Sunday, June 30, 2024

Reforms of Louis XVI


Here are some of the reforms of Louis XVI, made of his own free will beginning from the moment he ascended the throne. He was considered quite the Liberal. 

  1774 Louis XVI placed Turgot in charge of finances and introduced free circulation of grain. Founded School of Medicine in Paris. 

  1775 Droits d'octroi were reduced, prison reform begun, and the death penalty for deserters was abolished. 

 1776 The king signed the six edicts of Turgot comprising the abolition of the corvée. The parlements resisted the edicts, preventing them from becoming law. In the same year he reduced his household.

  1778 More taxes reduced. 

  1779 The king abolished servitude and other reforms were made.

  1780 Further reductions in the Royal household were made, hospital reform was begun, prison reform continued, most torture was abolished. 

  1784 Relief given to Jews. 

  1786 More hospital reform, aid to the deaf, and provisions made for lost children. 

  1787 Steps taken towards the total abolition of the corvée, more reductions in royal household, civil rights accorded to Jews and Protestants. 

 1788 All forms of torture were abolished, greater freedom given to press, steps towards abolition of lettres de cachet.

 All of the above is taken from Nesta Webster's Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette during the Revolution, but it is a matter of public record as well. There are also discussions on the king's reforms in Simon Schama's Citizens and Vincent Cronin's Louis and Antoinette. Anyone who thinks Louis XVI was a lazy, sluggish, do-nothing king need only examine the six volumes of laws passed during his reign. He wanted to reform the feudal tax system, which is why he called the Estates-General. If all the nobles and wealthy clergy had been minimally taxed, there would have been no deficit. The enemies of the king were determined his plans were not to succeed. They had been planning for years. As Marie-Antoinette wrote to her brother Leopold II in August 1790 about the society she had once thought to be innocuous:

Be well on your guard where you are with regard to all associations of Freemasons. You must already have been warned that it is by this means that all the monsters here count on attaining the same end in every country. Oh, God, preserve my fatherland and you from such misfortunes.
(Image: Louis XVI rendant la liberté aux serfs de son royaume. Dessin de Charles de Wailly, 1783.) Share

Gender-Confusion Month Ends But Is Never Over

 From The Patriot Post:

First, we confirmed that the woke commander of the Osan Air Force base in South Korea has authorized “pride patches” to be worn on uniforms while performing official duties. Got that? The greatest external threat to the United States is Red China, which is currently threatening an invasion of Taiwan to enforce reunification. Our frontline of defense in the region includes Osan, and I bet the ChiComs are terrified of those pride patches.

Of course, that pandering AF commander may have just been taking a cue from the CIA, which made sure to prioritize it’s “pride month” celebrations. House Select Committee on Intelligence member, Rep. Mike Waltz (R-FL), a former Green Beret concluded: “It just shows where this administration’s priorities continue to be, which is a virtue signal to the progressive Left, rather than staying focused on lethality, effective intelligence collection, and keeping America safe. It’s just a total misplacement of priorities, and it comes from the top, and it comes from highly politicized political appointees, by political appointees that are pushing an agenda.”

It’s not just the Air Force. Each of the service branch chiefs is dutifully appeasing the Biden administration’s political gender-confusion agenda with such virtue-signaling nonsense. Yes, even the Navy SEALs got in on the act, with their own rainbow social media post.

Next news in, after defacing the White House by putting rainbow colors on its columns, Kamala Harris hosted the cast of “Queer Eye,” and concluded the gay affair by thanking them for “meaningful conversation” and “giving my office your stamp of approval.” So special! Perhaps the failed “Border Czar” should host the families of Laken Riley, Rachel Morin, and 12-year old Jocelyn Nungaray at the White House, the latest torture/murder victims of Biden’s swarms of illegal immigrants. Harris could have painted the columns red in remembrance of the tens-of-thousands of American citizens assaulted by violent illegal immigrants.

Then we learned that SCOTUS will hear legal challenges to what the Demos and their Leftmedia parrots call a “gender-affirming care ban” for children — or, more accurately, a “ban on gender mutilation of children.” This comes on the heels of U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle ruling in which he asserts: “Florida has adopted a statute and rules that ban gender-affirming care for minors even when medically appropriate. The ban is unconstitutional.” Just when exactly is so-called “transgender” chemical alteration and physical mutilation of children “medically appropriate”?

Apparently Biden approves. His official pride month proclamation objects to states protect children from gender mutilation: “These bills and laws attack our most basic values and freedoms as Americans: the right to be yourself, the right to make your own medical decisions, and the right to raise your own children.” In fact, we also just confirmed evidence that Biden’s “transgender” groomer-in-chief at the Department of Health and Human Services, Richard “Rachel” Levine, advocated for removal of age limit guidelines for genital mutilation surgeries on children. That is the same miscreant who wanted to declare a whole “summer of pride.” (Read more.)


Resistance works. From USA Today:

 Bud Light, owned by beer giant Anheuser-Busch, is still struggling after last year’s conservative blowback over a social media campaign with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney.

 “The goal is to make ‘pride’ toxic for brands,” conservative commentator Matt Walsh wrote on X, formerly Twitter, at the time.  The strategy worked. Activists rallied supporters using hashtags and slogans like “go woke go broke” and held boycotts and other actions they called “Bud Lighting.” Not only did sales suffer, some in the LGBTQ+ community turned away from Target and Bud Light, too, for bowing to conservative pressure. Now brands are navigating the volatile political climate more gingerly. Expect fewer rainbow logos, Skallerud says. (Read more.)


