Whereat she did put out her fair hand to me, saying, "Never," and there were tears in her eyes. A cosey place it was, despite the wine-bibbers that did profane it; and the inn-keeper's wife, a most buxom, eye-pleasing wench, with three sturdy boys aye clambering about her.
A knowledge of the process of fermentation, therefore, was in all probability possessed by the prehistoric populations of the globe; and it must have become a matter of great interest even to primaeval wine-bibbers to study the methods by which fermented liquids could be surely manufactured.
So in he went; and, luckily or unluckily, found standing together apart from the rest, Sir Richard, the Don, and young St. Leger. "Well, Don Guzman, you have given us wine-bibbers the slip this afternoon. I hope you have been well employed in the meanwhile?"
I have always admired their silent grace, and the more because I have observed their applications to the meat and drink following to be less passionate and sensual than ours. They are neither gluttons nor wine-bibbers as a people. They eat, as a horse bolts his chopt hay, with indifference, calmness, and cleanly circumstances. They neither grease nor slop themselves.
Moreover, he manifestly perceived them to be universally gluttons, wine-bibbers, drunkards and slaves to their bellies, brute-beast fashion, more than to aught else after lust.
They spent much of their abundant leisure on the margin of Maule's well, which was haunted by a kind of snail, evidently a titbit to their palates; and the brackish water itself, however nauseous to the rest of the world, was so greatly esteemed by these fowls, that they might be seen tasting, turning up their heads, and smacking their bills, with precisely the air of wine-bibbers round a probationary cask.
Light-fingered gentry, inconspicuously clad, aided in provoking misunderstanding that should shake for them the orchard trees. A company of wine-bibbers with monstrous, leering masks, staggering from a side-street, fell into the whirlpool. With vociferation and blows the whole pulled here and there, the original cause of the falling out buried now in a host of new causes.
Clarke, who had appeared at the doorway, a worn, and troubled spectre of dismay, now put in a confirmatory word. "You are quite right, Simeon. That house reeks with the talk of wine-bibbers and those who make life a witticism. Such an atmosphere profoundly affects Viola." Pratt glowered at him with keen, contemptuous glance. "You look as if you'd been drawn through a knot-hole.
We first visited the subterranean apartments, the kitchen and other offices, and especially the cellars, in which last there were two or three bottles of wine still left in a bin, covered with cobwebs, and evidently, by their appearance, undisturbed for many years. It was clear that the ghosts were not wine-bibbers. For the rest we discovered nothing of interest.
Many-fountained Rome ought to be a cure for wine-bibbers; yet I never saw an Italian drink at these springs; they would rather quaff the thin red and white wines that are sold for a few baiocchi at the inns. The Pincian Hill and the adjoining grounds of the Borghese Palace came at length to be our favorite haunts.