The Lost Word

A Christmas Legend of Long Ago

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Author: Henry van Dyke
Published: 1898
Language: English
Wordcount: 9,635 / 33 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 76.5
LoC Category: BL
Downloads: 877
mnybks.net#: 2411
Origin: gutenberg.org
Excerpt

disappointment, and life so early take on the look of a failure. It has little reason in it, perhaps, but it has all the more weariness and gloom, because the man who is oppressed by it feels dimly that it is an unnatural and an unreasonable thing, that he should be separated from the joy of his companions, and tired of living before he has fairly begun to live.

Hermas had fallen into the very depths of this strange self-pity. He was out of tune with everything around him. He had been thinking, through the dead, still night, of all that he had given up when he left the house of his father, the wealthy pagan Demetrius, to join the company of the Christians. Only two years ago he had been one of the richest young men in Antioch. Now he was one of the poorest. And the worst of it was that, though he had made the choice willingly and accepted the sacrifice with a kind of enthusiasm, he was already dissatisfied with it.

The new life was no happier than the old. He was weary of vigils and fasts, wear

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