This volume was already in the press, when Abbe Cognat published in the Correspondant (January 25th, 1883) the letters which I wrote to him in 1845 and 1846. As several of my friends told me that they had found them very interesting, I reproduce them here just as they were published.
Treguier, August 14th, 1845.
My dear friend,
Few events of importance have occurred, but many thoughts and feelings have crowded in upon me since the day we parted. I am all the more glad to impart them to you because there is no one else to whom I can confide them. I am not alone, it is true, when I am with my mother; but there are many things that my tender regard for her compels me to keep back, and which, for the matter of that, she would not understand.
Nothing has occurred to advance the solution of the important problem of which, as is only natural, my mind is full. I have learnt nothing more, unless it be the immensity of the sacrifice which God required of me. A thousand painful details which I had never thought of have cropped up, with the effect of complicating the situation, and of showing me that the course dictated me by my conscience opened up a future of endless trouble. I should have to enter into long and painful details to make you understand exactly what I mean; and it must suffice if I tell you that the obstacles of which we have on various occasions spoken are as nothing by comparison with those which have suddenly started up before me.