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Les MisÚrables - M. Myriel

1. M. Myriel

2. M. Myriel becomes M. Welcome

3. A Hard Bishopric for a Good Bishop

4. Works corresponding to Words

5. Monseigneur Bienvenu made his Cassocks last too long

6. Who guarded his House for him

7. Cravatte

8. Philosophy after Drinking

9. The Brother as depicted by the Sister

10. The Bishop in the Presence of an Unknown Light

11. A Restriction

12. The Solitude of Monseigneur Welcome

13. What he believed

14. What he thought

15. The Evening of a Day of Walking

16. Prudence counselled to Wisdom

17. The Heroism of Passive Obedience

18. Details concerning the Cheese-Dairies of Pontarlier

19. Tranquillity

20. Jean Valjean

21. The Interior of Despair

22. Billows and Shadows

23. New Troubles

24. The Man aroused

25. What he does

26. The Bishop works

27. Little Gervais

28. The Year 1817

29. A Double Quartette

30. Four and Four

31. Tholomyes is so Merry that he sings a Spanish Ditty

32. At Bombardas

33. A Chapter in which they adore Each Other

34. The Wisdom of Tholomyes

35. The Death of a Horse

36. A Merry End to Mirth

37. One Mother meets Another Mother

38. First Sketch of Two Unprepossessing Figures

39. The Lark

40. The History of a Progress in Black Glass Trinkets

41. Madeleine

42. Sums deposited with Laffitte

43. M. Madeleine in Mourning

44. Vague Flashes on the Horizon

45. Father Fauchelevent

46. Fauchelevent becomes a Gardener in Paris

47. Madame Victurnien expends Thirty Francs on Morality

48. Madame Victurnien's Success

49. Result of the Success

50. Christus nos Liberavit

51. M. Bamatabois's Inactivity

52. The Solution of Some Questions connected with the Municipal Police

53. The Beginning of Repose

54. How Jean may become Champ

55. Sister Simplice

56. The Perspicacity of Master Scaufflaire

57. A Tempest in a Skull

58. Forms assumed by Suffering during Sleep

59. Hindrances

60. Sister Simplice put to the Proof

61. The Traveller on his Arrival takes Precautions for Departure

62. An Entrance by Favor

63. A Place where Convictions are in Process of Formation

64. The System of Denials

65. Champmathieu more and more Astonished

66. In what Mirror M. Madeleine contemplates his Hair

67. Fantine Happy

68. Javert Satisfied

69. Authority reasserts its Rights

70. A Suitable Tomb

71. What is met with on the Way from Nivelles

72. Hougomont

73. The Eighteenth of June, 1815

74. A

75. The Quid Obscurum of Battles

76. Four o'clock in the Afternoon

77. Napoleon in a Good Humor

78. The Emperor puts a Question to the Guide Lacoste

79. The Unexpected

80. The Plateau of Mont-Saint-Jean

81. A Bad Guide to Napoleon; a Good Guide to Bulow

82. The Guard

83. The Catastrophe

84. The Last Square

85. Cambronne

86. Quot Libras in Duce?

87. Is Waterloo to be considered Good?

88. A Recrudescence of Divine Right

89. The Battle-Field at Night

90. Number 24,601 becomes Number 9,430

91. In which the reader will peruse Two Verses which are of the Devil's Composition possibly

92. The Ankle-Chain must have undergone a Certain Preparatory Manipulation to be thus broken with a Blow from a Hammer

93. The Water Question at Montfermeil

94. Two Complete Portraits

95. Men must have Wine, and Horses must have Water

96. Entrance on the Scene of a Doll

97. The Little One All Alone

98. Which possibly proves Boulatruelle's Intelligence

99. Cosette Side by Side with the Stranger in the Dark

100. The Unpleasantness of receiving into One's House a Poor Man who may be a Rich Man

101. Thenardier at his Manoeuvres

102. He who seeks to better himself may render his Situation Worse

103. Number 9,430 reappears, and Cosette wins it in the Lottery

104. Master Gorbeau

105. A Nest for Owl and a Warbler

106. Two Misfortunes Make One Piece of Good Fortune

107. The Remarks of the Principal Tenant

108. A Five-Franc Piece Falls on the Ground and Produces a Tumult

109. The Zigzags of Strategy

110. It Is Lucky That the Pont D'Austerlitz Bears Carriages

111. To Wit, the Plan of Paris in 1727

112. The Gropings of Flight

113. Which Would be Impossible With Gas Lanterns

114. The Beginning of an Enigma

115. Continuation of the Enigma

116. The Enigma Becomes Doubly Mysterious

117. The Man with the Bell

118. Which Explains How Javert Got on the Scent

119. Number 62 Rue Petit-Picpus

120. The Obedience of Martin Verga

121. Austerities

122. Gayeties

123. Distractions

124. The Little Convent

125. Some Silhouettes of this Darkness

126. Post Corda Lapides

127. A Century under a Guimpe

128. Origin of the Perpetual Adoration

129. End of the Petit-Picpus

130. The Convent as an Abstract Idea

131. The Convent as an Historical Fact

132. On What Conditions One can respect the Past

133. The Convent from the Point of View of Principles

134. Prayer

135. The Absolute Goodness of Prayer

136. Precautions to be observed in Blame

137. Faith, Law

138. Which treats of the Manner of entering a Convent

139. Fauchelevent in the Presence of a Difficulty

140. Mother Innocente

141. In which Jean Valjean has quite the Air of having read Austin Castillejo

142. It is not Necessary to be Drunk in order to be Immortal

143. Between Four Planks

144. In which will be found the Origin of the Saying: Don't lose the Card

145. A Successful Interrogatory

146. Cloistered







In 1815, M. Charles-Francois-Bienvenu Myriel was Bishop of D----
He was an old man of about seventy-five years of age; he had occupied
the see of D---- since 1806.

