You also, without knowing it, you are A dream ... like that. Plauchut saw you once, and he adored you. That proves that he is not stupid. When he left me in Paris, he told me to remember him to you.
I left Cadio in doubt between good and average receipts. The cabal against the new management relaxed after the second day. The press was half favorable, half hostile. The good weather is against it. The hateful performance of Roger is also against it. So that we don’t know yet if we shall make money or not. As for me, when money comes, I say, “So much the better,” without excitement, and if it does not come, I say, “So much the worse,” without any chagrin. Money not being the aim, ought not to be the preoccupation. It is, moreover, not the real proof of success, since so many vapid or poor things make money.
Here I am with another play already underway, so as to keep my hand in. I have a novel also on the stocks, on the strolling players. I have studied them a good deal this time without learning anything new. I already had the plot. It is not complicated and is very logical.
I embrace you tenderly as well as your little mother. Give me some sign of life. Does the novel get on?
I am remorseful for not having answered at length your last letter, my dear master. You told me of the “ill turns” that people did you. Did you think that I did not know it? I confess to you even (between ourselves), that I was hurt on account of them more because of my good taste, than because of my affection for you. I did not think that several of your friends were warm enough towards you. “My God! my God! how mean literary men are!” A bit out of the correspondence of the first Napoleon. What a nice bit, eh? Doesn’t it seem to you that they belittle him too much?
The infinite stupidity of the masses makes me indulgent to individualities, however odious they may be. I have just gulped down the first six volumes of Buchez and Roux. The clearest thing I got out of them is an immense disgust for the French. My Heavens! Have we always been bunglers in this fair land of ours? Not a liberal idea which has not been unpopular, not a just thing that has not caused scandal, not a great man who has not been mobbed or knifed! “The history of the human mind is the history of human folly!” as says M. de Voltaire.
And I am convinced more and more of this truth: the doctrine of grace has so thoroughly permeated us that the sense of justice has disappeared. What terrified me so in the history of ’48 has quite naturally its origins in the Revolution, which had not liberated itself from the middle ages, no matter what they say. I have re-discovered in Marat entire fragments of Proudhon (sic) and I wager that they would be found again in the preachers of the League.