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LONDON:

IBOTSON AND PALMER, PRINTERS, SAVOY STREET, STRAND,

THE

METROPOLITAN.

PRINCE LUCIEN BONAPARTE'S MEMOIRS.

FROM the great interest excited by the announcement of the Prince of Canino having determined to publish his own MEMOIRS, as well as from the highly-important nature of the work itself, we feel great pleasure in having it in our power to publish, Exclusively, the following Extracts from the early part of it, with which we have been favoured. We shall commence with the Prince's account of himself and family.

"When the revolution opened in 1789, the grand era of political reform, I entered my fifteenth year. After having been alternately for some time at the College of Autun, and at the Military School of Brienne, lastly at the seminary of Aix in Provence, I returned to Corsica. My mother, a widow in the prime of her life, devoted herself to the care of her numerous family. Joseph, the eldest of her children, was twenty-two years of age, and seconded her attentions to us with ardour, and with a paternal affection. Napoléon, two years younger than Joseph, was just returned from France with our sister, Marianne-Eliza, from the Ecole Royale of St. Cyr. Louis, Jerome, Pauline, and Caroline, were all children. A brother of my father, the Archidriere Lucien, was become the chief of our family, and though gouty and bedridden for some time past, he watched over our interests without ceasing. If providence had struck us with a cruel blow in depriving us so early of our father, it compensated for that loss, as far as possible, in leaving us yet for some time that excellent uncle, and in endowing the best of mothers with that spirit of constancy, and strength of soul, of which the future that opened before us, furnished the opportunity of giving abundant proofs in a course of wonderful prosperity, as well as in that long exile which still holds us beneath its inexorable influence, and to the termination of which she had not the consolation to look forward in her dying hour. A brother, worthy of our mother, the Abbé Fesch, completed our family.

"Although holding one of the first ranks in the island in every respect, our fortune was not very brilliant. Several voyages of my father to France, where he was deputy of the noblesse to Louis XVI., and the expenses of our education, superior to his means, notwithstanding the benefits he derived from government, had much impoverished our fortune.

"The education of my two elder brothers upon the continent, mine, and the deputations of our father to Paris, had rendered us entirely French. Corsica had been declared, since the 30th of November 1789, an integral part of the monarchy; and that declaration, which had satisfied the wishes of the islanders, had completely effaced from their minds the bitter remembrance of the conquest. The philosophical ideas, and revolutionary Sept. 1836.-VOL. XVII.—NO. LXV.

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agitations which prevailed upon the continent, fermented also in our heads; and no one hailed with more ardour than we did, the dawn of 1789. Joseph enters into the administration of the departments. Napoléon, prepared by serious studies to march with giant steps in his career of prodigies-and the third brother, a mere boy, ran to throw himself into the popular societies with the lively enthusiasm of a youthful and ardent head, filled with the remembrances of college, and the great names of Rome and Greece.

"I think it right to suppress all details that are foreign to public affairs: of what avail would they be? Amidst the numerous recollections of my early years, I notice only those which appear to me to be useful."

After describing the state of the island at that period, the Prince thus proceeds to speak of the celebrated Paoli.

"Our ancient chief, the famous Pascal Paoli, was returned; he had only passed through Paris, and although they paid him every mark of respect that was due to so great a man, he judged with severity the chiefs who then directed the revolution. Louis XVI. had inspired him with a profound interest. Paoli foresaw the future: he arrived in Corsica, weary and discontented. Every political phasis increased his discontent. It was at that moment that his arrival at Ajaccio was announced to us. We had for a long time offered up prayers for his return. The enthusiasm which his name alone inspired, gave him a superior moral force over the government. He was the friend, the father, the idol of the towns and hamlets. As soon, therefore, as his arrival was promised at Ajaccio, all business ceased-nothing was thought of but his reception. The authorities, the Gamison, the popular society, thought only of Paoli ; their impatience to see him increased every hour.

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My age gave me access only to the popular Society. I thought night and day of nothing but the discourse that I should pronounce before the hero. But being rather diffident, as a young man, of my phrases, I had recourse to our library: after having rummaged over all the books without ceremony, I appropriated several passages that pleased me; and it was, above all, Bodin and Needham that I secretly put under contribution. I made choice of those civilians the least known, that I might deck myself with some of the spoils without fear of detection. I was desirous also to treat of some patriotic subject on the history of Corsica, with a view of leading to applications favourable to our illustrious auditor. I did not need upon this occasion to have recourse to foreign aid: I chose for my subject the death of the curate of Gnagno, who, surrounded in the hollow of a ravine by the Genoese troops, from whom he could not escape, but upon condition of taking the oath of obedience to the tyrants of his country, preferred to die of hunger. Above twenty years afterwards, I celebrated that sublime death in one of the cantos of my poem of the "Ceméide," under the name of Rosol. No ancient republic offers in its history a more heroic martyrdom than that of the curate of Gnagno. It exalted my imagination; I composed my speech with a palpitating heart, and, I believe, it possessed sufficient merit to make me regret its loss.

"Thus prepared, I ran with a crowd of my countrymen to meet Paoli. He had already received my two elder brothers as the sons of a man who was dear to him, who had possessed his entire confidence, and who had served with him in the war of independence; he welcomed me as such : his caresses intoxicated me; and I counted the moments that delayed our sitting. It opened at length; Paoli was seated in front of the tribune in an arm-chair, ornamented with laurels and crowns of oak. I conquered my momentary agitation, and poured forth my fragments of Needham and Bodin with confidence and warmth. I remember only that they dwelt

chiefly upon the preference that the people should give to a republican government. Well chosen for the chief of our ancient republic, and adroitly joined together, those fragments of two grave civilians might well cause wonder and astonishment in the mouth of an orator of seventeen; their effect, therefore, surpassed my hopes. Paoli, in embracing me, called me his little Tacitus. The members of our club who took their part in my triumph, announced then that I had got another harangue ready upon the subject of the death of the curate of Guagno, and Paoli promised us a second audience.

