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Old Ambrose

Anecdotes Home




Among the few individuals who accompanied James II. to
France, when he was dethroned, was Madame de Varonne, a lady of good
family, but of ruined fortune. She was compelled to part with all her
servants successively, until she came to her footman, Ambrose, who had
lived with her twenty years; and who, although of an austere deportment,
was a faithful and valuable servant. At length her resources would not
permit her to retain even Ambrose, and she told him he must seek another
place. "Another place!" exclaimed the astonished servant; "No; I will never
quit you, let what will happen; I will live and die in your service." In
vain was Ambrose told by his mistress that she was totally ruined; that she
had sold every thing she had, and that she had no other means of
subsistence than by seeking some employment for herself. Ambrose protested
he would not quit his mistress; he brought her his scanty savings of twenty
years, and engaged himself to a brazier for tenpence a day and his board.
The money he brought every evening to his mistress, whom he thus supported
for four years; at the end of which time she received a pension from the
French king, which enabled her to reward the remarkable fidelity of her old
servant.




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