and in their midst was the Infant Church, a tiny body of，
At first the little circlet of gold wavered in the countess's hand, then the hand shook, then the circlet fell, the countess's head tossed itself into the air, and the countess's feet shambled out to the lawn. She did not however go so fast but what she heard the signora's voice, asking--
'Who on earth is that woman, Mr Slope?'
'Oh, ah. I might have supposed so. Ha, ha, ha. Well, that's as good as a play.'
It was as good as a play to any there who had eyes to observe it, and wit to comment on what they observed.
But the Lady De Courcy soon found a congenial spirit on the lawn. There she encountered Mrs Proudie, and as Mrs Proudie was not only the wife of a bishop, but was also the cousin of an earl, Lady De Courcy considered her to be the fittest companion she was likely to meet in that assemblage. They were accordingly delighted to see each other. Mrs Proudie by no means despised a countess, and as this countess lived in the county and within a sort of extensive visiting distance of Barchester, she was glad to have this opportunity of ingratiating herself.
'My dear Lady De Courcy, I am so delighted,' said she, looking as little grim as it was in her nature to do so. 'I hardly expected to see you here. It is such a distance, and then you know, such a crowd.'
'And such roads, Mrs Proudie! I really wonder how the people ever get about. But I don't suppose they ever do.'
'Well, I really don't know; but I suppose not. The Thorne don't, I know,' said Mrs Proudie. 'Very nice person, Miss Thorne, isn't she?'
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