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PostPosted: 13 Oct 2016 5:55 pm 
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The preface of Circuit is by one Dingron Mozart of the Institute. Now is this the Institute where Philippe de Chérisey studied acting or the Paris Institute?

Is Dingron Mozart a real person? Unlikely. What is the significance of his name? Mozart suggests Freemasonry but what about Dingron?


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PostPosted: 13 Oct 2016 8:01 pm 
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Say it out loud...

Dingue rond mots arts ........ crazy circle of words and art.


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PostPosted: 14 Oct 2016 1:28 pm 
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What actually prompted this query was that Scottish Opera will be performing the Marriage of Figaro, and ..synapses, you know... Dingron Mozart came to mind. Thanks for the answer, I'm going to have a look further on on the 'net.


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PostPosted: 14 Oct 2016 1:57 pm 
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I found this link to Dingron Mozart from a online page of the Rennes Group. http://rennesgroup.pbworks.com/w/page/9 ... 99Institut Violet Marriott is a leading authority on Phillipe de Cherisey.

The opening line of the Preface : "At the half-way stage of our life." is more or less the opening words of Dante's Inferno...which prompts another link, not to Circuit, but to the cinema https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RH2BD49sEZI


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 Post subject: hmmm....
PostPosted: 14 Oct 2016 5:52 pm 
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Pilrig wrote:
I found this link to Dingron Mozart from a online page of the Rennes Group. http://rennesgroup.pbworks.com/w/page/9 ... 99Institut Violet Marriott is a leading authority on Phillipe de Cherisey.



My apologies but the translation is terrible, it's way off.


Marriot writes .....


Quote:
A conversation takes place between the Professor and his student, who like Charlot in Circuit appears to be an alter ego of de Chérisey himself. The Professor asks “How do we know that someone loves us?” and in reply the student points out that there is nothing one can do about it. “It eut un O pointé” the Professor says. As the verb “pointer”, it means to prick or stab: “point” as a noun meaning a spot, a hole, and as an adjective it means “particular”. “O” is a circle, a space, an opening. The Professor’s comment might be translated “he has hit the spot – the target” and as “C’est là le point” – “that is the point (of the argument)”.



Wrong, it means the complete opposite.


un O pointé simply means the worst zero that a scholar can achieve... more zero than zero !

zéro pointé Cet usage typographique est tombé en désuétude dans l’écriture manuscrite mais pas la langue des écoliers qui désigne encore ainsi la plus mauvaise note possible et l’absence absolue de résultat scolaire.


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PostPosted: 15 Oct 2016 10:30 am 
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So the student scored nul points for the essay ?

To begin with, the quote given from the piece is NOT from the translation section - it is from the commentary and it says clearly that the words zero pointe "might be translated as ......." clearly an indication that what follows is speculation and conjecture NOT a definitive translation.

Why quote the commentary and not the translation?

Could you explain the quotation from the dictionary which is rather puzzling?


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PostPosted: 15 Oct 2016 4:37 pm 
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Pilrig wrote:
So the student scored nul points for the essay ?


More than zero...absolute zero.



Pilrig wrote:
Why quote the commentary and not the translation?


Because the translation was even worse... it said zéro pointé meant a home hit...which is completely the opposite to the meaning.

Pilrig wrote:
Could you explain the quotation from the dictionary which is rather puzzling?


certainly...

Sheila wrote:
zéro pointé. Cet usage typographique est tombé en désuétude dans l’écriture manuscrite mais pas la langue des écoliers qui désigne encore ainsi la plus mauvaise note possible et l’absence absolue de résultat scolaire.


Zéro pointé. The use of this expression has fallen into disuse in the written language but in the language of schoolchildren it is still taken to mean the worst possible mark one would hope to achieve, the absolute absence of a scholarly result.

Zero with a Capital Z !

So when V. Marriot translates zéro pointé as a hitting the spot - a "home hit" then No...absolutely not. It means the complete opposite.


