"It is a singular story, and yet intimately connected with the great events of modern history, or, what is almost the same thing, with the history of Napoleon. Those were memorable times. Every farmer could see the whole array of history manœuvre and pass in review beneath his dormer-window: kings and emperors behaved like play-actors, and, sometimes assumed a different dress and a different character in every scene. And all this gorgeous spectacle was at the farmer's service, costing him nothing but his house and home, and occasionally, perhaps, his life. My neighbor Hansgeorge was not quite so unlucky,--as the story will show..."