Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Virtue Signaling and Secular Redemption

Virtue Signaling and Secular Redemption

Ever since former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began kneeling before preseason games in 2016, taking a knee in protest has become all the rage among the self-styled athletic elite. Spreading out from Kaepernick’s banal act of “defiance,” more and more players on more and more teams began refusing to stand for the playing of the national anthem. The madness has now reached such a pitch that team coaches—the Steelers’ Mike Tomlin, for example—and even team owners—such as the Cowboys’ Jerry Jonesare showing ingratitude toward the very nation that has enriched them. Players from awful inner city neighborhoods are protesting the police presence which keeps those places from descending into full chaos—and are also destroying the league that was their one ticket out of poverty.

In all of this, they are cheered on by their echo chambers in academia and the media, the semi-literate millionaire gladiators who staff the phalanxes of Sunday bloodsport, along with their keepers, have suddenly entered the pantheon of secular saints, heroes of political correctness who have found a way to regurgitate the cant of the liberal guardians without uttering a single word. As anyone could have predicted, ESPN—the sports-themed social justice clearinghouse whose anchoress Jemele Hill recently called Donald Trump a “white supremacist,”—has been supportive of the kneelers. The returning Apollo 11 astronauts were met with less fanfare than the linemen and tight ends genuflecting while our nation’s song is played.

But kneeling and pigskins were not always looked upon with such favor by the arbiters in the institutional politburo. Just last month, for example, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that former high school football coach Joseph Kennedy, whose pregame practice included kneeling at midfield in silent prayer and who was fired when he refused to stop praying, had no First Amendment grounds to sue for reinstatement. As reported in the Washington Examiner, the court found that Coach Kennedy “took advantage of his position to press his particular views upon the impressionable and captive minds before him.”

And then there was Tim Tebow. As an undergraduate quarterback at the University of Florida and then a player in the NFL, Tebow used to kneel in prayerful thanksgiving for touchdowns. He was roundly mocked by the media for this, subjected to intense ridicule for daring to express his faith in the public square. Tebow’s good nature allowed the scorn to roll off his back, but for many his treatment by the gods of broadcasting was a wake-up call. The term “post-Christian America” became a virtual slogan for our first post-Christian president, but even before it caught on the PC pillorying of Tim Tebow alerted us to the hard shifting of the cultural winds. Really and truly, the Christian hawsers anchoring the ship of the United States were being heaved back into the deep at lightning speed.

Long before Tim Tebow was born, of course, the takeover of America’s institutions by cultural Marxists and dyed-in-the-wool atheistic communists was well underway. By now, no one should be surprised to hear that most mainline churches are in full, fawning thrall to homosexual “marriage,” for instance. Recently, to take just one example, Fr. James Martin, a Jesuit who has made a career out of bending his own knee to the idols of the age, published a book which surely charts a course toward the homosexualization of even the Catholic Church. But it isn’t just churches. Academia, print media, broadcast media, the armed forces, the courts, the intelligence services, the Boy Scouts, the Girl Scouts, the medical profession, the public schools, charities, large corporations, and every last labor union in the country—all have been swamped by politics. And politics, for the cultural Marxists, is a way of freezing natural human interaction and paralyzing resistance to infiltration. The strategy has worked everywhere it has been tried.
Except, until now, in sports. While some athletes have been outspoken about their political views, the tradition until just yesterday was for players to keep their politics part of their private lives. We knew Michael Jordan was friends with Bill Clinton and we knew Mike Tyson was a supporter of Donald Trump. We knew Tom Brady leaned right and Ray Lewis leaned left. But we didn’t care. Politics and sports were anathema, we thought. We had given up on religion and on shared moral tenets, but Sundays (there is no small irony in this) were days when we could put our differences aside and come together as one.

This began to change several years ago with the advent of virtue signaling. Virtue signaling is the practice, now endemic in the United States, of letting everyone know that you embrace the right views, hold the right opinions, and vote for the right candidates. (And by “right” here, I of course mean “left.”) Akin to Thorstein Veblen’s conspicuous consumption, virtue signaling is a typically American way of showing off one’s newfangled achievements to one’s equally clueless neighbors. Virtue signaling requires no thought and no investment of either time or reputation. All that is necessary is to parrot what one hears on TV. It is as simple as that.

