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The Duchess Of Berry/Charles X by Imbert de St-Amand

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Thursday, the 16th of September, 1824, at the moment when Louis
XVIII. was breathing his last in his chamber of the Chateau des
Tuileries, the courtiers were gathered in the Gallery of Diana. It
was four o'clock in the morning. The Duke and the Duchess of
Angouleme, the Duchess of Berry, the Duke and the Duchess of
Orleans, the Bishop of Hermopolis, and the physicians were in the
chamber of the dying man. When the King had given up the ghost,
the Duke of Angouleme, who became Dauphin, threw himself at the
feet of his father, who became King, and kissed his hand with
respectful tenderness. The princes and princesses followed this
example, and he who bore thenceforward the title of Charles X.,
sobbing, embraced them all. They knelt about the bed. The De
Profundis was recited. Then the new King sprinkled holy water on
the body of his brother and kissed the icy hand. An instant later
M. de Blacas, opening the door of the Gallery of Diana, called
out: "Gentlemen, the King!" And Charles X. appeared.

Let us listen to the Duchess of Orleans. "At these words, in the
twinkling of an eye, all the crowd of courtiers deserted the
Gallery to surround and follow the new King. It was like a
torrent. We were borne along by it, and only at the door of the
Hall of the Throne, my husband bethought himself that we no longer
had aught to do there. We returned home, reflecting much on the
feebleness of our poor humanity, and the nothingness of the things
of this world."

Marshal Marmont, who was in the Gallery of Diana at the moment of
the King's death, was much struck by the two phrases pronounced at
an instant's interval by M. de Damas: "Gentlemen, the King is
dead! The King, gentlemen!"

He wrote in his Memoirs: "It is difficult to describe the
sensation produced by this double announcement in so brief a time.
The new sovereign was surrounded by his officers, and everything
except the person of the King was in the accustomed order.
Beautiful and great thought, this uninterrupted life of the
depository of the sovereign power! By this fiction there is no
break in this protecting force, so necessary to the preservation
of society." The Marshal adds: "The government had been in fact
for a year and more in the hands of Monsieur. Thus the same order
of things was to continue; nevertheless, there was emotion
perceptible on the faces of those present; one might see hopes
spring up and existences wither. Every one accompanied the new
King to his Pavilion of Marsan. He announced to his ministers that
he confirmed them in their functions. Then every one withdrew."

While the Duchess of Berry was present at the death of Louis
XVIII., the Duke of Bordeaux and his sister, Mademoiselle, then,
the one four, the other five years of age, remained at the Chateau
of Saint Cloud, with the Governess of the Children of France, the
Viscountess of Gontaut-Biron. This lady passed the night of the
15th of September in great anxiety. She listened on the balcony,
awaiting and dreading the news.

At the moment that the day began to dawn, she heard afar the
gallop of a horse that drew near, passed the bridge, ascended the
avenue, reached the Chateau, and in response to the challenge of
the guard, she distinguished the words: "An urgent message for
Madame the Governess." It was a letter from the new King. Madame
de Gontaut trembled as she opened it. Charles X. announced to her,
in sad words, that Louis XVIII. was no more, and directed her to
made ready for the arrival of the royal family. "Lodge me where
you and the governor shall see fit. We shall probably pass three
or four days at Saint Cloud. Communicate my letter to the Marshal.
I have not strength to write another word."

"The day was beginning to break," we read in the unpublished
Memoirs of the Governess of the Children of France. "I went to the
bed of Monseigneur. He was awakened. He was not surprised, and
said nothing, and allowed himself to be dressed. Not so with
Mademoiselle. I told her gently of the misfortune that had come
upon her family. I was agitated. She questioned me, asking where
was bon-papa. I told her that he was still in Paris, but was
coming to Saint Cloud; then I added: 'Your bon-papa, Mademoiselle,
is King, since the King is no more.' She reflected, then,
repeating the word: 'King! Oh! that indeed is the worst of the
story.' I was astonished, and wished her to explain her idea; she
simply repeated it. I thought then she had conceived the notion of
a king always rolled about in his chair."

The same day the court arrived. It was no longer the light
carriage that used almost daily to bring Monsieur, to the great
joy of his grandchildren. It was the royal coach with eight
horses, livery, escort, and body-guard. The Duke of Bordeaux and
his sister were on the porch with their governess. On perceiving
the coach, instead of shouting with pleasure, as was their custom,
they remained motionless and abashed. Charles X. was pale and
silent. In the vestibule he paused: "What chamber have you
prepared for me?" he said sadly to Madame de Gontaut, glancing at
the door of his own. The governess replied: "The apartment of
Monsieur is ready, and the chamber of the King as well." The
sovereign paused, then clasping his hands in silence: "It must
be!" he cried. "Let us ascend."

They followed him. He passed through the apartments. On the
threshold of the royal chamber Madame de Gontaut brought to
Charles X. the Duke of Bordeaux and Mademoiselle and he embraced
them. The poor children were disconcerted by so much sadness. "As
soon as I can," he said to them, "I promise to come to see you."
Then turning to the company: "I would be alone." All withdrew in
silence. The Dauphiness was weeping. The Dauphin had disappeared.
Everything was gloomy. No one spoke. Thus passed the first day of
the reign of Charles X.

The next day the King received the felicitations of the Corps de
l'Etat. Many addresses were delivered. "All contained the
expression of the public love," said Marshal Marmont in his
Memoirs, "and I believe that they were sincere; but the love of
the people is, of all loves, the most fragile, the most apt to
evaporate. The King responded in an admirable manner, with
appropriateness, intelligence, and warmth. His responses, less
correct, perhaps, than those of Louis XVIII., had movement and
spirit, and it is so precious to hear from those invested with the
sovereign powers things that come from the heart, that Charles X.
had a great success. I listened to him with care, and I sincerely
admired his facility in varying his language and modifying his
expressions according to the eminence of the authority from whom
the compliments came."

The reception lasted several hours. When the coaches had rolled
away and when quiet was re-established in the Chateau of Saint
Cloud, Charles X., in the mourning costume of the Kings, the
violet coat, went to the apartment of the Duke of Bordeaux and his
sister. The usher cried: "The King!" The two children, frightened,
and holding each other by the hand, remained silent. Charles X.
opened his arms and they threw themselves into them. Then the
sovereign seated himself in his accustomed chair and held his
grandchildren for some moments pressed to his heart. The Duke of
Bordeaux covered the hands and the face of his grandfather with
kisses. Mademoiselle regarded attentively the altered features of
the King and his mourning dress, novel to her. She asked him why
he wore such a coat. Charles X. did not reply, and sighed. Then he
questioned the governess as to the impression made on the children
by the death of Louis XVIII. Madame de Gontaut hesitated to
answer, recalling the strange phrase of Mademoiselle: "King! Oh!
that indeed is the worst of the story." But the little Princess,
clinging to her notion, began to repeat the unlucky phrase.
Charles X., willing to give it a favorable interpretation, assured
Mademoiselle that he would see her as often as in the past, and
that nothing should separate him from her. The two children, with
the heedlessness of their age, took on their usual gaiety, and ran
to the window to watch the market-men, the coal heavers, and the
fishwomen, who had come to Saint Cloud to congratulate the new

The griefs of sovereigns in the period of their prosperity do not
last so long as those of private persons. Courtiers take too much
pains to lighten them. With Charles X. grief at the loss of his
brother was quickly followed by the enjoyment of reigning.
Chateaubriand, who, when he wished to, had the art of carrying
flattery to lyric height, published his pamphlet: Le roi est mart!
Vive le roi! In it he said: "Frenchmen, he who announced to you
Louis le Desire, who made his voice heard by you in the days of
storm, and makes to you to-day of Charles X. in circumstances very
different. He is no longer obliged to tell you what the King is
who comes to you, what his misfortunes are, his virtues, his
rights to the throne and to your love; he is no longer obliged to
depict his person, to inform you how many members of his family
still exist. You know him, this Bourbon, the first to come, after
our disaster, worthy herald of old France, to cast himself, a
branch of lilies in his hand, between you and Europe. Your eyes
rest with love and pleasure on this Prince, who in the ripeness of
years has preserved the charm and elegance of his youth, and who
now, adorned with the diadem, still is but ONE FRENCHMAN THE MORE
IN THE MIDST OF YOU. You repeat with emotion so many happy mots
dropped by this new monarch, who from the loyalty of his heart
draws the grace of happy speech. What one of us would not confide
to him his life, his fortune, his honor? The man whom we should
all wish as a friend, we have as King. Ah! Let us try to make him
forget the sacrifices of his life! May the crown weigh lightly on
the white head of this Christian Knight! Pious as Saint Louis,
affable, compassionate, and just as Louis XII., courtly as Francis
I., frank as Henry IV., may he be happy with all the happiness he
has missed in his long past! May the throne where so many monarchs
have encountered tempests, be for him a place of repose! Devoted
subjects, let us crowd to the feet of our well-loved sovereign,
let us recognize in him the model of honor, the living principle
of our laws, the soul of our monarchical society; let us bless a
guardian heredity, and may legitimacy without pangs give birth to
a new King! Let our soldiers cover with their flags the father of
the Duke of Angouleme. May watchful Europe, may the factions, if
such there be still, see in the accord of all Frenchmen, in the
union of the people and the army, the pledge of our strength and
of the peace of the world!" The author of the Genie du
Christianisme thus closed his prose dithyramb: "May God grant to
Louis XVIII. the crown immortal of Saint Louis! May God bless the
mortal crown of Saint Louis on the head of Charles X.!"

In this chant in honor of the King and of royalty, M. de
Chateaubriand did not forget the Duke and Duchess of Angouleme,
nor the Duchess of Berry and the Duke of Bordeaux. "Let us
salute," he said, "the Dauphin and Dauphiness, names that bind the
past to the future, calling up touching and noble memories,
indicating the own son and the successor of the monarch, names
under which we find the liberator of Spain and the daughter of
Louis XVI. The Child of Europe, the new Henry, thus makes one step
toward the throne of his ancestor, and his young mother guides him
to the throne that she might have ascended."

