In September 1833, Gautier was solicited to write a historical romance based on the life of French opera star Mlle Maupin, who was a first-rate swordswoman and often went about disguised as a man. Originally, the story was to be about the historical la Maupin, who set fire to a convent for the love of another woman, but later retired to a convent herself, shortly before dying in her thirties. Gautier instead turned the plot into a love triangle between a man, d'Albert, and his mistress, Rosette, who both fall in love with Madelaine de Maupin, who is disguised as a man named Théodore. (--from Wikipedia)
but the episode of the licentious prelates, and veiled their faces as they cried out against the abomination of the desolation!
Such people, too, know nothing of the romance of Rodrigo save the verse about the snake. If there is any nakedness in a picture or a book they go straight to it like swine to the mire, without troubling themselves about the full-blown flowers, or the beautiful golden fruit which hang in every direction.
I confess that I am not virtuous enough for that. The impudent abigail Dorine may safely display her plump breast before me. I shall certainly not take out my pocket-handkerchief to cover the bosom that cannot be seen. I shall look at her breast as at her face, and, if it is white and well-formed, I shall take pleasure in it; but I shall not try whether Elmire's dress is soft, nor push her in a saintly way towards the edge of the table, as did the pitiful Tartuffe.
The great affectation of morality which reigns at present would be very laughable, if it were not v
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