Hundreds of additional titles available for
online reading when you join Gateway to the Classics
 IT was the year 1793. On the 21st of January the unfortunate and guilty Louis XVI. had been
led to the guillotine. The Royalists had surrendered Toulon to the British fleet. A
Republican army was sent to regain the important port. Joseph Bonaparte was commissioned
on the staff of the major-general in command, and was slightly wounded in the attack upon
Cape Brun. All France was in a state of terrible excitement. Allied Europe was on the
march to crush the revolution. The armies of Austria, gathered in Italy, were threatening
to cross the Alps. The nobles in France, and all who were in favor of aristocratic
domination, were watching for an opportunity to join the Allies, overwhelm the
revolutionists, and replace the Bourbon family on the throne.
The National Assembly, which had assumed the supreme command upon the dethronement of the
king, was now giving place to another assembly gathered in Paris, called the National
 Convention. Napoleon was commissioned to obtain artillery and supplies for the troops
composing the Army of Italy, who, few in numbers, quite undisciplined and feeble in the
materials of war, were guarding the defiles of the Alps, to protect France from the
threatened Austrian invasion in that quarter. He was soon after named general of brigade
in the artillery, and was sent to aid the besieging army at Toulon. Madame Bonaparte and
the younger children were at Marseilles, where Joseph and Napoleon, the natural guardians
of the family, could more frequently visit them. On the last day of November of this year
the British fleet was driven from the harbor of Toulon, and the city recaptured, as was
universally admitted, by the genius of Napoleon.
In the year 1794 Joseph married Julie Clary, daughter of one of the wealthiest capitalists
of Marseilles. Her sister Eugenie, to whom Napoleon was at that time much attached,
afterward married Bernadotte, subsequently King of Sweden. Of Julie Clary the Duchess of
"Madame Joseph Bonaparte is an angel of goodness. Pronounce her name, and all the
indigent, all the unfortunate in Paris, Naples, and
 Madrid, will repeat it with blessings. Never did she hesitate a moment to set about what
she conceived to be her duty. Accordingly she is adored by all about her, and especially
by her own household. Her unalterable kindness, her active charity, gain her the love of
The brothers kept up a very constant correspondence. These letters have been published
unaltered. They attest the exalted and affectionate character of both the young men.
Napoleon writes to Joseph on the 25th of June, 1795:
"In whatever circumstances fortune may place you, you well know, my dear friend, that you
can never have a better friend, one to whom you will be more dear, and who desires more
sincerely your happiness. Life is but a transient dream, which is soon dissipated. If you
go away, to be absent any length of time, send me your portrait. We have lived so much
together, so closely united, that our hearts are blended. I feel, in tracing these lines,
emotions which I have seldom experienced; I feel that it will be a long time before we
shall meet again, and I can not continue my letter."
 Again Napoleon writes on the 12th of August: "As for me, but little attached to life, I
contemplate it without much anxiety, finding myself constantly in the mood of mind in
which one finds himself on the eve of battle, convinced that when death comes in the
midst, to terminate all things, it is folly to indulge in solicitude."
In these letters we see gradually developed the supremacy of the mind of Napoleon, and
that soon, almost instinctively, he is recognized as the head of the family. On the 6th of
September he writes from Paris:
"I am very well pleased with Louis.
He responds to my hopes, and to the expectations which I had formed for him. He is a fine
fellow; ardor, vivacity, health, talent, exactness in business, kindness, he unites every
thing. You know, my friend, that I live for the benefits which I can confer upon my
family. If my hopes are favored by that good-fortune which has never abandoned my
enterprises, I shall be able to render you happy, and to fulfill your desires. I feel
keenly the absence of Louis. He was of. great service to me. Never was a man more active,
more skillful, more
 winning. He could do at Paris whatever he wished."
