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The Duke de Laval, when there was any doubt or question about anything that could not be settled, always used to say, Eh bien done, demandez à Monsieur de Balbe, car il sait tout; and when I heard him converse I often thought so. Caesar, his only son, a young man about two years older than myself, on whose education he has bestowed unwearied pains, was, among those of his own age, what his father was in the oldest class,—the first at Madrid.
He has much learning, good taste, anugh he is nearly fifty years old, and has passed, with unmoved tranquillity, through the revolutions of the last thirty years, without taking part in any, he is in discussion as prompt, excitable, and enthusiastic as a young man of twenty; and as Caesar de Balbo is the model of all that is bold, vehement, and obstinate, we used to have fine battles.
Indeed the Duke do Laval, with whom I seldom failed to pass three or four hours, every day, in society somewhere, is one of the very few men I hav