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choice of the future sovereign have more than once been favourable to women, and the nation, not being able to call them to the throne, has often, nevertheless, crowned them in the persons of their husbands. For instance, among the Ostrogoths, Athalaric, the grandson of Theodoric the Great, succeeded to his grandfather in preference to his mother, Amalasuntha ; but when that prince died without leaving issue, Theodatus, the husband of Amalasuntha, was crowned, not because the nation recognised that Amalasuntha had a positive right, but because there remained in the hearts of all a religious attachment to the great family of the Amalians, an attachment which was again manifested when the Goths required of Vitiges, before raising him to the throne, that he should repudiate his wife in order to espouse Malasuntha, the last scion of that illustrious race.
§ 5.-OF THE KING'S DAUGHTERS. The civil condition of princesses was the same as that of other women ; whether daughters, wives, or widows, they were in the power and under the wardship of their fathers, husbands, or relatives. Thus, in the treaty of Andelau (A.D. 586), Gontran expressly stipulates that Clotilda, his daughter, shall be under the protection of King Childebert, with all she shall possess at the death of her father; and on his side Gontran binds himself, in case his nephew should die before him, to take under his tutelage Brunehault, the mother of Childebert, Chlodoswinde, his sister, and Faileuba, his wife.
Charlemagne, in the deed in which he partitioned the Empire among his children, also decided that his daughters should be wards, but he left them the right of choosing as guardian that one of their brothers whom each should prefer. This stipulation of Charlemagne's is so much the more interesting as its form is quite feudal; interpolate this ordinance into a deed of the middle ages, and you would think you were listening to some baron regulating the position of his daughters after his death.
In Spain, where the crown was elective, the newly elected kings thought it no crime to rid themselves of dangerous competitors. Consequently a canon of the seventeenth council of Toledo put the princesses under the wardship of the Church, and guaranteed to them their independence, their dignity, their share in the property left by their father or brother, as well as the gifts which he made to them during his occupation of the throne.
The law is more severe towards the queen dowager, and a canon of the ninth council of Toledo, confirmed by the third council of Saragossa, ordered the queen to assume the veil immediately after the death of her husband, for a reason of pride which is quite Spanish.
"That removed from all turmoil of the world, she might not be subjected to public contumely; and that the people might not be in the habit of seeing her in an inferior position whom they had recently acknowledged as a mistress."
§ 6.-OF THE QUEENS. Queens had, like other women, a morgengabe, a dower, and a share in the acquired property. As the Frankish king was a large proprietor rather than a sovereign, there was no reason for altering the situation of
Thus, the treaty of Andelau (A.D. 587) informs us that Gaileswind, the sister of Brunehault, had received from Chilperic, both for her dower and her morgengabe, whole cities, such as Bordeaux, Limoges, Cahors, and Béziers. This same Chilperic, when he gave his daughter in marriage to the King of the Visigoths, took the preliminary precaution of sending ambassadors to investigate if the dower of his daughter corresponded to the immense marriage-portion he was giving her.
This dower was, like most other dowers, a mere estate for life, which, after the mother's death, reverted to the children. If then a king's widow wished to dispose of some part of her dower, she was obliged to obtain the concurrence of the heirs at law. This explains a letter of Radegonda's, the widow of Clotaire I., in which she announced to the bishops assembled at Tours, that wishing to endow the monastery of St. Croix with a part of the lands which her husband's liberality had bestowed upon her, she caused the deed of gift to be confirmed by her children.
The Schwabenspiegel has a special ordinance concerning the morgengabe of the empress; the emperor is not restricted in this liberality, the maximum of which is fixed for all other conditions of women ; but if he gives it out of the estates of the empire, his successor is not obliged to respect the donation.
As to the dower, there was this singularity in it, that for our queens, as well as for other women, it was the sign of a lawful marriage ; without a dower, the lady of the king or emperor was only his concubine.
With regard to the acquired property, Aymoin informs us that on the death of Dagobert, Ega, the mayor of the palace, amassed all the treasures of that prince, and gave to Queen Nanthilda the third of what the king had acquired.
In the tenth century, King Raoul, when attacked by a desperate malady, in one of those fits of piety familiar to our ancestors, divided all his treasures between the monasteries of France and Burgundy, but he reserved his wife's share. It is the last occasion on which mention is made of the queen's rights, at least so Pasquier says. I quote from him
“ As matters were arranged subsequently to this, I do not see that there was any co-partnery between our kings and our queens ; they severally acquire, under their
respective names, and there is nothing in common between them, in the matter of property, neither in the acquired nor the personal property."
Dutillet well explains the reason of this new order of things.
