The Memoirs of Marie Antoinette, entire
Madame Campan

Part 8 out of 8

hastily, and these men read us a decree of the Commune directing that we
should be searched. My poor brother was asleep; they tore him from his
bed under the pretext of examining it. My mother took him up, shivering
with cold. All they took was a shopkeeper's card which my mother had
happened to keep, a stick of sealing-wax from my aunt, and from me 'une
sacre coeur de Jesus' and a prayer for the welfare of France. The search
lasted from half-past ten at night till four o'clock in the morning."

The next visit of the officials was to Madame Elisabeth alone; they found
in her room a hat which the King had worn during his imprisonment, and
which she had begged him to give her as a souvenir. They took it from
her in spite of her entreaties. "It was suspicious," said the cruel and
contemptible tyrants.

The Dauphin became ill with fever, and it was long before his mother,
who watched by him night and day, could obtain medicine or advice for
him. When Thierry was at last allowed to see him his treatment relieved
the most violent symptoms, but, says Madame Royale, "his health was never
reestablished. Want of air and exercise did him great mischief, as well
as the kind of life which this poor child led, who at eight years of age
passed his days amidst the tears of his friends, and in constant anxiety
and agony."

While the Dauphin's health was causing his family such alarm, they were
deprived of the services of Tison's wife, who became ill, and finally
insane, and was removed to the Hotel Dieu, where her ravings were
reported to the Assembly and made the ground of accusations against the
royal prisoners.

[This woman, troubled by remorse, lost her reason, threw herself at
the feet of the Queen, implored her pardon, and disturbed the Temple
for many days with the sight and the noise of her madness. The
Princesses, forgetting the denunciations of this unfortunate being,
in consideration of her repentance and insanity, watched over her by
turns, and deprived themselves of their own food to relieve her.--
LAMARTINE, "History of the Girondists," vol. iii., p.140.]

No woman took her place, and the Princesses themselves made their beds,
swept their rooms, and waited upon the Queen.

Far worse punishments than menial work were prepared for them. On 3d
July a decree of the Convention ordered that the Dauphin should be
separated from his family and "placed in the most secure apartment of the
Tower." As soon as he heard this decree pronounced, says his sister, "he
threw himself into my mother's arms, and with violent cries entreated not
to be parted from her. My mother would not let her son go, and she
actually defended against the efforts of the officers the bed in which
she had placed him. The men threatened to call up the guard and use
violence. My mother exclaimed that they had better kill her than tear
her child from her. At last they threatened our lives, and my mother's
maternal tenderness forced her to the sacrifice. My aunt and I dressed
the child, for my poor mother had no longer strength for anything.
Nevertheless, when he was dressed, she took him up in her arms and
delivered him herself to the officers, bathing him with her tears,
foreseeing that she was never to behold him again. The poor little
fellow embraced us all tenderly, and was carried away in a flood of
tears. My mother's horror was extreme when she heard that Simon, a
shoemaker by trade, whom she had seen as a municipal officer in the
Temple, was the person to whom her child was confided . . . . The
officers now no longer remained in my mother's apartment; they only came
three times a day to bring our meals and examine the bolts and bars of
our windows; we were locked up together night and day. We often went up
to the Tower, because my brother went, too, from the other side. The
only pleasure my mother enjoyed was seeing him through a crevice as he
passed at a distance. She would watch for hours together to see him as
he passed. It was her only hope, her only thought."

The Queen was soon deprived even of this melancholy consolation. On 1st
August, 1793, it was resolved that she should be tried. Robespierre
opposed the measure, but Barere roused into action that deep-rooted
hatred of the Queen which not even the sacrifice of her life availed to
eradicate. "Why do the enemies of the Republic still hope for success?"
he asked. "Is it because we have too long forgotten the crimes of the
Austrian? The children of Louis the Conspirator are hostages for the
Republic . . .but behind them lurks a woman who has been the cause of
all the disasters of France."

At two o'clock on the morning of the following day, the municipal
officers "awoke us," says Madame Royale, "to read to my mother the decree
of the Convention, which ordered her removal to the Conciergerie,

[The Conciergerie was originally, as its name implies, the porter's
lodge of the ancient Palace of Justice, and became in time a prison,
from the custom of confining there persons who had committed
trifling offences about the Court.]

preparatory to her trial. She heard it without visible emotion, and
without speaking a single word. My aunt and I immediately asked to be
allowed to accompany my mother, but this favour was refused us. All the
time my mother was making up a bundle of clothes to take with her, these
officers never left her. She was even obliged to dress herself before
them, and they asked for her pockets, taking away the trifles they
contained. She embraced me, charging me to keep up my spirits and my
courage, to take tender care of my aunt, and obey her as a second mother.
She then threw herself into my aunt's arms, and recommended her children
to her care; my aunt replied to her in a whisper, and she was then
hurried away. In leaving the Temple she struck her head against the
wicket, not having stooped low enough.

[Mathieu, the gaoler, used to say, "I make Madame Veto and her
sister and daughter, proud though they are, salute me; for the door
is so low they cannot pass without bowing."]

The officers asked whether she had hurt herself. 'No,' she replied,
'nothing can hurt me now."

The Last Moments of Marie Antoinette.

We have already seen what changes had been made in the Temple. Marie
Antoinette had been separated from her sister, her daughter, and her Son,
by virtue of a decree which ordered the trial and exile of the last
members of the family of the Bourbons. She had been removed to the
Conciergerie, and there, alone in a narrow prison, she was reduced to
what was strictly necessary, like the other prisoners. The imprudence of
a devoted friend had rendered her situation still more irksome.
Michonnis, a member of the municipality, in whom she had excited a warm
interest, was desirous of introducing to her a person who, he said,
wished to see her out of curiosity. This man, a courageous emigrant,
threw to her a carnation, in which was enclosed a slip of very fine paper
with these words: "Your friends are ready,"--false hope, and equally
dangerous for her who received it, and for him who gave it! Michonnis
and the emigrant were detected and forthwith apprehended; and the
vigilance exercised in regard to the unfortunate prisoner became from
that day more rigorous than ever.

[The Queen was lodged in a room called the council chamber, which
was considered as the moat unwholesome apartment in the Conciergerie
on account of its dampness and the bad smells by which it was
continually affected. Under pretence of giving her a person to wait
upon her they placed near her a spy,--a man of a horrible
countenance and hollow, sepulchral voice. This wretch, whose name
was Barassin, was a robber and murderer by profession. Such was the
chosen attendant on the Queen of France! A few days before her
trial this wretch was removed and a gendarme placed in her chamber,
who watched over her night and day, and from whom she was not
separated, even when in bed, but by a ragged curtain. In this
melancholy abode Marie Antoinette had no other dress than an old
black gown, stockings with holes, which she was forced to mend every
day; and she was entirely destitute of shoes.--DU BROCA.]

Gendarmes were to mount guard incessantly at the door of her prison, and
they were expressly forbidden to answer anything that she might say to

That wretch Hebert, the deputy of Chaumette, and editor of the disgusting
paper Pere Duchesne, a writer of the party of which Vincent, Ronsin,
Varlet, and Leclerc were the leaders--Hebert had made it his particular
business to torment the unfortunate remnant of the dethroned family.
He asserted that the family of the tyrant ought not to be better treated
than any sans-culotte family; and he had caused a resolution to be passed
by which the sort of luxury in which the prisoners in the Temple were
maintained was to be suppressed. They were no longer to be allowed
either poultry or pastry; they were reduced to one sort of aliment for
breakfast, and to soup or broth and a single dish for dinner, to two
dishes for supper, and half a bottle of wine apiece. Tallow candles were
to be furnished instead of wag, pewter instead of silver plate, and delft
ware instead of porcelain. The wood and water carriers alone were
permitted to enter their room, and that only accompanied by two
commissioners. Their food was to be introduced to them by means of a
turning box. The numerous establishment was reduced to a cook and an
assistant, two men-servants, and a woman-servant to attend to the linen.

