Recollections of the Private Life of Napoleon — Complete eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,044 pages of information about Recollections of the Private Life of Napoleon — Complete.
in the court of the Imperial palace when a flag of truce came out of the town to announce that the Archduchess Marie Louise had been unable to accompany her father, and was ill in the palace, and consequently exposed to danger from the artillery; and the Emperor immediately gave orders to change the direction of the firing so that the bombs and balls would pass over the palace.  The archduke did not long hold out against such a sharp and energetic attack, but fled, abandoning Vienna to the conquerors.

On the 12th of May the Emperor made his entrance into Vienna, one month after the occupation of Munich by the Austrians.  This circumstance made a deep impression, and did much to foster the superstitious ideas which many of the troops held in regard to the person of their chief.  “See,” said one, “he needed only the time necessary for the journey.  That man must be a god.”—­“He is a devil rather,” said the Austrians, whose stupefaction was indescribable.  They had reached a point when many allowed the arms to be taken out of their hands without making the least resistance, or without even attempting to fly, so deep was their conviction that the Emperor and his guard were not men, and that sooner or later they must fall into the power of these supernatural enemies.


The Emperor did not remain in Vienna, but established his headquarters at the chateau of Schoenbrunn, an imperial residence situated about half a league from the town; and the ground in front of the chateau was arranged for the encampment of the guard.  The chateau of Schoenbrunn, erected by the Empress Maria Theresa in 1754, and situated in a commanding position, is built in a very irregular, and defective, but at the same time majestic, style of architecture.  In order to reach it, there has been thrown over the little river, la Vienne, a broad and well-constructed bridge, ornamented with four stone sphinxes; and in front of the bridge is a large iron gate, opening on an immense court, in which seven or eight thousand men could be drilled.  This court is square, surrounded by covered galleries, and ornamented with two large basins with marble statues; and on each side of the gateway are two large obelisks in rose-colored stone, surmounted by eagles of gilded lead.

‘Schoenbrunn’, in German, signifies beautiful fountain; and this name comes from a clear and limpid spring, which rises in a grove in the park, on a slight elevation, around which has been built a little pavilion, carved on the inside to imitate stalactites.  In this pavilion lies a sleeping Naiad, holding in her hand a shell, from which the water gushes and falls into a marble basin.  This is a delicious retreat in summer.

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Recollections of the Private Life of Napoleon — Complete from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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