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Excerpt from "The Birth-mark"

Excerpt from "The Birth-mark"

That Georgiana is no mere victim is made clear in this disturbing passage. She appears almost eager to sacrifice herself on the altar of her husband's idealism, an impulse matching her husband's pride and consistent with the characterization of herself she offers at her death as "the best the earth could offer."
He conducted her back, and took leave of her with a solemn tenderness, which spoke far more than his words how much was now at stake. After his departure, Georgiana became rapt in musings. She considered the character of Aylmer, and did it completer justice than at any previous moment. Her heart exulted, while it trembled, at his honorable love, so pure and lofty that it would accept nothing less than perfection, nor miserably make itself contented with an earthlier nature than he had dreamed of. She felt how much more precious was such a sentiment, than that meaner kind which would have borne with the imperfection for her sake, and have been guilty of treason to holy love, by degrading its perfect idea to the level of the actual. And, with her whole spirit, she prayed, that, for a single moment, she might satisfy his highest and deepest conception. Longer than one moment, she well knew, it could not be; for his spirit was ever on the march--ever ascending--and each instant required something that was beyond the scope of the instant before.

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