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The Burlesque Napoleon


The Burlesque Napoleon

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    Available in PDF Format | The Burlesque Napoleon.pdf | Unknown
    Philip Walsingham Sergeant
Excerpt from book: CHAPTER II JEROME AT SEA It is a fact familiar to students of Napoleonic history that for several years previous to this period Napoleon had been cherishing the idea of improving the French navy, in order to meet the perpetual menace of England. Even during his first Italian campaign he had sent to the Directory 2,000,000 francs for naval purposes : but the Directors had used the money otherwise. His experiences in Egypt served to strengthen his views. It was not until the year following that in which he put Jerome into the navy that he wrote to Lucien: " Whatever the cost, we must become masters of the Mediterranean, or force the English to efforts which they will be unable to sustain long." The words, however, serve to show what his desire was years before. When, therefore, the First Consul started out to make a sailor of his youngest brother he offered him a career in which he hoped that the rewards would beof the highest: and had Jerome been what Napoleon wanted him to be his entrance into the navy should have meant not a little for France and for himself. The scheme was, nevertheless, most unpalatable to Jerome, who made vigorous protests, and, according to some accounts, took care to fail in his preliminary examination. But he only found, as he was destined often to find later, that protests had no strength against his brother's will. Scouting the idea that a post of aide-de-camp, such as Louis had filled in Italy, would be suitable for Jerome, Napoleon sent him as a mere midshipman, an aspirant de seconde classe, to Rear-Admiral Ganteaume's flagship Indivisible at Brest. Ganteaume, who had succeeded in bringing Napoleon safely home from Egypt, was entrusted now with a mission dangerous enough to make it sure that those under him would see real service. The Mediterrane...  
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