MAN AND WOMAN
God made for man a throne; for woman an altar.
The throne exalts, the altar sanctifies.
Man is the brain, Woman, the heart.
The brain creates light, the heart, Love. Light engenders, Love resurrects.
Because of reason Man is strong, because of tears Woman is invincible.
Reason is convincing, tears moving.
Man is capable of all heroism, Woman of all martyrdom.
Heroism ennobles, martyrdom sublimates.
Man has supremacy, Woman, preference.
Supremacy is strength, preference is the right.
Man is a genius, Woman, an angel.
Genius is immeasurable, the angel undefinable.
The aspiration of man is supreme glory,
The aspiration of woman is extreme virtue.
Glory creates all that is great; virtue, all that is divine.
Man is a code, Woman a gospel.
A code corrects, the gospel perfects.
Man thinks, Woman dreams.
To think is to have a worm in the brain,
to dream is to have a halo on the brow.
Man is an ocean, Woman a lake.
The ocean has the adorning pearl, the lake, dazzling poetry.
Man is the flying eagle, Woman, the singing nightingale.
To fly is to conquer space. To sing is to conquer the Soul.
Man is a temple, Woman a shrine.
Before the temple we discover ourselves, before the shrine we kneel.
In short, man is found where earth finishes, woman where heaven begins.
Love Letter: Juliette Drouet to Victor Hugo
Julienne Josephine Gauvain
10 April 1806
Fougères, Brittany, France
11 May 1883 (aged 77)
Mistress of writer Victor Hugo
Juliette Drouet to Victor Hugo
Friday 8 p.m
If only I were a clever woman, I could describe to you my gorgeous bird, how you unite in yourself the beauties of form, plumage and song !
I would tell you that you are the greatest marvel of all ages, and I should only be speaking the simple truth. But to put all this into suitable words, my superb one, I should require a voice far more harmonious than that which is bestowed upon my species - for I am the humble owl that you mocked at only lately, therefore, it cannot be.
I will not tell you to what degree you are dazzling and to the birds of sweet song who, as you know, are non the less beautiful and appreciative. I am content to delegate them the duty of watching, listening and admiring, while to myself I reserve the right of loving; this may be less attractive to the ear, but it is sweeter far to the heart.
I love you, I love you. My Victor; I cannot reiterate it too often; I can never express it as much as I feel it.
I recognize you in all the beauty that surrounds me in form, in colour, in perfume, in harmonious sound: all of these mean you to me. You are superior to all. I see and admire - you are all !
You are not only the solar spectrum with the seven luminous colours, but the sun himself, that illumines, warms and revivifies! This is what you are, and I am the lowly woman that adores you.