The Letters of Horace Walpole, Earl of Orford — Volume 4 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,055 pages of information about The Letters of Horace Walpole, Earl of Orford — Volume 4.

(806) Am`elie de Boufflers, wife of Armand-Louis de Gontaut, Duc do Biron, better known in England by the title of Duc de Lauzan.  By a letter from Madame Necker to Gibbon, the Duchesse appears to have been at Lausanne in October; but in the following September , tempted,” says Gibbon, " by some faint, and I fear, fallacious hope Of clemency to the women”, she was induced to revisit France, and perished by the guillotine, in one of Robespierre’s bloody proscriptions.  See vol. v. pp. 133, 400.  The Duc was entrusted with the command of the army of the republic in La Vend`ee; but, being reproached with having suffered Niort to be besieged and with not having seconded westermann, he was denounced at the bar of the Convention, delivered over to the revolutionary tribunal, and condemned to death.  He suffered on the 31st of December 1793, and is words upon the scaffold are said to have been, “I have been false to my God, my order, and my king:  I die full of faith and repentance.”  See his “M`emoires, " in two volumes 8vo. published in 1802.-E.

Letter 384To Miss Berry.  Strawberry Hill, June 23, 1791. (page 510)

Wo is me!  I have not an atom of news to send you, but that the second edition of Mother Hubbard’s Tale was again spoiled on Saturday last by the rain; yet she had an ample assemblage of company from London and the neighbourhood.  The late Queen of France, Madame du Barry, was there; and the late Queen of England, Madame d’Albany, was not.  The former, they say, is as much altered as her kingdom, and does not retain a trace of her former powers.  I saw her on her throne in the chapel of Versailles;(807) and, though then pleasing in face and person, I thought her un peu pass`e.  What shall I tell you more? that Lord Hawkesbury is added to the cabinet-council—­que vous importe? and that Dr. Robertson has published a Disquisition into the Trade of the Anchellts with India;(808) a sensible work—­but that will be no news to you till you return.  It was a peddling trade in those days.  They now and then picked up an elephant’s tooth, or a nutmeg, or one pearl, that served Venus for a pair of pendants, when Antony had toasted Cleopatra in a bumper of its fellow; which shows that a couple was imported:-but. alack! the Romans were so ignorant, that waiters from the Tres Tabernoe, in St. Apollo’s-street, did not carry home sacks of diamonds enough to pave the Capitol—­I hate exaggerations, and therefore I do not say, to pave the Appian Way.  One author, I think, does say, that the wife of Fabius Pictor, whom he sold to a proconsul, did present Livia(809) with an ivory bed, inlaid with Indian gold; but, as Dr. Robertson does not mention it, to be sure he does not believe the fact well authenticated.

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