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      In March, 1649, there were in the Huron country and its neighborhood eighteen Jesuit priests, four lay brothers, twenty-three men serving without pay, seven hired men, four boys, and eight soldiers. [15] Of this number, fifteen priests were engaged in the various missions, while all the rest were retained permanently at Sainte Marie. All was method, 367 discipline, and subordination. Some of the men were assigned to household work, and some to the hospital; while the rest labored at the fortifications, tilled the fields, and stood ready, in case of need, to fight the Iroquois. The Father Superior, with two other priests as assistants, controlled and guided all. The remaining Jesuits, undisturbed by temporal cares, were devoted exclusively to the charge of their respective missions. Two or three times in the year, they all, or nearly all, assembled at Sainte Marie, to take counsel together and determine their future action. Hither, also, they came at intervals for a period of meditation and prayer, to nerve themselves and gain new inspiration for their stern task.


      Lettres de Ratification, MS.


      For a moment more, however, let us stay with the chronicle. At last, when all was suffered, the infuriated boys missed Ben Butler and Big Bethel! One day soon after that engagement, returning through Richmond in new uniforms--of a sort--with scoured faces, undusty locks, full ranks, fresh horses, new harness and shining pieces, and with every gun-carriage, limber, and caisson freshly painted, they told their wrath to Franklin street girls while drinking their dippers of water. Also--"Good-by!--With smiting pity he saw her affright. "Go back!" he once more gasped: "In God's name, go back!" while recklessly he stepped forward out of cover. But in splendid desperation, with all her soul's battle in her eyes--horror, love, defiance, and rending chagrin striving and smiting, she sprang after him into the open, and clutched and twined his arms. The blue skirmish-line, without hearing, saw him; saw, and withheld their fire, fiercely glad that tactics and mercy should for once agree. And Anna saw.

      On reaching France he repaired to court, and it may have been at this time that a royal patent raised him to the rank of the untitled nobility. He soon wearied of the antechambers of the Louvre. It was here, however, that his destiny awaited him, and the work of his life was unfolded. Aymar de Chastes, Commander of the Order of St. John and Governor of Dieppe, a gray-haired veteran of the civil wars, wished to mark his closing days with some notable achievement for France and the Church. To no man was the King more deeply indebted. In his darkest hour, when the hosts of the League were gathering round him, when friends were falling off, and the Parisians, exulting in his certain ruin, were hiring the windows of the Rue St. Antoine to see him led to the Bastille, De Chastes, without condition or reserve, gave up to him the town and castle of Dieppe. Thus he was enabled to fight beneath its walls the battle of Arques, the first in the series of successes which secured his triumph; and he had been heard to say that to this friend in his adversity he owed his own salvation and that of France.

      XXXIV A FREE-GIFT BAZAAR"Why, then," archly said Anna, "who is?"


      About noon he gave his farewell feast, after the 81 custom of those who knew themselves to be at the point of death. All were welcome to this strange banquet; and when the company were gathered, the host addressed them in a loud, firm voice: "My brothers, I am about to die. Do your worst to me. I do not fear torture or death." Some of those present seemed to have visitings of real compassion; and a woman asked the priests if it would be wrong to kill him, and thus save him from the fire.

      Too much else awaits our telling to allow here a recital of their hearts' war while love--and love's foes--hid in winter quarters, as it were. That is to say, from the season of that mad kiss which she had never forgiven herself (much less repented), to the day of Beauregard's appeal, early in '62, to all the plantations and churches in Dixie's Land to give him their bells, bells, bells--every bit of bronze or brass they could rake up or break off--to be cast into cannon; and to his own Louisiana in particular to send him, hot speed, five thousand more men to help him and Albert Sidney Johnston drive Buel and Grant out of Tennessee.64 Oh, Zeus! oh, Sun, oh Earth!... If any one dares to violate this compact, let his brains and his childrens brains be poured out on the ground like this wine.

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      If my wish has found favor with Ye, Heavenly Powers, cried Charicleia, raising her arms with southern fervor towards the sky, oh! give me, in my husbands presence, a sign that my prayer will be granted."When I hands in my checks, O, my ladies!"

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      The stony-hearted bigot gave the signal; and those who will may paint to themselves the horrors of the scene.The boy whirled up with the old woman clinging. A stream of oaths and curses appallingly original poured from him, not as through the lips alone but from his very eyes and nostrils. That the girl was first of all a fool and damned was but a trivial part of the cry--of the explosion of his whole year's mistaken or half-mistaken inferences and smothered indignation. With equal flatness and blindness he accused her of rejoicing in the death of Kincaid: the noblest captain (he ramped on) that ever led a battery; kindest friend that ever ruled a camp; gayest, hottest, daringest fighter of Shiloh's field; fiercest for man's purity that ever loved the touch of women's fingers; sternest that ever wept on the field of death with the dying in his arms; and the scornfullest of promotion that ever was cheated of it at headquarters.

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      Pontrincourt set himself without delay to the task of Christianizing New France, in an access of zeal which his desire of proving that Jesuit aid was superfluous may be supposed largely to have reinforced. He had a priest with him, one La Fleche, whom he urged to the pious work. No time was lost. Membertou first was catechised, confessed his sins, and renounced the Devil, whom we are told he had faithfully served during a hundred and ten years. His squaws, his children, his grandchildren, and his entire clan were next won over. It was in June, the day of St. John the Baptist, when the naked proselytes, twenty-one in number, were gathered on the shore at Port Royal. Here was the priest in the vestments of his office; here were gentlemen in gay attire, soldiers, laborers, lackeys, all the infant colony. The converts kneeled; the sacred rite was finished, Te Deum was sung, and the roar of cannon proclaimed this triumph over the powers of darkness. Membertou was named Henri, after the King; his principal squaw, Marie, after the Queen. One of his sons received the name of the Pope, another that of the Dauphin; his daughter was called Marguerite, after the divorced Marguerite de Valois, and, in like manner, the rest of the squalid company exchanged their barbaric appellatives for the names of princes, nobles, and ladies of rank.


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