A Dauphin of France learns self-control

May 12, 2014

Nine year old Louis of France, Dauphin son of Louis XV.

Nine year old Louis of France, Dauphin son of Louis XV.

The count of Châtillon explained to Louis XV’s eldest son Louis, Dauphin of France, that he needed to repress his irritability, and the young prince promised that he would.

— “Lord Count,” he said, “I would like to make it clear that I renounce all my stupidities and urge you to please look upon them as no more than the blowing of the wind.”

Some time later, when the Dauphin’s ill temper overwhelmed him, the count gave him a warning:

— “Sir,” he said, “the wind is blowing strong.”

— “Indeed it is Sir,” answered the boy, “and the thunder is not far behind!”

Pretending to be thoroughly frightened, the count covered both ears with his hands to block out the noise of the thunderclap.

At this the prince broke out into a smile and ran up to hug him, saying:

— “I promised that I would not lose my temper. Please forgive me.”


Jacques Necker, Galerie de l’ancienne cour (Maestricht: J. E. Dufour, 1787), Vol. 3, 143. (Nobility.org translation.)

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 384


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