They came up to him with curious eyes to chaffer for his blue-glass beads, and stare at his smooth, perfectly-moulded arms and throat, at the wonderfully straight features, and the lofty carriage of his head, at the thick hair, like fine, black wool, that waved above his forehead and clustered round the nape of his neck, interwoven with his brilliant blue beads.
I have seldom seen, my dear children, so beautiful a face as that of this Puritan damsel; and it was beautiful with that sort of modest and maidenly comeliness where the features derive their sweetness from the sweet soul which shines through them. The perfectly-moulded body appeared to be but the outer expression of the perfect spirit within.
One evening, while we were waiting for one of the endless courses of a table-d'hôte dinner, my wandering eyes were caught by the most perfect human head I had ever seen. It seemed that of the youthful Lord Byron, so well known in busts and engravings the same small head with high forehead and clustering dark-brown curls, the perfectly-moulded chin, the full, ripe beauty of the lips. The eyes were a deep blue, but I thought them black at first, they were so darkly shaded by the thick black lashes. I am convinced that Byron must have had just such eyes, for some of his biographers describe them as black and others as blue. When he rose from the table I saw a slight, well-knit figure of exquisite proportions, like the Greek god of love. (Not Cupid with his vulgar arrows, but the true heavenly Eros. I saw him once in the Museum at Naples, and again in the Vatican. Is it Love, or Death, or Immortality? I queried, and then I knew it was the three in one.) I soon learned that the youth whose ideal beauty had impressed me so strongly was the Count Francisco de Alvala of Toledo in Spain. I fancy that his eyes were as easily attracted to beauty as mine, for the next day he was my vis-