Notwithstanding this declaration of the physician and the avowal of Stabs, the Emperor, touched by the coolness and assurance of the unfortunate fellow, again offered him his pardon, upon the sole condition of expressing some repentance for his crime; but as Stabs again asserted that his only regret was that he had not succeeded in his undertaking, the Emperor reluctantly gave him up to punishment.
After he was conducted to prison, as he still persisted in his assertions, he was immediately brought before a military commission, which condemned him to death. He did not undergo his punishment till the 17th; and after the 13th, the day on which he was arrested, took no food, saying that he would have strength enough to go to his death. The Emperor had ordered that the execution should be delayed as long as possible, in the hope that sooner or later Stabs would repent; but he remained unshaken. As he was being conducted to the place where he was to be shot, some one having told him that peace had just been concluded, he cried in a loud voice, “Long live liberty! Long live Germany!” These were his last words.
During his stay at Schoenbrunn the Emperor was constantly engaged in gallant adventures. He was one day promenading on the Prater in Vienna, with a very numerous suite (the Prater is a handsome promenade situated in the Faubourg Leopold), when a young German, widow of a rich merchant, saw him, and exclaimed involuntarily to the ladies promenading with her, “It is he!” This exclamation was overheard by his Majesty, who stopped short, and bowed to the ladies with a smile, while the one who had spoken blushed crimson; the Emperor comprehended this unequivocal sign, looked at her steadfastly, and then continued his walk.