Eylau: Precis Des Travaux de la Grande Armée
Napoleon's Proclamation to the Army: 26 October 1806
Proclamation of the Emperor and King.
SOLDIERS! you justified my waiting, and answered the confidence of the French People with dignity. You withstood the deprivations and tirednesses with as much courage as you showed intrepidity and coolness in the fields of the battle. You are the worthy defenders of the honor of my crown and the glory of a Great People; as long as you are animated with this spirit, nothing will be able to resist to you. From now on I do not know which weapon I must give preference.....you are all good soldier. Here are the results of our work.
One of the first military powers of Europe, which not long ago dared to propose a ashamed capitulation on us, is destroyed. The forests, the processions of Franconie, Saale, Elba, that our fathers had not crossed in seven years, we crossed in seven days, and gave battle in the interval at four engagements and a great battle. We carried to Potsdam, to Berlin, the fame of our victories. We made 60,000 prisoners, took 65 flags, among which were those of the guards of the King of Prussia, 600 pieces of cannon, 3 fortresses, more than 20 Generals. However, about half of you regret not having given a blow yet from your rifle. All the provinces of Prussian monarchy, up to the Oder, are in our hands.
Soldiers! the Russians think highly of themselves to come to us. We will march to their meeting; we will save them half the way to go, they will find an Austerlitz in the milieu of Prussia. A nation which at once forgot the generosity of which we extended towards it after that battle, where its emperor, his court, the remains of its army owed their safety only to the capitulation that we granted to them, is a nation which could fight successfully against us.
However, while we march forward against the Russians, new armies, formed in the interior of the Empire, come to take our place to keep our conquests. My entire people rose, made indignant of the ashamed capitulation that the Prussian ministers, in their delirium, proposed to push upon us. Our roads and our frontier towns are filled with conscripts who burn to go on your footprints. From now on we will not anymore be the toys of a treacherous peace, and we will no longer lay aside the weapons which we had obliged the English, these eternal enemies of our nation, to give up to project to disturb the Continent, and with the tyranny of the seas.
Soldiers! I to better express then the sentiments that I have for you, that by saying to you that I carry you in my heart the love that you show me all of the days.
Of our imperial camp of Potsdam, October 26, 1806.
For the Emperor,
Major-General of the Grande-Army, prince de Neufchâtel and of Vallengin,
Marshal ALEX. BERTHIER.
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