Page images

ceding days began to have an effect on him, which smile had lost all that it had of sarcastic and bitter, his hàbits of exercise of every kind, and his singular and did not exceed the limits of good humour and alertness and activity of character, as well as the good manners. painful nature of the reflections which occupied his Thus travelling on with much more harmony than ihoughts, had hitherto prevented bis experiencing; on the preceding day, the little party came at last The ideas of his mind began to be so little corrected within iwo miles of ihe famous and strong town of by the exertion of his senses, worn out and deadened Peronne, near which the Duke of Burgundy's army as the latter now were by extremity of fatigue, that lay encamped, ready, as was supposed, to invade the visions which the foriner drew superseded or per- France; and, in opposition to which, Louis XI, had verted the information conveyed by the blunted organs himself assembled a strong force near Saint Maxence, of seeing and hearing; and Durward was only sen- for the purpose of bringing to reason his over-power. sible that he was awake, by the exertions which, ful vassal. sensible of the peri! of his situation, he occasionally Peronne, situated upon a deep river, in a flat counmade, to resist falling into a deep and dead sleep. try, and surrounded by strong bulwarks and profound Every now and then, a strong consciousness of the moats, was accounted in ancient, as in modern times, risk of falling from or with his horse roused him to ex- one of the strongest fortresses in France. The ertion and animation; but ere long his eyes again were Count of Crèvecæur, his retinue, and his prisoner, dimmed by confused shades of all sorts of mingled were approaching the fortress about the third hour colours, the moonlight landscape swain before them, after noon; when, riding through the pleasant glades and he was so much overcome with fotigue, that the of a large forest, which then covered the approach to Count of Crèveceur, observing his condition, was at the town on the east side, they were met by two men length compelled to order two of his attendants, one of rank, as appeared from the number of their attendto each rein of Dorward's bridle, in order to prevent ants, dressed in the habits worn in time of peace; the risk of his falling from his horse.

and who, to judge from the falcons which they carWhen at length they reached the town of Landrecy, ried on their wrists, and the number of spaniels and the Count, in compassion to the youth, who had greyhounds led by their followers, were engaged in now been in a great measure without sleep for three the amusement of hawking. But on perceiving Crenights, allowed himself and his retinue a halt of four vec@ur, with whose appearance and liveries they hours, for rest and refreshment.

were sufficiently intimate, they quitted the search Deep and sound were Quentin's slumbers, until which they were making for a heron along the banks they were broken by the sound of the Count's trum- of a long canal, and came galloping towards him. pet, and the cry of his Fouriers and harbingers, "Dé- News, news, Count of Crèvecæur!" they cried bout! débout :-Ha! Messires, en route, en route!"- both together;" will you give news, or take news? Yet, unwelcomely early as the lones came, they or will you barter fairly ?". awaked him a different being in strength and spirits “I would barter fairly, Messires,” said Crèvecaur, from what he had fallen asleep. Confidence in him after saluting them courteously, "did I conceive you self and his fortunes returned with his reviving had any news of importance sufficient to make an spirits, and with the rising sun. He thought of his equivalent for mine." love no longer as a desperate and fantastic dream, The iwo sportsmen smiled on each other; and the but as a high and invigorating principle, to be cherish elder of the two, a fine baronial figure, with a dark ed in his bosom, although he might never propose to countenance, marked with that sort of sadness which himself, under all the difficulties by which he was be- some physiognomists ascribe to a melancholy temset, to bring it to any prosperous issue.-" The pilot," perament, and some, as the Italian statuary augured he reflected, “steers his bark by the polar star, al- of the visage of Charles I., consider as predicting an though he never expects to become possessor of it; unhappy death,t turning to his companion, said, and the thoughts of Isabelle of Croye shall make me Crêvecæur has been in Brabant, the country of a worthy man-at-arms, though I may never see her commerce, and he has learned all its arutices-he more. When she hears that a Scottish soldier, named will be too hard for us if we drive a bargain." Quentin Durward, distinguished bimself in a well- "Messires," said Crèvecæur, " the Duke ought in fought field, or left his body on the breach of a dis- justice to have the first of my wares, as the Seigneur puted fortress, she will remember the companion of takes his toll before open market begins. But tell her journey, as one who did all in his power to me, are your news of a sad or a pleasant complexion ?" avert the snares and misfortunes which beset it, and The person whom he particularly addressed was a perhaps will honour his memory with a tear, his cof- lively-looking man, with an eye of great vivacity, fin with a garland."

