Monsieur Bergeret in Paris

Works by France

Book 2
谷月社
1
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CHAPTER I

Monsieur Bergeret was seated at table taking his frugal evening meal. Riquet lay at his feet on a tapestry cushion. Riquet had a religious soul; he rendered divine honours to mankind. He regarded his master as very good and very great. But it was chiefly when he saw him at table that he realized the sovereign greatness and goodness of Monsieur Bergeret.

If, to Riquet, all things pertaining to food were precious and impressive, those pertaining to the food of man were sacred. He venerated the dining-room as a temple, the table as an altar. During meals he kept his place at his master’s feet, in silence and immobility.

“It’s a spring chicken,” said old Angélique as she placed the dish upon the table.

“Good. Be kind enough to carve it, then,” said Monsieur Bergeret, who was a poor hand with weapons and quite hopeless as a carver.

“Willingly,” said Angélique, “but carving isn’t woman’s work, it’s the gentlemen who ought to carve poultry.”

“I don’t know how to carve.”

“Monsieur ought to know.”

This dialogue was by no means new. Angélique and her master exchanged similar remarks every time that game or poultry came to the table. It was not flippantly, it was certainly not to save herself trouble, that the old servant persisted in offering her master the carving-knife as a token of the respect which was due to him. In the peasant class from which she had sprung and also in the little middle-class households where she had been in service, it was a tradition that it was the master’s duty to carve. The faithful old soul’s respect for tradition was profound. She did not think it right that Monsieur Bergeret should fall short of it, that he should delegate to her the performance of so authoritative a function, that he should fail to carve at his own table, since he was not grand enough to employ a butler to do it for him, like the Brécés, the Bonmonts and other such folk in town or country. She knew the obligations which honour imposes on a citizen who dines at home, and she never failed to impress them upon Monsieur Bergeret.

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About the author

About Anatole France

Anatole France (16 April 1844 – 12 October 1924) was a French poet, journalist, and novelist. He was born in Paris, and died in Saint-Cyr-sur-Loire. He was a successful novelist, with several best-sellers. Ironic and skeptical, he was considered in his day the ideal French man of letters. He was a member of the Académie française, and won the 1921 Nobel Prize in Literature "in recognition of his brilliant literary achievements, characterized as they are by a nobility of style, a profound human sympathy, grace, and a true Gallic temperament".

France is also widely believed to be the model for narrator Marcel's literary idol Bergotte in Marcel Proust's In Search of Lost Time.

Anatole France began his literary career as a poet and a journalist. In 1869, Le Parnasse Contemporain published one of his poems, La Part de Madeleine. In 1875, he sat on the committee which was in charge of the third Parnasse Contemporain compilation. As a journalist, from 1867, he wrote many articles and notices. He became famous with the novel Le Crime de Sylvestre Bonnard (1881). Its protagonist, skeptical old scholar Sylvester Bonnard, embodied France's own personality. The novel was praised for its elegant prose and won him a prize from the Académie française.

In La Rotisserie de la Reine Pedauque (1893) Anatole France ridiculed belief in the occult; and in Les Opinions de Jérôme Coignard (1893), France captured the atmosphere of the fin de siècle. France was elected to the Académie française in 1896.

France took an important part in the Dreyfus affair. He signed Émile Zola's manifesto supporting Alfred Dreyfus, a Jewish army officer who had been falsely convicted of espionage. France wrote about the affair in his 1901 novel Monsieur Bergeret.

France's later works include L'Île des Pingouins (1908) which satirizes human nature by depicting the transformation of penguins into humans – after the animals have been baptized by mistake by the nearsighted Abbot Mael. Les dieux ont soif (1912) is a novel, set in Paris during the French Revolution, about a true-believing follower of Robespierre and his contribution to the bloody events of the Reign of Terror of 1793–94. It is a wake-up call against political and ideological fanaticism and explores various other philosophical approaches to the events of the time. La Revolte des Anges (1914) is often considered France's most profound novel. It tells the story of Arcade, the guardian angel of Maurice d'Esparvieu. Arcade falls in love, joins the revolutionary movement of angels, and towards the end realizes that the overthrow of God is meaningless unless "in ourselves and in ourselves alone we attack and destroy Ialdabaoth."

