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dation of a Christian's love for his Creator; but even more direct and palpable motives,--the expectation of future reward and punishment, -have no firm hold on their coarse and half-formed understandings. To them the present alone seems real,--the future is a dream, Unused to make provision for to-morrow, how should they think of making provision for eternity? A regard, therefore, for the everlasting welfare of our fellow-creatures, no less than for their present enjoyments, should prompt us to devise means for raising the income of the labourer to a level with his necessities.' pp. 101—3.
Art. V. Historical Documents and Reflections on the Government of
Holland. By Louis Bonaparte, ex-King of Holland. In three
ourselves in the department of controversy which belongs to that troubled and troublesome character, we could not desire a finer opportunity than that which is afforded us by the present work, of flourishing on either side of the question : by dexterous management, in the way of selection and preterition, we could easily make it minister either to the triumph of the inimitable policy of the powers that have been and that be, or to the ample justification of the awful denunciations and prophetic warnings of the disinterested contemners of unattainable distinction. Happily, however, we are under no temptation thus to alembicate a very stmple and plain matter; and when we shall have furnished our readers with the means of ascertaining the quantity of information wbich they may expect to derive from the perusal of these volumes, we shall not only have finished our own task, but we shall, probably, have also relieved them from any necessity of purchasing a book slenderly fraught with original matter, and unnecessarily expensive in its mode of publication. We shall not embarrass ourselves with any doubts as to the genuineness of the composition : we take it in its apparent character, as the plaidoyer of an amiable and honourable man, who, having been placed in a situation of great responsibility, and involved in circumstances of extreme difficulty, is desirous of proving to the world that he discharged his trust fairly; and that, in his abandonment of his post, he betrayed neither weakness nor pusillanimity, but yielded to an influence and a compulsion to which he had no means of opposing an effectual resistance. In one point of view, indeed, this may be deemed a very important document, inasmuch as it clearly demonstrates that the internal calamities of nations are owing, not to the absence of talent, but to the want of simple integrity in those who administer their government. It presents to us the example of a man somewhat feeble-minded and of defective energy, but animated by a sincere and steady anxiety to find
and follow the path of duty, raised to the sovereignty of a state in most inauspicious times, and proving manifestly that but for the interposition of an overwhelming force from without, every doinestic embarrassment would have been completely cleared away. Louis Bonaparte found his people active, but enthralled ; independent in feeling, but subservient to a superior and immoveable power; oppressed by debt and by exaction, and restless under a bondage which they were equally unable to bear or to reject. In addition to this sufficiently injurious state of things, he soon became aware that he was himself held forth but as a mask to deeper schemes; that, although ostensibly given as the pledge of favourable intentions, he was in reality designed as the mere engine of unprincipled and oppressive rapacity. Abler men than Louis must inevitably have failed in the attempt to bear up against this complication of ills; and he may be excused for betraying signs of entire incompetency to the management of a realm in so fearful a crisis ; yet it is but just to concede to him the praise of pure intentions and of views generally correct. As far as appears on the face of the transactions in which he was engaged, be seems to bave maintained an even and conscientious course, and to have borne off an untainted character and the regrets of his subjects.
Louis, however, shines rather more as a sovereign than as a book-maker, and, we have no doubt, made a more dignified appearance before his legislative assembly, than he now does before a critical bench. We have so much in these volumes that has been previously and more correctly told, and so much that illustrates nothing, and is altogether unworthy of any other custody than that of the newspapers, where it may be still referred to; besides a number of official papers and exposés of which the results only would have been amply sufficient; that if we could suppose the Collector to bave been in league with his bookseller, we should be able to account for his management, without being under the necessity of referring it to want mental dexterity. Louis Bonaparte has not unfrequently reminded us of Richard Cromwell; but the latter had a shrewder motive for the preservation of the addresses and harangues which had been showered upon him in the season of his prosperity, whereas Louis seems in all simplicity to take them as genuine expressions of attachment, and carefully records them in his volumes for the edification of his reader. His French prejudices, too, lead him into downright absurdities : for instance, he tells us, that in the battle of Corunna, the English were defeated, though, if this were true, Soult would have been condemned to death or degradation for suffering them to embark. Junot, too, is highly praised for concluding the convention of Cintra, although he is allicrued to have gained the victory in
the conflict of Vimeira :-why then did he not follow it up by compelling the British troops to return to their ships, instead of signing an instrument which, however advantageous its terins, was still neither more nor less than a capitulation? The loss of the battle of the Nile is attributed to the erroneous judgement of Brueys, and it is intimated that Villeneuve would, if the command bad been in bis hands, have prevented the tragical ca"tastrophe'!!--Without further anticipation, we shall now proceed to notice the main points of the work.
