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HINTS FOR LOVERS

by Arnold Haultain



Boston : Houghton Mifflin Company : New York

310 The Riverside Press Cambridge, Massachusetts U.S.A.



Copyright, 1909, by Theodore Arnold Haultain All Rights Reserved Entered at Stationers' Hall



This Edition is limited to five hundred and forty numbered copies of which this is number 245



To Emma Mellicent Audrey



PHAIDRA: ti touth o dae legousin anthropous eran TROPHOS: aediston, o pai, tauton a lgeinon th ama -Euripides



Table of Contents

I. On Girls II. On Men III. On Women IV. On Love V. On Lovers VI. On Making Love VII. On Beauty VIII. On Courtship IX. On Men and Women X. On Jealousy XI. On Kisses and Kissing XII. On Engagements and Being Engaged XIII. On Marriage and Married Life XIV. On This Human Heart



PLEA: CONFESSION AND AVOIDANCE

". . . aphorism are seldom couched in such terms, that they should be taken as they sound precisely, or according to the widest extent of signification; but do commonly need exposition, and admit exception: otherwise frequently they would not only clash with reason and experience, but interfere, thwart, and supplant one another." —Issac Barrow

"The very essence of an aphorism is that slight exaggeration which makes it more biting whilst less rigidly accurate." —Leslie Stephen



I. On Girls

"A Pearl, A Girl." -Browning

There are of course, girls and girls; yet at heart they are pretty much alike. In age, naturally, they differ wildly. But this is a thorny subject. Suffice it to say that all men love all girls-the maid of sweet sixteen equally with the maid of untold age.

* * *

There is something exasperatingly something-or-otherish about girls. And they know it—which makes them more something-or-otherish still:—there is no other word for it.

* * *

A girl is a complicated thing. It is made up of clothes, smiles, a pompadour, things of which space and prudence forbid the enumeration here. These things by themselves do not constitute a girl which is obvious; nor is any one girl without these things which is not too obvious. Where the things end and the girl begins many men have tried to find out.

Many girls would like to be men—except on occasions. At least so they say, but perhaps this is just a part of their something-or-otherishness. Why they should want to be men, men cannot conceive. Men pale before them, grow hot and cold before them, run before them (and after them), swear by them (and at them), and a bit of a chit of a thing in short skirts and lisle-thread stockings will twist able-bodied males round her little finger.

It is an open secret that girls are fonder of men than they are of one another—which is very lucky for the men.

Girls differ; and the same girl is different at different times. When she is by herself, she is one thing. When she is with other girls she is another thing. When she is with a lot of men, she is a third sort of thing. When she is with a man. . . But this baffled even Agur the son of Jakeh.

As a rule, a man prefers a girl by herself. This is natural. And yet is said that you cannot have too much of a good thing. If this were true, a bevy of girls would be the height of happiness. Yet some men would sooner face the bulls of Bashan.

Some foolish men—probably poets—have sought for and asserted the existence of the ideal girl. This is sheer nonsense: there is no such thing. And if there were, she could not compare with the real girl, the girl of flesh and blood—which (as some one ought to have said) are excellent things in woman.

Other men, equally foolish, have regarded girls as playthings. I wish these men had tried to play with them. They would have found that they were playing with fire and brimstone. Yet the veriest spit-fire can be wondrous sweet.

Sweet? Yes. On the whole a girl is the sweetest thing known or knowable. On the 6 whole of this terrestrial sphere Nature has produced nothing more adorable than the high-spirited high-bred girl.—Of this she is quite aware—to our cost (I speak as a man). The consequence is, her price has gone up, and man has to pay high and pay all sorts of things—ices, sweets, champagne, drives, church-goings, and sometimes spot-cash.

Men are always wishing they knew all about girls. It is a precious good thing that they don't.—Not that this is in any way disparaging to the girls. The fact is

A girl is an infinite puzzle, and it is this puzzle, that, among other things, tickles the men, and rouses their curiosity.

What a man doesn't know about a girl would fill a Saratoga trunk; what her does know about her would go into her work-box.

* * *

The littlest girl is a little women. No boy knows this—and precious few grown up men. Thus

Many a grown up man plays with a girl, then finds himself in love with her. As to the girl—-

Always the girl knows whether the play is leading: she probably chooses the game.

* * *

Very late in life does a man learn the truth (and significance) of that ancient proverb that Kissing goes by Favour. For

The masculine mind is the slave of Law and Justice:

Aphrodite never heard of Law or Justice: she was born at sea. That is to say,

Few are the men who at some time in their lives have not wondered at the vagaries of girlish complaisance: the foolish, the ne'er-do-well, the bully, the careless, the cruel,—it is to these often that a girls' caress is given. And,

Curiously enough, that is, curiously enough as it seems to purblind law-loving man,—should the favored one be openly convicted, that alters not one whit his statue with the girl; for,

A girl, having given her heart, never recalls it not wholly: she may regret; she never recoils. In other words,

To the man of her own free lawless choice a girl is always loyal; to subsequent and subordinate attachments she is dutiful. So,

Even the renegade, if loved by a girl, will be upheld by that girl through thick and thin—secretly, it may be, for often the girl, nevertheless devotedly, and only under compulsion will he listen to the detractor: he may desert her, or, if he sticks to her, he may beat her; no matter: he holds her heart in the hollow of his hand. But, But,

Few things mystify poor law-abiding man than this, that the central, the profoundest, the most portentous puzzle of the universe—the weal of woe of two high-aspiring, much-enduring, youthful human souls, should be the sport of what seems to him the veriest and merest chance.

* * *

The unconscious search of sweet sixteen is for (in mathematical language which will not sophisticate her) the integral of love.—Yet

In the short years between sixteen and twenty a girl's love will undergo rapid and startling developments.

* * *

A girl with lots of brothers has more chances of matrimony than a girl with none: she knows more of men; especially of their weaknesses and idiosyncrasies. And

To know the weaknesses and idiosyncrasies of men is perhaps a wife's chief task; unless it be to put up with them.

* * *

Often enough the freckled and fringrant girl wins over the professional beauty.

* * *

Sometimes grown-up girls are just as shy as little ones—and for the same reasons because there is no one who knows how to play with them.

Girls often play with love as if it were one of the amusements of life; but a day comes when love proves itself the most sensuous thing on earth. And

A girl is quick to discover the kind of love that is required of her. As a rule

Many a girl who has been sore put to it to prove herself whole-hearted. For of course,

Always every suitor expects whole heartedness. And this every girl instinctively knows. Indeed,

Is not a half-hearted love, or a half-hearted acceptress of love, a contradiction in terms?

* * *

A certain measure of the sophisticated or unsophistication of a youthful damsel may be found in her manner o f receiving the attentions of a stranger in a station different from her own.

Young women, themselves but rarely unsophisticated, view with a certain pitying sort of curiosity unsophisticatedness in men. And

A young man's unsophisticatedeness it is a great delight to a woman to eradicate. Yet

A girl regards with complex emotions the man who has blossomed under the genial warmth of her rays; the flattery to own powers is counterbalanced by the evidence of lack of power in him.

* * *

A girl thinks she detects flippancy in seriousness. A woman thinks she detects seriousness in flippancy.

* * *

What would be conduct decidedly risque in a city miss, is often innocent playfulness in a country maid.

* * *

Between the ages of sixteen and eighteen, girls play with love as if it were a doll; very soon after twenty they discover it is a dynamo. This is why

An early and clandestine engagement often works more havoc than happiness. For

Either, one of the parties to the concealed compact receives or pays attention which perturb the other; or, a subsequent and acknowledged lover looks askance at the previous entanglement. Since even if

A clandestine engagement (as is usually the case) is merely a flirtation with the emoluments which accompany a promise to marry, those emoluments are not nice things for a subsequent and avowed lover, whether masculine or feminine, to think upon. Lastly,

A laxity with regard to the claims of courtship is apt to breed a laxity with regard to the claims of wedlock. In short,

Flirtations, like clandestine engagements, are an affront to love. Accordingly

To the engagement-ring should be as attached as much importance as to the wedding-ring. Indeed,

A difficult and a delicate path it is that a girl has to tread through life—and often enough a dangerous. Yet with extraordinary deftness she treads it. She must win her a mate, yet has to pretend that the mate wins her. She makes believe to be captured, yet has herself to be intent on the chase. To be wooed and wedded is the law of her being, yet not for one moment dares she to exhibit too great an alacrity to obey that law; for she knows instinctively that an easy victory prognosticates a fickle victor. Is she abundantly endowed with the very attributes that make for wife-and mother-hood, a strong and swaying passion and an affection unbounded, she must hold them in leash with exemplary patience; for, alas! Are they given the rein for a single passing moment, instead of being accounted unto her for righteousness, they work her ruin. She must win her one man, and she must win him for life; but she cannot pick or choose, for she must wait to be asked.

If she make test of many admirers, she is described as a flirt; if, conscientious and demure, she await her fate, a desirable fate is by no means assured.

In truth it seems that too often a girl must dissemble—hateful as dissemblance in men. T'is a hard road indeed that a girl has to travel. To win her a fellow-farer for life, she must go out of her way to accommodate so many travelers: and this one is lured by this, and that one by that, and another by something unnoticed by the throng. But, an she dissembles one iota too much, her fellow-farers look askance, and he who eventually joins her for good upbraids her for that by which she won.

Dissemblance is indeed at once the boon and the bane of a girl: without it, she thinks to be overlooked (often enough a preposterous assumption); with it, she is looked upon too much. And always,

Always a girl has to pretend that never did she descend to dissemblance. —Which, nevertheless, is sometimes absolutely true, for

Just now and then there happens that miracle of miracles, where their flames up in the man, and their flames up in the maid, in both at once, unaided and unlooked-for, that divine and supra-mundane spark which smolders lambent in every youthful breast: when maid and man take mutual fire at touch of hands and look of eyes,—fire lit at that vestal altar which knows no source and burns for aye.



