Claude Gueux was a poor workman, living in Paris with his mistress and child. Although his education had been neglected, and he could not even read, the man was naturally clever and intelligent, and thought deeply over matters. Winter came the man, the woman, and the child were frozen and famished. The man turned thief. We do know not what he stole. What signifies, as the result was the same: to the woman and child it gave three days’ bread and warmth; to the man, five years’ imprisonment. He was taken to Clairvaux,—the abbey now converted into a prison, its cells into dungeons, and the altar itself into a pillory. With Claude Gueux, Victor Hugo developed his views on social injustice.