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THE  BRONTfiS                       63
home acquaintances. She took snuff out of a
very pretty gold snuff-box which she sometimes
presented to you with a little laugh, as if she en-
joyed the slight shock and astonishment visible in
your countenance. In summer, she spent part of
the afternoon in reading aloud to Mr. Bronte. In
the winter evenings, she must have enjoyed this \
for she and Mr. Bronte had often to finish their
discussions on what she had read when we all met
for tea. She would be very lively and intelligent
and tilt arguments against Mr. Bronte without fear.
" c Tabby,' the faithful, trustworthy old servant
was very quaint in appearance - very active and,
in these days, the general servant and factotum.
We were all ' childer' and c bairns3 in her
estimation. She still kept to her duty of walking
out with the e childer,' if they went any distance
from home, unless Branwell were sent by his father
as a protector.
" Emily Bronte had by this time acquired a lithe-
some, graceful figure. She was the tallest person
in the house, except her father. Her hair, which
was naturally as beautiful as Charlotte's, was in
the same unbecoming tight curl and frizz and
there was the same want of complexion. She had
very beautiful eyes - kind, kindling, liquid eyes ;
but she did not often look at you ; she was too
reserved. Their colour might be said to be
dark grey, at other times dark blue, they varied
so. She talked very little. She and Anne were
like twins- inseparable companions, and in the very
closest sympathy which never had any interruption.
" Anne - dear, gentle Anne - was quite different