“This will never do, Betsy,” said Mr. Linley, shaking his head. “Sir Joshua calls you Saint Cecilia, but ’twere a misnomer if you do not sing the phrase better than you have just sung it. ‘She drew an angel down’: let that be in your mind, my dear. There is no celestial being that would move a pinion to help a maiden who implored its aid in so half-hearted a way. Let us try again. One, two, three——”
“‘Angels, ever bright and fair,’”
sang Miss Linley.
Her father sprang from the harpsichord.
“Gracious powers, madam! the angels are not in the next room—they are not even in Pierrepont Street, take my word for it; they are in heaven, and heaven, let me tell you, is a very long way from Bath!” he cried. “Give forth the ‘Angels’ as if you meant to storm the ears of heaven with your cry. Think of it, girl—think that you are lost, eternally lost, unless you can obtain help that is not of earth. Stun their ears, madam, with the suddenness of your imploration, and let the voice come from your heart. Betsy, that smile is not in the music. If Maestro Handel had meant a smile to illuminate the part, take my word for it he would have signified it by a bar of demi-semi-quavers, followed by semi-quavers and quavers. Good heavens, madam! do you hope to improve upon Handel?”
“Ah, father, do not ask too much of me to-night; I am tired—anxious. Why, only last week a highwayman——”
Miss Linley glanced, eagerly listening, toward the window, as if she fully expected to see the mask of a highwayman peering between the blinds.
“Betsy, I am ashamed of you!” said her father. “What stuff is this? Is there any highwayman fool enough to collect fiddles? Do you fancy that a boy with a fiddle tucked under his arm is in any peril of a bullet?”
“But they may affright the child.”
“Child? Child? Who is the child? What! Do you think that because you have not seen your brother since he was fourteen, the four years that have passed can have made no impression on him?”
“I suppose he will have grown.”
“You may be sure that he will be able to defend himself without drawing either his sword or his fiddle. To your singing, Betsy. Go back to the recitative.”
“It would be a terrible thing to find that he had outgrown his affection for us. I have heard that in Italy——”
“Still harping on my daughter’s brother! Come, Miss Linnet, you shall have your chance. You shall fancy that your prayer is uttered on behalf of your brother.
‘Angels, ever bright and fair,
Take, oh, take him to your care.’
Now shall the angels hear for certain. Come, child; one, two——”
sang Miss Linley.
“Brava!” cried her father sotto voce, as the sound thrilled through the room and there was a suggestion of an answering vibration from the voice of the harpsichord.
“‘Angels, ever bright and fair,
Take, oh, take me——’”
The harpsichord jingled alone. The girl’s voice failed. She threw herself into a chair, and, covering her face with her hands, burst into a passion of sobbing.
“Oh, if he does not arrive after all—if some accident has happened—if—if——”
The apprehensions which she was too much overcome to name were emphasised in the glance that she cast at her father. Her eyes, the most marvellous wells of deep tenderness that ever woman possessed, at all times suggested a certain pathetic emotion of fear, causing every man who looked into their depths to seek to be her protector from the danger they seemed to foresee; but at this moment they appeared to look straight into the face of disaster.
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"I ne'er could see aught that was helpful to the trade of a smith in such biases as the Quakers, to name only one of the new-fangled sects," said Hal Holmes, the blacksmith, shaking his head seriously. "So I holds with Miller."
"Ay, that's the way too many of ye esteems a religion—' Will it put another crown in my pocket?' says you. If't puts a crown in your pocket,'tis a good enough religion; if't puts half-a-crown in your pocket,'tis less good; if't puts naught in your pocket, that religion is good for naught."
"Greatly interested? Greatly interested?" said Cyril Mowbray, his second repetition of the words being a note or two higher than the first. "Greatly int——Oh, well, perhaps you had your own reasons for feeling interested in so trivial an incident as a run on your bank that might have made you a beggar in an hour or two. Yes, I shouldn't wonder if I myself would have had my interest aroused—to a certain extent—had I been in your place, Dick." Mr. Westwood laughed with an excellent assumption of indifference, a minute or two after his friend had spoken. Cyril could not understand why he had not laughed at once; but that was probably because he had not been brought up as the senior partner in a banking business, or, for that matter, in any other business.
"He admits a solitary bankruptcy," said Amber. "Bankruptcy is the official recognition of genius."
"It certainly is the shortest way to distinction," said Josephine. "Bankruptcy's a sort of English Legion of Honour, isn't it?—a kind of bourgeois decoration."
"To genius," said Amber, with the nod of one who completes a quotation that some one else has begun. "Mr. Richmond is really very clever."
