“To return to Cambaceres what belongs to Cambaceres”
- B - C
Forfeiture Act of the Emperor
On April 2,1814, the preserving Senate
under the impulse of Talleyrand (chief of the provisional government
since the day before) and of its president Barthélémy votes the
forfeiture of the Emperor. According to many biographers', Cambaceres is
joined the act of forfeiture twice voted by the Senate: first once
07/04/1814 and one second time 09/04/1814.
In the facts, it is the cardinal Etienne-Hubert de Cambaceres who on
April 7 gives his support for the act of forfeiture of the Emperor. On
April 10, Jean-Jacques Régis addresses to Talleyrand his full
adhesion “with all the acts made by the Senate since April 1 as to
the provisions which are following its acts.” Many senators await
the response of Cambaceres to decide, the letter was thus antedated at
the April 9 and immediately inserted in the edition of the Moniteur
of the 12/04/1814.
Address to the French (09/10/1794)
The shortly after its election to the
presidency of Convention, Cambaceres writes the Address to the French,
true profession of faith of the thermidorian Republic : “French, in the middle of the your triumphs, one contemplates your
loss. Some perverse men would like to dig within France the tomb of
freedom. The heirs to the crimes to Robespierre and all the conspirators
whom you embanked agitate. (…) Flee those which speak unceasingly about
blood and scaffold, these exclusive patriots, these outraged men, these
men nouveau riches by the Revolution who fear the action of justice and
who intend to find their safety in confusion and anarchy. Estimate, seek
these hard and modest men, these good and pure beings which flee the
places and which practise without ostentation the republican virtues.
Time had just overcome by firmness and wisdom. It is necessary that
calms it succeeds all the storms finally. The vessel of the Republic so
much of time storm-tossed touches with the shore, keep you to push back
it in the middle of the shelves.”
of the Empire
The constitution of Year XII (1804) fixes
the functions of the Lord Archchancellor :
Contain V :
Great dignities of the Empire
Art 32 : Great dignities of the Empire are those of Great
Elector, Archchancellor of the Empire, Archchancellor of State,
Archtreasurer, Constable, High Admiral.
Art 33 : The
holders of great dignities of the Empire are named by the Emperor. They
enjoy the same honors that the French princes, and immediately take row
after them. The time of their reception determines the row which they
Art 34 : Great dignities of the Empire are
Art 35 : The holders of great dignities of the
Empire are senators and advisers of State.
Art 36 : They train
the large council of the Emperor. They are members of the private
council. They make the large council of the Legion of honor.
: The archichancelier of the Empire makes the functions of
chancellor for the promulgation of the senatus consult organics and the
laws. He also does those of chancellor of the imperial palate. He is
present at the annual work in which the large judge Minister for Justice
returns account to the Emperor of the abuses which can have been
introduced into the administration of justice, either civil, or criminal.
He chairs the imperial high court. He chairs the joined together
sections of the Council of State and Tribunat, in accordance with
article 95, title XI. He is present at the celebration of the marriages
and the birth of the princes, the crowning and funerals of the Emperor.
He signs the report which the Secretary of State draws up. He introduces
the holders of great dignities of the Empire, the ministers and the
Secretary of State, the large civil officers of the crown, the first
president of the Supreme court of appeal, with the oath which they lend
between the hands of the Emperor. They receives the oath of the members
and the parquet floor of the supreme court of appeal, of the presidents
and Attorney Generals of the Courts of Appeal and the courses criminal.
It introduces the solemn delegations and the members of the courses of
justice admitted at the audience of the Emperor. It signs and seals the
commissions and patents of the members of the courses of justice and
members of the legal profession; it seals the commissions and patents of
the administrative civil functions, and the other acts which will be
indicated in the bearing payment organization of the seal.
Art 45 :
Each holder of great dignities of the Empire chairs an electoral college
of department. (...) The electoral college séant in Bordeaux is chaired
by the archichancelier of the Empire. (…)
Art 46 : Each holder
of great dignities of the Empire receives annually, as fixed salary, one
the third of the sum affected to the princes, in accordance with the
decree of the December 21,1790.
