Chateaubriand's memoirs, XXXV, 2

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XXXV, 1 << Chateaubriand's memoirs >> XXXV, 3


Mémoires d'Outre-tombe


Book XXXV, chapter 2
General Lamarque’s cortege



Paris, Rue d’Enfer, 10th of June 1832.


General Lamarque’s cortege lead to two blood-stained days and the victory of the Quasi-Legitimacy over the Republican Party. The latter, fragmented and disunited, carried out a heroic resistance.

Paris was placed in a state of siege: it was censure on the largest possible scale, censure in the style of the Convention, with this difference that a military commission replaced the revolutionary tribunal. In June 1832 they shot the men who brought them victory in July 1830; they sacrificed that same École Polytechnique, that same artillery of the National Guard, who had conquered the powers that be, on behalf of those who now struck at them, disavowed them and cast them off! The Republicans were certainly wrong to have espoused the methods of anarchy and disorder; but should we not rather have deployed such noble arms on our frontiers? They would have delivered us from the yoke of the stranger. Generous and exalted spirits would not thereby have remained in Paris fermenting trouble, inflamed by our shameful foreign policy and the disloyalty of our new monarchy. You have shown no mercy, you who, without sharing the dangers of the Three Days, reaped the rewards. Go, with their mothers, now, and seek the bodies of those medal-winners of July, whose positions, wealth and honours you have taken. You, our young men, have met differing fates on the same shore! You possess both tombs beneath the colonnade of the Louvre and places in the Morgue; some for having seized, others for having granted a crown. Who knows your names, you makers of sacrifice and you victims, forever unknown, of a memorable revolution? Who remembers those whose blood cements the monuments men admire? The workers who built the Great Pyramid, to hold the body of an inglorious pharaoh, sleep forgotten in the sand, among the sparse roots that nourished them during their labour.