which was corrected by an expression of reflection In this aly mood of bearing his misfortune, and gravity about the mouth and upper lip-the whole Quentin felt himself more able to receive and reply physiognomy marking a man who saw and judged to the jests of the Count of Crèveccur, who passed rapidly, but was sage and slow in forming resolutions several on his alleged effeminacy and incapacity of or in expressing opinions. This was the famous undergoing fatigue. The young Scot accommodated Knight of Hainauli, son of Collart, or Nicolas de himself so good-humourely to the Count's raillery, l’Elite, known in history, and amongst historians, br and replied at once so happily and so respectfully, the venerable name of Philip des Comines, at ibis that the change of his tone and manner made ob- time close to the person of Duke Charles the Bold viously a more favourable impression on the Count than he had entertained from his prisoner's conduct was never taken by an enemy, but preserved the proud name of

* Indeed, though lying on an exposed and warlike frontier, it during the preceding evening, when, rendered irri- Peronne la Pucelle, until the Duke of Wellington, a great destable by the feelings of his situation, he was alternate- troyer of that sort of reputation, took the place in the melnoraly moodily silent or fiercely argumentative.

ble advance upon Paris in 1815. The veieran soldier began at length to take notice habitants of Ghent with the Chancellor of Burgundy, in the

D'Hymbercourt, or Imbercourt, was put to death by the iaof his young companion, as a pretty fellow, of whom year 1477. Mary of Purgundy, daughter of Charles the Bold, something might be made; and more than hinted to appeared in mourning

in the market

place, and with tears le him, thai, would he but resign his situation in the sought the life of her servants from her insurgent subjects, but Archer-guard of France, he would undertake to have : Philip des Comines was described in the former editions of him enrolled in the household of the Duke of Bus- this work as a little man, fitted rather for counsel than aetion. gundy in an honourable condition, and would himself This was a description made at a venture, to vary the military take care of his advancement. And although Quen historian, upon the authority of Matthieu d'Arves, who knews

portraits with which the age and work abound.' Sleidan the tin, with suitable expressions of gratitude, declined Philip des Comines, and had served in his household, says he this favour at present, until he should find out how was a man of tall stature, and a noble presence. The leared far he had to complain of his original patron, King the History of f'rance, a work of great value, intimates that Louis, he, nevertheless, continued to remain on good Philip des Comines made a figure at the games of chivalry and terms with the Count of Crévec@ur; and, while his paceants exhibited on the wedding or Charles of Burgundy enthusiastic mode of thinking, and his

foreign and with Margaret of England in 1468. See the Chronicle of Jean idiomatical manner of expressing himself, often ex

de Troyen. in Petitot's edition of the Neroits relatifs a

l'Histoire de France, vol. xiii. p. 375. Note. I have looked into cited a smile on the grave cheek of the Count, that Oliver de la Marck, who, in lib. ii., chapter ir., of bis Memoirs, when his enemy so unexpectedly put himself in his power by his visit to Peronne.

in vain.


and one of his most esteemed counsellors. He an- | the terms of peace of his own making. But I never swered Crevecæur's question concerning the com- suspected that so old a fox as Louis could have been plexion of the news of which he and his companion, induced to come into the trap of his own accord. the Baron d'Hymbercourt, were the depositaries. -- What said the Burgundian counsellors ?"

They were," he said, "like the colours of the rain- "As you may guess," answered D'Hymbercourt; bow, various in hue, as they might be viewed from talked much of faith to be observed, and little of different points, and placed against the black cloud advantage to be obtained, by such a visit; while it or the fair sky-Such a rainbow was never seen in was manifest they thought almost entirely of the France or Flanders since that of Noah's ark." last, and were only anxious to find some way to re

My tidings,” replied Crèvecæur, "are altogether concile it with the necessary preservation of appearlike the comet; gloomy, wild, and terrible in them- ances.". selves, yet to be accounted the forerunners of still “And what said the Duke?" continued the Count greater and more dreadful evils which are to ensue.'

