Short summary - Wednesday's Violets - André Maurois

French literature summaries - 2021

Short summary - Wednesday's Violets
André Maurois

Micro-narration: A student in love with a famous actress sends her a bunch of violets on Wednesdays. After his death, the actress brings a bunch of violets to his grave.

Jenny Sorbier graduated from the Conservatory with first prize and was immediately invited to the famous Comedy Theater Franzese. Thanks to the talent of the actress, brilliant education, charm and wonderful hair, she very soon became one of the leading actresses in the theater.

One day after the performance, on Wednesday, the attendant handed her a bunch of violets for two sous. The doorman said that the flowers were brought by a student of the Ecole Polytechnique in a black uniform. The student brought bouquets of violets every Wednesday when the students of the Polytechnic School were out of classes. This went on for six months. On the next Wednesday, Jenny decided to meet her fan during the intermission of the performance, but he did not come. And the next Wednesday there was no student, no violets. Jenny went on tour with the theater, which was a great success.

A year later, she received Colonel Genevrier at his request. He came dressed in a black civilian suit. The colonel said he was in mourning for Andre's son, a lieutenant who was killed in Madagascar two months ago. It was the same student who brought in a bunch of violets every Wednesday. He idolized Jenny. The colonel handed her a whole bunch of letters that were never sent.

Immediately after graduating from the Ecole Polytechnique, Andre asked to be sent to Madagascar. He told his sister that either parting would cure him of hopeless passion, or he would accomplish some feat and then ...

Every Wednesday Jenny goes to the Montparnasse cemetery and brings a bunch of violets to the grave of a lieutenant unknown to her.