Napoleon: For and Against

By Pieter Geyl; Olive Renier | Go to book overview

CHAPTER Ill
G. PARISET

IN the great history of France under the direction of Ernest Lavisse, one of those collective works which had become fashionable in historiography, there appeared in 1921 as the third of the ten copious volumes in which contemporary history beginning with 1789 is surveyed, the volume of G. Pariset, on Consulate and Empire. It is a textbook of high quality, sane, sober and clear, but by no means impersonal. It unhesitatingly presents an original conception. Let me illustrate the nature of this with a few of its main points.


FOREIGN POLICY

Bonaparte's victory at Marengo and that of Moreau near Hohenlinden led to the peace of Lunéville. Hohenlinden formed an indispensable element in this situation and to that extent Bonaparte rejoiced at it, but the fact that it was Moreau's victory irked him: 'He could not forgive victorious generals.'1 Anyhow, it was peace, and the joy that reigned in France was indescribable. Some people, however, were already afraid that the First Consul would use his success to expand his own power and to undertake new adventures. But even the most timid admonition in the Tribunate was apt to anger Bonaparte, and it is therefore difficult to find out how widespread this concern may have been. 'This much is certain, that France was profoundly and decidedly pacific; never was she less militaristically inclined than immediately after his greatest successes in the field.' No doubt men take pride in the glorious character of the peace. 'But the destinies of Holland, Switzerland, Italy, the German princes, touch the nation only indirectly. It is satisfied now that the safety of France, for ever firmly established within her natural frontiers, is no longer threatened. It remains indifferent, to Bonaparte's distant combinations. The nation was even more fatigued than in the days of the Directory. It imagined that the object had now been attained, its

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1
p. 51.

-364-

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Napoleon: For and Against
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page 3
  • Contents 5
  • Preface - To the First Dutch Edition 7
  • Part One - The Antithesis at the Beginning 13
  • Chapter I - Chateaubriand 17
  • Chapter II - Madame de Staël 19
  • Chapter III - The Napoleonic Legend 23
  • Part Two - The First Chroniclers 33
  • Chapter I - M. Mignet 35
  • Chapter II - Baron Bignon 37
  • Chapter III - Armand Lefebvre 45
  • Chapter IV - Adolphe Thiers 53
  • Part Three - Reaction against the Legend 69
  • Chapter I - Jules Barni 73
  • Chapter II - Edgar Quinet 77
  • Chapter III - Pierre Lanfrey 86
  • Chapter IV - Comte D'Haussonville 106
  • Chapter V - Hippolyte Taine 133
  • Part Four - Admirers 149
  • Chapter I - Prince Napoleon 156
  • Chapter II - Henry Houssaye 160
  • Chapter III - Arthur - LéVy Polemic against Taine 169
  • Chapter IV - FréDéric Masson 177
  • Chapter V - Count Albert Vandal 230
  • Part Five - The Problem of Foreign Policy 233
  • Chapter I - Old Acquaintances 235
  • Chapter II - Emile Bourgeois 241
  • Chapter III - Two More Old Acquaintances 250
  • Chapter IV - Albert Sorel 254
  • Chapter V - Edouard Driault 308
  • Part Six - The Antithesis at the End 349
  • Chapter 1 356
  • Chapter II - A. L. Guérard 362
  • Chapter Ill - G. Pariset 364
  • Chapter IV - Jules Isaac 371
  • Chapter V - Charles Seignobos 373
  • Chapter VI - Jacques Bainville 376
  • Chapter VII - Louis Madelin 390
  • Chapter VIII - Gabriel Hanotaux 403
  • Chapter IX - Georges Lefebvre 446
  • Chronological Table 451
  • Index 465
  • Index of Authors 475
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