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.gitignore vendored

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.gitmodules vendored

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[submodule "themes/gohugo-theme-ananke"]
path = themes/gohugo-theme-ananke
url =

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title: "{{ replace .Name "-" " " | title }}"
date: {{ .Date }}
draft: true

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title = "Notre-Dame de Paris"
languageCode = "en-us"
theme = "gohugo-theme-ananke"
DefaultContentLanguage = "en"
SectionPagesMenu = "main"
Paginate = 3 # this is set low for demonstrating with dummy content. Set to a higher number
googleAnalytics = ""
enableRobotsTXT = true
changefreq = "monthly"
priority = 0.5
filename = "sitemap.xml"
favicon = ""
site_logo = ""
description = "The last theme you'll ever need. Maybe."
facebook = ""
twitter = ""
instagram = ""
youtube = ""
github = ""
gitlab = ""
linkedin = ""
mastodon = ""
slack = ""
stackoverflow = ""
rss = ""
# choose a background color from any on this page: and preface it with "bg-"
background_color_class = "bg-black"
featured_image = "/images/gohugo-default-sample-hero-image.jpg"
recent_posts_number = 2

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title: "Ananke: a Hugo Theme"
featured_image: '/images/gohugo-default-sample-hero-image.jpg'
description: "The last theme you'll ever need. Maybe."
Welcome to my blog with some of my work in progress. I've been working on this book idea. You can read some of the chapters below.

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title: "About"
description: "A few years ago, while visiting or, rather, rummaging about Notre-Dame, the author of this book found, in an obscure nook of one of the towers, the following word, engraved by hand upon the wall: —ANANKE."
featured_image: ''
{{< figure src="/images/Victor_Hugo-Hunchback.jpg" title="Illustration from Victor Hugo et son temps (1881)" >}}
_The Hunchback of Notre-Dame_ (French: _Notre-Dame de Paris_) is a French Romantic/Gothic novel by Victor Hugo, published in 1831. The original French title refers to Notre Dame Cathedral, on which the story is centered. English translator Frederic Shoberl named the novel The Hunchback of Notre Dame in 1833 because at the time, Gothic novels were more popular than Romance novels in England. The story is set in Paris, France in the Late Middle Ages, during the reign of Louis XI.

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title: Contact
featured_image: "images/notebook.jpg"
omit_header_text: true
description: We'd love to hear from you
type: page
menu: main
This is an example of a custom shortcode that you can put right into your content. You will need to add a form action to the the shortcode to make it work. Check out [Formspree]( for a simple, free form service.
{{< form-contact action="" >}}

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title: "Articles"
date: 2017-03-02T12:00:00-05:00
Articles are paginated with only three posts here for example. You can set the number of entries to show on this page with the "pagination" setting in the config file.

