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more than youll fork out, old cock."

Old Mick busied himself about the
house, fidgeting in and out of the room
— ^upstairs and downstairs ; while Tom
was silently arranging more than one
programme of matters which must
come off if he would save himself
from ruin and disgrace.

His father had ceased to come into
the room ; indeed his step had not been
heard through the house or on the
stairs for some time, and it was evi-
dent he had gone to bed. But Tom
sat for a full hour longer, with scarcely
a change of position of even hand or
foot. At length, with a sudden sort of
snorting sigh, he stood up, stretched
himself, with a loud and weary moan,
and went to his room.



[TO BX OONTDTUID.]



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MtdaiM RicamitT and Htr Frimdt.



79



From The Dublin BoTiew.

MADAME R^CAMIER AND HER FRXENDS.



Souvenirs ei Corre^ondance tires des
Papiers de Madame JRecamier,
Paris : Michel L^vj Freres. 1859.

TTe took occasion in our number of
last January to trace the fortunes of
that distinguished ladj who became
consort of the greatest, though not
the best, of the kings of France.
We saw her rise from obscurity to
eminence, without being giddy through
her elevation ; resisting the fascina-
tions of a licentious court; imbibing
celestial wisdom from hidden sources
in proportion to the difficulties of her
position ; exerting great influence
without abusing the delicate trust;
and at length, bowed with age, retir-
ing into the conventual seclusion of
the establishment her piety had rear-
ed, and there breathing her last amid
the love and admiration, the prayers
and blessings, of a thousand friends.

T7e have now another portrait to
hang beside that of Frances de Main-
tenon — the portrait of^one who in^
some respecta resembled her; who,
rising, like her, from an inferior con-
dition, was courted by an emperor,
and betrothed, or all but betrothed, to
a royal prince ; withstood innumera-
ble temptations at a period of bound-
less corruption ; conciliated the esteem
and friendship of the best and wisest
men, and then glided into the vale of
years through the peaceful shade of
the Abbaye-aux-Bois. The first of
these ladies was resplendent in talents,
the second in beauty ; the one ex-
celled in tact, the other in sweetness
and grace ; the one in the sphere of
politics and public life, the other in
the realm of letters and the private
circle. If Madame de Maintenon
was the most admired, Madame Rd-
camier was the most loved. Each
appeared under a sort of disguise, for



one spoke and acted as if she were
not the wife of her dkrn husband, and
the other as if she were the wife of
him who was her husband only in
name. Both have had violent detrac-
tors ; both are best known by their
letters ; and Aus, where they agreed
and where they differed, they remind
us of each other. Of both France is
proud, and both, as years pass on, are
rising into purer and brighter fame.
At the same time it can by no means
be said of Madame R4camier, as it
may most truly of Madame de Main-
tenon, that religion was the one ani-
mating principle of her life ; yet the
facts which we have to recount will
show — not, indeed, that religion sup-
plied her with the main ends of her
existence, but that it enabled her in a
corrupt age to follow the objects of
her choice in habitual submission to
God's actual commandments.

Julie Bernard, the subject of the
present memoir, was bom at Lyons,
on the 4th of December, 1777. Her
father, a notary of that city, was re-
markable for his handsome face and
fine figure, and Madame Bernard was
a noted beauty. She had a passion
for show, and during the long illness
which ended in her death in 1807,
found her chief amusement in dress
and ornaments. When Julie was
seven years old, her father was ap-
pointed to a lucrative post in Paris,
and left his little daughter at Yille-
franche, under the care of an aunt
Here the first of her numberless ad-
mirers, a boy of her own age, made a
deep impression on her susceptible
mind, and here, too, she received her
earliest education in the convent of
La D^erte. The memory of that
hallowed spot, its clouds of incense,
its processions in the garden, its
hymns and fiowcrs, abode with her,



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Madame JRecamier and Her Friends,



she said, through life like a sweet
dream, and to the lessons there taught
she ascribed her retention of the faith
amid the host of sceptical opinions
she encountered in after years. It
was not without regret and tears that
she bade farewell to the abbess and
sisters, and turned her face toward
Paris and the attractions of her pa-
rents' home. Nothing but accomplish-
ments were thought of to complete her
education. The brilliant capital was
to supersede the " D^serte " in her af-
fections, and her mother took great
pains to make Juliette as frivolous as
herself. Her chief attention was given
to music, she was taught to plaj the
harp and piano by the firat artists,
and took lessons in singing f^'om
Boleldieu. This was a real gain,
though in a different way from that
which was intended. We shall see
further on how the skill thus acquired
was afterward employed in the service
of religion, and how the habit of play-
ing pathetic airs and pieces soothed
many a sad moment when she was
old and blind.

