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wild and devious paths, crossing each other at the extremity of almost every field-often serving, at the same time, as channels for the winter torrents, and winding so capriciously among

the innumerable hillocks, and beneath the meeting hedge-rows, that the natives themselves were always in danger of losing their way when they went a league or two from their own habitations. The country, though rather thickly peopled, contained, as may be supposed, few large towns; and the inhabitants, devoted almost entirely to rural occupations, enjoyed a great deal of leisure. The noblesse or gentry of the country were very generally resident on their estates, where they lived in a style of simplicity and homeliness which had long disappeared from every other part of the kingdom. No grand parks, fine gardens, or ornamented villas; but spacious clumsy chateaus, surrounded with farm offices and cottages for the labourers. Their manners and way of life, too, partook of the same primitive rusticity. There was great cordiality, and even much familiarity in the intercourse of the seigneurs with their dependants. They were followed by large trains of them in their hunting expeditions, which occupied so great a part of their time. Every man had his fowlingpiece, and was a marksman of fame or pretensions. They were posted in various quarters, to intercept or drive back the game; and were thus trained, by anticipation, to that sort of discipline and concert, in which their whole art of war was afterwards found to consist. Nor was their intimacy confined to their sports. The peasants resorted familiarly to their landlords for advice, both legal and medical; and they repaid the visits in their daily rambles, and entered with interest into all the details of their agricultural operations. They came to the weddings of their children, drank with their guests, and made little presents to the young people. On Sundays and holidays, all the retainers of the family assembled at the chateau, and danced in the barn or the court-yard, according to the season. The ladies of the house joined in the festivity, and that without any airs of condescension or of mockery; for, in their own life, there was little splendour or luxurious refinement. They travelled on horseback, or in heavy carriages drawn by oxen; and had little other amusement than in the care of their dependants, and the familiar intercourse of neighbours among whom there was no rivalry or principle of ostentation.

From all this there resulted, as Madame de L. assures us, a. certain innocence and kindliness of character, joined with great hardihood and gaiety,—which reminds us of Henry IV. and his Bearnois,--and carries with it, perhaps on account of that association, an idea of something more chivalrous and romantic more honest and unsophisticated, than any thing we expect to meet with in this modern world of artifice and derision. There was great purity of morals accordingly, Mad. de L. informs us, and general cheerfulness and content in all this district;-crimes were never heard of, and lawsuits almost unknown. Though not very well educated, the population was exceedingly devout; -though their's was a kind of superstitious and traditional derotion, it must be owned, rather than an enlightened or rational faith. They had the greatest veneration for crucifixes and images of their saints, and had no idea of any duty more imperious than that of attending on all the solemnities of religion. They were singularly attached also to their curés, who were al. most all born and bred in the country, spoke their patois, and shared in all their pastimes and occupations. When a huntingmatch was to take place, the clergyman announced it from the pulpit after prayers, -and then took his fowlingpiece, and accompanied his congregation to the thicket. It was on behalf of these curés, in fact, that the first disturbances were excited.

The decree of the Convention, displacing all priests who did not take the oaths imposed by that Assembly, occasioned the removal of several of those beloved and conscientious pastors; and various tumults were excited by attempts to establish their successors by authority. Some lives were lost in these tumults; but their most important effect was in diffusing an opinion of the severity of the new government, and familiarizing the people with the idea of resisting it by force. The order of the Convention for a forced levy of 300,000 men, and the preparations to carry it into effect, gave rise to the first serious insurrection ;-and while the dread of punishment for the acts of violence then committed, deterred the insurgents from submitting, the standard was no sooner raised between the republican government on the one hand and the discontented peasantry on the other, than the mass of that united and alarined population declared itself for their associates ; and a great tract of country was thus arrayed in open rebellion, without concert, leader or preparation. We have the testimony of Madame de L. therefore, in addition to all other good testimony, that this great civil war originated almost accidentally, and certainly not from any plot or conspiracy of the leading royalists in the country. The resident gentry; no doubt, for the most part, favoured that cause; and the peasantry felt almost universally with their masters ;-but neither had the least idea, in the beginning, of opposing the political pretensions of the new government, nor, even to the last, much serious hope of effecting any revolution in the general state of the country. The first

Memoires de Mad. de Larochejaquelein, movements, indeed, partook far more of bigotry than of royalism; and were merely the rash and undirected expressions of plebeian resentment for the loss of their accustomed pastors. The more extensive commotions which followed on the compulsory levy, were equally without object or plan, and were confined at first to the peasantry. The gentry did not join until they had no alternative, but that of taking up arms against their own dependants, or along with them; and they went into the field, generally, with little other view than that of acquitting their own faith and honour, and scarcely any expectation beyond that of obtaining better terms for the rebels they were joining, or of being able to make a stand till some new revolution should take place at Paris, and bring in rulers less harsh and sanguinary:

It was at the ballot for the levy of St Florent, that the rebellion

may be said to have begun. The young men first murinured, and then threatened the commissioners, who somewhat rashly directed a fieldpiece to be pointed against them, and afterwards to be fired over their heads :-Nobody was hurt by the discharge; and the crowd immediately rushed forward and seized upon the gun. Some of the commissioners were knocked downtheir papers were seized and burnt-and the rioters went about singing and rejoicing for the rest of the evening. An account, probably somewhat exaggerated, of this tumult

