Page:Inside Canton.djvu/180

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179
INSIDE CANTON.

I have already given the ideas of the Chinese about beauty: you have here their theory of love. Rather crude, you will say; but, after all, naïve, exact, intelligible as an axiom! … When we withdrew from the little house of Pan-se-Chen, it was three o'clock in the morning; the districts where the flower-boats lay were still illuminated; gongs were still sounding away; fireworks crackling and whizzing, and voices singing as before. These noises mingled confusedly with the accustomed sounds of early dawn from the noisy sailors on board the junks ready to set sail. The dissolute child of opulence finished his night of revelry to the same music which ushered in for the poor labourer his day of toil.