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Texts by Huysmans

Included in this section are books and pieces of journalism classified under the headings Art criticism, Fiction, Non-fiction, Literary criticism, Prefaces, Miscellaneous, and Letters.


Art criticism

blue  ‘Beaux-Arts: Des paysagistes contemporains’ by G. Huysmans. This is the first piece of Huysmans’ writing to appear in print, in the Revue Mensuelle of 25th November 1867. Written when he was just nineteen, the article was published under the name ’G. Huysmans’ because it was only with the publication of Le Drageoir à épices in 1874 that Huysmans adopted the Dutch form of his Christian names.


blue  ‘La Cruche cassée d'après Greuze, par Guillon.’ This essay on Greuze’s famous painting was first published in Le Musée des Deux Mondes on 15 October 1875.


blue  ‘Le Bon Compagnon.’ This essay about Franz Hals was first published in Le Musée des Deux Mondes, 1 November 1875.


blue  ‘Le Cellier.’ This essay about de Hooch was first published in Le Musée des Deux Mondes, 15 December 1875.


blue  ‘Les nouvelles peintures de Saint-Sulpice par Charles Landelle.’ An early review interesting for its view on religious art which was published in the Chronique illustrée, 8 January 1876.


blue  ‘Les Natures mortes.’ La République des Lettres, 20 May 1876.


blue  ‘Les envois de Rome’ and ‘L'exposition de blanc et de noir.’ La République des Lettres, 9 July 1876.


blue  ‘Exposition pour le grand Prix de Rome (1876).’ La République des Lettres, 30 July 1876.


blue  ‘Les envois de Rome.’ Le Musée des Deux Mondes, 1 August 1876.


blue  ‘L'Exposition du Cercle artistique de Bruxelles.’ Musée des deux mondes, 1 September 1876.


blue  ‘Diaz.’ La République des Lettres, 26 November 1876.


blue  ‘Le Nana de Manet.’ This description of Manet’s controversial picture was published in L’Artiste, Brussels, on 13 May 1877.


blue  ‘Le Rolla de M. Gervex.’ This analysis of the picture which caused such a stir at the 1878 Salon was published in L’Artiste, Brussels, on the 4th of May 1878.

blue  ‘Exposition universelle. — L’École anglaise.’ L’Artiste, Brussels, 2 June 1878.


blue  ‘Exposition universelle. — Écoles Espagnole, Portugaise, Américaine et Greque.’ L’Artiste, Brussels, 16 June 1878.


blue  ‘Le dernier livre de M. Ch. Blanc.’ This review demolishing Blanc’s book Les Beaux-Arts à l’Exposition Universelle de 1878 was published in L’Artiste, Brussels, 15 November 1878.

blue  ‘Les natures mortes.’ This round-up of still lives at the 1880 Salon appeared in L'Exposition des Beaux-Arts: Salon de 1880, published by Ludovic Baschet in 1880 in a sumptuously illustrated edition. This particular piece was never reprinted, though it did form the basis for some of the criticisms that appeared in L'Art moderne, 1883.


blue  ‘Les albums Anglais.’ This review, which first appeared in the Revue Littéraire et Artistique, 15 August 1881, was reprinted with minor changes in L’Art moderne.


blue  ‘Belly.’ An essay on Léon Belly (1827-1877) included in Les Chefs-d’oeuvre d’art au Luxembourg, Librairie Ludovic Baschet, Paris: 1881.


blue  ‘Tissot.’ An essay on James Joseph-Jacques Tissot (1836-1902) included in Les Chefs-d’oeuvre d’art au Luxembourg, Librairie Ludovic Baschet, Paris: 1881.


blue  ‘Ziem.’ An essay on Félix Ziem (1821-1911) included in Les Chefs-d’oeuvre d’art au Luxembourg, Librairie Ludovic Baschet, Paris: 1881.


blue  L’Art moderne. This is the full text of Huysmans’ collection of art criticism, first published in 1883.


blue  ‘La genèse du peintre.’ La Revue indépendante, April 1884.


blue  ‘Le nouvel Album d’Odilon Redon.’ This imaginative piece on Redon’s work, published in La Revue Indépendante, in February 1885, was included with only slight changes in the second edition of Croquis parisiens.


blue  ‘Le Salon de 1885.’ A review which appeared in the first three numbers of L’Evolution sociale in 1885.