Happy in the ease with which the change in the reign had taken
place, and seeing the unanimous manifestations of devotion and
enthusiasm by which the throne was surrounded, the Duchess of
Berry regarded the future with entire confidence. Inclined by
nature to optimism, the young and amiable Princess believed
herself specially protected by Providence, and would have
considered as a sort of impiety anything else than absolute faith
in the duration of the monarchy and in respect for the rights of
her son. Had any one of the court expressed the slightest doubt as
to the future destiny of the CHILD OF MIRACLE, he would have been
looked upon as an alarmist or a coward. The royalists were simple
enough to believe that, thanks to this child, the era of
revolutions was forever closed. They said to themselves that
French royalty, like British royalty, would have its Whigs and its
Tories, but that it was forever rid of Republicans and
Imperialists. At the accession of Charles X. the word Republican,
become a synonym of Jacobin, awoke only memories of the guillotine
and the "Terror." A moderate republic seemed but a chimera; only
that of Robespierre and Marat was thought of. The eagle was no
longer mentioned; and as to the eaglet, he was a prisoner at
Vienna. What chance of reigning had the Duke of Reichstadt, that
child of thirteen, condemned by all the Powers of Europe? By what
means could he mount the throne? Who would be regent in his name?
A Bonaparte? The forgetful Marie Louise? Such hypotheses were
relegated to the domain of pure fantasy. Apart from a few
fanatical old soldiers who persisted in saying that Napoleon was
not dead, no one, in 1824, believed in the resurrection of the
Empire. As for Orleanism, it was as yet a myth. The Duke of
Orleans himself was not an Orleanist. Of all the courtiers of
Charles X., he was the most eager, the most zealous, the most
enthusiastic. In whatever direction she turned her glance, the
Duchess of Berry saw about her only reasons for satisfaction and



The Duchess of Berry took part in the solemn entry into Paris made
by Charles X., Monday, 27th September, 1824. She was in the same
carriage as the Dauphiness and the Duchess and Mademoiselle of
Orleans. The King left the Chateau of Saint Cloud at half-past
eleven in the morning, passed through the Bois de Boulogne, and
mounted his horse at the Barriere de l'Etoile. There he was
saluted by a salvo of one hundred and one guns, and the Count de
Chambral, Prefect of the Seine, surrounded by the members of the
Municipal Council, presented to him the keys of the city. Charles
X. replied to the address of the Prefect: "I deposit these keys
with you, because I cannot place them in more faithful hands.
Guard them, gentlemen. It is with a profound feeling of pain and
joy that I enter within these walls, in the midst of my good
people,--of joy because I well know that I shall employ and
consecrate all my days to the very last, to assure and consolidate
their happiness." Accompanied by the princes and princesses of his
family and by a magnificent staff, the sovereign descended the
Champs-Elysees to the Avenue of Marigny, followed that avenue,
and entered the Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honore, before the Palace
of the Elysee. At this moment, the weather, which had been cold
and sombre, brightened, and the rain, which had been falling for a
long time, ceased. The King heard two child-voices crying
joyously, "Bon-papa." It was the little Duke of Bordeaux and his
sister at a window of an entresol of the Elysee which looked out
upon the street. On perceiving his two grandchildren, Charles X.
could not resist the impulse to approach them. He left the ranks
of the cortege, to the despair of the grand-master of ceremonies.
The horse reared. A sergeant-de-ville seized him by the bit.
Listen to Madame de Gontaut: "I was frightened, and cried out. The
King scolded me for it afterward. I confessed my weakness; to fall
at the first step in Paris would have seemed an ill omen. The King
subdued his fretful horse, said a few tender words to the
children, raised his hat gracefully to the ladies surrounding us.
A thousand voices shouted: Vive le Roi! The grand-master was
reassured, the horse was quieted, and the King resumed his place.
The carriage of the princes and princesses passing at that moment,
the little princes saw them--it was an added joy."

The cortege followed this route: the Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honore,
the boulevards to the Rue Saint-Denis, the Rue Saint-Denis, the
Place du Chatelet, the Pont au Change, the Rue de la Bailer,
the Marche-Neuf, the Rue Neuve-Notre-Dame, the Parvis. At every
moment the King reined in his superb Arab horse to regard more at
ease the delighted crowd. He smiled and saluted with an air of
kindness and a grace that produced the best impression. Charles X.
was an excellent horseman; he presented the figure and air of a
young man. The contrast naturally fixed in all minds, between his
vigorous attitude and that of his predecessor, an infirm and
feeble old man, added to the general satisfaction. The houses were
decorated with white flags spangled with fleurs-de-lis. Triumphal
arches were erected along the route of the sovereign. The streets
and boulevards were strewn with flowers. At the sight of the
monarch the happy people redoubled their acclamations. Benjamin
Constant shouted: "Vive le roi!"--"Ah, I have captured you at
last," smilingly remarked Charles X.

Reaching the Parvis de Notre-Dame, the sovereign, before entering
the Cathedral, paused before the threshold of the Hotel-Dieu.
Fifty nuns presented themselves before him, "Sire," said the
Prioress, "you pause before the house so justly termed the Hotel-
Dieu, which has always been honored with the protection of our
kings. We shall never forget, Sire, that the sick have seen at
their bedside the Prince who is today their King. They know that
at this moment your march is arrested by charity. We shall tell
them that the King is concerned for their ills, and it will be a
solace to them. Sire, we offer you our homage, our vows, and the
assurance that we shall always fulfil with zeal our duties to the
sick." Charles X. replied: "I know with what zeal you and these
gentlemen serve the poor. Continue, Mesdames, and you can count on
my benevolence and on my constant protection."

The King was received at the Metropolitan Church by the Archbishop
of Paris at the head of his clergy. The Domine salvum, fac regem,
was intoned and repeated by the deputations of all the authorities
and by the crowd filling the nave, the side-aisles, and the
tribunes of the vast basilica. Then a numerous body of singers
sang the Te Deum. On leaving the church, the King remounted his
horse and returned to the Tuileries, along the quais, to the sound
of salvos of artillery and the acclamations of the crowd. The
Duchess of Berry, who had followed the King through all the
ceremonies, entered the Chateau with him, and immediately
addressed to the Governess of the Children of France this note:
"From Saint Cloud to Notre-Dame, from Notre-Dame to the Tuileries,
the King has been accompanied by acclamations, signs of approval
and of love."

Charles X., on Thursday, the 30th September, had to attend a
review on the Champ-de-Mars. The morning of this day, the readers
of all the journals found in them a decree abolishing the
censorship and restoring liberty of the press. The enthusiasm was
immense. The Journal de Paris wrote: "Today all is joy,
confidence, hope. The enthusiasm excited by the new reign would be
far too ill at ease under a censorship. None can be exercised over
the public gratitude. It must be allowed full expansion. Happy is
the Council of His Majesty to greet the new King with an act so
worthy of him. It is the banquet of this joyous accession; for to
give liberty to the press is to give free course to the
benedictions merited by Charles X."

The review was superb. After having heard Mass in the chapel of
the Chateau of the Tuileries, the King mounted his horse at half-
past eleven, and, accompanied by the Dauphin, the Duke of Orleans,
and the Duke of Bourbon, proceeded to the Champ-de-Mars. Two
caleches followed; the one was occupied by the Dauphiness, the
Duchess of Berry, and the Duke of Bordeaux in the uniform of a
colonel of cuirassiers,--a four-year old colonel,--the other by
the Duchess of Orleans and Mademoiselle of Orleans, her sister-in-
law. The weather was mild and clear. The twelve legions of the
National Guard on foot, the mounted National Guard, the military
household of the King, and all the regiments of the royal guard,
which the sovereign was about to review, made a magnificent
appearance. An immense multitude covered the slopes about the
Champ-de-Mars. Charles X. harvested the effect of the liberal
measure that he had first adopted. A thunder of plaudits and
cheers greeted his arrival on the ground. At one moment, when he
found himself, so to speak, tangled in the midst of the crowd,
several lancers of his guard sought to break the circle formed
about him by pushing back the curious with the handles of their
lances. "My friends, no halberds!" the King called to them. This
happy phrase, repeated from group to group, carried the general
satisfaction to a climax. A witness of this military ceremony, the
Count of Puymaigre, at that time Prefect of the Oise, says in his
curious Souvenirs:--

"Charles X. appeared to have dissipated all the dangers that for
ten years had menaced his august predecessor.

"On all sides there rose only acclamations of delight in favor of
the new King, who showed himself so popular, and whose gracious
countenance could express only benevolent intentions. I was
present, mingling with the crowd, at the first review by Charles
X. on the Champ-de-Mars, and the remarks were so frankly royalist,
that any one would have been roughly treated by the crowd had he
shown other sentiments."

The Duchess of Berry was full of joy. She quivered with pleasure.
Very popular in the army and among the people, as at court and in
the city, she was proud to show her fine child, who already wore
the uniform, to the officers and soldiers. She appeared to all
eyes the symbol of maternal love, and the mothers gazed upon her
boy as if he had been their own. As soon as the little Prince was
seen, there was on every face an expression of kindliness and
sympathy. He was the Child of Paris, the Child of France. Who
could have foretold then that this child, so loved, admired,
applauded, would, innocent victim, less than six years later, be
condemned to perpetual exile, and by whom?

Charles X. had won a triumph. Napoleon, at the time of his
greatest glories, at the apogee of his prodigious fortunes, had
never had a warmer greeting from the Parisian people. In the
course of the review the King spoke to all the colonels. On his
return to the Tuileries he went at a slow pace, paused often to
receive petitions, handed them to one of his suite, and responded
in the most gracious manner to the homage of which he was the
object. An historian not to be accused of partiality for the
Restoration has written: "On entering the Tuileries, Charles X.
might well believe that the favor that greeted his reign effaced
the popularity of all the sovereigns who had gone before. Happy in
being King at last, moved by the acclamations that he met at every
step, the new monarch let his intoxicating joy expand in all his
words. His affability was remarked in his walks through Paris, and
the grace with which he received all petitioners who could
approach him." Everywhere that he appeared, at the Hotel-Dieu, at
Sainte-Genvieve, at the Madeleine, the crowd pressed around him
and manifested the sincerest enthusiasm. M. Villemain, in the
opening discourse of his lectures on eloquence at the Faculty of
Letters, was wildly applauded when he pronounced the following
eulogium on the new sovereign: "A monarch kindly and revered, he
has the loyalty of the antique ways and modern enlightenment.
Religion is the seal of his word. He inherits from Henry IV. those
graces of the heart that are irresistible. He has received from
Louis XIV. an intelligent love of the arts, a nobility of
language, and that dignity that imposes respect while it seduces."
All the journals chanted his praises. Seeing that the
Constitutionnel itself, freed from censorship, rendered
distinguished homage to legitimacy, he came to believe that
principle invincible. He was called Charles the Loyal. At the
Theatre-Francais, the line of Tartufe--

"Nous vivons sous un prince ennemi de la fraude"--

was greeted with a salvo of applause. The former adversaries of
the King reproached themselves with having misunderstood him. They
sincerely reproached themselves for their past criticisms, and
adored that which they had burned. M. de Vaulabelle himself

"Few sovereigns have taken possession of the throne in
circumstances more favorable than those surrounding the accession
of Charles X."

It seemed as if the great problem of the conciliation of order and
liberty had been definitely solved. The white flag, rejuvenated by
the Spanish war, had taken on all its former splendor. The best
officers, the best soldiers of the imperial guard, served the King
in the royal guard with a devotion proof against everything.
Secret societies had ceased their subterranean manoeuvres. No more
disturbances, no more plots. In the Chambers, the Opposition,
reduced to an insignificant minority, was discouraged or
converted. The ambitious spirits of whom it was composed turned
their thoughts toward the rising sun. Peace had happily fecundated
the prodigious resources of the country. Finances, commerce,
agriculture, industry, the fine arts, everything was prospering.
The public revenues steadily increased. The ease with which riches
came inclined all minds toward optimism. The salons had resumed
the most exquisite traditions of courtesy and elegance. It was the
boast that every good side of the ancien regime had been preserved
and every bad one rejected. France was not only respected, she was
a la mode. All Europe regarded her with sympathetic admiration. No
one in 1824 could have predicted 1880. The writers least favorable
to the Restoration had borne witness to the general calm, the
prevalence of good will, the perfect accord between the country
and the crown. The early days of the reign of Charles X. were, so
to speak, the honeymoon of the union of the King and France.



