His Presence and Representation in Cyclical and Linear Settings- With the Assistance of Robert T. Coote
Appendix: Napoleon’s purported musings regarding Jesus Christ 389
389 Appendix Napoleon’s purported musings regarding Jesus Christ (see note 115, p. 172) Barry E. O’Meara, Napoleon’s attending physician during his confinement on St. Helena, produced Napoleon in Exile: or, A Voice from St. Helena, a 2-volume memoir (London: Simpkin and Marshall, 1822). In the 1860s a new edition of O’Meara became available. The new work offered an additional, rambling chapter, evidently not O’Meara’s work, yet lacking any indication of attribution. It purported to give Napole- on’s reflections on Jesus Christ subsequent to O’Meara’s return to England. John Ferguson, Jesus in the Tide of Time (London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1980), pp. 231–32, also claims to give Napoleon’s view of Jesus Christ: “Alexander, Caesar, Charlemagne and myself have founded Empires. But on what did we rest the creations of our genius? Upon force! Jesus Christ alone founded his Empire upon love; and at this hour millions of men would die for him. I have so inspired multitudes that they would die for mebut after all, my presence was necessarythe lightning of my eye, my voice, a word from me, then the sacred fire was kindled in their hearts. Now that I am at St Helena alone, chained upon this rock, who fights and wins empires for me? What an abyss between my deep misery, and the eternal reign of Christ, who is proclaimed, loved, adored, and whose reign is extending over all the earth!” Unfortunately Ferguson offers no source, and any such account of Napoleon’s view of Jesus is...
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