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TO THE LIGHTHOUSEbe some simpler way, some less laborious way, shesighed. When she looked in the glass and saw herhair grey, her cheek sunk, at fifty, she thought, pos-sibly she might have managed things better—herhusband; money; his books. But for her own partshe would never for a single second regret her de-cision, evade difficulties, or slur over duties. Shewas now formidable to behold, and it was only insilence, looking up from their plates, after she hadspoken so severely about Charles Tansley, that herdaughters, Prue, Nancy, Rose—could sport with in-fidel ideas which they had brewed for themselvesof a life different from hers; in Paris, perhaps; awilder life; not always taking care of some man orother; for there was in all their minds a mute ques-tioning of deference and chivalry, of the Bank ofEngland and the Indian Empire, of ringed fingersand lace, though to them all there was something inthis of the essence of beauty, which called out themanliness in their girlish hearts, and made them,as they sat at table beneath their mother’seyes, honour her strange severity, her extreme cour-tesy, like a Queen’s raising from the mud to wash abeggar’s dirty foot, when she thus admonished themso very severely about that wretched atheist whohad chased them—or, speaking accurately, been in-vited to stay with them—in the Isles of Skye.14