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cabinet-making; and, assisted only by his brother, the Duke of Montpensier, made a handsome cupboard, and a table with drawers, for a poor woman in the village of St Leu.
At this period of his youth, as well as in more advanced years, the subject of our memoir gave many tokens of a benevolent and noble disposition, sacrificing on many occasions his pocket-money to relieve distress, and exerting himself to succour the oppressed. Speaking of his progress and character under her tuition, the Countess de Genlis observes : “ The Duke of Chartres has greatly improved in disposition during the past year; he was born with good inclinations, and is now become intelligent and virtuous. Possessing none of the frivolities of the age, he disdains the puerilities which occupy the thoughts of so many young men of rank—such as fashions, dress, trinkets, follies of all kinds, and the desire for novelties. He has no passion for money; he is disinterested; despises glare; and is consequently truly noble. Finally, he has an excellent heart, which is common to his brothers and sister, and which, joined to reflection, is capable of producing all other good qualities."
A favourite method of instruction pursued by Madame de Genlis consisted in taking her young pupils on a variety of holiday excursions. Interesting rural scenes, spots consecrated by historical transactions, cabinets of curiosities, manufacturing, establishments, &c. were thus visited, and made the subject of useful observation. In the summer of 1787, the Duchess of Orleans and her children, accompanied by their superintendent, visited Spa, the health of the duchess requiring aid from the mineral waters of that celebrated place of resort. A pleasing anecdote is related of the Orleans family on the occasion of this visit. The health of the duchess having been much improved by the waters of the Sauvenière—a spring a few miles from the town in the midst of pleasing scenery-the Duke of Chartres and his brothers and sister, prompted by their instructress, resolved on giving a gay and commemorative fête. Round the spring they formed a beautiful walk, removed the stones and rocks which were in the way, and caused it to be ornamented with seats, with small bridges placed over the torrents, and covered the surrounding woods with charming shrubs in flower. At the end of the walk conducting to the spring whose waters had been so efficacious, was a kind of little wood, which had an opening looking out upon a precipice remarkable for its height, and for being covered with majestic piles of rock and trees. Beyond it was a landscape of great extent and beauty. In the wood was raised by the duke and his brothers and sister an altar to “GRATITUDE," of white marble, on which was the following inscription : "The waters of the Sauvenière having restored the health of the Duchess of Orleans, her children have embellished the neighbourhood of its springs, and have themselves traced the walks and cleared the woods with more assi-, duity than the workmen who laboured under their orders.” On the fête day in question, the young Duke of Chartres expressed with grace and effect his filial sentiments of devotedness and love, but suddenly left the side of his mother, and appeared with his brothers and sister, a few seconds afterwards, at the foot of the altar, himself holding a chisel in his hand, and appearing to be writing in it the word“ Gratitude.” The effect was magical ; all present were at once charmed and ached; and many a cheek was bedewed with pleasurable tears.*
The same authority from whom we have the above anecdote, relates some interesting particulars of a journey which the family made about this period to Eu, in Normandy, whence they proceeded westward by Havre to the bay of Avranches. Here they visited the rocky fortress of St Michael, which, standing within the margin of the sea, is a conspicuous object for a distance of many miles around. Long celebrated for its shrine of St Michael, the convent in this island-fort had for ages been visited by thousands of devotees, and probably this species of celebrity, as well as the natural features of the place, and its historical associations, induced the young princes of Orleans to view it with some degree of interest. Till this period, its dungeons had been employed as a state-prison; and these were viewed with melancholy feelings by the young visitors. While conducted over these gloomy recesses by the monks, to whose charge the prison had been committed, the Duke of Chartres made some inquiries relative to an iron cage, which had been used for the close confinement of prisoners: The monks, in reply, told him that the cage was not of iron, but of wood, framed of enormous logs, between which were interstices of the width of three and four finger - breadths. It was then about fifteen years since
any prisoners had been wholly confined therein, but any who were violent were subject to the punishment for twenty-four hours. The Duke of Chartres expressed his surprise that so cruel a measure, in so damp a place, should be permitted. The prior replied, that it was his intention, at some time or other, to destroy this monument of cruelty, since the Count d'Artois (afterwards Charles X.) had visited Mount St Michael a few months previous, and had positively commanded its demolition. “In that case," said the Duke of Chartres, “there can be no reason why we should not all be present at its destruction, for that will delight us." The next morning was fixed by the prior for the good work of demolition, and the Duke of Chartres, with the most touching expression, and with a force really beyond his years, gave the first blow with his axe to the cage, amidst the transports, acclamations, and applauses of the prisoners. The Swiss who was appointed to show this monster cage, alone looked grave and disappointed, for he made money, * Reminiscences of Men and Things-a series of interesting papers in Fraser's
by conducting strangers to view it. When the Duke of Chartres was informed of this circumstance, he presented the Swiss with ten louis, and with much wit and good humour observed, “Do now, my good Swiss, in future, instead of showing the cage to travellers, point out to them the place where it once stood; and surely to hear of its destruction will afford to them all more pleasure than to have seen it."
