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view with the emperor. Francis II. was not a cruel man. At the age of twenty-five, he had not been hardened by long training in the school of state policy. He was a husband and a father. The heroic wife of La Fayette, with her daughters, was admitted to his presence. She demanded only to share her husband's prison, but she implored the emperor to restore to liberty the father of her children. “He was, indeed, sire, a general in the armies of republican America ; but it was at a time when the daughter of Maria Theresa was foremost in his praise. He was, indeed, a leader of the French revolution, but not in its excesses, not in its crimes; and it is owing to him alone that, on the dreadful 5th October, Maria Antoinette and her son had not been torn in pieces by the bloodthirsty populace of Paris. He is not the prisoner of your justice, nor your arms, but was thrown by misfortune into your power, when he fled before the same monsters of bloody crime who brought the king and queen to the scaffold. Three of my family have perished on the same scaffold, my aged grandparent, my mother, and my sister. Will the emperor of Germany close the dark catalogue, and doom my husband to a dungeon worse than death? Restore him, sire--not to his army, to his power, to his influence—but restore his shattered health, his ruined fortunes--to the affections of his fellow-citizens in America, where he is content to live and close his career-to his wife and children."
The emperor was a humane man. He heard, reasoned, hesitated; told her “his hands were tied" by reasons of state, and permitted her to shut herself up with her daughters in the cells of Olmutz! There her health failed; she asked to be permitted to pass a month at Vienna, to recruit it, and was answered that she might leave the prison whenever she pleased, but that if she left it, she could never return there. On this condition, she rejects the indulgence with disdain; and prepares to sink, under the slow poison of an infected atmosphere, by her husband's side. But her brave heart—fit partner for a hero's—bore her through the trial, though the hand of death was upon her. She prolonged a feeble existence for ten years after their release from captivity, but never recovered the effects of this merciless imprisonment.
The interposition of the friends of La Fayette, in Europe and America, to obtain his release, was unsuccessful. On the floor of the house of commons, General Fitzpatrick, on the 16th December, 1796, made a motion in his behalf. It was supported by Colonel Tarleton, who had fought against La Fayette in America, by Wilberforce and Fox. The speech of the latter is one of the most admirable specimens of eloquence ever heard in a deliberative assembly. But justice remonstated, humanity pleaded in vain. General Washington, then president of the United States, wrote a letter to the emperor of Germany. What would not the emperor afterwards have given to have had the wisdom to grant the liberty of La Fayette to the entreaty of Washington? But an advocate was at hand who would not be refused. The “ Man of Destiny" was in the field. The Archduke Charles was matched against him during the campaign of
The englos of Bonaparte flew from victory to vic. tory. The archduke displayed agninst him all the resourcos of the old school. But the days of strategy
Bonnparte stormod upon his front, threw his ariny across deep rivers, burst upon his rear, and annihilated the astonished duke in the midst of his manauvres. Ho fought ten pitched battles in twenty days, drove the Austrinns across the Julian Alps, appronched within olevon days' march of Vienna, and then granted the emperor, just preparing for flight into the recorren of Germany, the treaty of Campio Forinio, having demanded, in the preliminary conferencos of Leoben, the release of La Fayetto. Napoleon was often afterwards heard to sny, that, in all his negotiations with foreign powers, he had never experienced so pertinncious n resistance as that which was made to this demand. The Austrian onvoys at the French hond quarters, assorted that he was in confinement in the imperinl territories. But Bonnparto distrusted this mirortion, and sont a former aid-lecamp of La l'nyette, to communicate directly with the Austrian ininister on the subject. He wns finally released, on the 230 September, 1797. But while his liboration was eflectod by the interference of the army of the republic abrond, the continention and sale of the rosidue of his property went on at home.
Included in the goneral decree of outlawry, as an emigrant, La Fayette did not go back to Franco till the directory was overturned. On the establishment of the consular government, being restored to his civil rights, though with the loss of nenrly all his estatos, he returned to his native country, and sought the retirement of Lagrange. He was indebted to Napoleon for release from captivity, probably for the lives of himself and family. He could not but see that all hope of restoring the constitution of 1791, to which he had pledged his faith, was over, and he had every reason of interest and gratitude to compound with the state of things as it existed. But he never wavered for a moment. Bonaparte endeavored, in a personal interview, to persuade him to enter the senate; but in vain.
From the tranquillity of private life, nothing could now draw him. Mr. Jefferson offered him the place of governor of Louisiana, then just become a territory of the United States; but he was unwilling, by leaving France, to take a step that would look like a final abandonment of the cause of constitutional liberty on the continent of Europe. Napoleon ceased to importune him, and he lived at Lagrange, retired and unmolested, the only man who had gone through the terrible revolution with a character free from every just impeachment. He entered it with a princely fortune ; in the various high offices he had filled, he had declined all compensation; and he came out poor. He entered it in the meridian of early manhood, with a frame of iron. He came out of it, fifty years of age, his strength impaired by the cruelties of his long imprisonment.
But the time at length arrived, which was to call La Fayette from his retirement, and place him againthe veteran pilot-at the helm. The colossal edifice of the empire, which had been reared by Napoleon, crumbled by its own weight. The pride, the interests,
the vanity, the patriotism of the nations were too deeply insulted and wounded by his domination.
The armies of Europe poured down like an inundation on France; twice the conqueror is conquered; the dynasty of the Bourbons is restored; and La Fayette is now found at the tribune. Tranquillity being established in France, and being invited to visit the United States by a vote of congress, he comes
our shores on the 25th August, 1824, and is received with the most enthusiastic welcome. His tour through the country will never be forgotten. Everywhere he was met by crowds of people, anxious to see the benefactor of their country, and to testify their heartfelt homage and gratitude. There is perhaps nothing in La Fayette's life more remarkable than the admirable tact, sense and propriety displayed in his answers to the various addresses made as he passed through the country
Having spent several months in the United States, he returns to France, and we soon see him at the head of a new revolution. In July, 1830, Charles X. and his family are seen flying from Paris, and La Fayette is commander of the National Guards in the Hotel de Ville. The dynasty is changed. Louis Philippe is established upon the basis of a constitutional monarchy, and La Fayette once more resigns his commission. Insensible to the love of power,
of money, and of place, he is again a private citizen, exercising only the office of a representative in the chamber of deputies. Thus he continued till May, 1834. In attending the funeral of a colleague, he contracted a cold, which settled on his lungs. After a