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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 287 pages of information about Bart Ridgeley.

He returned to his algebraic problem, with a desperate plunge at its solution.  The unknown quantity remained unknown; and, a moment later, he was gratified to see how he had finally caught and expressed, with his pencil, a look of Julia, that had always eluded him before.  But was he to be overcome by a girl?  Was life and its ambitions to be crushed out and brought to nought by one small hand?  He would see.  It would be inexpressible luxury to tell her once—­but just once—­all his passion and worship, and then, of course, remain silent forever, and go out of her presence.  He wished her to know it all, so that, as she would hear and know of him in the coming years, she would know that he was worthy, not of her love, but worthy to love her, whatever that may mean, or whatever of comfort it might bring to either.  What precious logic the heart of a young man in his twenty-second year is capable of!


Logic of the gods.

“Doctor,” said Barton, in the little office of the latter, “I’ve called to borrow your Euclid; may I have it?  I have never tried Euclid, really.”

“Oh, yes, you can have it, and welcome.  Do you want to try yourself on the pons asinorum?

“What is that; another bridge of sighs? for I suppose they can be found out of Venice.”

“It is a place over which asses have to be carried.  It is, indeed, a bridge of sighs, and a bridge of size.”

“Oh, Doctor, don’t you do that!  Well, let me try it!  I want more work; and especially I want a wrestle with Euclid.”

“Work! what are you doing, that you call work?”

“Well, hoeing beans, pulling up weeds, harvesting oats, with recreations in Latin Grammar, Dabol, Algebra, Watts on the Mind, Butler’s Analogy, and other trifles.”

“All at one time?”

“No, not more than three at the same time.  Don’t lecture me, Doctor, I am incorrigible.  When I work, I don’t play.”

“And when you don’t play you work, occasionally; well, I think Euclid will do you good.”

“I won’t take it as a prescription, Doctor!”

“A thorough course of mathematics would do more for one of your flighty mind, than anything else; you want chaining down to the severe logic of lines and angles.”

“To the solution of such profound problems as, that the whole of a thing is more than a fraction of it; and things that are exactly alike resemble each other, for instance, eh?”

“Pshaw! you will make fun of everything.  Will you ever reach discretion, and deal with things seriously?”

“I was never more serious in my life, and could cry with mortification over my lost, idled-away hours, you never believed in me, and are not to blame for that, nor have I any promises to make.  I am not thought to be at all promising, I believe.”

“Bart,” said the Doctor, seriously, “you don’t lack capacity; but you are too quick and impulsive, and all imagination and fancy.”

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