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formée; la République s'empressa de lui témoigner sa reconnaissance et de le dé. dommager des maux qu'il avoit soufferts ; elle le reçut Bourgeois de la ville au mois de Juin 1536 ; elle lui donna la maison habitée autrefois par le Vicaire-Général, et elle lui assigna une pension de 200 écus d'or tant qu'il séjourneroit à Genève. Il fut admis dans le Conseil de Deux-Cent en 1537.
Bonnivard n'a pas fini d'être utile : appres avoir travaillé à rendre Genève libre, il réussit à la rendre tolérante. Bonnivard engagea le Conseil à accorder aux Eco clésiastiques et aux paysans un tems suffisant pour examiner les propositions qu'on leur faisoit; il réussit par sa douceur : on prêche toujours le Christianisme avec succès quand on le prêche avec charité.
Bonnivard fut savant; ses manuscrits, qui sont dans la Bibliothèque publique, prouvent qu'il avoit bien lu les auteurs classiques Latins, et qu'il avoit approfondi la ihéologie et l'histoire. Ce grand homme aimcit les sciences, et il croyoit qu'elles pouvoient faire la gloire de Genève ; aussi il ne négligea rien pour les fixer dans cette ville naissante; en 1551 il donna sa bibliothèque au public; elle fut le commencement de notre bibliothèque publique ; et ces livres sont en partie les rares et belles éditions du quinzième siècle qu'on voit dans notre collection. Enfin, pendant la même année, ce bon patriote institua la République son héritière, à condition qu'elle employeroit ses biens à entretenir le collège dont on projettoit la fondation.
Bonnivard mourut en 1570 ; mais on ne peut l'assurer, parce qu'il y a une lacune
PRISONER OF CHILLON
My hair is gray, but not with years,
But rusted with a vile repose,
And mine has been the fate of those
who now are one,
Proud of Persecution's rage ;
(1) Ludovico Sforza, and others. The same is asserted of Marie Antoinette's the wife of Louis XVI. though not in quite so short a period. Grief is said to have the same effect : to such, and not to fear, this change in hers was to be attributed.
There are seven pillars of Gothic mould, In Chillon's dungeons deep and old, There are seven columns
gray, Dim with a dull imprison'd ray, A sunbeam which hath lost its way, And through the crevice and the cleft Of the thick wall is fallen and left : Creeping o'er the floor so damp, Like a marsh's meteor lamp : And in each pillar there is a ring,
And in each ring there is a chain ; That iron is a cankering thing,
For in these limbs its teeth remain,
- I cannot count them o'er,
They chain'd us each to a column stone,
A grating sound not full and free
It might be fancy - but to me
I was the eldest of the three,
And to uphold and cheer the rest
bestAnd each did well in his degree.
The youngest, whom my father loved, Because our mother's brow was given To him with eyes as blue as heaven,
For him my soul was sorely moved :
(When day was beautiful to me
A polar day, which will not see
Its sleepless summer of long light, The snow-clad offspring of the sun :
And thus he was as pure and bright, And in his natural spirit gay, With tears for nought but others' ills, And then they flow'd like mountain rills, Unless he could assuage the woe Which he abhorr'd to view below.
The other was as pure of mind,
With joy :— but not in chains to pine : His spirit wither’d with their clank,
I saw it silently decline
And so perchance in sooth did mine : But yet I forced it on to cheer Those relics of a home so dear. He was a hunter of the hills,
Had follow'd there the deer and wolf;
To him this dungeon was a gulf, And fetter'd feet the worst of ills.
Lake Leman lies by Chillon's walls : A thousand feet in depth below Its massy waters meet and flow;
Thus much the fathom-line was sent
Which round about the wave inthrals :
Sounding o'er our heads it knock'd;
And then the very rock hath rock'd,
And I have felt it shake, unshock'd,
I said my nearer brother pined,
(1) The Château de Chillon is situated between Clarens and Villeneuve, which last is at one extremity of the Lake of Geneva. On its left are the entrances of the Rhone, and opposite are the heights of Meillerie and the range of Alps above Boveret and St. Gingo.
Near it, on a hill behind, is a torrent: below it, washing its walls, the lake has been fathomed to the depth of 800 feet, French measure: within it are a range of dungeons, in which the early reformers, and subsequently prisoners of state, were confined. Across one of the vaults is a beam black with age, on which we were informed that the condemned were formerly executed. In the cells are seven pillars, or, rather, eight, one being half merged in the wall; in some of these are rings for the fetters and the fettered: in the pavement the steps of Bonnivard have left their traces -he was confined here several years.
It is by this castle that Rousseau has fixed the catastrophe of his Héloise, in the rescue of one of her children by Julie from the water ; the shock of which, and the illness produced by the immersion, is the cause of her death.
The cháteau is large, and seen along the lake for a great distance. The walls are white.