Imágenes de páginas

small and resembled a prison. It was of the great Condé, of the Prince de the time when the Italian renaissance Conti, and of Madame de Longueville. was extending its ramifications into The Chantilly estate having thus beFrance just after the expeditions into come the property of the house of Italy made by Charles the Eighth, France, it ever afterwards remained so. Louis the Twelfth, and François Pre The historians of the end of the sixmier. Utilizing the leisure given him teenth century are loud in their praises by his disgrace under François the Sec- of the beauties of Chantilly, and the ond, he built a new castle in the new pleasures enjoyed by the little court style, a mixture of the Roman architec- which Prince Henri II. held there. M. ture then being revived beyond the Cousin has written eloquently about it Alps, and of the elegant and variegated in his able work on Madame de LongueFrench architecture. The old massive ville. It is, however, to the Grand towers of defence had not yet been Condé that Chantilly chiefly owes its discarded, but their character had been renown. He not only embellished it changed. Instead of being a warlike internally, but caused Le Notre to lay element, they formed a decorative fea- out new gardens, make channels to ture. The defensive appearance sub- carry away the waters of the brooks, sisted, but was brightened by the en- and enclose the fish-ponds within solid larged windows and the openworked walls. Charles the Fifth had visited balustrades.

Chantilly in the time of the Constable; Lawns and flower-beds charmed the and later Henri the Fourth had come eye, while beautiful avenues stretched there, attracted, however, more by the away into the forest. Anne I., Duke of charms of the châtelaine than by the Montmorency, perished at Saint-Denis beauty of the spot and the sumptuousat the hand of Robert Stuart. He was ness of the new château. The Grand seventy-four years old and had had suf- Condé was visited there by Louis the ficient time to give his residence at Fourteenth and all his court, whom he Chantilly an air of grandeur, which his entertained with a splendor that quite descendants have not failed to increase. dazzled Madame de Sévigné. EveryBut the work of the old warrior was body has read the letter in which she destined to undergo some vicissitudes describes those festivities and relates His grandson, Henri II. de Mont- with such unaffected, inimitable art the morency, was, for a short time, the events of that famous day when Vatel idol of the people and the court. A killed himself: brilliant prince, but weak-willed, he al

On soupa, il y eut quelques tables où le lowed himself to be drawn into a con ròti manqua.

Cela saisit Vatel; il spiracy against Richelieu.

This was dit plusieurs fois: "Je suis perdu d'honneur; the last cry, so to speak, uttered by the voici un affront que je ne supporterai pas." feudal spirit. Henri lost his head t

Il dit à Gourville: "La tête me tourne; il y Toulouse in 1632, at the age of thirty

a douze nuits que je n'ai dormi; aidez


a donner des ordres." . . . Le prince alla eight years.

With him the first ducal jusque dans la chambre de Vatel et lui dit: branch of the Montmorencys became

“Vatel, tout va bien, rien n'était si beau extinct. His sister Charlotte, the most

que le souper du roi.” Il répondit: “Monbeautiful woman of her time, entered seigneur, votre bonté m'achève; je sais into possession of the sequestrated que le rôti a manqué à deux tables." property. She married Henri II. de “Point du tout,” dit le prince; "ne vous Bourbon-Condé, and thus it was that fâchez pas; tout va bien.” Minuit vient; the eaglets of the Montmorencys be- le feu d'artifice ne réussit pas; il fut couunited to the fleurs-de-lys of

vert d'un nuage. Il coûtait 16,000 francs.

A quatre heures du matin, Vatel s'en va France, and the bipartite escutcheon was able to be sculptured by the Duc contre un petit pourvoyeur qui lui apportait

partout; il trouve tout endormi; il rend'Aumale on the walls of the restored seulement deux charges de marée; il attend château. This Princess de Bourbon- quelque temps; sa tête s'échauffait, il Condé-Montmorency was the mother crut qu'il n'aurait pas d'autre marée; il


[ocr errors]

trouva Gourville il lui dit: "Monsieur, je The Revolution swept down upon ne survivrai pas à cet affront-ci." Gour- Chantilly as upon many other splendid ville se moqua de lui. Vatel monta à sa

residences. The old castle was demolchambre, mit son épée contre la porte et se ished, and the small castle would have la passa au travers du cœur, mais ce ne

shared the same fate had not the buyer fut qu'au troisième coup. ... La marée cependant arrive de tous côtés; on cherche delayed its destruction too long. This Vatel pour la distribuer; on monte à sa

small castle, called the Château d'Enchambre; on heurte, on enfonce la porte, ghien, together with the stables, were on le trouve noyé dans son sang; on court

turned into barracks. Under the Emà M. le prince qui fut au désespoir." pire, the forest was an appanage


