Barbault wijdt een paar bladzijden aan de verschillende geboortetijden die in gebruik zijn, maar hij eindigt de introductie
met (p. 6):
In fact it would be more accurate to say "in the 11th
hour". This would bring us closer to the "unofficial"
source of the Memorial of Sainte Hélène of Las
Cases, with the advantages of memories from picturesques tales
of Napoleon's delivery:'
was born on the 15th of August 1769, the day of the Assumption,
around noun. His mother, a strong woman, both physically and
morally, who participated in the war while pregnant with him,
wanted to go to mass because of the solemnity of the day.
She had to come back quickly and didn't even have time to
reach her bedroom and laid her newborn on one of those old
antique carpets with great characters, those heroes from legend
or may be from the Illiad: there was Napoleon."
His mother, Letizia, explained away the romantic decoration
"It is a tall tale to have him born on the head of Caesar:
he did not need it. We had no carpets in our Corsica houses."
But the rest of the story stays the same:"When arriving
at home - it was around noun- she had no time to go up to her
bed... and gave birth almost immediately." (André
Castelot in his Bonaparte, Academic Library Perrin 1967).
And we still have other statements on this birth:
"With the help of her sister-in-law Gertruda Paravicini - her husbands'sister
- she went back home hastily to her house on Malerba Street.
As soon as she arrived, she had no time to go up to her bedroom:
she made her way to the sitting room, laid down on a green counch
and almost immediately gave birth with the help of her sister
in law who acted as a midwife. It was around noun. (André
Castelot, "Madame Mère" in his Histoire
insolite. Academic Library Perrin 1982.)"