Letter from Charles S. Peirce to his father Benjamin Peirce
(Paris, 02.01.1876)

Spanish translation & annotations


Paris, Avenue Matignon 11
1876 Jan 2

My dear Father,

My address always remains Care of McCulloch & Co. 41 Lombard Street London. For fear of forgetting it I will state that at once.

Happy new year to all at home Mother, Aunt Lizzie, Jem, Bertie, Helen Mill Ellis and their seven children. New Year’s is made much of at Paris. About one day before Christmas the side walks of the boulevard towards the street were lined with Booths at which are sold all sort of things for presents of the cheap


kind. Generally one very limited kind at each booth. At one for example nothing but puzzles, at another only portemonnaies etc. This year "étrennes utiles" preponderate. Of course the Boulevard has been very different from its usual air of mild gaiety. It has been thronged as I supposed only Tremont Row knew how to be thronged, nearly from the Madeleine to the Porte St. Martin & even beyond. The booths reach to the Bastille. It is wonderful to see such an immense crowd. It overflows too & fills all the "passages". For my part I confess however that I like the normal every day aspect of the Boulevard’s the



Some time ago I wrote to you asking you to arrange with Ward to renew my letter of credit with the Barings, for 1000 one thousand pounds. I hope you will be willing to do so for me pretty soon. Indeed unless you will do so at once I shall be in rather an awkward position.

Paris is fearfully expensive. I was comparing it with Berlin & there I used to pay for the best dinner possible 5 francs without wine. Here with wine a dinner at 5 francs is not fit to keep a man well on at all. There the theatre was a thaler. Here it is all the way from 6 to 15 francs & one


has fees to pay besides & one goes oftener here. Indeed for a good while I went every night.

Of late I have found life much more tolerable here & it is a great thing having Harry James here. But I don’t think very differently of the French from what I did before I was among them. Their intellectual quality surprizes me I confess. Everybody, high & low, is so clever. But on the whole the base of their character is vanity. The French utterly despise Americans. No people think so poorly of us. For my part, I have tried to make out what it is that we are lacking in. I think I see what their idea is & there is some justice in it; but as for any France American union, I want none of it.

Your loving son,

C. S. Peirce



Transcription by Max Fisch, revised by Sara Barrena (2014)
Una de las ventajas de los textos en formato electrónico respecto de los textos impresos es que pueden corregirse con gran facilidad mediante la colaboración activa de los lectores que adviertan erratas, errores o simplemente mejores transcripciones. En este sentido agradeceríamos que se enviaran todas las sugerencias y correcciones a sbarrena@unav.es
Proyecto de investigación "Charles S. Peirce en Europa (1875-76): comunidad científica y correspondencia" (MCI: FFI2011-24340)

Fecha del documento: 3 de febrero 2014
Última actualización: 3 de febrero 2014

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