List Of Contents | Contents of The Wandering Jew, V6, by Eugene Sue
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general rising against Rome--a wide schism--the sacred college divided
into three parties.  One approves--the other blames--the third trembles.
The Sick Man, still more frightened than he is now at having allowed the
destruction of Poland, will shrink from the clamors, reproaches, threats,
and violent ruptures that he has occasioned.

"That is well--and goes far.

"Then, set the Pope to shaking the conscience of the Sick Man, to disturb
his mind, and terrify his soul.

"To sum up.  Make everything bitter to him--divide his council--isolate
him--frighten him--redouble the ferocious ardor of good Albini--revive
the appetite of the Sanfedists[25]--give them a gulf of liberals--let
there be pillage, rape, massacre, as at Cesena--a downright river of
Carbonaro blood--the Sick Man will have a surfeit of it.  So many
butcheries in his name--he will shrink, be sure he will shrink--every day
will have its remorse, every night its terror, every minute its anguish;
and the abdication he already threatens will come at last--perhaps too
soon.  That is now the only danger; you must provide against it.

"In case of an abdication, the grand penitentiary has understood me.
Instead of confiding to a general the direction of our Order, the best
militia of the Holy See, I should command it myself.  Thenceforward this
militia would give me no uneasiness.  For instance: the Janissaries and
the Praetorian Guards were always fatal to authority--why?--because they
were able to organize themselves as defenders of the government,
independently of the government; hence their power of intimidation.

"Clement XIV. was a fool.  To brand and abolish our Company was an absurd
fault.  To protect and make it harmless, by declaring himself the General
of the Order, is what he should have done.  The Company, then at his
mercy, would have consented to anything.  He would have absorbed us, made
us vassals of the Holy See, and would no longer have had to fear our
services.  Clement XIV. died of the cholic.  Let him heed who hears.  In
a similar case, I should not die the same death."

Just then, the clear and liquid voice of Rose-Pompon was again heard.
Rodin bounded with rage upon his seat; but soon, as he listened to the
following verse, new to him (for, unlike Philemon's widow, he had not his
Beranger at his fingers' ends), the Jesuit, accessible to certain odd,
superstitious notions, was confused and almost frightened at so singular
a coincidence.  It is Beranger's Good Pope who speaks--

     "What are monarchs? sheepish sots!
	Or they're robbers, puffed with pride,
	Wearing badges of crime blots,
	Till their certain graves gape wide.
	If they'll pour out coin for me,
	I'll absolve them--skin and bone!
	If they haggle--they shall see,
	My nieces dancing on their throne!
	So laugh away!
	Leap, my fay!
	Only watch one hurt the thunder
	First of all by Zeus under,
	I'm the Pope, the whole world's wonder!"

Rodin, half-risen from his chair, with outstretched neck and attentive
eye, was still listening, when Rose-Pompon, flitting like a bee from
flower to flower of her repertoire, had already begun the delightful air
of Colibri.  Hearing no more, the Jesuit reseated himself, in a sort of
stupor; but, after some minutes' reflection, his countenance again
brightened up, and he seemed to see a lucky omen in this singular
incident.  He resumed his pen, and the first words he wrote partook, as
it were, of this strange confidence in fate.

"I have never had more hope of success than at this moment.  Another
reason to neglect nothing.  Every presentiment demands redoubled zeal.  A
new thought occurred to me yesterday.

"We shall act here in concert.  I have founded an ultra-Catholic paper
called Neighborly Love.  From its ultramontane, tyrannical, liberticidal
fury, it will be thought the organ of Rome.  I will confirm these
reports.  They will cause new terrors.

"That will be well.

"I shall raise the question of the liberty of instruction.  The raw
liberals will support us.  Like fools, they admit us to equal rights;
when our privileges, our influence of the confessional, our obedience to
Rome, all place us beyond the circle of equal rights, by the advantages
which we enjoy.  Double fools! they think us disarmed, because they have
disarmed themselves towards us.

"A burning question--irritating clamors--new cause of disgust for the
Weak Man.  Every little makes a mickle.

"That also is very well.

"To sum up all in two words.  The end is abdication--the means, vexation,
incessant torture.  The Rennepont inheritance wilt pay for the election.
The price agreed, the merchandise will be sold."

