[Illustration: PALACE OF THE LUXEMBOURG (GARDEN FRONT).
Used as a Federal Ambulance Hospital.]
[Illustration: LES PETROLEURS]
[Footnote 108: On the Wednesday succeeding the explosion of the powder-magazine in the garden of the Luxembourg, which unroofed a portion of the palace, and destroyed the windows, and did fearful damage to the surrounding houses, all the Communeux disappeared from the neighbourhood. The following night four men returned, bringing a quantity of petroleum with them. They gave orders that the six hundred wounded men who were then lying in the Palace should be taken away immediately. They had commenced their sinister project, and were pouring the petroleum about in the cellars, when the soldiers of the Brigade Paturel were informed of it, and arrived in time to prevent its execution. The criminals were taken and shot on the spot.]
[Footnote 109: The incendiaries formed a veritable army, composed of returned convicts, the very dregs of the prisons, pale, thin lads, who looked like ghosts, and old women, that looked like horrible witches; their number amounted to eight thousand! This army had its chiefs, and each detachment was charged with the firing of a quarter. The order for the conflagration of public edifices bore the stamp of the Commune, and of the Central Committee, and the seal of the delegate at the Ministry of War. For the private houses more expeditive means were used. Small tickets, of the size of postage stamps, were found pasted upon walls of houses in different parts of Paris, with the letters B.P.B. (bon pour bruler), literally, good for burning. Some of the tickets were square, others oval, with a bacchante’s head in the centre. They were affixed on spots designated by the chiefs. Every petroleuse was to receive ten francs for each house she fired. Sept. 5,1871. Amongst the insurgents tried at Versailles, three petroleuses were condemned to death, and one to imprisonment for life, a host of others being transported or otherwise punished.]