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Augustus Melmotte

Married to Madame Melmotte

Father of Marie Melmotte

Chapter IVEdit

Melmotte had to admit his wife [ Madame Melmotte ] was a foreigner because “she spoke very little English” (32). #Facility with Language “Melmotte himself spoke his language [English] fluently, but with an accent which betrayed at least a long expatriation” (32). #Facility with Language “The tradesmen had learned enough to be quite free of doubt, and in the City Mr. Melmotte’s name was worth any money, -- though his character was perhaps worth but little” (35). #Names #Verbal Currency Melmotte calls Lord Alfred just “Alfred.” After the ball and a few drinks, Lord Alfred snaps at Melmotte: “‘Damn that kind of nonsense,’ he said. ‘Call people by their proper names’” (42). #Names “Though his eyes and ears were always open, though he attended to everything, and was a man of hsarp intelligence, he did not yet quite understand the bearing and sequence of English titles” (43). #Names “He [Melmotte] did not, however, conceive that the young baronet had as yet addressed his girl in such words as Felix had in truth used when they parted” (43). #Secrets #Seduction

Chapter IXEdit

“As Mr. Melmotte read the documents, Fisker from time to time put in a word. But the words had no reference at all to the future profits of the railway or to the benefit which such means of communication would confer upon the world at large; but applied solely to the appetite for such stock as theirs, which might certainly be produced in the speculating world by a proper manipulation of the affairs” (76). #Dishonesty #Facility with Language #Empty Words/Papers Fisker convinces Melmotte that it’s not necessary to back the railway stock with real money:

““There would be such a mass of stock!’ ‘You have to back that with a certain amount of paid-up capital?’ ‘We take care, sir, in the West not to cripple commerce too closely by old-fashioned bandages” (77). #Dishonesty #Empty Words/Papers

Chapter XEdit

Melmotte gives an awkward speech at Fisker's farewell dinner: "He was not eloquent; but the gentlemen who heard him remembered that he was the reat Augustus Melmotte, that he might probably make them all rich men, and they cheered him to the echo" (81). #Facility with Language #Empty Words/Papers


“When Melmotte sat down Fisker made his speech, and it was fluent, fast, and florid.” . . . “But there was more faith in one ponderous word from Mr. Melmotte’s mouth than in all the American’s oratory” (82). #Facility with Language #Trust

Chapter XXEdit

“She [ Lady Carbury ] endeavored to open various other subjects of conversation; but she found Mr. Melmotte to be heavy on her hands. After a while she had to abandon him in despair, and give herself up to raptures in favour of Protestantism at the bidding of the Caversham parson, who sat on the other side of her” (167). #Facility with Language

Chapter XXIEdit

After Mr. Longestaffe read Georgiana’ s letter: “On the following morning, when there could have been no intercourse with London by letter, Lady Pomona called her younger daughter to her, and handed her an note to read. ‘Your papa has this moment given it me. Of course you must judge for yourself.’ This was the note; --

‘My Dear Mr. Longestaffe ,

‘As you seem determined not to return to London this season, perhaps one of your young ladies would like to come to us. Mrs. Melmotte would be delighted to have Miss Georgiana for June and July. If so, she need only give Mrs. Melmotte a day’s notice

‘Yours Truly,

Augustus Melmotte ’” (177). #Letters #Proximity