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The Life of Napoleon I (Volume 1 of 2) by Rose

Footnote 251 Lord Hawkesbury to Lord Whitworth


242: Papers presented to Parliament on May 18th, 1803. I pass over the insults to General Stuart, as Sebastiani on February 2nd recanted to Lord Whitworth everything he had said, or had been made to say, on that topic, and mentioned Stuart "in terms of great esteem." According to Meneval ("Mems.," vol i., ch. iii.), Jaubert, who had been with Sebastiani, saw a proof of the report, as printed for the "Moniteur," and advised the omission of the most irritating passages; but Maret dared not take the responsibility for making such omissions. Lucien Bonaparte ("Mems.," vol. ii., ch. ix.) has another version--less credible, I think--that Napoleon himself dictated the final draft of the report to Sebastiani; and when the latter showed some hesitation, the First Consul muttered, as the most irritating passages were read out: "Parbleu, nous verrons si ceci--si cela--ne decidera pas John Bull a guerroyer." Joseph was much distressed about it, and exclaimed: "Ah, mon pauvre traite d'Amiens! Il ne tient plus qu'a un fil."]

[Footnote 243: So Adams's "Hist, of the U.S.," vol. ii., pp. 12-21.]

[Footnote 244: Miot de Melito, "Mems.," vol. i, ch. xv., quotes the words of Joseph Bonaparte to him: "Let him [Napoleon] once more drench Europe with blood in a war that he could have avoided, and which, but for the outrageous mission on which he sent his Sebastiani, would never have occurred."


laboured hard to persuade Lord Whitworth that Sebastiani's mission was "solely commercial": Napoleon, in his long conversation with our ambassador, "did not affect to attribute it to commercial motives only," but represented it as necessitated by our infraction of the Treaty of Amiens. This excuse is as insincere as the former. The instructions to Sebastiani were drawn up on September 5th, 1802, when the British Ministry was about to fulfil the terms of the treaty relative to Malta and was vainly pressing Russia and Prussia for the guarantee of its independence]

[Footnote 245: Despatch of February 21st.]

[Footnote 246: "View of the State of the Republic," read to the Corps Legislatif on February 21st, 1803.]

[Footnote 247: Papers presented to Parliament May 18th, 1803. See too Pitt's speech, May 23rd, 1803.]

[Footnote 248: See Russell's proclamation of July 22nd to the men of Antrim that "he doubted not but the French were then fighting in Scotland." ("Ann. Reg.," 1803, p. 246.) This document is ignored by Plowden ("Hist. of Ireland, 1801-1810").]

[Footnote249: Despatch of March 14th, 1803. Compare it with the very mild version in Napoleon's "Corresp.," No. 6636.]

[Footnote 250: Lord Hawkesbury to General Andreossy, March 10th.]

[Footnote 251: Lord Hawkesbury to Lord Whitworth, April 4th, 1803.]

[Footnote 252: Despatches of April 11th and 18th, 1803.]

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