Page:A French Volunteer of the War of Independence.djvu/167

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OF THE WAR OF INDEPENDENCE.


arts and social intercourse. The six remaining months I spent in garrison, going from the stables to parade, and from parade to the exercise ground. The silken thread of my life was smooth and even, but I felt a longing for adventures, and at one time I really believed there was a chance of my getting some fighting in India.

One of the missionary priests brought to Paris a youth whom he called the pretender to the throne of Cochin-China. This young Tonkinese prince—whose legitimate claim to the throne I never for an instant doubted—had in his suite several mandarins, who were the smallest men I ever saw, and the young prince himself did not give promise of being any taller. In fact it was difficult to look at them without laughing. The report given by the reverend father, and our commercial interests, half induced the Government to help the little prince to regain his throne, all the force that he required to effect this being a couple of frigates, and some 500 soldiers. I was told that Comte de Behague, who commanded at Belle-Isle would be the