A Man of Business by Honoré de Balzac

Un Homme d’Affaires
A Man of Business

 
The notary Cardot is hosting an evening at the home of his paramour Malaga. The conversations are quite entertaining at these dinners where wives are never present. After dinner when the talk turns to debts and the collection of same, Desroches relates the story of the affair between Maxime de Trailles and Cerizet.

At the time Maxime was tricked into paying a debt, he was keeping Antonia Chocardelle and it was through her that Cerizet, in disguise and playing a part, was able to get the face value of bills drawn by Maxime which he had purchased at very low prices.

 
Read it here

Summarized by Dagny, June 2010

2 comments on “A Man of Business by Honoré de Balzac

  1. The interest for me in this short work are the characters rather than the intricate financial dealings which so confused Malaga. They also confused me, lol.

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  2. scamperpb says:

    I quite agree. In reading “The Human Comedy”, I rarely was able to follow financial transactions from beginning to end. I’m not even sure Balzac could follow them himself, and he for sure lost money on virtually every business venture he undertook. This story focuses on how debts are rarely paid by the wealthy, a continuing theme in Balzac. If a milliner pesters a wealthy patron for payment, then the patron just orders another hat, LOL. The point of this story is Cerizet tricks Maxime into actually paying a debt at face value.

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