LETTER SIGNED Ste Beuvewritten by his secretary on April 20, 1868, to a poet who wanted to participate in the luxurious work entitled "Sonnets and Eaux-fortes" published by Philippe Burty and Alphonse Lemerre in 1869. The book, published in 350 copies, included sonnets by many young poets and etchings by sometimes very famous artists such as Manet, Braquement, or Doré.
"Dear Mr. and dear Poet,
I would like to be able to tell you more about the poetic-pittoresque company. Not going out for health reasons, I only know what happens to me at home. I was asked for an unpublished sonnet, and I could not provide one; I could only offer one of my own choice and already published.
Mr. Burty of the Gazette des Beaux Arts, who is at the same time most knowledgeable about all literature, will direct the etchings. Mr. Lemerre, a highly literate publisher, will collect the sonnets. In my opinion, you are, without compliment, one of the Sonnets that best deserve a place in such a collection. I would tell Mr. Lemerre, if I see him. But you could send him your volumes with a letter from you and with my permission.
I remain Passage Choiseul.
Believe me, all of you.
LETTER SIGNED Ste Beuvewritten by its secretary on April 25, 1869:
"My Dear Friend,
I'm way over my head, and the more I have, the more I ask for. So I took advantage of your letter for the word I had to say about Mr. Ordinaire. I thought he was a little younger than Taine. He was at the school of Mr. Michelle, the principal: did this Mr. Michelle immediately succeed Mr. Dubois? Wasn't Mr. Dubois still principal in 1948 when this generation of Size, About, etc., entered the school?
If I could, I'd like to nominate Mr. Dubois.
A single line of response. Millions of heartfelt apologies and thanks,
Taine's biographer sums up the change in the headmaster of the teacher training college:
"It seemed that the Teacher Training College was a privileged place, a sort of intellectual oasis that the reaction of 1850 was not to reach. At the end of that school year, however, there was a threatening ringing of the bell. Mr. P.F. Dubois, a suspect of liberalism, was replaced at the head of the school by Mr. Michelle, rector of Besançon (who, contrary to custom, was not a former normalist)."
Two sheets folded in half, black ink.