Perdita as a woman, but can hardly classify Miranda
except in the real where Ariel dwells.
Yet both are painted with strong qualities-Perdita with deep conscientiousness, as Mrs. Jameson
has pointed out, and Miranda
with absolute self-devotion.
In that reversion to country life which is going on side by side with the increased tendency to cities — a combination which is making us all into a nation that dwells half the year on the pavements and the other half in the wilderness-we may go back to that poetic side of existence which suggested his Perditas and Mirandas to Shakespeare
We shall never get back to the fantastic shepherdesses of French and Italian
song, for these never were on sea or land; but we may at least hope to find, in the rural types of character, a corrective to the dangers of a purely metropolitan society.
Perhaps I shall do well to draw again upon the wide observation of my Western teacher to paint the class of young girls in America
most remote from true rusticity — a class whom all may recognize in her description.
“The type which troubles me most,” she says, “is the smart, quick-witted girl, who takes the tone of any company she is with; who sees the fine points of literature or history without feeling any of them, who has girlishness without maidenliness, and who has absolutely no reverence — in short, the type of Maud Matchin