It was not only that she felt crushed and choked by the strangling green that hemmed in the old house the weeds and the trees, and the plants seemed to draw in the night closer and closer about the windows and doors but also solitude with Paul was revealing to her, in a ruthless, cruel manner, his weaknesses. They were none of them, perhaps, very terrible, but she did not wish to see them.
While the world that surrounded and hemmed them and their fellows in might or must be regarded as unchanging and unchangeable, doomed for ever to reproduce and monotonously reiterate whatsoever it had once done and been, the mind or spirit of Man in its own realm seemed capable of going beyond all its past achievements and rising to new heights, not merely here and there or in isolated instances but in such numbers or masses as to raise for long periods of history the general level of human efficiency and welfare.
As a seat in the House of Commons not unnaturally every year it is hemmed or hawed in, gets farther and farther away from the people, it is becoming more and more apparent to the people every year that the Members of their House of Commons as a class are unlikely to do anything of a very striking or important or lasting value in the way of getting business men to be good.
You would go away, you want to escape!" cried the voices of those near at hand. "We will see as to that!" Again they fell upon the carriage, and still they hemmed him in the closer. "True, I am going away," said Law. "But you can not say that I tried to steal away without your knowing it. There, up the stairs, are my papers. You will see in time that I have concealed nothing.
Something of the man's heroic temper may be gathered from a letter which he wrote to Miss Heathorn when his affairs were darkest. "However painful our separation may be," he says, "the spectacle of a man who had given up the cherished purpose of his life . . . would, before long years were over our heads, be infinitely more painful." He declares that he is hemmed in by all sorts of difficulties.
A storm threatened and it was necessary to close the tent flap. I blew out my candle and wrapped myself in my blankets. I was unable to stretch my legs because others were in the way. I was hemmed and pressed in on all sides. I felt an impulse to kick out savagely, but was able to control myself.
However, he was also perceived by little Massot, the "Globe" reporter, who was prowling round the stalls, and who at once bore down upon him, eager for information. And he hemmed him in and forthwith interviewed him respecting the affair of that mechanician Salvat, who was accused of having deposited the bomb at the entrance of the house.
After the first volley, which scattered the horses of the cavalry, the artillery and infantry loaded and fired independently as fast as their antiquated weapons permitted, until the air was filled with smoke and the acrid smell of gunpowder. The Rajah, hemmed in by spearmen with levelled points and followed by all his suite with drawn swords, timidly approached the bull, tulwar in hand.
Dean, and the adjutant hemmed, and hawed, and 'lowed that the colonel hadn't formerly drawn 'em up yet, but that a copy would be served on him as soon as they were ready." "Then I said I'd go right in and find you, and that's all I know." And then it was that Folsom turned on Burleigh, with gloom in his eye, and said: "By the Eternal, Major Burleigh, I hope you've had nothing to do with this!"
The mountains which hemmed in the little valley were a deep, velvety blue in the morning light. Em looked at them with a new throb in her heart. She did not care what was beyond them as she walked between the tangled vine-rows. Stephen Elliott had left Irene, and walked beside her. The valley was wide enough for Em's world, a girl's world, which is hemmed in by mountains always, and always narrow.