2021-04-18 10:43:13

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ENGLISH PILGRIMS ON THE ROAD. PILGRIMS ON THE ROAD."No," replied Sergeant Jim, "I doubt if the most of 'em are." I turned to him and drew down my under eyelid. "Will you kindly tell me, sir, if you see any unnatural discoloration in there?"

This conversation occurred while they were halted under some venerable shade-trees by the side of the Tokaido, and were looking at the people that passed. Every few minutes they saw groups varying from two to six or eight persons, very thinly clad, and having the appearance of wayfarers with a small stock of money, or none at all. The Doctor explained that these men were pilgrims on their way to holy placessome of them were doubtless bound for Enoshima, some for Hakone, and some for the great mountain which every now and then the turns in the road revealed to the eyes of the travellers. These pilgrimages have a religious character, and are made by thousands of persons every year. One member of a party usually carries a small bell, and as they walk along its faint tinkle gives notice of their religious character, and practically warns others that they are not commercially inclined, as they are without more money than is actually needed for the purposes of their journey. They wear broad hats to protect them from the sun, and their garments, usually of white material, are stamped with mystic characters to symbolize the particular divinity in whose honor the journey is made.He selected a robe of a delicate blue, and finely embroidered with silk of various colors. The embroideries represented flowers and leaves in curious combinations; and when the robe was placed on a frame where the light could fall full upon it, Frank thought he had never seen anything[Pg 241] half so pretty. And it is proper to add that he bought two of these robes. Why he should buy two, when he had only one sisterand she would not be likely to want two wrappers of the same kindI leave the reader to guess.

"There are women here who are not pretty, just as there are some in America; but when you are among them, it isn't polite to tell them of it. Some of them paint their faces to make them look pretty. I suppose nobody ever does anything of the kind in America or any other country but Japan, and therefore it is very wicked for the Japanese ladies to do so. And when they do paint, they lay it on very thick. Mr. Bronson calls it kalsomining, and Fred says it reminds him of the veneering that is sometimes put on furniture to make pine appear like mahogany, and have an expensive look, when it isn't expensive at all. The 'geishas,' or dancing and singing girls, get themselves up in this way; and when they have their faces properly arranged, they must not laugh, for fear that the effort of smiling would break the coating of paint. And I have heard it said that the covering of paint is so thick that they couldn't smile any more than a mask could; and, in fact, the paint really takes the place of a mask, and makes it impossible to recognize anybody through it."But they were not made by the Japanese, as this one was," Frank responded, "and they are statues of figures standing erect, while this represents a sitting figure. A sitting figure sixty feet high is something you don't see every day."

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"The variety of porcelain in the Canton shops is very great, and a simple list of what there is would fill several pages. They showed us some of what they call egg-shell porcelain. It was so thin that you could almost see through it, and so delicate that it had to be carefully handled. The varieties of cups and saucers we could not begin to tell; they make them suited to every market in the world, and it is said that the greatest part of what they make is of the shapes that are not used in China. Of vases there was no end, and they were of all sizes, from a tiny cone for a small bouquet up to a huge one capable of holding a barrel of water, with plenty of room to spare. The trade in vases must be very great, if we are to judge by the quantities and variety that we saw. Many of them were very elaborate, and must have cost a great deal of money.They left the river at Fushimi, and followed what seemed to be an almost continuous street for six miles or more. Formerly the great route for travellers and commerce between Osaka and Kioto was by way of the river as far as Fushimi, and thence by the road. The result of this state of affairs for centuries was to build up a long village largely composed of hotels and tea-houses. Their business has somewhat fallen off since the[Pg 289] completion of the railway from Kioto to Osaka and Kobe; but there is still enough to maintain a considerable number of them. There is one large hotel, at the foot of the Inari hill, about two miles from the centre of Kioto, where the jin-riki-sha coolies invariably stop for a short rest, and to take tea at the expense of their employers. The custom was carefully observed in the present instance, and our friends were shown to the rear of the hotel, where there was a pretty garden with a little fountain supplied from the hill above. They sipped their tea, and gave side-glances at the black-eyed maids that were moving around the house; and when John announced that the coolies were rested, the journey was resumed.

"Oh, if you were you wouldn't say so. You'd let on to be looking for good crossings on Pearl River, so that if Johnston should get chewed up we needn't be caught here in a hole, Ferry's scouts and all."

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CHAPTER XVII.I shook my head and we moved toward the tents. This was worse than the dream; the rat had not seen the cockerel, but the cockerel had observed the rat--dropping into the barrel: the cockerel, yes, and not the cockerel alone, for I saw that Gholson was associating him with her of the curtained wagon. By now they were side and side. I asked if Ferry came often to headquarters. "Yes, quite as often as he's any business to." "Ah, ha!" thought I, and presently said I had heard he was a great favorite.

I clenched my teeth. "I am nineteen, madam."JAPANESE PIPE, CASE, AND POUCH. JAPANESE PIPE, CASE, AND POUCH."Our guide said that not only do they make offerings in the cemeteries to the spirits of the dead, but they have shrines in their houses where the dead are worshipped. To prove what he said was true, he took us into a house and showed one of these shrines with bowls of rice and fruit, cups of tea, and other things, on a table. He explained that when the offerings were made they sent for a priest, who came with two men to assist him; and while the priest stood behind the table and repeated his prayers, one of his attendants pounded on a drum, and the other rang a bell. There was a fire in front of the shrine, and during the time the priest was performing the man who gave the feast knelt before the fire and burned some mock money, made out of silver paper in imitation of real coin. When the affair was over, the priest took all that he wanted from the table, and the remainder was eaten by the company who had been invited.

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Apr-18 10:43:13