Joseph II. and His Court
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Joseph II. and His Court


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Project Gutenberg Etext Joseph II. and His Court, by L. Muhlbach #8 in our series by L. MuhlbachCopyright laws are changing all over the world, be sure to check the laws for your country before redistributing thesefiles!!!Please take a look at the important information in this header. We encourage you to keep this file on your own disk,keeping an electronic path open for the next readers.Please do not remove this.This should be the first thing seen when anyone opens the book. Do not change or edit it without written permission. Thewords are carefully chosen to provide users with the information they need about what they can legally do with the texts.**Welcome To The World of Free Plain Vanilla Electronic Texts****Etexts Readable By Both Humans and By Computers, Since 1971*******These Etexts Are Prepared By Thousands of Volunteers!*****Information on contacting Project Gutenberg to get Etexts, and further information is included below, including fordonations.The Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation is a 501(c)(3) organization with EIN [Employee Identification Number]64-6221541Title: Joseph II. and His CourtAuthor: L. MuhlbachRelease Date: February, 2003 [Etext #3793][Yes, we are about one year ahead of schedule][The actual date this file first posted = 09/12/01]Edition: 10Language: EnglishProject Gutenberg Etext Joseph II. and His Court, by L. Muhlbach******This file should be named j2ahc10.txt or******Corrected EDITIONS of ...



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Project Gutenberg Etext Joseph II. and His Court, by L. Muhlbach #8 in our series by L. Muhlbach
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Title: Joseph II. and His Court
Author: L. Muhlbach
Release Date: February, 2003 [Etext #3793] [Yes, we are about one year ahead of schedule] [The actual date this file first posted = 09/12/01] Edition: 10 Language: English
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An Historical Novel
I. The Conference. II. The Letter. III. The Toilet of the Empress. IV. Husband and Wife. V. The Archduke Joseph. VI. Kaunitz. VII. The Toilet. VIII. The Red Stockings. IX. New Austria.
X. The Young Soldier. XI. The Empress and her Son. XII. An Italian Night. XIII. Isabella of Parma. XIV. The Ambassador Extraordinary. XV. The Dream of Love. XVI. Gluck. XVII. The New Opera. XVIII. Ranier Von Calzabigi. XIX. The Birthday. XX. Orpheus and Eurydice. XXI. "In Three Years, We Meet Again." XXII. Che Faro Senza Eurydice.
XXIII. Father Porhammer and Count Kaunitz. XXIV. Matrimonial Plans. XXV. Josepha of Bavaria. XXVI. The Marriage Night. XXVII. An Unhappy Marriage. XXVIII. A Statesman'S Hours of Dalliance. XXIX. Prince Kaunitz and Ritter Gluck. XXX. An Unfortunate Meeting. XXXI. Mourning. XXXII. The Imperial Abbess. XXXIII. The Co-Regent. XXXIV. Haroun Al Raschid. XXXV. The Disguise Removed. XXXVI. Rosary and Sceptre. XXXVII. The Difference Between an Abbess and an Empress. XXXVIII. The Reigning Empress. XXXIX. The Co-Regent Deposed. XL Mother and Son. XLI. Death the Liberator. XLII. The Mirror. XLIII. The Interview with Kaunitz. XLIV. The Archduchess Josepha. XLV. The Departure. XLVI. Inoculation. XLVII. An Adventure. XLVIII. The Judgment of Solomon. XLIX. Two Affianced Queens.
L. The Dinner at the French Ambassador's. LI. Marianne's Disappearance. LII. Count Falkenstein. LIII. What they found at Wichern. LIV. The Somnambulist.
