Imatges de pàgina
PDF
EPUB

• Paris, plus vite que le pas.' Kings have better memories for injuries than for services. Of the massacre itself he declines to give an opinion. Like Sir Roger De Coverley, he thinks much may be said on both sides. Those who write at present, he adus, dare not tell more than half: For my part, I prefer saying nothing at all. *

When Dr Lingard boasts of the moderation of the Catholics at Nismes, who remained quiet on this occasion,'t he forgets there was no Royal garrison in the place, and that the Hugonots were the stronger party in the town. He might have learned from Menard, to whom he refers, that in the following war, Nismes was one of the towns that remained in arms against the King. Of the massacres of the Catholics at Nismes, to which he alludes, that of 1567, called the Michelade, was undoubtedly a most atrocious and deliberate act; that of 1569, which he improperly calls a massacre in cold blood, was not more than usually happens in civil wars, when a place is taken by surprise and pillaged. But, though he appears to have had Menard before his eyes, he is again misled by trusting to Caveyrac. .

Proceeding on his plan of attenuating, by all possible means, our horror of the St Bartholomew, Dr Lingard reduces the number of victims throughout France to less than 1600. He forgets that his friend Caveyrac had reprinted an extract from the Archives of the Hotel de Ville of Paris, by which it appears, that, during the eight days preceding the 13th of September 1572, eleven hundred dead bodies had been interred in the neighbourhood of St Cloud, Autucil, and Chaillot. The persons employed in this service, it may be remarked, were the gravediggers of St Innocents; the sum paid for their trouble was 35 Jivres Tournais, amounting to about 110 francs of the present money of France; and the motive for employing them on the part of the town, was the fear of infection from the number of putrid bodies lying unburied in its vicinity. † The much greater numbers interred near Paris, between the 24th of August and 5th of September, were of course not included in this account; nor the bodies carried by the river below St Cloud, which must have been buried at the places where they were deposited by the stream. A zealous Catholic, who published a metrical account of the St Bartholomew soon after the massacre, laments that so many Hugonots were still in prison, who ought to be serving the King in his garrisons, or

Au gibet, ou comme les autres par eau
Envoyez à Rouen sans batteau.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

* Montluc, iv. 339, 343, 12mo.

+ Lingard, viii. 520. | Sauval, llistoire de Paris, iii. 634. # Deluge des Iluguenots. Paris, Oct. 3d 1572. 12mo.

But the conclusion of Dr Lingard is not more improbable, than his mode of arriving at it extraordinary. After extracting from Caveyrac the estimates of the number of victims collected from different authors by the Abbé, he adds from himself: But • the Martyrologist adopted a measure, which may enable us to • form a conjecture. He procured from the ministers in the • different towns, lists of the names of the persons who had suf• fered, or were supposed to have suffered. He published the • result in 1582; and the reader will be surprised to learn, that 6 he could discover the names of no more than 786 persons. Perhaps, if we double that number, we shall not be very far

from the real amount. Why, it may be asked, double the number? If such uncommon industry was really used to obtain an accurate list of the sufferers, why add to it at all? What possible motive could possess the Calvinist ministers to withhold from their martyrologist the names of one half of their martyrs ? But, where has Dr Lingard discovered, that the Protestant Martyrologist, as he calls him, took such extraordinary pains to procure accurate lists of the victims? We have searched with care through the work, to which we suppose he refers, because it is the book referred to by Caveyrac; but we have found in it no mention of such inquiries as he describes—no traces of diligent research—no pretensions to give complete lists of the sufferers. t Nous marquerons les noms de quelques particuliers,' say the authors, entre tant de milliers de personnes de • toutes qualites mises à mort.'- Nous ajouterons maintenant

ceux dont nous avons eu memoire, avec quelques circonstances au massacre d'aucuns. Ce n'est qu'un bien petit echantillon,

car il faudroit un gros livre et du temps beacoup pour sçavoir • la verité par le menu.'— Nous particulariserons quelque pe. tit nombre de gens emportez par ces furieux massacres. • Ayant recouvré de quelques bons personnages les noms de

quelquesuns qui furent lors massacrez (at Lyons) je les ay ici • inserez.' They repeatedly call on others, who have better means of information, to complete their list of the victims; and so

[ocr errors]

* Lingard, viii. 520.

+ The title of this book is 'Histoire des Martyrs persecutez et • mis à mort pour la verité de l'Evangile, depuis le temps des Apostres

jusqu'à present. Geneva, 1619, folio.' We have not been able to procure the Edition of 1582; but the one we have examined, we are assured, is the most complete of any. The first edition of the work appeared in 1554, under the title of · Livre des Martyrs depuis Jean Hus jusqu'à 1554. The edition of 1619 was edited by Simon Goulart of Senlis, one of the ministers of Geneva. VOL. XLIV. NO, 87.

H

far from having taken extraordinary pains to make their catalogue accurate and perfect, they have actually copied nine-tenths of the names they have given from the Memoires de l'Etat

sous Charles IX., published in 1578; and in the only instance where they have departed from that work, which in general they have servilely abridged, they profess to be indebted for their information to a pious Catholic of Orleans, a canon of St Croix, who witnessed and was shocked at the massacres committed by his townsmen.

How and where then, it may be asked, could Dr Lingard's circumstantial mistake originate? We beg his pardon if we are in the wrong, but we suspect he has been misled by a passage in Caveyrac. That author, who had seen and consulted the book he quotes, supposes that the Martyrologist must have made minute inquiries into the names and number of the victims. ! Il faut supposer que l'auteur a recherché et conservé avec • soin ces noms precieux à la secte, et les moyens ne durent

pas lui manquer. 't Now, we suspect that Dr Lingard, read. ing with more than usual haste his Caveyrac, has converted the supposition of the Abbé into an assertion; and, in adding the other circumstances of the story, that he has been seduced into an imitation of the philosophic historians whom he abuses, and borrowed from his fancy what was wanting to support and complete his theory.