One of the means by which Madame de Genlis endeavoured to teach her pupils to examine and regulate their own minds and conduct, was the keeping of a journal, in which they were enjoined to enter every occurrence, great and small, in which they were personally concerned. The journal kept by the Duke of Chartres, in consequence of this recommendation, has latterly been given to the public, and makes us acquainted with some interesting particulars of his early life, as well as with the sentiments which he then entertained. The latter are such as might have been expected from a lad reared within the all-prevailing influence of revolutionary doctrines. Of the political movements of 1789, Madame de Genlis and her husband were warm adherents; and they failed not, with the concurrence of the Duke of Orleans, to impress their sentiments on the susceptible mind of their charge. Introduced, and entered a member of the Jacobin Club, the young Duke of Chartres appears from his journal to have been in almost daily attendance on the sittings of this tumultuary body, as well as the National Assembly. What was much more creditable to his judgment, he seems to have been equally assiduous in acquiring a knowledge of surgery by his visits to the Hôtel-Dieu, or great public hospital of Paris. A few entries in his journal on these and other points, illustrative of his youthful character and pursuits, may here be introduced.
“ Nov. 2 (1790).— I was yesterday admitted a member of the Jacobins, and much applauded. I returned thanks for the kind reception which they were so good as to give me, and I assured them that I should never deviate from the sacred duties of a good patriot and a good citizen.
Nov. 26.— I went this morning to the Hôtel-Dieu. The next time I shall dress the patients myself.
Dec. 2.—I went yesterday morning to the Hôtel-Dieu. I dressed two patients, and gave one six, and the other three livres.
Dec. 25.—I went yesterday morning to confession. I dined at the Palais Royal, and then went to the Philanthropic Society, whence I could not get away till eight o'clock.
I went to the midnight mass at St Eustache, returned at two in the morning, and got to bed at half-past two. I performed my devotions at this mass (Christmas].
Jan. 7 (1791).-I went this morning to the Hôtel-Dieu in a hackney-coach, as my carriage was not come, and it rained hard. I dressed the patients, and bled three women.
Jan. 8.- In the morning to the Assembly; at six in the evening to the Jacobins. M. de Noailles presented a work on the Revolution, by Mr Joseph Towers, in answer to Mr Burke. He praised it highly, and proposed that I should be appointed to translate it. This proposition was adopted with great applause, and I foolishly consented, but expressing my fear that I should not fulfil their expectations,
I returned home at a quarter past seven. At night, my father told me that he did not approve of it, and I must excuse myself to the Jacobins on Sunday. [We are afterwards informed that he executed the translation, but that it was arranged for the press by his sub-governor or tutor, M. Pieyre, whose name was prefixed to it.]
Jan. 28.-[Describes how he caught cold, and became unwell.] Went to Bellechasse (the residence of Madame de Genlis), where, notwithstanding my headache, and though I had much fever, I wished to remain; but my friend (Madame de G.] sent me away, reminding me that I was to be at the Hôtel-Dieu in the morning."
