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pended. This was the Pope by whom Napoleon was crowned. A strange feeling came over us as we stood in the very room in which and by the side of the very table on which Napoleon signed his abdication, prior to his departure for Elba; and sad as we always feel when we think of the cruel decree which separated Josephine from him, it is not strange that this feeling of sorrow was more impressive when we found ourselves in the identical room, with its furniture unchanged, where this fatal decree was pronounced.
In speaking of Paris and of what we have done and seen here, we hardly know where to begin or what to say. We have kept no regular account of our movements here. Dr. Parker and party preceded us here two weeks, taking lodgings at a private boarding house; and shopping being the leading business with the ladies along with us, sight seeing has been secondary with us all, and we have not sought to go much together. Of course, we have paid our respects to Minister Washburne, who received us in the kindest manner, and obtained tickets for us to visit the Legislative Assembly at Versailles. Unfortunately, however, we were one day too late, as on going to Versailles we were disappointed in learning that an adjournment for some weeks had taken place the day before. We made the trip in a two story street railroad carriage, occupying some two hours each way.
We could have gone by steam cars, but chose the former mode because we wished to see the country along the line of the stage road, which runs very near St. Cloud and through the village of Sèvres. We entered the tramway carriage, capable of accommodating thirty or forty persons, near the Louvre and passed along the Seine in the rear of the Palace and Garden of the Tuileries, at the left of the Champs Élysées and at the right of the Champ de Mars, where the great Exposition of 1867 was held, on the opposite side of the river. The trip would have been pleasanter had the day been fair, as we thought when we set out it would be; but we were served with all kinds of weather-sunshine, rain, hail, and a flurry of snow in the course of the day. The Field of Mars is a large open space, bare as the Desert of Sahara of vegetation, and used as a military parade ground. Some of the private residences along the country road are quite elegant. Arriving at Versailles, we at once made our way to the Palace, an immense edifice, with a façade over one quarter of a mile in extent. Two of the larger halls of the Palace are now used, one for the Senate and the other for the Chamber of Deputies. The larger of these two halls was constructed for a Theater. These we were permitted to enter, but the principal interest centered in the more private apartments abounding in works of art. These are magnificent in every respect, and are designated by various names, such as the Salle de Constantine, the Salle des Croisades, the Salle des États Généraux, the Salle de l'Abondance, the Salon de Venus, the Salon de Diane, the Salon d'Apollon, or Throne Room, the Grand Galerie de Louis XIV., etc. In the Gallery of Statuary are many excellent works, including a
beautiful statue of “Joan of Arc," which is much admired. In several of the rooms there are many historical paintings, mostly modern. One of these, very striking, represents “The Storming of Malakoff at Sevastopol." In the Hall of the Crusades are pictures descriptive of battles fought by the Crusaders in their efforts to regain possession of the Holy Land. In the Salle du Sacre is David's famous picture of “The Coronation of Napoleon,” which cost, it is said, twenty thousand dollars. In the same or another room is an equally grand picture, a most striking representation of “The Crowning of Josephine by the Emperor” at the Church of Nôtre Dame in Paris on the 2d of December, 1804. Josephine is kneeling, attended by two Maids of Honor bearing her long train, and Napoleon, standing by her and holding the crown up with both hands, is about to place it upon her head. Officers of the Church in their robes and other insignia of office, many of the nobility of both sexes, the foreign ministers, and others are in attendance, as interested spectators, the portraits of many of them being painted from life. One of these was pointed out to us as that of General Armstrong, the American Minister. The Napoleon family is largely represented here by busts, statues, and paintings, nor are they alone in this respect, great numbers of other distinguished men and women of France being in like manner remembered. We paused to look with more than common interest upon the Chambre à Coucher of Marie Antoinette, as on a former occasion the writer entered her little prison in Paris. It was in this room that she lay asleep on the night of the 5th of October, 1789, when the mob broke into the Palace. “She made her escape
through a small corridor leading to the grand antechamber of the King:” In one of the rooms we saw portraits of Washington, Daniel Webster, Henry Clay, Andrew Jackson, and James K. Polk.
Nothing can be more charming than the Palace grounds, adorned as they are with innumerable statues, a magnificent staircase, splendid fountains, flower beds, and shady groves.
In the Grand Trianon, at the further end of the Park, a building “erected for Madame Maintenon, a favorite mistress of Louis XIV.,” there are some fine apartments, in one of which, the Cabinet de la Reine, is the bed formerly occupied by Josephine. On the whole, we were amply compensated by our visit to Versailles.
Another day was devoted to St. Cloud and Sèvres. The glory of St. Cloud had departed, leaving only a mass of ruins. Its beautiful Palace was entirely destroyed during the late war-set on fire, it is said, by French shells in an endeavor to dislodge the Germans on the 13th of October, 1870.
The surrounding grounds are still beautiful, but their magnificent Cascade was silent on the day of our visit. A short walk took us to the Imperial Manufactory of Porcelain at Sèvres, just out of the village. The building is of the commonest character of a workshop. We were kindly received and shown through the entire establishment, from the molding and painting rooms to the ovens. None but accomplished workmen and artists could turn out such works as go from this famous manufactory. We were charmed with some of the portraits and other pictures on porcelain we saw here. We do not wonder that they bring a high price.
Beautiful as are the surroundings of Paris, much the greater interest, of course, centers in the city,