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46
LOUIS XVII.

are said to have given leave for the brother and sister to see each other, but the meeting was never permitted. The argument from the sudden disappearance of persons in a position to know something of the truth is of a less convincing character. It may be noted that the more famous of the persons alleged by partisans of subsequent pretenders to have been hustled out of the world for their connexion with the secret are the empress Josephine, the duc d'Enghien and the duc de Berri.

Immediately on the announcement of the dauphin's death there arose a rumour that he had escaped. Simien-Despréaux, one of Louis XVIII.'s own authors, 'stated at a later period (1814) that Louis XVII. was living and that among the signatories of the treaty of April 13th were some who possessed proofs of his existence; and Eckard, one of the mainstays of the official account, left-among his unpublished papers a statement that many members of “ an assembly of our wise men ” obstinately named Louis XVII. as the prince whom their wishes demanded. Unfortunately the removal of the child suited the plans of the comte de Provence (now Louis XVIII. for the émigrés) as well as it suited the revolutionary government, and no serious attempt was made by the royal family to ascertain the truth, though they paid none of the tributes to the memory of the dead king which might reasonably have been expected, had they been convinced of his death. Even his sister wore no mourning for him until she arrived at Vienna and w that this was expected of her. In spite of the masiliterature which has accumulated on the subject, neither his death in the Temple nor his escape therefrom has been definitely established, though a very strong presumption is established in favour of the latter.

Some forty candidates for his honours were forthcoming under the Restoration. The most important of these pretenders were Karl Wilhelm Naundorff and the comte de Richemont. NaundorlI's story rested on a series of complicated intrigues. According to him Barras determined to save .the dauphin in order to please Ioséphine Beauharnais, the future empress, having conceived the idea of using the dauphin's existence as a means of dominating the Comte de Provence in the event of a restoration. The dauphin was concealed in the fourth storey of the Tower, a wooden figure being substituted for him. Laurent, to protect himself from the consequences of the substitution, replaced the wooden figure by a deaf mute, who was presently exchanged for the scrofulous child of the death certificate. The deaf mute was also concealed in the Temple. It was not the dead child, but the dauphin who left the prison in the coffin, whence he was extracted by his friends on the way to the cemetery. Richemont's tale that the woman Simon, who Was genuinely attached to him, smuggled him out in aebasket, is simple and more credible, and does not necessarily invalidate the story of the subsequent operations with the deaf mute and the scrofulous patient, Laurent in that case being deceived from the beginning, but it renders them extremely unlikely. A third pretender, Eleazar Williams, did not affect to know anything of his escape. He possessed, he said, no consciousness of his early years, only emerging from idiocy at the age of thirteen, when he was living with an Indian family in New York State. He was a missionary to the Indians when the prince de join ville, son of Louis Philippe, met him, and after some conversation asked him to sign a document abdicating his rights in favour of Louis Philippe, in return for which he, the dauphin (alias Eleazar Williams), was to receive the private inheritance which was his. This Eleazar refused to do. The wildness of this tale refutes itself.

Richemont (Henri Ethelbert Louis Victor Hébert) was in prison in Milan for seven years and began to put forward his claims in Paris in 1828. In 1833 he was again arrested, was brought to trial in the following year and was condemned to twelve years' imprisonment. He escaped after a few months and left the country, to return in 1840. He died at Gleize on the 10th of August 1853, the name of Louis Charles de France being inscribed on .his tomb until the government ordered its removal.

