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Duchâtelet-the Newton of harlotry-in The aristocracy of the profession, the his elaborate work, · De la Prostitution de kept mistresses, have nearly all of them la Ville de Paris,'* enumerates the in- their favoured lovers, whom our author stances in which near relations have simul- warns us by no means to confound with taneously presented themselves for regis- their ostensible protectors : many of these tration. Out of 5183 registrations, 164 favourites occupy an elevated position in cases have occurred of two sisters present- society-general oflicers-men of letters ing themselves at the same time, 4 instances financiers-noblemen.' The next rankof three sisters, 3 instances of four; and the higher class of street-walkers-who the still more fearful spectacle of a mother live free from personal restraint, exercise and her daughter presenting themselves to- their trade during the day, and devote their gether has occurred no less than sixteen nights to the society of their lovers, whom times !!
by preference they choose from among the * This is a work 'd'une grande célébrité' in of these grand divisions is consecraled to a philoFrance. We marvel not that it should be so; for sophic analysis of the veteran rank of the profession. never was there a book more radically and essen- Here, in fourteen sections, we have given to us their tially French.. The subject well deserves the atten. nomenclature-the gradual purifications in the tion of the philanthropist and the statesman: it is French language on this important subject during the treatment of it--the blending together philosophic a long succession of ages--the exact year, 1796, in gravity and trivial minuteness—the needless abomi- which their present decorous appellation was connation of detail-- which makes the English reader ceded to then-their domestic pursuits, studies, and fling it from him with wonder and disgust. The amusements—their opinion of themselves, a nice author had prepared himself for liis revolting task point-their special and individual affairs of ihc heart by a long familiarity with kindred subjects: the-che discomfort to their establishments when these death-spreading industry of Montfaucon--the ob- extend to more than two cherished objects at oncestructed sinks and sewers of Paris--had been the their tournure d'esprit-their maternal solicitude; objects of his care, before he busied himself with -and, to complete the interesting picture, their calm these darker impurities. To them he devoted al secession from the toils of life-their provincial remost exclusively the last eight years of his life. His tirements—their gradually extending respectability zeal and energy in the pursuit were unceasing; and their charitable cares-their rural piety-their among the mass of facts which he has collected and eager participation in the holiest ceremonials of the brought into system many are of high importance church :-the whole wound up with what should and utility. But from long dwelling upon one have been its commencement, had there not existed, favourite and engrossing subject, his eye lost by as we are expressly told, insurmountable dificuldegrees the faculty of correci perspective: things lies' in so doing-the whole wound up with absolutely unimportant, things altogether base and 'DEFINITION d'une Dame de Naison.' trivial, became from proximity magnified into ob- The accuracy of every statement contained in jects of philosophic grandeur. What moral or this volume is repeatedly insisted upon by M. statistical advantage, for example, can result from Frégier, and the work carries within itself the ascertaining with mathematical accuracy and re- strongest evidence of truth. There are, nevertheless, ducing into decimal fractions the proportionate ratios some very startling assertions in it. 'We scarcely of the eyes, grey, brown, blue, red, and black, of know which of the three following is the most inevery street-walker in Paris?
What practical credible :utility in mastering the still more difficult problem 1st. That one of the physicians of Paris, observof the colour of their eyebrows? There may be ing the uniform increase of fat which courtezans some interest in knowing exactly the height of the acquire from the use of mercury, suggested the exVenus de Medicis, and of the Pucelle d'Orléans ;-- pediency of subjecting all animals intended for the but to ascertain, within the fraction of an inch, the food of man to a like course of treatment !! (Page altitudes, in an ascending series, of TWELVE THOU- | 116 of the Brussels edition of 1836—we deem it exSAND FOUR HUNDRED AND FIFTY-Four Parisian pros- pedient to be accurate in our references.) titutes is a department of science, a species of
2d. That in one of the forty-eight quarters of philosophy, which we are convinced no human Paris, that of l’lle Saint Louis, in a population of being but a Frenchman would ever have thought of 7500, not one single prostitute is to be found!!! cultivating
(Page 327.) As an author, Paren-Duchâtelet’s merits are 3d. That one woman of a superior grade-but considerable. His language is correct, clear, and we will quote the original words, to prevent the poseven eloquent; but the measureless attachment sibility of error--'assurait la sanié de tous scs which he feels towards his subject betrays him clicns. Pour cela elle ne recevait que des hommes sometimes into an energy of phrase singularly ludi- mariés que tous se connaissaient ; on n'était admis crous. Subjects of loathsome disquisition, needless chez elle que sur la présentation de quelques habiand frivolous impurities, are thus pompously tués, et avec l'assentiment de tous les autres au ushered in: 'Je consacre un chapitre,' -- Cette nombre de quarante à cinquante'!!!! (Page 81.) opinion étant d'un poids immense,' - J'ai puisé Parent-Duchâtelet was a skilful and valuable largement à cette source précieuse,'--' Cet inestimable public servant. We believe, also, that he was a document ;'-and on one occasion, when dilating on virtuous man; and the disgust with which we cast a subject supereminently revolting and disgraceful, aside the book does not extend to its author. Nor filled with gratitude towards his co-explorers, he would we be unjust to the work itself. As it exists, exclaims, ' Ils l'ont étudiée pour moi, et m'ont donné it would be unendurable in this country; but if dià ce sujet des précieux renseignemens !!
vested of all its unnecessary grossness, all its trivial In elaborate correctness of arrangement the work details, we should be glad to see, in an English dress, is a master-piece: each of its grander divisions is the solid information which it contains. We warn subdivided into numerous subordinate sections, our readers against supposing that they will find every one of which has its duplex enunciation, the what we speak of in a late trumpery publication of one concise, the other full and comprehensive. One the Edinburgh press.
students of law and medicine, and the ju- | men than the disdain which the higher ranks venile attorneys, “the intelligence and wit among them express for those of an inferior of these young men rendering them espe- grade, the one grand criterion of their recially attractive. These women never ex- lative dignity being the price at which they act any payment from their favourites; on accord their favours. Should
individual the contrary, they lavish their money upon forget herself so far as to lower her terms, them; and the number of young men in she is exposed to the anger and revilings of Paris who degrade themselves by being her fellows: this is an offence which, in their thus supported is considerable. • This total opinion, admits of no excuse. The contempt absence of mercenary views,' says our of the superior class naturally draws down author, “is universal through all the grada- upon it the vindictive hatred of the other; and tions of prostitution, even to the very low- when members of the two meet, as they perest. Towards their lovers, the disinterest- petually do in the prison or the hospital, hoth edness of these abandoned women is un reduced to the same hard fare and the same mixed and perfect.' The next class in the coarse dress, the inferior fails not to take a descending scale are perhaps the least cor- bitter revenge. The mistresses of the houses rupted and vicious of the whole: these of Tolerance have in their pay agents in the nearly all of them exercise some indus- different hospitals, who form acquaintance trious trade, in addition to their regular with the handsomest of their fellow-patients; profession: many are economists, and in- and, on their report, the Dame de Maison envest their money in the savings-banks: not ters into a treaty with the girls thus selected, a few of them in the capital thus accumu- and makes them a present of clothes, and a lated find ultimately the means of emanci-weekly allowance of four or five francs dupating themselves, and set up in some de- ring the remainder of their stay in the hospital, cent business. The lovers chiefly sought the agent herself receiving a much higher reafter by this class are shopmen, journey- muneration. These selections chiefly take men hair-dressers, and journeymen tailors, place from among girls out of place, and the latter especially. In this rank there are work-women without employment; who, many women whose degradation has sprung on leaving the hospital, have no alternative from poverty, and not from any propensity before them but famine or vice. The houses to vice. The lowest class is that which most of the lower class are recruited from the demands the strict attention of the police ; prisons by similar agency. Many of the for with them are constantly associated Dames de Maison obtain their recruits by men of the vilest and most dangerous cha- the aid of correspondents in the country, esracter, their lovers or their souteneurs, who pecially in the manufacturing departments : are for the most part liberated convicts. they often employ regular travellers for the The attachment of these women for their same purpose ; and not a few are in league favourites knows no bounds: the vilest with the persons who keep offices for the treatment at their hands, blows, even hiring of servants, who, without remorse, wounds, will not shake it. The duty of the when a girl more than usually handsome souteneur is to warn his mistress of the ap- applies for a place, send her to the address proach of the police, when she is infringing of one of the most showy of the licensed the prescribed rules; and in the event of Maisons. The train is so well laid, that it her being arrested, he is always prepared very generally succeeds flattery, dress, luxe to do battle in her defence.
