Wednesday, 20 February 2019 02:24

Voltaire to Madame de Champbonin, October 1734

Madame du Châtelet arrived [on a visit to Cirey] from Paris yesterday evening. She came at the very moment when I received a letter from her saying she would not arrive so soon. She is surrounded by two hundred bundles that turned up on the same day as herself. We have beds with no curtains, bedrooms with no windows, Chinese cabinets but no armchairs, charming phaetons and not a horse fit to pull them. In the midst of this disorder, Madame du Châtelet laughs and is charming. She came in a sort of tipcart for two; she’d had no sleep but was quite well. She asks me to send you a thousand compliments on her behalf. We’re about to patch old tapestries back together. We’re looking for curtains, we’re having doors made—all so we can have you to visit. I swear, joking apart, that you’ll be well looked after here. Farewell, madame, I am very tenderly and respectfully attached to you for life.