Les contemplations Les Contemplations (The Contemplations) is a collection of poetry by Victor Hugo, published in 1856. It consists of 156 poems in six books. Most of the poems were written between 1841 and 1855, though the oldest date from 1830. Memory plays an important role in the collection, as Hugo was experimenting with the genre of autobiography in verse. The collection is equally an homage to his daughter Léopoldine Hugo, who drowned in the Seine.