Her first contact with royalty was
by accident Her mother had taken
her to see a grand banquet at Ver-
sailles, to which, as in the days of
Louis XIV., the public were admitted
as spectators. Juliette was very
beautiful, and the queen, struck by her
appearance, sent one of her ladies to
ask that she might retire with the
royal family. Madame Royale was
just of the same age as Juliette, aud
the two children were mci^ured to-
gether. Madame Boyale also was a
beauty, and not over-pleased, it seems,
by this close comparison with a girl
taken out of a crowd. How little
could either foresee the strange for-
tunes that awiuted the other !

Madame Bernard, with her love of
display, took a pride also in gathering
clever men around her. Laharpe,
Lemontey, Barrere, and other mem-
bers of the legislative assembly, fre-
quented her drawing-room, and M.
Jacques Rdcamier, an eminent banker
of Paris, and son of a merchant at



Lyons, was a constant guest. His
character was easy and jovial ; he
wrote capital letters, spouted Latin,
made plenty of money, spent it fast,
and was often the dupe of his generos-
ity and good humor. He had always
been kind to Juliette, and had given
her heaps of playthings. When,
therefore, in 17^3, he asked her hand
in marriage, she consented without
any repugnance, though Madame Ber-
nard explained to her the incon-
veniences which might arise from
their disparity of age, habits, and
tastes — ^^I. R^camier being forty-two
and Juliette only fifteen. The wed-
ding took place ; but their union is a
mystery which has never been solved
with certainty. To her nominal hus-
band she was never anything but a
daughter. Her niece, Madame Le-
normant, says she can only attest the
fact,, which was well known to all inti-
mate friends, but that she is not bound
{charges) to explain it. Madame

M , another biographer, believes, .

as did many beside, that she was in
reality M. K^camier's daughter; that,
living, as every one did during the
reign of terror, in fear of the guillo-
tine, he wished to be able to leave her
his fortune in case of his death, and,
in the meantime, to place her in a
splendid position ; that Madame B^
camier, niade aware of her real pa-
rentage, would of course be the last
to reveal and publish her mother's
shame ; and that this story, care-
fully borne in mind, explains all the
anomalies of her life.

To this strange alliance, however,
is due the formation of the most re-
markable literary salon of the present
age. It represented more perfectly
than any other those of the H6tel
Rambouillet and of Madame de Sabl^
in the seventeenth century ; of Ma-
dame Geoffrin, Madame d'Houdetot,
and Madame Suard, in the eight-
eenth ;* and it surpassed in solid at-
tractions those of Madame de Stael at
Coppet, and of Madame d'Albany of

« " C<tuHti«9 du Xufufi," par SAinte-Bewt.
Tomet, pp. 114,116.



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Madame Secamier and Her Friends.



81



Florence, of which it was the contem-
porarj. She was herself its life, and
diffused over it a charm no biographer
can seize. So jonng and fair, so fas-
cinating jet so innocent, she riveted
every gaze, and attracted all hearts
without yielding to any. Like the
coloring of a landscape which changes
every hour, she defied description, and
found no adequate reflex save in the
fond esteem and faithful memory of
those who knew her. Yet her near-
est and dearest friends felt that she
was above them ; and it might be said
of her, as Saint^Simon said of the
Duchess de Bonrgogne, that she walk-
ed like a goddess on clouds. Her
beauty made her popular, and she was
talked of everywhere ; for the Paris-
ians at this time, like refined pagans,
affected the worship of beauty under
every form. She seemed, therefore,
by general consent, to have a natural
mission to restore society, which a se-
ries of revolutions had completely dis-
organized, and her power of drawing
people together and harmonizing what
party politics had unstrung, became
more apparent every day. By birth
she belonged to the people, bj tastes
and manners to the aristocracy, and
had thus a double hold over those
who, with republican principles, were
fast returning to early associations of
rank and order.

