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In this island
La femme est pleine de valeur,
De force et de science,
Lois, commerce, finance,
Et son amant?
Près d'un garçon trop sage,
Parle de mariage;
And in fact the dignity of one's sex is somewhat shocked to find the queen keeping her seraglio; an old dowager, a major of the Royal Guards, attempting to seduce the whiskered object of her affections by certain lucrative propositions ; and a young man of this remarkable kingdom weeping over the disgrace he has fallen into from his weakness in favour of a young lady, who, after profiting by a promise of marriage, refuses to keep her word.
But it would not be fair, in ridiculing the absurdities of women who are too mad or too ignorant to understand the extent of their folly--it would not be fair to
Vous promet au retour,
En avant, en avant ! (bis.)
Courageux et fidèle
A la foi du serment,
Signal de gloire,
Nous sommes là.
deny that, in the idea which some foolish followers of a ridiculous system have made contemptible, there is, as that idea was first conceived, much justice and much benevolence. In opening other careers to female ambition--in making fame and fortune more easy of honest attainment, you would doubtless diminish that calamity which is engendered by necessity and ambition on the one hand, and the want of an honourable
way power and independence on the other. It would never enter into the head of any but a fanatic or a fool to dress up Mademoiselle Cécile in a judge's robes, or a field marshal's uniform; but it would be wise in a government to encourage and assist, as far as a government can encourage and assist; that development of intelligence and that habit of application which would give, in the various situations of life, every facility to the female who pursues a virtuous and useful avocation.*
Much of the fate of females must depend on the instruction they receive. One dislikes to indulge in theories which seem to have no immediate chance of realization; and when we see the wild doctrines of female licentiousness that are abroad in France, it appears almost absurd to show what might be done by female morality—yet, if it be possible to breathe a higher and purer tone into French society-and this is what French society wants—if it be possible to approach in peace the visions of St. Just, and to make virtue, honesty, and justice, “the order of the day,”if it be possible to make that change in manners with out which the laws which affect the surface of a nation will not penetrate to its core ; if it be possible to do this—in a country where the influence of the sexes enters into almost every crime, it must be by making that influence serviceable to every virtue.
* In a country where the division of fortunes rarely throws a woman upon the world in an utter state of destitution, there is little rea! necessity for the vices she may fall into; pay, that any clamour should have been ever so indistinctly raised, for perfect equality between the sexes--shows the very great equality that in France really exists !
How are you to do this ?-It is not so much the female mind that wants cultivating, it is the female character that wants exalting. The doctrine may be unpopular, but what you have to do cannot be done merely by the elegances of literature or the speculations of science. The education which you must give —to be useful must be-moral : must be an education that will give a chivalric love-such love as women are prone to feel—not for the romantic depravities of life-not for the mawkish devilry and romance of a bourgeois Byron, but for what is great and noble in life --for the noble heroism of a Farcy, for the political integrity of a Bérenger.
The sex most capable of rewarding public virtue, should be taught to honour and admire public virtueshould be taught to admire ublic virtue as it was formerly taught to admire accomplished vice; should be taught to feel for the patriot what it feels for the soldier, and what too often it feels for the roué. The female mind should be hardened and strengthened by logical notions of right, as well as filled with the fanciful theories which a smattering of letters and philosophy inspires.
I fear this can hardly be done by laws; much towards it, however, might be done by a court patronising merit and honouring principle ; much towards it might be done by a government which, extending by its nature into every position and relation of society, has an opportunity in every village of distinguishing merit and rewarding virtue. At all events, whatever the court or the government can do for this objectthat it ought to do; for there is no influence which should not be employed to elevate the morality of a people to whom Providence has denied the support of religion ;-and the influence of which I have been speaking is an influence which the history and the character of the French ally to sanction, and which will be working deeply to the injury of the state, if it be not turned to its advantage.
France under Richelieu-Under Bonaparte-Now-Military spirit
of each epoch- The camp has entered into the city-The duel of the Duc de Beaufort and of the Editor of the “ National”—The union between the sword and the tribune impossible in England, may be possible in France - The people who mourned Foy, Lamarque, Lafayette, mourned a type of themselves.
On a height which overlooked the plains of Rousillon,* and which commanded the dark ramparts of the city he was besieging-a cuirass on his breast-his bald head, the scene and centre of so many plans, great and terrible, covered with the red cap of the church-stood the Cardinal-profound minister, astute favourite, great captain. All eyes were fixed on him, and he could be seen everywhere; and near him were the generals and the grand seigneurs of the monarchy, grand seigneurs whom he had made courtiers, and around him the chivalry and nobility of France. Never did a more loyal troop follow their sovereign than that which galloped after King Louis, when, the eye bright, and the hand firm, he forgot the reveries of Chambord on the plains of Perpignan. Many and brave cavaliers were there. When was the oriflamme unfurled in olden times, and that a brilliant army was not ready to follow the white pennon? Yet, the army of France under Richelieu was not France. The priest who humbled the aristocracy had not ventured to open its honours to the nation.
Twenty-one years ago, in that palace which has since known more than one master, you might have seen a man, at once a prey to his ambitious follies and his reasonable fears--with the brow bent and the lip curled--now pacing his chamber for hours—now stretched for a day together, in still and mute concentration of thought, over immense maps, to which his conquests had given a new surface--nervous, restless, agitated, as he said, by a destiny not yet accomplished -you might have seen that mysterious man, whose sword had already decided the fate of empires, meditating, almost in spite of himself, the scheme of a new conquest-of a conquest cast in the gigantic mould of his own genius, and which was to submit the oldest dynasties of Europe to the sway of an empire hardly yet seen rising from its foundations. Lo! he wakes from his stupor. “ Vive la France! vive la grande armée !" sounds in his ear. And hark to the tramp of soldiers, and the beating of drums! and already along the road to Germany, behold the triumphal arches--which should have been reserved for his return! And now may you see those stern and martial men, accustomed to the reception of conquerors--the head high, the step firm, the eye determined, the lip compressed. Now may you see those men-men of execution--men who only live in the hazards of adventurous action, brandishing their arms with a ferocious gayety, and waiting in fixed devotion the commands of a chief, whose star has never yet paled on the field of battle.
* Soe the eloquent romance of Cinq-Mars
Such was the army of France under Napoleon; but the army of France under Napoleon was not the nation of France. Bonaparte reigned in an immense camp, which was guarded from the approach of the people.
“La France n'est qu'un soldat,” said M. de Chateaubriand, in the first of those eloquent pamphlets which showed that his genius was not on the decline. Yes, the army of France is now the nation of France ; but the nation of France is more than an army. France is not only a soldier-France is more than a soldier. But do not expect that you can at once sweep away the effects of centuries! Do not expect that you can make a nation of warriors, by the scratch of a pen, a