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reason to suppose that her naturally warm affec- | Joseph, her eldest son. "My son," said she, tion, and her strong sense, would have rendered you are the heir to all my worldly possessions, her, in a private station, an admirable, an exem- cannot dispose of them; but my children are still, plary parent; and it was not her fault, but rather as they have ever been, my own. I bequeath them her misfortune, that she was placed in a situation to you; be to them a father. I shall die contented where the most sacred duties and feelings of her if you promise to take that office upon you." She sex became merely secondary. While her numer- then turned to her son Maximilian and her daughous family were in their infancy, the empress was ters, blessed them individually, in the tenderest constantly and exclusively occupied in the public terms, and exhorted them to obey and honour their duties and cares of her high station; the affairs elder brother as their father and sovereign. After of government demanded almost every moment repeated fits of agony and suffocation, endured, to of her time. The court physician, Von Swietar, the last, with the same invariable serenity and waited on her each morning at her levée, and patience, death, at length, released her, and she brought her a minute report of the health of the expired on the 29th of November, 1780, in her princes and princesses. If one of them was in- sixty-fourth year. She was undoubtedly the greatdisposed, the mother, laying aside all other cares, est and best ruler who ever swayed the imperial immediately hastened to their apartment. They sceptre of Austria; while, as a woman, she was all spoke and wrote Italian with elegance and one of the most amiable and exemplary who lived facility. Her children were brought up with ex- in the eighteenth century. treme simplicity. They were not allowed to indulge in personal pride or caprice; their benevolent feelings were cultivated both by precept and example. They were sedulously instructed in the "Lives of the Saints," and all the tedious forms of unmeaning devotion, in which, according to the sincere conviction of their mother, all true piety consisted. A high sense of family pride, an unbounded devotion to the house of Austria, and to their mother, the empress, as the head of that house, was early impressed upon their minds, and became a ruling passion, as well as a principle of conduct with all of them.
We have only to glance back upon the history of the last fifty years to see the result of this mode of education. We find that the children of Maria Theresa, transplanted into different countries of Europe, carried with them their national and family prejudices; that some of them, in later years, supplied the defects of their early education, and became remarkable for talent and for virtue. That all of them, even those who were least distinguished and estimable, displayed occasionally both goodness of heart and elevation of character; and that their filial devotion to their mother and what they considered her interests, was carried to an excess, which in one or two instances proved fatal to themselves. Thus it is apparent that her maternal duties were not neglected; had this been the case she could never have acquired such unbounded influence over her children.
Maria Theresa had long been accustomed to look death in the face; and when the hour of trial came, her resignation, her fortitude, and her humble trust in heaven, never failed her. Her agonies during the last ten days of her life, were terrible, but never drew from her a single expression of complaint or impatience. She was only apprehensive that her reason and her physical strength might fail her together. She was once heard to say, "God grant that these sufferings may soon terminate, for otherwise, I know not if I can much longer endure them."
After receiving the last sacraments, she summoned all her family to her presence, and solemnly recommended them to the care of the emperor
MARIA ANTOINETTA AMELIA,
DUCHESS of Saxe Gotha, daughter of Ulric of Saxe Meinungen, was born in 1572. Her talents as a performer on the piano, and as a composer, would have been creditable to a professed artist. Several of her canzoni, and also variations for the piano, have been published; but her most important work is a symphony in ten parts. She died towards the beginning of this century.
MARIE ANTOINETTE JOSEPHE JEANNE DE LORRAINE, ARCHDUCHESS of Austria and queen of France, daughter of the emperor Francis I. and Maria Therese, was born at Vienna, November 2d, 1755. She was carefully educated, and possessed an uncommon share of grace and beauty. Her hand was demanded by Louis XV. for his grandsen, the dauphin, afterwards Louis XVI., to whom she was married in 1770, before she had attained her fifteenth year. A lamentable accident, which occurred during the festivities given by the city of Paris to celebrate the marriage, was looked upon as a sinister omen, which subsequent events having confirmed, has acquired undue importance.
