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dwellings of their masters, and showed symptoms of the greatest terror. Earthquakes in this quarter of the country are not unfrequent. One happened but a short time previous to the visit of Sir John Stanley, who conjectures, that this probably enlarged the cavities communicating with the bottom of the pipe of the New Geyser; for it is to be remarked, that till then, (June 1789) that spring had not played for a considerable length of time with any degree of violence.*
[Our readers are presented in this number, with an engraved portrait of Bensparte,—copied, by the polite permission of its proprietor, from a painting, more strongly resembling him, than any other which has been exhibited to the American public. We have taken the liberty of accompanying it with the following extracts from a vigorous and faithful Sketch of his Character, from the pen of an American, who had the benefit of a personal observation, and whose talents are an honour to his native land. Ed. Sel. Rec.]
THE person of Bonaparte has been so often described, that I need not enter into particulars on this point. He was quite corpulent at this period, and is now, as I am informed, still more robust. He wore on this occasion, a plain uniform coat with the imperial insignia, and the cross of the legion of honour. His hair was without powder, and cropped short. I saw him in various situations afterwards, and received uniformly the same impressions from his countenance. It is full of meaning, but does not altogether indicate the true character of his soul. His eye is solemn and gloomy, and exceedingly penetrating; but it has less of savage fierceness, and of fire, than one would expect. The whole physical head, however, is not unsuitable to the station or nature of the individual.
"His warlike mind, his soul devoid of fear,
His limbs are well-proportioned, and remarkably strong and mus cular. His personal activity is indefatigable, and his personal courage has never been questioned. I have seen him several times on horseback, almost always in full gallop. He displays no grace in this position, but is universally admitted, to be one of the most adventurous, as well as skilful riders in his dominions.
There is no man, as I am well informed, more patient of fatigue, or more willing to encounter it in every situation. His habits as to diet are not at all abstemious, and yet by no means
* See Edinburgh Transactions, v. iii. p. 150.
those of an epicure. He eats voraciously, and with the greatest celerity, of whatever is placed before him; drinks largely of coffee at all hours of the day, and takes an immense quantity of snuff. I had understood before I arrived in Paris, that he appeared but seldom in public, and then with multiplied precautions for the security of his person. This, however, is certainly an incorrect statement. He exposes himself without any appearance of apprehension, and in situations, in which his life might be at once assailed by a thousand hands. I have seen him in an open carriage, in the midst of a population of fifty thousand souls, in the park of St. Cloud.
I was prompted by a very natural curiosity to make many inquiries concerning the domestic temper and habits of " the Casar of Cæsars," as Bonaparte is now denominated in the journals of Paris. My sources of information were among the best, and the following is the summary of the copious details, which were given to me on this subject: From his earliest youth, his disposition was haughty, vindictive, overweening and ambitious. This character he displayed at the siege of Toulon, where he first distinguished himself in such a manner, as to induce his commanderin-chief, Dugommier, to make this remark, in speaking of him to one of the commissaries of the convention: "Let that young man engage your attention; if you do not promote him, I can answer for it, that he will know how to promote himself."-When he was appointed, at the early age of twenty-five, to the command of the army of Italy, he betrayed no emotion, either of surprise or of diffidence, at so sudden and dangerous an elevation, and answered those, who indulged in some remarks concerning his youth, in this way" At the expiration of six months, I shall either be an old general or a dead man.”
Even in his boyhood, Bonaparte was passionately devoted to the military science, and took part with his young comrades, only in such exercises, as presented the most lively images of war.
He was not without social qualities in the earlier stages of his military career, and even after his elevation to the first posts of the army, could occasionally soften the natural sternness and solemnity of his manner, into an affable and communicative ease, which rendered his conversation somewhat attractive. He often indulged himself when first consul, after the public repasts of the Thuileries, in copious narratives concerning his campaigns in Egypt, about which he was extremely fond of talking. But on his accession to the imperial dignity, these glimmerings of the spirit of gentleness and courtesy were seen no more, and the innate dispositions of the man were displayed without disguise or control.
The consummate abilities of Bonaparte, both as a general and
a statesman, are now universally acknowledged. Until a few years past, his enemies were unwilling to allow him, that supremacy of genius which he undoubtedly possesses, and to which every individual, with whom I conversed on this subject in Paris, bore the amplest testimony. None of his counsellors, no functionary of his government approaches him, without feeling the ascendency of his mind; and there are but few about his person, who can penetrate into the recesses of his policy. His thoughts are perpetually occupied by vast schemes of conquest, and busied in all the most subtle refinements of elaborate fraud. His great strokes of policy, as well as the movements of his armies, originate with himself, and he displays, no less skill than despotism, in the application of the talents of others to his own purposes.
His ministers, however able or profligate, are scarcely equal to embrace, either the vast compass, or the gigantic depravity of his ambition. Although decorated with splendid titles, and enriched with an ample share of the public spoil, they are, nevertheless, the most miserable and laborious slaves in existence, under the inflexible dominion of the most capricious and insolent of all masters. They suffer personal indignities without number, and are at no one moment, secure of the favour, upon which they know their existence to depend. If the foreign enterprises of Bonaparte, as well as the internal organization of his empire, be attentively examined, it will be perceived that he acts, in almost all instances, from a profound knowledge of the history of mankind, and of human nature under all its phases. There is scarcely a successful device, in the catalogue of the means, employed by conquering nations for the extension of their dominion, or by the Philips, the Cæsars, the Constantines, and the Charlemagnes, for the consolidation of their power, of which he will not be found, to have made a skilful and efficacious use.
He has never felt, and is incapable of feeling, any influence, calculated to frustrate the views of his ambition, but that of an impetuous temper. To female blandishments he is utterly insensible, as far as they tend to subjugate the mind, although he has never deserved, the reputation for continency, which he has enjoyed beyond the limits of Paris. Josephine possessed not the slightest ascendant over his decisions, or his inclinations, in any one point, nor will the present Empress exert any larger share of influence, whatever may be the superiority of her titles, to deference or to love. For the whole house of Lorraine, he cherishes an unextinguishable hate, and meditates the most complete destruction. Motives of state policy alone, led to this union, and they alone will regulate his department towards the Austrian princess, who was sacrificed, unavailinly sacrificed, to the preservation of her father's crown.