Vendetta - Honore de Balzac - Страница 1 из 96


VENDETTA
By Honore De Balzac
Translated by Katharine Prescott Wormeley
DEDICATION
To Puttinati, Milanese Sculptor.
VENDETTA
CHAPTER I. PROLOGUE
In the year 1800, toward the close of October, a foreigner, accompanied
by a woman and a little girl, was standing for a long time in front of
the palace of the Tuileries, near the ruins of a house recently pulled
down, at the point where in our day the wing begins which was intended
to unite the chateau of Catherine de Medici with the Louvre of the
Valois.
The man stood there with folded arms and a bowed head, which he
sometimes raised to look alternately at the consular palace and at
his wife, who was sitting near him on a stone. Though the woman seemed
wholly occupied with the little girl of nine or ten years of age, whose
long black hair she amused herself by handling, she lost not a single
glance of those her companion cast on her. Some sentiment other than
love united these two beings, and inspired with mutual anxiety their
movements and their thoughts. Misery is, perhaps, the most powerful of
all ties.
The stranger had one of those broad, serious heads, covered with thick
hair, which we see so frequently in the pictures of the Caracci. The jet
black of the hair was streaked with white. Though noble and proud, his
features had a hardness which spoiled them. In spite of his evident
strength, and his straight, erect figure, he looked to be over sixty


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