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The God of Love   By: (1860-1936)

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First Page:

THE GOD OF LOVE

BY

JUSTIN HUNTLY McCARTHY

AUTHOR OF

"THE GORGEOUS BORGIA" "SERAPHICA" "IF I WERE KING" ETC.

"The God of Love ah, Benedicite , How mighty and how great a lord is he!" CHAUCER.

NEW YORK AND LONDON HARPER & BROTHERS PUBLISHERS MCMIX

Copyright, 1909, by HARPER & BROTHERS.

All rights reserved

Published October, 1909.

TO

JUSTIN McCARTHY

CONTENTS

CHAP. PAGE

I. THE MAY DAY QUEEN 1 II. A CHILD AND A CHILD 28 III. VITTORIA 46 IV. THE WORDS OF THE IMAGE 54 V. ONE WAY WITH A QUARREL 66 VI. LOVER AND LASS 80 VII. CONCERNING POETRY 92 VIII. MONNA VITTORIA SENDS ME A MESSAGE 108 IX. MADONNA VITTORIA SOUNDS A WARNING 120 X. THE DEVILS OF AREZZO 131 XI. MESSER FOLCO'S FESTIVAL 138 XII. DANTE READS RHYMES 144 III. GO BETWEENS 164 XIV. MESSER SIMONE SPOILS SPORT 176 XV. A SPY IN THE NIGHT 190 XVI. THE TALK OF LOVERS 204 XVII. A STRANGE BETROTHAL 215 XVIII. A WORD FOR MESSER SIMONE 225 XIX. THE RIDE IN THE NIGHT 243 XX. THE FIGHT WITH THOSE OF AREZZO 256 XXI. MALEOTTI BEARS FALSE WITNESS 266 XXII. THE RETURN OF THE REDS 279 XXIII. THE PEACE OF THE CITY 286 XXIV. BREAKING THE PEACE 297 XXV. MEETING AND PARTING 309 XXVI. THE ENEMY AT THE GATE 322 XXVII. THE SOLITARY CITY 335 NOTE 343

THE GOD OF LOVE

I

THE MAY DAY QUEEN

This is the book of Lappo Lappi, called by his friends the careless, the happy go lucky, the devil may take it, the God knows what. Called by his enemies drinker, swinker, tumbler, tinker, swiver. Called by many women that liked him pretty fellow, witty fellow, light fellow, bright fellow, bad fellow, mad fellow, and the like. Called by some women who once loved him Lapinello, Lappinaccio, little Lappo. Called now in God as a good religious should be, Lappentarius, from a sweet saint myself discovered or invented; need we quibble? in an ancient manuscript. And it is my merry purpose now, in a time when I, that am no longer merry, look back upon days and hours and weeks and months and years that were very merry indeed, propose to set down something of my own jolly doings and lovings, and incidentally to tell some things about a friend of mine that was never so merry as I was, though a thousand times wiser; and never so blithe as I was, though a thousand times the better man. For it seems to me now, in this cool grim grayness of my present way, with the cloisters for my kingdom and the nimbused frescoes on the walls for my old time ballads and romances, as if my life that was so sunburnt and wine sweetened and woman kissed, my life that seemed to me as bright, every second of it, as bright ducats rushing in a pleasant plenteous stream from one hand to another, was after all intended to be no more than a kind of ironic commentary on, and petty contrast to, the life of my friend.

He and I lived our youth out in the greatest and fairest of all cities that the world has ever seen, greater a thousand times than Troy or Nineveh, or Babylon or Rome, and when I say this you will know, of course, that I speak of the city of Florence, and we lived and loved at the same time, lived and loved in so strangely different a fashion that it seems to me that if the two lives were set side by side after the fashion of Messer Plutarch of old days, they would form as diverting a pair of opposites as any student of humanity could desire for his entertainment... Continue reading book >>




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