The funeral solemnities of Louis XVIII. seemed to the people a
mortuary triumph of Royalty over the Revolution and the Empire.
The profanations of 1793 were expiated. Napoleon was left with the
willow of Saint Helena; the descendant of Saint Louis and of Louis
XIV. had the basilica of his ancestors as a place of sepulture,
and the links of time's chain were again joined. The obsequies of
Louis XVIII. suggested a multitude of reflections. It was the
first time since the death of Louis XV. in 1774, that such a
ceremony had taken place. As was said by the Moniteur:--

"This solemnity, absolutely novel for the greater number of the
present generation, offered an aspect at once mournful and
imposing. A monarch so justly regretted, a king so truly
Christian, coming to take his place among the glorious remains of
the martyrs of his race and the bones of his ancestors,--profaned,
scattered by the revolutionary tempest, but which he had been able
again to gather,--was a grave subject of reflection, a spectacle
touching in its purpose and majestic in the pomp with which it was

Through what vicissitudes had passed these royal tombs, to which
the coffin of Louis XVIII. was borne! Read in the work of M.
Georges d'Heylli, Les Tombes royales de Saint-Denis, the story of
these profanations and restorations.

The Moniteur of the 6th of February, 1793, published in its
literary miscellany, a so-called patriotic ode, by the poet
Lebrun, containing the following strophe:--

"Purgeons le sol des patriotes,
Par des rois encore infectes.
La terre de la liberte
Rejette les os des despotes.
De ces monstres divinises
Que tous lea cercueils soient brises!
Que leur memoirs soit fletrie!
Et qu'avec leurs manes errants
Sortent du sein de la patrie
Les cadavres de ses tyrants!"

[Footnote: Let us purge the patriot soil--By kings still
infected.--The land of liberty--Rejects the bones of despots.--Of
these monsters deified--Let all the coffins be destroyed!--Let
their memory perish!--And with their wandering manes--Let issue
from the bosom of the fatherland--The bodies of its tyrants!]

These verses were the prelude to the discussion, some months
later, in the National Convention, of the proposition to destroy
the monuments of the Kings at Saint-Denis, to burn their remains,
and to send to the bullet foundry the bronze and lead off their
tombs and coffins. In the session of July 31, 1793, Barrere, the
"Anacreon of the guillotine," read to the convention in the name
of the Committee of Public Safety, a report, which said:--

"To celebrate the day of August 10, which overthrew the throne,
the pompous mausoleums must be destroyed upon its anniversary.
Under the Monarchy, the very tombs were taught to flatter kings.
Royal pride and luxury could not be moderated even on this theatre
of death, and the bearers of the sceptre who had brought such ills
on France and on humanity seemed even in the grave to vaunt a
vanished splendor. The strong hand of the Republic should
pitilessly efface these haughty epitaphs, and demolish these
mausoleums which might recall the frightful memory of kings."

The project was voted by acclamation. The tombs were demolished
between the 6th and 8th of August, 1793, and the announcement was
made for the anniversary of the 10th of August, 1792, of "that
grand, just, and retributive destruction, required in order that
the coffins should be opened, and the remains of the tyrants be
thrown into a ditch filled with quick-time, where they may be
forever destroyed. This operation will shortly take place."

This was done in the following October. For some days there was
carried on a profanation even more sacrilegious than the
demolition of the tombs. The coffins containing the remains of
kings and queens, princes and princesses, were violated. On
Wednesday, the 16th of October, 1798, at the very hour that Marie
Antoinette mounted the scaffold,--she who had so wept for her son,
the first Dauphin, who died the 4th of June, 1789, at the
beginning of the Revolution,--the disinterrers of kings violated
the grave of this child and threw his bones on the refuse heap.
Iconoclasts, jealous of death, disputed its prey, and they
profaned among others the sepulchres of Madame Henrietta of
England, of the Princess Palatine, of the Regent, and of Louis XV.

In the midst of these devastations, some men, less insensate than
the others, sought at least to rescue from the hands of the
destroyers what might be preserved in the interest of art. Of this
number was an artist, Alexandre Lenoir, who had supervised the
demolition of the tombs of Saint-Denis. He could not keep from the
foundry, by the terms of the decree, the tombs of lead, copper,
and bronze; but he saved the others from complete destruction--
those that may be seen to-day in the church of Saint-Denis. He had
them placed first in the cemetery of the Valois, near the ditches
filled with quicklime, where had been cast the remains of the
great ones of the earth, robbed of their sepulchres. Later, a
decree of the Minister of the Interior, Benezech, dated 19
Germinal, An IV., authorizing the citizen Lenoir to have the tombs
thus saved from destruction taken to the Museum of French
Monuments, of which he was the conservator, and which had been
installed at Paris, Rue des Petits Augustins. From thence they
were destined to be returned to the Church of Saint-Denis, under
the reign of Louis XVIII.

At the height of his power, Napoleon dreamed of providing for
himself the same sepulture as that of the kings, his predecessors.
He had decided that he would be interred in the Church of Saint-
Denis, and had arranged for himself a cortege of emperors about
the site that he had chosen for the vault of his dynasty. He
directed the construction of a grand monument dedicated to
Charlemagne, which was to rise in the "imperialized" church. The
great Carlovingian emperor was to have been represented, erect,
upon a column of marble, at the back of which statues in stone of
the emperors who succeeded him were to have been placed. But at
the time of Napoleon's fall, the monument had not been finished.
There had been completed only the statues, which have taken their
rank in the crypt. They represent Charlemagne, Louis le
Debonnaire, Charles le Chauve, Louis le Begue, Charles le Gros,
and even Louis d'Outremer, who, nevertheless, was only a king.

Like the Pharaohs of whom Bossuet speaks, Napoleon was not to
enjoy his sepulture. To be interred with pomp at Saint-Denis,
while Napoleon, at Saint Helena, rested under a simple stone on
which not even his name was inscribed, was the last triumph for
Louis XVIII.,--a triumph in death. The re-entrance of Louis XVIII.
had been not only the restoration of the throne, but that of the
tombs. The 21st of January, 1815, twenty-two years, to the very
day, after the death of Louis XVI., the remains of the unhappy
King and those of his Queen, Marie Antoinette, were transferred to
the Church of Saint-Denis, where their solemn obsequies were
celebrated. Chateaubriand cried:--

"What hand has reconstructed the roof of these vaults and prepared
these empty tombs? The hand of him who was seated on the throne of
the Bourbons. O Providence! He believed that he was preparing the
sepulchres of his race, and he was but building the tomb of Louis
XVI. Injustice reigns but for a moment; it is virtue only that can
count its ancestors and leave a posterity. See, at the same
moment, the master of the earth falls, Louis XVIII. regains the
sceptre, Louis XVI. finds again the sepulture of his fathers."

At the beginning of the Second Restoration, the King determined,
by a decree of the 4th of April, 1816, that search should be made
in the cemetery of the Valois, about the Church of Saint-Denis, in
order to recover the remains of his ancestors that might have
escaped the action of the bed of quicklime, in which they had been
buried under the Terror. The same decree declared that the remains
recovered should be solemnly replaced in the Church of Saint-

Excavations were made in January, 1817, in the cemetery of the
Valois, and the bones thus discovered were transferred to the
necropolis of the kings.

"It was night," says Alexandre Lenoir, in his Histoire des Arts en
France par les Monuments. "The moon shone on the towers; the
torches borne by the attendants were reflected from the walls of
the edifice. What a spectacle! The remains of kings and queens,
princes and princesses, of the most ancient of monarchies, sought
with pious care, with sacred respect, in the ditches dug by
impious arms in the evil days. The bones of the Valois and the
Bourbons found pele-mele outside the walls of the church, and
brought again, after a long exile, to their ancient burial place."

In a little vault on the left were deposited the coffins
containing the bones of earlier date than the Bourbons, and a
marble tablet was placed upon it, with the inscription: "Here rest
the mortal remains of eighteen kings, from Dagobert to Henry III.;
ten queens, from Nantilde, wife of Dagobert, to Marguerite de
Valois, first wife of Henry IV.; twenty-four dauphins, princes,
and princesses, children and grandchildren of France; eleven
divers personages (Hugues-le-grand, four abbes of Saint-Denis,
three chamberlains, two constables, and Sedille de Sainte-Croix,
wife of the Counsellor Jean Pastourelle). Torn from their violated
sepulchres the 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24 October, 1793, and
18 January, 1794; restored to their tombs the 19 January, 1817."

On the right were placed the coffins enclosing the remains of the
princes and princesses of the house of Bourbon, the list of which
is given by a second marble plaque: "Here rest the mortal remains
of seven kings, from Charles V. to Louis XV.; seven queens, from
Jeanne de Bourbon, wife of Charles V., to Marie Leczinska, wife of
Louis XV.; dauphins and dauphinesses, princes and princesses,
children and grandchildren of France, to the number of forty-
seven, from the second son of Henry IV. to the Dauphin, eldest son
of Louis XVI. Torn from their violated sepulchres the 12, 14, 15,
and 16 October, 1793; restored to their tombs the 19 January,

Besides these vaults, there is one that bears the title of the
"Royal Vault of the Bourbons," though but a small number of
princes and princesses of this family are there deposited. There
is where Louis XVIII. was to rest. In 1815, there had been placed
in this vault the coffins of Louis XVI. and of Marie Antoinette,
recovered on the site of the former cemetery of the Madeleine. On
the coffin of the King was carved: "Here is the body of the very
high, very puissant, and very excellent Prince, Louis, 16th of the
name, by the grace of God King of France and Navarre." A like
inscription on the coffin of the Queen recited her titles.

In 1817, there had been put by the side of these two coffins those
of Madame Adelaide and of Madame Victorine, daughter of Louis XV.,
who died at Trieste, one in 1799, the other in 1800, and whose
remains had just been brought from that city to Saint-Denis.
There had also been placed in the same vault a coffin containing
the body of Louis VII.--a king coming now for the first time, as
Alexandre Lenoir remarks, to take a place in the vault of these
vanished princes, whose ranks are no longer crowded, and which
crime has been more prompt to scatter than has Death been to fill
them; also the coffin of Louise de Vaudemont, wife of Henry III.,
the queen who was buried in the Church of the Capucins, Place
Vendome, and whose remains escaped profanation in 1793. In this
same vault were also two little coffins, those of a daughter and a
son of the Duke and Duchess of Berry, who died, one in 1817, the
other in 1818, immediately after birth, and the coffin of their
father, assassinated the 13th of February, 1820, on leaving the
Opera. Such were the companions in burial of Louis XVIII.



Louis XVIII. died the 16th of September, 1824, at the Chateau of
the Tuileries. His body remained there until the 23d of September,
when, to the sound of a salvo of one hundred and one guns, it was
borne to the Church of Saint-Denis. The coffin remained exposed in
this basilica within a chapelle ardente, to the 24th of October,
the eve of the day fixed for the obsequies, and during all this
time the church was filled with a crowd of the faithful, belonging
to all classes of society, who gathered from Paris and all the
surrounding communes, to render a last homage to the old King.
Sunday, 24th of October, at two o'clock in the afternoon, the body
was transferred from the chapelle ardente to the catafalque
prepared to receive it. Then the vespers and the vigils of the
dead were sung, and the Grand Almoner, clad in his pontifical
robes, officiated. The next day, Monday, the 25th of October, the
services of burial took place.