As soon as this resolution was passed, Hebert had repaired to the Temple
and inhumanly taken away from the unfortunate prisoners even the most
trifling articles to which they attached a high value. Eighty Louis
which Madame Elisabeth had in reserve, and which she had received from
Madame de Lamballe, were also taken away. No one is more dangerous, more
cruel, than the man without acquirements, without education, clothed with
a recent authority. If, above all, he possess a base nature, if, like
Hebert, who was check-taker at the door of a theatre, and embezzled money
out of the receipts, he be destitute of natural morality, and if he leap
all at once from the mud of his condition into power, he is as mean as he
is atrocious. Such was Hebert in his conduct at the Temple. He did not
confine himself to the annoyances which we have mentioned. He and some
others conceived the idea of separating the young Prince from his aunt
and sister. A shoemaker named Simon and his wife were the instructors to
whom it was deemed right to consign him for the purpose of giving him a
sans-cullotte education. Simon and his wife were shut up in the Temple,
and, becoming prisoners with the unfortunate child, were directed to
bring him up in their own way. Their food was better than that of the
Princesses, and they shared the table of the municipal commissioners who
were on duty. Simon was permitted to go down, accompanied by two
commissioners, to the court of the Temple, for the purpose of giving the
Dauphin a little exercise.

Hebert conceived the infamous idea of wringing from this boy revelations
to criminate his unhappy mother. Whether this wretch imputed to the
child false revelations, or abused his, tender age and his condition to
extort from him what admissions soever he pleased, he obtained a
revolting deposition; and as the youth of the Prince did not admit of his
being brought before the tribunal, Hebert appeared and detailed the
infamous particulars which he had himself either dictated or invented.

It was on the 14th of October that Marie Antoinette appeared before her
judges. Dragged before the sanguinary tribunal by inexorable
revolutionary vengeance, she appeared there without any chance of
acquittal, for it was not to obtain her acquittal that the Jacobins had
brought her before it. It was necessary, however, to make some charges.
Fouquier therefore collected the rumours current among the populace ever
since the arrival of the Princess in France, and, in the act of
accusation, he charged her with having plundered the exchequer, first for
her pleasures, and afterwards in order to transmit money to her brother,
the Emperor. He insisted on the scenes of the 5th and 6th of October,
and on the dinners of the Life Guards, alleging that she had at that
period framed a plot, which obliged the people to go to Versailles to
frustrate it. He afterwards accused her of having governed her husband,
interfered in the choice of ministers, conducted the intrigues with the
deputies gained by the Court, prepared the journey to Varennes, provoked
the war, and transmitted to the enemy's generals all our plans of
campaign. He further accused her of having prepared a new conspiracy on
the 10th of August, of having on that day caused the people to be fired
upon, having induced her husband to defend himself by taxing him with
cowardice; lastly, of having never ceased to plot and correspond with
foreigners since her captivity in the Temple, and of having there treated
her young son as King. We here observe how, on the terrible day of long-
deferred vengeance, when subjects at length break forth and strike such
of their princes as have not deserved the blow, everything is distorted
and converted into crime. We see how the profusion and fondness for
pleasure, so natural to a young princess, how her attachment to her
native country, her influence over her husband, her regrets, always more
indiscreet in a woman than a man, nay, even her bolder courage, appeared
to their inflamed or malignant imaginations.

It was necessary to produce witnesses. Lecointre, deputy of Versailles,
who had seen what had passed on the 5th and 6th of October, Hebert, who
had frequently visited the Temple, various clerks in the ministerial
offices, and several domestic servants of the old Court were summoned..
Admiral d'Estaing, formerly commandant of the guard of Versailles;
Manuel, the ex-procureur of the Commune; Latour-du-Pin, minister of war
in 1789; the venerable Bailly, who, it was said, had been, with La
Fayette, an accomplice in the journey to Varennes; lastly, Valaze one of
the Girondists destined to the scaffold, were taken from their prisons
and compelled to give evidence.

No precise fact was elicited. Some had seen the Queen in high spirits
when the Life Guards testified their attachment; others had seen her
vexed and dejected while being conducted to Paris, or brought back from
Varennes; these had been present at splendid festivities which must have
cost enormous sums; those had heard it said in the ministerial offices
that the Queen was adverse to the sanction of the decrees. An ancient
waiting-woman of the Queen had heard the Duc de Coigny say, in 1788, that
the Emperor had already received two hundred millions from France to make
war upon the Turks.

The cynical Hebert, being brought before the unfortunate Queen, dared at
length to prefer the charges wrung from the young Prince. He said that
Charles Capet had given Simon an account of the journey to Varennes, and
mentioned La Fayette and Bailly as having cooperated in it. He then
added that this boy was addicted to odious and very premature vices for
his age; that he had been surprised by Simon, who, on questioning him,
learned that he derived from his mother the vices in which he indulged.
Hebert said that it was no doubt the intention of Marie Antoinette, by
weakening thus, early the physical constitution of her son, to secure to
herself the means of ruling him in case he should ever ascend the throne.
The rumours which had been whispered for twenty years by a malicious
Court had given the people a most unfavourable opinion of the morals of
the Queen. That audience, however, though wholly Jacobin, was disgusted
at the accusations of Hebert.

[Can there be a more infernal invention than that made against the.
Queen by Hdbert,-namely, that she had had an improper intimacy with
her own son? He made use of this sublime idea of which he boasted
in order to prejudice the women against the Queen, and to prevent
her execution from exciting pity. It had, however, no other effect
than that of disgusting all parties.--PRUDHOMME.]

He nevertheless persisted in supporting them.

[Hebert did not long survive her in whose sufferings he had taken
such an infamous part. He was executed on 26th March, 1794.]

The unhappy mother made no reply. Urged a new to explain herself, she
said, with extraordinary emotion, "I thought that human nature would
excuse me from answering such an imputation, but I appeal from it to the
heart of every mother here present." This noble and simple reply
affected all who heard it.

In the depositions of the witnesses, however, all was not so bitter for
Marie Antoinette. The brave D'Estaing, whose enemy she had been, would
not say anything to inculpate her, and spoke only of the courage which
she had shown on the 5th and 6th of October, and of the noble resolution
which she had expressed, to die beside her husband rather than fly.
Manuel, in spite of his enmity to the Court during the time of the
Legislative Assembly, declared that he could not say anything against the
accused. When the venerable Bailly was brought forward, who formerly so
often predicted to the Court the calamities which its imprudence must
produce, he appeared painfully affected; and when he was asked if he knew
the wife of Capet, "Yes," said he, bowing respectfully, "I have known
Madame." He declared that he knew nothing, and maintained that the
declarations extorted from the young Prince relative to the journey to
Varennes were false. In recompense for his deposition he was assailed
with outrageous reproaches, from which he might judge what fate would
soon be awarded to himself.

In all the evidence there appeared but two serious facts, attested by
Latour-du-Pin and Valaze, who deposed to them because they could not help
it. Latour-du-Pin declared that Marie Antoinette had applied to him for
an accurate statement of the armies while he was minister of war.
Valaze, always cold, but respectful towards misfortune, would not say
anything to criminate the accused; yet he could not help declaring that,
as a member of the commission of twenty-four, being charged with his
colleagues to examine the papers found at the house of Septeuil,
treasurer of the civil list, he had seen bonds for various sums signed
Antoinette, which was very natural; but he added that he had also seen a
letter in which the minister requested the King to transmit to the Queen
the copy of the plan of campaign which he had in his hands. The most
unfavourable construction was immediately put upon these two facts, the
application for a statement of the armies, and the communication of the
plan of campaign; and it was concluded that they could not be wanted for
any other purpose than to be sent to the enemy, for it was not supposed
that a young princess should turn her attention, merely for her own
satisfaction, to matters of administration and military, plans. After
these depositions, several others were received respecting the expenses
of the Court, the influence of the Queen in public affairs, the scene of
the 10th of August, and what had passed in the Temple; and the most vague
rumours and most trivial circumstances were eagerly caught at as proofs.

Marie Antoinette frequently repeated, with presence of mind and firmness,
that there was no precise fact against her;

[At first the Queen, consulting only her own sense of dignity, had
resolved on her trial to make no other reply to the questions of her
judges than "Assassinate me as you have already assassinated my
husband!" Afterwards, however, she determined to follow the example
of the King, exert herself in her defence, and leave her judges
without any excuse or pretest for putting her to death.--WEBER'S
"Memoirs of Marie Antoinette."]

that, besides, though the wife of Louis XVI., she was not answerable for
any of the acts of his reign. Fouquier nevertheless declared her to be
sufficiently convicted; Chaveau-Lagarde made unavailing efforts to defend
her; and the unfortunate Queen was condemned to suffer the same fate as
her husband.

