Page:Littell's Living Age - Volume 128.djvu/458

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had taken his passage on board of H.M.'s frigate "Phaeton," which was expected to arrive in about a month's time. At this news Napoleon was greatly chagrined, as he appeared to know Sir Hudson Lowe well. Napoleon remarked to the admiral, "I hope Sir Hudson Lowe will act in the same manner as you have done, then I shall be comfortable." Sir George bowed, and remained silent. Mr. Jones, having a standing pass from Sir George, often came to Longwood. In a conversation about the war with Bonaparte, the latter spoke very highly of some of his own generals, saying that none could exceed them in their art. Mr. Jones replied, "You were very lucky to fall in with such clever men." "Not at all," said Napoleon. "My maxim was, never to promote any man unless he deserved it. No matter how humble a man's origin might be, if he possessed merit or any good qualities I always encouraged him, and by experience he promoted himself. To make a thorougly good general a man should go regularly through all grades in the army — that is, he should rise from the ranks. If a man had talent, I developed it. Now the practice in the English army is always to promote persons of high birth, — money easily purchasing the commission of a lieutenant-colonel, for a man with little or no military experience; the sons of noblemen can be captains and majors without ever having had a day's march with a regiment, while good soldiers who have fought for their country and experienced the fatigues and hardships of war, if they happen to be of obscure birth, in low circumstances, and to lack wealthy or influential friends, are totally and most unjustly neglected." Mr. Jones then asked Napoleon what he thought of Lord Wellington. "Why," said Napoleon, "Wellington is a good soldier and a brave man; but he does not possess that experience which is requisite in a field-marshal. Sir Rowland Hill should have been your commander-in-chief. He is far superior to Wellington, and so was General Picton. During the latter part of the war I am convinced that Wellington only followed General Hill's directions. Poor old Hill is a general who fought hard and well for his country, and he ought to have had the honours that have been given to Wellington. The English had several old officers more experienced in the field and who were better commanders than Wellington. I had read an account of Waterloo written by an Englishman, from which it appears that Wellington did the sole business himself; but let any man read a true account of the battle, and then he will see who was really the conqueror. I do not wish to disparage Wellington, — far from it, — but what would have become of him and his army if Blucher had not come to his assistance so soon?" Mr. Jones remarked that the action must have been dreadful, from the accounts he had read of it. "Yes," replied Napoleon, "it was sharp; but if I had taken the advice of Marshal Bertrand and Marshal Ney, I could have destroyed the English army, and afterwards have attacked the Prussians. I was deceived. I thought the Prussians were Grouchy coming to my assistance. Had he come as I expected, the allied army would have been annihilated — we should have taken it en flagrant délit; but Providence turned the scale against me."

The Warning Symptoms of Sleeplessness — It is of course premature to offer any remarks on the "tragedy at Norwich," but there can be no objection to urging very strenuously upon hospital surgeons and practitioners generally, who are not specially familiar with the symptoms of mind and brain disease, the imperative necessity of treating "sleeplessness" as a warning symptom. A "curious patient," so described because he does not sleep, should be at once placed under proper supervision, for his own sake and the safety of those around him. Inability to sleep, remarks the Lancet, is one of the most significant indications of a condition of nervous irritability or mental excitement which may at any moment assume the form of uncontrollable violence. Delirium tremens, traumatic delirium, and the most dangerous forms of mania are all prone to give this warning token of their presence, and scarcely any other. Without in the least prejudging the case now sub judice, we venture to bespeak the attention of the profession and the public for a matter of daily importance, unfortunately impressed afresh upon the notice of everybody by this terrible lesson in blood.