blue  ‘Chronique d’art: Fantaisie sur le Musée des Art Décoratifs et sur l’architecture cuites.’ An article that appeared in La Revue indépendante in November 1886, and which was later republished with only minor changes in Certains (1889) under the title ’Le Muse des Arts décoratifs et l’Architecture cuite’.


blue  ‘Chronique d’art: Le nouvelle salle du Louvre.’ An article that appeared in La Revue indépendante in December 1886, and which was later republished with minor changes in Certains (1889) under the title ’La Salle des Etats au Louvre’.


blue  ‘Chronique d’art: Exposition de Maîtres anciens au profit des inondés du Midi.’ An article that appeared in La Revue indépendante in February 1887, only half of which was later republished in Certains (1889) under the title ’Goya et Turner’.


blue  ‘Chronique d’art: Les Indépendants.’ An article that appeared in La Revue indépendante in April 1887, and which was never republished.


blue  ‘Chronique d’art: Le Salon de 1887.’ An article that appeared in La Revue indépendante in May 1887, the bulk of which was never republished.


blue  ‘Chronique d’art: Le Salon de 1887, II. L’Exposition Internationale de la rue de Sèze.’ An article that appeared in La Revue indépendante in June 1887, the bulk of which was never republished.


blue  ‘Chronique d’art: L’Exposition de Millet.’ An article that appeared in La Revue indépendante in July 1887, and which was later republished with minor changes in Certains (1889) under the title ’Millet’.


blue  ‘Chronique d’art: Le Tableau de Bianchi au Louvre.’ An article that appeared in La Revue indépendante in October 1887, which was later republished with minor changes in Certains (1889) under the title ’Bianchi’.


blue  ‘J. L. Forain.’ A different version of the appreciation of Forain that appeared in Certains, published in the Revue Illustrée of 1 May 1889.


blue  Certains. This is the full text of Huysmans’ collection of art criticism, first published in 1889. It includes essays on Félicien Rops, Whistler, Redon and Moreau.


blue  ‘Les dessins de Victor Hugo.’ An essay on Victor Hugo’s drawings, published in La Jeune Belgique, March 1890.


blue  ‘Félicien Rops.’ A reprint of the Certains essay on Félicien Rops published in La Plume, No. 179, 15-30 June 1896.


blue  ‘La Belle Matinée.’ This piece on Raffaëlli, which first appeared in Certains, was republished in Les Maîtres Artistes, Troisième année, No. 6, 10 January 1903, with only slight changes.


blue  ‘Les Grünewald du Musée de Colmar.’ An earlier version of the essay that appeared in Trois primitifs, which was first published in Le Mois littéraire et pittoresque in March 1904.


blue  Trois primitifs. This is the full text of two extended essays Huysmans published in 1905, the first entitled ’Les Grünewald du Musée de Colmar’, the second, ’Francfort-sur-le-mein’.



Fiction

blue  Le Drageoir aux épices. This is the full text of Huysmans’ first book, published in 1874, together with Pages retrouvées.


blue  Marthe, histoire d’une fille. This is the full French text of Huysmans’ novel, published in 1876.


blue  ‘Sac au dos.’ This is the full French text of Huysmans’ short story based on his own experiences during the Franco-Prussian war of 1870-71. This version was first published by L’Artiste in Brussels, in 1878. To compare this version with the later one published in the collection Les Soirées de Médan click here.


blue  Les Soeurs Vatard. This is the full French text of Huysmans’ novel, published in 1879.


blue  Sac au dos. This is the full French text of Huysmans’ previously published short story which he adapted for the 1880 collection Les Soirées de Médan. To compare this version with the earlier one, click here.


blue  Croquis Parisiens. This is the full French text of Huysmans’ collection of prose poems and sketches. It was published in 1880 and republished, with the addition of seven new pieces (marked by an asterisk in the text) in 1886.

blue  En ménage. This is the full French text of Huysmans’ novel, published in 1881.


blue  Pierrot sceptique. This is the full French text of the ’pantomine’ Huysmans’ wrote in conjunction with Léon Hennique in 1881.


blue  A vau l’eau. This is the full French text of Huysmans’ novella, published in 1882.


blue  A rebours. This is the full text of Huysmans’ most well-known work, which was first published in 1884.


