This was a severe disappointment to the Duke, who had already begun to occupy himself with his son’s future, but the Duchess, whose saintly mind had been tormented with misgivings about the future life of the boy whose prospects then seemed so brilliant and so full of temptations, and who did not probably consider the Duke, her husband, a very promising or trustworthy guide and example, resigned herself to the loss of the heir, whom she had even in her prayers entreated God to take out of this world rather than allow him to be tainted by the vice and corruption with which she foresaw he would be surrounded in it.
The infatuation of Barras for her began also to cool. He left off going to her as at one time to  consult her about everything. If he wished to see her, or she to see him, she must go to him at the Luxembourg.When Pitt heard of it he remarked, “That woman is capable of closing the gates of hell.”
Countless were the inconsistencies of the faddists of the party to which she belonged, and in the crotchets of which she had educated her daughter, but what duty or reason or “satisfaction” could there be in such a calculation as this?Ne répétaient que le nom de Lisette,
At last, however, it was finished, and she stood in the presence of Louis XV. He was no longer young, but she thought him handsome and imposing. He had intensely blue eyes, a short but not brusque manner of speaking, and something royal and majestic about his whole bearing which distinguished him from other men. He talked a great deal to Mme. de Puisieux, and made complimentary remarks about Félicité, after which they were presented to the Queen, who was lying in a reclining chair, already suffering from the languor of the fatal illness caused by the recent death of her son, the Dauphin. Then came the presentation to Mesdames, and to the “Children of France,” and in the evening they went to the “jeu de Mesdames.”For more than a year she did not dare to pass the Palais Royal or to cross the place Louis XV., too many phantoms seemed to haunt and reproach her for the past.He was executed as he foretold.
Louveciennes  was near Marly and Versailles. The chateau built by Louis XV. was in a delightful park, but there was a melancholy feeling about the whole place.
“Lost? Certainly not. I have only just found you, and shall not let you go. I am going to take you to dine with me, my dear Chevalier de ——”They were kept a fortnight at the Hague by the storms and shipwrecks going on, but early in January they decided to embark for England. The cold was fearful, and, wrapped in fur cloaks, fur boots and caps, they set off to drive seven or eight leagues perched on the top of open baggage waggons, seated upon the boxes, so unsafe that the Baron de Breteuil, who was with them, fell off and put his wrist out.But nobody was afraid of Louis XVI., and when he did command he was by no means sure of obedience. He had ascended the throne with the most excellent intentions, abolished all sorts of abuses, and wanted to be the father of his people. But a father who cannot be respected is very likely not to be loved, and a ruler who cannot inspire fear cannot inspire respect either, and is not so fit to be a leader as one who possesses fewer virtues and more strength and courage.
“What the devil of a story are you telling me, Chevalier de ——?” cried his tormentor. “Where did you have supper last night? I believe you have drunk too much.”The arrangement proved entirely satisfactory. Lisette went about all day with M. Denon, in gondolas, and to see everything—churches, pictures, palaces; every one who knows Venice even now, knows it as a place of enchantment, unlike anything else on earth; and in those days the Doge still reigned, modern desecrations and eyesores were not, and the beauty of the life and surroundings of the Queen of the Adriatic was supreme.
Their aunt, the Maréchale de Mouchy, called then the Comtesse de Noailles, was about this time appointed first lady of honour to the Archduchess Marie Antoinette of Austria, whose approaching marriage with the Dauphin was the great event of the day; and was sent with the other distinguished persons selected to meet her at the frontier. This alliance was very unpopular with the royal family and court, who disliked Austria and declared that country to be the enemy of France, to whom her interests were always opposed. Madame Adéla?de especially, made no secret of her displeasure, and when M. Campan came to take her orders before setting off for the frontier with the household of the Dauphin, she said that she disapproved of the marriage of her nephew with the Archduchess, and if she had any order to give it would not be to fetch an Austrian.
The lad understood, blushed crimson, and retired, profoundly grateful for being let off so easily. Neither was the lesson lost upon him; after this he played no more.“Monsieur, I have just been hearing so much nonsense about this portrait, that really I don’t know whether I have been working like an artist or a sign-painter.
To which Lisette replied that she did not know M. L—— at all except by name; and the matter ended.详情
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