Sandra Belloni — Complete eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 709 pages of information about Sandra Belloni — Complete.
despising, if he pleased, the soul that would invent a sauce.  I mean to say, he would, like the larger body of our sentimentalists, have acquiesced in our simple humanity, but without sacrificing a scruple to its grossness, or going arm-in-arm with it by any means.  Sir Purcell, however, never sank, and never bent.  He was invariably erect before men, and he did not console himself with a murmur in secret.  He had lived much alone; eating alone; thinking alone.  To complain of a father is, to a delicate mind, a delicate matter, and Sir Purcell was a gentleman to all about him.  His chief affliction in his youth, therefore, kept him dumb.  A gentleman to all about him, he unhappily forgot what was due to his own nature.  Must we not speak under pressure of a grief?  Little people should know that they must:  but then the primary task is to teach them that they are little people.  For, if they repress the outcry of a constant irritation, and the complaint against injustice, they lock up a feeding devil in their hearts, and they must have vast strength to crush him there.  Strength they must have to kill him, and freshness of spirit to live without him, after he has once entertained them with his most comforting discourses.  Have you listened to him, ever?  He does this:—­he plays to you your music (it is he who first teaches thousands that they have any music at all, so guess what a dear devil he is!); and when he has played this ravishing melody, he falls to upon a burlesque contrast of hurdy-gurdy and bag-pipe squeal and bellow and drone, which is meant for the music of the world.  How far sweeter was yours!  This charming devil Sir Purcell had nursed from childhood.

As a child, between a flighty mother and a father verging to insanity from caprice, he had grown up with ideas of filial duty perplexed, and with a fitful love for either, that was not attachment:  a baffled natural love, that in teaching us to brood on the hardness of our lot, lays the foundation for a perniciously mystical self-love.  He had waged precociously philosophic, when still a junior.  His father had kept him by his side, giving him no profession beyond that of the obedient expectant son and heir.  His first allusion to the youth’s dependency had provoked their first breach, which had been widened by many an ostentatious forgiveness on the one hand, and a dumbly-protesting submission on the other.  His mother died away from her husband’s roof.  The old man then sought to obliterate her utterly.  She left her boy a little money, and the injunction of his father was, that he was never to touch it.  He inherited his taste for music from her, and his father vowed, that if ever he laid hand upon a musical instrument again, he would be disinherited.  All these signs of a vehement spiteful antagonism to reason, the young man might have treated more as his father’s misfortune than his own, if he could only have brought himself to acknowledge that such a thing as madness

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Sandra Belloni — Complete from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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