I am highly satisfied with the manner in which you have fulfilled your functions as deputies. Her progress in the study of music and of foreign languages was surprising; Albaneze instructed her in singing, and Goldoni taught her Italian.
Tasso, Milton, Dante, and even Shakespeare, soon became familiar to her. But her studies were particularly directed to the acquisition of a correct and elegant style of reading. Rochon de Chabannes, Duclos, Barthe, Marmontel, and Thomas took pleasure in hearing her recite the finest scenes of Racine. Her memory and genius at the age of fourteen charmed them; they talked of her talents in society, and perhaps applauded them too highly.
She was soon spoken of at Court. Some ladies of high rank, who took an interest in the welfare of her family, obtained for her the place of Reader to the Princesses. Her presentation, and the circumstances which preceded it, left a strong impression on her mind. The day on which I first put on my Court dress, and went to embrace him in his study, tears filled his eyes, and mingled with the expression of his pleasure. I possessed some agreeable talents, in addition to the instruction which it had been his delight to bestow on me.
He enumerated all my little accomplishments, to convince me of the vexations they would not fail to draw upon me. Her eyes were dazzled by the splendour which glittered at Versailles. The grand apartments hung with black, the great chairs of state, raised on several steps, and surmounted by a canopy adorned with Plumes; the caparisoned horses, the immense retinue in Court mourning, the enormous shoulder-knots, embroidered with gold and silver spangles, which decorated the coats of the pages and footmen,--all this magnificence had such an effect on my senses that I could scarcely support myself when introduced to the Princesses.
The first day of my reading in the inner apartment of Madame Victoire I found it impossible to pronounce more than two sentences; my heart palpitated, my voice faltered, and my sight failed. How well understood was the potent magic of the grandeur and dignity which ought to surround sovereigns! Marie Antoinette, dressed in white, with a plain straw hat, and a little switch in her hand, walking on foot, followed by a single servant, through the walks leading to the Petit Trianon, would never have thus disconcerted me; and I believe this extreme simplicity was the first and only real mistake of all those with which she is reproached.
It was by no means attractive; the Court of the Princesses, far removed from the revels to which Louie XV. Madame Adelaide, the eldest of the Princesses, lived secluded in the interior of her apartments; Madame Sophie was haughty; Madame Louise a devotee. Mademoiselle Genet never quitted the Princesses' apartments; but she attached herself most particularly to Madame Victoire.
This Princess had possessed beauty; her countenance bore an expression of benevolence, and her conversation was kind, free, and unaffected. The young reader excited in her that feeling which a woman in years, of an affectionate disposition, readily extends to young people who are growing up in her sight, and who possess some useful talents. Whole days were passed in reading to the Princess, as she sat at work in her apartment. Mademoiselle Genet frequently saw there Louis XV.
I rose and went into another room. Alone, in an apartment from which there was no outlet, with no book but a Massillon, which I had been reading to the Princess, happy in all the lightness and gaiety of fifteen, I amused myself with turning swiftly round, with my court hoop, and suddenly kneeling down to see my rose-coloured silk petticoat swelled around me by the wind. In the midst of this grave employment enters his Majesty, followed by one of the Princesses. I attempt to rise; my feet stumble, and down I fall in the midst of my robes, puffed out by the wind. His eyes remained fixed upon you all the time he was speaking; and, notwithstanding the beauty of his features, he inspired a sort of fear.
I was very young, it is true, when he first spoke to me; you shall judge whether it was in a very gracious manner. I was fifteen. The King was going out to hunt, and a numerous retinue followed him. As he stopped opposite me he said, 'Mademoiselle Genet, I am assured you are very learned, and understand four or five foreign languages. Gassner, gifted with an extraordinary warmth of imagination, imagined that he received inspirations.
The Empress protected him, saw him occasionally, rallied him on his visions, and, nevertheless, heard them with a sort of interest. Being still pressed by the Empress, and wishing to give a general expression to the idea with which he seemed deeply occupied, "Madame," he replied, "there are crosses for all shoulders. The conflagration of the scaffolds intended for the fireworks, the want of foresight of the authorities, the avidity of robbers, the murderous career of the coaches, brought about and aggravated the disasters of that day; and the young Dauphiness, coming from Versailles, by the Cours la Reine, elated with joy, brilliantly decorated, and eager to witness the rejoicings of the whole people, fled, struck with consternation and drowned in tears, from the dreadful scene.
This tragic opening of the young Princess's life in France seemed to bear out Gassner's hint of disaster, and to be ominous of the terrible future which awaited her.
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Campan, already mentioned as holding an office at the Court; and when the household of the Dauphiness was formed, Madame Campan was appointed her reader, and received from Marie Antoinette a consistent kindness and confidence to which by her loyal service she was fully entitled. Madame Campan's intelligence and vivacity made her much more sympathetic to a young princess, gay and affectionate in disposition, and reared in the simplicity of a German Court, than her lady of honour, the Comtesse de Noailles.
This respectable lady, who was placed near her as a minister of the laws of etiquette, instead of alleviating their weight, rendered their yoke intolerable to her. Her piety, charity, and irreproachable morals rendered her worthy of praise; but etiquette was to her a sort of atmosphere; at the slightest derangement of the consecrated order, one would have thought the principles of life would forsake her frame.
The Queen was receiving I know not whom,--some persons just presented, I believe; the lady of honour, the Queen's tirewoman, and the ladies of the bedchamber, were behind the Queen. I was near the throne, with the two women on duty. All was right,--at least I thought so. Suddenly I perceived the eyes of Madame de Noailles fixed on mine. She made a sign with her head, and then raised her eyebrows to the top of her forehead, lowered them, raised them again, then began to make little signs with her hand. From all this pantomime, I could easily perceive that something was not as it should be; and as I looked about on all sides to find out what it was, the agitation of the Countess kept increasing.
The Queen, who perceived all this, looked at me with a smile; I found means to approach her Majesty, who said to me in a whisper, 'Let down your lappets, or the Countess will expire. What misconduct might not be dreaded from a princess who could absolutely go out without a hoop! The Queen made no answer at that time, but a few days after, having a very large ruff on, and some 'bouili' to eat, she ordered a very long spoon to be brought, and ate her 'bouili' with it, without soiling her ruff.
