e Blumenthal est capable de me remercier'. The story appears, in a somewhat altered version, in Le Côté de Guermantes, II, 592. The proofs (of A l'ombre des jeunes filles en fleurs) which, earlier in the letter, Proust writes that he may not be well enough to correct, are the 5,000 pages which he mentioned to Madame Catusse on 13 October 1917. Lucien Daudet's novel Le Chemin Mort, had been published in 1908. In a passage suppressed by Daudet, Proust assures him that the talk is not of its homosexual aspect, but of the author's talent ('pas du tout en point de vue m[auvais] g[enre] mais à point de vue immense talent'). Kolb, XVI, 280. Cahiers V (XLVIII). " /> PROUST, Marcel. Autograph letter signed to Lucien Daudet, <I>n.p. [Paris], n.d. [3 November 1917]</I>, referring to his correspondent's <I>pneumatique</I>, to his health and a terrible fog, continuing [in an unpublished passage of 11 lines] to reassure Lucien about his youthful appearance, 'tous les jours tu deviens plus jeune parce que ton spririt vivifié se dégage de charmantes choses qui ne vieillissent pas les gens mais les vieillotisent (je ne sais pas comment il faut écrire ce néologisme)'; and that he would like by his letters to give him confidence, 'te faire une cure d'injections de confiance à ta jeunesse...'; anticipating his own death, being not even up to correcting his proofs, and offering further encouragement to Lucien, 'Alors tu suis ma cure et pour une fois, troisième du nom, ce sera moi le docteur Proust'. While protesting about exhaustion he continues with news and gossip, mentioning [Albert] Flament; recalling an evening with Lucien and his friends [the Hinnisdaels], whose friend, Monsieur de Gouy, he has seen in the Ritz; reporting praise for <I>Le Chemin Mort</I> [Lucien's novel]; apologising for the length of the letter ('L'extrême fatigue prolonge les bavardages séniles aussi bien qu'elle suspend les conversations sérieuses'), and adding that he is almost at the point of talking about Gourgaud's wedding presents and their symbolism; finally commenting on the stupidity of writing novels and [in an unpublished passage of 18 lines] comparing a passage in <I>Swann</I> with a story about the Duke of Montmorency's title, <I>14¼ pages, 8vo</I> (including altogether approximately 40 unpublished lines). On the relationship of life to the novel, Proust writes 'Il est stupide d'écrire des romans. Voici ce qui arrive entre mille examples. Dans <I>Swann</I> M. de Charlus dit "Au temps lointain où il y avait de Montmorency", on lui fait observer que M. de Talleyrand avait q.q. droits et il répond "Dans ce cas il n'y a aucune raison pour qu'on ne donne pas aussi bien le tître á M. Bloch" (le jeune homme que tu avais oublié dans le 1er volume)'. Proust compares this with the news that Madame de Blumenthal's son ('fils que M. de Perigord doit adopter') is said to be about to have the title of Duke of Montmorency. 'C'est pour cela que c'est idiot d'écrire parcequ'on est rattrapé par la vié, et les livres les plus spontanées deviennent un jour ou l'autre des romans à clefs'. This passage including the details of the Blumenthal title, suppressed by Daudet for publication of the letter, is repeated in Proust's letter of 14 December 1917 to Jacques de Lacretelle (Kolb, XVI, 357). In the present letter Proust mentions that he will have to change it in the proof. 'Il faudra que je change cela "sur epreuves". Peut'etre j'oublierai. Et alors M<SUP>e</SUP> Blumenthal est capable de me remercier'. The story appears, in a somewhat altered version, in <I>Le Côté de Guermantes</I>, II, 592. The proofs (of <I>A l'ombre des jeunes filles en fleurs</I>) which, earlier in the letter, Proust writes that he may not be well enough to correct, are the 5,000 pages which he mentioned to Madame Catusse on 13 October 1917. Lucien Daudet's novel <I>Le Chemin Mort</I>, had been published in 1908. In a passage suppressed by Daudet, Proust assures him that the talk is not of its homosexual aspect, but of the author's talent ('pas du tout en point de vue m[auvais] g[enre] mais à point de vue immense talent'). Kolb, XVI, 280. <I>Cahiers</I> V (XLVIII). | Christie's