Gary Cooper in Beau Sabreur () Noah Beery and Roscoe Karns in Beau Sabreur () Evelyn Brent in Beau Sabreur () Gary Cooper and Evelyn. Title: Beau Sabreur Author: Percival Christopher Wren * A Project Gutenberg of Australia eBook * eBook No.: Edition: 1 Language: English. plural beau sabreurs\ˌbō-sa-ˈbrərz \ or beaux sabreurs\ˌbō-sa-ˈbrər \. Definition of beau sabreur.: a dashing adventurer. Love words? You must.
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The Author would like to anticipate certain of the objections which may be raised by some of the kindly critics and reviewers who gave so friendly and encouraging a chorus of praise to Beau Geste, The Wages of Virtue, and The Stepsons of France.
The only defence that the Author can offer is that, although perfectly impossible, they actually happened. In reviewing The Wages of Virtue, for example, a very distinguished literary critic remarked that the incident of a girl being found in the French Foreign Legion was absurd, and merely added an impossibility to a number of improbabilities.
The Author admitted the justice of the criticism, and then, as now, put forth the same feeble defence that, although perfectly impossible, it was the simple truth. He further offered to accompany the critic at the latter’s expense to the merry town of Figuig in Northern Africa, and there to show him the tombstone with its official epitaph of a girl who served for many years, in the Spahis, as a cavalry trooper, rose to the rank of Sergeant, and remained, until her death in battle, quite unsuspected of being what she was–a European woman.
And in this book, nothing is set forth as having happened which has not happened–including the adoption of two ex-Legionaries by an Arab tribe, and their rising to Sheikdom and to such power that they were signatories to a treaty with the Republic.
One of them, indeed, was conducted over a French troopship, and his simple wonder at the marvels of the Roumi was rather touching, and of pleasing interest to all who witnessed it. The reader may rest assured that the deeds narrated, and the scenes and personalities pictured, in this book, are not the vain outpourings of a film-fed imagination, but the re-arrangement of actual happenings and the assembling of real people who have actually lived, loved, fought and suffered–and some of whom, indeed, live, love, fight and suffer to this day.
I will start at the very nadir of my fortunes, at the very lowest depths, and you shall see them rise to their zenith, that highest point where they are crowned by Failure.
Behold me, then, clad in a dirty canvas stable-suit and wooden clogs, stretched upon a broad sloping shelf; my head, near the wall, resting on a wooden ledge, a foot wide and two inches thick, meant for a pillow; and my feet near the ledge that terminates this beautiful bed, which is some thirty feet long and seven feet wide.
It is as long as the room, in fact, and about two feet from the filthy brick floor.
Beau Sabreur (novel) – Wikipedia
Between my pampered person and the wooden bed, polished by the rubbing of many vile bodies, is nothing. Covering me is a canvas “bread-bag,” four feet long and two wide, a sack used for the carrying of army loaves.
As a substitute for sheets, blankets and eider-down quilt, it is inadequate. The night is bitterly cold, and, beneath my canvas stable-suit, I am wearing my entire wardrobe of underclothes, in spite of which, my teeth are chattering and I shiver from head to foot as neau stricken with ague.
There is nothing else in the sabfeur but myself and a noisy, nouveau riche, assertive kind of odour. I am wrong–and I wish to be strictly accurate and perfectly truthful–there are hungry and insidious insects, number unknown, industrious, ambitious, and successful. Some of my fellow troopers pride themselves on being men of aabreur and reason, and therefore believe only in what they can see. I cannot see the insects, but I, intelligent or not, believe in them firmly.
A rat has sabreuf across my face. I am glad so rude a beast is in prison. On the whole, though, I wish he were not in prison, for he is nibbling at my ambrosial locks. If I smite at him wildly I shall administer a severe blow to the brick wall, with my knuckles. The door, brau six-inch oak, is flung open, and by the light of the lantern in the hand of the Sergeant of the Guard, I see a man and a brother flung into my retreat. He falls heavily and lies where he falls, in peaceful slumber.
He has been worshipping at the shrine of Bacchus, a false god. The door clangs shut and leaves the world to darkness and to me, and the drunken trooper, and the rat, and the insects. I shiver and wriggle and scratch and wonder whether the assertive odour will conquer, or my proud stomach rise victorious over.
Yes, it is rising. Again the door opens and a trooper bsau, thanking the Sergeant of beai Guard, in the politest terms, for all his care and kindness. The Sergeant of the Guard, in the impolitest terms, bids the trooper remove his canvas trousers. He does so, and confirms what the Sergeant had feared–that he is wearing his uniform trousers beneath them. The Sergeant of the Guard confiscates the nethermost garments, consigns the prisoner to the nethermost regions, gives him two beaau days in this particular region, and goes out.
As the door clangs, the new-comer strikes a match, produces half a candle, lights it, and politely greets me and the happy sleeper on the floor. Evidently a humane and kindly soul this. I stand rebuked for my callousness in leaving the drunkard on the ground. But he does not carry these virtues to excess, for, observing that the Bacchanal has been cast into prison in his bsau uniform in which he was evidently brought helpless into barrackshe removes the man’s tunic, and puts it on over his own canvas stable-jacket.
