Droll Tales 3

The wind and the rain returned for the best part of the day which I spent on more reading of Balzac.

The third story of the second Decade of his Droll Tales, with the slightly varying titles shown beside the relevant name of the illustrators shown below, is a short tale of a marriage arranged for money; how the beautiful daughter turned it to her advantage; and the ultimate outcome. Further details of the publications are given in https://derrickjknight.com/2023/01/06/droll-tales-1/

King’s Darling. Mervyn Peake;

The King’s Sweetheart. Gustave Doré;

The King’s Mistress. Jean de Bosschère.

This evening we dined on roast lamb; roast pork with crisp crackling; roast parsnips and potatoes, including softer sweet ones; firm broccoli and crunchy carrots, with which Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I finished the Shiraz.


  1. A good use of the day. Whenever, I hear his name, I still hear the disgusted tone of voice in which a lady in the film version of the Music Man greeted the thought of reading Balzac.

  2. I read one or two of the pages, but I wanted to read all of the pages; I wanted to know what happens next!

    We shared your miserable, windy, damp day, and after returning from a shopping trip with Joss, my choice of reading was Prince Harry’s book, a gift to go alongside my Royal book collection.

    It’s hard going, one of those books where you are forced to read the padding of boring twaddle before he gets to the point!

    1. Thanks very much, Sue. I’m pleased to have whetted your appetite. I have no desire to read Spare, much as I sympathise with the man. It was immediately half price in Waterstones.

  3. Talking about marriages, I was fortunate to have visited the little church in Berdichev where Balzac married Countess Hanska. It was 20 km away from my college, an easy distance by motorcycle.

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