They all went, not knowing themselves where they were going or why. The genius Napoleon knew still less than others, since no one gave him orders. But even so he and his entourage observed their long-standing habits: wrote orders, letters, reports, the ordre du jour; addressed each other as Sire, Mon Cousin, Prince d’Eckmühl, roi de Naples, and so on. But the orders and reports existed only on paper, nothing was carried out according to them, because nothing could be carried out, and despite their calling themselves majesties, highnesses, and cousins, they all felt that they were pathetic and vile people who had done a great deal of evil, for which they now had to pay. And despite their pretence of looking after the army, each of them thought only of himself and of how to get away quickly and save himself.
—Leo Tolstoy | War and Peace | trans. Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky | p. 1068