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- Pickle the Spy - 5/45 -


beleaguered, besieged, taken by storm by the fair. He kept up the habit of drinking which had been noted in him even before his expedition to Scotland. He allowed his old boyish scepticism (caused by a mixed Protestant and Catholic education) to take the form of studied religious indifference. After defying and being expelled by Louis XV., he adopted (what has never, perhaps, been observed) the wild advice of d'Argenson ('La Bete,' and Louis's ex- minister of foreign affairs), he betook himself to a life of darkling adventures, to a hidden and homeless exile. In many of his journeys he found Pickle in his path, and Pickle finally made his labours vain. The real source of all this imbroglio, in addition to an exasperated daring and a strangely secretive temperament, was a deep, well-grounded mistrust of the people employed by his father, the old 'King over the water.' Whatever James knew was known in London by next mail. Charles was aware of this, and was not aware that his own actions were almost as successfully spied upon and reported. He therefore concealed his plans and movements from James, and even-- till Pickle came on the scene--from Europe and from England. The result of his reticence was an irremediable rupture between 'the King and the Prince of Wales--over the water,' an incurable split in the Jacobite camp.

The general outline here sketched must now be filled up in detail. The origo mali was the divisions among the Jacobites. Ever since 1715 these had existed and multiplied. Mar was thought to be a traitor. Atterbury, in exile, suspected O'Brien (Lord Lismore). The Earl Marischal and Kelly {30a} were set against James's ministers, Lord Sempil, Lord Lismore, and Balhaldie, the exiled chief of the Macgregors. Lord Dunbar (Murray, brother of Lord Mansfield) was in James's disgrace at Avignon. Sempil, Balhaldie, Lismore were 'the King's party,' opposed to Marischal, Kelly, Sheridan, Lally Tollendal, 'the Prince's party.' Each sect inveighed against the other in unmeasured terms of reproach. This division widened when Charles was in France, just before the expedition to Scotland.

One of James's agents in Paris, Lord Sempil, writes to him on July 5, 1745, with warnings against the Prince's counsellors, especially Sir Thomas Sheridan (Charles's governor, and left-handed cousin) and Kelly. They, with Lally Tollendal and others, arranged the descent on Scotland without the knowledge of James or Sempil, whom Charles and his party bitterly distrusted, as they also distrusted Lord Lismore (O'Brien), James's other agent. While the Prince was in Scotland (1745-1746), even before Prestonpans, the Jacobite affairs in France were perplexed by the action of Lismore, Sempil, and Balhaldie, acting for James, while the old Earl Marischal (who had been in the rising of 1715, and the Glenshiel affair of 1719) acted for the Prince. With the Earl Marischal was, for some time, Lord Clancarty, of whom Sempil speaks as 'a very brave and worthy man.' {31a} On the other hand, Oliver Macallester, the spy, describes Clancarty, with whom he lived, as a slovenly, drunken, blaspheming rogue, one of whose eyes General Braddock had knocked out with a bottle in a tavern brawl! Clancarty gave himself forth as a representative of the English Jacobites, but d'Argenson, in his 'Memoires,' says he could produce no names of men of rank in the party except his own. D'Argenson was pestered by women, priests, and ragged Irish adventurers. In September 1745, the Earl Marischal and Clancarty visited d'Argenson, then foreign minister of Louis XV. in the King's camp in Flanders. They asked for aid, and the scene, as described by the spy Macallester, on Clancarty's information, was curious. D'Argenson taunted the Lord Marischal with not being at Charles's side in Scotland. To the slovenly Clancarty he said, 'Sir, your wig is ill-combed. Would you like to see my perruquier? He manages wigs very well.' Clancarty, who wore 'an ordinary black tie- wig,' jumped up, saying in English, 'Damn the fellow! He is making his diversion of us.' {32a} The Lord Marischal was already on bad personal terms with Charles. Clancarty was a ruffian, d'Argenson was the adviser who suggested Charles's hidden and fugitive life after 1748. The singular behaviour of the Earl Marischal in 1751-1754 will afterwards be illustrated by the letters of Pickle, who drew much of his information from the unsuspicious old ambassador of Frederick the Great to the Court of Versailles. It is plain that the Duke of Ormonde was right when he said that 'too many people are meddling in your Majesty's affairs with the French Court at this juncture' (November 15, 1745). The Duke of York, Charles's brother, was on the seaboard of France in autumn 1745. At Arras he met the gallant Chevalier Wogan, who had rescued his mother from prison at Innspruck. {32b} Clancarty, Lord Marischal, and Lally Tollendal were pressing for a French expedition to start in aid of Charles. Sempil, Balhaldie, Lismore, were intriguing and interfering. Voltaire wrote a proclamation for Charles to issue. An expedition was arranged, troops and ships were gathered at Boulogne. Swedes were to join from Gothenburg. On Christmas Eve, 1745, nothing was ready, and the secret leaked out. A million was sent to Scotland; the money arrived too late; we shall hear more of it. {33a} The Duke of York, though he fought well at Antwerp, was kneeling in every shrine, and was in church when the news of Culloden was brought to him. This information he gave, in the present century, to one of the Stair family. {33b} The rivalries and enmities went on increasing and multiplying into cross-divisions after Charles made his escape to France in August 1746. He was filled with distrust of his father's advisers; his own were disliked by James. The correspondence of Horace Mann, and of Walton, an English agent in Florence, shows that England received all intelligence sent to James from Paris, and knew all that passed in James's cabinet in Rome. {33c} The Abbe Grant was suspected of being the spy.

