Chapter XXXIX icon

Chapter XXXIX

НазваниеChapter XXXIX
Дата конвертации10.08.2012
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Precedence at the Communion Table.--The King Offended with Madame de

Torcy.--The King's Religion.--Atheists and Jansenists.--Project against

Scotland.--Preparations.--Failure.--The Chevalier de St. George.--His

Return to Court.


Death and Character of Brissac.--Brissac and the Court Ladies.--The

Duchesse de Bourgogne.--Scene at the Carp Basin.--King's Selfishness.--

The King Cuts Samuel Bernard's Purse.--A Vain Capitalist.--Story of Leon

and Florence the Actress.--His Loves with Mademoiselle de Roquelaure.--

Run--away Marriage.--Anger of Madame de Roquelaure.--A Furious Mother.--

Opinions of the Court.--A Mistake.--Interference of the King.--

Fate of the Couple .


The Duc d'Orleans in Spain.--Offends Madame des Ursins and Madame de

Maintenon.--Laziness of M. de Vendome in Flanders.--Battle of Oudenarde.

--Defeat and Disasters.--Difference of M. de Vendome and the Duc de



Conflicting Reports.--Attacks on the Duc de Bourgogne.--The Duchesse de

Bourgogne Acts against Vendome.--Weakness of the Duke.--Cunning of

Vendome.--The Siege of Lille.--Anxiety for a Battle.--Its Delay.--Conduct

of the King and Monseigneur.--A Picture of Royal Family Feeling.--Conduct

of the Marechal de Boufflers.


Equivocal Position of the Duc de Bourgogne.--His Weak Conduct.--

Concealment of a Battle from the King.--Return of the Duc de Bourgogne to

Court.--Incidents of His Reception.--Monseigneur.--Reception of the Duc

de Berry.--Behaviour of the Duc de Bourgogne.--Anecdotes of Gamaches.--

Return of Vendome to Court.--His Star Begins to Wane.--Contrast of

Boufflers and Vendome.--Chamillart's Project for Retaking Lille.--How It

Was Defeated by Madame de Maintenon.


Tremendous Cold in France.--Winters of 1708-1709--Financiers and the

Famine.--Interference of the Parliaments of Paris and Dijon.--Dreadful

Oppression.--Misery of the People.--New Taxes.--Forced Labour.--General

Ruin.--Increased Misfortunes.--Threatened Regicide.--Procession of Saint

Genevieve.--Offerings of Plate to the King.--Discontent of the People.--

A Bread Riot, How Appeased.


M. de Vendome out of Favour.--Death and Character of the Prince de

Conti.--Fall of Vendome.--Pursegur's Interview with the King.--Madame de

Bourgogne against Vendome.--Her Decided Conduct.--Vendome Excluded from

Marly.--He Clings to Meudon.--From Which He is also Expelled.--His Final

Disgrace and Abandonment.--Triumph of Madame de Maintenon.


Death of Pere La Chaise.--His Infirmities in Old Age.--Partiality of the

King.--Character of Pere La Chaise.--The Jesuits.--Choice of a New

Confessor.--Fagon's Opinion.--Destruction of Port Royal.--Jansenists and

Molinists.--Pascal.--Violent Oppression of the Inhabitants of Port Royal.


I went this summer to Forges, to try, by means of the waters there, to

get rid of a tertian fever that quinquina only suspended. While there I

heard of a new enterprise on the part of the Princes of the blood, who,

in the discredit in which the King held them, profited without measure by

his desire for the grandeur of the illegitimate children, to acquire new

advantages which were suffered because the others shared them. This was

the case in question.

After the elevation of the mass--at the King's communion--a folding-chair

was pushed to the foot of the altar, was covered with a piece of stuff,

and then with a large cloth, which hung down before and behind. At the

Pater the chaplain rose and whispered in the King's ear the names of all

the Dukes who were in the chapel. The King named two, always the oldest,

to each of whom the chaplain advanced and made a reverence. During the

communion of the priest the King rose, and went and knelt down on the

bare floor behind this folding seat, and took hold of the cloth; at the

same time the two Dukes, the elder on the right, the other on the left,

each took hold of a corner of the cloth; the two chaplains took hold of

the other two corners of the same cloth, on the side of the altar, all

four kneeling, and the captain of the guards also kneeling and behind the

King. The communion received and the oblation taken some moments

afterwards, the King remained a little while in the same place, then

returned to his own, followed by the two Dukes and the captain of the

guards, who took theirs. If a son of France happened to be there alone,

he alone held the right corner of the cloth, and nobody the other; and

when M. le Duc d'Orleans was there, and no son of France was present, M.

le Duc d'Orleans held the cloth in like manner. If a Prince of the blood

were alone present, however, he held the cloth, but a Duke was called

forward to assist him. He was not privileged to act without the Duke.

