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Colonel Chabert a hero of the Napoleonic wars has been declared dead and burried in the bloody battle of Eylau. Ten years later he turns up in Paris to reclaim his name, his rank, his fortune... and his wife. The Colonel's wife has since remarried to Count Ferraud, closely linked to the post-Napoleon rulers. She spares no effort to block the Colonel's rehabilitation... even his return to "life". Is this man really Chabert ? ... Isn't he in fact an imposter?... A mythomaniac?... A madman?...Or if he is truly the brave hero, miraculously escaped from the grave, why this "dead man" comes to meddle in the intricate game played by the living ? Attorney Dervill takes up the case, and decides to disentangle the web of intrigue constantly rewoven by the strands of darkness and light which makes up the inexhaustible Human Comedy.