类型:奇幻地区:莫桑比克剧发布:2020-11-25 09:44:47


“Of that I wash my hands,” he exclaimed hastily. Then softening his voice: “I was told you were divorced?”“Je jouerai du violon.”Mme. de Genlis had before pointed out to him this danger, but he was very anxious to be with his sister, the only one of his nearest relations left to him, and she did not like to press the matter. But he soon saw that they must separate. The magistrates at Zug behaved very well, saying that the little family gave no reason for complaint, on the contrary were kind to the poor, harmless and popular.

Et Lisette les écoutait.

“I call God to witness, mother, that I did not order this dreadful crime!”Vien, who had been first painter to the King; Gérard, Gros, and Girodet, the great portrait painters (all pupils of David), and her old friend Robert, were constant guests. With David she was not on friendly terms; his crimes and cruelties during the Revolution caused her to regard him with horror. He had caused Robert to be arrested, and had done all he could to increase the horrors of his imprisonment. He had also tried to circulate the malicious reports about Calonne and Mme. Le Brun, of whom he was jealous, though his real love for his art made him acknowledge the excellence of her work.

Presently he stopped; said it was evident that she was an Englishwoman, that he did not wish [440] to cause them any further inconvenience; they could continue their journey, but he advised them to put out the lantern as it might be dangerous. He showed them a bye way by which they could reach the Austrian outposts without meeting any more French troops.“How thankful I was to find myself alone in the room occupied first by my brother, then by Buonaparte, to which I came back after so long an absence: absolute solitude was a necessity to my mind. I prayed and groaned without interruption, which relieved me; then I resolved irrevocably to act in such a manner as never to expose France or my family to the Revolution which had just ended.... I lay down in the bed of Buonaparte, it had also been that of the martyr king, and at first I could not sleep ... like Richard III. I saw in a vision those I had lost, and in the distance enveloped in a sanguinary cloud I seemed to see menacing phantoms.”

“God gives me strength,” she wrote to him, “and He will support me; I have perfect confidence in Him. Adieu; the feeling for all I owe you will follow me to heaven; do not doubt it. Without you what would become of my children? Adieu, Alexis, Alfred, Euphémie. Let God be in your hearts all the days of your lives. Cling to Him without wavering; pray for your father: do all for his true happiness. Remember your mother, and that her only wish has been to keep you for eternity. I hope to find you again with God, and I give you all my last blessing.The writer of these fascinating memoirs of the time proceeds, after speaking of various noble names and regretting many that were extinct, such as Lusignan, Coucy, Xaintrailles, Chatillon, Montgommery, &c., to say, “One thing that has always given me the best opinion of the Noailles, is the protection they have never ceased to grant to all gentlemen who can prove that they have the honour [174] to belong to them, no matter what their position nor how distant the relationship.” He (or she) [67] goes on to relate that a family of much less consideration, the Montmorin, being envious of the Noailles, asserted that they were not of the ancient noblesse, and pretended that they possessed a piece of tapestry on which a Noailles was depicted serving a Montmorin as a ma?tre d’h?tel, with the date 1593.

She came to the wedding with the son and daughter of her second marriage; the latter was afterwards the celebrated Mme. de Montesson. But she managed permanently to cheat her elder daughter out of nearly the whole of the property of her father, and always behaved to her and to her children with the most heartless cruelty.

She was conscious also that her own position was not safe. She had many friends amongst the Girondins, and now terrified at their fall she felt that she was compromised by her association with [300] them; her husband was an additional peril to her, for the new abomination called loi contre des suspects was aimed at those against whom no tangible thing could be brought forward, but who might be accused of “having done nothing for the Republic” and would certainly apply to him. M. de Fontenay had hidden himself for a time and then re-appeared, and seeing they were both in great danger she agreed to his proposal and they went first to Bordeaux, intending shortly to put the Pyrenees between themselves and the Revolution. But swiftly and suddenly the danger that had struck down so many of their acquaintances fell like a thunderbolt upon them.“My criticism, Madame, is this. It seemed to me just now that they accused you of having made the eyes too small and the mouth too large. Well, if you will believe me, you will slightly lower the upper eyelids and open imperceptibly the corner of the lips. Thus you will have almost the charm of that sculpturesque and expressive face. The eyes will be still brighter when their brilliance shines from between the eyelids like the sun through the branches.”The late Dauphin was said to have regarded with especial affection the unlucky Duc de Berri, who was awkward, plain, brusque, and dull; but the favourite of Louis XV. was his youngest grandson, the handsome, mischievous Comte d’Artois, in whom he recognised something of his own disposition, and upon whom he was often seen to look with a smile of satisfaction.

“It is you who will embrace me! Open the door! Open the door!”

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He was, in fact, a visionary, credulous enthusiast, with an overweening vanity and belief in his own importance; obstinate and self-confident to a degree that prevented his ever seeing the fallacy of his views. His own conceit, and the flattery and adulation of his family and friends, made him think that he, and no other, was the man to save and direct France. His very virtues and attractions [210] were mischievous in converting others to his unpractical and dangerous views.The Parisians delighted in any shows or festivities, and the royal family were received with acclamations whenever they appeared from the mob, which twenty years later was yelling and howling with savage fury for their destruction.

“Meyerbeer, but that does not tell you much.”When the Bastille was destroyed, and the officers who were accused of nothing but defending the post entrusted to them were murdered, that prison [324] contained seven prisoners, of whom one was detained by the request of his family, four were forgers, one was an idiot, the other unknown. [102]NAPOLEON


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