Paris to believe that the Prince had been ordered blood baths, and that all the young innocents who were lost had gone to fill his tub,—which caused a good many wooden-headed, wooden-shoed mothers to hide their offspring, as they did in the time of Herod.
At this time also, a rumour was current in Auvergne that young Comte de M had tried to poison his father in a dish of eggs and tripe. Whether there was any foundation for this terrible charge, I cannot say, but it is a fact that all the fathers in Auvergne took the matter seriously. Terror reigned under the domestic roof, and there was not a son who was not suspected of parricidal intentions, and all the heads of families talked of living without eating at all, for fear of this fatal dish of eggs and tripe.
- The writer has made a mistake here. It was Louis XV, not the Dauphin, who was supposed to bathe in the blood of children. The rumour was current in 1750, or twenty-four years earlier than the date here given, and led to riots which were suppressed with some loss of life, and the ringleaders were hanged "on gibbets 40 feet high." See Dareste's History of France, Vol. vi, p. 416.