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PostPosted: 15 Oct 2016 4:50 pm 
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I chose not to bore you with the rest of the translation but it's wrong from start to finish. The meaning of what Chérisey is trying to express is lost in this translation.

Original is "Qu’est-ce que ça peut vous faire " ?

Translated as “What can you do?”

What it actually means is " What difference does it make to you" or "Is it really any of your business"

which is why the student got a mega-zero nul point.


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PostPosted: 15 Oct 2016 9:32 pm 
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Thank you but I have a feeling there is more to it than that.

The zero pointe was a printer's convention - NOT an expression - that has fallen into disuse in the written word. True that it is a slang expression that kids use so it is not in most dictionaries but Dingron Mozart is not a school kid, he's the teacher so why is he using it? Teachers of that epoch did not "get down among the kids." - that could be why I am puzzled.


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PostPosted: 16 Oct 2016 7:15 am 
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Le "o" et le "0" pouvant aisément être confondus, lorsque le "0" était écrit seul, on avait coutume d'écrire un point en son centre, pour signifier que c'était bien un "0" et non un "o". On ne l'emploie plus de nos jours, mais les élèves utilisent toujours l'expression "zéro pointé" pour désigner le fait qu'ils aient eu un zéro.


The "o" and "0" can easily be confused, when the "0" is written singly, it was customary to put a dot in its center, to signify that it was a "0" and not a " o ". We don't employ this method today, but students still use the term "zéro pointé" to refer to the fact that they had a zero.

zéro pointé est employé comme l'expression....... note éliminatoire - zéro pointé is used as the expression FAIL.

Zero pointé = Completly nul.

"le gouvernement mérite un zéro pointé" = "the government deserves a big fat zero"

etc.


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PostPosted: 16 Oct 2016 8:07 pm 
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Do you think Dingron Mozart is

1) Real?
2) Fictitious?
3) Based on a real person?
4) Another aspect of Philippe de Cherisey?

And the identity of the Institute

1) Is it the Paris Institute?
2) Is it where Philippe trained as an actor?
3) Is it where Philippe was at school?
4) Is it fictitious?


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PostPosted: 16 Oct 2016 9:42 pm 
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Pilrig wrote:

And the identity of the Institute

1) Is it the Paris Institute?
2) Is it where Philippe trained as an actor?
3) Is it where Philippe was at school?
4) Is it fictitious?


Le Collège de 'Pataphysique?


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PostPosted: 17 Oct 2016 4:55 am 
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gladium wrote:
Pilrig wrote:

And the identity of the Institute

1) Is it the Paris Institute?
2) Is it where Philippe trained as an actor?
3) Is it where Philippe was at school?
4) Is it fictitious?


Le Collège de 'Pataphysique?


:lol:

Also - DM are the intials of both Dingron Mozart and Dis Manibus.

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PostPosted: 17 Oct 2016 10:34 pm 
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Pilrig wrote:
Do you think Dingron Mozart is

1) Real?
2) Fictitious?
3) Based on a real person?
4) Another aspect of Philippe de Cherisey?

And the identity of the Institute

1) Is it the Paris Institute?
2) Is it where Philippe trained as an actor?
3) Is it where Philippe was at school?
4) Is it fictitious?


Pilrig, what is less then zero on a map of arcadia?

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PostPosted: 18 Oct 2016 1:32 am 
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Pilrig wrote:
Thank you but I have a feeling there is more to it than that.

The zero pointe was a printer's convention - NOT an expression - that has fallen into disuse in the written word. True that it is a slang expression that kids use so it is not in most dictionaries but Dingron Mozart is not a school kid, he's the teacher so why is he using it? Teachers of that epoch did not "get down among the kids." - that could be why I am puzzled.



To be honest there is another meaning. We have discussed esp. Louvian the Masonic sign of the circle and the dot in the middle. I would only be speculating in saying that de Cherisey was using it as another form of symbol as it's meaning is quite specific. It is an Ancient symbol and the more ancient the probably the more credible the explanation would be. When looking at Vi marriot's description it may be they are an initiate and are trying to explain in the best way possible an explanation by reverse engineering and couching in general terms.

