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nieces were rather shy and quiet, but very courteous and affectionate, and they appeared to my English eyes absolutely "grown up," though only about sixteen and eighteen years old.

At seven-thirty my visitors left me to unpack and dress hastily for dinner, M- and A- promising to return and fetch me, which they did at a few minutes to eight. They led me first through intricate passages, and then down a handsomely carved staircase, into a splendid gallery, beautifully furnished and filled with objets d'art and jardinières of sweet-smelling flowers. Mme. Le Breton, carefully gantée, was already there, waiting with M. le Duc de Bassano and M. Pietri, both of whom she introduced to me. Almost immediately afterward the empress made her appearance, we ladies courtesying and the gentlemen bowing low.

Her imperial Majesty welcomed me most kindly, hoped I had had a pleasant journey and had left my grandmother well, and then, after a ceremonious bow from the maître d'hôtel, who announced "Le diner de sa Majesté est servi," the Duc de Bassano offered the empress his arm, M. Pietri took in Mme. Le Breton, and we three girls followed, passing into the dining-room at the end of the gallery.

After dinner the two girls and I walked up and down the gallery for about half an hour with the empress, who told us all sorts of interesting things about her past life; then we went into the drawingroom, and I was asked to play the piano. My pieces were apparently much liked, and the empress seemed pleased and anxious for more. After a little while, thinking I might perhaps be giving them a dose, I left off; but the empress said with so much insistence: "Another piece, please, mademoiselle, if you are not tired. You give us so much pleasure!" that I acceded to her wish. At ten o'clock the gentlemen came in from the billiard-room, and then, on a sign from the empress, M- and A- - got up, kissed their aunt's hand, as it is the custom to do in Spain, shook hands with Mme. Le Breton, the Duc de Bassano, and M. Pietri, courtesied to the empress, and retired.

This was the order of the day usually:

At eight M A and I breakfasted in the dining-room at a little table laid for us in the bow-window. From eight-thirty to twelve we devoted ourselves to English and music. Then usually came a tap at our door and a little visit from the empress, with whom we nearly always went for our morning's walk. At one we all had luncheon together, then another walk or drive in common, after which, at four forty-five came rosary for the whole household in the chapel, the empress herself saying all the prayers before and after. At five came afternoon tea all together in the salon du matin, and after a more or less prolonged conversation the girls studied again till dressing-time, at seven-thirty. At eight came dinner, after which we had our usual little walk up and down the gallery with the empress, followed by needlework and conversation in the drawing-room, and bed at ten.

Farnborough Hill is a beautiful dwelling, much finer than Camden Place, the empress's Chislehurst home for a good many years. Had it been possible for her to remain at Camden Place, though, she would never have made a move into Hampshire. Mr. Stroud would willingly have sold her his property, but the empress could not succeed in getting possession of the adjoining land necessary for building the mausoleum she had set her heart on for her husband and son. In telling us about her efforts one evening she spoke with much sadness and not a little bitterness, saying how hard it had been for her to beg permission to buy a little land wherein to bury her husband and son, and to be refused it by a man who owned such broad acres as did Mr. E, a rich German toymanufacturer, who declared that "nothing could ever induce him to sell an inch of land for the erection of a church, and that the French might therefore seek elsewhere."

The reception-rooms all opened out on to the central gallery, which is about one hundred and twenty feet long, and twenty broad, and filled with the most artistic and lovely things. Grouped about, and principally near the entrance of the grand salon, are two lovely Louis XVI arm-chairs, two sofas, some smaller

Louis XVI chairs, footstools to match, and four beautiful cabinets with splendid Sèvres plaques let in as doors. These cabinets, even years ago, were each valued at one hundred thousand francs, according to Mme. Le Breton. They belonged formerly to Napoleon III's mother, Queen Hortense, daughter of Josephine Beauharnais, the beautiful Creole empress. At the lower extremity of the gallery was the Empress Eugénie's private sitting-room; a room called the prince imperial's room; beyond which, following along to the left, was a little boudoir called petit salon de l'imperatrice; then came, beyond the handsome old carved staircase, le salon des dames, used as a study; and the large salon du matin. Farther on, were three enormous oriel windows, in front of which were tiled jardinières, whose fragrant flowers perfumed the whole of the gallery; beyond was the dining-room door, at the end of the gallery. On the wall opposite each Gothic window hung magnificent gobelins, three of a series of six completed in the dining-room. They represented different episodes in the life of the illustrious Don Quixote, and were always much admired by connoisseurs.

Next in sequence came, to the left, the billiard-room; then the grand salon and the entrance to the handsome vestibule. Scattered about among Queen Hortense's meubles (and other beautiful pieces I have not mentioned) were palmtrees, a few good pieces of modern statuary by the best sculptors of the day, and a great number of busts. Napoleon I's immediate family had certainly not been neglected: they were all there. There, too, was a bust of the great man himself.

