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t? ?,r"^ I f^s. ^"if If^ Friedland and STRIKING RESULTS OF HUNDRED i Very Ordinary Combat, but Decisive In a Political Sense. Drama of the World's Events Not Essentially Varied by French Emperor's VictorySignificance of the i Famous Treaty of Tilsit. By GEORGE L. KILMER. N a military sense the battle of Friedland, fought June 14, 1807, in Poland up near the Baltic sea, was a side show when compared with the stupendous conflicts where Napoleon Bonaparte led his indomita ble French soldiery. The combat was in no sense remarkable. Its chief fea tures have been duplicated in almost every great war. A Russian army of 60,000 to 70,000 men was routed, but how little that affected the nation's fighting power is shown by the fact that a few jears later the defeated czar at Friedland led 900,000 men to the field to wipe out Napoleon. With reference to the campaign of 1807 Friedland was decisive. It was Bussia's last throw then and about as decisive as the battle of Mukden in the late Russo-Japanese war. But in a political sense Friedland was decisivethat is, decisive of tem porary events. Napoleon wrote from the field to his brother Joseph, "This battle has been as decisive as those of Marengo, of Austerlitz, of Jena." He fought for his own fortunes in all of these battles And really the polit ical issues involved in the Friedland victory were fought over again in 1813, and the victory of 1807 reversed at Leipsic, the "battle of the Nations." The nations which fought Napoleon at Leipsic in 1813 were praying for his defeat in 1807, but only Russia had an aimy in the field at that date to smite the usuipmg emperor of the French The czar and his political allies wished to use Napoleon as he wab used at Moscow la 1S12, smash his aimj and drive him back eastward over the Rhine i Happiest iVioment of His Life. The author ot Decisive Battles of the Woild" defines as decisive "those few of Inch a contrary event "would have varied the diama of the world in all its subsequent scenes Apply ing this definition to Fiiedland we must limit the e\v to the immediate field of Napoleon's adventures It maiked the culmination of his caieer as a political achentmer lie said him self that that was one of the happiest moments of his life, "peihans the hap piest" It made him the greatest fig ure in all Euiope for the time But a contiaij c\eut, the defeat of Napoleon at Friedland, ^onld not "have -taiied the drama of the woild in all its sub sequent scenes" It tvould have ac celerated the downfall which came at Leipsic to be clinched at Waterloo Had Napoleon lost Friedland there would piobably ha\e been no war of the Spanibh peninsula, 1808-1813 no dhorce of the Empress Josephine, at least as it was brought about two years later no Austrian empress on the throne of France in 1810 no Mos cow disaster in 1812 no "great coali tion" of the powers against the Cor sican in 1813 hence no Elba, no Wa terloo, no St Helena. Possibly Eng land, freed of the menace of Napoleon the mighty hanging on her flanks, would ha-\e sent an army to America in 1812 to reverse the \ei diets of Sara toga and Yorktown in some battle on the Canadian border or the middle At lantic coast. Possibly too Napoleon, if defeated at Friedland, would have tried to take revenge out of England by direct attack, and thus compelled her to let America alone in 1812. Very Ordinary Battle. No, the drama of the world as we look at it a hundred years from Fried land was not essentially varied by Na poleon's victory of June 14, 1807. He used his new power to turn Europe upside down for a few years, hasten ing his own end, after which things resumed their normal course as though Friedland had never happened. The battle, as before stated, was very or dinary At the close of 1 eoo Napoleon had overrun the kingdmi of Pru* seizing Berlin, and passed the u& in Poland The Prussian kinsr L' 1 BATTLE OF FRIEDLAND. Horace Vernet depicts the emperor on the battlefield, giving orders to tlv general of division, Oudinot, for the pursuit of the enemy. Napoleon.]-hiHh A BATTLE YEARS AGO. FOUGHT ONE army and his ally, Alexander I. of Rus sia, sent a force of 100,000 men into Poland against the French invader. An indecisive battle was fought at Eylau in April, 1807, and in June Na poleon took the field for the purpose of attacking the Russian base of sup plies at Koenigsbergx on the Baltic coast. The Russians, led by General Bennigsen, were encamped east of the river Alle, and Napoleon was on the west side of that stream. A race was begun for Koenigsberg, and Napoleon sent far in advance three corps, remain ing with the main body himself. Koe nigsberg is on the west side of the Alle, and in order to rescue it from the French the Russians had to cross that river, the only available point for the purpose being the village of Friedland Napoleon