Entertainment

Entertainment could not escape the vigilance of the Church, either. Games, dancing, balls, cabarets, theatre and, in some cases, music were often denounced by the Church authorities. The cabarets were also under close surveillance. The cabaret, sometimes the only other meeting place for villagers, could not in any way compete with the Church. Under the French Regime, there are several attempts at regulating the sale and consumption of alcohol and the opening of cabarets on Sundays.


À la lueur d'un flambeau tenu par un jeune enfant, une femme richement vêtue se coiffe sous l'oeil attendri d'un homme. / By the light of a torch held by a youngster, a richly dressed woman is arranging her hair, while a man affectionately watches her.

L'Orgueil, 17th Century

Gerrit Van Honthorst
Musée de la civilisation, Séminaire de Québec Collection, 1991.515

Ostentation and Futility

These persons seem "to have an attire more proper for the ball and the theatre than for a church service, not having an ounce of shame in profaning the House [of God] and thus setting traps for the purity of those who come to make their prayers".

"But what is even more criminal before God is the fact that some girls and women dare approach the sacraments, present the Holy Bread [sic], come to the offertory and take collection in Church in this indecent state (...)."

For these reasons, We [sic] expressly forbid all girls and women, whatever their quality and condition, to approach the Sacraments, present the Holy Bread, come to the offertory, and take collection in the churches in the indecent manners that we have specified in our present mandamus, and all the curates of our diocese to accept them in this state; but we wish that, when they come to church, they appear with the propriety and modesty required by Christian holiness and humility".




Dans un bordel, deux officiers du corps de garde fument la pipe à une table improvisée. / In a brothel, two officers of the guard smoke their pipes at an improvised table.

Officiers au cabaret, undated

after Saint-Igny
in Paul Lacroix, XVIIe siècle, institutions, usages et costumes: France, 1590-1700, 1880
Musée de la civilisation, Séminaire de Québec Library, 320.2.9




Après un souper bien arrosé, deux hommes trinquent à nouveau à leur amitié. / Having washed their supper with plenty of alcohol, two men drink to their friendship once again.

À ta santé! L'ami Bazile, undated

in Paul Saunière, Monseigneur, undated
Musée de la civilisation, Séminaire de Québec Library, 429.6




Attablés dans une auberge, un homme et ses deux compagnons demandent à nouveau à boire à l'hôtesse. / Sitting at a table in an inn, a man and his two companions ask the landlady for another drink.

Avant de se remettre en route ils avaient copieusement soupé, undated

in Paul Saunière, Monseigneur, undated
Musée de la civilisation, Séminaire de Québec Library, 429.6




Debout sur une scène illuminée par des chandelles, un acteur de théâtre est immobile et sans mot, paniqué par un blanc de mémoire. / Standing on a stage lighted by candles, a panic-stricken actor stands motionless and speechless, unable to remember his lines.

Le blanc de mémoire, undated

G. J. Pinwell
in H. W. Dulcken, Dalziel's Illustrated Goldsmith, 1865
Musée de la civilisation, Séminaire de Québec Library, 436.3




Au bas d'un escalier d'une place publique, des villageois écoutent les mélodies d'un joueur de fifre. / At the foot of the stairs in a central square, villagers listen to the melodies of a fife player.

Le joueur de fifre, undated

G. J. Pinwell
in H. W. Dulcken, Dalziel's Illustrated Goldsmith, 1865
Musée de la civilisation, Séminaire de Québec Library, 436.3




Trois hommes discutent sur le quai, sous l'enseigne de la boutique du Chien d'Or. / Three men talk on the quay, under the sign of the Chien d'Or (Golden Dog) shop.

Embarquement sur le quai (detail), undated

Louis H. Bouchard
in Leçon d'histoire, undated
Musée de la civilisation, Séminaire de Québec Library, 717.1.1




Canotant sur l'eau, Amérindiens et Européens font du théâtre. Ils jouent à la rencontre entre un navigateur et Neptune, roi des mers. / Canoeing on the water, Amerindians and Europeans stage a play. They are acting out the meeting of a navigator and Neptune, king of the seas.

The First Play in Canada, 1606, undated

in Charles William Jefferys, The Picture Gallery of Canadian History, 1942
Musée de la civilisation, Séminaire de Québec Library, 971.00222




Endormi sur une chaise à la lueur d'une chandelle, un homme est bordé par un satyre. / By the light of a candle, a man sleeps on a chair with a satyr at his side.

La Paresse, undated

Gerrit Van Honthorst
Musée de la civilisation, Séminaire de Québec Collection, 1991.308




Dans un bordel, deux officiers du corps de garde fument la pipe à une table improvisée. / In the half-light of a brothel, a man falls for a woman's charms, under the eyes of his three friends.

Le cabaret, undated

Le Prince
Musée de la civilisation, Séminaire de Québec Collection, 1993.26899

Charivari

"Having been informed that, as a consequence of a marriage celebrated in this city of Québec, for the last six days, a great number of persons of either sex are said to meet every night to engage in charivari and to have committed, in their disorderly and scandalous liberties, as regularly happens, quite impious acts that put to shame our Mysteries, the Truths of the Christian religion and the holy ceremonies of the Church, and having been obliged to call upon the secular powers to stop such gatherings, which these same powers used their authority to repress, but which, in spite of this, we have learned, have not only continued, but also increased from day to day, as has their impiety, we are obliged, by duty of our responsibility, to unite the authority of the Church with that of the secular powers and to oppose with all our might such impiety and such expressly forbidden gatherings to believers of either sex and even by civil ordinances, since, there is nothing more injurious to religion, proper morals, the public good, and to the tranquillity of all families". Whosoever should participate in a gathering known as a charivari will be punished with the most dire of consequences: excommunication".

Têtu, H. et C.O. Gagnon, éd. Manements, lettres pastorales et circulaires des Évêques de Québec, Québec, Imprimerie Générale A. Côté, 1887.