He was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1921. He died in 1924 and is buried in the Neuilly-sur-Seine community cemetery near Paris.

On 31 May 1922, France's entire works were put on the Index Librorum Prohibitorum (Prohibited Books Index) of the Roman Catholic Church. He regarded this as a "distinction". This Index was abolished in 1966.

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Publisher
谷月社
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Published on
Dec 31, 2015
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Pages
149
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Classics
Fiction / Fantasy / General
Fiction / Literary
Literary Collections / European / General
Literary Collections / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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See entire series


I. LIFE OF SAINT MAEL

Mael, a scion of a royal family of Cambria, was sent in his ninth year to the Abbey of Yvern so that he might there study both sacred and profane learning. At the age of fourteen he renounced his patrimony and took a vow to serve the Lord. His time was divided, according to the rule, between the singing of hymns, the study of grammar, and the meditation of eternal truths.

A celestial perfume soon disclosed the virtues of the monk throughout the cloister, and when the blessed Gal, the Abbot of Yvern, departed from this world into the next, young Mael succeeded him in the government of the monastery. He established therein a school, an infirmary, a guest-house, a forge, work-shops of all kinds, and sheds for building ships, and he compelled the monks to till the lands in the neighbourhood. With his own hands he cultivated the garden of the Abbey, he worked in metals, he instructed the novices, and his life was gently gliding along like a stream that reflects the heaven and fertilizes the fields.

At the close of the day this servant of God was accustomed to seat himself on the cliff, in the place that is to-day still called St. Mael's chair. At his feet the rocks bristling with green seaweed and tawny wrack seemed like black dragons as they faced the foam of the waves with their monstrous breasts. He watched the sun descending into the ocean like a red Host whose glorious blood gave a purple tone to the clouds and to the summits of the waves. And the holy man saw in this the image of the mystery of the Cross, by which the divine blood has clothed the earth with a royal purple. In the offing a line of dark blue marked the shores of the island of Gad, where St. Bridget, who had been given the veil by St. Malo, ruled over a convent of women.

Now Bridget, knowing the merits of the venerable Mael, begged from him some work of his hands as a rich present. Mael cast a hand-bell of bronze for her and, when it was finished, he blessed it and threw it into the sea. And the bell went ringing towards the coast of Gad, where St. Bridget, warned by the sound of the bell upon the waves, received it piously, and carried it in solemn procession with singing of psalms into the chapel of the convent....


THE BARD OF KYME

Along the hill-side he came, following a path which skirted the sea. His forehead was bare, deeply furrowed and bound by a fillet of red wool. The sea-breeze blew his white locks over his temples and pressed the fleece of a snow-white beard against his chin. His tunic and his feet were the colour of the roads which he had trodden for so many years. A roughly made lyre hung at his side. He was known as the Aged One, and also as the Bard. Yet another name was given him by the children to whom he taught poetry and music, and many called him the Blind One, because his eyes, dim with age, were overhung by swollen lids, reddened by the smoke of the hearths beside which he was wont to sit when he sang. But his was no eternal night, and he was said to see things invisible to other men. For three generations he had been wandering ceaselessly to and fro. And now, having sung all day to a King of Ægea, he was returning to his home, the roof of which he could already see smoking in the distance; for now, after walking all night without a halt for fear of being overtaken by the heat of the day, in the clear light of the dawn he could see the white Kyme, his birthplace. With his dog at his side, leaning on his crooked staff, he walked with slow steps, his body upright, his head held high because of the steepness of the way leading down into the narrow valley and because he was still vigorous in his age. The sun, rising over the mountains of Asia, shed a rosy light over the fleecy clouds and the hill-sides of the islands that studded the sea. The coast-line glistened. But the hills that stretched away eastward, crowned with mastic and terebinth, lay still in the freshness and the shadow of night.

The Aged One measured along the incline the length of twelve times twelve lances and found, on the left, between the flanks of twin rocks, the narrow entrance to a sacred wood. There, on the brink of a spring, rose an altar of unhewn stones....

