The Accursed House by Emile Gaboriau

Emile Gabriau is a French writer who has beautifully described the paradoxes of this world in his story ”The Accursed House’. It is really difficult to understand the working of human mind. If someone charges his customers extra money, people would doubt him, but, still forgive him for succumbing to greed. But, if  someone decides to charge less money for his service, people will eye him with greater suspicion.

This is what happens when Vimcomte inherit his Grand uncle’s property and being man of principals, decides to reduce the exorbitant rent charged by his uncle. With good intentions, he hopes to win his tenants’ hearts. But, he surely misunderstood his tenants’ capriciousness as all hell breaks loose when they learn of their new landlord’ s benevolence.

They doubt that there must be something terribly wrong with the building. In no time, rumours of the building being dilapidated, haunted and bearing illegal activities start spreading like fire in jungle. People even brand him as a criminal hiding something suspicious in the building. His reputation dwindles. Poor Vimcomte, who set out to do a charity work is blamed for bringing bad name and ill-luck to his illustrious family.

This seems entirely true of this world. People cannot digest any unsolicited favour. An innocent action creates deadly Tsunami, the charity is unheeded and even his well wishers bay for his blood.Irony is indeed a companion of innocence. Nobody can believe that the other person’s intentions are well and he doesn’t want anything in return for a good deed. Possibly, no one believes you to be so good that you can do someone a favour without any hidden motive. Human mind has become so accustomed to the filth, that anything clean evokes suspicion of being unhealthy.

While reading story, I remembered an old story telecasted on Doordarshan years ago. The story was set in a distant hilly village and was centered around an Autistic young man who was innocent like a kid despite coming of age. A new teacher joins the village school and out of motherly affection, invites him to play in her house. She sympathizes with his condition and tries to lessen his difficulties by educating him to some extent. But villagers become skeptical of her intentions and brand her a characterless woman trying to take advantage of the mentally challenged young man. At last, she has to leave the village. Her charity towards a poor man drowned all her reputation.

The accursed House is a sharp sarcasm on the society, exposing people’s shallow understanding arising from their poor mentality, coloring their judgment, confusing their sense of good or bad. A good attempt to bring out the audaciousness of people in a humorous, playful way with excellent command on train of thoughts. Kudos to Emile for writing such an entertaining moral story!


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  2. This is best story ever.It came in my studies of english in supplymentary reading.I enjoy this story.

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  4. partiman says:

    This is wonderful story that i came across during my studies.

  5. Yes Partiman it is indeed a great story, relevant even after a century and a half of actual conception.

  6. jamyang choden says:

    this story is one of the good stories i have ever read till now in my student life



  8. Dorjee Sherab says:

    I want the the suspecious thoughts of the tenants in simple language.Thank you

  9. jigme yoezer says:

    This is the sweet story

  10. i am impress with this story. Thank you for writing such wonderful story. I enjoyed n got to learn more about the world and people living on it. Thank you once agai

  11. Ngawang this story is written by Emile Gaboriau, a French writer.. I have only written a review of that short story.. Glad you liked it.. If you google the title, probably you would be able to find the original story as well. It is well written and definitely worth a read ?

  12. This is the first story which really teach me suspicious nature of human being and moreover story congist of immortal value of life

  13. What is the theme of this story la?

  14. Anupama Sarkar says:

    Killo this story is based on human fear psychosis.. how we are unable to trust others goodness if we lack in it ourselves

  15. sonam wangmo says:

    Sir/madam, why do you think Mr. Bernard chose to be the last person to leave the accursed house?
    What topic can be discussed here?

  16. Amit chhetri says:

    it would have been nice if u could have also written the character analysis of the characters. PLZ!!

  17. Samdrup zangmo says:

    Well can I get q and a part la

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