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I am afraid that you may be uncomfortable in that stage-coach which makes the run, and it is so easy to spare you two and a half hours of discomfort! We embrace you full of hope. I am working like an ox so as to have my novel finished and not to have to think of it a minute when you are here. G. Sand CXLII. TO GUSTAVE FLAUBERT Nohant, 19 December, 1869 So women are in it too?

Not the least animated and cordial of his papers is one on the Abbé Gerbet, in the sixth volume, a paper which shows, as Gustave Planche said of him, that "he studies with his heart, as women do;" and one in the second volume on Malesherbes, whom he describes as being "separated, on the moral side, from the Mirabeaus and the Condorcets not by a shade, but by an abyss," and whom he sums up as "great magistrate, minister too sensitive and too easily discouraged, heroic advocate, and sublime victim."

Gustave grimaced; then he waved his cigarette in the air, exclaiming: "She is charming, my dear Gilbert!" "The exhilaration is explained." "There is not a word to be said against her," he added hastily. "That does not depress me," said I. "But why should she invite me?" "She doesn't invite you; she invites me to bring anybody!" "Then she is ennuyée, I presume?"

This is so true that we may examine Gustave Flaubert's admirable pages on the legend of St. Julian the Hospitaller. Their development is like a dazzling yet regulated tumult, evolved in superb language whose apparent simplicity is only due to the complicated ingenuity of consummate skill. All is there, all except the accent which would have made this work a true masterpiece.

CCXCII. TO GUSTAVE FLAUBERT Thursday morning, 10th June, 1875 We are leaving, Lina and I, on Saturday morning, and up to then we shall be on the move. If you wanted to come to dine with us Friday at Magny's at six o'clock, at least we could say farewell. You should be free at nine o'clock, for we go to bed with the chickens in order to leave early the next day. What do you say?

Unluckily, amongst those of Gustave was one with a violent-tempered girl who persecuted him when he left her, and he naturally wished to avoid all chance of a silly scandal, if only out of respect to the dignity of his fiancee. But I found that was not the true motive, or at least the only one, for concealment. Prepare yourself, my poor wife.

Would you look at Gustave Dore less? Rather, more, I fancy. On the other hand, I could soon put you into good humour with me, if I chose. I know well enough what you like, and how to praise it to your better liking.

"The Abbe replied with unalterable good-humour, 'But, in order to criticise the effects of drunkenness, must one get drunk one's self? Gustave was put out, and retired into a corner of the room, keeping sullen silence till my other visitors left.

As the time of his uncle's return approached, the two months seemed to Gustave to have flown by like a pleasant dream; and, although he felt sure that his relative would not oppose the union, he foresaw that he would not be allowed hereafter to spend so much of his time away from business.

We slept at Digne, and made an early morning start, the car plunging us almost from the first into scenery which only Gustave Doré could have imagined. Gnome villages and elfin castles clung to slim pinnacles of rock which seemed to swing, like blown branches, against the sky.

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