La prose de labsinthe (FICTION) (French Edition)

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We had a wonderful, argumentative and occasionally dramatic evening. It was the last thing he said before he passed out in his chair, toppling over and falling to the floor with a tremendous crash, and we all had to look lively again, grab hold of a limb each and carry him to the nearest sofa.

Next morning, with this feeling of clarity and imperturbability still on me, I stepped on something hard and sharp. I had however attained an unusual mental clarity, and I had found it very agreeable. I was absolutely converted, I said. But how far should I attribute the unusual clarity I experienced to the wormwood? He thought them more likely due to a combination of factors, including the exceptionally high alcohol content, the dilating effect of anise on the capillaries, the psychoactive effect of all the herbs, not just the wormwood, and perhaps most importantly the anticipation of the drinker as the drink is prepared.

That slowly passing minute, as the cold water trickles on to the sugar cube, and the sweetness dribbles down through the perforations in the absinthe spoon, turning the clear, emerald spirit to an opaque milky whiteness, as though by sacramental magic, does raise expectations — to a fever pitch, if you are easy prey to the absurdities thrown up by a romantic imagination.

But a weird clarity of mind that seems the very opposite of drunkenness — that I can vouch for. Jeremy Clarke 30 June No prizes for guessing who wrote this, or what the drink is: But was absinthe hallucinogenic? See also Absinthe Alcohol Drink Food.

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Most Popular Read Recent Read. Naz Shah needs to make up her mind about abortion Ross Clark. Macron is quick to take on nationalism. Philip May falls foul of the Maybot Steerpike. What to read next. The Spanish understand the pig and the sea Bruce Anderson. Our daily haggis Bruce Anderson. The only good thing about the Soviet Union was cheap caviar Bruce Anderson. Myra Orth, Renaissance Manuscripts: Short-title catalogue of books printed in France and of French books printed in other countries from to in the British Library London, Parisian Publisher Geneva, WP.

This striking material, often of high artistic quality, constitutes a fascinating means to reflect on the values and motivations as well as the challenges faced by French society at the time. These were government bonds issued through banks, given by individuals to the state at a fixed, low interest rate and redeemable after a given period.

Subscribing to them was presented as an integral part of the war effort. The posters advertising them highlight a situation of economic strain high government debt, inflation and currency devaluation , and its social and political repercussions, stressing the financial responsibility of civilians to support soldiers on the frontline. On one side, the one franc coin seems to climb effortlessly up a slope, leading the way for a group of allied soldiers to ascend. The caption indicates that since the whole world trusts France's credit, the franc strengthens; meanwhile, since nobody trusts Germany's credit, its currency weakens.

On the other side, a one mark coin rolls down a cliff. Barely supported by the soldiers who attempt to prevent its downfall, the wayward coin appears about to crush them.


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In these posters, subscription to war loans is presented as essential to support the army and hasten the victory of the French troops. It displays in the sunset, a female allegory of Victory, winged, in armour and wrapped in the French flag, leading through the air cavalry and infantry who bear French, British, Japanese, American and Serbian flags. The perspective of their triumphant charge contrasts with the scene below, depicting a mass of wounded and dead soldiers on the battlefield.

The poster thus also highlights the cooperation of the allied forces. It shows a colourful Uncle Sam shaking hands with a statue of the Marquis de Lafayette, the French general who fought for the Americans in the War of Independence of National and regional pride are stirred up by the allusion to Marseille and the reference to Alsace as a long-standing part of France. It reminds us of the crucial role played by the French colonies and French colonial troops during the war.


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  • The posters also give insights into the hope for peace and reconstruction, with the return of demobilised troops after the war. Despite the importance of regional elements like the laurel and the traditional dress, if you look closely at this poster you can see that the Marseille address has been covered over by that of the Paris offices. Another poster advertising Liberation loans was issued by the Chambre des notaires de Beauvais. It features a black and white drawing by Lucien Jonas , an established painter who worked for the French Army and Navy during the war.

    In this case, the image does not depict armies but a single soldier bringing home two small girls. The elder wears a traditional Alsatian outfit including the distinctive black bow headdress and holding a French flag, while the younger wears the Lorraine cross and white bonnet. The image illustrates verses by Jules Favre, a statesman at the beginning of the Third French Republic, about the recovery of Alsace and Lorraine lost during the Franco-Prussian War Through liberation and victory, the happy scene, reminiscent of a joyful family reunion, embodies the territorial reunification of France at the end of the conflict.

    Visual sources and ephemera are essential to our understanding of the First World War. Displaying nationalistic posters advertising the collecting of funds for the war effort to enable victory and support reconstruction at the time of the liberation of France emphasised the economic underpinning of the war and its monetary and social consequences.

    The posters illustrate the importance of financial history which is crucial to our understanding of the funding of the war and the social consequences of the economic situation. They carry powerful imagery and strong patriotic symbolism at regional, national and international levels.

    Although they display optimism and hope after the hardships of the war, the loan posters, which before and after the armistice appeal to civilian populations for the support of the army and the reconstruction of the country, demonstrate ongoing economic challenges and can also be seen to foreshadow indirectly the financial and political crises of the interwar period. Jim Aulich and John Hewitt, Seduction or instruction? Pearl James, Picture this: World War I posters and visual culture Lincoln, La guerre des affiches: Benjamin Gilles et Arndt Weinrich, Une guerre des images: France-Allemagne Paris, YF.

