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MADAME DE MORNAY.*

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From The Spectator. cultivation were equal to those of Mrs.

Hutchinson ; but, by what she has written, This notice of a very remarkable French Madame de Mornay strongly excites our dewoman of the latter part of the fifteenth cen- sire to know more. She was, at all events, tury, is a reprint of a “Discours” by a woman of great energy and decision, courAdolphe Scheffer, brother of the two cele- ageous and faithful in affection ; truly religbrated French artists, Ary and Henri Schef- ious, yet not inclined to give way to religfer. It was drawn up for reading at a meet- ious pretension : singularly simple and ing of L'Assemblée Générale de la Société truthful in all her aims. In the memoir of de l'Histoire du Protestantisme Français, her husband, drawn up for the use of her 1854. It is brief and very incomplete, hav- only son, there is a marked absence of egoing more the character of an eloge than of a tism. His father's example ; the manner in memoir. Of course, what it tells of Madame which De Mornay conducted himself in varide Mornay is, so far as it goes, indisputably ous emergencies—is all in all with her. true; but it says nothing but what must be

The outlines of Madame de Mornay's life familiar to very cursory readers ; it gives us may soon be given. She was the daughter few particulars of her varying life in her of a Catholic gentleman, Gui Arbaleste, dutiful attempts to make a home for her hus- Mons. file la Borde, who held honorable apband wherever his employments called him; pointments at Paris in 1550, the year of her it

says nothing of her English friends ; of birth. He afterwards became a Protestant, the birth of her children, one of whom, born but not so soon as his daughter, who in in London, was named after Queen Eliza- early youth embraced the Calvinistic faith. beth by her special desire, and had Sir She married very young, a M. Feuqueres, Philip Sydney for godfather ; it does not likewise a reformer, but was left a widow, once mention her faithful friendship for the with one daughter, in 1569, when only nineexcellent Lauguet, and her nursing him in teen. Five years afterwards she became the his last illness at Antwerp: and it makes no wife of Duplessis Mornay, who was about two allusion to her characteristic difference with years older than herself. Both of them had the Consistoire at Montauban. There exist, narrowly escaped death on the day of St. we feel persuaded, materials for a far more

Bartholomew, both being in Paris, though extended and interesting account of Madame each at that time unknown to each other. de Mornay than this, or, indeed, than

Through their connections with the noblest that has yet been written, either in her own of the Huguenot party and some of the best country or ours. The De Mornay papers, of the Catholic, both were happily spared still in the hands of one of the descendants for long, useful, and consistent service, of Duplessis Mornay (the Marquis Jules de never, for an hour of after life, as it appears, Mornay), form a very voluminous collection. shrinking from the toilsome duties before From these many extracts have been made. them through fear or through favor. It is The letters and many scattered papers have really worth remarking what an abundance been published in twelve octavo volumes, of practical talent is displayed in the records in a Paris edition of 1824, and several of which remain of the great men and women De Mornay's theological works are also well of France of that day. De Mornay's own known. But among those which remain un

writings, when they are not on the subject edited, surely some valuable letters from the of abstruse theology, are clear, concise, and pen of his wife might be found which would to the point; and his wife, though few specirepay the trouble of collection. We cannot mens of her authorship remain, is memoraindeed quite agree with M. Guizot, who in ble among women for the closeness with one of his best “ Etudes Biographiques sur which she adheres to the task she imposes la Revolution d'Angleterre” (that on Lucy on herself in no instance wasting unnecesHutchinson), overrates Madame de Mornay, sary words, though there is abundant proof me think, intellectually if not morally. We of the strong and even passionate character do not suppose her mental powers of their of her feelings. Her sojourn in England * Madame Duplessis Mornay, née Charlotte Ar

during her husband's first embassy to the baleste. Par Adolphe Screefjes

. Parison
Cherbu- court of Elizabeth from that of Navarre ex-

tended from about May, 1577, to July, 1578.

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numerous.

There her eldest daughter by De Mornay, before God," she says, “that I esteem this was born, soon after her arrival. Her sec- matter of the hair of no value, and that if ond, the Elizabeth of whom we have spoken, I believed there was any authoritative comwas also born in England just before her de- mand I would obey directly.” She objects parture for the Low Countries. Of course to the imitation of the worst point in the the friendships formed in our country were Romish Church—that of setting up the au

