Montesquieu

At a time when the world is in tears over the death of his father, in that moment of sur­prise when eve­ryone is asking for Charles, and fin­ding him no lon­ger ; at a time when he has­tens his steps to go fill his place, he sends some fai­th­ful men before him to arrest those who had contri­bu­ted to the disor­der of his sis­ters’ conduct. This cau­sed some bloody tra­ge­dies. These were ins­tan­ces of ove­rhasty impru­dence. He began to avenge domes­tic cri­mes before he rea­ched the palace, and to revolt the minds before being the mas­ter.

He put out the eyes of Bernard, king of Italy, his nephew, who had come to plead for his cle­mency, and who died a few days later ; that mul­ti­plied his ene­mies. His fear of them led him to have his bro­thers shorn1 : that fur­ther increa­sed the num­ber. He was vehe­mently reproa­ched for these last two items ; they did not fail to say that he had vio­la­ted his oath and the solemn pro­mi­ses he had made to his father the day of his coro­na­tion.

After the death of the empress Hirmengarde, by whom he had three chil­dren, he mar­ried Judith : he had a son by her, and soon, com­bi­ning accom­mo­da­tions […].

[Faire tondre ses frères : “[…] c’était autrefois une ignominie en France que de tondre les cheveux ; et cette peine était mise au même rang que la fustigation par les loix de Charlemagne” (Trévoux).]