uries of all sorts, conquer her repugnance, These are the four chief classes which and she devotes herself to a life of shame, constitute that division of the system in without even being aware that she has been which the women continue to be free agents, the victim of a conspiracy. Especial care and mistresses of their own actions; with is taken to keep these unhappy creatures the exception only of their constant subjec- totally penniless, lest they should emancipate tion to the sanatory regulations, and, in the themselves from the thraldom they endure ; event of misconduct, to imprisonment. From and if they are suspected of economising, the highest to the lowest, from the femme every art used to lead them into extravagalante who lives surrounded by every lux- gance. In the more splendid establishments ury, to the half-clothed prowler through the personal indulgences are granted to them in streets, all are alike subjected to the dispen- excess; yet, no sooner does disease attack sary, the hospital, and the prison. The visits them, than they are hurried off without symto the dispensary are required to be made pathy or remorse from the very centre of twice every month, and are recorded on a luxury to the melancholy wards of a hoscard, which they are bound to produce, when pital.' The vilest, the most revolting, and called upon to do so by the police. Nothing the most dangerous of all these licensed is a more marked characteristic of these wo- ' establishments are the dens in those parts of
the city where the lower classes congregate ; the benefit to the offenders would be imsuch as the Grand Barriers and the outward portant and permanent; they would beBoulevards. Day and night, one unceasing come less immoral, and less dangerous subround of riut, debauchery, drunkenness fight- jects to the state. But experience has ing, and theft, takes place in these hot-beds proved that this cannot be. The fact is noof crime.
torious, that the law is not able to bring Clandestine prostitution has a range as within its coercive powers one-half of the wide as that which is regular and avowed. class. But this is not, we conceive, the A large proportion of the total number of chief objection to it. A portion of the class, femmes-galantes, or kept-mistresses-femmes having the sanction of the law, being under à partie-the girls who habitually frequent its care, legalized and protected, establishthe theatres-workwomen-maid servants es at once a line of demarkation between -and, last and most melancholy of all, it and the remaining part, which holds itchildren, form the catalogue of the 4000 fe- self aloof from all restraint. The consemales who constitute the mass of prostitu- quence is inevitable—the unrestricted portion which does not submit itself to the law. tion become, from the mere circumstance The femmes à partie are a distinct race: they of this distinction, this separation, more are women distinguished generally by their depraved, more audacious, and more danwit and fascinating manners, who are, or gerous than they would be, were there no have been prostitutes. They keep a good such division. The slightest acquaintance table, and receive all visiters who are in with the nature of the human mind would troduced to them by friends in whom they convince us, à priori, that this must be so; confide: they give dinners, balls, soirées; but not only M. Frégier's volumes, but the and collect around them as many beautiful more circumstantial work of Parent-Duchâfaces as they can-divorced wives--actresses telet, prove, beyond a shadow of doubt, -opera-dancers, and femmes galantes of all that such is the case. From the amount, kinds: they live by the spoils of the thought- therefore, of good, which the exertions of less young men of fortune. In disgraceful the law effect in one half of the mass, is to conduct the women who beset the theatres be deducted the amount of evil which equal—they cannot exceed—their parallels results to the other. But the question in London. This stain upon our national which relates to society at large is one of manners has been far too patiently endured, far greater importance; and here there is and we hail with gratitude the recent effort no balancing of good and evil. The legalof Mr. Macready to free our capital from so izing, the trafficking with vice, the protecfoul a reproach.
tion and countenance given to it, cannot It has been painful to us to go into these exist without baneful effects extending details; but as of all the divisions of so- themselves directly or indirectly over all ciety this is the one in which the greatest divisions of society. The national scale of difference exists between the two nations, morality is brought down; the distinctions we have deemed it right specially to direct of right and wrong are defaced. A licensed the attention of our readers to it. That brothel and a licensed gambling-house are both in a moral and a religious point of less dangerous places to those who freview it is a subject of the deepest import- quent them than similar abodes of vice unance none can doubt; and it deserves, subjected to control; but to society at large consequently, the calm attention of the the injury resulting from the union of crime political economist. English feelings and and law is incalculably greater. France English prejudices may, perhaps, bias our has already perceived this as regards the judgment; our neighbours consider us an- one vice, and sanctioned gambling-houses tiquated and unwise in our views on this have ceased to exist. branch of civil government; and we know It is proved, that among the prostitutes that the French system of legalized prosti- in Paris a considerable number economize tution is gradually spreading over other their gains, are depositors in the savingsEuropean nations. We do not wonder banks, and acquire the means of quitting
, that it should do so; for, unquestionally, their vicious course of life : it is proved, there are many advantages connected with also, that a large proportion of these unit. These are upon the surface. The ob- happy women do ultimately obtain re-adjections lie deeper. If legal surveillance mission into their original classes of society. could, without undue interference with the Could we restrict our views to these indiliberty of the subject, be made to extend viduals, the knowledge that such is the over all those who are tainted with this case would be consolatory : but we must vice, great good, great diminution of crime, look also at those by whom they are redisease and misery, would be the result ; 'ceived: we then perceive that it is the ab
sence of high moral feeling in society at | ty. These are the voluntary members of the large which renders it possible for beings driven to đo so by the neglect
or the cruelty of
fraternity ; but many join it unwillingly, being who have so degraded themselves ever to their masters: many are orphans. The efforts recover the station they have lost. The made by the police to reclaim these juvenile oflax and depraved tone of society, which fenders are unceasing; but severity and kindleads them to hope that such an event ness are alike ineflectual. Again and again are possible, leads also to their economy and they arrested, and punished or pardoned as the iheir savings. Instances of similar re-ad- case requires ; and again and again do they remission into the ranks of honesty are com
sume the same lawless course of life. A singu.