The daughters of Anthony thority of the priest instead of God's comCooke, the Walsinghams, Philip Sydney, mands. The end of it was that, being unand many others, chiefly, if not entirely, able to obtain admission to the Sacrament chosen among the more serious Church at Montauban, and determided not to yield party, were her intimate friends. After the the point, she went to another church and first embassy to England, Madame de Mor- ministers at about three leagues distant, and nay chiefly lived in Antwerp for some years. was there received willingly. Here her beloved son, the source of so much Some light is let upon character by an injoy, pride, and sorrow, was born. De Mor- cident like this. Madame de Mornay, renay had again to visit the English court, and vered and beloved as she was by her family was employed on business both for the State and intimate friends, had a decision and a and the Huguenot cause incessantly. At talent for independent management which last, wearied by continual absence from could not always make her agreeable in the home he established her in Gascony, where, less intimate intercourse of life. We canat Montauban, at Nerac, and at La Rochelle, not penetrate the mysteries of manner ; we they resided for more than four years. The have not her own letters, as we have those reformed religion numbering many friends of Lady Anne Bacon, the widow of Sir Nicin this part of France, they gave and re- olas, before us, or we might find some points ceived sympathy; but it was at Montauban of resemblance, in the midst of her occupathat Madame de Mornay, in the absence of tion in much larger matters. Uncomproher husband, became entangled in an annoy- mising" is the word we are inclined to use ing dispute with the narrowest section of with reference to both these gifted women, the Consistoire, led on by the principal min- while both, in things great and little, seem ister, M. Beraut. According to a contem- to have loved power. It would not be hisporary account, this minister had already torically just if we were to suppress the fact signalized himself, and troubled the Church of Madame de Mornay having offended, not at Montauban by an exaggerated application her minister only, but a younger and probof one of the acts of the National Synod ably much abler man, in Anthony Bacon, against extravagant dress; and Madame de the brother of Francis. Residing for a time Mornay, who had passed unscathed through at Montauban, he, of course, was commended the religious ordeals of England, the Low by Walsingham, and by his mother, Lady Countries, and other places, had the misfor- Bacon, to the good offices of De Mornay and tune to displease this scrupulous man by the his wife, and at first appears to have enmanner of dressing her hair. In his high in- joyed their society; but he fancied or bedignation, and abetted by others of his party, lieved in a project for entangling him in a he refused, not to her only but to all the courtship with Mademoiselle Du Pas, the members of her family, servants included, daughter by her first marriage of Madame tickets for the Holy Sacrament. He de- de Mornay. It is our belief, derived from clined to examine their spiritual fitness, and all we read of young Anthony, that he was put them practically under the ban of the much to be trusted in all matters of stateChurch. A paper drawn up, if not by Ma- craft, and that he had no desire to falsify or dame de Mornay, at least under her direc- misrepresent a case; but that he was irritation (which may be found in the second vol ble, unhealthy, intensely jeal.sus of his indeume of the Euvres, edition of 1824), details pendence, particularly disinclined to mar. the particulars of this affair. A high-spirited riage, which was often pressed upon him by and probably a tenacious woman, she did his mother in vain-that he was extravagant not choose to alter her style of dress in also, and would resent any attempt to curb obedience to the commands of a minister or him in the matter of expense; perhaps he a small section of the Church. “I declare I was also by no means smitten with the rigid life of the Huguenots. However it might to him our pilgrimage in this life, since it be, he certainly turned against Madame de has pleased God that his own has been more Mornay, and whether from his own pique, speedily, and more happily closed—so well, or more sensible reasons, took the part of indeed, that if I did not dread the grief of her minister. It may be and probably was M. Duplessis, who, in proportion to the inthe old story of a clever managing matron crease of my sorrow has given me more and failing in her attempt to fulfil the wishes of more of his affection, it would weary me exbis own maternal friends, and giving rise to tremely to survive him." a bitter feeling in a young man's mind. It She received the fatal news on the 24th is just the case, in fact, in which we think of November, 1605, and died on the 15th of Lucy Hutchinson, with her greater lightness May in the following year. The 7th of that of spirit, her brilliancy, and general aptitude month found her performing her religious for sympathy, would have succeeded where duties in the Church of Saumur ;

and though Madame de Mornay failed. But we always looking the picture of woe, it was not deemed feel we have got into a higher court, and to that her end was so near. a more severe standard of judgment, when De Mornay survived her for seventeen years. we turn to the grave Frenchwoman. It is painful to think that the church built

