#StackBounty: #line-spacing Reduce line spacing when using smaller font size in an environment

Bounty: 50

I am typesetting a collection of short stories found on Project Gutenberg, where most stories are introduced by a comment of the editor and/or an historical note.

In my understanding these blurbs are less relevant than the stories, so I decided to put them in an appropriate environment and typeset them in a smaller font

  Some think that love, strong, true, and self-sacrificing, is not to
  be found in the Orient; but the story of Charan, which comes down
  four hundred years and more, proves the contrary, for it still has
  the fresh, sweet flavour of a romance of yesterday; albeit the setting
  of the East provides an odd and interesting background.

In the days of King Sung-jong (A.D. 1488-1495) one of Korea's noted
men became governor of Pyong-an Province. Now Pyong-an stands first
of all the eight provinces in the attainments of erudition and polite
society. Many of her literati are good musicians, and show ability
in the affairs of State.

that, coupled with the memoir class, produces the following


as you can see, the distance between the lines in the blurb is too much, I have played with linespread (even negative values…) but nothing changed.

OTOH, when I have a long footnote, I know that the line spacing is appropriately reduced…

How can I reduce the distance between the lines in my environment to take into account the smaller font?

Get this bounty!!!

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