[Footnote 49: There are two versions of Dombrowski’s earlier history. By his admirers he was said to have headed the last Polish insurrection: the party of order stigmatise him as a Russian adventurer, who had fought in Poland, but against the Poles, and in the Caucasus, in Italy, and in France—wherever; in fine, blows were to be given and money earned. He entered France, like many other adventurous knights, in Garibaldi’s suite, came to Paris after the siege, and immediately after the outbreak of the eighteenth of March was created general by the Commune, and gathered round him in guise of staff the most illustrious, or least ignoble, of those foreign parasites and vagabonds, who have made of Paris a grand occidental Bohemian Babel. These soldiers of fortune, most of whom had been “unfortunate” at home, formed the marrow of the Commune’s military strength.
Dombrowski had gained a name for intrepidity even among these men of reckless courage and adventurous lives. He maintained strict discipline, albeit to a not very moral purpose. Whoever dared connect his name with the word defeat was shot. Like many other Communist generals he took the most stringent measures for concealing the truth from his soldiers, and thus staved off total demoralisation until the Versailles troops were in the heart of Paris. His relations with the Federal authorities were not of an uniformly amiable character.]
[Footnote 50: A poor Italian smith told me he had three men seized. They had taken a stove near the fortifications of Ternes, when they were arrested. “But we are Italians!” they cried. It was no excuse, for the Federals replied, “Italians! so much the better; you shall serve as Garibaldians!”]