A Shepherd's Life

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Purchase of this book includes free trial access to www.million-books.com where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: CHAPTER III Winterbourne Bishop A favourite village—Isolated situation—Appearance of the village—Hedge-fruit—The winterbourne—Human interest—The home feeling—Man in harmony with nature—Human bones thrown out by a rabbit —A spot unspoiled and unchanged Of the few widely separated villages, hidden away among the lonely downs in the large, blank spaces between the rivers, the one I love best is Winterbourne Bishop. Yet of the entire number—I know them all intimately—I daresay it would be pronounced by most persons the least attractive. It has less shade from trees in summer and is more exposed in winter to the bleak winds of this high country, from whichever quarter they may blow. Placed high itself on a wide, unwooded valley or depression, with the low, sloping downs at some distance away, the village is about as cold a place to pass a winter in as one couldfind in this district. And, it may be added, the most inconvenient to live in at any time, the nearest town, or the easiest to get to, being Salisbury, twelve miles distant by a hilly road. The only means of getting to that great centre of life which the inhabitants possess is by the carrier's cart, which makes the weary four-hours' journey once a week, on market-day. Naturally, not many of them see that place of delights oftener than once a year, and some but once in five or more years. Then, as to the village itself, when you have got down into its one long, rather winding street, or road. This has a green bank, five or six feet high, on either side, on which stand the cottages, mostly facing the road. Real houses there are- none—buildings worthy of being called houses in these great days—unless the three small farm-houses are considered better than cottages, and the rather mean-looking rectory—the rector, poor m...
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