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day matinee, to which he was accustomed to take her, he had brought her here for a meal, but always to a certain room in the first story. But to-day he led her directly into the rooms on the ground floor, where various companies were already seated at little tables.
"We are now an officially betrothed. pair, and we do not need to hide ourselves," he whispered softly to her as they entered.
The waiter led the way to a little table in the last room but one on which stood a little electric lamp with a red silk shade. Two covers were already laid.
"Ah, how pretty that is!" she said and for the first time looked happy, "what nice things!"
He only bowed. She admired the fine white flowered table-cloth, the dishes and glasses, the glittering silver, the flowers in the vases and the good soup. Then she commenced to look around. The ladies at the other little tables were so beautifully dressed, the gentlemen in uniforms and dress coats, everything was so festive. And still more guests were coming. They were passing close by their table. A lady stopped.
"Hubert Ehren! already back from Paris? and-" but she stammered in the middle of a word, saw Lisbeth, blushed, and turned away. The gentleman who followed her, greeted him smilingly.
But Hubert had sprung up: “Come," he said quickly, and drew her from her chair. "They think-I will not have that!"
Before she knew what he was doing, she stood with him before that couple: "My betrothed bride!" he said, "we have just come from my mother's," and then introduced to her Mr. Reinhold Weber and wife. The gentleman grasped a hand of each and congratulated them effusively, Hubert on his
beautiful bride, and Lisbeth on her distinguished groom.
The good wishes of the lady sounded noticeably cooler. She was little and delicate and beautifully dressed. She looked at Lisbeth through her lorgnette with the long handle. "Heavens!" She said slowly, "where have I seen her? Her face-Hubert, help me, where have I seen this lady?"
"That is impossible for me to say. It is possible that so great a collector as you are may have seen one of Helleu's etchings very like her-"
"Helleu! No. She is much more in the English style, more like an old Gainsborough, or something by Sir Thomas Lawrence-But it was not a picture, it was-no, impossible! But Hubert, I have not talked with you enough about your last book. These lines entirely without color-"
"Are exactly what a poem is without illustration," he said, "therefore the purest, the quintessence."
"Color is poetry," she cried.
"As a general thing color coarsens, color gives body, hinders our imagination, when it would, of itself, form the picture, and even when color is there, it can translate its aims, form its substance. True value is only given by strong lines."
"Do you understand much of this?" asked Mr. Weber, turning toward Lisbeth.
"No," she said, distinctly, "not a word."
"Permit me!" cried the waiter, who tried to pass with a great plate of roast meat. For they were standing between the tables.
"A practically chosen place for an esthetic dispute about art, which may last a long time," murmured Mr. Weber.
Hubert heard him. He laughed. "I notice. You are hungry. We will go. Lydia and I will another time engage in a fruitless combat, hours long-Come
The lady took her long lorgnette and looked after them.
"Now," asked Hubert, as they again took their places, as Lisbeth left the soup, which she had found so good, untouched, "what is the matter with you? What has the beautiful Lydia done to you?"
"She recognized me," she said with 'tear-choked voice.
"Who, Lydia Weber? Where could she have known you?"
"She comes so often now to visit Frau Doctor. She was there yesterday, and I opened the door for her. And to morrow she is invited to breakfast. She knew me immediately. in her."
I saw it
He threw his head up so that his thick locks fell back from his forehead. "That makes no difference. Or rather it is so much the better. She may know it all, all, that I do not need her any longer; that her advances and her flatteries do not move my heart, because it is in firm hands. How can you let that vex you, Lisbeth? wonder for a little while that I have not chosen for a bride some refined phenomenon, some esthetic creature, like herself. If she only knew how little I grudge her to the good Weber!"
"Did you want to marry her?" "Want? I? She wanted it enough. And my mother and the acquaintances. But I, never. She is too little. And too over-cultured. She wants to do too much. I need rest. She would never be able to answer my needs. It makes me shudder to imagine her sweeping through my work room with her swishing silk trailing robes-but you, Lisbeth"-he leaned over the table to her and tried to look into her eyes, which she kept fixed on her plate. "You, in your young slenderness, so earnest and full of style, you will suit the rooms. You must know that the chairs and
table and every cupboard are made according to my designs; I collected the materials in my journeys, matching colors, so that every tint and every shade harmonize with that which I have carried in my mind, my thoughts, reflecting my most inward being. is a real home such as it should be, the image and fulfilment of the human being who created it. And in this home of my thought, among the pictures, the hangings, the furniture, which I discovered, will you be, Lisbeth, a part of my Ego, also discovered by me, thought out and loved.-Now, will you not smile? Do you not also find this outlook beautiful?"
