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30 

LANNES (JEAN). Autograph letter signed to his father-in-law François-Scholastique Guéhenneuc. Lisbon, 18 Vendemiaire year XII [11 October 1803]. 3 pp. in-4, address on the back: "I am sending... dispatches to the First Consul and to the Minister of Foreign Relations [Charles-Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord]. I beg you, my friend, to deliver them yourself. Mr. Bandera [the Lisbon banker Jacinto Fernandes Bandeira] counted me one hundred thousand francs, I gave him a note on the Government. I am writing to the First Consul and asking him to have it paid, I have no doubt that he will do so, but if he should have the slightest difficulty, I beg you to make arrangements with the person whom Mr. Bandera must address to you. I declare to you, my friend, that it is impossible for me to remain any longer in this residence, given the enormous expenses I am obliged to make, so tell the First Consul to call me back as soon as possible, otherwise I will eat much more than I have. I AM WITH THE PRINCE IN THE MOST INTIMATE MANNER. I am with the prince in the most intimate manner. Finally, my friend, when I remain two days without seeing him, he sends me someone to tell me to go to him. PIQUEMANIQUE HAS JUST BEEN DISMISSED [the Intendant General of Police Diogo Inácio Pina Manique, very hostile to France and to the ideas of the Enlightenment] as well as the Minister of the Theatre who, by his order, had a Frenchman arrested in his dressing room for having applauded the talents of an actress. I promise you that IT IS NOT LITTLE THAT WE HAVE OBTAINED THE RELEASE OF THIS CANAILLE, the English are terrified to see that our influence is growing every day more and more at their expense. I no longer receive the newspapers or news from the Government, it is more than two months since the Minister [Charles-Maurice de Talleyrand] wrote to me, it seems that we are not cousins, besides I do not care much for it, his correspondence is funny with me, One day he writes to me to ask the Portuguese Government for something, and another not to ask for it, so that I AM OBLIGED TO DO NOTHING OF ANYTHING HE SAYS TO ME, I AM GUIDED BY THE DEVOUTNESS I HAVE FOR THE FIRST CONSUL... THE PRINCE TOLD ME YESTERDAY THAT HE HAD RECEIVED A COURIER FROM PETERBURG WHO ASSURED HIM THAT THERE WAS MUCH TALK OF PEACE. I DO NOT BELIEVE IT AT ALL, MY FRIEND. I DO NOT EVEN SEE THAT IT CAN BE MADE WITH A NATION WHICH VIOLATES THE TREATIES EIGHT DAYS AFTER HAVING MADE THEM. I DO NOT SEE, THEREFORE, ANY OTHER COURSE THAN TO GO TO THEM. I am sure that everything will succeed for B[onaparte]. Fortune is devoted to him as I am, and will never abandon him. Farewell, my friend, our children have been much better for a few days, give my love to the whole family, tell Louis that I will make him drink the prairie powder, besides I am sure he will not believe it, he has honor [the future general Louis Guéhenneuc, brother-in-law and future aide-de-camp of Marshal Lannes, also future aide-de-camp to Napoleon I]. A thousand greetings to the good doctor whom we still love well [his close friend Jean-Nicolas Corvisart, Napoleon Bonaparte's personal physician]... "LANNES AMBASSADOR TO PORTUGAL. Marshal Lannes had been appointed on November 14, 1801 in Lisbon as minister plenipotentiary and envoy extraordinary: he arrived there on March 25, 1802, and remained in post from this date to August 10, 1802 and then from March 12, 1803 to August 1, 1804. He had a lot to do because of the strong presence of the English, the personality of their minister in Portugal, Lord Robert Fitzgerald, and the manoeuvres of the regent, who gave him all the appearances of friendship: Jean de Bragance made sumptuous gifts to Lannes and agreed to be the godfather of one of his sons. FUTURE SENATOR AND COUNT OF EMPIRE, FRANÇOIS-SCHOLASTIQUE GUEHENNEUC (1759-1840) came from the small nobility of Brittany. He was first employed in the administration of hospitals under the Ancien Régime and then in the administration of Water and Forests under the Revolution. His daughter, Louise, having married Marshal Lannes, and his son having become Napoleon's aide-de-camp, his career was greatly favoured.

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Location of the item : France - 77300 - fontainebleau

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