blue  ‘Esther, Fragment.’ This piece, published in La Vogue No. 8, 13-20 June 1886, is a section later incorporated almost unchanged in En Rade in 1887.


blue  En rade. This is the full text of Huysmans’ novel which was published serially between November 1886 and May 1887 in La Revue indépendante, before being published in book form in 1887.


blue  Un dilemme. This is the full French text of Huysmans’ novella, published in 1887.

blue  En rade. This is the full text of Huysmans’ novel published in book form in 1887.

blue  Là-Bas. This is the full French text of Huysmans’ novel, published in 1891.


blue  En Route. This is the full text of Huysmans’ first ’Catholic’ novel, published in 1895.


blue  La Cathédrale. This is the full text of Huysmans’ novel of Catholic symbolism centred on the cathedral at Chartres, published in 1898.


blue  L’Oblat. This is the full text of the final part of Huysmans’ tetrology’, published in 1903.

blue  La Retraite de Monsieur Bougran. This novella, which serves as a sort of complement to A Vau-l'eau, was written in 1888 but only published posthumously in 1964.


Non-fiction

blue  ‘La Bièvre.’ This is an early version of the piece that Huysmans later reprinted in Croquis parisiens. It was published in L’Artiste, 27 avril 1878. To compare the two versions click here.


blue  La Bièvre. This is the full text of Huysmans’ short account of a neglected area of Paris, first published in 1890.

blue  Le Quartier Saint-Séverin. This is the full text of Huysmans’ account of an area of Paris that had strong personal associations for him. It was first published in 1898.


blue  ‘Les Gobelins.’ First published in Soleil de dimanche on 5 March 1899, this is an earlier version with only minor variations of the text that appeared in La Bièvre. Les Gobelins. Saint-Séverin (1901).

blue  ‘Le Quartier Notre-Dame.’ First published in L'Almanach du Bibliophile in 1899, this essay was later expanded and appeared in book form in 1905.


blue  La Bièvre. Les Gobelins. Saint-Séverin. Société de propagation des livres d’art, 1901.

blue  Sainte Lydwine de Schiedam. This is the full text of Huysmans’ ’hagiography’ published in 1901.


blue  De Tout. This is a collection of Huysmans’ journalism published in 1902.


blue  ‘Saint-Germain de l'Auxerrois.’ First published in La Tour de France in January 1905. A slightly amended version was published posthumously in Trois glises et Trois primitifs (1908).


blue  Le Quartier Notre-Dame. A longer, reworked version of the essay that first appeared in 1899, published by Romagnol in 1905, with illustrations by Charles Jouas.


blue  ‘La Symbolique de Notre-Dame.’ Published in La Tour de France in April 1905. An amended version was published posthumously in Trois glises et Trois primitifs (1908).


blue  Les Foules de Lourdes. The full text of Huysmans’ account of Lourdes, published in 1906.

blue  'A Lourdes : la procession du Saint Sacrement le 8 septembre, 1904.' A section of Les Foules de Lourdes published in September 1906 in Le Mois littéraire et pittoresque.

blue  Trois églises et trois primitifs. This is the full text of a collection that was in the course of being published at the time of Huysmans’ death. It was first published posthumously in 1908.


blue  En Marge. A collection of Huysmans’ essays and prefaces, edited by Lucien Descaves and published in 1927.


Literary criticism

blue  ‘Le Salon de Poèsie.’ This long review of the third series of the Parnasse contemporain was published in the République des Lettres, on 20 April 1876.

blue  ‘Etude sur le Gamiani de Musset.’ This study of Alfred de Musset’s erotic novella was published anonymously in 1876.


blue  ‘Emile Zola et L’Assommoir.’ This long defence of Zola and his work was published in 1876 in the weekly journal, L’Actualité, which was edited in Brussels by Camille Lemonnier.


blue  ‘Marcelle.’ A review of Maurice Du Seigneur’s poem, published in L’Artiste, Brussels, 3 June 1877.


blue  La Proie et l’ombre de Marius Roux.’ A review was published in L’Artiste, Brussels, on the 20th of April, 1878.

blue  ‘Camille Lemonnier.’ This profile of the Belgian writer was published in L’Artiste, Brussels, on the 4th of August, 1878.

