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The Magic Skin - Honore de Balzac

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THE MAGIC SKIN
BY
HONORE DE BALZAC

Translator
Ellen Marriage



To Monsieur Savary, Member of Le Academie des Sciences.



[omitted: a drawing representing the serpentine
path made by the tip of a stick when flourished.]
STERNE--Tristram Shandy, ch. cccxxii.



I

THE TALISMAN

Towards the end of the month of October 1829 a young man entered the
Palais-Royal just as the gaming-houses opened, agreeably to the law
which protects a passion by its very nature easily excisable. He
mounted the staircase of one of the gambling hells distinguished by
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