From The Federalist:

Tractor Supply announced Thursday it is no longer implementing neo-Marxist initiatives throughout the company, marking a rare win for conservatives seeking to restore sanity to American institutions.

“We work hard to live up to our Mission and Values every day and represent the values of the communities and customers we serve,” a company press release reads. “We have heard from customers that we have disappointed them. We have taken this feedback to heart. Going forward, we will ensure our activities and giving tie directly to our business.”

 The announcement came after conservative filmmaker and former congressional candidate Robby Starbuck unearthed the company’s infatuation with so-called “diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI),” a poisonous left-wing framework that dismisses merit and instead discriminates based on characteristics such as skin color and sex. Individuals who qualify for a certain position on merit but don’t meet the discriminating entity’s goal of being more “diverse” are often passed over in favor of those who meet institutionally preferred identitarian standards. (Read more.)

Meanwhile, in Georgia...From The Georgia Record:

Blue states are passing laws to allow children to become “transgender” without parental consent, to punish those who use “wrong” pronouns, and to shield “gender” doctors from lawsuits for harms caused to kids. Red states are passing laws to outlaw transgender medical “treatments” on minors, to protect children from sexually explicit schoolbooks, and banning males from female sports.

Disagreements over the definition of biology, sex, sexuality, and truth – and the safeguarding of children. I never expected to be thinking about such things when I got involved in gay rights, in 1993. No one was talking about any of the things “LGBTQ+” activists are talking about today.

It’s 2024 in Georgia and a once rare psychiatric disorder affecting primarily men has become today what we call “transgender.” What were formerly known as transsexuals and transvestites have morphed into a host of different things, real and imaginary. Today’s queers, nonbinarys, pansexuals, asexuals, demiboys, and gender-fluids - with xemself, perself, and verself pronouns. What remains a diagnosis in the Manual for Mental Disorders (DSM-5) is now used to tell kids they can be “born in the wrong body.” A condition trans activists insist be included under The Americans with Disabilities Act is proselytized to kids as healthy social and biological development. (Read more.)


Queen Charlotte Was Not Black

 We have been over this before. Charlotte was a German princess with auburn hair and blue eyes who may have had a dark-skinned ancestress five hundred years before her birth. That would hardly qualify her as mixed race. From EL PAÍS:

 A newly crowned king with no descendants — not the most comfortable position to occupy in a reigning royal house, but one that would resolve a year later following an exhaustive search for eligible European princesses. The chosen future queen was Charlotte, protagonist of Queen Charlotte: A Bridgerton Story, the prequel to the hit Netflix show Bridgerton, in which the monarch is portrayed as a Black woman — the first in a series of creative licenses that, while permitted by fiction, do not, of course, accurately reflect the real historical figure herself. In portraits and descriptions from the time, Queen Charlotte is consistently represented as white. The historian John Watikings described the queen as “rather small, but her shape fine, and carriage graceful; her hands and neck extremely well turned; her hair auburn; her face round and fair; the eyes of light blue face round and white, her eyes light blue...” Although at the time, marriages were arranged, it was customary to send portraits of prospective wives so that the groom could get a sense of the possible candidates and make his choice. George received two portraits of Charlotte that are preserved in the Royal Collection of the British Crown, in which she is depicted as having pale skin and blue eyes. There is no historically valid reason that she might be portrayed as Black. The only fact that might explain certain features is that the queen’s ancestors, specifically María Afonso, born five centuries before her, may have been Moors rather than Jews — something that in any case lacks a basis in history, given that, in the Middle Ages, the category of “Moor” referred to a religion and not an ethnic group, whose members could be from anywhere, including, of course, Europe. (Read more.)


Saturday, June 29, 2024

Charles I and Henrietta Maria at Oxford

 From Merton College:

The assassination of Buckingham in 1628 saved the marriage. Charles and Henrietta Maria found solace together and eight children were born between 1629 and 1644, a family famously celebrated in the portraits of Van Dyck. She developed into a discerning patron of the arts, an enthusiastic developer of houses and gardens, a confident participant in court politics and a committed patron of the Catholic cause in England. King and queen commissioned and participated in court masques that held up their mutual love as a model for the harmony of a wise king and his ordered realm. As tensions grew over Charles’s religious and fiscal policies across his three kingdoms, tensions that would lead in 1637 into a revolt in Scotland, his more anxious subjects saw in such productions evidence not of harmony, but of papist conspiracy at the heart of the court and of the queen at its head. Her elaborate baroque chapel, built by Inigo Jones at Somerset House, her cultivation of continental sacred music, her squad of French Capuchin priests, her encouragement of noble lady converts to Rome and her welcome to papal agents at court all fitted the picture.

As Charles turned reluctantly to his English Parliament to resolve the deepening crisis, criticism of the queen mounted. It was in part fear for her safety that led them to leave London in January 1642 and soon afterwards she crossed to Holland. She was both escorting her daughter to a marriage into the House of Orange and looking for support for her husband’s cause. Early in 1643, she sailed to Bridlington and set herself up at York, helping to direct the royal armies in the north, but her aim was always to re-join the king, who had made Oxford his base and Christ Church his home. Already in February she was writing to him, ‘I am in the greatest impatience in the world to join you’.

