I've had these letters for a while, but was unable to find someone to help with the translation. With the help of the most excellent BarryPepito, who I found on reddit, I am finally able to share these with you:

My dear André,

Among the customers of the counter (other word for a bar), there is a lady and one of her friend who are looking for a good cellist in order to form a trio. I thought about you. It would be I think a great exercise for you and in the same time a delicious distraction. Secondly, these persons are from the "grand monde" (means high bourgeoisie, rich people) and that won't harm your relations (meeting important people). Then, with these relations, you could, I think, I believe, produce yourself one day or another in a professional way.

Anyway, give me as soon as possible your response concerning this matter. And if you're interested, please come over 2, place de l'Opera (2, Opera Plaza, Opera Square) {Monday morning} at the counter (bar). I will introduced you to my Head of Service who will do the rest.
I think that you all are perfectly healthy. Please send to your dear parents my best wishes. To you and your little sisters, receive kisses from your uncle.

Sign 67 rue de Clichy (Clichy Street) Paris

PS: your aunt sends you and your family affectionate kisses.

It's heavy-hearted that we received your letter, and we all thank Mme, Hekking and you, master (French title for lawyers), for the sympathy that you were willing to show us.

Man born of a woman, living for a short time, is filled with many miseries. He comes out like a flower, and is cut down: he goes in flight like a shade, and is never seen again.

Note, BP: After a little google, I found the original quote of the end of the text, it's from Job 14:1 and 14:2. Also, this note is the draft of the last letter:

27, rue Titon (Titon Street), Paris XI (Paris is split in districts called "Arrondissements", Titon street is in the 11th "Arrondissement)

Dear Doctor/Master, (still the French title for Lawyer, it could also havee been a teacher or even a member of a freemasonry, but generally, using only "maitre" is when you talk to a lawyer)

It's heavy-hearted that we received your letter, and we all thank Mme. Hekking and you master, for the sympathy that you were willing to show us after the death of my late mother. Man born of a woman, living for a short time, is filled with many miseries. (he cutted out the second part)

Because, here below, we are not masters of our destiny. Today we are but tomorrow, where will we be ? We flee like a shadow *(coming from the job 14:2 once again).

It has been 8 days already (tonight, at 10:30) that my beloved mother left this world of misery for (her?) eternity and her memory is still here. We need to spend hours so cruel for our poor hearts, to realize how worthless we are and see the vanity in which we live. Our consolation is that we are not eternal and that one day, we will also take this path to leave this land of pain where we are only passengers.

So I conclude, dear maître, by sending you my best regards.

André Sharon

The book the letters were in:

Found in "Histoire des Treize" by Honore de Balzac. Published by Societe d'Editions Litteraires et Artistiques, Paris, 1904.

-Click to enlarge photos-


Ellen Etc said...

Lovely, thanks.

Tricia said...

Many thanks to the translator!

I wonder if Andre ever joined the trio or got introduced to high society?

Célia Costa (Celly) said...

Lovely letters, thanks so much for sharing !

Kagemusha said...

Found 67 Rue de Clichy on Google maps... I can only imagine the history since!!!!

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