Page:Pleasant Memories of Pleasant Lands.djvu/320

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ACCOMIM.ISIIMF.XT OF READINC. 295

took her place on the throne, Prince Albert at her left hand, on a lower seat, as the etiquette of the realm requires ; the Lord Chancellor standing near, and Lord Melbourne bearing before her the sword of state.

The complexion of Victoria is exceedingly fair, but her countenance has no decided intellectual expression. It seemed remarkable that so young a creature should evince such entire ease and self-possession, nor even betray the slightest consiousness that every eye in that vast assembly was fixed solely on her. This, however, is a part of the queenly training, in which she has be come perfect.

After a brief pause, a tone, combining sweetness with command, escaped those ruby lips. The gentle man of the Black Rod, was commissioned to " summon my House of Commons." That whole body, led by their Speaker, with a lion-like air, presented them selves at the door or bar, their accustomed limit, to hear the speech of her Majesty. This she pronounced in a voice of such clearness and melody, and with so correct an enunciation, that every word of her speech was distinctly audible to the farthest extremity of the House of Lords. She possesses in an eminent degree the accomplishment of fine reading. I could not help wishing that the fair daughters of my own land, who wear no crown save that of loveliness and virtue, would more fully estimate the worth of this accom plishment, and more faithfully endeavor to acquire it. For I remembered how often, in our seminaries of edu cation, I had listened almost breathlessly to sentiments,

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