to bring from Paris a dozen copies of the paper containing the report to distribute among the jury. I told him he would commit a crime, according to English and American law,—‘Embracery;’ but he laughed at the idea. This forenoon the Procureur-General first spoke, then the counsel for the prisoner; then again the Procureur, and again the counsel for the prisoner. I understood that they had a right to speak as many times as they chose, the counsel for the prisoner always having the last word. In the arguments there was nothing such as I have been accustomed to; every thing was different. The defence was theatrical, brilliant, French. The counsel grasped the hand of his client, and worked the whole audience into a high pitch of excitement. At the close of his argument, he called upon his client to promise, in the face of the court and of God, that, if he were restored to liberty by the verdict of the jury, he would hasten to precipitate himself upon the tomb of the unfortunate girl he had destroyed and pray for forgiveness; and the prisoner, by way of response, stretched his hand to his counsel, who seized it with a strong grasp, saying at once, “J'ai fini.” Women screamed and fainted, strong men yielded, and tears flowed down the cheeks of the jury and even the grim countenances of the half-dozen police, or gendarmes, who sat by the side of the prisoner, elevated and within the observation of all the audience. The arguments concluded, the judge, sitting (and the jury sitting), read a very succinct statement of the case, and the law which bore upon it. This occupied perhaps five or ten minutes. The jury then retired, and within less than ten minutes returned. The prisoner, in the mean time, had been conducted to a room out of the court-room. The jury rendered their verdict, ‘Not guilty;’ the prisoner was then brought in, and the judge communicated the decision to him, dismissing him with an impressive admonition. The greatest excitement prevailed in the court-room when the verdict was announced. Women, and men too, cried for joy. So much for a French criminal trial!1 March 18 (Sunday). Stayed in Versailles another day, to view the wonderful palace, now opened as an historical museum, and the former scene of the Arabian Nights' magnificence of Louis Quatorze. I had previously, on the days of the trial, stolen some peeps at the garden; but I gave to-day entirely to this object. All that my imagination pictured fell infinitely short of what I found to be the reality.2 March 19. Was at the soiree of De Gerando this evening. March 20. Again went to the College Royal de France and heard Lerminier. His audience was quite crowded, and he was excessively animated. He discussed the relations of France with the Church, under Philip Augustus; the character of Pope Innocent III.; and the crusade against the Albigenses. Americans are accused of national vanity; but certainly they must yield the palm on this account to the French. This whole lecture was calculated to pamper the national vanity of Frenchmen, and to fortify them in a belief, which needs no additional support among them, that they are and
This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
Chapter 2 : Parentage and Family.—the father.
Chapter 3 : birth and early Education.— 1811 - 26 .
Chapter 4 : College Life.— September , 1826 , to September , 1830 .—age, 15 - 19 .
Chapter 5 : year after College.— September , 1830 , to September , 1831 .—Age, 19 - 20 .
Chapter 6 : Law School .— September , 1831 , to December , 1833 .—Age, 20 - 22 .
Chapter 7 : study in a law office .—Visit to Washington .— January , 1854 , to September , 1834 .—Age, 23 .
Chapter 8 : early professional life.— September , 1834 , to December , 1837 .—Age, 23 - 26 .
Chapter 9 : going to Europe .— December , 1837 .—Age, 26 .
Chapter 10 : the voyage and Arrival.— December , 1837 , to January , 1838 — age, 26 - 27 .
Chapter 11 : Paris .—its schools.— January and February , 1838 .—Age, 27 .
Chapter 12 : Paris .—Society and the courts.— March to May , 1838 .—Age, 27 .
Chapter 13 : England .— June , 1838 , to March , 1839 .—Age, 27 - 28 .
Chapter 14 : first weeks in London .— June and July , 1838 .—Age, 27 .
Chapter 15 : the Circuits .—Visits in England and Scotland .— August to October , 1838 .—age, 27 .
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