The Letters of Queen Victoria: A Selection from Her Majesty's Correspondence between the Years 1837 and 1861 - Vol. 3

By Queen Victoria; Viscount Esher et al. | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XXIX
1860

The King of the Belgians to Queen Victoria.

LAEKEN, 6th January 1860.

MY DEAREST VICTORIA,--I have to thank you for a most affectionate and gracious letter of the 3rd. . . .

I will speak to my pianist about Wagner Lohengrin; he plays with great taste and feeling, and I purchased a fine Parisian piano to enable him to go on satisfactorily.

Now I must speak a little of passing events. Louis Napoleon wished for a Congress because it would have placed a new authority between himself and the Italians, whom he fears evidently concerning their fondness of assassinating people." The pamphlet, "The Pope and the Congress," remains incomprehensible1; it will do him much harm, and will deprive him of the confidence of the Catholics who have been in France his most devoted supporters. Now the Congress is then postponed, but what is to be done with Italy? One notion is, that there would be some arrangement by which Piedmont would receive more, Savoy would go to France, and England would receive Sardinia. I am sure that England would by no means wish to have Sardinia. It will give me great pleasure to hear what Lord Cowley has reported on these subjects. I understand that Louis Napoleon is now much occupied with Germany, and studies its resources. This is somewhat alarming, as he had followed, it seems, the same course about Italy. Gare la bombe, the Prussians may say. One cannot understand why Louis Napoleon is using so many odd subterfuges when plain acting would from the month of September have settled everything. I must say that I found Walewski at that time very sensible and conservative. His retiring will give the impression that things are now to be carried on in a less conservative way, and people will be much alarmed. I know Thouvenel, and liked him, but that was in the poor King's time. In England his nomination will not give

____________________
1
This famous pamphlet, issued (like that of February 1859, ante, p. 313, note) under the nominal authorship of M. de la Guéronnière, expounded the Emperor's view that the Pope should be deprived of his temporal dominions, Rome excepted. Its publication brought about the resignation of Count Walewski (who was succeeded by M. de Thouvenel) and the abandonment of the proposed Congress.

-382-

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The Letters of Queen Victoria: A Selection from Her Majesty's Correspondence between the Years 1837 and 1861 - Vol. 3
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page i
  • Table of Contents iii
  • List of Illustrations vii
  • Introductory Note To Chapter XXIII 1
  • Chapter XXIII 1854 3
  • Introductory Note - To Chapter XXIV 63
  • Chapter XXIV - 1855 65
  • Introductory Note To Chapter XXV 158
  • Chapter XXV - 1856 160
  • Introductory Note - To Chapter XVII 223
  • Chapter XVII - 1857 225
  • Introductory Note - To Chapter XXVII 261
  • Chapter XXVII - 1858 263
  • Introductory Note To Chapter XXVIII 307
  • Chapter XXVIII - 1859 309
  • Introductory Note To Chapter XXIX 379
  • Chapter XXIX - 1860 382
  • Introductory Note - To Chapter XXX 420
  • Chapter XXX - 1861 422
  • Index 479
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