Penelope's English Experiences Being Extracts From The Commonplace Book Of Penelope Hamilton By Kate Douglas Wiggin







































































































 -   When I call upon Lady DeWolfe, I say to
myself impressively, as I go up the steps: 'You are as - Page 9
Penelope's English Experiences Being Extracts From The Commonplace Book Of Penelope Hamilton By Kate Douglas Wiggin - Page 9 of 115 - First - Home

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When I Call Upon Lady DeWolfe, I Say To Myself Impressively, As I Go Up The Steps:

'You are as good as a butler, as well born and well bred as a butler, even more intelligent than a butler.

Now, simply because he has an unapproachable haughtiness of demeanour, which you can respectfully admire, but can never hope to imitate, do not cower beneath the polar light of his eye; assert yourself; be a woman; be an American citizen!' All in vain. The moment the door opens I ask for Lady DeWolfe in so timid a tone that I know Parker thinks me the parlour- maid's sister who has rung the visitors' bell by mistake. If my lady is within, I follow Parker to the drawing-room, my knees shaking under me at the prospect of committing some solecism in his sight. Lady DeWolfe's husband has been noble only four months, and Parker of course knows it, and perhaps affects even greater hauteur to divert the attention of the vulgar commoner from the newness of the title.

Dawson, our butler at Smith's private hotel, wields the same blighting influence on our spirits, accustomed to the soft solicitations of the negro waiter or the comfortable indifference of the free-born American. We never indulge in ordinary democratic or frivolous conversation when Dawson is serving us at dinner. We 'talk up' to him so far as we are able, and before we utter any remark we inquire mentally whether he is likely to think it good form.

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