Fougeret de Montbron

The Amorous Adventures of Margot


Here at long last, is the story of “Margot, the Cobbler.” It is the very story which the General of the Cops misconstrued to accuse the author of high treason. The entire army of Parisian prostitutes and their pimps abetted the General in this distortion of the truth. Since the author has been accused of having attacked religion, the government and the King himself in this story, he could not afford to keep silent and thus virtually admit to any guilt. Therefore, the story is being published so that the readers may judge for themselves where lies the right and the wrong.


It is not because of vanity, and even less out of modesty, that I expose openly the various roles I played when I was young. It is my honest desire-if at all possible-to debase the egotism of those who have searched for a moderate fortune in ways similar to my own. And, above all, I want to offer the public a glowing testimony of my gratitude with the admission that everything I own is the direct result of their generosity and charity.

I was born in the rue Saint-Paul; my existence is the result of the furtive liaison between an honorable soldier of the guards and a mender of shoes. My mother, who would rather spend her time on her back, taught me the trade of mending and patching-especially shoes-at a very early age, to rid herself of the responsibility of taking care of me as quickly as she possibly could. I was about thirteen years old when my mother decided that she could leave me her mending coop and her customers, provided of course that she would get her share of my daily take.

I fulfilled her hopes so well that it took me only a very short time before I had become a pearl among the menders in our neighborhood. But I did not limit my talents to cobbling because I was also very adept at patching old trousers and mending the seats. Added to my dexterity and greatly enhancing my business was my charming face with which Nature had graced me. There was nobody in the entire neighborhood who did not want to be waited on by me. My mending coop was the gathering point of all the lackeys of the rue Saint-Antoine. Thus, I was continuously exposed to fine company, which gave me my first veneer of good manners and breeding.

My parents had given me, through lineage and good example, such a strong inclination to taste voluptuous pleasures that the desire to walk in their footsteps and try out the sweetness of carnal knowledge almost killed me.

My father, Monsieur Tranche-montagne, my mother and I lived in a single room on the fourth floor. It was furnished with a couple of wicker chairs, an old cupboard with some dirty earthenware dishes, and one wide, miserable bed without curtains and without a blanket upon which the three of us had to sleep.

The older I became the more frequently I awoke during the night because I started to notice the distinct motions of my bed companions. Quite often they were so exuberant that the springs of the bedstead forced me to participate in all of their movements. They were both panting and whispering words of endearment to each other that were dictated by their passion. I suffered unbearable excitement. I was consumed by a smoldering fire which almost took my breath away. At those moments I would have loved to kick and punch my own mother because I was so jealous of the ecstasies she enjoyed. What else could I do when I was plagued by these emotions than resort to the silent lusts of the lonely? It was a blessing that on top of these pressing needs I did not suffer from a cramp in my fingertips. But, alas, what a miserable remedy when compared to the real thing! It was really child's play. I stimulated and wore myself out to no avail and the only result was that I would be more fervent, passionate and frantic than before. I was almost consumed by rage and passion; briefly I wished I could be ravaged by a satyr. A nice disposition for a fourteen-year-old girl but, as the saying goes, I was “a chip off the old block.”

One might well understand how this eternally torturing thorn in my flesh caused me to think seriously about procuring some good solid boy friend who might be able to slake this unbearable thirst which made my tongue stick to the roof of my mouth. Or at least some person who might be able to bring about some relief!


Among the many manservants who continually paid me their compliments was a handsome, robust young groom who rated my special attention. His off-the-cuff compliments were always in the special language of his profession and he claimed that he never rubbed down his charger without thinking about me. Whereupon I would answer that I never worked on a pair of trousers that did not remind me of Monsieur Pierrot (that was his name). We were quite serious and paid each other many other similar compliments in elegantly turned phrases which I can no longer remember. It is enough, dear reader, for you to know that Pierrot and I quickly came to an agreement and a few days later we were to seal our covenant in the back room of a local tavern upon the altar of Venus.

The place of this sacrifice was furnished with an old table and half a dozen chairs that had fallen into decay. The walls were covered with indecent scribblings as is the custom of love-sick couples when they are in a good mood. Our banquet was entirely in keeping with the simplicity of our place of consecration. A small jug of wine for eight pennies, cheese for two and some bread — the entire amount, after careful calculation, was not more than twelve pennies. Nevertheless we celebrated our High Mass with such pleasure as if we had feasted for a gold louis per person at the famous Dupare Inn. One does not have to be surprised at this. Even the coarsest meal becomes a repast when love is a guest.

Finally we had finished. Next we had to solve the difficult problem of how we could make ourselves more comfortable. We were smart enough not to trust either the table or any of the available chairs, so we selected the only remaining possibility: trying to do it standing up. Pierrot made me recline against the wall. Oh, powerful god of the fields! It scared me when I looked down upon what he showed me. Those thrusts! What an attack! The wall creaked and moaned under his monstrous assault. I had made up my mind (because I did not want to have to reproach myself later) that this poor boy was not going to be the only one to suffer from exhaustion after so much hard work. But despite these good intentions, our perseverance and mutual courage, we still had not even made fair to middling progress, and personally I had begun to have my doubts as to whether we were ever going to be able to crown our efforts with some sort of achievement. Then Pierrot got the marvelous idea to wet his enormous tool with some spittle. Oh, Nature, Nature! How marvelous are thy many secrets! The hiding place of love opened itself and he penetrated… what more should I say? I was good and thoroughly — as it should be — deflowered.

From that time on I slept much better. Thousands of flattering dreams ruled my sleep. Monsieur and Madame Tranche-montagne could make the bed groan as loudly as they wanted during their amorous entanglements… I no longer heard them.

Our innocent love affair lasted for almost a year. I adored Pierrot and he loved me. He was quite a man indeed, whose only fault was his continuous lack of money. And since among good friends the rich help the poor, it was I who had to supply him with whatever he needed to pay for his expenses. Though the proverb states that a true cavalier would rather eat his stirrups than accept support from a lady, my boy friend, to the contrary, consumed the proceeds of my business because he loved to drink and gamble and obviously wanted to spare his stirrups. Soon I was even forced to sell my mending coop.

My mother had long since noticed that my business had fallen off sharply and she reproached me sternly. To make things worse, she soon learned from gossip in the neighborhood that my innocence had been thoroughly ruined. But, dear mother did not say anything about that. However, one morning, when I was still in a deep sleep, she armed herself with a brand new cane, and after she had sneakily pulled my nightshirt over my head, she set my buttocks afire before I had a chance to defend myself. Just imagine the incredible humiliation for a grown girl to

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