March 4th, 2013

sportable

I cannot understand this word.
"The corporal returned to his story, and went on--but with an embarrassment
in doing it, which here and there a reader in this world will not be able
to comprehend; for by the many sudden transitions all along, from one kind
and cordial passion to another, in getting thus far on his way, he had lost
the sportable key of his voice, which gave sense and spirit to his tale:
he attempted twice to resume it, but could not please himself;"