Uncle tom's cabin - online children's book

Complete unabridged version in one volume

Home Main Menu Order Support About Search

Share page  

Previous Contents Next

LIFE AMONG THE LOWLY            445
mind, that, as Tom was not hard to his hand, he would harden him forthwith; and some few weeks after Tom had been on the place, he determined to commence the process.
One morning, when the hands were mustered for the field, Tom noticed, with surprise, a new-comer among them, whose appearance excited his attention. It was a woman, tall and slenderly formed, with remarkably deli­cate hands and feet, and dressed in neat and respectable garments. By the appearance of her face, she might have, been between thirty-five and forty; and it was a face that, once seen, could never be forgotten, — one of those that, at a glance, seem to convey to us an idea of a wild, pain­ful, and romantic history. Her forehead was high, and her eyebrows marked with beautiful clearness. Her straight, well-formed nose, her finely cut mouth, and the graceful contour of her head and neck, showed that she must once have been beautiful; but her face was deeply wrinkled with lines of j>ain, and of proud and bitter endur­ance. Her complexion was sallow and unhealthy, her cheeks th 1, her features sharp, and her whole form ema­ciated. 1 it her eye was the most remarkable feature, — so large, so heavily black, overshadowed by long lashes of equal darkness, and so wildly, mournfully despairing. There was a fierce pride and defiance in every line of her face, in every curve of the flexible lip, in every motion of her body ; but in her eye was a deep, settled night of anguish, — an expression so hopeless and unchanging as to contrast fearfully with the scorn and pride expressed by her whole demeanor.
Where she came from, or who she was, Tom did not know. The first he did know, she was walking by his side, erect and proud, in the dim gray of the dawn. To the gang, however, she was known; for there was much looking and turning of heads, and a smothered yet appar­ent exultation among the miserable, ragged, half-starved creatures by whom she was surrounded.