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"Fantine's Arrest"
Fantine's Arrest
Information
Composer

Claude-Michel Schönberg

Lyricist

Herbert Kretzmer

Performers

Bamatabois
Fantine
Javert
Jean Valjean

Song Order
Previous

"I Dreamed a Dream"

Next

"Javert's Apology"

"Fantine's Arrest" takes part in 1823, Montreuil-sur-Mer. Fantine is arguing with Bamatabois after he threw a snowball at her back when she did nothing wrong. They fight and Javert, accompanied by constables, enters the scene and drags away Fantine to the Police Station. Javert arrests Fantine but Monseiur Madeleine (Jean Valjean in disguise) intervenes.

The lyrics were written by Herbert Kretzmer.

LyricsEdit

Bamatabois:
Here's something new. I think I'll give it a try.
Come closer, you!
I like to see what I buy...
The ususal price
For just one slice of your pie.

Fantine:
I don’t want you. No, no, M'sieur, let me go.

Bamatabois:
Is this a trick? I won’t pay more!

Fantine:
No, not at all.

Bamatabois:
You've got some nerve, you little whore,
You've got some gall.
It's the same with a tart
As it is with a grocer
The customer sees what he gets in advance
It's not for the whore to say 'yes sir' or 'no sir'
It's not for the harlot to pick and to choose
Or to lead me a dance!

[Fantine strikes Bamatabois.]

Fantine:
I'll kill you, you bastard, try any of that!
Even a whore who has gone to the bad
Won't be had by a rat!

Bamatabois:
By Christ you'll pay for what you've done
This rat will make you bleed you'll see!
I guarantee, I'll make you suffer
For this disturbance of peace
For this insult to life and property!

Fantine:
I beg you, don't report me, sir
I'll do whatever you may want...

Bamatabois:
Make your excuse to the police!

Javert:
Tell me quickly what's the story
Who saw what, and why, and where?
Let him give a full description.
Let him answer to Javert!
In this nest of whores and vipers
Let one speak who saw it all.
Who laid hands on this good man here?
What's the substance of this brawl?

Bamatabois:
Javert, would you believe it
I was crossing from the park
When this prostitute attacked me
You can see she left her mark.

Javert:
She will answer for her actions
When you make a full report.
You may rest assured, M'sieur
That she will answer to the court.

Fantine:
There's a child who sorely needs me
Please M'sieur, she's but 'that high'
Holy God, is there no mercy?
If I go to jail she'll die!

Javert:
I have heard such protestations
Every day for twenty years.
Let’s have no more explanations,
Save your breath and save your tears.
'Honest work. Just reward. That's the way to please the Lord'.

Valjean:
A moment of your time, Javert
I do believe this woman's tale.

Javert:
But M'sieur Mayor!

Valjean:
You've done your duty
Let her be
She needs a doctor, not a jail

Javert:
But M'sieur Mayor!

Fantine:
Can this be?

Valjean:
Where will she end –
This child without a friend

I've seen your face before
Show me some way to help you
How have you come to grief
In such a place as this?

Fantine:
M'sieur, don't mock me now, I pray
It's hard enough I've lost my pride!
You let your foreman send me away
Yes, you were there and turned aside

[Fantine spits in Valjean's face.]

I never did no wrong!

Valjean:
Is it true, what I've done?

Fantine:
My daughter's close to dying...

Valjean:
To an innocent soul?

Fantine:
If there's a God above

Valjean:
Had I only known then.

Fantine:
He'd let me die instead.

Valjean:
In His name my task has just begun.
I will see it done.

Javert:
But M'sieur Mayor!

Valjean:
I will see it done!

Javert:
But M'sieur Mayor!

Valjean:
I will see it done!

TriviaEdit

  • The song is known as "El arresto de Fantine" in the Spanish production (including the Runaway Cart), "Fantines Verhaftung" in the German production and "Fantines arrestatie" in the Dutch production.
  • In the original French production the song was separated into two songs, which were called "Dites-moi ce qui se passe" ("Tell Me What Happened"), and "Fantine et Monsieur Madeleine" ("Fantine and Monsieur Madeleine").
  • At the beginning of this number, the first part is cut, along with some of the other parts.
  • For the 2012 film, Valjean asks Fantine where Cosette is and a short conversation begins. Before the scene is over, Valjean says "I will see it done." "Shhh, rest now."

Changes between versionsEdit

In the original Barbican previews, there are two additional verses.

Townspeople:
Take this harlot now this instant,
Let there be a full report
Let her go there in the morning
Let her answer to the court!

Fantine:
Gentle Jesus won't you save me
Are there tears enough to cry?

Javert:
It's the same pathetic story
"Please Monsieur, my child will die..."


VideosEdit

Les Misérables OST - Fantine's Arrest Lyrics03:49

Les Misérables OST - Fantine's Arrest Lyrics

Fantine's Arrest- Les Miserables 1985 Previews04:27

Fantine's Arrest- Les Miserables 1985 Previews

The original version of Fantine's Arrest.

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