August 19 1815: NO VEGETABLES FOR NAPOLEON!

“The weather was moderate, with a pleasant breeze from the north-west. Buonaparte, since on board the Northumberland, has kept nearly the same hours: he gets up late (between 10 and 11) has his breakfast (of meat and wine) in his bedroom, and continues there in his dishabille until three or four in the afternoon, when he dresses for dinner. He then comes out of his bed-cabin, and either takes a short walk on deck, or plays a game of chess with one of his Generals, until the dinner hour (which is five o’clock.) At dinner he generally eats and drinks a good deal, and talks but little. He prefers meats, of all kinds, highly dressed, and never touches vegetables.

After dinner, he generally walks for about an hour, or an hour and a half, and it is during these walks, that I have the most free and pleasant conversations with him. About eight he quits the deck; and we then make up a game at cards for him, in which he seems to engage with considerable pleasure and interest, until about ten, when he retires to his bed-room, and I believe goes almost immediately to bed. Such a life of inactivity, with the quantity and description of his food, makes me fear that he will not retain his health throughout the voyage; he, however, as yet, does not appear to suffer any inconvenience from it.”

— Sir George Cockburn on the HMS Northumberland writes in his diary for August 19 1815.

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