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date: 2017-04-09T10:58:08-04:00
description: "The Grand Hall"
featured_image: "/images/Pope-Edouard-de-Beaumont-1844.jpg"
tags: ["scene"]
title: "Chapter I: The Grand Hall"
Three hundred and forty-eight years, six months, and nineteen days ago
to-day, the Parisians awoke to the sound of all the bells in the triple
circuit of the city, the university, and the town ringing a full peal.
The sixth of January, 1482, is not, however, a day of which history has
preserved the memory. There was nothing notable in the event which thus
set the bells and the bourgeois of Paris in a ferment from early morning.
It was neither an assault by the Picards nor the Burgundians, nor a hunt
led along in procession, nor a revolt of scholars in the town of Laas, nor
an entry of “our much dread lord, monsieur the king,” nor even a pretty
hanging of male and female thieves by the courts of Paris. Neither was it
the arrival, so frequent in the fifteenth century, of some plumed and
bedizened embassy. It was barely two days since the last cavalcade of that
nature, that of the Flemish ambassadors charged with concluding the
marriage between the dauphin and Marguerite of Flanders, had made its
entry into Paris, to the great annoyance of M. le Cardinal de Bourbon,
who, for the sake of pleasing the king, had been obliged to assume an
amiable mien towards this whole rustic rabble of Flemish burgomasters, and
to regale them at his Hôtel de Bourbon, with a very “pretty morality,
allegorical satire, and farce,” while a driving rain drenched the
magnificent tapestries at his door.
What put the “whole population of Paris in commotion,” as Jehan de Troyes
expresses it, on the sixth of January, was the double solemnity, united
from time immemorial, of the Epiphany and the Feast of Fools.
On that day, there was to be a bonfire on the Place de Grève, a maypole at
the Chapelle de Braque, and a mystery at the Palais de Justice. It had
been cried, to the sound of the trumpet, the preceding evening at all the
cross roads, by the provost’s men, clad in handsome, short, sleeveless
coats of violet camelot, with large white crosses upon their breasts.
So the crowd of citizens, male and female, having closed their houses and
shops, thronged from every direction, at early morn, towards some one of
the three spots designated.
Each had made his choice; one, the bonfire; another, the maypole; another,
the mystery play. It must be stated, in honor of the good sense of the
loungers of Paris, that the greater part of this crowd directed their
steps towards the bonfire, which was quite in season, or towards the
mystery play, which was to be presented in the grand hall of the Palais de
Justice (the courts of law), which was well roofed and walled; and that
the curious left the poor, scantily flowered maypole to shiver all alone
beneath the sky of January, in the cemetery of the Chapel of Braque.
The populace thronged the avenues of the law courts in particular, because
they knew that the Flemish ambassadors, who had arrived two days
previously, intended to be present at the representation of the mystery,
and at the election of the Pope of the Fools, which was also to take place
in the grand hall.
It was no easy matter on that day, to force one’s way into that grand
hall, although it was then reputed to be the largest covered enclosure in
the world (it is true that Sauval had not yet measured the grand hall of
the Château of Montargis). The palace place, encumbered with people,
offered to the curious gazers at the windows the aspect of a sea; into
which five or six streets, like so many mouths of rivers, discharged every
moment fresh floods of heads. The waves of this crowd, augmented
incessantly, dashed against the angles of the houses which projected here
and there, like so many promontories, into the irregular basin of the
place. In the centre of the lofty Gothic* façade of the palace, the grand
staircase, incessantly ascended and descended by a double current, which,
after parting on the intermediate landing-place, flowed in broad waves
along its lateral slopes,—the grand staircase, I say, trickled
incessantly into the place, like a cascade into a lake. The cries, the
laughter, the trampling of those thousands of feet, produced a great noise
and a great clamor. From time to time, this noise and clamor redoubled;
the current which drove the crowd towards the grand staircase flowed
backwards, became troubled, formed whirlpools. This was produced by the
buffet of an archer, or the horse of one of the provost’s sergeants, which
kicked to restore order; an admirable tradition which the provostship has
bequeathed to the constablery, the constablery to the _maréchaussée_,
the _maréchaussée_ to our _gendarmeri_ of Paris.

