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sustained no loss in the permanent shutting up of
his school.

There was the Chevalier de la Morlière,
"with only one letter different from Molière,"
who hated Clairon the actress, and organised
a cabal against her, got put under very
uncomfortable police surveillance for his pains,
and finally was forbidden the theatre
altogether: who, after a youth of high company
and a manhood of hideous debauchery, sinking
ever lower and lower till there seemed no fouler
depth to which he could fall, died, a half-starved
beggar, having seen his last victim, poor Denise,
the guitar-playerseventeen when he was sixty-
sixdie of want before him. He, too, was a
literary power in his day; could bring tears of
rage from Clairon's haughty eyes; once supped
with Dubarry, who gave him a hundred Louis, a
smile, and her hand to kiss, in return for a dedication;
was "le Chevalier;" the author of Angola, a
popular novel; and for a period was caressed and
fêted by the fine folks, till his evil nature broke
out too openly for even that evil time, and all
men and women with any decency were forced to
abandon him to the frightful fate he had chosen.

And there was the handsome little reprobate
Desforges, who had as many lovers as
there are days in the year, and who was
present at that horrible massacre of eighteen
hundred people in the theatre at Marseilles,
when the soldiers fired on the audience because
they hissed a certain piece which had been
commanded by a local unpopularity. His life has
nothing more noteworthy in it than his cleverness
and unblushing licentiousness, yet he was
of no small account in his day, and brought
shame and sorrow upon many a nobler man.
And there was Grimod de la Reynière, called
Balthazar, appropriately enoughthe most gormandising
of a family of gourmandswhose grandfather
died of a pâté de foie gras, whose father
was the most noted epicure that Paris or the
whole civilised world could show, and who, himself,
true to the traditions of his race, was born
with webbed hands, and carried the science of
gastronomy up to the very highest pitch of which
it was capable. The father of Grimod de la
Reynière was a wealthy parvenu, a farmer-
general; his mother, a Mademoiselle de Jarente,
sister to Malesherbes, and niece of the Bishop
of Orleans, as proud as she was poor, and debasing
her blue blood to the gold-coloured mud
of the parvenu, with many a wry face and
balancing of her empty purse. Grimod's deformity
told sadly against him in the heart of his
aristocratic mother. It was bad enough to have
married a De la Reynière at all, but to give
birth to a palmiped De la Reynière—to a creature
with goose-feet instead of handswas horrible!
Mademoiselle de Jarente never forgave
her son his misfortune, and never made even
a show of loving him. He did the best he could to
hide his defect, and had well-looking false hands
of steel springs, with long steel hooks or claws
for fingers. These elegant masterpieces of
machinery he always covered with white kid gloves;
but once, when a boy, he was teazed by two
ladies who insisted on seeing his steel fingers,
so he took off his gloves and scratched them so
unmercifully that he sent them shrieking and
bleeding to his mother. He was fond of practical

Grimod might have been a great man: he was
full of genius, and had not a bad heart, though
he was eccentric enough: but he had early a
terrible blow in a certain love disappointment
which practically ruined him. He wanted to
marry his cousin, to whom he was ardently
attached; but he was denied, and the girl was married
out of hand hastily, to some one else. Grimod
never throve morally after this. He plunged
into every kind of extravagance, more like a
madman than one of sane and healthy mind; his
conduct at last becoming so unbearable that his
parents cut off his allowance and left him to
sink or swim by himself; whereupon Master
Balthazar took to driving his own carriage for
hire. And once, when his lady-mother came out
of her magnificent hotel, she found her son sitting
on the steps, with a market gardener's basket
full of vegetables on his arm. He offered them to
her for sale, as she passed. One of his numerous
pranks was the announcement of his death; and
the invitation to his funeral of several of his
most intimate friends. At the hour when the
procession was to form, suddenly the folding-doors
of the dining-room were flung wide open, a flood
of light streamed forth, and there stood Grimod,
alive and well, prepared to do the honours of
the most magnificent banquet ever given. His
friends forgave the joke, for the sake of the
viands. He went through the time of the Terror,
always eating and drinking of the best, as
if these were the supreme duties of a man's
life, and giving his immortal soul diligently to
the stewpans. He married a vulgar little actress
of low birth, and died in 1838, an octogenarian,
loyal to the last to the faith of gastronomes.

GOING TO THE FRONT.— In this article, in No. 81,
the passage, at page 105, " It is one of the disgraces
(disgrazie) of Italy, that she has too many
commanders," should have stood: It is one of the misfortunes
of Italy, that she has too many commanders.

Next week will be commenced
To be continued from week to week until completed
in August.


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