The Letters Of
The Letters Of "Norah" On Her Tour Through Ireland By Margaret Dixon Mcdougall - Page 280 of 404 - First - Home

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The Keeper's Wife Examined It And Passed It Over To The Keeper, Who Examined It Also, Asked Some Prudent, Cautious Questions, And We Were Admitted To A Part Of The Grounds.

This gate keeper, a remarkably gentlemanly old man, in his respectable blue broadcloth, his comely sagacious, weather-beaten face, his guarded manner of speaking, and his name, Grant, made me quite sure that he was a Highlandman, which he was not, but a Western Irishman.

He informed us as we went along that only part of the grounds could be seen on account of the troubled state of the country. Whether there was any part of the demesne that an elderly woman and a pretty girl were likely to run away with became a subject of thought to me. Conscientiously this delightful old man kept us off tabooed walks and shunted us into permissible places. Where all was beautiful and new, and time having a limit, we were quite willing when brought to order, to follow on the allowed path.

I was admiring a tree of the regally magnificent kind, leaf-draped branches like green robes sweeping down to the emerald sward, that always remind me of the glorious trees which sunlight loves to gild in the grounds at Castle Coole; I remarked on its exceeding beauty to our guide, who said it would bear a nearer view, and we followed him on a path through the grass till we stood beside it. Parting the foliage we found ourselves at a natural grotto of light-colored stone, where a stream of "the purest of crystal" came from under the rock at one end, and glancing in the stray beams of sunlight that found their way in through the arch of leaves, flashed down a tiny cascade in a shower of diamonds, and with a little gurgling laugh hid under the rock again, racing on to join the subterranean waters that laugh together over the failure of the great canal.

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