Octave Feuillet was born on 11 August 1821 at Saint-Loin Normandy, the second son of Jacques Feuillet, who was a senior civil servant in the local government administration. It should not be assumed that the fall of the Second Empire led to Feuillet's ostracism from society. On the contrary, his novels continued to go into new editions, and the republican government tried to persuade him to take up again the post of Librarian at Fontainebleau. Nevertheless Feuillet gives a portrayal of aristocratic life in the Second Empire which is far from uncritical and unfailingly approving. Monsieur de Camors describes a society in which political power is bought and sold, democracy being a travesty, while marriage is a device of convenience, and religion is an empty convention. Feuillet's letters, quoted in his widow's Quelques Annees de ma Vie and Souvenirs et Correspondances, make his allegiances clear.