— But you will be ready to say, what was your hope in doing this? — What did you look forward to? — To any thing, every thing — to time, chance, circumstances, slow effects, sudden bursts, perserverance and weariness ... Every possibility of good was before me, and the first of blessings secured ... — from Emma, by Jane Austen (1775-1817)
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October 13, 2010

Sur les traces de Madame Bovary

My listening comprehension in French isn't up to snuff, and the Google translation is amusingly incomprehensible, but I found a little film about Ry, the town that claims to be the setting of Madame Bovary:



Sur les traces de Madame Bovary

From other reading:  Flaubert never confirmed that Ry was the model for Yonville ('Yonville-l'Abbaye is a country that does not exist'). But he is said to have been inspired by the story of Eugène Delamare, a student of Flaubert's father, and his wife Delphine, who lived in Ry in the 1840s. 'Disappointed by her husband, her lovers and life,' Delphine poisoned herself and died there in 1848.

Among other things, the narrator of this video points out the home of the Delamares, which is now houses a notary; she mentions that Delamare, like Charles Bovary, was a widower and a health officer who was remarried to a young wife; and she points out a blue door, something I recognized:

'As I've had the honor of explaining to your husband, 'said the pharmacist, '..you'll find yourselves enjoying one of the most comfortable houses in Yonville. Its main convenience, for a doctor, is that it has a door opening on the Alley, so that people can enter and leave without being seen....'

Fun to look, at least, while I work on my own translation skills...
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