Page:History of England (Macaulay) Vol 4.djvu/448

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It is now time to relate the events which, since the battle of La Hogue, had taken place at Saint Germains.

James, after seeing the fleet which was to have convoyed him back to his kingdom burned down to the water edge, had returned in no good humour to his abode near Paris. Misfortune generally made him devout after his own fashion; and he now starved himself and flogged himself till his spiritual guides were forced to interfere.[420]

It is difficult to conceive a duller place than Saint Germains was when he held his Court there; and yet there was scarcely in all Europe a residence more enviably situated than that which the generous Lewis had assigned to his suppliants. The woods were magnificent, the air clear and salubrious, the prospects extensive and cheerful. No charm of rural life was wanting; and the towers of the most superb city of the Continent were visible in the distance. The royal apartments were richly adorned with tapestry and marquetry, vases of silver and mirrors in gilded frames. A pension of more than forty thousand pounds sterling was annually paid to James from the French Treasury. He had a guard of honour composed of some of the finest soldiers in Europe. If he wished to amuse himself with field sports, he had at his command an establishment far more sumptuous than that which had belonged to him when he was at the head of a great kingdom, an army of huntsmen and fowlers, a vast arsenal of guns, spears, buglehorns and tents, miles of network, staghounds, foxhounds, harriers, packs for the boar and packs for the wolf, gerfalcons for the heron and haggards for the wild duck. His presence chamber and his antechamber were in outward show as splendid as when he was at Whitehall. He was still surrounded