Eugénie Grandet, Honoré de BalzacEugénie Grandet is an novel by French I’ve lately read Honore de Balzac’s famous novel Eugenie Grandet and am. Depicting the fatal clash between material desires and the liberating power of human passions, Honoré de Balzac’s Eugénie Grandet is translated. Eugenie Grandet (The Human Comedy) [Honoré de Balzac, Marion Ayton Depicting the fatal clash between material desires and the liberating power of human passions, Honoré de Balzac’s Eugénie Grandet is Honore de Balzac.

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Balzac immediately draws the reader in with his description of a melancholy house, the home of the Grandets.

The Grandets live in Saumur of the province of Anjouand his description of the desolation of the house immediately sends shivers up my spine at the thought grandeet living there. Grandet is among the wealthiest men in the town. At the time of the French Revolution he was a cooper one who makes and repairs wooden barrels.

Through bribery, he obtained the best vineyard lands for a small sum — all legal if somewhat shady. Grandet displayed an understanding of how things work and continued to prosper. He sold wine to the Army of the Republic.

He made sure his estates were valued such that he paid little property tax. Although he had to quit as town mayor under Napoleon who did not like Eygeniehe inherited from several relatives around this time and continued to prosper. As such Grandet is a representative of the new social type for which the Revolution was fought to equalize the bourgeois with the nobility. At the time of this story M. Grandet is so rich that only his notary Cruchot and des Grassins the banker have any idea of his total wealth.

Grandet was of retiring habits, speaking seldom and in predictable speech patterns. Starting with the Revolution he began stammering when called upon — people think this is a lack of education but indeed M. Grandet has adopted this habit much like Columbo wears his old raincoat to disarm his foes. He never makes a definite decision right away and always claims he has to ask his wife. He is small of stature and looks vaguely evil and most definitely avaricious.

He is reminiscent of a Bengal tiger and boa constrictor. Grandet is a social recluse. Only 6 people in the town were allowed to call at his house: Cruchot the notary, his nephew, his uncle the abbe Cruchot, Grancet. Grandet loves only his money, which he counts nightly, and his daughter Eugenie, who will inherit his fortune someday. Both he and Adolphe Grassins call on Eugenie in hopes of eventually marrying the heiress.

Grandet plays one against the other and seems to slightly favor which one whose parent has done him the most recent favor. All the town watches balza two competing families and wonder who will win Eugenie. Some think perhaps neither, that M. He is a true miser, never spending money on food — they eat what is paid in kind for services, never even had game until M.

Eugénie Grandet by Honoré de Balzac

Grandet acquired a woodland and a keeper who supplied them game. Eugenie and her mother spend their days in the parlor mending the household linen. No matter what the weather, a fire is not permitted before the first of November or after the end of March. The work of keeping things in repair is so exhausting that if Eugenie wants to sew anything else she had to take time from her normal sleep — as well as eeugenie a candle candles are carefully controlled by her father. The only company for the household is big Nanon, who had been taken as a servant when young and very hard up by M.


Nanon does euhenie the work of the household and is doggedly loyal to M. Grandet because of his taking her in. The Grandets attend church and hold court to all of their eligible visitors afterwards.

She also gets a new dress, one of two per year. Grandet gives Eugenie 4 gold coins per year on special occasions allegedly as an accumulation of a dowry. Periodically he requires Eugenie to display her coins. Eugenie is 23 on this day, and the family talks of it being time for her to marry.

Nanon goes to retrieve a special bottle of wine upstairs and nearly falls coming back down because the steps are in such bad repair. Mme Grandet observes that Eugenie nearly twisted her ankle the day before, and M. I think we are to understand he would never permit paying someone to fix the stair or anything else!

He begins the repair when the visitors begin to call. Nanon is unobtrusively spinning in the kitchen when M. Grandet tells her to come join the party — by which he means bring her spinning into the parlor. Eugenie is ecstatic over the box.

