Daniel Deronda HTML version

Chapter 7
"Perigot. As the bonny lasse passed by,
Willie. Hey, ho, bonnilasse!
P. She roode at me with glauncing eye,
W. As clear as the crystal glasse.
P. All as the sunny beame so bright,
W. Hey, ho, the sunnebeame!
P. Glaunceth from Phoebus' face forthright,
W. So love into thy heart did streame."
--SPENSER: Shepard's Calendar.
"The kindliest symptom, yet the most alarming crisis in the ticklish state of youth;
the nourisher and destroyer of hopeful wits; * * * the servitude above freedom;
the gentle mind's religion; the liberal superstition."--CHARLES LAMB.
The first sign of the unimagined snow-storm was like the transparent white cloud
that seems to set off the blue. Anna was in the secret of Rex's feeling; though for
the first time in their lives he had said nothing to her about what he most thought
of, and he only took it for granted that she knew it. For the first time, too, Anna
could not say to Rex what was continually in her mind. Perhaps it might have
been a pain which she would have had to conceal, that he should so soon care
for some one else more than for herself, if such a feeling had not been
thoroughly neutralized by doubt and anxiety on his behalf. Anna admired her
cousin--would have said with simple sincerity, "Gwendolen is always very good to
me," and held it in the order of things for herself to be entirely subject to this
cousin; but she looked at her with mingled fear and distrust, with a puzzled
contemplation as of some wondrous and beautiful animal whose nature was a
mystery, and who, for anything Anna knew, might have an appetite for devouring
all the small creatures that were her own particular pets. And now Anna's heart
was sinking under the heavy conviction which she dared not utter, that
Gwendolen would never care for Rex. What she herself held in tenderness and
reverence had constantly seemed indifferent to Gwendolen, and it was easier to
imagine her scorning Rex than returning any tenderness of his. Besides, she was
always thinking of being something extraordinary. And poor Rex! Papa would be
angry with him if he knew. And of course he was too young to be in love in that
way; and she, Anna had thought that it would be years and years before any
thing of that sort came, and that she would be Rex's housekeeper ever so long.
But what a heart must that be which did not return his love! Anna, in the prospect
of his suffering, was beginning to dislike her too fascinating cousin.
It seemed to her, as it did to Rex, that the weeks had been filled with a
tumultuous life evident to all observers: if he had been questioned on the subject
he would have said that he had no wish to conceal what he hoped would be an