Frédéric Bazille, Bazille’s Studio (Detail)
[Morning-room in Algernon’s flat in Half-Moon Street. The room is luxuriously and artistically furnished. The sound of a piano is heard in the adjoining room.]
[Lane is arranging afternoon tea on the table, and after the music has ceased, Algernon enters.]
Algernon: Did you hear what I was playing, Lane?
Lane: I didn’t think it polite to listen, sir.
Algernon: I’m sorry for that, for your sake. I don’t play accurately—any one can play accurately—but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life.
Lane: Yes, sir.
–Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest