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Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 9, page 72, February 24, 1858

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Identifier: DX03461255

Title: Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 9, page 72, February 24, 1858

Description: Describes the competitiveness of music master Mr. Ulric around other men.


Consequently he [Mr. Ulric] hates [Jesse] Haney, myself and all the men visitors, with all his little might, and is mortally jealous when we stay all night. Some time back when Haney & I were reading aloud [Charles] Dicken's story of "The Perils of Certain English Prisoners &c," Ulric was so moved that he got up wanting to take the book from my hand to read himself. (He talks exceedingly broken English.) Last Friday, in retaliation he brought a german [Friedrich] Schiller and would read aloud, standing and gesticulating three thundering long poems, which, of course, nobody understood but Haney, whom he, of all persons, would not wish to please. I happened to know an English version of one of these — "The Diver" — and, on request, repeated the whole of it, taking the wind out of Ulric's sails in an awful manner. He sat and glared at me as though I were an evil spirit, half believing I had extemporized it all, for his especial mortification. Anon, amidst all his piano-forte performance — of which he gives folks more than enough — he did the "Standard-Bearer." Whereupon I sang the "Ratcatcher's Daughter" which, it's needless to say filled him with extreme disgust, the more so as everybody else roared. "Vat is that" doo-dall dee-doodaldum?" inquired he, about the Chorus. Also he got frantically jealous of Grace [Eldredge] & Haney, I beckoning him from the other room and the piano, to observe there [their] pose — Grace on a stool beside Haney. He came in like Richard the Third about to smother children! To see him standing up, seizing [James] Parton's hand, and singing at the top of his voice, German protestations of eternal affection — Parton’s look of part wonder, part contempt part compassion, part goodnature — was the drollest spectacle! Ulric so far forgets his position as to abuse us to Fanny [Fern]

Rights: NoC-US


Dates: 1858-02-24

Type(s): Diary

Maker/Creator: Gunn, Thomas Butler, 1826-1903

Subjects: Germans
Books and reading


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