year of his good health, if that can be called good which was at best but feeble, he indicated the plan, and wrote the most finished paragraphs of his intended work. The detached thoughts which make up the bulk of it were scribbled, as they occurred to him during the last four years of his life, on scraps of paper, or on the margin of what he had already written, often when he was quite incapable of sustained employment. Many were dictated, some to friends, and some to a servant who constantly attended him in his illness.

Towards the end of his life he was obliged to move into Paris again, where he was carefully nursed by his sister Madame Perier, to whose house he was moved at the last, where he died on August 9th, 1662, at the age of thirtynine, having spent his last years in an ecstasy of self-denial, of charity, and of aspiration after God.

Not for six years after his death were his family and friends able to consider in what form his unfinished work should be given to the world. Then Port Royal had a breathing space, what was known as the Peace of the Church was established by Clement IX., and it was considered that the time had come to set in order these precious fragments. The duty of giving an author's works to the world as he left them was little understood in those days, and the Duc de Roannez even suggested that Pascal's whole work should be re-written on the lines he had laid down. Some editing was, on all hands, allowed to be needful; thus the arrangement of chapters, and the fragments to be included in chapters, were matter for fair discussion. But the committee of editors went further, and even when the text had been settled by them, it had to undergo a further censorship by various theologians. Finally, in January, 1670, the "Pensées" appeared as a

small duodecimo, with a preface by the Perier family, and no mention of Port Royal in the volume.

For a full account of this and other editions, the reader must be referred to the preface to M. Molinier's edition, Paris, 1877-1879, and to that of M. Faugère, Paris, 1844.

M. Victor Cousin was the first to draw attention to the need of a new edition of Pascal in 1842. He showed that great liberties had been taken with and suppressions made in the text, and the labour to which he invited was first undertaken by M. Prosper Faugère. M. Havet adopting his text departed from his arrangement, reverted in great measure to that of the old editors, and accompanied the whole by an excellent commentary and notes, 2nd edition, Paris, 1866. M. Molinier has again consulted the MSS. word for word, and while in a degree following M. Faugère's arrangement has yet been guided by his own skill and judgment. It must always be remembered that each editor must necessarily follow his own judgment in regard to the position he should give to fragments not placed by the writer. But provided that an editor makes no changes merely for the sake of change, and that he loyally enters into the spirit of his predecessors, each new comer, till the arrangement is finally fixed, has a great advantage. Such an editor is M. Molinier, and in his arrangement the text of Pascal would seem to be mainly if not wholly fixed; so that for the first time we have not only Pascal's "Thoughts,” but we have them approximately arranged as he designed to present them to his readers.

The course of an English translator is clear; his responsibility is confined to deciding which text to follow, he has no right to make one for himself. In the present edition, therefore, M. Molinier's text and arrangement are scrupulously followed except in two places. In regard to one, M. Molinier has himself adopted a different reading in his



notes made after the text was printed, the second is an obvious misprint. Pascal's Profession of Faith," or Amulet," is transferred from the place it occupies in M. Molinier's edition to serve as an introduction to the work, striking as it does the key-note to the "Thoughts."

Pascal's quotations from the Bible were made of course from the Vulgate, but very often indeed from memory, and incorrectly, while he often gave the substance alone of the passage he used. No one version of the Bible therefore has been used exclusively, but the Authorized Version and the Douai or Rheims versions have been used as each in turn most nearly afforded the equivalent of the quotations made by Pascal.

The notes are mainly based on those of MM. Faugère, Havet, and Molinier.



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