The George Sand-Gustave Flaubert Letters

CXXI. To George Sand

My prophecy is fulfilled; My friend X—— has gained only ridicule with his candidacy. That serves him right. When a man of style debases himself to practical life, he loses caste and should be punished. And then, is it a question of politics, now! The citizens who are excited for or against the Empire or the Republic seem to me as useful as those who discuss efficacious or efficient grace. Politics are as dead as theology! They have had three hundred years of existence, that is quite enough.

Just now I am lost in the Church Fathers. As for my novel l’Education sentimentale, I am paying no more attention to it, God be thanked! It is recopied. Other hands have gone over it. So, the thing is no longer mine. It does not exist any longer, good night. I have taken up again my old hobby of Saint Antoine. I have reread my notes, I am making another new plan and I am devouring the ecclesiastical memoirs of the Nain de Tillemont. I hope to succeed in finding a logical connection (and therefore a dramatic interest) between the different hallucinations of the Saint. This extravagant setting pleases me and I am absorbed in it, there you are!

My poor Bouilhet bothers me. He is in such a nervous state that they have advised him to take a little trip to the south of France. He is overwhelmed by an unconquerable melancholy. Isn’t it queer! He who was so gay, formerly!

My Heavens! What a beautiful and farcical thing is the life of the desert Fathers! But without doubt they were all Buddhists. That is a stylish problem to work at, and its solution would be more important than the election of an academician. Oh! ye men of little faith! Long live Saint Polycarp!

Fangeat, who has reappeared recently, is the citizen who, on the 25th day of February, 1848, demanded the death of Louis-Philippe “without a trial.” That is the way one serves the cause of progress.

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Last updated Friday, March 14, 2014 at 21:53