II. On Men

"Duskolon esti to thremma anthropus." —Plato

For man, the over-grown boy, life has commonly two, and only two, sides: work, and play. Happy he who has for a helpmate one who possesses the faculty of increasing a zeal for the first and of adding a zest to the second. Wherein, O woman, thou mayest happily find the two-fold secret of thy life-work. For

Man is a greedy animal: he wants all or nothing. And fortunately for him,

Women tacitly extol man's greed: they will not be shared any more than they will share.

There is something canine in the masculine nature: like a dog over a bone, it snarls at the very approach of a rival.

* * *

It is curious, but it is true, that proud man becomes prouder (and—more curious still—at the same time humbler) when weak woman gives him something—a look a smile, a locket, her hair, a kiss, herself.

* * *

The greater a man's faith in himself, the greater his mistress hers in him. And perhaps, the greater his mistress her faith in a man, the greater his in himself. For

A woman's faith in a man works wonders.

* * *

A man to whom a woman cannot look up, she cannot love. Yet,

It is marvelous how a woman contrives to find something to look up to in a man.

* * *

Many men forget the artistic tendency of the feminine temperament, a tendency which shows itself in many ways—their love of pretty things, of pretty ways, and of pretty words. From which three alone we may deduce the rule that

When with the woman he admires and whose admiration he seeks, a man cannot be too careful of his dress, his speech, and his manners.

* * *

A believer in Woman is a believer in Good. And vice versa, and mutatis mutandis.

* * *

Man's standard of value of a woman is usually determined by the scale of his own emotions. That is to say,

The pedestal upon which a man places a woman (a man always puts a woman upon a pedestal) is a pedestal erected solely by the effect upon himself of her charms.

* * *

A man may boast himself invincible by men; never by woman.

* * * The lady-killer is always an object of attraction to ladies, even to those whom he makes no attempt to slay.

* * *

It may perhaps be a thing as unreasonable as certainly it is indisputable, that however much wild oats a man may himself sow, he invariably entertains a very peculiar objection to any woman near or dear to him entering upon this particular branch of agriculture.

* * *

He is a fool who does not bear himself before his lady-love as a prince among men.

* * *

Some men are so gallant that they will never be outdone by the woman who encourages them. But it often leads to strange embarrassments and entanglements.

* * *

Few things terrify a man more than the knowledge of a woman's ability to make her emotions—when, if ever, he arrives at it.

* * *

That is a very silly man who thing she can play one woman off against another. For

In matters of emotional finesse the masculine instance is nowhere: it is blinded, befogged, befooled at every turn.

Heaven help the man who is dragged into a quarrel between two wrathful ladies!

* * *

Three things there be—nay, four—which man can never be sure, how a greatsoever his acumen, his astuteness, or his zeal: a woman; a race horse; a patent; and the money-market. They defy both faith and fate; they should be the recreations not the resources of life; and he is a fool who stakes more than a portion of his substance on any one of them.

* * *

What a paltry thing, after all, is man, man uncomplemented by woman! Left to himself, he stagnates; linked with a woman, he rises—-or sinks. A gentle touch stimulates him, a confiding heart makes of him a new creature. Under the rays of feminine sympathy, he expands who else would remain inert. Fame may allure him, friends encourage him, fortune cause him a momentary smile, but only woman makes him; and fame, friends, fortune, all are naught if there be not at his side a sharer of his weal. A man will strive for fortune, strip himself for friends, scour the earth for fame; but were there no woman in the world to be won, not one of these things would he do.

* * *



III. On Women

"Ehret die Fanen!" -Schiller

From woman, who e're she be, there seems to emanate a potency ineffable to man,—impalpable, invisible, divine. It lies not in beauty or grace, not even in manner or mein; and it requires neither wiles nor artifice. It is not the growth of long and intimate acquaintance, for often it acts spontaneously and at once; and neither the woman who possesses it nor the man who succumbs to it can give it a name. For to say that it consists in the effluence or influence of personality or temperament, of affinity or passion, of sympathy or charm, is to say nothing save that we know not what it is. All unknown to herself, it wraps its owner round with airs the which to breathe uplifts the spirit, and yet, may be, perturbs the heart, of man. Even its effects are recondite and obscure. It allures; but how it allures now man shall tell. It impels; but to what, does not appear. It rouses all manner of hopes, stirs sleeping ambition, and desires and aspirations unappeasable; but for what purport or to what end, none stays to inquire . It incites; sometimes it enthralls. It innervates; it exhaults. Under its spell, reason is flung to the winds, and matters of great mundane moment are trivial and of no account: for it bewilders the wit and snatches the judgment of sane and rational men. It is most powerful in youth; it is most powerful upon youth; yet some retain it till far on in years, and no age but feels its sway:—a veiled and mysterious force; sometimes daemonical, often divine: at once the delight and the despair of man. After all,

The man who declares he understands women, declares his folly. For,

If woman were not such a mystery, she would not be such an attraction. For again,

What is known is ignored. (But woman need have no cause for apprehension.) Besides,

Men may be classified; women never. This is why

Generalizing in the case of women is useless; since

Woman is a species of which every woman is a variety. And every man must make up his mind to this, that

Every woman is a study in herself. However,

If women were comprehensible to men, men and women would be friends, not lovers (But the race is safe). The simple fact is that

Womanliness is the supreme attraction, in however fair or however frail a personality it is embodied. And

The sacred function of all womanhood is to kindle in man the divine spark by means 30 of the mystic flame that burns ever in the vestal breast.

* * *

Every true woman's orbit is determined by two forces: Love and Duty. Which is another way of saying that

Women, like the lark, are true to the kindred points of heaven and home. But,

It is only when the two foci are coincident and identical that her orbit becomes the perfect circle and her home becomes her heaven.

* * *

A woman's heart is an unfathomable ocean: nothing ever filled it; no one ever plumbed it. At the surface are glancing waves, or flying spume, or, it may be, raging billows; beneath are silent depths invisible to man. A thousand streams flow into it in vain. Towards varying coast-lines it bears itself variously; here, placid and content; there, dashing furious. But none ever stamped his marked upon its brim, and always it remains the refluent, reluctant sea. Of it man knows only the waves that break or ripple at his feet. It betrays no 31 secrets; it asks not to be understood. Storm and calm but stir or still its surface, and what things it hides forever engulfed no one may learn. Subtle, yet mighty; an eternal, and entrancing, mystery to man.

A man's heart is the enclosing shore; measurable, impressionable, definite, and overt; thinking to house that sea, shaping it, over looking it, and staying and governing its tides. Yet changed by it, crumbling before it, yielding to it: at once its guardian and its slave. Yet perhaps

The placidest of seas is that which is wholly land-locked.

* * *

Women, apparently, were made for men; men for themselves. Certainly

Men seem to carry out this design of Nature, that they should be ministered to by women.

* * *

A woman asks a woman questions in order to discover something. She asks a man questions in order to discover the man.

* * *

he last thing that a woman will risk is her personal appearance. Which is saying a good deal, for

A woman will risk an interview at an unseasonable hour, but not in an unseasonable frock.

* * *

Never, never take a woman au pied de la letter.

* * *

Women's rights are: to be loved.

* * *

Women's duties are: to love.

* * *

There is always something sovereign and monarchial about a woman: like a queen's, her wishes are her commands. And

In matrimony, woman's sovereignty is not abdicated. By no means; it is only transformed from an absolute into a constitutional monarch : she acts then by and with the advice of her First Lord. This is the ideal State.

* * *

Woman's true function, as a citizen, in this world is: to spur men on to high and noble action. And this, quite unconsciously, she does.

Woman's true function, as a woman, in the world is: to evoke man's most fervid emotions, and at the same time to keep them at their highest level. And this she also does—perhaps not quite so unconsciously.

* * *

They err who call women illogical. Feminine logic is inexorable. But it proceeds per saltum. It is man who has laboriously to reason step by step.

* * *

The most wayward woman craves control: To let a woman have her own way is interpreted by her as indifference. And

The surest way to fail to please a woman is to let her do what she pleases.

* * *

Woman is born to acting as the sparks fly upward. And

What a woman really is, nobody knows, least of all herself. To see a woman as she really is, one must see her with her babe. For

It is curious, but it is true, that not even before the passionate and accepted lover to whom she has utterly devoted herself can a woman bare her heart as can she to her babe. Perhaps we may go so far as to say that

Motherhood always partially eclipses wife-hood:

When the child comes, the man stands aside. For

It is not within the capability of man to evoke or to develop the totality of woman. There are feminine potentialities he is powerless to awake. There is a portion of womanliness always hidden from him. To her babe alone she opens the innermost recesses of her soul. For him she wears no masks, affect no accent, plays no part. Even her features take on a different and unique expression before the offspring of her womb. Never is she more womanly, never so strong, never so quite, never so self-contained, never so completely herself, and never so beautify when bending over her helpless infant son. And naturally: for say what one will,

Motherhood is the goal of womanhood. And

Howsoever she comes by it, a woman's burthen is always to her "That Holy Thing". So

No one knows what a woman is like till she is a mother. In other words

Motherhood reveals womanhood. And, be it remembered,

There be childless women—both spinsters and wives—who could mother mankind in their bosoms. Such women wield great influence. For

Many a mere man there is has owed his all to a motherly woman.

* * *

Nor speech, not restore, nor expression of feature, nor all combined, will ever reveal the real feelings of a woman. To unbosom herself is impossible to woman. Do not expect it, for

Definite and accurate utterance is not given to woman.

* * *

The chief business of woman is: first, to get married; second, to get others married.

