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This episode, of which I have briefly given the outline, was the principal event of Alfred de Musset's life, the one which marked and colored it most deeply, which brought his genius to perfection by a cruel and fiery torture, and left a lasting imprint upon his writings. Although he never produced anything finer than certain passages of "Rolla," which was published in 1833, yet previous to that or more accurately to 1835, when he began to write again he had composed no long poem of equal merit throughout, none in which the flight was sustained from first to last. The magnificent series of the "Nights" of May, December, August and October, the "Letter to Lamartine," "Stanzas on the Death of Malibran," "Hope in God," and a number of others of not less melody and vigor, but less exalted and serious in tone; several plays, among them Lorenzaccio, which missed only by a very little being a fine tragedy; the greater part of his prose tales and criticisms, including Le Fils de Titien, the most charming of his stories, and the Confession d'un Enfant du Siècle, which shows as much genius as any of his poems, belong to the period from 1835 to 1840, his apogee. Of the last work, notwithstanding its unmistakable personal revelations which, if they do not tell the author's story, at least reflect his state of mind Paul de Musset says, what everybody who has read his brother's writings carefully will feel to be true, that neither in the hero nor any other single personage must we look for Alfred's entire individuality. In the complexity of his character and emotions, and the contradictions which they united, are to be found the eidolon of every young man in his collection, even "the two heroes of Les Caprices de Marianne, Octave and Cœlio," says Paul, "although they are the antipodes of one another." Neither is it as easy as it would seem on the surface to trace the thread of any one incident of his life through his writings. Although containing some irreconcilable passages, the four "Nights" appeared to have been born of the same impulse and to exact the same dedication: it is undeniably a shock to have their inconsistencies explained by hearing that while the "Nuits de Mai," "d'Août" and "d'Octobre" refer to his passion for Madame Sand, the "Nuit de Décembre" and "Lettre