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From the French broadcasting system and as we present the story of a monster the first in a series of programs we're counting the historical background over world famous artistic masterpieces. Today the raft of the Medusa. The 17th of June 1860 around 8 o'clock in the morning the Medusa ship of the Royal Navy disembarked. The weather was radiant. The master of the ship after Gandhi was captained several months later and sensational trial took place in the accused box with the same Captain
Louis by the grace of God King of France and. Salutations to all present and to come this day. 3rd of March 1817 ten o'clock in the morning after having celebrated the mass of the Holy Spirit and by virtue of the ordinance of His Majesty Louis the eighteenth of the last seventh of January the maritime council of war can vote by Monsieur and more rear admiral of the Royal Military Order of St. Louis is assembled aboard the military vessel in the port of Ross for. Gentleman. The object of this meeting. Is to judge monsieur who triggered captain former captain of the Medusa stranded on the 2nd of July. Eighteen hundred sixteen around 3:00 in the afternoon off the African coast of the sadder and completely lost the Fifth of July following around
three o'clock in the morning also to examine the conduct of the said Commander concerning the facts preceding accompanying and following the loss of the ship. There are reasons which are brought about the necessity. Of judging Monsieur de Chaumont I never heard of flying gravity and catastrophe without precedent in the matter to Manaus of our country and the abandoning in open seas of a raft bearing a hundred fifty of the ship. Clerk Please read the principal accusations made against the commander of the frigate Medusa who go go sure. There are five principal accusations against Monsieur the Shah Madre. One separation of the frigate Medusa from the Corvette Echo and the brig Argus. Although the Medusa under the command of Monsieur the Shomali was the lead ship
of the convoy destined for Senegal. To the stranding of the Medusa on the 2nd of July 1816 due to a grave navigational error. Free the loss of the abuser on July the 5th 1816. For. Evacuation and abandon of the Medusa. All those seventeen passengers were still on board and who were not rescued until 17 days later. Date. Only three men half insane were found on the derelict tilted at 45 degree angle. 5. Abandon of the raft of the Medusa from the fifth to the 17th of July in open seas with one hundred forty seven passengers including a woman and a child of the one hundred forty seven passengers on the raft. Only 14 were found living 12 days after their about. Four of the survivors died as a result of horrible injuries contracted on the raft. Three of the eight are among the 23 witnesses that the court will hear.
They are called the cadet officer first class in charge of the raft. Louis good full sail master the mystery of the 70 surgeon. Could a head office a genre Danielle couldn't. Your ordeal on the raft lasted 13 days and as many nights can you day by day. Tell us. What your existence was like on bone. You're strong. What was the prevailing atmosphere around the raft. The first evening. Carm three portions of wine were distributed to everyone since we believed to be not far off. Evening prayers were said. But the night was terrible. The seas rose and a storm broke out. We don't enough space to standing clutching on to one another. We were constantly falling over each other into the water up to our waists. It was women through the 70s helped by several
among us thought of stringing ropes along the length of the raft. By gripping these ropes. We were better able to resist the waves. Then someone had an idea to give each person a number so that we would be able to take count of the survivors at all times. Around midnight the CM reached its full fury. Dash to and fro in groups like going to capsize. Hold on tight to the earth. It's around seven o'clock in the morning the tempest abated somewhat. We then discovered 12 less fortunate. The legs had become wedged in the separations between the logs of the raft. They were unable to free themselves and to drown several others have been washed away by the storm. We were minus twenty all told. At what moment did you read the news hope from the tenth day on on that day that two ships boys and a young bacon men could no longer stand the waiting. They threw
themselves into the sea. See my mother again my home town home never again put my back foot on the sand never again sleep in a bed. But it's frightening my friends flowers getting moldy. If one day you should see my mother tell her that I loved her but that I couldn't. I loved her but I'm not. I was a big. Three. This list of treatment options why that also was the evening of the first revote. Yes your honor. During the night from the 6th of July storm was up again.
The wind was so strong that we were all forced to clutch one another around the mosque like a hive of bees. Or else run from one end of the rock to the other to counterbalance the weight of the waves. The soldiers thought the end was calm and started drinking. As long as we're all going to die let's open the cake by the mass. They're all helpless the others. Let's get rid of them. They should go before us talk said comrade to arms. And hatch. The skulls of all he knows how we must and we shall be safe. I want us all to die but we won't let that happen. Two arms two arms and he's having one foster car. According to the witnesses. 60 to 65 soldiers a pettish during that night massacred or drowned. How was such a slaughter possible. Did not the group of officers of which you were in Judge have some responsibility in this con and.
