Full text: Mrs. Dalloway

MRS. DALLOWAY 
gloves; but her own daughter, her Elizabeth, cared not 
a straw for either of them. 
Not a straw, she thought, going on up Bond Street to 
a shop where they kept flowers for her when she gave a 
party. Elizabeth really cared for her dog most of all. 
The whole house this morning smelt of tar. Still, better 
poor Grizzle than Miss Kilman; better distemper and 
tar and all the rest of it than sitting mewed in a stuffy 
bedroom with a prayer book! Better anything, she was 
inclined to say. But it might be onlya phase, as Richard 
said, such as all girls go through. It might be falling in 
love. But why with Miss Kilman? who had been badly 
treated of course; one must make allowances for that, 
and Richard said she was very able, had a really histori- 
cal mind. Anyhow they were inseparable, and Eliza- 
beth, her own daughter, went to Communion; and how 
she dressed, how she treated people who came to lunch 
she did not care a bit, it being her experience that the 
religious ecstasy made people callous (so did causes); 
dulled their feelings, for Miss Kilman would do any- 
thing for the Russians, starved herself for the Austrians, 
but in private inflicted positive torture, so insensitive 
was she, dressed in a green mackintosh coat. Year in 
year out she wore that coat; she perspired; she was 
never in the room five minutes without making you 
feel her superiority, your inferiority; how poor she was; 
how rich you were; how she lived in a slum without a 
cushion ora bed or a rug or whatever it might be, all her 
soul rusted with that grievance sticking in it, her dis- 
missal from school during the War—poor, embittered, 
unfortunate creature! For it was not her one hated 
but the idea of her, which undoubtedly had gathered 
in to itself a great deal that was not Miss Kilman; had 
become one of those spectres with which one battles in 
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