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Full text of "A few memories"

JAMES   RUSSELL  LOWELL                     165
Edinburgh, apart from its rare beauty, makes it particularly attractive. We were invited to Holyrood Palace by the then Lord High Commissioner, and through his kindness were enabled to wander through its interesting rooms, so full of memories of Mary Stuart and Rizzio, without the usual crowd of tourists. To me the most touching of all the relics there is the small Venetian mirror which had reflected the lovely face of Mary. It is so cracked and blurred now that in it one can hardly see one's own. Poor Queen! so tortured in life, so maligned in death! I have always found a keen satisfaction in observing the expression of those who, quitting her monument in the Abbey, seemed moved with pity at the memory of her sufferings and ignominious death; while Elizabeth, sleeping in her pomp and state, apparently arouses no sympathy from those who coldly gaze upon the hardened features carved upon her tomb.
"Romeo and Juliet" was the play decided on for the approaching London season. It was at Mrs. Humphry Ward's house that, meeting James Russell Lowell for the first time, I mentioned to him our proposed trip to Verona in quest of sketches and local data for that production, in-