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At times a stall was loaded with the spoils of a sunken ship or the loot from a city fire, and you could buy for a song the rare fabrics and costly dainties of the rich, a stain on the cloth, a discoloured label on the tin, alone giving a hint of their adventures.

This was done deliberately, and in as cautious a manner as if it were believed that fabrics of a delicate construction lay hidden beneath. When the canvass was removed, the first articles that came in view were some of the habiliments of the male sex. They were of fine materials, and, according to the fashions of the age, were gay in colours and rich in ornaments.

Under it he continued to think as if with a separate set of words, "I don't know. She isn't beautiful. A stupid, nervous little girl. But it hasn't anything to do with her. It's something in me." He stood up, his eyes unsmiling, and surveyed the animated faces as from a distance. Paper faces and paper eyes fluttering masks suspended politely above fabrics that lounged in chairs.

It was quite an aristocratic gathering; most of the important people of the country were there. There were white and rose-colour, violet and primrose, showing out amongst other indescribable tints. Frilled parasols were unfurled like great flowers; the place was filled with dainty fabrics, and soft hues, and laughter and ceaseless movement.

Now, for the perfecting of all these operations, from the tedious and bungling process to the rapid and elegant; for the change of an almost infinite variety of crude and worthless materials into useful and beautiful fabrics, mind has been the agent. Succeeding generations have outstripped their predecessors just in proportion to the superiority of their mental cultivation.

Thought is well-nigh instantaneously flashed from hemisphere to hemisphere, if not from pole to pole; commerce is so highly cultivated that international exhibitions of the raw material and the fabrics of all nations are the order of the day; while good-will between man and man to say nothing of woman is so prevalent, that I really find it hard to believe in the possibility of a great European war."

One of the most perfect poets in Paris had amused himself with drawing up a "list of the workers in contemporary French poetry, with their talents, their productions, and their earnings": and he enumerated "the crystals, the Oriental fabrics, the gold and bronze medals, the lace for dowagers, the polychromatic sculpture, the painted porcelain," which had been produced in the workshops of his various colleagues.

It so happens, and not unlucklily for an Adam and Eve who are still in the costume that might better have befitted Eden, it so happens that their first visit is to a fashionable dry-goods store. No courteous and importunate attendants hasten to receive their orders; no throng of ladies are tossing over the rich Parisian fabrics.

But it has surmounted all these obstacles, is firmly established in both nations, and now its manufacture gives support to one-seventh part of the population of Great Britain, employs there thirty-four millions of spindles, consumes annually two and a half million bales of the raw material, and sends abroad, in addition to thread and yarn, twenty-eight hundred million yards of fabrics, of the aggregate value of two hundred and thirty millions of dollars.

"My own self, I'm a bachelor man, too been batching for twenty years, one place and another but by God! Sim, this here is the human limit. Look at that bed." He kicked a foot toward a heap of dirty fabrics which lay upon the floor, a bed which might once have been devised for a man, but long since had fallen below that rank.

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