Random Quote #73 topic: zola-dictionary, A Zola Dictionary; the Characters of the Rougon-Macquart Novels of Emile Zola, Patterson, J. G

VIRGINIE, sister of Adele, for whose sake Auguste Lantier deserted
Gervaise Macquart. Gervaise, meeting Virginie in a public washing-house,
was taunted by her on the subject of her lover, and a terrible fight
between the two women followed, Virginie being severely beaten. Gervaise
did not see her again for some years, by which time she had married M.
Poisson, an ex-soldier, who later became a policeman. She professed to
have overlooked the fight with Gervaise, but appears to have been
not without hope that an opportunity of repaying her injuries might
eventually arise. When the Coupeaus gave way to drink, Lantier, who had
again established friendly relations, suggested that Virginie should
take the Coupeaus' shop and buy a stock of groceries and sweetmeats with
a legacy she had received from an aunt. Partly moved by a desire for
revenge on Gervaise, she did so, and Lantier retained with the Poissons
the place as a lodger he formerly occupied with the Coupeaus. Soon
after, he became Virginie's lover, and, by paying nothing for
his support, while he gradually ate the contents of the shop, he
accomplished the downfall of the Poissons in much the same manner as he
had already ruined the Coupeaus. L'Assommoir.


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