By mid-March 1643, rooms at Merton were being prepared for the queen and a route cleared between their host colleges so that king and queen could readily meet. She finally arrived on 14 July, entering the city by coach. There were speeches of welcome and the university authorities presented the queen with gloves and books of poems. Then she walked with Charles from Christ Church through one of the Canon’s gardens and ‘Corpus Christi backeside’ to Merton, where she settled into the Warden’s Lodgings at the junction of Front Quad and Fellows’ Quad. These were conveniently vacant as the Warden, Nathaniel Brent, had fled to London and sided with Parliament, which was by then busy trying to impeach the queen as well as to besiege her husband.

Henrietta Maria already knew Oxford. When she and Charles visited in August 1636, four-year-old Anthony Wood, the great chronicler of 17th-century Oxford who grew up in Postmasters Hall, saw them and remembered it for the rest of his life. Indeed, she already knew Merton, for Warden Brent had entertained the royal couple in 1629. Welcomed to the College with an oration by James Marsh, a long-serving fellow, they spent an hour in the long gallery that stretched from Brent’s lodgings along the top of Fellows’ Quad, enjoying afternoon sweetmeats.

She made her bedroom in Brent’s dining room, now the Breakfast Room, accessible from the stately carved staircase that Brent had just had built, while her entourage occupied the Queen’s Room over the Fitzjames Arch and adjoining areas. They included several servants who died at Oxford and were buried in the College Chapel – Richard North, Ellis Roberts, Mary Skevington – and the widows of aristocratic royalist captains, such as Lady Cobham and the Countess of Northampton. The Chapel hosted her Catholic services and at least one fellow, Dr John Greaves, the Savilian Professor of Astronomy, was later accused of spending far too much time with her Capuchin confessors. (Read more.)

Marriage Medal of Charles I of England and Henrietta of France

From the BBC:

A rare large gold coin from the reign of Charles I has fetched £54,560 at auction. The coin, known as the Triple Unite, was minted in Oxford in 1643 during the English Civil War and had the value of 60 shillings, or three pounds. It depicts the King holding a sword and an olive branch, possibly signifying his desire for peace. It sold earlier at auction house Dix Noonan Webb as part of the Micheal Gietzelt Collection. (Read more.)


Biden Campaign And Dems In Chaos

 From The Georgia Record:

Liberal media and Dem pundits spent hours last night trying to put some positive spin on Biden's debate performance, but by today, opinions began congealing into a picture of one of the worst debate showings since Kennedy v. Nixon debate. CNN opined, "Objectively, Biden produced the weakest performance since John F. Kennedy and Richard Nixon started the tradition of televised debates in 1960..." They also observed, "It was clear a political disaster was about to unfold as soon as the 81-year-old commander in chief stiffly shuffled on stage in Atlanta to stand eight feet from ex-President Donald Trump. (Read more.)


John Augustine Washington III

 From Mount Vernon:

John Augustine Washington III was the great-grand nephew of George Washington and the last private owner of Mount Vernon.  The fourth of five children, he was born on May 3, 1821 to John Augustine Washington II and Jane Charlotte Blackburn Washington.  John Augustine spent his young childhood at his parents’ Blakeley plantation near present day Charles Town, West Virginia, but after the deaths of Bushrod Washington and his wife Julia in 1829, the Mount Vernon estate became the possession of Bushrod’s nephew, John Augustine Washington II.  As the son of a wealthy Virginia planter, John Augustine enjoyed a comfortable lifestyle at Mount Vernon, developing interests in politics, hunting, and agriculture.  After John Augustine II passed away in June 1832, the estate was left to his widow Jane Charlotte, who vowed to maintain the estate to the best of her ability without involving her children’s inheritances.  While John Augustine Washington III preferred his more aristocratic pastimes, Jane insisted that he attend college after his father’s death.  He graduated from the University of Virginia in 1840, returning to Mount Vernon in September 1841 with a proposition to manage the plantation for his mother.  She agreed, loaning him twenty-two slaves and contracting his employment for five hundred dollars per year for seven years.1 (Read more.)


Friday, June 28, 2024

True Face of Pride: Architects of Perversion, II

 Part I is HERE.


Daily Wire Backstage: The Presidential Debate

 An entertaining but astute analysis.


Did St. John the Baptist Take the Nazarite Vow?

 From Aleteia:

The word Nazirite derives from the Hebrew nazir. It has, perhaps not surprisingly, the same overtones found in the Latin sacer — both words imply that something or someone has been “consecrated” and, consequently, “separated” from the rest. Scholars explain the notion of the sacred (that is what both nazir and sacer literally mean) intends to explain the remarkable character of that which is considered as such by highlighting its uniqueness. Whatever is deemed sacred is, by its very nature, already somehow “apart” from the rest. (Read more.)


Thursday, June 27, 2024

Marie-Thérèse in White

Just as Marie-Antoinette wore a great deal of white throughout her life, so did her daughter, Marie-Thérèse-Charlotte.

In white with a blue sash, just like her mother
Detail of Wertmuller's portrait
In the gardens of Trianon, 1789

1795. The Orphan of the Temple
In Vienna, 1798
1799, around the time of her marriage.

Around 1800, after her marriage. She is wearing her hair up.
Around 1810
Around 1815

Circa 1820
For more portraits of Marie-Thérèse-Charlotte of France, please visit our forum.


