning after the escape, the keeper of the tem- period) showed himself more than usually communicaple mentioned in his daily report the transfer of the live. He spoke alone-he spoke eloquently. He was two prisoners, in virtue of the order of the minister, listened to with as much pleasure as interest. Almost founded on the decree of the directory. Such transfers every subject had been reviewed; at last the word amwere effected every day, and the officer, whose duty it bition was pronounced. was to receive the reports of the prisons, paid no more “I am supposed to be ambitious,” said he. "Ambiattention to that than to the rest; and it was not until tious! and of what? I ambitious! Listen, gentlethe expiration of ten days that the police was informed. men, attentively to what I am going to say; I authorize The accomplices of the escape were all known, but they you to repeat it. In three years I will retire from pubwere scarcely troubled. The keeper, named Boniface, lie affairs. I will then have an annual income of fifty (and never was a name better suited to the person who thousand livres; with my tastes that will be more than bore it) had been deprived of his office, when on the enough. I will have a country seat, because Madame 3d Nitose he was transported.
Bonaparte loves the country. I mean to ask only one thing; I shall have well merited it, and I must absolutely
have it. I desire to be justice of the peace in my can- | the last conspiracy of Georges, in 1804, and perished ton. Am I ambitious ?"
with him. Lahaye St. Hilaire was also engaged in the The first consul spoke thus in the commencement of conspiracy of 1804, and again escaped. We find him 1802.
in Brittainy in 1806, carrying off the bishop of Vannes, whom he refused to exchange except for two of his men
then in prison. He was finally taken in a struggle THE AUTHORS OF THE INFERNAL
which cost the life of an officer of gendarmerie, and unMACHINE.
derwent his sentence in 1807. 3 Nivose-24 decEMBER, 1800.
Picot de Limoëlan, who censured the employment of
tinder, observing, “I would have set fire to il with a I shall say nothing of the event of the 3d of Nivose mctch, and have remained standing where I was," did not itself. The mysteries of that fearful conspiracy have reappear at the head quarters of Georges. He em. been sufficiently explained by the trial of two of its barked as a sailor at St. Malo: afterwards, retiring into authors. I intend to confine myself to a few details, a holy asylum, he became a priest. A letter from him, either little divulged or entirely unknown.
addressed to his sister, was seized. Fearing lest it The affair of the 3d of Nivose occurred at a moment should be stopped by English cruizers, he wrote above when the reaction against the Jacobins was at its height, the direction : "Englishmen, permit this letter to pass; il a month after the foolish attempt of Démerville, Aréna, is from a man who has done and suffered much for your Céracchi, Diana, and Topino Lebrun. The Jacobins cause.” were accordingly the first to be suspected. The first An agent of exchanges at Paris, M. Nolin, while traconsul adopted this opinion warmly. It was for a mo- velling, was mistaken for Limoëlan, and arrested at ment believed that Fouché would be disgraced, as he Montpellier. During his short captivity he was the was accused of protecting the Jacobins, and had de object of the most anxious care of the faithful in that nounced the Chouans as the real authors of the crime. royalist city. M. Nolin affected to laugh at the matter,
The most violent measures were proposed in the coun- and to let things take their own course. The keeper cil of state. A list of those to be proscribed was pre- of the prison was bribed. M. Nolin was allowed to pared in such haste, that the name of a man who had escape, and was carried to a community of religious been dead six months, and of another who had been people, where he was honored as a saint. Every thing nefour years absent from France, figured on it.
cessary to effect his escape and flight into a foreign Nothing less than the physical proofs which Fouché country was placed at his disposal ; and his courage in submitted to the first consul could overcome his preju- refusing to leave his prison was greatly admired. dices; and although the authors of the crime were af The order for his discharge could scarcely put an terwards known, the Jacobins were nevertheless pro- end to the illusion. scribed; the proscription was only less numerous. Forty Jacobins were transported to the Sechelles isles for a crime committed by Chouans.