One may have supposed that football, of all activities, would have been safe from the encroachments of virtue signaling, however. Once held up by Progressive champion Teddy Roosevelt as the perfect training for young men to fight imperialist wars, football has always been violent barbarism. Beyond considerable athletic prowess and the ability to strategize and remember plays, it requires no formal education of its practitioners. It is, in fact, horribly detrimental to the cognitive abilities of those who play it. But it is precisely for this reason that football, once the apolitical axis of shared American cultural life, lay open to political takeover after all.

It is no coincidence that the advent of virtue signaling in football was simultaneous with the revelations—leaks at first, but now a horrifying torrent—that repeated concussive hits were causing devastating, debilitating brain damage in football players at all levels. The NFL, which has some of the most powerful and highest-paid lawyers on the planet, denied it all at first. But then one after another player came forward with the same story. Some players committed suicide. Others—or their widows—filed suit. The NFL began to look monstrous even in the eyes of the proletariat, which formed its most loyal revenue base. The NFL had a public relations problem. What to do?

The answer was as brilliant as it was shrewd. The NFL, virtually overnight, transformed itself from a league of pile-driving body blows and periodic maimings (all of which were played back in slow motion as the ratings numbers climbed) to a troupe of pink-clad activists who just happened to play a ball game but whose real purpose was “raising awareness” about “women’s issues.” And it was not to be chalked up in the debit column, either, that the new “woman friendly” NFL served to distract attention from Adam “Pacman” Jones, Adrian Peterson, Brandon Marshall, Johnny Manziel, Daryl Washington, and the dozens of other NFL players who have been either accused or convicted of violence or sexual assault against females. Ben Roethlisberger, the Steelers quarterback who so boldly sat out the anthem before last Sunday’s game, has twice been accused of sexual assault. He is now, naturally, a secular hero for showing contempt for the country whose criminal justice system allowed him twice to walk free.

The NFL’s new virtue signaling strategy worked like a charm. Female viewership soared, the league was able to appear humanitarian (despite the fact that its employees were being beaten to senseless pulps each weekend), and, for once, the players were able to give the world a peek into their political views. Was anyone surprised that an organization devoted to wanton violence for money would team up with the Susan G. Komen outfit, which funds precisely the same activity with its support for Planned Parenthood? But it doesn’t matter, because Planned Parenthood uses Susan G. Komen for cover, too. Everyone likes to signal their own virtue. Football players and coaches are hardly the exception.

It was only natural that, eventually, someone should take the virtue signaling to the next level and inject real, unmistakable politics into the game. Enter Colin Kaepernick. Now infamous as the little free agent who started this big war, Kaepernick took cues from his radical Muslim girlfriend and turned the NFL into a stage for his own self-righteousness. The temptation must have been almost irresistible. He knew he would be crowned with glory on SportsCenter the next morning. He knew the New York Times and the Washington Post would fall all over themselves to gild him with accolades. The NFL—and the sports world in general—was the Great White Whale, the last frontier of non-politics in a country now overrun with the stuff. All it took was a flash of insight to realize that the citadel was undefended and all the soldiers in the keep had long since switched sides.

What does this mean for the country? It was never any secret that the American elite hate the United States. We knew that before Jane Fonda mounted her first anti-aircraft gun in North Vietnam. But there is a much larger import to the genuflecting of the barbarians. Just as Christians realized ten years ago, during the mocking of Tim Tebow, that America was not a Christian nation anymore, Americans—even non-religious Americans—with any shred of patriotism left now realize that America isn’t an American nation anymore. We are a nation of virtue signalers. We bow to no God, and certainly to no flag or higher calling. We bedeck ourselves with the rainbow hues and brightly colored bows of our raised awareness, mechanically mimic the lessons we get from all sides from the cultural Marxists, and reverently bend our knees to our own virtue, to our own gloriously virtuous selves—right there on the big screen, for all the world to see.