LV. The Prophecy. LVI. The Gift. LVII. The Conference. LVIII. Kaunitz. LIX. Souvenir d'Eperies. LX. Frederick The Great. LXI. The Prima Donna. LXII. Frederick the Great and Prince Kaunitz. LXIII. Russia a Foe to all Europe. LXIV. The Map of Poland. LXV. The Countess Wielopolska. LXYI. The Emperor and The Countess. LXVII. Maria Theresa. LXVIII. Marie Antoinette and Court Etiquette. LXIX. The Triumph of Diplomacy. LXX. Gossip. LXXI. An Explanation. LXXII Famine in Bohemia. LXXIII. The Black Broth. LXXIV. The Extortioners of Quality. LXXV. Diplomatic Esoterics. LXXVI. Russia Speaks. LXXVII. The Last Petition. LXXVIII. Finis Polonie. LXXIX. The Mad Countess. LXXX. The Betrothal. LXXXI. Franz Antony Mesmer. LXXXII. Therese Von Paradies. LXXXIII. The First Day of Light. LXXXIV. Diplomatic Strategy. LXXXV. Dominus ac Redemptor Noster. LXXXVI. Heart-Struggles. LXXXVII. The Forced Bridal. LXXXVIII. Prince Louis de Rohan. LXXXIX. The Poles at Vienna. XC. The Last Farewell. XCI. The Concert. XCII. The Catastrophe.
XCIII. Le Roi ist Mort, Vive Le Roi! XCIV. The Memoranda. XCV. France and Austria. XCVI. The King's List. XCVII. The First Pasquinade. XCVIII. The New Fashions. XCIX The Temple of Etiquette. C. The New Fashions and their Unhappy Results. CI. Sunrise. CII. The Following Day. CIII. The Last Appeal. CIV. The Flight. CV. Joseph in France. CVI. The Godfather. CVII. The Godfather. CVIII. The Arrival at Versailles. CIX. Count Falkenstein In Paris. CX. The Queen and The "Dames de la Halle." CXI. The Adopted Son of the Queen. CXII. "Chantons, Celebrons Notre Reine." CXIII. The Hotel Turenne. CXIV. The Denouement. CXV. The Parting. CXVI. Joseph and Louis. CXVII. The Promenade and the Epigram. CXVIII. The Dinner en Famille. CXIX. A Visit to Jean Jacques Rousseau.
CXX. The Parting. CXXI. Death of the Elector of Bavaria. CXXII. A Page From History. CXXIII. The Emperor as Commander-In-Chief. CXXIV. Secret Negotiations for Peace. CXXV. Fraternal Discord. CXXVI. The Defeat. CXXVII. The Revenge. CXXVIII. A Letter to the Empress of Russia. CXXIX. The Gratitude of Princes. CXXX. Frederick The Great. CXXXI, "The Darkest Hour is Before Day." CXXXII. The Emperor and his Mother. CXXXIII. Prince Potemkin. CXXXIV. The Prussian Ambassador. CXXXV. The Austrian Ambassador. CXXXVI. The Empress Catharine. CXXXVII. The Czarina and her Master. CXXXVIII A Diplomatic Defeat. CXXXIX. The Czarina and the Kaiser.
CXL. The Oath. CXLI. Prince Kaunitz. CXLII. The Banker and his Daughter. CXLIII. The Countess Baillou, CXLIV. The Expulsion of the Clarisserines. CXLV. Count Podstadsky'S Escort. CXLVI. The Lampoon. CXLVII. The Petitioners. CXLVIII. The Petitioners. CXLIX. The Lady Patroness. CL. Mother and Son. CLI. The Two Oaths. CLII. New-Fashioned Obsequies. CLIII. The Pope in Vienna. CLIV. The Flight. CLV. The Marriage before God. CLVI. The Park. CLVII. The Parting. CLVIII. Colonel Szekuly. CLIX. The Pope's Departure. CLX. The Repulse. CLXI. The Count in the Pillory. CLXII. The Nemesis. CLXIII. Horja and the Rebellion In Hungary. CLXIV. The Jew's Revenge. CLXV. The Favor of Princes. CLXVI. The Deputation from Hungary. CLXVII. The Recompense. CLXVIII. The Rebellion in the Netherlands. CLXIX. The Imperial Suitor. CLXX. The Last Dream of Love. CLXXI. The Turkish War. CLXXII. Marriage and Separation. CLXXIII. The Last Dream of Glory. CLXXIV. The Hungarians Again. CLXXV. The Revocation. CLXXVI. The Death of The Martyr.
In the council-chamber of the Empress Maria Theresa, the six lords, who composed her cabinet council, awaited the entrance of their imperial mistress to open the sitting.