"Ah," she said hesitating, "if then people look at me as these others have done just now. And when I must tell my name and do not even do that well, then you also will not like that. And when I don't know anything-"
"Then I will teach you."
"Yes, but I cannot learn so much. You always speak of strange people and in strange language. As long as you were alone with me, all went well. But now, to-day-first your mother and then Mrs. Weber-she understands you. But to me you will have to explain everything. I am not fit for you."
"Child," he said, "you child, as you are, only wait a little. You learn so easily and I will guide you."
"No," she cried, "that is just it. I cannot count on that. I also am no longer a child. You said that of yourself and I am no more a child than you. When I was fourteen I left home. And now suddenly I must watch every step I take and feel all the time that everything I do is wrong and I should do it some other way, and you will be ashamed of me-"
He looked straight in her face with his shining eyes: "I love you, Lisbeth. Do you not also love me?" "Yes, I do, but-"
"No but. There is none. Honest
love is understanding, honest love other. Be patient. In two weeks you knows how to renounce its own Ego will be my wife." for a wife in order to give up to the Rundschau.
(To be concluded.)
THE CHARACTERISTICS OF BIBLE PORTRAITURE.
There are no subjects so difficult to "It is exstudy as those nearest to us. pedient for you that I go away" are words that might be printed on every familiar object in the world. It is the things which are in contact with us that are the things most hid from us. We know more about the stars than we Why? do of our own life. Just because life is our own, and the stars are not. I do not think familiarity breeds contempt; my adage would rather be that familiarity breeds blindness. The constant and unvaried vicinity of an object incapacitates us from mentally seeing it.
I think the literature of the Bible has suffered peculiarly in this respect. There is no book in Europe whose phrases are so familiar; there is, perhaps, no book in Europe of which the masses have so little artistic knowledge. I say "artistic knowledge." Men have looked upon it so long as a thing of divine grace that they have ceased to view it as a thing of human nature. There is even an impression that, from the natural side, a knowledge of the Bible is no mark of culture. Tell an average man that he has thoroughly appreciated the literary spirit of Homer; he will feel proud. Tell an average man that he is thoroughly deficient in a knowledge of English literature; he will be either incensed or ashamed. But I have heard young men of great ambition and of high pretensions actually boast of their ignorance
of the Bible! It is the artistic aspect of such a boast that alone I have here to do with. The idea evidently is that, however much the Bible makes a demand upon the conscience, it makes no demand upon the culture. And I attribute this impression largely to the fact that the words of the book are so familiar to the conscience. The conscience is the innermost part of our nature; and what gets in there, is not easily brought further out. A song whose words are familiar by the tune is not likely to be appreciated at its poetic value; and a book whose first appeal is to the conscience is not readily overheard by the literary instinct.
None the less, the impression of the average man on this subject is the reverse of the truth. In order to see this, the first thing to do is to stand back. What we want is a more distant prospect of the Bible: It is too near us. Its literature is eclipsed by its message of salvation. Its awful proximity to the soul prevents it from being seen by the eye. I intend to escape from this proximity. I am going to make an effort to obtain a more distant view. I will try to forget that this book brings a message of salvation. I will try to forget that it is making an appeal to my conscience. I will endeavor to be a neutral spectator, to look at the book as if I had seen it for the first timeseen it as a purely secular thing, and as a purely literary phenomenon. To facil
itate such an effort I shall keep to that in the Bible which is most secular and nearest to the common day-the figures delineated upon the page of Scripture.
I have not long adopted the attitude until I am brought to a very startling discovery. It is this, that the figures of the Bible are purely mental pictures. Dealing as I am with the products of an unphilosophic people, I expect to find that the physical predominates; I find that the physical is almost entirely absent. Have you ever turned your mind to this peculiarity of Bible portraiture its repudiation of photography? When a modern novelist presents the personages of his drama, the first thing he does is to describe them. Our first question about a man is, What is he like? our second is, perhaps, Where does he live?-the immediate subjects of interest are the form and its environment. But the Bible ignores both the form and its environment. You ask in vain the question, What is he like? The personages of the Bible are without dimension, without feature, without physical attribute; they are all spirit. Was Peter tall or short? Was Judas handsome or deformed? Martha wrinkles on her brow? Elijah a flashing eye? Had Abraham a patriarchal mien? No answer comes. We hear on the stage a dialogue of voices, but we see not the form of him who speaks. And the environment is equally unrevealed. There is no vision of the land where Abraham journeyed, of the oak where Abraham worshipped, of the mountain where Abraham sacrificed. So far as description is concerned, Joseph in Egypt might have been equally Joseph in Mesopotamia or Joseph in Arabia. The central figure of all is no exception. The Son of man is physically unseen. The only instance where His outward beauty breaks through the veil is an instance which rather confirms than violates the principle. It is that moment of Trans
figuration glory in which His countenance is illumined exclusively from within.