THE HORSE-SHOE. Georges, in the different examinations to which he was subjected after his arrest in 1804, declared that he At the moment of the explosion of the infernal mahad sent some officers of his staff to Paris to assassinate chine, Fouché and M. Real were entering the opera, the first consul. But, he added, that he blamed the where the oratorio of Saul was to be performed. Inmethod which had been chosen, that by explosion, as it formed a few minutes afterwards of the details of the endangered the lives of the innocent.
event, they left their wives and went out on foot for the The authors of the infernal machine were Picot de purpose of going, each a different way, to the place of Limoëlan, St. Réjand, Lahaye St. Hilaire, Joyaux and the explosion, having previously agreed to meet in the Carbon: the last was a sort of servant charged only course of the evening at the hotel of the minister of with the duty of obtaining the necessary articles for the police. execution of the conspiracy. Picot de Limoëlan, major The rue St. Nicaise and the surrounding streets were general of Georges, was the important man in the af. already filled with agents of the police: the crowd of fair, and commanded in Georges' name: St. Réjand, an anxious spectators were driven by the troops back into old naval officer, was the person who set fire to the ma. the rue St. Honoré and to the side of the Carrousel. chine with a sort of tinder. In his report to Georges, The street St. Nicaise was filled with ruins. In the which he feared would be seized by the police, he spoke centre lay the remains of a horse, whose limbs had been of the act as a matter of hearsay, and of the principal so violently torn asunder and scattered, that only a sinauthor of the crime as a malefactor.
gle leg could be recognized. Will it be believed that “The malefactor,” said he, "has declared to a pious this deformed fragment of the horse was the means of person that he prayed at the moment of setting fire to leading to the discovery of the truth? the tinder. In this prayer he asked of God to avert M. Real immediately observed a shoe which seemed the blow, if the life of Napoleon would be useful to the to have been lately put on, still attached to the hoof. human family.”
He instantly comprehended its importance, as a means Lahaye St. Hilaire and Joyaux were officers of of leading to the discovery of the authors of the crime, Georges, sent to aid in the execution of the conspiracy. and caused a sentinel to be placed near that it might
Carbon and St. Réjend were condemned to death, be carefully guarded. and executed the 20th of April, 1801. Joyaux, Lahaye The next morning the fragments of the cart and the St. Hilaire and Picot de Limoēlan escaped in the con- remains of the horse were carried to the prefecture of fusion of the first moment. Joyaux was concerned in | police, and all the blacksmiths as well as the cartwrights
OF THE CONSPIRACY OF GEORGES.
of the capitol were invited to examine them. A smith moment received the news of some victory, which it is recognized the shoe as having been made at his forge, celebrating by salutes of artillery. It must be anand gave the description of the individual who had nounced to the public; it will produce a good effect.” brought the horse to him, about five feet one inch in The manager threw some difficulties in the way, which height, with a scar above the left eye. It was the de- M. Armand d'Ailly victoriously combatted. At length scription of Carbon.
the curtain is drawn up, the actor advances, makes the three customary bows, and says: “Gentlemen, we
hasten to make known to the public, that the governM. DE BOURMONT DURING THE EVENING ment has this instant received the news of a victory of OF THE THIRD NIVOSE.
the French army. This victory, the consequences of Fouché and M. Real, after minutely examining the the population of the capital by the cannon of the In
which are incalculable, is announced at this moment to place, and the fragments which the explosion had left, and
valides." giving the necessary orders for guarding them, repaired, as had been agreed, to the hotel of the police. They rested. Closely confined in the prison of the Force, he
Three days afterwards M. Armand d'Ailly was arhad been there but a few moments, when M. de Bour- had the greatest difficulty in proving that he was not mont was announced. M. Real went out to receive connected with the conspiracy of the infernal machine. him. M. de Bourmont came to offer to the minister of police to arm, against the Jacobins, three hundred Chouars, then concealed at Paris, and under his orders. M. Real did not believe, any more than Fouché, that
DISCOVERY the Jacobins were guilty of the attempted assassination. The course of M. de Bourmont appeared to them suspicious, and an order was given for his arrest, which Much has been written about the conspiracy of was executed at once.