Although this detail has no connection whatever with the real
substance of what we are about to relate, it will not be superfluous,
if merely for the sake of exactness in all points, to mention here
the various rumors and remarks which had been in circulation about him
from the very moment when he arrived in the diocese. True or false,
that which is said of men often occupies as important a place in
their lives, and above all in their destinies, as that which they do.
M. Myriel was the son of a councillor of the Parliament of Aix;
hence he belonged to the nobility of the bar. It was said that
his father, destining him to be the heir of his own post, had married
him at a very early age, eighteen or twenty, in accordance with a
custom which is rather widely prevalent in parliamentary families.
In spite of this marriage, however, it was said that Charles Myriel
created a great deal of talk. He was well formed, though rather short
in stature, elegant, graceful, intelligent; the whole of the first
portion of his life had been devoted to the world and to gallantry.

The Revolution came; events succeeded each other with precipitation;
the parliamentary families, decimated, pursued, hunted down,
were dispersed. M. Charles Myriel emigrated to Italy at the very
beginning of the Revolution. There his wife died of a malady of
the chest, from which she had long suffered. He had no children.
What took place next in the fate of M. Myriel? The ruin of the French
society of the olden days, the fall of his own family, the tragic
spectacles of '93, which were, perhaps, even more alarming to the
emigrants who viewed them from a distance, with the magnifying powers
of terror,--did these cause the ideas of renunciation and solitude
to germinate in him? Was he, in the midst of these distractions,
these affections which absorbed his life, suddenly smitten with one
of those mysterious and terrible blows which sometimes overwhelm,
by striking to his heart, a man whom public catastrophes would
not shake, by striking at his existence and his fortune? No one
could have told: all that was known was, that when he returned
from Italy he was a priest.

In 1804, M. Myriel was the Cure of B---- [Brignolles]. He was already
advanced in years, and lived in a very retired manner.

About the epoch of the coronation, some petty affair connected
with his curacy--just what, is not precisely known--took him
to Paris. Among other powerful persons to whom he went to solicit
aid for his parishioners was M. le Cardinal Fesch. One day,
when the Emperor had come to visit his uncle, the worthy Cure,
who was waiting in the anteroom, found himself present when His
Majesty passed. Napoleon, on finding himself observed with a certain
curiosity by this old man, turned round and said abruptly:--

"Who is this good man who is staring at me?"

"Sire," said M. Myriel, "you are looking at a good man, and I
at a great man. Each of us can profit by it."

That very evening, the Emperor asked the Cardinal the name of the Cure,
and some time afterwards M. Myriel was utterly astonished to learn
that he had been appointed Bishop of D----

What truth was there, after all, in the stories which were invented
as to the early portion of M. Myriel's life? No one knew.
Very few families had been acquainted with the Myriel family before
the Revolution.

M. Myriel had to undergo the fate of every newcomer in a little town,
where there are many mouths which talk, and very few heads which think.
He was obliged to undergo it although he was a bishop, and because he
was a bishop. But after all, the rumors with which his name was
connected were rumors only,--noise, sayings, words; less than words--
palabres, as the energetic language of the South expresses it.

However that may be, after nine years of episcopal power and of
residence in D----, all the stories and subjects of conversation
which engross petty towns and petty people at the outset had fallen
into profound oblivion. No one would have dared to mention them;
no one would have dared to recall them.

M. Myriel had arrived at D---- accompanied by an elderly spinster,
Mademoiselle Baptistine, who was his sister, and ten years his junior.

Their only domestic was a female servant of the same age
as Mademoiselle Baptistine, and named Madame Magloire, who,
after having been the servant of M. le Cure, now assumed
the double title of maid to Mademoiselle and housekeeper to Monseigneur.

Mademoiselle Baptistine was a long, pale, thin, gentle creature;
she realized the ideal expressed by the word "respectable"; for it
seems that a woman must needs be a mother in order to be venerable.
She had never been pretty; her whole life, which had been nothing
but a succession of holy deeds, had finally conferred upon her
a sort of pallor and transparency; and as she advanced in years
she had acquired what may be called the beauty of goodness.
What had been leanness in her youth had become transparency in
her maturity; and this diaphaneity allowed the angel to be seen.
She was a soul rather than a virgin. Her person seemed made
of a shadow; there was hardly sufficient body to provide for sex;
a little matter enclosing a light; large eyes forever drooping;--
a mere pretext for a soul's remaining on the earth.

Madame Magloire was a little, fat, white old woman, corpulent
and bustling; always out of breath,--in the first place,
because of her activity, and in the next, because of her asthma.

On his arrival, M. Myriel was installed in the episcopal palace with
the honors required by the Imperial decrees, which class a bishop
immediately after a major-general. The mayor and the president
paid the first call on him, and he, in turn, paid the first call
on the general and the prefect.

The installation over, the town waited to see its bishop at work.




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