Holland, the Rhine, and Sturminster Newton
From their lodgings in Yeovil they set out at the end of May for Holland and the Rhine — the first thing that struck them being that ‘the Dutch seemed like police perpetually keeping back an unruly crowd composed of waves’. They visited Rotterdam — ‘looking over-clean and new, with not enough shadow, and with houses nearly all out of the perpendicular’; then The Hague, Scheveningen, Emmerich, and Cologne, where Hardy was disappointed by the machine-made Gothic of the Cathedral, and whence in a few days they went on ‘between the banks that bear the vine’, to Bonn, Coblentz, Ehrenbreitstein, and Mainz, where they were impressed by a huge confirmation in the cathedral which, by the way, was accompanied by a tune like that of Keble’s Evening Hymn. Heidelberg they loved, and looking west one evening from the top of the tower on the Knigsstuhl, Hardy remarks on a singular optical effect that was almost tragic. Owing to mist the wide landscape itself was not visible, but ‘the Rhine glared like a riband of blood, as if it serpentined through the atmosphere above the earth’s surface’. Thence they went to Carlsruhe, where they attended a fair, and searched for a German lady Hardy had known in England, but were unable to find her.
KeywordsAttenuation Amid Expense Boiling Smoke
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