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    Software name: appdown
    Software type: Microsoft Framwork

    size: 703MB

    Lanuage:Englist

    Software instructions



      Mary's list included some carvings in ivory and some lacquered boxes to keep her gloves in. These were not at all difficult to find, as they were everywhere in the shops, and it would have been much harder to avoid them if he had wanted to do so. There were chessmen of ivory, and representations of the divinities of the country; and then there were little statues of the kings and high dignitaries from ancient times down to the present. As it was a matter of some perplexity, Frank sought the advice of Doctor Bronson; the latter told him it would be just as well to restrain himself in the purchase of ivory carvings, as there was better work of the kind in China, and a few samples of the products of Japan would[Pg 248] be sufficient. Frank acted upon this hint, and did not make any extensive investments in Japanese ivory. He found a great variety of what the Japanese call "nitschkis," which are small pieces of ivory carved in various shapes more or less fanciful. They were pretty, and had the merit of not being at all dear; and as they would make nice little souvenirs of Japan, he bought a good many of them. They are intended as ornaments to be worn at a gentleman's girdle, and in the olden times no gentleman considered his dress complete without one or more of these at his waist, just as most of the fashionable youths of America think that a scarf-pin is necessary to make life endurable. A large number of carvers made a living by working in ivory, and they displayed a wonderful amount of patience in completing their designs. One of these little carvings with which Frank was fascinated was a representation of a man mounting a horse with the assistance of a groom, who was holding the animal. The piece was less than two inches in length, and yet the carver had managed to put in this contracted space the figures of two men and a horse, with the dress of the men and the trappings of the horse as carefully shown as in a painting. There[Pg 249] was a hole in the pedestal on which the group stood, and Frank found, on inquiry, that this hole was intended for the passage of a cord to attach the ornament to the waist of the wearer. And then he observed that all the carvings had a similar provision for rendering them useful.The dying flame flickered up again.

      "Right you are"and they reluctantly moved off, leaving their comrade in the enemy's hands.Yes. Personally I dont care two straws. But Charles does rather.


      "Sir Robert," said he, "you saw that vassal who first did homage?to that base-born churl I owe my life. I had engaged hand to hand with a French knight, when my opponent's esquire treacherously attacked me from behind. This was observed by my faithful follower, who struck down the coward with his axe, and, in a moment more, rid me of the knight by a blow that cleft his helmet and entered his brain. He also, by rare chance, I know not how, slew the bearer of that banner yonder, and, when the battle was over, laid it at my feet.""Unaccountable good."

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      Near the end of the first day's journey the party stopped at a Japanese inn that had been previously selected by their conductor, and there they found their baggage, and, what was quite as welcome, a substantial dinner from the hands of the cook that had been sent on ahead of them. They had sharp appetites, and the dinner was very much to their liking. It was[Pg 190] more foreign than Japanese, as it consisted largely of articles from America; but there was a liberal supply of boiled rice, and the savory stew of fish was not wanting.

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      The various sale departments at the Stores were thronged all day from morning to night during this week before Christmas with crowds of purchasers, but the correspondence on business matters, such as engaged Norah, fell off as the holidays approached, and next morning, when she arrived, she found not more than a dozen letters for her to open. Charles, however, was being worked off his feet in the book-department, where were a hundred types of suitable Christmas gifts (the more expensive being bound in stuffed morocco, so that the sides of them resembled flattish{185} cushions) and Norah intended, as soon as she had finished her shorthand transcription, to proceed at once with the typewriting, and then ask leave of Keeling to go and help her brother. He arrived but a few minutes after her, and in half an hour her shorthand dictation was finished.

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      They went on deck soon after, and, sure enough, several whales were in sight. Every little while a column of spray was thrown into the air,[Pg 57] and indicated there was a whale beneath it.Then suddenly an honour fell on Odiam. The War Office itself sent it a telegram. But the honour was taken sadly, for the telegram announced that Sergeant David Backfield had been killed in action at Laing's Nek.


      alllittle