Chapter 33 - (VERSO)
acutely sensitive of being so scrutinized, felt that she must scream aloud; and the white-lace girl kept talking audibly to her next neighbor about the “country bumpkins” and “rustic belles” in the audience, G18 Anne believed that she would hate that white-lace girl to the end of life.
Unfortunately for Anne, a professional elocutionist was staying at the hotel and had consented to recite. She was a lithe, dark-eyed woman in a wonderful gown of shimmering gray stuff like woven moonbeams, with gems on her neck and in her dark hair. She had a marvellously flexible voice and wonderful power of expression; the audience went wild over her selection. Anne
LMM Note G18
languidly anticipating "such fun" from the displays of local talent on the programme.
"a professional elocutionist" would travel giving recitations of poetry, speeches, and dialogues, sometimes set to music. The "elocution movement" began in the 18(begin superscript)th(end superscript) century in England but came to North America in the 19(begin superscript)th(end superscript). The profession was dominated by women at the height of its popularity, in part, because elocution was seen as less salacious than, for example, acting. Elocution was also taught in schools, and there were textbooks and formal training on the skill.
"staying at the hotel": Like many other tourist destinations or small towns, the local paper would often announce the arrival of particularly distinguished guests in the newspaper. This clipping, from September of 1890, lists the "Hotel Arrivals" at both the "Hotel Davies" and "Osborne House" in Charlottetown.