James and Mary Ford, eds. Every Day in the Year. 1902.

December 2


By Francis Saltus Saltus (1849–1889)

  • The battle of Austerlitz has sometimes been called the “Battle of Three Emperors” from the presence of the Emperors Alexander I., of Russia, Napoleon of France and Francis of Austria. It was fought on Dec. 2, 1805, and resulted in a victory for the French over the Russians and Austrians.

  • ON to the goal the impatient legions come!

    Ulm haloes with success an army’s might;

    Far mid the mists and gloom of Austrian night,

    Hear the advancing steeds, the ominous drum!

    Europe cowers shuddering, and strong kings are dumb;

    A Cæsar leads a nation to the fight,

    And o’er the allied camps the flaming light

    Of his great star strikes the rude masses numb!

    Five hundred thundering cannon boom and glow,

    A sun of victory on the keen steel slants,

    There on the gore-strewn plains of pine and snow

    Russ clutches Gaul in labyrinths of lance,

    While o’er the hurrying hell of war and woe

    Floats the Imperial, blood-stained flag of France.