It had great success at the Salon, was engraved by Müller, and was one of those amongst her works which decided Joseph Vernet, shortly after her return, to propose her as a member of the Royal Academy of Painting. She was duly elected, in spite of the opposition of M. Pierre, who was painter to the King, and a very bad painter too.Mme. Le Brun was now virtually separated from her husband, with whom it would have been impossible for her to live unless she were prepared to allow him to spend her fortune, and reduce her to beggary. She soon collected round her a large society of friends, and resumed the soirées at which they amused themselves as far as possible after their old fashion, acting tableaux vivants, &c.
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.They both sprang up, declaring it was better to die than to stay with such a monster, and left the room.
She observed also that it was now usual for all the men to stand at one side of the room, leaving the women at the other, as if they were enemies.
“We have not come to that, Monsieur l’Abbé. The prayer for the King!”Autrement nommés en province?In the ill-furnished, dilapidated h?tel salon of Mme. d’Escars Pauline came in the evenings, after a day spent in the poor lodging upon the scanty food she could get, passing her time in reading, in devotion, and in doing what she could to help others.
When she was better she and M. de Montagu took a small furnished apartment and dined at Mme. Le Rebours’, paying pension of 100 francs a month for themselves, the child and nurse. M. de Beaune went to live at a pension set up by the Comtesse de Villeroy, where for a very moderate price he had good food, a good room, and the society of a salon in Paris. He grumbled no more, and they were all much more comfortable than in England.“What gives you the right to laugh at us, Monsieur?” asked one of them, with irritation.
“No one can judge of what society in France was,” wrote Mme. Le Brun in her old age, “who has not seen the times when after the affairs of the day were finished, twelve or fifteen agreeable people would meet at the house of a friend to finish the evening there.”The two gentlemen then went to look for the carriage, which had not come. They were away a long time. A fearful noise seemed to be going on in the place Louis XV., and when, after midnight, they did return, they assured the anxious, rather frightened young women that they could not find either carriage or servants, that the crowd was fearful, and there would be no chance of getting  away for at least two hours, so they had brought them some cakes and a chicken for supper. They did not tell them of the fire, the horrible confusion, and the people being crushed to death in the place. But presently groans and cries were heard just under their window, and, looking out, they saw two old ladies in full evening dress, with paniers—the Marquise d’Albert and the Comtesse de Renti, who, while trying to get to their carriage, had got separated from their servants and carried along by the crowd. As it was impossible to get them to the door, they leaned out of the window and drew them up with great difficulty. Mme. d’Albert was covered with blood, as some one in the crowd had snatched out one of her diamond ear-rings.
“Yes, yes! I know the way to the restaurant!” and as he dragged him along in an iron grasp some guards, who had discovered the escape of the prisoner, recognised and seized him.It is therefore evident that at the time of which Mme. de Genlis is writing, the middle of May, the Duchess of Orléans was in prison. Also that the Marquis de Sillery, her husband, had not been detained in the Abbaye, as from his letter she had supposed, but was only under supervision till the 7th of April.
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But that of her daughter, who still lived in Paris, and who in 1819 was seized with a sudden illness which terminated fatally, was a terrible grief to her at the time; though in fact that selfish, heartless woman had for many years caused her nothing but vexation and sorrow, and it seems probable that after the first grief had subsided her life was happier without her, for the place she ought to have occupied had long been filled by the two nieces who were looked upon by her and by themselves as her daughters—her brother’s only child, Mme. de Rivière, and Eugénie Le Brun, afterwards Mme. Tripier Le Franc.“Well, I am ——. I was head-gardener at the chateau in the old time, and now, Messieurs, if you will honour me by coming to my house and accepting some refreshment, I will show you something that will surprise you.”
“You think like a scoundrel!”详情
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