Page:Life of Octavia Hill as told in her letters.djvu/218

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
196
chap.
LIFE OF OCTAVIA HILL

stand, rising as high as this house. Then we've read so ; the ignorant old thing is getting some glimmerings about history. I've left off walking again ; after the first fortnight I got more and more tired with it, but I persevered till the fever came, and have never resumed it ; but the terrace here is my continual haunt.

Ambleside,

June 10th, 1861.

To Florence.

I want to tell you something of all I have seen and felt, because ... I fear you have had a sad house. I have been to Keswick. We spent several delicious days there, sitting up on lovely hills overlooking Derwent Water, with all its wooded islands, and the blue valleys that part ridge beyond ridge of mountains ; and rowing in the evening on the smooth water watching the sun set, and mists gathering on the mountains, gathering in intensity of colour, minute by minute ; or driving far over the mountain passes to Buttermere, and Crummock, and learning about ferns and flowers. Then we drove to a lovely little village called Eamont Bridge ; it is rich in historic memories. . . . We saw a large Druid circle called Mayborough (of which Turner has made a lovely picture). Then we went to Lord Brougham's place, Brougham Hall. It is an old building which belonged to his ancestors generations back. It is kept in the best possible taste ; there are fine old Norman rooms, with a well under one bed for supplying the castle in times of siege. There are beautiful pictures by Gainsborough, Reynolds, Holbein, a most interesting collection of portraits. Then we saw a grand old ruined castle. Then the village where the rebels were taken in the rebellion against George, in