dispatched the corps of Lannes with Oudinot's famous Grena-^ diers to Friedland to hold the cross ing, and the battle of Friedland was opened about 1 o'clock in the after noon by a vigorous cannon fire from the Russian batteries, still in position on the east bank of the Alle, against Oudinot's line. Supposing that he could crush the French under Lannes, General Bennigsen crossed nearly the whole of his army to the west bank, using the single bridge \and two pon toon bridges which he had in his outfit. Sweeping French Victory. Lannes had but 10,000 men and, like the vigorous Reynolds at Gettysburg, put up the best fight he-could and sent courier after courier to summon Napo- leon to the field One of these couriers, Baron do Marbot, of Lannes' staff has left a =tory of the whole affair. Mar bot sajs he met Napoleon .some miles away, and "he was beaming." As he rode alons the column the soldiers cheered, and he repeatedly said to them, "Today is a lucky day it is the anniversary of Marengo When Na polcon got up with the reserves, it is said that he had 70,000 on the field against 33,000 Russians. The battle was going against the French when Napoleon's chief of artillery, General Scnarmont, pnother Warren on Round Top and the hero of the day, massed thirty guns to play upon the Russian guns across the river At the same time the French infantry charged to ward the bridges and plied the bayonet upon the dense ranks gathered around the bridge heads. Senarmont next turned his guns upon the bridges, and the long June day closed with 20,000 to 25,000 Russians hors du combat, while the French. so-Marbot declares, lost but 7,000 A Meeting of Monarchs. Meanwhile Alexander had remained withm a few miles of the battlefield, but with the river Niemen flowing be vtween him and the French When he saw his own defeated soldiers hurry ing across the Niemen with Marshal Murat's cavalry at their heels, he ask ed for an armistice. Napoleon march ed the victors of Friedland to the Nie-. men at Tilsit and encamped on the west of the river opposite the Russian camps On a raft in the middle of the river, in full view of both armies, the czar and Napoleon met on the 25th of June, and two days later the hapless King Frederick of Prussia, who was Alexander's guest and protege, was present at an interview on the same scene. Napoleon and the czar had em braced after the manner of monarch3 at the first meeting, but Marbot says that Napoleon received Frederick "po- litely, but coldly." Frederick through the chances of war had lost all the vast domain of Frederick the Great except a few villages, and Marbot ob serves that Napoleon's coldness at the first meeting was due to the fact that he was planning to permanently con fiscate a large part of the Prussian realm. The interviews between the mon archs were prolonged over twenty flays and ended in the famous treaty of Tilsit. At Napoleon's invitation Qjieett Louisa of- Prussia came to TO ?if. Baron Marbot says:Vv Ifivited her to dinner, which she ac tepted, doubtless much against the grain Napoleon and the queen of Prussia hated eac other cordially. She had insulted in many proclamations, and he had given it back in his bulletins. Yet their Interview showed no^traces of their mu tual hatred. Napoleon was respectful and attentive, the queen gracious and disposed to captivate her former enemy. The figure cut by Louisa's royal spouse at this time' was mostv 3 pitiful. In the "Memoirs of Napoleon," by the Duchess D'Abrantes, we read: The king of Prussia was of so little ac count in these conferences that nothing more was said of him than if he were at Berlin. To see a king, for in fact he was a king, following his conqueror with an eye of apprehension, fearing to speak, walking always behind the other two sov ereigns, and thus by his own act placing himself in a subordinate rank, must al ways be distressing. TheNiuchess was the wife of Junot, one of Napoleon's generals, and re counts the story of Tilsit as given her by eyewitnesses. Long before Friedland and Tilsit Na poleon had declared that he would de throne Frederick of Prussia. At St Helena he said: Where I erred most fatally was at Til sit. I ought to have dethroned the king of Prussia I hesitated a moment. I was sure Alexander would not have opposed it, providing I had not taken the king's dominions for myself. I might have de clared that the hojise of Hohenzollern had ceased to reign. He added that he would have done so had there been a scion of the branch of Frederick the Great at hand Ap ropos of the despoliation of Piussia. sanctioned by the treaty at Tilsit, the Duchess D'Abrantes quotes an inter esting morsel from the lips of Alexan der, whom she met in Paiis 1814. Said the czar On our meeting at Tilsit 1 stepped upon the raft quite determined to sustain my dignity in my deportment toward the man whose treatment of the king