1. I have the anecdote, which is quite authentic, from M. Pedro Gailhard himself, the late manager of the Opera.

  2. Flash notes drawn on the “Bank of St. Farce” in France correspond with those drawn on the “Bank of Engraving” in England. —⁠Translator’s note

  3. M. Pedro Gailhard has himself told me that he created a few additional posts as door-shutters for old stage-carpenters whom he was unwilling to dismiss from the service of the Opera.

  4. In those days, it was still part of the firemen’s duty to watch over the safety of the Opera house outside the performances; but this service has since been suppressed. I asked M. Pedro Gailhard the reason, and he replied:

    “It was because the management was afraid that, in their utter inexperience of the cellars of the Opera, the firemen might set fire to the building!”

  5. Like the Persian, I can give no further explanation touching the apparition of this shade. Whereas, in this historic narrative, everything else will be normally explained, however abnormal the course of events may seem, I can not give the reader expressly to understand what the Persian meant by the words, “It is someone much worse than that!” The reader must try to guess for himself, for I promised M. Pedro Gailhard, the former manager of the Opera, to keep his secret regarding the extremely interesting and useful personality of the wandering, cloaked shade which, while condemning itself to live in the cellars of the Opera, rendered such immense services to those who, on gala evenings, for instance, venture to stray away from the stage. I am speaking of state services; and, upon my word of honor, I can say no more.

  6. All the water had to be exhausted, in the building of the Opera. To give an idea of the amount of water that was pumped up, I can tell the reader that it represented the area of the courtyard of the Louvre and a height half as deep again as the towers of Notre Dame. And nevertheless the engineers had to leave a lake.

  7. These two pairs of boots, which were placed, according to the Persian’s papers, just between the set piece and the scene from the Roi de Lahore, on the spot where Joseph Buquet was found hanging, were never discovered. They must have been taken by some stage-carpenter or “door-shutter.”

  8. An official report from Tonkin, received in Paris at the end of July, 1909, relates how the famous pirate chief De Tham was tracked, together with his men, by our soldiers; and how all of them succeeded in escaping, thanks to this trick of the reeds.

  9. Daroga is Persian for chief of police.

  10. The Persian might easily have admitted that Erik’s fate also interested himself, for he was well aware that, if the government of Teheran had learned that Erik was still alive, it would have been all up with the modest pension of the erstwhile daroga. It is only fair, however, to add that the Persian had a noble and generous heart; and I do not doubt for a moment that the catastrophes which he feared for others greatly occupied his mind. His conduct, throughout this business, proves it and is above all praise.

  11. It is very natural that, at the time when the Persian was writing, he should take so many precautions against any spirit of incredulity on the part of those who were likely to read his narrative. Nowadays, when we have all seen this sort of room, his precautions would be superfluous.

  12. Even so, I am convinced that it would be easy to reach it by draining the lake, as I have repeatedly requested the Ministry of Fine Arts to do. I was speaking about it to M. Dujardin-Beaumetz, the undersecretary for fine arts, only forty-eight hours before the publication of this book. Who knows but that the score of Don Juan Triumphant might yet be discovered in the house on the lake?

  13. See the interview of the special correspondent of the Matin, with Mohammed-Ali Bey, on the day after the entry of the Salonika troops into Constantinople.