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of Carthage, which had ordained it for the reverence of the matrimonial benediction. But as that council did not order its prohibition to be evaded by paying, it is more likely that this tax was a consequence of the infamous custom which gave to certain lords the first nuptial night of the brides of their vassals. Buchanan thinks that this usage began in Scotland under king Even.
Be this as it may, the lords of Prellay and Parsanny, in Piedmont, called this privilege carrajio;' but having refused to commute it for a reasonable payment, the vassals revolted, and put themselves under Amadeus VI., fourteenth count of Savoy.
There is still preserved a procès-verbal, drawn up by M. Jean Fraguier, auditor in the Chambre des Comtes’ at Paris, by virtue of a decree of the said chamber of April 7, 1507, for valuing the county of Eu, fallen into the king's keeping by the minority of the children of the count of Nevers, and his wife Charlotte de Bourbon. In the chapter of the revenue of the barony of St. Martin-le-gaillard, dependent on the county of Eu, it is said—“ Item, the said lord, at the said place of St. Martin,has the right of cuissage' in case of marriage.”
The lords of Souloire had the like privilege, and having omitted it in the acknowledgment made by them to their sovereign the lord of Montlevrier, the acknowledgment was disapproved; but by deed of December 15, 1607, the sieur de Montlevrier formally renounced it; and these shameful privileges have everywhere been converted into small payments, called (marchetta.'
Now, when our prelates had fiefs, they thought (as the judicious Fleury remarks) that they had as bishops what they possessed only as lords; and the curates, as their under-vassals, bethought themselves of blessing the nuptial bed, which brought them a small fee under the name of wedding-dishes-i. e. their dinner, in money or in kind. On one of these occasions the following quatrain was put by a country curate under
the pillow of a very agcd president, who married a young woman named La Montagne. He alludes to Moses' horns, which are spoken of in Exodus.*
Le Président à barbe grise
D'en descendre comme Moise. A word or two on the fees exacted by the clergy for the burial of the laity. Formerly, at the decease of each individual, the bishops had the contents of his will made known to them; and forbade those to receive the rites of sepulture who had died 'unconfessed' (i. e. left no legacy to the church) unless the relatives went to the official, who commissioned a priest, or some other ecclesiastic, to repair the fault of the deceased, and make a legacy in his name. The curates also opposed the profession of such as wished to turn monks, until they had paid their burial-fees; saying, that, since they died to the world, it was but right that they should discharge what would have been due from them had they been interred.
But the frequent disputes occasioned by these vexations obliged the magistrates to fix the rate of these singular fees. The following is extracted from a regulation on this subject, brought in by Francis de Harlai de Chamvallon, archbishop of Paris, on the 30th May, 1693, and passed in the court of parliament on the 10th of June following: Marriages.
Liv. Sous. For the publication of the banns
1 10 For the betrothing
2 0 For celebrating the marriage
6 0 For the certificate of the publication of the
banns, and the permission given to the
5 0 For the wedding-mass
1 10 For the vicar
* Chap. xxxiv. 29.
Liv. Sous. For the clerk of the sacraments
1 0 For blessing the bed
1 10 Funeral Processions. Of children under seven years old, when the clergy do
do not go in a body:For the curate
1 10 For each priest
0 10 When the clergy go in a body:For the curial fee
4 0 For the presence of the curate
2 0 For each priest
0 For the vicar
0 For each singing-boy, when they carry the body
8 0 And when they do not carry it
5 0 And so of young persons from seven to twelve
Of persons above twelve
night, for drink, &c.
plete service; viz. the vigils and the two
ther there shall be paid, for each of the
4 10 1 0 0 10 0 5 0 5 1 0
For the reception of bodies thus conveyed :
Liv. Sous. To the curate
6 0 To the vicar
1 10 To each priest
TEARS. TEARS are the silent language of grief. But why? What relation is there between a melancholy idea and this limpid and bring liquid filtered through a little gland into the external corner of the eye
which moistens the conjunctive and little lachrymal points, whence it descends into the nose and mouth" by the reservoir called the lachrymal duct, and by its conduits.
Why in women and children, whose organs are of a delicate texture, are tears more easily excited by grief than in men, whose formation is former ?
Has nature intended to excite compassion in us at the sight of these tears, which soften us and lead us to help those who shed them? The female savage is as strongly determined to assist her child who cries, as a lady of the court would be, and perhaps more so, because she has fewer distractions and passions.
Everything in the animal body has, no doubt, its object. The eyes, particularly, have mathematical re
* This tax is much increased; but we doubt whether the augmentations have been made legal. It is now thought fit to have the part of confessor to the deceased played by a priest who appears in a particular habit, and who receives a crown. When the sick man has died without confession, the confessor is sometimes allowed, in order to avoid scandal and to get the crown.
This is a means of decrying a respectable family among the mob of the parish, who are in the hands of the priests, because the laity are still stupid enough to commission them to distribute their alms.
This greediness of the clergy has long been a subject of complaint. "Baptist of Mantua, general of the Carmelites in the fifteenth century, says in his poetry, that all is venal-priests, temples, altars, incense, prayers ; vay God himself.
lations so evident, so demonstrable, so admirable with the rays of light;—this mechanism is so divine, that I should be tempted to take the audacity of denying the final causes of the structure of our eyes, for the delirium of a high fever.
The use of tears appears not to have so determined and striking an object; but it is probable that nature caused them to flow in order to excite us to pity.
There are women who are accused of weeping when they choose. I am not at all surprised at their talent. A lively, sensible, and tender imagination can fix upon some object, on some melancholy recollection, and represent it in such lively colours, as to draw tears; which happens to several performers, and particularly to actresses on the stage.
Women who imitate them in the interior of their houses, join to this talent the little fraud of appearing to weep for their husbands, while they really weep for their lovers. Their tears are true, but the object of them is false.
It is impossible to affect tears without a subject, in the same manner as we can affect to laugh. We must be sensibly touched to force the lachrymal gland to compress itself, and to spread its liquor on the orbit of the eye; but the will alone is required to laugh.
We demand why the same man, who has seen with a dry eye the most atrocious events, and even committed crimes with sang-froid, will weep at the theatre at the representation of similar events and crimes ? It is, that he sees them not with the same eyes; he sees them with those of the author and the actor. He is no longer the same man; he was barbarous, he was agitated with furious passions, when he saw an innocent woman killed, when he stained himself with the blood of his friend;
he became a man again at the representation of it. His soul was filled with a stormy tumult; it is now tranquil and void, and nature re-entering it, he sheds virtuous tears. Such is the true merit, the great good of theatrical representation, which can never be effected by the cold declamation of an orator paid to tire an audience for an hour.