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date: 2017-04-10T11:00:59-04:00
description: "Pierre Gringoire"
featured_image: ""
tags: []
title: "Chapter II: Pierre Gringoire"
Nevertheless, as be harangued them, the satisfaction and admiration
unanimously excited by his costume were dissipated by his words; and when
he reached that untoward conclusion: “As soon as his illustrious eminence,
the cardinal, arrives, we will begin,” his voice was drowned in a thunder
of hooting.
“Begin instantly! The mystery! the mystery immediately!” shrieked the
people. And above all the voices, that of Johannes de Molendino was
audible, piercing the uproar like the fife’s derisive serenade: “Commence
instantly!” yelped the scholar.
“Down with Jupiter and the Cardinal de Bourbon!” vociferated Robin
Poussepain and the other clerks perched in the window.
“The morality this very instant!” repeated the crowd; “this very instant!
the sack and the rope for the comedians, and the cardinal!”
Poor Jupiter, haggard, frightened, pale beneath his rouge, dropped his
thunderbolt, took his cap in his hand; then he bowed and trembled and
stammered: “His eminence—the ambassadors—Madame Marguerite of
Flanders—.” He did not know what to say. In truth, he was afraid of
being hung.
Hung by the populace for waiting, hung by the cardinal for not having
waited, he saw between the two dilemmas only an abyss; that is to say, a
Luckily, some one came to rescue him from his embarrassment, and assume
the responsibility.
An individual who was standing beyond the railing, in the free space
around the marble table, and whom no one had yet caught sight of, since
his long, thin body was completely sheltered from every visual ray by the
diameter of the pillar against which he was leaning; this individual, we
say, tall, gaunt, pallid, blond, still young, although already wrinkled
about the brow and cheeks, with brilliant eyes and a smiling mouth, clad
in garments of black serge, worn and shining with age, approached the
marble table, and made a sign to the poor sufferer. But the other was so
confused that he did not see him. The new comer advanced another step.
“Jupiter,” said he, “my dear Jupiter!”
The other did not hear.
At last, the tall blond, driven out of patience, shrieked almost in his
“Michel Giborne!”
“Who calls me?” said Jupiter, as though awakened with a start.
“I,” replied the person clad in black.
“Ah!” said Jupiter.
“Begin at once,” went on the other. “Satisfy the populace; I undertake to
appease the bailiff, who will appease monsieur the cardinal.”
Jupiter breathed once more.
“Messeigneurs the bourgeois,” he cried, at the top of his lungs to the
crowd, which continued to hoot him, “we are going to begin at once.”
“_Evoe Jupiter! Plaudite cives_! All hail, Jupiter! Applaud,
citizens!” shouted the scholars.
“Noel! Noel! good, good,” shouted the people.
The hand clapping was deafening, and Jupiter had already withdrawn under
his tapestry, while the hall still trembled with acclamations.
In the meanwhile, the personage who had so magically turned the tempest
into dead calm, as our old and dear Corneille puts it, had modestly
retreated to the half-shadow of his pillar, and would, no doubt, have
remained invisible there, motionless, and mute as before, had he not been
plucked by the sleeve by two young women, who, standing in the front row
of the spectators, had noticed his colloquy with Michel Giborne-Jupiter.
“Master,” said one of them, making him a sign to approach. “Hold your
tongue, my dear Liénarde,” said her neighbor, pretty, fresh, and very
brave, in consequence of being dressed up in her best attire. “He is not a
clerk, he is a layman; you must not say master to him, but messire.”

