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The beautiful Grisset looked sometimes at the gloves, then sideways to the window, then at the gloves—and then at me. I was not disposed to break silence-I followed her example. So I looked at the gloves, then to the window, then at the gloves, and then at her,-and so on alternately.
I found I lost considerably in every attack, she had a quick black eye, and shot through two such long and silken eye-lashes with such penetration, that she looked into my very heart and reins— It may seem strange, but I could actually feel she did
It is no matter, said I, taking up a couple of the pairs next me, and putting them into my pocket.
I was sensible the beautiful Grisset had not ask'd a single livre above the price-I wish'd she had ask'd a livre more, and was puzzling my brains how to bring the matter about- -Do you think, my dear Sir, said she, mistaking my embarrass. ment, that I could ask a sous too much of a stranger -and of a stranger whose politeness, more than his want of gloves, has done me the honour to lay himself at my mercy ?—M'en croyez capable ? Faith! not I, said I; and if you were, you are welcome-So counting the money into her hand, and with a lower bow than one generally makes to a shopkeeper's wife, I went out, and her lad with his parcel followed me.
THERE was nobody in the box I was let into but a kindly old French officer. I love the character, not only because I honour the man whose manners are softened by a profession which makes bad men worse; but that I once knew one for he is no more—and why should I not rescue one page from violation by writing his name in it, and telling the world it was Captain Tobias Shandy, the dearest of my flock and friends, whose philanthropy I never think of at this long distance from his death —but my eyes gush out with tears. For his sake, I have a predilection for the whole corps of veterans ; and so I strode over the two back rows of benches, and placed myself beside him.
The officer was reading attentively a small pamphlet, it might be the book of the opera, .with a large pair of spectacles. As soon as I sat down, · he took his spectacles off, and putting them into a shagreen case, returned them and the book into his pocket together. I half rose up, and made him a bow.
Translate this into any civilized language in the world-the sense is this :
'Here's a poor stranger come into the box-he seems as if he knew nobody; and is never likely, were he to be seven years in Paris, if every man he comes near keeps his spectacles upon his nose --'tis shutting the door of conversation absolutely in his face--and using him worse than a German.'
The French officer might as well have said it all aloud; and if he had, I should in course have put the bow I made him into French too, and told him, 'I was sensible of his attention, and return'd him a thousand thanks for it.'
There is not a secret so aiding to the progress of sociality, as to get master of this short hand, and be quick in rendering the several turns of looks and limbs, with all their inflections and delineations, into plain words. For my own part, by long habitude, I do it so mechanically, that when I walk the streets of London, I go translating all the way; and have more than once stood behind in the circle, where not three words have been said, and have brought off twenty different dialogues with me, which I could fairly have wrote down and sworn to.
I was going one evening to Martini's concert at Milan, and was just entering the door of the hall, when the Marquisina di E*** was coming out in a sort of a hurry-she was almost upon me before I saw her; so I gave a spring to one side to let her pass--She had done the same, and on the same side too: so we ran our heads together: she instantly got to the other side to get out; I was just as unfortunate as she had been; for I had sprung to that side and opposed her passage again-We both flew together to the other side, and then back-and so on-it was ridiculous; we both blush'd intolerably; so I did at last the thing I should have done at first I stood stock still, and the Marquisina had no more difficulty. I had no power to go into the room, till I had made her so much reparation as to wait and follow her with my eye to the end of the passage-She look'd back twice, and walk'd along it rather sideways, as if she would make room for any one coming up stairs to pass her-No, said I-that's a vile translation: the Marquisina has a right to the best apology I can make her; and that opening is left for me to do it in—so I ran and beggʻd pardon for the embarrassment I had given her, saying it was my intention to have made her way! She answered, she was guided by the same intention towards me-so we reciprocally thank'd each other. She was at the top of the stairs ; and seeing no chichesbée near her, I begg'd to hand her to her coach—so we went down the stairs, stopping at every third step to talk of the concert and of the adventure.
-Upon my word, Madame, said I, when I had handed her in, I made six different efforts to let you go out-And I made six different efforts, replied she, to let yon enter- I wish to heaven you would make a seventh, said I-With all my heart, said she, making room - Life is too short to be long about the forms of it-so I instantly stepp'd in, and she carried me home with her–. And what became of the concert, St. Cecilia, who I suppose was at it, knows more than I.
I will only add, that the connection which arose out of the translation, gave me more pleasure than any one I had the honour to make in Italy.
I was walking down that lane which leads from the Carousel to the Palais Royal, and observing a little boy in some distress at the side of the gutter, which ran down the middle of it, I took hold of his band, and help'd him over. Upon turning up his face to look at him after, I perceived he was about forty-Never mind, said I; some good body will do as much for me when I am ninety.
I feel some little principles within me, which incline me to be merciful towards the poor blighted part of my species, who have neither size or stren th to get on in the world.—I cannot bear to see one of them trod upon; and had scarce got seated beside an old French officer at the Opera Comique, ere the disgust was exercised, by seeing the very thing happen under the box we sat in.
At the end of the orchestra, and betwixt that and the first side-box, there is a small esplanade left, where, when the house is full, numbers of all ranks take sanctuary. Though you stand, as in the parterre, you pay the same price as in the orchestra.
A poor defenceless being of this order had got thrust, somehow or other, into this luckless place
-the night was hot, and he was surrounded by beings two feet and a half higher than himself. The dwarf suffered inexpressibly on both sides : but the thing which incommoded him most was a tall corpulent German, near seven feet high, who stood directly betwixt him and all possibility of seeing either the stage or the actors. The poor dwarf did all he could to get a peep at what was