Queen Hortense, and when the restoraSuch is Madame de Sévigné's account tion came, Prince Louis-Henri de Bourof it. To-day Vatel would have felt no bon re-entered into possession of the esuneasiness. In the absence of sea-fish tate and the ruins of the castle. He he would have fallen back on fresh- died in 1818, and his son, the last of the water fish, with which the ponds at Condés, whose son, the Duc d'Enghien, Chantilly are abundantiy stocked. He was shot at Vincennes, himself died would have artistically disguised the shortly after the revolution of 1830. carp as turbot and the eels as rock lob. He was found hanging to a windowsters. At a push he would have served fastening in the Château de Saint-Leu, breast of chicken as filleted sole, where he was then staying. Full light great has been the progress made in has never been thrown upon his tragic the culinary art in France since the end. By his will the youthful Duc days of Louis the Fourteenth. Yet d'Aumale was made universal legatee. they were not afraid to spend money. The immense fortune of the Condés A well-informed chronicler compiled an could not have come into better hands. account of what it cost the prince to The young prince had the traditional entertain worthily his great cousin the valor of the Bourbons. His military king, and he estimated the expense at disposition, of which he gave such briitwo hundred thousand livres, which is liant evidence in Africa, was coupled equal to eight hundred thousand francs with a passionate fondness for lllof our money. But this is nothing in erature and art. Early in life, comparison with the millions of francs when master of his ideas, he formed spent two centuries earlier by a mer- the design of bringing back to Chantilly chant of Florence to celebrate his its past splendors, and of using the revdaughter's marriage.

enues of the domain for the complete Chantilly was still further enlarged restoration of the home of the Condés. and improved by the descendants of the The revolution of 1848, which broke out great Condé. They built a church, while he was governor of Algeria, preplanted the Parc de Sylvie, and erected vented him from executing his plans at various subsidiary buildings, or com- that time. Popular with the army pleted those which were still unfin which he had led to victory, beloved ished. Thus the famous stables with and respected in France, he might marble troughs were built, which can easily have brought over his troops and hold two hundred and forty horses. commenced with the provisional gov. When Paul the First, Emperor of Rus- ernment a struggle, the issue of which sia, came to France, Louis-Henri de would scarcely have been doubtful. Bourbon, grandson of the great Condé, But he preferred exile to civil gave, in the central rotunda which From this, and from the reserved attiforms a riding school, a feast ending tude which he always maintained after with a sort of transformation scene. his return to France, a writer has tried The screens which shut off the two to draw the conclusion that in subwings containing the horses were mitting to exile, and in appearing to drawn aside, displaying the entire sta- lend his words and actions to the pass. ble to the sight of the guests.

ing of laws contrary to equity and jus.







tice, the Duc d'Aumale adhered to their tion, have been increased, especially the principles, and abandoned for his part library and the picture-gallery. Both the rights of his family. This writer is were started in England, some mastermistaken. He seems to have forgotten pieces on canvases and on panels, as the high-spirited letter which the well as some rare books, having been prince addressed to M. Grévy, when the acquired the duke during his exile. latter countersigned the decree taking They cannot be described here, but we from him the dearest of his titles, that must not omit to mention few of of general in his country's service. He them. First in chronological order is a had been forbidden to serve on the bat- painting in tempera by Giotto called tle-field at a time when France had “La Mort de la Vierge, a notable work dire need of a valiant captain, but he on account of the solemnity of its subwas thought of when a military judge ject. It contains twenty-one figures was wanted, in which capacity he per- within its small frame. This valuable formed his duty with an ability and picture belonged to the collection of M. high-mindedness which extorted the Reiset, a former curator of the Louvre admiration of all Europe. He had even Gallery. The whole of the Reiset colbeen visited in his retirement in order lection was acquired by the Duc to be asked to place the collar of the d’Aumale in 1879. Next, there Golden Fleece around the neck of the some paintings, not striking in appearPresident of the Republic. His duty ance, but useful for the history of the done and the dictates of courtesy satis, art of the early schools of Sienna and fied, the hero of Abder Kader had been Florence. The quattrocentisti appear in struck off the rolls of the army; after a few paintings by Fra Angelico and his family's banishment had come his his school. Then there

Saint own degradation. The cup full; John-Baptist, at once hard, rigid and he repulsed it with indignation, an ac- mystical, by Andrea del Castagno; a tion which cost him a new period of ex- charming “mystic marriage of Saint ile lasting three years.