, was brought next day to a venerable peasant of the name of Cathelineau, a sort of itinerant dealer in wool, who was immediately struck with the decisive consequences of this open attack on the constituted authorities. The tidings were brought to him as he was kneading the weekly allowance of bread for his family. He instantly wiped his arins, put on his coat, and repaired to the village market-place, where he harangued the inhabitants, and prevailed on twenty or thirty of the boldest youths to take their arms in their hands and follow him. He was universally repected for his piety, good sense, and mildness of character; and, proeeeding with his troop of recruits to a neighbouring village, repeated his eloquert exhortations, and instantly found himself at the head of a hundred enthusiasts. Without stopping a moment, he led this new army to the attack of a inilitary post guarded by four score soldiers and a picce of cannon. Tlie post was surprised,--the soldiers dispersed or made prisoners, and the gun brought off' in triumph. From this he advances, the same afternoon, to another post of two hundred soldiers and three pieces of cannon; and succeeds by the same surprise and intrepidity. The morning after, while preparing for other enterprises, he is joined by another band of insurgents, who kad associated to protect one of their friends, for whose arrest a military order had been issued. The united force, now am mounting to a thousand men, then directed its attack on Chollet, a considerable town, occupied by at least 500 of the republican army; and again bears down all resistance by the suddenness and impetuosity of its onset. The rioters find here a considerable supply of arms, money and ammunition ;-and thus a country is lost and won, in which, but two days before, nobody thought or spoke of insurrection!

If there was something astonishing in the sudden breaking out of this rebellion, its apparent suppression was not less extraordinary. These events took place just before Lent; and, upon the approach of that holy season, the religious rebels all dispersed to their homes, and betook themselves to their prayers and their rustic occupations, just as if they had never quitted them. A column of the republican army, which advanced from Angers to bear down the insurrection, found no insurrection to quell. They marched from one end of the country to the other, and met everywhere with the most satisfactory appearances of submission and tranquillity. These appearances, however, it will readily be understood, were altogether deceitful; and as soon as Easter Sunday was over, the peasants began again to assemble in arms,--and now, for the first time, to apply to the gentry to head them. One of the first on whom they prevailed was M. de la Charette ; who had never, till that time, given any indication of hostility to the revolutionary government. He very early took the command of the insurgents in Lower Poitou, the only quarter in which their first successes were stained with cruelty and pillage. M. de Charette attempted in vain to restrain these disorders; and, when he was compelled to give way to them, discovered, that greater devotedness was to be expected from men who had thus sinned beyond all hopes of forgiveness.

All this time Madame Lescure and her family remained quietly at Clisson; and, in that profound retreat, were ignorant of the singular events to which we have alluded, for long after they occurred. The

first intelligence they obtained was from the indefatigable M. Thomasin, who passed his time partly at their chateau, and partly in scampering about the country, and haranguing the constituted authorities always in his national uniform, and with the authority of a Parisian patriot. One day this intrepid person came home, with a strange story of the neighbouring town of Herbiers having been taken either by a party of insurgents, or by an English army suddenly landed on the coast; and, at seven o'clock the next morning, the chateau was invested by 200 soldiers, -and a party of dragoons rode into the court-yard. Their business was to demand all the horses,

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arms and ammunition, and also the person of an old cowardly chevalier, some of whose foolish letters had been carried to the municipality. M. de L. received this deputation with his characteristic composure-made the apology of the poor chevalier, , and a few jokes at his expense--gave up some bad horses--and sent away the party in great good humour. For a few days they were agitated with contradictory rumours: But at last it appeared that the government had determined on vigorous measures; and it was announced, that all the gentry would be required to arm themselves and their retainers against the insurgents. This brought things to a crisis ;-a council was held in the chateau, when it was speedily determined, that no consideration of prudence or of safety could induce men of honour to desert their dependants, or the party to which, in their hearts, they wished well;—and that, when the alternative came, they would rather fight with the insurgents than against them. Henri de Larochejaquelein-of whom the fair writer gives so engaging a picture, and upon whose acts of heroism she dwells throughout with so visible a delight, that it is quite a disappointment to find that it is not his name she bears when she comes to change her own had been particularly inquired after and threatened; and upon an order being sent to his peasantry to attend and ballot for the militia, he takes horse in the middle of the night, and sets out to place himself at their head for resistance. The rest of the party remain a few days longer in considerable perplexity.-M. Thomasin having become suspected, on account of his frequent resort to them, had been put in prison; and they were almost entirely without intelligence as to what was going on; when one morning, when they were at breakfast, a party of horse gallops up to the gate, and presents an order for the immediate arrest of the whole company. M. de L. takes this with perfect calmness-a team of oxen is yoked to the old coach; and the prisoners are jolted along, under escort of the National dragoons, to the town of Bressuire. By the time they had reached this place, their mild and steady deportment had made so favourable an impression on their conductors, that they were very near taking them back to their homes ;-and the municipal officers, before whom M. de L. was brought, had little else to urge for the arrest, but that it did not seem adviseable to leave him at large, when it had been found necessary to secure all the other gentry of the district. They were not sent, however, to the common prison, but lodged in the house of a worthy republican, who had formerly supplied the family with groceries, and now treated them with the greatest kindness and civility. Here they remained for several days, closely shut up in two

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