Proclamation by Louis XVIII on leaving Paris, 19 March 1815
PROCLAMATION! — Louis, by the grace of God, King of France and Navarre, to our trusty and well-beloved the peers of France, and the deputies of the departments: —
Divine Providence, who recalled us to the throne of our fathers, now permits that this throne should be shaken by the defection of a part of the armed force who had sworn to defend it. We might avail ourselves of the faithful and patriotic dispositions of the immense majority of the inhabitants of Paris, to dispute the entrance into it of the rebels: but we shudder at the calamities of every description which a combat within its walls would bring upon the inhabitants
We retire with a few brave men, whom intrigue and perfidy will not succeed in detaching from their duties; and since we cannot defend our capital, we will proceed to some distance to collect forces, and to seek at another point of the kingdom, not for subjects more loving and faithful than our good Parisians, but for Frenchmen more advantageously situated to declare themselves for the good cause.
The existing crisis will subside into a calm. We have the soothing presentiment, that those misled soldiers, whose defection exposes our subjects to so many dangers, will soon discover their errer, and will find, in our indulgence, and in our affection, the recompense of their return to their duty.
We will soon return into into midst of this good people, to whom we shall once more bring peace and happiness.
[Then follows an ordinance, declaring the session of the chamber of peers and the chamber of deputies at an end, and. convoking a new session to meet at the soonest possible period, in the place which the King shall point out as the provisional seat of his government.]
Given at Paris the 19th of March, in the year of our Lord, 1815, and the 20th of our reign.