CHAPTER 4. THE MARRIAGE OF QUASIMODO.
The mass of masonry which served as foundation to the
odious edifice was hollow. A huge cellar had been
constructed there, closed by an old iron grating, which
was out of order, into which were cast not only the human
remains, which were taken from the chains of Montfaušon, but
also the bodies of all the unfortunates executed on the other
permanent gibbets of Paris. To that deep charnel-house, where
so many human remains and so many crimes have rotted in company,
many great ones of this world, many innocent people, have
contributed their bones, from Enguerrand de Marigni, the first
victim, and a just man, to Admiral de Coligni, who was its last,
and who was also a just man.
As for the mysterious disappearance of Quasimodo, this is all
that we have been able to discover.
About eighteen months or two years after the events which
terminate this story, when search was made in that cavern for
the body of Olivier le Daim, who had been hanged two days
previously, and to whom Charles VIII. had granted the favor
of being buried in Saint Laurent, in better company, they
found among all those hideous carcasses two skeletons, one
of which held the other in its embrace. One of these skeletons,
which was that of a woman, still had a few strips of a
garment which had once been white, and around her neck was
to be seen a string of adrÚzarach beads with a little silk bag
ornamented with green glass, which was open and empty.
These objects were of so little value that the executioner had
probably not cared for them. The other, which held this one
in a close embrace, was the skeleton of a man. It was noticed
that his spinal column was crooked, his head seated on his
shoulder blades, and that one leg was shorter than the other.
Moreover, there was no fracture of the vertebrae at the nape
of the neck, and it was evident that he had not been hanged.
Hence, the man to whom it had belonged had come thither
and had died there. When they tried to detach the skeleton
which he held in his embrace, he fell to dust.