If we are asked why so few names have been preserved of the many thousands that perished, we reply, that no pains were used to collect them at the time, the survivors being too much occupied with their own danger to record the cruelties they witnessed on others; and that the collections made afterwards by Sully, were purposely suppressed, and probably destroyed. I

Of five or six Conseillers au parlement murdered at Toulouse, and afterwards suspended from an elm-tree in the court-yard of the palace, dressed in their parliamentary robes, not one is named by the Martyrologist, and only one by De Thou. Accident, as in the case of the Catholic priest at Orleans, has supplied the greater part of the names that have been preserved. Left to conjecture as to the numbers that perished, authors have differed widely in the estimates they have given. Papire Masson and Tavannes reduce the number slain in Paris to 2000; De Thou makes them 2000 during the first day only; D'Aubigné raises the whole to 3000; Capilupi pretends. that

* Histoire des Martyrs, 779, 781, 788, 791. + Caveyrac, xxxvii.

# Economics, l. 14. folio. ỹ Thuanus, 1. 145.

8000 were slain in a few hours ; Brantome makes the total 4000; De Serres and the Memoires de l'Etat increase the number to 10,000; and Davila, in giving the same estimate, adds, that among them were 500 barons, cavallieri, and military officers. Bellievre, in his discourse to the Swiss, pretends, that at the time of the massacre, there were 800 Hugonot gentlemen in Paris, and 8000 common persons; and as we know that few gentlemen escaped, it would follow, that of persons of condition the number that perished was quite as great as stated by Davila; but the discourse of Bellievre is so replete with falsehoods, that no dependance can be placed on it. Adriani makes 1500 murdered at Paris in the first day, as many more in the two following days, and 400 gentlemen in all. Perefixe reckons that more than 20 seigneurs de marque were slain at Paris, 1200 gentle. men, and from 3 to 4000 of inferior condition.

Papire Masson calculates the whole number of victims throughout France, exclusive of Paris, at 10,000; La Popelinière gives 20,000 as the total; Adriani, De Serres, and De Thou, 30,000; Davila 40,000; Sully 70,000, and Perefixe 100,000. If obliged to choose amidst these conflicting opinions, we should prefer trusting to the judgment and caution of De Thou.

Having exhausted our remarks on Dr Lingard's account of the St Bartholomew, we shall proceed to other parts of his work, where he treats of the history of the French Protestants, in which we shall find errors and misrepresentations not less remarkable, nor less worthy of notice. We shall follow no regular order in our observations, but take up the different subjects as they occur to us.

Ďr Lingard relates, with complacence, what he calls the shrewd reply of the Queen-mother to a supposed application in favour of the Hugonots, by Walsingham, the English Ambas. sador at Paris, at the desire of his mistress; but he has so altered and disfigured the story, that the conversation he relates has little or no resemblance to the truth. * In the first place, it is not true, that Elizabeth, through her ambassador, "had recommended

to the protection of Charles, the persons and worship of the * French Protestants.' The conversation, in which Catherine • made her shrewd reply,' occurred on the 14th of September, before Walsingham had received instructions of any sort from his court, after the massacre; and therefore, if he had made any application on behalf of the Hugonots, it must have been of his own authority: But he made no such application. The Queenmother having sent for him, to hear and remove his scruples

[ocr errors]

* Lingard, viii. 116.

about the projected marriage between Elizabeth and the Duke of Alençon, desired him to assure his mistress, that it was the King's intention the edict of pacification should remain in force. But, in what sort ?' inquired the ambassador. • They shall • enjoy the liberty of their conscience,' answered Catherine• and the exercise of their religion too?' replied Walsingham.• No, my son will have exercise but of one religion in his re6 alm.' But how, urged the ambassador, does that refusal agree with the observation of the edict, which secures to them liberty of worship? Will you have them live without exercise • of religion?' Even,' saith she, as your Mistress suffereth • the Catholics of England.'-'My mistress did never promise • them any thing by edict; if she had, she would not fail to • have performed it.'* We leave our readers to judge which party had the advantage in this colloquy.

What can be more unfair, in the impression it is calculated to convey to a careless reader, than Dr Lingard's mention of the assassination of Ligneroles? The leaders of the French • Protestants,' he informs us, forwarded the project' (of marriage between Elizabeth and the Duke of Anjou), with all

their influence. Ligneroles, the Duke's favourite, and the * supposed enemy of the match, was assassinated ; and a confi- . • dent hope was entertained, that the Prince, no longer under • his influence, would accede to the proposed terms.'+ Who would not understand, from this passage, that Ligneroles had been assassinated by contrivance of the French Protestants, because he opposed the marriage of the Duke of Anjou with Queen Elizabeth ? But Dr Lingard knows, or ought to know, that Ligneroles was murdered by direction of Charles IX., with the knowledge and consent of his brother, the Duke of Anjou, and that his assassins were Catholics, and not Protestants. Various reasons have been assigned for this murder, but among them we have not met with the one insinuated by Dr Lingard. The prevailing opinion is, that Ligneroles, having been intrusted by the Duke of Anjou with the secret designs of the Court against the Hugonots, had imprudently, in conversation with the King, shown he was in possession of the secret; and that Charles, unwilling an affair of such importance should be known to any one who was not of his council, after reproaching his brother sharply for his indiscretion, determined on the immediate murder of Ligneroles, which he effected, by sending for the Vicomte de la Guerche, and directing him to assassinate that gentleman without delay. The King affected

* Digges, 242.

+ Lingard, viii. 93.

« AnteriorContinua »