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One of the first questions in the Guy de Maupassant reading challenge was Political backdrop to “The Lancer's Wife” (Franco-Prussian War)?. After I was unable to find the story in French, it turned out that the English translator had actually attributed a story by Jean Richepin to Guy de Maupassant. This led to a new question: Which short stories are falsely attributed to Guy de Maupassant, and why? The stories listed there were by Jean Richepin, René Maizeroy or Leopold von Sacher-Masoch (who is best known for, uh, stuff that has nothing to do with literature).

Since Guy de Maupassant was born in 1850 and Richepin in 1849, they were contemporaries. Both contributed to the literary periodical Gil Blas and both contributed a preface to La grande Bleue by Maizeroy (published in 1888). However, is there any evidence that they met each other?

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There appears to be evidence that Maupassant and Richepin met each other. A contemporary author, Octave Mirbeau (1848 – 1917), wrote in a letter to the sculptor Auguste Rodin dating from December 1885 (see Google Books):

Le diner des Bons Cosaques est fixé au vendredi 8 janvier. Il aura lieu au Restaurant du Pied de Mouton, 29 rue Vauvilliers.

Mirbeau mentions neither Maupassant nor Richepin in his letter, but a footnote in volume 1 of a recent editions of his letters, Correspondance générale I (2003), adds,

Le premier dîner regroupait, outre Mirbeau, Hervieu et Rodin, Félicien Rops, Bourges, Bonnières, Bouchor, Maupassant, Richepin, Bourget, Huysmans, Grosclaude, Lavedan, Rod, Raffaëlli, auxquelles s'adjoindront par al suite, Ganderax, Cazin, Monet, Heredia, Renoir, Lemaître, Mallarmé etc. Il aura lieu le premier vendredi de chaque mois.

Translation:

The first diner brought together, besides Mirbeau, Hervieu and Rodin, Félicien Rops, Bourges, Bonnières, Bouchor, Maupassant, Richepin, Bourget, Huysmans, Grosclaude, Lavedan, Rod, Raffaëlli, who would later be joined by Ganderax, Cazin [Marie Cazin?, Jean-Charles Cazin?], Monet, Heredia, Renoir, Lemaître, Mallarmé etc. It would take place every first Friday of the month.

The footnote also quotes an article by Marcelle Adam in Le Figaro dated 22 May 1908, in which the journalist wrote,

J'ai connu là Maupassant, séduisant et capricieux; (...) Richepin, fougueux et bohème; (...).

Translation:

That is where I met Maupassant, attractive and capricious; (...) Richepin, enthusiastic and bohemian; (...).

It is not clear from this information how well Maupassant and Richepin knew each other; only that they met at least once.

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