lar case is on record of one of these children, paratively rare in England. It is not with who was arrested no less than forty times: hé sorrow that we assert this to be so. It is
was always alone; and, strange to say, in no the purer morality of the social system with one instance had he committed any punishable us that renders the exclusion final and ir. crime; his only proveable offence was that of remediable; and we hold that, where the being day and night a houseless wanderer.' loss to the unhappy class is as one, the gain The points of resemblance between the to society is as a thousand.
pickpockets, the sharpers, and the robbers The vagabonds are the next class des- of Paris and London are so numerous and cribed. They hold an intermediate place so strong as to render it unnecessary for us between the beggar and the robber. to follow our author through the whole of
his details. Many of his statements might • Ragged and idle, vegetating in a state of be mistaken for extracts from our own potorpid carelessness, and solely occupied by the lice reports. We shall therefore touch only present moment, these degraded beings abound
on those forms of crime which are least in all the great centres of population. A numerous division of the tribe hang about the known in England. market-places, to pick up a few pence, by exe- * The octroi duty, which is levied on all articuting commissions, and eke out their daily cles of consumption brought into Paris, forms gains by petty thefts and begging. The young- by far the most considerable portion of the city er division of the class is recruited from among revenue. In 1840 it amounted to no less a sum the boys expelled from the schools or the manu- than 40,606,535 francs, (£1,624,261). To evade factories for inveterate idleness and misconduct, this tax innumerable modes of smuggling are and who pass their entire days loitering in the resorted to, and not only by professed thieves, streets, in defiance of the remonstrances and and by women and children, who devote themcorrections of their parents. These young rep- selves to it as a legitimate branch of inrobates, whose ages vary from seven to sixteen, dustry, but also by a large number of the opare soon enticed by other boys, more advanced erative classes when out of employment. in vice, to band themselves together into gangs, These latter, however, when their own sometimes to the number of eighteen ; one es- accustomed occupation is again offered them, pecial article of their compact being mutually to willingly quit their illicit trade. Many of these assist one another in escaping from the search bands of smugglers are armed, have their capof their parents, or of the masters to whom they tains (chefs d'équipes,) and carry on their trade have been apprenticed. The most timid and avowedly, and in defiance of the agents of the the least depraved frequent the markets, and octroi, with whom they sometimes come into beg or execute commissions; the bolder and open collision. But by far the greater quantity of more accomplished rob. With all of them, smuggled goods are introduced secretly...... La without exception, gambling is the ruling pas- fraude sous vêtement is effected by bladders arsion; next to this the theatre; and, in order to ranged around the corsets of women, or by a collect money to pay for their admission, they hollow cuirass of rin neatly fitted to the shape. will frequently fast for a couple of days. Wher- La fraude par escalade takes place only during ever there is noise, tumult, or sedition, there the night: a ladder, with a strong cord at the these gangs are sure to be seen. Those who end of it, is placed against the city wall; up this rob, lord it over the rest, as it is from their the smuggler ascends, charged with a leathern gains that the more timid and the new recruits sack filled with wine or spirit, and the cord enare supported. They are ambitious to form the ables him to descend wiih his burden on the acquaintance and receive the instructions of other side. La fraude par jet de vessie is pracgrown-up robbers; but indeed the fathers of tised in open day. The point of communication many of them are robbers. An instance is being fixed upon, the exterior smuggler throws known of one of these boys who, when not bladder after bladder over the wall, and they are quite three years old, was able to pick a lock; caught by his accomplice. Unwholesome meat and when soon afterwards he commenced busi- is introduced into the city in the same manner. ness in the streets, the childish naïveté with But of all the modes of smuggling, the one which he recited his little felonies is said to have which most largely detracts from the city reve"filled his father's mind with delight and pride." nues is that effected by means of subterranean These thievish imps swarm on the Boulevards, excavations. A gang hire a house outside the and'insinuate themselves more especially into the walls, having attached to it a court or garden groups which surround the ambulatory exhi- suitable to their purpose : opposite to this, in, bitions and the print-shops. In short, every side the walls, they occupy another building, and crowded place is the theatre of their activi- 'from the one to the other they open a subterra
success as ever,
nean communication, through which articles of situation; the transaction is an important one ; every description are conveyed in immense he will not part with his own silver, nor will he quantities. Once within the walls, they are allow the young woman to part with hers, until speedily forwarded to the retailers, between he has ascertained the purity of some of the whom and the smuggler there is an established gold pieces. He takes two or three of them to league. The seizures made by the police are ihe nearest money-changer, and returns with innumerable; and formerly it was the custom crown-pieces; all doubts on their side are now at in many of the stations to collect and hang up an end. Not so with the American: he, in his the various arms, instruments, and curious appa- turn, says that he must ascertain that her silver ratus which had been captured ; but these be- is good. His ignorance excites a laugh, and the came so numerous, that the offices were gra- nature of the coinage of the country is fully exdually converted into museums and arsenals, plained to him. Still he persists; and at length and it was deemed expedient to destroy the the friendly adviser consents, but on the express whole.'
