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EROS and ANTEROS
FRANCIS TURNER PALGRAVE
Tu lascierai ogni cosa diletta
With an Introduction
R. BRIMLEY JOHNSON
PETER DAVIES, PUBLISHER
THE PASSIONATE PILGRIM, or Eros and Anteros, was published in 1858, when Palgrave was a young man of thirtyfour, over the pseudonym Henry J. Thurstan. I have had the privilege of talking over the relation of certain narrative statements therein to the actual facts, with his daughter, Miss Palgrave, who has kindly allowed me to write of these matters, on her authority. All is said here, therefore, that needs to be said, or ever will be. Indeed, there is no more to say.
R. B. J.
FRANCIS TURNER PALGRAVE was a poet, above all a lover of poetry, who made poems out of life.
The Passionate Pilgrim is, emotionally, a literal 'Confession'; but so far as it attempts narration, almost wholly imaginative: a sincere Liber Amoris, to eternalize in true words 'a tale of things, trivial in the world's ear, terrible in recollection'; not precisely a true tale.
Because the happy, intimate boy and girl friendship, unbroken for years, developed in him a man's love which his lady Désirée could not return, he sought 'relief in the imagined sympathy of unknown fellow-creatures, the sad solace that lies in utterance of agonies and exultations,' not merely personal,' but 'one image of the fate of humanity' :
It is not the facts, but the glory of their investing sensations I wish to narrate.'
It may well be that he was actually at her side, ' in the little Gothic crypt of a village church near the sea, and wandering over the roof or touching hands as he aided her blithe ascent to the highest tower'; since 'her wild caprice of gaiety,' ever met, in him, with a normal and healthy boy's delight' in the banners or battle-cries of school warfaring,' the 'great boisterous school-hall,' or