Page:Men of the Time, eleventh edition.djvu/956

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ROCHEFORT.

Rochefort forward as their candi- date for the seventh circonscription ! of Paris, and on the second ballot | he polled 14,780 votes, against 18,267 recorded in favour of his ' adversary, M. Jules Favre. In the ' following November he was pro- j posed as a candidate for the first I circonscription of Paris. On this occasion he ventumed into France, and on crossing the Belgian frontier he was arrested, but was set at liberty a few hours afterwards, and received from the Emperor a sauf- conduxt to be in force till after the elections. M. Rochefort, now the idol of the Parisian populace, de- clared that he should merely take the oath of allegiance to the Em- pire, in order to overthrow it for a Repuljlic. He was elected Deputy by 17,978 votes, against 13,M5 given to his opponent, M. Camot. in the Chambers he took his seat beside M. Raspail, and rendered himself notorious by the coarseness of his personal attacks on the Em- peror. In Dec, 1869, he started the Marseillaise, a newspaper, the character of which is sufficiently indicated by its title. It was not, like "La Lanteme," written en- tirely by the editor, but was the work of several hands. The attacks in this journal on Prince Pierre Bonaparte led to the assassination by the latter of Victor Noir, one of M. Rochefort's subordinates. The paper was seized Jan. 11, 1870. The Chambers authorised its prose- cution, and on Jan. 22 M. Roche- fort and two other writers in the paper were sentenced to six months* imprisonment with fines. On Feb. 7, M. Rochefort was arrested at a public meeting at La YiUette, on which occasion there was immense excitement and much rioting in Paris. He wa§ confined in the prison of Sainte-Pelagie. On the proclamation of the Republic in Sept., 1870, M. Rochefort was re- leased, being conveyed on the shoulders of the mob from his prison to the Louvre. He was placed

at the head of a department of State, but quarrelled with every- body, and soon resigned his ap- pointment, after which, it was re- ported, he served as a simple gunner in the artillery during the siege of Paris. Subsequently, du- ring the brief triumph of the Com- mime, he edited an infamous journal, the Mot d*Ordre. On May 19, 1871, while endeavouring to escape in disguise from Paris, he was arrested at Meaux and taken to Versailles. He was placed on his trial before a court-martial, Sept. 20 and 21, 1871, charged with inciting to civil war, with compli- city in the destruction, by the Commune, of private property and public monuments, and with the publication of false news and at- tacks on the established govern- ment in the Mot d'Ordre. A verdict of gixilty was returned, and he was sentenced to imprisonment for life. He was incarcerated first in Fort Boyard, from whence he was transferred (Jime, 1872) to the citadel of Saint-Martin-de-R^. The French Government permitted M. Rochefort to leave the fortress in which he was immured, and to go to Versailles, Nov. 6, 1872, for the special object of marrying the mother of his illegitimate children, and thus legitimising them accord- ing to French law. Madame Roche- fort, who was then extremely ill, died a few weeks afterwards. Sub- sequently, M. Rochefort was trans- ported to the penal settlement of New Caledonia. In 1874 he, with Grousset, Gourde, Balliere, and two other Communist prisoners, succeeded in escaping from the is- land. They left as stowaways on board a vessel bound for Newcastle, New South Wales, reached Sydney in safety, and sailed soon after- wards for Europe. On June 16, 1874, M. Rochefort arrived at Queenstown, where, but for the intervention of the Royal Irish Constabulary, he would have met with rough treatment at the hands