Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

was not shed in the course of it ! . Si in Aquitania,' he exclaims with a sigh, ubi hoc malum latius serpserat Parisiensium medicorum remedia tunc adhiberi potuissent, idem annus finem

bellorum civilium et initium diuturnæ pacis attulisset ; sed ali• ter coelitibus visum est !'* By what process so determined an enemy of heresy has been converted into a Hugonot by Dr Lingard, we shall not attempt to explain. - One Thing, however, appears to us certain, that the mistake could not have happened, if the work of Papire Masson, short as it is, had not escaped Dr Lingard's diligent perusal of the original docu. 'ments' on this subject. We may venture to call Papire Masson's Life of Charles IX. an original document, as it was written in 1575, within three years of the massacre. .. : Dr Lingard tells us that the particulars he relates of the St Bartholomew are taken from the narrative of the Duke of • Anjou, with a few additional circumstances from the Memoirs

of Queen Margaret, and those of Tavannes. All three were ' in the Louvre at the time, and two of them were among the "devisers of this massacre.'t His readers will naturally con, clude from this observation, that the Memoirs of Tavannes were written by Marshal Tavannes, who was indeed not only one of the devisers of the massacre, but one of the most active instruments in carrying it into execution. Buty if Dr Lingard had read the book called Memoirs of Tavannes, he must have known that it was composed, not by the Marshal himself, but by his third son, John Vicount de Tavannes, who was too young, at the time of the St Bartholomew, to be admitted into the private councils where the massacre was devised, and had too austere a father to venture on questioning him, or attempting to penetrate into his secrets. Caveyrac, indeed, who was not unacquainted with this fact, is confident that the son n'a écrit, sans doute, ses Me. moires que sur ce qu'il lui avoit oui-dire.' I But, unfortunately, for this. sans doute,' we have the testimony of the son himself to the contrary. J'ai vu, j'ai sçu partie de faits, de Monsieurs de • Tavannes, mon pere,' says the son, 'non de tout par lui, qui, à • la forme des anciens Français, s'emploioit à faire, non à dire, si

peu curieux de vanité, qu'il a refusé des Memoires à ceux qui : vouloient (disoient-ils), immortaliser son nom.'. The faz ther survived the massacre only eleven months; and the son, who was only eighteen years of age at his father's death, pass. ed a great part of that interval near Rochelle, at a distance from him, and did not finish the miscellaneous composition called

* Vita Caroli IX, apud Castelnau, iii. 16. + Lingard, viii. 519. I Caveyrac, xv.

Tavannes, Epitre à ses Parens. VOL. XLIV.NO. 87.

Memoirs of Tavannes till fifty years afterwards. * It appears to have been the work of his old age, and contains many curi. ous and interesting anecdotes, which he must have collected from hearsay and family tradition. It is in general full of prejudice, but has some passages remarkable for their candour. Being written when the causes of the St Bartholomew had become matter of historical discussion, it must be regarded as a controversial work; and can at no rate be received as the authority of one who was among the devisers of the masSacre.'

The supposition that the massacre of St Bartholomew was planned a considerable time before it was carried into execution, is é unsupported,' Dr Lingard tells us, • by contem• porary authority.'t This, we must confess, does strike us as a most extraordinary allegation, from one who has diligently perused all the original documents on the subject. If it does not proceed, as we suspect it does, from the author having confined his researches to what was to be found in Ca. veyrac's dissertation, there is a degree of hardihood in the assertion that challenges admiration—with whatever other feel. ings it may be blended. Within less than a month after the massacre, Camillo Capilupi, nephew of the cardinal of that name, drew up at Rome an account of the St Bartholomew, in the form of a letter to his brother Alfonso, which was seen and approved of by the Cardinal of Lorraine, and begun to be printed under his inspection. In this little work a circumstaniial account is given of the bloody tragedy recently enacted at Paris, in which the contrivance, preparation, and execution of the massacre, are related, with overflowing joy, triumph, and exultation. The author boasts that it had been planned two years before, when the last peace was made with the Hugonots, and had been conducted to its termination by the King and the Queen-mother, with incredible address and dissimulation. I The Bishop of Valence, in his address to the Poles in exculpation of the St Bartholomew, published within a few months of the massacre, admits that the Protestants charged the King with having long dissembled his design before he was able to carry it into effect. ♡ Papire Masson, who wrote his Life of