It was a happy day 'when the
churches were re-opened in Paris,
and the sod swelling notes of the
SaluJtarU Hostia filled the crowded
tanes once more. It was as the paean
of the faithful over the scattered army
of unbelief. Madame B6camier was
in request. She held the plate for
some charitable object at Saint-Roch,
and collected the extraordinary sum
of 20,000f. The two gentlemen who
attended her could scarcely cleave. a
way for her through the crowd. Peo-
ple mounted on chairs, on pillars, and
the altars of the side chapels, to see
her. In these days, dancing was her
delight She was the first to enter
the ball-room, and the last to quit it
But this did not last long. She soon

VOL. n. 6



gave up the shawl-dance, for which
she was famous, though nothing could
be more correct and picturesque than
the movements she executed while,
with a long scarf in her hands, she
made it by turns a sash, a veil, and
a drapery — drooping, fluctuating,
gliding, attitudinizing, with matchless
taste. Her reign was absolute. In
the promenades of Longchamps, no
carriage was watched like hers ; and
every voice pronounced her the fairest
Twice only in her life did she meet
Bonaparte, and to most persons in her
position and at that period those mo-
ments would have proved fatal. His
eye was as keen for female charms as
for weak points in the enemy's line.
He saw her first in 1797, during a
triumphal i§te given at the Luxem-
bourg palace in his honor. He had
just returned from his marvellous
campaign in Italy and genius was
reaping the laurels too seldom be-
stowed on solid worth. Madame B4-
camier was not insensible to his mili-
tary prowess. She stood up to ob-
serve his features more plainly, and a
long murmur of admiration filled the
hall The young conqueror turned
his head impatiently. Who dared to
divide public attention with the hero
of Castiglione and Rivoli ? He darted
a harsh glance at his rival, and she
sank into her seat But the beautiful
vision rested in his memory. He saw
her once again, about two years later,
and spoke with her. It was at a ban-
quet given by his brother Lucien,
then minister of the interior. Ma-
dame Becamier as usual was all in
white, with a necklace and bracelets
of pearls. The First Consul paid her
marked attention, and his words,
though insignificant in themselves,
meant more than met the ear. His
manners, however, were simple and
pleasing, and he held a little girl of
four years old, his niece, by the hand.
He chid Madame Becamier for not
sitting next him at dinner, fixed his
gaze on her during the music, sent
Fouch4 to express to her his admiring
regard, and told her himself that he



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Maclame Ricamier and Her Friends*



should like to yisit her at CL'chj.
But Juliette, though respectful, was
discreet. Time flowed on ; Napoleon
became emperor, and from the giddy
height of the imperial throne bethought
him of the incomparable lady in
white. He had a double conquest to
make. Her chUteau was the resort of
emigrant nobles who had returned to
France, and whose sympathies were
all with the past. To break up her
circle, to gain her over to his interests,
to enhance by her presence the
splendor of his dissolute court, were
objects well worthy of his plotting,
ambitious, and unscrupulous nature.
Fouch^ was again employed as
tempter. He remonstrated with her
on the species of opposition to the em-
peror's policy which was fostered in
her salons, but found her little dis-
posed to make concessions, or avow
any liking for the despot His genius-
and exploits, she admitted, had daz-
zled her at first, but her sentiments
had entiitely changed since her friends
had been persecuted, the Due d'£n-
ghein put to death, and Madame de
Stael driven into exile. In spite of
these frank avowals, which were
equally respectful and fearless, Fouch^
persisted in his design, and in the
park around Madame B^camier's ele-
gant retreat, urged her, in the em-
peror's name, to accept the post of
dame du palats to the empress. His
majesty had never yet found a wo-
man worthy of him, and it was im-
possible to say how deep might be his
affection for one like her ; how whole-
some an influence she might exert
over him; what services she might
render to the oppressed of all classes ;
and how much she migiit ^'enlighten
the emperor's religion!*' Madame
Murat, to her shame, seconded these
proposals, and expressed her earnest
desire that Madame B6camier should
be attached to her household, which
was now put on the same footing as
that of thQ empress. To these reiter-
ated advances, Madame Bdcamier
returned the most decided refusal,
•alleging, by way of courtesy, her love



of independence as the cause. At last,
foiled and irritated, Foucht — the
Mephistopheles of the piece— quitted
CUchy, never to return.

