15 October 1789: Love Transactions & Self-Denial

Thursday 15. — This Morning write and at twelve carry my Letters to Dalrymple who promises to send them to London safely. Thence go to the Convent and take up my fair friend [Mme Flahaut]. At the Louvre we find some Persons who have Business with her. This is transacted and then we transact our Business. She complains of my Injustice, and perhaps with Reason. One Argument is very good: ‘I tell you that I love you because I love you; if I did not it would be very easy to get rid of you for I am under no Obligation to be upon Terms.’ And yet this Argument proves just nothing. However, it is worth what it is worth. We wait till near five before the Bishop [d’Autun] comes from Versailles and then sit down to an excellent Dinner. She engages us to sup at Madame La Bordes. (…) Go to Madame de Chattellux’s. (…) Go thence to the Louvre. Madame [Flahaut] is dressing. Is too much fatigued to be caressed. The Bishop arrives. I tell him my Intention in writing to La Fayette. He approves of it and observes that he must be preserved because he is useful. He tells me that he will not accept of a Place in the present Administration and I approve of that Determination. He is received with infinite Attention at Madame La Borde’s, which proves that they expect he will be Somebody. My Friend’s Countenance glows with Satisfaction in looking at the Bishop and myself as we sit together agreeing in Sentiment & supporting the Opinions of each other. What Triumph for a Woman! I leave her to go Home with him and thus risque heroically the Chance of Cuckoldom. What Self Denial for a Lover. This has been a disagreable rainy Day.

A diary of the French revolution, by Gouverneur Morris, 1752-1816. Ed. by Beatrix Cary Davenport. Vol. 1 (Boston, 1939), p. 259.

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