Chateaubriand's memoirs, XXXIV, 5

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Mémoires d'Outre-tombe


Book XXXIV, chapter 5
Before my departure from Paris


Paris, April 1831.


I have never abandoned the resolution I conceived at the time of the July troubles. I am pre-occupied with obtaining the means of living in a foreign country, means difficult to obtain, since I have none. The editor who acquired my works has nearly bankrupted me, and my debts force me to seek someone who will make me a loan.

Whatever happens, I am going to Geneva with the money owing to me from the sale of my last pamphlet (De la Restauration et de la Monarchie élective), I leave my proxy to sell the house, in which I write this page, in short order. If I find a shopkeeper in my bed, I can find another bed outside France. Among these uncertainties and upheavals, until I am established somewhere, it will be impossible for me to pick up the tale of my Memoirs from the point at which I interrupted them. (This relates to my literary career and my political career, both left behind, lacunas which are now filled by what I have just written in recent years, 1838 and 1839. Paris: Note, 1839) I will still continue to write about the current events in my life; I will document these events by means of the letters I happen to write on the road or during my various halts; I will tie in intervening facts by means of a journal which will fill in the missing time between the dates of these letters.