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date: 2017-04-11T11:13:32-04:00
description: "Monsieur the Cardinal"
featured_image: ""
tags: []
title: "Chapter III: Monsieur the Cardinal"
Poor Gringoire! the din of all the great double petards of the Saint-Jean,
the discharge of twenty arquebuses on supports, the detonation of that
famous serpentine of the Tower of Billy, which, during the siege of Paris,
on Sunday, the twenty-sixth of September, 1465, killed seven Burgundians
at one blow, the explosion of all the powder stored at the gate of the
Temple, would have rent his ears less rudely at that solemn and dramatic
moment, than these few words, which fell from the lips of the usher, “His
eminence, Monseigneur the Cardinal de Bourbon.”
It is not that Pierre Gringoire either feared or disdained monsieur the
cardinal. He had neither the weakness nor the audacity for that. A true
eclectic, as it would be expressed nowadays, Gringoire was one of those
firm and lofty, moderate and calm spirits, which always know how to bear
themselves amid all circumstances (_stare in dimidio rerum_), and who
are full of reason and of liberal philosophy, while still setting store by
cardinals. A rare, precious, and never interrupted race of philosophers to
whom wisdom, like another Ariadne, seems to have given a clew of thread
which they have been walking along unwinding since the beginning of the
world, through the labyrinth of human affairs. One finds them in all ages,
ever the same; that is to say, always according to all times. And, without
reckoning our Pierre Gringoire, who may represent them in the fifteenth
century if we succeed in bestowing upon him the distinction which he
deserves, it certainly was their spirit which animated Father du Breul,
when he wrote, in the sixteenth, these naively sublime words, worthy of
all centuries: “I am a Parisian by nation, and a Parrhisian in language,
for _parrhisia_ in Greek signifies liberty of speech; of which I have
made use even towards messeigneurs the cardinals, uncle and brother to
Monsieur the Prince de Conty, always with respect to their greatness, and
without offending any one of their suite, which is much to say.”
There was then neither hatred for the cardinal, nor disdain for his
presence, in the disagreeable impression produced upon Pierre Gringoire.
Quite the contrary; our poet had too much good sense and too threadbare a
coat, not to attach particular importance to having the numerous allusions
in his prologue, and, in particular, the glorification of the dauphin, son
of the Lion of France, fall upon the most eminent ear. But it is not
interest which predominates in the noble nature of poets. I suppose that
the entity of the poet may be represented by the number ten; it is certain
that a chemist on analyzing and pharmacopolizing it, as Rabelais says,
would find it composed of one part interest to nine parts of self-esteem.
Now, at the moment when the door had opened to admit the cardinal, the
nine parts of self-esteem in Gringoire, swollen and expanded by the breath
of popular admiration, were in a state of prodigious augmentation, beneath
which disappeared, as though stifled, that imperceptible molecule of which
we have just remarked upon in the constitution of poets; a precious
ingredient, by the way, a ballast of reality and humanity, without which
they would not touch the earth. Gringoire enjoyed seeing, feeling,
fingering, so to speak an entire assembly (of knaves, it is true, but what
matters that?) stupefied, petrified, and as though asphyxiated in the
presence of the incommensurable tirades which welled up every instant from
all parts of his bridal song. I affirm that he shared the general
beatitude, and that, quite the reverse of La Fontaine, who, at the
presentation of his comedy of the “Florentine,” asked, “Who is the
ill-bred lout who made that rhapsody?” Gringoire would gladly have
inquired of his neighbor, “Whose masterpiece is this?”
The reader can now judge of the effect produced upon him by the abrupt and
unseasonable arrival of the cardinal.
That which he had to fear was only too fully realized. The entrance of his
eminence upset the audience. All heads turned towards the gallery. It was
no longer possible to hear one’s self. “The cardinal! The cardinal!”
repeated all mouths. The unhappy prologue stopped short for the second
The cardinal halted for a moment on the threshold of the estrade. While he
was sending a rather indifferent glance around the audience, the tumult
redoubled. Each person wished to get a better view of him. Each man vied
with the other in thrusting his head over his neighbor’s shoulder.
He was, in fact, an exalted personage, the sight of whom was well worth
any other comedy. Charles, Cardinal de Bourbon, Archbishop and Comte of
Lyon, Primate of the Gauls, was allied both to Louis XI., through his
brother, Pierre, Seigneur de Beaujeu, who had married the king’s eldest
daughter, and to Charles the Bold through his mother, Agnes of Burgundy.
Now, the dominating trait, the peculiar and distinctive trait of the
character of the Primate of the Gauls, was the spirit of the courtier, and
devotion to the powers that be. The reader can form an idea of the
numberless embarrassments which this double relationship had caused him,
and of all the temporal reefs among which his spiritual bark had been
forced to tack, in order not to suffer shipwreck on either Louis or
Charles, that Scylla and that Charybdis which had devoured the Duc de
Nemours and the Constable de Saint-Pol. Thanks to Heaven’s mercy, he had
made the voyage successfully, and had reached home without hindrance. But
although he was in port, and precisely because he was in port, he never
recalled without disquiet the varied haps of his political career, so long
uneasy and laborious. Thus, he was in the habit of saying that the year
1476 had been “white and black” for him—meaning thereby, that in the
course of that year he had lost his mother, the Duchesse de la
Bourbonnais, and his cousin, the Duke of Burgundy, and that one grief had
consoled him for the other.

