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Saturday, 13 February 2010

The Primordial Mother



"Here is the head upon which all the ends of the world are come and the eyelids are a little weary. All the thoughts and experience of the world have etched and moulded there. The animalism of Greece, the lust of Rome, the mysticism of the Middle Ages with its spiritual ambition and imaginative loves, the return of the pagan world, the sins of Borgias. She is older than the rocks among which she sits; like the vampire, she has been dead many times, and learned the secrets of the grave; and has been a diver in deep seas, and keeps their fallen day about her. And all this has been to her but as the sound of lyres and flutes, and lives only in the delicacy with which it has moulded the changing lineaments, and tinged the eyelids and the hands."


Walter Pater, from his famous description of La Gioconda

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