Tales Of A Traveller, By Washington Irving

















































































































 -  At an early
age, therefore, before my mind had dawned upon the world and its
delights, or known any thing - Page 70
Tales Of A Traveller, By Washington Irving - Page 70 of 433 - First - Home

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At An Early Age, Therefore, Before My Mind Had Dawned Upon The World And Its Delights, Or Known Any Thing Of It Beyond The Precincts Of My Father's Palace, I Was Sent To A Convent, The Superior Of Which Was My Uncle, And Was Confided Entirely To His Care.

My uncle was a man totally estranged from the world; he had never relished, for he had never tasted its pleasures; and he deemed rigid self-denial as the great basis of Christian virtue.

He considered every one's temperament like his own; or at least he made them conform to it. His character and habits had an influence over the fraternity of which he was superior. A more gloomy, saturnine set of beings were never assembled together. The convent, too, was calculated to awaken sad and solitary thoughts. It was situated in a gloomy gorge of those mountains away south of Vesuvius. All distant views were shut out by sterile volcanic heights. A mountain stream raved beneath its walls, and eagles screamed about its turrets.

I had been sent to this place at so tender an age as soon to lose all Distinct recollection of the scenes I had left behind. As my mind expanded, therefore, it formed its idea of the world from the convent and its vicinity, and a dreary world it appeared to me. An early tinge of melancholy was thus infused into my character; and the dismal stories of the monks, about devils and evil spirits, with which they affrighted my young imagination, gave me a tendency to superstition, which I could never effectually shake off.

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