But this very visibility may prove to be the NFL’s undoing. How much scrutiny will the private lives of its players and owners bear? As the Novena for the Seven Gifts of the Holy Ghost has it:
If Thou take Thy grace away, nothing pure in man will stay, all turn’d to ill.
Like the rest of us, the NFL may want to think twice before venerating its own piety in public. But a larger problem remains: in a post-Christian, post-patriotic, and now, probably, post-football America, what is left to hold us all together?
Editor’s note: Pictured above, Detroit Lions players take a knee during the national anthem before an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Detroit, Sunday, Sept. 24, 2017. (Photo credit: Paul Sancya | AP Images)

Monday, September 25, 2017

The Normalization of Delusional Thinking

The Normalization of Delusional Thinking

I sometimes wonder how so many people can be in denial about the danger posed by Islam to the rest of the world.

The textual, historical, and statistical evidence that Islam is an aggressive religion is overwhelming, but very few are willing to look at it. On the one side, you have a ton of hard evidence, and on the other side, you have ten megatons of wishful thinking: priests, prime ministers, and Hollywood celebrities assuring us that Islam is more peaceful than Christianity, more feminist than Gloria Steinem, and more caring than the Red Cross.

It’s the textbook definition of a delusion—“a false belief or wrong judgement held with conviction despite incontrovertible evidence to the contrary.” But, as I’ve come to realize, this delusional thinking is not specific to the crisis posed by Islam. Rather, it’s part of a larger pattern. In many ways, delusional thinking has become a main feature of the modern mind.

Take the transgender issue. All of a sudden, a significant percentage of our social and intellectual elites have succumbed to the delusion that a girl can be a boy, and a boy can be a girl, or whatever he, she, ne, ze, zir currently desires to be. This is not merely a rebellion against social convention, it’s a rebellion against reality. It’s a rejection of basic biology.

The most disturbing aspect of the “gender fluidity” fad is not that there are young and not-so- young (e.g. Bruce Jenner) people who are badly confused about their gender, but that there are legions of professionals—doctors, psychologists, teachers—who stand ready to confirm them in their delusion and even pump them full of puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones.

More sinister still, there are other authorities who want to punish those who fail to honor the delusion. The California Senate recently passed a bill to fine and even imprison nursing home workers who fail to address patients by their preferred pronoun. Meanwhile, the New York City Commission on Human Rights issued a “guidance” to business owners requiring them to use a person’s preferred pronoun or face a fine of $125,000 for “misgendering.”

In the old South there used to be laws against miscegenation, but nowadays in sophisticated, modern Manhattan, you can be fined for “misgendering.” Imagine that. If Max, the doorman, wants to be called “Maxine” today, you’d better go along with it, or else risk bankruptcy. And if on Thursday he decides he’s Maximilian I, the Emperor of Mexico, you’d be wise to address him as “your imperial majesty,” just to stay on the right side of the Human Rights Commission. In short, you are at the mercy of Max and his multiple identities.

There are several parallels here to what has become the standard response to Islam. As with transgenderism, we see an official denial of reality: Islamic terror has nothing to do with Islam, the terrorists (who are only a “handful”) “misunderstand” their faith, Islamic values are just the same as Christian values, and so on.

Likewise, just as you’re not allowed to call Bruce Jenner “he,” you’re not supposed to say “radical Islamic terror” or “migration invasion” or any other words that might be offensive to Muslims. If you slip up and use “Islamophobic” language, you can expect the same consequences that would follow if you called Maxine, “Max” on the wrong day of the week—namely, ostracism, job loss, and a heavy fine. Years before the New York City Human Rights Commission started policing transgressive words, columnist Mark Steyn was hauled before three Canadian human rights commissions for defamation of religion. His crime? In an article for Macleans, he noted the readily verifiable fact that Muslim birthrates in Europe were outstripping those of native Europeans.

Steyn is not alone. Dozens of prominent Europeans have faced similar trials, not because they said anything false about Islam, but because they made factual statements that Muslims found offensive. That sort of treatment sends a message, and most people have no trouble understanding the message. Whether the topic is Islam, or gender ideology, it’s not prudent to speak your mind. For example, although most adults realize that boys can’t be girls or vice versa, most are too cowed to say otherwise, except to trusted friends and relatives.

As Matthew Hanley observes in an incisive piece on the subject, such compelled speech is “degrading;” moreover, “making [others] agree to something they know is a lie is a hallmark of totalitarianism.” True enough, some people don’t know it’s a lie. They’ve been conditioned in school and college to believe that boys can be girls, that same-sex “marriage” is the equivalent of heterosexual marriage, and that Islam is responsible for most of history’s great cultural and scientific breakthroughs. The fact that these lies are believed by so many is testimony to the soft totalitarian takeover of our educational system.