Anyway it is clear from Sheila's description of less then zero is one way to translate the text but it doesn't negate that de Cherisey would have meant both as they can coincide.

Circuit from what I know were supposed to be transcripts for a surrealist comedy/political sketch radio show - at least some of it was.


It's a bit like Alice in Wonderland that uses the chess board, trigonometry and Geometry as it's basis cause Lewis Carroll aka Charles Dogdson was a Maths Professor.

or

The belief that God created the universe according to a geometric plan has ancient origins. Plutarch attributed the belief to Plato, writing that "Plato said God geometrizes continually" (Convivialium disputationum, liber 8,2). In modern times the mathematician Carl Friedrich Gauss adapted this quote, saying "God arithmetizes".[2]


https://archive.org/stream/pdfy-vyvZm-c ... d_djvu.txt
Quote:
First up, in column eighteen at the far right-hand side, is a set of elements known as the noble
gases. Noble is an archaic, funny- sounding word, less chemistry than ethics or philosophy. And
indeed, the term "noble gases" goes back to the birthplace of Western philosophy, ancient Greece.
There, after his fellow Greeks Leucippus and Democritus invented the idea of atoms, Plato minted the
word "elements" (in Greek, stoicheid) as a general term for different small particles of matter. Plato
— who left Athens for his own safety after the death of his mentor, Socrates, around 400 bc and
wandered around writing philosophy for years — of course lacked knowledge of what an element
really is in chemistry terms. But if he had known, he no doubt would have selected the elements on the
eastern edge of the table, especially helium, as his favorites.

In his dialogue on love and the erotic, The Symposium, Plato claimed that every being longs to
find its complement, its missing half. When applied to people, this implies passion and sex and all the
troubles that accompany passion and sex. In addition, Plato emphasized throughout his dialogues that
abstract and unchanging things are intrinsically more noble than things that grub around and interact
with gross matter. This explains why he adored geometry, with its idealized circles and cubes,
objects perceptible only to our reason. For nonmathematical objects, Plato developed a theory of
"forms," which argued that all objects are shadows of one ideal type. All trees, for instance, are
imperfect copies of an ideal tree, whose perfect "tree-ness" they aspire to. The same with fish and
"fish-ness" or even cups and "cup-ness." Plato believed that these forms were not merely theoretical
but actually existed, even if they floated around in an empyrean realm beyond the direct perception of
humans. He would have been as shocked as anyone, then, when scientists began conjuring up ideal
forms on earth with helium

In 1911, a Dutch-German scientist was cooling mercury with liquid helium when he discovered



that below -452°F the system lost all electrical resistance and became an ideal conductor. This
would be sort of like cooling an iPod down to hundreds of degrees below zero and finding that the
battery remained fully charged no matter how long or loud you played music, until infinity, as long as
the helium kept the circuitry cold. A Russian-Canadian team pulled an even neater trick in 1937 with
pure helium. When cooled down to -456°F, helium turned into a superfluid, with exactly zero
viscosity and zero resistance to flow — perfect fluidness. Superfluid helium defies gravity and flows
uphill and over walls. At the time, these were flabbergasting finds. Scientists often fudge and pretend
that effects like friction equal zero, but only to simplify calculations. Not even Plato predicted
someone would actually find one of his ideal forms.

Helium is also the best example of "element-ness" — a substance that cannot be broken down or
altered by normal, chemical means. It took scientists 2,200 years, from Greece in 400 bc to Europe in
1800 ad, to grasp what elements really are, because most are too changeable. It was hard to see what
made carbon carbon when it appeared in thousands of compounds, all with different properties.
Today we would say that carbon dioxide, for instance, isn't an element because one molecule of it
divides into carbon and oxygen. But carbon and oxygen are elements because you cannot divide them
more finely without destroying them Returning to the theme of The Symposium and Plato's theory of
erotic longing for a missing half, we find that virtually every element seeks out other atoms to form
bonds with, bonds that mask its nature. Even most "pure" elements, such as oxygen molecules in the
air (0 2 ), always appear as composites in nature. Yet scientists might have figured out what elements