None of the members of the Bonaparte family were ever ashamed to remind themselves of the
days of their comparative poverty and obscurity. "One day," writes Louis Napoleon, now
Napoleon III., "Joseph related that his brother Louis, for whom he had felt, from his
infancy, all the cares and tenderness of a father, was about to leave Marseilles to go to
school in Paris. Joseph accompanied him to the diligence. Just before the diligence
started he perceived that it was quite cold, and that Louis had no overcoat. Not having
then the means to purchase him one, and not wishing to expose his brother to the severity
of the weather, he took off his own cloak and wrapped it around Louis. This action, which
they mutually recalled when they were kings, had always remained engraved in the hearts of
them both, as a tender souvenir of their constant intimacy."
JOSEPH GIVING HIS CLOAK TO HIS BROTHER LOUIS.
On the 6th of March, 1796, Napoleon was married to Josephine Beauharnais. "Thus vanished,"
writes Joseph Bonaparte, "the hope which my wife and I had cherished, for
sev-  eral years, of seeing her younger sister Eugenie united in marriage with my brother
Napoleon. Time and separation disposed of the event otherwise."
A few days after Napoleon's marriage he took command of the Army of Italy, and hastened
across the Alps to the scene of conflict. After the victory of Mondovi, Napoleon,
cherishing the hope of detaching the Italians from the Austrians, sent Joseph to Paris to
urge upon the Directory the importance of making peace with the Court of Turin. General
Junot accompanied Joseph, to present to the Directory the flags captured from the enemy.
The astonishing victories which Napoleon had gained excited boundless enthusiasm in Paris.
Carnot, one of the Directors, gave a brilliant entertainment in honor of the two
ambassadors, Joseph and Junot. During the dinner be opened his waistcoat and showed the
portrait of Napoleon, which was suspended near his heart. Turning to Joseph, he said,
"Say to your brother that I wear his miniature there, because I foresee that he will be
the saviour of France. To accomplish this, it is necessary that he should know that there
is no one in the Directory who is not his admirer and his friend."
 The measures which Napoleon had suggested were most cordially approved by all the members
of the Government. One of the most important members of the Cabinet proposed that Joseph
Bonaparte should immediately, upon the ratification of peace, he appointed ambassador of
the French Republic to the Court of Turin. Joseph, with characteristic modesty, replied,
that though he was desirous of entering upon a diplomatic career, he did not feel
qualified to assume at once so important a post. He was however prevailed upon to enter
upon the office.
From this mission, so successfully accomplished, Joseph returned to his brother, and
joined him at his head-quarters in Milan. Napoleon pressed forward in his triumphant
career, drove the Austrians out of Italy, and soon effected peace with Naples and with
Having accomplished these results, Napoleon immediately fitted out an expedition for the
reconquest of Corsica, his native island, which the British fleet still held. The
expedition was placed under the command of General Gentili. The troops sailed from
Leghorn, and disembarked at Bastia. Joseph accompanied
 them. Immediately upon landing; the
Corsicans generally rose and joined their deliverers, and the English retired in haste
from the island. Joseph gives the following account of his return to his parental home:
"I was received by the great majority of the population at the distance of a league from
Ajaccio. I took up my residence in the mansion of Ornano, where I resided for several
weeks, until our parental homestead, which had been devastated, Was sufficiently repaired
to be occupied. I could not detect the slightest trace of any unfriendly feelings toward
our family. All the inhabitants, without any exception, hastened to greet me. In my turn,
I reorganized the government without consulting any other voice than the public good. A
commissioner from the Directory soon arrived, and he sanctioned, without any exception,
all the measures which I had adopted:
"Having thus fulfilled, according to my best judgment, the mission which fraternal
kindness had intrusted to me, and leaving our native island tranquil and happy in finding
itself again restored to the laws of France, I prepared to return to the Continent, having
made a sojourn in Corsica of three months."
 On the 27th of March, 1797, Joseph was appointed ambassador to the Court of Parma.
