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      Lycon let himself be shown around the city by the boy he had found sleeping with his head against the door-post, and invented errands to many of the citizens but none of them recognized him. Boy, pout servir dinstruction au Sieur Talon


      having deterred most others from venturing into it. La


      [64] Pierre Moreau, alias La Taupine, was afterwards bitterly complained of by the Intendant Duchesneau, for acting as the governor's agent in illicit trade with the Indians.

      Unless we assume that his scheme of invading Mexico was thrown out as a bait to the King, it is hard to reconcile it with the supposition of mental soundness. To base so critical an attempt on a geographical conjecture, which rested on the slightest possible information, and was in fact a total error; to postpone the perfectly sound plan of securing the mouth of the Mississippi, to a wild project of leading fifteen thousand savages for an unknown distance [Pg 363] through an unknown country to attack an unknown enemy,was something more than Quixotic daring. The King and the minister saw nothing impracticable in it, for they did not know the country or its inhabitants. They saw no insuperable difficulty in mustering and keeping together fifteen thousand of the most wayward and unstable savages on earth, split into a score and more of tribes, some hostile to each other and some to the French; nor in the problem of feeding such a mob, on a march of hundreds of miles; nor in the plan of drawing four thousand of them from the Illinois, nearly two thousand miles distant, though some of these intended allies had no canoes or other means of transportation, and though, travelling in such numbers, they would infallibly starve on the way to the rendezvous. It is difficult not to see in all this the chimera of an overwrought brain, no longer able to distinguish between the possible and the impossible.him some wild plums; and in the evening, as he lay fainting on the ground, another brought him the coveted broth. Weary and forlorn, he reached at last the lower Mohawk town, where, after being stripped, and, with his companion, forced to run the gauntlet, he was placed on a scaffold of bark, surrounded by a crowd of grinning and mocking savages. As it began to rain, they took him into one of their lodges, and amused themselves by making him dance, sing, and perform various fantastic tricks for their amusement. He seems to have done his best to please them; but, adds the chronicler, I will say in passing, that as he did not succeed to their liking in these buffooneries (singeries), they would have put him to death, if a young Huron prisoner had not offered himself to sing, dance, and make wry faces in place of the father, who had never learned the trade.

      The allies were spared so long a progress. On the morning of the twenty-ninth of July, after paddling all night, they hid as usual in the forest on the western shore, apparently between Crown Point and Ticonderoga. The warriors stretched themselves to their slumbers, and Champlain, after walking till nine or ten o'clock through the surrounding woods, returned to take his repose on a pile of spruce-boughs. Sleeping, he dreamed a dream, wherein he beheld the Iroquois drowning in the lake; and, trying to rescue them, he was told by his Algonquin friends that they were good for nothing, and had better be left to their fate. For some time past he had been beset every morning by his superstitious allies, eager to learn about his dreams; and, to this moment, his unbroken slumbers had failed to furnish the desired prognostics. The announcement of this auspicious vision filled the crowd with joy, and at nightfall they embarked, flushed with anticipated victories.


      His expulsion was a Sulpitian defeat. Laval, always zealous for unity and centralization, had some time before taken steps to repress what he regarded as a tendency to independence at Montreal. In the preceding year he had written to the Pope: There are some secular priests (Sulpitians) at Montreal, whom the Abb de Queylus brought out with him in 1657, and I have named for the

      Pratique des Jsuites, says that the French placed effigies

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      The Council was reorganized, and now consisted of the Governor, the Superior of the Jesuits, and three of the principal inhabitants. [20] These last were to be chosen every three years by the Council itself, in conjunction with the Syndics of Quebec, Montreal, and Three Rivers. The Syndic was an officer elected by the inhabitants of the community to which he belonged, to manage its affairs. Hence a slight ingredient of liberty was introduced into the new organization.The Associates needed a soldier-governor to take charge of their forty men; and, directed as they supposed by Providence, they found one wholly to their mind. This was Paul de Chomedey, Sieur de Maisonneuve, a devout and valiant gentleman, who in long service among the heretics of Holland had kept his faith intact, and had held himself resolutely aloof from the license that surrounded him. He loved his profession of arms, and wished to consecrate his sword to the Church. Past all comparison, he is the manliest figure that appears in this group of zealots. The piety of the design, the miracles that inspired it, the adventure and the peril, all combined to charm him; and he eagerly embraced the enterprise. His father opposed his purpose; but he met him with a text of St. Mark, "There is no man that hath left house or brethren or sisters or father for my sake, but he shall receive an hundred-fold." On this the elder Maisonneuve, deceived by his own worldliness, imagined that the plan covered some hidden speculation, from which enormous profits were expected, and therefore withdrew his opposition. [9]

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      The travellers were crossing a marshy prairie towards a distant belt of woods that followed the course of a little river. They led with them their five horses, laden with their scanty baggage, and, with what was of no less importance, their stock of presents for Indians. Some wore the remains of the clothing they had worn from France, eked out with deer-skins, dressed in the Indian manner; and some had coats of old sail-cloth. Here was La Salle, in whom one would have known, at a glance, the chief of the party; and the priest, Cavelier, who seems to have shared not one of the high traits of his younger brother. Here, too, were their nephews, Moranget and the boy Cavelier, now about seventeen years old; the trusty soldier Joutel; and the friar Anastase Douay. Duhaut followed, a man of respectable birth and education; and Liotot, the surgeon of the party. [Pg 421] At home, they might perhaps have lived and died with a fair repute; but the wilderness is a rude touchstone, which often reveals traits that would have lain buried and unsuspected in civilized life. The German Hiens, the ex-buccaneer, was also of the number. He had probably sailed with an English crew; for he was sometimes known as Gemme Anglais, or "English Jem."[325] The Sieur de Marie; Teissier, a pilot; L'Archevque, a servant of Duhaut; and others, to the number in all of seventeen,made up the party; to which is to be added Nika, La Salle's Shawanoe hunter, who, as well as another Indian, had twice crossed the ocean with him, and still followed his fortunes with an admiring though undemonstrative fidelity.All Indians, and especially these populous and stationary tribes, had their code of courtesy, whose requirements were rigid and exact; nor might any infringe it without the ban of public censure. Indian nature, inflexible and unmalleable, was peculiarly under the control of custom. Established usage took the place of law,was, in fact, a sort of common law, with no tribunal to expound or enforce it. In these wild democracies,democracies in spirit, though not in form,a respect for native superiority, and a willingness to yield to it, were always conspicuous. All were prompt to aid each other in distress, and a neighborly spirit was often exhibited among them. When a young woman was permanently married, the other women of the village supplied her with firewood for the year, each contributing an armful. When one or more families were without shelter, the men of the village joined in building them a house. In return, the recipients of the favor gave a feast, if they could; if not, their thanks were sufficient. [42] l Among the Iroquois and Huronsand doubtless among the kindred tribesthere were marked distinctions of noble and base, prosperous and poor; yet, while there was food in the village, the meanest and the poorest need not suffer want. He had but to enter the nearest house, and seat himself by the fire, when, without a word on either side, food was placed before him by the women. [43]


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