At this sitting, a great political question was to be discussed and its gravity seemed to be reflected in the faces of the lords, as, in low tones, they whispered together in the dim, spacious apartment, whose antiquated furniture of dark velvet tapestry corresponded well with the anxious looks of its occupants.
In the centre of the room stood the Baron von Bartenstein and the Count von Uhlefeld, the two powerful statesmen who for thirteen years had been honored by the confidence of the empress. Together they stood, their consequence acknowledged by all, while with proud and lofty mien, they whispered of state secrets.
Upon the fair, smooth face of Bartenstein appeared an expression of haughty triumph, which he was at no pains to conceal; and over the delicate mouth of Von Uhlefeld fluttered a smile of ineffable complacency.
"I feel perfectly secure," whispered Von Bartenstein. "The empress will certainly renew the treaties, and continue the policy which we have hitherto pursued with such brilliant results to Austria."
"The empress is wise," returned Uhlefeld. "She can reckon upon our stanch support, and so long as she pursues this policy, we will sustain her."
While he spoke, there shot from his eyes such a glance of conscious power, that the two lords who, from the recess of a neighboring window, were watching the imperial favorites, were completely dazzled.
"See, count" murmured one to the other, "see how Count Uhlefeld smiles to-day. Doubtless he knows already what the decision of the empress is to be; and that it is in accordance with his wishes, no one can doubt who looks upon him now."
"It will be well for us," replied Count Colloredo, "if we subscribe unconditionally to the opinions of the lord chancellor. I, for my part, will do so all the more readily, that I confess to you my utter ignorance of the question which is to come before us to-day. I was really so preoccupied at our last sitting that I—I failed exactly to comprehend its nature. I think, therefore, that it will be well for us to vote with Count von Uhlefeld—that is, if the president of the Aulic Council, Count Harrach, does not entertain other opinions."
Count Harrach bowed. "As for me," sighed he, "I must, as usual, vote with Count Bartenstein. His will be, as it ever is, the decisive voice of the day; and its echo will be heard from the lips of the empress. Let us echo them both, and so be the means of helping to crush the presumption of yonder crafty and arrogant courtier."
As he spoke he glanced toward the massive table of carved oak, around which were arranged the leathern arm-chairs of the members of the Aulic Council. Count Colloredo followed the glance of his friend, which, with a supercilious expression, rested upon the person to whom he alluded. This person was seated in one of the chairs, deeply absorbed in the perusal of the papers that lay before him upon the table. He was a man of slight and elegant proportions, whose youthful face contrasted singularly with the dark, manly, and weather-beaten countenances of the other members of the council. Not a fault marred the beauty of this fair face; not the shadow of a wrinkle ruffled the polish of the brow; even the lovely mouth itself was free from those lines by which thought and care are wont to mark the passage of man through life. One thing, however, was wanting to this beautiful mask. It was devoid of expression. Those delicate features were immobile and stony, No trace of emotion stirred the compressed lips; no shadow of thought flickered over the high, marble brow; and the glance of those clear, light-blue eyes was as calm, cold, and unfeeling as that of a statue. This young man, with Medusa-like beauty, was Anthony Wenzel von Kaunitz, whom Maria Theresa had lately recalled from Paris to take his seat in her cabinet council.
The looks of Harrach and Colloredo were directed toward him, but he appeared not to observe them, and went on quietly with his examination of the state papers.
"You think, then, count," whispered Colloredo, thoughtfully, "that young Kaunitz cherishes the absurd hope of an alliance with France?"
"I am sure of it. I know that a few days ago the French ambassador delivered to him a most affectionate missive from his friend the Marquise de Pompadour; and I know too that yesterday he replied to it in a similar strain: It is his fixed idea, and that of La Pompadour also, to drive Austria into a new line of policy, by making her the ally of France."
Count Colloredo laughed. "The best cure that I know of for fixed ideas is the madhouse," replied he, "and thither we will send little Kaunitz if—"
He ceased suddenly, for Kaunitz had slowly raised his eyes from the table, and they now rested with such an icy gaze upon the smiling face of Colloredo, that the frightened statesman shivered.
