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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1899. Excerpt: ... CHAPTER XVIII The sun shone brilliantly over the vast plain of the River of Hesydrus; and glorified the dark woods and the golden slopes of the mountains, and the flowery fields nestling between them; and lit the trellised groves.and sparkled on the dancing river, and touched with the glamour of its radiance the walls of temples and palaces where the pools of the lotuses and lilies lay, and where the rich rose gardens bloomed and exhaled their fragrance;--and glittered on the grand city of the king, Prophthasia the magnificent, where it lay like a tented snow drift, illimitable in extent, dazzling, and incomparable. The city awakened with the dawn. Long before the dew had been dispersed from the roofs, the inhabitants sallied forth in their holiday attire, and began to swarm in countless multitudes toward the central parts, where the anticipated display of the power and glory of the king was to be enjoyed more thoroughly and continuously than elsewhere. It was the day of the Feast of the Presentation. Upon that day, which was celebrated once in every two years, the tribute of the whole vast kingdom was devoted to gifts of every conceivable and costly nature, which, after being displayed in gorgeous procession before the eyes of the people, were presented to the temples of the gods, and by them absorbed and used until the recurrence of the Feast at the end of the two years following. Every living soul was interested, and to a greater or less extent gratified and made happy, by the spectacle; for every living soul had contributed its share to the cost of it, and to the beauty of its rendering. At noon, the great marble terrace before the gates of the king's palace was glittering with the pomp of the royal occupation. A throne of ivory and gold in the midst, ...