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Le Signe de Croix, ou un Conte d'Autrefois: Tradition Populaire

vers/verse, pub:1826




From A Bibliography of Alexandre Dumas père by Frank Wild Reed:
     This lengthy piece of verse comprises a total of 333 lines, arranged in stanzas of unequal length, and with variations in the rhyming scheme. It is prefixed by six lines from "Les Deux Archers" of Victor Hugo.
     It forms the eleventh piece, occupying pages 97 to 114, of the MS. "Préludes Poétiques," copied by Dumas for Mme. Mélanie Waldor.
     Apparently it has never been printed as a whole, but on several occasions 32 lines have appeared, under other titles, as mentioned below.
     As "Romance," these 32 lines, then spaced into four eight-line stanzas, rhyming regularly a, b, a, b, c, d, c, d, were first published in "La Psyché," June, 1826, with one slight variant. In this form the two final lines of each stanza are the same, forming a refrain.
     As "Le Plaisir est une Rose" it was re-issued, with five considerable variants from the MS. version, in the "Chansonnier des Graces," for 1827; Paris, F. Louis.
     M. Glinel prints the version of "La Psyché" in his "Alexandre Dumas et Son Œuvre," pp. 163-64. He was then apparently unaware of the fact that it was only a portion of a longer poem.
     The subject is a legend of the forest of Villers Cotterets, a different version of which is related by Michaux in his "Souvenirs Personnels sur A. Dumas," pp. 143 to 145.

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