The banker, Perregeaux, is one of those fortunate beings who, by drudgery and assiduity, has succeeded in some few years to make an ample fortune. A Swiss by birth, like Necker, he also, like him, after gratifying the passion of avidity, showed an ambition to shine in other places than in the counting-house and upon the exchange. Under La Fayette, in 1790, he was the chief of a battalion of the Parisian National Guards; under Robespierre, a commissioner for purchasing provisions; and under Bonaparte he is become a Senator and a commander of the Legion of Honour. I am told that he has made all his money by his connection with your country; but I know that the favourite of Napoleon can never be the friend of Great Britain. He is a widower; but Mademoiselle Mars, of the Emperor’s theatre, consoles him for the loss of his wife.
General Marmont accompanied Bonaparte to Egypt, and distinguished himself at the capture of Malta, and when, in the following year, the siege of St. Jean d’Acre was undertaken, he was ordered to extend the fortifications of Alexandria; and if, in 1801, they retarded your progress, it was owing to his abilities, being an officer of engineers as well as of the artillery. He returned with Bonaparte to Europe, and was, after his usurpation, made a Counsellor of State. At the battle of Marengo he commanded the artillery, and signed afterwards, with the Austrian general, Count Hohenzollern, the Armistice of Treviso, which preceded shortly the Peace of Luneville. Nothing has abated Bonaparte’s attachment to this officer, whom he appointed a commander-in-chief in Holland, when a change of Government was intended there, and whom he will entrust everywhere else, where sovereignty is to be abolished, or thrones and dynasties subverted.
Paris, October, 1805.
My lord:—Many wise people are of the opinion that the revolution of another great Empire is necessary to combat or oppose the great impulse occasioned by the Revolution of France, before Europe can recover its long-lost order and repose. Had the subjects of Austria been as disaffected as they are loyal, the world might have witnessed such a terrible event, and been enabled to judge whether the hypothesis was the production of an ingenious schemer or of a profound statesman. Our armies under Bonaparte have never before penetrated into the heart of a country where subversion was not prepared, and where subversion did not follow.
How relatively insignificant, in the eyes of Providence, must be the independence of States and the liberties of nations, when such a relatively insignificant personage as General von Mack can shake them? Have, then, the Austrian heroes—a Prince Eugene, a Laudon, a Lasci, a Beaulieu, a Haddick, a Bender, a Clairfayt, and numerous other valiant and great warriors—left no posterity behind them; or has the presumption of