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" As Stanislaus was drawing towards Bender, 1.C. 1713.

Heg. 1125 the bashaw, who had returned thither, after hav. ing accompanied Charles for some miles, fent the king of Poland an Arabian horse, wich magnificent trappings. He was received at Bender amidst a discharge of the artillery; and, excepting his confinement, from which he was not as yet delivered, he had no great cause to complain of his treatment. * Meanwhile Charles was on his way to Adrianople. Nothing was talked of in that town but his late battle. The Turks at once condemned and adınired him; but the divan was so provoked, that they threatened to confine him in one of the isles of the Archipelago. Stanislaus, king of Poland, from whom I had the honor to receive the greatest part of these particulars, assured me likewise, that a proposal was made in the divan for confining him in one of the islands of Greece; but the grand feignior's anger being assuaged, a few months after allowed him to depart.

· Count Desalleurs, who could have taken his part, and might have prevented the Turks from offering such an affront to all Christian kings, was at Conftantinople, as was likewise count Poniatowski. Most of the Swedes at Adrianople were in prison, and the sultan's throne seemed to

be

* The good chaplain Norberg alleges, that we are here guilty of a manifeft contradiction, in supposing that king Stanislaus was at once detained a prisoner, and treated as a king, at Bender. What! had not the poor man discern. ment enough to perceive, that it is very possible for a person, at one and the same time, to be loaded with honors and deprived of his liberty. VOLTAIR L.

1

Heg.1125

A French

T.C. 1713. be inaccessible to any complaints of the king of

Sweden. The marquis of Fierville, who had resided with Charles at Bender as a private agent of France, was then at Adrianople. He undertook to do that prince a piece of service at a time when he was abandoned or oppressed by all the world besides. In this design he was happily are

fifted by a French gentleman, of an ancient family gentleman in Champaign, called Villelongue, a man of great petition to courage, but who, not having a fortune equal to in behalf his fpirit, and moreover charmed with the fame of Sweden. of the king of Sweden, had repaired to Turkey

with a view of entering into the service of that prince. With the assistance of this young man, the marquis wrote a memorial in the king of Sweden's name, in which he made his majesty demand satisfaction of the sultan for the infult which, in his person, had been offered to all crowned heads, and for the treachery, real or fupposed, of the khan and the bashaw of Bender. In this memorial he accused the vizier and other ministers of having received bribes from the Ruffians, imposed upon the grand seignior, intercepted the king's letters to his highness, and of having, by their artifices, extorted from the fultan an order so contrary to the hospitality of Mufsulmen, by which, in direct violation of the laws of nations, and in a manner so unworthy of a great emperor, they had attacked, with twenty thousand men, a king who had none but his ser

yants

vants to defend him, and who relied upon the J.C. 1713,

Heg, 1125 sacred word of the sultan.

- When the memorial was drawn up, it was to be translated into Turkish, and written in a particular hand, and upon a certain kind of paper, which is always used in addresses to the sultan. For this purpose they applied to several French interpreters in the town ; 'but the affairs of the king of Sweden were in such a desperate situation, and the vizier was so much his declared

enemy, that not a single interpreter would undertake the task. At length they found a stranger, whose hand was not known at the Porte, who, having received a handsome gratuity, and being fully assured of the most profound secrecy, translated the memorial into Turkish, and wrote it upon the proper sort of paper. Baron Arvidson, a Swedish officer, counterfeited the king's subscription. Fierville, who had the royal signet, appended it to the writing, and the whole was sealed up with the anns of Sweden. Villelongue undertook to deliver it into the hands of the grand feignior, as he went to the mosque, according to his usual custom. The like methods had been frequently employed for presenting memorials to the sultan against his ministers; but that very circumstance rendered the success of this enterprise the more precarious, and the danger of the attempt the more imminent.

· The vizier, who plainly foresaw that the Swedes would demand justice of the sultan, and

who,

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J.C.1713. who, from the unhappy fate of his predeceffors,
Heg. 1125.

had but too many warnings to provide for his
own safety, had given peremptory orders to allow
no one to approach the grand feignior's perfon,
but to seize all such as should be about the
mosque with petitions in their hands.

• Villelongue was well apprized of this order,
and at the same time knew, that, by breaking it,
he should run the risk of losing his head. He
therefore laid aside his Frank's dress, and put on
a Grecian habit; and, concealing the letter in his
bosom, repaired betime to the neighbourhood of
the mosque to which the grand feignior resorted.
He counterfeited the madman; and, dancing be-
tween two files of janissaries, through which the
sultan was to pass, he purposely let some pieces
of money drop from his pockets, as if by chance,
in order to amuse the guards.

When the sultan was drawing near, the guards endeavoured to remove Villelongue out of the way; but he fell on his knees, and struggled with the janissaries. At last his cap fell off, and he was discovered, by his long hair, to be a Frank. He received several blows, and was very roughly handled. The grand feignior, who was at no great distance, heard the scuffile, and asked the cause of it. Villelongue cried out with all his might, Amman! Amman! Mercy! pulling the letter out of his bosom. The sultan ordered the guards to let him approach. Villelongue inftantly ran up to him, embraced his stirrup, and

presented

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the sultan.

however

true.

J.C. 1713. presented the memorial, saying, Sued crall dan,

Heg.1125. The king of Sweden gives it thee. The sultan put the letter in his bosom, and proceeded to the mosque. Meanwhile Villelongue was secured, and imprisoned in one of the exterior apartments of the seraglio.

Ć The sultan, having read the letter upon his He has a leaving the mosque, resolved to examine the pri- tion with foner himself. This perhaps will appear fome- This, what incredible : nothing however is here ad

strange, is vanced, but what is vouched by the letters of Mr. Villelongue; and surely, when so brave an officer affirms any thing upon his honor, he merits, at leaft, some credit. He assured me, then, that the sultan laid aside his imperial garb and turban, and disguised himself like an officer of the janissaries, a thing which he frequently does. He brought along with him an old man, of the isle of Malta, as an interpreter. By favor of this disguise, Villelongue enjoyed an honor which no Christian ambassador ever obtained. He had a private conference with the Turkish emperor for a quarter of an hour. He did not fail to represent the wrongs which the king of Sweden had suffered, to accuse the ministers, and to demand satisfaction; and all this with so much the more freedoin, as, in talking to the sultan, he was only supposed to be calking to his equal. He could casily discover, notwithstanding the darkness of the prison, that it was no other than the grand feignior himself; but this discovery only made

D G

him

VOL. IV.

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