Oops, I knew I wasn't remembering something to add to that last post! Page 56:
"Since his dismissal as Minister of War, Narbonne had joined the army on the northern frontier under the command of Lafayette. Madame de Stael, so rumour had it, had gone to join him at the camp of Arras, bearing a phial of poison on her person, with the intention of killing herself should any harm come to her lover. How Narbonne responded to this gesture is not known; his overwhelming preoccupation now was with the king. His liberalism was sincere, but so too was the loyalty he felt as a soldier and a nobleman to the monarchy, a loyalty which transcended the King's personal defects, and in which his own honour was closely involved."
I am really going to hunt down the key commands for accents, because there are so many I'll be ignoring otherwise when I post quotes from this book. Even though none of my French teachers are going to be tut-tut-ing over the lack of accents. Well, that I'll know about.
Meanwhile I really am going to have to read more on Madame de Stael. This isn't the first time I've bumped into her in a history book, and I've read enough to want to read some of her writing. Also the quote above wasn't the last mention of suicide during her relationship with Narbonne either. But then when you're threatened with the guillotine, poison does seem like the easier way out.