Excerpt from A Distinguished Provincial at Paris: Lost Illusions, and Other Stories
Some people no longer look the same when detached from the background of faces, objects, and surroundings which serve as a setting, without which, indeed, they seem to lose something of their intrinsic worth. Personality demands its appropriate atmosphere to bring out its values, just as the figures in Flemish interiors need the arrangement of light and shade in which they are placed by the painter's genius if they are to live for us. This is especially true of provincials. Mme. De Bargeton, moreover, looked more thoughtful and dignified than was necessary now, when no barriers stood between her and happiness.
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