Henry James, Jr.


(......) Passion Week, in London, is distinctly an ascetic period; is really an approach to sackcloth and ashes. Private is suspended; most of the theatres and music-halls are ; the huge dusky city seems to take on a sadder coloring and a sort of hush steals over mighty uproar. At such a time, for a stranger, is not cheerful. Arriving there, during the past winter, Christmas-time-, I encountered three British Sundays in a row - - a spectacle to strike terror into the stoutest heart.

(......) From Good Friday to Easter Monday, inclusive, they very much en evidence, and it was an excellent for getting an impression of the British populace. Gentility retired to the background and in the West End the blinds were lowered; the streets were void of and well-dressed pedestrians were rare; but the *masses* were abroad and making the most of their holiday, and strolled about and watched them at their gambols. The were most unfavorable, but in an English *outing* there always a margin left for a drenching, and throughout vast smoky city, beneath the shifting gloom of the the grimy crowds trooped about with a kind of stolidity. The parks were full of them, the railway overflowed and the Thames embankment was covered. The *,masses,* think, are usually an entertaining spectacle, even when observed the glutinous medium of London bad weather. There are few things in their way more impressive than a London holiday; it suggests a variety of reflections. Even at superficially the British capital is one of the interesting of cities, and it is perhaps on such as this that I have most felt its interest. is ugly, dusky, dreary, more destitute than any European of graceful and decorative incident; and though on festal , like those I speak of, the populace is massed large numbers at certain points, many of the streets empty enough of human life to enable you to their intrinsic hideousness. A Christmas Day or a Good uncovers the ugliness of London. As you walk along streets, having no fellow-pedestrians to look at, you look at the brown brick house-walls-, corroded with soot and , pierced with their straight stiff window-slits and finished, by of a cornice, with a little black line resembling slice of curb-stone-.



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