Laurus Nobilis

Chapters on Art and Life

Author: Vernon Lee (Violet Paget)
Language: English
Wordcount: 55,591 / 171 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 37.9
LoC Category: N
Downloads: 573
Added to site: 2009.01.31
mnybks.net#: 23297
Genre: Essays
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Excerpt

s turn elicits and improves some of the highest qualities of his soul. Nay, as every great writer on art has felt, from Plato to Ruskin, but none has expressed as clearly as Mr. Pater, in all true æsthetic training there must needs enter an ethical element, almost an ascetic one.

The greatest art bestows pleasure just in proportion as people are capable of buying that pleasure at the price of attention, intelligence, and reverent sympathy. For great art is such as is richly endowed, full of variety, subtlety, and suggestiveness; full of delightfulness enough for a lifetime, the lifetime of generations and generations of men; great art is to its true lovers like Cleopatra to Antony--"age cannot wither it, nor custom stale its infinite variety." Indeed, when it is the greatest art of all, the art produced by the marvellous artist, the most gifted race, and the longest centuries, we find ourselves in presence of something which, like Nature itself, contains more beauty, suggests more thought, works

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