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Napoleon suppressed, and his conquerors gone, France, I repeat, fell once more into the possession of her Politicians; and her history since then is simply the record of their conflicts for supremacy-each set struggling in turn to outwit the others. A new Constitution, called the "Charter of 1814," inaugurated the return of Louis XVIII. This Constitution gave the Executive power to the King, and divided the Legislative power between two Chambers: an Upper Chamber composed of Peers, some hereditary and others for life; and a Lower one consisting of Deputies, elected by qualified suffrage.

Two parties immediately sprung up, which were the natural product of the circumstances. One consisted of the Aristocracy and Clergy, who had been persecuted and decimated by the Revolution. These naturally desired that France should return to the condition in which they were the dominant classes. They proposed that Agriculture should be the chief interest; that cultivation on a large scale should be restored; that great properties should be reconstituted with Entail and Primogeniture; that the Clergy should be supported by the State; and that the Administrative Centralization reorganized by Napoleon, which enabled the Government to control the country, should be abolished. In short, they hoped to revive the Feudal System, the system of the Middle Ages, the government of the Aristocracy, which Richelieu had suppressed. They were as much opposed to an Absolute Monarchy as to an Absolute Democracy. They always believed that France was their heritage, quite forgetting that they had been superseded by the Absolute Monarchy, and that both. had been supplanted by the Revolution. This was the

Feudal party, which dreamt that ancient France could be galvanized and set up again.

Opposed to it was the party that was born in the seventeenth century, and survived the vicissitudes and horrors of the eighteenth century. They denied that the Supreme power belonged either to the Aristocracy or the Monarchy; it was, they contended, the property of the Nation, to be used by its agents or delegates for the benefit of all. This was the party of Modern France. It represented all the new interests that had grown up, and consisted of the new men that aspired to govern the country. It was composed of the parliamentarians, the bankers, manufacturers, merchants, physicians, and lawyers; in fact, the descendants of that Middle Class which once stood between the Aristocracy and the masses.

The struggles between these parties, between ancient France and modern France, filled up the reign of Louis XVIII. The King was a sensible man, with a love for belles-lettres, and no taste for politics and its noisy jargon. The lessons of his eventful life were not forgotten. The ancient Monarchy of France in the person of his brother had sunk in a sea of blood. An exile and wanderer for twenty-three years, he returned to France, · not to sit on the throne of his ancestors-it had vanished -but to play the novel rôle of Constitutional King. Either from indifference or prudence, he held aloof from the contests that raged around him. He could feel no sympathy for a party that sought to resuscitate an Aristocracy meant to curb alike the Monarchy and the masses. He comprehended, on the other hand, the folly of resisting a party that impersonated the France of his day. For nearly ten years he held the balance evenly between them, choosing as his Minister,

at one time the Duke Decazes, the leader of modern France, and at the other, M. de Villèle, the chief of the "Impracticables," as the party of ancient France was christened. When dying, he laid his hand on the head of his young grand-nephew, the Duke de Bordeaux,* and said, "Let my brother husband tenderly the Crown of this child."

* The Duke de Bordeaux, better known as the Count de Chambord, was born in September, 1820, and was grandson of Charles X. His father, the Duke de Berry, was assassinated, in February, 1820, as he was leaving the Opera-house, by the fanatic Louvel, a saddler, who declared his object was to extinguish the elder branch of the Bourbons.



CHARLES X., brother of Louis XVI., and of the last King, succeeded to the throne in 1824. Up to this time he bore the title of Count d'Artois. He emigrated in 1789, and was active in urging the Foreign Powers to invade France and put down the Revolution. He returned in 1814, untaught by the fearful events that had occurred, and unconscious of the vast moral and material change that had ensued. This was exemplified by his reply when asked, on his arrival in Paris, if he found any alteration. "Only a Frenchman the more," he answered, alluding to himself. He was a man of small capacity, and great irresolution--just the combination to lead to a catastrophe. During his brother's reign, he identified himself with the reactionary party, and readily yielded to the perilous influence of the Clergy.

He was no sooner in power, than under the counsel of his Minister, M. de Villèle, he authorized the adoption of several indiscreet measures, which soon aroused public indignation. Alarmed at the outcry, he called M. de Martignac to his side, 1827, and calmed the universal dissatisfaction by a wiser policy. Unable, however, to resist the pressure of insidious advisers, and still profoundly ignorant of public sentiment in France, he

made, in 1829, M. de Polignac his Minister, and resolved on a course of policy utterly opposed to the views and interests of the great majority of the Nation. The protests of the Opposition in the Chamber of Deputies were loud and threatening. They voted an Address to the King by a majority of 221, declaring that the "political views of the Government did not concur with the wishes of the people." In spite of this warning, and the many symptoms of an impending storm, the King persisted in extreme measures; and in July, 1830, he issued the famous Ordinances dissolving the Chamber of Deputies, suspending the Liberty of the Press, and changing the Electoral System. In a word, the Constitution of 1814 was glaringly violated.

Two days after, July 27, an Insurrection broke out in the streets of Paris, which in three days ended in the Abdication of Charles X., in favor of his grandson, the Duke de Bordeaux. The infatuated King again resumed the road to exile. He died at Goritz, in 1836,


in his 80th year.


Thus fell to the ground, where it is destined to lie, the Monarchy of the Middle Ages, impersonated in the elder branch of the Bourbons. It was put on its legs a second time by the Allied Armies in 1814, not so much perhaps out of respect for the "Divine Right it represented, but that there was no other material out of which a Government could be manufactured. The Revolution had left neither a man nor a principle. The Empire naturally disappeared with Napoleon, its founder. There was nothing, therefore, but the old Monarchy to resuscitate, and an effort was made to adapt

* At the very close of the reign of Charles X., July, 1830, Algiers was annexed to France.

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