The author of this book review takes the opportunity to launch an attack on Freemasonry:
Camille Ferri Pisani: |
Prince Napoleon in America, 1861.
Translated by Georges J. Joyaux. 317pp. Galley Press. 25s.
The Prince Napoleon in question is Napoleon III's cousin Jérôme Napoleon, better known as Plon-Plon. He travelled to America in 1861 as a private individual, since his presence in Paris as a public individual on the steps to the throne was once again threatening to turn into a major scandal. His friends, the Freemasons, had elected him their Grand Master in succession to Prince Murat, who had incensed the lodges by speaking in favour of the Pope's temporal power. The Emperor, not previously consulted, saw in the election a gross interference in a highly delicate situation and had it declared invalid. Plon-Plon, who earlier in the year had suffered a humiliating defeat at the hands of the Duc d'Aumale, made it plain that he was bowing resentfully before the Emperor's despotic power and when Murat wrote him a haughty letter reacted with Corsican, though not Napoleonic, rudeness. A duel seemed, unavoidable, but the Emperor wrote sharply to his recalcitrant cousin who then went on his cruise. Marshal Magnan became Grand Master, and the Masons resumed their tunnelling with temporarily blunted claws.
Excerpted from "Plon-Plon in America", Literary Supplement, 29 July 1960, from a clipping in the Grand Lodge of British Columbia and Yukon Library.