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CHAPTER I KILGOBBIN CASTLE Some one has said that almost all that Ireland possesses of picturesque beauty is to be found on, or in the immediate neighbourhood of, the seaboard; and if we except some brief patches of river scenery on the Nore and the Blackwater, and a part of Lough Erne, the assertion is not devoid of truth. The dreary expanse called the Bog of Allen, which occupies a tableland in the... more...

CHAPTER I The Irish police barrack is invariably clean, occasionally picturesque, but it is never comfortable. The living-room, in which the men spend their spare time, is furnished with rigid simplicity. There is a table, sometimes two tables, but they have iron legs. There are benches to sit on, very narrow, and these also have iron legs. Iron is, of course, harder than wood. Men who are forced to... more...

CHAPTER XXII The night was pitch dark, and on rounding the adjacent corner no vehicle could be seen; but a peculiar whistle from Dick was answered by the sound of approaching wheels and the rapid footfalls of a horse, mingled with the light rattle of a smart gig. On the vehicle coming up, Dick took his little mare, that was blacker than the night, by the head, the apron of the gig was thrown down, and... more...

ADDRESS I have been accused in certain quarters, of giving flattering portraits of my countrymen. Against this charge I may plead that, being a portrait-painter by profession, the habit of taking the best view of my subject, so long prevalent in my eye, has gone deeper, and influenced my mind:—and if to paint one's country in its gracious aspect has been a weakness, at least, to use the words of... more...

CHAPTER I The summer term ended in a blaze of glory for Frank Mannix. It was a generally accepted opinion in the school that his brilliant catch in the long field—a catch which disposed of the Uppingham captain—had been the decisive factor in winning the most important of matches. And the victory was particularly gratifying, for Haileybury had been defeated for five years previously. There was no... more...

CHAPTER I MAHON ON THE TRAIL Sergeant Mahon emptied the barracks mail bag on the desk before Inspector Barker and stood awaiting instructions. The Inspector passed his hand over the small pile of letters and let his eye roam from one to another in the speculative way that added zest to the later revelation of their contents. One from headquarters at Regina he set carefully aside. With an "ah!"... more...

Introduction. The tale of Tartarin de Tarascon was written by Alphonse Daudet in 1872, and was one of the many works which he produced. In it he pokes gentle fun at a type of Frenchman who comes from the Midi, the area where he himself was born. Tartarin has characteristics which may remind the English-speaking reader of Toad of Toad Hall, a boastful braggart, easily deceived, but good-hearted au fond.... more...

CHAPTER I—M. MYRIEL In 1815, M. Charles-Francois-Bienvenu Myriel was Bishop of D—— He was an old man of about seventy-five years of age; he had occupied the see of D—— since 1806. Although this detail has no connection whatever with the real substance of what we are about to relate, it will not be superfluous, if merely for the sake of exactness in all points, to mention here the various... more...

ALFRED DE MUSSET A poet has no right to play fast and loose with his genius. It does not belong to him, it belongs to the Almighty; it belongs to the world and to a coming generation. At thirty De Musset was already an old man, seeking in artificial stimuli the youth that would not spring again. Coming from a literary family the zeal of his house had eaten him up; his passion had burned itself out and... more...

CHAPTER I Remains of our good yeomanry blood will be found in Kent, developing stiff, solid, unobtrusive men, and very personable women. The distinction survives there between Kentish women and women of Kent, as a true South-eastern dame will let you know, if it is her fortune to belong to that favoured portion of the county where the great battle was fought, in which the gentler sex performed manful... more...