are much sooner had they known about helium, which has never reacted with another substance, has
never been anything but a pure element. *


http://www.livescience.com/51894-prime- ... hifts.html

Quote:
*Why the 'Prime Meridian of the World' Shifted Hundreds of Feet
By Charles Q. Choi, Live Science Contributor
Why the 'Prime Meridian of the World' Shifted Hundreds of Feet
The Prime Meridian of the World (dotted line) and the modern reference meridian indicating zero longitude using satellite measurements (solid line).

Once called the Prime Meridian of the World, the invisible line running north to south that divides the world into Eastern and Western hemispheres passed through the Airy Transit Circle — a 19th-century telescopic instrument at the Royal Observatory at Greenwich, England.

However, this line of longitude now runs 334 feet (102 meters) east of where it did. What made it shift? A change in finding out which way is down — from using a basin of liquid mercury to relying on satellites around Earth, researchers have found.

Nowadays, any point on Earth's surface can be described by its latitude and longitude — lines of latitude run from east to west, while lines of longitude run from north to south. Although the concept of running a grid of lines over a map to specify places on the Earth was first suggested by ancient Greek astronomer and mathematician Hipparchus in about 150 B.C., the idea did not take off until the Age of Discovery, when explorers began wandering across the globe, beginning in the early part of the 15th century.



Developing ways to pinpoint one's latitude and longitude was one of the greatest scientific endeavors in history, a quest that ultimately took centuries and was a matter of life and death. Navigation at sea was extraordinarily challenging, resulting in countless tragedies because ships could not get a fix on where they were. One example of such a disaster happened in 1707, when four British warships and more than 1,400 lives were lost because storms forced the fleet's navigators off course, making them believe they were safely to the west of the island of Ushant instead of closing in on dangerous rocks near the Isles of Scilly. [9 Craziest Ocean Voyages]

Finding lat. and long.

In order to define a location in terms of latitude and longitude, one first has to have starting points both for the lines running north to south, known as meridians, and those running east to west, known as parallels. In the case of latitude, the easiest place to start from and set as zero is the equator. However, the location of the prime meridian, which marks zero degrees longitude, is completely arbitrary — it could be located anywhere. Britain once ruled the waves, and so the Royal Observatory at Greenwich near London ultimately became the reference point for longitude.

Latitude is relatively easy to calculate, using an instrument such as an astrolabe to measure the altitude of the sun or a charted star over the horizon. In contrast, the key to calculating longitude is rooted in time. A line of longitude can be thought of not just as a marker of space but also of time — for instance, the eastern United States is an hour or more ahead of the western United States. If navigators can know what time it is at a fixed reference point, such as the prime meridian, the difference between the time at that reference point and the time wherever the navigators are located can help pinpoint the distance of their ships from that fixed location, and thus determine their longitude. [5 of the Most Precise Clocks Ever Made]

After inventors created timepieces accurate enough to help navigators calculate their longitude, an international conference in 1884 officially established the prime meridian through Greenwich. The prime meridian was used to establish Greenwich Mean Time, upon which all other time zones now depend.

Before clocks accurate enough to pinpoint longitude were developed, navigators gazed up at the night sky to determine time. The apparent position of the moon and stars depends on where Earth is facing, and since Earth spins on its axis at a regular pace like a clock, knowing where Earth is facing can help navigators deduce their time and longitude.

These astronomical calculations depended on navigators knowing how their instruments might be tilted with relation to the positions of the moon and stars, explained study co-author Ken Seidelmann, an astronomer at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. The act of "determining the vertical," or knowing which way was straight down, in turn depended on watching a basin of liquid mercury — gravity pulled the fluid downward so it was level with the horizon.

