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Ancient Manners Also Known As Aphrodite   By: (1870-1925)

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First Page:

Ancient Manners

This Edition on Large Paper, is limited to 1000 copies of which this is No . . . . . . . . . .

Ancient Manners



Illustrated by ED. ZIER

Privately printed for Subscribers only


This Translation of Ancient Manners was executed on the Printing Presses of CHARLES HERISSEY, at Evreux, (France), for Mr. Charles CARRINGTON, Paris, Bookseller et Publisher, and is the only complete English version extant.


Author's Preface


I. Chrysis II. On the Quay at Alexandria III. Demetrios IV. The Passer by V. The Mirror, the Comb, and the Necklace VI. The Virgins VII. Chrysis's Hair


I. The Garden of the Goddess II. Melitta III. Love and Death IV. Moonlight V. The Invitation VI. Chrysis's Rose VII. The Tale of the Enchanted Lyre


I. The Arrival II. The Dinner III. Rhacontis IV. The Orgie at Bacchis's V. The Crucified One VI. Enthusiasm VII. Cleopatra


I. Demetrios Dreams a Dream II. The Panic III. The Crowd IV. The Response V. The Garden of Hermanubis VI. The Walls Of Purple


I. The Supreme Night II. Dust Returns to Earth III. Chrysis Immortal IV. Pity V. Piety


The very ruins of the Greek world instruct us how our modern life might be made supportable.

Richard Wagner

The learned Prodicos of Ceos, who flourished towards the end of the fifth century before our era, is the author of the celebrated apologue that Saint Basil recommended to the meditations of the Christians: Heracles between Virtue and Pleasure . We know that Heracles chose the former and was therefore permitted to commit a certain number of crimes against the Arcadian Stag, the Amazons, the Golden Apples, and the Giants.

Had Prodicos gone no further than this, he would simply have written a fable marked by a certain cheap Symbolism; but he was a good philosopher, and his collection of tales, The Hours , in three parts, presented the moral truths under the various aspects that befit them, according to the three ages of life. To little children he complacently held up the example of the austere choice of Heracles; to young men. doubtless, he related the voluptuous choice of Paris, and I imagine that to full grown men he addressed himself somewhat as follows:

"One day Odysseus was roaming about the foot of the mountains of Delphi, hunting, when he fell in with two maidens holding one another by the hand. One of them had glossy, black hair, clear eyes, and a grave look. She said to him: 'I am Arete.' The other had drooping eyelids, delicate hands, and tender breasts. She said: 'I am 'Tryphe.' And both exclaimed: 'Choose between us.' But the subtile Odysseus answered sagely. 'How should I choose? You are inseparable. The eyes that have seen you pass by separately have witnessed but a barren shadow. Just as sincere virtue does not repel the eternal joys that pleasure offers it, in like manner self indulgence would be in evil plight without a certain nobility of spirit. I will follow both of you. Show me the way.' No sooner had he finished speaking than the two visions were merged in one another, and Odysseus knew that he had been talking with the great golden Aphrodite."

The principal character of the novel which the reader is about to have under his eyes is a woman, a courtesan of antiquity; but let him take heart of grace: she will not be converted in the end.

She will be loved neither by a saint, nor by a prophet, nor by a god. In the literature of to day this is a novelty.

A courtesan, she will be a courtesan with the frankness, the ardour, and also the conscious pride of every human being who has a vocation and has freely chosen the place he occupies in society; she will aspire to rise to the highest point; the idea that her life demands excuse or mystery will not even cross her mind... Continue reading book >>

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