Conveyed back to the Conciergerie, she there passed in tolerable
composure the night preceding her execution, and, on the morning of the
following day, the 16th of October,

[The Queen, after having written and prayed, slept soundly for some
hours. On her waking, Bault's daughter dressed her and adjusted her
hair with more neatness than on other days. Marie Antoinette wore a
white gown, a white handkerchief covered her shoulders, a white cap
her hair; a black ribbon bound this cap round her temples .... The
cries, the looks, the laughter, the jests of the people overwhelmed
her with humiliation; her colour, changing continually from purple
to paleness, betrayed her agitation .... On reaching the scaffold
she inadvertently trod on the executioner's foot. "Pardon me," she
said, courteously. She knelt for an instant and uttered a half-
audible prayer; then rising and glancing towards the towers of the
Temple, "Adieu, once again, my children," she said; "I go to rejoin
your father."--LAMARTINE.]

she was conducted, amidst a great concourse of the populace, to the fatal
spot where, ten months before, Louis XVI. had perished. She listened
with calmness to the exhortations of the ecclesiastic who accompanied
her, and cast an indifferent look at the people who had so often
applauded her beauty and her grace, and who now as warmly applauded her
execution. On reaching the foot of the scaffold she perceived the
Tuileries, and appeared to be moved; but she hastened to ascend the fatal
ladder, and gave herself up with courage to the executioner.

[Sorrow had blanched the Queen's once beautiful hair; but her
features and air still commanded the admiration of all who beheld
her; her cheeks, pale and emaciated, were occasionally tinged with a
vivid colour at the mention of those she had lost. When led out to
execution, she was dressed in white; she had cut off her hair with
her own hands. Placed in a tumbrel, with her arms tied behind her,
she was taken by a circuitous route to the Place de la Revolution,
and she ascended the scaffold with a firm and dignified step, as if
she had been about to take her place on a throne by the side of her

The infamous wretch exhibited her head to the people, as he was
accustomed to do when he had sacrificed an illustrious victim.

The Last Separation.--Execution of Madame Elisabeth.
--Death of the Dauphin.

The two Princesses left in the Temple were now almost inconsolable; they
spent days and nights in tears, whose only alleviation was that they were
shed together. "The company of my aunt, whom I loved so tenderly," said
Madame Royale, "was a great comfort to me. But alas! all that I loved
was perishing around me, and I was soon to lose her also . . . . In
the beginning of September I had an illness caused solely by my anxiety
about my mother; I never heard a drum beat that I did not expect another
3d of September."--[when the head of the Princesse de Lamballe was
carried to the Temple.]

In the course of the month the rigour of their captivity was much
increased. The Commune ordered that they should only have one room; that
Tison (who had done the heaviest of the household work for them, and
since the kindness they showed to his insane wife had occasionally given
them tidings of the Dauphin) should be imprisoned in the turret; that
they should be supplied with only the barest necessaries; and that no one
should enter their room save to carry water and firewood. Their quantity
of firing was reduced, and they were not allowed candles. They were also
forbidden to go on the leads, and their large sheets were taken away,
"lest--notwithstanding the gratings!--they should escape from the

On 8th October, 1793, Madame Royale was ordered to go downstairs, that
she might be interrogated by some municipal officers. "My aunt, who was
greatly affected, would have followed, but they stopped her. She asked
whether I should be permitted to come up again; Chaumette assured her
that I should. 'You may trust,' said he, 'the word of an honest
republican. She shall return.' I soon found myself in my brother's
room, whom I embraced tenderly; but we were torn asunder, and I was
obliged to go into another room.--[This was the last time the brother and
sister met] . . . Chaumette then questioned me about a thousand
shocking things of which they accused my mother and aunt; I was so
indignant at hearing such horrors that, terrified as I was, I could not
help exclaiming that they were infamous falsehoods.

"But in spite of my tears they still pressed their questions. There were
some things which I did not comprehend, but of which I understood enough
to make me weep with indignation and horror . . . . They then asked
me about Varennes, and other things. I answered as well as I could
without implicating anybody. I had always heard my parents say that it
were better to die than to implicate anybody." When the examination was
over the Princess begged to be allowed to join her mother, but Chaumette
said he could not obtain permission for her to do so. She was then
cautioned to say nothing about her examination to her aunt, who was next
to appear before them. Madame Elisabeth, her niece declares, "replied
with still more contempt to their shocking questions."

The only intimation of the Queen's fate which her daughter and her
sister-in-law were allowed to receive was through hearing her sentence
cried by the newsman. But "we could not persuade ourselves that she was
dead," writes Madame Royale. "A hope, so natural to the unfortunate,
persuaded us that she must have been saved. For eighteen months I
remained in this cruel suspense. We learnt also by the cries of the
newsman the death of the Duc d'Orleans.

[The Duo d'Orleans, the early and interested propagator of the
Revolution, was its next victim. Billaud Varennes said in the
Convention: "The time has come when all the conspirators should be
known and struck. I demand that we no longer pass over in silence a
man whom we seem to have forgotten, despite the numerous facts
against him. I demand that D'ORLEANS be sent to the Revolutionary
Tribunal." The Convention, once his hireling adulators, unanimously
supported the proposal. In vain he alleged his having been
accessory to the disorders of 5th October, his support of the revolt
on 10th August, 1792, his vote against the King on 17th January,
1793. His condemnation was pronounced. He then asked only for a
delay of twenty-four hours, and had a repast carefully prepared, on
which he feasted with avidity. When led out for execution he gazed
with a smile on the Palais Royal, the scene of his former orgies.
He was detained for a quarter of an hour before that palace by the
order of Robespierre, who had asked his daughter's hand, and
promised in return to excite a tumult in which the Duke's life
should be saved. Depraved though he was, he would not consent to
such a sacrifice, and he met his fate with stoical fortitude.--
ALLISON, vol. iii., p. 172.]

It was the only piece of news that reached us during the whole winter."

The severity with which the prisoners were treated was carried into every
detail of their life. The officers who guarded them took away their
chessmen and cards because some of them were named kings and queens, and
all the books with coats of arms on them; they refused to get ointment
for a gathering on Madame Elisabeth's arm; they, would not allow her to
make a herb-tea which she thought would strengthen her niece; they
declined to supply fish or eggs on fast-days or during Lent, bringing
only coarse fat meat, and brutally replying to all remonstances, "None
but fools believe in that stuff nowadays." Madame Elisabeth never made
the officials another request, but reserved some of the bread and cafe-
au-fait from her breakfast for her second meal. The time during which
she could be thus tormented was growing short.

On 9th May, 1794, as the Princesses were going to bed, the outside bolts
of the door were unfastened and a loud knocking was heard. "When my aunt
was dressed," says Madame Royale, "she opened the door, and they said to
her, 'Citoyenne, come down.'--'And my niece?'--'We shall take care of her
afterwards.' She embraced me, and to calm my agitation promised to
return. 'No, citoyenne,' said the men, 'bring your bonnet; you shall not
return.' They overwhelmed her with abuse, but she bore it patiently,
embracing me, and exhorting me to trust in Heaven, and never to forget
the last commands of my father and mother."

Madame Elisabeth was then taken to the Conciergerie, where she was
interrogated by the vice-president at midnight,' and then allowed to take
some hours rest on the bed on which Marie Antoinette had slept for the
last time. In the morning she was brought before the tribunal, with
twenty-four other prisoners, of varying ages and both sexes, some of whom
had once been frequently seen at Court.

"Of what has Elisabeth to complain?" Fouquier-Tinville satirically
asked. "At the foot of the guillotine, surrounded by faithful nobility,
she may imagine herself again at Versailles."

"You call my brother a tyrant," the Princess replied to her accuser; "if
he had been what you say, you would not be where you are, nor I before

She was sentenced to death, and showed neither surprise nor grief. "I am
ready to die," she said, "happy in the prospect of rejoining in a better
world those whom I loved on earth."

On being taken to the room where those condemned to suffer at the same
time as herself were assembled, she spoke to them with so much piety and
resignation that they were encouraged by her example to show calmness and
courage like her own. The women, on leaving the cart, begged to embrace
her, and she said some words of comfort to each in turn as they mounted
the scaffold, which she was not allowed to ascend till all her companions
had been executed before her eyes.