.." of Crèvec@ur. We must open our bales," said Comines to his Spoke brief and bold, as usual,” replied Comines, companion, or our market will be forestalled by "'Which of you was it, he asked, who witnessed some new.comers, for ours are public news.-In one the meeting of my cousin Louis and me after the word, Crèvecæur-listen, and wonder-King Louis battle of Montl’hery,* when I was so thoughtless as is at Peronne !''

to accompany him back within the intrenchments "What!" said the Count, in astonishment; " has of Paris with half a score of attendants, and so put the Duke retreated without a battle? and do you re- my person at the King's mercy?' I replied, that main here in your dress of peace, after the town is most of us had been present; and none could ever besieged by the French ?--for I cannot suppose it forget the alarm which it had been his pleasure to taken.”

give us. 'Well,' said the Duke, you blamed me for "No, surely," said D'Hymbercourt, “the banners my folly, and I confessed to you that I had acted like of Burgundy have not gone back a foot; and still a giddy-pated boy; and I am aware, too, that my King Louis is here."

father of happy memory being then alive, my kins"Then Edward of England must have come over man, Louis, would have had less advantage by seizthe seas with his bowmen,” said Crèveceur, and, ing on my person than I might now have by securing like his ancestors, gained a second field of Poictiers.'' his. But, nevertheless, if my royal kinsman comes

"Not so,” said Comines—"Not a French banner hither on the present occasion, in the saine singlehas been borne down, not a sail spread from Eng- ness of heart under which I then acted, he shall be land-where Edward is too much amused among royally welcome. If it is meant by this appearance the wives of the citizens of London, to think of play- of confidence, to circumvent and io blind me, ull he ing the Black Prince. Hear the extraordinary truth. execute some of his politic schemes, by Saint George You know, when you left us, that the conference be- of Burgundy, let him look to it! And so, having tween the commissioners on the parts of France and turned up his mustaches, and stamped on the ground, Burgundy was broken up, without apparent chance he ordered us all to get on our horses, and receive so of reconciliation ?"

extraoruinary a guest.” True; and we dreamt of nothing but war." “And you met the King accordingly ?" replied the “What has followed has been indeed so like a Count of Crèvecæur-"Miracles have not ceased! dream,” said Comines, " that I almost expect to How was he accompanied ?" awake, and find it so. Only one day since, the Duke As slightly as might be," answered D'Hymberhad in Council protested so furiously against farther court; "only a score or two of the Scottish Guard, delay, that it was resolved to send a defiance to the and a few knights and gentlemen of his household King, and march forward instantly into France. among whom his astrologer, Galeotti, made the gayToison d'Or, commissioned for the purpose, had put est figure.", on his official dress, and had his foot in the stirrup to "That fellow," said Crèvecaur, "holds some demount his horse, when lo! the French herald Mont- pendence on the Cardinal Balue -I should not be joie rode into our camp. We thought of nothing else surprised that he has had his share in determining than that Louis had been beforehand with our defi- the King to this step of doubtful policy. Any nobiance; and began to consider how much the Duke lity of higher rank ?" would resent the advice, which had prevented him There are Monsieur of Orleans and Dunois," refrom being the first to declare war. But a council plied Comines. being speedily assembled, wha was our wond "I will have a rouze with Dunois," said Crèvewhen the herald informed us, that Louis, King of cæur, "wag the world as it will. But we heard that France, was scarce an hour's riding behind, intend- both he and the Duke had fallen into disgrace, and ing to visit Charles, Duke of Burgundy, with a small were in prison ?"! retinue, in order that their differences might be settled "They were both under arrest in the Castle of at a personal interview !"

Loches, that delightful_place of retirement for the You surprise me, Messicurs," said Crèvecæur; French nobility,” said D'Hymbercourt; " but Louis and yet you surprise me less than you might have has released them, in order to bring them with him expected; for, when I was last at Plessis-les-Tours, -perhaps because he cared not to leave Orleans biethe all-trusted Cardinal Balue, offended with his hind. For his other attendants, faith, I think his master, and Burgundian at heart, did hint to me, gossip, the Hangman Marshal, with two or three of that he could so work upon Louis's peculiar foibles, as to lead him to place himself in such a position de Charalois, lind an interview with Louis under the walls of

** After the battle of Montl'hiery, in 1465, Charles, then Compto with regard to Burgundy, that the Duke might have Paris, each at the head of a small party. The two princes dis.

mounted, and walked together so deeply engaged in discussing gives an ample account of these “ fierce vanities," containing the business of their meeting, that Charles forgot the peculiarity as many miscellaneous articles as the reticule of the old mer. of his situation ; and when Louis turned back towards the chant of Peter Schleml, who bought shadows, and carried with town of Paris, from which he came, the Count of Charalois him in his bag whatever any one could wish'or demand in re kept him company so far as to pass the line of outworks with turn. There are in that splendid description, knights, dames, wbich Paris was surrounded, and enter a field work which pages, and archers, good store besides of castles, fiery dragons, communicated with the town by a trench.

