The History of Napoleon Bonaparte, Vol. 1 of 4 (Classic Reprint)

The History of Napoleon Bonaparte, Vol. 1 of 4 (Classic Reprint)

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Excerpt from The History of Napoleon Bonaparte, Vol. 1 of 4

The dilapidated villa in Corsica, where Napoleon passed his infantile years, still exists, and the thoughtful tourist loses himself in pensive reverie as he wanders over the lawn where those children have played - as he passes through the vegetable garden in the rear of the house, which enticed them to toil with their tiny hoes and spades, and as he struggles through the Wil derness of shrubbery, now running to wild waste, in the midst of which once could have been heard the merry shouts of these infantile kings and queens. Their voices are now hushed in death. But the records of earth can not show a more eventful drama than that enacted by these young Bonapartes between the cradle and the grave.

There is, in a sequestered and romantic spot upon the ground, an isolated granite rock, of wild and rugged form, in the fissures of which there is some thing resembling a cave, which still retains the name of Napoleon's Grotto. This solitary rock was the favorite resort of the pensive and meditative child, even in his earliest years. When his brothers and sisters were in most happy companionship in the garden or on the lawn, and the air resounded with their mirthful voices, Napoleon would steal away alone to his 'loved retreat. There, in the long and sunny afternoons, with a book in his hand, he would repose, in a recumbent posture, for hours, gazing. Upon the broad expanse of the Mediterranean spread out before him, and upon the blue sky, which overarched his head. Who can imagine the visions which in those hours arose before the expanding energies of that wonderful mind?

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