I still feel a very great satisfaction when I find myself alone in a street

From Iris Origo’s Leopardi: A Study in Solitude (pg. 5)- recounting the life of the poet’s father.  I haven’t looked into whether the elder Leopardi’s Memoirs were ever published.

Two years later, when barely eighteen, he assumed, as head of the family, the complete management of the whole property – yet he was still forbidden by his mother to go out of the house, unless accompanied by his preceptor.  This restriction, although not unusual in families such as his, was particularly galling to Monaldo.  “To this day,” he wrote in his Memoirs, “although I am the father of twelve children (living and dead), a magistrate of the city, and forty-eight years of age, I still feel a very great satisfaction when I find myself alone in a street, without a tutor by my side.”

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