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      In these enthusiasts we shall find striking examples of one of the morbid forces of human nature; yet in candor let us do honor to what was genuine in them,that principle of self-abnegation which is the life of true religion, and which is vital no less to the highest forms of heroism.

      The Mohawks took no part in the Erie war, and hence their hands were free to fight the French and the tribes allied with them. Reckless of their promises, they began a series of butcheries, fell upon the French at Isle aux Oies, killed a lay brother of the Jesuits at Sillery, and attacked Montreal. Here, being roughly handled, they came for a time to their senses, and offered terms, promising to spare the French, but declaring that they would still wage war against the Hurons and Algonquins. These were allies whom the French were pledged to protect; but so helpless was the colony, that the insolent and humiliating proffer was accepted, and another peace ensued, as hollow as the last. The indefatigable Le Moyne was sent to the Mohawk towns to confirm it, so far, says the chronicle, as it is possible to confirm a peace made by infidels backed by heretics. ** The Mohawks received him with great rejoicing; yet hisWhat do you want so late? Maira said again, this time with a touch of impatience.

      [1] Saint-Vallier, tat Prsent de l'glise, 4 (Quebec, 1856).Meanwhile, winter closed in with a severity rare even in Canada. The St. Lawrence and the St. Charles were hard frozen; rivers, forests, and rocks were mantled alike in dazzling sheets of snow. The humble mission-house of Notre-Dame des Anges was half buried in the drifts, which, heaped up in front where a path had been dug through them, rose two feet above the low eaves. The priests, sitting at night before the blazing logs of their wide-throated chimney, heard the trees in the neighboring forest cracking with frost, with a sound like the report of a pistol. Le Jeune's ink froze, and his fingers were benumbed, as he toiled at his declensions and conjugations, 19 or translated the Pater Noster into blundering Algonquin. The water in the cask beside the fire froze nightly, and the ice was broken every morning with hatchets. The blankets of the two priests were fringed with the icicles of their congealed breath, and the frost lay in a thick coating on the lozenge-shaped glass of their cells. [4]

      des parents qui les empche de les corriger et de leur


      *** Il serait propos de leur augmenter les charges, de account of them, see the work just cited, Introduction.


      comme un asile pour se mettre couvert de leurs crimes,


      One of the most curious monuments of La Salle's time is a long memoir, written by a person who made his acquaintance at Paris in the summer of 1678, when, as we shall soon see, he had returned to France in prosecution of his plans. The writer knew the Sulpitian Galine,[75] who, as he says, had a very high opinion of La Salle; and he was also in close relations with the discoverer's patron, the Prince de Conti.[76] He says that he had ten or twelve interviews with La Salle; and, becoming interested in him and in that which he communicated, he wrote down the substance of his conversation. The paper is divided into two [Pg 107] parts: the first, called "Mmoire sur Mr. de la Salle," is devoted to the state of affairs in Canada, and chiefly to the Jesuits; the second, entitled "Histoire de Mr. de la Salle," is an account of the discoverer's life, or as much of it as the writer had learned from him.[77] Both parts bear throughout the internal evidence of being what they profess to be; but they embody the statements of a man of intense partisan feeling, transmitted through the mind of another person in sympathy with him, and evidently sharing his prepossessions. In one respect, however, the paper is of unquestionable historical value; for it gives us a vivid and not an exaggerated picture of the bitter strife of parties which then raged in Canada, and which was destined to tax to the utmost the vast energy and fortitude of La Salle. At times, the memoir is fully sustained by contemporary evidence; but often, again, it rests on its own unsupported authority. I give an abstract of its statements as I find them.So too Brbeuf, in a letter to Vitelleschi, General of the Jesuits (see Carayon, 163): "Ce qu'il faut demander, avant tout, des ouvriers destins cette mission, c'est une douceur inaltrable et une patience toute preuve."