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apparatus tearing through the streets? I do see down our street, in the pavement, an iron plate, labelled "Mouth for fire." Also, at a great barrack, I have seen the words Sapeurs, Pompiers; and I am told that the sapeurs are to cut away the burning wood with their hatchets, and the pompiers to pump water. Madame Leblanc says that more. fires occur in winter, and also in factories where there are steam-engines, and in saw-mills. She adds that sometimes houses take fire from the chimneys not being cleaned. That the chimneys in new houses are so small that children cannot climb them she considers an advantage, for she says that it was barbarity. Victor afterwards tells me that they have large fires here, that burn four or five houses! The small amount of fuel used, the excellence of a great part of the buildings, constructed of stone, and the great care of the French, doubtless help to protect them from devastating fires.
I have another dressmaker,-a democratic one. She calls to see me about some sewing I want done; and to narrate her conversation will help to portray the Parisian mind. I mention one of my friends who was Protestant, but has become Catholic. To my surprise, she replies, "She has left the truest religion to take up the most false." It is a strange question after what she has said, but I ask, "Are you a Catholic?" "I am a free-thinker," she replies; "I accept no dogmas that cannot be proved; what I desire is truth." She tells us that on Sunday, which was Fête-Dieu, or the festival of the holy sacrament, there was a procession around the square at Batignolles, and mothers came with their children, bringing nosegays to touch the holy sacrament, to have the nosegays blessed. "And there has been a remonstrance got up," she adds, "and I signed
it, for what we want is justice; and if it is not permitted to have a procession, and carry a red flag with the words 'Long live the Commune!' neither should there be a blue banner with 'Long live the Sacred Heart!" If the women who spoke in the times of the Commune were like her, they were fluent. She speaks also of some lecture that had been forbidden; and while on these topics, she says, "And we are in the nineteenth century, at Paris, in the most enlightened city of France; what, then, must it be in the provinces?" What follows rests on her authority. "One of my daughters went to the communal laic school in the Rue, and Mademoiselle ———, the principal, said to the child that her mother must come and bring her certificate of baptism, because she was old enough to prepare for the first communion. I answer that my daughter will not commune, and that I don't think a mistress ought to concern herself with the conscience of the children. Then the mistress made the child suffer every species of vexation, deprived her of rewards for her studies, such as are usually given, medals, and so forth, and even prevented her going to the cabinet. I took her away from the school, and put her to a Protestant one. Now she says the prayer with the other children, and once a week learns the sacred history, but is not obliged to go to church. In the communal school, conducted by the Sisters, Rue, the girls are obliged to sew two hours a day; sewing is taken in from The Spring" (a great store), "and the Sisters receive the money." If Madame Simon, as I will call the dressmaker, is correct, what is the remedy for these things? Is not one preventive to invite the public to visit these communal or public schools?
Madame Leblanc inquires of Madame Simon concerning another daughter, and she replies that she put her to work
with a stranger, because she was not sufficiently diligent at home, adding, "I do not like idlers,-Je n'aime pas les flaneuses."
I have called Paris the great hotel of the world; but the passenger, the traveller, who stays over-night, or even for a week, in the parlor and handsome bedroom of a well-kept hotel, what does he know of the contentions, the heartburnings, the debts, the trials, the jealousies, of the landlord's family? Nay, how much does he care for them, so long as the meals and the rooms are in good order?
I go to see the shoemaker about my shoes, and he tells me that the men do not work on Monday (or not regularly), that they would rather work on Sunday,-rather than go to church. They spend Monday at the wine-shop, and wives and children must sometimes suffer. As usual, his wife is in the store, and one of them speaks of the men's getting good wages and spending them. They tell me of the excellent traits of their little boy, who has become reconciled to leaving the country, and who is now with his grandparents near the Luxembourg. He is gentil, or sweet; he is tractable. The shoemaker and his wife are quite. handsome young people; but she does not dress much. I suppose that such persons, shut up in close quarters, go out of the house for amusement.
This evening one of our acquaintances, Madame — comes to see us, but will not dine; however, she accepts a biscuit or little sponge-cake and some wine. Victor expresses his delight in certain wines. We speak of women's drinking too much, and Madame
an enormous quantity get drunk in her country, the Côte d'Or, where wine is made. However, énormément seems to be a favorite French expression, as many at home say "immense." I tell them that I saw women yesterday who looked as if they had been drinking a good deal, but that I do not see men staggering (for I have not often seen people drunk). They tell me that the law allows drunken men to be apprehended and fined, and for the third offence to lose their right of citizenship.
I understand Madame to speak of two béguines, or nuns, having come to see her to ask for things, and that she excused herself on the ground of having nothing to give, for they might give you a bad name among your neighbors.
They talk about the Church or the mass, and Madame
says how tiresome high mass was; she tells, too, what a priest once said to her at the confessional, which I will omit. Victor says that he once disguised himself at carnival-time in a girl's dress. He confessed to the priest that he had done so, for it is against the rule. What this priest said I will also omit. Madame Leblanc, on her part, has no revelations to make. The stories that Victor and Matell, portraying the state of society among men While they are
says, "Don't you believe in God?" as if he is wrong or unfortunate. Victor, in reply, brings up his argument about good people's being in misery as against the belief in a merciful and all-powerful God; and as to immortality, he says that he believes that bad people will pass away, but that such people as Madame Carpentier, his late friend, will live in the memories of their friends. Here some one might have asked him, "What about that kennel of Napoleons of
which you formerly spoke? Will they not live in the memory of man ?"
One of my acquaintances tells me lately of the trouble that he had in getting out a French translation of a work by Garibaldi: one or more printers struck off a few pages, and then gave it up for fear of penalties. As the work gives an account of Garibaldi's regiment in Italy, I do not see the objection to its being published here; but I am told that it is republican. "But you are a republic," I reply. "Garibaldi speaks against the priests," continues my acquaintance, "and Figaro discouraged the public from subscribing, saying that it was not likely that the book would appear." When at last a printer was found, then money was advanced on the printing. "B.," he adds, "was a wonderful help, and also his bonne [or woman-servant], who worked with us until two in the morning," sending off copies, I suppose.
The law requires that copies of new works shall be sent to a certain government official, and one of my acquaintances tells me how he managed to get a book through without running the risk of this censorship. As soon as volumes were ready, he would pack them off to one place of deposit or another, and when the edition was out, he sent in his specimens to the official; but it was then too late to seize them, even if the government had been so inclined, which, in this case, I do not learn that it was.
Tuesday, June 25th.—One of Victor's acquaintances is dead, and he has received an invitation to the funeral. is printed upon a large sheet of paper with broad black margins, and is expressed nearly as follows: "You are