[Madame Elisabeth was one of those rare personages only seen at
distant intervals during the course of ages; she set an example of
steadfast piety in the palace of kings, she lived amid her family
the favourite of all and the admiration of the world .... When I
went to Versailles Madame Elisabeth was twenty-two years of age.
Her plump figure and pretty pink colour must have attracted notice,
and her air of calmness and contentment even more than her beauty.
She was fond of billiards, and her elegance and courage in riding
were remarkable. But she never allowed these amusements to
interfere with her religious observances. At that time her wish to
take the veil at St. Cyr was much talked of, but the King was too
fond of his sister to endure the separation. There were also
rumours of a marriage between Madame Elisabeth and the Emperor
Joseph. The Queen was sincerely attached to her brother, and loved
her sister-in-law most tenderly; she ardently desired this marriage
as a means of raising the Princess to one of the first thrones in
Europe, and as a possible means of turning the Emperor from his
innovations. She had been very carefully educated, had talent in
music and painting, spoke Italian and a little Latin, and understood
mathematics.... Her last moments were worthy of her courage and
virtue.--D'HEZECQUES's "Recollections," pp. 72-75.]

"It is impossible to imagine my distress at finding myself separated from
my aunt," says Madame Royale. "Since I had been able to appreciate her
merits, I saw in her nothing but religion, gentleness, meekness, modesty,
and a devoted attachment to her family; she sacrificed her life for them,
since nothing could persuade her to leave the King and Queen. I never
can be sufficiently grateful to her for her goodness to me, which ended
only with her life. She looked on me as her child, and I honoured and
loved her as a second mother. I was thought to be very like her in
countenance, and I feel conscious that I have something of her character.
Would to God I might imitate her virtues, and hope that I may hereafter
deserve to meet her, as well as my dear parents, in the bosom of our
Creator, where I cannot doubt that they enjoy the reward of their
virtuous lives and meritorious deaths."

Madame Royale vainly begged to be allowed to rejoin her mother or her
aunt, or at least to know their fate. The municipal officers would tell
her nothing, and rudely refused her request to have a woman placed with
her. "I asked nothing but what seemed indispensable, though it was often
harshly refused," she says. "But I at least could keep myself clean. I
had soap and water, and carefully swept out my room every day. I had no
light, but in the long days I did not feel this privation much . . . .
I had some religious works and travels, which I had read over and over.
I had also some knitting, 'qui m'ennuyait beaucoup'." Once, she
believes, Robespierre visited her prison:

[It has been said that Robespierre vainly tried to obtain the hand
of Mademoiselle d'Orleans. It was also rumoured that Madame Royale
herself owed her life to his matrimonial ambition.]

"The officers showed him great respect; the people in the Tower did not
know him, or at least would not tell me who he was. He stared insolently
at me, glanced at my books, and, after joining the municipal officers in
a search, retired."

[On another occasion "three men in scarfs," who entered the
Princess's room, told her that they did not see why she should wish
to be released, as she seemed very comfortable! "It is dreadful,'
I replied, 'to be separated for more than a year from one's mother,
without even hearing what has become of her or of my aunt.'--'You
are not ill?'--'No, monsieur, but the cruellest illness is that of
the heart'--' We can do nothing for you. Be patient, and submit to
the justice and goodness of the French people: I had nothing more to
say."--DUCHESSE D'ANGOULEME, "Royal Memoirs," p. 273.]

When Laurent was appointed by the Convention to the charge of the young
prisoners, Madame Royale was treated with more consideration. "He was
always courteous," she says; he restored her tinderbox, gave her fresh
books, and allowed her candles and as much firewood as she wanted, "which
pleased me greatly." This simple expression of relief gives a clearer
idea of what the delicate girl must have suffered than a volume of

But however hard Madame Royale's lot might be, that of the Dauphin was
infinitely harder. Though only eight years old when he entered the
Temple, he was by nature and education extremely precocious; "his memory
retained everything, and his sensitiveness comprehended everything." His
features "recalled the somewhat effeminate look of Louis XV., and the
Austrian hauteur of Maria Theresa; his blue eyes, aquiline nose, elevated
nostrils, well-defined mouth, pouting lips, chestnut hair parted in the
middle and falling in thick curls on his shoulders, resembled his mother
before her years of tears and torture. All the beauty of his race, by
both descents, seemed to reappear in him."--[Lamartine]-- For some time
the care of his parents preserved his health and cheerfulness even in the
Temple; but his constitution was weakened by the fever recorded by his
sister, and his gaolers were determined that he should never regain

"What does the Convention intend to do with him?" asked Simon, when the
innocent victim was placed in his clutches. "Transport him?"


"Kill him?"


"Poison him?"


"What, then?"

"Why, get rid of him."

For such a purpose they could not have chosen their instruments better.
"Simon and his wife, cut off all those fair locks that had been his
youthful glory and his mother's pride. This worthy pair stripped him of
the mourning he wore for his father; and as they did so, they called it
'playing at the game of the spoiled king.' They alternately induced him
to commit excesses, and then half starved him. They beat him
mercilessly; nor was the treatment by night less brutal than that by day.
As soon as the weary boy had sunk into his first profound sleep, they
would loudly call him by name, 'Capet! Capet!' Startled, nervous, bathed
in perspiration, or sometimes trembling with cold, he would spring up,
rush through the dark, and present himself at Simon's bedside, murmuring,
tremblingly, 'I am here, citizen.'--'Come nearer; let me feel you.'
He would approach the bed as he was ordered, although he knew the
treatment that awaited him. Simon would buffet him on the head, or kick
him away, adding the remark, 'Get to bed again, wolfs cub; I only wanted
to know that you were safe.' On one of these occasions, when the child
had fallen half stunned upon his own miserable couch, and lay there
groaning and faint with pain, Simon roared out with a laugh, 'Suppose you
were king, Capet, what would you do to me?' The child thought of his
father's dying words, and said, 'I would forgive you.'"--[THIERS]

The change in the young Prince's mode of life, and the cruelties and
caprices to which he was subjected, soon made him fall ill, says his
sister. "Simon forced him to eat to excess, and to drink large
quantities of wine, which he detested . . . . He grew extremely fat
without increasing in height or strength." His aunt and sister, deprived
of the pleasure of tending him, had the pain of hearing his childish
voice raised in the abominable songs his gaolers taught him. The
brutality of Simon "depraved at once the body and soul of his pupil. He
called him the young wolf of the Temple. He treated him as the young of
wild animals are treated when taken from the mother and reduced to
captivity,--at once intimidated by blows and enervated by taming. He
punished for sensibility; he rewarded meanness; he encouraged vice; he
made the child wait on him at table, sometimes striking him on the face
with a knotted towel, sometimes raising the poker and threatening to
strike him with it."

[Simon left the Temple to become a municipal officer. He was
involved in the overthrow of Robespierre, and guillotined the day
after him, 29th July, 1794.]

Yet when Simon was removed the poor young Prince's condition became even
worse. His horrible loneliness induced an apathetic stupor to which any
suffering would have been preferable. "He passed his days without any
kind of occupation; they did not allow him light in the evening. His
keepers never approached him but to give him food;" and on the rare
occasions when they took him to the platform of the Tower, he was unable
or unwilling to move about. When, in November, 1794, a commissary named
Gomin arrived at the Temple, disposed to treat the little prisoner with
kindness, it was too late. "He took extreme care of my brother," says
Madame Royale. "For a long time the unhappy child had been shut up in
darkness, and he was dying of fright. He was very grateful for the
attentions of Gomin, and became much attached to him." But his physical
condition was alarming, and, owing to Gomin's representations, a
commission was instituted to examine him. "The commissioners appointed
were Harmond, Mathieu, and Reverchon, who visited 'Louis Charles,' as he
was now called, in the month of February, 1795. They found the young
Prince seated at a square deal table, at which he was playing with some
dirty cards, making card houses and the like,--the materials having been
furnished him, probably, that they might figure in the report as
evidences of indulgence. He did not look up from the table as the
commissioners entered. He was in a slate-coloured dress, bareheaded; the
room was reported as clean, the bed in good condition, the linen fresh;
his clothes were also reported as new; but, in spite of all these
assertions, it is well known that his bed had not been made for months,
that he had not left his room, nor was permitted to leave it, for any
purpose whatever, that it was consequently uninhabitable, and that he was
covered with vermin and with sores. The swellings at his knees alone
were sufficient to disable him from walking. One of the commissioners
approached the young Prince respectfully. The latter did not raise his
head. Harmond in a kind voice begged him to speak to them. The eyes of
the boy remained fixed on the table before him. They told him of the
kindly intentions of the Government, of their hopes that he would yet be
happy, and their desire that he would speak unreservedly to the medical
man that was to visit him. He seemed to listen with profound attention,
but not a single word passed his lips. It was an heroic principle that
impelled that poor young heart to maintain the silence of a mute in
presence of these men. He remembered too well the days when three other
commissaries waited on him, regaled him with pastry and wine, and
obtained from him that hellish accusation against the mother that he
loved. He had learnt by some means the import of the act, so far as it
was an injury to his mother. He now dreaded seeing again three
commissaries, hearing again kind words, and being treated again with fine
promises. Dumb as death itself he sat before them, and remained
motionless as stone, and as mute." [THIERS]