condition ihat he himself shall go with him to
the shop with the girl's packet of silver. She The great abundance and variety of sil- feels deeply this kind attention, and pours out ver coin give the sharpers of Paris an im- her thanks. They depart and leave her alone, portant advantage over their London breth- gazing intently on the beautiful little padlocked ren. Le vol à l'Américaine would be little purse, which is left in her care. Half an hour productive with us; in France, although it passes, but of course no one returns ; she
comes alarmed, the master of the wine-shop is has been perpetually exposed in the news- summoned; he is, or affects to be astonished ; papers, it is still practised with as much the purse is cut open, and, to the unspeakable
horror of the poor girl, the rouleaux are of cop
per.' " Those who devote themselves to this branch of industry loiter near the Bank of France, the
A man of unexceptionable appearance Treasury, or the coach offices, on the watch for enters a shop, makes some purchases, propersons carrying a sack of crown pieces; and duces gold, and requests that the change when they espy a rustic looking man or woman
may be given him in some particular coin, thus burdened, and whose appearance pleases that of the Republic, for instance, or of the them, they immediately commence operations. A young girl, for instance, is seen to come out of Kingdom of Italy. The obliging shopthe Treasury with a budget well filled, and care
keeper pours out his sack of silver on the fully tied round; two sharpers follow her, and counter, and the customer draws out with the one who plays the part of the American great care from the heap the peculiar coinsteps forward some hundred paces; the other age which he seeks. During this public accosts her in so civil and good-humoured a tone process of selection he carries on a private as not to alarm her; she answers him as civilly; one; and, with a skill which many a prothe conversation goes on; he talks economy, fessed juggler might envy, abstracts as praises saving-banks, and wishes there were more young work-women of her age who had many crown-pieces as he can venture to as prudent and saving habits as he is sure she take, without too much diminishing the has. In the midst of these flattering words the heap. Then follow thanks and apologies American retraces his steps, and, on approach for giving trouble; and complimentary ing the girl, asks her in bioken French if she speeches having been made on both sides, will change the crowns she is carrying for gold; the unsuspicious tradesman restores the diif so, he will give her a bonus of 100 sous on minished silver into its bag; and it is only every 20 francs. She is startled, and somewhat when at the end of the day he counts its shocked at this offer. Not so the complimentary gentleman by her side; he is less scrupulous, contents that he discovers his loss, which and says at once that he himself will accept the sometimes amounts to 600 or 1000 francs. terms. The American forthwith produces a hand- The ladies are proficients in this art : ful of gold pieces : the poor girl's surprise aug- their powers of conversation and their perments, but it becomes extreme when the care-sonal attraction aid greatly; but the mysless foreigner declares that he has brought tons
M. of gold with him to France on board his vessel, tery lies in their fingers, of which, and that current coin he must have at once, let it Frégier, “la souplesse et la force a quelcost him what it will. She now, in a timid que chose de merveilleux.' The fair sex whisper, tells her new acquaintance that she are indeed great shoplifters. Their pelisses thinks she should like to participate in the traffic. and mantles are furnished with huge pockHe confirms her in the prudent resolution, and ets, artfully constructed in the foldings: an proposes that they should go into a wine-shop immense shawl is very favourable to the with the rich foreigner. Having established operation; and those who assume the garb themselves in a private room, the American not of Paysannes have their coarse thick petonly displays numerous pisces of gold, but also ticoat formed into a perfect series of secret a beautiful litule sack made of some rich skin, fastened with a padlock, and crammed full of compartments. One of the modes adopted the rouleaux which he wants to change. The is new to us, and there is a shade of materother man now feels the responsibility of his nal tenderness thrown over the transaction,