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Brighton a sanatorium ; light and glow without oppressive, moist heat; in winter a clear cold. Most terrible of all to bear is cold when the atmosphere is saturated with water. If any reply that trees have no leaves in winter and so do not condense moisture, I at once deny the conclusion; they have no leaves, but they condense moisture nevertheless. This is effected by the minute twigs, thousands of twigs and little branches, on which the mists condense, and distil in drops. Under a large tree, in winter, there is often a perfect shower, enough to require an umbrella, and it lasts for hours. Eastbourne is a pleasant place, but visit Eastbourne, which is proud of its trees, in October, and feel the damp fallen leaves under your feet, and you would prefer no trees.
Let nothing check the descent of those glorious beams of sunlight which fall at Brighton. Watch the pebbles on the beach; the foam runs up and wets them, almost before it can slip back the sunshine has dried them again. So they are alternately wetted and dried. Bitter sea and glowing light, bright clear air, dry as dry,--that describes the place. Spain is the country of sunlight, burning sunlight; Brighton is a Spanish town in England, a Seville. Very bright colours can be worn in summer because of this powerful light; the brightest are scarcely noticed, for they seem to be in concert with the sunshine. Is it difficult to paint in so strong a light? Pictures in summer look dull and out of tune when this Seville sun is shining. Artificial colours of the palette cannot live in it. As a race we do not seem to care much for colour or art-I mean in the common things of daily life--else a great deal of colour might be effectively used in Brighton in decorating houses and woodwork. Much more colour might be put in the windows, brighter flowers and curtains; more, too, inside the rooms; the sober hues of London furniture and carpets are not in accord with Brighton light. Gold and ruby and blue, the blue of transparent glass, or purple, might be introduced, and the romance of colour freely indulged. At high tide of summer Spanish mantillas, Spanish fans, would not be out of place in the open air. No tint is too bright-scarlet, cardinal, anything the imagination fancies; the brightest parasol is a matter of course. Stand, for instance, by the West Pier, on the Esplanade, looking east on a full-lit August day. The sea is blue, streaked with green, and is stilled with heat; the low undulations can scarcely rise and fall for somnolence. The distant cliffs are white; the houses yellowish-white; the sky blue, more blue than fabled Italy. Light pours down, and the bitter salt sea wets the pebbles ; to look at them makes the mouth dry, in the unconscious recollection of the saltness and bitterness. The flags droop, the sails of the fishing-boats hang idle; the land and the sea are conquered by the great light of the sun.
Some people become famous by being always in . one attitude. Meet them when you will, they have invariably got an arm—the same arm-crossed over the breast, and the hand thrust in between the buttons of the coat to support it. Morning, noon, or evening, in the street, the carriage, sitting, reading the paper,
always the same attitude ; thus they achieve social distinction; it takes the place of a medal or the red ribbon. What is a general or a famous orator compared to a man always in the same attitude ? Simply nobody, nobody knows him, everybody knows the mono-attitude man, Some people make their mark by invariably wearing the same short pilot coat. Doubtless it has been many times renewed, still it is the same coat. In winter it is thick, in summer thin, but identical in cut and colour. Some people sit at the same window of the reading-room at the same hour every day, all the year round. This is the way to become marked and famous; winning a battle is nothing to it. When it was arranged that a military band should play on the Brunswick Lawns, it became the fashion to stop carriages in the road and listen to it. Frequently there were carriages four deep, while the gale blew the music out to sea and no one heard a note. Still they sat content.
There are more handsome women in Brighton than anywhere else in the world. They are so common that gradually the standard of taste in the mind rises, and good-looking women who would be admired in other places pass by without notice. Where all the flowers are roses, you do not see a rose. They are all plump, not to say fat, which would be rude ; very plump, and have the glow and bloom of youth upon the cheeks. They do not suffer from “pernicious anæmia," that evil bloodlessness which London physicians are not unfrequently called upon to cure, when the cheeks are white as paper and have to be rosied with minute doses of arsenic. They
extract their arsenic from the air. The way they step and the carriage of the form show how full they are of life and spirits. Sarah Bernhardt will not come to Brighton if she can help it, lest she should lose that high art angularity and slipperiness of shape which suits her rôle. Dresses seem always to fit well, because people somehow expand to them. It is pleasant to see the girls walk, because the limbs do not drag, the feet are lifted gaily and with ease. Horse-exercise adds a deeper glow to the face; they ride up on the Downs first, out of pure cunning, for the air there is certain to impart a freshness to the features like dew on a flower, and then return and walk their horses to and fro the King's Road, certain of admiration. However often these tricks are played, they are always successful. Those philanthropic folk who want to reform women's dress, and call upon the world to observe how the present style contracts the chest, and forces the organs of the body out of place (what a queer expression it seems, “organs”!) have not a chance in Brighton. Girls lace tight and “go in " for the tip of the fashion, yet they bloom and flourish as green bay trees, and do not find their skirts any obstacle in walking or tennis. The horse-riding that goes on is a thing to be chronicled; they are always on horseback, and you may depend upon it that it is better for them than all the gymnastic exercises ever invented. The liability to strain, and even serious internal injury, which is incurred in gymnastic exercises, ought to induce sensible people to be extremely careful how they permit their daughters to sacrifice themselves on this
scientific altar. Buy them horses to ride, if you want them to enjoy good health and sound constitutions. Nothing like horses for women. Send the professors to Suakim, and put the girls on horseback. Whether Brighton grows handsome girls, or whether they flock there drawn by instinct, or become lovely by staying there, is an inquiry too difficult to pursue.
There they are, one at least in every group, and you have to walk, as the Spaniards say, with your beard over your shoulder, continually looking back at those who have passed. The only antidote known is to get married before you visit the place, and doubts have been expressed as to its efficacy. In the south-coast Seville there is nothing done but heart-breaking; it is so common it is like hammering flints for roadmending; nobody cares if your heart is in pieces. They break hearts on horseback, and while walking, playing tennis, shopping-actually at shopping, not to mention parties of every kind. No one knows where the next danger will be encountered-at the very next corner perhaps. Feminine garments have an irresistible flutter in the sea-breeze ; feathers have a beckoning motion. No one can be altogether good in Brighton, and that is the great charm of it. The language of the eyes is cultivated to a marvellous degree; as we say of dogs, they quite talk with their eyes. Even when you do not chance to meet an exceptional beauty, still the plainer women are not plain like the plain women in other places. The average is higher among them, and they are not so irredeemably uninteresting. The flash of an eye, the shape of a shoulder, the colour of the hair-something