Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Mellichampe: A Legend of the Santee >> Chapter VIII: Janet Berkeley >> Page 71

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Page 71

Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription JANET BERKELEY. 71
THE appearance of Janet Berkeley fully justified the high
encomium which Barsfield had passed upon her beauties ; yet
nothing could be more unassuming than her deportment
nothing more unimposing than her entire carriage. A quiet
ease, a natural and seemingly effortless movement, placed her
before you, and, like all perfect things, her loveliness was to be
studied before it could be perceived. It did not affront you
by an obtrusion of anything remarkable. Her features were
all too much in unison with one another too symmet-
rically unique, to strike abruptly ; they seemed rather to
fill and to absorb the mind of the spectator than to strike
his eye.
Her person was rather small and slender: her features,
though marked by health, were all soft and delicate. A pale,
high forehead, from beneath which a pair of large black eyes
flashed out a subdued, dewy, but rich, transparent light �a
nose finely Grecian� cheeks rather too pale, perhaps, for ex-
pression and a mouth which was sweetly small and deli-
cately full were the distinguishing features of her face.
Her chin, though not prominent, did not retreat ; and her neck
was white and smoothly round, as if a nice artist had spent a
life in working it to perfection. Her hair, which was long and
dark, was gathered 'up and secured by a white fillet, without
study, yet with a disposition of grace that seemed to denote
the highest efforts of study. It was the art which concealed
the art the fine taste of the woman naturally employed in
adorning the loveliest object in creation herself. It .was
the fashion of the time to pile the hair in successive layers