blue  ‘J.-K. Huysmans.’ This biographical profile of Huysmans was published in the series Les Hommes d’aujourd’hui in 1885. It was actually written by Huysmans himself, although it appeared under the pseudonym of his long-term mistress, A[nna] Meunier.


blue  ‘Curiosités.’ A short definition of poetry in response to a question posed by the editor of La Vogue in April 1886.


blue  ‘Léon Hennique.’ This profile of his friend and one-time collaborator, the writer Léon Hennique, was published in Les Hommes d’Aujourd’hui in 1887.


blue  ‘Lucien Descaves.’ This profile of his future executor, Lucien Descaves, was published in Les Hommes d’Aujourd’hui in 1889.


blue  ‘Maupassant: Étude biographique.’ A short biographical piece on Guy de Maupassant, which Huysmans contributed to an article published in the Revue Encyclopédique of 1893.


blue  ‘Villiers de l’Isle Adam intime.’ An account of the death of the author of Axel published in Figaro, 13 May 1893.


blue  ‘A propos de quelques livres.’ A review centring on Jacques Esquirol’s A mi-côte, published in L’Echo de Paris, 24 August 1898.


blue  ‘Réponse à une enquête.’ A response to some questions published in Sillon, January 1899.


blue  ‘Bouquins. A propos de Barbey d’Aurevilly, Hello, Dom Legeay et Émile Mâle.’ A review published in L’Echo de Paris, 26 April 1899.


blue  ‘Questions sociales et religieuses du temps présent.’ An assessment of Abbé Planeix’s collection of conférences, published in La Corporation, 31 October 1903.


Prefaces

blue  Bois, Jules. Le Satanisme et la magie. Paris: Flammarion, 1895.

blue  'Marie-Charles Dulac.' Charles Marie Dulac Paris: Georges Petit, 1899.

blue  Broussolle, Abbé J-C. La jeunnesse du Pérugin et les origines de l'École ombrienne. Paris: Lecène-Oudin, 1901.

blue  Cazals, F-A. Paul Verlaine, ses portraits. Paris: Bibliothèque de l'Association, 1896.

blue  Dutilliet, Abbé Henri. Petit Catéchisme liturgique. Paris: J Bricon, 1896.

blue  Gourmont, Remy de. Le Latin mystique. Paris: Mercure de France, 1892.

blue  Hannon, Théodore. Rimes de Joie. Brussels: Gay et Doucé, 1881.

blue  Verlaine, Paul. Poésies religieuses. Paris: Messein, 1904.


Miscellaneous

blue  ‘Licenciement de Soudrilles.’ The first in a series of six ’Croquis et eaux-fortes’, published in Le Musée des Deux Mondes, between 1 March 1875 and 1 May 1876.


blue  ‘La Tulipe.’ The second in the ’Croquis et eaux-fortes’ series published in Le Musée des Deux Mondes on 1 April 1875.


blue  ‘Un petit coin.’ The third of the ’Croquis et eaux-fortes’, published in Le Musée des Deux Mondes on 15 May 1875.


blue  ‘Le sommeil de l’amour.’ Le Musée des Deux Mondes, 15 June 1875.


blue  ‘Un campement de bohémiens.’ The fourth in the ’Croquis et eaux-fortes’ series, published in Le Musée des Deux Mondes, on 15 July 1875.


blue  ‘Une fête à Nogent-sur-Marne.’ Le Musée des Deux Mondes, 1 September 1875.


blue  ‘Chronique parisiennes.’ Three pieces written for the Chronique illustrée, published on 18 December 1875, 25 December 1875 and 1 January 1876.


blue  ‘Effet de soir.’ The fifth of the ’Croquis et eaux-fortes’ series, published in Le Musée des Deux Mondes, 15 January 1876.


blue  ‘Maître Karel Brand.’ The sixth of the ’Croquis et eaux-fortes’ series, published in Le Musée des Deux Mondes, 1 and 15 March 1876.


blue  ‘Chinoiserie.’ The seventh and last of the ’Croquis et eaux-fortes’ series, published in Le Musée des Deux Mondes, 1 May 1876.


blue  ‘Similitudes.’ An earlier version of the piece included in Croquis parisiens. Published in République des Lettres, 6 August 1876, and L’Artiste, Brussels, 9 décembre 1877.


