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transaction, they were separated, ' by Desfontaines' removal to Caen.
In July, 1697, Bezuel, while amusing himself in hay-making, near a friend's house, was seized with a fainting fit, after which he had a bad night. Notwithstanding this attack, he returned to the meadow next day, where he again underwent a deliquium. He again slept ill. On the succeeding day, while he was observing the man laying up the hay, he had a still more severe attack. “ I fell into a swoon : I lost my senses : “ one of the footmen perceived it, and “ called out for help. They recovered “me a little, but my mind was more “ disordered than it had been before, “ I was told that they asked me then “ what ailed me, and that I answered “ I have seen what I thought I should
But I neither remember the question, nor the answer. However, “ it agrees with what I remember I saw
“ then, a naked man in half length; 66 but I knew him not.
They helped me to go down the “ ladder; I held the steps fast; but be“cause I saw Desfontaines my school“ fellow at the bottom of the ladder, I “ had again a fainting fit: my head got “ between two steps, and I again lost “ my senses. They let me down, and • set me upon a large beam, which “ served for a seat in the great Place de Capucins. I sat upon it, and then I
no longer saw Mr. de Sortoville, nor “ his servants, though they were present. “ And perceiving Desfontaines near the “ foot of the ladder, who made me a sign to come to him, I went back
upon my seat, as it were to make “ room for him; and those who saw
me, and whom I did not see, though
my eyes were open, observed that " motion.
“ Because he did not come, I got up “ to go to him: he came up to me, took “ hold of my left arm with his right
hand, and carried me thirty paces “ farther into a by-lane, holding me
“ The servants believing that I was “ well again, went to their business,
except a little foot-boy, who told Mr. “ de Sortoville, that I was talking to
myself. Mr. de Sortoville thought I
was drunk. He came near me, and “ heard me ask some questions, and “ return some answers, as he told me " since,
“ I talked with Desfontaines nearly “three quarters of an hour. I promised you, said he, that if I died before
yoll, “ I would come and tell you so. “ dead: I was drowned in the river of
Caen, yesterday, about this hour. I *« was walking with such and such per
“sons. It was very hot weather ; the “ fancy took us to go into the water ; “I grew faint, and sunk to the bottom “ of the river. The Abbé Meniljean, “ my school-fellow, dived to take me “ up. I took hold of his foot; but “ whether he was afraid, or had a mind “ to rise to the top of the water, he “ struck out his leg so violently, that he “ gave me a blow on the breast, and “ threw me again to the bottom of the “ river, which is there very deep...
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * “ He always appeared to me taller than “ I had seen him, and even taller than “ he was when he died. I always saw “ him in half-length, and naked, bare“ headed, with his fine light hair, and “ a white paper upon his forehead “ twisted in his hair, on which there “ was a writing, but I could only read “ In &c..”*
* Memoirs de Trevoux, T. viii.-1726.
These spectral impressions were repeated more than once, with conversations. The accidental death of the
young man was ascertained very quickly.
This story was published by the celé brated Abbé de St. Pierre, who con cluded, very justly, that the whole-ap pearances might be explained from natural causes, though he failed in his mode of deduction.
The first impression was evidently occasioned by Bezuel's fainting. I know, from my own experience, as well as that of others, that the approach of syncope is sometimes attended with a spectral appearance, which I believe is always a recollected image. But the subsequent attacks, in this case, appear to have been delirious; there can be little doubt that Bezuel was deceived in the length of his supposed dialogue with
We know well, how fal