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MALLOCK W.
In an enchanted island
page 293

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large garden, the bedrooms and the ordinary living-rooms being in two detached buildings. The place for a time was occupied by a son of the ex-Khedive, who has left no traces of his presence but a col-lection of French novels. It is now completely deserted except for a few gardeners ; and though these structures are younger than men who are still young, the ruinous stucco already is fallen off from them, the garden steps are cracked, and the white balustrades are crumbling. We went out through a small door in a wall, and there before us were the silent breadths of the Mie, just turning golden in the light of the liquid evening. The tall reeds stood rustling, which had hidden the cradle of Moses, and far off were the Pyramids standing like mounds of violet. In the hush of the hour it seemed that all the ages were meeting. Here, at my elbow, was the pride of the modern world, made yesterday, and broken like a child's toy to-day. There in the distance was the pride of the first of tyrannies, which has seen every existing civilisation rise, and will probably live to see every existing civilisation fall. Reflections like these were still filling my mind during all the tedious journey back to Ismailia and Port Said—thoughts of this meeting and inter-tangling of civilisations and ages. Once they took a form that was curiously bizarre and ludicrous. The post-boat, owing to a violent storm of wind, was unable to venture into the lake on which Ismailia 290 IN AN ENCHANTED ISLAND

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