Page:Memoirs of Vidocq, Volume 1.djvu/11

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and leave our readers to form their own decision on his eventful life.

Eugène François Vidocq was a native of Arras, where his father was a baker: and from early associations he fell into courses of excess which led to the necessity of his flying from the paternal roof. After various, rapid, and unexampled events in the romance of real life, in which he was everything by turns and nothing long, he was liberated from prison, and became the principal and most active agent of police. He was made Chief of the Police de Sureté under Messrs Delavau and Franchet, and continued in that capacity from the year 1810 till 1827, during which period he extirpated the most formidable of those ruffians and villains to whom the excesses of the revolution and subsequent events had given full scope for the perpetration of the most daring robberies and iniquitous excesses. Removed from employment in which he had accumulated a handsome independence, he could not determine on leading a life of ease, for which his career of perpetual vigilance and adventure had unfitted him, and he built