Friday, February 12, 2010

I remember reading Candid when I was in school, but don't ask me what it was about. I would need the Cliff's Notes to write a paper on it now. Thank goodness that part of my life is over, at least for now. But that's not to say that François-Marie Arouet (better know as...Voltaire) couldn't write a mean love letter.

He wrote this love letter to his sweetie, Olympe Dunover. With a name like that you would think she came from royalty, but she was the daughter of a poor lower-class woman. He was sent to the Netherlands at the age of 19 to be an attaché to the French Ambassador. It was there that they met and fell in love. Neither the ambassador nor Olympe's mommy approved of the love affair and Voltaire was sent to prison! Hello...isn't that kind of strict? I mean come on people, there have probably been disapproving fathers/mothers/ambassadors throughout all time that didn't jump to that extreme. I mean really. Our fearless Voltaire was quick about his get-away and escaped by climbing out of the prison window. Resourceful, wasn't he?

An odd looking guy, but like I said, he could write a mean love letter...

The Hague 1713

"I am a prisoner here in the name of the King; they can take my life, but not the love that I feel for you. Yes, my adorable mistress, to-night I shall see you, and if I had to put my head on the block to do it.

For heaven's sake, do not speak to me in such disastrous terms as you write; you must live and be cautious; beware of Madame your mother as of your worst enemy. What do I say? Beware of everybody; trust no one; keep yourself in readiness, as soon as the moon is visible; I shall leave the hotel incognito, take a carriage or a chaise, we shall drive like the wind to Sheveningen; I shall take paper and ink with me; we shall write our letters.

If you love me, reassure yourself; and call all your strength and presence of mind to your aid; do not let your mother notice anything, try to have your pictures, and be assured that the menace of the greatest tortures will not prevent me to serve you. No, nothing has the power to part me from you; our love is based upon virtue, and will last as long as our lives. Adieu, there is nothing that I will not brave for your sake; you deserve much more than that. Adieu, my dear heart!


1 comment:

Shauna_Rae said...

I have so enjoyed these love letters for some reason. Maybe it's because my husband isn't overly romantic.

I thought about putting them together in a little book. Then Stephen could read it and get ideas of how he needs to write me a letter!

Anyway, thanks for sharing!