The totalitarian creep has been going on for quite some time. I remember a university colleague who, back in the early nineties, excitedly told me that the big new thing in educational theory was “constructivism.” Actually, constructivism had already been the new thing in educational circles for at least a couple of decades prior to his personal revelation. It’s the idea that there are no objective truths, and hence each individual has to construct his own reality. According to this school of thought, Huckleberry Finn has no objective meaning, only the meaning you read into it. If you decide that Huckleberry Finn is a story about a transgendered adolescent seeking his true gender (your teachers will happily encourage you in that direction), then that’s the meaning of Huckleberry Finn. Whatever Mark Twain had in mind is irrelevant.

These as-you-like-it educational theories, arose in tandem with the self-esteem movement that began to sweep through schools, colleges, and seminaries in the 1960s and 70s. The self-esteem craze came out of the work of Carl Rogers, the pioneer of non-directive, non-judgmental therapy. Rogers taught that we should trust our inner selves, that morality is subjective, and that what’s right for you isn’t necessarily right for me. In his later years, as he developed an interest in Eastern thought, Rogers began to doubt the existence of objective reality. Reality, he came to believe, was something that each person created for himself.

Post-Rogers, the whole direction of education shifted—from exploring the world to exploring the self; from grappling with objective realities such as mathematics, history, and geography to discovering every nook and cranny of the subjective self. Non-directive education was the prelude to what we have now: in the case of gender ideology, the triumph of feelings over biological facts, and, in the case of Islam, the triumph of feel-good narratives over historical realities.

Another objective reality that came under attack during the self-esteem era was the existence of God, or, more accurately, the existence of the God who reveals himself in the Old and New Testaments—the God who make demands on the individual self. In his place, many substituted vague, New Age-ish forms of spirituality. Either that, or they began to conceive of God as a servant of their emotional needs—an all-understanding therapist in Heaven who just wants everyone to feel good about himself, herself, zeself, zirself.

The famous maxim attributed to Chesterton applies here: “The first effect of not believing in God is to believe in anything.” Once you lose sight of the central objective reality in the universe, it’s easy to lose sight of all the other realities, and you end up believing in anything—no matter how counter-factual the “anything” might be. You might believe that same-sex couples are truly married, you might believe that males can become females. You might even believe—heaven help you—that Islam is a religion of peace.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Saints of suffering and genius: Bl. Herman and St. Pacificus

Saints of suffering and genius: Bl. Herman and St. Pacificus

These two holy men with great physical challenges stand as powerful witnesses to the truth that every life has dignity.

We live in a society that looks at suffering and disabilities as curses, circumstances to be avoided at all costs. If an unborn baby is imperfect, she should be aborted. If an adult becomes infirm, he should be able to end his own life. In the name of compassion, we eliminate the flawed and congratulate ourselves on being good enough.

The Church stands strongly in opposition to this inclination, fighting for the unborn, the elderly, and the handicapped, for their dignity and their very lives. People with disabilities have something to offer the world, not only when they happen to have some particular talent. Human beings are a gift simply because they exist.

This week, Mother Church offers us two saints with disabilities to contemplate. September 25 is the feast of Blessed Herman of Reichenau (also called Blessed Herman the Cripple). Blessed Herman was born in the 11th century with cerebral palsy and a cleft palate. He also suffered from spina bifida or spinal muscular atrophy, all of which combined to make moving and even speaking very difficult for him.

By all worldly measures, Herman was a burden. He could contribute nothing to his noble family and caring for him was extremely difficult. Then as now, however, the Church valued every life. Herman was entrusted to a Benedictine monastery when he was seven, there to be cared for in obscurity.

But Herman was no ordinary man. He was a genius. Though his body was weak, making both speaking and writing a terrible chore, his mind was brilliant beyond all telling. As the monks began to care for him, they realized that his disability was only a small obstacle between Herman and greatness.

Herman’s education began, but soon he outstripped his tutors. He was a musicologist, an astronomer, and a mathematician. As a historian, he wrote a detailed history of the Western world in the first millennium after Christ. He read Arabic, Greek, and Latin. He wrote theology and poetry. He built musical instruments and astronomical equipment. He was called “The Wonder of His Age,” and all this before turning 40! Towards the end of his short life, Bl. Herman went blind. No longer able to study as he had, he turned his unparalleled mind to composition, writing the Salve Regina and the Alma Redemptoris Mater before dying at age 40.

