Between him and the royalists were the September massacres, rivers of blood, crimes and blasphemies without end.
He was, in fact, a visionary, credulous enthusiast, with an overweening vanity and belief in his own importance; obstinate and self-confident to a degree that prevented his ever seeing the fallacy of his views. His own conceit, and the flattery and adulation of his family and friends, made him think that he, and no other, was the man to save and direct France. His very virtues and attractions  were mischievous in converting others to his unpractical and dangerous views.He and Vergennes were said to have wasted the revenues of France, but at any rate he spent money like a gentleman, and when, in 1787, he was dismissed from office, he did not possess an écu.And they proceeded to tell her a number of stories, many of which she did not believe, until she found out to her cost that they were true; but which, nevertheless, filled her mind with uneasy suspicions; while her mother sat by with tears in her eyes, repenting of the new folly by which she had again ruined the happiness of her child.
Louis XV. was upon the throne; the manners and customs of the ancien régime were in full force, though mitigated and softened by the growing enlightenment and liberalism which were spreading not only in the literary and professional circles, but amongst the younger generation in all classes.
“See this absurd Valence, on his knees to me, asking for the hand of my niece.”
For some years Mme. de Genlis had been dame pour accompagner la Duchesse de Chartres, though it was suggested that it was more the Duke than the Duchess whom she accompanied; but she now exchanged this designation for that of “governess to the Princesses of Orléans.” The Duchess, who had always longed for a daughter, was delighted with these two and Mme. de Genlis, who wished to have charge of them from the first.Térèzia was much better off at the Carmes, for she was no longer au secret, but mixed in the day with the rest of the prisoners and shared a cell at night with the Duchesse d’Aiguillon and Joséphine Vicomtesse de Beauharnais, whose husband, a revolutionary general and a thoroughly contemptible character, had lately been guillotined by his republican friends.
MARIE ANTOINETTEBut the condition of Pauline, brought up in all the luxury and magnificence of the h?tel de Noailles, and suddenly cast adrift in a country the language and habits of which were unknown to her, with very little money and no means of getting more when that was gone, was terrifying indeed. She did not know where anything should be bought, nor what it should cost; money seemed to her to melt in her hands. She consulted her husband, but he could not help her. If she tried to make her own dresses, she only spoilt the material, as one can well imagine. Their three servants, the German boy, a Dutch woman, and after a little while an English nurse, could not understand each other, but managed to quarrel perpetually and keep up the most dreadful chatter. Her child, this time a son, was born on March 30th, Easter Day. She had looked forward to celebrating that festival at  the new church then to be opened, at which many of the young people were to receive their first Communion. Pauline, like all the rest of the French community, had been intensely interested and occupied in the preparations. Flowers were begged from sympathising friends to decorate the altar, white veils and dresses were made for the young girls by their friends, all, even those whose faith had been tainted and whose lives had been irreligious, joining in this touching and solemn festival, which recalled to them their own land, the memories of their childhood, and the recollection of those they had lost.
The news spread through the prison and caused general grief. Some of the prisoners got out of the way because they could not bear to see them pass, but most stood in a double row through which they walked. Amidst the murmurs of respect and sorrow a voice cried out—
“Really,” she said, “this question seems to me very difficult to solve. A Queen go to see the sun rise! I do not know whether in the days of Louis XIV. it would not have been thought——”详情
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