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The figure of a brilliant, viva- means of which we can distinguish cious, and graceful woman of fash- the antique disused garments, the ion, when we meet with it in the forgotten habits, the ancient forms sober paths of history, acts as one of of speech. Through the opening the lights in the picture. It is not ranks it is a pleasure to watch the only the sparkling point itself that light soul tripping in airy, oldcharms the eye, but the depth of fashioned measures to the quaint contrast with which it relieves the strains that are heard no longer, to masses of shade, and clears up the observe the dim partners in its misty vista. Crowds of human dance which it selects from the creatures, especially when they are crowd, to see it clasping visionary dead and past, mass themselves up hands, and exchanging shadowy like trees, with an instinctive hud- embraces with the half-seen creadling together and interlacing of tures upon whom it casts a little passions and interests. The loftier of its own light. That light may figures, which stand well apart from be but the glow-worm glitter of a the throng, are too much raised bright conversational superficial above it, in most cases, to throw soul-it may be only the shimmer much light on anything but the of a court suit of cloth-of-goldupturned heads, the eyes of eager but we follow it with an interest attention, hope, or despair, with which is often above its deserts ; which the multitude regards its for so much as human instrumenmasters. The statesmen, the great tality can, it opens the common soldiers, the great poets, throw only ranks to us, and makes our ansuch lights as this from above upon cestors visible, not in the grave the expectant mass below them. shape of their wars and their sysBut there are actors less splendid, tems, but in their form and fashion who thread out and in through the as they lived. obscure crowd, leaving each a track This office is not one which is among the nameless throng, by specially reserved to women. Far
VOL. CIV.NO. DCXXXIII.