BOOK THE THIRD - GARNERING
9. Chapter Ix - Final (continued)
Mr. Bounderby, very red and uncomfortable, resumed:
'It appears to me, ma'am, I say, that a different sort of
establishment altogether would bring out a lady of your powers.
Such an establishment as your relation, Lady Scadgers's, now.
Don't you think you might find some affairs there, ma'am, to
'It never occurred to me before, sir,' returned Mrs. Sparsit; 'but
now you mention it, should think it highly probable.'
'Then suppose you try, ma'am,' said Bounderby, laying an envelope
with a cheque in it in her little basket. 'You can take your own
time for going, ma'am; but perhaps in the meanwhile, it will be
more agreeable to a lady of your powers of mind, to eat her meals
by herself, and not to be intruded upon. I really ought to
apologise to you - being only Josiah Bounderby of Coketown - for
having stood in your light so long.'
'Pray don't name it, sir,' returned Mrs. Sparsit. 'If that
portrait could speak, sir - but it has the advantage over the
original of not possessing the power of committing itself and
disgusting others, - it would testify, that a long period has
elapsed since I first habitually addressed it as the picture of a
Noodle. Nothing that a Noodle does, can awaken surprise or
indignation; the proceedings of a Noodle can only inspire
Thus saying, Mrs. Sparsit, with her Roman features like a medal
struck to commemorate her scorn of Mr. Bounderby, surveyed him
fixedly from head to foot, swept disdainfully past him, and
ascended the staircase. Mr. Bounderby closed the door, and stood
before the fire; projecting himself after his old explosive manner
into his portrait - and into futurity.