Perefixe, vol. ii. pp. 498, 499.
MARIE DE MEDICIS AS REGENT
Self-possession of Marie de Medicis—The Ducs de Guise and d’Epernon assemble the nobility—Precautions for the security of the metropolis—The first audience of the widowed Queen—Impolicy of Sully—The Duc d’Epernon announces to the Parliament the authorized regency of Marie—By whom it is ratified—Precarious position of the Queen-mother—The first night of widowhood—Injudicious apathy of Marie de Medicis on the subject of her husband’s murder—Her incautious display of favour towards the Duc d’Epernon—The Duke is suspected of having been an accessory to the assassination of Henri IV—He demands the punishment of the authors of the rumour—A lawyer and a courtier—Fearless reply of the President de Harlay to the rebuke of the Regent—Suspicions against Philip of Spain—Louis XIII holds his first Bed of Justice—The Queen requests the support of the Parliament—Return of the Court to the Louvre—The Duc de Sully visits the Queen—Effect of his reception—The Princess-Dowager of Conde urges the return of her son to Court—M. de Soissons is invited by Marie de Medicis to the capital—His disappointment—His arrogance—A courtly falsehood—Reception of M. de Soissons at the gates of Paris—His numerous retinue—The recompense of obedience—Congratulatory deputations—Trial of the regicide Ravaillac—His execution—Arrival of the Duc de Bouillon in Paris—His quarrel with the Duc de Sully—They are reconciled—The Court attend a funeral service at Notre-Dame—Presumption of the Duc d’Epernon—Marie de Medicis devotes herself to state affairs—Jealousy of the Princes of the Blood and great nobles—Marie endeavours to conciliate them—The Spanish Minister endeavours to prevent the return of the Prince de Conde—Without success—The Regent forms a council—Pretensions of the nobles—The Duc d’Epernon takes possession of apartments in the Louvre—He leagues with the Comte de Soissons against the Prince de Conde—Speculations of the Ministers—Their policy—Boyhood of Louis XIII—A delicate position—A royal rebuke—Court favour—The visionary Government—Discontent of the citizens of Paris—Unpopularity of the Regent—The ex-Queen’s entertainment—Imprudence of Marie de Medicis—Confirmation of the Edict of Nantes—Return of the Prince de Conde—The Regent is alarmed by his popularity—Double-dealing of the Duc d’Epernon—The Prince de Conde declares his intention to uphold the interests of the Regent—His reception at the Louvre—He rejoins his wife—The Court of the Hotel de Conde—A cabal—Marie is advised to arrest the Prince de Conde—She refuses—The secret council—Indignation of Sully—Mischievous advice of the Duc de Bouillon—Munificence of the Regent to M. de Conde—The royal treasury—Venality of the French Princes—The