THE SAINT by Fritz von Unruh


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An extended ecstasy -- this episode in the life of St. Catherine of Siena -- which has to do with the little bride of Christ's emotional involvement with the Etruscan, unbeliever, Niccolo Toldo -- this has an hysterical mysticism and a lyric religiosity that would, perhaps, keep it from the general market. For the Catherine of the diplomatic and denominational importance is here shown as a dedicated torn by her love of Christ and her love of the temporal Toldo, whose earthly lust for her and determination to win her physically, wars -- but always unsuccessfully -- with her avowed vocation. In the clash between the Guelphs and the Ghibellines, in the political scurrilities and issues, Catherine, to whom Toldo has come for information about the Christ he is to paint, prays for and postulates the Light that will come to them both with Niccolo's conversion. Told in the first person, this takes a difficult subject in stride -- if sometimes unevenly, generally in character, and always with an awareness of the questions of the period that are sometimes resolved into dialectical exhaustive, lengthy, argument. Very selected audience, here.

Pub Date: Oct. 9th, 1950
Publisher: Random House