young darwin

“A young man of twenty-two, carrying a copy of Paradise Lost when he set sail on the Beagle six years before Victoria ascended the throne, Darwin was a Romantic. He played the piano to worms, thought about the free will of dogs and oysters, called his eldest son Mr Hoddy Doddy, liked novels with pretty women and happy endings, and was basically a good egg.”

(Angelique Richardson, review of George Levine’s Darwin Loves You: Natural selection and the re-enchantment of the world, Times Literary Supplement, 27 July 2007, p. 11.)

tasso recovered

     “Fòrse sé tu gustassi unal sòl volta
La millésima parte délle giòje,
Ché gusta un còr amato riamando,
Diresti ripentita sospirando,
Perduto è tutto il tempo
Ché in amar non si spènde.”

(Tasso, quoted in Matthew G. Lewis’s The Monk as an epigraph to Chapter II.)