The Princes of the blood wanted to change this; they were envious of the

distinction accorded to M. d'Orleans, and wished to put themselves on the

same footing. Accordingly, at the Assumption of this year, they managed

so well that M. le Duc served alone at the altar at the King's communion,

no Duke being called upon to come and join him. The surprise at this was

very great. The Duc de la Force and the Marechal de Boufflers, who ought

to have served, were both present. I wrote to this last to say that such

a thing had never happened before, and that it was contrary to all

precedent. I wrote, too, to M. d'Orleans, who was then in Spain,

informing him of the circumstance. When he returned he complained to the

King. But the King merely said that the Dukes ought to have presented

themselves and taken hold of the cloth. But how could they have done so,

without being requested, as was customary, to come forward? What would

the king have thought of them if they had? To conclude, nothing could be

made of the matter, and it remained thus. Never then, since that time,

did I go to the communions of the King.

An incident occurred at Marly about the same time, which made much stir.

The ladies who were invited to Marly had the privilege of dining with the

King. Tables were placed for them, and they took up positions according

to their rank. The non-titled ladies had also their special place. It

so happened one day; that Madame de Torcy (an untitled lady) placed

herself above the Duchesse de Duras, who arrived at table a moment after

her. Madame de Torcy offered to give up her place, but it was a little

late, and the offer passed away in compliments. The King entered, and

put himself at table. As soon as he sat down, he saw the place Madame de

Torcy had taken, and fixed such a serious and surprised look upon her,

that she again offered to give up her place to the Duchesse de Duras; but

the offer was again declined. All through the dinner the King scarcely

ever took his eyes off Madame de Torcy, said hardly a word, and bore a

look of anger that rendered everybody very attentive, and even troubled

the Duchesse de Duras.

Upon rising from the table, the King passed, according to custom, into

the apartments of Madame de Maintenon, followed by the Princesses of the

blood, who grouped themselves around him upon stools; the others who

entered, kept at a distance. Almost before he had seated himself in his

chair, he said to Madame de Maintenon, that he had just been witness of

an act of "incredible insolence" (that was the term he used) which had

thrown him into such a rage that he had been unable to eat: that such an

enterprise would have been insupportable in a woman of the highest

quality; but coming, as it did, from a mere bourgeoise, it had so

affected him, that ten times he had been upon the point of making her

leave the table, and that he was only restrained by consideration for her

husband. After this outbreak he made a long discourse upon the genealogy

of Madame de Torcy's family, and other matters; and then, to the

astonishment of all present, grew as angry as ever against Madame de

Torcy. He went off then into a discourse upon the dignity of the Dukes,

and in conclusion, he charged the Princesses to tell Madame de Torcy to

what extent he had found her conduct impertinent. The Princesses looked

at each other, and not one seemed to like this commission; whereupon the

King, growing more angry, said; that it must be undertaken however, and

left the robes; The news of what had taken place, and of the King's

choler, soon spread all over the Court. It was believed, however, that

all was over, and that no more would be heard of the matter. Yet the

very same evening the King broke out again with even more bitterness than

before. On the morrow, too, surprise was great indeed, when it was found

that the King, immediately after dinner, could talk of nothing but this

subject, and that, too, without any softening of tone. At last he was

assured that Madame de Torcy had been spoken to, and this appeased him a

little. Torcy was obliged to write him a letter, apologising for the

fault of Madame de Torcy; and the King at this grew content. It may be

imagined what a sensation this adventure produced all through the Court.

While upon the subject of the King, let me relate an anecdote of him,

which should have found a place ere this. When M. d'Orleans was about to

start for Spain, he named the officers who were to be of his suite.

Amongst others was Fontpertius. At that name the King put on a serious


"What! my nephew," he said. "Fontpertius! the son of a Jansenist--of

that silly woman who ran everywhere after M. Arnould! I do not wish that

man to go with you."