Saint Pacificus of San Severino (1653-1721), on the other hand, lived a golden life. Born into a noble family, his body was perfect and his mind along with it. He entered the Franciscan order and became a priest and a professor of philosophy.
Respected as he was, Fr. Pacificus was well aware that his salvation wouldn’t come from learning or the esteem of the world. His task was the salvation of souls, and he begged to be sent out as a preacher, encountering sinners in their struggles and leading them back to the embrace of Christ. For five years he wandered the Italian countryside preaching, until his feet began to develop crippling, untreatable sores.
Pacificus accepted this cross, giving up his successful preaching ministry to sit for hours each day in the confessional. There, too, he was useful. But Pacificus’ goodness didn’t lie in his usefulness, and as his disease progressed God was teaching him (and us) just that.

Next, Pacificus lost his hearing. Sign language was very limited at the time but he got by with crude gestures. Still, Fr. Pacificus submitted, rejoicing to carry the Cross with Christ in some small way.

He could no longer teach or preach or hear confessions, but he could still celebrate Mass. Until his sight, too, was taken. The great orator was now blind, deaf, and crippled. And in this lay his great gift to the world. He was holy in his usefulness, but he became a saint not by accomplishing but by being. Pacificus suffered joyfully, even when abused by his nurse. His peaceful acceptance of God’s will so conformed him to the heart of Christ that he experienced ecstasies and was eventually elected superior of his community, his holiness being far more important than his worldly abilities. For nearly 30 years, he lived in pain and isolation, dying at age 68 on September 24, which became his feast day.

Blessed Herman and Saint Pacificus stand as powerful w
itnesses to the truth that every life has dignity. Blessed Herman was counted useless but offered great gifts of beauty, truth, and goodness to the world. Saint Pacificus became useless in the eyes of the world so that God could show what a gift his life was. Let’s ask their intercession for all people with disabilities, for all who suffer from chronic pain, and for our culture, that it may once again become a culture of life. Blessed Herman of Reichenau and Saint Pacificus of San Severino, pray for us!

Fifty years after St. Pacificus’ death, Charles Michel de l’Épée, a French Catholic priest, created the first systematic sign language and became known as the “Father of the Deaf.”

Monday, September 4, 2017

A Role for Government that Nobody Thinks About--REDUCE GOVERNMENT TAXATION

A Role for Government that Nobody Thinks About

A few years ago, as Obamacare was being put in place, Republican governor John Kasich of Ohio suggested that the Christian obligation to assist the poor was a reason for expanding Medicaid in the state. Catholic social teaching does indeed make clear that the state has a role in assisting the needy, but only—in line with the principle of subsidiarity—when there is no other way it can be done. Is that the case with providing access to health care?

Subsidiarity is hardly just a sectarian principle. Even though hardly an American politician ever mentions it, it is a basic principle of social ethics—part of the natural law. As Pope Pius XI famously stated it in his encyclical Quadragesimo Anno, it is at the same time “an injustice,” “a grave evil” and “a disturbance of right order to transfer to the larger and higher collectivity functions which can be performed and provided for by lesser and subordinate bodies” (#79). In other words, when something can be done in the private realm—starting with the family and also including private associations, whether for-profit or non-profit—it is a moral imperative that it be done there. It is only when the evidence shows that something is truly needed in the first place and that it cannot be done privately that it is justified bringing it into the governmental realm. If so justified, it must then be shown that it cannot be done at the governmental levels closest to the people before it can go to the higher and more distant levels. In other words, while there is a moral obligation to assist the needy, it can be immoral if it’s done in a way that involves government when it’s not necessary.

It’s also not just a question of morality, but of practicality. When the attempt is made to do all sorts of things from the center, they can’t be done adequately or efficiently. As I’m fond of telling my students, it’s a good thing that the federal government isn’t in charge of trash collection in communities all over the country because it probably wouldn’t get done. In the encyclical Centesimus Annus, Pope St. John Paul II ran down a whole list of the troublesome results of the welfare state: the loss of human initiative, massive increases in public spending, and less concern with those being served than with “bureaucratic ways” (#48). In Europe we now witness national economies being crippled because of bloated public social welfare spending and a host of problems—including terrorism—resulting from easy immigration motivated in part by trying to get more people to tax to sustain the welfare states.