Georges; the examinations of the numerous persons When the first consul heard of this incident he ex. who were arraigned and who figured with him on the hibited an ill humor that could only have resulted from benches of the criminal tribunal of the Seine, have the opinion to which he tenaciously adhered, that the been published in many volumes; every thing seems Jacobins had co-operated in the crime which had threat to have been said about this affair. One thing, howened his life. He ordered M. de Bourmont to be set ever, has been omitted, the recital of the circumstances free; and when, afterwards, the true authors of the at, which led to the discovery of the royalist plot of 1804. tempt were known, the extraordinary proceeding of On this subject there are two different versions; for this Mendian chief, an explanation of which it was so the one which I have traced to the most authentic advisable to have sought, was already forgotten.
sources I will name iny authorities; the other was Is it not, in fact, reasonable to suppose that M. de communicated to me by the most agreeable talker I Bourmont was in the secret of the conspiracy, and that ever knew, by Charles Nodier. I was in possession his proposition to the minister was made with no other of the version, which I may call the original one, when view than to turn aside suspicion, and to protect the Charles Nodier related to me bis, which was so well flight of those who were really guilty, by misleading arranged and so naturally constructed, that I, finding the police? Yet notwithstanding his deception in this myself so much delighted with the acquaintance of instancc, Napoleon's prejudices on some points were Charles Nodier, could not hesitate to give it credit. so strong, that, a long time afterwards, he thanked M. Nodier spoke to me, however, de visu; but this worthy de Bourmont for the good intentions he had exhibited individual has seen so many things during his long life, towards him. It is perhaps to the proposition of the that he is excusable for not having seen them all third Nivose, in itself so unjustifiable, that M. de Bour.
equally well. mont owed the advancement which he obtained in the
The circumstances which led to the discovery of army, and the possibility of desertion on the evening Georges' conspiracy, are not known, and for this reason preceding the battle of Waterloo.
the police were taken by surprise, and the police is not In a great many instances one inay observe in the fond of exhibiting its blunders ; they had some indisemperor this singular predilection for the royalists, and, tinct idea of a scheme for a debarkation on the steep generally, for every thing connected with the aristo- coast of Dieppe, but were ignorant of the moment secracy. .
lected; they commenced watching the coast with great
precaution when these debarkations was already efM. ARMAND D'AILLY.
fected, and the conspirators were concealed at Paris.
The first consul was at the Tuileries conversing with M. Armand d'Ailly, who is, I believe, still on the many councillors of state, when General Murat, comFrench stage, had made a successful debut in his dra- mander of Paris, was announced; he came to submit matie career in 1800. At the period of the attempted to Bonaparte a letter, in which a person who had been assassination of the third Nivose, he was enıployed as condemned to death and was then about to be executed, a comedian at the theatre des Troubadours.
asked leave to make some disclosures. The first consul M. Armand d'Ailly happened to be finishing a part, read the letter, and said, after a moment's reflection : when the explosion in the rue St. Nicaise was heard. "This is some poor devil who wishes to gain an hour As soon as he had got behind the scenes, he took the of life ; hope, then, is the last sentiment that remains ! manager aside and said: “There has just been a dis. What he has to say is probably not worth the trouble charge of cannon. Doubtless the government has this I of putting oneself out of the way; no matter, let us
hear what it is. Real, will you go and speak with|I repeat, perfectly innocent of the crime for which I him? But no reprieve, do you hear, I will have none.” have been condemned; nevertheless, I was believed to
The emperor used the right of pardon which the con- be guilty; I defended myself badly; my position was stitution conferred on him, very sparingly, and he de 100 false a one; for though innocent on one point, I clared that he had occasion to repent of every instance have not the less deserved death; I am guilty on anoin which he applied it. In political matters he prefer- ther; I conspired with Georges; I assisted in the de. red not to prosecute at all. Many little conspiracies- barkation of his accomplices on the coast near Dieppe; many projects of assassination directed against them, I came to Paris with them; they are all concealed here." were discovered by the police, with which the tribunals The attention of M. Real, intensely excited, increased were never troubled. They found out the originators with every word; he pressed the wretched culprit with and the accomplices in each conspiracy, and after keep-repeated questions; his answers were simple, precise, ing them a few months in prison, set them at liberty. consistent; in a short time no doubt remained in his Such a system is perhaps not very rigorously conform- mind. An order was forthwith despatched to close the able to our principles of liberty ; is it less excellent on barriers, and to institute the most rigorous surveillance that account?
