The Ancient Regime eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 652 pages of information about The Ancient Regime.

[35].  “Confessions,” part I, book III.

[36].  Letter to M, de Beaumont.

[37]. “Émile,” letter IV. 193.  “People of the world must necessarily put on disguise; let them show themselves as they are and they would horrify us,” etc.

[38].  See, especially, his book entitled “Rousseau juge de Jean-Jacques,” his connection with Hume and the last books of the “confessions.”

[39].  “Confessions,” part 2. book XI.  “The women were intoxicated with the book and with the author to such an extent that there were few of them, even of high rank, whose conquest I could not have made if I had undertaken it.  I possess evidence of this which I do not care, to publish, and which, without having been obliged to prove it by experience, warrant, my statement.”  Cf.  G. Sand, “Histoire de ma vie,” I.73.

[40].  See an engraving by Moreau called “Les Petits Parrains.” — Berquin, passim., and among others “L’épée.” — Remark the ready-made phrases, the style of an author common to children, in Berquin and Madame de Genlis.

[41].  See the description of sunrise in “Émile,” of the Élysée (a natural garden), in “Héloise.”  And especially in “Emile,” at the end of the fourth book, the pleasures which Rousseau would enjoy if he were rich.

[42].  See in Marivaux, ("La double inconstance,”) a satire on the court, courtiers and the corruptions of high life, opposed to the common people in the country.

[43] Bachmaumont, I. 254.

[44].  “A calculator was required for the place but a dancer got it.” — “The sale of offices is a great abuse.” -"Yes, it would he better to give them for nothing.” — “Only small men fear small literature.” — “Chance makes the interval, the mind only can alter that !” — “A courtier? — they say it is a very difficult profession.” — “To receive, to take, and to ask, is the secret in three words,” etc, — Also the entire monologue by Figaro, and all the scenes with Bridoisin.


I. The nobility.

The Aristocracy. — Novelty commonly repugnant to it. — Conditions of this repugnance. — Example in England.

This public has yet to be made willing to be convinced and to be won over; belief occurs only when there is a disposition to believe, and, in the success of books, its share is often greater than that of their authors.  On addressing men about politics or religion their opinions are, in general already formed; their prejudices, their interests, their situation have confirmed them beforehand; they listen to you only after you have uttered aloud what they inwardly think.  Propose to them to demolish the great social edifice and to rebuild it anew on a quite an opposite plan:  ordinarily you auditors will consist only of those who are poorly lodged or shelterless, who live in garrets or cellars, or who sleep under

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The Ancient Regime from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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