The Little Schoolmaster Mark
The Prince looked up as the two came in, and waved his disengaged hand for them to stand back, and the next moment the strange phantasmagoria, into which the boy's life was turned, took another phase, and he again lost all perception of what he had seen before; for there burst into the little room the most wonderful voice, which not only he and the Chaplain, but even the Maestro and the Prince, had well-nigh ever heard.
The girl, who was taking her music lesson, had been discovered in Italy by the old Maestro, who managed the music of the private theatre which the Prince had formed. He had heard her, a poor untaught girl, in a coffee-house in Venice, and she afterwards became, in the opinion of some, the most pathetic female actress and singer of the century.
The first chord of her voice penetrated into the boy's nature as nothing had ever done before; he had never heard any singing save that of the peasants at church, and of the boys and girls who sang hymns round the cottage heart