Secrecy And Stonewalling

 From Jan at The Easton Gazette:

On the opposite side, many small-town officials tend to enact retribution on those citizens who stand up to them or support political rivals. Often times, the victims stand down out of fear of negative consequences to their families and businesses. It's a difficult thing, but citizens who want to break up small "cabals" of power need to take the chance of consequences. Other citizens in town need to stand by and support them when they do.

Taxpayers need to question any and all actions of their town officials and DEMAND that decisions be made in the open at public meetings and that these meetings are recorded electronically and made available to the citizens. People also need to go to meetings and speak out when they have questions, complaints or ideas.

Finally, there is power in numbers. In our small town, we just had an election. Over 400 people in a town of 650 voted. Yet, at any given town meeting, the most we have is 30 or 40 people. Sometimes attendance is fewer than a dozen. Imagine if every town meeting was bursting at the seams to seat all participants. Imagine if meetings had to be moved to larger locations. There's a huge difference between speaking to 400 people versus 20. One may feel more accountable. Plus, those 400 people may suddenly discover that they are philosophically aligned with each other and will actually accomplish what the people, not just the politicians, want.

The sad truth is that no matter the small town you live in, you are likely to suffer the same kind of treatment that many across the country are dealing with. In just over a year and a half, our citizens have been subjected to abuse, indifference, and downright rudeness from elected, appointed, and hired officials. And, even though we have pushed and made changes, the attitude doesn't seem to have changed that much. We need to keep reminding them that we are not servants but that they work for us.

It's the only way to stop the alarming trend of secrets and stonewalling. (Read more.)


The Psychology of Scapegoating

 From Psychology Today:

The ego defense of displacement plays an important role in scapegoating, in which uncomfortable feelings such as anger, frustration, envy, guilt, shame, and insecurity are displaced or redirected onto another, often more vulnerable, person or group. The scapegoats—outsiders, immigrants, minorities, 'deviants'—are then persecuted, enabling the scapegoaters to discharge and distract from their negative feelings, which are replaced or overtaken by a crude but consoling sense of affirmation and self-righteous indignation.

The creation of a villain necessarily implies that of a hero, even if both are purely fictional.

Sometimes it is the villain, or villains, who are in need of an even greater villain. Especially in a time of crisis, unscrupulous leaders and politicians can cynically exploit the ancient and deep-rooted impulse to scapegoat to deflect and distract from their own inadequacies and evade, or seek to evade, their legitimate burden of blame and responsibility.

A good example of a historical scapegoat is Marie Antoinette, Queen of Louis XVI of France, whom the French people called l’Autre-chienne—a pun playing on Autrichienne [Austrian woman] and autre chienne [other bitch]—and accused of being profligate and promiscuous. When Marie Antoinette arrived in France to marry the then heir to the throne, the country had already been near bankrupted by the reckless spending of Louis XV, and the young and naïve foreign princess quickly became the unwitting target of the people’s mounting ire. (Read more.)


Wednesday, June 26, 2024

Children of Henri IV and Marie de' Medici

Henri IV, first Bourbon King of France
Marie de' Medici

Today we will discuss Henrietta Maria's parents and full siblings, Henrietta Maria being the heroine of my novel, My Queen, My Love. Someday I will do a post on all the children of Henri IV.

Henri IV or Henri of Navarre has been celebrated by the French people as the monarch who was the epitome of justice, kindness, and virility. The fact of his many mistresses and bastards never hindered his popularity, so great were his achievements on behalf of the French people in ending the Wars of Religion. His childless first marriage with his cousin Marguerite de Valois was annulled so that he could have legitimate offspring. He married the much younger and extremely wealthy and beautiful Italian princess Maria de' Medici in 1600. Queen Marie was devoutly Catholic and, loving her husband, suffered from his unfaithfulness. After she bore several children, Henri had Marie crowned at Notre Dame de Paris. The day after her coronation in 1610, Henri was assassinated. Marie became the Regent for her young son, Louis XIII.

As Regent, Queen Marie chose to avoid war by making peace with the  other Catholic powers of Spain and the Empire. She believed that Catholic monarchies should unite to keep Protestantism at bay. She sent her youngest daughter Henriette  to marry in England because she believed there was a chance of bringing Charles I into Catholicism. In her later years, a falling-out with her oldest son Louis XIII led to her exile and eventual death in penury in Germany. On Marie de' Medici from Women of Style:

During her reign, Marie undertook several large art projects, including building and furnishing of the Palais du Luxembourg, she called “Palais Medicis”. Flemish master Peter Paul Rubens, whom Marie met around the time of her wedding, was commissioned to create paintings glorifying her life and reign and this series of 21 paintings along with portraits of Marie and her family is now known as the Marie de Medici cycle and hangs in the Louvre.

The task of painting Marie’s life and triumphs was a difficult one since Rubens had to create 21 paintings about a woman whose life consisted of marriage, giving birth to six children, one of which died in infancy and political scandals that made any literal description of the events too controversial to execute without angering someone in government.

Rubens, already established as an exceptional painter, turned to classical literature and artistic traditions and used allegorical representations to glorify the queen’s achievements and sensitively illustrate the less favorable events in Marie’s life. He painted extravagant images of the Queen Mother surrounded by ancient gods. (Read more.)