His disease now made rapid progress, and Gomin and Lasne, superintendents
of the Temple, thinking it necessary to inform the Government of the
melancholy condition of their prisoner, wrote on the register: "Little
Capet is unwell." No notice was taken of this account, which was renewed
next day in more urgent terms: "Little Capet is dangerously ill." Still
there was no word from beyond the walls. "We must knock harder," said
the keepers to each other, and they added, "It is feared he will not
live," to the words "dangerously ill." At length, on Wednesday, 6th May,
1795, three days after the first report, the authorities appointed M.
Desault to give the invalid the assistance of his art. After having
written down his name on the register he was admitted to see the Prince.
He made a long and very attentive examination of the unfortunate child,
asked him many questions without being able to obtain an answer, and
contented himself with prescribing a decoction of hops, to be taken by
spoonfuls every half-hour, from six o'clock in the morning till eight in
the evening. On the first day the Prince steadily refused to take it.
In vain Gomin several times drank off a glass of the potion in his
presence; his example proved as ineffectual as his words. Next day Lasne
renewed his solicitations. "Monsieur knows very well that I desire
nothing but the good of his health, and he distresses me deeply by thus
refusing to take what might contribute to it. I entreat him as a favour
not to give me this cause of grief." And as Lasne, while speaking, began
to taste the potion in a glass, the child took what he offered him out of
his hands. "You have, then, taken an oath that I should drink it," said
he, firmly; "well, give it me, I will drink it." From that moment he
conformed with docility to whatever was required of him, but the policy
of the Commune had attained its object; help had been withheld till it
was almost a mockery to supply it.

The Prince's weakness was excessive; his keepers could scarcely drag him
to the, top of the Tower; walking hurt his tender feet, and at every step
he stopped to press the arm of Lasne with both hands upon his breast. At
last he suffered so much that it was no longer possible for him to walk,
and his keeper carried him about, sometimes on the platform, and
sometimes in the little tower, where the royal family had lived at first.
But the slight improvement to his health occasioned by the change of air
scarcely compensated for the pain which his fatigue gave him. On the
battlement of the platform nearest the left turret, the rain had, by
perseverance through ages, hollowed out a kind of basin. The water that
fell remained there for several days; and as, during the spring of 1795,
storms were of frequent occurrence, this little sheet of water was kept
constantly supplied. Whenever the child was brought out upon the
platform, he saw a little troop of sparrows, which used to come to drink
and bathe in this reservoir. At first they flew away at his approach,
but from being accustomed to see him walking quietly there every day,
they at last grew more familiar, and did not spread their wings for
flight till he came up close to them. They were always the same, he knew
them by sight, and perhaps like himself they were inhabitants of that
ancient pile. He called them his birds; and his first action, when the
door into the terrace was opened, was to look towards that side,--and
the sparrows were always there. He delighted in their chirping, and he
must have envied them their wings.

Though so little could be done to alleviate his sufferings, a moral
improvement was taking place in him. He was touched by the lively
interest displayed by his physician, who never failed to visit him at
nine o'clock every morning. He seemed pleased with the attention paid
him, and ended by placing entire confidence in M. Desault. Gratitude
loosened his tongue; brutality and insult had failed to extort a murmur,
but kind treatment restored his speech he had no words for anger, but he
found them to express his thanks. M. Desault prolonged his visits as
long as the officers of the municipality would permit. When they
announced the close of the visit, the child, unwilling to beg them to
allow a longer time, held back M. Desault by the skirt of his coat.
Suddenly M. Desault's visits ceased. Several days passed and nothing was
heard of him. The keepers wondered at his absence, and the poor little
invalid was much distressed at it. The commissary on duty (M. Benoist)
suggested that it would be proper to send to the physician's house to
make inquiries as to the cause of so long an absence. Gomin and Larne
had not yet ventured to follow this advice, when next day M. Benoist was
relieved by M. Bidault, who, hearing M. Desault's name mentioned as he
came in, immediately said, "You must not expect to see him any more; he
died yesterday."

M. Pelletan, head surgeon of the Grand Hospice de l'Humanite, was next
directed to attend the prisoner, and in June he found him in so alarming
a state that he at once asked for a coadjutor, fearing to undertake the
responsibility alone. The physician--sent for form's sake to attend the
dying child, as an advocate is given by law to a criminal condemned
beforehand--blamed the officers of the municipality for not having
removed the blind, which obstructed the light, and the numerous bolts,
the noise of which never failed to remind the victim of his captivity.
That sound, which always caused him an involuntary shudder, disturbed him
in the last mournful scene of his unparalleled tortures. M. Pelletan
said authoritatively to the municipal on duty, "If you will not take
these bolts and casings away at once, at least you can make no objection
to our carrying the child into another room, for I suppose we are sent
here to take charge of him." The Prince, being disturbed by these words,
spoken as they were with great animation, made a sign to the physician to
come nearer. "Speak lower, I beg of you," said he; "I am afraid they
will hear you up-stairs, and I should be very sorry for them to know that
I am ill, as it would give them much uneasiness."

At first the change to a cheerful and airy room revived the Prince and
gave him evident pleasure, but the improvement did not last. Next day M.
Pelletan learned that the Government had acceded to his request for a
colleague. M. Dumangin, head physician of the Hospice de l'Unite, made
his appearance at his house on the morning of Sunday, 7th June, with the
official despatch sent him by the committee of public safety. They
repaired together immediately to the Tower. On their arrival they heard
that the child, whose weakness was excessive, had had a fainting fit,
which had occasioned fears to be entertained that his end was
approaching. He had revived a little, however, when the physicians went
up at about nine o'clock. Unable to contend with increasing exhaustion,
they perceived there was no longer any hope of prolonging an existence
worn out by so much suffering, and that all their art could effect would
be to soften the last stage of this lamentable disease. While standing
by the Prince's bed, Gomin noticed that he was quietly crying, and asked
him. kindly what was the matter. "I am always alone," he said. "My
dear mother remains in the other tower." Night came,--his last night,--
which the regulations of the prison condemned him to pass once more in
solitude, with suffering, his old companion, only at his side. This
time, however, death, too, stood at his pillow. When Gomin went up to
the child's room on the morning of 8th June, he said, seeing him calm,
motionless, and mute:

"I hope you are not in pain just now?"

"Oh, yes, I am still in pain, but not nearly so much,--the music is so

Now there was no music to be heard, either in the Tower or anywhere near.

Gomin, astonished, said to him, "From what direction do you hear this

"From above!"

"Have you heard it long?"

"Since you knelt down. Do you not hear it? Listen! Listen!" And the
child, with a nervous motion, raised his faltering hand, as he opened his
large eyes illuminated by delight. His poor keeper, unwilling to destroy
this last sweet illusion, appeared to listen also.

After a few minutes of attention the child again started, and cried out,
in intense rapture, "Amongst all the voices I have distinguished that of
my mother!"

These were almost his last words. At a quarter past two he died, Lasne
only being in the room. at the time. Lasne acquainted Gomin and Damont,
the commissary on duty, with the event, and they repaired to the chamber
of death. The poor little royal corpse was carried from the room into
that where he had suffered so long,--where for two years he had never
ceased to suffer. From this apartment the father had gone to the
scaffold, and thence the son must pass to the burial-ground. The remains
were laid out on the bed, and the doors of the apartment were set open,--
doors which had remained closed ever since the Revolution had seized on a
child, then full of vigour and grace and life and health!

At eight o'clock next morning (9th June) four members of the committee of
general safety came to the Tower to make sure that the Prince was really
dead. When they were admitted to the death-chamber by Lasne and Damont
they affected the greatest indifference. "The event is not of the least
importance," they repeated, several times over; "the police commissary of
the section will come and receive the declaration of the decease; he will
acknowledge it, and proceed to the interment without any ceremony; and
the committee will give the necessary directions." As they withdrew,
some officers of the Temple guard asked to see the remains of little
Capet. Damont having observed that the guard would not permit the bier
to pass without its being opened, the deputies decided that the officers
and non-commissioned officers of the guard going off duty, together with
those coming on, should be all invited to assure themselves of the
child's death. All having assembled in the room where the body lay, he
asked them if they recognised it as that of the ex-Dauphin, son of the
last King of France. Those who had seen the young Prince at the
Tuileries, or at the Temple (and most of them had), bore witness to its
being the body of Louis XVII. When they were come down into the council-
room, Darlot drew up the minutes of this attestation, which was signed by
a score of persons. These minutes were inserted in the journal of the
Temple tower, which was afterwards deposited in the office of the
Minister of the Interior.