It was them or us. They still have their bayonets and sabers and they charged us. One of them pretended to be resting on the supplies which made up the side of the raft in order to cut the guide ropes with his knife. When he was discovered and tried to kill an officer. We threw him overboard. Another time when I ordered the sail Holden and these madman rushed up and cut the halyards on the stays. The falling mass nearly broke the hip of the infantry captain duple. Revolt is wanted to throw him overboard. Others wanted to gouge out his eyes. I group the officers together and we finally encircle the mutineers. Is it true that you kept the mutineers who had fallen overboard from climbing back into the raft. And is it true that in order to do this you didn't hesitate to chop their fingers off. It is true. My safety was stake. Was there a lot of women aboard. Yes the campaign of. She was also thrown overboard by the mutineers and
was half drowned when the moon came out on the raft. It lit up the slaughter house. It seemed like a butcher's table. We had no drinking water left and nothing left to live on. Is it true that from that day on. The survivors of the Medusa ate human flesh. It's true. How does one reconcile oneself to such an outrage against nature under such circumstances. On that raft with death at our elbows life had all value and no value. In the morning the men of the crew and the soldiers fell upon the cabdrivers of the the men who died the preceding night. They cut them into slices in it and let them roll without waiting. My officer and I refused to touch it but we had to admit that those who did he did became stronger. We had a meeting and decided to drive a flash in the sun to make it more palatable. How long did you and your officers hold out. Not very long.
How could we. We did nothing for three days my hunger pains were horrible. We were barefooted two nights in a row we had been through a senseless struggle. We were up in water to our knees and up to our waist when the seas rose. We could only rest standing. The wounded were laid out on empty barrels and constantly knocked against one another. But didn't you try and find some other means of staving off your hunger. Yes but it was no good. The bravest tried to eat the limb bandoliers off the Sabers. They were hardly able to even swallow the smallest fragments like here ones at the leather interior of their knapsacks. Which had become soft from sweat and grease. But what about fish. The tropical seas abound in fish evolved varieties and that was precisely what we thought at first we fashioned some small hawks and also had bent one of the sabers hoping to catch some sharks but to no avail.
The current carried our hooks under the raft where they got in Tangled. Actually one shot did bite at the bandit but it managed to straighten it and get away. The morning of the 14th day 12 other of our companions died of hunger and were littered over the raft. We too were dying of hunger. We didn't resist any longer but the fear of God human self-respect fear of dying was stronger. Now let us proceed on to the fourth day. That was the most bearable without a doubt. Don't misunderstand me by that. I merely mean it was the least horrible. The weather was clear. Flying fish passed under the raft and some of them came through the spaces between the logs of it. All we had to do is bend to our knees and catch them. We're talking about 200 that same evening we had another stroke of good luck. The Master.
Discovered something badly wrapped package. Captain I like to pitch in something everyone don't get carried away in the season. What we've got to do is put someone in the bottom of the bag that's how you saw a hole in the side of the cask. Put a piece of dry cloth and I just want a pretty place for the first time. My office isn't flush. With the. Surprise of powder which we quickly used up. And soon we had nothing.
Thank you. I would now like to hear Monsieur de 70. I must put one question to you Miss you to send me. I've been told that you were responsible for an unusual decision. Made on the following day the fifth day to be exact the ninth of July. However it appears that everything was more or less calm on that ninth of July. But in the evening. The revolt broke out again. Wow. Some foot soldiers had persuaded the other soldiers that the coast of Africa was nearby. They promised to lead them across the desert without danger. On one condition to grab the jewels of the passengers of the ship's treasure which was fastened to the math.
Unfortunately no one is able to confirm the verity of this plot. All the evidence is un based. And that is why I question you. You are the one. Who gave the signal put the massacre of the night of the 9th to the 10th of July. You were the one who only ordered a sergeant from PM No promo about this sergeant had managed to make a hole in the side of the last half cask of wine we had left. He had already 500 drunk a great deal of it. Death is a severe penalty. We had sworn to kill the first who tried to cheat on the Russians. If I had let him go it would have been anarchy on board. It was a just service. However it was that which incited the other soldiers to a murderous fury. The fighting was terrible. We fought with anything nice pieces of iron. Horrible. We lost five of our best sailors. The mutineers were nearly all killed. The
canteen woman was injured. How many survivors were left on the raft. The morning of the 10th of July 30. But of these 30 20 you were hardly able to remain upright. That was the day you decided to throw the sick overburden correct commits you to 70. Yes it was evening. I was not the only one to decide. We had a council the 15 dying could not have been saved. Is that right Commander. That is right. We had a stormy one. We have the right to take me to him
for that. I'll save my car and. Those who agree with the proposition of. Raise their right and. I'm against it but I'll take the majority. I thought. There's nothing left an hour to go right and carry out you are right. But wait. The woman you're not going to kill the kind canteen woman too. I like the others. She has a broken hip she centered She stopped. I have to kill her Russian wife. No delicacy Are We All right. My friends as I am I see that you want to get me to. After having see more than 20 years have gone
by since I left my neat it you wouldn't Sure. I follow the armies of the republic. I thin the campaigns Russia. France I never met and I saw dues even in the worst moment. I may use. Every one will tell you so take my wine. Canteen woman is so used to pour out all the way. Kate even the last to take it but it's there. My compliments. Don't go away. No. We. Yes it's an extra aisle or bottle. It's an extra mouth to feed briefs I can not see me go. We threw overboard.