"By my faith, Sire," replied the Duc d'Orleans, "I know not what the

mother has done; but as for the son, he is far enough from being a

Jansenist, I'll answer for it; for he does not believe in God."

"Is it possible, my nephew?" said the King, softening.

"Nothing more certain, Sire, I assure you."

"Well, since it is so," said the King, "there is no harm: you can take

him with you."

This scene--for it can be called by no other name--took place in the

morning. After dinner M. d'Orleans repeated it to me, bursting with

laughter, word for word, just as I have written it. When we had both

well laughed at this, we admired the profound instruction of a discreet

and religious King, who considered it better not to believe in God than

to be a Jansenist, and who thought there was less danger to his nephew

from the impiety of an unbeliever than from the doctrines of a sectarian.

M. d'Orleans could not contain himself while he told the story, and never

spoke of it without laughing until the tears came into his eyes. It ran

all through the Court and all over the town, and the marvellous thing

was, that the King was not angry at this. It was a testimony of his

attachment to the good doctrine which withdrew him further and further

from Jansenism. The majority of people laughed with all their heart.

Others, more wise, felt rather disposed to weep than to laugh, in

considering to what excess of blindness the King had reached.

For a long time a most important project had knocked at every door,

without being able to obtain a hearing anywhere. The project was this:--

Hough, an English gentleman full of talent and knowledge, and who, above

all, knew profoundly the laws of his country, had filled various posts in

England. As first a minister by profession, and furious against King

James; afterwards a Catholic and King James's spy, he had been delivered

up to King William, who pardoned him. He profited by this only to

continue his services to James. He was taken several times, and always

escaped from the Tower of London and other prisons. Being no longer able

to dwell in England he came to France, where he occupied himself always

with the same line of business, and was paid for that by the King (Louis

XIV.) and by King James, the latter of whom he unceasingly sought to re-

establish. The union of Scotland with England appeared to him a

favourable conjuncture, by the despair of that ancient kingdom at seeing

itself reduced into a province under the yoke of the English. The

Jacobite party remained there; the vexation caused by this forced union

had increased it, by the desire felt to break that union with the aid of

a King that they would have reestablished. Hough, who was aware of the

fermentation going on, made several secret journeys to Scotland, and

planned an invasion of that country; but, as I have said, for a long time

could get no one to listen to him.

The King, indeed, was so tired of such enterprises, that nobody dared to

speak to him upon this. All drew back. No one liked to bell the cat.

At last, however, Madame de Maintenon being gained over, the King was

induced to listen to the project. As soon as his consent was gained to

it, another scheme was added to the first. This was to profit by the

disorder in which the Spanish Low Countries were thrown, and to make them

revolt against the Imperialists at the very moment when the affair of

Scotland would bewilder the allies, and deprive them of all support from

England. Bergheyck, a man well acquainted with the state of those

countries, was consulted, and thought the scheme good. He and the Duc de

Vendome conferred upon it in presence of the King.

After talking over various matters, the discussion fell, upon the Meuse,

and its position with reference to Maastricht. Vendome held that the

Meuse flowed in a certain direction. Bergheyck opposed him. Vendome,

indignant that a civilian should dare to dispute military movements with

him, grew warm. The other remained respectful and cool, but firm.

Vendome laughed at Bergheyck, as at an ignorant fellow who did not know

the position of places. Bergheyck maintained his point. Vendome grew

more and more hot. If he was right, what he proposed was easy enough; if

wrong, it was impossible. It was in vain that Vendome pretended to treat

with disdain his opponent; Bergheyck was not to be put down, and the

King, tired out at last with a discussion upon a simple question of fact,

examined the maps. He found at once that Bergheyck was right. Any other

than the King would have felt by this what manner of man was this general

of his taste, of his heart, and of his confidence; any other than Vendome

would have been confounded; but it was Bergheyck in reality who was so,

to see the army in such hands and the blindness of the King for him! He

was immediately sent into Flanders to work up a revolt, and he did it so

well, that success seemed certain, dependent, of course, upon success in


The preparations for the invasion of that country were at once commenced.

Thirty vessels were armed at Dunkerque and in the neighbouring ports.

