Page:Inside Canton.djvu/218

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217
INSIDE CANTON.

He showed her from the terrace the Tartar city and the Chinese city, of which the roofs can be dimly seen, and I am sure he thought his companions very absurd to shut the door rudely in the face of his charming friend. The two sons of Pan-se-Chen were brought up in the house: they had a professor of deportment, a small, pedantic person, whom the elder of the boys appeared to take for a model.

I have thus introduced to my reader nearly all the individuals composing the household of our mandarin. Now, if he will take into account the army of domestics required to wait upon this little world,—the number of palaquin-bearers necessary for carrying about such a multitude, of whom not one will go on foot through the streets,—the enormous consumption of food, of clothing, of articles of luxury, which goes on in such an establishment,—he will readily comprehend that the Chinese, even the richest, can be at no loss in spending their enormous fortunes.

Of late years, Chinese women have been seen in Europe; and those who have had opportunities of examining them, will perhaps find my account of the beauty of their countrywomen very exaggerated. Let me, therefore, say a few explanatory words upon this topic. There is in China a vast difference between the women of the populace and the women of the upper classes; the women of the first description are almost uniformly ugly—the

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