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which shuts out the town and gives one party we decided were from Boston; a the impression of being suspended in pervading air of intellectuality and the air. We wandered about the courtyard, presence of two Boston bags proclaimed sat in the shade of a great larch-tree the fact. They were, of course, intent which grew by the chapel wall, and upon extracting every crumb of informa leaned on the stone well-curb admir- tion, and, their French being of a very ing the ferns which grew between the American brand, the strength and pastones. While so engaged we

tience of the concierge were severely startled by sepulchral voices issuing taxed. We noticed that he drooped apparently from the depths of the well. visibly as the inspection drew to a close, It Aashed through the fertile brain of and decided that he too was hungry. M'sieur that an underground passage Finally the representatives of the Hub connected the well with some part of withdrew with a parting remark delivthe château, and that the voices were ered in inimitable French to which, I those of the other visiting party. But fear, no spelling could do justice. We the instant and apt response to our mur then approached the concierge with a murs of surprise forced upon us the manner which plainly said “next." He realization that we had merely stumbled rolled a desperate eye at us, asked if we upon one of the haunts of Echo.

were pressed for time, then, evidently Our wanderings and discoveries kept with the memory of his last experience us happily diverted for perhaps fifteen before him, and despairing of making minutes, but then our appetites became an American understand, pointed exreally clamorous, and still the other vis- pressively down his throat and hastily itors engaged the services of the con- withdrew. We could not but sympathize, cierge. We could trace their progress but sympathy is not filling. from room to room. Occasionally they Help came to us, however, as we were would appear at a window to admire the disconsolately turning over picture postview or emerge upon a balcony to take cards, in the form of a shy pink and a picture. We wondered if they were white maiden, who offered her services never hungry. Two of the ladies of the in lieu of those of her father. Under her

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guidance we mounted

that she no more than a beautiful old stone

her royal rival could be staircase worn and hol

contented with Chaulowed by the footsteps

mont for a home. As of many ages to the

we left I wondered if only suite of rooms

Chenonceaux were inwhich is shown. Most

deed more beautiful, of the château is occu

that both preferred it pied by the present

to lovely Chaumont. owner, but the five or

In descending we six rooms which are

found the way that we open to the public are

should have ascended. so beautiful as to make

It was a pleasant walk one forget to regret that

down a tree-shaded he cannot see more.

avenue, but unfortuThey are furnished

nately it landed us at and decorated just as

the eastern limit of the in the old days of Chau

town, and we had left mont's glory. From

our basket at the last the Salle des Gardes,

shop at the western with its old tapestries,

end. It was a blow, quaint wrought-iron

but we had got beyond fire-dogs, and suits

words, and silently and of mail, we passed

sadly we fetched our through the great oak

basket, boarded our cacarved Salle de ConA BEAUTIFUL OLD STONE STAR

noe, paddled furiously CASE, WORX

HOLLOWED seil into the bedcham

to the nearest shaded ber of Catherine de Médicis. Of all the spot, and ate. When nothing remained old rooms we saw in our journeyings this but an empty cheese-box and an empty was to me the most beautiful. In it are bottle, we composed ourselves upon the an ancient bed and prie-dieu, time-dark- grass with intent to sleep. The entry in ened carved escritoires and cabinets, M’dame's journal for that day saysand on the walls most lovely old tapes " Attempted a siesta, but tickly little tries in blending shades of faded rose. green bugs prevented." They did, so A mellow radiance filled the room, time we took to our paddles again. stood still, it seemed a place enchanted, A friend, hearing of our intended jourfull of dreams. Lifting a heavy curtain ney in Touraine, had enthusiastically on one side, we stepped out on to the characterized his impressions of the gallery of the chapel which occupies the province with the remark, "It's a perfect end of the wing. Beside the altar-steps bowl of sunshine.” Often during the four is the great carved chair in which preceding days of cloud and rain we had Georges, Cardinal d'Amboise, the wisest cast an ironical thought at this descripand best councilor of his time, used to tion, but to-day we felt the truth of it. sit, while above it still hangs the old red All the rays of the sun were focused in Cardinal's hat which Cæsar Borgia gave that one spot of the valley of the Loire, him more than four hundred years ago. and we were the center of that spot. Another door from Catherine's room leads into the one occupied by her Amboise began to make its impresastronomer and confidant, Ruggieri— sion while still a long stretch of river, and here hangs a portrait of the wicked blinding in its reflection of the naked sun old queen. The chamber of Diane de and the blazing white sky, lay before us. Poitiers is built in the thickness of Its dominant position, on the top of a the entrance tower and is entered from high rock above the river, and the masthe Salle des Gardes. It is not so sive proportions of its round tower, made beautiful as that of Catherine, but still the impression one of impregnability. sufficiently so to make it seem strange We took heart at the sight of the château,