By the light of his candle, I study the pleasing black hole in which we lie, its walls decorated by drawings, poems, aphorisms, and obiter dicta which do not repay study. It is a reeking, damp and verminous cellar, some thirty feet square, ventilated only by a single grated aperture, high up in one of the walls, and is an unfit habitation for a horse or dog.
In fact, Colonel du Plessis, our Commanding Officer, would not have one of the horses here for an hour. But I am here for fifteen days save when doing punishment-drill and serve me jolly well right.
What is beau sabreur – Definition of beau sabreur – Word finder
Mind, I am not complaining in the very least. I knew the penalty and accepted it. But there was a lady in the case, the very one who had amused us with her remark to de Lannec, anent a stingy Jew politician of her acquaintance–“When a man with a Future visits a lady with a Past, he should be thoughtful of the Present, that it be acceptable–and expensive.
And Death stayed his hand until I had justified this brave and witty little lady’s faith; and now, after the event, sends his fleas, and odours, and hideous cold too late. There is a great commotion without, and the candle is instantly extinguished by its owner, who pinches the wick. Evidently one foolishly and futilely rebels against Fate, and more foolishly and futilely resists the Guard.
The door opens and the victim is flung into the cell with a tremendous crash. The Sergeant of the Guard makes promises. The prisoner makes sounds and the sounds drown the promises. He must be raging mad, fighting-drunk, and full of vile cheap canteen-brandy. The humane man re-lights his candle, and we see a huge and powerful trooper gibbering in the corner. What he sees is, apparently, a gathering of his deadliest foes, for he draws a long and nasty knife from the back of his trouser-belt, and, with a wild yell, makes a rush for us.
The humane man promptly knocks the candle flying, and leaps off the bed. I spring like a–well, flea is the most appropriate simile, just here and now–in the opposite direction, and take up an attitude of offensive defence, and to anybody who steps in my direction I will give of my best–where I think it will do most good.
Apparently the furious one has missed the humane one and the Bacchanalian one, and has struck with such terrific force as to drive his knife so deeply into the wood that he cannot get it out again. I am glad that my proud stomach, annoyed as I am with it, was not between the knife and the bed. The violent one now weeps, the humane one snores, the Bacchanalian one grunts chokingly, and I lie down again, this time without my bread-bag. Soon the cruel cold, the clammy damp, the wicked flea, the furtive rat, the noisy odour, and the proud stomach combine with the hard bench and aching bones to make me wish that I were not a sick and dirty man starving in prison.
Doubtless you wonder how a man may be an Etonian one year and a trooper in a French Hussar Regiment the next. I am a Frenchman, I am proud to say; but my dear mother, God rest her soul, was an Englishwoman; and my father, like myself, was a great admirer of England and of English institutions.
Hence my being sent to school at Eton. He was even then a General, the youngest in the French Army, and his wife is the sister of an extremely prominent and powerful politician, at that time–and again since–Minister of State for War. My uncle is fantastically patriotic, and La France is his goddess.
For her he would love to die, and for her he would see everybody else die–even so agreeable a person as myself. When his last moments come, he will be frightfully sick if circumstances are not appropriate for him to say, ” I die — that France may live “–a difficult statement to make convincingly, if you are sitting in a Bath chair at ninety, and at Vichy or Aix.
He is also a really great soldier and a man of vision. He has a mind that plans broadly, grasps tenaciously, sees clearly. He eyed me keenly, greeted me coldly, and observed–“Since your father is spilt milk, as the English say, it is useless to cry over him.
Are you going to renounce your glorious birth-right and live in England, or are you going to be worthy of your honoured name? Do it at once, and do it as I shall direct. Tools on which I can rely absolutely.
If you have ambition, if you are a man, obey me and follow me. Help me, and I will make you. Fail me, and I will break you. My uncle rose from his desk and paced the room. Soon I was forgotten, I think, as he gazed upon his splendid Vision of the future, rather than on his splendid Nephew of the present.
Triumphant over her jealous greedy foes.
Morocco, the Sahara, the Soudan, all the vast teeming West. It is not enough. Germany only awaiting The Day. Africa, an inexhaustible reservoir of the finest fighting material in the world. The Sahara–with irrigation, an inexhaustible reservoir of food. It was lunch-time, and I realized that I too needed irrigation and would like to approach an inexhaustible reservoir of food. If he were going to send me to the Sahara, I would go at once.
I looked intelligent, and murmured:. And I felt that I was just like France in that respect. What soldiers for France! There is where we want trained emissaries–France’s secret ambassadors at work among the tribes.
At the moment I did not greatly care. The schemes of irrigation and food-supply interested me more. France’s orchard and cornfield. And the sun’s very rays shall be harnessed that their heat may provide France with the greatest power-station in the world. Divide and rule–that Earth’s poorest and emptiest place may become its richest and fullest–and that France may triumph.
Selfishly I thought that if my poorest and emptiest place could soon become the richest and fullest, I should triumph. Go to the Headquarters of the military division of the arrondissement in which you were born, show your papers, and enlist as a Volontaire.
What is “beau sabreur”
You will then have to serve for only one year instead of the three compulsory for the ordinary conscript–because you are the son of a widow, have voluntarily enlisted before your time, and can pay the Volontaire’s fee of 1, francs. I will see that you are posted to the Blue Hussars, and sabreeur will do a year in the ranks.
You will never mention my name to a soul, and you will be treated precisely as any other private soldier.