clematis in a clear leap from the ground, its topmost tendrils throttling the dormers.
Even then your surprises are not over. You have yet to come in touch with the real spirit of the Inn, and be introduced to our jewel of a dining-room, the “Marmouset,” opening flat to the ground and hidden behind a carved oaken door mounted in hammered iron: a low-ceilinged, Venetian-beamed room, with priceless furniture, tapestries, and fittings—chairs, tables, wainscoting of carved oak surmounted by Spanish leather; quaint andirons, mirrors, arms, cabinets, silver, glass, and china; all of them genuine and most of them rare, for Lemois, our landlord, has searched the Continent from end to end.
Yes!—a great inn this inn of William the Conqueror at Dives, and unique the world over. You will be ready now to believe all its legends and traditions, and you can quite understand why half the noted men of Europe have, at one time or another, been housed within its hospitable walls, including such exalted personages as Louis XI and Henry IV—the latter being the particular potentate who was laid low with a royal colic from a too free indulgence in the seductive oyster—not to men-