blue  ‘Le grande place de Bruxelles.’ Published in La République des Lettres, 23 October 1876.


blue  ‘Carnet d’un voyageur à Bruxelles.’ Published in Le Musée des Deux Mondes, 15 November 1876.


blue  ‘L’ambulante.’ This early version of one of the ’Croquis parisiens’ was published in La Cravache parisienne on 10 décembre 1876.


blue  ‘La marchande de petit noir.’ La Cravache parisienne 24 December 1876.


blue  ‘Le boulevard Montparnasse.’ La Cravache parisienne, 7 January 1877.


blue  ‘En Hollande.’ This piece, written after Huysmans’ visit to his uncle in Tilburg in September 1876, was published in Le Musée des Deux Mondes on 15 February 1877.


blue  ‘A maître François Villon.’ L’Artiste, Brussels, 15 July 1877.


blue  ‘Image D’Épinal.’ L’Artiste, Brussels, 22 July 1877.


blue  ‘Ballade en prose de la chandelle des six.’ L’Artiste, Brussels, 12 August 1877.


blue  ‘Le Sommeil de l’Amour.’ L’Éclair, numéro 14, September 1877.


blue  ‘L’épave.’ L’Éclair, numéro 16, September 1877.


blue  ‘Le Geindre.’ L’Éclair, numéro 19, October 1877.


blue  ‘Noël.’ L’Artiste, Brussels, 23 December 1877.


blue  ‘Bonjour bon an.’ L’Artiste, Brussels, 6 January 1878.


blue  ‘Robes et manteaux.’ Le Gaulois, 6 June 1880.


blue  ‘Une goguette.’ Le Gaulois, 11 June 1880.


blue  ‘Tabatières et riz-pain-sel.’ Le Gaulois, June 1880.


blue  ‘L’extralucide.’ Le Gaulois, 26 June 1880.


blue  ‘Deux sonnets.’ These two pieces of erotica were originally published in Le Nouveau Parnasse Satyrique du dix-neuvième siècle (Brussels: Henry Kistemaeckers) in 1881.

blue  ‘A travers le jardin du Luxembourg.’ Les Chefs-d’oeuvre d’art au Luxembourg, Paris: Librairie Ludovic Baschet, 1881.


blue  ‘Le parc Monceau.’ La Vie moderne, 25 June 1881.


blue  ‘Pantin.’ Revue littéraire et artistique, 18 September 1881. One of the series of ’Croquis parisiens’ which Huysmans did not include in later the collection of the same name, but which he used in a slightly amended form in A Rebours.


blue  ‘L’Emblème.’ La Revue Indépendante, March 1885.


blue  ‘Ouverture de Tannhaeuser.’ Revue Wagnérienne, 8 April 1885. An earlier version to that which appeared with slight changes in Croquis parisiennes.


blue  ‘Autour des fortifications.’ La Revue illustrée, 1 and 15 January 1886.


blue  ‘En Hollande.’ This is an almost complete reworking of the earlier piece, which was published in two parts in La Revue illustrée on 15 December 1886 and 15 January, 1887.


blue  ‘L’Avenue de la Motte-Picquet.’ La Revue Indépendante, 1887.


blue  ‘L’Accordant’ Gil-Blas, 8 janvier 1889. An article about a visit to the bell-ringer at Saint-Sulpice which Huysmans reused in Chapter III of Là-bas.


blue  ‘Promenades à l’Exposition: Les derniers travaux.’ Revue de l’Exposition Universelle de 1889, Paris: L Baschet, 1889.


blue  ‘Une Carmélite.’ Echo de Paris, 10 November 1897.


blue  ‘Les Vitreaux de Chartres’ Les Annales politiques et littéraires, 6 February 1898. A pre-publication extract from La Cathédrale.


blue  ‘En Hollande: Sensations d’Amsterdam’ Les Annales politiques et littéraires, 11 September 1898. An edited version of the article that appeared in La Revue illustrée.


blue  ‘Un procès.’ L’Echo de Paris, 14 December 1898.

blue  ‘L’Abbaye Bénédictine de Ligugé.’ Revue Encyclopédique, 24 December 1898. Huysmans reworked this piece and included it in De Tout under the title ’L’Abbaye de Ligué’.

blue  ‘Le quartier Saint-Pauli.’ L’Echo de Paris, 24 May 1899.