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Main > Fairy tale > All authors > Andersen Hans Christian > Fairy tale "The New Century's Goddess"

The New Century's Goddess

So it was, and so it will be, in mankind' s mighty onward march in the consciousness of freedom.

Each century, each thousand years, one might even say, has its chief expression in its poetry. Born in the passing era, it comes forth and reigns in the new, succeeding era.

Thus she is already born, this Goddess of the New Century, amid the roar of today' s machinery. We send her our greetings! May she hear this, or sometime read it, perhaps among the charcoal tracings we just mentioned.

The rocker of her cradle extended from the farthest point reached by the foot of man on polar voyages, as far as the living eye can gaze into the jet depth of the polar sky. We would never hear the rocking for the clatter of engines, the screams of locomotives, the thunder of quarry blasts, and the bursting of the Spirit' s old bonds.

She is born in the vast factory of the present, where steam sets in action its power, and where Master Bloodless and his crew toil night and day.

She bears the womanly heart of love, the vestal' s flame, and the furnace of passion. Hers is the lightning ray of intellect, in all its endless, shifting, prismatic hues of the ages. Fantasy' s vast, swanfeathered tunic is her strength and pride; science wove it; the "elemental forces" gave it power of wing.

On her father' s side, she is a child of the people, sound in sense and heart, with an earnest eye, and with humor on her lips. Her mother is the highborn, academy-trained emigrant' s daughter, with gilded rococo reminiscences. The Goddess of the New Century has in her the blood and soul of both.

Upon her cradle were laid splendid birthday gifts. Plentiful as bonbons, the occult riddles of nature, with their solutions, are strewn there. The diver' s bell gives mystic souvenirs from the deep. The map of the heavens, that high-hung Pacific Ocean with its countless isles, each a world in itself, is embroidered on the cradle cloth. The sun paints her pictures; photography has given her toys to play with.

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