At this period he and dromedaries, there are leopards riding upon lions ; ihere hat only five or six persons in company with him. His escort are rocks, orchards, fountains, spears broken and whole, and caught an alarm for his safety, and his principal followers rode the twelve labours of Hercules: In such a brilliant medley forward from where he hnd left them, remembering that his had some trouble in finding Philip des Comines, He is the first grandfather had been assassinated at Monterenu in a similar named, however, of a gallant band of assailants, knights and parley, on 10th September, 1419.

To their great joy the Count noblemen, to the number of twenty, who, with the Prince of returned uninjured, accompanied with a guard belonging 10 Orange as their leader, encountered in a general tourney, with Louis. The Burgundians taxed him with rashness in no meaa parly of the same number under the profilizate Adolf or Cleves, sured terms. " Say no more of it." said Charles ; “I acknowwho acted as a challenger, by the romantic title of Ardre d'or iedge the extent of my folly, but I was not aware what I was The encounter, though with arms of courtesy, was very fierce. doing till I entered the redoubt." - Memoires de Philippe DES and separated by main force, not without difficulty. Philip des COMINES, chap. xiii. Comines has, therefore, a title to be accounted lem Marte quam Louis was much praised for his good faith on this occasion; Mercurio, though, when we consider the obscurity which has and it was natural that the Duke should call it to recollection settled on the rest of this troupe doree, we are at no loss to esti. mate the most valuable of his qualitications.


[ocr errors]

his retinue, and Oliver, his barber, may be the most in their intercourse with each other, they are required, considerable--and the whole bevy so poorly arrayed, by the respect which is due to their own rank and that, by my honour, the King resembles most an old dignity, to regulate their feelings and expressions by usurer going to collect desperate debts, attended by a severe etiquette, which precludes all violent and a body of catchpolls.”'

avowed display of passion, and which, but that the "And where is he lodged ?'' said Crèvecæur. whole world are aware that this assumed complai

“Nay, that,” replied Comines, "is the most mar- sance is a matter of ceremony, might justly pass for vellous of all. Our Duke offered to let the King's profound dissimulation. It is no less certain, howArcher-Guard have a gate of the town, and a bridge ever, that the overstepping of these bounds of cereof boats over the Somme, and to have assigned to monial, for the purpose of giving more direct vent to Louis himself the adjoining house, belonging to a their angry passions, has the effect of compromising wealthy burgess, Giles Orthen; but, in going thither, their dignity with the world in general ; as was par the King espied the banners of De Lau and Pencil de ticularly noted when those distinguished rivals, Rivère, whom he had banished from France; and Francis the First, and the Emperor Charles, gave scared, as it would seem, with the thought of lodging each other the lie direct, and were desirous of decidso near refugees and malecontents of his own ma- ing their differences hand to hand, in single combat. king, he craved to be quartered in the Castle of Pe- Charles of Burgundy, the most hasty and imparonne, and there he haih his abode accordingly." tient, nay, the most imprudent prince of his time,

"Why, God ha' mercy!", exclaimed Crevecæur, found himself, nevertheless, fettered within the magic "this is not only venturing into the lion's den, but circle which prescribed the most profound deference thrusting his head into his very jaws-Nothing less to Louis, as his Suzerain and liege Lord, who had than the very bottom of the rat-trap would serve the deigned to confer upon him, a vassal of the crown, crafty old politician!"

the distinguished honour of a personal visit. Dress. “Nay," said Comines, "D'Hymbercourt hath not ed in his ducal mantle, and attended by his great told you the speech of Le Glorieux*-which, in my officers, and principal knights and nobles, he went mind, was the shrewdest opinion that was given." in gallant cavalcade, to receive Louis XI. His reti

And what said his most illustrious wisdom ?" nue absolutely blazed with gold and silver; for the asked the Count.