Francis to humility, poverty, and chasWhen the Duc d'Aumale came back, tity," three figures very touching in political feeling had no doubt become their idealism, by Pietro de Sano; a virless strong, for his return gave general gin between two saints, by Filippo satisfaction. He found that great Lippi, a curious example of realism; a progress had been made with the works profile portrait of the beautiful Simonat Chantilly under the direction of the etta Vespucci, the friend of Julian de architect, Viollet-Leduc. The latter Medicis, which is attributed to Polladied before finishing his task and was juolo and might also be attributed to succeeded by M. Daumet, who carried Botticelli; "Vierge glorieuse" by it to completion.

Perugini, formerly in the Northwick The reconstruction of the château collection; an “Annunciation,” by Fran. having been terminated, the duke was cia; "Autumn,” by Botticelli; and able to give effect to an idea long enter- "Esther and Ahasuerus," a scene into tained by him. He had wished to be. which Filippo Lippi has put all the queath the whole estate of Chantilly to grace and savor of his genius. that great society, the Institut, to which The examples of the earlier period of he belonged in three different capaci- the Milanese and Venetian schools ties. He did better, he made it over ir- show us nothing very remarkable prior revocably by a donation in due legal to an infant Jesus by Bernardino form with the adhesion of all his fam. Luini, which seems to have come from ily, simply reserving to himself the pos- Raphael's pencil. The “Christ with session thereof during his lifetime, in the reed,” by Titian, of which there is order to embellish it still further. This a replica at Vienna, was bought by the arrangement has not been without ad- Duc d'Aumale at Brescia. Much negovantage to Chantilly. The collections, tiation took place before this picture all of which are comprised in the dona was allowed to pass the frontier. A



"Virgin” with a numerous company of to France, passed from band to hand, saints, is one of Palma Vecchio's best was sold for twenty-four thousand canvases. It belonged for a time to the francs at the sale of the Aguado collecNorthwick collection, but passed to tion, and again changed hands for one Chantilly with the Reiset pictures. hundred and fifty thousand francs at

Passing over a number of secondary the Delessert sale, in 1869, the Duc works, we reach one of the master- d'Aumale being the purchaser. M. pieces of the Condé museum, Raphael's Gruyer estimates that if the picture “Three Graces." M. Gruyer, the Duc were offered for sale to-day, it would d'Aumale's confidant in art matters, re- fetch more than one million francs, but lates that the prince could not recog. he thinks that it is now at the end of nize the three Graces in this little its wanderings. This is a point which painting. To him, the three figures, we shall examine further on. each holding an apple or orange, After noting examples of Andrea del were an allegory of the three ages of Sarto, Jules Romain, Perino del Vaga, woman,-one representing youth, an- and Bronzino, all derived from the esother the marriageable age, and the tate of the Prince of Salermo, and an third mature age. He explained his historical portrait, that of the famous idea by saying that the first two appear Odet de Coligny, Cardinal of Châtillon, to the best advantage, almost full face, painted in France by Primaticcio, we whereas the woman who has reached reach the Bolognese school with all the the child-bearing age partially hides Carraccis. A canvas by Annibal Carherself and shows her back. This is an racci, “Venus Asleep,” is its only caporiginal and plausible theory; but it ital item. After these the Italian does not convince M. Gruyer, who per- schools are met with more and more sists in seeing in Raphael's picture an rarely and finally come to an end, with eloquent souvenir of an antique paint. the exception of a landmark here and ing passed from the Dudley Gallery to there to guide us through the history Chantilly for the modest price of 25,- of Italian painting. 0001. It has been engraved in France, A few fragments of Spanish painting first by Mr. Walker, and afterwards by lead us to the Byzantine school, from M. Adrien Didier, whose work is the banks of the Rbine, and to the worthy of the original.