"Now you contradict yourself—a moment ago you said he was a genius—and being a genius is just the opposite to being clever," laughed Josephine. "Is this your syllogism: Geniuses become bankrupt, Mr. Richmond becomes bankrupt, therefore he is a genius?"
"Well, that wasn't quite what was in my mind. I suppose that to have the Homeric attribute of nodding scarcely makes one a Homer?"
The serene and maternal Mrs. Ramsay, the tragic yet absurd Mr. Ramsay, and their children and assorted guests are on holiday on the Isle of Skye. From the seemingly trivial postponement of a visit to a nearby lighthouse, Woolf constructs a remarkable, moving examination of the complex tensions and allegiances of family life and the conflict between men and women.
(This book has not been prepared, endorsed, or licensed by any person or entity that created, published, or produced the Harry Potter books or related properties.)
In the years leading up to 1606, Shakespeare’s great productivity had ebbed. But that year, at age forty-two, he found his footing again, finishing a play he had begun the previous autumn—King Lear—then writing two other great tragedies, Macbeth and Antony and Cleopatra.
It was a memorable year in England as well—a terrorist plot conceived by a small group of Catholic gentry had been uncovered at the last hour. The foiled Gunpowder Plot would have blown up the king and royal family along with the nation’s political and religious leadership. The aborted plot renewed anti-Catholic sentiment and laid bare divisions in the kingdom.
It was against this background that Shakespeare finished Lear, a play about a divided kingdom, then wrote a tragedy that turned on the murder of a Scottish king, Macbeth. He ended this astonishing year with a third masterpiece no less steeped in current events and concerns: Antony and Cleopatra.
“Exciting and sometimes revelatory, in The Year of Lear, James Shapiro takes a closer look at the political and social turmoil that contributed to the creation of three supreme masterpieces” (The Washington Post). He places them in the context of their times, while also allowing us greater insight into how Shakespeare was personally touched by such events as a terrible outbreak of plague and growing religious divisions. “His great gift is to make the plays seem at once more comprehensible and more staggering” (The New York Review of Books). For anyone interested in Shakespeare, this is an indispensable book.
“The arrival of a significant young nonfiction writer . . . A measured yet bravura performance.” —Dwight Garner, The New York Times
James Joyce’s big blue book, Ulysses, ushered in the modernist era and changed the novel for all time. But the genius of Ulysses was also its danger: it omitted absolutely nothing. Joyce, along with some of the most important publishers and writers of his era, had to fight for years to win the freedom to publish it. The Most Dangerous Book tells the remarkable story surrounding Ulysses, from the first stirrings of Joyce’s inspiration in 1904 to the book’s landmark federal obscenity trial in 1933. Written for ardent Joyceans as well as novices who want to get to the heart of the greatest novel of the twentieth century, The Most Dangerous Book is a gripping examination of how the world came to say Yes to Ulysses.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Even if you've never read the novels and have only seen the films, you know that the world of Middle-earth is a complicated one. Tolkien took great care in representing this world, from creating new languages to including very particular cultural details that add to the richness of the world's fabric. Many other books have been written about Tolkien and his works, but none have come close to providing the kind of reference needed to comprehend the world of Middle-earth. That's what veteran Dummies author and unabashed Tolkien fan Greg Harvey attempts to do in The Origins of Tolkien's Middle-earth For Dummies.
As the author says in his introduction to the book, this is not an encyclopedia or quick guide to all the diverse beings, languages, and history that make up Tolkien's Middle-earth. Nor is it a set of plot outlines for the novels. Rather, what you'll find in The Origins of Tolkien's Middle-earth For Dummies is a basic guide to some of the possible linguistic and mythological origins of Middle-earth, plus a rudimentary analysis of its many themes and lessons for our world. This book can help enrich your reading (or re-reading) of Tolkien's novels, and it will challenge you to think about the themes inherent in Tolkien's Middle-earth and their implications in your own life.
Here's just a sampling of the topics you'll find covered in The Origins of Tolkien's Middle-earth For Dummies:Exploring the main themes in Tolkien's works, including immortality and death; the heroic quest; love; fate and free will; and faith and redemption Investigating the diverse lands of Middle-earth – including the Shire, Gondor, and Mordor – and their significance Examining the different cultures of Middle-earth, such as Hobbits, Elves, Men, and those wily Wizards Touring the history of Middle-earth Understanding Tolkien's creation of new languages to enrich the story of Middle-earth Top Ten lists on the battles in the War of the Ring, online resources, and the ways the films differ from the novels
So, whether you're reading Tolkien's novels or watching the films for the first time, or you've been a fan for many years and are looking for a new take on Tolkien's works, The Origins of Tolkien's Middle-earth For Dummies can help you enhance your reading or viewing experience for years to come.