The problem with this strategy is that Earth's gravity field varies in strength over its surface. Anything that has mass has a gravity field that pulls objects toward it, and the strength of this field depends on that body's mass. Since Earth's mass is not spread out evenly, this means its gravity field is stronger in some places and weaker in others.

At Greenwich, Earth's gravity field does not pull straight downward. This means the vertical there "did not go through the center of the Earth," Seidelmann told Live Science.

Center of Earth

In 1984, scientists began using satellites to precisely measure latitude and longitude coordinates on Earth's surface. The verticals this strategy measures do go through the center of the Earth. The offset between these two kinds of verticals explains why the prime meridian now runs 334 feet (102 m) east of where it did, Seidelmann said.

With the aid of colleagues around the world, the researchers also found that the problem was not limited to Greenwich. "We contacted friends who knew what their coordinates had been to go out with GPS receivers to take a reading to see whether there had been a change," Seidelmann said. "We found that each place had a different past value for their coordinates, probably based on how gravity caused a local deflection of the vertical."

"It was fun coming up with conclusive evidence as to what really happened with the prime meridian, and why," Seidelmann said.

He and his colleagues detailed their findings in the August issue of the Journal of Geodesy.



Thinking with Objects: The Transformation of Mechanics in the Seventeenth ...
By Domenico Bertoloni Meli

Image

Image

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PostPosted: 19 Oct 2016 7:55 pm 
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Amedee and Gregoire are mentioned in later Circuit


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PostPosted: 24 Oct 2016 7:13 pm 
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In the Preface there is reference to the verses from Good King Dagobert and the pictures from the tarot which head each chapter. The provenance of both is given precisely. The verses come from the Grand Larousse Encyclopaedia and the Tarot Pictures are from the Major Arcana of the Marseilles Tarot.


Forward to the Preface by the author (Philippe de Chérisey)
It says the twenty-two Chapters appear in the accepted order 1,2,3 … etc confirmed by the pictures. However the verses of Good King Dagobert are not. It suggests that the reader could rearrange the Chapters to discover a second circuit.
It then indicates other sets of twenty-two for the reader to discover.
a) The 22 stations of the Vincennes-Neuilly line.


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PostPosted: 26 Oct 2016 3:29 pm 
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High King

Joined: 04 May 2009 7:03 am
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Location: Australia
rain.

Please, for goodness' sake, sort out your apostrophes.

For example:

Quote:
It's a bit like Alice in Wonderland that uses the chess board, trigonometry and Geometry as it's basis cause Lewis Carroll aka Charles Dogdson was a Maths Professor.

I was at St James's Station three days ago. My wife's Oyster didn't work. The station attendant said: "It's out of money".

I said: "My wife doesn't work, why'd you think it does"?

He said: "Stop being a smart-arse."

He was right. So was I.

And, BTW, why does Trigonometry have a lesser status than Geometry?


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PostPosted: 26 Oct 2016 8:14 pm 
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b) The 22 volumes of the journal of the Goncourts.

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2006/ ... anreview27


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PostPosted: 27 Oct 2016 7:15 pm 
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Wombat wrote:

My wife's Oyster didn't work.


Oh I am sorry.

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Ludwig Wittgenstein


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PostPosted: 31 Oct 2016 5:09 pm 
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Pilrig, keep going.... i know for sure that those who have not read Circuit will be all ears.


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PostPosted: 31 Oct 2016 6:42 pm 
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It being Hallowe'en the night, I'll continue the morra.
A blessed Samhain to all Arcadians !


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PostPosted: 31 Oct 2016 7:11 pm 
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otherwise known as la Fête des Pommes. - fête des morts.


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PostPosted: 31 Oct 2016 7:51 pm 
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Caelum wrote:
Wombat wrote:

My wife's Oyster didn't work.


Oh I am sorry.


Did it clam up?


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PostPosted: 01 Nov 2016 6:30 am 
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gladium wrote:
Caelum wrote:
Wombat wrote:

My wife's Oyster didn't work.


Oh I am sorry.


Did it clam up?


Quote:
..keep going.... i know for sure that those who have not read...will be all ears.


