Jules Laforgue's misery
July 5, 2011 9:47 AM   Subscribe

Trying to track down the location of a quotation by the French/Uruguayan poet Jules Laforgue, mentioned by Johan Huizinga.

Bit of a long shot, this. In The Task of Cultural History, Huizinga writes "History may become democratic, but it must remain stoic. Jules Laforgue says somewhere in his letters that he cannot but look upon all history as anything but an endless series of misery. But he was a poet". There is no footnote. I have access to Laforgue's Œuvres Complètes, but his collected correspondence takes up volumes four and five. I was just wondering, before I resign myself to combing through the volumes, if this rang a bell with anyone and perhaps somewhere in the hive-mind there might be a more precise reference out there somewhere.
posted by hydatius to Media & Arts (2 answers total)
If it's a paraphrase, then it's not an uncommon sentiment in Laforgue's work: I don't know the letters, but it sounds a bit like 'L'Homme entre deux néants n'est qu'un jour de misère' in the posthumous 'Sonnet pour éventail'.
posted by holgate at 10:24 AM on July 5, 2011

Response by poster: Thanks Holgate, your comment is much appreciated. I don't have much of a detailed knowledge of Laforgue's work, but knowing that this not uncommon in his poetic works does help me.
posted by hydatius at 1:30 AM on July 7, 2011

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