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The Author Of Beltraffio

by Henry James

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1884 short story by the prolific American-born author and literary critic of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. He spent much of his life in Europe and became a British subject shortly before his death. He is primarily known for novels, novellas and short stories based on themes of consciousness and morality.

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Much as I wished to see him I had kept my letter of introduction three weeks in my pocket-book. I was nervous and timid about meeting him - conscious of youth and ignorance, convinced that he was tormented by strangers, and especially by my country-people, and not exempt from the suspicion that he had the irritability as well as the dignity of genius. Moreover, the pleasure, if it should occur - for I could scarcely believe it was near at hand - would be so great that I wished to think of it in advance, to feel it there against my breast, not to mix it with satisfactions more superficial and usual.



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