The House of the Seven Gables

By Nathaniel Hawthorne; A. Marion Merrill | Go to book overview

XI
THE ARCHED WINDOW

FROM the inertness, or what we may term the vegetative character, of his ordinary mood, Clifford would perhaps have been content to spend one day after another, interminably, -- or, at least, throughout the summer-time, -- in just the kind of life described in the preceding pages. Fancying, however, that it might be for his benefit occasionally to diversify the scene, Phœbe sometimes suggested that he should look out upon the life of the street. For this purpose, they used to mount the staircase together, to the second story of the house, where, at the termination of a wide entry, there was an arched window of uncommonly large dimensions, shaded by a pair of curtains. It opened above the porch, where there had formerly been a balcony, the balustrade of which had long since gone to decay, and been removed. At this arched window, throwing it open, but keeping himself in comparative. obscurity by means of the curtain, Clifford had an opportunity of witnessing such a portion of the great world's movement as might be supposed to roll through one of the retired streets of a not very populous city. But he and Phœbe made a sight as well worth seeing as any that the city could exhibit. The pale, gray, childish, aged, melancholy, yet often simply cheerful, and sometimes delicately intelligent aspect of Clifford, peering from behind the faded crimson of the curtain, --

-178-

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The House of the Seven Gables
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page i
  • Preface iii
  • Contents v
  • List of Illustrations vi
  • List of Characters viii
  • Introduction xi
  • Bibliography xviii
  • Chronological List of Hawthorne's Works xix
  • I - The Old Pyncheon Family 1
  • II - The Little Shop-Window 31
  • III - The First Customer 45
  • IV - A Day Behind the Counter 62
  • V - May and November 78
  • VI - Maule's Well 96
  • VII - The Guest 109
  • VIII - The Pyncheon of To-Day 128
  • IX - Clifford and Phoebe 148
  • X - The Pyncheon Garden 162
  • XI - The Arched Window 178
  • XII - The Daguerreotypist 194
  • XIII - Alice Pyncheon 210
  • XIV - Phœbe's Good-By 237
  • XV - The Scowl and Smile 250
  • XVI - Clifford's Chamber 269
  • XVII - The Flight of Two Owls 284
  • XVIII - Governor Pyncheon 301
  • XIX - Alice's Posies 320
  • XX - The Flower of Eden 339
  • XXI - The Departure 350
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