Owing to the injudicious arrangements for the exhibition of fireworks, a great number of people were thrown down and trodden to death, more than three hundred persons having been killed or wounded. In 1774 Louis XVI. ascended the throne; in 1778 the queen became, for the first time, a mother. During the first years of her residence in France, Marie Antoinette was the idol of the people. After the birth of her second son, when, according to usage, she went to church to return thanks, the populace wished to remove the horses from her carriage, and draw her through the streets; and when she alighted and walked, to gratify them, they flung themselves upon their knees, and rent the air with acclamations. Four years from this period, all was changed. The acts of kindness and benevolence which the queen had exhibited; her grace, beauty, and claims upon the nation as a woman and a foreigner, were all forgotten. Circumstances remote in their origin had brought about, in France, a state of feeling fast ripening to a fearful issue. The queen could no longer do with impunity what had been done by her predecessors. The extravagance and thoughtlessness of youth, and a neglect of the strict formality of court etiquette, injured her reputation. She became a mark for censure, and finally an object of hatred to the people, who accused her of the most improbable crimes. An extraordinary occurrence added fuel to the flame of calumny. The countess de la Motte, a clever but corrupt woman, by a vile intrigue in which she made the cardinal de Rohan her tool, purchased, in the queen's name, a magnificent diamond necklace, valued at an enormous sum. She imposed upon the cardinal by a feigned correspondence with the queen, and forged her signature to certain bills; obtained possession of the necklace, and sold it in England. The plot exploded. The queen, indignant at the cardinal, demanded a public investigation. The affair produced the greatest scandal throughout France, connecting as it did the name of the queen with such disgraceful proceedings; and though obviously the victim of an intrigue, she received as much censure as if she had been guilty. Accused of being an Austrian at heart, and an enemy to France, every evil in the state was now attributed to her, and the Parisians soon exhibited their hatred in acts of open violence. In May, 1789, the States-General met. In October the populace proceeded with violence to Versailles, broke into the castle, murdered several of the body-guard, and forced themselves into the queen's apartments. When questioned by the officers of justice as to what she had seen on that memorable day, she replied, "I have seen all, I have heard all, I have forgotten all."
mily, every variety of privation and indignity. On the 21st of January, 1793, the king perished on the scaffold; the dauphin was forcibly torn from her, and given in charge to a miserable wretch, a cobbler called Simon, who designedly did everything in his power to degrade and brutalize the innocent child. On the 2d of August, Marie Antoinette was removed to the Conciergerie, to await her trial in a damp and squalid cell. On the 14th of October, she appeared before the revolutionary tribunal. During the trial, which lasted seventy-three hours, she preserved all her dignity and composure. Her replies to the infamous charges which were preferred against her were simple, noble, and laconic. When all the accusations had been heard, she was asked if she had anything to say. She replied, "I was a queen, and you took away my crown; a wife, and you killed my husband; a mother, and you deprived me of my children. My blood alone remains: take it, but do not make me suffer long." At four o'clock, on the morning of the 16th, she was condemned to death by an unanimous vote. She heard her sentence with admirable dignity and self-possession. At half-past twelve, on the same day, she ascended the scaffold. Scarcely any traces remained of the dazzling loveliness which had once charmed all hearts; her hair had long since become blanched by grief, and her eyes were almost sightless from continued weeping. She knelt and prayed for a few minutes in a low tone, then rose and calmly delivered herself to the executioner. Thus perished, in her thirty-seventh year, the wife of the greatest monarch in Europe, the daughter of the heroic Maria Theresa, a victim to the circumstances of birth and position. No fouler crime ever stained the annals of savage life, than the murder of this unfortunate queen, by a people calling themselves the most civilized nation in the world.
Marie Antoinette had four children. Marie Therese Charlotte, the companion of her parents in captivity, born 1778. In 1795 she was exchanged for the deputies whom Dumouriez had surrendered to Austria, and resided in Vienna till 1799, when she was married by Louis XVIII. to his nephew, oldest son of Charles X. Napoleon said of her that "she was the only man of her family." The dauphin, Louis, born in 1781, and died in 1789. Charles Louis, born in 1785; the unfortunate prince who shared his parents' imprisonment for a time, and died in 1795, a victim to the ill-treatment of the ferocious Simon; and a daughter who died in infancy.
