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A Residence in France During the Years 1792, 1793,

And some sausages to be made


* These rescripts were usually couched in the following terms:-- "Citizen, you are desired to betake yourself immediately to ------, (naming the prison,) under pain of being conveyed there by an armed force in case of delay."

--A few necessaries are hastily packed together, the adieus are made, and, after a walk to their prison, they lay their beds down in the corner allotted, just as if it were a thing of course.

It was a general observation with travellers, that the roads in France were solitary, and had rather the deserted appearance of the route of a caravan, than of the communications between different parts of a rich and populous kingdom. This, however, is no longer true, and, as far as I can learn, they are now sufficiently crowded--not, indeed, by curious itinerants, parties of pleasure, or commercial industry, but by Deputies of the Convention,* agents of subsistence,** committee men, Jacobin missionaries,*** troops posting from places where insurrection is just quelled to where it has just begun, besides the great and never-failing source of activity, that of conveying suspected people from their homes to prison, and from one prison to another.--

* Every department was infested by one, two, or more of these strolling Deputies; and, it must be confessed, the constant tendency of the people to revolt in many places afforded them sufficient

employment. Sometimes they acted as legislators, making laws on the spot--sometimes, both as judges and constables--or, if occasion required, they amused themselves in assisting the executioner.--The migrations of obscure men, armed with unlimited powers, and whose persons were unknown, was a strong temptation to imposture, and in several places adventurers were detected assuming the character of Deputies, for various purposes of fraud and depredation.--The following instance may appear ludicrous, but I shall be excused mentioning it, as it is a fact on record, and conveys an idea of what the people supposed a Deputy might do, consistent with the "dignity" of his executive functions.

An itinerant of this sort, whose object seems to have been no more than to procure a daily maintenance, arriving hungry in a village, entered the first farm-house that presented itself, and immediately put a pig in requisition, ordered it to be killed, and some sausages to be made, with all speed. In the meanwhile our mock-legislator, who seems to have acted his part perfectly well, talked of liberty, l'amour de la Patrie, of Pitt and the coalesced tyrants, of arresting suspicious people and rewarding patriots; so that the whole village thought themselves highly fortunate in the presence of a Deputy who did no worse than harangue and put their pork in requisiton.--Unfortunately, however, before the repast of sausages could be prepared, a hue and cry reached the place, that this gracious Representant was an impostor! He was bereft of his dignities, conveyed to prison, and afterwards tried by the Tribunal Revolutionnaire at Paris; but his Counsel, by insisting on the mildness with which he had "borne his faculties," contrived to get his punishment mitigated to a short imprisonment.--Another suffered death on a somewhat similar account; or, as the sentence expressed it, for degrading the character of a National Representative.--Just Heaven! for degrading the character of a National Representative!!! --and this too after the return of Carrier from Nantes, and the publication of Collot d'Herbois' massacres at Lyons!


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