* * *

It is difficult to say which have played the greater havoc among men: the women with too much conscience, or the woman with none.

* * *

When a woman repulses, beware. When a woman beckons, be warier.

* * *

Woman are always prepared for emergencies.

* * *

With woman, tact and jealousy rarely go hand in hand; tact and spite never.

The only instance in which a woman's tact is apt to be at fault is in detraction of a woman whom she regards as her rival;

The instance in which a woman's tact is seen as its best is in deploying the men who she knows are rivals for her hand. And usually

When a woman has more than one admirer, she not only deploys them, but tries to make them advance en echelon. For

Few things disconcert a woman more than a multiple and simultaneous attack delivered front a front. But

The way in which a woman will maneuver her attackers is marvelous.

* * *

They say a woman cannot argue. Hear her explain an indiscretion!

* * *

An independent woman is a contradiction in terms. For Woman's chief want is to feel that she is wanted. Therefore it is that

With women, cruelty is more easily borne than coldness. Indeed, It is astonishing how much downright cruelty a woman will stand from the man she loves or has loved. On the other hand,

Melancholy also attracts women. Naturally,

Women are made to soothe, to pity, to comfort, to delight. Therefore it is that

To see a strong man in a weak woman's arms is a sight which should arouse —not our laughter, but our(1) envy. So it does.

(1) Common Gender

* * *

Let not the simpleton think a woman will sympathize with his simplicity:

No woman is a simpleton.

What women admire is a subtle combination of forcefulness and gentleness.

If a woman has to choose between forcefulness and gentleness, always she will sacrifice the latter. And

It is astonishing to what lengths forcefulness can go without endangering a woman's admiration. If it sweeps her off her feet. . . well,

In nothing does a woman so clearly exhibit the inherent femininity of her nature as in the delight with which, at the bottom of her heart, she recalls moments when she has been swept off her feet. She may sigh over them; but

Generally, a woman's sighs are by no means those of remorse. A woman never brings pure reason to bear upon her actions; she acts by sentiment 40 and she judges her acts by sentiment. This is why

Even when a woman has deceived and betrayed, she does not regard herself culpable. Always, she says to herself, she was driven to it, and therefore she is blameless. Accordingly

A penitent woman is rare:

Even when a man, with his so-called superior reason, thinks he has proved her wrong, at the bottom of her heart she knows herself right.

* * *

Many have been the discussions as to woman's most powerful weapon. The simple fact is, she is armed cap a pie(2). Indeed, Every woman is a sort of feminine Proteus, not only in the myriad shapes she assumes, but also in her amenability to nothing but superior force. Women form, perhaps, where men are concerned, the single exception to the rule that in union there is strength. One woman often enough is irrepressible; two (be the second her own mother) break the charm an association of women is the feeblest of forces.

(2) Cf. Cowper:

They are all women, and they dart Like Porcupines, from every part. -Anacreontics

* * *

All women are rivals. And this they never forget. Consequently

Mistrust a truce between hostile ladies.

* * *

Amongst women, modesty is of infinitely more potent influence than is ability. Yet

To a woman's modesty ability is a wonderfully enhancing setting. And

Modesty is the most complex and the most varied of emotions. Perhaps

When modesty and frailty go hand in hand, there is no more delectable combination known to men; and Aphrodite has not the subtle charm of a Cynthia. Perhaps this is why such

A wondrous halo of romance hangs about the name of a Heloise, of a Marguerite, of a Marianna Alcoforado; of a Concetta of Afragola; of a Catalina; of Robert le Diable's Helena, of Isolde; of Lucia of Bologna, the enchantress of Ottaviano; of Francesca; of Guenevere; of the sweet seventeen-year old novice of Andouillets, Margarita, the fille who was "rosy as the morn"; of the Beguine who nursed Captain Shandy; of the fille de chamber who walked along the Quai de Conti with Yorick; of Ameilia Viviani, the inspirer of Shelly's most ecstatic lyric; of Dryden's masque-loving Lucretia. For, after all,

Is the star any the less starry to the rapt star-gazer when he finds it to be a tremulous planet?

Cynthia may have blushed in heaven; bit did the blush make her any less lovely to the Latmian?

Only in the clear and unclouded pool is the star undimmed embosomed.

* * *

They say a woman is capricious. But the consistency of woman's capriciousness is only exceeded by the capriciousness of man's consistency.

Man calls woman capricious simply because he is too stupid to comprehend the laws by which she is swayed. Woman does not call man capricious. —The inference is obvious.

* * *

To women the profoundest mysteries of the universe give place to two things: a lover, and a baby.—But perhaps these are the profoundest mysteries of the universe.

* * *

How many women there be who, deeming themselves fitted to be the consorts of kings, yet comport themselves dutifully as the wives of wastrels! And indeed,

Given beauty, cleverness, and grace, 44 there is no position to which a woman could not aspire; for

Being Woman, she is ex officio Queen.

* * *

Speak to a woman disparagingly of her sex,—she is up in arms.

Speak to her disparagingly of a member of her sex,—well, she will not be up in arms. The reason for her bellicosity in the former case is the fact that

A woman always interprets abstract disparagement of her sex personally. And she is perfectly right.

* * *

It is not only the woman who cannot be accounted quite as stainless as the stars that sometimes trade on their charms.

* * *

When a strong-souled woman wholly and unreservedly loves, her love will go to lengths passing the comprehension of man. For

Women prefer an despot to a dependent.

* * *

It is marvelous to what a pitch of demureness features by nature that the most coquettish can be set.

(A Man's features are often a clue to his character; a woman's rarely.) So it comes about that

The owner of a seraphic face is often owner of a temper satanic. Nevertheless,

Often enough a spice of diablerie in a woman at once enhances all her charms.

It is indeed fortunate for the men that so many women are unaware of the power of their charms.

* * *

A woman would much rather you lied to her concerning herself than that you told her something unpleasant to hear.

* * *

Some women seem to be envious of some men's familiarity with immorality.

* * *

It is by woman that a woman will be first suspected; and it is by a woman she will be last forgiven. The last thing a woman will ask you for is: your esteem. And yet

Cast a slur upon a woman's character and you are considered indiscreet. Cast a slur upon a woman's personal appearance, and you are considered culpable.

* * *

Fashion is a woman's sole law. And

The surest evidence of strong-mindedness in woman is to fly in the fact of fashion.

* * *

Ridicule is woman's keenest weapon; it is the poisoned arrow in her quiver. Well is it for the men that she never, or so rarely, has recourse to it.

* * *

A woman is quick to discern the quality of the admiration bestowed upon her.

* * *

No one, not even herself, knows what a woman will do next.—Doubtless this is trite. But it is true as trite. Yet men rarely find it out till late in life—and forget it as soon as found out.

* * *

A woman can say more in a sigh than a man can say in a sermon.

* * *

Nothing piques a woman so much as indifference to her favors. Indifference to her undiscovered passion she quite otherwise regards.

* * *

The woman knows the male heart probably better than does it itself. She knows above all things, that to hold that heart she must never wholly satisfy it. And many—and multiform—and marvelous—are the ruses by which she accomplishes that end. And yet,

Women there are who firmly believe that, were they to try, they could enthrall any man beyond possibility of extrication. And 48 so perhaps they could; but the achievement would require as much unscrupulousness as it would seductiveness.

The seductive and unscrupulous woman is hatred of women.

* * *

Under the gaze of a group of men whom she knows that her brilliancy dazzles, a woman, like the snow-clad hearth, sparkles: Under the gaze of a man by whom she knows she is passionately desired, like the same earth under the lordly sun, she melts.

* * *

All women think they can cozen men: few women think they can cozen women.

* * *

The women who perturb men most are those who combine too effectively adorableness with desirableness.

* * *

As in nature, so in humanity, flight on the part of the lady is not always symbol of unwillingness of pursuit. On the other hand

Feminine audacity by no means betokens feminine immodesty.

Feminine obduracy is invincible by man. Luckily, it is rare.

* * *

Men call women variable: did she not vary, men would tire. This, women instinctively know.

Women rightly dislike and disgust variability in men. For

Women like best to be liked: to lead gives them but paltry and temporary pleasure. (Though this they do not always instinctively know; or, if they do, they conceal their knowledge.) And

Variability is incompatible with leadership.

* * *

How delicately a loving woman reproves! How defiantly an unloving!

* * *

How many lonely women—married and unmarried—the world contains, only these lonely women know.

* * *

The feminine metier par excellence is: to allure. And

The subtle and elaborate means by which women will devise to intensify the lure, passes the comprehension o f men. Yet

In all ages, to make herself attractive was as right and proper for the woman as to make himself feared was for the man. Besides,

With women the art of attracting has long since become second nature.

* * *

Women are quick to recognize a rake. For

A rake always rouses curiosity, never aversion.

* * *

A worsted woman always, either silently or volubly, calls down a curse upon her successful rival.—And 't is a curse that too often fails.

Many women handicap other women; and they handicap them in multifarious ways. Probably the one most frequently used is lavishness of favors.

The woman who is lavish of favors is hated of her stricter sisters. But, before these, what an air of bravado she wears!

* * *

As a rule, women are far better readers of character than are men. A woman will often startle a man by her penetrating insight into character. And

Many a man has been put on his guard by female institution.

* * *

The fragilest woman will be ill content with suppressed embraces. And

The ablest-bodied woman loves being petted. Even

A prude is a shy coquette.

* * *

The man who judges of a woman by her letters is a fool.—Her gesture will contain more matter than her journal. Besides,

The woman who could punctuate could reason.

* * *

The debut of a younger sister evokes mixed emotions.

* * *

The prayer—uttered or unexpressed—of many an undowered young woman is, May a moneyed man fall in love with me ! And she is not always over-careful to add, And may I fall in love with that moneyed man!