Dutch and Flemish schools, in which Another small picture by Raphael. we meet with a portrait of Jean-sansafter his second manner, possesses, Peur by an unknown hand, two porapart from its great value as a work of traits by Jan Van Eyck, or at all events art, a certain historical value. It is a after his manner, and a very interestpainting of the Virgin called the Or- ing figure of the Grand Batard de leans Virgin, a family heirloom, so to Bourgogne. This Grand Bâtard, named speak. It has very great merit in the Antoine, was the second of Philippe-leeyes of connoisseurs. Painted at Ur- Bon's nineteen bastard children. Some bino between 1505 and 1508, it is im- of their descendants might still be bued with Florentine grace, and figures found by careful search in Flanders or among Raphael's works as a striking Burgundy. and perfect production. This picture Among the Flemish quattrocentisti we travelled a good deal before reaching have to mention a picture by Thierry the Orleans Gallery. It got into the Bouts, entitled “Translation of Relics," Lands of David Teniers the Younger, of a deeply religious character; two who was accused of having touched up valuable works by Jan Memling, and the background; but it is certain that some historical figures by unknown he did not commit that crime. During painters, one of whom is supposed to the French revolution the Orleans Vir- have been Holbein. We then come to gin was taken back to Flanders for a very curious portrait of Elizabeth safety, and was sold there for twelve Stuart, queen of Bohemia, by Mierethousand francs. It came once more velt. Without stopping to examine


some portraits by Pourbus and Hen- graceful or charming. One asks onedrich Pot, we may draw attention to a self whether the painter has not picfull-length portrait of Gaston de tured an artist's dream rather than France, Duke of Orleans, by Van Dyck. taken his models from nature. The This portrait, one of the master's fin salon in the Champs-Elysées now open est, was given in 1829 to the Duke of contains a finely executed stroke-enOrleans, afterwards Louis-Philippe, by graving of this picture. King George the Fourth. It is well Among the treasures recently added known in England. By the same to the Condé Museum, which is the painter there are two other portraits; name given to it by the Duc d'Aumale, one, half-length, of the famous Count we can only mention the forty Foude Berghes, is the figure of a soldier, quets purchased by the prince at without fear if not without reproach; Frankfort in 1891, and for which he paid and the other, hung alongside to form two hundred and fifty thousand francs a contrast, that of the Princess de Bar to Mr. George Brentano, their former bançon, pretty, gentle, and winning, owner. They are miniatures extracted who is less known than she ought to from a primer written and illustrated be. Then come the small Flemings and for Etienne Chevalier, treasurer of a picture of the Grand Condé by France, The space at our command Teniers Junior.

would not allow us to do more than inHere, had we space, we should give dicate the subjects, and a catalogue of a pen-and-ink sketch of that great man, this kind would have but a secondary although we should have

diffi- interest. M. Gruyer has made a special culty in doing so after the portrait study of them, the results of which he drawn for all time by the author of the has published in a large volume illus“Histoire des Princes de la Maison de trated by forty heliographic engravings Condé." Juste d'Egmont also has from the originals. Unfortunately, this painted Louis II., Prince de Bourbon, book, which is a very erudite work, has but at a later age-thirty-five years. not been put on the market; but it This portrait must have been painted ought at least to be possible to consult from 1654 to 1658, when the prince was it in the great public libraries. serving in Spain. It formed part of We have said nothing about the pieCondé's estate, and is therefore the tures of the French school, which ocoriginal. Replicas are to be found in cupy a very distinguished place in the France, Belgium, and Spain. There Musée de Condé. After the works by are doubtless some in England as well. Fouquet, Clouet, and their pupils, the

We will pass over the remaining pic- modern French school takes up the tures of the two schools, although they largest space. Ingres, Delacroix, and include some fine sea-pieces and an ex- Meissonier are worthily represented. cellent landscape by Ruisdael, in order The late prince, in making arrangeto deal with the English school, the ex ments for the endurance and glory of amples of which are not numerous, but his life's work, did not fail to provide extremely interesting.

sufficient resources, not only for its Joshua Reynolds is represented by a maintenanee, staff, repairs, and portrait of the Duc de Chartres, after- forth, but also for gradual additions to wards Louis-Philippe. He is painted the collections. There is no need for full length, in the uniform of a colonel anxiety in this respect. The Chantilly of Hussars. This picture, of ight col- estate is very large. The forest not oring, is a reduction of the large por- only produces wood, but contains extrait which is at Hampton Court, and tensive beds of that limestone of which which has suffered from fire as well as Paris is built. These might be made to from the restorers. By the same artist yield a considerable revenue, and the there is "the two Waldegraves,” mother Institute of France can be relied upon and daughter, which is one of his mas- to deal prudently with this source of interpieces. Nothing could

come. What we fear is a danger of




« AnteriorContinuar »