Paris under the Commune eBook

John Leighton Stuart
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 483 pages of information about Paris under the Commune.

Between Courbevoie and the Porte Maillot the fighting is continual.  Ground is lost and gained, such and such a house that was just now occupied by the Versaillais is now in the hands of the Federals, and vice versa.  Neither side is wholly victorious, but the fighting goes on.  What! is there no one to cry out “Enough!  Enough blood, enough tears!  Enough Frenchmen killed by Frenchmen, Republicans killed by Republicans.”  Men fall on each side with the same war cry on their lips.  Oh! when will all this dreadful misunderstanding cease?


[Footnote 44:  The biography of this general of the Commune is very imperfect, down to the time when he was elected for the 1st Arrondissement of Paris, and was thereupon appointed Minister of War, or in Communal phraseology, Delegate at the War Department.  He seems to have been one of those beings, without country or family, but who are blessed, by way of compensation, with a plurality of names; we do not know whether Cluseret was really his own, or how many aliases he had made use of.

It is said that he was formerly captain in a battalion of Chasseurs d’Afrique, but was dismissed the army upon being convicted of defalcations, in connection with the purchase of horses, and, that soon after his dismissal from the French army, he went to the United States, where he served in the revolutionary war, and attained to the rank of General.  Then we have another story, to the effect that having been entrusted with the care of a flock of lambs, the number of the animals decreased so rapidly, that nothing but the existence of a large pack of wolves near at hand, could possibly have accounted for it in an honest way; this affair is said to have occurred at Churchill, Such vague charges as these however deserve but little credit.

After closing his career as a shepherd, he became a defender of the Pope’s flock, enlisting in the brigade against which Garibaldi took the field.  The next we hear of him is that he joined the Fenians, and made an attempt to get possession of Chester Castle, but that he fell under suspicion of being a traitor, and was glad to escape to France, where, report says, he found refuge with a religious community.

          “When the devil was sick,
          The devil a monk would be;
          But when the devil was well,
          The devil a monk was he!”



Thirty men carrying muffled drums, thirty more with trumpets draped in crape, head a long procession; every now and then the drums roll dismally, and the trumpets give a long sad wail.

Numerous detachments of all the battalions come next, marching slowly, their arms reversed.  A small bunch of red immortelles is on every breast.  Has the choice of the colour a political signification, or is it a symbol of a bloody death?

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Paris under the Commune from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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