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date: 2017-04-12T11:14:48-04:00
description: "Master Jacques Coppenole"
featured_image: ""
tags: ["scene"]
title: "Chapter IV: Master Jacques Coppenole"
While the pensioner of Ghent and his eminence were exchanging very low
bows and a few words in voices still lower, a man of lofty stature, with a
large face and broad shoulders, presented himself, in order to enter
abreast with Guillaume Rym; one would have pronounced him a bull-dog by
the side of a fox. His felt doublet and leather jerkin made a spot on the
velvet and silk which surrounded him. Presuming that he was some groom who
had stolen in, the usher stopped him.
“Hold, my friend, you cannot pass!”
The man in the leather jerkin shouldered him aside.
“What does this knave want with me?” said he, in stentorian tones, which
rendered the entire hall attentive to this strange colloquy. “Don’t you
see that I am one of them?”
“Your name?” demanded the usher.
“Jacques Coppenole.”
“Your titles?”
“Hosier at the sign of the ‘Three Little Chains,’ of Ghent.”
The usher recoiled. One might bring one’s self to announce aldermen and
burgomasters, but a hosier was too much. The cardinal was on thorns. All
the people were staring and listening. For two days his eminence had been
exerting his utmost efforts to lick these Flemish bears into shape, and to
render them a little more presentable to the public, and this freak was
startling. But Guillaume Rym, with his polished smile, approached the
“Announce Master Jacques Coppenole, clerk of the aldermen of the city of
Ghent,” he whispered, very low.
“Usher,” interposed the cardinal, aloud, “announce Master Jacques
Coppenole, clerk of the aldermen of the illustrious city of Ghent.”
This was a mistake. Guillaume Rym alone might have conjured away the
difficulty, but Coppenole had heard the cardinal.
“No, cross of God?” he exclaimed, in his voice of thunder, “Jacques
Coppenole, hosier. Do you hear, usher? Nothing more, nothing less. Cross
of God! hosier; that’s fine enough. Monsieur the Archduke has more than
once sought his _gant_\* in my hose.”
_* Got the first idea of a timing._
Laughter and applause burst forth. A jest is always understood in Paris,
and, consequently, always applauded.
Let us add that Coppenole was of the people, and that the auditors which
surrounded him were also of the people. Thus the communication between him
and them had been prompt, electric, and, so to speak, on a level. The
haughty air of the Flemish hosier, by humiliating the courtiers, had
touched in all these plebeian souls that latent sentiment of dignity still
vague and indistinct in the fifteenth century.
This hosier was an equal, who had just held his own before monsieur the
cardinal. A very sweet reflection to poor fellows habituated to respect
and obedience towards the underlings of the sergeants of the bailiff of
Sainte-Geneviève, the cardinal’s train-bearer.
Coppenole proudly saluted his eminence, who returned the salute of the
all-powerful bourgeois feared by Louis XI. Then, while Guillaume Rym, a
“sage and malicious man,” as Philippe de Comines puts it, watched them
both with a smile of raillery and superiority, each sought his place, the
cardinal quite abashed and troubled, Coppenole tranquil and haughty, and
thinking, no doubt, that his title of hosier was as good as any other,
after all, and that Marie of Burgundy, mother to that Marguerite whom
Coppenole was to-day bestowing in marriage, would have been less afraid of
the cardinal than of the hosier; for it is not a cardinal who would have
stirred up a revolt among the men of Ghent against the favorites of the
daughter of Charles the Bold; it is not a cardinal who could have
fortified the populace with a word against her tears and prayers, when the
Maid of Flanders came to supplicate her people in their behalf, even at
the very foot of the scaffold; while the hosier had only to raise his
leather elbow, in order to cause to fall your two heads, most illustrious
seigneurs, Guy d’Hymbercourt and Chancellor Guillaume Hugonet.