over the departure of travellers ; M. Real ordered the In compliance with the first consul's request, M. Real commander of the armed force to await additional inrepaired to the Abbaye. The armed force destined to structions, leapt into his carriage and drove in the grealaccompany the prisoners to the place of execution, was est haste to the Tuileries. On his arrival the first conalready ranged around the square, keeping back the sul said: crowd of curious spectators. The prisoner had been “Well! it was some silliness. The unfortunate culplaced in a lower room of the prison, lighted by a small prit is despatched, is he not ?" window looking on the square, and guarded by thick “No." bars. From this place he could observe the preliminary “How! no?" preparations for his punishment; one of the gendarmes, “I have learnt strange things; Georges and his band having dismounted, had fastened the bridle of his horse are in Paris.” to a bar of the window. The return of the order des. " Ridiculous!" patched to the commandant at Paris, was the only “No, it is but too serious.” thing they now awaited.
“ Indeed ?" M. Real entered, made himself known, and was im “ Indeed." mediately introduced into the chamber of the prisoner, Here M. Real observed a movement, which the first whom he found, pale, alarmed, and scarcely able to consul was accustomed to make by turning half round, speak a word.
a gesture entirely Italian, a sort of sign of the cross. You have,” he said, "announced your intention to "Let us hear what it is." make some disclosures; 1 come to hear what they are.” “The police has been entirely misled; I hold the
“Ah! yes, it is true, I have many things to say; clue to the whole affair." but see, every thing is finished; of what advantage And he detailed what he had just learnt. will it be for me to speak ?"
"The devil! is it serious ! and do you believe the And with a gesture of despair the wretched man man?" pointed to the frightful exhibition so inhumanly placed "It is impossible not to believe him." under his eyes.
“ You have not suffered him to be executed." M. Real was struck with horror; his interest was “No, undoubtedly; I took upon myself to order the excited, and beckoning to the jailor he said a few words executioner to wait your instructions." to him in a short and severe tone, and the prisoner was “You have done well.” instantly transferred to another apartment. He then “An order of reprieve must be despatched.” strove to reassure him, had some refreshments brought, “Write, I will sign it.” and observing that he had become calmer, again invited The order is immediately prepared, signed, and deshim to explain himself.
patched. “I have no power to promise your pardon ; it must “Now, Real, we must take measures to prevent their come from a higher source ; if, indeed, that which you cscaping us." have to disclose is of great importance, perhaps" “I have already ordered the barriers to be closed, and
“Will it be possible, sir ? But no, the hour of my that all persons should be rigorously examined who death has sounded; they only wait your departure to desire to go out or enter the city. The whole band carry me out. No matter—I will 'have a more quiet will be soon notified; seeing the execution suspended conscience, and if I must die I will at least have done their suspicions will be naturally excited; I go to preone good action.”
pare every thing that remains to be done. But, general, "Speak; all hope is not yet lost."
you have a review for to-morrow; there are seventy “Yes, sir, I will speak; but believe me, the interest desperate men in the city, perhaps others yet unknown of the first consul requires that you should confide in to us; every means of quitting Paris is denied them; the words of a dying man. I am condemned to death; they can have no safety but in your death; these men I have been dragged before a military commission; are in the midst of us; a pistol is easily fired; a blow they have interrogated me; they have confronted me from a dagger is easily given ; you must countermand with witnesses; they have tried and condemned me, the review.” and, in truth, I am still ignorant of what I am accused ! “No, no, every one to his trade; yours is to watch You doubt, sir; I see it; it is so; is it not ? it is what over me, to preserve me from every danger; it is mine all say who are condemned; but, one moment. I am, I to review the troops. I will review them to-morrow."
