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PinkMonkey.com Digital Library - PinkMonkey.com-David Copperfield by Charles Dickens


streets, and again mingled with the shadows of the venerable
gateways and churches. The rooks were sailing about the cathedral
towers; and the towers themselves, overlooking many a long
unaltered mile of the rich country and its pleasant streams, were
cutting the bright morning air, as if there were no such thing as
change on earth. Yet the bells, when they sounded, told me
sorrowfully of change in everything; told me of their own age, and
my pretty Dora's youth; and of the many, never old, who had lived
and loved and died, while the reverberations of the bells had
hummed through the rusty armour of the Black Prince hanging up
within, and, motes upon the deep of Time, had lost themselves in
air, as circles do in water.

I looked at the old house from the corner of the street, but did
not go nearer to it, lest, being observed, I might unwittingly do
any harm to the design I had come to aid. The early sun was
striking edgewise on its gables and lattice-windows, touching them
with gold; and some beams of its old peace seemed to touch my
heart.

I strolled into the country for an hour or so, and then returned by
the main street, which in the interval had shaken off its last
night's sleep. Among those who were stirring in the shops, I saw
my ancient enemy the butcher, now advanced to top-boots and a baby,
and in business for himself. He was nursing the baby, and appeared
to be a benignant member of society.

We all became very anxious and impatient, when we sat down to
breakfast. As it approached nearer and nearer to half past nine
o'clock, our restless expectation of Mr. Micawber increased. At
last we made no more pretence of attending to the meal, which,
except with Mr. Dick, had been a mere form from the first; but my
aunt walked up and down the room, Traddles sat upon the sofa
affecting to read the paper with his eyes on the ceiling; and I
looked out of the window to give early notice of Mr. Micawber's
coming. Nor had I long to watch, for, at the first chime of the
half hour, he appeared in the street.

'Here he is,' said I, 'and not in his legal attire!'

My aunt tied the strings of her bonnet (she had come down to
breakfast in it), and put on her shawl, as if she were ready for
anything that was resolute and uncompromising. Traddles buttoned
his coat with a determined air. Mr. Dick, disturbed by these
formidable appearances, but feeling it necessary to imitate them,
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PinkMonkey.com Digital Library - PinkMonkey.com-David Copperfield by Charles Dickens



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