- E - F
Convinced republican, Cambaceres
disapproves the principle of a hereditary monarchy. This evening of
March 1804, it entrusts its feelings to Lebrun
: “Bonaparte who will not be retained any more by the shapes of the
republic will take for Louis XIV, and France made a Revolution against
that. (...) We made the war in Europe (...) and will make we now to give
it to him monarchs wire or brothers of ours, and France will succumb to
these insane companies. And then, Lebrun, you know well who if a throne
is restored, the partisans of the Bourbons will find the way easier to
carry their applicant there. Which serious error!”.
The legislative commission charged to write the new constitution sets up
itself: y sit the consuls, the ministers and some senators like Tronchet
and Roederer. Very quickly, Cambaceres which argues against the
monarchical principle, runs up against Bonaparte. This one, flattered by
Talleyrand and Fouché, puts Cambaceres at the variation of the
discussions; the tension shows between the two men. On May 15,
Cambaceres argues against heredity: “That there is not this stupid
institution, anachronistic and destroying, which entrusts the capacity
to that which by chance was born the first” then it resigns of its
functions of Second Consul.
The following day, Bonaparte convenes Cambaceres with Saint-Cloud to try
to make it change opinion. He proposes the station of Archchancellor
to him (station created on the councils of Talleyrand which coveted it).
Cambaceres accepts and to cross short to the rumours of dissensions
between the two men, it is Cambaceres, president of the Senate which
proclaims the on May 18 Empire in Saint-Cloud.
Demonstration organized on the Field of
Mars to celebrate the complete release of the territory of the Republic.
Cambaceres, president of Convention, pronounces speech, where he recalls
the day “where a hypocritical conspirator spread out the sumptuous
apparatus of tyranny, and to burn, in the honor of the Divinity, an
incense that in secrecy he held for him”. A few months were passed,
“and here that the people and his representatives, gathered in this
same enclosure, come to proclaim there the freedom and the defeat of the
despots united against it”. It speaks about the time when the
French, within abundance and of happiness, would say to their children:
“O have you the glances were never soiled by the aspect of a throne,
learn that it was times when your fathers curved the head under the rod
of a tyrant; learn the combat by which they could conquer the Republic”.
And it exhorts the future generation “to preserve carefully the
invaluable heritage of freedom”, and “to think that always one would
seek to charm this crowned deposit to him”.
- H - I
- K - L
The resumption of the war in 1805 obliges
the fast lifting of an army. The legislative Body not being in session,
the conscription cannot follow the legal way, the Emperor thus requires
a vote of the Senate which by a senatus consult authorizes the lifting
of 80.000 men. The relative docility of the Senate skilfully operation
by Cambaceres leads Napoleon to use the senatorial procedure with each
one of its needs for troops.
Levies de conscrits by senatus-consulte
during the Empire:
In fifteen years of being able, Napoleon
raises approximately 2 million men (either 36% of mobilizable or 7% of
the French population). The big rise of the liftings in the last years
of the reign gives birth to the legend from the ogre and makes the mode
unpopular. The Senate tries to make resistance in 1814 but discredited
by years of docility, he loses any popular base.
Cambaceres appears in first line : for the public opinion he is
responsible for the multiple liftings of conscripts. True black spot of
its political career: the conscription is the cause of the unpopularity
- N - O
Opposition to Napoleon
Contrary to the other ministers and advisers, Cambaceres will often announce its dissension with Napoleon. If that often occurs
into private, we know many occasions:
Under the Consulate, Cambaceres will be opposed without success to the
arrests of the Moreau general and the duke of Enghien. (See also
Under the Empire, he will disapprove the divorce with
Josephine, explaining what the French people like her very munch.
Whereas he works with the Russian ambassador
overcome the last reserves of the tsar Alexandre Ist,
Cambaceres fights the Austrian marriage while arguing that contrary to
Romanov, Habsbourg never respected alliances by marriage.
