The George Sand-Gustave Flaubert Letters

CCXCIX. To George Sand Paris, 11 December, 1875

Things are going a little better, and I am profiting by the occasion to write to you, dear, good, adorable master.

You know that I have abandoned my big novel in order to write a little MEDIEVAL bit of nonsense, which won’t run to more than thirty pages. It puts me in a more decent setting than that of modern times, and does me good. Then I am hunting for a contemporary novel, but I am hesitating among several embryonic ideas; I should like to do something concise and violent. The string of the necklace (that is to say, the main idea) is still to seek.

Externally my life is scarcely changed: I see the same people, I receive the same visits. My faithful ones on Sunday are first of all, the big Tourgueneff, who is nicer than ever, Zola, Alphonse Daudet, and Goncourt. You have never spoken to me of the first two. What do you think of their books?

I am not reading anything at all, except Shakespeare, whom am going through from beginning to end. That tones you up and puts new air into your lungs, just as if you were on a high mountain. Everything appears mediocre beside that prodigious felow.

As I go out very little, I have not yet seen Victor Hugo. However, this evening I am going to resign myself to putting on my boots, so that I can go to present my compliments to him. His personality pleases me infinitely, but his court! . . . mercy!

The senatorial elections are a subject of diversion to the public of which I am a part. There must have occurred, in the corridors of the Assembly, dialogues incredibly grotesque and base. The XlXth century is destined to see all religions perish. Amen! I do not mourn any of them.

At the Odeon, a live bear is going to appear on the boards. That is all that I know about literature.

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