Vauvenargues

Vauvenargues
Critical Miscellanies, Vol 2, Essay 1

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Vauvenargues by John Morley

Published:

1905

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Vauvenargues
Critical Miscellanies, Vol 2, Essay 1

By

0
(0 Reviews)

Book Excerpt

as 'very noble, in truth, but slightly barbarous,' this criticism was peculiarly striking. A great many years afterwards Voltaire was surprised in the same way, to find that an officer could write such a book as the _Félicité Publique_ of the Marquis de Chastellux. To Vauvenargues he replied with many compliments, and pointed out with a good deal of pains the injustice which the young critic had done to the great author of Cinna. '_It is the part of a man like you,_' he said admirably, '_to have preferences, but no exclusions._'[13] The correspondence thus begun was kept up with ever-growing warmth and mutual respect. 'If you had been born a few years earlier,' Voltaire wrote to him, 'my works would be worth all the more for it; but at any rate, even at the close of my career, you confirm me in the path that you pursue.'[14]

The personal impression was as fascinating as that which had been conveyed by Vauvenargues' letters. Voltaire took every opportunity of visiting his unfortunate friend, then

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