The Brass Stair-Rods Received An
Exhaustive Polishing And Were Returned To Their Places.
Now A Troop Of Servants Brought
Pots and tubs
of blooming plants and formed them into a beautiful
jungle about the door and the base of
Other servants adorned all the balconies of the various
stories with flowers and banners; others ascended
to the roof and hoisted a great flag on a staff there.
Now came some more chamber-maids and retouched the sidewalk,
and afterward wiped the marble steps with damp cloths
and finished by dusting them off with feather brushes.
Now a broad black carpet was brought out and laid down the
marble steps and out across the sidewalk to the curbstone.
The PORTIER cast his eye along it, and found it was not
absolutely straight; he commanded it to be straightened;
the servants made the effort - made several efforts,
in fact - but the PORTIER was not satisfied. He finally
had it taken up, and then he put it down himself and got
At this stage of the proceedings, a narrow bright
red carpet was unrolled and stretched from the top
of the marble steps to the curbstone, along the center
of the black carpet. This red path cost the PORTIER
more trouble than even the black one had done. But he
patiently fixed and refixed it until it was exactly right
and lay precisely in the middle of the black carpet.
In New York these performances would have gathered a mighty
crowd of curious and intensely interested spectators;
but here it only captured an audience of half a dozen
little boys who stood in a row across the pavement,
some with their school-knapsacks on their backs and their
hands in their pockets, others with arms full of bundles,
and all absorbed in the show.
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Page 7 of 558
Words from 1671 to 1976