Upon which, addressing herself to M. What interest could the courtiers have in seeking her destruction, which involved that of the King? Was it not drying up the source of all the advantages they enjoyed, or could hope for? I was the bearer of this petition to her Majesty, who said, 'I will undertake to have these good people relieved from so great an annoyance. If the second petition had reached the Queen, M. She was always so happy when it was in her power to do good. Brunier," says Madame Campan, "was physician to the royal children.
During his visits to the palace, if the death of any of his patients was alluded to, he never failed to say, 'Ah! But the Queen! What urgent reasons of state could Danton, Collot d'Herbois, and Robespierre allege against her? What savage greatness did they discover in stirring up a whole nation to avenge their quarrel on a woman? What remained of her former power? She was a captive, a widow, trembling for her children! In those judges, who at once outraged modesty and nature; in that people whose vilest scoffs pursued her to the scaffold, who could have recognised the generous people of France?
Of all the crimes which disgraced the Revolution, none was more calculated to show how the spirit of party can degrade the character of a nation. The news of this dreadful event reached Madame Campan in an obscure retreat which she had chosen. She had not succeeded in her endeavours to share the Queen's captivity, and she expected every moment a similar fate. After escaping, almost miraculously, from the murderous fury of the Marseillais; after being denounced and pursued by Robespierre, and entrusted, through the confidence of the King and Queen, with papers of the utmost importance, Madame Campan went to Coubertin, in the valley of Chevreuse.
Madame Auguid, her sister, had just committed suicide, at the very moment of her arrest. Had she deferred this fatal act for one day she would have been saved; the cart which conveyed Robespierre to execution stopped her funeral procession! A new career now opened to Madame Campan. At Coubertin, surrounded by her nieces, she was fond of directing their studies. This occupation caused her ideas to revert to the subject of education, and awakened once more the inclinations of her youth. At the age of twelve years she could never meet a school of young ladies passing through the streets without feeling ambitious of the situation and authority of their mistress.
Her abode at Court had diverted but not altered her inclinations. I now possessed nothing in the world but an assignat of five hundred francs. I had become responsible for my husband's debts, to the amount of thirty thousand francs. I chose St. Germain to set up a boarding-school, for that town did not remind me, as Versailles did, both of happy times and of the misfortunes of France. I took with me a nun of l'Enfant-Jesus, to give an unquestionable pledge of my religious principles.
The school of St. Germain was the first in which the opening of an oratory was ventured on. The Directory was displeased at it, and ordered it to be immediately shut up; and some time after commissioners were sent to desire that the reading of the Scriptures should be suppressed in my school. I inquired what books were to be substituted in their stead. After some minutes' conversation, they observed: 'Citizeness, you are arguing after the old fashion; no reflections. The nation commands; we must have obedience, and no reasoning.
At the year's end I had sixty pupils; soon afterwards a hundred. I bought furniture and paid my debts. Germain was undoubtedly owing to the talents, experience, and excellent principles of Madame Campan, seconded by public opinion. All property had changed hands; all ranks found themselves confusedly jumbled by the shock of the Revolution: the grand seigneur dined at the table of the opulent contractor; and the witty and elegant marquise was present at the ball by the side of the clumsy peasant lately grown rich. In the absence of the ancient distinctions, elegant manners and polished language now formed a kind of aristocracy.
The house of St. Germain, conducted by a lady who possessed the deportment and the habits of the best society, was not only a school of knowledge, but a school of the world. Six months afterwards she came to inform me of her marriage with a Corsican gentleman, who had been brought up in the military school, and was then a general. I was requested to communicate this information to her daughter, who long lamented her mother's change of name.
I was also desired to watch over the education of little Eugene de Beauharnais, who was placed at St. Germain, in the same school with my son. Madame de Beauharnaias set out for Italy, and left her children with me. On her return, after the conquests of Bonaparte, that general, much pleased with the improvement of his stepdaughter, invited me to dine at Malmaison, and attended two representations of 'Esther' at my school. Shortly before Caroline's marriage to Murat, and while she was yet at St. Germain, Napoleon observed to Madame Campan: "I do not like those love matches between young people whose brains are excited by the flames of the imagination.
I had other views for my sister. Who knows what high alliance I might have procured for her! She is thoughtless, and does not form a just notion of my situation. The time will come when, perhaps, sovereigns might dispute for her hand. She is about to marry a brave man; but in my situation that is not enough. Fate should be left to fulfil her decrees. During dinner the First Consul astonished her by the able manner in which he conversed on the subject under discussion.
She said he argued so logically that his talent quite amazed her. During the consulate Napoleon one day said to her, "If ever I establish a republic of women, I shall make you First Consul. Madame Campan said that she heard from him that when he founded the convent of the Sisters of la Charite he was urgently solicited to permit perpetual vows. He, however, refused to do so, on the ground that tastes may change, and that he did not see the necessity of excluding from the world women who might some time or other return to it, and become useful members of society.
It is impossible to calculate the loss which a nation sustains in having ten thousand women shut up in cloisters. War does but little mischief; for the number of males is at least one-twenty-fifth greater than that of females. Women may, if they please, be allowed to make perpetual vows at fifty years of age; for then their task is fulfilled. Germain been in a more flourishing condition than in What more could Madame Campan wish? For ten years absolute in her own house, she seemed also safe from the caprice of power.
But the man who then disposed of the fate of France and Europe was soon to determine otherwise. After the battle of Austerlitz the State undertook to bring up, at the public expense, the sisters, daughters, or nieces of those who were decorated with the Cross of Honour. The children of the warriors killed or wounded in glorious battle were to find paternal care in the ancient abodes of the Montmorencys and the Condes. Accustomed to concentrate around him all superior talents, fearless himself of superiority, Napoleon sought for a person qualified by experience and abilities to conduct the institution of Ecouen; he selected Madame Campan.
