Page:Man Who Laughs (Estes and Lauriat 1869) v1.djvu/351

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CHAPTER IV.


WELL-MATCHED LOVERS.


URSUS, being a philosopher, understood all this, and approved of Dea's infatuation. The blind see the invisible. He said, "Conscience is vision." Then, looking at Gwynplaine, he murmured, "Half-monster, but demi-god, nevertheless."

Gwynplaine, on the other hand, was madly in love with Dea. There is the invisible eye,—the spirit; and the visible eye,—the pupil. He saw her with the visible eye. Dea was dazzled by the ideal; Gwynplaine, by the real. Gwynplaine was not ugly; he was frightful. He saw his contrast before him: in proportion as he was terrible, Dea was lovely. He was the personification of the horrible; she was the embodiment of grace. Dea was a dream. She seemed a vision scarcely embodied. In her Grecian form; in her delicate and supple figure, swaying like a reed; in her shoulders, on which might have been invisible wings; in the modest curves which indicated her sex, to the soul rather than to the senses; in her fairness, which amounted almost to transparency; in the earnest and quiet serenity of her look, divinely shut out from earth; in the sacred innocence of her smile,—she was almost an angel, and yet a woman.

Gwynplaine 's existence might be compared to the point of intersection of two rays; one from below and one from above,—a black and a white ray. The same