" The queens have no co-proprietorship in the acquired property of their husbands, the kings, but only in that made before their accession to the throne. In pursuance of this rule, King Philip of Valois did justice to his queen, Joan of Burgundy, in giving her half of his acquisitions made before he became king. The administration of the kingdom cannot, in deference to the fact of marriage, take the queens into partnership, for everything is for the crown and commonwealth, which cannot be made over to the queen by virtue of the customary law. The king's purse is that of the people, not the privy purse of the kings and queens.”
( To be continued.)
TROUBLE AT THORNHILL.
CLARA GIVES HER OPINION PRETTY STRONGLY.
I once paid a visit in the country house of a rich old bachelor, and one of the first things I was shown was a sort of upper hall, communicating with several of the principal bedrooms, and most luxuriously furnished. The couches, chairs, and ottomans, were the very impersonation of comfort and downy idleness; round the wall were seats after the semblance of the often-quoted Turkish divan, but infinitely more comfortable—the divan, in its own country, being generally as hard as a straw-mattrass, and about as pleasant to sit upon—those, however, which stirred up such visions of repose and laziness at my friend's did not belie their appearance, you sank down half buried in velvets, and did not seem to care whether you ever got up again.
This chamber of luxury was, as my host triumphantly informed me, an idea of his own; a general post-prandial dressing—or more properly speaking, undressing-room-especially for lady guests, where they might assemble, in place of invading each other's apartments, and running the risk of a rencontre with some unbraced unchokered sposo, coming up, half asleep, from the gentleman's sanctum, the smoking-room. “Or," as mine host added, with a wicked look, “disturbing the first nap of the gudeman; for all men are not smokers, although all ladies
i brush their hair-isn't that the nom-de-guerre of a midnight gossip?"
Perhaps he was right in a general way; a quiet chat with an old friend, over the fire before going to bed, is a pleasant thing. Girls and young wives favour it most. When the days come that bring grey hairs, false fronts and teeth, there are reasons why a demi-toilet grows unpopular.
“Do you girls ever sleep?" asked Major Belmont, at the breakfasttable, the day after Roger's visit to Wellingford.
“What a question ! Sleep-of course we do; what makes you ask ?” and Miss Dimsdale, to whom the question had been specially directed, opened her great grey eyes, and looked astonished.
“Well, I have strong suspicions. Doors are not sound-proof-my room is opposite Miss Babbington's, and I am not deaf-hence the explanation."
“In fact, you heard us talking."
“I certainly heard the murmur of sweet voices,” said the major, "and it was so tantalising ;" then everybody laughed.
So you see, Clara Dinsdale was not above the weakness of the fireside chat. Upon the night in question she had come uninvited (I had nearly said unwelcomed) into Lilly's room, on purpose to scold her for what she was pleased to call flirting with Roger.
It was all in vain that Lilly denied the imputation. Clara said she was not blind, and that anybody with only half an eye could see it, and also that Roger was in love.
Lilly clenched her little hands, and angry tears came up in her eyes, though they did not run over to cool her burning cheeks.
“ You needn't fly into a passion," went on Clara, of course taking the most suitable method of throwing oil upon the troubled water ; "everybody is talking of it. I cannot think what you find to like or even endure in him—he is selfish, conceited, egotistical and hypocritical, and I am sure he had a share in driving Harry away, and that's why I cannot have common patience with him ; but for that matter," Clara went on, flushing and speaking passionately, "you, too, have turned against Harry. I thought better of you. Poor Harry—I would not wonder at his staying away, if I thought he knew the sort of welcome he would have."
"I think you are in love with Harry yourself, Clara," cried Lilly, with a scornful bitter laugh.
"Don't be silly, child, I'm not in love with him.”
"Perhaps not now," said Lilly, drily, wondering how Clara liked the thrust, and whether she would draw first blood.
"You need not be so sharp, Lilly, I only say all this because I love you, and because I feel quite sure you are only flirting with Roger; if I thought for an instant that you were in love-right down honest earnest love with him, I should not utter another word.”
Clara spoke plainly, and Lilly knew she spoke the truth, and with her old impulsiveness, she jumped up and threw her arms round Clara.
“I have not forsaken Harry, Clara dear; and Roger knows that, too."
“Then he told you he loved you, and you did flirt."
"No, no! How cruel you are ; I never ceased thinking of Harry, and-and-you won't tell, Clara ?—but I've seen him since he ran away."
Lilly's face was white now, and she was shaking, as she took her arms from Clara's neck, and stood up.
“Seen who? Do you mean Harry? Where did you see him ?"
"Several places. In Constantinople, when we went to papa, Harry had come down with some sick men, and found papa ill, so he was nursing him ; and then in Marseilles, when we were coming home, he joined us, and went to Paris with us."
Clara sat perfectly silenced with astonishment; she had thought