Shirley said she liked the green sweep of the common turf, and, better still, the heath on its ridges, for the heath reminded her of moors: she had seen the moors when she was travelling on the borders near Scotland. She remembered particularly a district traversed one long afternoon, on a sultry but sunless day in summer: they journeyed from noon till sunset, over what seemed a boundless waste of deep heath, and nothing had they seen but wild sheep: nothing heard but the cries of wild birds.
'I know how the heath would look on such a day,' said Caroline; 'purple black: a deep shade of the sky-tint, and that would be livid.'
'Yes, quite livid, with brassy edges to the clouds, and here and there a white gleam, more ghastly than the lurid tinge, which, as you looked at it, you momentarily expected would kindle into blinding lightening.'
'Did it thunder?'
'It muttered distant peals, but the storm did not break till evening, after we had reached our inn: that inn being an isolated house at the foot of a range of mountains.'
'Did you watch the clouds come down over the mountains?'
'I did: I stood at the window an hour watching them. The hills seemed rolled in a sullen mist, and when the rain fell in whitening sheets, suddenly they were blotted from the prospect: they were washed from the world.'
It is so exciting to read this description! I see this, I look out of my window and I see this, and here it is, written about over 160 years ago by none other than Charlotte Bronte! It's absolutely thrilling! I've included some pictures I took a while ago to show you.
And, so far, I am in love with this book. I've put several quotes up on my Tumblr: the descriptive passages are intense. I'll write about this book in more detail on Sunday, I have a post planned which involved a lot of reading (hence the blog silence) and Shirley will be included. For now, before I go back to bed, here's one more quote, which follows the above:
They both halted on the green brow of the Common: they looked down on the deep valley robed in May rainment; on varied meads, some pearled with daisies, and some golden with king-cups: to-day all this young verdure smiled clear in sunlight; transparent emerald and amber gleams played over it. In Nunnwood - the sole remnant of antique British forest in a region whose lowlands were once all sylvan chase, as its highlands were breast-deep heather - slept the shadow of a cloud; the distant hills were dappled, the horizon was shaded and tinted like mother-of-pearl; silvery blues, soft purples, evanescent greens and rose-shades, all melting into fleeces of white cloud, pure as azury snow, allured the eye as with remote glimpse of heaven’s foundations. The air blowing on the brow was fresh, and sweet, and bracing.It's perfect, this book is perfect.