Abel strode ahead in his black cut-away coat, snuff-coloured trousers, and high-crowned felt hat with its ornamental band. This receded to the back of his head as he grew hotter. The harp was slung from his shoulder, the gilding looking tawdry in the open day.
"You see Henry was doing the Rake's Progress act there in New York being a gilded youth and such like. Now being a gilded youth and 'a well-known man about town' is something that wants to be done in moderation, and Henry didn't seem to know the meaning of the word. I put up something like a hundred and eighty thousand dollars for Hank's gilding last year.
He was indeed a splendid picture of youth and strength, as he stood there, the sunlight gilding his fair hair, and all the magnificent proportions of his figure thrown into relief against the background of grey stone and sky, an insouciante smile on his lips, and all the light of love and self-confidence in his fine blue eyes.
Chesney Wold is shut up, carpets are rolled into great scrolls in corners of comfortless rooms, bright damask does penance in brown holland, carving and gilding puts on mortification, and the Dedlock ancestors retire from the light of day again. Around and around the house the leaves fall thick, but never fast, for they come circling down with a dead lightness that is sombre and slow.
The cheap parquet of the floor had a clammy gleam; a tiny icon, roosting high in a corner, showed a tawdry shine of gilding; the whole room, square and lofty, with its sparse furniture grouped stiffly about its emptiness, was gaunt and forbidding. Of a personality that should be at home within it and leave the impress of its life upon the place, there was not a sign; it was the corpse of a room.
But you know I am made of the guinea gold that does not need gilding. However, she does her best. I have a maid to wait on me, but I think I do very much more for her. Still, she mends the holes that I dance in the heels of my stockings all of silk, Stair, and smuggled from France! For they 'run' things here, just as they do in Galloway in Sussex and Cornwall mainly.
Almost without thinking, so familiar was the road, did she enter the Redoute, and ascend the wide staircase; and then at last she feels a thrill as she sees before her the big salons that she has so often re-visited in her dreams, with their gilding, and mirrors, and velvet, that she loves so well, and with which some of her happiest hours are associated sees, too, the long green tables, where Monsieur Horace's fortune is to be made, and Madelon's promise redeemed at last.
He often dreams if war and tumult will ever roll, in flame and fire, over the West. The mists of the future veil his eyes. He waits the signal from the South. All over California, the wealth of the land peeps through its surface gilding. There are no clouds yet upon the local future. No burning local questions at issue here, save the aversion of the two sections, distrustful of each other.
Indian red underlies the gilding, and the weather has left some parts gold and some half gold and red, and other bits weather-worn silvery teak. The pillars and doors from the gallery into the interior shrines were all gold of varying colours of weather stain.
He said to himself that, if ever he became rich, his establishment should be quite different. He would have preferred rather more simplicity, a trifle less satin, velvet, hangings, mirrors and gilding.