The Grandissimes eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 327 pages of information about The Grandissimes.
it never occurs to us that in this matter we are interested, and therefore disqualified, witnesses.  We say we are not understood; that the jury (the civilized world) renders its decision without viewing the body; that we are judged from a distance.  We forget that we ourselves are too close to see distinctly, and so continue, a spectacle to civilization, sitting in a horrible darkness, my-de’-seh!” He frowned.

“The shadow of the Ethiopian,” said the grave apothecary.

M. Grandissime’s quick gesture implied that Frowenfeld had said the very word.

“Ah! my-de’-seh, when I try sometimes to stand outside and look at it, I am ama-aze at the length, the blackness of that shadow!” (He was so deeply in earnest that he took no care of his English.) “It is the Nemesis w’ich, instead of coming afteh, glides along by the side of this morhal, political, commercial, social mistake!  It blanches, my-de’-seh, ow whole civilization!  It drhags us a centurhy behind the rhes’ of the world!  It rhetahds and poisons everhy industrhy we got!—­mos’ of all our-h immense agrhicultu’e!  It brheeds a thousan’ cusses that nevva leave home but jus’ flutter-h up an’ rhoost, my-de’-seh, on ow heads; an’ we nevva know it!—­yes, sometimes some of us know it.”

He changed the subject.

They had repassed the ruins of Fort St. Louis, and were well within the precincts of the little city, when, as they pulled up from a final gallop, mention was made of Doctor Keene.  He was improving; Honore had seen him that morning; so, at another hour, had Frowenfeld.  Doctor Keene had told Honore about Palmyre’s wound.

“You was at her house again this morning?” asked the Creole.

“Yes,” said Frowenfeld.

M. Grandissime shook his head warningly.

“’Tis a dangerous business.  You are almost sure to become the object of slander.  You ought to tell Doctor Keene to make some other arrangement, or presently you, too, will be under the—­” he lowered his voice, for Frowenfeld was dismounting at the shop door, and three or four acquaintances stood around—­“under the ‘shadow of the Ethiopian.’”

CHAPTER XXVII

THE FETE DE GRANDPERE

Sojourners in New Orleans who take their afternoon drive down Esplanade street will notice, across on the right, between it and that sorry streak once fondly known as Champs Elysees, two or three large, old houses, rising above the general surroundings and displaying architectural features which identify them with an irrevocable past—­a past when the faithful and true Creole could, without fear of contradiction, express his religious belief that the antipathy he felt for the Americain invader was an inborn horror laid lengthwise in his ante-natal bones by a discriminating and appreciative Providence.  There is, for instance, or was until lately, one house which some hundred and

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The Grandissimes from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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