Comte de Lacepede, the pupil, friend, and rival of Buffon, then Grand Chancellor of the Legion of Honour, assisted her with his enlightened advice. Napoleon, who could descend with ease from the highest political subjects to the examination of the most minute details; who was as much at home in inspecting a boarding-school for young ladies as in reviewing the grenadiers of his guard; whom it was impossible to deceive, and who was not unwilling to find fault when he visited the establishment at Ecouen,--was forced to say, "It is all right. The internal regulations were submitted to him.
One of the intended rules, drawn up by Madame Campan, proposed that the children should hear mass on Sundays and Thursdays. Napoleon himself wrote on the margin, "every day. After inspecting the chapel and the refectories, Napoleon desired that the three principal pupils might be presented to him. Napoleon looked over the whole of the house, entered into the most trivial details, and after addressing questions to several of the pupils: 'Well, madame,' said he, 'I am satisfied; show me your six best pupils.
On addressing the list to the Prince de Neufchatel, Madame Campan added to it the names of four other pupils, and all the ten obtained a pension of francs. During the three hours which this visit occupied, Marie Louise did not utter a single word. D, one of Napoleon's generals, who had recently been promoted, did not belong to a great family. All the heroes of our army sprang from the elder branch of that sovereign's family, who never emigrated.
In answer to this, one of them said, 'True nobility, gentlemen, consists in giving proofs of it. The field of honour has witnessed ours; but where are we to look for yours? Your swords have rusted in their scabbards. Our laurels may well excite envy; we have earned them nobly, and we owe them solely to our valour. You have merely inherited a name. This is the distinction between us. Suchet's sound judgment, his governing yet conciliating spirit, his military tact, and his bravery, had procured him astonishing success.
In this letter she enumerated the contents of the portfolio which Louis XVI. When Napoleon read this letter, he said, "Let it be sent to the office of Foreign Affairs; it is an historical document. After showing him over the establishment I conducted him to the park, the most elevated point of which overlooked the plain of St.
We feared that we had been betrayed; for on arriving so precipitately before Paris all our plans were laid, and we did not expect the firm resistance we experienced. I recollect having dwelt on several points which appeared to me to be very important, and which were in their spirit hostile to aristocratic principles.
For example, I informed his Majesty that the daughters of distinguished and wealthy individuals and those of the humble and obscure mingled indiscriminately in the establishment. The most perfect equality is preserved; distinction is awarded only to merit and industry. The pupils are obliged to cut out and make all their own clothes.
They are taught to clean and mend lace; and two at a time, they by turns, three times a week, cook and distribute food to the poor of the village. The young girls who have been brought up at Ecouen, or in my boarding-school at St. Germain, are thoroughly acquainted with everything relating to household business, and they are grateful to me for having made that a part of their education. In my conversations with them I have always taught them that on domestic management depends the preservation or dissipation of their fortunes.
I immediately communicated to them the intelligence, which was joyfully received; but the sweetmeats were looked for in vain. When Alexander set out for England he changed horses at Ecouen, and the post-master said to him: 'Sire, the pupils of Ecouen are still expecting the sweetmeats which your Majesty promised them. The Cossacks had most likely devoured the sweetmeats, and the poor little girls, who had been so highly flattered by the promise, never tasted them.
Denis, on the model of that of Ecouen. Perhaps Madame Campan might have hoped for a title to which her long labours gave her a right; perhaps the superintendence of the two houses would have been but the fair recompense of her services; but her fortunate years had passed her fate was now to depend on the most important events.
Napoleon had accumulated such a mass of power as no one but himself in Europe could overturn. France, content with thirty years of victories, in vain asked for peace and repose. The army which had triumphed in the sands of Egypt, on the summits of the Alps, and in the marshes of Holland, was to perish amidst the snows of Russia. Nations combined against a single man. The territory of France was invaded. The orphans of Ecouen, from the windows of the mansion which served as their asylum, saw in the distant plain the fires of the Russian bivouacs, and once more wept the deaths of their fathers.
Paris capitulated. France hailed the return of the descendants of Henri IV. Denis, told Madame Campan that Napoleon visited it during the Hundred Days, and that the pupils were so delighted to see him that they crowded round him, endeavouring to touch his clothes, and evincing the most extravagant joy. The matron endeavoured to silence them; but Napoleon said, 'Let them alone; let them alone. This may weaken the head, but it strengthens the heart. The hatred of her enemies had revived. The suppression of the school at Ecouen had deprived her of her position; the most absurd calumnies followed her into her retreat; her attachment to the Queen was suspected; she was accused not only of ingratitude but of perfidy.
Slander has little effect on youth, but in the decline of life its darts are envenomed with a mortal poison. The wounds which Madame Campan had received were deep. Her sister, Madame Auguie, had destroyed herself; M. Rousseau, her brother-in-law, had perished, a victim of the reign of terror. In a dreadful accident had deprived her of her niece, Madame de Broc, one of the most amiable and interesting beings that ever adorned the earth.
Madame Campan seemed destined to behold those whom she loved go down to the grave before her. Beyond the walls of the mansion of Ecouen, in the village which surrounds it, Madame Campan had taken a small house where she loved to pass a few hours in solitary retirement. There, at liberty to abandon herself to the memory of the past, the superintendent of the imperial establishment became, once more, for the moment, the first lady of the chamber to Marie Antoinette. To the few friends whom she admitted into this retreat she would show, with emotion, a plain muslin gown which the Queen had worn, and which was made from a part of Tippoo Saib's present.
A cup, out of which Marie Antoinette had drunk; a writing-stand, which she had long used, were, in her eyes, of inestimable value; and she has often been discovered sitting, in tears, before the portrait of her royal mistress. After so many troubles Madame Campan sought a peaceful retreat. Paris had become odious to her. She paid a visit to one of her most beloved pupils, Mademoiselle Crouzet, who had married a physician at Mantes, a man of talent, distinguished for his intelligence, frankness, and cordiality.