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date: 2017-04-13T11:15:58-04:00
description: "Quasimodo"
featured_image: ""
tags: []
title: "Chapter V: Quasimodo"
In the twinkling of an eye, all was ready to execute Coppenole’s idea. Bourgeois, scholars and law clerks all set to work. The little chapel situated opposite the marble table was selected for the scene of the grinning match. A pane broken in the pretty rose window above the door, left free a circle of stone through which it was agreed that the competitors should thrust their heads. In order to reach it, it was only necessary to mount upon a couple of hogsheads, which had been produced from I know not where, and perched one upon the other, after a fashion. It was settled that each candidate, man or woman (for it was possible to choose a female pope), should, for the sake of leaving the impression of his grimace fresh and complete, cover his face and remain concealed in the chapel until the moment of his appearance. In less than an instant, the chapel was crowded with competitors, upon whom the door was then closed.
Coppenole, from his post, ordered all, directed all, arranged all. During the uproar, the cardinal, no less abashed than Gringoire, had retired with all his suite, under the pretext of business and vespers, without the crowd which his arrival had so deeply stirred being in the least moved by his departure. Guillaume Rym was the only one who noticed his eminence’s discomfiture. The attention of the populace, like the sun, pursued its revolution; having set out from one end of the hall, and halted for a space in the middle, it had now reached the other end. The marble table, the brocaded gallery had each had their day; it was now the turn of the chapel of Louis XI. Henceforth, the field was open to all folly. There was no one there now, but the Flemings and the rabble.
The grimaces began. The first face which appeared at the aperture, with eyelids turned up to the reds, a mouth open like a maw, and a brow wrinkled like our hussar boots of the Empire, evoked such an inextinguishable peal of laughter that Homer would have taken all these louts for gods. Nevertheless, the grand hall was anything but Olympus, and Gringoire’s poor Jupiter knew it better than any one else. A second and third grimace followed, then another and another; and the laughter and transports of delight went on increasing. There was in this spectacle, a peculiar power of intoxication and fascination, of which it would be difficult to convey to the reader of our day and our salons any idea.
Let the reader picture to himself a series of visages presenting successively all geometrical forms, from the triangle to the trapezium, from the cone to the polyhedron; all human expressions, from wrath to lewdness; all ages, from the wrinkles of the new-born babe to the wrinkles of the aged and dying; all religious phantasmagories, from Faun to Beelzebub; all animal profiles, from the maw to the beak, from the jowl to the muzzle. Let the reader imagine all these grotesque figures of the Pont Neuf, those nightmares petrified beneath the hand of Germain Pilon, assuming life and breath, and coming in turn to stare you in the face with burning eyes; all the masks of the Carnival of Venice passing in succession before your glass,—in a word, a human kaleidoscope.
The orgy grew more and more Flemish. Teniers could have given but a very imperfect idea of it. Let the reader picture to himself in bacchanal form, Salvator Rosa’s battle. There were no longer either scholars or ambassadors or bourgeois or men or women; there was no longer any Clopin Trouillefou, nor Gilles Lecornu, nor Marie Quatrelivres, nor Robin Poussepain. All was universal license. The grand hall was no longer anything but a vast furnace of effrontry and joviality, where every mouth was a cry, every individual a posture; everything shouted and howled. The strange visages which came, in turn, to gnash their teeth in the rose window, were like so many brands cast into the brazier; and from the whole of this effervescing crowd, there escaped, as from a furnace, a sharp, piercing, stinging noise, hissing like the wings of a gnat.