Louis XIII
Louis XIII is most famous for being the King championed by The Three Musketeers. He embraced a policy which opposed his mother's and was helped by the advice of Cardinal de Richelieu. The King and Cardinal were determined that France would not be a satellite of the Holy Roman Empire but would continue as a power in her own right, even if it meant making treaties with Protestants. Here are some impressions of Louis XIII, from The Secret Lives of Royals, Aristocrats and Commoners:

Louis XIII was short, ungainly, and---until disease attacked him---inclined to corpulence. He was not beautiful, although Sully, who had served the royal house so faithfully, professed to admire the boy's regular features. His nose was too large, his head out of proportion to his body, his chin projected, his lover lip was unpleasantly thickened, and his mouth was usually half-open. Owing to the awkward formation of his palate he was compelled to speak little and slowly to avoid a trying stammer. He suffered from chronic gout, and it is almost certain that he had at least one epileptic fit. His teeth were decayed, and he was a continual invalid through persistent dyspepsia. Most of these physical defects may be traced in his family history. Many of them he bequeathed to his sons. Philip inherited his undersized stature as well as his brown hair and swarthy skin. In profile Louis XIV challenged comparison with the ancestral Bourbons, and was in more ways than one a true grandson of Henri IV. (Read more.)

Élisabeth of France, also called Isabel. Queen of Spain.
Élisabeth de France, called "Madame Royale" before her wedding, was married to Philip IV of Spain in an "exchange of princesses" in which the Daughter of France traded places with the Spanish Princess Anne of Austria, who married Élisabeth's brother Louis XIII. Her only surviving child the Infanta Maria Teresa became the first wife of Louis XIV.

Christine de France, Duchess of Savoy
Christine de France was the middle daughter and the only one not to become a queen, although she exercised considerable influence in the Duchy of Savoy and its environs. She was the mother of a large family and after her husband's premature death she was said to have taken a lover, which may or may not be true, since the same story is told of Henriette-Marie and her sister-in-law, Anne of Austria. Christine and Henriette wrote to each other all their lives and exchanged portraits of their children.

                                                                             Monsieur d'Orléans

Monsieur d'Orléans died before he could be named, since the French royal children were named and christened when they were older.  From Wikipedia:

Marie de' Medici gave birth to her fourth child, a son, at the Palace of Fontainebleau. Like all of her other children, he was born in the Oval room, later called the "Louis XIII salon".[1] Born at 22:00 on 16 April 1607, the day after Easter, the prince's birth was a source of tremendous joy for his father, King Henry. His newborn son was said to resemble him, possessing the same large nose and "sparkle of his father's eyes".[2] (Read more.)

Gaston of France, Duke of Orléans
Gaston of France, Duke of Orléans, born in 1608, was closest in age to Henriette and devoted to her and to their mother all his life. He was heir to the throne for many years, until Queen Anne gave birth to a son. He was often in trouble for plotting and for marrying without permission. His scheming caused turmoil in France during his brother's reign and during the reign of his nephew, Louis XIV.

Henriette-Marie de France as a child
Henriette-Marie of France is the protagonist of My Queen, My Love. It is the story of the fifteen-year-old French princess Henriette-Marie who is mandated by the Pope and her brother the King of France to convert the English back to Catholicism by marrying their King, Charles I. Meanwhile, the Catholic Faith is outlawed in the British Isles, so as Queen she becomes the #1 lawbreaker. The powerful Duke of Buckingham is trying to thwart her influence with her husband. And England has become known as a place where queens lose their heads.

Available from Amazon.
"A royal tale enlivened by imaginative drama...." —Kirkus Reviews


CNN Host Cuts Trump Spokesperson's Mic

And much more.


Waves on Titan

From Space:

Nearly 20 years ago, the Cassini probe and its Huygens lander peeked under the hazy atmosphere of Saturn's largest moon Titan and gave us our first glimpse of the moon's familiarly strange surface. Cassini-Huygens found that noxious liquids like methane and ethane form a very Earthlike patchwork of streams, rivers, and even seas as large as the Great Lakes. Now, scientists poring over imagery from Cassini have determined that Titan may very well have another thing familiar to Earth's mariners: waves. Those scientists believe those waves may be responsible for eroding and reshaping Titan's lakeshores. (Read more.)


Tuesday, June 25, 2024

The Storming of the Tuileries, June 1792

Louis XVI dons the Bonnet Rouge

Madame Royale describes the storming of the Tuileries palace on June 20, 1792 and how her family escaped death:

On the 20th of June, about eleven o'clock in the morning, nearly all the inhabitants of the faubourgs Saint-Antoine and Saint-Marceau, where the populace chiefly lived, marched in a body to the National Assembly, to go from there to the garden and plant the liberty-tree. But as they were all armed, which gave reason to suspect bad intentions, my father ordered the gates of the Tuileries to be closed. The Assembly showed great dissatisfaction, and sent a deputation of four municipals to induce the king to order the gates to be opened. These deputies spoke very insolently; said they exacted the opening of the gates in order that those who had come to plant the tree, the sign of liberty, might return that way, inasmuch as the crowd in the rue Saint-Honoré was too great to allow them to pass. My father, however, persisted in his refusal, and they then went and opened themselves the gates of the garden, which was instantly inundated by the populace; the gates of the courtyards and the château still remained locked. 

