CRY OF THE HEART by Hertha Pauli


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Through her writings and through her friendship with Alfred Nobel, the Baroness Bertha von Suttner left her impression on the conscience of a war-minded Europe of the late 1800's and this biography, itself novelistic in form, charts the cause and effect of her small but definite sphere of influence. Alone at 30 and bereaved by the death of her fiance who had been killed in a dynamite explosion, Bertha, then Countess Kinsky, became governess to the four von Suttner daughters in Vienna. More than that, she fell in love with Arthur von Suttner who was just finishing his law studies. Because they could not marry then, Bertha was forced to leave the household and by no more than a stroke of fortune became of Nobel, the man whose invention had killed her fiance. This association, though very warm, lasted only until a plea from Arthur brought Bertha back to Vienna, marriage, and the following years in the war torn Balkans that saw the beginnings of both her own and Arthur's careers as writers. Both also won acclaim, Arthur through fiction and Bertha partly through autobiographical work in which she became an impassioned spokeswoman for peace and the spiritual, personal values of a peaceful world. And she, with Arthur, was also able to renew the acquaintance with Nobel to form an enduring frienship. If their aim- world peace- was mutual, an ironic note is struck in the divergent ways they chose to achieve it, Nobel through fear and Bertha von Suttner through an appeal to humaneness. Yet their association had its lasting effect in the result of Baroness von Suttner's influence in the planning of the Nobel Peace Prize. Warm, heartfelt and a very human picture of the times.

Publisher: Ives Washburn