of Prus sia was, in my opinion, violently unjust. I intended to do much for my unfortunate friend (Frederick) and much also for my own people, but scarcely had I seen Napo leon before I was overcome. Alas, neither the czar's sympathy nor the beautiful queen's graciousness availed to save the Prussian realm from the greed of Napoleon. But what the sword took from Louisa and Frederick in 1807 the sword gave back in 1814, when the allies deposed Napoleon from his throne in Paris. Among the troops that marched into Paris at that time was a son of King Frederick and^Queen Louisa, a youth of seventeen, who won the Iron Cross for valor Again in 1870 that boy, grown to be a gray haired king, entered Paris at the head of a conquering army, dethroning Napoleon's nephew, Napoleon III, and was crowned Wil liam I., emperor of Germany, at Ver sailles. So the humiliation at Tilsit was avenged. A Frank Reminiscence. It has been said that at Tilsit the czar and Napoleon divided the mastery of Europe between themselves. Napo leon seems to have been overjoyed at the friendly alliance he made with the czar. He wrote at the time to his brother Joseph, "We lived as intimate friends This is not the language of a boaster, but of a man promoted and tends to show that Napoleon felt that he had reached his goal by an alliance with the Russian autocrat "I found myself dictating laws, having emperors and kings pay me court," he afterward said. On the other hand this versatile Corsican sometimes laughed his sleeve at the "emperors and kings" he had hobnobbed with at Tilsit In talks with Napoleon at St. Helena one of the chroniclers records this frank remi niscence "When," said Napoleon, "I was at Tilsit with the Emperor Alexander and the king of Prussia, I was the most ignorant of the three military affairs These two sov ereigns especially the king of Prussia, were completely au fait as to the number of buttons there ought to be In front of a jacket, how many behind and the manner in which the skirts ought to be cut Not a tailor in the army knew better than King Frederick how many measu&s of cloth it took to make a jacket In fact," continued he, laughing, "I was nobody in comparison with them They continually tormented me about matters belonging to tailors, of which I was entirely ignorant, although, in order not to affront them, I answered just as gravely as if the fate of an army depended upon the cut of a jacket When I went to see the king of Prussia, instead of a library I found that he had a large room, like an arsenal, fur nished with shelves and pegs on which were hung fifty or sixty jackets of differ ent patterns Every day he changed his fashion and put on a different one He attached more importance to this than was necessary for the salvation of a king dom Three treaties resulted from Fried landone between France and Russia, published at the time one between France and Prussia, also made public, and a third, long kept secret, between Russia and France. This last was practically an offensive and defensive alliance of the two powers against England, Austria and Turkey. A rem^ nant of his realm was left to the Prus sian king out of regard for the wishes of Alexander Napoleon was blamed by the liberals of Europe for not re constituting the kingdom of Poland. Instead of that he created the grand duchy of Warsaw in favor of his old ally, the king of Saxony, whose prede cessors had reigned in Poland. At home he was blamed for not crossing the Niemen after Friedland and push ing his conquest farther east also for putting too much trust in Alexander, who later turned upon him. He was also blamed for leaving Prussia either too strong or too weak Prussia strong and allied with France would have been a buffer between France and Russia weak, Prussia would never ha\e troubled France again for a cen tury. Echoing the trend of criticism in European capitals at the time of Napo leon's fall, Baron Meneval, long close to Napoleon, says in his memoirs, "It^ needed the disaster at Moscow (1812) and Leipsic (1813) to overthrow the beautiful monument to Napoleon's glory," created by the victory at Fried laud in 1807. mmm mmm f-iamZ&m+^Sn&tttt70 %^mmwmm ^mmmwL%S9S S IF IT ISN'T A Victor IT ISN'T THE BEST. Prices of ($10, $17, $22, $30, machines $40, $50, $60, $100. Records 35c, 60c and $1.00. All Supplies and Latest Records. J. C. BORDEN, Only Authorized Agent for Princeton. Byersf Has Bargains I all the time And carries continu ally a large stock of the very best General Merchandise D. BYERS 1 Bottom Price Cash Store. The Rural Telephone Co. THE PEOPLE'S FAVORITE. Lines to Dalbo, Cambridge, Santi ago. Freer and Olendorado. Good Service In Princeton and to all adjoining points. We connect with the Northwestern Long Distance Telephone. Patronize a Home Concern. Service Day and Night. T. J. 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