no end, and I was only at the beginning. No one took any
As we approached the lake, some thin mist-clouds lowered over it and over the earth, so that it seemed as if it would rain. One portion of the firmament glowed with the brightest blue; while the other part was obscured by thick clouds, through which the sun was just breaking. Some of its rays reached the clouds of mist, and illuminated them in a wonderfully beautiful manner. The most delicate shades of colour seemed breathed, as it were, over them like a dissolving rainbow, whose glowing colours were intermingled and yet singly perceptible. This play of colours continued for half an hour, then faded gradually till it vanished entirely, and the ordinary atmosphere took its place. It was one of the most beautiful appearances I had ever witnessed.
The roads separate about a mile behind the little town of Thingvalla; the one to the left goes to Reikholt, the right-hand one leads to the Geyser. We rode for some time along the shores of the lake, and found at the end of the valley an awful chasm in the rock, similar to the one of Almanagiau, which we had passed on such a wretched road.
The contiguous valley bore a great resemblance to that of Thingvalla; but the third one was again fearful. Lava covered it, and was quite overgrown with that whitish moss, which has a beautiful appearance when it only covers a portion of the lava, and when black masses rise above it, but which here presented a most monotonous aspect.
We also passed two grottoes which opened at our feet. At the entrance of one stood a pillar of rock supporting an immense slab of lava, which formed an awe-inspiring portal. I had unfortunately not known of the existence of these caves, and was consequently unprepared to visit them. Torches, at least, would have been requisite. But I subsequently heard that they were not at all deep, and contained nothing of interest.
In the course of the day we passed through valleys such as I had seen nowhere else in Iceland. Beautiful meadow-lawns, perfectly level, covered the country for miles. These rich valleys were, of course, tolerably well populated; we frequently passed three or four contiguous cottages, and saw horses, cows, and sheep grazing on these fields in considerable numbers.
The mountains which bounded these valleys on the left seemed to me very remarkable; they were partly brown, black, or dark blue, like the others; but the bulk of which they were composed I considered to be fine loam-soil layers, if I may trust my imperfect mineralogical knowledge. Some of these mountains were topped by large isolated lava rocks, real giants; and it seemed inexplicable to me how they could stand on the soft soil beneath.
In one of these valleys we passed a considerable lake, on and around which rose circling clouds of steam proceeding from hot springs, but of no great size. But after we had already travelled about twenty- five miles, we came to the most remarkable object I had ever met with; this was a river with a most peculiar bed.
This river-bed is broad and somewhat steep; it consists of lava strata, and is divided lengthwise in the middle by a cleft eighteen to twenty feet deep, and fifteen to eighteen feet broad, towards which the bubbling and surging waters rush, so that the sound is heard at some distance. A little wooden bridge, which stands in the middle of the stream, and over which the high waves constantly play, leads over the chasm. Any one not aware of the fact can hardly explain this appearance to himself, nor understand the noise and surging of the stream. The little bridge in the centre would be taken for the ruins of a fallen bridge, and the chasm is not seen from the shore, because the foaming waves overtop it. An indescribable fear would seize upon the traveller when he beheld the venturous guide ride into the stream, and was obliged to follow without pity or mercy.
- a quiet old man, who, in his appearance and manner of life,
- where there were the great heaps of grain, which she could
- over the pew wainscot on a Sunday for nearly fifteen years;
- out of hearing, making her way toward the great attic that
- a short time we were surrounded by a large group of the
- know a reason, by small frauds neutralized by small extravagances,
- she swims she’s a witch, and if she’s drowned — and
- her best bonnet. Maggie took the opposite view very strongly,
- reason we have seen so many parrots lately; the cheucau
- take more than two or three boarders, if so many. If I
- in the world, and if you didn’t understand the reading,
- he knew how to put into the right hands. Mr. Riley liked
- golden dragon. Max pulled the keys from his pocket, and
- world, as he often said, and if you drive your wagon in
- The fixed inquiring glance with which Mr. Tulliver had
- back, trotting about and sniffing vaguely, as if he were
- our tents. They were very civil, and offered us a house;
- must suffer a little at a cousin’s table where the fly
- so strong a recommendation of him as he had given to his
- at home last holidays — the body all black, you know,
- of the Eurasian. She turned and faced him, threw up both
- quarters an inconvenient parasite on an animal toward whom
- mostly, I think — but they’ve all got the same covers,
- while she held her doll topsy-turvy, and crushed its nose
- without actually submerging his head, and to regain the
- pretty child; I’m sure Lucy takes more after me nor my
- giving her a dim, delicious awe as at the presence of an
- had asked him for an opinion; it is always chilling, in
- with stating that they were poor natives of the place,
- his little girl on the back, and then held her hands and
- but after that I want to send him to a downright good school,
- with his youngest pupils, and he’s not to be mentioned
- The wide heavens about her seemed to promise a greater
- that one of the chief people at Oxford said, Stelling might
- Latin, be expected to manifest a delicate scrupulosity
- in the world for them; under Stelling’s eye continually.”
- the steps again, finding himself now nearly up to his armpits
- of small promptings than of far-sighted designs. He had
- of the classics at the great Mudport Free School, and had
- eyes, like a Skye terrier suspecting mischief, or at all
- On went the Eurasian, up to her waist in the flood, with
- drove many nails in she would not be so well able to fancy
- again; the granary doors were open; and there was Yap,
- Mr. Riley, “and I wouldn’t do it for everybody. I’ll
- gate, but the apparatus was out of his reach, and he had
- exactly in the same condition; and there was another subject,
- with polite significance — “not that a man can’t
- quarters an inconvenient parasite on an animal toward whom
- Max gaining upon her, now, at every stride. There was a
- picked it up and looked at it, while the father laughed,