Let me whisper into your shell-like:

A catastrophe. No apostrophe.

Bianca’s Dream.
A Venetian Story.

Thomas Hood (1827)

1.

Bianca! — fair Bianca! — who could dwell

With safety on her dark and hazel gaze,

Nor find there lurk’d in it a witching spell,

Fatal to balmy nights and blessed days?

The peaceful breath that made the bosom swell,

She turn’d to gas, and set it in a blaze;

Each eye of hers had Love’s Eupyrion in it,

That he could light his link at in a minute.

2.

So that, wherever in her charms she shone,

A thousand breasts were kindled into flame;

Maidens who cursed her looks forgot their own,

And beaux were turn’d to flambeaux where she came;

All hearts indeed were conquer’d but her own,

Which none could ever temper down or tame:

In short, to take our haberdasher’s hints,

She might have written over it — “from Flints.”

3.

She was, in truth, the wonder of her sex,

At least in Venice — where with eyes of brown

Tenderly languid, ladies seldom vex

An amorous gentle with a needless frown;

Where gondolas convey guitars by pecks,

And Love at casements climbeth up and down,

Whom for his tricks and custom in that kind,

Some have considered a Venetian blind.

4.

Howbeit, this difference was quickly taught,

Amongst more youths who had this cruel jailer,

To hapless Julio — all in vain he sought

With each new moon his hatter and his tailor;

In vain the richest padusoy he bought,

And went in bran new beaver to assail her —

As if to show that Love had made him smart

All over — and not merely round his heart.

5.

In vain he labor’d thro’ the sylvan park

Bianca haunted in — that where she came,

Her learned eyes in wandering might mark

The twisted cypher of her maiden name,

Wholesomely going thro’ a course of bark:

No one was touched or troubled by his flame,

Except the Dryads, those old maids that grow

In trees — like wooden dolls in embryo.

6.

In vain complaining elegies he writ,

And taught his tuneful instrument to grieve,

And sang in quavers how his heart was split,

Constant beneath her lattice with each eve;

She mock’d his wooing with her wicked wit,

And slash’d his suit so that it matched his sleeve,

Till he grew silent at the vesper star,

And, quite despairing, hamstring’d his guitar.

7.

Bianca’s heart was coldly frosted o’er

With snows unmelting — an eternal sheet,

But his was red within him, like the core

Of old Vesuvius, with perpetual heat;

And oft he longed internally to pour

His flames and glowing lava at her feet,

But when his burnings he began to spout.

She stopp’d his mouth, and put the crater out.

8.

Meanwhile he wasted in the eyes of men,

So thin, he seem’d a sort of skeleton-key

Suspended at death’s door — so pale — and then

He turn’d as nervous as an aspen tree;

The life of man is three score years and ten,

But he was perishing at twenty-three,

For people truly said, as grief grew stronger,

“It could not shorten his poor life — much longer.”

9.

For why, he neither slept, nor drank, nor fed,

Nor relished any kind of mirth below;

Fire in his heart, and frenzy in his head,

Love had become his universal foe,

Salt in his sugar — nightmare in his bed,

At last, no wonder wretched Julio,

A sorrow-ridden thing, in utter dearth

Of hope — made up his mind to cut her girth!

10.

For hapless lovers always died of old,

Sooner than chew reflection’s bitter cud;

So Thisbe stuck herself, what time ’tis told,

The tender-hearted mulberries wept blood;

And so poor Sappho when her boy was cold,

Drown’d her salt tear drops in a salter flood,

Their fame still breathing, tho’ their breath be past,

For those old suitors lived beyond their last.

11.

So Julio went to drown — when life was dull,

But took his corks, and merely had a bath;

And once he pull’d a trigger at his skull,

But merely broke a window in his wrath;

And once, his hopeless being to annul,

He tied a pack-thread to a beam of lath,

A line so ample, ’twas a query whether

’Twas meant to be a halter or a tether.

12.

Smile not in scorn, that Julio did not thrust

His sorrows thro’—’tis horrible to die!