MARIA LOUISA LEOPOLDINE CAROLINE,
ARCHDUCHESS of Austria, duchess of Parma, was the eldest daughter of Francis I., emperor of Austria, by his second marriage, with Maria Theresa, daughter of the king of Naples. She was born in 1791, and April 1st, 1810, married Napoleon. Her son was born March 20, 1811. When Napoleon left Paris to meet the allied army, he made her regent of the empire. On the 29th of March, 1814, she was obliged to leave Paris; Na
She accompanied the king in his flight to Varennes, in 1791, and endured with him with unexampled fortitude and magnanimity the insults which now followed in quick succession. In April, 1792, she accompanied the king from the Tuilleries, where they had been for some time detained close prisoners, to the Legislative Assembly, where he was arraigned. Transferred to the Temple, she endured, with the members of the royal fa-poleon abdicated his authority April 11th, and
Maria Louisa went to meet her father at Rambouillet, who would not allow her to follow her husband, but sent her, with her son, to Schönbrunn. When Napoleon returned from Elba, he wrote to his wife to join him, but his letters remained unanswered. In 1816 she entered upon the administration of the duchies of Parma, Piacienza, and Guastalla, secured to her by the treaty of Fontainebleau. While there she privately married her master of the horse, Colonel Neipperg, by whom she had several children. She was apparently amiable, but weak, self-indulgent, and surrounded by artful advisers, who kept her in the thraldom of sensuous pleasures till she lost the moral dignity of woman. What signified her royal blood and high station! She lived unhonoured, and died unwept.
CELEBRATED for her faithfulness to the Spaniards, and for the assistance which she afforded them in the conquest of Mexico, was born at Painalla, in the province of Coatzacualco, on the south-eastern borders of the Mexican empire. Her father, a rich and powerful Cacique, died when she was very young. Her mother married again; and, wishing to give her daughter's inheritance to her son by the second marriage, she cruelly sold her to some travelling merchants, and announcing her death, performed a mock-funeral to deceive those around her. These merchants sold the Indian maiden to the Cacique of Tabasco; and when the Tabascans surrendered to Cortés, she was one of twenty female slaves who were sent to him as propitiatory offerings. Speaking two of the Mexican dialects, Marina was a valuable acquisition to Cortés as interpreter, which value increased tenfold, when with remarkable rapidity she acquired the Spanish language. Cortés knew how to value her services; he made her his secretary, and, finally won by her charms, his mistress. She had a son by him, Don Martin Cortés, commendador of the military order of St. James, who afterwards rose to high consideration; but finally falling under suspicion of treasonable practices against the government, was, in 1568, shamefully subjected to the torture in the very capital which his father had acquired for the Castilian crown!
Prescott, to whose admirable work, "The Conquest of Mexico," we are chiefly indebted for this memoir, describes Marina as follows: "She is said to have possessed uncommon personal attractions; and her open, expressive features, indicated her generous temper. She always remained faithful to the countrymen of her adoption; and her knowledge of the language and customs of the Mexicans, and often of their designs, enabled her to extricate the Spaniards, more than once, from the most embarrassing and perilous situations. She had her errors, as we have seen; but they should be rather charged to the defects of her early education, and to the evil influence of him to whom, in the darkness of her spirit, she looked with simple confidence for the light to guide her. All agree that she was full of excellent qualities; and the important services which she rendered
the Spaniards have made her memory deservedly dear to them; while the name of Malinche — the name by which she is still known in Mexico-was pronounced with kindness by the conquered races, with whose misfortunes she showed an invariable sympathy."
Cortés finally gave Marina away in marriage to a Spanish knight, Don Juan Xamarillo. She had estates assigned her, where she probably passed the remainder of her life. Marina is represented as having met and recognised her mother after a long lapse of time, when passing through her native province. Her mother was greatly terrified, fearing that Cortés would severely punish her; but Marina embraced her, and allayed her fears, saying, "that she was sure she knew not what she did when she sold her to the traders, and that she forgave her." She gave her mother all the jewels and ornaments about her person, and assured her of her happiness since she had adopted the Christian faith.
A VENETIAN lady, who lived in the seventeenth century, in 1601, published a book at Venice with this title “La nobilita é la eccellenza della donne, con difetti é manecamenti degli uomini ;" in which she attempted to prove the superiority of women to men. Marinella published some other works; among these, one called "La Colomba Sacra;" and "The Life of the Holy Virgin, and that of St. Francis."