The consular episode in Madame
R^camier's life has made us anticipate
some important events. We must re-
turn to i^e first years of her marriage.
It was in 1798 Ihat some negotiations
between her husband and M. Necker,
the ex-minister of Louis XVL, brought
her in contact with that statesman's
celebrated daughter, Madame de
StaeL At their first interview a
sympathy sprung up between the two
ladies, which ended in a lasting friend-
ship. Madame Ricamier lived in her
friends, and her circle was a host ever
increasing, for she always talked much
and fondly of the friends of former
years. She could say, like the Cid,
" five hundred of my friends." Yet
she had her degrees of attachment.
They were, to use the beautiful simile
of Hafiz, like the pearls of a neck-
lace, and she the silken cord on which
they lay. The chief of this &vored
circle were four — ^Madame de Stael
among womankind, and for the rest
Chateaubriand, Ballanche, and Mont-
morency.

M. Necker's hdtel in the Rue du
Mont-Blanc having been purchased by
M. Ricamier, no cost was spared in
its decoration. It was a model of ele-
gance, and every object of furniture
down to the minutest ornament was
designed and executed expre3sly for
it. Here the opulent husband was in-
stalled, whil» the fair hostess held her
court at the chateau of Clichy. M.
Rucamier dined with her daily, and in
the evening returned to Paris. No
political distinction prevailed in her
assemblies, but the restored emigrants
were peculiarly welcome. Like Ma-
dame de Stael, Chateaubriand, and al-
most all reflective persons in our age,
she thought monarchy had better be
limited by a parliament than, as Tal-
leyrand said, by assassination. Yet
revolutionary generals and military
dukes gathered round her, side by side
with the Dae de Guignes, Adrlen and



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83



Maihiea de Montmorencj, and other
representatives of the fsdlen aristoc-
racy. In her presence they forgot
their difference at least for awhile,
and lost insensibly the asperity of
party prejudice. /

Due ]VL&thieu de Montmorency was
Madame Recamier^s senior by seven-
teen years. He had served in Amer-
ica in the regiment of Anvergne, of
which his father was colonel, and on.
his return to France abandoned him-
self to all the pleiisures and fashions
of the world. His residence in the
land of Fenn and Washington had
imbaed him with republican notions,
which he shared with a clique of
yoang noblemen like himself. Such
persons, as is well known, were among
the earhest victims of the revolution
they hurried on. Due Mathieu emi-
grated in 1792, and soon afi;erward
learned in Switzerland that his broth-
er, the Abb6 de Laval, whom he ten-
derly loved, had been beheaded. Re-
morse fiUed his breast, and drove him
almost to madness. He charged him-
self with his brother's death. It was
he who had proposed in the states
general the abolition of the privileges
of nobility, approved the sequestra-
tion of church property, and strength-
eaed the hands of Mirabeau and the
power of that assembly which paved
the way for regicide and the reign of
terror. Madame de Stael was his in
timate friend. She had shared his
political enthusiasm, and did all in her
power to sootfie him. But religion
alone oould pour balm into his smart-
ing wounds. His conversion was com-
plete and lasting. The impetuous,
seductive, and frivolous young man
became known to ail as a fervent and
strict Christian. Sainte-Beuve speaks
of him as a ^ saint.** Extreme deli-
cacy of language indicated the inward
discipline he underwent ; while the
warmth of his feelings and the solidity
of his judgment inspired at the same
time confidence and regard. His
friendship for Madame de Stagl con-
tmaed, though their religious convio-
tiooB diffeied, and he was alive to the



imperfections of her character. He
hoped one day to see hsr triumph
over herself, and his solicitude for
Madame R6camier was eoual, though
in another way. Over her ne watched
continually like a loving parent. He
trembled lest she should at last fall a
victim to the gay world which so much
admired her, and which she sought to
please. To shine without sinning is
difficult indeed. Montmorency's let-
ters prove the depth and purity of his
affection. His intimacy with his amior
Ue ande lasted unbroken during seven-
and-twenty years, and ended only with
his death.

Montmorency's death was the fitting
sequel of a holy and useful life. It
happened in 1826. He had recently
been elected one of the forty of the
French Academy, and had also been
appointed governor to the Due de Bor-
deaux, the grandson and heir of
Charles X. He had gone to the
church of St. Thomas d'Aquin on
Good Friday, apparently in perfect
health, and was kneeling before the
altar and the ^ faithful cross on which
the world's salvation hung," when his
head bowed lower, and in a moment
the bitterness of death was past