And come down, with our little all of dust,

That dun of all the duns to satisfy:

To leave life’s pleasant city as we must,

In Death’s most dreary spunging-house to lie,

Where even all our personals must go

To pay the debt of nature that we owe!

13.

So Julio liv’d:—’twas nothing but a pet

He took at life — a momentary spite;

Besides, he hoped that time would some day get

The better of love’s flame, howover bright;

A thing that time has never compass’d yet,

For love, we know, is an immortal light.

Like that old fire, that, quite beyond a doubt,

Was always in — for none have found it out.

14.

Meanwhile, Bianca dream’d —’twas once when Night

Along the darken’d plain began to creep,

Like a young Hottentot, whose eyes are bright,

Altho’ in skin as sooty as a sweep:

The flow’rs had shut their eyes — the zephyr light

Was gone, for it had rock’d the leaves to sleep.

And all the little birds had laid their heads

Under their wings — sleeping in feather beds.

15.

Lone in her chamber sate the dark-ey’d maid,

By easy stages jaunting thro’ her pray’rs,

But list’ning side-long to a serenade,

That robb’d the saints a little of their shares;

For Julio underneath the lattice play’d

His Deh Vieni, and such amorous airs,

Born only underneath Italian skies,

Where every fiddle has a Bridge of Sighs.

16.

Sweet was the tune — the words were even sweeter —

Praising her eyes, her lips, her nose, her hair,

With all the common tropes wherewith in metre

The hackney poets overcharge their fair.

Her shape was like Diana’s, but completer;

Her brow with Grecian Helen’s might compare:

Cupid, alas! was cruel Sagittarius,

Julio — the weeping water-man Aquarius.

17.

Now, after listing to such laudings rare,

’Twas very natural indeed to go —

What if she did postpone one little pray’r —

To ask her mirror “if it was not so?”

’Twas a large mirror, none the worse for wear,

Reflecting her at once from top to toe:

And there she gazed upon that glossy track,

That show’d her front face tho’ it “gave her back.”

18.

And long her lovely eyes were held in thrall,

By that dear page where first the woman reads:

That Julio was no flatt’rer, none at all,

She told herself — and then she told her beads;

Meanwhile, the nerves insensibly let fall

Two curtains fairer than the lily breeds;

For Sleep had crept and kiss’d her unawares,

Just at the half-way milestone of her pray’rs.

19.

Then like a drooping rose so bended she,

Till her bow’d head upon her hand reposed;

But still she plainly saw, or seem’d to see,

That fair reflection, tho’ her eyes were closed,

A beauty-bright as it was wont to be,

A portrait Fancy painted while she dozed:

’Tis very natural some people say,

To dream of what we dwell on in the day.

20.

Still shone her face — yet not, alas! the same,

But ‘gan some dreary touches to assume,

And sadder thoughts, with sadder changes came —

Her eyes resigned their light, her lips their bloom,

Her teeth fell out, her tresses did the same,

Her cheeks were tinged with bile, her eyes with rheum:

There was a throbbing at her heart within,

For, oh! there was a shooting in her chin.

21.

And lo! upon her sad desponding brow,

The cruel trenches of besieging age,

With seams, but most unseemly, ‘gan to show

Her place was booking for the seventh stage;

And where her raven tresses used to flow,

Some locks that Time had left her in his rage.

And some mock ringlets, made her forehead shady,

A compound (like our Psalms) of tête and braidy.

22.

Then for her shape — alas! how Saturn wrecks,

And bends, and corkscrews all the frame about,

Doubles the hams, and crooks the straightest necks,

Draws in the nape, and pushes forth the snout,

Makes backs and stomachs concave or convex:

Witness those pensioners called In and Out,

Who all day watching first and second rater,

Quaintly unbend themselves — but grow no straighter.

23.

So Time with fair Bianca dealt, and made

Her shape a bow, that once was like an arrow;

His iron hand upon her spine he laid,

And twisted all awry her “winsome marrow.”