Rodin here paused abruptly, thinking he had heard some noise at that door
of his, which opened on the staircase; therefore he listened with
suspended breath; but all remaining silent, he thought he must have been
deceived, and took up his pen:

"I will take care of the Rennepont business--the hinge on which will turn
our temporal operations.  We must begin from the foundation--substitute
the play of interests, and the springs of passion, for the stupid club-
law of Father d'Aigrigny.  He nearly compromised everything--and yet he
has good parts, knows the world, has powers of seduction, quick insight--
but plays ever in a single key, and is not great enough to make himself
little.  In his stead, I shall know how to make use of him.  There is
good stuff in the man.  I availed myself in time of the full powers given
by the R. F. G.; I may inform Father d'Aigrigny, in case of need, of the
secret engagements taken by the General towards myself.  Until now, I
have let him invent for this inheritance the destination that you know
of.  A good thought, but unseasonable.  The same end, by other means.

"The information was false.  There are over two hundred millions.  Should
the eventuality occur, what was doubtful must become certain.  An immense
latitude is left us.  The Rennepont business is now doubly mine, and
within three months, the two hundred millions will be ours, by the free
will of the heirs themselves.  It must be so; for this failing, the
temporal part would escape me, and my chances be diminished by one half.
I have asked for full powers; time presses, and I act as if I had them.
One piece of information is indispensable for the success of my projects.
I expect it from you, and I must have it; do you understand me?  The
powerful influence of your brother at the Court of Vienna will serve you
in this.  I wish to have the most precise details as to the present
position of the Duke de Reichstadt--the Napoleon II. of the Imperialists.
Is it possible, by means of your brother, to open a secret correspondence
with the prince, unknown to his attendants?

"Look to this promptly.  It is urgent.  This note will he sent off to-
day.  I shall complete it to-morrow.  It will reach you, as usual, by the
hands of the petty shopkeeper."

At the moment when Rodin was sealing this letter within a double
envelope, he thought that he again heard a noise at the door.  He
listened.  After some silence, several knocks were distinctly audible.
Rodin started.  It was the first time any one had knocked at his door,
since nearly a twelve-month that he occupied this room.  Hastily placing
the letter in his great-coat pocket, the Jesuit opened the old trunk
under his bed, took from it a packet of papers wrapped in a tattered
cotton handkerchief, added to them the two letters in cipher he had just
received, and carefully relocked the trunk.  The knocking continued
without, and seemed to show more and more impatience.  Rodin took the
greengrocer's basket in his hand, tucked his umbrella under his arm, and
went with some uneasiness to ascertain who was this unexpected visitor.
He opened the door, and found himself face to face with Rose-Pompon, the
troublesome singer, and who now, with a light and pretty courtesy, said
to him in the most guileless manner in the world, "M. Rodin, if you

[23] On page 110 of Lamennais' Affaires de Rome, will be seen the
following admirable scathing of Rome by the most truly evangelical spirit
of our age: "So long as the issue of the conflict between Poland and her
oppressors remained in the balances, the papal official organ contained
not one word to offend the so long victorious nation; but hardly had she
gone down under the Czar's atrocious vengeance, and the long torture of a
whole land doomed to rack, and exile, and servitude began, than this same
journal found no language black enough to stain those whom fortune had
fled.  Yet it is wrong to charge this unworthy insult to papal power; it
only cringes to the law which Russia lays down to it, when it says:

"'If you want to keep your own bones unbroken, bide where you are, beside
the scaffold, and, as the victims pass, hoot at them!'"

[24] See Pope Gregory XVI.'s Encyclical Letter to the Bishops in France,

[25] Hardly had the Sixteenth Gregory ascended the pontifical throne,
than news came of the rising in Bologna.  His first idea was to call the
Austrians, and incite the Sanfedist volunteer bands of fanatics.
Cardinal Albini defeated the liberals at Cesena, where his followers
pillaged churches, sacked the town, and ill-treated women.  At Forli,
cold-blooded murders were committed.  In 1832 the Sanfedists (Holy
Faithites) openly paraded their medals, bearing the heads of the Duke of
Modem and the Pope; letters issued by the apostolic confederation;
privileges and indulgences.  They took the following oath: "I. A. B.,
vow to rear the throne and altar over the bones of infamous freedom-
shriekers, and exterminate these latter without pity for children's cries
and women's tears."  The disorders perpetrated by these marauders went
beyond all bounds; the Romish Court regularized anarchy and organized the
Sanfedists into volunteer corps, to which fresh privileges were granted.
[Revue deux Mondes, Nov.  15th, 1844.--"La Revolution en Italie."]



Notwithstanding his surprise and uneasiness, Rodin did not frown.  He
began by locking his door after him, as he noticed the young girl's
inquisitive glance.  Then he said to her good-naturedly, "Who do you
want, my dear?"

"M. Rodin," repeated Rose-Pompon, stoutly, opening her bright blue eyes
to their full extent, and looking Rodin full in the face.

