The Wandering Jew — Complete eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,953 pages of information about The Wandering Jew — Complete.

These lines, expressing so simply the sincere gratitude of the hunchback, gave the last blow to Florine’s hesitations.  She could no longer resist the generous temptation she felt.  As she read these last fragments of the journal, her affection and respect for Mother Bunch made new progress.  More than ever she felt how infamous it was in her to expose to sarcasms and contempt the most secret thoughts of this unfortunate creature.  Happily, good is often as contagious as evil.  Electrified by all that was warm, noble, and magnanimous in the pages she had just read, Florine bathed her failing virtue in that pure and vivifying source, and, yielding, at last to one of those good impulses which sometimes carried her away, she left the room with the manuscript in her hand, determined, if Mother Bunch had not yet returned, to replace it—­resolved to tell Rodin that, this second time, her search for the journal had been vain, the sempstress having no doubt discovered the first attempt.

[26] In the Ruche Populaire, a working man’s organ, are the following particulars: 

“Carding Mattresses.—­The dust which flies out of the wool makes carding destructive to health in any case, but trade adulterations enhance the danger.  In sticking sheep, the skin gets blood-spotted; it has to be bleached to make it salable.  Lime is the main whitener, and some of it clings to the wool after the process.  The dresser (female, most often) breathes in the fine dust, and, by lung and other complaints, is far from seldom deplorably situated; the majority sicken of it and give up the trade, while those who keep to it, at the very least, suffer with a catarrh or asthma that torments them until death.

“As for horsehair, the very best is not pure.  You can judge what the inferior quality is, from the workgirls calling it vitriol hair, because it is the refuse or clippings from goats and swine, washed in vitriol, boiled in dyes, etc., to burn and disguise such foreign bodies as straw. thorns, splinters, and even bits of skin, not worth picking out.  The dust rising when a mass of this is beaten, makes as many ravages as the lime-wool.”


The discovery.

A little while before Florine made up her mind to atone for her shameful breach of confidence, Mother Bunch had returned from the factory, after accomplishing to the end her painful task.  After a long interview with Angela, struck, like Agricola, with the ingenuous grace, sense, and goodness, with which the young girl was endowed, Mother Bunch had the courageous frankness to advise the smith to enter into this marriage.  The following scene took place whilst Florine, still occupied in reading the journal, had not yet taken the praiseworthy resolution of replacing it.  It was ten o’clock at night.  The workgirl, returned to Cardoville House, had just entered her chamber.  Worn out by so many emotions, she had

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The Wandering Jew — Complete from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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