Page images

not go, and afford fresh matter for scandal. The Duchess pleaded in excuse, that as the Queen had invited her to go, she could not possibly refuse her. The Duchess went to the entertainment, which lasted till six o'clock in the morning. At that very late hour she returned home and went to bed. She had, however, scarcely lain herself down in it, when she saw the door open very slowly, and the Duke of Guise enter the room, followed by an aged servant, who carried a bason of broth in his hand. The Duke immediately locked the door, and coming up to the bed in a very deliberate manner, thus accosted her in a very sirm and determined tone of voice: "Madam, "although you would not do last night what "I desired you, you shall do it now. Your "dancing of last night has most probably heated "you a little; you must drink immediately this "bason of broth." The Duchess, suspecting it to be poison, burst into a slood of tears, and begged hard that the Duke would permit her to send for her Consessor before she drank it. The Duke told her again that she must drink it; and the Duchess, sinding all resistance to no purpose, swallowed the broth. As soon as she had done this, he went out of the room, having locked the door after him. In three or four hours afterwards the Duke again paid hei a visit, and, with an affected smile I 4 upon

upon his countenance, said, *{ Madam, I am "afraid that you have spent your time very un"pleasantly since I left you; I sear too that I *, have been the cause of this: judge then, "Madam, of all the time that you have made me "pass as unpleasantly as this. Take comfort, ** however; you have, I assure you, nothing to *f sear. I am willing to believe, in my turn, "that I have nothing to be apprehensive of. ** But however, in future, if you please, we will ** avoid playing these tricks with one another."

The bodies of the Duke and of his brother the Cardinal were refused to their mother, by the Monarch who had caused them to be murdered: they were consumed by quick-lime immediately after the assassination, and were buried in the church of the Dominican Convent at Eu in Normandy; where they are deposited under two monuments without any inscription.

The Duke of Guise's person was so majestic, that when his sovereign, Henry the Third, caused him to be massacred in his presence, he could not help exclaiming, as he saw him lying on the ground, " Man Dieu, comme 11 ejl grand, it ant "mort!"

The Duke of Guise, on setting out upon some very dangerous expedition, was desired by his

brother, brother, the Duke of Mayennc, to "deliberate maturely upon it before he engaged in it. ** Brother," replied he, "be assured, that what I M was not able to resolve on in a quarter of an "hour, I should never resolve on, if I were to "spend my whole lise in thinking upon it."


.was, during the celebrated League of France, Governor for the Huguenot Party in the city of Mason in that kingdom. By way of amusing some of his sair countrywomen, some French ladies that he had with him at supper, he threw headlong from the walls of his castle, into the river Saone, the Catholic prisoners that were brought in, tied two together,

D'Aubigne calls him, u inyenteur de tous *' cruautez, qui bouffonnoit en les executant—an "inventor of all kinds of cruelties, who used to "play the buffoon whilst he was executing them."

He occasionally made his prisoners throw themselves headlong from the battlements of a high tower upon the pikes of tils soldiers. One of these unfortunate persons having approached the battlements merits twifte, without venturing to take the dreadful leap, the Baron reproached him with his want of courage in a very insulting manner. "Why M now, Sir," replied the Prisoner, "bold as you "are, I would give you three times before you ** took the leap." This pleasantry laved the life of die poor sellow.

This minister of cruelty being one day asked by D'Aubigne, why he made his soldiers exercise such horrid acts of cruelty, in a man-* ner by no means consonant to his very great courage! replied, " that when soldiers make "war in a respectful manner, they carry both "their heads and their hearts too low;— that "it was impossible to teach them to put properly "at the same time their hands to their swords and ** to their hats;—and that, in taking from them all "hopes of mercy, they were under the necessity ** of looking for no asylum but under the shadow ** of their standards, and of not expecting to live ** unless they were victorious."



THIS author of the celebrated and very rare Memoirs relative to Henry the Fourth of France which bear his name, was at fust a Protestant Minister at the Court of the King of Navarre, anil was much pressed by the Count of Soillons to marry him to one of the Princesses of the House of Navarre. He refused; as not thinking it honourable to be concerned in giving the sanction of religion to a marriage which he knew to be *lisagreeable to the Royal Family of Navarre, and to which he was sure they would never give their consent. The Count of Soissons still insisted— Cayet resisted with great intrepidity. On the Count's threatening to stab him if he persisted in his refusal, he very spiritedly replied, "Will, "then, your Highness may kill me, if you please j ** I preser dying by the hand of a great Prince to "d)ing by that of the hangman."


« PreviousContinue »