The Empress was not in the least like what she had imagined. Short and stout, though exceedingly dignified, her white hair was raised high above her forehead, her face, still handsome, expressed the power and genius which characterised her commanding personality, her eyes and her voice were gentle, and her hands extremely beautiful. She had taken off one of her gloves, expecting the usual  salute, but Lisette had forgotten all about it till afterwards when the Ambassador asked, to her dismay, if she had remembered to kiss the hand of the Empress.
The Queen and the Comte d’Artois were the most hated and threatened of the royal family. Now, as always, they urged the miserable Louis to defend himself as his forefathers would have done; the Prince de Condé was of their opinion. Let the King defend himself when his palace was attacked, and, if necessary, sally out at the head of his loyal followers and either save his crown and his life, or, if that could not be, fall gloriously with his sword in his hand like a son of Henri IV., instead of being taken by his own subjects like a rat in a hole.VENICEShe was constantly surrounded by perils and temptations which to many would have been irresistible. Admiring eyes followed her at the theatre, people crowded round her in the gardens and places of entertainment, men of rank who wanted an opportunity of making love to her had their portraits painted by her for that purpose; but she treated them all with indifference, and when she noticed that their looks and glances were too expressive she would coolly remark: “I am painting your eyes now,” or would insist on the portrait being done with the eyes looking in another direction.
“Détestables flatteurs, présent le plus funeste,Capital letter F
“You are the painter, Isabey?”
Capital letter IAt the time of the expedition to St. Domingo he desired to send Leclerc, the husband of his second sister, Pauline. Leclerc hesitated, then said he should be glad to go, but he had a tie which bound him to France.Alexander, seeing the fearful danger hanging over his mother, his brother, and himself, was silent; and Pahlen, who was the director of the plot, took care that it should go much further than restraint.
In an agony of terror Pauline sprang out of the carriage and implored him to tell her the worst, for she could bear it.Mme. de Tourzel asserts that La Fayette helped to irritate the mob against him, and that he was afraid of de Favras’ intrigues against himself, as he was accused of plotting to murder Necker, Bailly, and La Fayette.
Accustomed all her life to be surrounded by friends, to be made much of and allowed to do as she liked wherever she went, she had followed her own fashion of wearing a certain style of dress, artistic, characteristic, but inexpensive. Nobody had objected to the simple toilettes of soft muslin, gracefully arranged, nor to the scarves and handkerchiefs she twisted in her hair. But she became suddenly conscious that they were by no means suitable to appear before the formidable personage, whom she pictured to herself as tall, dark, gloomy, and terrible, moreover the Countess Esterhazy looked at her in astonishment, and with much hesitation said—
After a time she went to Milan, where she was received with great honour. The first evening she was serenaded by all the young men of the chief Milanese families, but, not knowing that all this music was on her account, she sat listening and enjoying it with composure, until her landlady came and explained. She made an excursion to the lakes, and on her return to Milan decided to go to Vienna, seeing that France would be out of the question for an indefinite time.From the first moment of this interview Tallien was seized with an overpowering passion for her, which he was compelled to conceal by the presence of the gaoler, who waited to re-conduct the prisoner to her cell, and before whom if he showed either pity or sympathy, in spite of all his power as a leader of the Revolution, he would endanger his own safety and increase her danger. Therefore he only bowed, signed to her to sit down, and took a chair opposite her.
The royalists were just now all the more bitter against La Fayette, as he was supposed to have been partly the cause of the death of M. de Favras, who was engaged in a plot for the liberation of the King, which was unfortunately discovered. The King and Queen tried in vain to save him; he was condemned and put to death.“So that one would be quite alone? No one could hear anything that went on there?”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.
M. de Beaune not only refused to receive or speak to the Vicomte de Noailles and La Fayette, but would scarcely allow Pauline to see her sisters, at any rate in his h?tel. When they were announced anywhere he took up his hat and left the house, and the banging of doors in the distance proclaimed his displeasure. It was worse when she was alone with her husband and his father in the evenings. Ever since the fall of the Bastille M. de Beaune had been anxious to emigrate with his family, and Pauline, who shared his opinions, had the same wish. But her husband disapproved of it, and the endless discussions and altercations, in which M. de Beaune was irritated and violent, and his son quiet and respectful though resolute, made her very unhappy.Mme. de Valence seems to have accepted the situation, but by no means with the Griselda-like “satisfaction” of her sister. Very soon her reputation much resembled that of her husband, and many were the anecdotes told to illustrate the manners and customs of their ménage.Que vous les avez prises.详情
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