A few words with reference to the principal characters in the novel of the "Forty-five Guardsmen" are necessary to complete the story.
Diana de Monsoreau, having taken the vows at the Convent des Hospitalières, survived the Duc d'Anjou only two years. Of Remy, her faithful companion, we hear no more: he disappeared without leaving a trace behind him.
History, however, informs us more fully as to the others. The Duc de Guise, having at last broken into open rebellion against Henri III., was so far successful, that with the aid of the League he compelled the king to fly from Paris. A hollow reconciliation was, however, patched up between them, the Duc de Guise stipulating that he should be appointed lieutenant-general of the kingdom; but no sooner had the king returned to the Louvre than he determined on the assassination of the duke. He sounded Crillon, the leader of the "Forty-five," on the subject, but this noble soldier refused to have anything to do with it, offering, however, to challenge him to single combat. De Loignac was less scrupulous, and we know the result; the Duc de Guise and his brother the cardinal were both murdered. Ten days after this event, Catherine de Medicis, the queen-mother, died, regretted by none.
The Parisians, exasperated by the murder of the Duc de Guise, declared his brother, the Duc de Mayenne, the head of the League, and rose against the king, who was again obliged to fly. He begged the king of Navarre for aid, who promptly responded to the call, and they were shortly before Paris with a united army of Catholics and Huguenots. Henri III. was, however, pursued by the relentless hate of the clever and unscrupulous Duchesse de Montpensier. She worked so skillfully on the fanatical mind of the young Jacobin friar, Jacques Clement, that he undertook the death of the king. He entered the camp with letters for Henri, whom he stabbed while reading them. The king died on the 2d August, 1589, after having declared Henri of Navarre his successor.
Of the subsequent life and adventures of Chicot, unfortunately nothing authentic is known. TRANSLATOR.
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