This section is from the book "The Steward's Handbook And Guide To Party Catering", by Jessup Whitehead. Also available from Amazon: Larousse Gastronomique.
A name often met with in relation to gastronomieal subjects. "The Marquis de Cussy was a notable man enough in his day. It was he who was escorting the Empress Marie Louise back to Vienna when at Parma he heard of Napoleon's escape from Elba. Planting her there, he retraced his steps immediately and found his master back at the Tuileries, where he himself was an excellent prefect of the palace; but, the Hundred Days once over, he found himself suddenly a pauper, having always managed to combine indifference to his own interests with lavishness to others. This and his charms of manner made him popular, and he possessed that first talent of a born conversationist - a lending ear. But he was a born gourmet, too, and fully acted up to Colnet's line: 'Quand on donne a diner, on a toujours raison.' Great cooks struggled for his kitchen, and stayed with him seven years. He gave a dinner once a week, never to more than eleven guests, and it lasted two hours. He cites with approval in his 'Art Culinaire' one of the stories about that very unpleasant person Diogenes, who, seeing a child eating too fast, fetched the boy's tutor a rousing cuff.
De Cussy's own rigid rule was to eat moderately and to sip his liquors; and he preached putting down the knife and fork while still hungry, and then taking several glasses of an old wine, munching crisp breadcrust the while. Perhaps these wert. some of the reasons why the camel never refused, and explained his 'easily digesting a whole red-legged partridge' on the very day of his death, at the age of seventy-four. Many a well-advised man nowadays would as soon eat Tom Jones' Partridge body and bones; and there have been what a vain world calls nobler deaths, to be sure, and different illustrations of Hamlet's grave dictum that ' the readiness is all;' still we need not be too exclusive. This particular gourmet had the smooth-skinned, pink complexion of many an old-fashioned London merchant - in the daytime, that is; but a clever caricature of him by Dantan, which displays the bust of a heavy-chopped, bloated old gormandizer, with a great Yorkshire pie for pedestal, jnust also have been too near the truth, perhaps, after dinner; for one of his sayings to Brillat-Savarin, who would have mirrors in his dining room, was that a man should only look in the glass fasting.
After this it would be of no use at all his telling us that he could take up his pen immediately after dinner in full possession of his ideas, if we did not know from his sorry writings that he could not tack two ideas together, and that, whatever his practice was, his theories about cookery were not worth the charcoal for testing them." De Cussy is quoted nowadays occasionally, because he did write of L'Art Culinaire, and of Caremc, and of his contemporary gourmets and entertainers. " M. de Cussy, who, when young, had been patronized by Marie Antoinette, and who in later years was about the court of Marie Louise, failed to obtain a small place under Louis XVIII till the discriminating monarch was told that the mixture of strawberries, cream, and champagne, which possesses such a refined flavor, was the creation of the aged gastronome".