* * *

If the "New Woman" (3) turns out to be a fitter companion for men than the old, no man will complain of her novelty. Yet

Men regard the advent of the New Woman rather askance. Why? Because

To judge from certain feminine utterances, the New Woman seems more inclined to aim at rivalry than at companionship with man. —However, there need be no fears as to the result, since

Such is the mysterious potency of womanhood, that, whether new or old, woman will always lead man captive. Besides

As every new variety of fashion in dress seems becoming to women, so, it is probable, every variety of fashion in manners will become them also. But probably

The phrase the "New Woman" is not unlike the phrase the "New Chemistry": the materials are the same; what is new is the nomenclature.

(3) A phrase (and not much more than a phrase) much in vogue in Europe and America in the last two decades of the nineteenth century of the area known as Christian.

* * *

A woman's peccadilloes are generally worse than a man's. At all events they are more reprobated.

* * *

Abashment intensifies a woman's love for him so making her abashed. And

There is a shame that is sweeter than joy. (As

There is a fear more tremulous than delight.) For

Mastery is a woman's standard of man. And There is an element of the freest and frankest savagery in the most refined and spiritual of women. (How otherwise

Can any one explain the extraordinary fable of Selene and Pan?(4) —And man?

—But that man was ever a savage. It may be added that

The defenselessness of woman is a conventional fiction: she can avert an attack by a look; she can terminate a siege by a taunt.

(4) Though Browning tried. See "Dramatic Idyls", "Pan and Luna"

* * *

Solomon has objurgated the invincibly garrulous woman. The invincibly taciturn woman is so rare as to have escaped objurgation. Yet she too is a terror to men.

* * *

Every woman is suspicious and jealous of any woman that opens a man's eyes; even though she knows that

Never was there a woman who could and would deliberately wholly enlighten a man.

And, yet, marvelous and curious amongst things curious and marvelous, will but a woman fling artifice to the winds, and look and act and say as great Nature prompts,—wildly, willfully, wantonly,—that woman will captivate as no feminine wiles will ever captivate.

* * *

If the man were worth it, many a woman would dispense with the marriage ceremony. For

Ah! Love—love—love,—given love, what else is needed? (Unfortunately

Love can never be sure of itself—much less of anything else. Accordingly

The marriage contract is a device on the part of the community to provide for the preservation of the home: it makes the parties promise fidelity.) But

Precious few are the men who are worth the risking. Unfortunately,

More women succumb to strength of will than to strength of character.

Neither, in general, are women overcurious to enquire whether the strength of character.

Neither, in general, are women over curious to enquire whether the strength of the masculine will makes for good or for evil.

So long as the masculine will overmaster the feminine, the feminine mind is satisfied. Of course there are exceptions, but as a rule,

Women—whether young or old, married or single, strong-minded or weak— are never happier than when they can depend on a man. Accordingly,

The lover or the husband who is weaker than, and depends upon, the woman, will some day rue his weakness and dependence. And yet,

To see a strong male at her feet—that is exquisite to the woman. So exquisite that

It is with difficulty that a woman refrains from exhibiting a man's servitude to others. On the other hand,

There is an element of intimidation in a resplendent woman. And of this she is aware.—Hence perhaps her power.

* * *

A woman will attain her ends by adroit finesse, where a man would blunder into open hostility. And

It is well that man should blind his eyes to feminine wiles, since,

Always a woman kindly pretends oblivion of masculine blunders.

* * *

The woman whose tastes and refinements are above her station, is in pitiable plight: she is too fastidious to espouse the men who would marry her; the men she would marry she rarely meets. For, The only thing that, to love, is insupportable is vulgarity. Since

Love, romantic love, the efflorescence and bloom of life, is besmirched unless tenderly touched.

* * *

To generalize passes the wit of woman; but in penetration she is preternatural.

* * *

What fascinates a woman is the man who unwittingly attracts her against her will. But such a man rouses a combination of emotions comprehensible only by women.

* * *

A woman's answer to an insuperable argument is: a look. And a most cogent answer it is. Indeed,

Speech is a woman's least effective weapon; rarely if ever does she resort to it:

In the affairs of life, as in the affairs of love, where men be concerned, it is upon her personality that she relies, not upon her speech whether written or uttered.

Her personal appearance is to a woman, what his personal honor is to a man: it must be immaculate; constant with the fashion of the hour; and strictly in accordance with her or his status in society. Accordingly,

Dress and demeanor—these form the code of feminine ethics. Even

Deception on the part of a woman is merely diplomacy;

Women deceive only be cause man is too blind to see. That is to say,

Since man in past ages has never allowed woman either freedom of action or frankness of speech, it is not to be expected of her that she should be all at once an adept in their use.—To her credit be it said that,

Generally a woman deceives only n order to arouse or to retain the admiration of man. For example,

Many a woman has surreptitiously made love to the man—and few are the men who have detected it.

* * *

Why this woman fascinates all who come within the sphere of their influence, and that women, does not, no earthly sage will ever know. As well ask what makes one man a Napoleon, another a poltroon. So, too,

It is impossible for a woman to say 'I will be loved,' as it is for a man to say 'I will be obeyed.'—Perhaps

Love and Power are divine miracles.

* * *

(At the risk of treading on delicate ground, ground off which I shall be hooted by the modern woman, I venture to say that)

The idea that a woman is the property of the man of her choice, rail as it as the woman may, has not yet been ousted from the feminine mind—and heart. Indeed,

So firmly implanted in the feminine breast is the idea of the ownership of her by the man, that it is to the man who assumes and exercises ownership that she clings. This is why

A woman easily changes her allegiance; since,

Allegiance, to a woman, means loyalty to the man who assumes and exercises ownership over her:

Let a man who a fractional part of a second evince the shadow of a doubt of his proprietorship—at once he undermines a woman's allegiance. Consequently,

It is folly for men to express amazement at the ease with which a woman will transfer herself and her affections.

A woman will transfer herself bodily over and over again, but only because the previous owner lightly esteemed, or weakly maintained, his ownership. As a matter of fact

In pristine days woman was, naturally and necessarily, the property, the chattel, of the man: marriage was not then a matrimonial syndicate of two: marriage meant that a woman sought a provider, a supporter, a defender; the man a mate for his delight, his comfort, and his solace, a keeper op is cave or hut, a mother and nurse for his heirs. And provision, support, and defense, being, in pristine days, matters of strength, prowess, or cunning, naturally and necessarily pristine man 65 gained him and kept him a mate by strength, prowess, or cunning; he regarded that mate as his by right of force, not as a partner in a compact. And

The most complicated of modern communities has no whit altered the relationship of man to mate, conceal though it may the origin and history of marriage. Finally,

No woman at the bottom of her heart has any objection to being owned. Indeed (though no woman would say it, a man may),

Every woman at the bottom of her heart delights to be owned, and tacitly and secretly seeks the man who she thinks will glory in that ownership and keep his property safe—not only from material harms, but from temptations to changes of ownership. In which last little fact lies a curious truth.

Women like to be defended against themselves. In this little matter men and women differ: That any other man should dare for one instant to covet or alienate (5) that most precious of his possessions, his mate, —nothing rouses to a higher pitch man's unappeasable wrath than this;

Against the man so daring, a woman's wrath is never roused: rather she regards him as one having discernment, and his daring is a commendable compliment to herself. In fine, and in short,

Allegiance, to a man, on the part of a woman, means, in her eyes, loyalty to him who properly exercises the right of ownership. In simple truth,

A woman gives herself to a man: to the man who proves himself worthy the gift, she is true.

And this is why women, all women, even the New ones, love being petted and admired and made much of all their lives: this but proves the possession of the gift to be appreciated. Besides,

The male is the dominant animal—not necessarily in his cave or his hut, —by no means, but in the stress and struggle of life; and women tacitly (though never openly) look up to and admire this dominance, even when exercised over themselves; since THIS, in turn, proves the masterfulness, the worth, of the man; albeit sometimes they rebel against it if carried to far. At least,

Unless a man continues to exhibit his appreciation of the gift by word as well as by deed, the woman is apt to imagine that that appreciation is on the wane.

(5) How women must laugh in their sleeves at the fact that one man may sue another in a court of law for "alienating his wife's affections"!

* * *



IV. On Love

"Amore che muove il sole e l'altre stelle." —Dante

The beginning, middle, and end of love—is a sigh.

* * *

All things point to the infinite; and love more than all things else.

* * *

Complex as is the character of love, here are two things which love always does: always it

"Refines the thoughts And heart enlarges;" —Milton

and,

Love dyes all things a cerulean hue. (What a pity it is not a fast color!)

* * *

Love is the most antimonial of emotions: it worships, yet it will not stop at sacrilege; it will build about its object a temple of adoration, then desecrate the fane; it will give all, yet ruthlessly seize everything; it delights in pleasing, yet it sometimes wittingly wounds; its ineffable tenderness often merges into an inclemency extraordinary; —symbol of universal duality, it is at once demonical and angelic.

* * *

Nothing stands still in this world, not even love: it must grow or it withers. And, perhaps,

That is the strongest love which surmounts the greatest number of obstacles.

* * *

Love to some is an intoxicant; to others an ailment. To all it is a necessity.

* * *

As is one's character, so is one's love. And

Perhaps the deepest love is the quietest.

* * *

Love is as implacable as it is un-appeasable. Nay more,

Love is merciless: as merciless to its votary as to its victim: For

Love would slay rather than surrender; would for-swear rather than forgo.

* * *

Some loves, like some fevers, render the patient immune—at all events to that particular kind of contagion.

Many lovers are vaccinated in early youth.

* * *

Only love can comprehend and reciprocate love. This is why,

If, of two sensitive human souls, the one loves passionately and the other not at all, the other is unwittingly blind and deaf to love's clamors and claims: the one may ardently urge; the other but passively yields:—

Only the famished understand the pangs of the hungered.

