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island two days after the Emperor's death. Such were the alleged barbarities of England towards a man who had so long striven to effect her destruction, and who had chastised the hostility of Hofer by death in the fosse of Mantua, of Cardinal Pacca by confinement amidst Alpine snows in the citadel of Fenestrelles, and the supposed enmity of the Duke d'Enghien by massacre in the ditch of Vincennes.1 *
But all this was as nothing as long as Mordecai the Jew sat at the king's gate. In the first instance, indeed, the bland and courteous manners of Sir Pulteney Malcolm, who was intrusted with the chief command, softened the restraints of captivity, and made the weary hours pass in comparative comfort; but he was unfortunately succeeded by Sir Hudson Lowe, whose manners were far less conciliating. A gallant veteran, who had accompanied the army of Silesia, in the quality of English commissioner, through its whole campaign in France, he was overwhelmed with the sense of the responsibility under which he laboured, in being intrusted with the custody of so dangerous a captive; and he possessed none of the graces of manner which so often, in persons in authority, add to the charms of concession, and take off the bitterness of restraint. The obloquy cast on Sir Colin Campbell, in consequence of having been accidentally absent from Elba when the Emperor made his escape, was constantly before his eyes. He does not appear to have exceeded his instructions;
i Pari. Deb. im. 1138, 1159; Forsyth, iii. 345.
116. Irritation between him and Sir Hudson Lowe.
* The allowance of wine to the establishment at Longwood was as follows, a fortnight:—
21 84 140
And besides, forty-two bottles of porter. A tolerable allowance for ten grown persons, besides servants.—Seo Parliamentary Debates, xxxv. 1159. The total cost of the table was £12,000 a-year.—Ibid., 1158.
VOL. II. 2 A
Chap, and certainly the constant plots which were in agita1X' tion for Napoleon's escape, called for and justified every
ml- imaginable precaution. But he was often unreasonably exigeant on trifles of no real moment to the security of the Emperor's detention; and his manner was so unprepossessing, that, even when he conferred an indulgence, it was seldom felt as such. Napoleon, on his part, was not a whit behind the governor of the island in irritability or unreasonable demands. He seemed anxious to provoke outrages, and his ideas were fixed on the effect the account of them would produce in Europe. He was in correspondence with the leading members of the English Opposition, who made generous and streuuons efforts to soften his captivity; and he never lost the hope that, by the effect these representations would make on the British people, and on the world, his place of confinement might be altered; and, by being restored to Europe, he might succeed in playing over again the game of the Hundred Days. All his thoughts were fixed on this object, and it was to i Forsyth's ^av a foundation for these complaints that he affected to stTeie°naat ^e °ffence a* every trifle, and voluntarily aggravated iii.334,3.57; the inconveniences of his own position. Montholon said 416, 417. truly to Sir Hudson Lowe, "If you had been an angel from heaven, you would not have pleased us."1 *
The truth is, none of the parties implicated in the All parties treatment of Napoleon at St Helena have emerged unre^dTng"g scathed out of the ordeal through which they have passed mentTt'st fiince l"s death; and the publication of the papers of Sir Hudson Lowe, by Mr Forsyth, has placed this beyond a
* "En lisant attentivement les corrcspondances ot les notes fitrangeres a tout prftcxte, ontrc les familiers do Napoleon ot do Hudson Lowe, on est confoudu des outrages, des provocations, des invectives, dont lo captif et scs amis insultent a tout propos le gouverneur. Napoleon en co moment chercliait a emouvoir par des cris de doulour la piti6 du parlement anglais et a fournir un grief aux orateurs do 1'opposition contro le ministero, afin d'obtenir son rapprochement de l'Europe. Lo d&sir de provoquer des outrages par des outrages, et de presenter on suite ces outrages comme des crimes au Continent, transpire dans toutes ces notes. II est 6vident quo lc gouverneur, souvont irrite, quelquefois inquisitour, toujours inhabile, so sentait lui-meme victime de la responsabilitc." —Lamabtise, Hut. de la KeUauration, vi. 416, 417.
doubt. The British government was the first to blame: Chap. its conduct in the main, and in all essential articles, was Ix' indulgent and considerate; but in matters of lesser real 1821, moment, but still more important to a person of Napoleon's irritable disposition, their instructions were unnecessarily rigid. Admitting that after his stealthy evasion from Elba it was indispensable that he should be seen daily by some- of the British officers, and attended by one, beyond certain prescribed limits, where was the necessity of refusing him the title of Emperor, or ordering everything to be withheld which was addressed to him by that title? A book inscribed "Imperatori Napoleon" might have been delivered to him without his detention being rendered insecure. A copy of Coxe's Marlborough, presented by him to a British regiment which he.esteemed, might have been permitted to reach its destination, without risk of disaffection in the British army.1 It is hard to 1 Fonyth, say whether most littleness was evinced by the English "' government refusing such slight gratifications to the fallen hero, or by himself in feeling so much annoyed at the withholding the empty titles bespeaking his former greatness. It is deeply to be regretted, for the honour of human nature, which is the patrimony of all mankind, that he did not bear his reverses with more equanimity, and prove that the conqueror of continental Europe could achieve the yet more glorious triumph of subduing himself. For a year before his death he became more tractable.