"It's not here," said he, moving towards the stairs.  "I do not know him.
Inquire above or below."

"No, you don't! giving yourself airs at your age!" said Rose-Pompon,
shrugging her shoulders.  "As if we did not know that you are M. Rodin."

"Charlemagne," said the socius, bowing; "Charlemagne, to serve you--if I
am able."

"You are not able," answered Rose-Pompon, majestically; then she added
with a mocking air, "So, we have our little pussy-cat hiding-places; we
change our name; we are afraid Mamma Rodin will find us out."

"Come, my dear child," said the socius, with a paternal smile; "you have
come to the right quarter.  I am an old man, but I love youth--happy,
joyous youth!  Amuse yourself, pray, at my expense.  Only let me pass,
for I am in a hurry."  And Rodin again advanced towards the stairs.

"M. Rodin," said Rose-Pompon, in a solemn voice, "I have very important
things to say to you, and advice to ask about a love affair."

"Why, little madcap that you are! have you nobody to tease in your own
house, that you must come here?"

"I lodge in this house, M. Rodin," answered Rose-Pompon, laying a
malicious stress on the name of her victim.

"You?  Oh, dear, only to think I did not know I had such a pretty

"Yes, I have lodged here six months, M. Rodin."

"Really! where?"

"On the third story, front, M. Rodin."

"It was you, then, that sang so well just now?"


"You gave me great pleasure, I must say."

"You are very polite, M. Rodin."

"You lodge, I suppose, with your respectable family?"

"I believe you, M. Rodin," said Rose-Pompon, casting down her eyes with a
timid air.  "I lodge with Grandpapa Philemon, and Grandmamma Bacchanal--
who is a queen and no mistake."

Rodin had hitherto been seriously uneasy, not knowing in what manner Rose
had discovered his real name.  But on hearing her mention the Bacchanal
queen, with the information that she lodged in the house, he found
something to compensate for the disagreeable incident of Rose-Pompon's
appearance.  It was, indeed, important to Rodin to find out the Bacchanal
Queen, the mistress of Sleepinbuff, and the sister of Mother Bunch, who
had been noted as dangerous since her interview with the superior of the
convent, and the part she had taken in the projected escape of Mdlle. de
Cardoville.  Moreover, Rodin hoped--thanks to what he had just heard--to
bring Rose-Pompon to confess to him the name of the person from whom she
had learned that "Charlemagne" masked "Rodin."

Hardly had the young girl pronounced the name of the Bacchanal queen,
than Rodin clasped his hands, and appeared as much surprised as

"Oh, my dear child," he exclaimed, "I conjure you not to jest on this
subject.  Are you speaking of a young girl who bears that nickname, the
sister of a deformed needlewoman."

"Yes, sir, the Bacchanal Queen is her nickname," said Rose-Pompon,
astonished in her turn; "she is really Cephyse Soliveau, and she is my

"Oh! she is your friend?" said Rodin, reflecting.

"Yes, sir, my bosom friend."

"So you love her?"

"Like a sister.  Poor girl!  I do what I can for her, and that's not
much.  But how comes it that a respectable man of your age should know
the Bacchanal Queen?--Ah! that shows you have a false name!"

"My dear child, I am no longer inclined to laugh," said Rodin, with so
sorrowful an air, that Rose-Pompon, reproaching herself with her
pleasantry, said to him: "But how comes it that you know Cephyse?"

"Alas! I do not know her--but a young fellow, that I like excessively--"

"Jacques Rennepont?"

"Otherwise called Sleepinbuff.  He is now in prison for debt," sighed
Rodin.  "I saw him yesterday."

"You saw him yesterday?--how strange!" said Rose-Pompon, clapping her
hands.  "Quick! quick!--come over to Philemon's, to give Cephyse news of
her lover.  She is so uneasy about him."

"My dear child, I should like to give her good news of that worthy
fellow, whom I like in spite of his follies, for who has not been guilty
of follies?" added Rodin, with indulgent good-nature.

"To be sure," said Rose-Pompon, twisting about as if she still wore the
costume of a debardeur.

"I will say more," added Rodin: "I love him because of his follies; for,
talk as we may, my dear child, there is always something good at bottom,
a good heart, or something, in those who spend generously their money for
other people."

"Well, come! you are a very good sort of a man," said Rose-Pompon,
enchanted with Rodin's philosophy.  "But why will you not come and see
Cephyse, and talk to her of Jacques?"

"Of what use would it be to tell her what she knows already--that Jacques
is in prison?  What I should like, would be to get the worthy fellow out

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