- 18 Febbraio 2007
Montesquieu was often glad to retire from the “official centers of conversation” to quieter houses, where he could be more at home, and where he could meet such marvels of the age as the two sisters of Madame de Rochefort, “the Marquise de Boufflers, who was faithful to her lover, and the Duchesse de Mirepoix, who was faithful to her husband.” But of all salons he preferred that the Duchesse d’Aiguillon. There he met the most interesting men of the day of all nationalities, attracted by the impartiality of the duchess, her abundant and original wit, her refined talk, her obligating manners, and her ability to speak four languages. Gustavus III. called her the “living journal of the Academy.” But she had judgment also; and authors consulted her about their works. Montesquieu liked her for herself and also because in her house he could meet Madame Dupré de Saint-Maur, wife of the Intendant of Bordeaux, who was “equally charming as mistress, as wife, and as friend.” It was in the arms of Madame Dupré de Saint-Maur that Montesquieu died on the 10th of February, 1755, in his sixty-sixth year.