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He did not, however, confine his attention to classical authors, he was too completely a modernist for that. He read regularly the "Edinburgh Review," to which he subscribed, and his letters mention reading Paganel's work on the French Revolution, Marshall's Washington, which he termed "a party diatribe," Destutt de Tracy's ideology, Botta's American Revolution, Eaton's life of Jackson, Flourens' experiments on the functions of the nervous system in vertebrate animals, Woodward's system of universal science and scores of other titles. He read also Greek and Latin readers and a Cherokee grammar and he was interested in Pestalozzi's theories of education. He had been fond of poetry but found his taste for it gone, as it had pretty much for mathematics. Of history he read widely, denouncing Hume as having "done more toward the suppression of the liberties of man than all the million of men in arms of Bonaparte and the millions of human lives with the sacrifice of which he will stand loaded before the judgment seat of his maker."
Retirement with Jefferson, as it turned out, meant merely withdrawal from active public life, not from the world. He had looked to association chiefly with the local community, which he described as consisting "of plain, honest and rational neighbors, some of them well-informed, and men of reading, all superintending their farms, hospitable and friendly," and he saw much of them, becoming "their friendly adviser, lawyer, and even gardener," but they were only a small part of his visitors. Never before or since did the world so in
sistently beat a pathway to any man's door. Friends came, such as Madison, Monroe, Wirt, Nelson, Lafayette, Correa da Serra and Cabell; distinguished national figures such as Webster and Clay, but there came also many others. Monticello was "overrun with pilgrims from the illustrious to the impertinent." His granddaughter well described it. "They came of all nations, at all times, and paid longer or shorter visits. I have known a New England judge bring a letter of introduction to my grandfather, and stay three weeks. We had persons from abroad, from all the states of the Union, from every part of the State-men, women, and children. In short, almost every day, for at least eight months of the year, brought its contingent guests. People of wealth, fashion, men in office, professional men, military and civil, lawyers, doctors, Protestant clergymen, Catholic priests, members of Congress, foreign ministers, missionaries, Indian agents, tourists, travelers, artists, strangers, friends. Some came from affection and respect, some from curiosity, some to give or receive advice or instruction, some from idleness, some because others set the example, and very varied, amusing, and agreeable was the society afforded by this influx of guests." Sometimes there were as many as fifty guests at one time, the great majority unexpected and uninvited, and many unknown. In the stables were their horses and in the kitchen their servants, and altogether they not only robbed him of time and rest and destroyed his privacy, but they literally ate him out of house and home.
Age brought to Jefferson little loss of mental vigor or spirit. In 1822 he was accused anonymously in the press of personal dishonesty in the settlement of accounts with the United States. He replied resentfully and, of course, conclusively; and reporting the matter to Adams, said, "Although I know it is too late for me to buckle on the armor of youth, yet my indignation would not permit me passively to receive the kick of an ass." Not often, however, did such matters touch him or did the changes taking place in the world tempt him from retirement. "To me," he wrote, "they have been like the howlings of the winter storm over the battlements while warm in my bed."
And yet he met old age with a youthful spirit. He had retired not to die but to live more abundantly, and in that frame of mind he went on to the end. He never varied in the attitude which he expressed to Adams when asked if he would be willing to live over his seventy-three years. "To which I say, yea. I think with you that it is a good world on the whole; that it has been founded on a principle of benevolence and more pleasure than pain dealt out My temperament is sanguine. I steer my bark with Hope in the head, leaving Fear astern."
In another respect was his old age youthful. He had none of the inflexibility of mind which age so often imposes. He was eager to learn and ready to change his views when they were proved wrong or when conditions altered. He became an advocate of the development of industry, or "placing the manufacturer by the side of the agriculturist," or "the consumer by the side of the pro
ducer," as he phrased it. Always he was seeking the truth as he had sought liberty. Truth alone could make men free. Just before his death he voiced his faith. "There is not a truth existing which I fear, or would wish unknown to the whole world."
