The Duchess of Berry and the Court of Charles X eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 211 pages of information about The Duchess of Berry and the Court of Charles X.

Nevertheless she was not without lively anxiety in that regard.  The Rohans had refused all compromise with her.  If they were disinherited, what would they say?  Would they not attack the will on the ground of undue influence?  Such was the eventuality against which the prudent Baroness intended to guard herself.  In consequence she conceived the bold project of sheltering her own wealth under the patronage of some member of the royal family, in having him receive the fortune of the old Prince under a will which at the same time should consecrate the part to be received by her, and put it beyond all contest.  She would have wished the old Prince to choose his heir in the elder branch of the House of Bourbon.  But the Duchess of Berry, who was disinterestedness itself, declined any arrangement of that nature.  To the insinuations made to her in favor of her son, she responded:—­

“Henri will be King.  The King of France needs nothing.”

She did more.  It is said that to the persons who bore these advances to her, she suggested the idea of having the heritage of the Condes pass to the family of the Duke of Orleans.  But the thing was not easy.  It is true that the children of the Duke were, by their mother, Bathilde d’Orleans, nephews of the wife of the Duke of Bourbon.  But this Prince had led a bad life with his wife, from whom he had separated immediately after the birth of the Duke d’Enghien, and the souvenirs of the Revolution separated him widely from a family whose political ideas were not his.  Yet the Duke and Duchess of Orleans were not discouraged.  They entered on negotiations a long time in advance with the Baroness of Feucheres, who was in reality the arbiter of the situation.  M. Nettement relates that the first time that Marie-Amelie pronounced the name of the Baroness in the presence of the Duchess of Angouleme, the daughter of Louis XVI. said to her:  “What! you have seen that woman!” The Duchess of Orleans responded:  “What would you have?  I am a mother.  I have a numerous family; I must think before all of the interests of my children.”

What is certain is that the Prince was induced to be the godfather of the Duke d’Aumale, born the 6th of January, 1822, and that was a sort of prelude to the will of 1830.

X

THE COURT

Now let us throw a general glance over the court of the King, Charles X., in 1825, the year of the consecration.

The civil household of the King comprised six distinct services:  those of Grand Almoner of France, of the Grand Master of France, of the Grand Chamberlain of France, of the Grand Equerry of France, of the Grand Huntsman of France, and of the Grand Master of Ceremonies of France.

The Grand Almoner was the Cardinal, Prince of Croy, Archbishop of Rowen; the First Almoner, Mgr.  Frayssinous, Bishop of Hermopolis; the confessor of the King, the Abbe Jocard.  Charles X., this monarch, surrounded by great lords, knelt before a plebeian priest and demanded absolution for his sins.  There were, besides, in the service of the Grand Almoner of France, eight almoners, eight chaplains, and eight pupils of the chapel, serving in turns of four.

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The Duchess of Berry and the Court of Charles X from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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