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Courage! I have shown it for years; think you I shall lose it at the moment when my sufferings are to end?
I was a queen, and you took away my crown; a wife, and you killed my husband; a mother, and you deprived me of my children. My blood alone remains: take it, but do not make me suffer long.
I feel profound sorrow in leaving my poor children: you know that I only lived for them and for you, my good and tender sister. You who out of love have sacrificed everything to be with us, in what a position do I leave you!
I have just been condemned, not to a shameful death, which can only apply to felons, but rather to finding your brother again...I seek forgiveness for all whom I know for every harm I may have unwittingly caused them...Adieu, good, gentle sister...I embrace you with all my heart as well as the poor, dear children.
I pardon all my enemies the evils that they have done me. I bid farewell to my aunts and to all my brothers and sisters. I had friends. The idea of being forever separated from them and from all their troubles is one of the greatest sorrows that I suffer in dying. Let them at least know that to my latest moment I thought of them.
In our own misfortunes how much comfort has our affection for one another afforded us! And, in times of happiness, we have enjoyed that doubly from being able to share it with a friend; and where can one find friends more tender and more united than in one's own family?
It is the nature of human beings, and especially of the mediocre ones, to wish to change everything. They desire it all the more because they know popularity will accrue rather to those who disturb than to those who maintain order.
It is to you, my sister, that I write for the last time. I have just been condemned, not to a shameful death, for such is only for criminals, but to go and rejoin your brother. Innocent like him, I hope to show the same firmness in my last moments.
It would be doing me great injustice to think that I have any feeling of indifference to my country; I have more reason than anyone to feel, every day of my life, the value of the blood which flows in my veins, and it is only from prudence that at times I abstain from showing how proud I am of it.
Let my son never forget the last words of his father, which I repeat emphatically; let him never seek to avenge our deaths.
No one understands my ills, nor the terror that fills my breast, who does not know the heart of a mother.
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