新时期新领导新担当新作为:扛重任打赢“新会战”

Those of the Grand Monarque were brought up in almost royal state, magnificently dowered, raised to a rank next to the princes of the blood, amongst whom they were generally married, and with whom they kept up constant quarrels and rivalry.

There had been a sudden silence when he entered; no one saluted him but Mme. Le Brun, who greeted [286] him with a smile, but all regarded him with curiosity. His dress was not like those of the gentlemen present, nor of their class at all; it had a sort of Bohemian picturesqueness which rather suited his handsome, striking, sarcastic face; he was very young, not more than about twenty, but he spoke and moved with perfect unconcern amongst the uncongenial society into which he had fallen. Mme. Le Brun, tired of the stupid, contradictory remarks of the amateurs who then, as now, were eager to criticise what they knew nothing about, and nearly always said the wrong thing, exclaimed impatiently

Besides, she educated her own two daughters, her nephew, Csar Ducrest, whose mother died and whose father (her brother) was given a post at the Palais Royal, a young cousin, Henriette de Sercey, and later on one or two other children she adopted. But what caused considerable speculation and scandal was the sudden appearance of a little girl, who was sent, she said, from England, to speak English with the other children amongst whom she was educated. On perfectly equal terms with the Princes and Princesses of Orlans, petted and made much of by every one, she was, and still is supposed by many, perhaps by most people, to have been really the daughter of Mme. de Genlis and the Duc de Chartres. At any rate, no English relations were ever forthcoming, and it was never clearly established where she came from, except that she was announced to have been sent over from England at the request of the Duc de Chartres. She was remarkably beautiful and talented, and Mme. de Genlis brought her forward, and did everything to make her as affected and vain as she had been made herself.

At a State ball she first saw again the Empress, Marie Thrse, daughter of the Queen of Naples, whom she found much changed in appearance. She had painted her portrait in 1792.

Then I will be guilty too. The splendid ceremony of the benediction of the Neva by the Archimandrite, in the presence of the Empress, the Imperial family, and all the great dignitaries, deeply impressed her. Will you give me your certificate of residence? all the emigrants have them and prove to me every day that they have never left France.

Long and touching were the conversations and confidences of the sisters when they were alone together.

It was an eccentric existence that she led in her youth, it must be confessed. That wandering, restless life had a character all the more strange because at that time it was so unusual; going perpetually from one chateau to another, roaming about the country disguised as a peasant, playing tricks on everybody, eating raw fish, playing the harp like Apollo, dancing, acting, fencing....

Mme. Le Brun returned home, but dared not stay there, so she accepted the invitation of her brothers father-in-law, M. de Rivire, in whose house she thought she would be safe, as he was a foreign minister. She stayed there a fortnight, treated as if she were a daughter of the house, but she had resolved to get out of France before it was too late.

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.

In a very short time, however, she was summoned out of the prison and conducted by the gaolers into the presence of Tallien.

It was decided that the three sisters should meet at Viane, where Pauline and her husband went, with post-horses provided by Mme. de Tess. It was eight years since Pauline and Rosalie had met, and Pauline said it was a foretaste of Heaven.

She also was overjoyed to meet the Comtesse de Brionne, Princesse de Lorraine, one of the earliest friends who had shown her unvarying kindness at the beginning of her careerand she resumed her old habit of going often to supper with her. The Polignac, too, had a place near Vienna, in fact, wherever she went Lisette met numbers of her unfortunate countrymen and acquaintance driven into exile, watching in despair the course of events in France.

It was an eccentric existence that she led in her youth, it must be confessed. That wandering, restless life had a character all the more strange because at that time it was so unusual; going perpetually from one chateau to another, roaming about the country disguised as a peasant, playing tricks on everybody, eating raw fish, playing the harp like Apollo, dancing, acting, fencing....