The Last Lesson

by

Alphonse Daudet

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Old Hauser Character Analysis

One of the elder villagers who gathers with the children in M. Hamel’s classroom to hear the last lesson. He brings his old primer, an elementary reading textbook, with him to the class, and uses it to help the youngest students read their letters. Like the other villagers and school children, including the story’s narrator Franz, Hauser is devastated at news that the Prussian authorities who have occupied the French region of Alsace-Lorraine, where the village is located, have forbidden the teaching of French in schools. He cries as he helps the young children read and makes everyone else in the classroom want to cry and laugh at once.

Old Hauser Quotes in The Last Lesson

The The Last Lesson quotes below are all either spoken by Old Hauser or refer to Old Hauser. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Culture and Language Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the National Council of Education Research and Training edition of The Last Lesson published in 2015.
The Last Lesson Quotes

[…] the thing that surprised me most was to see, on the back benches that were always empty, the village people sitting quietly like ourselves; old Hauser, with his three-cornered hat, the former mayor, the former postmaster, and several others besides.

Related Characters: Franz (The Narrator) (speaker), M. Hamel, Old Hauser
Related Symbols: The Classroom
Page Number: 4
Explanation and Analysis:

After the writing, we had a lesson in history, and then the babies chanted their ba, be bi, bo, bu. Down there at the back of the room old Hauser had put on his spectacles and, holding his primer in both hands, spelled the letters with them. You could see that he, too, was crying; his voice trembled with emotion, and it was so funny to hear him that we all wanted to laugh and cry.

Related Characters: Franz (The Narrator) (speaker), M. Hamel, Old Hauser
Related Symbols: The Classroom, French
Page Number: 8
Explanation and Analysis:
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The Last Lesson PDF

Old Hauser Character Timeline in The Last Lesson

The timeline below shows where the character Old Hauser appears in The Last Lesson. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
The Last Lesson
Patriotism and Resistance Theme Icon
Education and Knowledge Theme Icon
Community and Solidarity Theme Icon
...village people assembled on the benches at the back of the room, including old man Hauser, the former mayor, and the former postmaster of the town. Everyone looks gloomy. Old Hauser... (full context)
Culture and Language Theme Icon
Patriotism and Resistance Theme Icon
Education and Knowledge Theme Icon
Community and Solidarity Theme Icon
...onto a history lesson, before the babies are given their turn to recite ABCDs. Old Hauser, sitting at the back and reading from an old primer, helps them by spelling the... (full context)