wealth of the Court of England being exhausted by "As the Duke," replied Comines," was hastily the wars of York and Lancaster, and the expenditure ordering some vessels and ornaments of plate, and of France limited by the economy of the Sovereign, the like to be prepared as presents for the King that of Burgundy was for the time the most magniand his retinue, by way of welcome on his arrival, ficent in Europe. The cortège of Louis, on the con"Trouble not thy small brain about it, my friend trary, was few in number, and comparatively mean Charles,' said Le Glorieux, 'I will give thy cousin in appearance, and the exterior of the King himself, Louis a nobler and a fitter gift than thou canst; and in a threadbare cloak, with his wonted old highthat is my cap and bells, and my bauble to boot'; for, crowned hat stuck full of images, rendered the conby the mass, he is a greater fool than I am, for put- trast yet more striking; and as the Duke, richly atting himself in thy power.'-—'But if I give him no tired with the coronet and mantle of state, threw reason to repent it, sirrah, how then ?' said the Duke. himself from his noble charger, and, kneeling on one Then, truly, Charles, thou shalt have cap and bauble knee, offered to hold the stirrup while Louis disthyself, as the greatest fool of the three of us. I pro- mounted from his little ambling palfrey, the effect mise you this knavish quip touched the Duke closely was almost grotesque. -I saw him change colour and bite his lip.-And The greeting between the two potentates was, of now, our news are told, noble Crèvecæur, and what course, as full of affected kindness and compliment, think you they resemble ?"

as it was totally devoid of sincerity. But the temper "A mine full-charged with gunpowder," answered of the Duke rendered it much more difficult for him Crèvec@ur, to which, I fear, it is my fate to bring to preserve the necessary appearances, in voice, speech, the kindled linstock. Your news and mine are like and demeanour; while in the King, every species of fax and fire, which cannot meet without bursting simulation and dissimulation seemed so much a part into flame, or like certain chemical substances which of his nature, that those best acquainted with him cannot be mingled without an explosion. Friends, could not have distinguished what was feigned from -gentlemen,-ride close by my rein; and when I tell what was real. you what has chanced in the bishopric of Liege, I Perhaps the most accurate illustration, were it not think yon will be of opinion, that King Louis might unworthy two such high potentates, would be, to as safely have undertaken a pilgrimage to the infer- suppose the King in the situation of a stranger, pernal regions, as this ill-timed visit to Peronne." fectly acquainted with the habits and dispositions of

The two nobles drew up close on either hand of the canine race, who, for some purpose of his own, is the Count, and listened, with half-suppressed excla- desirous to make friends with a large and surly masmations, and gestures of the deepest wonder and in- tiff

, that holds him in suspicion, and is disposed to terest, to his account of the transactions at Liege worry him on the first symptoms either of diffidence and Schonwaldt. Quentin was then called forward, or of umbrage. The mastiff growls internally, erects and examined and re-examined on the particulars of his bristles, shows his teeth, yet is ashamed to fly the Bishop's death, until at length he refused to an upon the intruder, who seems at the same time so swer any further interrogatories, not knowing where- kind and so confiding, and therefore the animal enfore they were asked, or what use might be made of dures advances which are far from pacifying him, his replies.

watching at the same time the slightest opportunity They now reached the rich and level banks of the which may justify him in his own eyes for seizing his Somme, and the ancient walls of the little town of friend by the throat, Peronne la Pucelle, and the deep green meadows The King was no doubt sensible, from the altered adjoining, now whitened with the numerous tents of voice, constrained manner, and abrupt gestures of the Duke of Burgundy's army, amounting to about the Duke, that the game he had to play was delicate, fifteen thousand men.

and perhaps he more than once repented having ever taken it in hand. But repentance was too late,

and all that remained for him was that inimitable CHAPTER XXVI.

dexterity of management, which the King understood equally at least with any man that ever lived.

The demeanour which Louis used towards the
When Princes meet, Astrologers may mark it

Duke, was such as to resemble the kind overflow-
An ominous conjunction, full of boding,
Like that of Mars with Saturn. -Old Play.

ing of the heart in a moment of sincere reconciliation ONE hardly knows whether to term it a privilege had been estranged by temporary circumstances now

with an honoured and tried friend, from whom he or a penalty annexed to the quality of princes, that, passed away, and forgotten

as soon as removed. The The jester of Charles of Burgundy, of whom more here- King blamed himself for not having sooner taken the after.

decisive step, of convincing his kind and good kins


man by such a mark of confidence as he was now either side have lost a kind friend and affectionate bestowing, that the angry passages which had oc- cousin. curred betwixt them were nothing in his remem- "Nay, nay, my royal sovereign," said Duke brance, when weighed against the kindness which Charles, "the Duke of Orleans shall have no interreceived him when an exile from France, and under ruption from me in the path which he has chosen the displeasure of the King his father. He spoke of par amours. The cause in which I couch my lance the Good Duke of Burgundy, as Philip the father of against Orleans, must be fair and straight." Duke Charles was currently called, and remembered Louis was far from taking amiss this brutal allua thousand instances of his paternal kindness, sion to the personal deformity of the Princess Joan.