Louis shews considerable anxiety to establish the nobility of his family, and produces documents to prove that the name, though he does not distinctly connect it with bis own immediate relatives, was once illustrious in rank, character, and office. The following anecdote, however, appears to involve something like an inconsistency.
As to the nobility of the Bonaparte family, whatever libellers may pretend, it is very ancient, and well identified in the annals of Italy. It is said, that when the marriage of Napoleon with the Archduchess Maria Louisa was about to take place, the French Emperor, in answer to some remonstrances on the subject, observed, I should not enter into this alliance, if I did not know that her origin is as noble as my own. A collection of documents, extracted from the archives of different towns of Italy, was then presented to the Emperor Napoleon, from 'which it appeared that the Bonapartes, at a very remote period, were lords of Treviso. Napoleon threw it into the fire, energetically observing, “I wish my nobility to commence only with myself, and to hold all my titles from the French people.”
The Bonapartes are represented as actuated by a spirit of indignant patriotism in their emigration from Corsica. • Wben • Paoli,' writes their present Historian, the Corsican commander, violated his oath, and delivered the island into the hands of the English, the Bonapartes chose to see their houses set qu fire, their estates lạid waste, and to sacrifice their for
tune, rather than enter into any alliance with the eneinies of • their country.' Misrepresentations so gross as these, make us extremely sceptical as to the good faith of their Author. Why the English, rather than the French, were the enemies' of Corsica, it might puzzle a wiser head than that of Louis to point out: the fact is simply, that in the struggle of parties, the Bonapartes sided with the French, and were no losers by their election. No notice whatever is taken of the patronage of Marbæuf, nor of the subsequent connexion of Napoleon with Paoli. The whole of the statemeuts relating to the early career of Napoleon, are in the same strain, and we feel no disposition to waste our time in citing or criticising them. Still more injudicious than this, are the pains taken by Louis to prove that he is a man of infinite courage: be describes himselt as, in mere
boyhood, interposing between his brother and the artillery of the enemy, and as declining on another occasion to shelter himself from a fierce cannonade. But the finest specimen of profound and pathetic absurdity in the whole book, is to be found in the following anecdote. At about the age of seventeen, he accompanied Napoleon to Paris, and • found in that immense capital, the innovations and disorders which always follow political convulsions. He reached the capital a few days after the disturbances of the 23d of May; and the misfortunes which he witnessed, naturally filled him with apprehension lest for, tune might one day abandon his brother. Every general was at that time exposed to the risk of losing his life, if unsuccessful; neither courage nor talent were in that case of any avail. They had scarcely reached the place destined for their residence near the Place de la Victoire, when Louis threw himself into an easy-chair and seeming to wake out of an anxious train of thought, he exclaimed, with a profound sigh and a prophetic tone-Here we are then, at Paris ! The sententious tone, meditative air, involuntary emotion, and absence of mind, with which these words were uttered, astonished his brother and Junot, who happened to be present. On being asked the cause of the deep sigh and exclamation, he answered, that he was himself ignorant of it.'
During part of Napoleon's Italian campaigns, Louis was in the army; and be relates sundry instances of his own valour and skill at this period, attributiog to himself, moreover, a main share in the victory of Rivoli. He engaged, after the treaty of Campo Formio, in an honourable amour with a young lady, who was the schoolfellow of his sister; but his brother, when informed of the affair, sent bim from Paris to take part in the Egyptian expedition. His notes of that eventful transaction contain nothing striking, excepting the narrative of the affecting attachment of young Casabianca to his father, which is told for the fiftieth time, but with such variations from the received accounts, as materially lessen the interest and probability of the story. Passing over the intermediate and unimportant details, we shall cite a few particulars respecting his marriage with Hortensia, the daughter of Josephine, which took place when he was two and twenty years of age. Our readers are aware that strange reports have been circulated, respecting the intimacy of Napoleon with his daughter-in-law; these are treated by Louis as calumnies and absurd
stories.' 'He resisted this matrimonial arrangement for a long time; but
one evening when there was a ball at Malmaison, his sister-in-law (Josephine) took him apart, his brother joined them, and, after a long conference, they obtained from him his consent. The day for the ceremony was fixed, and on the 4th of January, 1802, the contract, the civil marriage, and the religious ceremony took place ***** Louis became a husband * * Never was there a more gloomy
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