MARLBOROUGH, SARAH, DUCHESS OF WAS the daughter of Mr. Jennings, a country gentleman of respectable lineage and good estate. She was born on the 26th of May, 1660, at Holywell, a suburb of St. Albans. Her elder sister, Frances, afterwards duchess of Tyrconnel, was maid of honour to the duchess of York; and Sarah, when quite a child, was introduced at court, and became the playfellow of the princess Anne, who was several years younger than herself. Sarah succeeded her sister as maid of honour to the duchess of York; which, however, did not prevent her having constant intercourse with the princess, who lived under the same roof with her father, and who at that early age showed the greatest preference for her.
In 1677, Sarah Jennings married, clandestinely, the handsome colonel Churchill, favourite gentleman of the duke of York. Both parties being poor, it was an imprudent match; but the duchess of York, whom they made the confidant of their
attachment, stood their friend, and offered her! powerful assistance. She gave her attendant a handsome donation, and appointed her to a place of trust about her person. The young couple followed the fortunes of the duke of York for some years, while he was a sort of honourable exile from the court; but when the establishment of the princess Anne was formed, she being now
married, Mrs. Churchill, secretly mistrusting the durability of the fortunes of her early benefactress, expressed an ardent wish to become one of the ladies of the princess Anne, who requested her father's permission to that effect, and received his consent. The early regard evinced by the princess Anne for Mrs. Churchill, soon ripened into a romantic attachment; she lost sight of the difference in their rank, and treated her as an equal, desiring a like return. When apart, they corresponded constantly under the names, chosen by the princess, of Mrs. Morley and Mrs. Freeman.
No two persons could be less alike than the princess and Sarah Churchill; the former was quiet, somewhat phlegmatic, easy and gentle, extremely well bred, fond of ceremony, and averse to mental exertion; the latter, resolute, bold, inclined to violence, prompt, unwearied and haughty. Swift, who was, however, her bitter enemy, describes her as the victim of "three furies which reigned in her breast, sordid avarice, disdainful pride, and ungovernable rage." The duchess of Marlborough's strongest characteristic appears to have been a most powerful will. Much is said of the ascendancy which a strong mind acquires over a weak one; but in many instances where this is thought to be the case, the influence arises from strength of will, and not from mental superiority. In the present instance, this was not altogether so; for the duchess of Marlborough was undoubtedly greatly superior to queen Anne in mind, but if her sense and discretion had been properly exercised, in controlling that indomitable will, which foamed and raged at everything which obstructed her path or interfered with her opinions, her influence might have been as lasting as it was once powerful.
On the accession of James II., Churchill was created a baron; but, attaching himself to the Protestant cause, when the prince of Orange landed, he deserted his old master and joined the prince; lady Churchill, meanwhile, aiding the princess Anne in her flight and abandonment of the king her father. On the accession of William and Mary, in 1692, to the English throne, Churchill was rewarded for his zeal by the earldom of Marlborough, and the appointment of commander-inchief of the English army in the Low Country. Afterwards, falling into disgrace with the king and queen, lord and lady Marlborough were dismissed the court. Princess Anne espoused the cause of her favourite, and retired also; but, upon the death of queen Mary, they were restored to favour. The accession of Anne to the throne on the death of William, placed lady Marlborough in the position which her ambitious spirit coveted; she knew her own value and that of her gallant husband. She knew that Anne not only loved but feared her; that she would require her aid, and have recourse to her on all occasions of difficulty; and she felt equal to every emergency. A perusal of the letters of the queen to lady Marlborough at this period, is sufficient evidence of the subjection in which she (the queen) was held by her imperious favourite; the humility which they express are unworthy of her as a sovereign and as a woman. That Anne was already beginning to writhe under this intolerable yoke, there can be no doubt. From the commencement of her reign, a difference in politics between herself and her favourite was manifested. Lady Marlborough had a strong leaning to the whig side, while the queen was always attached to the tory party; and dissensions soon arose as to the ministers who were to surround the throne. Since the advancement of lord Marlborough, his lady had lost much of the caressing devotion which she had hitherto manifested for the queen; and exhibited to her some of that overbearing arrogance with which she treated the rest of her contemporaries. It is not astonishing that the queen, under these circumstances, should have sought for sympathy in one near her person who had suffered from the same overbearing temper. Abigail Hill, a poor relation of lady Marlborough's, whom she had placed about the queen as bed-chamber woman, was the prudent and careful recipient of her mistress's vexations, and gradually acquired such influence with her as eventually to supersede her powerful relative as favourite. Much has been said of the ingratitude of Mrs. Masham to her early benefactress. As there is no evidence that she had recourse to improper or dishonourable means to ingratiate herself with the queen, this charge cannot be substantiated. The queen's favour was a voluntary gift. Lady Marlborough alienated her mistress by her own arbitrary temper; and the queen only exercised the privilege which every gentlewoman should possess, of selecting her own friends and servants. Meanwhile, the brilliant successes of lord Marlborough obliged the queen to suppress her estranged feelings towards his wife, and bound her more closely to the
interests of his family. In 1702, lord Marlborough | pass to her room.