* Tavannes, 395, 457, 461.

t Lingard, viii. 519. . : Lo Stratagema, 4to. 1572, reprinted with a French translation, 12mo. 1574. În the first edition, the dedication to Alfonso Capilupi is dated Rame, September 18th, 1572.

§ Mem. de l'Etat sous Cha. 9. ï. 45.

[graphic]

Charles IX. in 1575, introduces his account of what he calls the 6. Clades Parisiensis,' in the following words: • Cun vero i desperatus morbus anxiam et periculosam curationem requi.

rere videretur, nec aliter sanari posse quam astu et sævitia,

astum præmisit, per speciem nuptiarum Margaritæ sororis et · Henrici Borbonii principis Bigarrorum.'* Adriani, a contemporary Italian historian of eminence, traces back the first design of the St Bartholomew to the interview at Bayonne in 1565. f So much for Catholic authorities. With respect to Protestants, we shall cite but two contemporary vouchers for the accusation, among the many hundreds that present themselves. Schomberg, ambassador of Charles IX. with the Protestant princes of Germany, writes to his master on the 9th of October 1572, that the Elector of Saxony is convinced by the intelligence he has received from different quarters, que ce 6 qui a été fait à l'endroit du feu l’Admiral et ses adherens, a été

par préméditation, et pour la totale ruine et extermination de • ceux de leur religion, et de la religion même.' [ In December 1572, the Hugonots of Dauphiné having assembled, at the request of the Count de Gordes, to consider whether they should lay down their arms, decided in the negative, after a discussion in which one of their number described, in the following words, the massacre of St Bartholomew: Le vingt-quatrième d'Aout,

par le malheureux conseil des perfides, projette de plus long main, sous l'appât de banquets et nôces, les principaux d'entre seux furent meurtris dans le palais royal, et dans la capitale • ville du royaume.'' The suspicions of the Hugonots and the conviction of the Catholics, may be unfounded; but, with such evidence before him, how could Dr Lingard, who has diligently perused and compared the most authentic documents on the subject, insinuate to his readers, that the charge of premeditation against the authors of the massacre was the invention of later times, by saying that it was unsupported by contemporary authority? The charge may be unfounded, but its existence is coeval with the massacre.

But, if Dr Lingard has been remiss in his search after ori. ginal authorities, and if he has cited books which he appears never to have seen, he has been no less negligent in his examination of the works that have passed through his hands. His

* Castelnau, iii. 16.

+ Adriani, Storia, ii. Lib. xviii. 1320. Lib. xxii. pp. 44. 49. Edition of 1583.

† MSS. Bibliotheque du Roi, 996. St Germain. Ø Mem. to l'Etat sous Cha. 9. ii. 36.

chief authority for the version he has adopted of the St Bará: tholomew, is the account of it given by the Duke of Anjou, afterwards Henry III. of France, when in Poland, to a person' of consideration in his service. This curious narrative was' first published in the Supplement to the Memoirs of Villeroy,' Secretary of State under Henry III. and Henry IV., as a discourse addressed by Henry III. when in Poland, to a person of honour and rank in attendance on his person at Cracow; and it has been lately reprinted with the same title by M. Petitot. In Matthieu's History of France, where it next appeared, we are told it was addressed to Miron, the King's physician; and, in Le Long's Bibliotheque Historique de la France, it is said to have been directed to M. de Souvré. But, whoever was the person to whom it was addressed, the occasion that led to it was the following. In his journey through Germany to Poland, where he had been elected king, Henry was repeatedly insulted and mortified with allusions to the St Bartholomew. As he went in procession through the towns, amidst the acclamations directed by the public authorities, execrations from men, women, and children, met his ears; at palaces where he lodged, pictures exhibiting the horrid scenes of the massacre were obtruded on his sight, with the victims and assassins represented to the life; and at banquets, and on other festive occasions, allusions were made to his guilt, and to that of his companions in the journey; which alarmed their fears, and provoked their indignation:

