Le baron de Nucingen

Le baron de Nucingen

(Scenes from a Courtesan’s Life)

baron de Nucingen

Le baron teignit ses cheveux et ses favoris … fit une toilette de marié…

SPLENDEURS ET MISERES DES COURTISANES.
Furne, 1844, t. XI, p. 451
Signatures :  Bertall ; A. Castan

7 comments on “Le baron de Nucingen

  1. Gill Price says:

    One of Balzac’s finest creations, old Nucingen the crafty banker could be alive today bearing in mind the recent banking scandals….his wife Delphine is pretty awful too.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dagny says:

      He sure could be, Gill. I admit to having a soft spot for Delphine, probably because Rastignac liked her so much – and she wasn’t quite as bad as her sister, lol.

      Like

      • Gill Price says:

        Delphine is a great character and I loved reading about her in Old Goriot…I think this was the first Balzac you read wasn’t it Dagny? Another brilliant adventure was A Harlot High and Low and the banker Nucingen featured a lot in this one too. The scene where he sees Esther and falls in love with her is a classic!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Dagny says:

        Yes, you remember correctly, Gill. Old Goriot was the first Balzac I read and the one that hooked me on La Comedie Humaine.

        In Harlot, I enjoyed seeing Nucingen get fleeced just to see Esther. Delphine’s scene when he was preparing to go see Esther (he thought) was priceless as she gave him fashion tips.

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  2. Gill Price says:

    I’m re-reading Gobseck, and you are right Dagny, Delphine’s sister Madame de Restaud is a great Balzac villainess….she sells her husband’s jewels and they are not hers to sell. I’ve nearly finished the story, I can’t wait to see how it all pans out in the end.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Gill Price says:

    Just finished Gobseck….it really is one of Balzac’s best. The description of his hoard of gold, and the rotting food, is one of the finest passages in the Comedie Humaine. The lesson of this story seems to be that in the end, gold is only metal and it didn’t do Gobseck much good. The lawyer Derville is a fine “good” character. I remember him from Le Colonel Chabert, another good Balzac.

    Liked by 1 person

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