The Optimist by Henry Theodore Tuckerman

The Optimist

byHenry Theodore Tuckerman

Paperback | February 6, 2012

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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1850. Excerpt: ... A CHAPTER ON HANDS. "Give me your hands!" Fnnui, Shtlock had reason, while enumerating his claims to humanity, to ask, "Has not a Jew hands?" I have just examined the sculptured hand of a child modelled from life, by an artist of exact eye, and whose chisel bestows a flesh-like surface upon its products. The abstract beauty of the hand is better?ealized when thus viewed; and if we combine with this perception a sense of its varied facility as a mechanical instrument, and its countless offices as a means of expression, we cannot but feel that it is one of the graceful mysteries which characterize human beings; and hence it is that the most pathetic line in the Corsair, occurs in the description of the dead Medora, where the poet speaks of " the cold flowers her colder hand contained." The hand, in the light of comparative anatomy, most significantly marks the distinction between men and brutes. Its complex apparatus, and the relation between its performances and the mind, are so remarkable, that familiarity alone prevents their beinff observed with wonder. When we consider that its motions depend upon no less than twenty-nine bones, their certainty and vigor is marvellous. As an instrument, it combines, to an inconceivable degree, the almost antagonistic qualities of great strength and extreme delicacy, freedom of movement with nicety of action, and perfect ease with thorough control. The same machine whereby the athlete raises himself to the slackrope, or the blacksmith wields a ponderous sledge, is adapted to graduate the hues upon the artist's canvas, and modify sounds of the most exquisite musical instruments. The fingers, whose accurate sensation counts the pulsations of the invalid, when folded together, become a weapon, which, deftly managed, may fe...

Details & Specs

Title:The OptimistFormat:PaperbackDimensions:78 pages, 9.69 × 7.44 × 0.16 inPublished:February 6, 2012Publisher:General Books LLCLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0217098886

ISBN - 13:9780217098885

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