Girardin, Madame Emile De
literary volumes collected wide
GIRARDIN, MADAME EMILE DE, a French authoress, was barn at Aix-la-Chapelle, January 26, 1804, and died at Paris June 29, 1855. Her maiden name was Delphine Gay, and her mother, the well-known Madame Sophie Gay, brought her up in the midst of that brilliant literary society of which she was afterwards a conspicuous ornament. In 1822 she obtained peculiarly honourable mention from the Academy for a poem on the Devotion of the Sisters of ,Sainte Camille at the Siege of Barcelona ; and not long after she published two volumes of miscellaneous pieces, Essais poetiques (1824) and Youveaux essais poetiques (1825). A visit to Italy in 1827, during which she was enthusiastically welcomed by the literati of Rome and even crowned in the capitol, was productive of various poems, of which the most ambitious was iiiapoline (1833). Her marriage in 1831 to M. Emile Girardin opened up a new literary career. The contemporary sketches which she contributed from 1836 to 1839 to the feuilleton of La Presse, under the nom de plume of Charles Delannay, were collected under the title of Lettres Parisiennes (1843), and obtained a success which has proved as permanent as it was brilliant. But it was to more elaborate efforts that the authoress would have preferred to entrust her reputation, and she indeed confesses, in a half serious half mocking mood, that it was almost a disappointment to find herself famous for so slight a thing. To the close of her life she continued to appear both as a novelist and as a writer for the stage, and in both departments she reaped a wide popularity through the wit and emotional force of her productions. Costes cruse vieille fille h sex neveux (1832), La canne de 3-fonsieur de Balzac (1836), and Il ne fast pas jouer avec la dottiest' (1853) are among the best known of her romances ; and her dramatic pieces include .L'Ecole des journalistes (1840), Judith (1843), Cleoindre (1847), C'est la !ante du marl (1851), Lady Tartufe (1853), La joie fait pesr (1854), Le chapeau dun horloyer (1854), and Use femme qui d'Eteste SOIL marl, which did not appear till after the author's death. In the literary society of her time Madame Girardin exercised no small personal influence, and among the frequenters of her drawing-room were Gautier and Balzac, Alfred de Musset and Victor Hugo. During the latter years of her life a pensive melancholy gathered round her : for long years she had prayed the prayer of Hannah, and her woman's heart had not been comforted. Her collected works were published in six volumes, 1860-1861.
See Sainte-Benve, Causeries du lunch, t. iii.; G. de Molenes, " Les fern Ines poetes,'' in Rerue des _Deux Mondes„July 1842 ; Taxi le Delord, Les Matinees litteraires, 1860 ; L'esprit dc Madame Girardin, avec une preface par M. Lamartine, 1862 : G. Madame rie Girardin, sa vie et sex ceuvres, 1868.
SAINT-MArtc (1801-1873), a politician and man of letters whose real name was Marc Girardin department - the Haute Vienne. His Orleanist tendencies and his objections to the republic were strong, and though he at first supported Thiess, he afterwards became a leader of the opposition to the president. He died, however, before Thiess was actually driven from power. Saint-Marc Girardin was one of the most distinguished of the many writers whose political and literary activities combined have raised them to distinction in France during this century, but to whom there cannot be assigned the highest rank either as politicians or as litterateurs. His political claims were not above those of a vigorous and intelligent journalist. His professorial lectures were popular and well attended ; his literary knowledge was wide, and included German and Italian ; his criticisms, on which his claims as a man of letters rest, were acute and well expressed, but not remarkable for great subtlety or novelty of thought or style.
His chief work is his Cows de litterature drauatiquc (18431S63), a series of lectures the delivery and publication of which lasted for over twenty years. Tlds work has for second title De 1' Usage des Passions dans le Drante, which describes it more accurately. The author goes through the list of the various passions, and of the chief situations which call them out, discussing at the same time the mode in which they are treated in the most celebrated dramas of ancient and modern times. The source of these illustrations is not indeed limited to drama, and the lecturer takes a wide range over the fields of poetry and romance. The result was doubtless as a course of lectures interesting and stimulating ; as a book it is somewhat desultory. Among his other works may be noticed Essecis de Litt6rature (1844, 2 vols.), made up chiefly of contributions to the Debats, his Notices sue l' Allentagne (1834), and many volumes of collected Sourenirs, Rejlexions, &c., on foreign countries and passing events. His latest works of literary importance were La Fontaine et les Fabulistes (1867) and an Etude sue J. J. Rousseau (1870) which had appeared in the Revue des Deux armies.