By William Makepeace Thackeray
Quittant l’Irlande à los angeles suite d’un duel qui tourne mal, Redmond Barry s’enrôle dans l’armée anglaise alors en guerre contre l. a. Prusse. Après avoir été fait prisonnier par l’ennemi, il sera contraint d’espionner un yes chevalier de Balibari pour le compte des Allemands. Coup de théâtre : celui-ci n’est autre que son oncle ! Tous deux prennent alors los angeles fuite et deviennent, avec succès et moyennant quelques tricheries, joueurs de cartes professionnels.
Ambitieux, Redmond parvient à se marier avec los angeles comtesse Lyndon, une riche veuve. Mais leur relation se révèle houleuse. En plus de dépenser sa fortune, Barry se comporte en mari tyrannique. Jeune arriviste débauché, libertin, il est l’archétype de l’opportuniste à l. a. recherche de los angeles gloire et de l’argent…
Dans un kind grinçant, le narrateur des pretend Mémoires de Barry Lyndon décrit avec ironie les travers de l. a. haute société cosmopolite d’un XVIIIe siècle décadent.
En 1975, Stanley Kubrick healthy de cette oeuvre, qu’il tira d’un relatif oubli, une magistrale variation cinématographique.
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Even here we feel a distinction, for the fullness of things seen seems, in the American book, to arise rather from deep familiarity than from delighted investigation. Beyond this, there is a gulf of difference. To juxtapose them is to juxtapose two kinds, not two specimens. Huckleberry Finn is the book of an older man and a less conscious artist, as the collapse of the last chapters makes clear. It is a book grown in stony soil, and, setting aside the last pages, its supreme virtue is candour. Its world is accepted, not created, and it is distanced only in time.
There are others to whom these things are intensely irritating-! remember somewhere an exasperated comment that it is actually the lower lip that requires stiffeningso that they cannot accept or even listen to what is told them in this mode. And already we have the third kind, the younger readers, to whom Kipling's mannerisms of language and attitude are as much a matter of history as Lamb's puns or Dickens's dealings with Little Em'ly. In a short while it will be possible to see the critical problem fairly, as it has become possible with Thackeray's sentimentality.
In it a young man, who was already a considerable writer, explored a wrong turning; the novel was not for him. There were other wrong turnings at about the same time, the Meredithian 'Lamentable Comedy of Willow Wood', for instance, and the stodgy blank verse of'Ev-arra and his Gods', but none explored at such length or with such sincere fervour as this. Into his novel he poured his life and experience, 1 New York. United States Book Company, successors to John W. Lovell Company. No. 25, Wutminster Series, Dec.