Its principal success is the safeguard of the
parliamentary system, which prevented the return of the absolute
monarchy at the Restoration. In October 1809, Napoleon decided to remove
the legislative Assembly and to vote the laws himself. Cambaceres, very
attached to the ideas of the Revolution, never will not work this
dossier. In 1812, Napoleon, exceeded by slownesses of Cambaceres,
threatens to modify the Constitution in order to be able to go beyond
the Archchancellor's blocking. Cambaceres still succeeds in saving time
until December 1813. Cambaceres ceases his political offices at the
beginning of the year 1814 after the adjournment of the legislative
The caricature opposite date of 1814. It illustrates the combat of four
years between Napoleon and Cambaceres for the decree of adjournment of
the legislative Assembly. It takes as a starting point The Fighters
: an ancient statue preserved at the Museum of the Offices in Florence.
- Q - R - S
Like Fouche or Talleyrand, Cambaceres has
his own network of advisors. He names chief of his secret police certain
Guilly, former attache with the police force of safety of the Directory.
Guilly is described like “large brown, a little arched and deprived
of an eye in consequence of a combat of gun” (Prefecture of
Police, report of the 08/06/1802). One evening in a Parisian coffee,
one named Vivier says that it is the agent of the second Consul and that
it awaits a mission in province (Prefecture of Police, report of
One knows few things on the private police force. If it is of public
notoriety that the agents of Cambaceres are well paid, there is not any
trace in the books of reason and the registers of expenditure. In 1802,
Bonaparte requests from the Dossonville police chief a detailed report
on the activities of the secret police of Cambaceres. Hardly written,
this document disappears from the files of the Prefecture of Police.
of Year VIII (1800) fixes the functions of the second consul :
Containt II :
Art 24 : The citizens Sieyes
and Roger-Ducos, outgoing consuls, are named members of the
Senate: they will meet with the second and the third consul named by the
present Constitution. These four citizens name the majority of the
Senate, which is supplemented then itself, and proceeds to the elections
which are entrusted to him.
Containt IV :
Art 39 : The government is entrusted to three consuls named
for ten years and indefinitely re-eligible. Each one of them is elected
individually, with quality distinct from first, or second, or third
consul. The Constitution names First consul the citizen Bonaparte,
ex-consul provisional; second consul, the citizen Cambaceres, ex-minister
of justice; and third consul the citizen Lebrun,
ex-member of the commission of the Council of Ancients. For this time
the third consul is named only for five years.
Art 40 : The
First consul has particular functions and particular attributions, in
which it is temporarily compensated, when it is necessary, by one as of
the his colleagues.
Art 41 : The First consul promulgates the
laws; he names and revokes at will the members of the Council of State,
the ministers, the ambassadors and other agents external in chief, the
officers of the sea and Army, the members of the local governments and
the commissions of the government close the courts. He names all the
criminal judges and civil others that the Justice of the Peace and the
judges of cassation, without being able to revoke them.
Art 42 :
In the other acts of the government, the second and the third consul
serve in an advisory capacity: it sign the register of these acts to
note their presence; and if they want it, they consign their opinions to
it; after which the decision of the First consul is enough.
: First the consul salary will be of five hundred thousand francs in
year VIII. The treatment of each of the two other consuls is equal to
the three tenth of that of the first.
- U - V
Translation of Rousseau to the Pantheon
On October 9, the coffin leaves the Poplars
island in Ermenonville to be deposited in the national Garden in Paris.
On October 11, Cambaceres, president of Convention, a speech in the
Pantheon pronounces : “Deep Moralist, apostle of freedom, Rousseau were the precursor who
called the nation in the roads of glory and happiness… To the first
glance that it threw on mankind, it saw the people with knees, curved
under the sceptres and the crowns; it dared to pronounce the words of
equality and freedom! These words resounded in all the hearts, and the
people rose. (…) It has the first predicted the fall of the empires and
monarchies: it said that Europe had aged, and that these large bodies,
close running up, were going to collapse as these ancient mounts which
subside under the weight of the centuries. (…) Rousseau lived in poverty,
and its example teaches us that it rests with fortune neither to give
nor to charm the true size. (…) His life will be one time in the record
of the virtue; and this day, these honors, this apotheosis, this contest
of a whole people, this triumphal pump, any advertisement which national
Convention wants to discharge at the same time, towards the philosopher
of nature, and the debt of the French, and the recognition of humanity”.