This brings us to the subject of her ma- by his wife, and in which her body and that ternal relations. There seems to have been of her son were interred, was assailed long nothing injudicious in her domestic rule. before his own death by the renewed hostilThe manner in which her daughters cling to ity of the Catholic party, which obliged the her in affliction, and the constant confidence aged man to frame a codicil to his will, diof her only son, prove this irresistibly. He recting that their remains and his own was nobly endowed by nature and education. should be transferred to another burial-place His mother's last words, in writing of him near his own Chateau de la Forrest in Poicafter his early, chivalrous end; are these, tou, and “there,” he adds, “I desire to be “It is almost beyond belief how every- placed with them, and with any of my famwhere where he has lived he is regretted ; ily who may also wish it, all with the least 80 completely was his ready, obliging tem- possible parade, to wait there together for per, offensive to no one, recognized even in the blessed Resurrection.” his short life — nearly indeed from infancy. How quickly after that period (1623) did It seems as if all this should soften our sor- the darkest clouds of religious persecution rows—yet they are as yet increased thereby almost that ever shrouded a country in

For a long time,” she adds (after gloom gather over that sad land of France ! hearing of the event which took place in a Who could have foreseen that a granddaughmost gallant enterprise of young De Mor- ter of De Mornay's old companion in arms, nay at Gueldres), we scarcely knew what Agrippa d’Aubigny, was to be the bitterest to say to each other. Next to God he was of the foes of their faith! But was not even ever in our thoughts and words. Our daugh- a Condé among those who broke up their ters happily married and sent from us, not places of Worship, forbade their ministers without grief, he alone remained, and in him even to live as ministers, and hunted their all our lines met.” This touching lamenta- women and children from rock to rock in tion for a blow which soon after terminated the “ desert,” where alone they could ather own enfeebled existence is a part of the tempt to meet ? So the “ lost leaders.” of conclusion of her memoir of his father. a great cause sometimes turn into its most “And here," she says, “it is proper that implacable foes, and so does worldliness eat this, my book, should end,—with him, as it out the heart of what is noblest among men! was only undertaken for him ; to describe

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From The Spectator. Sharpest in outline and best fenced off is the THE MARRIAGE OF THE PRINCE OF

topmost division, comprising the various WALES.

members of the royal families of Europe. It The fortunate heir to the English crown is laid down as a law, more stringent than is, in one respect, the most unfortunate man any in the Codex Justinianus, that all these of the age. His royal highness Prince Al members are ebenbürtigs, or equal by right bert Edward of Great Britain is young, ac- of birth, whatever may be their political or complished, well looking, thoroughly well other position. Thus, the Czar of all the educated, generally beloved, and in the pro- Russias, who rules a territory of nearly eight spective possession of one of the most glit- millions of square miles, being one-seventh tering diadems in the world ; and yet, in the of the land of the whole earth, stands, acplenitude of all these earthly and heavenly cording to the Almanach de Gotha, exactly gifts, can only select his partner through life on the same level with the sovereign prince from among seven fair damsels. Tom of Lichtenstein, whose realm extends over a Brown, the city clerk, who tries to be a gen- few bogs in the Tyrolese mountains, and tleman upon sixty pounds a year, would not who furnishes seventeen men and a druntolerate for a moment the idea of having his mer to the army of the German Confederamatrimonial horizon narrowed to such di- tion. So well, however, is the Codes of mensions; nor would even John Styles, the Gotha acknowledged among the royal class, plowman, who works for board wages six that the great Czar never for a moment hesdays in the week, and on the seventh courts itates to recognize the little prince, and all all the girls of the parish, bear the restric- his little kith and kin, as ebenbürtig; and tion. Both Tom and John would certainly should the youngest son of Lichtenstein dethink themselves hardly used if, in this era mand the hand of the autocrat's only daughof liberty, when locomotion is cheap and ter, the offer would not in the least be held girls are plenty as blackberries, they should presumptuous, but perfectly en règle. In not be allowed to pick their spouses, at least, epistolary intercourse, the Czar addresses among a hundred fair ones, so as to be able the prince as “ Monsieur mon frère," and in to thoroughly investigate the comparative every other respect the brotherhood is carmerits of black and blue eyes, plump and ried into the smallest item of royal etiquette. slender forms. They would feel aggrieved But great as is the equality on the high tablethe more, as they are fully aware that the land of royalty, immense also is the gulf human flower-garden through which they which severs it from the terrace below, conare roving has far more than a hundred taining the second division of Gotha humanqueens-of-hearts, being practically of almost ity. There are barons in Hungary and Bounlimited dimensions, and expanding with hemia a thousand times as rich and powerful every step downwards in the social scale. It as the sovereign prince of Lichtenstein, but is only on the pinnacle of the pyramid that woe to them if they should aspire to the the space is contracted until, as in the case hand of one of Lichtenstein's daughters ! of a live prince of the blood royal, the mat- An ignominious refusal would be the least rimonial field is circumscribed by the fatal for them to expect in return for such impunumber Seven. The land on this elevated dent daring; and,. even should they succeed ground is measured out and registered by a in their matrimonial aspirations, the dread'royal Doomsday-book more formidable than ful Almanach would brand the union as the one preserved at the Chapter-house of "morganatic." Equally detestable, from Westminster Abbey. The book is well the Gotha standpoint, yet on the whole atknown and deeply reverenced as the Alma- tended with lesser punishment, are breaches nach de Gotha.

