Napoleon in exile: or, A voice from St. Helena. The opinions and reflections of Napoleon on the most important events of his life and government, in his own words

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Page 463 - The plan of the battle," said he, " will not in the eyes of the historian reflect any credit on Lord Wellington as a general. In the first place, he ought not to have given battle with the armies divided. They ought to have been united and encamped before the 15th. In the next, the choice of ground was bad; because if he had been beaten he could not have retreated, as there was only one road leading through the forest in his rear. He also committed a fault which might have proved the destruction...
Page 466 - I would not have attacked him. As a general, his plan did not show talent. He certainly displayed great courage and obstinacy : but a little must be taken away even from that, when you consider that he had no means of retreat, and that, had he made the attempt, not a man of his army would have escaped. First, to the firmness and bravery of his troops, for the English fought with the greatest...
Page 382 - ... about it ; at first I was pleased with his proposals, because I thought it would enlighten the world to drive those brutes, the Turks, out of Europe. But when I reflected upon the consequences, and saw what a tremendous weight of power it would give to Russia, on account of the...
Page 66 - British generosity, had surrendered himself to us in preference to his other enemies, is unworthy the magnanimity of a great country, — and the treaties by which, after his captivity, we bound ourselves to detain him in custody at the will of sovereigns to whom he had never surrendered himself, appear to me repugnant to the principles of equity, and utterly uncalled for by expedience or necessity.
Page 180 - I felt so much affected by his conduct, that 1 noticed and praised him much. A few days afterwards, his mother came to return me a visit of thanks. I was much struck with her appearance, and still more with her esprit.
Page 26 - Corneille, or of some other esteemed author, and read aloud for an hour, or chatted with the ladies and the rest of his suite. He usually retired to his bed-room at ten or eleven, and to rest, immediately afterwards. When he breakfasted or dined in...
Page 332 - To leave a few miserable*, who could not recover, in order that they might be massacred by the Turks with the most dreadful tortures, as was their custom, would, I think, have been cruelty. A general ought to act with his soldiers, as he would wish should be done to himself. Now would not any man under similar circumstances, who had his senses, have preferred dying easily a few hours sooner, rather than expire under the tortures of those barbarians ? You have been amongst the Turks...
Page 40 - Window-curtains of white long- cloth, a small fire-place, a shabby grate, and fire-irons to match, with a paltry mantel-piece of wood, painted white, upon which stood a small marble bust of his son. Above the mantel-piece hung the portrait of...
Page 48 - I never saw such a horrid countenance. He sat on a chair opposite to my sofa, and on the little table between us there was a cup of coffee. His physiognomy made such an unfavourable impression upon me, that I thought his looks had poisoned it, and I ordered Marchand to throw it out of the window ; I could not have swallowed it for the world.
Page 215 - When be was summoned by the Russians, he replied, that as soon as they sent him back the leg he had lost at Moscow, he would surrender the fortress. Many times in my life," continued he, " have I been saved by soldiers and officers throwing themselves before me when I was in the most imminent danger. At Arcola, when I was advancing, Colonel...

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