Sir and Sire

: Bonaparte.

A petition from the English _detenus_ at Valenciennes was
left for signature at the house of the colonel of gendarmerie, addressed in

a fulsome manner to Bonaparte, under his title of Emperor of the French,

and beginning with "_Sire_." Some unlucky wag took an opportunity of

altering this word into "_Dear Sir_," and nearly caused the whole party to

be imprisoned.