A Prince of Bohemia  

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"My dear friend," said Mme. de la Baudraye, drawing a pile of manuscript from beneath her sofa cushion, "will you pardon me in our present straits for making a short story of something which you told me a few weeks ago?"

"Anything is fair in these times. Have you not seen writers serving up their own hearts to the public, or very often their mistress' hearts when invention fails? We are coming to this, dear; we shall go in quest of adventures, not so much for the pleasure of them as for the sake of having the story to tell afterwards."--A Prince of Bohemia (1840) by Honoré de Balzac (see autofiction)

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A Prince of Bohemia is a novel by Balzac about the bohemian exploits of "La Palferine". Original French title: "Un prince de la bohème". First published 1840. Included as part of La Comédie humaine. Bohemia, Balzac tells us, is a world of young men between 20 and 30 given to frivolity and buffoonery. Holding the middle class in contempt, they conquer women and abandon them for the sake of conquest alone. They live in squalid garrets, but move socially in high society (see reverse-slumming).

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