类型:奇幻地区:莫桑比克剧发布:2020-10-20 02:27:05


It is difficult for those who are accustomed to think of Paris only as it is now, to picture to themselves at all what it was like in the eighteenth century; for until years after the Revolution it was, to all intents and purposes, a medi?val city.“He seemed,” she says “distrait, gloomy, and preoccupied, with a strange expression which had something sinister in his face; he walked up and down from one room to another, as if he dreaded conversation or questions. The day was fine. I sent Mademoiselle, my niece, and Pamela into the garden; M. de Sillery followed: I found myself alone with M. le Duc d’Orléans. Then I said something about his situation, he hastily interrupted me and said brusquely that he had pledged himself to the Jacobins. I replied that after all that had happened it was a crime and a folly; that he would be their victim.... I advised him to emigrate with his family to America. The Duke smiled disdainfully and answered as he had often done before, that I was well worth being consulted and listened to when it was a question of historical or literary matters, but that I knew nothing about politics.... The conversation became heated, then angry, and suddenly he left me. In the evening I had a long interview with M. de Sillery. I entreated him with tears to leave France; it would have been easy for him to get away and to take with him at least a hundred thousand francs. He listened with emotion; told me he abhorred all the excesses of [434] the Revolution, but that I took too gloomy a view of the outlook. Robespierre and his party were too mediocre to keep their ascendancy long; all the talent and capacity was among the moderates, who would soon re-establish order and morality (they were all put to death soon afterwards); and that he considered it criminal for an honest man to leave France at this moment, as he thereby deprived his country of one more voice for reason and humanity. I insisted, but in vain. He spoke of the Duke of Orléans, saying that in his opinion he was lost, because he was placing all his hopes in the Jacobins, who delighted in degrading him in order to destroy him more easily....”

The Chateau de Plauzat—Varennes—Increasing danger—Decided to emigrate—Triumphal progress of La Fayette—The farewell of the Duchesse d’Ayen—Paris—Rosalie—A last mass—Escape to England.On the morning of the 4th Thermidor a dagger had been mysteriously sent to Tallien, without a word of explanation. No one knew who had brought it; there it was upon his table. But he knew the dagger, and what it meant. It was a Spanish poignard which belonged to Térèzia. It was then that he went and made his last and useless appeal to Robespierre. Térèzia had again been removed to La Force, and on the 7th Thermidor he received a letter from her.

“You speak like a villain!”

Philippe-égalité was now Duc d’Orléans, and his eldest son Duc de Chartres. That young prince was about seventeen, and like all the Orléans family, except the Duchess and the Comte de Beaujolais, was thoroughly indoctrinated with the detestable spirit that prevailed at the Palais Royal.Louis XIV., to whom the idea of the people “allowing” the King to do anything he chose must have appeared ludicrous, replied that their love for their King would, indeed, be excessive if they would not bear him out of their sight, and ended by saying—

TWO years and a half had passed and Mme. Le Brun had no desire to leave Vienna, when the Russian Ambassador and several of his compatriots urged her strongly to go to St. Petersburg, where they said the Empress Catherine II. would be extremely pleased to have her.

The Semiramis of the North, as she was called, received her so graciously, that all her fears and embarrassments disappeared.It appeared after a time that the post in the household of the Comtesse de Provence was not attainable, and in the first disappointment of this refusal, Mme. de Montesson told her niece that she had only to ask and she would receive an appointment at the Palais Royal.

It is probable that she deceived herself more than she did other people, and her life in fact, between the Duke and Duchess and their children, could not have been anything but a constant course of deception.

That Térèzia was infinitely superior to her lover was not only shown by the progress of years and events, but was obvious in the early days of her liaison with Tallien. For her speeches in public and private were not merely empty bombastic talk. She really did everything in her power to rescue from danger and help in trouble the unfortunate people with whom she was surrounded. For she hated cruelty and bloodshed, and saw no reason or excuse for it; in spite of the sophisms and theories of her republican friends. It made no difference to her to what party or class they belonged; she would help any one who was in trouble and appealed to her. And her power was immense, for Tallien, who held life and death in his hands, was her slave, and [310] even the savage Lacomb and Ysabeau, his colleagues, bowed before the charm of her influence.Mme. Le Brun took the greatest pleasure in her intercourse with the Queen. Having heard that she had a good voice and was passionately fond of music, Marie Antoinette asked her to sing some of the duets of Grétry with her; and scarcely ever afterwards did a sitting take place without their playing and singing together.



“The day after to-morrow.”Aix-la-Chapelle was crowded with emigrés, among whom she found many friends and relations. They met chiefly in the salon of her cousin, the Comtesse d’Escars; every one had relations with the army of Condé, in prison, in deadly peril, or even already murdered. The society was chiefly composed of old men, priests and women, whose lives were a perpetual struggle with poverty hitherto unknown to them.



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