The Dauphin and Dauphiness left the Tuileries at 10:30 A.M., to be
present at the funeral ceremony. In conformity with etiquette,
Charles X. was not present. He remained at the Tuileries with the
Duchess of Berry, with whom he heard a requiem Mass in the chapel
of the Chateau at eleven o'clock. The Duchess was thus spared a
painful spectacle. With what emotion would she not have seen
opened the crypt in which she believed she would herself be laid,
and which was the burial place of her assassinated husband and of
her two children, dead so soon after their birth.

The ceremony commences in the antique necropolis. The interior of
the church is hung all with black to the spring of the arches,
where fleurs-de-lis in gold are relieved against the funeral
hangings. The light of day, wholly shut out, is replaced by an
immense quantity of lamps, tapers, and candles, suspended from a
multitude of candelabra and chandeliers. At the back of the choir
shines a great luminous cross. The Dauphiness, the Duchess of
Orleans, the princes and princesses, her children, her sister-in-
law, are led to the gallery of the Dauphiness. The church is
filled with the crowd of constituted authorities. At the entrance
to the nave is seen a deputation of men and women from the
markets, and others who, according to the Moniteur, have won the
favor of admission to this sad ceremony by the grief they
manifested at the time of the King's death. The Dauphin advances,
his mantle borne from the threshold of the church to the choir by
the Duke of Blacas, the Duke of Damas, and the Count Melchior de
Polignac. The Duke of Orleans comes next. Three of his officers
bear his mantle.

A salvo of artillery, responded to by a discharge of musketry,
announces the commencement of the ceremony. The Grand Almoner of
France says Mass. After the Gospel Mgr. de Frayssinous, Bishop of
Hermopolis, ascends the pulpit and pronounces the funeral oration
of the King. At the close of the discourse another salvo of
artillery and another discharge of musketry are heard. The
musicians of the Chapel of the King, under the direction of M.
Plantade, render the Mass of Cherubim. At the Sanctus, twelve
pages of the King, guided by their governor, come from the
sacristy, whence they have taken their torches, salute the altar,
then the catafalque, place themselves kneeling on the first steps
of the sanctuary, and remain there until after the Communion. The
De Profundis and the Libera are sung. After the absolutions,
twelve bodyguards advance to the catafalque, which recalls by its
form the mausoleums raised to Francis I. and to Henry II. by the
architects of the sixteenth century. It occupies the centre of the
nave. The cords of the pall are borne by the Chancellor Dambray in
the name of the Chamber of Peers, by M. Ravez in the name of the
Chamber of Deputies, by the Count de Seze in the name of the
magistracy, by Marshal Moncey, Duke of Conegliano, in the name of
the army. The twelve bodyguards raise the coffin from the
catafalque, and bear it into the royal tomb. Then the King-at-Arms
goes alone into the vault, lays aside his rod, his cap, and his
coat-of-arms, which he also casts in, retires a step, and cries:
"Heralds-at-Arms, perform your duties."

The Heralds-at-Arms, marching in succession, cast their rods,
caps, coats-of-arms, into the tomb, then withdraw, except two, of
whom one descends into the vault to place the regalia on the
coffin, and the other is stationed on the first steps to receive
the regalia and pass them to the one who stands on the steps.

The King-at-Arms begins announcing the regalia. He says: "Marshal,
Duke of Ragusa, major-general of the Royal Guard, bring the flag
of the Royal Guard." The marshal rises from his place, takes the
flag from the hands of the officer bearing it, advances, salutes
first the Dauphin, then the Duke of Orleans, approaches the vault,
makes a profound bow, and places the flag in the hands of the
Herald-at-Arms, standing on the steps. He passes it to the
second, who places it on the coffin. The marshal salutes the altar
and the princes and resumes his place.

The King-at-Arms continues the calls. "Monsieur the Duke of
Mortemart, captain-colonel of the regular foot-guards of the King,
bring the ensign of the company which you have in keeping." He
summons in the same manner the Duke of Luxembourg, the Duke of
Mouchy, the Duke of Gramont, the Duke d'Havre, who bring each the
standard of the company of the body-guards of which they are the
four captains. The call of the other regalia goes on in the
following order:--

"Monsieur the Count of Peyrelongue, Equerry in Ordinary of His
Majesty, bring the spurs of the King.

"Monsieur the Marquis of Fresne, Equerry in Ordinary of His
Majesty, bring the gauntlets of the King.

"Monsieur the Chevalier de Riviere, Master of the Horse of His
Majesty, bring the coat-of-arms of the King.

"Monsieur the Marquis of Vernon, charged with the functions of
First Equerry, bring the helmet of the King.

"Monsieur the Duke of Polignac, charged with the functions of
Grand Equerry of France, bring the royal sword. (The royal sword
is presented before the vault only by the point, and is not
carried down.)

"Monsieur the Prince de Talleyrand, Grand Chamberlain of France,
bring the banner."

There is seen approaching, the banner in his hand, an old man,
slight, lame, clad in satin and covered with embroidery, in gold
and jewelled decorations. It is the unfrocked priest who said the
Mass of the Champ-de-Mars, for the Fete de la Federation; it is
the diplomat who directed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at the
time of the murder of the Duke d'Enghien; it is the courtier, who,
before he was Grand Chamberlain of Louis XVIII. and Charles X.,
was that of Napoleon. The banner is presented before the vault
only by one end. It is inclined over the opening of the crypt, but
is not cast in, salutes, for the last time, the dead King, then
rises as if to proclaim that the noble banner of France dies not,
and that the royalty sheltered beneath its folds descends not into
the tomb.

The King-at-Arms again cries:--

"Monsieur the Duke d'Uzes, charged with the functions of Grand
Master of France, come and perform your duty." Then the maitres de
l'hotel, the chambellans de l'hotel, and the first maitre de
l'hotel approach the vault, break their batons, cast them in, and
return to their places.

The King-at-Arms summons the persons bearing the insignia of

"Monsieur the Duke of Bressac, bring la main de justice.

"Monsieur the Duke of Chevreuse, bring the sceptre.

"Monsieur the Duke of la Tremoille, bring the crown."

These three insignia are taken down into the vault, as were the
flag and the four standards.

Then the Duke d'Uzes, putting the end of the baton of Grand Master
of France within the vault, cries out: "The King is dead!"

The King-at-Arms withdraws three paces, and repeats in a low
voice: "The King is dead! the King is dead! the King is dead!"
Then turning to the assembly he says: "Pray for the repose of his

At this moment the clergy and all the assistants throw themselves
upon their knees, pray, and rise again. The Duke d'Uzes withdraws
his baton from the vault, and brandishing it, calls out: "Long
live the King!"

The King-at-Arms repeats: "Long live the King! long live the King!
long live the King! Charles, tenth of the name, by the grace of
God, King of France and Navarre, very Christian, very august, very
puissant, our very honored lord and good master, to whom God grant
long and happy life! Cry ye all: Long live the King!" Then the
trumpets, drums, fifes, and instruments of the military bands
break into a loud fanfare, and their sound is mingled with the
prolonged acclamations of the assembly, whose cries "Long live the
King! long live Charles X.!" contrast with the silence of the

"To this outburst of the public hopes," says the Moniteur,
"succeeded the return of pious and mournful duties; the tomb is
closed over the mortal remains of the monarch whose subjects,
restored to happiness, greeted him on his return from the land of
exile with the name of Louis le Desire, and who twice reconciled
his people with Europe. This imposing ceremony being ended, the
princes were again escorted into the Abbey to their apartments, by
the Grand Master, the Master of Ceremonies and his aides, preceded
by the Master-at-Arms, and the Heralds-at-Arms, who had resumed
their caps, coats-of-arms, and rods. Then the crowd slowly
dispersed. We shall not try to express the sentiments to which
this imposing and mournful ceremony must give rise. With the
regrets and sorrow caused by the death of a prince so justly wept,
mingle the hopes inspired by a King already the master of all
hearts. This funeral ceremony when, immediately after the burial
of a monarch whom God had called to Himself, were heard cries of
'Long live Charles X.,'--the new King greeted at the tomb of his
august predecessor,--this inauguration, amid the pomps of death,
must have left impressions not to be rendered, and beyond the
power of imagination to represent."

Reader, if this recital has interested you, go visit the Church of
Saint-Denis. There is not, perhaps, in all the world, a spectacle
more impressive than the sight of the ancient necropolis of kings.
Enter the basilica, admirably restored under the Second Empire. By
the mystic light of the windows, faithful reproductions of those
of former centuries,--the funerals of so many kings, the
profanations of 1793, the restoration of the tombs,--all this
invades your thought and inspires you with a dim religious
impression of devotion. These stones have their language. Lapides
clamabunt. They speak amid the sepulchral silence. Listen to the
echo of a far-away voice. There, under these arches, centuries
old, the 21st of August, 1670, Bossuet pronounced the funeral
oration of Madame Henriette of England. He said:--

"With whatever haughty distinction men may flatter themselves,
they all have the same origin, and this origin insignificant.
Their years follow each other like waves; they flow unceasingly,
and though the sound of some is slightly greater and their course
a trifle longer than those of others, they are together confounded
in an abyss where are known neither princes nor kings nor the
proud distinctions of men, as the most boasted rivers mingle in
the ocean, nameless and inglorious with the least known streams."

Is not the Church of Saint-Denis itself a funeral discourse in
stone more grandiose and eloquent than that of the reverend
orator? Regard on either side of the nave these superb mausoleums,
these pompous tombs that are but an empty show, and since their
dead dwell not in them, contemplate these columns that seem to
wish to bear to heaven the splendid testimony of our nothingness!
There, at the right of the main altar, descend the steps that lead
to the crypt. There muse on all the kings, the queens, the
princes, and princesses, whose bones have been replaced at hazard
within these vaults, after their bodies had been, in 1793, cast
into a common ditch in the cemetery of the Valois to be consumed
by quicklime. The great ones of the earth, dispossessed of their
sepulchres, could they not say, in the region of shades, in the
mournful words of the Sermonnaire:--

"Death does not leave us body enough to require room, and it is
only the tombs that claim the sight; our body takes another name;
even that of corpse, since it implies something of the human form,
remains to it but a little time; it becomes a something nameless
in any tongue, so truly does everything die in it, even the
funeral terms by which its unhappy remains are designated. Thus
the Power divine, justly angered by our pride, reduces it to
nothingness, and, to level all conditions forever, makes common
ashes of us all."

