The Life of Marie Antoinette, Queen of France eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 573 pages of information about The Life of Marie Antoinette, Queen of France.

Yet so deeply seated were hope and confidence in the queen’s heart, so sanguine was her trust that out of the mutual enmity of the populace and the Assembly safety would still be wrought for the king and the monarchy, that even while the din of battle was raging outside the hall, and inside deputy after deputy was rising to heap insults on the king and on herself, or to second Vergniaud’s resolutions for his formal degradation, she could still believe that the tide was about to turn in her favor.  While the uproar was at its height she turned to D’Hervilly, who still kept his post, faithful and fearless, at his master’s side.  “Well, M. d’Hervilly,” said she, with an air, as M. Bertrand, who tells the story, describes it, of the most perfect security, “did we not do well not to leave Paris?” “I pray God,” said the brave noble, “that your majesty may be able to ask me the same question in six months’ time.[6]” His foreboding was truer than her hopes.  In less than six months she was a desolate, imprisoned widow, helplessly awaiting her own fate from her husband’s murderers.

All these resolutions of Vergniaud, all the ribald abuse with which different members supported them, the unhappy sovereigns were condemned to hear in the narrow box to which they had been removed.  They bore the insults, the queen with her habitual dignity, the king with his inveterate apathy; Louis even speaking occasionally with apparent cheerfulness to some of the deputies.  The constant interruptions protracted the discussions through the entire day.  It was half-past three in the morning before the Assembly adjourned, when the king and his family were removed to the adjacent Convent of the Feuillants, where four wretched cells had been hastily furnished with camp-beds, and a few other necessaries of the coarsest description.  So little was any attempt made to disguise the fact that they were prisoners, that their own domestic servants were not allowed the next day to attend them till they had received a formal ticket of admittance from the president.  Yet even in this extremity of distress Marie Antoinette thought of others rather than of herself; and when at last her faithful attendant, Madame de Campan, obtained access to her, her first words expressed how greatly her own sorrows were aggravated by the thought that she had involved in them those loyal friends whose attachment merited a very different recompense.[7]

CHAPTER XXXVIII.

Indignities to which the Royal Family are subjected.—­They are removed to the Temple.—­Divisions in the Assembly.—­Flight of La Fayette.—­Advance of the Prussians.—­Lady Sutherland supplies the Dauphin with Clothes.—­Mode of Life in the Temple.—­The Massacres of September.—­The Death of the Princess de Lamballe.—­Insults are heaped on the King and Queen.—­The Trial of the King.—­His Last Interview with his Family.—­His Death.

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The Life of Marie Antoinette, Queen of France from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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