of the barrier separating the class of nobles The great modern Doomsday-book, the from the vulgar herd, which are held up to Almanach de Gotha, divides all mankind public scorn under the name of mésalliances. and womankind, of course-into the three But the law, in this point, has lost much of classes of princes, nobles, and plebeians. its rigor of late, and the execution of it is The boundary between each of these classes, found to be attended with great difficulties. is laid down and most markedly and dis- The more serious, therefore, has been the tinctly making trespass all but impossible. attention directed by the Almanach to the

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royal class, and in order that contamination Protestant faith. But it happens, curiously should become quite impossible the name of enough that though the majority of Euroevery member is carefully registered, to- pean sovereigns are Protestant-thanks to gether with all particulars, and published the mosaic constitution of the German annually forth to the world. It is in this empire-there are, nevertheless, consideralist, and nowhere else on the habitable globe, bly more young princes and princesses that his royal highness the Prince of Wales brought up in the Roman Catholic creed, must look for a wife,

than after the tenets of the Reformed The catalogue of princes and princesses Church. The Catholic princes, it seems, is a tolerably long one, extending over near multiply more than their Protestant bretha hundred pages of the royal Doomsday- ren, although, as a rule, they do not arrive

and it seems rather extraordinary at quite so old an age. The largest of all that there should be no more than seven the royal houses of Europe, are the families fair ones in the list eligible for the selection of Hapsburg and of Lichtenstein, ubi supra, of the heir-apparent to the crown of Eng- both Roman Catholic, and including within land. The fact is owing to some general their sacred circle more matrimonial eligiand some particular causes. There are bilities than a dozen ordinary Protestant about eight hundred members of royalty in households. The house of Hohenzollern is Europe, all ebenbürtig and legitimate ; but itself far more productive in its two Cathothe vast majority of them are in the sere lic branches, of Hechingen and Sigmarinand yellow leaf, past marrying and being gen, than in the younger line which has married. Like English law lords and bish- given kings to Prussia. The handsomest ops, princes and princesses, as a rule, attain and, it is believed, most accomplished to a good old age, far above the average of princess of Europe at the present moment, vulgar humanity. The King of Wurtem- is Furstinn Maria of Hohenzollern-Sigmaburg, the Landgraf of Hesse-Homburg, and ringen, born November 17, 1845, and thereseveral other members of reigning families, fore exactly four years younger than the are past eighty ; the Duke of Saxe-Meinin- Prince of Wales. But, owing to the difgen bas sat on the throne for nigh sixty ference of creed, the radiant Furstinn is years; the Prince of Schwarzburg-Rudol- noli-me-tangere to his royal highness. stadt has ruled bis happy subjects since Somebody in Russia, where people are 1807; and Fürst George of Schaumburg- more accommodating in matrimonial religLippe ever since 1787. The greater num- ion than in this country, is said already to ber of sovereigns of Europe and their fami- be looking out for this paragon of prinlies are above fifty years of age ; and the cesses. case is not at all rare of four generations After sifting and distilling the contents basking together in the sunny atmosphere of the royal Doomsday-book with the utof a throne. There are two emperors and most care, the sad fact remains at the botthree empresses in Austria, two kings in tom, that, as already said, there are really Bavaria, and two queens in Saxony, not to no more than seven eligible ladies in the speak of a multitude of retired and reign- world to whom the eldest son of Queen Vicing sovereigns in the minor realms of the toria may offer his hand. The list being so world. Many a page of the Almanach de extremely circumscribed, it seems worth Gotha has to be turned over before the eye while to set forth the names of this galaxy alights

, in a maze of venerable sexa, septa, of beauteous candidates for the throne of and octogenarians, on a name fit to match, Great Britain and the Indies. First on the in point of age, with that of the young list, according to rank, stands Princess heir-expectant of the British Isles. But Alexandrine of Prussia, born February 1, the search becomes still more difficult from 1842, the youngest daughter of Prince Althe fact that it is not only age, but religion bert, brother of the king by Princess Mariwhich has to be looked after. The consort anne of the Netherlands. It is unfortunate whom England wants for her future king, for this young princess that from an early must be not merely young and comely, age she had to be the involuntary spectator and scion of a sovereign princely family, of domestic dissensions, which ultimately but must be, above all, a believer in the led to a judicial divorce of her parents, pro

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