It’s curious that such a prominent American liberal intellectual as Alan Wolfe in his book The Future of Liberalism would say that it’s better for the needy to be taken care of by a government bureaucracy than private charitable organizations, which he says would be kind of “groveling.” He should have consulted John Paul before saying that and, for that matter, just observed how government bureaucracies treat people—with the additional fact that they have the full force of law to club people with. He might also have noted how when the elderly have turned to Medicaid for nursing home assistance, the state readily seizes any lingering assets they may have upon their deaths. Perish the thought of even any tidbits going to their offspring. Could anyone envision a private charity doing that?

The massive increases in public spending that John Paul alluded to raise a related problem that also has moral implications: the high taxation needed to sustain it. Pope Leo XIII’s admonition in the encyclical Rerum Novarum should be remembered: the state acts unjustly when it takes “more than is fair” from its citizens by taxation, as it is an indirect violation of the right of private property (#47). So, excessive taxation can be immoral. One of the criticisms of Medicaid expansion in Ohio and other states occasioned by Obamacare is the many millions it will add to state budgets—which is likely to mean, sooner or later, higher taxes. Those higher taxes won’t come just from the super-wealthy, of course, but will reach into the working and lower middle classes and will be an additional strain on them.

Do the facts show that aiding the needy on matters like health care mainly requires government? The members of Congress apparently thought that when they enacted Medicaid during LBJ’s Great Society. They simply made that assumption, probably without doing—or even wanting to do—much research about it. As historian Allen J. Matusow has written, however, there is no evidence that since its establishment Medicaid has provided either more access to health care or a better quality of care for the poor than the previous charitable care did. Following from what his predecessor said, Pope Benedict XVI in the encyclical Caritas in Veritate made clear that it is in no way inevitable that centralized, bureaucratic structures are needed to provide social services and assistance. He called on nations to develop a “more devolved and organic system” (#60).
Almost certainly, this especially refers to the non-profit sector—like the old charity-provided health care that Matusow speaks of—but perhaps to some extent even the for-profit sector, since Benedict says the distinctions have blurred in some ways as even certain for-profits now address some social welfare needs (#46). It’s worth noting that one of the consequences of the expansion of government’s social welfare role has been to weaken the non-profit, charitable sector or make even it increasingly dependent on government.
Actually, there is no danger that the poor would not get badly needed care from medical institutions even in the complete absence of Medicaid, since they are required by law to provide it. Many health care institutions don’t even need such legal prodding, however. They have arrangements to reduce the cost of care based on income.

In light of the history of successful charitable care in the U.S., one wonders if instead of proposing the expansion of Medicaid in their states, governors should seek to change state law and use the prestige, persuasive power, and even bully pulpit of their executive offices to encourage the reinvigoration and expansion of non-profit health care institutions and various efforts at charitable care. For that matter, the president ought to push in similar ways for this nationally and by encouraging legislative action to make it more possible. As charitable care would be strengthened and show people anew what it did before the era of Medicaid, Medicaid could actually be gradually wound down and, ultimately, retained only in the health care areas where government involvement is clearly needed.

It is problematical to suggest, as Governor Kasich does about health care, that the Christian obligation to assist the needy should be carried out via government programs. While, to be sure, government is sometimes needed and the obligation may in some cases be one of justice more than charity, to dismiss charity entirely from the picture makes it all seem like a redistribution-of-income scheme. It is hard for people to think they are carrying out a moral obligation to assist others when government gives them no choice and just forces them to pay up through the tax system. The case can certainly be made that, besides helping to avoid the pitfalls spoken of here, charitable institutions are both more effective than government in addressing human needs and—the Alan Wolfes notwithstanding—better at respecting and having concern for the individual than, as Pope John Paul recognized in mentioning “bureaucratic ways,” a distant, impersonal bureaucracy.

Editor’s note: Pictured above is St. Camillo de Lellis saving the sick of the Hospital of the Holy Spirit Sassia during the flooding of the Tiber of 1598, painted by Pierre Hubert Subleyras, c. 1746.