valley the town of rubies, clothed in and roofed over with grey iron, in a veil of mist. All about it are the peaked mountains, pale and unreal at their summits, green at their thresholds.
It is the day of the big bazaar, and the market-place is astir, and quick with traffic. Along the yellow road, all hammered matrix of rubies, sit the market-women, with great hats on their heads, and the produce of their gardens spread before them. Fruits and vege-
tables abound. Here are small tomatoes done up in little cane cylinders, through the pattern of which the red fruit glints, baskets of scarlet raspberries, piles of flowers, and a variety of strange products, from mushrooms to bamboo-roots. Down these lanes the crowd sways, laughing, talking, bargaining, while the sun streams down on the gay colours of their clothes. It is the East, the indubitable East; but clean, neat, and prosperous ; the Far Silken East of the little-known peoples. Of those who come and go, some are clad in blue and red, in breast-cloth, coat, stomacher, and leggings ; with crescent silver neck-