The remains of so many sovereigns and princes are no longer even
corpses. The corpses have perished as ruins perish. You may no
longer see the coffins of the predecessors of Louis XVI. But those
of the Martyr-King, of the Queen Marie Antoinette, of the Duke of
Berry, of Louis XVIII., are there before you in the crypt. Pause.
Here is the royal vault of the Bourbons. Your glance can enter
only a narrow grated window, through which a little twilight
filters. If a lamp were not lighted at the back, the eye would
distinguish nothing. By the doubtful gleam of this sepulchral
lamp, you succeed in making out in the gloom the coffins placed on
trestles of iron; to the left that of the Duke of Berry, then the
two little coffins of his children, dead at birth; then in two
rows those of Mesdames Adelaide and Victoire, daughters of Louis
XV., those of Louis XVI. and Marie Antoinette, those of the two
last Princes of Conde, died in 1818 and in 1830, and on the right,
at the very extremity of the vault, that of the only sovereign
who, for the period of a century, died upon the throne, Louis

The royal vault of the Bourbons was diminished more than half to
make room for the imperial vault constructed under Napoleon III.
The former entrance, on the steps of which stand the Heralds-at-
Arms at the obsequies of the kings, has been suppressed. The
coffin of Louis XVIII. was not placed on the iron trestles, where
it rests to-day, at the time of his funeral. It was put at the
threshold of the vault, where it was to have been replaced by that
of Charles X.; for by the ancient tradition, when a king of France
dies, as his successor takes his place on the throne, so he, in
death, displaces his predecessor. But Louis XVIII. waited in vain
for Charles X. in the royal vault of the Bourbons; the last
brother of Louis XVI. reposes in the chapel of the Franciscans at

Charles X. is not alone in being deprived of his rights in his
tomb; the Duke and Duchess of Angouleme and the Count of Chambord
were so, and also Napoleon III. The second Emperor and Prince
Imperial, his son, sleep their sleep in England; for the
Bonapartes, like the Bourbons, have been exiled from Saint-Denis.
By a decree of the 18th of November, 1858, the man who had re-
established the Empire decided that the imperial dynasty should
have its sepulture in the ancient necropolis of the kings.
Napoleon III. no more, realized his dream than Napoleon I. He had
completed under his reign the magnificent vault destined for
himself and his race. But once more was accomplished the Sic vos
non vobis, and no imperial corpse has ever taken its place in the
still empty Napoleonic vault. The opening situated in the church,
near the centre of the nave, is at present closed by enormous
flagstones framed in copper bands; and as there is no inscription
on these, many people whose feet tread them in visiting the church
do not suspect that they have beneath them the stairway of six
steps leading down to the vault that was to be the burial place of
emperors. "Oh, vanity! Oh, nothingness! Oh, mortals ignorant of
their destinies!" It is not enough that contending dynasties
dispute each other's crowns; their covetousness and rivalry must
extend to their tombs. Not enough that sovereigns have been exiled
from their country; they must be exiled from their graves.
Disappointments in life and in death. This is the last word of
divine anger, the last of the lessons of Providence.



Born at Versailles, the 9th of October, 1757, Charles X., King of
France and Navarre, was entering his sixty-eighth year at the time
of his accession to the throne. According to the portrait traced
by Lamartine, "he had kept beneath the first frosts of age the
freshness, the stature, the suppleness, and beauty of youth." His
health was excellent, and but for the color of his hair--almost
white--he would hardly have been given more than fifty years. As
alert as his predecessor was immobile, an untiring hunter, a bold
rider, sitting his horse with the grace of a young man, a kindly
talker, an affable sovereign, this survivor of the court of
Versailles, this familiar of the Petit-Trianon, this friend of
Marie Antoinette, of the Princess of Lamballe, of the Duchess of
Polignac, of the Duke of Lauzun, of the Prince de Ligne,
preserved, despite his devotedness, a great social prestige. He
perpetuated the traditions of the elegance of the old regime.
Having lived much in the society of women, his politeness toward
them was exquisite. This former voluptuary preserved only the good
side of gallantry.

The Count d'Haussonville writes in his book entitled Ma Jeunesse:--

"I have often seen Charles X. on horseback reviewing troops or
following the chase; I have heard him, seated on his throne, and
surrounded with all the pomp of an official cortege, pronounce the
opening discourse of the session; I have many times been near him
at the little select fetes that the Duchess of Berry used to give,
of a morning, in the Pavilion de Marsan, to amuse the Children of
France, as they were then called, and to extend their acquaintance
with the young people of their own age. One day when I was
visiting with my parents some exposition of objects of art or
flowers in one of the lower halls of the Louvre, I saw him
approach my mother--whom he had known in England--with a
familiarity at once respectful and charming. He plainly wished to
please those whom he addressed, and he had the gift of doing so.
In that kind of success he was rarely wanting, especially with
women. His physiognomy as well as his manner helped. It was open
and benevolent, always animated by an easy, perhaps a slightly
commonplace smile, that of a man conscious that he was
irresistible, and that he could, with a few amiable words,
overcome all obstacles."

The fiercest adversaries of Charles X. never denied the attraction
emanating from his whole personality, the chief secret of which
was kindliness. In his constant desire to charm every one that
approached him, he had a certain something like feminine coquetry.
The Count of Puymaigre, who, being the Prefect of the Oise, saw
him often at the Chateau of Compiegne, says:--

"If the imposing tone of Louis XVIII. intimidated, it was not so
with Charles X.; there was rather danger of forgetting, pacing the
room with him, that one was talking with a king."

Yet, whatever may be asserted, the new monarch never dreamed of
restoring the old regime. We do not believe that for a single
instant he had the insensate idea of putting things back to where
they were before 1789. His favorite minister, M. de Villele, was
not one of the great nobles, and the men who were to take the
chief parts in the consecration were of plebeian origin. The
impartial historian of the Restoration, M. de Viel-Castel,
remarked it:--

"Charles X. by this fact alone, that for three years he had
actively shared in affairs and saw the difficulty of them better,
by the fact that he was no longer exasperated by the heat of the
struggle and by impatience at the political nullity to which
events had so long condemned him, had laid aside a part of his
former exaggeration. In the lively satisfaction he felt in
entering at last, at the age of sixty-seven, upon the enjoyment of
the supreme power by the perspective of which his imagination had
been so long haunted, he was disposed to neglect nothing to
capture public favor, and thus gain the chance to realize the
dreams of his life. His kindliness and natural courtesy would have
inspired these tactics, even if policy had not suggested them."

The dignity of the private life of the King added to the respect
inspired by his personality. His morals were absolutely
irreproachable. His wife, Marie Therese of Savoy, died the 2d of
June, 1805; he never remarried, and his conduct had been wholly
edifying. The sacrifice he made to God, in renouncing the love of
women, after he lost his well-beloved Countess of Polastron by
death in 1803, was the more meritorious, because, apart from the
prestige of his birth and rank, he remained attractive longer than
men of his age. No such scandals as had dishonored the court of
nearly all his predecessors occurred in his, and the most
malevolent could not charge him with having a favorite. In his
home he was a man as respectable as he was attractive, a tender
father, a grandfather even more tender, an affectionate uncle, a
gentle, indulgent master for his servants. None of the divisions
that existed in the family of Louis XVIII. appeared in that of his
successor; perfect harmony reigned in the court of the Tuileries.

Of a mind more superficial than profound, Charles X. did not lack
either in tact or in intelligence. He sincerely desired to do
right, and his errors were made in good faith, in obedience to the
mandates of his conscience. Lamartine, who had occasion to see him
near at hand, thus sums up his character:--

"A man of heart, and impulsive, all his qualities were gifts of
nature; hardly any were the fruit acquired by labor and
meditation. He had the spirit of the French race, superficial,
rapid, spontaneous, and happy in the hazard of repartee, the smile
kindly and communicative, the glance open, the hand outstretched,
the attitude cordial, an ardent thirst for popularity, great
confidence in his relations with others, a constancy in friendship
rare upon the throne, true modesty, a restless seeking for good
advice, a conscience severe for himself and indulgent for others,
a piety without pettiness, a noble repentance for the sole
weaknesses of his life, his youthful amours, a rational and
sincere love for his people, an honest and religious desire to
make France happy and to render his reign fruitful in the moral
improvement and the national grandeur of the country confided to
him by Providence. All these loyal dispositions were written on
his physiognomy. A lively frankness, majesty, kindness, honesty,
candor, all revealed therein a man born to love and to be loved.
Depth and solidity alone were wanting in this visage; looking at
it, you were drawn to the man, you felt doubts of the King."

This remark, just enough at the end of Charles X.'s reign, was
hardly so at the outset. In 1824 people had no doubts of the man
or of the King. The French were content with Charles X., and
Charles X. was content with himself.

The new King said to himself that his policy was the right one,
because, from the moment of his accession, all hatreds were
appeased. With the absolute calm enjoyed by France he compared the
agitations, plots, violence, the troubles and the fury of which it
had been the theatre under the Decazes ministry. From the day the
Right had assumed power, and Louis XVIII. had allowed his brother
to engage in public affairs, the victory of royalty had been
complete and manifest. Charles X. thought then that the results
had sustained him; that foresight, virtue, political sense, were
on his side. Needless to say, every one about him supported him in
that idea, that he believed in all conscience that he was in the
right, obeying the voice of honor and acting like a king and a
Christian. Any other policy than his own would have seemed to him
foolish and cowardly. To hear his courtiers, one would have said
that the age of gold had returned in France; the felicitations
offered him took an idyllic tone. The Count of Chabrol, Prefect of
the Seine, said to him, January 1, 1825, at the grand reception at
the Tuileries:--

"At your accession, Sire, a prestige of grace and power calmed, in
the depths of all hearts, the last murmur of the storm, and the
peace that we enjoy to-day is embellished by a charm that is yours

The same day the Drapeau Blanc said:--

"Why is there an unusual crowd passing about the palace of the
cherished monarch and princes? It is watching with affection for a
glance or smile from Charles! These are the new-year gifts for the
people moved by love for the noble race of its kings. This glance,
expressing only goodness, this smile so full of grace, they long
for everywhere and always before their eyes. His classic and
cherished features are reproduced in every form; every public
place has its bust, every hut its image; they are the domestic
gods of a worship that is pure and without superstition, brought
to our families by peace and happiness." The aurora of Charles
X.'s reign was like that of his brother Louis XVI. The two
brothers resembled travellers who, deceived by the early morning
sun and the limpid purity of the sky, set forth full of joy and
confidence, and are suddenly surprised by a frightful tempest. The
new James II. imagined that his royalty had brought his trials to
an end. It was, on the contrary, only a halt in the journey of
misfortune and exile. He believed the Revolution finished, and it
had but begun.



At the accession of Charles X., the royal family, properly
speaking, consisted of six persons only,--the King, the Duke and
Duchess of Angouleme, the Duchess of Berry and her two children
(the Duke of Bordeaux and Mademoiselle). By the traditions of the
monarchy, the Duke of Angouleme, as son and heir of the King, took
the title of Dauphin, and his wife that of Dauphiness. The Duchess
of Berry, who, under the reign of Louis XVIII. was called Madame
the Duchess of Berry, was by right, henceforward, called simply
Madame, a privilege that belonged to the Duchess of Angouleme
before she was Dauphiness. That is why the Gymnase, the theatre
under the special protection of the Duchess of Berry, was called,
after the new reign began, the Theatre de Madame.

Born at Versailles the 5th of August, 1775, the Duke of Angouleme
had just entered on his fiftieth year. A tender and respectful
son, an irreproachable husband, a brave soldier, he was lacking in
both brilliant and solid qualities. His awkward air, his
bashfulness, his myopia, his manners rather bourgeois than
princely, were against him. He had nothing of the charm and grace
of his father. But when one knew him, it was easy to see that he
had unquestioned virtues and real worth. To Charles X. he was a
most faithful subject and the best of sons. In contrast with so
many heirs apparent, who openly or secretly combat the political
ideas of their fathers, he was always the humble and docile
supporter of the throne. The Spanish expedition brought him
credit. In it he showed courage and zeal. The army esteemed him,
and he gave serious attention to military matters. A man of good
sense and good faith, he held himself aloof from all
exaggerations. At the time of the reaction of the White Terror, he
had repudiated the fury of the ultras, and distinguished himself
by a praiseworthy moderation. He had great piety, with out
hypocrisy, bigotry, or fanaticism. The Count of Puymaigre, in his
curious Souvenirs, says:--

"The Duke of Angouleme appeared to me to be always subordinated to
the will of the King, and he said to me one day very emphatically
that his position forbade any manifestation of personal sentiment,
because it was unbecoming in the heir apparent to sustain the
opposition. Though very religious, he did not share the
exaggerated ideas of what was then called the 'congregation,' and
I recall that one day he asked me brusquely: 'Are you a partisan
of the missions?' As I hesitated to reply, he insisted. 'No, my
lord, in nowise; I think that one good cure suffices for a
commune, and that missionaries, by treating the public mind with
an unusual fervor, often bring trouble with them and at the same
time often lessen the consideration due to the resident priest.'"

