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      In spite of their brave words, Charles and the Queen Mother tamely resigned themselves to the affront, for they would not quarrel with Spain. To have done so would have been to throw themselves into the arms of the Protestant party, adopt the principle of toleration, and save France from the disgrace and blight of her later years. France was not so fortunate. The enterprise of Florida was a national enterprise, undertaken at the national charge, with the royal commission, and under the royal standard; and it had been crushed in time of peace by a power professing the closest friendship. Yet Huguenot influence had prompted and Huguenot hands executed it. That influence had now ebbed low; Coligny's power had waned; Charles, after long vacillation, was leaning more and more towards the Guises and the Catholics, and fast subsiding into the deathly embrace of Spain, for whom, at last, on the bloody eve of St. Bartholomew, he was to become the assassin of his own best subjects.They arrived at Tadoussac on the fifteenth of July; and the nuns ascended to Quebec in a small craft deeply laden with salted codfish, on which, uncooked, they subsisted until the first of August, when they reached their destination. Cannon roared welcome from the fort and batteries; all labor ceased; the storehouses were closed; and the zealous Montmagny, with a train of priests and soldiers, met the new-comers at the landing. All the nuns fell prostrate, and kissed the sacred soil of Canada. [17] They heard mass at the church, dined at the fort, and presently set forth to visit the new settlement of Sillery, four miles above Quebec.

      But where were the Iroquois? Montmagny and the Jesuits grew very anxious. In a few days more the concourse would begin to disperse, and the golden moment be lost. It was a great relief when a canoe appeared with tidings that the promised embassy was on its way; and yet more, when, on the seventeenth, four Iroquois approached the shore, and, in a loud voice, announced themselves as envoys of their nation. The tumult was prodigious. Montmagny's soldiers formed a double rank, and the savage rabble, with wild eyes and faces smeared with grease and paint, stared over the shoulders and between the gun-barrels of the musketeers, as the ambassadors of their deadliest foe stalked, with unmoved visages, towards the fort.

      Again Periphas laughed.Callippides had sharp earshe was a sycophantand the distance from the two speakers to the spot86 where he stood was only thirty or forty paces. First he caught one of the slaves words, then more, until at last he distinctly heard her say:

      [32] "Pioneers of France," 377.Zeus Hypsistos.

      [5] Brbeuf, Relation des Hurons, 1636, 86.

      "1o. C'est le naturel des artisans de se plaindre et de gronder."His enterprise had been a complete success. He had gained every point, and, in spite of the dangerous navigation, had not lost a single canoe. Thanks to the enforced and gratuitous assistance of the inhabitants, the whole had cost the King only about ten thousand francs, which Frontenac had advanced on his own credit. Though in a commercial point of view the new establishment was of very questionable benefit to the colony at large, the governor had, nevertheless, conferred an inestimable blessing on all Canada by the assurance he had gained of a long [Pg 96] respite from the fearful scourge of Iroquois hostility. "Assuredly," he writes, "I may boast of having impressed them at once with respect, fear, and good-will."[68] He adds that the fort at Cataraqui, with the aid of a vessel now building, will command Lake Ontario, keep the peace with the Iroquois, and cut off the trade with the English; and he proceeds to say that by another fort at the mouth of the Niagara, and another vessel on Lake Erie, we, the French, can command all the Upper Lakes. This plan was an essential link in the schemes of La Salle; and we shall soon find him employed in executing it.




      The next volume of the series will be devoted to the efforts of Monarchy and Feudalism under Louis XIV. to establish a permanent power on this continent, and to the stormy career of Louis de Buade, Count of Frontenac.