The greatest service of his later years-in his mind one of three things for which he believed himself worthy of remembrance-was, of course, the founding of the University of Virginia. Always interested in popular education he began in 1776 to urge it enthusiastically. Later the establishment of a state university seemed to him a necessary part of the plan. He converted Virginia to the idea,—no light task— he planned its organization and its program on different lines from those prevailing in the United States, he designed and had built under his own eye the beautiful buildings that were to house the institution and he gathered together a faculty. He did all this in spite of the bitter opposition of the clergy and of political and personal enemies, and in 1825 he had the joy of seeing students in attendance, bringing "hither their genius to be kindled at our fire," as he phrased it. This last year, in spite of his distress over financial troubles, rounded out well a full and rich life. His university was in operation, he had completed a half century since he penned an immortal document in the history of human freedom and he had lived to see Jeffersonianism become Americanism. Fortunately for his peace of mind, he could not see what a century would do for his doctrines or for his country, and he was ready to utter his nunc dimittis.
From the time he reached middle age Jefferson had dreaded living too long, and when in 1803, at the age of sixty, he thought he had discovered the beginnings of a slow but fatal disease, he was not at all unhappy over it. But he recovered and for the rest of his life seems not to have troubled himself unduly with fears of senility, although he was conscious of the changes age was making in him and constantly alluded to them. In 1814 he wrote Adams, "But our machines have now been running seventy or eighty years, and we must expect that, worn as they are, here a pivot, there a wheel, now a pinion, next a spring, will be giving away; and however we may tinker them up for a while, all will at length surcease motion."
Time, on the whole, treated him kindly. His hair became somewhat grizzled, but his sight was good and every tooth was sound. His digestion was unimpaired. In his later years, he could not walk any great distance, but he rode every day, often for many miles, without fatigue. He had dislocated his wrist in Paris, and it now became stiff and at times painful. In 1823 he fell down the steps of one of the terraces at Monticello and broke the other arm. The bone knit but it was never entirely comfortable again. The fact that he was ambidextrous was a great service to him now. His health had begun to fail a few years before this, and from then on he went downhill, slowly, it is true, but steadily. Soon after the new year in 1826, he grew worse, but did not call in a doctor until the end of June, when he was beyond help. As he phrased it, "the machine" was "at
last worn out." He was perfectly aware of his condition and entirely contented and unafraid. He was weak but he was serene and cheerful as usual, and retained his decisive quality to the end. On the day he summoned a physician, he wrote declining, on the plea of illness, to attend the jubilee celebration of the Fourth of July at Washington, and expressing the hope and belief that the choice made fifty years before might arouse men everywhere to "burst the chains, under which monkish ignorance and superstition had persuaded them to bind themselves, and to assume the blessings and security of self-government." Thereafter his mind was full of the day and its memories, and in his dreams he reverted to the Revolution. He hoped to see the Fourth and when he was told that it had come, he murmured "Nunc dimittis, Domine."
Ten years before he had written Adams: "The simultaneous movements in our correspondence have been remarkable on several occasions. It would seem as if the state of the air, or the state of the times, or some other unknown cause, produced a sympathetic effect on our mutual recollections." Once more, seemingly, their spirits were attuned to each other. Jefferson went ahead, choosing, as it were, the hour at which the Declaration had first been read to Congress. But who does not wish to think that somewhere close by he lingered, waiting for his old comrade, that with renewed youth, in fullness of powers, with bold and eager confidence, they might once more together dare a great adventure?
THOSE QUARRELSOME BONAPARTES
IX-In the Residence of Kings
ROBERT GORDON ANDERSON
OSEPHINE found life in the Tuileries very pleasant. It was thrilling to walk in the footsteps of kings, to look out of their windows with the full sense of ownership, to be curtsied to where they had been curtsied to, and sleep where they had lain. And there were many balls and receptions, dinners for two hundred covers in the Gallery of Diana, and great closets full of new gowns. But this transition from republican simplicity to royal splendor had to be made very adroitly. Like skilful singers they went with the utmost smoothness from one register into another; and the maids of the Rue Chantereine were increased by a chef and a valet and a few culinary domestics, before the whole flock appeared, of ladies-in-waiting, dames du palais, butlers and pages, prefects and carvers, "chiefs-of-the-service," guards, chamberlains, and grooms of the chamber. The sibilant "citizen" slid into the "Sire" without any perceptible hiss or slur.
