Open main menu
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
262
CHOISEUL-STAINVILLE—CHOLERA

duke’s character, accuses him of exciting the war between Russia and Turkey in 1768 in order to be revenged upon the tsarina Catherine II., and says of his foreign policy, “he would project and determine the ruin of a country, but could not meditate a little mischief or a narrow benefit.” “He dissipated the nation’s wealth and his own; but did not repair the latter by plunder of the former,” says the same writer, who in reference to Choiseul’s private life asserts that “gallantry without delicacy was his constant pursuit.” Choiseul’s widow, a woman “in whom industrious malice could not find an imperfection,” lived in retirement until her death on the 3rd of December 1808.

See Mémoires du duc de Choiseul, edited by F. Calmettes (Paris, 1904); P. Boutaric, L’Ambassade de Choiseul à Vienne en 1757–1758 (Paris, 1872); Duc de Cars, Mémoires (Paris, 1890); F. J. de P., Cardinal de Bernis, Mémoires et lettres (Paris, 1878); Madame de Pompadour, Correspondance (Paris, 1878); Revue historique, tomes 82 and 87 (Paris, 1903–1905); Horace Walpole, Memoirs of the Reign of George III., edited by G. F. R. Barker (London, 1894); G. Mangros, Le duc et la duchesse de Choiseul (Paris, 1903); and La Disgrace du duc et de la duchesse de Choiseul (Paris, 1903); E. Calmettes, Choiseul et Voltaire (Paris, 1902); A. Bourguet, Études sur la politique étrangère du duc de Choiseul (Paris, 1907); and Le Duc de Choiseul et l’alliance espagnole (Paris, 1906). See also the Edinburgh Review for July 1908.


CHOISEUL-STAINVILLE, CLAUDE ANTOINE GABRIEL, Duc de (1760–1838), French soldier, was brought up at Chanteloup, under the care of his relative, Étienne François, duc de Choiseul, who was childless. The outbreak of the Revolution found him a colonel of dragoons, and throughout those troublous times he was distinguished for his devotion to the royal house. He took part in the attempt of Louis XVI. to escape from Paris on the 20th of June 1791; was arrested with the king, and imprisoned. Liberated in May 1792, he emigrated in October, and fought in the “army of Condé” against the republic. Captured in 1795, he was confined at Dunkirk; escaped, set sail for India, was wrecked on the French coast, and condemned to death by the decree of the Directory. Nevertheless, he was fortunate enough to escape once more. Napoleon allowed him to return to France in 1801, but he remained in private life until the fall of the Empire. At the Restoration he was called to the House of Peers by Louis XVIII. At the revolution of 1830 he was nominated a member of the provisional government; and he afterwards received from Louis Philippe the post of aide-de-camp to the king and governor of the Louvre. He died in Paris on the 1st of December 1838.


CHOISY, FRANÇOIS TIMOLÉON, Abbé de (1644–1724), French author, was born in Paris on the 16th of August 1644, and died in Paris on the 2nd of October 1724. His father was attached to the household of the duke of Orleans, and his mother, who was on intimate terms with Anne of Austria, was regularly called upon to amuse Louis XIV. By a whim of his mother, the boy was dressed like a girl until he was eighteen, and, after appearing for a short time in man’s costume, he resumed woman’s dress on the advice—doubtless satirical—of Madame de La Fayette. He delighted in the most extravagant toilettes until he was publicly rebuked by the duc de Montausier, when he retired for some time to the provinces, using his disguise to assist his numerous intrigues. He had been made an abbé in his childhood, and poverty, induced by his extravagance, drove him to live on his benefice at Sainte-Seine in Burgundy, where he found among his neighbours a kindred spirit in Bussy-Rabutin. He visited Rome in the suite of the cardinal de Bouillon in 1676, and shortly afterwards a serious illness brought about a sudden and rather frivolous conversion to religion. In 1685 he accompanied the chevalier de Chaumont on a mission to Siam. He was ordained priest, and received various ecclesiastical preferments. He was admitted to the Academy in 1687, and wrote a number of historical and religious works, of which the most notable are the following:—Quatre dialogues sur l’immortalitè de l’âme . . . (1684), written with the Abbé Dangeau and explaining his conversion; Traduction de l’Imitation de Jésus-Christ (1692); Histoire de France sous les règnes de Saint Louis ... de Charles V et Charles VI (5 vols., 1688–1695); and Histoire de l’Église (11 vols., 1703–1723) He is remembered, however, by his gossiping Mémoires (1737), which contain striking and accurate pictures of his time and remarkably exact portraits of his contemporaries, although he has otherwise small pretensions to historical accuracy.

