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Honore de Balzac Classics: Beatrix By Honore de Balzac
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Beatrix by Honore de Balzac was published in 1839. In this novel Balzac presents thinly disguised character studies of certain of his famous contemporaries. Beatrix is the Comtesse d'Agoult... More > (1805-1876), an author who wrote under the pen-name of "Daniel Stern," and who lived ten years (from 1835 to 1845) with Franz Liszt, the Hungarian pianist and composer (1811-188. To them were born three daughters, one of whom married Von Billow, and afterward Richard Wagner. Liszt is represented in the novel as Conti. The rival of Beatrix, Camille Maupin, or Mademoiselle des Touches, is a composite study of two characters in real life: the Baroness Dudevant (1804-1876), the famous novelist known by her pseudonym of "George Sand"; and Madame de Steel (1766-1817). It is said that Madame Dudevant was immensely pleased with the story because it represented her in favorable contrast to her "friend" and fellow-author, the Comtesse d'Agoult.< Less