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S.A. Bent, comp. Familiar Short Sayings of Great Men. 1887.

Sophie Arnould

  • [A popular French actress, born in Paris about 1744; noted for her conversational talent and bons-mots; died 1803.]
  • The good time when I was unhappy.

  • A saying put into verse by Rulhière,—
  • “Un jour, une actrice fameuse
  • Me contait les fureurs de son premier amant;
  • Moitié rêvant, moitié rieuse,Elle ajoute ce mot charmant:
  • Oh! c’était le bon temps, j’étais bien malheureuse.”
  • The truth of this sentiment is illustrated by a saying of Dr. Johnson’s, “Employment and hardship prevent melancholy.”
  • I entered the world through a celebrated door.

  • She was born in the room where Admiral Coligny was assassinated.
  • Being told that a Capuchin monk had been devoured by rats, she exclaimed, “Poor animals! what a terrible thing hunger must be!” (Pauvres bêtes! il faut que la faim soit une chose terrible!)
  • She called marriage “the sacrament of adultery.”
  • Of a very thin actress she observed, “One needn’t go to St. Cloud to see les eaux” (les os).
  • The names of three sisters, Rose, Marguerite, and Hyacinthe, suggested the exclamation, “What a flower-bed!” (Ah, quel platebande!) Her comment upon an actress who appeared in midwinter with a dress covered with flowers was, “You look like a hot-house” (Vous avez l’air d’une terre chaude).