He presented to the duke credentials from the Directory of the French Republic, containing
the following sentiments:
"The desire which we have to maintain and to cherish the friendship and the kind relations
happily established between the French Republic and the Duchy of Parma, has induced us to
appoint Citizen Bonaparte to reside at the Court of your Royal Highness in quality of
ambassador. The knowledge which we have of his principles and his sentiments is to us a
sure guarantee that the choice which we have made of his person to fulfill that honorable
mission will be agreeable to you, and we are well persuaded that he will do every thing in
his power to justify the confidence we have placed in him. It is in that persuasion that
we pray your Royal Highness to repose entire faith in every thing which he may say in our
behalf,. and particularly whenever he may renew the assurance of the friendship with which
we cherish your Royal Highness."
The Duke of Parma had married an Austrian duchess, sister of Maria Antoinette. She was an
energetic woman in conjunction
 with the ecclesiastics, who crowded the palace, had great control over her husband. But
the spirit of the French Revolution already pervaded many minds in Parma. Not a few were
restive under the old feudal domination of the duke and the arrogance of the Church. One
day Joseph was walking through the gardens of the ducal palace with several of the
dignitaries of the Court. He spoke with admiration of the architectural grandeur and
symmetry Of the regal mansion.
"That is true," one replied, "but turn your eyes to the neighboring convent; how far does
it surpass in magnificence the palace of the sovereign! Unhappy is that country where
things are so."
After the peace of Leoben Napoleon returned to Milan and established himself, for several
months, at the chateau of Montebello. Joseph soon joined his brother there. In the mean
time their eldest sister, Eliza, had been married to M. Bacciochi, a young officer of
great distinction. He was afterward created a prince by Napoleon. He was a man of elegant
manners, and had attained no little distinction in literary and artistic accomplishments.
"We have often been amused," say the
 authors of the "Napoleon Dynasty," "to see British writers, some of whom doubtless never
passed beyond the Channel, speak depreciatingly of the manners and refinement of these
new-made princes and nobles of Napoleon's Empire. Those who are familiar with the elegant
manners of the refined Italians read such slurs with a smile. Whatever may be the crimes
of the Italians, they have never been accused, by those who know them, of coarseness of
manner, or lack of refinement of mind and taste. Eliza is said to have possessed more of
her brother's genius than any other one of the sisters. Chateaubriand, La Harpe, Fontanes,
and many other of the most illustrious men of France sought her society, and have
expressed their admiration of her talents."
At Montebello the second sister, Pauline, was married to General Leclerc. Pauline was
pronounced by Canova to be the most peerless model of grace and beauty in all Europe. The
same envenomed pen of slander which has dared to calumniate even the immaculate Josephine
has also been busy in traducing the character of Pauline. We here again quote from the
"Napoleon Dynasty," by the Berkeley men:
 "No satisfactory evidence has ever been adduced, in any quarter, that Pauline was not a
virtuous woman. Those who were mainly instrumental in originating and circulating these
slanders at the time about her, were the very persons who had endeavored to load the name
of Josephine with obloquy. Those who saw her could not withhold their admiration. But the
blood of Madame Mere was in her veins, and the Bonapartes, especially the women of the
family, have always been too proud and haughty to degrade themselves. Even had they lacked
what is technically called moral character, their virtue has been intrenched behind their
ancestry, and the achievements of their own family; nor was there at any time an instant
when any one of the Bonapartes could have overstepped, by a hair's breadth, the bounds of
decency without being exposed. None of them pursued the noiseless tenor of their way along
the vale of obscurity. They were walking in the clear sunshine, on the topmost summits of
the earth, and millions of enemies were watching every step they took.
"The highest genius of historians, the bitterest satire of dramatists, the meanest and
most malignant pens of the journalists have assailed
 them for more than half a century. We have written these words because a Republican is the
only one likely to speak well even of the good things of the Bonaparte family. It was, and
is, and will be, the dynasty of the people standing there from 1804 a fearful antagonism
against the feudal age, and its souvenirs of oppression and crime."
