Pierre-Marie-Charles de Bernard du Grail de la Villette

Pierre-Marie-Charles De Bernard Du Grail De La Villette

Pierre-Marie-Charles de Bernard du Grail de la Villette

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Pierre-Marie-Charles de Bernard du Grail de la Villette (February 24, 1804 – March 6, 1850), better known simply as Charles de Bernard, was a French writer.


He was born in Besançon, member of a very ancient family of the Vivarais, was educated at the college of his native city, and studied for the law in Dijon and at Paris. He was awarded a prize by the Académie des Jeux Floraux for his Une fête de Neron in 1829. This first success in literature did not prevent him aspiring to the Magistrature, when the July Revolution broke out and induced him to enter politics.

He became one of the founders of the Gazette de Franche-Comté and an article in the pages of that journal about La peau de chagrin earned him the thanks and the friendship of Honoré de Balzac. The latter induced him to take up his domicile in Paris and introduced him to the art of novel-writing.


Bernard had published a volume of odes: 'Plus Deuil que Joie' (1838), which was not much noticed, but a series of stories in the same year gained him the reputation of a genial 'conteur'. They were collected under the title 'Le Noeud Gordien', and one of the tales, 'Une Aventure du Magistrat,' was adapted by Victorien Sardou for his comedy 'Pommes du voisin'.

'Gerfaut', generally acclaimed as his greatest work, crowned by the Academy, appeared also in 1838, then followed 'Le Paravent', another collection of short stories (1839); 'Les Ailes d'Icare' (1840); La Peau du Lion and La Chasse aux Amants...
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