the moment, but the idea would remain the same because it dominates everything.
Give our dear children a fond embrace for me. I suppose that you will not keep them in Paris during the hot season. Let them take the initiative in a great part of their life; let them develop themselves freely and without constraint. In that way you will make virile beings of them. Finally, draw from them at the same time both consolation and strength.
Now I have only to tell you that I wish, that I am hoping always, that this sad drama is soon to end. That would be such a blessing for all, for us, as for our dear families.
Your poor, dear mother, even now so delicate; your dear father—they both will need rest and calm, after such appalling, such unimaginable tortures. We may well call them that.
Often and often I ask myself how you all are, when news of you is so rare, and comes from so far.
And how often I scan the horizon, my eyes turned toward France, hoping that this may be the day on which my country is to call me back to her. While we wait for that day let us stand firm, dear Lucie; let us draw from our consciences and from our duty, the fresh stores of the strength we need so much.
Embrace all our family for me, and for yourself the tenderest kisses of your devoted husband.
2 July, 1895.
My dear Lucie:
When this letter reaches you your birthday will be at hand. The only hope that I can form, and which is in