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because the Duke de la Force had quitted Calvinism for the religion of Louis XIV? 11 064
I have just opened a History of Holland, in which I find that, in 1672, Marshal De Luxembourg harangued his troops in the following manner-"Go, my children, plunder, rob, kill, ravish; and if there be anything more abominable, fail not to do it, that I may find I have not been mistaken in selecting you as the bravest of men."
This is certainly a very pretty harangue. It is as true as those given us by Livy, but it is not in his style. To complete the dishonour of typography, this fine piece is inserted in several new Dictionaries, which are no other than impostures in alphabetical order.
It is a trifling error in the Abrégé Chronologique de l'Histoire de France (Chronological Abridgment of the History of France) to suppose that Louis XIV., after the peace of Utrecht, for which he was indebted to the English, after nine years of misfortune, and after the great victories which the English had gained, said to the English ambassador, "I have always been master at home, and sometimes abroad; do not remind me of it." This speech would have been very ill-timed, very false as it regarded the English, and would have exposed the King to a most galling reply. The author himself confessed to me, that the Marquis de Torcy, who was present at all the Earl of Stair's audiences, had always given the lie to this anecdote. It is, assuredly, neither true nor likely, and has remained in the later editions of this book only because it was put in the first. This error, however, does not at all disparage this very useful work, in which all the great events, arranged in the most convenient order, are perfectly authenticated.
All these little tales, designed to embellish history, do but dishonour it; and unfortunately, almost all ancient histories are little else than tales. Mallebranche was right, when, speaking on this subject, he said, "I think no more of History than I do of the news of my parish."
In 1723, Father Fouquet, a jesuit, returned to France from China, where he had passed twenty-five years,
Religious disputes had embroiled him with his brethren; he had carried with him to China a gospel different from theirs, and now brought back to France memorials against them. Two Chinese literati made the voyage along with him; one of them died on the way, the other came with Father Fouquet to Paris. This Jesuit was to take the Chinese to Rome secretly, as a witness of the conduct of the good fathers in China, and in the mean time Fouquet and his companion lodged at the house of the Professed, Rue St. Antoine.
The reverend fathers received advice of their reverend brother's intentions. Fouquet was no less quickly informed of the designs of the reverend fathers; he lost not a moment, but set off post the same night for Rome. The reverend fathers had interest enough to get him pursued; but the Chinese only was taken. This poor fellow did not understand a word of French. The good fathers went to Cardinal Dubois, who at that time needed their support; and told him that they had amongst them a young man who had gone mad, and whom it was necessary to confine. The Cardinal immediately granted a lettre-de-cachet, than which there is sometimes nothing which a minister is more ready to grant. The lieutenant of police went to take this madman, who was pointed out to him, He found a man making reverences in a way different from the French, speaking in a singing tone, and looking quite astonished. He expressed great pity for his derangement, ordered his hands to be tied behind him, and sent him to Charenton, where, like the abbé Desfontaines, he was flogged twice a week. The Chinese did not at all understand this method of receiving strangers; he had passed only two or three days in Paris, and had found the manners of the French very odd. He lived two years on bread and water, amongst madmen and keepers; and believed that the French nation con sisted of these two species, the one part dancing while the other flogged them.
