The book which made Mrs. Carlyle feel "in charity with the whole human race" could be no ordinary one. Adam Bede contains all George Eliot's broad and catholic knowledge of life, and the characters are all drawn by the hand of a master.
Adam hastened with long strides, Gyp close to his heels, out of the workyard, and along the highroad leading away from the village and down to the valley. As he reached the foot of the slope, an elderly horseman, with his portmanteau strapped behind him, stopped his horse when Adam had passed him, and turned round to have another long look at the stalwart workman in paper cap, leather breeches, and dark-blue worsted stockings.
Adam, unconscious of the admiration he was exciting, presently struck across the fields, and now broke out into the tune which had all day long been running in his head:
Let all thy converse be sincere,
Thy conscience as the noonday clear;
For God's all-seeing eye surveys
Thy secret thoughts, thy works and ways.
About a quarter to seven there was an unusual appearance of excitement in the village of Hayslope, and through the whole length of its little street, from the