The walls of the gallery could boast some very fine paintings, among them a life-size portrait of the empress and baby prince, by Winterhalter; one of the Duchesse de Mouchy, then Princess Anna Murat, her imperial Majesty's niece; and another of the Duchess of Alba, the empress's own sister, also by Winterhalter.

In the outer vestibule, which was up a few steps and passed through glass doors opening into the gallery opposite the old staircase, were also some fine canvases, one particularly striking, "The Empress

and Her Ladies," painted by Winterhalter in 1855. When the empress showed me this picture one day she gazed at it in a wistful way, while naming the different ladies and expatiating on the beauty of nearly all of them.

In a letter of mine, of February 20, is the following detailed description of some of the salons.

After luncheon on Sunday, on returning from a little walk in the Park with the Empress, H. I. M. very kindly herself showed me over the reception rooms, telling me the histories of the beautiful things in the vitrines, and pointing out the best paintings, etc., and I certainly could not have had a more interesting cicerone. First we went into the Grand Salon, which is a large room about 30 feet square, with a deep bay window, and the ceiling, like the dining-room, painted to imitate sky and clouds; a simulated balcony covered with creeping roses running round, the perspective of which is so good, that you almost think you need only climb up to find yourself in the open air.

Some of the furniture is modern, but most of it old, Louis XVI meubles, saved from the burning of the Tuileries, covered with handsome Gobelins. . . . In one corner of the room is the piano, in another a sofa, in front of which is the large oval table round which we play cards or work of an evening. This is the Empress's usual seat; she sits bolt upright, but, nevertheless, gracefully and without stiffness, very rarely if ever leaning back, and has an inveterate hatred to modern sprawling.

On each side of the Grand Salon door, inside, are glass cabinets which contain interesting historical and other souvenirs; .. a gold snuff-box, with a miniature of Napoleon I and his little son Le roi de Rome. This the Empress took out and showed me closely, telling me Napoleon held it in his hand when he breathed his last at St. Helena. A feather fan, brilliant with iridescent beetle-wings, the gold handle of which is set with large oriental pearls, given by the ladies of Algiers to the Empress during an official journey in 1860. In connection with it, she told me amusingly of her "misery" at a wedding in Algiers, in having constantly to swallow the jams and preserves made of violets and roses, which were presented at every minute. She remembered vividly also the penetrating smell of attar-of-roses which permeated even

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the food and nauseated her. A beautiful gold tea-service brought back for her from India by the Prince of Wales after his official trip in 1875; a shapely little marble hand,Princess Maud of Wales, when a child of three or four,-and in another cabinet, on right hand of the door, some splendid jewels, given the Empress by the different cities of France, when, during her husband's absence for the Crimean and other wars, she was three different times-in 1859-1865-and 1870-proclaimed "Régente." A sweet little Union Jack, too, in diamonds, rubies, and sapphires, given by Queen Victoria, after the signing of some treaty between England and France, and numberless other fascinating things I can't recall.

Arranged about the Grand Salon are various little card tables, covered with all sorts of things, pretty and interesting too, among others some large albums containing a collection of portraits and sketches done by Queen Hortense herself, to which she added a few others by her master, Isabey, and other celebrated painters of that day.

In this room too are some of the best and most important pictures of the house, nearly all life-sized and full length, by Gérard and David, which is praise enough. Eliza and her daughter by David, the Empress Josephine, Louis, King of Holland, and his wife Hortense, in their royal robes and insignia, all by Gérard; two pastels, Princesse Mathilde, sœur, and Princesse Clotilde, femme, of

Prince Napoléon (Plon-Plon), and two beautiful pictures, I call them, a St. John and a copy of Raphael's "Vierge à la Chaise," which are so marvelously executed, that I had to be assured so twice by the Empress before I could believe they really were mosaics. They had been sent on some faraway birthday to the little Prince Imperial by Pope Pius IX, who was his godfather.

In the Petit Salon de l'Imperatrice there is no modern furniture; all is Louis XVI, and the pictures themselves are mostly of that epoch. A large painting of Marie Antoinette by the celebrated Madame Vigée Lebrun, who speaks about the sittings for that very portrait in her Memoirs, which I have just been reading; several Wouvermans; two delightful heads by Greuze; a very sad looking head of poor little Louis XVII painted about the time of the Revolution, and several by Alexandre Coudert and others.

