the night's “beating” he had a list of some twenty

 people involved | time:2023-12-04 21:52:49

"Now, your majesty," said Gottsched, "do you not find that the German language is capable of repeating the French verses promptly and concisely?"

the night's “beating” he had a list of some twenty

"I am astonished that you have been able to translate this beautiful poem. I am sorry I am too old to learn German. I regret that in my youth I had neither the courage nor the instruction necessary. I would certainly have turned many of my leisure hours to the translation of German authors, rather than to Roman and French writers; but the past cannot be recalled, and I must be content! If I can never hope to become a German writer, it will at least be granted me to sing the praises of the regenerator of the German language in French verse. I have sought to do so now--listen!"

the night's “beating” he had a list of some twenty

The king read aloud a few verses to the enraptured professor. The immoderate praise enchanted him, and, in the assurance of his pride and conceit, he did not remark the fine irony concealed in them. With a raised voice, and a graceful, bantering smile, the king concluded:

the night's “beating” he had a list of some twenty

"C'est a toi Cygne des Saxons, D'arracher ce secret a la nature avare; D'adoucir dans tes chants d'une langue barbare, Les durs et detestables sons'"

[Footnote: Oeuvres Posthumes, vol. vii., p 216. "It is thine, swan of the Saxons, To draw the secret from the miser Nature; To soften with thy songs the hard And detestable sounds of a barbarous tongue."]

"Ah! your majesty," cried Gottsched, forgetting his indignation over the langue barbare, in his rapture at the praise he had received, "you are kind and cruel at the same moment. You cast reproach upon our poor language, and, at the same time, give me right royal praise. Cygne des Saxons--that is an epithet which does honor to the royal giver, and to the happy receiver. For a king and a hero, there can be no higher fame than to appreciate and reverence men of letters. The sons of Apollo and the Muses, the scholars, the artists and authors, have no more exalted object than to attain the acknowledgment and consideration of the king and the hero. Sire, I make you a most profound and grateful reverence. You have composed a masterly little poem, and when the Cygne des Saxons shall sing his swanlike song, it will be in honor of the great Frederick, the Csesar of his time."

"Now, my dear Quintus," said the king, after Gottsched had withdrawn, "are you content with your great scholar?"

"Sire," said he, "I must sorrowfully confess that the great Gottsched has covered his head with a little too much of the dust of learning; he is too much of the pedant."

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