Charles Lamb (1804)

Charles Lamb, 1804
Portrait (as Velázquez’ Philip IV) by William Hazlitt

Courtesy of the website of the National Portrait Gallery, London

But those unconnected, unset sounds are nothing to the measured malice of music. The ear is passive to those single strokes; willingly enduring stripes, while it hath no task to con. To music it cannot be passive; it will strive – mine at least will – ’spite of its inaptitude, to thrid the maze; like an unskilled eye painfully poring upon hieroglyphics.

– Charles Lamb (“Elia”), “A Chapter on Ears”

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