THE HEAD OF THE HOUSE OF COOMBE

THE HEAD OF THE HOUSE OF COOMBE

by Frances Hodgson Burnett
     
 

CHAPTER I





The history of the circumstances about to be related began many
years ago--or so it seems in these days. It began, at least, years
before the world being rocked to and fro revealed in the pause
between each of its heavings some startling suggestion of a new
arrangement of its kaleidoscopic particles, and then…  See more details below

Overview

CHAPTER I





The history of the circumstances about to be related began many
years ago--or so it seems in these days. It began, at least, years
before the world being rocked to and fro revealed in the pause
between each of its heavings some startling suggestion of a new
arrangement of its kaleidoscopic particles, and then immediately
a re-arrangement, and another and another until all belief in a
permanency of design seemed lost, and the inhabitants of the earth
waited, helplessly gazing at changing stars and colours in a degree
of mental chaos.

Its opening incidents may be dated from a period when people
still had reason to believe in permanency and had indeed many of
them--sometimes through ingenuousness, sometimes through stupidity
of type--acquired a singular confidence in the importance and
stability of their possessions, desires, ambitions and forms of
conviction.

London at the time, in common with other great capitals, felt
itself rather final though priding itself on being much more fluid
and adaptable than it had been fifty years previously. In speaking
of itself it at least dealt with fixed customs, and conditions
and established facts connected with them--which gave rise to
brilliant--or dull--witticisms.

One of these, heard not infrequently, was to the effect that--in
London--one might live under an umbrella if one lived under it in
the right neighbourhood and on the right side of the street, which
axiom is the reason that a certain child through the first six
years of her life sat on certain days staring out of a window
in a small, dingy room on the top floor of a slice of a house on
a narrow but highly fashionable London street and looked on at
the passing of motors, carriages and people in the dull afternoon
grayness.

The room was exalted above its station by being called The Day
Nursery and another room equally dingy and uninviting was known as
The Night Nursery. The slice of a house was inhabited by the very
pretty Mrs. Gareth-Lawless, its inordinate rent being reluctantly
paid by her--apparently with the assistance of those "ravens" who
are expected to supply the truly deserving. The rent was inordinate
only from the standpoint of one regarding it soberly in connection
with the character of the house itself which was a gaudy little
kennel crowded between two comparatively stately mansions. On one
side lived an inordinately rich South African millionaire, and
on the other an inordinately exalted person of title, which facts
combined to form sufficient grounds for a certain inordinateness
of rent.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
2940013653030
Publisher:
SAP
Publication date:
10/04/2011
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
File size:
288 KB

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