The Duke of Chartres appears from his journal to have been attached in an extraordinary degree to Madame de Genlis, whose admonitions he always regarded as those of a mother. Referring to his kind instructiess, under the date May 22, he proceeds: "O, my mother, how I bless you for having preserved me from all those vices and misfortunes (too often incident to youth), by inspiring me with that sense of religion which has been my whole support."
Some years previous to this period, the duke had been appointed to the honorary office of colonel in the 14th regiment of dragoons. Such offices being now abolished, it became necessary for him to assume in his own person the command of his regiment, and for this purpose he proceeded to Vendôme in June 1791, accompanied by M. Pieyre. At this time conside able commotion took place in many parts of France, in consequence of the refusal of a numerous body of clergy to take an oath prescribed by the constitution. The nonjuring clerzymen were everywhere ejected from their
livings, and in some places treated with indignity. While the Duke of Chartres was in Vendôme, a popular ferment took place, in which two of these unfortunaté men would have been murdered by the mob, but for his humane interference. The occurrence is described as follows in his journal:
“ June 27.—[Mentions his attendance with his regiment on a religious procession led by a clergyman who had taken the appointed oath.] At noon I had brought back the regiment, but with orders not to unboot or unsaddle. I asked Messrs Dubois, d'Albis, Jacquemin, and Phillippe, to dinner. They brought us word that the people had collected in a mob, and were about to hang two priests. I ran immediately to the place, followed by Pieyre, Dubois, and d'Albis. I came to the door of a tavern,
where I found ten or twelve national guards, the mayor, the townclerk, and a considerable number of people, crying, “They have broken the law; they must be hanged-to the lamp-post!' I asked the mayor what all this meant, and what it was all about. He replied, "It is a nonjuring priest and his father, who have escaped into this house; the people allege that they have insulted M. Buisson, a priest, who has taken the civic oath, and who was car ng the holy sacrament, and I can no longer restrain them. I have sent for a voiture to convey them away. goodness to send for two dragoons to escort them.' I did so immediately The mayor stood motionless before the door, not opening his mouth. I therefore addressed some of the most violent of the mob, and endeavoured to explain “how wrong it would be to hang men without trial; that, moreover, they would be doing the work of the executioner, which they considered infamous ; that there were judges whose duty it was to deal with these men. The mob answered that the judges were aristocrats, and that they did not punish the guilty. I replied, “That's your own fault, as they are elected by yourselves; but you must not take the law into your own hands.' There was now much confusion; at last one voice cried—“We will spare them for the sake of M. de Chartres.' 'Yes, yes, yes,' cried the people; "he is a good patriot; he edified us all this morning. Bring them out; we shall do them no harm. I went up to the room where the unhappy men were, and asked them if they would trust themselves to me; they said yes. I preceded them down stairs, and exhorted the people not to forget what they had promised. They cried out again, “Be easy; they shall receive no harm. I called to the driver to bring up the carriage; upon which the crowd cried out, 'No voiture-on foot, on foot, that we may have the satisfaction of hooting them, and expelling them ignominiously from the town.' 'Well, I said, on foot; be it so; 'tis the same thing to me, for you are too honest to forfeit your word.' We set out amidst hisses and a torrent of abuse; I gave my arm to one of the men, and the mayor was on the other side. The priest walked between Messrs Dubois and d’Albis. Not thinking at the moment, I unluckily took the direction towards Paris. The mayor asked one of the men where he would wish to go; he answered, "To Blois. It was directly the contrary way from that which we were taking.. The mayor wished to return, and to pass across the whole town. I opposed this, and we changed our direction, but without going back through the streets. We passed a little wooden bridge of a few planks without rails; there the mob cried to throw them into the river, and endeavoured, by putting sticks across, to make them fall into the water. I again reminded them of their promise, and they became quiet. When we were about a mile out of the town, some of the country people came running down the hill, and threw themselves upon us, calling out, 'Hang or drown 'the two rascals !'