Winner of the 1921 Nobel Prize for Literature, Anatole France was a French poet, journalist and novelist, whose works were celebrated for their nobility of style and profound human sympathy. For the first time in publishing history, this comprehensive eBook presents France’s complete fictional works, with numerous illustrations, many rare texts, informative introductions and the usual Delphi bonus material. (Version 1)

* Beautifully illustrated with images relating to France’s life and works
* Concise introductions to the novels and other texts
* ALL 16 novels, with individual contents tables
* Images of how the books were first published, giving your eReader a taste of the original texts
* All the novels, including all four volumes of A CHRONICLE OF OUR OWN TIMES, available in no other collection
* Excellent formatting of the texts
* All the shorter fiction, with rare tales appearing here for the first time in digital print
* Special chronological and alphabetical contents tables for the poetry and the short stories
* Easily locate the poems or short stories you want to read
* Includes France’s seminal historical study of Joan of Arc
* Special criticism section, with 8 essays and articles evaluating France’s contribution to literature
* Scholarly ordering of texts into chronological order and literary genres

Please visit www.delphiclassics.com to browse through our range of exciting titles

CONTENTS:

The Novels
THE CRIME OF SYLVESTRE BONNARD
THE ASPIRATIONS OF JEAN SERVIEN
HONEY-BEE
THAÏS
AT THE SIGN OF THE REINE PÉDAUQUE
THE OPINIONS OF JEROME COIGNARD
THE RED LILY
A CHRONICLE OF OUR OWN TIMES I: THE ELM-TREE ON THE MALL
A CHRONICLE OF OUR OWN TIMES II: THE WICKER-WORK WOMAN
A CHRONICLE OF OUR OWN TIMES III: THE AMETHYST RING
A CHRONICLE OF OUR OWN TIMES IV: MONSIEUR BERGERET IN PARIS
A MUMMER’S TALE
THE WHITE STONE
PENGUIN ISLAND
THE GODS ARE ATHIRST
THE REVOLT OF THE ANGELS

The Shorter Fiction
JOCASTA AND THE FAMISHED CAT
BALTHASAR AND OTHER WORKS
MOTHER OF PEARL
THE WELL OF SAINT CLARE
CLIO
CRAINQUEBILLE, PUTOIS, RIQUET AND OTHER PROFITABLE TALES
THE MERRIE TALES OF JACQUES TOURNEBROCHE
THE SEVEN WIVES OF BLUEBEARD AND OTHER MARVELLOUS TALES
CHILD LIFE IN TOWN AND COUNTRY
MISCELLANEOUS STORIES

The Short Stories
LIST OF SHORT STORIES IN CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER
LIST OF SHORT STORIES IN ALPHABETICAL ORDER

The Plays
CRAINQUEBILLE
THE COMEDY OF A MAN WHO MARRIED A DUMB WIFE
COME WHAT MAY

The Poetry
LIST OF POETICAL WORKS

The Non-Fiction
THE LIFE OF JOAN OF ARC

The Criticism
ANATOLE FRANCE — 1904 by Joseph Conrad
ANATOLE FRANCE by Arnold Bennett
HOMAGE TO ANATOLE FRANCE by John Galsworthy
ANATOLE FRANCE by John Cowper Powys
ANATOLE FRANCE by Robert Lynd
THE WISDOM OF ANATOLE FRANCE by John Middleton Murry
ANATOLE FRANCE by George Brandes
ANATOLE FRANCE by Winifred Stephens

Please visit www.delphiclassics.com to browse through our range of exciting titles
 
CHAPTER I

True to her word, Madame Bergeret quitted the conjugal roof and betook herself to the house of her mother, the widow Pouilly.

As the time for her departure drew near, she had half a mind not to go, and with a little coaxing would have consented to forget the past and resume the old life with her husband, at the same time vaguely despising M. Bergeret as the injured party.

She was quite ready to forgive and forget, but the unbending esteem in which she was held by the circle in which she moved did not allow of such a course. Madame Dellion had made it clear to her that any such weakness on her part would be judged unfavourably; all the drawing-rooms in the place were unanimous upon that score. There was but one opinion among the tradespeople: Madame Bergeret must return to her mother. In this way did they uphold the proprieties and, at the same time, rid themselves of a thoughtless, common, compromising person, whose vulgarity was apparent even to the vulgar, and who was a burden on everybody about her. They made her believe there was something heroic in her conduct.