Maigne, physician to the infirmaries at Mantes. Madame Campan found in him a friend and comforter, of whose merit and affection she knew the value. A few intimate friends formed a pleasant society, and she enjoyed a little tranquillity after so many disturbances. The revisal of her "Memoirs," the arrangement of the interesting anecdotes of which her "Recollections" were to consist, alone diverted her mind from the one powerful sentiment which attached her to life.
She lived only for her son. Campan deserved the tenderness of, his mother. No sacrifice had been spared for his education.
Change told a real story about how our users defined
After having pursued that course of study which, under the Imperial Government, produced men of such distinguished merit, he was waiting till time and circumstances should afford him an opportunity of devoting his services to his country. Although the state of his health was far from good, it did not threaten any rapid or premature decay; he was, however, after a few days' illness, suddenly taken from his family. Maigne says, "as that which took place when Marechal Ney's lady, her niece, and Madame Pannelier, her sister, came to acquaint her with this misfortune.
All three at once uttered a piercing cry. The two ladies threw themselves on their knees, and kissed her hands, which they bedewed with tears. Before they could speak to her she read in their faces that she no longer possessed a son. At that instant her large eyes, opening wildly, seemed to wander. Her face grew pale, her features changed, her lips lost their colour, she struggled to speak, but uttered only inarticulate sounds, accompanied by piercing cries.
Her gestures were wild, her reason was suspended. Every part of her being was in agony. To this state of anguish and despair no calm succeeded, until her tears began to flow. Friendship and the tenderest cares succeeded for a moment in calming her grief, but not in diminishing its power. A cruel disorder, which required a still more cruel operation, soon manifested itself. The presence of her family, a tour which she made in Switzerland, a residence at Baden, and, above all, the sight, the tender and charming conversation of a person by whom she was affectionately beloved, occasionally diverted her mind, and in a slight degree relieved her suffering.
No unfavourable symptoms appeared; Madame Campan was thought to be restored to her friends; but the disorder was in the blood; it took another course: the chest became affected. Maigne, "I could never look on Madame Campan as living; she herself felt that she belonged no more to this world. I hate all that savours of fanaticism.
The cheerfulness she displayed throughout her malady had nothing affected in it. Her character was naturally powerful and elevated. At the approach of death she evinced the soul of a sage, without abandoning for an instant her feminine character. I was fifteen years of age when I was appointed reader to Mesdames. I will begin by describing the Court at that period. Maria Leczinska was just dead; the death of the Dauphin had preceded hers by three years; the Jesuits were suppressed, and piety was to be found at Court only in the apartments of Mesdames.
The Duc de Choiseuil ruled. As to gaiety, there was none. Versailles was not the place at which to seek for assemblies where French spirit and grace were displayed. The focus of wit and intelligence was Paris. The King thought of nothing but the pleasures of the chase: it might have been imagined that the courtiers indulged themselves in making epigrams by hearing them say seriously, on those days when the King did not hunt, "The King does nothing to-day. On the first day of the year he noted down in his almanac the days of departure for Compiegne, Fontainebleau, Choisy, etc.
The weightiest matters, the most serious events, never deranged this distribution of his time. Since the death of the Marquise de Pompadour, the King had no titled mistress; he contented himself with his seraglio in the Parc-aux-Cerfs. It is well known that the monarch found the separation of Louis de Bourbon from the King of France the most animating feature of his royal existence.
The King delighted to manage the most disgraceful points of his private expenses himself; he one day sold to a head clerk in the War Department a house in which one of his mistresses had lodged; the contract ran in the name of Louis de Bourbon, and the purchaser himself took in a bag the price of the house in gold to the King in his private closet. The investigations of M. The result he arrives at see page of his work is that the house in question No.
Mederic, on the site of the Parc-aux-Cerfs, or breeding-place for deer, of Louis XIII was very small, and could have held only one girl, the woman in charge of her, and a servant. Most of the girls left it only when about to be confined, and it sometimes stood vacant for five or six months. It may have been rented before the date of purchase, and other houses seem sometimes to have been used also; but in any case, it is evident that both the number of girls and the expense incurred have been absurdly exaggerated.
The system flourished under Madame de Pompadour, but ceased as soon as Madame du Barry obtained full power over the King, and the house was then sold to M. He came every morning by a private staircase into the apartment of Madame Adelaide. Louis had, besides, six daughters: Mesdames Sophie and Louise, who are mentioned in this chapter; the Princesses Marie and Felicite, who died young; Madame Henriette died at Versailles in , aged twenty-four; and finally, Madame the Duchess of Parma, who also died at the Court.
Madame Adelaide pulled a bell which apprised Madame Victoire of the King's visit; Madame Victoire, on rising to go to her sister's apartment, rang for Madame Sophie, who in her turn rang for Madame Louise. The apartments of Mesdames were of very large dimensions. Madame Louise occupied the farthest room. This latter lady was deformed and very short; the poor Princess used to run with all her might to join the daily meeting, but, having a number of rooms to cross, she frequently in spite of her haste, had only just time to embrace her father before he set out for the chase.
Every evening, at six, Mesdames interrupted my reading to them to accompany the princes to Louis XV. Mesdames put on an enormous hoop, which set out a petticoat ornamented with gold or embroidery; they fastened a long train round their waists, and concealed the undress of the rest of their clothing by a long cloak of black taffety which enveloped them up to the chin. The chevaliers d'honneur, the ladies in waiting, the pages, the equerries, and the ushers bearing large flambeaux, accompanied them to the King.
In a moment the whole palace, generally so still, was in motion; the King kissed each Princess on the forehead, and the visit was so short that the reading which it interrupted was frequently resumed at the end of a quarter of an hour; Mesdames returned to their apartments, and untied the strings of their petticoats and trains; they resumed their tapestry, and I my book. During the summer season the King sometimes came to the residence of Mesdames before the hour of his 'debotter'. One day he found me alone in Madame Victoire's closet, and asked me where 'Coche'[Piggy] was; I started, and he repeated his question, but without being at all the more understood.