Married, on the 10th of June, 1799, to the daughter of Louis XVI.
and Marie Antoinette, the Duke of Angouleme had no children; but
though the sterilty of his wife was an affliction, he never
complained of it. He was not known to have either favorites or
mistresses. The life of this descendant of Louis XIV. and of Louis
XV. was purity itself. There were neither scandals nor intrigues
about him. By nature irascible and obstinate, he had modified this
tendency of his character by reason and still more by religion.
Assiduous in his duties, without arrogance or vanity, regarding
his role as Prince as a mission given him by Providence, which he
wished to fulfil conscientiously, he had not the slightest mental
reservation in favor of restoring the old regime, and showed,
perhaps, more favor to the lieutenants of Napoleon than to the
officers of the army of Conde, his companions in arms. To sum up,
he was not an attractive prince, but he merited respect. The Count
of Puymaigre thus concludes the portrait traced by him:--

"The manner, bearing, and gestures of the Duke of Angouleme cannot
be called gracious, especially in contrast with his father's
manners; doubtless it is not fair to ask that a prince, any more
than another, should be favored by nature, but it is much to be
desired that he shall have an air of superiority. The ruling taste
of the Dauphin was for the chase. He also read much and gave much
time to the personnel of the army. Retiring early, he arose every
morning at five o'clock, and lighted his own fire. Far from having
anything to complain of in him, I could only congratulate myself
on his kindness."

The Dauphiness, Marie-Theresa-Charlotte of France, Duchess of
Angouleme, born at Versailles the 19th of December, 1778, was
forty-five years old when her uncle and father-in-law, Charles X.,
ascended the throne. She was surrounded by universal veneration.
She was regarded, and with reason, as a veritable saint, and by
all parties was declared to be sans peur et sans reproche.

The Duchess of Angouleme, shunning the notoriety sought by other
princesses, preferred her oratory to the salons. Yet her devotion
had nothing mean or narrow in it. Despite the legendary
catastrophes that weighed upon her, she always appeared at fetes
where her presence was demanded. She laughed with good heart at
the theatre, and there was nothing morose or ascetic in her
conversation. She never spoke of her misfortunes. One day she was
pitying a young girl who suffered from chilblains. "I know what it
is," she said; "I have had them." Then she added, without other
comment: "True, the winters were very severe at that time." She
did not wish to say that she had had these chilblains while a
prisoner in the Temple, when fuel was refused to her.

But if the Princess never spoke of herself, she never ceased to
think of the martyrs for whom she wept. At the Tuileries, she
occupied the Pavillon de l'Horloge and the Pavillon de Flore, the
first floor apartments that had been her mother's. She used for
her own a little salon hung with white velvet sown with marguerite
lilies. This tapestry was the work of the unhappy Queen and of
Madame Elisabeth. In the same room was a stool on which Louis
XVII. had languished and suffered. It served as prie-dieu to the
Orphan of the Temple. There was in this stool a drawer where she
had put away the remaining relics of her parents: the black silk
vest and white cravat worn by Louis XVI. the day of his death; a
lace bonnet of Marie Antoinette, the last work done by the Queen
in her prison of the Conciergerie, which Robespierre had had taken
from her on the pretext that the widow of the Christian King might
kill herself with her needle or with a lace-string; finally some
fragments of the fichu which the wind raised from the shoulders of
Madame Elisabeth when the angelic Princess was already on the
scaffold. The Dauphiness, who usually dined with the King, dined
alone on the 21st of January and the 16th of October. She shut
herself in the chamber where she had collected these relics and
passed the whole day and evening there in prayer.

The charity of the pious Princess was inexhaustible. Almost all
her revenue was expended in alms. She would not have receipts
signed by those to whom she distributed relief. "The duty of
givers," she said, "is to forget their gifts and the names of
those who receive them; it is for those who receive to remember."
Nor did she ever ask the political opinions of those she relieved.
To be unfortunate, sufficed to excite her interest. One day Sister
Rosalie, charged by the Princess with paying a pension to a man
whose ill conduct she had discovered, thought it her duty to
notify the benefactress, and suspend the succor. "My sister,"
replied the Dauphiness, "continue to pay this man his pension. We
must be charitable to the good that they may persevere, and to the
bad that they may become better." Sunday, when the Princess did no
work, she passed the evening in detaching the wax seals from
letters and envelopes. This wax, converted into sticks, produced
one thousand francs a year, which she sent to a poor family. She
gave much, but only to Frenchmen and Frenchwomen. She replied to
every demand for aid for foreigners that she was sorry not to
comply with the request, but she should feel that she was doing an
injustice to give to others while there was a single Frenchman in
need. On each anniversary of mourning she doubled her alms.

The existence of the Dauphiness at the Tuileries passed with
extreme regularity. A very early riser, like her husband, she made
her toilet herself, having learned to help herself in her
captivity in the Temple. She used to breakfast at six o'clock, and
at seven daily attended the first Mass in the chapel of the
Chateau. There was a second at nine o'clock for the Dauphin, and a
third at eleven for the King. From eight to eleven she held
audiences. She retired at ten o'clock, and only prolonged the
evening to eleven when, she visited the Duchess of Berry, for whom
she had a great affection, and whose children she saw two or three
times a day. A devoted companion of Charles X., she always went
with him to the various royal chateaux. The Count of Puy maigre
says in his Souvenirs:--

"The Dauphiness having by her kindness accustomed me to speaking
freely, I used this privilege without embarrassment, but always
observing that measure which keeps a man of good society within
just limits, equally careful not to put himself ridiculously at
ease and not to be so abashed by exaggerated respect as to become
insipid. I have always thought that a princess no more than any
other woman likes to be bored. I talked much with her in the
carriage, seeking to amuse the Princess with a few anecdotes, and
I did not fear to discuss serious things with her, on which she
expressed her self with real sagacity. When she was accused of
want of tact in the numerous receptions of which one had to
undergo the monotony, it was often the fault of her immediate
companions, who neglected to give her suitable information as to
the various persons received. How many times I have hinted to her
to speak to some devoted man, who regarded a word from the
Princess as a signal favor, to yield to requests, perhaps
untimely, to visit some establishment, to receive the humble
petitions of a mayor, a cure, or a municipal council. I will not
deny that she had a sort of brusqueness, partly due to an
exceedingly high voice, and moments of ill humor, transient no
doubt, but which nevertheless left a painful impression on those
who were subjected to them. Madame the Dauphiness made no mistake
as to the state of France; she was not the dupe of the
obsequiousness of certain men of the court, and merit was certain
to obtain her support whether it had been manifested under the old
or the new regime; but she had not the influence she was supposed
to have, and I doubt if she tried to acquire it."

One day the Princess was talking to the Prefect of the Oise about
the great noblemen who had possessions in the Department.

"Have they any influence over the people?" she asked him.

"No, Madame, and it is their own fault. M. de La Rochefoucauld is
the only one who is popular, but his influence is against you. As
to the others, greedy of the benefits of the court, they come to
their estates only to save money, to regulate their accounts with
their managers, and the people, receiving no mark of their
interest, acknowledge no obligation to them."

"You are perfectly right," replied the Dauphiness, "that is not
the way with the English aristocracy."

"She saw with pain," adds M. de Puymaigre, "the marriages for
money made by certain men of the court, but not when they allied
themselves with an honorable plebeian family; her indignation was
justly shown toward those who took their wives in families whose
coveted riches came from an impure source."

The extraordinary catastrophes that had fallen on the daughter of
Louis XVI. and Marie Antoinette had been a great experience for
her, and she was not surprised at the recantations of the
courtiers. The Hundred Days had, perhaps, suggested even more
reflections to her than her captivity in the Temple or her early
exile. She could not forget how, in 1815, she had been abandoned
by officers who, but the day before, had offered her such
protestations and such vows. In the midst of present prosperity
she had a sort of instinct of future adversity. Something told her
that she was not done with sorrow, and that the cup of bitterness
was not drained to the dregs. While every one about her
contemplated the future with serene confidence, she reflected on
the extreme mobility of the French character, and still distrusted
inconstant fortune. The morrow of the birth of the Duke of
Bordeaux one of her household said to her:--

"Your Highness was very happy yesterday."

"Yes, very happy yesterday," responded the daughter of Louis XVI.,
"but to-day I am reflecting on the destiny of this child."

To any one inclined to be deceived by the illusions of the
prestige surrounding the accession of Charles X., it ought to have
sufficed to cast a glance on the austere countenance of the Orphan
of the Temple, to be recalled to the tragic reality of things. The
King had for his niece and daughter-in-law an affection blended
with compassion and respect. The pious and revered Princess gave
to the court a character of gravity and sanctity.



The Duchess of Angouleme and the Duchess of Berry lived on the
best of terms, showing toward each other a lively sympathy. Yet
there was little analogy between their characters, and the two
Princesses might even be said to form a complete contrast, one
representing the grave side, the other the smiling side of the

Born November 7, 1798, and a widow since February 14, 1820, Madame
(as the Duchess of Berry was called after the Duchess of Angouleme
became Dauphiness) was but twenty-five when her father-in-law,
Charles X., ascended the throne. She was certainly not pretty, but
there was in her something seductive and captivating. The vivacity
of her manner, her spontaneous conversation, her ardor, her
animation, her youth, gave her charm. Educated at the court of her
grandfather, Ferdinand, King of Naples, who carried bonhomie and
familiarity to exaggeration, and lived in the company of peasants
and lazzaroni, she had a horror of pretension and conceit. Her
child-like physiognomy had a certain playful and rebellious
expression; slightly indecorous speech did not displease her. This
idol of the aristocracy was simple and jovial, mingling in her
conversation Gallic salt and Neapolitan gaiety. In contrast with
so many princesses who weary their companions and are wearied by
them, she amused herself and others. Entering a family celebrated
by its legendary catastrophes, she had lost nothing of the
playfulness which was the essence of her nature. The Tuileries,
the scene of such terrible dramas, did not inspire her as it did
the Duchess of Angouleme, with sad reflections. When she heard
Mass in the Chapel of the Chateau, she did not say to herself that
here had resounded the furies of the Convention. The grand
apartments, the court of the Carrousel, the garden, could not
recall to her the terrible scenes of the 20th of June and the 10th
of August. When she entered the Pavillon de Flore, she did not
reflect that there had sat the Committee of Public Safety. The
Tuileries were, to her eyes, only the abode of power and pleasure,
an agreeable and beautiful dwelling that had brought her only
happiness, since there she had given birth to the Child of Europe,
the "Child of Miracle."

