unappeasable, is within me; it longeth to find
expression. A craving for love is within me, which speaketh itself the
language of love.
Light am I: ah, that I were night! But it is my lonesomeness to be
begirt with light!
Ah, that I were dark and nightly! How would I suck at the breasts of
And you yourselves would I bless, ye twinkling starlets and glow-worms
aloft!--and would rejoice in the gifts of your light.
But I live in mine own light, I drink again into myself the flames that
break forth from me.
I know not the happiness of the receiver; and oft have I dreamt that
stealing must be more blessed than receiving.
It is my poverty that my hand never ceaseth bestowing; it is mine envy
that I see waiting eyes and the brightened nights of longing.
Oh, the misery of all bestowers! Oh, the darkening of my sun! Oh, the
craving to crave! Oh, the violent hunger in satiety!
They take from me: but do I yet touch their soul? There is a gap 'twixt
giving and receiving; and the smallest gap hath finally to be bridged
A hunger ariseth out of my beauty: I should like to injure those I
illumine; I should like to rob those I have gifted:--thus do I hunger
Withdrawing my hand when another hand already stretcheth out to it;
hesitating like the cascade, which hesitateth even in its leap:--thus do
I hunger for wickedness!
Such revenge doth mine abundance think of: such mischief welleth out of
My happiness in bestowing died in bestowing; my virtue became weary of
itself by its abundance!
He who ever bestoweth is in danger of losing his shame; to him who ever
dispenseth, the hand and heart become callous by very dispensing.
Mine eye no longer overfloweth for the shame of suppliants; my hand hath
become too hard for the trembling of filled hands.
Whence have gone the tears of mine eye, and the down of my heart? Oh,
the lonesomeness of all bestowers! Oh, the silence of all shining ones!
Many suns circle in desert space: to all that is dark do they speak with
their light--but to me they are silent.
Oh, this is the hostility of light to the shining one: unpityingly doth
it pursue its course.
Unfair to the shining one in its innermost heart, cold to the
suns:--thus travelleth every sun.
Like a storm do the suns pursue their courses: that is their travelling.
Their inexorable will do they follow: that is their coldness.
Oh, ye only is it, ye dark, nightly ones, that extract warmth from
LUDOVICI IV WE PHILOLOGISTS TRANSLATED BY J.Page 11
_ To sit for five hours: the first step to holiness!--May I be allowed to say that Bizet's orchestration is the only one that I can endure now? That other orchestration which is all the rage at present--the Wagnerian--is brutal, artificial and "unsophisticated" withal, hence its appeal to all the three senses of the modern soul at once.Page 19
And also of _melody!_ However much in earnest we may otherwise be about the ideal, let us slander, my friends, let us slander,--let us slander melody! Nothing is more dangerous than a beautiful melody! Nothing is more certain to ruin taste! My friends, if people again set about loving beautiful melodies, we are lost!.Page 26
Incidentally, the _plots_ that Wagner knows how to unravel with the help of dramatic inventions, are of quite another kind.Page 27
Nothing is more entertaining, nothing more worthy of being recommended to a picnic-party, than to discuss Wagner dressed in a more modern garb: for instance Parsifal, as a candidate in divinity, with a public-school education (--the latter, quite indispensable _for pure_ foolishness).Page 28
A taste which Wagner understood!--which he felt equal to! which he has immortalised!--All he did was to apply it to music--he invented a style for himself, which might mean an "infinity of things,"--he.Page 44
Of all the arts which succeed in growing on the soil of a particular culture, music is the last plant to appear; maybe because it is the one most dependent upon our innermost feelings, and therefore the last to come to the surface--at a time when the culture to which it belongs is in its autumn season and beginning to fade.Page 47
Classical antiquity, however, was conveyed to the public through university professors and their intellectual offspring; and these professors, influenced (quite unconsciously, of course) by religious and "liberal" principles, presented to their scholars a kind of emasculated antiquity.Page 66
It must be insisted, however, that it is only through a knowledge of the present that one can acquire an inclination for the study of classical antiquity.Page 67
Valuing is the most difficult of all.Page 75
, _an enemy to one's own time.Page 77
First of all, the culture of antiquity is utilised as an incitement towards the acceptance of Christianity: it became, as it were, the premium for conversion, the gilt with which the poisonous pill was coated before being swallowed.Page 87
--All pure and simple caricature! So this is the result! And sorrow and irony and seclusion are all that remain for him who has seen more of antiquity than this.Page 89
,_ by Pindar.Page 101
173 Between our highest art and philosophy and that which is recognised to be truly.