When the King was gone I asked Madame of whom he spoke. She told me that it was herself, and very coolly explained to me, that, being the fattest of his daughters, the King had given her the familiar name of 'Coche'; that he called Madame Adelaide, 'Logue' [Tatters], Madame Sophie, 'Graille'[Mite], and Madame Louise, 'Chiffie'[Rubbish].
The people of the King's household observed that he knew a great number of such words; possibly he had amused himself with picking them out from dictionaries. If this style of speaking betrayed the habits and tastes of the King, his manner savoured nothing of such vulgarity; his walk was easy and noble, he had a dignified carriage of the head, and his aspect, with out being severe, was imposing; he combined great politeness with a truly regal demeanour, and gracefully saluted the humblest woman whom curiosity led into his path.
He was very expert in a number of trifling matters which never occupy attention but when there is a lack of something better to employ it; for instance, he would knock off the top of an egg-shell at a single stroke of his fork; he therefore always ate eggs when he dined in public, and the Parisians who came on Sundays to see the King dine, returned home less struck with his fine figure than with the dexterity with which he broke his eggs. Repartees of Louis XV. This Prince was still beloved; it was wished that a style of life suitable to his age and dignity should at length supersede the errors of the past, and justify the love of his subjects.
It was painful to judge him harshly. If he had established avowed mistresses at Court, the uniform devotion of the Queen was blamed for it. Mesdames were reproached for not seeking to prevent the King's forming an intimacy with some new favourite. Madame Henriette, twin sister of the Duchess of Parma, was much regretted, for she had considerable influence over the King's mind, and it was remarked that if she had lived she would have been assiduous in finding him amusements in the bosom of his family, would have followed him in his short excursions, and would have done the honours of the 'petits soupers' which he was so fond of giving in his private apartments.
Mesdames too much neglected the means of pleasing the wing, but the cause of that was obvious in the little attention he had paid them in their youth. In order to console the people under their sufferings, and to shut their eyes to the real depredations on the treasury, the ministers occasionally pressed the most extravagant measures of reform in the King's household, and even in his personal expenses.
Cardinal Fleury, who in truth had the merit of reestablishing the finances, carried this system of economy so far as to obtain from the King the suppression of the household of the four younger Princesses. They were brought up as mere boarders in a convent eighty leagues distant from the Court. Saint Cyr would have been more suitable for the reception of the King's daughters; but probably the Cardinal shared some of those prejudices which will always attach to even the most useful institutions, and which, since the death of Louis XIV. Madame Louise often assured me that at twelve years of age she was not mistress of the whole alphabet, and never learnt to read fluently until after her return to Versailles.
Madame Victoire attributed certain paroxysms of terror, which she was never able to conquer, to the violent alarms she experienced at the Abbey of Fontevrault, whenever she was sent, by way of penance, to pray alone in the vault where the sisters were interred. A gardener belonging to the abbey died raving mad. His habitation, without the walls, was near a chapel of the abbey, where Mesdames were taken to repeat the prayers for those in the agonies of death.
Their prayers were more than once interrupted by the shrieks of the dying man. When Mesdames, still very young, returned to Court, they enjoyed the friendship of Monseigneur the Dauphin, and profited by his advice. They devoted themselves ardently to study, and gave up almost the whole of their time to it; they enabled themselves to write French correctly, and acquired a good knowledge of history. Italian, English, the higher branches of mathematics, turning and dialing, filled up in succession their leisure moments.
Madame Adelaide, in particular, had a most insatiable desire to learn; she was taught to play upon all instruments, from the horn will it be believed! Madame Adelaide was graced for a short time with a charming figure; but never did beauty so quickly vanish. Madame Victoire was handsome and very graceful; her address, mien, and smile were in perfect accordance with the goodness of her heart.
Madame Sophie was remarkably ugly; never did I behold a person with so unprepossessing an appearance; she walked with the greatest rapidity; and, in order to recognise the people who placed themselves along her path without looking at them, she acquired the habit of leering on one side, like a hare.
This Princess was so exceedingly diffident that a person might be with her daily for years together without hearing her utter a single word. It was asserted, however, that she displayed talent, and even amiability, in the society of some favourite ladies. She taught herself a great deal, but she studied alone; the presence of a reader would have disconcerted her very much. There were, however, occasions on which the Princess, generally so intractable, became all at once affable and condescending, and manifested the most communicative good-nature; this would happen during a storm; so great was her alarm on such an occasion that she then approached the most humble, and would ask them a thousand obliging questions; a flash of lightning made her squeeze their hands; a peal of thunder would drive her to embrace them, but with the return of the calm, the Princess resumed her stiffness, her reserve, and her repellent air, and passed all by without taking the slightest notice of any one, until a fresh storm restored to her at once her dread and her affability.
In their august mother, Maria Leczinska, they possessed the noblest example of every pious and social virtue; that Princess, by her eminent qualities and her modest dignity, veiled the failings of the King, and while she lived she preserved in the Court of Louis XV. The Princesses, her daughters, were worthy of her; and if a few degraded beings did aim the shafts of calumny at them, these shafts dropped harmless, warded off by the elevation of their sentiments and the purity of their conduct. If Mesdames had not tasked themselves with numerous occupations, they would have been much to be pitied.
They loved walking, but could enjoy nothing beyond the public gardens of Versailles; they would have cultivated flowers, but could have no others than those in their windows. The Princess spent almost all her evenings with that lady, and ended by fancying herself domiciled with her. Madame de Narbonne had, in a similar way, taken pains to make her intimate acquaintance pleasant to Madame Adelaide. Madame Louise had for many years lived in great seclusion; I read to her five hours a day.
My voice frequently betrayed the exhaustion of my lungs; the Princess would then prepare sugared water for me, place it by me, and apologise for making me read so long, on the score of having prescribed a course of reading for herself. One evening, while I was reading, she was informed that M. Bertin, 'ministre des parties casuelles', desired to speak with her; she went out abruptly, returned, resumed her silks and embroidery, and made me resume my book; when I retired she commanded me to be in her closet the next morning at eleven o'clock.