Indeed Napoleon did not hear the "Sire" at once, even in that inner ear. Amid his blossoming generals he still wore the simple green coat of a colonel of his grenadiers. It was with difficulty that Josephine persuaded him to wear a magnificent
thing of crimson silk with gold oak leaves and laurel all down the front. "Diable!" he said with a shrug of his shoulders, when told that it had been presented by a leading manufacturer of Lyons. "Put it on. It may encourage the trade in silk!” But the very donning of it by so Spartan a soldier was proof to many that it was not an angel whispering in his ear but rather that dark ambassador whose name he had just taken in vain.
As for Josephine she could be acquitted of royalistic designs. And on dynastic designs Nature herself frowned. Julie, her sister-in-law, had gone to Plombières to take the waters, and came back promptly to present Joseph, now Councillor of State and Minister Plenipotentiary, with a pink little daughter. Since this was after seven years of married life, Josephine determined to try the waters also. She returned more gracefully slender than ever, and once for all decided that she did not want to be queen. For that meant a dynasty, with divorce as an alarming corollary. Sufficient, therefore, was their royal state. They could forego the scepter and diadem.
Meanwhile, however, they had settled down to trotting very amiably in double harness. How amiably
may be judged from an indictment she brought against Napoleon one afternoon as they looked out from Marie Antoinette's old window on the little green fans of the horsechestnuts.
"You have only two faults," said she very charmingly. "And they?"
"The first that you are so fond of argument with your councillors you betray your inmost thoughts." And laconic as he was on the field of battle, the charge was true, as she knew from Bourrienne's babbling.
"You must beware of Fouché, Savary, and Talleyrand," she went on, then: "The second is that you do not give enough of yourself to your friends. You cannot win them forever by giving them baubles and titles."
And though he might have heeded with profit, he laughed, tweaked her cheek, and as promptly forgot, for he had an engagement-on the field of Marengo.
But despite her intuitions, she did not understand her husband, seeing him for the most part only in his relationship to her.
Once it occurred to her to try to see with a man's eyes this master of men. She was playing billiards in the entresol which had echoed to the laughter of so many queens, and from which she could see the rising monuments, the new boulevards and the palaces that were to beautify Paris and add new luster to the conqueror's name. Her companion, since there were no others about that night, was the dapper meager Louis Wairy, better known as Constant, her husband's valet.
"Diable!" she said as she tried an
easy carom and failed. It was no use. She must talk to some one or be hopelessly bored. So "Constant," she said as she dismounted from her perch on the cushioned margin of the table, "you were at Marengo."
The bait served all too well, but she checked his rush for it. "Nay, nay, my valiant valet; not your own exploits. I would know what the General looked like, how he appeared in battle; what was his glance. under fire."
"Fearful, madame. But he was so merry when he shaved. He would not let me shave him; but I handed him his razors and clipped the little hairs in his nose. How he swore when the scissors tickled him! But I take good care of him, madame, the very best care; see that he has the right underclothes-always of the finest cassimere and-"
"Hairs in his nose! Underclothes!" exclaimed his mistress. "And I ask you how he appears in battle! Constant, you have the valet's soul."
"Well, madame, he talked to the monks in the hospice of St. Bernard. They marveled at his wisdom. Then with his men, he slid down the glaciers like a boy."
"What! On a sled?"
"Non, madame. He sat right down on the ice. How many pairs of good cassimere he spoiled!"
It was hopeless and she turned to the window. Two officers walked across the court with much jingling of spurs.
"Eöe! Rapp! Junot! Come in and save me from this haberdasher!" Then as they entered the chamber, "I asked this fellow how the General appears at Marengo; and he tells me