During this visit the surgeons entrusted with the autopsy arrived at the
outer gate of the Temple. These were Dumangin, head physician of the
Hospice de l'Unite; Pelletan, head surgeon of the Grand Hospice de
l'Humanite; Jeanroy, professor in the medical schools of Paris; and
Laasus, professor of legal medicine at the Ecole de Sante of Paris.
The last two were selected by Dumangin and Pelletan because of the former
connection of M. Lassus with Mesdames de France, and of M. Jeanroy with
the House of Lorraine, which gave a peculiar weight to their signatures.
Gomin received them in the council-room, and detained them until the
National Guard, descending from the second floor, entered to sign the
minutes prepared by Darlot. This done, Lasne, Darlot, and Bouquet went
up again with the surgeons, and introduced them into the apartment of
Louis XVII., whom they at first examined as he lay on his death-bed; but
M. Jeanroy observing that the dim light of this room was but little
favourable to the accomplishment of their mission, the commissaries
prepared a table in the first room, near the window, on which the corpse
was laid, and the surgeons began their melancholy operation.

At seven o'clock the police commissary ordered the body to be taken up,
and that they should proceed to the cemetery. It was the season of the
longest days, and therefore the interment did not take place in secrecy
and at night, as some misinformed narrators have said or written; it took
place in broad daylight, and attracted a great concourse of people before
the gates of the Temple palace. One of the municipals wished to have the
coffin carried out secretly by the door opening into the chapel
enclosure; but M. Duaser, police commiasary, who was specially entrusted
with the arrangement of the ceremony, opposed this indecorous measure,
and the procession passed out through the great gate. The crowd that was
pressing round was kept back, and compelled to keep a line, by a
tricoloured ribbon, held at short distances by gendarmes. Compassion and
sorrow were impressed on every countenance.

A small detachment of the troops of the line from the garrison of Paris,
sent by the authorities, was waiting to serve as an escort. The bier,
still covered with the pall, was carried on a litter on the shoulders of
four men, who relieved each other two at a time; it was preceded by six
or eight men, headed by a sergeant. The procession was accompanied a
long way by the crowd, and a great number of persona followed it even to
the cemetery. The name of "Little Capet," and the more popular title of
Dauphin, spread from lip to lip, with exclamations of pity and
compassion. The funeral entered the cemetery of Ste. Marguerite, not by
the church, as some accounts assert, but by the old gate of the cemetery.
The interment was made in the corner, on the left, at a distance of eight
or nine feet from the enclosure wall, and at an equal distance from a
small house, which subsequently served as a school. The grave was filled
up,--no mound marked its place, and not even a trace remained of the
interment! Not till then did the commissaries of police and the
municipality withdraw, and enter the house opposite the church to draw up
the declaration of interment. It was nearly nine o'clock, and still

Release of Madame Royale.--Her Marriage to the Duc d'Angouleme.
--Return to France.--Death.

The last person to hear of the sad events in the Temple was the one for
whom they had the deepest and most painful interest. After her brother's
death the captivity of Madame Royale was much lightened. She was allowed
to walk in the Temple gardens, and to receive visits from some ladies of
the old Court, and from Madame de Chantereine, who at last, after several
times evading her questions, ventured cautiously to tell her of the
deaths of her mother, aunt, and brother. Madame Royale wept bitterly,
but had much difficulty in expressing her feelings. "She spoke so
confusedly," says Madame de la Ramiere in a letter to Madame de Verneuil,
"that it was difficult to understand her. It took her more than a
month's reading aloud, with careful study of pronunciation, to make
herself intelligible,--so much had she lost the power of expression."
She was dressed with plainness amounting to poverty, and her hands were
disfigured by exposure to cold and by the menial work she had been so
long accustomed to do for herself, and which it was difficult to persuade
her to leave off. When urged to accept the services of an attendant, she
replied, with a sad prevision of the vicissitudes of her future life,
that she did not like to form a habit which she might have again to
abandon. She suffered herself, however, to be persuaded gradually to
modify her recluse and ascetic habits. It was well she did so, as a
preparation for the great changes about to follow.

Nine days after the death of her brother, the city of Orleans interceded
for the daughter of Louis XVI., and sent deputies to the Convention to
pray for her deliverance and restoration to her family. Names followed
this example; and Charette, on the part of the Vendeans, demanded, as a
condition of the pacification of La Vendee, that the Princess should be
allowed to join her relations. At length the Convention decreed that
Madame Royale should be exchanged with Austria for the representatives
and ministers whom Dumouriez had given up to the Prince of Cobourg,--
Drouet, Semonville, Maret, and other prisoners of importance. At
midnight on 19th December, 1795, which was her birthday, the Princess was
released from prison, the Minister of the Interior, M. Benezech, to avoid
attracting public attention and possible disturbance, conducting her on
foot from the Temple to a neighbouring street, where his carriage awaited
her. She made it her particular request that Gomin, who had been so
devoted to her brother, should be the commissary appointed to accompany
her to the frontier; Madame de Soucy, formerly under-governess to the
children of France, was also in attendance; and the Princess took with
her a dog named Coco, which had belonged to Louis XVI.

[The mention of the little dog taken from the Temple by Madame
Royale reminds me how fond all the family were of these creatures.
Each Princess kept a different kind. Mesdames had beautiful
spaniels; little grayhounds were preferred by Madame Elisabeth.
Louis XVI. was the only one of all his family who had no dogs in his
room. I remember one day waiting in the great gallery for the
King's retiring, when he entered with all his family and the whole
pack, who were escorting him. All at once all the dogs began to
bark, one louder than another, and ran away, passing like ghosts
along those great dark rooms, which rang with their hoarse cries.
The Princesses shouting, calling them, running everywhere after
them, completed a ridiculous spectacle, which made those august
persons very merry.--D'HEZECQUES, p. 49.]

She was frequently recognised on her way through France, and always with
marks of pleasure and respect.

It might have been supposed that the Princess would rejoice to leave
behind her the country which had been the scene of so many horrors and
such bitter suffering. But it was her birthplace, and it held the graves
of all she loved; and as she crossed the frontier she said to those
around her, "I leave France with regret, for I shall never cease to
consider it my country." She arrived in Vienna on 9th January, 1796, and
her first care was to attend a memorial service for her murdered
relatives. After many weeks of close retirement she occasionally began
to appear in public, and people looked with interest at the pale, grave,
slender girl of seventeen, dressed in the deepest mourning, over whose
young head such terrible storms had swept. The Emperor wished her to
marry the Archduke Charles of Austria, but her father and mother had,
even in the cradle, destined her hand for her cousin, the Duc
d'Angouleme, son of the Comte d'Artois, and the memory of their lightest
wish was law to her.

Her quiet determination entailed anger and opposition amounting to
persecution. Every effort was made to alienate her from her French
relations. She was urged to claim Provence, which had become her own if
Louis XVIII. was to be considered King of France. A pressure of opinion
was brought to bear upon her which might well have overawed so young a
girl. "I was sent for to the Emperor's cabinet," she writes, "where I
found the imperial family assembled. The ministers and chief imperial
counsellors were also present . . . . When the Emperor invited me to
express my opinion, I answered that to be able to treat fittingly of such
interests I thought, I ought to be surrounded not only by my mother's
relatives, but also by those of my father . . . . Besides, I said,
I was above all things French, and in entire subjection to the laws of
France, which had rendered me alternately the subject of the King my
father, the King my brother, and the King my uncle, and that I would
yield obedience to the latter, whatever might be his commands. This
declaration appeared very much to dissatisfy all who were present, and
when they observed that I was not to be shaken, they declared that my
right being independent of my will, my resistance would not be the
slightest obstacle to the measures they might deem it necessary to adopt
for the preservation of my interests."

In their anxiety to make a German princess of Marie Therese, her imperial
relations suppressed her French title as much as possible. When, with
some difficulty, the Duc de Grammont succeeded in obtaining an audience
of her, and used the familiar form of address, she smiled faintly, and
bade him beware. "Call me Madame de Bretagne, or de Bourgogne, or de
Lorraine," she said, "for here I am so identified with these provinces
--[which the Emperor wished her to claim from her uncle Louis XVIII.]--
that I shall end in believing in my own transformation." After these
discussions she was so closely watched, and so many restraints were
imposed upon her, that she was scarcely less a prisoner than in the old
days of the Temple, though her cage was this time gilded. Rescue,
however, was at hand.

