Blaise Pascal (16231662). Letters. The Harvard Classics. 190914.
Letter to Madame Perier
(Addressed: A Mademoiselle Périer la Conseillère.)
ROUEN, Saturday, the last of January, 1643.
MY DEAR SISTER, I doubt not that you have been greatly troubled at the length of time in which you have received no news from these parts. But I think that you must have suspected that the journey of the Elus has been the cause, as in fact it was. Had it not been for this, I should not have failed to write to you oftener. I have to tell you that messieurs the commissioners being at Gizors, my father made me take a tour to Paris, where I found a letter which you had written, in which you say that you are surprised that I reproach you that you do not write often enough, and in which you tell me that you write to Rouen once every week. It is very certain, if this is so, that the letters are lost, for I do not receive one once in three weeks. On my return to Rouen, I found a letter from M. Périer, who writes that you are ill. He does not write whether your sickness is dangerous or whether you are better; and an unusual length of time has passed since without having received any letter, so that we are in an anxiety from which I pray you to relieve us as soon as possible; but I think the prayer I make you will be useless, for before you shall have received this letter, I hope that we shall have received letters from you or from M. Périer. The department is finished, God be praised. If I knew of any thing new, I would let you know it. I am, my dear sister, etc.
Postscript in the handwriting of Etienne Pascal, the father: My dear daughter will excuse me if I do not write to her as I wished, having no leisure for it; for I have never been in a tenth part the perplexity that I am at present. I could not be more so without being overwhelmed; for the last four months I have not been in bed six times before two oclock in the morning.
I lately commenced a jesting letter upon the subject of your last, concerning the marriage of M. Desjeux, but I have never had leisure to finish it. For news, the daughter of M. de Paris, Maître des comptes, the wife of M. de Neufirlle, also Maître des comptes, is dead, as well as the daughter of Belair, the wife of young Lambert. Your little boy slept here last night. He is very well, thank God. I am ever your true and affectionate friend,
Your very humble and affectionate servant and brother,