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a stranger, but when he addressed them in their own language he quite won their hearts, and after a little confab he strolled unquestioned quietly along. He left the garden, and suddenly (without probably venturing to question himself as to his intentions) threw himself on his hands and knees, and began to climb the forbidden hill, under shelter of the large and thickly-sown potato plants. He reached the summit, and, creeping through a hože at the bottom of a hedge, found himself in an outer yard opposite the stable, where the horses were getting ready for the emperor's afternoon ride.
It so happened that the medical gentleman of his own ship had also taken tiffin at a friend's that day, and afterwards had, like our hero, strolled out to stare about him. His eye caught the figure of his young chief in the garden, and observed it disappear amongst the potato plants on the opposite side. From a knowledge of his disposition, and of his uncontrollable whim to have an interview with Napoleon, which he was aware the order at the passport-office had rendered it impossible for him lawfully to gratify, he felt convinced the young man was about getting himself into some serious scrape; and, without a moment's hesitation, down dived the good doctor into the ravine also, and was up the opposite side nearly as soon as the chief; but, instead of emerging by the stables, he had made his sortie at the other end of the house, right through which he boldly walked, (to his own utter astonishment, and that of everybody else afterwards,) and, without question or hindrance, reached the stableyard, and confronted the astonished chief.
After a few ejaculations, explanations, and representations, the doctor was prevailed upon, as they were there, to stay and have a peep at the emperor; who, they were assured, would be out presently, to take a few turns upon the terrace with Las Casas, before he mounted. Accordingly they sheltered themselves by the raised bank of the terrace, from which, when they stooped or sat down, they were not likely to be observed. At last, while peeping over, they beheld two figures slowly advancing in earnest conversation from the farther end of the terrace; one was bare-headed, but the other wore that identical, small, plain, cocked-hat, never to be mistaken and never to be forgotten—this was Napoleon. He had on a green single-breasteid coat, with steel buttons, each button having a sporting device and all different; white waistcoat, nankeen knee-breeches with buckles, and handsome silk stockings, carefully put on, and showing to great advantage a leg and foot almost effeminately beautiful. Although short, Napoleon was well and strongly made, and was not then nearly so fat as he afterwards became; his appearance was far more striking and dignified than the two Englishmen expected ; their eyes remained rivetted upon him until his nearer approach obliged them to dip, and they did not again look up until his back was turned ; and there they waited patiently enough until the emperor and Las Casas had again reached the extremity of the terrace, and had again turned towards them.
“I tell you what,” said the chief, “you may do as you please, doctor, but hang me if I stay here any longer skulking and playing at bo-peep! Come, doctor, follow me, and let us behave as men !''
So saying, he sprang upon the terrace, and the poor doctor, with a heavy sigh, and “ I see how it will end !" scrambled
too. The sudden appearance of the two intruders brought Napoleon and
“ How many guns
Las Casas to a stand; the latter, however, immediately advanced and met them.
“ Do you wish to speak to the emperor, gentlemen ?" he inquired, politely bowing.
“ We wish it very much, indeed," said the chief.
They took off their hats and advanced-it was an interesting moment; the Count introduced them as two English gentlemen; the Emperor took off his hat, bowed very low and replaced it. A glance of surprise and inquiry was exchanged between him and Las Casas; but no questions as to how they had made their entry in that direction were asked. Napoleon, who was in high good-humour, immediately began his questioning mode of conversation; he spoke in French, which was interpreted by Las Casas, but he seemed perfectly to understand without interpretation their English replies. “ What ship do you belong to ?”
East-Indiaman." " What situation do you
hold ? " " Chief officer.”
you carry ? " “ Thirty-six." " What tonnage ? " “ Fifteen hundred.” “ How many men ?" “ A hundred and eighty." “ Indeed! why, you could cope with a frigate!” “ We have already done so.”
How ? where ? ' “ In the action against Admiral Linois."
in that action ?" Yes, Šir.” His ex-Majesty looked glum, and turning to the doctor " What are you?”