When I got there the Princess was gone out; I learnt that she had gone at seven in the morning to the Convent of the Carmelites of St. Denis, where she was desirous of taking the veil. I went to Madame Victoire; there I heard that the King alone had been acquainted with Madame Louise's project; that he had kept it faithfully secret, and that, having long previously opposed her wish, he had only on the preceding evening sent her his consent; that she had gone alone into the convent, where she was expected; and that a few minutes afterwards she had made her appearance at the grating, to show to the Princesse de Guistel, who had accompanied her to the convent gate, and to her equerry, the King's order to leave her in the monastery.
Upon receiving the intelligence of her sister's departure, Madame Adelaide gave way to violent paroxysms of rage, and reproached the King bitterly for the secret, which he had thought it his duty to preserve. Madame Victoire missed the society of her favourite sister, but she shed tears in silence only. The first time I saw this excellent Princess after Madame Louise's departure, I threw myself at her feet, kissed her hand, and asked her, with all the confidence of youth, whether she would quit us as Madame Louise had done.
She raised me, embraced me; and said, pointing to the lounge upon which she was extended, "Make yourself easy, my dear; I shall never have Louise's courage. I love the conveniences of life too well; this lounge is my destruction. Denis to see my late mistress; she deigned to receive me with her face uncovered, in her private parlour; she told me she had just left the wash-house, and that it was her turn that day to attend to the linen.
Denis had been brought to her while I was reading; she prided herself, and with reason, upon having returned to her closet without the slightest mark of agitation, though she said she felt so keenly that she could scarcely regain her chair. She added that moralists were right when they said that happiness does not dwell in palaces; that she had proved it; and that, if I desired to be happy, she advised me to come and enjoy a retreat in which the liveliest imagination might find full exercise in the contemplation of a better world.
I had no palace, no earthly grandeur to sacrifice to God; nothing but the bosom of a united family; and it is precisely there that the moralists whom she cited have placed true happiness. I replied that, in private life, the absence of a beloved and cherished daughter would be too cruelly felt by her family. The Princess said no more on the subject. The seclusion of Madame Louise was attributed to various motives; some were unkind enough to suppose it to have been occasioned by her mortification at being, in point of rank, the last of the Princesses.
I think I penetrated the true cause. Her aspirations were lofty; she loved everything sublime; often while I was reading she would interrupt me to exclaim, "That is beautiful! She achieved it! I saw Madame Louise two or three times more at the grating. I was informed of her death by Louis XVI. I have this moment received intelligence of it.
Her piety and resignation were admirable, and yet the delirium of my good aunt recalled to her recollection that she was a princess, for her last words were, 'To paradise, haste, haste, full speed. She received incessant visits from bishops, archbishops, and ambitious priests of every rank; she prevailed on the King, her father, to grant many ecclesiastical preferments, and probably looked forward to playing an important part when the King, weary of his licentious course of life, should begin to think of religion.
This, perhaps, might have been the case had not a sudden and unexpected death put an end to his career. The project of Madame Louise fell to the ground in consequence of this event. She remained in her convent, whence she continued to solicit favours, as I knew from the complaints of the Queen, who often said to me, "Here is another letter from my Aunt Louise. She is certainly the most intriguing little Carmelite in the kingdom. Without quitting Versailles, without sacrificing her easy chair, she fulfilled the duties of religion with punctuality, gave to the poor all she possessed, and strictly observed Lent and the fasts.
The table of Mesdames acquired a reputation for dishes of abstinence, spread abroad by the assiduous parasites at that of their maitre d'hotel. Madame Victoire was not indifferent to good living, but she had the most religious scruples respecting dishes of which it was allowable to partake at penitential times. I saw her one day exceedingly tormented by her doubts about a water-fowl, which was often served up to her during Lent.
The question to be determined was, whether it was 'maigre' or 'gras'. She consulted a bishop, who happened to be of the party: the prelate immediately assumed the grave attitude of a judge who is about to pronounce sentence. He answered the Princess that, in a similar case of doubt, it had been resolved that after dressing the bird it should be pricked over a very cold silver dish; if the gravy of the animal congealed within a quarter of an hour, the creature was to be accounted flesh; but if the gravy remained in an oily state, it might be eaten without scruple.
Madame Victoire immediately made the experiment: the gravy did not congeal; and this was a source of great joy to the Princess, who was very partial to that sort of game. The abstinence which so much occupied the attention of Madame Victoire was so disagreeable to her, that she listened with impatience for the midnight hour of Holy Saturday; and then she was immediately supplied with a good dish of fowl and rice, and sundry other succulent viands.
She confessed with such amiable candour her taste for good cheer and the comforts of life, that it would have been necessary to be as severe in principle as insensible to the excellent qualities of the Princess, to consider it a crime in her. Madame Adelaide had more mind than Madame Victoire; but she was altogether deficient in that kindness which alone creates affection for the great, abrupt manners, a harsh voice, and a short way of speaking, rendering her more than imposing. She carried the idea of the prerogative of rank to a high pitch. One of her chaplains was unlucky enough to say 'Dominus vobiscum' with rather too easy an air; the Princess rated him soundly for it after mass, and told him to remember that he was not a bishop, and not again to think of officiating in the style of a prelate.
Mesdames lived quite separate from the King. Since the death of Madame de Pompadour he had lived alone. The enemies of the Duc de Choiseul did not know in what department, nor through what channel, they could prepare and bring about the downfall of the man who stood in their way. The King was connected only with women of so low a class that they could not be made use of for any delicate intrigue; moreover, the Parc-aux-Cerfs was a seraglio, the beauties of which were often replaced; it was desirable to give the King a mistress who could form a circle, and in whose drawing-room the long-standing attachment of the King for the Duc de Choiseul might be overcome.
It is true that Madame du Barry was selected from a class sufficiently low. Her origin, her education, her habits, and everything about her bore a character of vulgarity and shamelessness; but by marrying her to a man whose pedigree dated from , it was thought scandal would be avoided. The conqueror of Mahon conducted this coarse intrigue.
