2021-04-17 12:30:15

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ENGLISH Trees shut in the flat, interminable road, and it was midnight before we reached Srinagar, where I found, as a surprise, a comfortable house-boat with inlaid panels, and a fragrant fire of mango-wood smelling of orris-root.

GWALIOR

In the bazaar a light, glossy cheetah was being led round for an airing. The beast had on a sort of hood of silk stuck with peacock's feathers, which its keeper pulled down over its eyes when it saw a prey on which it was eager to spring; and with its eyes thus blinded, it would lick the hand that gave it an anna with a hot tongue as rough as a rasp.We stopped at a bungalow by a creek of the Jellum that was paved with broad lotus-leaves, among which the buds were already opening their pink hearts.IN 1779 Mme. Le Brun painted for the first time the portrait of the Queen, then in the splendour of her youth and beauty.

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Neither a genius nor yet possessed of any great artistic or intellectual talent, without worldly ambition, little attracted by the amusements of society, she was a sort of mixture of a grande dame and a saint.As we reached Bunnoo green cornfields extended as far as the eye could see, under mulberry trees just unfolding their leaves. Numberless channels of water irrigated the land; the bed of the Kurrum[Pg 275] alone, quite white, was flecked here and there with blue pools, and was presently lost in the rosy distance of the hills on the Afghan frontier.

The childhood of LisetteExtraordinary talentThe conventThe household of an artistDeath of M. VigeDespair of LisetteBegins her careerRe-marriage of her motherThe Dauphine.And from every stone, and in the rifts in the rocks, hung stalactites, like glittering icicles, and these too were of salt.

Monsieur le Comte, your husband, will lose his head on the scaffold; you will leave France to live without resources in a foreign land; you will work for your living, but after long years of exile you will return to France. You will marry an ambassador, but you will have other vicissitudes.These gentlemen of the Civil Service would put in an appearance "now and then"the eternal "now and then" that answers every question in India. They stepped out of a buggy, walked quickly round, had seen, and were gone again in a great hurry to finish some important work for the next European mail.

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In the distance is the great mosque which no unbeliever may enter; the doors stand wide open. The only ornaments on the white walls are the lamps, hung with red. In the court of the mosque,[Pg 97] under magnificent trees, are the tombs of the Nizams, with stone lattices, jewellery of marble, fragile pierced work, whereon wreaths of pale flowers are wrought with infinite grace. Near these tombs are two large fountains, where a crowd of men were bathing, talking very loud; and a large basin of porphyry full of grain was besieged by grey pigeons.The people came back to the dancing, which went on till daylight. The music could be heard in the distance, drowned from time to time by the yelling of the jackals or the watchman's call, and it was not till daybreak that the drumming ceased.Many an abbess, many a chatelaine spent time and money amongst the rich and poor; and there were seigneurs who helped and protected the peasants on their estates and were regarded by them with loyalty and affection. To some extent under the influence of the ideas and prejudices amongst which they had been born and educated, yet they lived upright, honourable, religious lives, surrounded by a mass of oppression, licence, and corruption in the destruction of which they also were overwhelmed.

Instead of the usual wreath of flowers for my neck the Rajah gave me a necklace of silver threads, to which hung a little bag of purple and green silk, closely embroidered, and looking like a scent-sachet, or a bag to hold some precious amulet.

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Apr-17 12:30:15