May 11 1815: Writing Bad French

“Writing bad French in the morning. Walked out to Neuilly barrière. Returning, observed the sports of the French city – footballs, and long tennis, which except in this orderly country could never be played – the older gentlemen playing at church-farthing. The Champs Elysée a lively sight. Dined at Massinot’s – fine day for first time. Went at evening to Madame Souza’s, where I got unwittingly into talk with Sismondi, and mentioned his own name to him. He argued about the Constitution, which he has defended – affected to the hereditary peers – appears not so pleasant in talk as in print with things – owned that it was the business of the republicans to get what they could from Napoleon, who, afterall, might be too hard for them. Lascour inveighed – I did not – to say when we asked him to what the country must revert if the Constitution is refused, and was obliged to own, to the old constitution. Lascour told me that he doubted if the Champ de Mai would take place – the representatives rendered it unnecessary for the electors to appear, only to examine the votes, which might be a million, perhaps, in all France. In short, the acceptance of the Constitution by votes is a farce. The director of the posts was there – he said, the communication with England was reopened. A gentleman read a note he had received hid in a bag of money, giving an account of a battle gained by Murat at Fourli. Of Lord William Bentinck’s  quitting Italy, and the English headquarters being broke up. Rumours also of Geneva having hoisted the tricoloured flag – Wellington has proclaimed he shall shoot any soldier who puts his foot in the French territory – this is told from telegraph in the Moniteur – cannon fired yesterday for Napoleon’s visit to the Invalides …”

. —  John Cam Hobhouse writes in his dary for  May 11 1815. #centjours

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