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and in spite of the heat paddled briskly the none too brilliant son of grim Louis until we slid into the grateful shade of XI., had added to the mediæval strongthe island that lies in front of the town. hold, which dated perhaps from Roman We landed under the château, and found times. The first impression of strength the hotel which Baedeker had pointed and inaccessibility was emphasized. out just across the street and facing the From the foot of the rock to its top river. It was an admirable inn, though climbs the huge round tower with battlehaving neither the rustic simplicity of mented galleries about its summit, their our hostelry at St. Dyé nor the over floors, pierced with holes for the cordial powering sophistication of the hotel at reception, by means of stones and melted Blois. It was just comfortable and home- lead, of uninvited guests. An inclined

After dinner, an eminently satis- plane, winding upward in a gradual factory occasion from radishes to straw- spiral within the tower, gave approach to berries, we sat on the little terrace behind the little plateau which the castle occua screen of greenery and drank our pies. Up this luxurious substitute for a coffee. A fluffy gray-and-white ball of staircase Charles the Fifth, Emperor of a kitten entertained us. With mock the Holy Roman Empire, rode at the importance it strolled casually among head of a troop of cavalry when he visthe tables and chairs, giving a friendly ited France during an interval of peace rub to M’dame's skirt as it passed. It with his ambitious and quarrelsome rival, undertook stupendous hunts in the jungle Francis First. It is recorded that on of the shrubbery, to receive every time this festive occasion flambeaux blazed a terrible fright from some figment of in such numbers “ that a man might see its imagination and dash madly off to as clearly as at midday." sanctuary within the inn. It was finally Our entrance the next morning was captured by the little son of mine host made in more modest style, through a and carried off to supper and to bed. gate on the other side of the rock and Then we strolled out behind the hotel for up a sloping road between heavy walls. a glimpse of the château.

At the top a garden of roses, in a profuWe looked up the sheer side of its sion of color and perfume, beguiled us rock to the facade which Charles VIII.from our first impression of the châ

teau, and made it seem a home for the the entrance is a graphic carving of the gentle arts of peace rather than a for- miracle of St. Hubert, who, you will tress for defense. This new note was remember, was a mighty hunter, and was strengthened by a walk through a little converted by the vision of a snow-white grove of lime-trees, laid out in geometric stag bearing a crucifix between his lines, and with their branches clipped antlers. A tablet in the floor of the and trained to make a roof of green chapel is a pathetic reminder of a noble splashed with gold by the sun. Beyond genius, for it records the fact that among their shade we gazed upon the doorway the human bones which it covers “are where Charles VIII., they say, bumped supposed to be the remains of Leonardo his foolish head so hard that he died. da Vinci.”

Then we turned to the chapel of St. As at Chaumont, little of the interior Hubert, perched over the edge of the of the château is shown, but we hardly rock on foundations that rise from its felt the lack. The view from the top of foot. Its diminutive size, its perfect Charles VIII.'s tower of the flowering proportions, and the wonderful stone valley of the Loire afforded compensacarving of its walls and ceiling give it a tion, if any were needed after the rose fair title to the often abused description, garden, the grove, and the chapel. a gem of Gothic architecture. Above If we had seen Amboise without fore

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knowledge and without a guide, our massacre of the Huguenot conspirators impressions would have been unquali- in the courtyard casts a shadow over the fiedly delightful. But the memory of place. Catherine de Médicis and her ruthless The balcony of hand-wrought iron,

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