In truth it was a change! — she had obey’d

The holy Pope before her chest grew narrow,

But spectacles and palsy seem’d to make her

Something between a Glassite and a Quaker.

24.

Her grief and gall meanwhile were quite extreme,

And she had ample reason for her trouble;

For what sad maiden can endure to seem

Set in for singleness, tho’ growing double.

The fancy madden’d her; but now the dream,

Grown thin by getting bigger, like a bubble,

Burst — but still left some fragments of its size,

That, like the soapsuds, smarted in her eyes.

25.

And here — just here — as she began to heed

The real world, her clock chimed out its score;

A clock it was of the Venetian breed,

That cried the hour from one to twenty-four;

The works moreover standing in some need

Of workmanship, it struck some dozens more;

A warning voice that clench’d Bianca’s fears,

Such strokes referring doubtless to her years.

26.

At fifteen chimes she was but half a nun,

By twenty she had quite renounced the veil;

She thought of Julio just at twenty-one,

And thirty made her very sad and pale,

To paint that ruin where her charms would run;

At forty all the maid began to fail,

And thought no higher, as the late dream cross’d her,

Of single blessedness, than single Gloster.

27.

And so Bianca changed; — the next sweet even,

With Julio in a black Venetian bark,

Row’d slow and stealthily — the hour, eleven,

Just sounding from the tow’r of old St. Mark;

She sate with eyes turn’d quietly to heav’n,

Perchance rejoicing in the grateful dark

That veil’d her blushing cheek — for Julio brought her

Of course — to break the ice upon the water.

28.

But what a puzzle is one’s serious mind

To open; — oysters, when the ice is thick,

Are not so difficult and disinclin’d;

And Julio felt the declaration stick

About his throat in a most awful kind;

However, he contrived by bits to pick

His trouble forth — much like a rotten cork

Grop’d from a long-necked bottle with a fork.

29.

But love is still the quickest of all readers;

And Julio spent besides those signs profuse

That English telegraphs and foreign pleaders,

In help of language, are so apt to use,

Arms, shoulders, fingers, all were interceders,

Nods, shrugs, and bends — Bianca could not choose

But soften to his suit with more facility,

He told his story with so much agility.

30.

“Be thou my park, and I will be thy dear,

(So he began at last to speak or quote;)

Be thou my bark, and I thy gondolier,

(For passion takes this figurative note;)

Be thou my light, and I thy chandelier;

Be thou my dove, and I will be thy cote:

My lily be, and I will be thy river;

Be thou my life — and I will be thy liver.”

31.

This, with more tender logic of the kind,

He pour’d into her small and shell-like ear,

That timidly against his lips inclin’d;

Meanwhile her eyes glanced on the silver sphere

That even now began to steal behind

A dewy vapor, which was lingering near,

Wherein the dull moon crept all dim and pale,

Just like a virgin putting on the veil:—

32.

Bidding adieu to all her sparks — the stars,

That erst had woo’d and worshipp’d in her train,

Saturn and Hesperus, and gallant Mars —

Never to flirt with heavenly eyes again.

Meanwhile, remindful of the convent bars,

Bianca did not watch these signs in vain,

But turn’d to Julio at the dark eclipse,

With words, like verbal kisses, on her lips.

33.

He took the hint full speedily, and, back’d

By love, and night, and the occasion’s meetness,

Bestow’d a something on her cheek that smack’d

(Tho’ quite in silence) of ambrosial sweetness;

That made her think all other kisses lack’d

Till then, but what she knew not, of completeness;

Being used but sisterly salutes to feel,

Insipid things — like sandwiches of veal.

34.

He took her hand, and soon she felt him wring

The pretty fingers all instead of one;

Anon his stealthy arm began to cling

About her waist that had been clasp’d by none,

Their dear confessions I forbear to sing,

Since cold description would but be outrun;

For bliss and Irish watches have the pow’r,

In twenty minutes, to lose half an hour!


https://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/h/hood/t ... tml#poem99


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