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training their minds to think. When we get here we seem to vie with each other to see who can be the most successful in avoiding the process.
It is long past
In all truth the spirit of this place is on me. the hour of midnight. The lights are out and I am writing this by the fitful, uncertain light of a solitary candle. A new realization has come to me, a realization of the reality of people who have gone before and yet have left some indelible impress on the atmosphere.
I am just in from talking to shadows, to ghosts; for ghosts are but shadows. Cold marbled Botetourt was the first to melt from his frigid statuesqueness under the softening light of the November moon. I was coming in from the Duke of Gloucester Street, right up the main walk from the gate and the sparkling whiteness of Botetourt held me breathless. As I walked towards him I murmured his name, Norman Berkley Baron de Botetourt, and it was like a mystic cantrap, for in the drama of shadow lights he became quite animate and as I stood there at his feet he seemed to spread out a hand in patriarchal blessing and he seemed to say, "My son, for all who walk these walks are my sons, to you falls the mantle of tradition that was woven these two centuries ago by such as me. Wear it as becomes a son of this old College and I will watch over you and guard you." It was all very real and I stood there motionless with wide-open eyes looking up into that benevolent face and I loved old Bote
Filled with strange calm I walked up to the Wren Building to cross over to Taliaferro. A shadowy Jefferson greeted me. He was very real. He was both youth and man. It confused me to see him here. I blurted out, "You should be at Charlottesville." Not the least diplomatic salutation for our greatest diplomat, to be sure. He looked quite sad and either he or the night wind in the trees murmured, "I wanted to found a democratic institution, and I have founded it here."
Frightened at my own poor judgment, I hurried past him, not daring to look back. The moon was shining bright into the first floor rooms of Brafferton. I nearly went by, but I paused just to watch for a minute the shadow form of Barton Rogers as he worked at his test-tubes with that loving zeal of the scientist.
Yes the spirit of the place is on me. There is such a thing as atmosphere about a place. Traditions do mean something, and it all makes me feel quite small and very humble.
H, Mother mine, who led my steps till now,
Who showed me how to walk in Life's strait way,
You taught me all I know of how to live,
That I may some full joy to you return;
Some joy in seeing this, thy child, succeed
Nellie Jane Harris.
FEMINISM IN THE MIDDLE AGES AND IN THE AGE OF MILTON
N order to get a clear conception of the status of woman in the early eighteenth century, it is perhaps necessary to look back and determine just what had been her status during the preceding centuries. With this necessity in view, let us look at the position of woman from the time of Dante up through the sixteenth century.
We notice that all through the medieval period, woman is spoken of in only one respect, and that is love. We find very few instances in which she is mentioned in any other connection. Woman is impractical, and her chief value is to please man. This chivalric love is the love of the Symposium, Phaedrus and Vita Nuova. Dante's love for Beatrice is largely Platonic love and is ultranuptial and anti-matrimonial. "It does not appear from anything that he tells us of his youthful years that they ever conversed together; and of love in the common acceptation of that term, it is clear there was no question." This is a splendid example of the Platonic love that predominated the chivalric age. It was unnatural, craving no union with its object, but craving to be remembered and loved by the beloved. All through the Vita Nuova we get just such a conception of Dante's attitude towards Beatrice. And likewise, passing on farther in the Middle Ages, the young knight thought and dreamed of his lady only in terms of love. This love was not only a habit, but it was an occupation. Such love permeates the entire life of the lovers. All life is subordinated to love, and it rules the destinies of its objects. It is a real business proposition and is considered so by those indulging in it. It has for its objective the absolute service of the beloved, strict fidelity and pure virtue. It is being in love for love's sake, or to express it more clearly, a lover loves for the sake of loving. Extreme constancy was held at a great premium. "Though sensual love lay at the bottom of the system, voluptousness was regarded as fatal to real love."
Strange to say, only the wealthy and aristocratic can engage in this chivalric love. The poor and lowly are excluded just as the women are excluded from the love of the Symposium. Passing on a little farther, we see the beautiful chivalric love of the Arthurian Romances. Arthur's knights are urged to be kind and generous to ladies at all times. "Dieu et Dame" and the name of woman are on the knight's lips at the same time. This adoration is the source of all nobility, honor and self-sacrifice. "Tristram and Lancelot, the two paragons of knighthood, are inviolably constant to their mistresses; the husband may and must be deceived, but not the wife who helps to deceive him." These same knights carry their ladies off to Joyous Gard and here bravery, courtship, happiness and endurance prevail.
Gower, in his Confessio Amantis, treats chivalric love as fully developed and really bases his poem on that idea. Romance and various activities of Cupid and Venus fill up the poem. Chaucer, in The Parlement of Foules, The Book of the Duchesse, and The Hous of Fame, shows clearly the romantic and chivalric influence of The Roman de la Rose, the great French erotic poem of the thirteenth century. Chaucer's conception of woman was largely one of chivalry and romance, with few exceptions, notably, The Tale of the Wyf of Bath.
The object of this chivalric love was not always an unmarried lady, but was frequently one with husband and children. Unlike the courtship relations, the wedded relations were by no means romantic; all of the romance had gone now. The marriage had been made very probably against the will of the contracting parties; so neither one felt any great responsibility in keeping their promises to each other. The husband could beat his wife, and was protected by the law, so long as he broke no bones or limbs. She was dependent upon him and both of them realized it. This lady was sometimes educated very well, but oftentimes she was not. She could probably do a little domestic duties when such duties became necessary, but was by no means adept in performing such tasks. Thus, we see the great emphasis that the Medi