They were useless except for a saber to cut rope and from then on hope and desperation took possession of us. Everything assumed an exaggerated importance. One day I don't recall when someone discovered a sprig of garlic and the next day we nearly killed each other over it. We also passed an empty flask which it contained rose water from hand to hand as if it contained life. Some sucked on pieces of tying to quench their thirst. One of us drank sea water. Another was constantly soaking his clothing in it. I once tried to jump overboard into a group of sharks but Masood held me back. Did you never think of building a small raft. Yes but right when we were launching it. As they were walking from one end to the other sank it. What was the use to try again. Just as well wait for death aboard the raft. What was the state of your morale was at
that moment overwhelming weakness and complete disgust. You're. Very those who eat the flesh of that chick which ran away from one of the doors of certainly understand that it wasn't our fault. She'd take me in an arms. What good survived Nazi Death is the only sin and death is the only damnation of the day my friend. Again a blue sky. Doctor stop. That's what doctor think North American news. I could just call aftermath.
Hundred and One the great painter was captured forever the moment before the final
rescue of these shipwrecked men in his famous canvas of the Medusa at the foot of the mast of the makeshift raft tossed about by the sea are huddled in the last survivor pointing with his arm indicates the brig on the horizon to something who is backed up against the mast and to the other sailors. A man raised on an empty barrel waved the scrap of cloth an old man and cradled the body of his dead son on his knee. This work remarkable for its real oozing with expression the grandeur of its scope its blazing colors and its masterly execution was not originally appreciated not was the usual along with masterpieces. The painter was unable to sell his work which he took with him to England in 1820. Since however it has long held a place of honor in going to who museum in Paris.
Croque. Read the names of the 15 survivors of the raft of the Medusa. Which took a boat one hundred forty seven passengers. Including a woman and a child. On July the 5th. Do you pull entrance to Captain that her infantry captain. Those are dead as a result of injuries. For Sale monster ship sense and shallow dead as a result of injuries. Dead as a result of injuries. LaViolette Saudia. Cost sailor Thomas pilot
Francois into engineer 70. Surgeon Josh Gad as a result of injuries as a result of injuries. I am. By right through the powers invested in this cog 51 years old former commander of the Medusa is declared guilty of the loss of the Medusa. According to Article 39 of the neighborhood penal code and by a majority of five to eight years struck from the list of naval officers and declared incapable of serving
guilty of not having been the last to abandon the sinking Medusa which he commanded by a majority of five to eight. Years sentenced to three years in prison. Use equally to be fined the expenses of this hearing hearing held closed. Judged and sentenced aboard the vessel at 1:45 in the evening. I am. I am. I now speak not for the indulgence of your judges in respect to your past service and the honor of the crown but is one of your peers an unbending one who you have acted honorably.
I hereby declare in the name of the Legion of Honor that you are no longer a member. Neither are you a member of the Royal Military Order of sound we by unanimous opinion of the naval council there. I strip you of your decorations. You've been listening to the story of a masterpiece. Today's eulogy and the rise of the MMA dude. With the ones that. Carol Jonathan the Lyall joy Norman and the old
show on the street and is this good. This program was written by piece gullable about that into English by Joel Saltzman and directed by piece on. It came to you transcribed from 48 the French broadcasting system in Paris. This program was distributed by the national educational radio network.
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The story of a masterpiece
J. Gericault: The Raft of the Medus
Producing Organization
French Cultural Services
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Series Description
Semi-dramatic series about famous French masterpiece stories, produced by French Cultural Services, as part of its project Various Aspects of French Life. This prog.: J. Gericault: The Raft of the Medusa.
Fine Arts
Media type
Producing Organization: French Cultural Services
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 68-22-1 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:28:21
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Chicago: “The story of a masterpiece; J. Gericault: The Raft of the Medus,” 1968-07-01, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed May 28, 2024,
MLA: “The story of a masterpiece; J. Gericault: The Raft of the Medus.” 1968-07-01. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. May 28, 2024. <>.
APA: The story of a masterpiece; J. Gericault: The Raft of the Medus. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from