“I think, cousin," he said, "your father made little on the contrary, he was rather pleased to find, that difference in his affection, beiwixt you and me; for the Duke was content to be amused with broad jests, remember, when by an accident I had bewildered in which he was himself a proficient, and which myself in a hunting-party, I found the Good Duke (according to the modern phrase) spared much sen. upbraiding you with leaving me in the forest, as if timental hypocrisy. Accordingly, he speedily placed you had been careless of the safety of an elder bro- their intercourse on such a footing, that Charles, ther."

though he felt it impossible to play the part of an The Duke of Burgundy's features were naturally affectionate and reconciled friend to a monarch harsh and severe; and when he attempted to smile, whose ill offices he had so often encountered, and in polite acquiescence to the truth of what the King whose sincerity on the present occasion he so strongtold him, the grimace which he made was truly ly doubted, yet had no difficulty in acting the hearly diabolical.

landlord towards a facetious guest; and so the want "Prince of dissemblers,” he said, in his secret soul, of reciprocity in kinder feelings between them, was "would that it stood with my honour to remind you supplied by the tone of good fellowship which exists how you have requited all the benefits of our House!". between two boon companions, -a tone natural to

“And then,” continued the King, "if the ties of the Duke from the frankness, and, it might be added, consanguinity and gratitude are not sufficient to bind the grossness of his character, and to Louis, because, us together, my fair cousin, we have those of spiritual though capable of assuming any mood of social inrelationship; for, I am godfather to your fair daugh- tercourse, that which really suited him best was ter Mary, who is as dear to me as one of my own mingled with grossness of ideas, and caustic humour maidens; and when the Saints (their holy name be in expression. blessed !) sent me a little blossom which withered in Both Princes were happily able to preserve, during the course of three months, it was your princely the period of a banquet at the town-house of Pefather who held it at the font, and celebrated the ronne, the same kind of conversation, on which they ceremony of baptism, with richer and prouder mag- met as on a neutral ground, and which, as Louis nificence than Paris itself could have afforded. Never easily perceived, was more available than any other shall I forget the deep, the indelible impression, to keep the Duke of Burgundy in that state of comwhich the generosity of Duke Philip, and yours, my posure which seemed necessary to his own safety. dearest cousin, made upon the half-broken heart of Yet he was alarmed to observe, that the Duke had the poor exile !

around him several of those French nobles, and those Your Majesty," said the Duke, compelling him of the highest rank, and in situations of great trust self to make some reply, acknowledged that slight and power, whom his own severity or injustice had obligation in terms which overpaid all the display driven into exile; and it was to secure himself from which Burgundy could make, to show due sense of the possible effects of their resentment and revenge, the honour you had done its Sovereign."

that (as already mentioned) he requested to be lodg"I remember the words you mean, fair cousin,” ed in the Castle or Citadel of Peronne, rather than in said the King, smiling; "I think they were, that in the town itself.* This was readily granted by Duke guerdon of the benefit of that day, I, poor wanderer, Charles, with one of those grim smiles, of which it had nothing to offer, save the persons of myself

, of was impossible to say, whether it meant good or harm my wife, and of my child.-Well, and I think I have to the party whom it concerned. indifferently well redeemed my pledge.”

But when the King, expressing himself with as "I mean not w dispute what your Majesty is much delicacy as he could, and in a manner he thought pleased to aver," said the Duke; “but”.


qualified to lull suspicion asleep, asked, whether ' But you ask," said the King, interrupting him, the Scottish Archers of his Guard might not maintain "how my actions have accorded with my words the custody of the castle of Peronne during his resiMarry thus : the body of my infant child Joachim dence there, in lieu of the gate of the town which the rests in Burgundian earth-my own person I have Duke had offered to their care, Charles replied, with his this morning placed unreservedly in your power- wonted sternness of voice, and abruptness of manner, and, for that of my wife,-truly, cousin, I think, con- rendered more alarming by his habit, when he spoke, sidering the period of time which has passed, you of either turning up his mustaches or handling his will scarce insist on my keeping my word in that sword or dagger, the last of which he used frequently particular. She was born on the day of the Blessed to draw a little way, and then return to the sheath, t Annunciation,” (he crossed himself, and muttered an -"Saint Martin ! No, my liege. You are in your Ora pro nobis,) some fifty years since ; but she is vassal's camp and city-so men call me in respect to no farther distant than Rheims, and if you insist on your Majesty-my castle and town are yours, and my my promise being fulfilled to the letter, she shall pre- men are yours; so it is indifferent whether my mensently wait your pleasure."

