The excerpt represents the core issue or deciding factor on which you must meditate, and is drawn from The Alkahest by Honore de Balzac:|
found herself compelled to defend her husband's peculiarities.
"Monsieur Claes," she said, "has undertaken a work which wholly
absorbs him; its success will eventually redound not only to the honor
of the family but to that of his country."
This mysterious explanation was too flattering to the ambition of a
town whose local patriotism and desire for glory exceed those of other
places, not to be readily accepted, and it produced on all minds a
reaction in favor of Balthazar.
The supposition of his wife was, to a certain extent, well-founded.
Several artificers of various trades had long been at work in the
garret of the front house, where Balthazar went early every morning.