Surgeon on board the same ship.” " Where were you educated ?" " At Edinburgh.”
“ You could not have studied in a better school: have you observed much of the medical practice of the Chinese ?”
“ I have had occasional opportunities of doing so.' “ They are very fond of blistering, are they not?”
Yes, they have recourse to it in almost every complaint." “ How do they raise the blister ?— by the use of cantharides or by friction?" " By friction, mostly." " What is your general opinion of Chinese medical practice ? '
“ That it is very indifferent-very far behind the European.” · Napoleon again turned to the chief officer
“ What does your cargo principally tonsist of, besides tea?" * “Nankeens, silks, and drugs." “ What is the proportion of tea ?”
Four-fifths of the whole."
66 Were you
“ Can you name how many chests of tea you carry, and their average
"Twenty-two thousand chests, weighing on the average ninety pounds each."
This Napoleon repeated with a gesture of astonishment :-“ And at how much do you value your cargo?”.
“ At six hundred thousand pounds." The Emperor paused and took snuff.
What other parts of the East have you yourself visiteds, besides China ?”
“ Our Presidencies of Calcutta, Madras, and Bombay; beside various islands, and different parts of the coast.”
At this moment another party was observed advancing along the terrace; it consisted of General and Madame Montholon, General and Madame Bertrand, and a stranger, whom one of the generals introduced as a supercargo from China; he had obtained his special permission and had arrived with his passport. The two ladies were handsomely but not showily dressed; India shawls of great value, stylish Parisian bonnets, and very pretty well-dressed feet, were not lost upon our sea-faring gentlemen. Madame Montholon was dark, with fine black eyes, and a countenance of much intelligence; Madame Bertrand was fairer—she was lively and graceful.
Napoleon addressed the supercargo :-" You are going home from China ?”
Then, I suppose, you have made a very large fortune ?” “ Not very large. “ Not a hundred thousand pounds ?”? “ O no, Sir !” “ Eighty thousand, then ?" “ Not so much.”
Fifty thousand ?” “ Not more than forty.” “ Not more! why, that's not much) a fortune. Are you married ?" Yes, Sir.”
wife on board with you
I did not.
you allow her to go in a ship alone all that way?”. “ Ye-es,” said the supercargo, looking a little disconcerted.
Napoleon shook his head, took snuff, and glanced round at the two ladies; the attention of both, however, was attracted by something on the ground, and Madame Bertrand, especially, was very busy making figures on the gravel with the point of her toe. The conversation was resumed. “ What is the opinion of the Chinese as to the English navy?”.
Sir, I cannot exactly tell you; I have never had an opportunity of ascertaining."
“ I fortunately have,” interrupted the young chief. Napoleon turned
66 Is your
towards him: “No nation can have a higher opinion of anything belonging to another, than the Chinese have of the English navy.
“ It shows their good sense,” said Napoleon; "I, too, have the highest opinion of the English navy. Of what,” continued he, addressing the chief, "of what kind are the Chinese vessels of war?”
" They are large junks, carrying from three to five hundred men, and from twenty-five to thirty guns."
“ Indeed! how many would it require to take an English frigate ?” “ Thirty would not take her.”
" How you talk! what, thirty, manned and armed as you have described, not take a single frigate!”
my opinion they would not take her.” “ Why ?"
“ Because the Chinese are ignorant of even the first principles of the management of a vessel of war; crowds of men are jammed together on the decks of their junks, without order or discipline, appearing to serve no purpose but that of interrupting each other, or that of being swept away by the well-directed fire of their enemy. They have guns, always in wretched condition, and shot; but the latter of all sizes being mixed together, you will see the men running backwards and forwards until they can find a shot to fit
Napoleon interrupted him by laughing, and cried out—"Oh! enough, enough! I yield the point." Permit me, Sir," resumed the chief,
an occurrence which will strongly confirm what I have stated. In the year 1803, an English eighteen-gun-brig was dismasted in a typhoon, and in much distress. The piratical fleet of junks lying off Macao observed her, and concluded she would become an easy prey. They made towards her; the brig, well knowing their character, prepared as well as she was able. They advanced, and fired : she gave them a broadside; and, notwithstanding the overpowering disadvantages under which she laboured, in a very short time several of the junks were sunk, and the rest made off disabled.”
