MONSIEUR DUMAS AND HIS BEASTS 149
established. You will ask what the change of government had to do with my beasts? Well, although, happily, they do not trouble their heads about politics, the revolution did affect them a good deal; for the French public, being excited by these occurrences, would not buy my books, preferring to read the ' Guillotine,' the ' Red Republic,' and such like corrupt periodicals; so that I became for the time a very much poorer man. I was obliged greatly to reduce my establishment. I sold my three horses and two carriages for a quarter of their value, and I presented the Last of the Laidmanoirs, Potich, and Mademoiselle Desgarcins to the Jardin des Plantes in Paris. I had to move into a smaller house, but my monkeys were lodged in a palace; this is a sort of thing that sometimes happens after a revolution. Mysouff also profited by it, for he regained his liberty on the departure of the monkeys.
As to Diogenes, the vulture, I gave him to my worthy-neighbour Collinet, who keeps the restaurant Henri IV., and makes such good cutlets a la Bearnaise. There was no fear of Diogenes dying of hunger under his new master's care; on the contrary, he improved greatly in health and beauty, and, doubtless as a token of gratitude to Collinet, he laid an egg for him every year, a thing he never dreamt of doing for me. Lastly, we requested Pritchard to cease to keep open house, and to discontinue his daily invitations to strange dogs to dine and sleep. I was obliged to give up all thoughts of shooting that year. It is true that Pritchard still remained to me, but then Pritchard, you must recollect, had only three feet; he had been badly hurt when he was shot by Charpillon, and the revolution of February had occasioned the loss of one eye.
It happened one day during that exciting period, that Michel was so anxious to see what was going on that he forgot to give Pritchard his dinner. Pritchard therefore invited himself to dine with the vulture, but Diogenes,