An hour later this armed procession began to defile before our windows, and no idea can be formed of the insults they said to us. Among others, they carried a banner on which were these words: 
"Tremble, tyrant; the people have risen;" and they held it before the windows of my father who, though he was not visible himself, could see all and hear their cries of "Down with Veto!" and other horrors. This lasted until three o'clock, when the garden was at last freed. The crowd then passed through the Place du Carrousel to the courtyards of the Tuileries, but quietly, and it was generally thought they were returning to their faubourgs. 

During this time our family were in the rooms on the courtyard side, absolutely alone and observing all that went on; the gentlemen of the suite and the ladies dined on the other side. Suddenly we saw the populace forcing the gates of the courtyard and rushing to the staircase of the château. It was a horrible sight to see, and impossible to describe–that of these people, with fury in their faces, armed with pikes and sabres, and pell-mell with them women half unclothed, resembling Furies. 

Two of the ushers wishing to run the bolts of my father's door, he prevented it and sprang himself into the next room to meet the rioters. My aunt followed him hastily, and hardly had she passed when the door was locked. My mother and I ran after her in vain; we could not pass, and at that moment several persons came to us, and finally, the guard. My mother cried out: "Save my son!" Immediately some one took him in his arms and carried him off. My mother and I, being determined to follow my brother, did all we could against the persons who prevented us from passing; prayers, efforts, all were useless, and we had to remain in our room in mortal anxiety. My mother kept her courage, but it almost abandoned her when, at last, entering my brother's room she could not find him. The persons who, on her own order, had carried him away lost their heads, and in the confusion, took him up higher in the château, where they thought him in greater safety. My mother then sent for him and had him brought back to his room. There we awaited, in the silence of profound anxiety, for news of what had happened to my father. 

Returning to him, I must resume at the moment when he passed through the door which was then locked against us. As soon as he thought the danger passed the king dismissed his suite, so that no one was with him but my Aunt Élisabeth, [Maréchal de Mouchy (who in spite of his 77 years and my father's order persisted in remaining), two old ushers, the brave Acloque, commander of the division of the National Guard, an example of fidelity in the uniform of rebellion], 1 and M. d'Hervilly, lieutenant-colonel of the new King's-Guard, who, seeing the danger, ran to call the Guard and collected about twenty grenadiers, but on reaching the staircase he found only six had followed; the others had abandoned him. My father was therefore almost alone when the door was forced in by one sapeur, axe in hand raised to strike him, but [here] by his coolness and imperturbable courage my father so awed the assassin that the weapon fell from his hand,–an event almost incomprehensible. It is said that some one cried out: "Unhappy man, what are you about to do?" and that those words petrified him; for my part I think that what restrained that wretch was Divine Providence and the ascendancy that virtue always maintains over crime. 

The blow having thus failed, the other accomplices, seeing that their leader had let himself be cowed, dared not execute their evil designs. Of all this mass of the populace, there were certainly very few who knew precisely what they were expected to do. To each had been given twenty sous and a musket; they were sent in drunk with orders to insult us in every imaginable way. Their leader, Santerre, had brought them as far as the courtyard, and there he awaited the success of his enterprise. He was desperate on learning that his stroke had missed, and he came near being killed himself by a man in the château, who aimed for him, and was prevented from shooting only by remonstrances as to the danger to which he exposed my father; for if Santerre were sacrificed the brigands would surely avenge him. 

My father was nevertheless obliged to allow all these wretches to go through the rooms of the château, and, standing himself in a window with my aunt, he watched them pass before him and heard the insults with which they overwhelmed him. It was on this horrible day that my father and my aunt each made a memorable speech. At the moment of the greatest danger a soldier came up to the king and said to him, "Sire, fear nothing." My father took his hand and laid it on his own heart. "Does it beat hard, grenadier?" he said. Shortly before, my Aunt Élisabeth, being mistaken for the queen, saw herself exposed to the utmost fury of the brigands; some one near was about to make her known. "Do not undeceive them," cried my aunt with sublime devotion. 

This dreadful situation lasted from half-past three in the afternoon till eight at night. Pétion, mayor of Paris, arrived, pretending to be much astonished on hearing of the danger the king had run. In haranguing the people he had the impudence to say: "Return to your homes with the same dignity with which you came." The Assembly, seeing that the stroke had missed, changed its tone, pretended to have been ignorant of everything, and sent deputation after deputation to the king expressing the grief it feigned to feel for his danger. 

Meantime my mother, who, as I said, could not rejoin the king, and was in her apartment with my brother and me, was a long time without hearing any news. At last, the minister of war came to tell her that my father was well; he urged her to leave the room where we then were, as it was not safe, and we therefore went into the king's little bed-chamber. We were scarcely there before the rioters entered the apartment we had just left. The room in which we now were had three doors: one by which we had entered, another opening upon a private staircase, a third communicating with the Council Chamber. They were all three locked, but the first two were attacked, one by the wretches who were pursuing us, the other by men who came up the little staircase, where we heard their shouts and the blows of their axes. 

In this close danger my mother was perfectly calm; she placed my brother behind every one and near the door of the Council Chamber, which was still safe, then she placed herself at the head of us all. Soon we heard some one at the door of the Council Chamber begging to enter. It was one of my brother's servants, pale as death, who said only these few words: "Madame, escape! the villains are following me." At the same instant, the other doors were forced in. In this crisis my mother hastily ordered the third door opened and passed into the Council Chamber, where there were, already, a number of the National Guard and a crowd of wretches. 

