How some French viewed Benjamin Franklin

I read an article on Marie-Antoinette's Gossip Guide which I found interesting concerning a founding father, Benjamin Franklin. He's the president on the 100 dollar bill... OK, I bet you caught that. Just ask a college student what number president he was and have a laugh.

It seem that not all in France were as enamoured of this Philidelphian as we have been led to believe.

Lauren relates...

While Mr Franklin visited Paris in March of 1778, there were many celebrations in his honour. But not everyone was impressed with the man. At a supper, Madame de Créquy found herself appalled with the presentation and behavior of Mr. Franklin. The first thing that caught her eye was his long hair! She goes on to describe him:

"'like a diocesan of Quimper,' brown coat, brown vest, brown breeches 'and hands of the same colour;' a linen cravat; but most remarkable, of all his way of eating fresh eggs.

He took five or six eggs, broke them into a goblet, put butter, salt, pepper, and mustard; and then 'nourished himself with little spoonfuls of this joli ragoût philadelphique.' He bit his asparagus and took a knife to his melon."

Her final assessment was that he was an unpleasant savage! Mdm de Créquy clearly did not approve of breeches in etiquette, and etiquette at the dinner table was most important.

A wonderful description of this rebel.


1 comment:

Unknown said...

Wonderful observation by Madame de Crequy! I lOVE it!