The Duchess of Berry thought that a palace should be neither a
barracks nor a convent nor a prison, and that even for a princess
there is no happiness without liberty. She loved to go out without
an escort, to take walks, to visit the shops, to go to the little
theatres, to make country parties. She was like a bird in a gilded
cage, which often escapes and returns with pleasure only because
it has escaped. She was neither worn out nor blasee; everything
interested her, everything made her gay; she saw only the good
side of things. In her all was young--mind, character,
imagination, heart. Thus she knew none of those vague
disquietudes, that causeless melancholy, that unreasoned sadness,
from which suffer so many queens and so many princesses on the
steps of a throne.

Gracious and simple in her manners, modest in her bearing, more
inclined to laughter and smiles than to sobs and tears, satisfied
with her lot despite her widowhood, she felt happy in being a
princess, in being a mother, in being in France. Flattered by the
homage addressed to her on all sides, but without haughty pride in
it, she protected art and letters with out pedantry, rejuvenated
the court, embellished the city, spread animation wherever she was
seen, and appeared to the people like a seductive enchantress.
Those who were at her receptions found themselves not in the
presence of a coldly and solemnly majestic princess, but of an
accomplished mistress of the house bent on making her salon
agreeable to her guests. There was in her nothing to abash, and by
her gracious aspect, her extreme affability, she knew how to put
those with whom she talked at their ease, while wholly preserving
her own rank. She was not only polite, she was engaging, always
seeking to say something flattering or kindly to those who had the
honor to approach her. If she visited a studio, she congratulated
the artist; in a shop she made many purchases and talked with the
merchants with a grace more charming to them, perhaps, than even
her extreme liberality. If she went to a theatre, she enjoyed
herself like a child. The select little fetes given by her always
had a character of special originality and gaiety.

The Dauphiness had a higher rank at court than Madame, because she
was married to the heir of the throne. But as she took much less
interest in social matters, she did not shine with so much eclat.
The Duchess of Berry was the queen of elegance. In all questions
of adornment, toilet, furniture, she set the fashion. A commission
as "tradesman of Madame" was the dream of all the merchants.
Sometimes, on New Year's Day, her purchases at the chief shops
were announced in the Moniteur. There were hardly any chroniques
in the journals under the Restoration. A simple "item" sufficed
for an account of the most dazzling fetes. If the customs of the
newspapers had been under the reign of Charles X. what they are
now, the Duchess of Berry would have filled all the "society
notes," and the objective point of every "reporter," to use an
American expression, would have been the Pavillon de Marsan, the
"Little Chateau," as it was then called. There indeed shone in all
their splendor the stars of French and foreign nobility, the women
who possessed all sorts of aristocracy--of birth, of fortune, of
wit, and of beauty. This little circle of luxury and elegance
excited less jealousy and less criticism than did the intimate
society of Marie Antoinette in the last part of the old regime,
because in the Queen's time, to frequent the Petit Trianon was the
road to honors, while under Charles X. the intimates of the
Pavillon de Marsan did not make their social pleasures the
stepping-stone to fortune.

The Duchess of Berry never meddled in politics. Doubtless her
sympathies, like those of the Dauphiness, were with the Right, but
she exercised no influence on the appointment of ministers and
functionaries. Charles X. never consulted her about public
affairs; the idea would never have occurred to the old King to ask
counsel of so young and inexperienced a woman.

It is but justice to the Princess to say that while wholly
inclined toward the Right, she had none of the exaggeration of the
extremists in either her ideas or her attitude, and that,
repudiating the arrogance and prejudices of the past, she never,
in any way, dreamed of the resurrection of the old regime. She was
liked by the army, being known as a good rider and a courageous
Princess. When she talked with officers she had the habit of
saying things that went straight to their hearts. There was no
difference in her politeness to the men of the old nobility or to
the parvenus of victory. The former servitors of Napoleon were
grateful for her friendliness to them, and perhaps they would
always have respected the white flag--the flag of Henry IV., had
it been borne by the gracious hand of his worthy descendant. To
sum up, she was what would be called to-day a very "modern"
Princess; her role might well have been to share the ideas and
aspirations of the new France.

The Duchess of Berry led a very active life. When she came to
France she was in the habit of rising late. But her husband, who
believed the days to be shorter for princes than for other men,
showed that he disliked this, and after that the Princess would
not remain in bed after six o'clock, winter or summer. As soon as
she was ready she summoned her children, and for half an hour gave
them her instructions. On leaving them, she went to hear Mass, and
then breakfasted. Next came the walks, almost always with a useful
object in view. Sometimes it was a hospital to which Madame
carried relief, some times an artist's studio, a shop, an
industrial establishment that she encouraged by her purchases and
her presence. On her return she busied herself with the tenderest
and most conscientious care in the education of the two daughters
whom her husband had left to her, and who have since become, one
the Baroness of Chorette, the other the Princess of Lucinge.
Audiences took up the remainder of the morning, sometimes lasting
to dinner time. When some one said to her one day that she must be
very tired of them, she replied: "During all that time I am told
the truth, and I find as much pleasure in hearing it as people of
society do in reading romances."

Madame was very charitable. She devoted to the poor an ordinary
and an extraordinary budget. The tenth of her revenue was always
applied to the relief of the unfortunate, and was deposited by
twelfths, each month, with her First Almoner. This tithe was
distributed with as much method as sagacity. A valet de chambre,
each evening, brought to the Princess the day's petitions for
relief. Madame classified them with her own hand in alphabetical
order, and registered and numbered them. Whatever the hour, she
never adjourned this task to the morrow. The private secretary
then went over these petitions and presented an analysis of them
to the Princess, who indicated on the margin what she wished to
give. This was the ordinary budget of the poor, the tenth of
Madame's revenue. But she had, besides, an extraordinary budget of
charity for the unfortunate who were the more to be respected
because they concealed themselves in obscurity and awaited instead
of seeking help. It often happened that the Princess borrowed in
order to give more. The total of her revenues amounted to
1,730,000 francs,--1,500,000 francs from the Treasury, 100,000
francs in Naples funds, coming from her dower, and 130,000 francs
from her domain of Rosny. Madame expended all in alms or in
purchases intended to encourage the arts and commerce.

The Duchess of Angouleme and the Duchess of Berry each had in the
environs of Paris a pleasure house, which was their Petit Trianon,
where they could lead a simpler life, less subject to the laws of
etiquette than in the royal Chateaux. That of the Dauphiness was
Villeneuve-l'Etang; and that of Madame, Rosny. The first had been
bought of Marshal Soult by the Duchess of Angouleme in 1821. When
she rode from Paris, this was always her destination. When she
lived at Saint Cloud, she often set out on foot in the early
morning alone, and followed across the park a little path known as
the "road of the Dauphiness," to a little gate of the Chateau of
Villeneuve-l'Etang, of which she carried the key.

Rosny is a chateau situated in the Department of Seine-et-Oise,
seven kilometres from Mantes, where Sully, the famous minister of
Henry IV., was born, and which had been bought in 1818 by the Duke
of Berry. It was the favorite resort of Madame. She went there
often and passed a great part of the summer. There she lived the
life of a simple private person, receiving herself those who came
to offer homage or request aid. The village of Rosny profited by
the liberality of the Chateau, La Quotidienne said in an article
reproduced by the Moniteur:--

"Since Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Berry has owned the
estate of Rosny, her sole occupation has been to secure the
happiness of this country. Every journey she makes is marked by
some act of goodness. Besides the Hospital of Saint-Charles, a
monument of her beneficence and piety, which is open to all the
sick of the country, she sends out relief to the homes of the
needy every day. The houses that rise in the village replace
wretched huts, and give a more agreeable and cheerful aspect to
the place. The children of either sex, the object of her most
tender solicitude, are taught at her expense. At every journey
Madame honors them with a visit and encourages them with prizes
which she condescends to distribute herself."

In his Souvenirs Intimes the Count de Mesnard, First Equerry of
the Duchess of Berry, writes:--

"The King, Charles X., did not recognize in his daughter-in-law
nearly the solidity that she had. He believed her to be light-
minded, and only looked upon her as a great child, though he loved
her much and her gaiety pleased him beyond measure, being himself
of a gay nature. You may have heard that one day Madame rode in an
omnibus. That is not correct. But it is true that one day Her
Royal Highness said to the King:--

"'Father, if you will wager ten thousand francs, I will ride in an
omnibus to-morrow.'

"'It's the last thing I should do, my dear,' replied His Majesty.
'You are quite crazy enough to do it.'"

M. de Mesnard adds this reflection: "What the King regarded as
folly was only the appearance of it. There was in Madame a rich
fund of reason, justice, and humanity. Independently of all the
acts of beneficence daily done here, Madame employs still more
considerable sums in the support of young girls in the convents of
Lucon and Mantes, and in several other establishments. There are
in the colleges a large number of young people of families of
modest fortune, whose expenses she pays. The Hospital of Rosny
alone costs Madame from twenty thousand to twenty-five thousand
francs a year. The exhaustless bounty of this august Princess
extends to all. There is no sort of aid that Her Royal Highness
does not take pleasure in according: subscriptions without
interest for her, for concerts that she will not hear, for benefit
performances that she will not see, everything gets a subscription
from her, and it all costs more than is convenient with the
Princess's revenue. Sometimes it happens that her funds are
exhausted, and as her benevolence never is, embarrassment

Apropos of this the Count de Mesnard relates a touching anecdote.
One winter exceedingly cold, the Duchess of Berry was about to
give a fete in the Pavillon de Marsan. During the day she had
supervised the preparations. Things were arranged perfectly, when
all at once her face saddened. She was asked respectfully what had
displeased her. "What icy weather!" she cried. "Poor people may be
dying of cold and hunger to-night while we are taking our
delights. That spoils my pleasure." Then she added emphatically:
"Go call the Marquis de Sassenay" (her Treasurer).

The Marquis came promptly.

"Monsieur," said the good Princess, "you must write instantly to
the twelve mayors of Paris, and in each letter put one thousand
francs to be expended in wood, and distributed this very night to
the poor families of each arrondissement. It is very little, but
it may save some unfortunates."

The Treasurer responded: "Madame, I should be eager to obey the
orders of Her Royal Highness, but she has nothing, or almost
nothing, in her treasury."

A feeling of discontent was strongly depicted on the face of
Madame, who was about to give expression to it, when M. de Mesnard
hastened to say that the funds of the First Equerry were in better
state than those of the Treasurer, and remitted to the latter the
twelve thousand francs, which were distributed to the poor that
evening according to the Princess's wishes.

The Duchess of Berry had the double gift of pleasing and making
herself loved. All the persons of her household, all her
servitors, from the great nobles and great ladies to the domestics
and the chamber-maids, were deeply devoted to her. Poor or rich,
she had attentions for all. Listen to the Count de Mesnard:--

"Madame is incessantly making presents to all who approach her. At
New Year's her apartments are a veritable bazaar furnished from
all the shops of Paris; her provision, made from every quarter, is
universal, from bon-bons to the most precious articles--
everything is there. Madame has thought of each specially; the
people of her own service are not forgotten any more than the
ladies and officers of her household; father, mother, children,
every one, is included in the distribution. The royal family
naturally comes first; next, the numerous relatives of the Palais
Royal, of whom she is very fond; then her family at Naples, which
is also numerous; and finally all of us, masters and servants, we
all have our turn."

