The Marx Brothers
Marxology - Napoleon's First Waterloo (Library of Congress-version)

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Napoleon's First Waterloo (Library of Congress-version)

Josephine Lotta Miles
Napoleon Groucho
François Chico
Alphonse Zeppo
Gaston Harpo


A Footman enters.

Footman The Empress!
Beauty walks downstairs left, preceded by two pages. Everybody bows.
The Emperor!
Groucho poses on stairs.

Napoleon Lafayette, we are here! Falls down stairs Here. As you were.
Everybody bows again.
Exeunt. Take Little Red Riding Hood with you

Josephine Napoleon, did you hurt yourself?

Napoleon Yes, why don't they have ashes there? Where are my faithful advisers, François, Alphonse, and Gaston?

Josephine You wish their advice?

Napoleon Of course I do. They are always wrong. Let me think.
Bus. of posing with hand in coat and taking snuff.

Josephine Napoleon, how many times have I told you not to use that horrible snuff.

Napoleon 'S nuff.
Enter Footman right.

Footman François.

Napoleon François.

François Napoleon, Josephine!

Josephine François.

Footman Alphonse.

Napoleon Alphonse.

Alphonse Napoleon, Josie.

Josephine Alphonse.

Footman Gaston

Napoleon Gaston.
Harpo with outstretched arms to Groucho passes him and goes to Beauty.

Josephine Gaston.
Boys all crowded about Beauty

Napoleon Ah, this devotion to me is touching. Emperor of the world, what is there left for me to conquer?

Alphonse The North Pole.

François Go to Mexico. Fight anybody.

Napoleon Leave Josephine alone with the court?

Josephine Napoleon, how can you doubt my love?

Napoleon I don't doubt your love. When I look in your big blue eyes, I know you are true to the Army. But then, I must be off, I must be off, I must be off. If I leave you with these guys I must be off. I am off to make Russia safe for French pastry.

Josephine Napoleon, don't forget your flannels.

Napoleon When one wears flannels, one can't forget. Farewell my queen. Alphonse, François, Gaston. I leave Josephine in your arms - - care. My honor it is safe.

François and Alphonse Safe!
Bus. for Groucho

Napoleon Farewell my queen. Farewell. Beyond the Alps lies Peter's Milk Chocolate.
[MK: I will bring you home a hunk.]
Vive La France!
Groucho starts up stairs but come back and exits left.

François Darling, I will be right back. Exits left.

Alphonse Josie, I am not even going away. Exits left.
Harpo Exits left.

François Josephine.

Josephine François.

François Darling, why are you crying?

Josephine I thought you were never coming.

François I thought Napoleon was never going.

Josephine Are you sure he has gone?

François Yes, he just kissed me good-bye.

Josephine Me too.

François Josephine

Josephine François. Hide! Someone's coming.
Groucho peeps in.

Napoleon Ten seconds I have been gone and no one is here. Ah, she loves me. She is true to me.
Enter Footman.

Josephine Champagne.

Napoleon Ham sandwich. Rye bread.

Josephine Napoleon!

Napoleon Josephine, my queen. Farewell, my queen, farewell!

Josephine Napoleon, what are you looking for?

Napoleon Lost my sword.

Josephine There it is dear, just where you left it.

Napoleon How stupid of me.
[MK: I'm as dumb as a Congressman.]
I wish you wouldn't open sardines with my sword. Do you want to get my army full of mustard?
[MK: My troops are beginning to smell like the Lenox Avenue local.]

Josephine Napoleon, let me look at your suspenders. Don't disgrace me by letting the Russians see you look so untidy.

Napoleon Aren't you solicitous? Farewell my queen. I'm going any minute now.
[MK: I run on the hour and the half hour.]
If my laundry comes send it general delivery care of Russia. Count it. There were two shirts missing last week. England rules the waves, but France waves the rule. Vive La Pump a Nickle.
Exits left.

Alphonse Josephine.

Josephine François. Hide!

François Josie, has he gone?

Josephine Who?

François Anybody. You know Josie I am so glad we are alone together because it is so hard to be together alone. You know I love you, oh so strong.

Josephine Remember I am an Empress. Don't play, the concord of sweet sounds is too insidious. I must be strong. Chico plays piano. Knock, Enter Napoleon. Chico hides.

Napoleon Josephine. Farewell my queen. My queen, my queenie.

Josephine Napoleon, what's wrong now?

Napoleon Lost my sword again. I was just about to shoot one of those Russians when I couldn't find my sword.

Josephine Here it is, just where you left it.

Napoleon Farewell my queen. I am going to Russia now and believe me I have the enemy just where they want me. Farewell my queen.

Josephine Napoleon, are you winning the war?

Napoleon I can't tell for sure. I haven't seen the morning papers yet. Farewell my queen. It looks like I'm off again.
Exits left. Harpo slips in behind couch right.