"This time my success was without alloy. Our hero was affected with the cries of hatred against the Genoese which sprang forth from my subject, and resounded in my passionate recital. The hatred of the Genoese, that patriotic passion of his whole life, moved every fibre of his soul; and when, in my peroration, the martyred curate pronounced with an expiring and prophetic voice the name of Paoli, the avenger of liberty, the tears were seen to flow down the cheeks of the venerable father of his country. I enjoyed with delight those tears. Paoli declared that he would take me with him, and that I should never leave him. Heroic old man! how happy was I to follow thee to the simple residence of Rostino! how little did I then think that my stay with thee would have been of so short a duration, and that the political tempest was soon to separate us for ever!

"The village of Mostino is situated on the mountains, and composed only of cottages and some small houses. Paoli inhabited a convent, where he lived with a noble simplicity. He had every day at his frugal but well-served table several guests. Every day a numerous crowd of mountaineers waited for the moment of his going out to see and speak to him: they surrounded him with filial respect. He spoke to all like a good father; but what at first surprised me extremely, was his recollecting and calling by their names the chiefs of families whom he had not seen for above a quarter of a century. Those calls, that remembrance, produced upon our islanders a magical effect. The fine head of the noble old man, ornamented with his long white hair, his majestic figure, his mild but penetrating look, his clear and sonorous voice, all contributed to throw an inexpressible charm upon what he said. To imagine a patriarch legislator in the midst of his numerous race, I do not think that either painting or poetry could borrow more noble features than those which I contemplated for several months at Rostino.

"Notwithstanding my enthusiasm, upon reflecting one day on the prodigious memory of Paoli, I began to question myself how it was possible. That same scene repeated several times at each walk, and almost in the same terms, ended by inspiring me with doubts. I was as much as I could be at the side of my hero. I began by observing all the preparations for these daily walks; a monk went always to the cabinet of Paoli before he walked out: I slily followed him, and I beheld him for several successive days descend into the middle of the crowd, and talk with the chiefs of those who were waiting for an audience. . . I was

upon the track for making discovery: it appeared evident to me that the precursor monk supplied, by his confidential reports, the memory of the patron. I must own that discovery displeased me: although I observed how greatly that paternal friend rendered so many good old men happy, the shadow of a deception offended my young imagination, and cooled a little my enthusiasm. I had been less scrupulous as to my speech. . . . We are always more indulgent towards ourselves.

"But the friendship which he evinced towards me appeared to increase every day; and the little cloud which had arisen over our walks, was shortly dissipated. Paoli loved to talk to me of England-of the true liberty which reigned in that happy country-of the good sense of its in

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habitants of the admirable equilibrium of its political powers. England,' said he, is not a monarchy: it is a wise and powerful republic: happy would it be for France if she would take England for her model.' All those conversations astonished me, they were beyond my comprehension my wise interlocutor did me more honour than I deserved: his lessons appeared strange to me, and soon they ceased to please me: I observed, under the Anglo mania, which I understood but very vaguely at that time, a little antipathy towards France; it wounded me deeply. Paoli perceived it, and he adjusted his lessons to what he called my college prejudices. He made the same attempt with my two elder brothers, that he had made to win me; but with more circumspection, as he was very anxious to gain us entirely; he had frequent conferences with Joseph and Napoleon, but he soon saw the inutility of his efforts. Notwithstanding the horror with which the revolutionary excesses inspired us, we felt assured that they would be calmed, and that the benefits of the revolution would survive its atrocities: we were Frenchmen, and we had faith in the future. Besides which, our island had maintained itself pure from the dreadful excesses which had sullied so many communes of the continent.

"We approached, however, the year of 1793! The sentiments of Paoli against France manifested themselves more openly every day. Every day he became more discontented with us, and less certain of persuading us to join him in the defection which he meditated. The catastrophe of the 21st of January gave the perishing blow to his hatred. He shook with rage-he could no longer contain himself.' 'Behold,' said he, your French wallowing in innocent blood! Behold them! Well, will you still dare to defend them? I can no longer bear it. The sons of Charles can never be capable of abandoning me. But the brothers must decide they must choose between France and me. But there is no longer any France. The monsters have destroyed all that merited to live. They have murdered their king, the best of men.

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A saint!

A saint. A saint. (He repeated with increasing ardour at every word.) Corsica will have no more to do with them, neither will I. Let them keep for themselves their blood-stained liberty: it was not made for my brave mountaineers: it were better to return to the Genoese. I expect you, brothers-and woe to him who shall pronounce in favour of that horde of brigands! I will not own one of them; no, not one, not even the sons of Charles !'

"I still behold the ardent old man: his countenance sparkled, his anger appeared to aggrandise him. His error was deplorable, since he saw in our immortal revolution only the crimes of the Reign of Terror. It was in vain that we told him that the execrable regicide of Charles the First had not prevented the establishment of English liberty after a time. He would not hear us. But the motive which misled him was as pure as his soul. He was wrong in despairing of the fortune of Franceof seeing the salvation of his country only in the union with England, which he esteemed above all other nations. He deceived himself with regard to the future: but he never ceased, notwithstanding his error, to be worthy of himself. Those who have explained his conduct as arising from motives of vulgar ambition, did not know him. Peace, honour, and glory to his ashes! They are worthy of the pantheon of a great and free nation. They are worthy to repose beneath the roof of West

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minster Abbey."

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The following is the account of the escape from Corsica.

Perceiving that the storm was about to burst over us, the popular Society decided upon sending a deputation to the popular Society at

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