The duchess of Marlborough's favour waned rapidly. She began to suspect Mrs. Hill, and remonstrated angrily with the queen on the subject, as if regard and affection were ever won back by reproaches! The secret marriage of Abigail Hill to Mr. Masham, a page of the court, which the queen attended privately, finally produced an open rupture. After a protracted attempt to regain her influence, during which period the queen had to listen to much "plain speaking" from the angry duchess, she was forced to resign her posts at court, and with her, the different members of her family, who filled nearly all the situations of dignity and emolument about the queen.
The duchess followed her husband abroad soon after her dismissal, where they remained till the death of queen Anne. George I. restored the duke of Marlborough at once to his station of captaingeneral of the land forces, and gave him other appointments; but he never regained his former political importance. The duchess of Marlborough was the mother of five children; her only son died at the age of seventeen, of that then fatal disease, the small-pox. Her four daughters, who inherited their mother's beauty, married men of distinction, two of whom only survived her. Lady Godolphin, the oldest, succeeded to the title of the duchess of Marlborough.
The duchess survived her husband twenty-three years. Her great wealth brought her many suitors, to one of whom, the duke of Somerset, she made the celebrated reply, "that she could not permit an emperor to succeed in that heart which had been devoted to John duke of Marlborough."
In her eighty-second year she published her vindication against all the attacks that in the course of her long life had been made against her. She also left voluminous papers to serve for the memoirs of her husband, as well as many documents since used in compiling her own life. Much of her latter life was spent in wrangling and quarrelling with her descendants; with some of whom she was at open war. She is said to have revenged herself upon her grand-daughter, lady Anne Egerton, by painting the face of her portrait black, and inscribing beneath it, "She is blacker within."
The duchess of Marlborough, in a corrupt age, and possessed of singular beauty, was of unblemished reputation. She had many high and noble qualities. She was truthful and honourable, and esteemed those qualities in others. Her attachment to her husband was worthy of its object, and of the love he bore her. A touching anecdote of the duke's unfading love for her is upon record, as related by herself. "She had very beautiful hair, and none of her charms were so highly prized by the duke as these tresses. One day, upon his offending her, she cropped them short, and laid them in an ante-chamber through which he must
To her great disappointment, he passed, and repassed, calmly enough to provoke a saint, without appearing conscious of the deed. When she sought her hair, however, where she had laid it, it had vanished. Nothing more ever transpired upon the subject till the duke's death, when she found her beautiful ringlets carefully laid by in a cabinet where he kept whatever he held most precious. At this part of the story the duchess always fell a crying." The duchess of Marlborough died in October, 1774, at the age of eighty-four, leaving an enormous fortune. MARLEY, LOUISE FRANÇOISE DE, MARCHIONESS DE VIELBOURG, WAS a French lady of eminence for her extensive learning and great virtues. She lived about 1615.
MARON, THERESA DE,
A SISTER of the celebrated Raphael Mengs, was born at Auszig, in Bohemia. From her earliest youth she excelled in enamel, miniature, and crayon paintings; and she retained her talents in full vigour till her death, at the age of eighty, in 1806. She married the Cavalier Maron, an Italian artist of merit.
MARS, MADEMOISELLE HYPPO-
AN eminent French actress, daughter of Monvel, a celebrated French actor, was born in 1778. She appeared in public in 1793, and was soon engaged at the Théatre Français.
Her father, Monvel, who was an actor of great celebrity, in giving her instructions had the good taste and judgment not to make her a mere creature of art. On the contrary, he taught her that much ought to be left to the inspiration of natural feelings, and that art ought only to second, not to supersede nature. Her original cast of parts consisted of those which the French term ingénues — parts in which youthful innocence and simplicity are represented. These she performed for many years with extraordinary applause. At length she resolved to shine in a diametrically opposite