Laharpe was another distinguished
man to be numbered among the lovers
of Madame R^camier's society. He
had known her from a child, and when
his exquisite taste in literature had
obtained for him the title of the
French Quintilian his regard was not
lessened for one whose reputation was
as flourishing as his own. He passed
weeks at Clichy, and when he re-
opened his course of lectures on
French literature at the Athenasum
she had a place reserved for her near
his chair. The letters she received
from him are equally affectionate and
respectful. He too had been con-
verted through the excesses of that
revolution which he had in the first
instance encouraged. After suffering
imprisonment in 1794, his ideas and
conduct underwent a total change, and
he resolved to devote his pen for the
rest of his days to the service of re-



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84



Madcane Jtecamier and Her Friends.



ligion. The energy vith which he de-
nounced ^< philosophers" and dema-
gogues drew upon him proscription,
and it was only by concealing himself
that he escaped being transported. Of
,all revolutions, that of France in the
last century has, by the horror it ex-
cited and the reaction it produced,
tended more than any other to consol-
idate monarchy, discredit scepticism,
and promote the salvation of souls.
It is a beacon-fire kindled to warn na-
tions of the rocks and shoals — the
faults of rule and the crimes of mis-
rule — by which society may suddenly
be broken up and civilization retarded.

Montmorency was a statesman,
Laharpe a man of letters ; let us now
turn to another friend of Madame R^
camier's, who from a private soldier
rose to be a king and leave a dynasty
behind him. This was Bernadotte.
In 1802, M. Bernard was postmaster-
general, and suspected of complic'ity
in a royalist correspondence that men-
aced the government. Madame R^-
camier was one day enterta'n'ing a few
guests at dinner, and Eliza Bonaparte,
afterward Grand Duchess of Tuscany,
was present by her own invitation.
On rising from table a note was
placed in the hands of the hostess an-
nouncing the arrest and imprisonment
of M. Bernard. To whom should she
have recourse at such a moment but
to tiie First Consul's sister? She
must see him, she said, that very
evening. Would Madame Bacciocchi
procure her an interview? The prin-
cess was cold. She would advise Ma-
dame K^camier to see Fouch^ first.
" And where shall I find you again,
madam, if I do not succeed?" asked
Madame R^camier. ^ At the Th^tre
Fran^aig," was the reply ; ** in my box
with my sister."

Nothing could be gained from
Fouch^ except the alarming informa-
tion that the afiair was a very serious
one, and that unless Madame R^ca-
mier could see the First Consul that
night it would be too late. In the ut-
most consternation she drove to the
Th^tre to remind Madame Baodoo-



chi of her promise. •'My father is
lost," she said, '' unless I can speak
with the Fii-stConsul to-night." "Well,
wait till the tragedy is over," rephed
the princess, with an air of indif
ference, '' and then I shall be at your
service." Happily there was one in
the box whose dark eyes, fixed 6a the
agonized daughter, expressed clearly
the interest he felt in her position.
He leant forward, and explaining tD
the princess that Madame R^camier
appeared quite ill, offered to conduct
her to the chief of the government
Madame Bacciocchi readily assented,
and gladly resigned the suppliant to
Bemadotle's charge. Again and
again he promised to obtain that
the proceedings against M. Bernard
should be stopped, and repaired im-
mediately to the Tuileries. The same
night he returned to Madame R^ca-
mier, who was counting the moments
till he re-appeared. His suit had
been successful, and he soon aRer
procured the prisoner's release. Ma-
dame Recamler accompanied him to
the Temple on the day M. Bernard
was delivered. He was deprived of
4iis post, for, though pardoned, he
had undoubtedly been guilty of a trea-
sonable correspondence with the Chou^
ans.

This was the foundation of Bcrna-
dotte's friendship with Madame Reca-
mier. "Neither time," he wrote to
her, when adopted by Charles XIII.,
as his son and heir — " neither time nor
northern ice will ever cool my regard
for you." He had many noble quali*
ties, and did much for Sweden. We
could forgive him for joining the coa-
lition against France, if he had not
embraced Lutheranism for the sake of
a crown.

During the short peace of Amiens,
in 1802, Madame Rdcamier visited
England, where she received the kind-
est attentions from the Diichesa o(
Devonshire, Lord Douglas, tlie
Prince of Wales, and the Due d'Or-
leans, afterward king of the French.
Those who can refer to the Eng^Usli
newspapers of that year will find that



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Madame Rjicamier and Her Friends,



85



all the movements of the Deautiful
stranger were regularly gazetted.

But where is Madame de Stael?
In the autumn of 1803 she was exiled
by Bonaparte, who feared her talents
and disliked her politics. As the
daughter of Necker and the friend
of limited monarchy, she was particu-



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