Of a great and reciprocated love there is one and only one sign: the expression of the eyes. Who that has seen it was ever deceived by its counterfeit?

Did ever the same love-light shine in the same eyes twice?

The light of love in the eyes may take on a thousand forms: exultant jubilation, a trustful happiness; infinite appeasement, or promises untold; an adoration supreme, or a complex oblation; tenderness ineffable, or heroic resolves; implicit faith; unquestioning confidence; abounding pity; unabashed desire. . .

He who shall count the stars of heaven, shall enumerate the radiances of love.

* * *

There is no Art of Loving (1); though, as Ovid says, love must be guided by art (2). Yet,

If love did not come by chance, it would never come at all.

(1) Ovid wrote not Art of Loving ("Ars Amandi"); he wrote on the Amatorial Art ("Ars Amatoria").

(2) "Arte regendus amor."—"Ars Amatoria", I, 4.

* * *

To each of us himself is the centre of the visible universe. But when love comes it alters this Ptolemaic theory. Yet,

It is a significant fact that love, which, more than any other thing in this world, is the great bringer-together of hearts, begins its mysterious work as a separator and puter-at-a-distance. For

When love first dawns in the breast of youth, it throws about its object a sacred aureole, which awes at the same time that it inspires the faithful worshipper.

* * *

Can only two walk abreast in the path of love? How many try to widen that strait and narrow way!

* * *

Love raises everything to a higher plane; but nothing higher than the man or woman who is loved.

Is there anything about which love does not shed a halo? Indeed,

Love is a sort of transfiguration. And when on the mount, we can very truly say, "It is good for us to be here".

If there is any sublunary thing equal in value to the true love of a faithful woman, it has not yet entered into the heart of man to conceive.

True love makes all things loveable,—except perhaps the chaperon.

Was there ever man or woman yet who was not bettered by a true love?

True love is ever diffident and fearful of its own venturesomeness (3). But this not every woman understands.

Too often the Phantasm of love and not the Verity wins the day (4). Women who seek a real lover should beware the overbold one.

(3) Cf. "La volupte Nous rend hardis, l'amour nous rend timides." —Voltaire, La Pucelle, Chant vi.

(4) See Leopardi, "Storia del Genere Humano", where the Verities of Truth and Love and Justice never leave the throne of Jove, but their Phantasms are sent down amongst men.

* * *

To merge the THEE and the ME into one—that is ever the attempt of love. It is impossible. Yet, perhaps

They are happiest who can longest disbelieve in the impossibility of this amatorial fusion; for it may be that such

Incredulity is favorable to romance.

* * *

Love is not exactly a sacrifice; it is an exchange. The lover, indeed, gives his heart; he expects another in return.

* * *

Love is like life: no apparatus can manufacture it; kill it, and nothing in the heavens above or in the earth beneath or in the waters under the earth will resuscitate it.

How many a forlorn human wight has tried to resuscitate love!

* * *

To such heights does love exalt the lover that he or she will live for days in the remembered delights of a look, a word, a gesture. But

One thing is impossible to love: love cannot create love; the intensest and most fervent love is powerless to evoke a scintillation of love.

Love may worship, it may adore, it may transfigure, it may exalt the object of its devotion to the skies; but it cannot cause that object to emit one ray of love in return.

* * *

Hate may be concealed; love never.

* * *

The greater the imaginative altitude of love, the lower the boiling point. But

Love cannot always be kept at high pressure.

* * *

The young think love is the winning-post of life, the old know it is a turn in the course. Nevertheless, it is a fateful turn.

* * *

In love, the imagination plays a very large part. And this may be variously interpreted. Thus,

By man, love is regarded as a sort of sacred religion; by woman, as her every-day morality. The former is the more exhilarating; but the latter is more serviceable. Indeed,

Love and religion are very near akin: both inspire, and both elevate. And

If faith, hope, and charity are the basis of religion, there never was such as religion as love. And

Love is the only religion in which there have been no heretics. Why? Because woman are at once its object and its priesthood.

Love, art, and religion are but different phases of the same emotion: awe, reverence, worship, and sacrifice in the presence of the supreme ideal.

Love knows no creed. Nay more,

Love acknowledges no deity but itself and accepts no sanctions but its own: it is autonomous. And yet—

And yet, love sometimes feels constrained to offer a liturgical acquiescence to the rubric of Reason. In short,

Between the prelatical domination of Reason and the recusant Protestantism of Love there has ever been strife. Or, in plain language, There are two codes of ethics: one that of the romantic heart; the other that of the practical head. Who shall assimilate them?

The heart, in its profoundest depths, feels that something is due to Reason; and Reason, in its highest flights, feels that something is due to the heart.

Is there a divine duplicity in the human soul? And yet, after all,

All love seeks is: love. Yet love little knows that

In seeking love, love enters on an endless search. Since

Love is an endless effort to realize the Ideal. For

Love always beckons over insurmountable barriers to uninhabitable realms; promises insupportable possibilities; lures to an unimaginable goal. Yet

Love has a myriad counterfeits. And

Men and women interpret the word differently. Even

Different women interpret the word love differently. Thus,

To one woman, love is as the rising of the sun: it shines but once in her whole life-day; it floods everything with its light; it brightens the world; it dazzles her.

To another woman, love is as the rising of a star: a fresh one may appear every hour of her life, and nor she nor her world is one whit affected by its rays. Indeed, one would hardly err if he said that

Many a woman really does not know whether she is "in love" or not. She is sought—that she perceives; but which of her seekers is worthiest, which most zealous, which merely takes her fancy, and which appeals to her heart—on these matters she meditates long—to the exasperation, of course, of the individual seeker. Accordingly,

Men, carried away by their own passionate impulse, detest calculation of the part of women:

Since HE stakes his all on impulse in the matter of love, says man, why should woman stay to consider? Foolish man! he forgets that

A woman always weighs a man's declaration of love—and legitimately— and naturally; perhaps legitimately because naturally; for, once again,

What a woman stays to consider in the matter of love is, not the potency of the impulse of the moment, but the permanent efficacy of the emotion. Therefore it is that

Woman unwittingly obeys great Nature's laws.

* * *

Many imagine that love is a thing like a chemical element: with a fixed symbol 84 and a rigid atomic equivalent. And so it may be; but, like the philosopher's stone, hitherto it has defied detection in its elemental form. The fact is probably that

Love may be compared to a substance that is never found free, and which not only combines in all sorts of relationships with all sorts of substances, but also, like many another chemical body, takes on the most varied forms, not only in these relationships, but also under varying pressures and temperatures.—Or perhaps it would be better to say that

Love may be compared to a musical note: to the unthinking it is a simple sound; to the more experienced it is know to consist of endless and complicated harmonical vibrations; harmonizing with some, and making discord with other, notes by regular but unknown laws; differing according to the timbre of the emitter; reverberating under certain conditions; lost to the ear in others; and only responding to resonators vibrating synchronously with itself. Lastly,

There is a whole gamut of love.—Changing that simile, we may say that

Love is not like the sun: a unit, and practically the same wherever seen; it is like light: all-pervading, universally diffused, and reflected and refracted and absorbed in varying degrees and varying manners by various objects. And

Than a great and pure love, can anyone point to anything on earth greater and more purifying?

The lesser luminary perturbs the tide of human passion; the greater light draws it upward—none the less veritably because in tinted formless vapor. This is symbolical of love.

It is the nascent thing that evokes the keenest emotions: the bud—the babe—dawn—and the first beginnings of love. So Love, like sun-light, wears its most tender tints at dawn.

* * *

It still remains a mystery that, out of a townful of folk, two particular hearts should worry themselves into early graves because this one cannot get that other. Yet

It is almost enough to destroy one's faith in the uniqueness of love to see from how narrow a circle of acquaintances men and women choose their spouses. Were Plato's two half-souls separated by the diameter of the globe—that were lamentable.

* * *

The man often argues that esteem will grow into passion. The woman knows that the argument is utterly fallacious. Yet Unless passion is guarded by esteem,—as the calyx ensheaths the corolla, the former is prone to wither.

In youthful love, as in the enfolded bud, esteem and passion—like calyx and corolla—-seem one and identical;

It is only the full-blown flower that displays its constituent parts.

Would that love could remain ever in bud!

* * *

To some love comes like a flash; to others as the burning of tinder.

In all, when real love is kindled, it devours all that is combustible. But

All love, like all fire, needs, not only ventilation but replenishing:

Unless the primal spark is nourished, it will not glow;

Stifle love, and it dies down. So

Even the love of a married pair, unless it retains something of the romance of courtship, is apt to go out.

* * *

Love takes no though of surroundings: an empty compartment is as good as a coppice. Give it privacy, it is satisfied.

* * *

In love, we would much rather give than take. Yet, if the giving is one-sided, there is trouble. And

Love brooks no half measures. Again,

Trust a woman to calculate the breaking-strain of her lover's heart. But she will never let him off with less than the maximum stress.

* * *

When love is dead, it is perhaps best soonest buried.

* * *

In astronomy, to determine the motions of three bodies mutually attractive is admittedly difficult. It is easy compared with the same problem in love.

* * *

A man's work and a woman's love, though to each the sum-total of life, are often things wholly and totally dissociated.

Man, the egoist, thinks that if the woman loves him, by consequence she will love his work. It may be, but usually, non sequitur; for

Few are the women who can understand a man's work:

For thousands of years man has worked in the hunting-field, in the market-place in the camp; for an equal length of time woman has worked by the cradle, by the hearth. Accordingly,

Man has two sides to his nature, woman but one:

Man wears one aspect when facing the world; he wears quite another aspect when facing women;

At their work, men are rigid, frigid, austere, sever, peremptory, tyrannical, downright;

With women, . . . . . .Humph!—Wherefore,

O strenuous and high-aspiring man, in thy work, seek not from woman's love what woman's love cannot give; but set thy face 90 as a flint. Bethink thee of the fate of Anthony. For

Man's chief business in the world is: Work.