On the 7th of May,1797, Joseph was promoted to the post of minister from the French
Republic to the Court at Rome. He received instructions from his Government to make every
effort to maintain friendly relations with that spiritual power, which exerted so vast an
influence over the masses of Europe. Pope Pius VI. gave him a very cordial reception, and
seemed well disposed to employ all his means of persuasion and authority to induce the
Vendeans in France to accept the French Republic. The Vendeans, enthusiastic Catholics,
and devoted to the Bourbons, were still, with amazing energy, perpetuating civil war in
France. The Allies, ready to make use of any instrumentality whatever to crush
republicanism, were doing every thing in their power to encourage the Vendeans in their
rebellion. The Austrian ambassador at the Papal Court
 was unwearied in his endeavors to circumvent the peaceful mission of Joseph.
Though the Pope himself and his Secretary of State were inclined to amicable relations
with the French Government, his Cabinet, the Sacred College, composed exclusively of
ecclesiastics, was intent upon the restoration of the Bourbons, by which restoration alone
the Catholic religion could be reinstated with exclusive power in France.
By the intrigues of Austria, General Provera, an Austrian officer, was placed in command
of all the Papal forces. Joseph immediately communicated this fact to the Directory in
Paris, and also to his brother. This Austrian officer had been fighting against the French
in Italy, and had three times been taken prisoner by the French troops.
Napoleon, who had lost all confidence in the French Directory, and who, by virtue of his
victories, had assumed the control of Italian diplomacy, immediately wrote as follows to
"Milan, Dec. 14, 1797.
"I shared your indignation, citizen ambassador, when you informed me of the arrival of
General Provera. You may declare positively
 to the Court of Rome that if it receive lute its service any officer known to have been in
the service of the Emperor of Austria, all good understanding between France and Rome will
cease from that hour, and war will be already declared.
"You will let it be known; by a special note to the Pope, which you will address to him in
person, that although peace may be made with his majesty the Emperor, the French Republic
will not consent that the Pope should accept among his troops any officer or agent
belonging to the Emperor of any denomination, except the usual diplomatic agents. You will
require the departure of M. Provera from the Roman territory within twenty-four hours, in
default whereof you will declare that you quit Rome."
The spirit of the French Revolution at this time pervaded to a greater or less degree all
the kingdoms of Europe. In Rome there was a very active party of Republicans anxious for a
change of government. Napoleon did not wish to encourage this party in an insurrection. By
so doing, he would exasperate still more the monarchs of Europe, who were already
 combined in deadly, hostility against republican France; neither did he think the
Republican party in Rome sufficiently strong to maintain their cause, or the people
sufficiently enlightened for self-government. Thus he was not at all disposed to favor any
insurrectionary movements in Rome; neither was he disposed to render any aid whatever to
the Papal Government in opposing those who were struggling for greater political liberty.
He only demanded that France should be left by the other governments in Europe in entire
liberty to choose her own institutions. And he did not wish that France should interfere,
in any way whatever, with the internal affairs of other nations.
While Joseph was officiating as ambassador at Rome, endeavoring to promote friendly
relations between the Papal See and the new French Republic, he was much embarrassed by
the operations of two opposite and hostile parties of intriguants at that court. The
Austrians, and all the other European cabinets, were endeavoring to influence the Pope to
give his powerful moral support against the French Revolution. On the other hand there was
a party of active revolutionists, both native and foreign, in Rome, struggling to rouse
popu-  lace to an insurrection against the Government, to overthrow the Papal power entirely, as
France had overthrown the Bourbon power, and to establish a republic. These men hoped for
the countenance and support of France. But Joseph Bonaparte could lend them no
countenance. He was received as a friendly ambassador at that court, and could not without
ignominy take part with conspirators to overthrow the Government. He was also bound to
watch with the utmost care, and thwart, if possible, the efforts of the Austrians and
other advocates of the old regime.
