Memoirs of the Countess Potocka, Page 6

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Doubleday & McClure co., 1900 - History - 253 pages
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Page xx - ... under notice. Tables of useful data and physical constants are printed at the end of the volume. Memoirs of the Countess Potocka. Edited by Casimir Stryienski. Authorised translation by Lionel Strachey. Pp. xxiv + 253- (New York : Doubleday and McClure Company, 1900.) THESE memoirs cover the period from the third partition of Poland to the incorporation of what was left of that country with the Russian Empire. They deal with episodes — more or less romantic and interesting — in Couritess...
Page 75 - So many portraits exist of this astonishing man, his history has been so much written about, all the stories told by the children of his old soldiers will live so long, that the generations to come will know him almost as well as ourselves. But what will be difficult to grasp is how deep and unexpected the impression was which those felt who saw him for the first time. As for me, I experienced a sort of stupor, a mute surprise, like that which seizes one at the aspect of any prodigy. It seemed to...
Page xxi - Potocka's career, referring to journeys, Court balls, and Napoleon I., between 1812 and 1820. The authoress died, at the age of ninety-one, in Paris, where her brilliant salon held no insignificant place in the gilded pleasures of the Second Empire. There is little of interest to scientific readers in the memoirs ; but one or two incidents referring to astrologers are amusing. LETTERS TO THE EDITOR. [The Editor does not hold himself responsible for opinions expressed by his correspondents.
Page 160 - no doubt you got home very late yesterday; we had hoped to see you, and your place remained empty!" Encouraged by this gracious reception, I tried to express the regret I had experienced in opening the letter which apprised me of everything I had lost by my absence. As he listened to me with a smile, I added that it would have been better if I had not come to Paris. He let me talk, was amused at my disappointment, and ended in consoling me by saying, with charming good-humour, that I ought to know...
Page 41 - As soon as the table waa cleared his valet put a mirror, a basin and brushes before him, and then and there the prince began his morning toilet over again, just as if he had been alone in his dressing room, while every one was waiting for him to finish to get up from the table. I could not suppress my astonishment and...
Page 234 - Long live the king of Poland! ' " 46 " From anybody else," the Countess continued, " this mode of announcing an event of such great moment, would justly have been thought a kind of epigram, for there was certainly comedy in all this affair. But it was not supposed that the imperial commissary was perpetrating a bad joke. So the thing was done in that way, and as there were a number of people in the parterre who were suborned, and still more who were dupes, the shouts and the applause became frantic....
Page 83 - No doubt a number of people had accumulated at the door the moment that Napoleon made his appearance, for he walked very quickly, as was his habit. The poor envoys lost their heads, and tumbled all over each other.
Page 196 - Poles, to these imperial exigencies— our habits were too republican. Je'rome has been wrongly accused of being without advantages; he had a quick and just mind. With a touch more of the legitimate sovereign, and one less of puerile vanity, he might have passed for a distinguished prince; but, being a spoilt child of fortune, he used and abused her bounty. It was the history of nearly all the members of that family. Each of them, taken individually, possessed incontestible qualities, but the greatness...
Page 96 - After listening for half an hour he became impatient. "That is not sentiment; it is a hash of phrases — a head front-side back. Don't you see she thinks she loves this Englishman because he shows himself cold and indifferent? Go to bed — it's time wasted. Whenever an author personifies herself in a book it is a failure. Good-night.
Page 127 - Each had her day, and so every morning it was a case of a long and fatiguing toilette, and of spending the best hours of the day in putting on and taking off a court dress. In the evening came rest — at the theatre. The Emperor received about noon, in his study. Standing with one hand leaning on his desk, he waited, bestowing a gracious glance on you if you were young and pretty. He received me with unusual civility, which considerably diminished the awkwardness of the ceremony. He was good enough...

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