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date: 2017-04-14T11:25:05-04:00
description: "Esmeralda"
featured_image: "/images/esmeralda.jpg"
tags: []
title: "Chapter VI: Esmeralda"
disable_share: false
We are delighted to be able to inform the reader, that during the whole of
this scene, Gringoire and his piece had stood firm. His actors, spurred on
by him, had not ceased to spout his comedy, and he had not ceased to
listen to it. He had made up his mind about the tumult, and was determined
to proceed to the end, not giving up the hope of a return of attention on
the part of the public. This gleam of hope acquired fresh life, when he
saw Quasimodo, Coppenole, and the deafening escort of the pope of the
procession of fools quit the hall amid great uproar. The throng rushed
eagerly after them. “Good,” he said to himself, “there go all the
mischief-makers.” Unfortunately, all the mischief-makers constituted the
entire audience. In the twinkling of an eye, the grand hall was empty.
To tell the truth, a few spectators still remained, some scattered, others
in groups around the pillars, women, old men, or children, who had had
enough of the uproar and tumult. Some scholars were still perched astride
of the window-sills, engaged in gazing into the Place.
“Well,” thought Gringoire, “here are still as many as are required to hear
the end of my mystery. They are few in number, but it is a choice
audience, a lettered audience.”
An instant later, a symphony which had been intended to produce the
greatest effect on the arrival of the Virgin, was lacking. Gringoire
perceived that his music had been carried off by the procession of the
Pope of the Fools. “Skip it,” said he, stoically.
He approached a group of bourgeois, who seemed to him to be discussing his
piece. This is the fragment of conversation which he caught,—
“You know, Master Cheneteau, the Hôtel de Navarre, which belonged to
Monsieur de Nemours?”
“Yes, opposite the Chapelle de Braque.”
“Well, the treasury has just let it to Guillaume Alixandre, historian, for
six hivres, eight sols, parisian, a year.”
“How rents are going up!”
“Come,” said Gringoire to himself, with a sigh, “the others are
“Comrades,” suddenly shouted one of the young scamps from the window, “La
Esmeralda! La Esmeralda in the Place!”
This word produced a magical effect. Every one who was left in the hall
flew to the windows, climbing the walls in order to see, and repeating,
“La Esmeralda! La Esmeralda?” At the same time, a great sound of applause
was heard from without.
“What’s the meaning of this, of the Esmeralda?” said Gringoire, wringing
his hands in despair. “Ah, good heavens! it seems to be the turn of the
windows now.”
He returned towards the marble table, and saw that the representation had
been interrupted. It was precisely at the instant when Jupiter should have
appeared with his thunder. But Jupiter was standing motionless at the foot
of the stage.
“Michel Giborne!” cried the irritated poet, “what are you doing there? Is
that your part? Come up!”
“Alas!” said Jupiter, “a scholar has just seized the ladder.”
Gringoire looked. It was but too true. All communication between his plot
and its solution was intercepted.
“The rascal,” he murmured. “And why did he take that ladder?”
“In order to go and see the Esmeralda,” replied Jupiter piteously. “He
said, ‘Come, here’s a ladder that’s of no use!’ and he took it.”
This was the last blow. Gringoire received it with resignation.
“May the devil fly away with you!” he said to the comedian, “and if I get
my pay, you shall receive yours.”
Then he beat a retreat, with drooping head, but the last in the field,
like a general who has fought well.
And as he descended the winding stairs of the courts: “A fine rabble of
asses and dolts these Parisians!” he muttered between his teeth; “they
come to hear a mystery and don’t listen to it at all! They are engrossed
by every one, by Chopin Trouillefou, by the cardinal, by Coppenole, by
Quasimodo, by the devil! but by Madame the Virgin Mary, not at all. If I
had known, I’d have given you Virgin Mary; you ninnies! And I! to come to
see faces and behold only backs! to be a poet, and to reap the success of
an apothecary! It is true that Homerus begged through the Greek towns, and
that Naso died in exile among the Muscovites. But may the devil flay me if
I understand what they mean with their Esmeralda! What is that word, in
the first place?—‘tis Egyptian!”

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