at-arms or the Scottish Archers guard either the outer Angry as the Duke of Burgundy was at the bare- gate or defences of the Castle.-No, by Saint George ! faced attempt of the King to assume towards him a Peronne is a virgin fortress-she shall not lose her tone of friends ip and intimacy, he could not help reputation by any neglect of mine. Maidens must be laughing at the whimsical reply of that singular carefully watched, my royal cousin, if we would have monarch, and his laugh was as discordant as the them continue to live in good fame.' abrupt tones of passion in which he often spoke. Surely, fair cousin, and I altogether agree with Having laughed longer and louder than was at that you," said the King, "Í being in fact more interested period, or would now be, thought fitting the time and occasion, he answered in the same time, bluntly de- of Monseigneur de Lau, whom the King had long detained in

* The arrival of three brothers, Princes of the House of Savoy, clining the honour of the Queen's company, but prison, of Sire Poncet de Riviere, and the Seigneur de Urfe: --stating his willingness to accept that of the King's who, by the way, as a romance writer

of a peculiar turn, might eldest daughter, whose beauty was celebrated. have been happily enough introduced into the present work, "I am happy, fair cousin," said the King, with one of these nobles bearing the emblem of Burgundy, the cross,

but the fate of the Euphuist was a warning to the author-all of those dubious smiles of which he frequently made namely, of Saint Andrew, inspired Louis with so much suspi use, "that your gracious pleasure has not fixed on cion, that he very impolitically demanded to be lodged in the py younger daughter Joan. I should otherwise old Castle of Peronne, and thus rendered himself an absolute have had spear-breaking between you and my cousin captive. See COMINES", Memoirs for the year 1468. of Orleans; and, had harm come of it, I must on stage-tradition a distinction of Shakspeare's Richard II.


in the reputation of the good little town than you are sunken rocks, and of dangerous shoals, than of safe --Peronne being, as you know, fair cousin, one of anchorage. those upon the same river Somme, which, pledged to At length a day closed, which must have been a your father of happy memory for redemption of mo- wearisome one to Louis, from the constant exertion, ney, are liable to be redeemed upon repayment. And, vigilance, precaution, and attention, which his situato speak truth, coming, like an honest debtor, dispo- tion required, as it was a day of constraint to the Duke, sed to clear off my obligations of every kind, I have from the necessity of suppressing the violent feelings brought here a few sumpter mules loaded with silver to which he was in the general habit of giving unfor the redemption-enough to maintain even your controlled vent. princely and royal establishment, fair cousin, for the No sooner had the latter retired into his own apartspace of three years."

ment, after he had taken a formal leave of the King "I will not receive a penny of it," said the Duke, for the night, than he gave way to the explosion of twirling his mustaches; "the day of redemption is passion which he had so long suppressed; and many past, my royal cousin; nor was there ever serious an oath and abusive epithet, as his jester, Le Glorieux, purpose that the right should be exercised, the cession said, " fell that night upon heads

which they were of these towns being the sole recompense my father never coined for,"? - his domestics reaping the benefit ever received from France, when, in a happy hour for of that hoard of injurious language, which he could your family, he consented to forget the murder of my not in decency bestow on his royal guest, even in grandfather, and to exchange the alliance of England his absence, and which was yet become too great to for that of your father. Saint George! if he had not be altogether suppressed. The jests of the clown had so acted, your royal self, far from having towns on the some effect in tranquillizing the Duke's angry mood; Somme could scarce have kept those beyond the --he laughed loudly, threw the jester a piece of gold, Loire. No-I will not render a stone of them, were caused himself to be disrobed in tranquillity, swallow

to receive for every stone so rendered its weight in ed a deep cup of wine and spices, went to bed, and gold. I thank God, and the wisdom and valour of slept soundly. my ancestors, that the revenues of Burgundy, though The couchée of King Louis is more worthy of notice it be but a duchy, will maintain my state, even than that of Charles; for the violent expression of when a King is my guest, without obliging me to exasperated and headlong passion, as indeed it belongs barter my heritage."

more to the brutal than the intelligent part of our naWell fair cousin,” answered the King, with the ture, has little to interest us, in comparison to the same mild and placid manner as before, and unper- deep workings of a vigorous and powerful mind. turbed by the loud tone and violent gestures of the Louis was escorted to the lodgings he had chosen Duke, “I see that you are so good a friend to France, in the Castle, or Citadel of Peronne, by the chamberthat you are unwilling to part with aught that belongs lains and harbingers of the Duke of Burgundy, and to her. But we shall need some moderator in these received at the entrance by a strong guard of archers affairs when we come to treat of them in council - and men-at-arms. What say you to Saint Paul ?"

