The Duchess of Langeais
the Duchess of Langeais is the title of a novel of Honore de Balzac published initially in March 1834 under the title of do not touch the axe in the review the Echo of young France . In 1839, appears the 2nd edition containing Ferragus and the Duchess of Langeais , which appears under this title for the first time. Lastly, in 1843, appears the third edition of the Histoire of the Thirteen container Ferragus , the Duchess of Langeais and the Girl with the eyes of gold in the human Comedy .
TopicThis novel is richest and most complete of the whole of the Histoire of the Thirteen . The general of Montriveau is enthusiast of the duchess of Langeais, vain which refuses with him and which disappears. Helped by powerful the Thirteen, kind of Freemasonry to the occult capacities as Balzac likes to put in scene, it continues it to a Spanish monastery where it took refuge under the name of Therese sister. There, it agrees to receive it in the presence of the Mother Superior than who it makes believe than this man is his brother. But, at the last time, she acknowledges her fault at the same time as her love hidden a long time for Montriveau. This beginning brings a long flashback, at the time where the duchess the world by the end of the nose carried out, doing housework with share with her husband and scorning his sighing. The spirit of the Thirteen impregnates the novel, in particular the scene of violence where one sees Montriveau, advised by Ronquerolle, to threaten the duchess to mark it with the face with a cross of Lorraine reddened with fire.
Dedicated to Franz Liszt, this portrait of vain representative of the noble families of the Saint-Germain suburb, which hold their fortune of their grounds and which live on the myth of a higher birth, was inspired in Balzac by the marchioness of Castries to which it dedicated a love without hope, and is not without carrying the mark of a violent rancour.
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