Now, do you imagine all this was an accident? Do you think it would have been difficult for the historians and poets of Israel to have portrayed the fire on Elijah's face or depicted the openness of Nathaniel's expression? The difficulty must have been to avoid it. The truth is, we have here a bit of literary culture as pronounced as the mannerism of Browning. The key-note of the national Jewish literature, which is also the key-note of the national Jewish character, is struck on its opening page, where, before the light or the firmament, before the herb or the tree, before the emergence of the shape of man or woman, the Spirit moved. This was the nation's motto-the power of the internal. This was to be the music to which its march was to be timedthrough city and desert, through prosperity and captivity. This was the rhythm by which it was to frame the lives of its heroes and according to which it was to estimate their power -the hidden self, the inner man. In its literature as in its religion, the primary rule of Jewish culture was that precept which it inculcated next to the worship of God, "Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image."
Before leaving this point I cannot but direct attention to the fact that these formless lives are household words among us. Spite of their abstractness, they have got possession of both the altar and the hearth. We ourselves have clothed them-given them a body, set them a local habitation. The local habitation we have assigned them is not the land in which they lived. It is our own land, our modern surroundings. The personalities of that far past ever present. They are no anachronism. They sit among us clothed in garbs they never wore on earth; and probably each of us has woven for
them a different garb. Yet to all of us they convey the same spiritual impression. Their identity to us lies not in their garb, but in their mind. Their power remains what it originally was -a mental power. Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, are essentially spiritual entities. They are independent of feature, independent of costume. You do not figure them as I do, but you think of them as I do. We have separate ideals of their form, but we have a common interest in their character. And it is this mental interest that keeps them alive. We have no photograph in common, no picture in common, no image in common; but we have in common the impression of certain mind-forces which have lived and struggled on the stage of time. In this region these words are emphatically true, "It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing."
Here, then, is the first principle of Bible delineation-the absence of any effort at physical representation. But this leads me to a second point closely connected with it. Not only are the men of the Bible purely spiritual abstractions; their deeds are purely inward. The dramas which they enact are enacted within their own brain. The stage on which each of them moves is the stage of his own heart; his dialogue is with himself, and he is unconscious of an audience. In the least philosophical of all nations we have dramatic incidents whose interest is purely psychological and whose theatre is as internal as is the stage on which move the plays of Ibsen. What is the drama of Abraham? It is a sacrifice of the will-a sacrifice which is never outwardly exacted, and where the lamb for the burnt-offering is unseen. What is the drama of Isaac? It is a life of self-restraint-a life in which the man withholds the exercise of half his power. What is the drama of Jacob? It is a struggle with con
science-a struggle in which a man wrestles with his better self until the breaking of the day. What is the drama of Joseph? It is the communing of a youth with his own dreams-alike under the stars of heaven and within the bars of a dungeon. What is the drama of Moses? It is the tragedy of hope deferred-of a heart never quite seeing the realization of its promised land. Nay, I ask it with reverence, what is the drama of Calvary? It is the vision of a Spirit broken by no outward calamity, by no visible storm, by no stress of mind or fortune, but simply and solely by the sense of human sin. A series like this cannot be accidental. It is, in truth, symptomaticthe expression of an idea which pervades the national literature because it constitutes the national life. From Adam to Paul, from Eden to Damascus, from the flaming sword in front of paradise to the flaming light before the eye of the man of Tarsus, the history of Israel exhibits one refrain-the struggle of each man with his own soul.
Now, this inwardness of the Bible drama has become the root of a third characteristic which I cannot otherwise describe than by the name "Shakespearian." By this name I mean to emphasize the fact that the men of the Bible are timeless. They are altogether independent of chronology. There is no distance in development between Hamlet and Julius Cæsar. The peculiarity of Shakespeare is that we have never the sense of going back. The spectator does not need to transport himself by an act of historical sympathy, into another age. Change the costumes, alter the names of places, and there is no difference in time between Macbeth and Richard III. Beyond the fact of his genius, this is not surprising in Shakespeare; the scenes are, after all, the work of a single mind living in a very cosmopolitan period. But that the same char