The Marechal de Brissac was one of the latter. He was bantered on the strictness of his principles of honour and honesty; it was thought strange that he should be offended by being thought, like so many others, exposed to hymeneal disgrace. Neither the wit, the talents, the graces of the Marquise de Pompadour, her beauty, nor even her love for the King, would have had any further influence over that worn-out being.
He wanted a Roxalana of familiar gaiety, without any respect for the dignity of the sovereign. Madame du Barry one day so far forgot propriety as to desire to be present at a Council of State. The King was weak enough to consent to it. There she remained ridiculously perched upon the arm of his chair, playing all sorts of childish monkey tricks, calculated to please an old sultan. Another time she snatched a packet of sealed letters from the King's hand. Among them she had observed one from Comte de Broglie. Likenesses of deceased persons taken. Cameras, Chemicals, and Stock for sale.
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The art taught on the most reasonable erms, and by the most approved method. Nov 2-tfso J. Stormy and cloudy weather no detriment to taking line pictures. Children of all ages taken—correct likenesses of deceased persona taken at the shortest notice. Ml Chandeliers'altered to burn coal gas.
Also, Bran Castings and Finishing. Bystriot attention to neatness, cheapness and desateh, I hope to merit a share of publio patronage. ALE and Porter Depot, no. Keeps constantly on hud a fresh supply of Ale and Porter, steamboats and Hotels furnished on reasonable terms. Office No. Wholesale dotting Warehouse, No. We promise to Ehow them the largest assortment in the city, and will sell at L J 'vr.
Terms liberal. Nov 2-lyaO - Clothing!! Purchasers are respectfully invited to call and examine my stock before making their selections. I have some styles that cannot be equalled in any house West of the Mountains, and I am determined to pell cheaper than the cheapest. Recollect the place—No. ISO Stain st.
Respectfully inform their friends and he public generally, that they are in receipt of a well-selected stock of cloths, cassimeres, vestings, Ac. Iheir well-known capabilities as'mechanics, they consider a gufl cient guaranty that their work shall not be surpusited by any other establishment in this or any other dciiy; and they arc confident their price cannot fail to suit those who may extend to them their patronage.
JOHS S. He is ready at all times, on the shortest notice, to make estimates on steamboat painting, and give satisfaction to all those who may favor him with a cull. Particular attention paid to estimating tor Jobbers and Builders. He pledges himself to work at cheap rates, and on mostlaccommodating terms, and give full and entire satisfaction to all parties entrusting work to ins care.
Mixed paints, in small and large quantities, always on hand for sale. Also, glass, putty, white lead, oil, turpentine, varnish, and every variety of paints and brushes; to suit customers. J cl- y BEAR! JinkLift Pumps, No. Anti-lTeezing Lift Pumps, No. Pumps for deep wells waranted. Pumps of nil description made to order. Lightning Conductors put up on a now and improved plan. Those wishing conductors erected would do well to oxamine this liod before purchasing elsewhere. Book-Bidding in all its various and improved orma. Music, Magazines,Newspapers of every description bound and re bound with neatness and despatch.
Nov 2 tfol J. Also,constantly on hand for sale hydraulic cement, piaster paris, white lime and sand in barrels, marble dust, fire brick, Ac. Repairing done at the shortest notice. All work in my line of business done in tho bost maimer.
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Charles Streets, or No. Hull 's Copper and Tin shop, St. Coffin Manufacturer and Funeral Undertaker. Ilia Collins and Cases aro made of the choicest materials. He also informs the community that he has anew mode of making Coffins and Cases waterproof,. This pitch is a great improvement to health where there is a corpse lying. He hasuriadc arrangements with several of the best Livery Stjihles, to furnish him with the best hearses and fine carriages, with careful drivers.
Rooms No. The proprietor will attend to having the corpse of gentlemen laid out. Also, a lady to attend to tho female department. He has all kinds of coffins on hand, and will make any thing extra that may he required. Plain, or covered with cloth, eassimere or velvet, for gentlemen and ladies,- also, covered with white velvet or satin for children or young ladies; and handsomely trimmed with silver plates, screws and tacks. Shrouds and Robes, of fine white flannel, white thibet, Swiss, jaconet and fine muslin; white silk gloves; white hose, silk and cotton; hat crape, and everything necessary for funerals.
Please take notice, that lie has coffins made expressly for Tombs, -with glass doors, so that the corpse eon he seen without opening the coffin and causing any offensive srnbll, ns is the case in tho ordinary common coffin. Remember the number—ll 4 Olive street, between 4th and oth. I would respectfully inform the citizens of St. Louis, and the public generally, that I have opened one of the most splendid Hat and Cap Establishments in the Western country, where I contemplate keeping a large and genera!
Also, a large assortment of all kinds of Straw Goods, such as Panama Leghorn and Straw Hats, of the latest spring and summer styles. Canes, Ac..
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Part am a and Leghorn Hats bleached and pressed. Also, Silk. Give us a cal!. Exchange Buildings, nearly opposite tho Monroe House. Country merchants would find it greatly to their interest to call before purchasing, Retail cheap for Cash. A LL kinds of blank books, madoof the best paper, il ruled to any pattern, and sowed in the new improved patent mode.
Libraries, Periodicals, Music, Ac. Louis, M. L, No. Carpets, oil el-dlis, hearthrugs, India matt luff, house and steamboat furnishing goods, table covers, jdair r ds, and a general assortment of linen goods, silk damask, d-. Between Washington Av. Carriages stored, or sold on commission, upon the most reasonable terms. Repairing done at the shortest notice, febl-lyol ,.
Louis Chair Manufactory, Ao.
Louis Manufactory. Back Shop on he corner of Seventh and Wash streets. THEY' take pleasure in announcing to the public that they have just completed the most elegant nnd tasteful hath House in the city, and in ttie rear of their fashionable Hair Dressing and Shaving Saloon, they have Bath Rooms, supplied with tabs.
The cisterns hold '12, gallons of water, a quantity sufficient to bathe men without replenishing. Those rooms-are all new, sumptuouslv. Add ress R. Round the head, in the-manner of a fillet, leaving the ear loose, dotted 1 to I. From the forehead, over to the poll, as deep. From ear to car, across the forehead, closo down to the point, level with the whisker, marked 3 to 8. From the front, as far forward as required, o the hair bhiml dotted i to 1.
