Ormond: A Tale

Ormond: A Tale

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Ormond: A Tale

Ormond: A Tale

Read FREE!

Excerpt

‘What! no music, no dancing at Castle Hermitage to-night; and all the ladies sitting in a formal circle, petrifying into perfect statues,’ cried Sir Ulick O’Shane, as he entered the drawing-room, between ten and eleven o’clock at night, accompanied by what he called his rear-guard, veterans of the old school of good fellows, who at those times in Ireland, times long since past, deemed it essential to health, happiness, and manly character, to swallow, and show themselves able to stand after swallowing, a certain number of bottles of claret per day or night.

‘Now then,’ continued Sir Ulick, ‘of all the figures in nature or art, the formal circle is universally the most obnoxious to conversation, and, to me, the most formidable; all my faculties are spell-bound—here I am like a bird in a circle of chalk that dare not move so much as its head or its eyes, and can’t, for the life of it, take to its legs.’

A titter ran round that part of the circle where the young ladies sat—Sir Ulick was a favourite with them, and they rejoiced when he came among them; because, as they observed, ‘he always said something pleasant, or set something pleasant a-going.’

‘Lady O’Shane, for mercy’s sake, let us have no more of these permanent sittings at Castle Hermitage, my dear–’

‘Sir Ulick, I am sure I should be very glad if it were possible,’ replied Lady O’Shane, ‘to have no more permanent sittings at Castle Hermitage, but when gentlemen are at their bottle, I really don’t know what the ladies can do but sit in a circle.’

‘Can’t they dance in a circle, or any way—or have not they an elegant resource in their music? there’s many here . . .

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