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Letter of Bonaparte to Barras, Passeriano, 4 Vendémiaire, 1797, Coppet Collection

Subjects: Correspondence

Credits: (c) Fondation Napoléon


A facsimile of this text was published by Jacques Arnna in Pages de l'épopée imperiale impériale, Tours, 1952, pp. 86-88.
The text reads
"Barras, J'ai été aussi surpris que tout homme l'aurait été à ma place de la conduite que l'on a tenue à mon égard. L'on me traite comme si mes sentiments étaient suspects. Augereau, par une indigestion de pouvoir bête, écrit des lettres qui le rendent la fable et le ridicule de l'armée, en même temps qu'elles font penser bien des choses qui, peut-être, ne sont pas. Un nuée (de pleutres niais?) vont prétendre tout blamer comme tout juger. Je suis malade... et j'estime le coeur bien plus que la tête des hommes qui vont dominer les conseils et l'opinion. Je te prie surtout d'avoir soin que l'on accuse de rien le jeune aide de camp d'Augereau. C'est un de mes meilleurs soldats, brave et bon. Je l'ai vu avec plaisir et je l'aime. Je t'embrasse; au revoir, à bientôt, j'espère, Bonaparte"
I am as surprised as any man would be in my place concerning the conduct held towards me. I am treated as if my feelings were suspect. Augereau, in an indigestion of senseless power, has written letters which render him the talk and ridicule of the army. And at the same time they make people think things that are perhaps not true. A crowd (of useless idiots?) will try to criticise everything as well as judge everything. I am ill... I value the heart much more highly than the head of the men who are going to dominate the councils and public opinion. Please take care above all that no-one accuses Augereau's young ADC of anything. He is one of my best soldiers, brave and good. I have happily watched him and delight in him. I kiss you. Goodbye and see you soon, I hope."


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