CliffsNotes on Frankenstein digs into Dr. Victor Frankenstein's scientific creation, a "hideous and gigantic" monster that the good doctor tries to defeat throughout most of the novel.
Following the story of an obsessive man whose determination to create a new race of humans produces monstrous results, this study guide provides summaries and critical commentaries for each part within the novel. Other features that help you figure out this important work includePersonal background on the author, including career highlightsIntroduction to and synopsis of the bookIn-depth analyses of the principal charactersCritical essays on the book's themes, plots, and moreReview section that features interactive questions and suggested essay topicsResource Center with books, films and other recordings, and Web sites that can help round out your knowledge
Classic literature or modern-day treasure — you'll understand it all with expert information and insight from CliffsNotes study guides.
“How lucky the young poet who discovers this wisest and most lighthearted of manuals.”—James Merrill
“Marvelously comprehensive, clarifying and useful, and a delight to read.”—John Reardon, Los Angeles Times Book Review
“A virtuoso performance and a mandatory text for poetry readers and practioners alike.”—ALA Booklist
J.R.R. Tolkien spent much of his life studying, translating and teaching the great epic stories of northern Europe, filled with heroes, dragons, trolls, dwarves and magic. He was hugely influential for his advocacy of Beowulf as a great work of literature and, even if he had never written The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, would be recognised today as a significant figure in the rediscovery of these extraordinary tales.
Legends from the Ancient North brings together from Penguin Classics five of the key works behind Tolkien's fiction.They are startling, brutal, strange pieces of writing, with an elemental power brilliantly preserved in these translations.They plunge the reader into a world of treachery, quests, chivalry, trials of strength.They are the most ancient narratives that exist from northern Europe and bring us as near as we will ever get to the origins of the magical landscape of Middle-earth (Midgard) which Tolkien remade in the 20th century.
In CliffsNotes on The Picture of Dorian Gray, you explore Oscar Wilde’s great works about narcissism, rife with symbolism and classic themes. Here, you meet Dorian Gray and discover his secret pact with the devil to stay young and handsome, and the subsequent destruction of his soul.
This study guide carefully walks you through Dorian’s story by providing summaries and critical analyses of each chapter of the novel. You'll also explore the life and background of the author, Oscar Wilde, and gain insight into how he came to write this novel. Other features that help you study includeA list of charactersGlossaries to define new and unfamiliar termsCritical essays about Oscar Wilde’s views and lifeA review section that tests your knowledgeA list of online resources for more study
Classic literature or modern modern-day treasure — you'll understand it all with expert information and insight from CliffsNotes study guides.
CliffsNotes on 1984 introduces you to the modern world as imagined by George Orwell, a place where humans have no control over their own lives, where nearly every positive feeling is squelched, and where people live in misery, fear, and repression.
Orwell's vision of the future may be grim, but your understanding of his novel can be bright thanks to detailed summaries and commentaries for every chapter. Other features that help you study includeCharacter analyses of major playersA character map that graphically illustrates the relationships among the charactersCritical essaysA review section that tests your knowledgeA Resource Center full of books, articles, films, and Internet sites
Classic literature or modern modern-day treasure — you'll understand it all with expert information and insight from CliffsNotes study guides.
Annotated and with an introduction by Maria DiBattista
Characterization has long been a troubled and neglected problem within literary theory. Through close readings of such novels as Pride and Prejudice, Great Expectations, and Le Père Goriot, Woloch demonstrates that the representation of any character takes place within a shifting field of narrative attention and obscurity. Each individual--whether the central figure or a radically subordinated one--emerges as a character only through his or her distinct and contingent space within the narrative as a whole. The "character-space," as Woloch defines it, marks the dramatic interaction between an implied person and his or her delimited position within a narrative structure. The organization of, and clashes between, many character-spaces within a single narrative totality is essential to the novel's very achievement and concerns, striking at issues central to narrative poetics, the aesthetics of realism, and the dynamics of literary representation.
Woloch's discussion of character-space allows for a different history of the novel and a new definition of characterization itself. By making the implied person indispensable to our understanding of literary form, this book offers a forward-looking avenue for contemporary narrative theory.
"I have been led into an exploration of the way the social form of Elizabethan holidays contributed to the dramatic form of festive comedy. To relate this drama to holiday has proved to be the most effective way to describe its character. And this historical interplay between social and artistic form has an interest of its own: we can see here, with more clarity of outline and detail than is usually possible, how art develops underlying configurations in the social life of a culture."--C. L. Barber, in the Introduction
This new edition includes a foreword by Stephen Greenblatt, who discusses Barber's influence on later scholars and the recent critical disagreements that Barber has inspired, showing that Shakespeare's Festive Comedy is as vital today as when it was originally published.