Naundorff, or Naiindorff, who had arrived from nowhere in Berlin in 1810, with papers giving the name Karl Wilhelm Naundorlf, in order to escape the persecutions of which he declared himself the object, settled at Spandau in 1812 as a clockmaker, and married in 1818 Iohanna Einert. In 1822 he removed to Brandenburg, and in 1828 to Crossen, near Frankfort. He was imprisoned from 182 5 to 1828 for coining, though apparently on insufficient evidence, and in 1833 came to push his claims in Paris, where he was recognized as the dauphin by many persons formerly connected with the court 'of' Louis XVI. Expelled from France in 18 36, the day after bringing, a suit against the duchess of Angouléme for the restitution of the daupnin'S private property, he lived in exile till his death at Delft on the 10th of August 1845, and his tomb was inscribed “ Louis XVII., roi de France et de Navarre (Charles Louis, duc de Normandie).” The Dutch authorities who had inscribed on his death certificate the name of Charles Louis de Bourbon, duc de Normandie (Louis XVII.) permitted his son to bear the namede Bourbon, and when the family appealed in 1850-1851, and again in 1874, for the restitution of their civil rights as heirs of Louis XVI. no less an advocate than Iules Favre pleaded their cause. ' Of all the pretenders Naundorff has the best case. He was certainly not the ]ew of Prussian Poland which his enemies declared him to be, and he has to this day a circle of devoted adherents. Since he was sincerely convinced of his own rights, it is surprising that he put forward no claim in 1814.

If the dauphin did escape, it seems probable that he perished shortly afterwards or lived in a safe obscurity. The account' of the substitution in the Temple is well substantiated, even to the names of the substitutes. The curious imbroglio deceived royalists and republicans alike. Lady Atkyns was trying by every possible means to get the dauphin out of his prison when he was apparently already in 'safe hands, if not outside the Temple walls. A child was in fact delivered to her agents, but he was a deaf mute. That there was fraud, and complicated fraud, in the guardians of the dauphin may be taken as proved by a succession of writers from 1850 onwards, and more recently by Frédéric Barbey, who wisely attempts no ultimate solution. When the partisans of Richemont or Naundorff come to the post4Temple careers of their heroes, they become in most cases so uncritical as to be unconvincing.

The official version of the dauphin's history as accepted 'under the Restoration was drawn up by Simien Despréaux in his uncritical Louis XVII. (1817), and is found, fortified»by document-s, iin M.: Eckard's Mémoires historiques sur Louis X VII. (1817) and in A. de Beauchesne's Louis X VII., sa vie, son ogonie, so mort. Captivité de la fornille royale au Temple (2 vols., 1852, and many subsequent editions), containing copies of original documents, and essential to the study of the question, although its sentimental pictures of the boy martyr can no longer be accepted. L. de la Sicotiere, “1 Les faux Louis XVII., " in Revue des questions historiques (vol. xxxii., .»1882), deals with the pretenders jean Marie Hervagault, Mathurin Bruneau and the rest; see also Dr Cabanes, Les M arts mystérieuses de l'histoire (1901), and revised catalogue of the ]. Sanford Saltus collection of Louis XVII. books (New York, 1908). Catherine Welch, in The Little Dauphin (1908) gives a résumé of the various sides of the question. .was

first printed with additions and suppress ions in 1817, 'and often subsequently, the best edition being that from her autograph text by G. Lenotre, La Fille de Louis X VI., Marie Thérese Charlotte de France, duchesse d'Angouléme, le Temple, Féchange, l'exil (1907). There are two collections of writings on the subject: Marie Therese de France, com iled (1852) by the marquis de Pastoret, and comprising beside the memoir written by Marie Thérese herself, articles by M. de Montbel, Sainte-Beuve, ]. Lemoine, La Guéronniere and extracts from Joseph Weber's memoirs; and Mémoires de Marie Thérese duchesse d'Angoule'me, comprising extracts from the narratives of Charles Goret (Mon Témoignage, 1852), of C. F. Beaulieu (Mémoire adressée ct la nation, 1795), of L. G. Michaud (Opinion d'un Français, 1795) and of Mme de Tourzel (Mérnoires 1883). Cf. A. Lanne, La Sazur de Louis X VII., and the articles on “ Madame Royale, " on the “ Captivité de la famille royale au Temple " and on the “ Mise en liberté de Madame ” in M. T0urneux's Bibliographic de l'histoire de Paris pendant' la revolution française (vol. iv., 1906, and vol. i., 1890).

Naiindorj.-For the case of 'Naiindorff see his own narrative, Abrégé de l'histoire des in fortunes du Dauphin (London, 1836; Eng. trans., 1838); also Modeste Gruau de la Barre, Intrigues Madame Royale's own account of the captivity of the Temple