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  • Napoleon and the Red Man: Selling Your Soul for European Dominion August 27, 2014

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Modern , trackback

    napoleon and the devil

    Beach must start this post with a rider: he LOATHES Napoleon. The man who destroyed the Venetian Republic; who murdered (directly or indirectly) hundreds of thousands of innocents; who filled French galleries and museums with plunder; who put the crown (which wasn’t his) on his own head; who perpetuated the worst revolution of all, in its most efficient but diabolical form; and who even placed flat boats, in harbours, facing the White Cliffs (how did that turn out Boney?). In words that George Bernard Shaw applied to Alexander, ‘a truly great man in every sense but the most important, it would have been better had he never been born.’

    How wonderful, then, to come across then this peculiar nineteenth century legend, probably of British origin. When you’ve read this everything will start to make sense.

    The 1st of January, 1814, early in the morning, Napoleon shut himself up in his cabinet; bidding Count Mole (then Counsellor of State, and since made Grand Judge of the Empire) to remain in the next room, and to hinder any person from troubling him whilst he was occupied in his cabinet. He looked more thoughtful than usual. He had not long retired to his study, when a tall man, dressed all in red, applied to Mold, pretending that he wanted to speak to the Emperor. He was answered that it was not possible. ‘I must speak to him,’ said he; ‘go, and tell him that it is the Red Man who wants him, and he will admit me.’ Awed by the imperious and commanding tone of that strange personage, Mold obeyed reluctantly, and, trembling, executed his dangerous errand. ‘Let him in,’ said Buonaparte sternly.

    Allegedly Mole listened at the door, because otherwise we wouldn’t have this account.

    The Red Man said, ‘This is my third appearance before you. The first we met was in Egypt, at the battle of the Pyramids. The second, after the battle of Wagram. I then granted you four years more, to terminate the conquest of Europe, or to make a general peace; threatening you that, if you did not perform one of those two things, I would withdraw my protection from you. Now I am come, for the third and last time, to warn you that you have now but three months to complete the execution of your designs, or to comply with the proposals of peace offered you by the allies: if you do not achieve the one, or accede to the other, all will be over with you so remember it well.’

    Napoleon begged the Red Man to ease up saying he couldn’t reconquer or make peace in that time, but the cloven-hoofed one (is there any doubt?) insisted on the contract and left Napoleon furious and alone in the cabinet room where he sat all day, presumably writing his New Year Resolutions. ‘Don’t smoke, don’t eat transfats, do conquer Belgium…

    Such were the reports that were spread in Paris three months before the fall of Napoleon Buonaparte, where they caused an unusual sensation, and created a belief that he had dealings with infernal spirits, and was bound to fulfil their will or perish. What is more remarkable is, that in three months the last wonderful events justified the Red Man’s words completely

    napoleon and the devil 2

    So it must be true… The writer of the letter (that appeared in the Gentleman’s Magazine (1815) states:

    Who the Red Man really was [cue spooky music], has never been known; but that such a person obtained an interview with him seems to have been placed beyond a doubt. Even the French papers, when Buonaparte was deposed, recurred to the fact, and remarked that his mysterious visitant’s prophetic threat had been accomplished.

    Not sure that I’ve come across this version in the history books. But now the question, was this really a French story, or was it dreamed up, minted and sold in the land of bitterweeds and shopkeepers. Beach’s money is on the English bourgeoisie: drbeachcombing AT yahoo DOT com