The Mémoires passed through many editions, and were edited in 1888 by M. de Lescure. Some admirable letters of Choisy are included in the correspondence of Bussy-Rabutin. Choisy is said to have burnt some of his indiscreet revelations, but left a considerable quantity of unpublished MS. Part of this material, giving an account of his adventures as a woman, was surreptitiously used in an anonymous Histoire de madame la comtesse de Barres (Antwerp, 1735), and again with much editing in the Vie de M. l’abbé de Choisy (Lausanne and Geneva, 1742), ascribed by Paul Lacroix to Lenglet Dufresnoy; the text was finally edited (1870) by Lacroix as Aventures de l’abbé de Choisy. See also Sainte-Beuve, Causeries du lundi, vol. iii.


CHOLERA (from the Gr. χολή, bile, and ῥέειν, to flow), the name given to two distinct forms of disease, simple cholera and malignant cholera. Although essentially different both as to their causation and their pathological relationships, these two diseases may in individual cases present many symptoms of mutual resemblance.

Simple Cholera (synonyms, Cholera Europaea, British Cholera, Summer or Autumnal Cholera) is the cholera of ancient medical writers, as is apparent from the accurate description of the disease given by Hippocrates, Celsus and Aretaeus. Its occurrence in an epidemic form was noticed by various physicians in the 16th century, and an admirable account of the disease was subsequently given by Thomas Sydenham in 1669–1672. This disease is sometimes called Cholera Nostras, the word nostras, which is good Latin and used by Cicero, meaning “belonging to our country.” The relations between it and Asiatic cholera (see below) are obscure. Clinically they may exactly resemble each other, and bacteriology has not been able to draw an absolute line between them. The real difference is epidemiological, cholera nostras having no epidemic significance.

The chief symptoms in well-marked cases are vomiting and purging occurring either together or alternately. The seizure is usually sudden and violent. The contents of the stomach are first ejected, and this is followed by severe retching and vomiting of thin fluid of bilious appearance and bitter taste. The diarrhoea which accompanies or succeeds the vomiting, and is likewise of bilious character, is attended with severe griping abdominal pain, while cramps affecting the legs or arms greatly intensify the suffering. The effect upon the system is rapid and alarming, a few hours of such an attack sufficing to reduce the strongest person to a state of extreme prostration. The surface of the body becomes cold, the pulse weak, the voice husky, and the whole symptoms may resemble in a striking manner those of malignant cholera, to be subsequently described. In unfavourable cases, particularly where the disorder is epidemic, death may result within forty-eight hours. Generally, however, the attack is arrested and recovery soon follows, although there may remain for a considerable time a degree of irritability of the alimentary canal, rendering necessary the utmost care in regard to diet.

Attacks of this kind are of frequent occurrence in summer and autumn in almost all countries. They appear specially liable to occur when cold and damp alternate with heat. Occasionally the disorder prevails so extensively as to constitute an epidemic. The exciting causes of an attack are in many cases errors in diet, particularly the use of unripe fruit and new vegetables, and the excessive drinking of cold liquids during perspiration. Outbreaks of this disorder in a household or community can sometimes be traced to the use of impure water, or to noxious emanations from the sewers.

In the treatment, vomiting should be encouraged so long as it shows the presence of undigested food, after which opiates ought to be administered. Small opium pills, or Dover’s powder, or the aromatic powder of chalk with opium, are likely to be retained in the stomach, and will generally succeed in allaying the pain and diarrhoea, while ice and effervescing drinks serve