Page:Life of Octavia Hill as told in her letters.djvu/146

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126
CH. III
LIFE OF OCTAVIA HILL

of an enormous whole. The sketch of Bellinzona Ruskin had drawn from the priest's garden, a lovely spot on a rock near the chapel and house, on the side of a steep craggy cliff, the little posts carefully bricked up to support a patch of mould here and there, on one of which was planted corn. Among it grew white lilies seen against a further piece of brightest green grass; beyond lay the ravine of the Ticino, and beyond again the mountains. … Miss B. has been offered the Secretaryship of the Children's Hospital; but her father and mother say that no daughter ought to leave home except to be married, or to earn her own living, witness Florence Nightingale, who has returned a mere wreck. Why if ever there was an example fitted to stir up heroism it might be hers! I wonder if her mother were asked whether she was prouder and fonder of her before her work or after? or whether she grudged the health which she herself has sacrificed so willingly? I am going daily to Dulwich. It is a long walk even if I take omnibus between Charing Cross and Camberwell Gate.