All the style of living at court was in accordance with the magnificence of the king and his courtiers; Colbert was beside himself at the sums the queen lavished on play. Madame de Montespan lost and won back four millions, in one night at bassette; Mdlle. de Fontanges gave away twenty thousand crowns' worth of New Year's gifts; the king had just accomplished the dauphin's marriage.
To come in the capacity of a cousin, and seat himself every day at a good table; to smooth the yellow, wrinkled brow of the old procurator; to pluck the clerks a little by teaching them BASSETTE, PASSE-DIX, and LANSQUENET, in their utmost nicety, and winning from them, by way of fee for the lesson he would give them in an hour, their savings of a month all this was enormously delightful to Porthos.
In the upper room of the Main-Guard he found Major Shackleton of the Tangier Foot taking a hand at bassette with Lieutenant Scrope of Trelawney's Regiment and young Captain Tessin of the King's Battalion. There were three other officers in the room, and to them Surgeon Wyley began to talk in a prosy, medical strain.
I have known a woman carried off half dead from bassette, and have many a time grieved, to see a person of quality gliding by me in her chair at two o'clock in the morning, and looking like a spectre amidst a glare of flambeaux: in short, I never knew a thorough-paced female gamester hold her beauty two winters together.
A sign, perhaps, over a shop in the street he walked down, or a leper pestering him for alms. The intervening hours are lost to him, and forever. It is no question of an abeyance of memory. There is a gap in the continuity of his experience, and that gap he will never fill up." "Except by hearsay?" The correction came from Lieutenant Scrope at the bassette table.