Repertory of the Comedie Humaine, by Honoré de Balzac

K

KATT, a Flemish woman, the nurse of Lydie de la Peyrade, whom she attended constantly in Paris on rue des Moineaux about 1829, and during her mistress’ period of insanity on Rue Honore Chevalier in 1840. [Scenes from a Courtesan’s Life. The Middle Classes.]

KELLER (Francois), one of the influential and wealthy Parisian bankers, during a period extending perhaps from 1809 to 1839. As such, in November, 1809, under the Empire, he was one of the guests at a fine reception, given by Comte Malin de Gondreville, meeting there Isemberg, Montcornet, Mesdames de Lansac and de Vandemont, and a mixed company composed of members of the aristocracy and people illustrious under the Empire. At this time, moreover, Francois Keller was in the family of Malin de Gondreville, one of whose daughters he had married. This marriage, besides making him the brother-in-law of the Marechal de Carigliano, gave him assurance of the deputyship, which he obtained in 1816 and held until 1836. The district electors of Arcis-sur-Aube kept him in the legislature during that long period. Francois Keller had, by his marriage with Mademoiselle de Gondreville, one son, Charles, who died before his parents in the spring of 1839. As deputy, Francois Keller became one of the most noted orators of the Left Centre. He shone as a member of the opposition, especially from 1819 to 1825. Adroitly he drew about himself the robe of philanthropy. Politics never turned his attention from finance. Francois Keller, seconded by his brother and partner, Adolphe Keller, refused to aid the needy perfumer, Cesar Birotteau. Between 1821 and 1823 the creditors of Guillaume Grandet, the bankrupt, unanimously selected him and M. des Grassins of Saumur as adjusters. Despite his display of Puritanical virtues, the private career of Francois Keller was not spotless. In 1825 it was known that he had an illegitimate and costly liaison with Flavie Colleville. Rallying to the support of the new monarchy from 1830 to 1836, Francois Keller saw his Philippist zeal rewarded in 1839. He exchanged his commission at the Palais-Bourbon for a peerage, and received the title of count. [Domestic Peace. Cesar Birotteau. Eugenie Grandet. The Government Clerks. The Member for Arcis.]

KELLER (Madame Francois), wife of the preceding; daughter of Malin de Gondreville; mother of Charles Keller, who died in 1839. Under the Restoration, she inspired a warm passion in the heart of the son of the Duchesse de Marigny. [Domestic Peace. The Member for Arcis. The Thirteen.]

KELLER, (Charles), born in 1809, son of the preceding couple, grandson of the Comte de Gondreville, nephew of the Marechale de Carigliano; his life was prematurely ended in 1839, at a time when a brilliant future seemed before him. As a major of staff at the side of the Prince Royal, Ferdinand d’Orleans, he took the field in Algeria. His bravery urged him on in pursuit of the Emir Abd-el-Kader, and he gave up his life in the face of the enemy. Becoming viscount as a result of the knighting of his father, and assured of the favors of the heir presumptive to the throne, Charles Keller, at the moment when death surprised him, was on the point of taking his seat in the Lower Chamber; for the body of electors of the district of Arcis-sur-Aube were almost sure to elect a man whom the Tuileries desired so ardently. [The Member for Arcis.]

KELLER (Adolphe), brother — probably younger — of Francois and his partner; a very shrewd man, who was really in charge of the business, a “regular lynx.” On account of his intimate relations with Nucingen and F. du Tillet, he flatly refused to aid Cesar Birotteau, who implored his assistance. [The Middle Classes. Pierrette. Cesar Birotteau.]

KERGAROUET (Comte de), born about the middle of the eighteenth century; of the Bretagne nobility; entered the navy, served long and valiantly upon the sea, commanded the “Belle-Poule,” and died a vice-admiral. Possessor of a great fortune, by his charity he made amends for the foulness of some of his youthful love affairs (1771 and following), and at Paris, near the Madeleine, towards the beginning of the nineteenth century, with much delicacy, he helped the Baronne Leseigneur de Rouville. A little later, at the age of seventy-two, having for a long time been a widower and retired from the navy, while enjoying the hospitality of his relatives, the Fontaines and the Planat de Baudrys, who lived in the neighborhood of Sceaux, Kergarouet married his niece, one of the daughters of Fontaine. He died before her. M. de Kergarouet was also a relative of the Portendueres and did not forget them. [The Purse. The Ball at Sceaux. Ursule Mirouet.]

KERGAROUET (Comtesse de). (See Vandenesse, Marquise Charles de.)

KERGAROUET (Vicomte de), nephew of the Comte de Kergarouet, husband of a Pen-Hoel, by whom he had four daughters. Evidently lived at Nantes in 1836. [Beatrix.]

KERGAROUET (Vicomtesse de), wife of the preceding, born at Pen-Hoel in 1789; younger sister of Jacqueline; mother of four girls, very affected woman and looked upon as such by Felicite des Touches and Arthur de Rochefide. Lived in Nantes in 1836. [Beatrix.]

KERGAROUET (Charlotte de), born in 1821, one of the daughters of the preceding, grand-niece of the Comte de Kergarouet; of his four nieces she was the favorite of the wealthy Jacqueline de Pen-Hoel; a good-hearted little country girl; fell in love with Calyste du Guenic in 1836, but did not marry him. [Beatrix.]

KOLB, an Alsatian, served as “man of all work” at the home of the Didots in Paris; had served in the cuirassiers. Under the Restoration he became “printer’s devil” in the establishment of David Sechard of Angouleme, for whom he showed an untiring devotion, and whose servant, Marion, he married. [Lost Illusions.]

KOLB (Marion), wife of the preceding, with whom she became acquainted while at the home of David Sechard. She was, at first, in the service of the Angouleme printer, Jerome-Nicholas Sechard, for whom she had less praise than for David. Marion Kolb was like her husband in her constant, childlike devotion. [Lost Illusions.]

KOUSKI, Polish lancer in the French Royal Guards, lived very unhappily in 1815-16, but enjoyed life better the following year. At that time he lived at Issoudun in the home of the wealthy Jean-Jacques Rouget, and served the commandant, Maxence Gilet. The latter became the idol of the grateful Kouski. [A Bachelor’s Establishment.]

KROPOLI (Zena), Montenegrin of Zahara, seduced in 1809 by the French gunner, Auguste Niseron, by whom she had a daughter, Genevieve. One year later, at Vincennes, France, she died as a result of her confinement. The necessary marriage papers, which would have rendered valid the situation of Zena Kropoli, arrived a few days after her death. [The Peasantry.]

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Last updated Wednesday, March 12, 2014 at 13:31