NICE, February 23, 1898.
. . . Novoye Vremya has behaved simply abominably about the Zola case. The old man and I have exchanged letters on the subject (in a tone of great moderation, however), and have both dropped the subject.
I don’t want to write and I don’t want his letters, in which he keeps justifying the tactlessness of his paper by saying he loves the military: I don’t want them because I have been thoroughly sick of it all for a long time past. I love the military too, but I would not if I had a newspaper allow the cactuses to print Zola’s novel for nothing in the Supplement, while they pour dirty water over this same Zola in the paper — and what for? For what not one of the cactuses has ever known — for a noble impulse and moral purity. And in any case to abuse Zola when he is on his trial — that is unworthy of literature. . . .
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