Dom Casmurro

by Machado de Assis

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XXXI - The Curiosities of Capitú

Capitú preferred everything to the seminary. Instead of being overwhelmed by the threat of the long separation, if she avenged the idea of ​​Europe, she was satisfied. And when I told you my imperial dream:

"No, Bentinho, let us leave the emperor on his own," he replied; Let us stay for the moment with the promise of José Dias. When did he say he would speak to your mother?

"It did not mark day; promised that he would see, that he would speak as soon as he could, and that he would catch me with God.

Capitú wanted to repeat to him all the answers of the addict, the changes of the gesture and even the pirouette, that only had told him. He asked for the sound of words. It was meticulous and thoughtful; the narration and the dialogue, everything seemed to mingle with me. It was also possible to say that I conferred, labeled and preached in memory my exposition. This image is by chance better than the other, but the best of them is none. Capitú was Capitú, that is, a very particular creature, more woman than I was a man. If you still have not said it, there it is. If so, stay too. There are concepts that must be instilled in the soul of the reader, by the force of repetition.

She was even more curious. The curiosities of Capitú give to a chapter. They were of various kinds, explicable and inexplicable, so useful as useless, some serious, others frivolous; I liked to know everything. In the college where, from the age of seven, he had learned to read, write and count, France, doctrine and needlework, he did not, for example, learn to make income; for that very reason, that Cousin Just had to teach him. If he did not study Latin with Father Cabral, it was because the priest, after having proposed it with jest, ended up saying that Latin was not the language of girls. Capitú confessed to me one day that this reason gave rise to the desire to know it. On the other hand, he wanted to learn English with an old friend of his father's teacher and his partner, but it was not good. Uncle Cosme taught him backgammon.

"Go get a little cap, Capitú," he told her.

Capitú obeyed and played easily, with attention, I do not know if I said with love. One day I was achal-drawing her a picture; gave me the last tears, and asked me to wait to see if it was alike. It was my father's, copied from the screen my mother had in the room and is still with me. Perfection was not; on the contrary, the eyes went out in a husk, and the hairs were small circles on one another. But since she did not have any rudiments of art, and having done so in a few minutes, I thought it was a work of great merit; Discard me the truth and the sympathy. Still, I was apprehending painting easily, as I learned music later. I was already dating the piano in our house, an old useless fret, just a pet. He read our novels, he leafed through our picture books, wanting to know about the ruins, the people, the campaigns, the name, the history, the achievement. Jose Dias gave him this news with a certain pride of erudite. His erudition did not outweigh much more than his homotopathy of Cantagallo.

One day, Capitú wanted to know what the living room figures were. The lodger said it briefly, lingering a little longer in Cesar, with exclamations and latins:

-Caesar! Julio Cesar! Big man! You quoque, Brute?

Capitú did not think Cesar's profile was pretty, but the actions quoted by Jose Dias gave him admiring gestures. He looked at him for a long time. A man who could do anything! who did everything! A man who gave a lady a pearl worth six million sesterces!

"And how much was every sesterce worth?"

José Dias, not having in mind the value of the sestercio, responded with enthusiasm:

"He's the greatest man in history!"

Caesar's pearls brightened the eyes of Captain. It was on this occasion that she asked my mother why she no longer wore the picture jewels; I preferred the one in the room with my father's; had a large necklace, a diadem and earrings.

"They are widowed jewels, as I am, Capitú."

-When did you put these on?

"It was for the Coronation parties.

-Oh! tell me the Coronation parties!

He already knew what the paes had told him, but of course he had for himself that they would know little more than what happened in the streets. He wanted the news of the tribunes of the Imperial Capella and the ballrooms. He had been born long after those celebrations. Listening to speak several times of the Majority, it took one day to know what this event was; they said to him, and thought that the emperor had done well enough to go up to the throno at the age of fifteen. Everything was a matter of the curiosities of Capitú, old furniture, old implements, customs, news of Itaguahy, the childhood and the youth of my mother, a saying from here, a dalli memory, an adagio from there ...


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