Devils Pool (1895)

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THE DEVIL'S POOL

 

BY

GEORGE SAND

 

TRANSLATED FROM THE FRENCH BY

JANE MINOT SEDGWICK

AND

ELLERY SEDGWICK

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WITH AN ETCHING BY E. ABOT

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LONDON
J. M. DENT & COMPANY
Boston: Little, Brown, & Company
1895

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E. Abot inv. & sculo.

University Press:
John Wilson and Son, Cambridge, U. S. A.

NOTICE

WHEN I wrote "The Devil's Pool," the first of a series of pastoral tales which I meant to bring out together under the title of "Tales of a Hemp-dresser," I had no system in view, and no design of introducing a revolution into literature. No one man has ever effected a revolution; for a revolution, especially in art, is an unconscious change which everybody has had a hand in. But this is not applicable to tales of rustic life, which have always existed, at all times, and under all forms, and have been sometimes pompous, sometimes affected, and sometimes natural. I have said somewhere, and must now repeat, that pastoral life has always been the ideal of cities and of the courts of kings. I have attempted nothing new in following the easy path which brings back civilized man to the charms of primitive life. I have not tried to invent a new language nor to affect a new style, though many newspaper articles have told me so. I understand my own intentions better than anybody else can, and I am continually surprised that criticism should be so far-seeking, when the simplest ideas and most trivial circumstances are all that inspire the creations of art. Especially as regards "The Devil's Pool," as I have related in the introduction, an engraving of Holbein, that had struck me, and a real scene that I had before my eyes at the same time, while the men were sowing the crops, were all that induced me to write the modest story laid among the humble landscapes of my daily walks. If I am asked what I meant to do, I shall answer that I meant to write a very touching and very simple story, and that I have not succeeded to my satisfaction. I have indeed seen and felt the beauty of simplicity, but seeing and describing are not the same thing. The best the artist can hope for is to persuade those who have eyes to see for themselves. Look at what is simple, my kind reader; look at the sky, the fields, the trees, and at what is good and true in the peasants; you will catch a glimpse of them in my book, but you will see them much better in nature.

George Sand.

Nohant, the twelfth of April, 1851.

Chapters(not individually listed)


Copyright.svg PD-icon.svg This work is a translation and has a separate copyright status to the applicable copyright protections of the original content.
Original:

This work was published before January 1, 1924, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.

 
Translation:

This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1924.


The author died in 1960, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 50 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.