Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Rivarol's Bags

Antoine de Rivarol (1753 - 1801), a French Royalist during the time of the French revolution, who seems to be known in English only through haphazard collections of quotes, used to write his notes and ideas on small slips of paper which he kept according to topics in different bags tied to the posts of his bed. Periodically he went through these bags and collated the notes in carnets or notebooks. He referred to these as his treasure. After his death, four of these carnets were found and the contents published. The most reliable edition of them seems to be Notes, Maximes et Pensees de A. Rivarol (Haumont 1941).

The practice of keeping papers in bags was apparently still common among lawyers and oficials in late eighteenth-century France.[1]

1. See these entries for more on storage of papers in bags.