On the 27th of December three members of the revolutionary party called upon Joseph and
informed him that during the night a revolution was to break out, and they wished to
communicate the facet to him, that he might not be taken by surprise. Joseph reproved
them, stating that he did not think it right for him, an ambassador at the Court of Rome,
to listen to such a communication; and moreover he assured them that the movement was
ill-timed, and that it could not prove successful.
They replied that they came to him for advice, for they hoped that republican France would
protect them in their revolution as soon
 as it was accomplished. Joseph informed them that, as an impartial spectator, he should
give an account to his Government of whatever scenes might occur, but that he could give
them no encouragement whatever; that France was anxious to promote a general peace on the
Continent, and would look with regret upon any occurrences which might retard that peace.
He also repeated his assurance that the revolutionary party in Rome had by no means
sufficient strength to attain their end, and he entreated them to desist from their
The committee were evidently impressed by his representations. They departed declaring
that every thing should remain quiet for the present, and the night passed away in
tranquillity. On the evening of the next day one of the Government party called, and
confidentially informed Joseph that the blunderheads were ridiculously
contemplating a movement which would only involve them in ruin. The Papal Government, by
means of spies, was not only informed of all the movements contemplated, but through these
spies, as pretended revolutionists, the Government was actually aiding in getting up the
insurrection, which it would promptly crush with a bloody hand.
 At 4 o'clock the next morning Joseph was aroused from sleep by a messenger who informed
him that about a hundred of the revolutionists had assembled at the villa Medici, where
they were surrounded by the troops of the Pope. Joseph, who had given the revolutionists
good advice in vain, turned upon his pillow and fell asleep again. In the morning he
learned that there had been a slight conflict, that two of the Pope's dragoons had been
killed, and that the insurgents had been put to flight; several of them having been
arrested. These insurgents had assumed the French national cockade, implying that they
were acting, in some degree of cooperation, with revolutionary France.
Joseph immediately called upon the Secretary of State, and informed him that far from
complaining of the arrest of persons who had assumed the French cockade, he came to make
the definite request that he would arrest all such persons who were not in the service of
the French legation. He also informed the secretary that six individuals had taken refuge
within his jurisdiction. At Rome the residences of the foreign ambassadors enjoyed the
privilege of sanctuary in common with most
 of the churches. Joseph informed the secretary, that if those who had taken refuge in his
palace were of the insurgents, they should be given up. As he returned to his residence he
found General Duphot, a very distinguished French officer, who the next day was to be
married to Joseph's wife's sister, and several other French gentlemen, eagerly conversing
upon the folly of the past night. Just as they were sitting down to dinner, the porter
informed him that some twenty persons were endeavoring to enter the palace, and that they
were distributing French cockades to the passers-by, and were shouting "Live the
Republic." One of these revolutionists, a French artist, burst like a maniac into the
presence of the ambassador, exclaiming "We are free, and have come to demand the support
Joseph sternly reproved him for his senseless conduct, and ordered him to retire
immediately from the protection of the Embassy, and to take his comrades with him, or
severe measures would be resorted to. One of the officers said to. the artist scornfully,
"Where would your pretended liberty be, should the governor of the city open fire upon
The artist retired in confusion. But the
 tumult around the palace increased. Joseph's friends saw, in the midst of the mob,
well-known spies of the Government urging them on, shouting Vive la Republique, and
scattering money with a liberal hand. The insurgents were availing themselves of the
palace of the French ambassador as their place of rendezvous, and where, if need be, they
hoped to find a sanctuary. Joseph took the insignia of his office, and calling upon the
officers of his household to follow him, descended into the court, intending to address
the mob, as he spoke their language. In leaving the cabinet, they heard a prolonged
discharge of fire-arms. It was from the troops of the Government; a picket of cavalry, in
violation of the established usages of national courtesy, had invaded the jurisdiction of
the French ambassador, which, protected by his flag, was regarded as the soil of France,
and, without consulting the ambassador, were discharging volleys of musketry through the
three vast arches of the palace. Many dropped dead; others fell wounded and bleeding. The
terrified crowd precipitated itself into the courts and on the stairs, pursued by the
avenging bullets of the Government. Joseph and his friends, as they boldly forced their
way through the flying multitude,
 encountered the dying and the dead, and not a few Government spies, who they knew were paid
to excite the insurrection and then to de. pounce the movement to the authorities.