From one side to the other, across the forehead, as far as bald, marked 2. Across the crown, or rise of the head, marked 3. To tlic Ladies. It is universally acknowledged by ovcry one of tasto, that however beautiful a woman may be, if her hair is deficient, either in quantity, quality, or color, one of her greatest charms'is wanting. Owen, andchosing. The partings are so admirably contrived, that die nearest inspection is confounded; the transparency of the web admitting the skin of the head to be seen through.
They may be described as being ns light as a feather. Address, R. Depot No. Manufactured between Locust, ami Olive. THE undersigned, in offering' the above article to citizens of the Mississippi Valley, will briefly state. We will keep a constant snpply ou hand at our depot, No. Citizens and strangers are respectfully solicited to extend to this branch of home Manufactures their generous support.. Louis and surrounding country—whioh will be sold at ns low prices as they enn be bought for at any other house. Our selections are complete and well assorted, and we feel that an examination will be a sufficient recommendation, and solicit a call.
Ofiffie, 49 Chesnut, between Second and Third streets. Nov2-ly C. De Montreville, Dentist, No. Steamboats and hotels, furnished in the best manner, and cheap for CASH. Families supplied cheaper than any other house in St. We wiii he receiN! Rugs of various qualities, plain and checked matting, door matts, Ac. Imitators of wood and marble. JOHN F. Cliarles st. This declaration is made by a large number of the most respectable gentlemen after giving them a fair trial. No lengthened discription is required.
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Its construction will lie apparent to all. Its durability is self-evident. The additional cost of these saddles is only a trifle over lie common saddle. All orders will be thankfully eceived and promptly attended to at No. Rooms, Fourth street, corner of Olive, St. AMONG his specimens may bo seen likenesses of distinguished statesmen, eminent divines, prominent citizens, Indian chiefs, and notorious robbers and murderers: also,beautiful landscapes, perfect clouds, and a boiiafide streatl of lightning, taken on the night jf Juno 18th, ISI7.
Every description of Daguerreotype work done it tins establishment tin short notice, and in the best, possible manner. All whom interest or curiosity ipay prompt, arc 1 respectfully invited to call and examine his work, whick will speak for itself, janll-. Always on hand, and prompt attention given at all hours. Laying out and dressing the dead, attended to personally, or by a Lady, on application at the office. Also anew and elegant Hearse, the only one with white plumes and trimmings in the city with good carriages and careful drivers. Layingtmt and dressing the dead, attend to personally by application at the office.
Also, anew and elegant Hearse, good carriages, and careful drivers. AT this establishment needle-work, plain and fancy, is taken in, and all orders punctually attended to. A general assortment of Catholic Bonks, among which are prayer-books, very appropriate for presents.
Orders from the country promptly and carefully attended to. A neat variety of Stationery, for snle cheap. Paper hanging done at short notice to order. Whitening, Wall-Coloring, Graining and Marbling. HAVING opened the above stand, we are prepared to receive orders or any amount of Whitening, "Wall-Color-ing, or Graining and Marbling, We profess to be workmen of the first order, and can give abundant evidence of our abilities, having been employed lor years past upon the best work in the city.
Store and Warehouse boarded ceilings, we can whiten superior to painting, and warrant as durable, and at small cost. We are determined not to be ; excelled in quality of workmanship, prompt execution, or rate of charges. GO Kit. WELLS takes pleasure in announcing to the public that ho is just completing the most elegant and tasteful Bath House in tho city, just in the rear of his fashionable Hair Dressing and Shaving Saloon.
When ho will have twelve Bath Booms—one half supplied with marble tubs. Ilia cisterns hold 12, gallons of water, a quantity sufficient to bathe men without replomishing. This will ensure constant clean water to the bathers. His rooms are all new, sumptuously furnished, well lighted with gas, so that baths of every temperature, and in every mode, may bo had at all hours, day and night. Preston G. Wells has just supplied his Hair dressing and ,Shaving Saloon with tho most beautiful marble wash stand in the West, furnishing both hot and cqld water to each basin. He flatters himself that tho generous patronage of the public has designated his Saloon as tho most tasteful and fashionable in the city.
Tho attachment of his elegant bathing rooms renders his establishment complete, and he invites a oontinnarico of patronage. Every variety of Mattresses,Rods and Bedding,constantly on hnnd. AH goods warranted of superior quality and workmanship, and at lowest rates. For Christmas. The highest throw will be entitled to the firflt prize; the highest aftor the first to the second prize, and tho lowest throw to the third prize.
To see the paintings calbat N. Boot and Shoe factory, No. Nov 2 H5O Keane and Peters. He Guarantees good fits, and can sell as low as any one in the city, work of the same quality to all that pay cash, and there will be a liberal discount allowed, and has at all times materials and findings appertaining to his which he will sell as low as they can be found in this city. Robt Cook. Louis, novfi—l so.
Franklin Av. Louie, oct4-Iy. French Gold Embossed and Landscape Patterns,, with suitable borders in great variety. Also, Chimney Screens, Window Shades, Tester pieces, and every article in the trade, at lower prices than usually offered in this city. Merchants, dealers and the trade, wdl find great advantage in purchasing at this establishment. John Hager. William Hager. North-west comer of Sixth and Chesnutsts. Louis done at the shortest notice. J nov —lyoO. Louis Mo. Always on hand, printing, writing and wrapping paper, Ac. INSURES property of all descriptions against loss or damage by lire also, against the perils of the sea or inland navigation.
Isaac C. Copelen, Richard Conkling, Samuel Taft, William Wood. Reeder, Henry Kessler, George W. Town ley. James B.
Having been appointed agontof thealxrvc Company, I am prepared to effect Insurance on as favorable terms as any other substantial Company in this city. Office, Main st. Fitz Gibbon. Washington Steam Sash Factory. Also, Boor and Window Frames, on moderate terms. Slitting and Planing done here. Washington Avenue, between Fifth and Sixth streets.