The Cruchots are aghast that the des Grassins have upstaged their present. Only Eugenie, her mother, and Nanon are sincere in their simplicity. None have any idea of the wealth of M.

Suddenly there is a knock on the dugenie. Who could it be, all the permissible visitors are already present? It is a young man, M. Charles Grandet, the son of M. He has been sent with baggage by his father for a visit to this provincial society.

Eugenie looks at him with wonder as he has the manners and dress of a Eugenif gentleman.

In fact, in his bags are all the latest fashions and accessories. He has even brought the writing case which was eugenir gift of his beloved Annette, a married Parisian woman now traveling in Scotland with her husband.

We wonder why he has come to the provinces. He homor the part complete with freshly curled hair, black satin cravat, fitted overcoat, cashmere waistcoat and gold watch and chain. He is indeed handsome and represents himself as a Parisian well. Imagine the mutual shock with which he and the country folk with snuff-encrusted collars and dingy linen look at each other! The Cruchots and des Grassins frankly stare: She insists upon a fire in his room, something unheard of in this miserly family.

She gives Nanon money to run out and purchase a wax candle so Charles will not have to endure the smell of their accustomed tallow candles. Meanwhile Mme des Grassins strikes up a conversation with Charles, flirting with him and inviting him to her house where he can meet both the wealthy merchant society and the noblesse. She is quick grandeg size up the Grandets to him: Grandet reads the letter from his brother.


Astonishingly his brother tells him he is bankrupt and is going to commit suicide. The visitors depart concerned that Charles is a new suitor for Eugenie. Instead, the Abbe more or less suggests to Mme. Instead he euvenie they all go to eugeniee after telling Charles that he might amuse himself after their meager breakfast by looking around the town. He cautions him that, even though the townspeople may say the Grandets are rich, this is not so, they are poor. Grandet behind his bedroom.

Only he has access to this room, and this is where he keeps granset his title deeds and we suspect much of his gold. Nanon turns out a vicious dog at night that only she can control, and M. Grandet tells Charles he eugfnie have to call Nanon should he want to step out of doors at night. Grandet goes to sleep worrying about what to dw with Charles, Nanon dreams of the dressing gown, and Eugenie is showing the signs of love. The next morning Eugenie is up early and dresses with care. The world is alive and bright and shiny to her, she is full of thoughts of Charles.

She worries she is not pretty enough for him, but Balzac hoonor our impression up to now that this might be true. She had nothing of the prettiness that ordinary people admire; but her beauty was unmistakable, and of a kind in which artists alone delight. Eugenie begs Nanon to make a cake, a practically unheard of happening at the Grandets.

Nanon obligingly wheedles extra flour and butter out of M. Grandet and later begs eggs of a tradesman to make Charles a late breakfast. Eugenie learns on a walk with her father yonor the fears of the des Grassins are unfounded: Grandet declares he would never marry Eugenie to Charles. She is very upset by this declaration and is comforted by her understanding mother when she returns home.

Though bazac is explicitly said, Mme Grandet understands all. Charles finally rises and asks for something light, perhaps a fowl, for breakfast. He does not yet understand the world he has entered. He makes do on the fresh eggs, and when he asks for butter Nanon exclaims he cannot later have cake if he has butter.

Eugénie Grandet by Honoré de Balzac

Eugenie insists on the butter, and Charles unknowingly complicates the cooking for the day. He is served cream balzzac sugar with his coffee, much to the disapproval of M. Grandet retire to the garden to discuss business. The women throw him sorrowful looks as they realize he will now learn of the death of his supposedly rich father.

Grandet walks the garden with Charles and worries about how to tell him euenie his father has committed suicide. Grandet is, he thinks of absolutely nothing but money. Eugenie and her mother and even big Nanon are concerned for Charles and his consuming grief, but M. Eugenie is not worldly wise enough to understand that a person can become bankrupt through unavoidable circumstances.