Another, M. Bordas, opposed Napoleon’s assumption of the Consulship on the 18th Brumaire, and was proscribed by him for a short time, but afterwards amnestied and received into favour. He gave his vote for Napoleon on the Champ de Mai in 1815, but accompanied this vote by a bold speech towards Napoleon wherein he found fault with his former despotic practises, and reminded him of the solemnity of his promise to govern in future paternally and nationally, as became the sovereign of a free people. M. Bordas is a very cheerful, lively, companionable man and tho’ seventy years of age, he has an uncommon share of vivacity, with something of the ci-devant jeune homme about him, and He is pleased to be considered still as a man a bonnes fortunes.
The next to him is M. Gauthier, who had been a lawyer, and held a considerable post as a magistrate in the time of the Republic and under the Empire. He possesses a good deal of talent, close logical reasoning, and has determined public principle.
The next, M. Michaud, had been also an advocate, and is possessor of considerable property in the department of the Doubs; he is a most rigid unbending republican, something in the style of Verrina in Schiller’s Fiesco; he opposed the assumption of the supreme power by Buonaparte on the 18th Brumaire; he voted against the Consulship for life, as well as against the assumption of the Imperial dignity. He is a very good classical scholar. He is a widower and has with him here Mlle Elisa, his only daughter, who follows her father’s fortunes. She is a very amiable and accomplished young lady; she has a thorough knowledge of music and of painting in oils, and is classically versed in the Italian language. I soon became acquainted with the whole of these illustrious exiles, and I find great delight and instruction from their conversation; and this is a great relief to me, for the life one leads in a Swiss town is rather monotonous.
I dine very often with my neighbour the Baron de Falkenskioeld, and at his house I became acquainted with M. de Laharpe, who was preceptor to the present Emperor of Russia. He is a native of this Canton, and has returned here to pass the remainder of his life. He is married to a very amiable Russian lady, and having acquired a pretty good fortune in Russia, he lives here very happily and comfortably; but notwithstanding this, he is often tempted to visit Paris, Milan and other great cities, and when there, sighs to return to his native mountains.