Support the Monkey! Tell All your Friends and Teachers
The show being over, the flutter in the air became quite a little
storm, and the precious little bells went ringing down-stairs. There
was soon but one person left of all the crowd, and he, with his hat
under his arm and his snuff-box in his hand, slowly passed among
the mirrors on his way out.
I devote you, said this person, stopping at the last door on his
way, and turning in the direction of the sanctuary, to the Devil!
With that, he shook the snuff from his fingers as if he had shaken
the dust from his feet, and quietly walked down-stairs.
He was a man of about sixty, handsomely dressed, haughty in
manner, and with a face like a fine mask. A face of a transparent
paleness; every feature in it clearly defined; one set expression on
it. The nose, beautifully formed otherwise, was very slightly
pinched at the top of each nostril. In those two compressions, or
dints, the only little change that the face ever showed, resided.
They persisted in changing colour sometimes, and they would be
occasionally dilated and contracted by something like a faint
pulsation; then, they gave a look of treachery, and cruelty, to the
whole countenance. Examined with attention, its capacity of
helping such a look was to be found in the line of the mouth, and
the lines of the orbits of the eyes, being much too horizontal and
thin; still, in the effect of the face made, it was a handsome face,
and a remarkable one.
Its owner went down-stairs into the courtyard, got into his
carriage, and drove away. Not many people had talked with him at
the reception; he had stood in a little space apart, and Monseigneur
might have been warmer in his manner. It appeared, under the
circumstances, rather agreeable to him to see the common people
dispersed before his horses, and often barely escaping from being
run down. His man drove as if he were charging an enemy, and
the furious recklessness of the man brought no check into the face,
or to the lips, of the master. The complaint had sometimes made
itself audible, even in that deaf city and dumb age, that, in the
narrow streets without footways, the fierce patrician custom of
hard driving endangered and maimed the mere vulgar in a
But, few cared enough for that to think of it a second time, and, in
this matter, as in all others, the common wretches were left to get
out of their difficulties as they could.
With a wild rattle and clatter, and an inhuman abandonment of
consideration not easy to be understood in these days, the carriage
dashed through streets and swept round corners, with women
screaming before it, and men clutching each other and clutching
children out of its way. At last, swooping at a street corner by a