RASSENEUR kept a tavern with the sign A l’Avantage between the settlement of the Deux-Cent-Quarante and the Voreux pit. He was formerly a good workman, but as he was an excellent speaker, and placed himself at the head of every strike, he was dismissed by the Mining Company. His wife already held a licence, and when he was thrown out of work he became an innkeeper himself. It was in his house that Etienne Lantier found lodgings when he first came to Montsou, and Souvarine also lodged there. Rasseneur’s readiness of speech gave him great influence with the miners, but a rivalry arose between him and Lantier, whose new theories caught the popular ear. This jealousy caused him to take a side against the strike, solely because it had been proposed by Lantier, and this attitude made him very unpopular. But after the failure of the strike, which he had all along predicted, the inconstancy of the crowd turned in his favour and he soon regained his old popularity. Germinal.
RASSENEUR (MADAME), wife of the preceding. At the time her husband was dismissed from the pit, she already held a licence, and they subsequently worked together to extend the business, in which they had considerable success. She was much more radical in politics than her husband, but during the strike trouble was careful to show extreme politeness to everyone. Germinal.
RASTOIL, a neighbour of Francois Mouret. He was a rich man about sixty years of age, who had been president of the civil tribunal of Plassans for over twenty years. He was a Legitimist, and his house was used as a convenient meeting-place for the party. For some time he refused to compromise his political position with Abbe Faujas, who had all along concealed his opinions. Ultimately, however, he supported the candidate for the representation of Plassans proposed by Faujas, for which he was rewarded by an appointment for his son. La Conquete de Plassans.
RASTOIL (MADAME), wife of the preceding, was a listless and somewhat prudish woman whose old entanglement with M. Delangre was still remembered with amusement in the cafes. She was consulted by Madame Mouret regarding the Home for Girls proposed by Abbe Faujas, and ultimately agreed to act on the committee. La Conquete de Plassans.
RASTOIL (ANGELINE), elder daughter of M. Rastoil, the president of the civil tribunal of Plassans. Though twenty-six years old, and now very yellow and shrewish-looking, she still adopted the role of a young girl, and had hopes of securing a husband. La Conquete de Plassans.
RASTOIL (AURELIE), second daughter of M. Rastoil. Like her sister Angeline, she was plain-looking, and posed as a girl fresh from school, in the uncertain hope of gaining a husband. La Conquete de Plassans.