Page:Auerbach-Spinozanovel.djvu/283

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261
THE UNEXPRESSED.

what was the matter with her; she gave no answer, and pretended to be no longer awake, but in fact could find no rest.

"He is a heartless, selfish man, with a frosty intellect!"

No, she could not say that, she could not think so of him. His youthful modesty, his invincible truthfulness, and above all, the unmistakable signs of good will and love for humanity in his countenance, the tender smile of his loving mouth, and the glowing depths of his dark eyes! No, she could not make him a caricature.

Singing and carolling she arose next morning, and as she stood before the glass her looks said:

"No, it has not come to that yet, and were he a god, and thought himself raised above all human woes, my honor and self-respect require that he should kneel to me; and then, having won him, I will see how to begin."

With gay self-satisfaction she continued her toilette.

Not with such gayety did Miriam de Spinoza don her wedding garments, for religious custom had here ordained a strange and harsh contrast. Beneath the glistening bridal robes the bride must wear the sheet in which she will one day be laid in the bosom of the earth, her winding-sheet; the lovely ringlets of Miriam from this day forward would be hidden beneath the cap and veil; the long