As he descended from his horse to cross the draw. "Neither Saint Paul, nor Saint Peter, nor e'er a bridge, over a moat of unusual width and depth, he Saint in the Calendar," said the Duke of Burgundy, looked on the sentinels, and observed to Comines, shall preach me out of the possession of Peronne. who accompanied him, with other Burgundian nobles,

* Nay, but you mistake me," said King Louis, smi- "They wear Saint Andrew's crosses--but not those ling; "I mean Louis de Luxembourg, our trusty con- of my Scottish Archers." stable, the Count of Saint Paul.-Ah! Saint Mary of "You will find them as ready to die in your defence Embrun! we lack but his head at our conference! Sire," said the Burgundian, whose sagacious ear had the best head in France, and the most useful to the detected in the King's tone of speech a feeling, which restoration of perfect harmony betwixt us.'

doubtless Louis would have concealed if he could. "By Saint George of Burgundy!" said the Duke, "They wear the Saint Andrew's Cross as the appen"I marvel to hear your Majesty talk thus of a man, dage of the collar of the Golden Fleece, my master false and perjured both to France and Burgundy | the Duke of Burgundy's Order." one, who hath ever endeavoured to fan into a flame "Do I not know it ?" said Louis, showing the collar our frequent differences, and that with the purpose of which he himself wore in compliment to his host; "It giving himself the airs of a mediator. I swear by the is one of the dear bonds of fraternity which exist beOrder I wear, that his marshes shall not be long a tween my kind brother and myself. We are brothers resource for him!”

in chivalry, as in spiritual relationship; cousins by “ Be not so warm, cousin," replied the King, smi- birth, and friends by every tie of kind feeling and good ling, and speaking under his breath ; "when I wished neighbourhood.-No farther than the base-court, my for the constable's head, as a means of ending the noble lords and gentlemen! I can permit your attendsettlement of our triling differences, I had no desire ance no farther-you have done me enough of grace." for his body, which might remain at Saint Quentin's "We were charged by the Duke,” said D'Hymberwith much convenience.

court, "to bring your Majesty to your lodging.–We "Ho! ho! I take your meaning, my royal cousin,”' trust your Majesty will permit us to obey our master's said Charles, with the same dissonant laugh which command." some other of the King's coarse pleasantries had ex- "In this small matter," said the King, "I trust torted, and added, stamping with his heel on the you will allow my command to outweigh his even ground, "I allow, in that sense, the head of the Con- with you his liege subjects.- I am something indispostable might be useful at Peronne."

sed, my lords--someibing fatigued. Great pleasure These, and other discourses, by which the King hath its toils, as well as great pain. I trust to enmixed hints at serious affairs amid matters of mirih joy your society better to-morrow.--And yours too, and amusement, did not follow each other consecu- Seignior Philip of Comines-1 am told you are the tively; but were adroitly introduced during the time annalist of the time--we that desire to have a name of the banquet at the Hotel de Ville, during a subse- in history, must speak you fair, for men say your pen quent interview in the Duke's own apartments, and hath a sharp point, when you will. -Good-night, my in short, as occasion seemed to render the introduc- lords and geniles, to all and each of you." tion of such delicate subjects easy and natural. The Lords of Burgundy retired, much pleased with

Indeed, however rashly Louis had placed himself the grace of Louis's manner, and the artful distribuin a risk, which the Duke's fiery temper, and the mu- tion of his attentions; and the King was left with tual subjects of exasperated enmity which subsisted only one or two of his own personal followers, under betwixt them, rendered of doubtful and perilous issue, the archway of the base-court of the Castle of Penever pilot on an unknown coast conducted himself ronne, looking on the huge tower which occupied one with more firmness and prudence. He seemed to of the angles, being in fact the Donjon, or principal sound, with the utmost address and precision, the Keep, of the place. This tall, dark, massive building, depthis and shallows of his rival's mind and temper, was seen clearly by the same moon which was lightand manifested neither doubt nor fear, when the re- ing Quentin Durward betwixt Charleroi and Peronne, sult of his experiments discovered much more of which, as the reader is aware, shone with peculiar

[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »