To Monsieur le Marquis de Belloy
It was sitting by the fire, in a mysterious
and magnificent retreat,—­now a thing
of the past but surviving in our memory, —­whence
The French novelist Honoré de Balzac (1799-1850) was the first writer to use fiction to convey the total social scene prevailing within one country at a particular period in its history. Common...
Had Balzac been a less masterful novelist, the disreputably profligate fraud in him might have overwhelmed his artistry. Still, the other Balzac, the artist, is tainted by his well-earned reputation f...