Josephine Gaston, I thought you were never coming. Won't you please play for me?
Harpo plays piano. Knock is heard. Harpo sits on couch and Beauty sits on Harpo's lap to hide him. Napoleon enters.

Napoleon Josephine, my queen. It seems like a year since I last saw you.
Kneels and kisses Harpo's hand which is around Beauty's waist.

Josephine Napoleon, aren't you home early?

Napoleon The war was called off on account of the rain. Looks at Beauty. Which one is you Josephine? Are you standing up or is it stigmatism? Where is my sword?
Harpo points to sword. Where are my rubbers?
Harpo puts out his feet under Beauty's dress. Ah queenie, I wouldn't wear those in the house if I were you. I am going to a crap game to-night. They whall not pass! Vive La Hoopla!
Exits left. Bus. for Harpo on couch.

Josephine Oh dear, I feel so faint. I must have music, sweet music. The harp.
Footman brings in harp. Harpo starts to play it and Beauty starts to sing. Harpo stops and plays little chords at the end of phrases. After song, Harpo plays solo on harp. Knock is heard.

Napoleon From behind couch Josephine.

Josephine Not yet.

Napoleon It's me.

Josephine I don't see you.

Napoleon You never could. Joesphine don't you recognize your nifty little nappy?

Josephine François, will you keep quiet? Do you want Alphonse to hear you?

Napoleon It's me, your little Apple Fritter. Napoleon.

Josephine That's what they all say.

Groucho comes out from behind couch.
Napoleon I'll soon knock that out of you. Woman, who's been here?

Josephine I have.

Napoleon Alone?

Josephine Alone.

Napoleon That's a lot of humpdy dumpdy. Remember you can fool some of the people all of the time and all of the people some of the time but you can't fool the neighbors any of the time. Someone's been here. He's a harp.

Josephine 'Tis my harp. I was practising.

Napoleon I don't want you practising with a harp. That's why I built the English Channel. Look me in the eye. The other eye. The eyes have it. Don't you think that your profidiousness is apparent to me? Do you think that you can make a Schimmil out of Napoleon?
[MK: I'm no kibitzer...I know women of your elk. I'm an elk myself. I'll smoke out those Siberian jackrabbits...]
Do you think it's fun being Napoleon? How would you like to be Napoleon and stand like this in history for two hundred years, and then to crown it all they have to name a cake after me and now I am a cake enter. I have had enough of this. I'll show you.

Josephine I love you more than anything in the world.
Groucho throws the snuff about.

Napoleon Come out, come out, wherever you are.

Josephine Napoleon, how can you doubt my love? No one has been here, no one is here.

Napoleon Why, if I thought so I'd - - -
Bus. of achooing.
What's that?

Josephine My hay fever.
Bus. of more achooing.

Napoleon How many hay fevers have you got? Chico comes out - - achoo.
See here, you yellow pants lizard, I am the Emperor and I'm not to be sneezed at. Harpo comes out.
So you too, my trusted friend Gaston. You volunteer fire department you. Zeppo comes out - - achoo, achoo, achoo,
Train going west on track 25.
So my queen, while the Emperor has been winning victories on foreign fields he has been losing on the home ground. So this is how you uphold the honor of the Bonapartes. Zounds on you, you titian haired traitoress, you minxed eyed wastrel, do you know what I'm going to do to you? Do you know what I'm going to do to you?
Bus. of sharpening sword.

Josephine Napoleon, you're not going to kill me?

Napoleon Kill you? I should say not. I'm going to sell the couch.
Everybody kneeling about Groucho.

Everybody Oh, don't sell the couch. Please don't sell the couch.

Two pierrots skip on closing curtains and Exit.

Script source; Library of Congress, Washington. Variations marked MK from Miles Kreuger Collection, Institute of the American Musical, Los Angeles.

On Broadway this scene was introduced by a Court Singer, a Court Violinist and a Court Pianist performing the song Glimpses of the Moon, written by Tom Johnstone and Phil Cook. According to the cover of the sheet music the song was "inspired by Allan Dwan's photoplay of Edith Wharton's novel" and "dedicated to Bebe Daniels", star of the movie Glimpses of the Moon. The first line of the song is "Daylight is done, twilight begun, all the world's at rest" while the chorus begins "Love wakes anew with each glimpse of the moon".

The novel Glimpses of the Moon by Edith Wharton was first published in 1922. It's a society drama about the ambitions of Susan Branch to remain in the European society even though she's lost all her money. She falls in love with penniless writer Nick Lansing and they enter marriage not out of love but out of convenience. In 1923 the drama was filmed by director Allan Dwan with screenplay by Edfrid A. Bingham and E. Lloyd Sheldon. Bebe Daniels played Susan Branch while David Powell appeared as Nick Lansing. This 66 minutes silent feature is now considered lost. .