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to their being less exposed to the sun than in other places, their business keeping them much within doors, I know not; perhaps, as in some other cases, different causes may club in producing the effect, but the effect itself is certain. Never was I in a place of greater industry, wheels and looms going in every house. As soon as we left Abbeville, the swarthiness returned : I speak generally, for bere are some women at Paris, who I think are not whitened by art. As to rouge, they do not pretend to imitate nature in laying it on; there is no gradual diminution of the colour, from the full bloom in the middle of the cheek, to the faint tint near the sides ; nor does it show itself differently in different faces. I have not had the honour of being at any lady's toilet, to see how it is laid on, but I fancy I can tell you how it is, or may be done. Cut a hole of three inches diameter in a piece of paper, place it on the side of your face, in such a manner that the top of the hole may be just under your eye; then, with a brush dipped in the colour, paint face and paper together; so, when the paper is taken off, there will remain a round patch of red, exactly the form of the hole. This is the mode, from the actress on the stage, npwards, through all ranks of ladies to the princesses of the blood; but it stops there, the queen not using it, having, in the serenity, complacence, and bepigpity that shine so eminently in, or rather through, her countenance, though now an old woman, to do extremely well without it,

You see I speak of the queen as if I had seen her, and so I have; you must know, I have

been at court. We went to Versailles last Sunday, and had the honour to be presented to the king : he spoke to both of us very graciously and cheerfully, is a handsome man, has a very lively look, and appears younger than he is. In the evening we were at the Grand Couvert, where the family sup in public. The table was half a hollow square; the service, gold. When either made a sign for drink, the word was given by one of the waiters, A boire pour le Roi, or A boire pour la Reine ; then two persons within the square approached, one with wine, the other with water, in caraffes; each drank a little glass of what they brought, and then put both the caraffes, with a glass, on a salver, and presented it. Their distance from each other was such as that other chairs might have been placed between any two of them. An officer of the court brought us up through the crowd of spectators, and placed Sir John (Pringle) so as to stand between the king and Madame Adelaide ; and me between the king and Mad. Victoire. The king talked a good deal to Sir John, asking many questions about our royal family ; and did me too the honour of taking some notice of me ;-that's saying enough, for I would not have you think me so much pleased with this king and queen, as to have a wbit less regard than I used to have for ours : no Frenchman shall go beyond me in thinking my own king and queen the very best in the world, and the most amiable.

Versailles has had infinite sums laid out in building it, and supplying it with water : some say the expense exceeds eighty millions sterling.

The range of building is immense, the garden front most magnificent,-all of hewn stone; the number of statues, figures, urns, &c. made of marble and bronze, of exquisite workmanship, is beyond conception. But the waterworks are out of repair, and so is great part of the front · next the town; looking, with its shabby half brick walls, and broken windows, not much better than the houses in Durham Yard. There is, in short, both at Versailles and Paris, a prodigious mixture of magnificence and negligence, with every kind of elegance, except that of cleanliness, and wbat we call tidiness; though I must do Paris the justice to say, that, in two points of cleanliness, they exceed us:- the water they drink, though from the river, they render as pure as that from the spring, by filtering it through cisterns filled with sand ; and the streets by constant sweeping, are fit to walk in at all times. There is no paved foot path ; accordingly, many well dressed people are constantly seen walking in them; the crowd of coaches and chairs, for this reason, is not so great. Men, as well as women, carry umbrellas in their hands, which they extend in case of rain or too much sun; and a man with an umbrella not taking up more than three feet square, or nine square feet of the street, when, if in a coach, he would take up two hundred and forty square feet, you can easily conceive that, though the streets here are narrower, they may be much less incumbered. They are extremely well paved, and the stones, being generally cubes, when worn on one side, may be turned, and become new.

The civilities we every where received gave us the bigbest impressions of the French politeness : it seems to be a point settled here universally, that strangers are to be treated with respect; and one has just the same deference shown one here by being a stranger, as in England by being a lady. The customhouse officers at Port St. Denis, as we entered Paris, were about to seize two dozen of excellent Bourdeaux wine, given us at Boulogne, and which we brought with us ; but, as soon as they found we were strangers, it was immediately remitted to us on that account. At the church Notre Dame, where we went to see a magnificent illumination, with figures, &c. for the deceased dauphiness, we found an immense crowd, who were kept out by guards; but the officer being told we were strangers from England, he immediately admitted us, and accompanied and showed us every thing. Why don't we practice this urbanity to Frenchmen? Why should they be allowed to outdo us in any thing?

Here is an exhibition of painting, &c. like ours in London, to which multitudes flock daily: I am not connoisseur enough to judge which has most merit. Every night, Sundays not excepted, here are plays or operas; and, though tbe weather has been hot, and the houses full, one is not incommoded by the heat so much as with us in winter. They must have some way of changing the air, that we are not acquainted with; I shall inquire into it.

Travelling is one way of lengthening life, at least in appearance. It is about a fortnight VOL. V.

XX

since we left London ; but the variety of scenes we have gone through makes it seem equal to six months living in one place. Perhaps I have suffered a greater change in my own person than I could have done in six years at home. I had not been here six days before my tailor and peruquier had transformed me into a Frenchman : only think what a figure I make in a little bagwig and naked ears! They told me I was become twenty years younger, and looked very gallant; so, being in Paris, where the mode is to be sacredly followed, I was very near making love to my neighbour's wife.

This letter shall cost you a shilling, and you may think it cheap when you consider that it has cost me at least fifty guineas to get into the situation that enables me to write it: besides, I might, if I had staid at home, bave won perhaps two shillings of you at cribbage. By the way, now I mention cards, let me tell you that quadrille is quite out of fashion here, and English whist all the mode at Paris and the court.

And pray look upon it as no small matter, that, surrounded as I am by the glories of the world, and amusements of all sorts, I remember you and Dolly, and all the dear good folks at Bromley : 'tis true I can't help, but must, and ever shall, remember you all with pleasure ; need I add, that I am particularly, my dear good friend, yours most affectionately,

B, F.

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