A man full of good qualities, brave, disinterested, honourable, a good husband, father, and friend, full of enthusiastic plans and aspirations for the regeneration of society and the improvement of everybody, La Fayette was a failure. He did more harm than good, for, like many other would-be popular leaders, he had gifts and capacity enough to excite and arouse the passions of the populace, but not to guide or control them.One morning the concierge of an isolated house there was asked by a tall, thin man in black, with a strange look whether there was not a pavilion in the garden to let.
But he did not at that time recall him to Paris, preferring that he should be a satrap at Bordeaux rather than a conspirator in the Convention; and remarking contemptuously—“What are you about yourself? I am a police officer, and I arrest you in the King’s name as a criminal.”To which astounding assertion she replied in those terms of flattery in which alone it was safe to address the individuals who “were not tyrants,” and whose motto was “Liberty, equality, and fraternity.”
“The poor Countess! I am representing her reading a romance with the arms of the King. She is the only person who holds to the King now.”“Nor I either,” said the police officer, laughing; “but why then did you say you were the devil, and what are you and your companions doing?
Mme. de Genlis in her “Memoirs” denies this story, but goes on to say with that half candour, which is perhaps the most deceptive, that she cannot but confess that her ambition overruled her in this matter; that she thought what was said about Mme. de Montesson and M. de Valence might not be true, or if it were, this marriage would put an end to the liaison; and what seems contradictory, that she believed the reason her aunt was so eager for the marriage was, that she thought it would be a means of attaching to her for ever the man she loved. But that her daughter had great confidence in her, and would be guided by her in the way she should behave.The alliances with the House of Savoy were much more popular with the court than that with the House of Austria and Lorraine,  and caused continual jealousies and disputes. Foreseeing that such would be the case, Louis XV., before the marriage of the Comte de Provence, thought it necessary to caution him on the subject. Louis XVIII. gives in his memoirs  the following account of the interview:—
This elegant trick was traced to the Duc de Chartres and his friends; and the good temper and general demeanour of Mme. de Genlis on this provoking occasion struck the Duke with  admiration and compunction. Philippe-égalité, contemptible as his disposition undoubtedly was, had also been very badly brought up, and when he was fifteen his father had given him a mistress who was afterwards notorious as Mlle. Duthé; he was always surrounded with a group of the fastest young men at court, the Chevalier de Coigny, MM. de Fitz-James, de Conflans, &c.
“And why not grant it?”
The Chasseurs de Lorraine and regiment de Flandre having been sent to Versailles on account of the crimes and murders daily committed there, the gardes-du-corps gave them a splendid banquet in the Salle de Comédie, to which all the troops, including the gardes-nationales, were invited.She had had great success in the number of important pictures she painted at Naples; and her  career at Rome was equally prosperous. She had plenty of money now, and nobody to meddle with it, and if it had not been for the constant anxiety about France she would have been perfectly happy. But French news was difficult to get and bad when it was obtained.
Gregory Orloff became her all-powerful favourite, and although she would never agree to his preposterous ambition and allow him to be married to her and crowned Emperor, she loaded the Orloff family with riches and honours, which they retained after other favourites had succeeded the gigantic guardsman in her affections.AFTER her confinement the Maréchale d’Etrée came to see Félicité, brought her a present of beautiful Indian stuffs, and said that her parents, M. and Mme. de Puisieux, would have the pleasure of receiving her when she was recovered. Also that Mme. de Puisieux would present her at Versailles.
On those wild autumn days she would sit in the great tapestried room working while her mother read and discoursed to her of the great truths of religion, the power and mercy of God, and the faith and courage which alone could support them amidst the trials and perils gathering around them; of the sufferings and victories of the saints and martyrs; of the swiftly passing trials and shadows of this world, the glory and immortality of the life beyond. And Pauline hung upon her mother’s words, for  she knew that they might be the last she would ever hear from that beloved voice, and her courage failed when she tried to tell her of her approaching exile. Mme. d’Ayen would every now and then address her counsels and instructions to the little grand-daughter who adored her; and the mother and daughter would unite their prayers amidst the rushing of the tempests or the clamours of the Jacobin club set up close to the chateau. All around was changed and terrible; they thought anxiously of those absent, and looked sadly at the church where they no longer went, as the curé was assermenté; and as the time drew near for her mother’s departure Pauline continually resolved to tell her of her own, but she could never bring herself to do so.She and Mme. de la Fayette used also to visit the prisons, which in those days required no little courage, owing to the squalor, cruelty, and misery with which they were thus brought into contact.详情
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