The Chevalier de Forbin was chosen to command the squadron. Four

thousand men were brought from Flanders to Dunkerque; and it was given

out that this movement was a mere change of garrison. The secret of the

expedition was well kept; but the misfortune was that things were done

too slowly. The fleet, which depended upon Pontchartrain, was not ready

in time, and that which depended upon Chamillart, was still more

behindhand. The two ministers threw the fault upon each other; but the

truth is, both were to blame. Pontchartrain was more than accused of

delaying matters from unwillingness; the other from powerlessness.

Great care was taken that no movement should be seen at Saint Germain.

The affair, however, began in time to get noised abroad. A prodigious

quantity of arms and clothing for the Scotch had been embarked; the

movements by sea and land became only too visible upon the coast. At

last, on Wednesday, the 6th of March, the King of England set out from

Saint Germain. He was attended by the Duke of Perth, who had been his

sub-preceptor; by the two Hamiltons, by Middleton, and a very few others.

But his departure had been postponed too long. At the moment when all

were ready to start, people learned with surprise that the English fleet

had appeared in sight, and was blockading Dunkerque. Our troops, who

were already on board ship, were at once landed. The King of England

cried out so loudly against this, and proposed so eagerly that an attempt

should be made to pass the enemy at all risks, that a fleet was sent out

to reconnoitre the enemy, and the troops were re-embarked. But then a

fresh mischance happened. The Princess of England had had the measles,

and was barely growing convalescent at the time of the departure of the

King, her brother. She had been prevented from seeing him, lest he

should be attacked by the same complaint. In spite of this precaution,

however, it declared itself upon him at Dunkerque, just as the troops

were re-embarked. He was in despair, and wished to be wrapped up in

blankets and carried on board. The doctors said that it would kill him;

and he was obliged to remain. The worst of it was, that two of five

Scotch deputies who had been hidden at Montrouge near Paris, had been

sent into Scotland a fortnight before, to announce the immediate arrival

of the King with arms and troops. The movement which it was felt this

announcement would create, increased the impatience for departure. At

last, on Saturday, the 19th of March, the King of England, half cured and

very weak, determined to embark in spite of his physicians, and did so.

The enemy's vessels hats retired; so, at six o'clock in the morning, our

ships set sail with a good breeze, and in the midst of a mist, which hid

them from view in about an hour.

Forty-eight hours after the departure of our squadron, twenty-seven

English ships of war appeared before Dunkerque. But our fleet was away.

The very first night it experienced a furious tempest. The ship in which

was the King of England took shelter afterwards behind the works of

Ostend. During the storm, another ship was separated from the squadron,

and was obliged to take refuge on the coast of Picardy. This vessel, a

frigate, was commanded by Rambure, a lieutenant. As, soon as he was able

he sailed after the squadron that he believed already in Scotland. He

directed his course towards Edinburgh, and found no vessel during all the

voyage. As he approached the mouth of the river, he saw around him a

number of barques and small vessels that he could not avoid, and that he

determined in consequence to approach with as good a grace as possible.

The masters of these ships' told him that the King was expected with

impatience, but that they had no news of him, that they had come out to

meet him, and that they would send pilots to Rambure, to conduct him up

the river to Edinburgh, where all was hope and joy. Rambure, equally

surprised that the squadron which bore the King of England had not

appeared, and by the publicity of his forthcoming arrival, went up

towards Edinburgh more and more surrounded by barques, which addressed to

him the same language. A gentleman of the country passed from one of

these barques upon the frigate. He told Rambure that the principal

noblemen of Scotland had resolved to act together, that these noblemen

could count upon more than twenty thousand men ready to take up arms, and
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Chapter XXXIX iconДокументы
1. /Ivrel/Core Rules/Addendums/Monster Addendum 1 [Draconians].doc
2. /Ivrel/Core...

Chapter XXXIX iconДокументы
1. /kachesov1/_contents.doc
2. /kachesov1/_preface.doc
Chapter XXXIX iconChapter IV the article

Chapter XXXIX iconContents. Chapter I

Chapter XXXIX iconChapter 5 "Who are these aliens?"

Chapter XXXIX iconChapter cxiii

Chapter XXXIX iconChapter xcvii

Chapter XXXIX iconChapter LXXXVIII

Chapter XXXIX iconChapter LXXVIII

Chapter XXXIX iconChapter 9 a few Questions

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