"If he should have heard me!" murmured he. "If he—" but the poor count had no further time for reflection; for at that moment the folding-doors leading to the private apartments of the empress were thrown open, and the lord high steward announced the approach of her majesty.
The councillors advanced to the table, and in respectful silence awaited the imperial entrance.
The rustling of silk was heard; and then the quick step of the Countess Fuchs, whose duty it was to accompany the empress to the threshold of her council-chamber, and to close the door behind her.
And now appeared the majestic figure of the empress. The lords laid their hands upon their swords, and inclined their heads in reverence before the imperial lady, who with light, elastic step advanced to the table, while the Countess Fuchs noiselessly closed the door and returned.
The empress smilingly acknowledged the salutation, though her smile was lost to her respectful subjects, who, in obedience to the strict Spanish etiquette which prevailed at the Austrian court, remained with their heads bent until the sovereign had taken her seat upon the throne.
One of these subjects had bent his head with the rest, but he had ventured to raise it again, and he at least met the glance of royalty. This bold subject was Kaunitz, the youngest of the councillors.
He gazed at the advancing empress, and for the first time a smile flitted over his stony features. And well might the sight of his sovereign lady stir the marble heart of Kaunitz; for Maria Theresa was one of the loveliest women of her day. Though thirty-six years of age, and the mother of thirteen children, she was still beautiful, and the Austrians were proud to excess of her beauty. Her high, thoughtful forehead was shaded by a profusion of blond hair, which lightly powdered and gathered up behind in one rich mass, was there confined by a golden net. Her large, starry eyes were of that peculiar gray which changes with every emotion of the soul; at one time seeming to be heavenly-blue, at another the darkest and most flashing brown. Her bold profile betokened great pride; but every look of haughtiness was softened away by the enchanting expression of a mouth in whose exquisite beauty no trace of the so-called "Austrian lip" could be seen. Her figure, loftier than is usual with women, was of faultless symmetry, while her graceful bust would have seemed to the eyes of Praxiteles the waking to life of his own dreams of Juno.
Those who looked upon this beautiful empress could well realize the emotions which thirteen years before had stirred the hearts of the Hungarian nobles as she stood before them; and had wrought them up to that height of enthusiasm which culminated in the well-known shout of
"Our king!" cried the Hungarians, and they were right. For Maria Theresa, who with her husband, was the tender wife; toward her children, the loving mother; was in all that related to her empire, her people, and her sovereignty, a man both in the scope of her comprehension and the strength of her will. She was capable of sketching bold lines of policy, and of following them out without reference to personal predilections or prejudices, both of which she was fully competent to stifle, wherever they threatened interference with the good of her realm, or her sense of duty as a sovereign.
The energy and determination of her character were written upon the lofty brow of Maria Theresa; and now, as she approached her councillors, these characteristics beamed forth from her countenance with such power and such beauty, that Kaunitz himself was overawed, and for one moment a smile lit up his cold features.
No one saw this smile except the imperial lady, who had woke the Memnon into life; and as she took her seat upon the throne, she slightly bent her head in return.
Now, with her clear and sonorous voice, she invited her councillors also to be seated, and at once reached out her hand for the memoranda which Count Bartenstein had prepared for her examination.
She glanced quickly over the papers, and laid them aside. "My lords of the Aulic Council," said she, in tones of deep earnestness, "we have to-day a question of gravest import to discuss. I crave thereunto your attention and advice. We are at this sitting to deliberate upon the future policy of Austria, and deeply significant will be the result of this day's deliberations to Austria's welfare. Some of our old treaties are about to expire. Time, which has somewhat moderated the bitterness of our enemies, seems also to have weakened the amity of our friends. Both are dying away; and the question now before us is, whether we shall extinguish enmity, or rekindle friendship? For seventy years past England, Holland, and Sardinia have been our allies. For three hundred years France has been our hereditary enemy. Shall we renew our alliance with the former powers, or seek new relations with the latter? Let me have your views, my lords."
With these concluding words, Maria Theresa waved her hand, and pointed to Count Uhlefeld. The lord chancellor arose, and with a dignified inclination of the head, responded to the appeal.