Woman's chief business in the world is; Love.

Man's love (perhaps just because it is his play-thing, not his business) is more finely tempered than is woman's, and takes on a finer edge. For this very reason it is the more easily turned, and is the less useful. —It is the pocket-knife, not the lancet, that is oftener called into requisition. Also,

Man's love is usually a highly ephemeral affair.

With a man, love is like hunger or thirst: he makes a great fuss over it; he forgets when it is appeased. Yet

When "passion's trance" is overpast, it is fortunate if affection takes its place. So too,

In love it is the man who protests; and

That man is fortunate, who, after marriage, has not some dubious reflections as to whether he has protested over-much. For

In love, it is the man, generally, who makes a fool of himself.

* * *

Love (like murder) will out. But

Jill keeps her secret better than Jack. For

A woman generally controls love: a man is controlled by it. And Jill's very power of making-believe to be "fancy free" exasperates Jack.

* * *

It is a purely feminine ruse to apply a test to love—both her own and that of her lover—to prove it true. A man would as soon as think of applying a match to a powder magazine to prove it combustible.

Love in woman's eyes is the supreme and ultimate arbitrator. If she is loved, love in her eyes will condone anything—anything. For

To prefer honor to love is a maxim to women unknown. With them love IS honor. And therefore the maxim is meaningless—and needless.

* * *

It is a sort of legal—or rather charitable—fiction that women should surrender only to love. In fact,

Do not even the lightest of Laises and Thaises make a show of being swayed by love? And

No woman by too much love was ever spoiled. Man, remember that!

* * *

The logic of the emotions differs from the logic of the intellect. As to the senses—

Alack-a-day! The senses never reason.

Love sometimes wrecks its barque upon the rocks to prove that they harbor no mirage.

Love sometimes forgets that it is possible to probe too far.

Love, in pursuit of love, sometimes vivisects as unconsciously as a science in pursuit of life.

* * *

Women detect the dawn of love while it is still midnight with a man. That is to say,

A woman knows a man is in love with her long before he is aware of it himself. Except perhaps in this once circumstance: when she herself is in love with somebody else. And this is a highly important circumstance.

* * *

Wholly to satisfy masculine infatuation is given to no woman. And perhaps

Wholly to satisfy feminine caprice is given to no man. So, sometimes,

The last refuge of an unrequited love is the belief that love will create love. Nothing can be more futile than such a faith. Yet

Love without hope, has its mitigations; but

How alleviate the pain of a love that mistook a simulated love for a true one?

A simulated love is a contradiction in terms.

Either one loves or one does not, that is the conclusion of the whole matter.

* * *

Love would rather suffer than forget.

Love would give the world to be able to exculpate a languid lover.

A passionate love is perhaps always poignant.

Love disdains pity.

A wounded love carries a scar to the grave.

* * *

In love, when honor is lost, loss of shame soon follows. Then indeed the downward patch becomes precipitous.

* * *

To some, love never comes; to some, it comes too often; but the same love never recurs, as never a bud opens twice: happy he or she is who gains bud, blossom, and fruit. Since

The sweetest love is that wherein the odorous flower of passion ripens into the nourishing fruitage of affection. But

Love requires careful nature. And

The more exotic the love, the more difficult its culture.—True, An orchid may life on air. Yes; but how torrid and vaporous an air!

Your sturdy mistletoe thrives on the humble apple; a Cattleya requires a Columbian forest.

* * *

Youth wonders at the amatory successes of middle-age. Youth knows not that

In matters amatory, age is no handicap:

A girl in her 'teens will make love to a gentleman of forty—and vice versa. In fact

The indiscreet impetuosity of youth succumbs before the astuteness of age.

The bachelor and the spinster both sometimes wonder that the benedick and the bride are still their rivals; for they know not that

In the amatorial art, matrimony is no handicap. In short,

There is no barrier at which love will balk. Nay more,

Love will forgive anything:

Did love demand it, love, though it might blush, would not blench. And

Often love itself stands amazed at its own divine audacity. Indeed,

Love loves to immolate itself for love. Knowing that

To love, nothing is common or unclean: for

Love, like charity, thinketh no evil. But—remember that

It is only the Uranian Aphrodite (5) that dares essay a divine audacity. Nevertheless,

Love is the most vulnerable of the emotions, and

A love doubtful of itself would be cautiously accepted: it is not a fact that

To try to feel one's own pulse, is to make the heart beat irregularly? So,

To try to see in a mirror the love light in one's own eyes, is to be-dim it. So, too,

If passion is not linked with affection—woe worth the day when the troth was plighted! But given passion linked with affection—ah!

Nothing, nothing is criminal to love; for love knows not conscience. Or rather,

Love upsets all conventional conditions. For

Love creates a world of its own, a world populated by two—and these make their own laws—or make none. So

A woman will imbrue her hands with blood, and a man will fling honor to the winds, and yet the twain regard each other as impeccant and impeccable.—Till Pippa passes; then,

Love always awakes to the fact that not even a community of two can live without law; and that

Though human laws may be outraged, those divine may not. And assuredly,

The ideal love is the divine love. And, in ideal love,

Strange, strange, but true, in a great and ardent love, when at last that is offered which was long sought, there supervenes upon the lovers a great tenderness, which hesitates to make their own that for which they yearned. Almost it were as if

A psychic monitor warned the conqueror to be clement, and the captive to be kind. This

Tenderness is the worship of the soul by the soul. And

Of all tests of love tenderness is the truest. But indeed, indeed

In love there are heights above heights, depths beneath depths: who shall scale them, who shall plumb?

(5) See Plato, "Symposium", 180 et seq.

* * *



V. On Lovers

"Si vis amari ama." —Seneca

Lovers think the world was made for them.—And so perhaps it was.

* * *

To each other, lovers are the most interesting personages alive; but onlookers regard them partly with amusement, partly with pity, partly with compassion—in the etymological sense of that word.

* * *

The first wonder of every accepted lover is that he should be the accepted lover of such a woman. —What the woman thinks . . . what the woman thinks, probably not even she herself knows. Probably each woman thinks her own thoughts.

To doubt whether one is in love is to prove oneself out of it.

* * *

To impress upon the lover the still-existing necessity of refining gold or painting the lily is out of the question. Yet every woman attempts it.

* * *

If there is one proverb more distasteful than another to a hot-headed lover, it is that half a loaf is better than no bread.

* * *

Children, dogs, and old people are difficult to deceive. Lovers who have to use circumspection should remember this.

* * *

A doubting lover should mark how, and for whom, his woman dresses.

* * *

To die for a woman would perhaps, to a young and ardent lover, not be difficult; to wage incessant warfare with the world for her, that perhaps is not so easy. But it is the better test of love; and perhaps also the better preserver and replenisher of love. For

Little as people seem to be aware of it, love requires constant replenishing: no flame can burn without a feeding oil, no pool overflow with out a purling brook. Yet

The first ecstasies of love often blind both lover and lass to the care necessary for the nurture of love. Indeed,

To many treat love as if it were a passing whim; whereas in sober reality it is (or should be) a lasting emotion.

* * *

Love, with woman, is like the tides. And

Few women know the high-water mark of their love: they are always harboring the belief that it may rise still higher; and often they await that rise.

* * *

It is but the reflection of himself in his mistress that many a foolish lover loves.

* * *

That aged spinster is a rare one who does not regret she did not accept one of her lovers. But

That younger spinster is not to be envied who has to make choice of several.

Youth glories in the multiplicity of its lovers; age sometimes wishes it had had but one.

* * *

The unloved think lad the one thing needful. The beloved know that an ocean of love could be swallowed up and the parched soul cry out athirst.

* * *

It is not well either to confide or confess too much.

A very small rock will wreck a very big ship, and a very small slip will spoil a very long life.

* * *

The pain which lovers cause each other—through fickleness, languidness, jealousy, and the thousand natural shocks that love is heir to—is not altogether pain, though at the moment it may seem the most poignant anguish the human soul could suffer. One proof of this lies in the fact that

There are few who would choose to have missed love's pangs altogether.

Perhaps the pleasure intermixed with love's pangs arises from the thought that the other is the cause of our suffering. For,

In all love, it is the sacrifice of oneself for the other that brings keenest joy. And yet

There is an element of self-love in the very extremest of love. Since

Love, after all, is a debtor and creditor affair. (Who ever loved with no hope of return?) It is when one of the parties declares him-or her-self insolvent that the account is closed—with many tears and sighs on the part of the chief creditor. At all events

The intenser the love, the more flawless does its object appear. For

The surest test of the sincerity of love is that it thinketh no evil.

The surest test of a waning love is that it begins not to content itself when it sees its object suffer.

The surest test of a dead love is that it forgets how to be jealous.

* * *

The falling-out of lovers true is a renewing may be of love. (1) Still it is not to be recommended. In fact, it might be said that

Every falling-out of lovers true is a nail in love's coffin. Yet,

A blessing it is that in love we remember the sweet rather than the bitter. For

Love was ever bitter-sweet (2).

(1) "Amanitum irae amoris integratis est." —Terrence, Andria, III, 23.

(2) But I supposed innumerable people have said this before. No matter.

* * *

The heart of a lover is like that bottom of a well: all the beauties of the starry heavens are revealed in it; but when it sheds the light of its countenance upon it, all else is obliterated.

* * *

Was any lover ever loved enough? Or

Did any ever hear of a tired lover? Nevertheless often

"Drink to me only with thine eyes", says the youthful lover; but when the seance is over he goes out and orders beef-steak and bottled beer.