My mother said to the soldiers that she came to take refuge with her son among them. The soldiers instantly surrounded us; a large table standing in the middle of the Chamber, served my mother to lean upon, my brother was seated on it, and the brigands defiled past it to look at us. We were separated from my father by only two rooms, and yet it was impossible to join him, so great was the crowd. We were therefore obliged to stay there and listen to all the insults that these wretches said to us as they passed. A half clothed woman dared to come to the table with a bonnet rouge in her hand and my mother was forced to let her [Page 236] place it on her son's head; as for us, we were obliged to put cockades on our heads. It was, as I have said, about eight o'clock when this dreadful procession of rioters ceased to pass and we were able to rejoin my father and aunt. No one can imagine our feelings at that reunion; they were such that even the deputies from the Assembly were touched. My brother was overcome with fatigue and they put him to bed. We stayed together for a time, the room being full of deputies. An hour later they went away, and about eleven o'clock, after having passed a most terrible day, we separated to get some rest . . . . 

The next day Pétion came again to play the hypocrite, saying he had heard of more assemblings of the people and he had hastened to defend the king. My father ordered him to be silent; but as he still tried to protest his attachment, my father said: "Be silent, monsieur; I know your thoughts." (Read more.)
Marie-Antoinette, her children, and Madame de Tourzel face the mob

TRUMP vs CNN: Media's Hoax EXPOSED


 From Breitbart:, perhaps the most well-known fact-checking website, has finally confirmed — seven years later — that President Donald Trump did not refer to neo-Nazis in Charlottesville in August 2017 as “very fine people.” The false claim was central to President Joe Biden’s election in 2020. He used it to launch his campaign in April 2019, claiming he had been inspired to run against President Trump because the latter called neo-Nazis “very fine people.” (Read more.)


A Matter of Life and Art

 From Andrew Klavan at The New Jerusalem:

In Sondheim’s Sunday in the Park with George, Mandy Patinkin as Georges Seurat sings about letting life pass him by while he performs the essentially meaningless task of painting an article of clothing: “You watch the rest of the world from a window while you finish the hat.”

I was thirty when Sunday in the Park opened on Broadway. I was just beginning to emerge from the darkest period of my life. I had tickets to the show one night, but I was volunteering at a suicide hotline then. I arranged to meet your mother at the theater after my shift.

But that evening, I received the one and only emergency call I ever got. A guy phoned and said he had taken a fatal dose of pills and just wanted to talk to me while he died. Working desperately against the clock, I managed to wangle his address out of him and sent an ambulance to fetch him. (Read more.)


Monday, June 24, 2024


On June 24, 1314, the Scots defeated the English army by a resounding victory on the field of Bannock Burn. Vastly outnumbered and facing heavy cavalry, the Scots were led by King Robert Bruce, whose tactical skill won the day. In spite of some military successes on June 23, "The Bruce" knew that victory on St. John's Day was not a foregone conclusion. From an old account:
Robert, on the other hand, was under no illusions at to what he would face the following day. Despite the high spirits flowing from the day's victories, the English army was still intact and greatly outnumbered him. His victories that day would allow him to withdraw with honor which is what he planned to do until an English knight, Sir Alexander de Seton, made his way to the Scottish camp. Brought before Robert, he told of the weak and dispirited condition of their army and pledged on his own life that if Robert was to fight the following day, he would win. Robert, therefore, has two choices if he chose to fight. He could remain with his back to the wood in a defensive position and risk being outflanked or to attack before the English could properly deploy, forcing them to fight on unfavorable ground - he chose the latter.

The Scot army rose at dawn on the 24th and by 3:45am it was light enough to see clearly. As they celebrated mass, those who had shown great courage were knighted, including Randolph and Douglas. Full of confidence from the previous day, they formed their divisions and received the order to advance.

Advancing in echelon, Douglas to the left, Randolph at the centre and Edward Bruce to the right, they poured from the wood with a cry. Robert remained with the cavalry and his own division to the flank of Edward Bruce out of sight of the English.

The English, with their split force, were temporarily stunned at the Scottish advance believing they would fight defensively and allowed them to within 100 yards before the order for them to form was given. Suddenly, the Scots halted and dropped to their knees in prayer. Seeing this, Edward sneered, "They kneel to ask for mercy." Sir Ingram de Umfraille, a Scot in English employ replied, "You say sooth now, they ask for mercy, but not of you. Those men will win or die." The king simply replied, "Be it so" and ordered the English advance. (More here.)

Robert Bruce encouraged his men by a famous speech which the poet Robert Burns later immortalized in verse.

Scots, wha hae wi' Wallace bled,
Scots, wham Bruce has aften led,
Welcome to your gory bed
Or to victorie!

Now's the day, and now's the hour:
See the front o' battle lour,
See approach proud Edward's power
Chains and slaverie!

Wha will be a traitor knave?
Wha can fill a coward's grave?
Wha sae base as be a slave?
Let him turn, and flee.

To the Scots, who had faced many betrayals by their own, there was nothing lower than a false friend. To be a liar and a traitor was to be a coward; to be a coward was to be a slave. But on June 24, 1314, courage and loyalty prevailed over tyranny.


