North America - Volume 2 By Anthony Trollope 




















































































































































 -   There is a gigantic statue of Washington, by
Greenough, out in the grounds in front of the building.  The figure - Page 13
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There Is A Gigantic Statue Of Washington, By Greenough, Out In The Grounds In Front Of The Building.

The figure is seated and holding up one of its arms toward the city.

There is about it a kind of weighty magnificence; but it is stiff, ungainly, and altogether without life.

But the front of the original building is certainly grand. The architect who designed it must have had skill, taste, and nobility of conception; but even this is spoiled, or rather wasted, by the fact that the front is made to look upon nothing, and is turned from the city. It is as though, the facade of the London Post-office had been made to face the Goldsmiths' Hall. The Capitol stands upon the side of a hill, the front occupying a much higher position than the back; consequently they who enter it from the back - and everybody does so enter it - are first called on to rise to the level of the lower floor by a stiff ascent of exterior steps, which are in no way grand or imposing, and then, having entered by a mean back door, are instantly obliged to ascend again by another flight - by stairs sufficiently appropriate to a back entrance, but altogether unfitted for the chief approach to such a building. It may, of course, be said that persons who are particular in such matters should go in at the front door and not at the back; but one must take these things as one finds them.

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