At length, when two years had elapsed, the ministry changed, and a new lieutenant of police was appointed. This magistrate commenced his administration by visit
ing the prisons. He also saw the lunatics at Charenton. After conversing with them, he asked if there were no other persons for him to see? He was told that there was one more unfortunate man; but that he spoke á language which nobody understood. A Jesuit who accompanied the magistrate, said it was the peculiarity of this man's madness that he never gave an answer in French; nothing would be got from him, and he thought it would be better not to take the trouble of calling him. The minister insisted. The unfortunate man was brought, and threw himself at his feet. The lieutenant sent for the King's interpreters, who spoke to him in Spanish, Latin, Greek, and English, but he constantly said Kanton, Kanton, and nothing else. The Jesuit assured them he was possessed. The magistrate, having at some time heard it said that there was a province in China called Kanton, thought this man might perhaps have come from thence. An interpreter to the foreign missions was sent for, who could murder Chinese. All was discovered. The magistrate knew not what to do, nor the Jesuit what to say. The Duke De Bourbon was then prime minister; the circumstance having been related to him, he ordered money and clothes to be given to the Chinese, and sent him back to his own country, whence it is not thought that many literati will come to see us in future. It would have been more politic to have kept this man and treated him well, than to have sent him to give his countrymen the very worst opinion of the French.*
About thirty years ago, the French Jesuits sent secret missionaries to China; who enticed a child from his parents in Canton, and brought him to Paris where they educated him in their convent of La Rue St. Antoine. This boy became a Jesuit at the age of fifteen; after which he remained ten years in France. He knows both French and Chinese perfectly, and is very learned. M. Bertin, comptroller-general, and afterwards secretary of state, sent him back to China in 1763, after the
* A very characteristic fact, and admirably illustrative of good government, and the use of the Lettre-de-cachet.-T.
abolition of the Jesuits. He calls himself Ko, and signe himself Ko, Jesuit.
In 1772, there were fourteen Jesuits in Pekin, amongst whom was brother Ko, who still lives in their house. The Emperor Kien-Long has kept these monks of Europe about him in quality of painters, engravers, watch-makers, and mechanics, with an express prohi bition from ever disputing on religion, or causing the least trouble in the empire.
The Jesuit Ko has sent manuscripts of his own composition from Pekin to Paris, entitled Memoirs relative to the History, Arts, and Sciences of the Chinese, by the Missionaries at Pekin. This book is printed, and is now selling at Paris by Nyon the bookseller. The author attacks all the philosophers of Europe. He calls a prince of the Tartar race, whom the Jesuits had seduced, and the late Emperor Yong-Chin had banished, an illustrious martyr to Jesus Christ. This Ko boasts of making many neophytes, who are ardent spirits, capable of troubling China even more than the Jesuits formerly troubled Japan. It is said, that a Russian nobleman, indignant at this jesuitical insolence, which reaches the farthest corners of the earth, even after the extinction of the order, has resolved to find some means of sending to the President of the Tribunal of Rites at Pekin, an extract in Chinese from these Memoirs, which may serve to make the aforesaid Ko, and the Jesuits who la bour with him, better known.
Angels of the Indians, Persians, &c.
THE author of the article ANGEL in the Encyclopėdia, says that all religions have admitted the existence of angels, although it is not demonstrated by natural We have no reason but natural reason." What is su pernatural is above reason. If I mistake not, it should have been, several religions (and not all) have acknow
ledged the existence of angels. That of Numa, that of Sabaism, that of the Druids, that of China, that of the Scythians, and that of the Phoenicians and ancient Egyptians, did not admit their existence.
We understand by this word, ministers of God, de puties, beings of a middle order between God and man, sent to make known to us his orders.
At the present time, in 1772, the Brahmins boast of having possessed in writing, for just four thousand eight hundred and seventy-eight years, their first sacred law, entitled the Shastah, fifteen hundred years before their second law, called Veidam, signifying the word of God. The Shastah contains five chapters: the first, of God and his attributes; the second, of the creation of the angels; the third, of the fall of the angels; the fourth, of their punishment; the fifth, of their pardon and the creation of man.
It is good, in the first place, to observe the manner in which this book speaks of God.
First Chapter of the Shastah.
God is one he has created all: it is a perfect sphere, without beginning or end. God conducts the whole creation by a general providence, resulting from a determined principle. Thou shalt not seek to discover the nature and essence of the Eternal, nor by what laws he governs: such an undertaking would be vain and criminal. It is enough for thee to contemplate day and night, in his works, his wisdom, his power, and his goodness.
After paying to this opening of the Shastah the tribute of admiration which is due to it, let us pass to the creation of the angels.
Second Chapter of the Shastah.
L The Eternal, absorbed in the contemplation of his own existence, resolved, in the fulness of time, to communicate his glory and his essence to beings capable of feeling and partaking his beatitude as well as of contributing to his glory. The Eternal willed it, and they