which certainly was gloomy enough. At last he rose to go, but continued to talk in the same disagreeable strain as he moved very slowly towards the door; and then, at the instant he went out of the room, said, in a peculiar tone of voice, ‘Et, cependant, Madame de Duras, il y a un petit moyen, si l'on savait s'en servir,’1 and disappeared, waiting no reply. An awkward silence of a moment followed, and then, making sincerely grateful adieus and acknowledgments to Mad. de Duras, I followed him. But I had not fairly got into my carriage, in the court-yard, before M. de Senonnes overtook me, and said that Mad. de Duras would be obliged to me if I would return to her for a moment in the library. Of course I went, and as soon as I had shut the door, she said, ‘You must be aware of the meaning of the extraordinary conversation you have just heard, and especially of the Prince's last words; and I hope you will do me the favor not to speak of it while you remain in France. As you are going away so soon, you will not, I trust, feel it much of a sacrifice.’ Of course I gave her the promise and kept it, although I should much have liked to tell the whole conversation at the De Broglies', where I dined with Humboldt, Lafayette, and De Pradt the same evening, and who would have enjoyed it prodigiously. But the first house at which I dined in England was Lord Holland's, where I met Tierney, Mackintosh, and some other of the leading Whigs, to whom I told it amidst great laughter. Two or three times afterwards, when I met Sir James Mackintosh, he spoke of Talleyrand, and always called him ‘le petit moyen.’
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