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Are there many people masticating at the sea-side?”
asked Mrs. Partington of one who had returned from
there, bearing evident marks of being used up. He informed
her that there were, but that the wet weather
had had a tendency to keep them in-doors, and that rusticating
by the sea, if she meant that, had been attended
with some mastication likewise. “How pleasant it must
have been,” said she, smiling like the distant sunshine,
“when denied the pleasure of imbibing the air out doors,
that you could imbibe within! It has had a very beneficious
effect on your health; for your countenance is
as blooming as a peony.” — “The sea-air is very salubrious,”
replied he, “and the constitution soon begins to
show its effects.” — “Yes,” said the dame, taking a pinch
of snuff, “so I should jedge; and not only the constitution,
but all of the revised statues, besides. I have no
doubt the sea is slewbrious, very —” — “And a great
slew of people go to see it,” said Ike, breaking in. —
“But depend upon it,” continued she, “there 's something
at the bottom of it.” — “What is that?” inquired
the young man, raising his eyes from a page of Chitty's
Pleadings. — “The telegraph cable, perhaps,” replied


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she, concluding her pinch. The young man whistled
faintly, and Ike at the instant knocked over an ink-bottle
with a feather-duster, in an attempt to kill a fly.