In 1798 Louis XVIII. accepted a refuge offered to him at Mittau by the
Czar Paul, who had promised that he would grant his guest's first
request, whatever it might be. Louis begged the Czar to use his
influence with the Court of Vienna to allow his niece to join him.
"Monsieur, my brother," was Paul's answer, "Madame Royale shall be
restored to you, or I shall cease to be Paul I." Next morning the Czar
despatched a courier to Vienna with a demand for the Princess, so
energetically worded that refusal must have been followed by war.
Accordingly, in May, 1799, Madame Royale was allowed to leave the capital
which she had found so uncongenial an asylum.

In the old ducal castle of Mittau, the capital of Courland, Louis XVIII.
and his wife, with their nephews, the Ducs d'Angouleme

[The Duc d'Angonleme was quiet and reserved. He loved hunting as
means of killing time; was given to early hours and innocent
pleasures. He was a gentleman, and brave as became one. He had not
the "gentlemanly vices" of his brother, and was all the better for
it. He was ill educated, but had natural good sense, and would have
passed for having more than that had he cared to put forth
pretensions. Of all his family he was the one most ill spoken of,
and least deserving of it.--DOCTOR DORAN.]

and de Berri, were awaiting her, attended by the Abbe Edgeworth, as chief
ecclesiastic, and a little Court of refugee nobles and officers. With
them were two men of humbler position, who must have been even more
welcome to Madame Royale,--De Malden, who had acted as courier to Louis
XVI. during the flight to Varennes, and Turgi, who had waited on the
Princesses in the Temple. It was a sad meeting, though so long anxiously
desired, and it was followed on 10th June, 1799, by an equally sad
wedding,--exiles, pensioners on the bounty of the Russian monarch,
fulfilling an engagement founded, not on personal preference, but on
family policy and reverence for the wishes of the dead, the bride and
bridegroom had small cause for rejoicing. During the eighteen months of
tranquil seclusion which followed her marriage, the favourite occupation
of the Duchess was visiting and relieving the poor. In January, 1801,
the Czar Paul, in compliance with the demand of Napoleon, who was just
then the object of his capricious enthusiasm, ordered the French royal
family to leave Mittau. Their wanderings commenced on the 21st, a day of
bitter memories; and the young Duchess led the King to his carriage
through a crowd of men, women, and children, whose tears and blessings
attended them on their way.

[The Queen was too ill to travel. The Duc d'Angouleme took another
route to join a body of French gentlemen in arms for the Legitimist

The exiles asked permission from the King of Prussia to settle in his
dominions, and while awaiting his answer at Munich they were painfully
surprised by the entrance of five old soldiers of noble birth, part of
the body-guard they had left behind at Mittau, relying on the protection
of Paul. The "mad Czar" had decreed their immediate expulsion, and,
penniless and almost starving, they made their way to Louis XVIII. All
the money the royal family possessed was bestowed on these faithful
servants, who came to them in detachments for relief, and then the
Duchess offered her diamonds to the Danish consul for an advance of two
thousand ducats, saying she pledged her property "that in our common
distress it may be rendered of real use to my uncle, his faithful
servants, and myself." The Duchess's consistent and unselfish kindness
procured her from the King, and those about him who knew her best, the
name of "our angel."

Warsaw was for a brief time the resting-place of the wanderers, but there
they were disturbed in 1803 by Napoleon's attempt to threaten and bribe
Louis XVIII. into abdication. It was suggested that refusal might bring
upon them expulsion from Prussia. "We are accustomed to suffering," was
the King's answer, "and we do not dread poverty. I would, trusting in
God, seek another asylum." In 1808, after many changes of scene, this
asylum was sought in England, Gosfield Hall, Essex, being placed at their
disposal by the Marquis of Buckingham. From Gosfield, the King moved to
Hartwell Hall, a fine old Elizabethan mansion rented from Sir George Lee
for L 500 a year. A yearly grant of L 24,000 was made to the exiled
family by the British Government, out of which a hundred and forty
persons were supported, the royal dinner-party generally numbering two

At Hartwell, as in her other homes, the Duchess was most popular amongst
the poor. In general society she was cold and reserved, and she disliked
the notice of strangers. In March, 1814, the royalist successes at
Bordeaux paved the way for the restoration of royalty in France, and
amidst general sympathy and congratulation, with the Prince Regent
himself to wish them good fortune, the King, the Duchess, and their suite
left Hartwell in April, 1814. The return to France was as triumphant as
a somewhat half-hearted and doubtful enthusiasm could make it, and most
of such cordiality as there was fell to the share of the Duchess. As she
passed to Notre-Dame in May, 1814, on entering Paris, she was
vociferously greeted. The feeling of loyalty, however, was not much
longer-lived than the applause by which it was expressed; the Duchess had
scarcely effected one of the strongest wishes of her heart,--the
identification of what remained of her parents' bodies, and the
magnificent ceremony with which they were removed from the cemetery of
the Madeleine to the Abbey of St. Denis,--when the escape of Napoleon
from Elba in February,1815, scattered the royal family and their
followers like chaff before the wind. The Duc d'Angouleme, compelled to
capitulate at Toulouse, sailed from Cette in a Swedish vessel. The Comte
d'Artois, the Duc de Berri, and the Prince de Conde withdrew beyond the
frontier. The King fled from the capital. The Duchesse d'Angouleme,
then at Bordeaux celebrating the anniversary of the Proclamation of Louis
XVIII., alone of all her family made any stand against the general panic.
Day after day she mounted her horse and reviewed the National Guard. She
made personal and even passionate appeals to the officers and men,
standing firm, and prevailing on a handful of soldiers to remain by her,
even when the imperialist troops were on the other side of the river and
their cannon were directed against the square where the Duchess was
reviewing her scanty followers.

["It was the Duchesse d'Angouleme who saved you," said the gallant
General Clauzel, after these events, to a royalist volunteer;
"I could not bring myself to order such a woman to be fired upon,
at the moment when she was providing material for the noblest page
in her history."--"Fillia Dolorosa," vol. vii., p. 131.]

With pain and difficulty she was convinced that resistance was vain;
Napoleon's banner soon floated over Bordeaux; the Duchess issued a
farewell proclamation to her "brave Bordelais," and on the 1st April,
1815, she started for Pouillac, whence she embarked for Spain. During a
brief visit to England she heard that the reign of a hundred days was
over, and the 27th of July, 1815, saw her second triumphal return to the
Tuileries. She did not take up her abode there with any wish for State
ceremonies or Court gaieties. Her life was as secluded as her position
would allow. Her favourite retreat was the Pavilion, which had been
inhabited by her mother, and in her little oratory she collected relics
of her family, over which on the anniversaries of their deaths she wept
and prayed. In her daily drives through Paris she scrupulously avoided
the spot on which they had suffered; and the memory of the past seemed to
rule all her sad and self-denying life, both in what she did and what she
refrained from doing.

[She was so methodical and economical, though liberal in her
charities, that one of her regular evening occupations was to tear
off the seals from the letters she had received during the day, in
order that the wax might be melted down and sold; the produce made
one poor family "passing rich with forty pounds a year."--See "Filia
Dolorosa," vol. ii., p. 239.]

Her somewhat austere goodness was not of a nature to make her popular.
The few who really understood her loved her, but the majority of her
pleasure-seeking subjects regarded her either with ridicule or dread.
She is said to have taken no part in politics, and to have exerted no
influence in public affairs, but her sympathies were well known, and "the
very word liberty made her shudder;" like Madame Roland, she had seen "so
many crimes perpetrated under that name."

