The Singers of Louchébem

The permutations of traditional criticism having been long exhausted, the bards of that country devised a system whereby each Song might be considered as if it were heard by certain different Humours, Moods and Temperaments of its Auditors. For example, a love song will raise Emotions in the heart of a young maiden, which are far removed from the effects of the same song on a doting greybeard.

This artifice opened infinite possibilities. The bards quibble on such distinctions as the Song Heard While Drunk; the Song Seemingly Enjoyed in an attempt to Ingratiate oneself with a Sweetheart; the Song, the Awfulness of which was not apparent when one enjoyed it in Youth; and what not.

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