“It is imprudent, but I will neglect nothing."
M. Real returned home, had the prisoner of the Abbaye brought to him, and while completing the exami- Anon! reviving from his deep emotion,
He turned his dim eye toward the Day-star bright, nation already commenced, despatched his orders for
Just then reclining on the breast of ocean, the next morning.
That softly heaved beneath the tremulous lightThe houses which face the Carrousel, in front of the
There was a whispering sweetness in the sight, chateau, were, at that period almost exclusively occupied
Which seemed his spirit to have tranquillized; by women of the town; already, on the 3d Nevose, the
For, starting from his reverie-black as night, propriety of dislodging them had been agitated. During the night, all these ladies received an invitation to pass The parting King of Day, he thus apostrophised:
Like Prophet, by an Angel's touch surprised the next day in some other place. Never, however, did a review draw more spectators; all the windows looking to the Carrousel were filled with gendarmes, in Bright orb! yet lingering on th’horizon's verge, citizen's dresses; the avenues were guarded with ad
So grandly beautiful in thy decline! mirable care ; but in spite of all these precautions, M. How glad at morn I've mark'd thy rays emerge, Real, who, from the balcony of the Tuileries, followed
And earth, sea, sky, with fresh’ning beauty shine; with a spying.glass every movement of the first consul, But clouds soon rose to dim thy rays benign, felt an indescribable oppression of the heart, which was
And o'er thy face the tempest's shadows passid ! only relieved when Bonaparte alighted from his horse, Thus hath thy pilgrimage resembled mine, and ascended the steps of the chateau.
With many a cloud of sadness overcastThe individual who rendered this great service called And, tranquilly like thee, would I depart at last! himself Querelle; he was a country surgeon. He had in fact been condemned by mistake. His pardon was promised and he obtained it, but at what a price! He Like thine—my race is ended! I shall sleep had come from the coast of Dieppe to Paris, with Beneath the woods in solitary gloom; Georges and others, travelling by night, passing the While o'er the Red Old Indian none shall weepdays in cellars of farm houses into which his com Nor lay his lifeless relics in a tomb!panions and himself were received by devoted accom- But thou, bless'd orb! surviving this brief doom, plices. Querelle was compelled to recommence this To-morrow shalt again in grandeur soar; voyage by night also, and under the escort of the police; And, shining down on ages yet to come, he had to recognize by evidences almost imperceptible Daily thy warm beams on this head shall pourthe places in which they had stopped. The police While I am slumbering cold upon this blood-stained seized every suspected person and brought all to Paris. shore ! Querelle recognized one form by the peculiar character of the bark of a dog.
He said--and sank exhausted; for it seemed I ought, perhaps here, to insert the poetical and pic
As if his energies, long worn and weak,
His eye with wonted lustre; a slight streak
As, from his frame, stretched stiffening on the ground,
The spirit seemed insensibly to break
Till, like the low vibration of a sound,
Life gradually ebb’d—and darkness closed around.
Last of his race, a stalwart Indian stood;
Surviving all its brethren of the wood!
TRUE LOVE. And mildly on the old man's visage shone
Far in a barren wild I've seen
A spot of purest vernal green,
And though it was an image fair
Mors omnia secat.
H. B. B,
Tho' all around was waste and sad,
His aspect had been stern'; but time had given
A bland expression to his sorrowing face, Which spoke resignment to the will of Heaven
As if his woes had found some soothing grace; But earth had ceased to be his resting place
Perish'd was all that once had made it dear! And-left, the last of all his ruined race
While pondering now upon his past carcer, His overflowing soul vented full many a tear.
Out from a cloud of darkness shone