The claims of three pretended Dauphins--Hervagault, the son of the tailor
of St. Lo; Bruneau, son of the shoemaker of Vergin; and Naundorf or
Norndorff, the watchmaker somewhat troubled her peace, but never for a
moment obtained her sanction. Of the many other pseudo-Dauphins (said to
number a dozen and a half) not even the names remain. In February,1820,
a fresh tragedy befell the royal family in the assassination of the Duc
de Berri, brother-in-law of the Duchesse d'Angouleme, as he was seeing
his wife into her carriage at the door of the Opera-house. He was
carried into the theatre, and there the dying Prince and his wife were
joined by the Duchess, who remained till he breathed his last, and was
present when he, too, was laid in the Abbey of St. Denis. She was
present also when his son, the Duc de Bordeaux, was born, and hoped that
she saw in him a guarantee for the stability of royalty in France. In
September, 1824, she stood by the death-bed of Louis XVIII., and
thenceforward her chief occupation was directing the education of the
little Duc de Bordeaux, who generally resided with her at Villeneuve
l'Etang, her country house near St. Cloud. Thence she went in July,
1830, to the Baths of Vichy, stopping at Dijon on her way to Paris, and
visiting the theatre on the evening of the 27th. She was received with
"a roar of execrations and seditious cries," and knew only too well what
they signified. She instantly left the theatre and proceeded to Tonnere,
where she received news of the rising in Paris, and, quitting the town by
night, was driven to Joigny with three attendants. Soon after leaving
that place it was thought more prudent that the party should separate and
proceed on foot, and the Duchess and M. de Foucigny, disguised as
peasants, entered Versailles arm-in-arm, to obtain tidings of the King.
The Duchess found him at Rambouillet with her husband, the Dauphin, and
the King met her with a request for "pardon," being fully conscious, too
late, that his unwise decrees and his headlong flight had destroyed the
last hopes of his family. The act of abdication followed, by which the
prospect of royalty passed from the Dauphin and his wife, as well as from
Charles X.--Henri V. being proclaimed King, and the Duc d'Orleans (who
refused to take the boy monarch under his personal protection)
lieutenant-general of the kingdom.

Then began the Duchess's third expatriation. At Cherbourg the royal
family, accompanied by the little King without a kingdom, embarked in the
'Great Britain', which stood out to sea. The Duchess, remaining on deck
for a last look at the coast of France, noticed a brig which kept, she
thought, suspiciously near them.

"Who commands that vessel?" she inquired.

"Captain Thibault."

And what are his orders?"

"To fire into and sink the vessels in which we sail, should any attempt
be made to return to France."

Such was the farewell of their subjects to the House of Bourbon. The
fugitives landed at Weymouth; the Duchesse d'Angouleme under the title of
Comtesse de Marne, the Duchesse de Berri as Comtesse de Rosny, and her
son, Henri de Bordeaux, as Comte de Chambord, the title he retained till
his death, originally taken from the estate presented to him in infancy
by his enthusiastic people. Holyrood, with its royal and gloomy
associations, was their appointed dwelling. The Duc and Duchesse
d'Angouleme, and the daughter of the Duc de Berri, travelled thither by
land, the King and the young Comte de Chambord by sea. "I prefer my
route to that of my sister," observed the latter, "because I shall see the
coast of France again, and she will not."

The French Government soon complained that at Holyrood the exiles were
still too near their native land, and accordingly, in 1832, Charles X.,
with his son and grandson, left Scotland for Hamburg, while the Duchesse
d'Angouleme and her niece repaired to Vienna. The family were reunited
at Prague in 1833, where the birthday of the Comte de Chambord was
celebrated with some pomp and rejoicing, many Legitimists flocking
thither to congratulate him on attaining the age of thirteen, which the
old law of monarchical France had fixed as the majority of her princes.
Three years later the wanderings of the unfortunate family recommenced;
the Emperor Francis II. was dead, and his successor, Ferdinand, must
visit Prague to be crowned, and Charles X. feared that the presence of a
discrowned monarch might be embarrassing on such an occasion. Illness
and sorrow attended the exiles on their new journey, and a few months
after they were established in the Chateau of Graffenburg at Goritz,
Charles X. died of cholera, in his eightieth year. At Goritz, also, on
the 31st May, 1844, the Duchesse d'Angouleme, who had sat beside so many
death-beds, watched over that of her husband. Theirs had not been a
marriage of affection in youth, but they respected each other's virtues,
and to a great extent shared each other's tastes; banishment and
suffering had united them very closely, and of late years they had been
almost inseparable,--walking, riding, and reading together. When the
Duchesse d'Angouleme had seen her husband laid by his father's side in
the vault of the Franciscan convent, she, accompanied by her nephew and
niece, removed to Frohsdorf, where they spent seven tranquil years. Here
she was addressed as "Queen" by her household for the first time in her
life, but she herself always recognised Henri, Comte de Chambord, as her
sovereign. The Duchess lived to see the overthrow of Louis Philippe, the
usurper of the inheritance of her family. Her last attempt to exert
herself was a characteristic one. She tried to rise from a sick-bed in
order to attend the memorial service held for her mother, Marie
Antoinette, on the 16th October, the anniversary of her execution. But
her strength was not equal to the task; on the 19th she expired, with her
hand in that of the Comte de Chambord, and on 28th October, 1851, Marie
Therese Charlotte, Duchesse d'Angouleme, was buried in the Franciscan

The Ceremony of Expiation.

"In the spring of 1814 a ceremony took place in Paris at which I was
present because there was nothing in it that could be mortifying to a
French heart. The death of Louis XVI. had long been admitted to be one
of the most serious misfortunes of the Revolution. The Emperor Napoleon
never spoke of that sovereign but in terms of the highest respect, and
always prefixed the epithet unfortunate to his name. The ceremony to
which I allude was proposed by the Emperor of Russia and the King of
Prussia. It consisted of a kind of expiation and purification of the
spot on which Louis XVI. and his Queen were beheaded. I went to see the
ceremony, and I had a place at a window in the Hotel of Madame de
Remusat, next to the Hotel de Crillon, and what was termed the Hotel de

"The expiation took place on the 10th of April. The weather was
extremely fine and warm for the season. The Emperor of Russia and King
of Prussia, accompanied by Prince Schwartzenberg, took their station at
the entrance of the Rue Royale; the King of Prussia being on the right of
the Emperor Alexander, and Prince Schwartzenberg on his left. There was
a long parade, during which the Russian, Prussian and Austrian military
bands vied with each other in playing the air, 'Vive Henri IV.!'
The cavalry defiled past, and then withdrew into the Champs Elysees;
but the infantry ranged themselves round an altar which was raised in the
middle of the Place, and which was elevated on a platform having twelve
or fifteen steps. The Emperor of Russia alighted from his horse, and,
followed by the King of Prussia, the Grand Duke Constantine, Lord
Cathcart, and Prince Schwartzenberg, advanced to the altar. When the
Emperor had nearly reached the altar the "Te Deum" commenced. At the
moment of the benediction, the sovereigns and persons who accompanied
them, as well as the twenty-five thousand troops who covered the Place,
all knelt down. The Greek priest presented the cross to the Emperor
Alexander, who kissed it; his example was followed by the individuals who
accompanied him, though they were not of the Greek faith. On rising, the
Grand Duke Constantine took off his hat, and immediately salvoes of
artillery were heard."


The following titles have the signification given below during the period
covered by this work:

MONSEIGNEUR........... The Dauphin.

MONSIEUR.............. The eldest brother of the King, Comte de Provence,
afterwards Louis XVIII.

MONSIEUR LE PRINCE.... The Prince de Conde, head of the House of Conde.

MONSIEUR LE DUC....... The Duc de Bourbon, the eldest son of the Prince
de Condo (and the father of the Duc d'Enghien shot
by Napoleon).

MONSIEUR LE GRAND..... The Grand Equerry under the ancien regime.

MONSIEUR LE PREMIER... The First Equerry under the ancien regime.

ENFANS DE FRANCE...... The royal children.

MADAME & MESDAMES..... Sisters or daughters of the King, or Princesses
near the Throne (sometimes used also for the wife of Monsieur, the eldest
brother of the King, the Princesses Adelaide, Victoire, Sophie, Louise,
daughters of Louis XV., and aunts of Louis XVI.)

MADAME ELISABETH...... The Princesse Elisabeth, sister of Louis XVI.

MADAME ROYALE......... The Princesse Marie Therese, daughter of Louis
XVI., afterwards Duchesse d'Angouleme.

MADEMOISELLE.......... The daughter of Monsieur, the brother of the King.


Allowed her candles and as much firewood as she wanted
Better to die than to implicate anybody
Duc d'Orleans, when called on to give his vote for death of King
Formed rather to endure calamity with patience than to contend
How can I have any regret when I partake your misfortunes
Louis Philippe, the usurper of the inheritance of her family
My father fortunately found a library which amused him
No one is more dangerous than a man clothed with recent authority
Rabble, always ready to insult genius, virtue, and misfortune
So many crimes perpetrated under that name (liberty)
Subjecting the vanquished to be tried by the conquerors


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