Brian wrote:

>Tom>Is this the one time in his published poetry when he
>Tom>couldn't control himself and blurted out, un-artfully, a blatant 
>What about the Jewish landlord in "Gerontion"?
>"And the jew squats on the window sill, the owner,
>Spawned in some estaminet of Antwerp,
>Blistered in Brussels, patched and peeled in London."

Again, maybe. There's more than one interpretation of those Gerontion lines.

At the risk of sounding like a starry-eyed teenaged William Arrowsmith fan, 
let me quote a paragraph from another of his Eliot essays, this one 
published posthumously, namely:

Eliot's Learning
by William Arrowsmith
Literary Imagination
Volume 2.2 (2000), pages 153-170.

The paragraph below appears on pages 155-156. Arrowsmith is discussing 
critics, such as F.W. Bateson, who have claimed that Eliot's "apparent" 
scholarly learning is, in fact, only "skin-deep". Arrowsmith is _not_ amused 
and proceeds to expose the flaws in the critics' arguments:


"Like others, Bateson would prefer to solve matters by reducing Eliot's 
learning to slapdash and sciolism. Thus, he regards the word _juvescence_ in 
Eliot's lines "In the juvescence of the year / Came Christ the tiger" 
["Gerontion" ii. 19-20] as a "slip," albeit a happy one, since the proper 
form is _juvenescence_. Technically, Bateson is right; but nobody familiar 
with Eliot's fierce exactitude in matters of diction and his effort to make 
every word realize the maximum meaning, will find the objection convincing. 
On the contrary, _juvescence_ is an obvious and deliberate conflation, a 
punning neologism akin to such symboliste coinages as _bibliopole_, 
_stagnance_, _navrance_, etc. Its purpose is surely to galvanize the crucial 
syllable _ju_ (Jew) of "juvescence of the year" - that cruellest of months, 
the season that transforms the Jew into "Christ the tiger." In short, the 
same Jew who, as Christ-to-be, squats like a slum landlord at the threshold 
of his ruined "house," the liminal, looming presence waiting to _repossess_ 
and evict his unworthy tenants."

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