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How like a spider shall I sit in my hole,
But, my lord,
'tis set forth how a premier should
Good; all favours
This is the curse, my lord, Of your high state; suspicion of all men.
* This tract on the “ Unity of the Minister,” contains all the doc. trines, and many more to the same effect, referred to in the text, and had a prodigious influence on the conscience of the poor king. At the onset of his career, Richelieu, as deputy of the clergy of Poitou, complained in his harangue to the king that ecclesiastics were too rarely summoned to the royal councils, and invoked the example of the Druids !
The indomitable heart Of Armand Richelieu !
Naught beside ?
* Joseph's ambition was not, however, so moderate ; he refused a bishopric, and desired the cardinal's hat, for which favour Richelieu openly supplicated the Holy See, but contrived somehow or other never to effect it, although two ambassadors applied for it at Rome.
† The peculiar religion of Père Joseph may be illustrated by the following anecdote: Àn officer, whom he had dismissed upon an expedition into Germany, moved by conscience at the orders he had received, returned for farther explanations, and found the Capuchin di
He approached and whispered, “But, my father, if these people defend themselves" “Kill all” (Qu'on tue tout), answered the good father, continuing his devotions.
sant sa messe.
Second Day (Midnight).
SCENE I. Richelieu's Castle at Ruelle. A Gothic chamber. Moonlight at the window, occasionally obscured.
RICHELIEU (reading). *
* I need not say that the great length of this soliloquy adapts it only for the closet, and that but few of the lines are preserved on the stage. To the reader, however, the passages omitted in representation will not, perhaps, be the most uninteresting in the play, and may be deemed necessary to the completion of the cardinal's portrait, action on the stage supplying so subtly the place of words in the closet. The self-assured sophistries which, in the text, mingle with Riche. lieu's better-founded arguments in apology for the darker traits of his character, are to be found scattered throughout the writings ase cribed to him. The reader will observe that in this self-confession lies the latent poetical justice which separates happiness from success. [Lines retained on the stage enclosed in brackets.]
Ofttimes the secret rivulets that swell
I have wrought
It is well-known that when, on his deathbed, Richelieu was asked if he forgave his enemies, he replied, " I never had any but those of the state.” And this was true enough, for Richelieu and the state
+ Richelieu's vindication of himself from cruelty will be found in various parts of Petitot's Collection, vols. xxi., xxx. (bis.)
And seeing daggers in the eyes of men,
(After a pause. And yet the Nile is fretted by the weeds Its rising roots not up; but never yet Did one least barrier by a ripple vex My onward tide, unswept in sport away. Am I so ruthless, then, that I do hate Them who hate me? Tush, tush! I do not hate; Nay, I forgive. The statesman writes the doom, But the priest sends the blessing. I forgive them, But I destroy; forgiveness is mine own, Destruction is the state's ! For private life, Scripture the guide ; for public, Machiavel. Would Fortune serve me if the Heaven were wroth ? For chance makes half my greatness. I was born Beneath the aspect of a bright-eyed star, And my triumphant adamant of soul Is but the fix'd persuasion of success. Ah! here !-that spasm !-again! How life and death Do wrestle for me momently! The king looks pale. I shall outlive the king! And then, thou insolent Austrian, who didst gibe At the ungainly, gaunt, and daring lover,f
* Voltaire has a striking passage on the singular fate of Richelieu, recalled every hour from his gigantic schemes to frustrate some miserable cabal of the anteroom. Richelieu would often exclaim, that “Six pieds de terre” (as he called the king's cabinet) “ lui donnaient plus de peine que tout le reste de l'Europe.” The death of Wallenstein, sacrificed by the Emperor Ferdinand, produced a most lively impression upon Richelieu. He found many traits of coinparison bé. tween Ferdinand and Louis, Wallenstein and himself. In the memoirs—now regarded by the best authorities as written by his sanction, and in great part by himself-the great Frenchman bursts (when alluding to Wallenstein's murder) into a touching and pathetic an. athema on the misère de cette vie of dependance on jealous and timid royalty, which he himself, while he wrote, sustained. It is worthy of remark, that it was precisely at the period of Wallenstein's death that Richelieu obtained from the king an augmentation of his guard. † Richelieu was commonly supposed, though I cannot say I find