 More background from Historic UK:

Following the killing of an English sheriff by William Wallace, revolts broke out in Scotland and on 11th September at the Battle of Stirling Bridge, Wallace defeated English forces led by John de Warenne. The following month the Scots raided northern England...Wallace was appointed Guardian of Scotland in March; however in July Edward invaded again and defeated the Scottish army, led by Wallace at the Battle of Falkirk. Following the battle Wallace went into hiding...Further campaigns by Edward in 1300 and 1301, led to a truce between the Scots and English. (Read more.)

(More here.)



The Depopulation Agenda

 From Leo Hohmann:

The global climate cult is getting ready to kick its war on food into overdrive with 13 nations – many of them major cattle and food-producing states led by the United States, Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Spain – signing onto a commitment to place farmers under new restrictions intended to reduce emissions of methane gas.

The Global Methane Hub announced in a May 17 press release that agriculture and environmental ministers and ambassadors from 13 countries, including the United States, have signed a commitment that pledges to reduce methane emissions in agriculture. The U.S. was represented by Biden’s climate czar, John Kerry.

What does this mean and why should you care? We’ll break it down.

According to the press release issued by these nations and posted at Global Methane Hub:

“Last month (in April 2023), the Global Methane Hub collaborated with the Ministries of Agriculture of Chile and Spain to convene the first-ever global ministerial on agricultural practices to reduce methane emissions. The ministerial brought together high-ranking government members to share global perspectives on methane reduction and low-emission food systems. The gathering led to a statement in which the nations committed to support efforts to improve the quality and quantity of, and access to, finance for climate change adaptation and mitigation measures in the agriculture and food sectors and to collaborate on efforts aimed at lowering methane emissions in agriculture and food systems.”

Conference participants included the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Climate & Clean Air Coalition, Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture, the World Bank, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, and the Inter-American Development Bank.

The World Bank, another creation of the post-World War II, U.S.-led liberal rules-based order, has been talking a lot lately, along with the U.N., about a coming famine. The World Bank issued a white paper just last week, on May 22, titled Food Security Update: World Bank Response to Rising Food Insecurity.(Read more.)


Bring me a Sword!

 From The Abbey of Misrule:

This week, like last week, we’re in Killaloe, the small town at the end of Lough Derg which is currently most famous, if it’s famous at all, for its twelfth-century cathedral and the good fishing that can be had where the river Shannon meets the country’s second-biggest lake. But things have not always been this quiet. It’s a little-known fact that, once upon a time, this sleepy little town was the de facto capital of Ireland.

Admittedly, it was quite a long time ago. About a thousand years, to be precise. Back then, the Big Man around these parts was one Brian Bóruma mac Cennétig - better known today as Brian Boru. Boru, whose star still shines brightly around here, with statues and visitor centres and churches dedicated to him, was perhaps the key figure in early medieval Ireland, and is most famous now for finally defeating the Vikings who, as in neighbouring England, had been raiding, settling, slaughtering and trying to conquer the nation for years. The ‘nation’ back then had no central government or ruler, being instead a collection of 150 uneasily co-existing kingdoms in a country of not more than half a million people. This, as again in neighbouring England, made the Vikings’ job easier, since there was no united opposition to their raids.

Brian Boru was originally the King of a small sub-kingdom of the larger kingdom of Munster, but he had greater ambitions, and set about subjugating and defeating the other Irish kingdoms with great success. In 1002 he was acknowledged by his defeated foes as High King of all Ireland. Killaloe, where he was born and where his father had reigned, became his capital. You can still visit an overgrown hillfort on the lakeshore which may have been his family’s fortress. As king, however, he built himself a fancy new palace on the high ground in the town, where the Catholic church now stands. (Read more.)


Sunday, June 23, 2024

'Se lengsta dæg': The Anglo-Saxon Solstice

 St. John's Eve and St. John's Day were like a summery Christmas in past times. From A Clerk of Oxford:

The first comes from the Menologium, a poem composed probably in the second half of the tenth century. The Menologium catalogues the cycle of the year and the saints' feasts which occur in each month, but it's much more than just a functional list; it combines useful knowledge and Christian learning with the traditional images and language of Anglo-Saxon poetry. I translated part of the section about May, full of flowering meadows and noisy birds, in this post. The section quoted below (lines 106-119) describes the month of June - ærra Liða is the Old English name - as far as June 24th, the feast of John the Baptist and the traditional date of Midsummer Day. It follows on from the section on May - naturally! - and so begins by dating the first of June as the sixth day after the feast of St Augustine of Canterbury, May 26th.


 Ælfric's description of the sun in his homily on Rogationtide, and 'O Earendel', the Old English version of the antiphon 'O Oriens', which falls on the winter solstice. The solstices and equinoxes were intimately connected with the medieval understanding of the church year: the spring equinox was crucial for the dating of Easter (as discussed here and here), and the solstices for celebrating the birth of Christ and of his herald, þeodnes dyrling, John the Baptist. Bede explains the symbolic relationship between the two solstices in his De temporum ratione:

very many of the Church’s teachers recount... that our Lord was conceived and suffered on the 8th kalends of April [25 March], at the spring equinox, and that he was born at the winter solstice on the 8th kalends of January [25 December]. And again, that the Lord’s blessed precursor and Baptist was conceived at the autumn equinox on the 8th kalends of October [24 September] and born at the summer solstice on the 8th kalends of July [24 June]. To this they add the explanation that it was fitting that the Creator of eternal light should be conceived and born along with the increase of temporal light, and that the herald of penance, who must decrease, should be engendered and born at a time when the light is diminishing.

(Read more.)