Angélique’s charity knew no discrimination; it extended towards everybody, even towards her worst enemies.

One day in Rochefort-en-Terre, as she was going along a certain street, she witnessed one of these everyday risings. This time it was directed against a National Agent named Le Clainche.[1] He was one of those petty tyrants, numerous at that time, who had adopted the new ideology and who relentlessly pursued the ‘non-juring’ priests and those who sheltered them. The mob had burst into his house and was ransacking it and throwing the furniture out of the windows. It is true, Angélique had more reason than anyone to complain of this man whose agents had, more than once, searched her house. But now she forgot everything. Without a care for what people would think or say, she began to pick up the most valuable articles and to restore them to their owner. At the same time, she tried to console him with reassuring words. Deeply moved by this genuine kindness, which in her case had something heroic in it, Le Clainche expressed his gratitude warmly and said that shortly he would visit her to reiterate his thanks. He kept his word and his visit was memorable on account of a rather comic incident. When he entered the house, Angélique was busy cooking galettes. On hearing footsteps, she turned round and caught sight of Le Clainche coming towards her, arms outstretched, evidently intending to embrace her. With the greatest presence of mind, she placed before her face the large wooden spatula (tournette) she was holding in her hand;[2] at the sight of this wooden instrument and feeling its heat, Le Clainche regained his calm and former reserve. After renewing his thanks, he was ready to prove to Angelique that his gratitude did not consist of words only; on the spot, he gave her tangible proof. It consisted of a signed document authorizing Angélique to practise her charitable zeal without hindrance, and to receive into her home those priests who had refused the Oath. No one was to question her conduct. As can be imagined, Angélique made good use of this authorization, happy that she could quite openly take the priests she had sheltered to visit the dying. Once, one of them dared to enter the house of a militant Jacobin in broad daylight; his wife, dangerously ill, wanted to receive the last rites before dying. More generous on this occasion than one would have dared to hope for a man of this temperament, Le Clainche himself contacted Angélique and she sent for Father Monnier, who, without delay, proceeded to Rochefort and openly administered the last sacraments to the dying woman.



[1] Rochefort, or, as it was called then, Rochefort-des-Trois, was the administrative centre of which Saint-Jacut was part.

[2] The “tournette” is the large wooden spatula used to turn “the galette” a round, flat cake made of plain flour – so that it cooks equally on both sides.