""I entered literary life as a meteor, and I shall leave it like a
thunderbolt."" These words of Maupassant to Jose Maria de Heredia
on the occasion of a memorable meeting are, in spite of their
morbid solemnity, not an inexact summing up of the brief career
during which, for ten years, the writer, by turns undaunted and
sorrowful, with the fertility of a master hand produced poetry,
novels, romances and travels, only to sink prematurely into the
abyss of madness and death. . . . . This book contains all thirteen
volumes of his original short stories.
This is a high quality book of the original classic edition. It
was previously published by other bona fide publishers, and is now,
finally, back in print.
This is a freshly published edition of this culturally important
work, which is now, at last, again available to you.
Enjoy this classic work. These few paragraphs distill the
contents and give you a quick look inside:
These words of Maupassant to Jose Maria de Heredia on the
occasion of a memorable meeting are, in spite of their morbid
solemnity, not an inexact summing up of the brief career during
which, for ten years, the writer, by turns undaunted and sorrowful,
with the fertility of a master hand produced poetry, novels,
romances and travels, only to sink prematurely into the abyss of
madness and death. . . . .
These poems, overflowing with sensuality, where the hymn to the
Earth describes the transports of physical possession, where the
impatience of love expresses itself in loud melancholy appeals like
the calls of animals in the spring nights, are valuable chiefly
inasmuch as they reveal the creature of instinct, the fawn escaped
from his native forests, that Maupassant was in his early
One saw, in particular, many enlisted men, peaceful citizens,
men who lived quietly on their income, bending beneath the weight
of their rifles; and little active volunteers, easily frightened
but full of enthusiasm, as eager to attack as they were ready to
take to flight; and amid these, a sprinkling of red-breeched
soldiers, the pitiful remnant of a division cut down in a great
battle; somber artillerymen, side by side with nondescript
foot-soldiers; and, here and there, the gleaming helmet of a
heavy-footed dragoon who had difficulty in keeping up with the
quicker pace of the soldiers of the line.
Their leaders, former drapers or grain merchants, or tallow or
soap chandlers-warriors by force of circumstances, officers by
reason of their mustachios or their money-covered with weapons,
flannel and gold lace, spoke in an impressive manner, discussed
plans of campaign, and behaved as though they alone bore the
fortunes of dying France on their braggart shoulders; though, in
truth, they frequently were afraid of their own men-scoundrels
often brave beyond measure, but pillagers and debauchees.
The earthquake crushing a whole nation under falling roofs; the
flood let loose, and engulfing in its swirling depths the corpses
of drowned peasants, along with dead oxen and beams torn from
shattered houses; or the army, covered with glory, murdering those
who defend themselves, making prisoners of the rest, pillaging in
the name of the Sword, and giving thanks to God to the thunder of
cannon-all these are appalling scourges, which destroy all belief
in eternal justice, all that confidence we have been taught to feel
in the protection of Heaven and the reason of man.
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