Napoleon appeared interested by this anecdote. He then asked whether the French missionaries in China were getting on in their vocation. The chief replied that, " as far as his information extended, those who could teach somewhat else beside their religion were doing well : those among them who were masters of languages, mathematics, astronomy, &c., were encouraged and permitted to teach; the others were rejected.”
“ Are there any Frenchmen in Canton ?”
“ Oh! I recollect, there is one: the cook of the Factory is a Frenchman.'
At this Napoleon laughed heartily, and the rest of the party joined in his mirth.
It was now time to think of departing. The supercargo took his leave, and, accompanied by the generals and their ladies, left the terrace. Our two gentlemen then made their bow. Napoleon parted from them with much cordiality, repeatedly waving his hand, and saying, “ Bon voyage, Messieurs, bon voyage ! Down plunged the two culprits amongst their friends, the potatoes, under whose shelter they were ena
bled to reach the bottom, as they had ascended, unperceived, although sentinels were pacing about in all directions. On looking up they perceived Napoleon and Las Casas observing them with great attention. They reached the encampment in safety; and, as their horses were put up in different directions, they parted, agreeing to waive all ceremony, and each to make the best of his way. The officers, who, when our friend' had left them, had just finished tiffin, had now just began dinner (no wonder provisions were getting scarce in St. Helena). The stranger was again hospitably invited in; but, for good reasons of his own, civilly declined, took leave of his friend, the naval lieutenant, and mounting his horse, galloped away.
He spared not whip or spur, and about seven in the evening reached the town. He went to the house of the well-known hospitable Jew of St. Helena, and was not sorry to find himself in his comfortable parlour, assisting his fair daughter in the duties of the tea-table. A thundering rap at the door!-a rap so loud and unusual, that the master of the house himself rose up to answer it. A parley.
· Pray, Sir, can you give any information concerning an officer of one of the Company's ships who has been riding about the country to-daya very young man, dressed in a blue surtout-coat, nankeen trowsers, and a blue velvet waistcoat, with smart gold dangling buttons on it?”
No, Shir," said the trembling Jew, “ I really cannot.' “ You have neither seen nor heard of any such person ?” “No surely, Shir." “ Have you any visiters this evening ?” “No, Shir, not at preshent. Vould you like to valk in, Shir, and take a dish of tea.?"
No, I thank you. Good night.” “ I vish you a very good night, Shir;" and the Jew gently closed his door. Shut up every vindow in de house, and every door; and give me some tea, girl; for my tongue is dry vid de lies I have been telling. I say," continued he, eyeing the culprit, “vhere have you been vid smart velvet vaistcoat and your Maltese buttons ?
Vhat have you been at to-day? Hark! don't you hear ? they are going rapping at every door in de street. Vhat hash been de matter ?”
A candid explanation of the whole immediately ensued. The good Jew sighed, shook his head, and turned up his eyes; but his daughter, in spite of her filial sympathy, appeared vastly to enjoy the adventure.
At four o'clock the next morning our friend was disturbed from his sound sleep and comfortable bed by the Jew, who came literally to turn him out, and to get him on board without delay. He was just dressed, wrapped up in a cloak, and about taking leave of his worthy host, when the purser of one of the Company's ships requested admittance. “I have come expressly to tell you,” said he, addressing the chief, “ to slip off as fast as you possibly can; nets are laying for you in every direction.”
In a few minutes after this hint our friend was on the jetty. An Indiaman's boat, but not belonging to his own ship, had just reached it, and landed the steward to look after his marketing. “ I say, my good fellows, give me a cast on board the will
Ay, ay, Sir-come along." And in a very short time he drew May.-vol. XLI. NO. CLXI.