BLTC Press Titles

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The Secret Doctrine, Volume I Cosmogenesis

H. P. Blavatsky

Letters on the Aesthetical Education of Man

Friedrich Schiller

Darby O'Gill and the Little People

Hermenie Templeton Kavanagh

The Characters of Theophrastus


Memoirs of Madame de Rémusat. 1802-1808

by Rémusat (Claire Elisabeth Jeanne Gravier de Vergennes, Madame de)


By degrees the flotillas built in our other harbors came round to join those of Boulogne. They sometimes met with obstacles on the way, for English vessels were always cruising about the coast to prevent their junction. The camps at Boulogne, at Montreuil, and at Compiegne presented an imposing appearance, and the army became daily more numerous and more formidable.

There is no doubt that these preparations for war, and the comments which were made upon them in Paris, caused some anxiety in Europe; for an article appeared in the newspapers which created no great impression at the time, but which I considered to be worth preserving, because it was an exact forecast of all that has since occurred. It appeared in the "Moniteur" of July 10, 1804, on the same day with an account of the audience given by the Emperor to all the ambassadors who had just received fresh credentials to his Court. Some of the latter contained flattering expressions from foreign sovereigns on his accession to the throne.

This is the article:

"From time immemorial, the metropolis has been the home of hearsay (les on dif). A new rumor springs up every day, to be contradicted on the next. Although there has AN ARTICLE IN THE "MONITEUR."


been of late more activity, and a certain persistence in these reports which gratify idle curiosity, we think it more desirable to leave them to time, and that wisest of all possible replies, silence! Besides, what sensible Frenchman, really interested in discovering the truth, will fail to recognize in the current rumors the offspring of malignity more or less interested in their circulation?

"In a country where so large a number of men are well aware of existing facts, and are able to judge of those which do not exist, if any one imagines that current rumors ought to cause him real anxiety, if a credulous confidence in them influences his commercial enterprises or his personal interests, either his error is not a lasting one, or he must lay the blame on his own want of reflection.

"But foreigners, persons attached to diplomatic missions, not having the same means of judging, nor the same knowledge of the country, are often deceived; and, although for a long time past they have had opportunities of observing how invariably every event gives the lie to current gossip, they nevertheless repeat it in foreign countries, and thus give rise to most erroneous notions about France. We therefore think it advisable to say a few words in this journal on the subject of political gossip.

"It is said that the Emperor is about to unite the Italian republic, the Ligurian republic, the republic of Lucca, the kingdom of Etruria, the Papal States, and, by a necessary consequence, Naples and Sicily, under his own rule. It is said that the same fate is reserved for Switzerland and Holland. It is said that, by annexing Hanover, the Emperor will be enabled to become a member of the Germanic Confederation.

"Many deductions are drawn from these suppositions; and the first we remark is that the Pope will abdicate, and that Cardinal Fesch or Cardinal Ruffo will be raised to the Pontifical Throne.

"We have already said, and we repeat it, that if the in

fluence of France were to be exerted in any changes affecting the Sovereign Pontiff, it would be exerted for the welfare of the Holy Father, and to increase the respect due to the Holy See and its possessions, rather than to diminish it.

"As to the kingdom of Naples, Mr. Acton's aggressive action and his constantly hostile policy might in former times have afforded France a legitimate cause of war, which she would never have undertaken with the intention of uniting the Two Sicilies to the French Empire.

"The Italian and Ligurian republics and the kingdom of Etruria will not cease to exist as independent States, and it is surely very unlikely that the Emperor would disown both the duties attached to the authority which he derives from the comitia of Lyons, and the personal glory he has acquired by twice restoring to independence the States which twice he has conquered.

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