Just as they were stepping out of the vestibule they met a company of fusileers who had
followed the cavalry. At the sight of the French ambassador they stopped. Joseph demanded
the commander. He, conscious of the lawlessness of his proceedings, had concealed himself
in the ranks, and could not be distinguished. He then demanded of the troops by whose
order they entered upon the jurisdiction of France, and commanded them to retire. A scene
of confusion ensued, some advancing, others retiring. Joseph then facing them, said, in a
very decisive tone, "that the first one who should attempt to pass the middle of the court
would encounter trouble."
He drew his sword, and Generals Duphot and Sherlock and two other officers of his escort,
armed with swords or pistols and poniards, ranged themselves at his side to resist their
advance. The musketeers retired just beyond pistol-shot, and then deliberately fired a
general discharge in the direction of Joseph and his friends. None of the party
sur-  rounding the ambassador were struck, but several were killed in their rear.
Joseph, with General Duphot, boldly advanced as the soldiers were reloading their muskets,
and ordered them to retire from the jurisdiction of France, saying that the ambassador
would charge himself with the punishment of the insurgents, and that he would immediately
send one of his own officers to the Vatican or to the Governor of Rome, and that the
affair would thus be settled. The soldiers seemed to pay no regard to this, and continued
loading their muskets. General Duphot, one of the most brave and impetuous of men, leaped
forward into the midst of the bayonets of the soldiers, prevented one from loading and
struck up the gun of another, who was just upon the point of firing. Joseph and General
Sherlock, as by instinct, followed him.
Some of the soldiers seized General Duphot, dragged him rudely beyond the sacred precincts
of the ambassador's palace and the flag of France, and then a soldier discharged a musket
into his bosom. The heroic general fell, and immediately painfully rose, leaning upon his
sabre. Joseph, who witnessed it all, in the midst of this scene of indescribable confusion
 called out to his friend, who the next day was to be his brother-in-law, to return.
General Duphot attempted it, when a second shot prostrated him upon the pavement. More
than fifty shots were then discharged into his lifeless body.
The soldiers now directed their fire upon Joseph and General Sherlock. Fortunately there
was a door through which they escaped into the garden of the palace, where they were for a
moment sheltered from the bullets of the assassins. Another company of Government troops
had now arrived, and was firing from the other side of the street. Two French officers,
from whom Joseph had been separated, now joined him and General Sherlock in the garden.
There was nothing to prevent the soldiers from entering the palace, where Joseph's wife
and her sister, who the next day was to have become the wife of General Duphot, were
trembling in terror. Joseph and his friends regained the palace by the side of the garden.
The court was now filled with the soldiers, and with the insurgents who had so foolishly
and ignominiously caused this horrible scene. Twenty of the insurgents lay dead upon the
 "I entered the palace," Joseph writes in his dispatch to Talleyrand; "the walks were
covered with blood, with the dying, dragging themselves along, and with the wounded,
loudly groaning. We closed the three gates fronting upon the street. The lamentations of
the betrothed of Duphot, that young hero who, constantly in the advance-guard of the
armies of the Pyrenees and of Italy, had always been victorious, butchered by cowardly
brigands; the absence of her mother and of her brother, whom curiosity had drawn from the
palace to see the monuments of Rome; the fusillade which continued in the streets, and
against the gates of the palace; the outer apartments of the vast palace of Corsini, which
I inhabited, thronged with people of whose intentions we were ignorant: these
circumstances and many others rendered the scene inconceivably cruel."
