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The Marquis de Sade
A Life

The definitive biography by Neil Schaeffer

Home : The Prison Letters : Archive : April 16, 1780
This letter displays Sade's practice of writing his own comments between the lines of his wife's letters. He would continue to re-read her letters, and in his loneliness and despair, he would, by means of these interlinear comments, develop a kind of conversation with her, even if it involved only paranoid accusations. -NS

Mme de Sade to her husband.
April 16, 1780

Here you have, my dear love, the bound notebook; it is not my fault that you only have it today: it was to be brought home by an imbecile whom it is pointless to name because you know it already yourself [i.e., Paul Lefèvre, one of Mme de Sade's servants in Paris, and the object of Sade's increasingly violent jealousy]. Summer britches; a brioche, a bonnet of black taffeta. They are making the greatest efforts to find the comedies, and if it is possible to find them, they will. It is Lefèvre, your old secretary, who is procuring them for me. A chest warmer of which we think the cords are too long [Sade's note: "wishes to say that it is Lefèvre who serves as her chest warmer and who has a very long one. Surely that is clear"]. I embrace you with all my heart.

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