By Joris-Karl Huysmans, Patrick McGuinness
The hero of this curious novel is des Esseintes, a neurasthenic aristocrat who has grew to become his again at the vulgarity of contemporary existence and retreated to an remoted kingdom villa. the following, followed basically by means of a number of silent servants, he pursues his obsessions with unique flora, infrequent gem stones, and complicated perfumes and embarks on a chain of more and more unusual aesthetic experiments, beginning with the choice to provide his tremendous puppy tortoise a jewel-encrusted shell...
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A. 1870 30 July Mobilized in the 6th Battalion of the Garde Mobile during the Franco-Prussian War. Dysentery prevents him from seeing action. 1870 15 Aug. a. 1871 Feb. The Government and its staff relocate to Versailles. 1871 Summer Huysmans rents rooms in Paris. 1872 First draft of his war memoirs which will become Sac au dos. 1873 1 Feb. a. 1874 10 Oct. Le Drageoir à épices (tr. Dish of Spices, 1927), a collection of prose-poems, is published at the author’s own expense. 1876 4 May His mother dies, leaving Huysmans responsible for his two half-sisters and the management of the bookbindery.
Bonnet et al. (Paris: Pléiade, 1992), p. 997. 10. Léon Bloy, ‘Les Représailles du Sphinx’, Le Chat Noir, 14 June 1884. 11. James Joyce, ‘Realism and Idealism in English Literature’, Occasional, Critical and Political Writings (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000), p. 173. 12. The Damned (Là-Bas), tr. Terry Hale (London: Penguin, 2001). 13. The Road from Decadence: From Brothel to Cloister. Selected Letters of J. K. Huysmans, tr. and ed. Barbara Beaumont (London: Athlone, 1989), p. 48. 14. , p.
1887 31 Oct. Letter to Zola first mentioning Là-Bas. 1888 Spring The Universal Review commissions a novella from Huysmans but subsequently declines La Retraite de M. Bougran (M. Bougran’s Retirement). 1888 Summer Huysmans encounters the work of the Primitives during a visit to Germany. 1889 21 Aug. Funeral of Villiers de l’Isle-Adam. Mallarmé and Huysmans are named his literary executors. 1889 Sept. Huysmans visits Tiffauges, the stronghold of Gilles de Rais. Huysmans meets Berthe de Courrière.