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Facino Cane

By De Balzac, Honore

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Book Id: WPLBN0000018645
Format Type: PDF eBook
File Size: 0.4 MB
Reproduction Date: 2005
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Title: Facino Cane  
Author: De Balzac, Honore
Language: English
Subject: Literature, Literature & thought, Writing.
Collections: Classic Literature Collection
Publication Date:
Publisher: World Ebook Library


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Balzac, H. D. (n.d.). Facino Cane. Retrieved from

I once used to live in a little street which probably is not known to you -- the Rue de Lesdiguieres. It is a turning out of the Rue Saint- Antoine, beginning just opposite a fountain near the Place de la Bastille, and ending in the Rue de la Cerisaie. Love of knowledge stranded me in a garret; my nights I spent in work, my days in reading at the Bibliotheque d'Orleans, close by. I lived frugally; I had accepted the conditions of the monastic life, necessary conditions for every worker, scarcely permitting myself a walk along the Boulevard Bourdon when the weather was fine. One passion only had power to draw me from my studies; and yet, what was that passion but a study of another kind? I used to watch the manners and customs of the Faubourg, its inhabitants, and their characteristics. As I dressed no better than a working man, and cared nothing for appearances, I did not put them on their guard; I could join a group and look on while they drove bargains or wrangled among themselves on their way home from work. Even then observation had come to be an instinct with me; a faculty of penetrating to the soul without neglecting the body; or rather, a power of grasping external details so thoroughly that they never detained me for a moment, and at once I passed beyond and through them. I could enter into the life of the human creatures whom I watched, just as the dervish in the Arabian Nights could pass into any soul or body after pronouncing a certain formula.

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