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[176] bulges across the country, separating the fertile Shenandoah valley on the east from the enchanting Winchester valley on the west. These apennines are called the Blue Ridge, from the purple tinge which, in the twilight after sunset, deepens into blue, as dark as that of either Syrian sea or Grecian sky. Virginia's sun is bright, and in his brightness constant through the year. Fogs are unknown, mists seldom seen. This wealth of sunlight in the sky sheds wealth of colour on the landscape. Skies as clear, and streams as fresh, are found in many places; but the beauty of this range of mountain woods is hardly to be matched on earth.

Groups of hills start here and there beyond the chain of heights; one Alp called White Top Mountain, lifting its head above the line that Snowdon would attain if she were piled on the highest peak of the Cheviot Hills. These hills are clothed with pine and maple, oak, and chestnut, to their crowns. Their sides are all aglow; gold, orange, scarlet, crimson, russet; all the burning colours of the forest mingling in one common flame. The glory of the falling year is nowhere to be seen in such perfection as in these Virginian Apennines.

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