“I have the greatest admiration for you, my child,” said old Madame Dutilleul from the depths of her easy chair, she who had survived four husbands, and was a truly terrible woman. People suspected her of everything, except of ever having loved, and in her old age she was honoured and respected by all.

Madame Bergeret was delighted at having inspired sympathy in Madame Dellion and admiration in Madame Dutilleul, and still she could not finally make up her mind to go, for she was of a homely disposition and accustomed to regular habits and quite content to live on in idleness and deceit. Having grasped this fact, M. Bergeret redoubled his efforts to ensure his deliverance. He stoutly upheld Marie, the servant, who kept every one in the house in a state of wretchedness and trepidation, was suspected of harbouring thieves and cut-throats in her kitchen, and only brought herself into prominence by the catastrophes she caused....

 

Winner of the 1921 Nobel Prize for Literature, Anatole France was a French poet, journalist and novelist, whose works were celebrated for their nobility of style and profound human sympathy. For the first time in publishing history, this comprehensive eBook presents France’s complete fictional works, with numerous illustrations, many rare texts, informative introductions and the usual Delphi bonus material. (Version 1)

* Beautifully illustrated with images relating to France’s life and works
* Concise introductions to the novels and other texts
* ALL 16 novels, with individual contents tables
* Images of how the books were first published, giving your eReader a taste of the original texts
* All the novels, including all four volumes of A CHRONICLE OF OUR OWN TIMES, available in no other collection
* Excellent formatting of the texts
* All the shorter fiction, with rare tales appearing here for the first time in digital print
* Special chronological and alphabetical contents tables for the poetry and the short stories
* Easily locate the poems or short stories you want to read
* Includes France’s seminal historical study of Joan of Arc
* Special criticism section, with 8 essays and articles evaluating France’s contribution to literature
* Scholarly ordering of texts into chronological order and literary genres

Please visit www.delphiclassics.com to browse through our range of exciting titles

CONTENTS:

The Novels
THE CRIME OF SYLVESTRE BONNARD
THE ASPIRATIONS OF JEAN SERVIEN
HONEY-BEE
THAÏS
AT THE SIGN OF THE REINE PÉDAUQUE
THE OPINIONS OF JEROME COIGNARD
THE RED LILY
A CHRONICLE OF OUR OWN TIMES I: THE ELM-TREE ON THE MALL
A CHRONICLE OF OUR OWN TIMES II: THE WICKER-WORK WOMAN
A CHRONICLE OF OUR OWN TIMES III: THE AMETHYST RING
A CHRONICLE OF OUR OWN TIMES IV: MONSIEUR BERGERET IN PARIS
A MUMMER’S TALE
THE WHITE STONE
PENGUIN ISLAND
THE GODS ARE ATHIRST
THE REVOLT OF THE ANGELS

The Shorter Fiction
JOCASTA AND THE FAMISHED CAT
BALTHASAR AND OTHER WORKS
MOTHER OF PEARL
THE WELL OF SAINT CLARE
CLIO
CRAINQUEBILLE, PUTOIS, RIQUET AND OTHER PROFITABLE TALES
THE MERRIE TALES OF JACQUES TOURNEBROCHE
THE SEVEN WIVES OF BLUEBEARD AND OTHER MARVELLOUS TALES
CHILD LIFE IN TOWN AND COUNTRY
MISCELLANEOUS STORIES

The Short Stories
LIST OF SHORT STORIES IN CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER
LIST OF SHORT STORIES IN ALPHABETICAL ORDER

The Plays
CRAINQUEBILLE
THE COMEDY OF A MAN WHO MARRIED A DUMB WIFE
COME WHAT MAY

The Poetry
LIST OF POETICAL WORKS

The Non-Fiction
THE LIFE OF JOAN OF ARC

The Criticism
ANATOLE FRANCE — 1904 by Joseph Conrad
ANATOLE FRANCE by Arnold Bennett
HOMAGE TO ANATOLE FRANCE by John Galsworthy
ANATOLE FRANCE by John Cowper Powys
ANATOLE FRANCE by Robert Lynd
THE WISDOM OF ANATOLE FRANCE by John Middleton Murry
ANATOLE FRANCE by George Brandes
ANATOLE FRANCE by Winifred Stephens

Please visit www.delphiclassics.com to browse through our range of exciting titles
 
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