330 HISTORY OF LACE. given her for being good,” remarks, “ A profitable and, doubtless, lasting and inseparable association was thus formed in the child’s mind between lace and goodness.” Whether in consequence of the French Revolution, or from the caprice of fashion, “ real ” lace—worse off than the passements and points of 1634, when in l’evolt—now underwent the most degrading vicissitudes. Indeed, so thoroughly was the taste for lace at this epoch gone by that in many families collections of great value were, at the death of their respective owners, handed over as rubbish to the waiting-maid. 23 Many ladies recollect in their youth to have tricked out their dolls in the finest Alenin point, which now would sell at a price far beyond their purses. Among the few who, in England, unseduced by frippery blonde, never neglected to preserve their collections entire, was her late royal highness the Duchess of Gloucester, whose lace was esteemed among the most magnificent in Europe. When the taste of the age again turned towards the rich productions of the preceding centuries, much lace, both black and white, was found in the country farm-houses, preserved as remem brances of deceased patrons by old family dependents. Sometimes the hoard had been forgotten, and was again routed out from old wardrobes and chests, where it had lain unheeded for years. Much was recovered from theatric wardrobes and the masquerade shops, and the church, no longer in its temporal glory, both in Italy, Spain, and Germany, gladly parted with what, to them, was of small value, compared with the high price given for it by amateurs. In Italy perhaps the fine fabrics of Milan, Genoa, and Venice, had fared best, from the custom which prevailed of sewing up family lace in rolls of linen to insure its preservation. After years of neglect, lace became a “ mania.” In England the literary ladies were the first to take it up. Sydney Lady Morgan and Lady Stepney quarrelled weekly on the respective 23 A lady, who had very fine old lace, bequeathed her “ wardrobe and lace ” to some young friends, who, going after her death to take possession of their legacy, were surprised to find nothing but new lace. On inquiring of the old faithful Scotch servant what had become of the old needle points, she said: “ Deed it’s aw there, ’cept a wheen auld Hudds, black and ragged, I flinged on the fire.” Another collection of old lace met with an equally melancholy fate. The maid, not liking to give it over to the legatees in its coffee-coloured hue, sewed it carefully together, and put it in a strong soap lye on the fire, to simmer all night. When she took it out in the morning, it was reduced to a jelly. Medea’s caldron had not been more effectual!