The Correspondence of Prince Talleyrand and King Louis XVIII during the Congress of Vienna

The Correspondence of Prince Talleyrand and King Louis XVIII during the Congress of Vienna

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The Correspondence of Prince Talleyrand and King Louis XVIII during the Congress of Vienna

The Correspondence of Prince Talleyrand and King Louis XVIII during the Congress of Vienna

Read FREE!

Excerpt

The publication of the Memoirs left by Prince Talleyrand, who died in 1838, cannot be much longer delayed.

Without passing premature judgment upon the interest and piquancy of the revelations which may be looked for when those Memoirs shall see the light, we may fairly surmise that the great politician who diplomatized so much with his contemporaries, has not resisted the temptation to diplomatize a little with posterity.

It would be surprising if, having always and in all things thoroughly understood and carefully studied the mise en scène, he had not most skilfully arranged the conditions of perspective under which he would choose to allow himself to be seen by the generations who should come after him. But although his own evidence upon himself and his times is not yet available to us, we are enabled to take him by surprise, at the present moment, by the aid of documents deposited in the archives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and to examine the details of his relations with many rulers of kingdoms and chief ministers in his character of negotiator.

At the Ministry of Foreign Affairs there is a manuscript comprising one hundred documents: sixty of these are letters written by Prince Talleyrand to King Louis XVIII. during the Congress of Vienna.

This manuscript also contains letters of Louis XVIII. The minutes of the latter are in the same archives, and constitute an annexe; there are also two letters, written, by the King's command, on the 9th of November and the 4th of December, 1814, by Count de Blacas.

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