* * *

What it really craves, the lover's heart is impotent to express. Yet, it is ever attempting.

A lover is full of wishes as an egg is full of meat. But

What it really wishes no lover seems able to say. As a matter of fact,

The endless task which the lover is ever attempting is a search for a formula for the summation of an infinite series of which love is the variable.—Few lovers seem to understand this.

* * *

To kindle aspiration in her lover, a woman herself need not be aspiring. For,

Whatever the talents of a man, they are stimulated by contact with woman. Since

An elevating influence seems to radiate from women: we have but to come into the light of their countenances for our own faces to shine as the sun. Indeed,

Physicists may talk as they like, but lovers know a more subtle and a more potent force than any yet revealed to them. It has not yet been named; but for the present it might be called "psychicity". (3)

(3) Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes speaks of "celebricity". See "Over the Tea Cup"

* * *

If you wish to ascertain the relationship of a youthful pair, watch their eyes. For

Simulation is difficult to the eye.

* * *

When the idol into which a woman has converted her lover is dethroned, she still worships her remembrance of her god, and puts together and treasures the broken pieces.

When the idol into which has converted his loved one is dethroned, he generally changes his creed.

* * *

A circumpsecting lover is a woman's abhorrence: as a calculating mistress is a man's.

* * *

Let a lover but put himself into the hands of his mistress, and he is safe. Since

The man she really loves, a woman will shield through thick and thin, through right and wrong. For,

Concerning a man, the only question a woman asks is, not, "Is he right or wrong?" but, "Is he mine or another's?"—We men therefore

Leave a woman to get her lover out of a scrape.

* * *

It is to be feared that the men and women who love but once and forever are not usually to be found outside of romances.

With women, love is a river, ever-flowing, from the brook in girlhood, (4) to the estuary of womanhood. Like a river, too,

Woman's love is fed by all the streams it meets. On the other hand,

With man, love is a geyser.

(4) Standing with reluctant feet Where the brook and river meet. —Longfellow, "Maidenhood"

* * *

The languishing lover has gone out of date; he has been replaced by the diverting one. And the change is significant of much: The early nineteenth-century maid pretended to ignorance; the early twentieth-century maid to omniscience.

The early nineteenth-century suitor protested; but

The early twentieth-century suitor has to contest. In the one case,

The woman tacitly acknowledges an inequality. In the other case,

The man has to openly to recognize his equal. Nevertheless,

The fundamental relationship between the sexes do not materially vary from century to century, much as conventional manners and customs may. For, after all,

Always what a man seeks in a woman is: love. And

In all love there is something perfectly and Paradisiacally pristine.

Would the most emancipated woman have love otherwise? At all events,

Perhaps the most womanly position a woman can occupy is: with her head on her lover's heart. At this the strong-minded may scoff. They may. * * *

The obsession of the male heart by one woman ousts from it all other women. Thus,

The accepted young man regards all women but the one as he would regard fashion-plates. To the young woman men continue to be men. That is to say,

A man dives headlong into love. A woman paddles into it. And the woman's hesitation at the brink of the stream exasperates the spluttering man. In short,

A man's heart is captured wholly and at a stroke. A woman's heart surrenders itself piecemeal.

Whereas, with a man, a trivial passion is usually an affair more of the senses or of the imagination than of the heart; with a woman every passions is an affair of the heart.

A man, when first he is in love, is absorbed in the contemplation of the object of his love. A woman is similarly situated is capable of making comparisons.

It gives to woman's curiosity a curious pleasure to compare the methods of men's proposals.

In love, a woman is generally cool enough to calculate pros and cons; a man, in similar plight, is incapable of anything but folly.

* * *

It is a feminine motto that a woman needs to be taught how to love. Perhaps she does; but most men will think one private tutor ought to suffice, and that tutor ought to be he. At all events,

The last schoolmaster would be apt to regard with somewhat mixed feelings the tuition of previous crammers.

Why go to the trouble of explaining away a first love, if the second is no whit its inferior? Unless it be to overcome.

What a second love chiefly deplores is: that it was not he (or she) who first taught his (or her) loved one to love. Is it not true also that

It is the first love that amazes, that beautifies, that consecrates?

(An illicit love beautifies and consecrates nothing:

A Maud leaves the daisies rosy; not so Faustine.)

Many a woman has given her heart to one lover and herself to another. The first is always won; the second is sometimes extorted. Yet,

It is wonderful how a woman will contrive to make all her lovers believe they are winners.

* * *

It often gives a lady a pleasure to give her lover a pang.

* * *

Not many but have tasted the bitterness of the conflict between the desire of the flesh and the resentment of the spirit. Explain these terms who may.

* * *

To attempt by erring to cure an erring lover, is to administer, not an antidote, but an adjuvant. It works poison in the blood. When (and if) in a tortuous love, a man arrives at a 'Don't give a damn' stage, he is not to be classed with the animals known as docile. And as to a woman. . . . . . . but polite language has its limits.

* * *

Many a man has be exasperated, not only by the audacity of his rival, but by the equanimity with which his lady-love views that audacity. He forgets that, as a rule,

Feminine complaisance varies directly as masculine audacity. And yet, often enough, as a simple matter of fact, 118 Masculine diffidence is vastly more potent than masculine audacity. And further,

Rarely need the complaisance that audacity evokes perturb the diffident man; since

Rarely need the complaisance that audacity evokes perturb the diffident man; since

The true woman may give her fingertips to the gallant; she gives herself to the worshiper. The pity o' it is that

The worshiper cannot away with the complaisance that permits a woman to give even her finger-tips to the gallant. And

Few are the women who have plumbed the silent and sensitive depths of the diffidence of her devotee. The worst of it is,

The devotee essays two things: he would apotheosize the object of his adoration and place her as a constellation among the stars; yet he would have her at the same time terrestrial and tangible. When the woman shows herself terrestrial and tangible to others than he, the faith of the devotee is shaken. In fine,

Every lover attempts that impossible task: the realization of the heavenly ideal. Perhaps

It is in aphelion that the corona appears most splendid;

Were perihelion to result is coalescence, perhaps the photosphere would be proved composed of terrestrial vapors. And if it did (as no doubt it would), would it be at all bedimmed? For, to the devout astrologer

Nothing, nothing will ever destroy beauty—and therefore wonder. So,

Bodily beauty, where Love is priestess, is a daedal spur to the loftiest worship.

The lover is ever worshipful. And

Where is worship, nothing can be profane. So

In love there is nor taint nor stain. Therefore,

Make, O youthful lover, the best and most of youth and love: never will either recur.

* * *



VI. On Making Love

"Mille modi Veneris" —Ovid

There are as many ways of making love as there are of making soup. And probably

There are as many kinds of love as there are of flavors. And

Palates—both sentimental and physical—evidently differ widely. And yet,

If you would know the secret of success with women, it is said in a word: Ardor. And

Would ye, O women, know in a word the secret of success with men? It lies in: Responsiveness.

* * *

In matters amatory—or rather pre-amatory—feminine tactics are infallible and consummate:

Let no man think to cope with feminine strategy.

* * *

A rake has more chance than a ninny.—Which doubtless has been said before.

* * *

In love, as in all things, indecision spells ruination. For

There is a curious antagonism between the sexes. They are in a manner foes, not friends. The successful wooer is the captor, the raptor; the bride is the capture, the rapture. (1) And

Even she who is minded to be caught will not spare her huntsman the ardor of the chase, and lightly esteems him who imagines she is to be lightly won.

In the chess-like game of love-making, no woman plays for check-mate: the game interests her too much to bring it to a finish. What pleases her most is stale-mate, where, though the King cannot be captured, the captress can maneuver without end.

A man imagines he wins by strenuous assault. The woman knows the victory was due to surrender.

(1) Etymologically as well as metaphorically—and veritably.

* * *

Wouldst thou ask ought of a woman? Question her eyes: they are vastly more voluble than her tongue. Indeed,

There is no question too subtle, too delicate, too recondite, or too rash, for human eyes to ask or answer. And

He who has not learned the language of the eyes, has yet to learn the alphabet of love. Besides,

Love speaks two languages: one with the lips; the other with the eyes. (There is really a third; but this is Pentecostal.) At all events,

Lovers always talk in a cryptic tongue.

There is but one universal language: the ocular—not Volapuk nor Esperanto is as intelligible or as efficacious as this.

* * *

No woman can be coerced into love,—though she may be coerced into marriage. And

Man, the clumsy wielder of one blunt weapon, often enough stands agape at his own powerlessness before the invulnerable woman of his desire. Indeed,

The battle between the coquettish maid and determined man is like the battle between the Retiarius and the Mirmillio. The coquetry ensnares the man as with a net against which his sword is useless.

* * *

A woman's emotions are as practical as a man's reason.

A man's emotions are never practical. This is why,

In the emotional matter of love, men and women so often lash. And perhaps

It is a beneficial thing for the race that a woman's emotions are practical. For

If neither the man nor the woman curbed the mettlesome Pegasus "Emotion", methinks the colts and fillies would want for hay and oats. * * *

It is a moot question which is the more fatally fascinating: the uniformed nurse or the weeded widow. But

Who has yet discovered the secret springs of fascination? For example,

How is it that certain eyes and lips will enthrall, while others leave us cold and inert?

Does the potency lie in the eyes and the lips, or is there some inscrutable and psychic power? At all events, who will explain how it is that

A man will sometimes forsake the most beautiful of wives and a woman will forsake the kindest of husbands to follow recklessly one who admits no comparison with the one forsaken? All we can say is that

The potency of personality exceeds the potency of beauty. For, Powerful as is physical charm, it counts not for all in the matter of love. Yet what it may be that does count, and how and why it does count, no man living shall say. For

Is even love aware of all its seeks? And

Is it given to any to grant all that love beseeches? And yet

Were all love sought bestowed, what sequel?

