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The Certain Hour

James Branch Cabell

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .u for this once," he answered, "since we are informed by those in holy orders that all such as lay violent hands upon themselves must suffer eternally." Then, kneeling, he cried, in an extremity of adoration: "Oh, I have served you all my life. You may not now deny me this last service. And while I talk they dig your grave! O blind men, making the new grave, take heed lest that grave be too narrow, for already my heart is breaking in my body. I have drunk too deep of sorrow. And yet I may not fail you, now that honor and mercy and my love for you demand I kill you before I also die—in such a fashion as this fellow speaks of."

She did not dispute this. How could she when it was an axiom in all Courts of Love that Heaven held dominion in a lover's heart only as an underling of the man's mistress?

And so she said, with a fond smile: "It is your demonstrable privilege. I would not grant it, dear, were my weak hands as clean as you. . . Read More

Community Reviews

to write perfectly of beautiful happenings

Ok so only 5 stars because i'm grading on a curve but still, i was going to rate each idividual story but found they were all 4 stars except for maybe one which was 3.

It starts with an essay about why its so hard to get good writing published and basica

The first tale in The Certain Hour (1916), “Belhs Cavaliers,” is set in the England of 1210 A.D., and features a love triangle of

1. the hero, Raimbaut de Vaquiras,

2. the open antagonist, Guillaume de Baut (Prince of Orange), and

3. Dona Biatritz, with a fourth figure added to form a sort of love r

I am reading the entirety of the Dom Manuel fantasy series by James Branch Cabell, and thus far, this is the one that resonated with me the least. But the premise is interesting.

In the second book, "Figures of Earth," Manuel creates earthen figures that Queen Freydis then brings to life at a "certa