From the Petit Salon de l'Imperatrice I was taken one day by the Empress into the so-called Cabinet du Prince. This was a great exception in my favor. It is a large room in which the Prince's things are arranged exactly as they were in the one he was occupying at Camden Place, Chislehurst, before leaving for Natal-his writing materials and even still unopened letters lying on his desk! She told me, poor Empress,―crying bitterly all the time, that though she did not think the terrible blow would really come, still she never could shake off a strong presentiment of danger, and as soon as ever her son had started for Zululand (having wrung an unwilling consent from her), she had all his belongings covered up carefully, and the place of each marked with a piece of chalk, and the room locked, that nothing might be touched. She told me also how the night before she learned the news of his death, she was waked up suddenly out of her sleep, hearing her son's voice distinctly calling her! Of course her extreme anxiety might easily account for this, but she herself quite believed it was no hallucination, but his real cry of distress, "Mère! Mère!" which reached her -telepathy in fact!

The Empress showed me an album given her since then by our Queen. It contains sketches of the events of the Prince Imperial's entire English career, at Chislehurst and Woolwich, and during the fatal campaign in Natal. In this album is a water-color representing the Last Bivouac; the Prince is depicted sitting on a little mound making a

sketch, while the savages crept up stealthily behind him (which very sketch the Empress afterward showed me). In looking through the Prince's private photograph album with his mother that day, I came across, in the midst of his relations and college friends, the picture of E. S., one of three very beautiful sisters, cousins of mine, who lived at Chislehurst during the Prince's youthful years there. I had heard he was in love with E. and was told by Mme. le Breton that he was often seen in passing in and out of church, looking at her with admiring eyes. He gave her his photograph one evening traveling down from London in the train returning from the opera, before leaving for South Africa.

Nearly all round this Cabinet du Prince are book-cases, containing the Prince's favorite books. On the mantel-piece stands an old clock formerly in Napoleon I's room at Longwood House, St. Helena; there is also a bronze bust of Napoleon III, and one of the Abbé Duguerry, one time the Prince's tutor, shot during the Commune. Near one of the windows a beautifully carved silver basinette, swinging between two solid imperial eagles, and decorated with the Prince's arms and those of the Ville de Paris, which presented this handsome gift at his birth.

There are several (veiled) pictures representing the sad moment of the Prince's falling pierced with the Zulu assegaies. These the Empress passed rapidly by. Two glass cases containing, in the first, all his little personal treasures and souvenirs of his father and of his childhood; his first little uniform, and presents given him by sovereigns, among others a beautiful little diamond-sheathed scimitar, from the Sultan of Turkey. In the other glass case all the personal effects he had with him at the Cape; his sketch-books, plans, maps, check- and note-books, etc., and the sword (his father's), with which he so bravely defended himself on the fatal day against the Zulus until overpowered by numbers.

In the center of this latter glass case is a small ebony compartment with a cross on the outside. It contains the shirt stained with his blood and torn with assegaies, together with the medal and gold chain his grandmother, Countess Montijo, put around his neck at his birth, and which he retained to the last, the Zulus being afraid, when stripping him of everything else, to touch this, thinking it was a charm.


The Empress Eugénie and her ladies in waiting. From the painting by François-Xavier Winterhalter

Over this very sad little sanctum is written in large letters: "Que votre volonté soit faite" (Thy will be done), and in front of it on a slab is a little white marble cross, on which Princess Beatrice has painted very prettily the word "Fiat," surrounded by violets.

The Empress, naturally, did not open this little sanctum for me, she merely passed it by silently with a lingering look of infinite sadness and a sigh; she has never yet, her nieces tell me, had the courage to look on these sad relics. Uhlmann, the Prince's faithful bodyservant keeps the key. All the above-named things of the Prince's were obtained from the Zulu King Cetewayo by our Queen, through the instrumentality of Sir Redvers Buller or Sir Bartle Frère, I think the Empress said. Only one thing was never recovered, but was destroyed through the ignorant superstition of the Zulus-the Prince's watch. An old warrior questioned concerning it by Dr. Scott, later on, when accompanying the Empress on her journey to Zululand in 1880, asked very innocently: "The little beast, you mean- -? Oh, we were afraid of it, so we killed it!" Having no notion about the nature of mechanism, they thought the ticking of the

watch meant a live creature; so-they stamped it out of existence.

Here is another letter:

The Empress next took me into the diningroom, through looking-glass doors, with gilt framework, saved from the Tuileries, and which make the already long gallery look interminable. It is a very handsomely proportioned room, about 45 feet long, the ceiling like that of the Grand Salon imitating clouds and sky, and the carved oak panels of the walls framing in priceless Gobelins. There are two huge bay-windows (in one of which, I have already said, our little breakfast-table is placed). The parquet floor is highly polished and in the center, on a thick Turkey carpet, is the dinner-table. Though really large, it looks almost lost in that immense


Over the large open marble fireplace, in which nearly always a glorious wood fire sparkles and crackles, is a bust of the Empress Marie Louise, and on each side of a very valuable Louis XVI dressoir stand two large gilt candelabra supported by Sèvres figures, the whole thing about seven or eight feet high. There, too, on one side, a beautiful marble statue, "L'Innocence," and on a

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