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HomePatriot DispatchesThe Maxims of Methuselah, Part IV

The Maxims of Methuselah, Part IV


(To read our installments, just search "Maxims") 

   Chapter vii

The patriarch apologizeth for woman's inconsistency

1 Wonder not at woman's in
consistency, for she hath been
created of warring essences.
2 For she is the weaker vessel, yet
shall not the strong enjoy her unless she
consenteth; and that which she loveth
must she refuse alway. 

3 She feareth a mouse when it appear-
eth, yet she goeth to fierce pains with

4 She demandeth of men the impossible
alway; yet she refuseth to see the side
that appeareth not first unto her. 

How She is Often Reproved

 5 Her ways are devious and full of
guile; yet when she taketh the straight
road she is reproved for her forwardness. 

6 Yea, when she entertaineth a fool
with honied words, do men accuse her
of hypocrisy; yet if she telephoneth to
men, asking them to call, then are they
enraged and perverse of spirit. 

And Stultified

 7 And in her defeat by her beloved is
her only victory. 

8 She beareth agony continually, yea,
she smileth and concealeth her pain; yet
if a man suffer, the whole city shall
know it. 

9 There is a thing no woman know-
eth, and all her days it shall be unre-
vealed; how she hath acted in private
theatricals, no man shall tell her, and
women shall say sweet words, meaning

The 10 Signs of a Woman in Love

10 Son, if a maiden love thee, thou
shalt appear handsome in her sight; she
shall praise thine eyes, and the corners
of thy mouth, yea, she shall admire thy
hands. Though thou wert even as the
ourang-outang yet shall she paint thee
with fancies. 

11 She shall be easy of access; she will
accept all thine invitations; she shall
have time in plenty. 

12 She shall shew thee her new raiment
and ask thy judgment; and the gown
which thou approvest not, she will not
wear it. 

13 She shall ask thee of thy mother,
and thy sister; she shall demand
photograph of thy childhood. 

14 She shall read the books that thou
readest, she shall study thy taste. She
shall know thy color and thy song; she
shall remember the sugar in thy tea, and
the lamb chop thou despisest will she
not offer thee. 

15 She shall pick threads from thy gar
ment; she shall brush thine hair. 

16 She remembereth when she first
met thee, and knoweth when thou hast
last called. She laugheth at thy jests. 

17 She knoweth thy neckties; she heed-
eth thine opinions and quoteth them to her

18 She giveth thee foolish gifts; and
she knoweth if thou usest them noL 

19 She readeth thy letters even when
they are cold; she knoweth thy step when
it is outside the door.
Chapter vii

Women to be Understood and women to be guarded against

1 Hearken unto my words and
attend diligently to my counsel;
for the world is full of women,
and the women full of wile; so that a
man, if he goeth not warily withal, shall
surely fall a prey thereunto. 

2 For in the endeavor to misunderstand
women we spend our most delightful

Her Methods Contrariwise

3 Take heed and know that a fond
woman's commandment is made only to
be broken; and only a fool erreth therein. 

4 When she smileth, peradventure it
may be for another; but when she frown-
eth it is for thee alone. 

5 If she talketh much of another, rejoice
that thou hast no rival; but if she
keepeth silent concerning him, watch thou
his acts, for danger lieth in wait for thee. 

6 If she weepeth, weep thou also, and
her grief shall be abated. 

The universal confidant to e avoided

7 Many a woman hath said unto me:
Lo, I am the universal confidante, and all
men tell me their loves; yet have I not
confided in her. 

When to Confide

8 If a damsel importune thee for thy
secret, lie thou straightway; yea, if there
be naught to hide, invent thou a pleasing
romance, for words shall content her. 

9 Yet if she ceaseth from her questions,
if she respecteth thy privacy, then mayest
thou tell her the truth.

A comparison of the plain and comely maid, 
 and their methods

10 My son, beware of a plain damsel
who charmeth thee, for she needeth much
wile, and useth divers weapons; 

11 She expecteth not to win easily,
and she maketh sure her aim; she playeth
the sympathetic. She studieth to
please, she doeth many favors. 

12 But the fair maiden is simple of
heart, she thinketh much of herself; she
giveth naught, but receiveth alway; she
basketh in her own beauty; she maketh
men to be weary. 

13 Doth a woman strive for the
impossible? Nay, she knoweth not the gain
thereof; and she scoffeth at him who
desireth a marvel. 

Women's prudence

14 Lo, many a man hath given up a
good salary for a chance of fortune; but a
woman preferreth the bird in the hand. 

15 If thou makest a statement concerning women,
 lo, she shall immediately try
to disprove it straightway. She goeth by

16 When a woman breaketh her heart,
when disaster befalleth her love, she
entereth the house of memory and shutteth
the door behind her; but if a man slayeth
his hope he shutteth the door also, but he

17 For all women are even as Lot's
wife, looking backward.
Citizen With Bark On

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