Two days after his arrival at Cracow, unable to sleep from the recollection of these insults, and agitated with the remembrance of the bloody scenes which they had recalled to his memory he sent for one of the persons in attendance, and bid him write down what he was going to dictate on the St Bartholomew: Our present business is not to discuss the degree of credit due to this narrative, but to examine the use Dr Lingard has made of it.

According to this story, the massacre of St Bartholomew arose out of an unsuccessful attempt to assassinate the Admiral Co. ligny, undertaken by direction of the Queen-mother, and of her son the Duke of Anjou, without the concurrence or knowledge of the King; on the failure of which, the Queen and her Catholic counsellors, partly by insinuation, and partly by fear, obs tained an order from the King to put to death the Admiral and his principal adherents. By this tale the odium of a preconcerted plot, concealed for many months, and disguised with infinite art and dissimulation, is avoided; and the guilt of the original authors of the St Bartholomew is reduced to the intended commission of a single niurder, which by accident was extended to a greater number, and, by the fury of an exasperated and fanatical populace, was converted into a general massacre of all the Hugonots in Paris. ; . If we are to believe this account, the determination to put to death the Admiral and other chiefs of the Hugonots, was not adopted till the day before the massacre; and the interval between the decision and the commencement of the slaughter being necessarily spent in preparations, no time was left for the Counsellors to reflect, or to reconsider what they were about. Dr Lingard has improved on this hint, and postponed the final resolution till • ten in the evening,' before the massacre was to begin. Four hours,' he tells us, having elapsed before the

plan was arranged, and the necessary orders had been given,

it wanted two more to the appointed time. To sleep in such + circumstances was impossible; and the King, his Mother and

Brothers, repaired to an open balcony, where they stood • gazing at the stars, and waiting the result.'* Of this picturesque description we find few traces in the original. We are there told, that after the King's dinner (which was in those days at eleven), the Queen-mother, her son the Duke of Anjou, and her other confidents, went into his closet, and stated to him the reasons that, in their opinion, made it necessary to despatch the Admiral without delay. The discourses held on the occasion are given at length. The King is represented as at first unwilling to give up the Admiral, but as at length transported with sudden rage, exclaiming in fury and passion, • Puisque nous trouvions bon qu'on tuât l'Admiral, qu'il le

vouloit,- mais aussi tous les Huguenots de France, à fin qu'il • n'en demeurât pas un qui lui peut reprocher après, et que ( nous y donnassions ordre promptement. Et sortant furieuse. ' ment, nous laissa dans son cabinet, où nous avisâmes le reste du jour, le soir et une bonne partie de la nuit, ce qui sembla à

propos pour l'execution d'une telle entreprise. Nous nous 'assurâmes du prevôt des marchands, des capitaines des quar, " tiers et autres personnes que nous pensions les plus factieux, • faisant un departement des quartiers de la ville, desseinans « les uns pour executer particulierement sur aucuns, comme • fût M. de Guise pour tuer l'Admiral. Or, après avoir reposé ! seulement deux heures la nuit, ainsi que le jour commençoit à

poindre, le Roi, la Reine-ma mere et moi allâmes au portail du Louvre, joinant le jeu de paume, en une chambre que re

garde sur la place de la basse-court, pour voir le commence"ment de l'execution. 't It appears, therefore, 1. That the

* Lingard, viii. 518. † Petitot. Collect, des Memoires, xliv. 508,

« AnteriorContinuar »