- Project Runeberg -  Letters written during a short residence in Sweden, Norway, and Denmark /
174

(1889) [MARC] Author: Mary Wollstonecraft With: Henry Morley
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174 LETTERS ON SWEDEN,
enlivened by them, and the hdf-fornied roads seemed
to demand the landmarks, set up in the waste, to
prevent the traveller from straying far out of his way,
and plodding through the wearisome sand.
The heaths were dreary, and had none of the wild
charms of those of Sweden and Norway to cheat time ;
neither the terrific rocks, nor smiling herbage grateful
to the sight and scented from afar, made us forget
their length. Still the country appeared much more
populous, and the towns, if not the farmhouses, were
superior to those of Norway. I even thought that the
inhabitants of the former had more intelligence at
least, I am sure they had more vivacity in their coun-
tenances than I had seen during my northern tour :
their senses seemed awake to business and pleasure.
I was therefore gratified by hearing once more the
busy hum of industrious men in the day, and the
exhilarating sounds of joy in the evening ; for, as the
weather was still fine, the women and children were
amusing themselves at their doors, or walking under
the trees, which in many places were planted in the
streets ;
and as most of the towns of any note were
situated on little bays or branches of the Baltic, their
appearance as we approached was often very pic-
turesque, and, when we entered, displayed the comfort
and cleanliness of easy, if not the elegance of opulent,
circumstances. But the cheerfulness of the people in
the streets was particularly grateful to me, after having
been depressed by the deathlike silence of those of
Denmark, where every house made me think of a tomb.
The dress of the peasantry is suited to the climate ; in

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