Perhaps 't were well to leave love but semi-satisfied. At bottom the real question is this: What will win and keep me another heart? But

How to win and keep another heart, that is a thing has to be found out for oneself—if it be discoverable. And always by the experimental method. Since

In matters amatory, there is no a priori reasoning possible. All we know is that

There is nothing more potent than passion. And

The chasm, which seems to innocence to yawn between virtue and frailty, is leapt by that Pegasus, Passion, at a bound—but he blinds his rider in the feat.

* * *

In spite of the poesy of love, deeds are more potent than words; —though perhaps it is well to pave the way for the one by the other.

In spite, too of the piety of love, love laughs at promises—that is, the promises that affect it.

* * *

There is one miracle that women can always perform, and always it astonishes the man; it is this: to change from the recipient into the appellant. That is to say,

When woman, usually regarded as the receiver, becomes the giver,—or rather the demander,—man's wonderment surpasses words. And let it be remembered that

There is no re-crossing this Rubicon.

* * *

Mistrust a prolonged and obdurate resistance. Either you are out-classed, or you are out-experienced. And, besides,

Surrender after prolonged resistance rarely is brought about by emotion.

* * *

A woman never really quite detests daring. This is why Much is a forgiving a daring man. So, too,

Much is forgiven a pretty woman -by the men.

* * *

If the beginning of strife is as when one letteth out water, the beginning of love is as when one kindleth a fire.

* * *

The eye tells more than the tongue. And

If the eye and the tongue contradict each other, believe the eye.

* * *

There is an indifference that attracts, and there is an indifference that repels. He is a sagacious man, and she is a sagacious woman, who will differentiate them. The question resolves itself into that which so often puzzles the angler,—how much line to let out. About one thing there need be no hesitation,

When your fish is within reach, be quick with the landing-net—or even with the gaff.

* * *

In the matter of wooing, soon enough does the young girl learn to prefer the mature manners of the man of the world to the gaucheries of inexperienced youth. As to the man!

How curious the things that appeal to this lord of creation, Man!—a half-averted face—a laughing gesture—a merry eye—an all but imperceptible tone of the voice—the scarce felt touch of a reluctant hand—a semi-tender phrase—an unexpected glance—the momentary pressure of petulant lips—a blanched cheek—a look prolonged one fractional part of a second beyond its wont—an infinitesimal drooping of the eyelid—a speaking silence—a half-caught sigh—these will entrap the male brute where green widths that were never dried will not hold him. But

By what men are won, most women seem thoroughly to comprehend.

By what women are won, few men know. Perhaps

No woman knows by what she herself is won.

One thing there is, at all events, to which woman will always succumb: tenderness. But remember, Dames, that

Tenderness is extremely difficult of simulation. Or rather,

Tenderness is so delicate and deep-seated a feeling, that few care to attempt its simulation.

* * *

A woman who gives herself too freely is apt to regret the giving. In time, too, she discovers that, as a matter of fact,

No woman can give her real self twice: one or other gift will prove to be a loan. (And

It is always and only the first recipient that causes a woman's heart to flutter, and often it flutters long.) 144

A second gift is generally a mortgage—if it is not a sale.

A mortgage is difficult to bind. For

There is a statute of limitations in love as there is in law. Nor is the former to be set aside by bond.

That pair is in a parlous state when either party discovers that the title was not properly searched. Since

Everybody expects a fee simple,—though few deserve it, God wot!

* * *

Perhaps the most durable conquest is the incomplete one. Which sounds illogical. But it is well to remember that

Repletion seems to cause, in the man, temporary indifference; while

Repletion causes, in the woman, enduring content. And in this we can detect a significant distinction between the sexes: namely the fact that

A single goal satisfies most women;

No single goal ever yet satisfied the restless spirit of man.

* * *

What gives keenest joy is the evocation of latent passion. For Each takes pleasure in believing that he or she alone can evoke this passion. Accordingly,

The premature confession of passion, and the confession of premature passion, both rankle in the breast—and, probably, in the breast of both penitent and confessor.

* * *

What intensity of feeling a woman can throw into the enunciation of a Christian name! There is perhaps no better clue to possession that this. For, probably,

Not until a man's Christian mane is ecstatically uttered is a woman wholly his. * * *

Men and women content with the different weapons. This is why Men are rarely intrepid in the presence of women; but women rarely stand in awe of men.—Nothing differentiates the sexes more than this; but the psychological reason is difficult to discover. Perhaps,

The making of love is a sort of duel, the conditions of which are that the man shall doff all his armor and the woman may don all hers. Indeed,

The battle of love-making would be an unequal combat, even were both contestants fully panoplied; for,

A woman's derision will pierce any mail. In fact,

No armor is impervious to woman's shafts—be they those of laughter or be they those of love. So

The veriest roue' is vulnerable to the veriest maid. But

For each man she meets, a woman carries in her quiver but one shaft. If that misses its aim, she is powerless: it is like a dart without a thong; when thrown, the man can close. But

Always it devolves upon the man to take the initiative. But, again,

Always the man must pretend that he takes no initiative. But, again,

Always the woman must pretend that she gives no opportunity.

The game of love is not only one of chance but one of skill. What irks man is that a woman pretends that she must be circumvented by wiles. But

Man was ever a clumsy wooer. Nevertheless,

It is only the man who thinks he is too venturesome. Since

The iciest woman sometimes thaws. And

The austerer a woman, the sweeter her surrender. And, again, A woman is never sweeter than in surrender. Accordingly,

"De l'audace, et encore de l'audace, et toujours de l'audace"(2) should be the motto of every wooer. Since

Audacity if beloved of women; but it must be an audacity born of Sincerity and educated b y Discretion. At all events

Beware timidity,—it is fatal.

(2) Danton

* * *

With women, nothing is more conquering than conquest; nothing so irresistible as resistance. On the other hand,

Resistance on the part of the woman is an effort put forth for the purpose of defeating its own object.

* * *

A man prizes only what he has fought for. No one knows this better than a woman. This is why

A woman's capitulation she always makes to appear as a capture. And

Where there are no defense works, a woman will erect them.

Foolish that man who does not storm entrenchments. For

Resistance on the part of a woman is a wall which a man is expected to leap. His agility is the measure of her approbation.

* * *

Arouse a woman's interest, and you arouse much. But Having failed, disappear. Yet

It takes very many futile attempts to make a failure. At the same time,

Importunity is an inferior weapon.

* * *

A conditional surrender is no surrender. But

A woman's surrender is in reality a desertion, a going over to the enemy. Thenceforward she is an ally. Indeed

A woman's capitulation is her conquest.

* * *

Let no amount of simulated austerity deter you. The marble Galatea came to life at the prayer of a man.

* * *

The number of modes in which a woman can say 'Yes' has not, up to the present, be accurately enumerated; but perhaps the one most frequently in use is the negative imperative. And

Many are the men who have puzzled long and painfully over the motives of a woman's 'No.' Yet in nine cases out of ten a woman says 'No' merely because she feels herself on the brink of saying 'Yes'. In other words,

It is often mistrust of herself that leads many a woman to refuse it will the lips the consent that is fluttering at her heart. Perhaps that is why

With woman 'Yea' and 'Nay' are meaningless and interchangeable terms.

* * *

'Ware a show of excessive feeling. It is proof, either that it is shallow and evanescent, or that it is put on. At all events Excessive feeling is rarely taken seriously. Now

Seriousness adds a spice to gallantry. But, like spice, a little is ample.

* * *

Many men think it is the woman who has to be persuaded. It is not the woman; it is her scruples. Besides, "Nemo repente turpissimus—vel turpissima". Yet

By thirty, scruples are either dormant or dominant.

Both of the callow youth of fifteen and the man of the world of forty-five swear by the woman of thirty.

* * *

It may seem a paradox, but it is a truism, that, in matters of love, it is the weaker and the defenseless sex that takes the initiative. In other words,

The woman makes the opportunity which the man takes. And

An opportunity missed is an opportunity lost. And

The woman is implacable to the man who sees the opportunity and takes it not. Since

With woman indifference is worse than insult. Wherefore

Never, never disappoint a woman.

* * *

Spontaneous admiration is the sincerest flattery. Those who know this, affect spontaneity. But it requires much art to conceal this art.

You will oftener err upon the side of ultra-delicacy in a compliment that upon the side of bare-facedness.

Do not imagine that excessive admiration can give offence. But remember that

The eye can netter express admiration than can the tongue.

The publicity with which a woman will receive admiration from a male admirer 144 often is sufficient to astonish that admirer. But

Often enough it is the admiration, not the admirer, that a woman covets. Indeed,

Many a woman is in love with love (3), but not her lover. But this no lover can be got to comprehend.

To flatter by deprecating a rival is a complement of extremely doubtful efficacy.

(3) I seem to remember that somebody before has said something like this before.

* * *

A woman does not admire too clement a conqueror. She admits the right to ovation, and to him who waives it she lightly regards.

* * *

Seek no stepping-stones unless you mean to cross:

He who gathers stepping-stones and refrains from crossing is contempted of women. Indeed,

Every advance of which advantage is not taken, is in reality a retreat. And remember, too, that though

Sought interviews are sweet, those unsought are sweeter. And

Probably no son of Adam—and for the matter of that, probably no daughter of Eve—ever quite looks back with remorse upon a semi-innocent escapade. Yet

The man who thinks he can at any time extract himself from any feminine entanglement that he may choose to have raveled, is a simpleton.

* * *

The way of man with a maid may have been too wonderful for Agur; now-a-days the way of a man with a married woman would puzzle a wiser than he.

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