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Chapter 1 It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife. However little known the feelings or views of such a man may be on his first entering a neighbourhood, this truth is so well fixed in the minds of the surrounding families, that he is considered the rightful property of some one or other of their daughters. "My dear Mr. Bennet," said his lady to him one day, "have you... more...

CHAPTER I Emma Woodhouse, handsome, clever, and rich, with a comfortable home and happy disposition, seemed to unite some of the best blessings of existence; and had lived nearly twenty-one years in the world with very little to distress or vex her. She was the youngest of the two daughters of a most affectionate, indulgent father; and had, in consequence of her sister's marriage, been mistress of his house from a very early period. Her mother... more...

EARLY DAYS. The three girls were called after flowers. This is how it came about: When Primrose opened her eyes on the world she brought back a little bit of spring to her mother's heart. Mrs. Mainwaring had gone through a terrible trouble—a trouble so dark and mysterious, so impossible to feel reconciled to, that her health had been almost shattered, and she had almost said good-bye to hope. The baby came in the spring-time, and the... more...

CHAPTER I A MYSTERIOUS DOG The elm-tree avenue was all overgrown, the great gate was never unlocked, and the old house had been shut up for several years. Yet voices were heard about the place, the lilacs nodded over the high wall as if they said, "We could tell fine secrets if we chose," and the mullein outside the gate made haste to reach the keyhole, that it might peep in and see what was going on. If it had suddenly grown up like a magic... more...

FOREWORD When considering the manuscript of "The Blue Envelope" my publisherswrote me asking that I offer some sort of proof that the experiences ofMarian and Lucile might really have happened to two girls so situated.My answer ran somewhat as follows: Alaska, at least the northern part of it, is so far removed from the rest of this old earth that it is almost as distinct from it as is the moon. It's a good stiff nine-day trip to it by water... more...


CHAPTER I 'HASTE TO THE WEDDING' 'Wooed and married and a'.' 'Edith!' said Margaret, gently, 'Edith!' But, as Margaret half suspected, Edith had fallen asleep. She lay curled up on the sofa in the back drawing-room in Harley Street, looking very lovely in her white muslin and blue ribbons. If Titania had ever been dressed in white muslin and blue ribbons, and had fallen asleep on a crimson damask sofa in a back drawing-room, Edith might have... more...

CHAPTER I It was a Sunday evening in October, and in common with many other young ladies of her class, Katharine Hilbery was pouring out tea. Perhaps a fifth part of her mind was thus occupied, and the remaining parts leapt over the little barrier of day which interposed between Monday morning and this rather subdued moment, and played with the things one does voluntarily and normally in the daylight. But although she was silent, she was... more...

CHAPTER I. I BEGIN LIFE. I was just nineteen years of age when I began my career as articled pupil with the Miss Bagshots of Albury Lodge, Fendale, Yorkshire. My father was a country curate, with a delicate wife and four children, of whom I was the eldest; and I had known from my childhood that the day must come in which I should have to get my own living in almost the only vocation open to a poor gentleman's daughter. I had been fairly... more...

CHAPTER ITHE ARRIVAL "Is this the station, Gran'pa Jim?" inquired a young girl, as the train began to slow up. "I think so, Mary Louise," replied the handsome old gentleman addressed. "It does look very promising, does it?" she continued, glancing eagerly out of the window. "The station? No, my dear; but the station isn't Cragg's Crossing, you know; it is merely the nearest railway point to our new home." The conductor opened their... more...

AN IDYL OF THE ROAD   aroline rocked herself back and forth from her waist, defying the uncompromisingly straight chair which inclosed her portly little person. "Bounded 'n th' north by Mass'joosetts; bounded 'n th' north by Mass'joosetts; bounded 'n th' north by Mass'joosetts," she intoned in a monotonous chant. But her eyes were not upon the map; like those of the gentleman in the poem, they were with her heart, and that was far away.... more...