Joseph immediately summoned the servants of the household around him. Three had been
wounded. The French officers; impelled by an instinct of national pride, heroically
emerged from the palace, with the aid of these domestics, to rescue the body of their
unfortunate general Taking a circuitous route, notwithstanding the fusillade which was
still continued, they
suc-  ceeded in reaching the spot of his cowardly assassination. There they found the remains of
this truly noble young man, despoiled, pierced with bullets, clotted with blood, and
covered with stones which had been thrown upon him.
It was six o'clock in the evening. Two hours had elapsed since the assassination of
Duphot; and yet not a member of the Roman Government had appeared at the palace to bring
protection or to restore order. Joseph was, properly, very indignant, and resolved at once
to call for his passports and leave the city. He wrote a brief note to the Secretary of
State, and sent it by a faithful domestic, who succeeded in the darkness in passing
through the crowd of soldiers. As the firing was still continued, Joseph and his friends
anxiously watched the messenger from the attic windows of the palace till he was lost from
An hour passed, and some one was heard knocking at the gate with repeated blows. They
supposed that it was certainly the governor or some Roman officer of commanding authority.
It proved to be Chevalier Angiolini, minister from Tuscany, the envoy of a prince who was
in friendly alliance with the French Republic. As he passed through the
 soldiery they stopped his carriage, and sarcastically asked him "if he were in search of
dangers and bullet-wounds." He courageously and reproachfully replied, "There can be no
such dangers in Rome within the jurisdiction of the ambassador of France." This was a
severe reproach against the officers of a nation who were indebted to the moderation of
the French Republic for their continued political existence. The minister of Spain soon
also presented himself, braving all the dangers of the street, which were truly very
great. They were both astonished that no public officer had arrived, and expressed much
indignation in view of the violation of the rights of the Embassy.
Ten o'clock arrived, and still no public officer had made his appearance. Joseph wrote a
second letter to the cardinal. An answer now came, which was soon followed by an officer
and about forty men, who said that they had been sent to protect the ambassador's
communications with the Secretary of State. But they had no authority or power to rescue
the palace from the insurgents, who were crowded into one part of it, and from the
Government troops, who occupied another part. No
 attention had been paid to Joseph's reiterated demands for the liberation of the palace
from the dominion of the insurgents and the troops.
Joseph then wrote to the secretary, demanding immediately his passport. It was sent to him
two hours after midnight. At six o'clock in the morning, fourteen hours after the
assassination of General Duphot, the investment of the palace by the troops and the
massacre of the people who had crowded into it, not a single Roman officer had made his
appearance charged by the Government to investigate the state of affairs.
Joseph, after having secured the safety of the few French remaining at Rome, left for
Tuscany, and in a dispatch to the French Government minutely detailed the events which had
occurred. In the conclusion of his dispatch he wrote:
"This Government is not inconsistent with itself. Crafty and rash in perpetrating crime,
cowardly and fawning when it has been committed, it is to-day upon its knees before the
minister Azara, that he may go to Florence and induce me to return to Rome. So writes to
the that generous friend of France, worthy
 of dwelling in a land where his virtues and his noble loyalty may be better appreciated."
In reply to this dispatch the French minister, Talleyrand, wrote to Joseph, "I have
received, citizen, the heart-rending letter which you have written me upon the frightful
events which transpired at Rome on the 28th of December. Notwithstanding the care which
you have taken to conceal every thing personal to yourself during that horrible day, you
have not been able to conceal from me that you have manifested, in the highest degree,
courage, coolness, and that intelligence which nothing can escape; and that you have
sustained with magnanimity the honor of the French name. The Directory charges me to
express to you, in the strongest and most impressive terms, its extreme satisfaction with
your whole conduct. You will readily believe, I trust, that I am happy to be the organ of