No one, we think, has made a more exact portrait of the Duchess of
Berry than the Count Armand de Pontmartin, who is so familiar with
the Restoration. In his truthful and lively Souvenirs d'un vieux
critique, how well he presents "this flower of Ischia or of
Castellamare, transplanted to the banks of the Seine, under the
gray sky of Paris, to this Chateau des Tuileries, which the
revolutions peopled with phantoms before making it a spectre."

How really she was "this good Duchess, so French and so Neapolitan
at once, half Vesuvius, half school-girl, whom nothing must
prevent us from honoring and loving." The chivalric and
sentimental rhetoric of the time, the elegies of the poets, the
noble prose of Chateaubriand, the tearful articles of the royalist
journals, have condemned her to appear forever solemn and sublime.
It was sought to confine her youth between a tomb and a cradle.
But as M. de Pontmartin so finely remarks: "At the end of two or
three years her true nature appears beneath this artificial
drapery. Amusements recommence, distractions abound. The Princess
is no longer a heroine; she is a sprite. The beach of Dieppe sings
her praises better, a thousand times better, than the chorus of
courtiers. She loves pleasure, but she wishes every pleasure to be
a grace or a benefit. She creates a mine of gold under the sand of
the Norman coast; she pacifies political rancor and soothes the
wounds of the grumblers of the Grand Army. She makes popular the
name of Bourbon, which had suffered from so much ingratitude. The
Petit-Chateau, as her delightful household was called, renews the
elegant manners, the exquisite gallantries of the court of Anne of
Austria, and offers to the romancers the models of which Balzac,
later, made so much too free use. There I see our amiable Duchess
in her true element, not on the kind of Sinai on which the writers
of the white flag have perched her, prodigal in their imitations
of Bossuet,--between Jeanne d'Arc and Jeanne Hachette, between
Valentine de Milan and the Widow of Malabar."

To sum up, the Duchess of Berry was to the court of Charles X.
what the Duchess of Burgundy was to that of Louis XIV. Her lovely
youth brightened everything. Let us do her this justice: despite a
character in appearance frivolous, she carried to a kind of
fanaticism the love of France and passion for French glory. There
was one thing that the gracious widow took very seriously,--the
rights of her son. She would have risked a thousand deaths to
defend that child, who represented in her heart the cause of the
fatherland. Where he was concerned there was in the attitude of
this frail young woman something firm and decided. To a sagacious
observer, the amazon was already manifest under the lady of
society. She was like those officers who shine equally at the ball
and on the field of battle. Recognizing in her more than one
imperfection, she cannot be denied either courage, or
intelligence, or heart. By her qualities as by her defects she was
of the race of Henry IV. But she was more frank and more grateful
than the Bearnais. Doubtless she did not have the genius, the
prodigious ability, the fine and profound political sense, of that
great man; but her nature was better, her generosity greater, her
character more sympathetic.



At the accession of Charles X., Louis Philippe, Duke of Orleans,
chief of the younger branch of the Bourbons, born at Paris,
October 6th, 1773, was not yet fifty-seven years old. He married
November 25th, 1809, Marie-Amelie, Princess of the Two Sicilies,
whose father, Ferdinand I., reigned at Naples, and whose mother,
the Queen Marie-Caroline, sister of Marie Antoinette, died at
Venice, September 7th, 1814. Marie-Amelie, born April 26th, 1782,
was forty-two years old when Charles X. ascended the throne. Of
her marriage with the Duke of Orleans there were born five sons
and four daughters:--

1. Ferdinand-Philippe-Louis-Charles-Henri-Roulin, Duke of
Chartres, born at Palermo, September 3d, 1810. (When his father
became King, he took the title of Duke of Orleans, and died from a
fall from his carriage going from the Tuileries to Neuilly on the
Chemin de la Revolte, July 13th, 1842.)

2. Louise-Marie-Therese-Caroline-Elisabeth, Mademoiselle
d'Orleans, born at Palermo the 3d of April, 1812. (She married the
King of the Belgians, Leopold I., August 9th, 1832, and died
October 11th, 1850.)

3. Marie-Christine-Caroline-Adelaide-Francoise-Leopoldine,
Mademoiselle de Valois, born at Palermo, April 12th, 1813. (She
was designated by the name of the Princess Marie, distinguished
herself in the arts, made the famous statue of Jeanne d'Arc,
married October 17th, 1837, the Duke Frederic William of
Wurtemberg, and died January 2d, 1839.)

4. Louis-Charles-Philippe-Raphael, Duke of Nemours, born at Paris,
October 25th, 1814.

5. Marie-Clementine-Caroline-Leopoldine, Mademoiselle de
Beaujolais, born at Neuilly June 3d, 1817. (She was designated by
the name of the Princess Clementine, and married, April 20th,
1843, the Prince August, of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha.)

6. Francois-Ferdinand-Philippe-Louis-Marie, Prince de Joinville,
born at Neuilly, August 14th, 1818.

7. Charles-Ferdinand-Louis-Philippe-Emmanuel, Duke of Penthievre,
born at Paris, January 1st, 1820. (He died July 25th, 1828.)

8. Henri-Eugene-Philippe-Louis, Duke d'Aumale, born at Paris,
January 16th, 1822.

9. Antoine-Marie-Philippe-Louis, Duke of Montpensier, born at
Neuilly, July 5th, 1824.

The Duke of Orleans had a sister who lived with him at the Palais
Royal, and was reputed to be his Egeria. She was Louise-Marie-
Adelaide-Eugenie, Mademoiselle d'Orleans, as she was called under
the Restoration. Born August 23d, 1777, she had been educated by
Madame de Genlis, with her brother, and was said to be attached to
the ideas of the Liberal party. (It was she who in 1830 decided
Louis-Philippe to accept the crown, took the name of Madame
Adelaide, and died, unmarried, some days before the revolution of
the 24th of February, 1848.)

Marie-Amelie, Duchess of Orleans, was the sister of the Prince
Royal of the Two Sicilies, Ferdinand, father of the Duchess of
Berry, and the niece was very fond of her aunt. The two Princesses
were united by other bonds than those of blood. During all her
infancy the Duchess of Berry had lived with her aunt at Palermo
and Naples. Both were descended in direct line from the great
Empress, Maria Theresa. Both had greatly loved the Queen Marie-
Caroline, of whom one was the granddaughter, the other the
daughter. Both professed great admiration for the Martyr-Queen,
Marie Antoinette, of whom one was the grand-niece, the other the
niece. The devotion and family feeling of the Duchess of Orleans
won every one's sympathy for her, and the Duchess of Berry had a
respectful attachment for her. Their relations were as constant as
they were friendly. There existed between the Palais Royal and the
Pavilion de Marsan, dwellings so near each other, a friendship and
neighborliness that left nothing to be desired.

The Duke of Bordeaux and his sister, Mademoiselle, were very fond
of their little Orleans cousins. There was a certain pleasure in
thinking that the Duke of Chartres might one day become the
husband of Mademoiselle. This young Prince, already very amiable
and sympathetic, was the favorite of the Duchess of Berry. She
said to herself that he would be the son-in-law of her dreams.
Every time that she went to the Palais Royal, where her visits
were incessant, she was received with transports of affection.
Nowhere did she enjoy herself more. Louis-Philippe treated her
with deference and courtesy. She believed sincerely in his
friendship, and any one who had shown in her presence the least
doubt of the loyalty of her aunt's husband would not have ventured
to complete the phrase expressing it. The Duchess of Berry was to
preserve this confidence until the Revolution of 1830.

Charles X. had a kindly feeling, founded on very real sympathy,
for the Duke of Orleans and all his family. During the Emigration,
as under the reign of Louis XVIII., he had always maintained very
cordial relations with the Duke, and had tried to efface the bad
memories of Philippe Egalite. Charles X. was as confiding as Louis
XVIII. was distrustful. Optimist, like all good natures, the new
King would not believe evil. He attributed to others his own good
qualities. Louis XVIII. always had suspicions as to the Duke of
Orleans. "Since his return," he said, in 1821, "the Duke of
Orleans is the chief of a party without seeming to be. His name is
a threatening flag, his palace a rallying-place. He makes no stir,
but I can see that he makes progress. This activity without
movement is disquieting. How can you undertake to check the march
of a man who makes no step?" Every time the Duke attempted to
bring up the question of exchanging his title of Most Serene
Highness for that of Royal Highness, the King stubbornly resisted.
"The Duke of Orleans is quite near enough to the throne already,"
he replied to all solicitations. "I shall be careful to bring him
no nearer."

This refusal was very depressing to the Duke. One circumstance
rendered it still more annoying. As a king's daughter, his wife
was a Royal Highness. By this title she enjoyed honors denied to
her husband. When she was present at court with him she was first
announced, both doors of the salon being opened: "Her Royal
Highness, Madame the Duchess of Orleans." Then one door having
been closed, the usher announced: "His Most Serene Highness,
Monseigneur the Duke of Orleans." This distinction was very
disagreeable to the Duke. Charles X. hastened to abolish it.
September 21st, 1824, he accorded the title of Royal Highness to
the Duke of Orleans, and three days later he conferred this title,
so much desired, on the children of the sister of the Duke. The
latter showed his great pleasure. Though he might favor liberalism
and give pledges to democracy, he remained a Prince to the marrow
of his bones. He loved not only money, but honors, and attached
extreme importance to questions of etiquette. The memories of his
childhood and his early youth bound him to the old regime and
despite appearances to the contrary, this Prince, so dear to the
bourgeois and to the National Guard, was always by his tastes and
aspirations a man of Versailles.

Charles X. would gladly have said to the Duke of Orleans, as
Augustus to Cinna, speaking of his benefits:--

"Je t'en avais comble, je t'en veux accabler."

He was not content with according him a title of honor; he gave
him something much more solid, by causing to be returned to him,
with the consent of the Chambers, the former domain and privileges
of the House of Orleans. This was not easy. It required not only
the good-will of the Chateau, but the vote of the Chambers, and
the majority was hardly favorable to the Duke of Orleans, of whom
it cherished the same suspicions as Louis XVIII. The Duchess of
Berry pleaded warmly the cause of her aunt's husband, and
conspired with Charles X. against the Right, the members of which
in this case believed it a service to royalty to disobey the King.
The opposition to the project seemed likely to be so strong, that
the government was obliged to commit a sort of moral violence upon
the Chamber of Deputies. The King directed his ministers to join
in some way the question of the apanages of the House of Orleans
with the disposition of his own civil list. The King thought that
the sentiments of the Chamber for himself and his family would
make them adopt the whole en bloc. It was a device of his
kindliness, a sort of smuggling in the King's coach, as was said
by M. de Labourdonnaye. A large number of deputies demanded a
division of the question. The ministers had to make great efforts
and mount the tribune many times to defend the measure, which
passed only by a very feeble majority. The Duke of Orleans, now at
the very height of his desires, thanked Charles X. with effusion.

Nor was this all; from the millions of indemnity to the emigres,
the Duke of Orleans drew 14,000,000 francs. The opposition chiefs
of the Left imitated the Prince and profited largely by the law
that they had opposed and condemned. The Duke of Choiseul obtained
1,100,000 francs, the Duke of La Rochefoucauld-Liancourt 1,400,000
francs, M. Gaetan de La Rochefoucauld 1,429,000 francs, General
Lafayette himself 1,450,000 francs.

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