Les Misérables (1862) is a novel by French author Victor Hugo, and among the best-known novels of the 19th century. It follows the lives and interactions of several French characters over a twenty year period in the early 19th century that starts in the year of Napoleon's final defeat. Principally focusing on the struggles of the protagonist—ex-convict Jean Valjean—who seeks to redeem himself, the novel also examines the impact of Valjean's actions for the sake of social commentary. It examines the nature of good, evil, and the law, in a sweeping story that expounds upon the history of France, architecture of Paris, politics, moral philosophy, law, justice, religion, and the types and nature of romantic and familial love. Les Misérables is known to many through its numerous stage and screen adaptations, of which the most famous is the stage musical of the same name, sometimes abbreviated "Les Mis" or "Les Miz" .
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and perhaps the most influential exponent of the Romantic movement in France. In France, Hugo's literary reputation rests on his poetic and dramatic output. Among many volumes of poetry,
I think I have comprehended what was passing in my brother's heart. He was thinking, no doubt, that this man, whose name is Jean Valjean, had his misfortune only too vividly present in his mind; that the best thing was to divert him from it, and to make him believe, if only momentarily, that he was a person like any other, by treating him just in his ordinary way. Is not this indeed, to understand charity well? Is there not, dear Madame, something truly evangelical in this delicacy which abstains from sermon, from moralizing, from allusions? and is not the truest pity, when a man has a sore point, not to touch it at all?
"The faults of women, of children, of the feeble, the indigent, and the ignorant, are the fault of the husbands, the fathers, the masters, the strong, the rich, and the wise."
"The infinite is. He is there. If the infinite had no person, person would be without limit; it would not be infinite; in other words, it would not exist. There is, then, an I . That I of the infinite is God."
After a pause, the old man raised a finger heavenward and said:— "The infinite is. He is there. If the infinite had no person, person would be without limit; it would not be infinite; in other words, it would not exist. There is, then, an I . That I of the infinite is God."
"Man has upon him his flesh, which is at once his burden and his temptation. He drags it with him and yields to it. He must watch it, cheek it, repress it, and obey it only at the last extremity. There may be some fault even in this obedience; but the fault thus committed is venial; it is a fall, but a fall on the knees which may terminate in prayer. "To be a saint is the exception; to be an upright man is the rule. Err, fall, sin if you will, but be upright.
"Ecclesiastes calls you the All-powerful; the Maccabees call you the Creator; the Epistle to the Ephesians calls you liberty; Baruch calls you Immensity; the Psalms call you Wisdom and Truth; John calls you Light; the Books of Kings call you Lord; Exodus calls you Providence; Leviticus, Sanctity; Esdras, Justice; the creation calls you God; man calls you Father; but Solomon calls you Compassion, and that is the most beautiful of all your names."
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