The approach of the supreme hour, as is often the Case, Change on softened the asperities of previous existence. He per- worelS sisted in not going out to ride, in consequence of hisdeath* quarrel with the governor of the island, who insisted on his being attended by an officer beyond the prescribed limits; but he amused himself with gardening, in which he took great interest, and not unfrequently, like Dioclesian, consoled himself for the want of the excitements of royalty, by labouring with his own hands in the cultivation of the earth. The cessation of riding exercise, how
Chap. ever, to one who had been so much accustomed to it,
proved very prejudicial. This, to a person of his active
mi' habits, coupled with the disappointment consequent on iiiFi9o^96; the failure of the revolutions in Europe, and the plans £2157216; formed for his escape, aggravated the hereditary malady usw. in the stomach, under which he laboured, and in spring chateaub*. 1821 caused his physicians to apprehend danger to his i«U6a. life.1
The receipt of this intelligence caused the English Hu d«[th. government to send directions for his receiving every posMay 5, siblc relief and accommodation, and even, if necessary, for his removal from the island. But these humane intentions were announced too late to be carried into effect. In the beginning of May he became rapidly worse; and on the evening of the 5tb, at five minutes before six, he breathed his last. A violent storm of wind and rain at the same time arose, which tore up the trees in the island by their roots,—it was amidst the war of the elements that his soul departed. The howling of the wind seemed to recall to the dying conqueror the roar of battle, and his last words were —" Mon Dieu—La Nation francaise—Tete d'arinec." He declared in his testament, "I die in the Apostolic and Roman religion, in the bosom of which I was born, above fifty years ago." When he breathed his last, his sword was beside him, on the left side of the couch; but the cross, the symbol of peace, rested on his breast. The child of the Revolution, the Incarnation of War, died in the Christian faith, with the emblem of the Gospel on his bosom! His will, which had been made in the April pre* Ann. Hist, ceding, was found to contain a great multitude of bequests, FoJsyt'h. iii.' but two in an especial manner worthy of notice. The first AntoS^i was a request that his body " might finally repose on the nu'i^Mom. banks of the Seine, among the people he had loved so u^ifza well;" the second, a legacy of 10,000 francs to the assassin 246,'3i"2. 'Cantillon, who, as already noticed,* had attempted the life of the Duke of Wellington,2 but had been acquitted by
* Ante, chap. vi . § 73.
the jury, from the evidence being deemed insufficient. He Chap.
died in the 53d year of his age, having been born on the IX"
5th February 1768. mu
Napoleon had himself fixed upon the place in the island of St Helena where he wished, in the first instance at HU funeral, least, to be interred. It was in a small hollow, called Slanes Valley, high up on the mountain which forms the island, where a fountain, shaded by weeping willows, meanders through verdant banks. The tchampas flourished in the moist soil. "It is a plant," says the Sanscrit writings, "which, notwithstanding its beauty and perfume, is not in request, because it grows on the tombs." The body, as directed by the Emperor, lay in state in a " chapclle ardente," according to the form of the Roman Catholic Church, in the three-cornered hat, military surtout, leather under-dress, long boots and spurs, as when he appeared on the field of battle, and it was laid in the coffin in the same garb. The funeral took place on the 9th May. It was attended by all the military and naval forces, and all the authorities in the island, as well as his weeping household. Three squadrons of dragoons headed the procession. The hearse was drawn by four horses. The 66th and 20th regiments, and fifteen pieces of artillery, formed part of the array, marching, with arms reversed, to the sound of mournful music, and all the touching circumstances of a soldier's funeral. When they approached the place of sepulture, and the hearse could go no farther, the coffin was borne by his own attendants, escorted by twentyfour grenadiers of the two English regiments who had the honour of conveying the immortal conqueror to his last resting-place. Minute-guns, during the whole ceremony, were fired by all the batteries in the island. The place j^.pjjj; of sepulture was consecrated by an English clergyman,* g^^. according to the English form, though he was buried with Antomarl the Catholic rites.1 Volleys of musketry and discharges 192.""' of artillery paid the last honours of a nation to their noble
* Tho Itcv. Mr Vernon.