    British Library contribution to Europeana The circumstances in which she witnessed this phenomenon were not, perhaps, those which she might have wished, but her observations remain sharp and witty. Life is not always easy for the children of famous writers, especially girls. She was born on 28 July , at the time of the fateful events leading to the overthrow of Charles X, and political turbulence was to mark her passage through life.

    Victor Hugo never recovered from the loss, which he explored in some of his most impassioned poetry. In protest at the anti-parliamentarian constitution of Hugo left France, first for Brussels, then for Jersey, and finally for Guernsey. Marine Terrace, where Victor Hugo and his family lived on Jersey from Instead, she found herself living on a remote island whose social life did not provide the diversions and company to rival that of the City of Light. Nevertheless, in her diary she proved an apt and observant chronicler and critic of the circles in which she was obliged to move.

    She gleefully notes the subterfuges of an Englishwoman who affects extra-long skirts to conceal her big feet, while another goes to the other extreme to display a skinny leg which she mistakenly believes slender. Watching them from the grandstand are the young men belonging to the clubs: Here is the menagerie: A 19th-century horse-race, from G. She outlived her father, dying in in the asylum where she had been under treatment for schizophrenia. Painfully frustrating as her life may have been, it could not extinguish her capacity to express herself with piquancy and perception.

    The bright dawn of the French Revolution did not last. By the Jacobin club meeting in the Rue St Jacques led by Maximilien Robespierre was the dominant political club in the country. Cover page of a selection of works by and about Robespierre Paris, R. The Legislative Assembly of consisted of the Plain — moderate republicans or monarchists who were influenced by the Girondists from Gironde — and the Mountain — those seated in the highest part of the hall, who were the most radical and included members of the Jacobin and Cordelier clubs. In April the French declared war on Austria.

    That August the Tuileries palace was stormed by the Paris mob.

    European studies blog: France

    The Provisional Government, with Danton as Minister of Justice, did nothing to prevent the September massacre of prisoners. In the same month the monarchy was abolished and 22 September became the first day of Year 1. In April the Committee of Public Safety was formed. It included Danton, Robespierre and Saint-Just. In the years Robespierre came to dominate the government and massacres occurred in the regions. The Reign of Terror had begun. Marie Antoinette was executed on 16 October.

    She was tried on 4 November and executed the same day. Olympe de Gouges had written that women were not allowed the vote yet were considered responsible enough for their actions to be executed. There were many more humble victims than aristocratic ones, as people paid off old scores by denouncing people they disliked. In November the worship of God was abolished and replaced by the Cult of Reason.

    Danton and Desmoulins were executed on 5 April. In July a conspiracy against Robespierre lead to his and those of his younger brother, and his supporters Georges Couthon and Antoine Saint-Just, who was only They were arrested on 27 July 9 Thermidor.

    Other colleagues followed them to the scaffold. The plotters were forced by public opinion to moderate their policies and the Reign of Terror was ended. II [ or ] R. He is 5 pieds feet 3 or 4 pouces literally thumbs or inches tall, smart, with a lively step, a brisk manner, wringing his hands nervously, his hair and clothes elegant, his face ordinary but fresh in colour and a naturally harsh voice. His discourse was sharp, and he argued clearly. He had trained as a lawyer.

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    He was proud and sought glory; often bold he was sometimes vindictive. He was chaste by temperament.

    He liked to attract women and sometimes had them imprisoned so he could free them. He also liked to instil fear into part of the Convention. He had a would-be assassin killed. After his arrest, when he saw himself abandoned by his allies, and Couthon badly injured, he shot himself and was seriously but not fatally injured in the jaw. He was found on the floor. Couthon was dead but Robespierre was just about alive. He was mocked by those around him.

    Dumas was distracted, Saint-Just humiliated and Payan defiant and then fearful. Dumas asked for water which was given to him. The execution is not described except to say that after the execution the clothes of the victims were hardly disturbed although blood-stained. France , History , Printed books , Romance languages. French Revolution , Robespierre , Terror.

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    In an earlier blog post , we discussed the recent acquisition of a copy of the revolutionary Journal de Marseille published in , RB. Now we would like to comment on the collection of pamphlets bound at the end of the volume. The collection also contains reports and political discourses held at the National Convention and the Committee of Public Safety , discussing topics such as religion, government or public instruction. The volume is very coherent in the way it gathers contemporary revolutionary material from South-Eastern France.

    However, most of the tracts contained in the Journal volume are from different, often Southern editions, or in some cases have a different type-set. Lacroix is the author of another tract in the Journal de Marseille collection: Auguste Mossy, who printed 3 tracts in the compilation, was a fervent revolutionary who started his own printing business in and became a municipal councillor for the city of Marseilles until he later held other important political functions, under the Consulate and the Napoleonic Empire but was demoted under the Bourbon Restoration.

    The newly-acquired Prise de Toulon is a copy of the first Marseille edition, published by Jean Mossy, while the library already owned the second edition Paris, ; Instructions for the actors; Scene 1 from La prise de Toulon. Character list and Preface from La prise de Toulon.