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I know you are French, Madame, he muttered with embarrassment.

A young lieutenant of the Garde-Nationale hurried up, harangued them, and with difficulty persuaded [419] the savage crowd to allow him to take them into his own house, around which a drunken, furious crowd kept guard while cries of A la lanterne! were every now and then heard. They would not believe anything they said; they threatened to hang any one who should go to Paris to make inquiries; they forced their way into the house and garden, but suddenly a friendly voice said in the ear of Mme. de Genlis: I was a gamekeeper at Sillery; dont be afraid. I will go to Paris. At last the crowd of ruffians dispersed, leaving a dozen to guard their prisoners; the mayor of the village gravely demanded that all her papers should be delivered to him, upon which Mme. de Genlis gave him four or five letters, and when she begged him to read them he replied that he could not read, but took them away.

When the twin daughters of the Duc de Chartres were five years old, one of them caught the measles, got a chill and died, to the great grief of the Duchess and the remaining twin, Madame Adla?de dOrlans. One day the Duc de Chartres came to consult Flicit, as he was in the habit of doing on all occasions; and on this one he confided to her that he could not find a tutor he liked for his boys, that they were learning to speak like shop boys, and that he wished she would undertake their education as well as that of their sister; to which she agreed. It was arranged that the Duke should buy a country house at Belle Chasse, where they should spend eight months of the year; the Duchesse agreed to the plan, all was settled, and Mme. de Genlis embarked on the career of education, [402] which had always been a passion with her, and which she could now pursue with every advantage. Her first child, the only one that lived, was born in February, 1780.

Many an abbess, many a chatelaine spent time and money amongst the rich and poor; and there were seigneurs who helped and protected the peasants on their estates and were regarded by them with loyalty and affection. To some extent under the influence of the ideas and prejudices amongst which they had been born and educated, yet they lived upright, honourable, religious lives, surrounded by a mass of oppression, licence, and corruption in the destruction of which they also were overwhelmed.