Among so many worse than doubtful friends, Charles, after 1746, took his own course; even his father knew little or nothing of his movements. Between his departure from Avignon (February 1749) and the accession of Pickle to the Hanoverian side (Autumn 1749 or 1750), Charles baffled every Foreign Office in Europe. Indeed, Pickle was of little service till 1751 or 1752. Curious light on Charles's character, and on the entangled quarrels of the Jacobites, is cast by d'Argenson's 'Memoires.' In Spring, 1747, the Duke of York disappeared from Paris, almost as cleverly as Charles himself could have done. D'Argenson thus describes his manoeuvre. 'He fled from Paris with circumstances of distinguished treachery' (insigne fourberie) towards his brother, the Prince. He invited Charles to supper; his house was brilliantly lighted up; all his servants were in readiness; but HE had made his escape by five o'clock in the afternoon, aided by Cardinal Tencin. His Governor, the Chevalier Graeme, was not in the secret. The Prince waited for him till midnight, and was in a mortal anxiety. He believed that the English attempts to kidnap or assassinate himself had been directed against his brother. At last, after three days, he received a letter from the Duke of York, 'explaining his fatal design' to accept a cardinal's hat. 'Prince Charles is determined never to return to Rome, BUT RATHER TO TAKE REFUGE IN SOME HOLE IN A ROCK.'

Charles, in fact, saw that, if he was to succeed in England, he could not have too little connection with Rome. D'Argenson describes his brother Henry as 'Italian, superstitious, a rogue, avaricious, fond of ease, and jealous of the Prince.' Cardinal Tencin, he says, and Lord and Lady Lismore, have been bribed by England to wheedle Henry into the cardinalate, 'which England desires more than anything in the world.' Charles expressed the same opinion in an epigram. Lady Lismore, for a short time believed to be the mistress of Louis XV., was deeply suspected. Whatever may be the truth of these charges, M. de Puysieux, an enemy of Charles, succeeded at the Foreign Office to d'Argenson, who had a queer sentimental liking for the Prince. Cardinal Tencin was insulted, and was hostile; the Lismores were absolutely estranged, if not treacherous; there was a quarrel between James and Henry in Rome, and Charles, in Paris. {35a} Such was the state of affairs at the end of 1747, while Pickle was still a prisoner in the Tower of London, engaged, he tells us, in acts of charity towards his fellow-captives!

Meanwhile Charles's private conduct demands a moment's attention. Madame de Pompadour was all powerful at Court. {35b} This was, therefore, a favourable moment for Charles, in a chivalrous affection for the injured French Queen (his dead mother's kinswoman), to insult the reigning favourite. Madame de Pompadour sent him billets on that thick smooth vellum paper of hers, sealed with the arms of France. The Prince tossed them into the fire and made no answer; it is Pickle who gives us this information. Maria Theresa later stooped to call Madame de Pompadour her cousin. Charles was prouder or less politic; afterwards he stooped like Maria Theresa.

For his part, says d'Argenson, the Prince 'now amused himself with love affairs. Madame de Guemene almost ravished him by force; they have quarrelled, after a ridiculous scene; he is living now with the Princesse de Talmond. He is full of fury, and wishes in everything to imitate Charles XII. of Sweden and stand a siege in his house like Charles XII. at Bender.' This was in anticipation of arrest, after the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle, in which his expulsion from France was one of the conditions. This Princesse de Talmond, as we shall see, was the unworthy Flora Macdonald of Charles in his later wanderings, his protectress, and, unlike Flora, his mistress. She was not young; Madame d'Aiguillon calls her vieille femme in a curious play, 'La Prison du Prince Charles Edouard Stuart,' written by d'Argenson in imitation of Shakespeare. {36a} The Princesse, nee Marie Jablonowski, a cousin of the Queen of France and of Charles, married Anne Charles Prince de Talmond, of the great house of La Trimouille, in 1730. She must have been nearly forty in 1749, and some ten years older than her lover.

We shall later, when Charles is concealed by the Princesse de Talmond, present the reader with her 'portrait' by the mordant pen of Madame du Deffand. Here Voltaire's rhymed portrait may be cited:

Les dieux, en la donnant naissance Aux lieux par la Saxe envahis, Lui donnerent pour recompense Le gout qu'on ne trouve qu'en France, Et l'esprit de tous les pays.

The Princesse, who frequented the Philosophes, appears to have encouraged Charles in free thinking and ostentatious indifference in religion.

'He is a handsome Prince, and I should love him as much as my wife does,' says poor M. de Talmond, in d'Argenson's play, 'but why is he not saintly, and ruled by the Congregation de Saint Ignace, like his father? It is Madame de Talmond who preaches to him independence and incredulity. She is bringing the curse of God upon me. How old will she be before the conversion for which I pray daily to Saint Francois Xavier?'

Such was Madame de Talmond, an old mistress of a young man, flighty, philosophical, and sharp of tongue.

On July 18, 1748, Charles communicated to Louis XV. his protest against the article of the Peace of Aix-la-Chapelle which drove him out of every secular state in Europe. Louis broke a solemn treaty by assenting to this article. Charles published his protest and sent it to Montesquieu. He complained that Montesquieu had not given him the new edition of his book on the Romans. 'La confiance devroit etre mieux etabli entre les auteurs: j'espere que ma facon de penser pour


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