Margaret mitchell – gone with the wind. part 1



Scarlett O’Hara was not beautiful, but men seldom realized it when
Caught by her charm as the Tarleton twins were. In her face were
Too sharply blended the delicate features of her mother, a Coast
Aristocrat of French descent, and the heavy ones of her florid
Irish father. But it was an arresting face, pointed of chin,
Square of jaw. Her eyes were pale green without a touch of hazel,
Starred with bristly black lashes and slightly tilted at the ends.
Above them, her thick black brows slanted upward, cutting a
Startling oblique line in her magnolia-white skin – that skin so
Prized by Southern women and so carefully guarded with bonnets,
Veils and mittens against hot Georgia suns.

Seated with Stuart and Brent Tarleton in the cool shade of the
Porch of Tara, her father’s plantation, that bright April
Afternoon of 1861, she made a pretty picture. Her new green
Flowered-muslin dress spread its twelve yards of billowing
Material over her hoops and exactly matched the flat-heeled green
Morocco slippers her father had recently brought her from Atlanta.
The dress set off to perfection the seventeen-inch waist, the
Smallest in three counties, and the tightly fitting basque showed
Breasts well matured for her sixteen years. But for all the
Modesty of her spreading skirts, the demureness of hair netted
Smoothly into a chignon and the quietness of small white hands
Folded in her lap, her true self was poorly concealed. The green
Eyes in the carefully sweet face were turbulent, willful, lusty
With life, distinctly at variance with her decorous demeanor.
Her manners had been imposed upon her by her mother’s gentle
Admonitions and the sterner discipline of her mammy; her eyes were
Her own.

On either side of her, the twins lounged easily in their chairs,

at the sunlight through tall mint-garnished glasses as
They laughed and talked, their long legs, booted to the knee and
Thick with saddle muscles, crossed negligently. Nineteen years
Old, six feet two inches tall, long of bone and hard of muscle,
With sunburned faces and deep auburn hair, their eyes merry and
Arrogant, their bodies clothed in identical blue coats and
Mustard-colored breeches, they were as much alike as two bolls of

Outside, the late afternoon sun slanted down in the yard, throwing
Into gleaming brightness the dogwood trees that were solid masses
Of white blossoms against the background of new green. The twins’
Horses were hitched in the driveway, big animals, red as their
Masters’ hair; and around the horses’ legs quarreled the pack of
Lean, nervous possum hounds that accompanied Stuart and Brent
Wherever they went. A little aloof, as became an aristocrat, lay
A black-spotted carriage dog, muzzle on paws, patiently waiting
For the boys to go home to supper.

Between the hounds and the horses and the twins there was a
Kinship deeper than that of their constant companionship. They
Were all healthy, thoughtless young animals, sleek, graceful,
High-spirited, the boys as mettlesome as the horses they rode,
Mettlesome and dangerous but, withal, sweet-tempered to those who
Knew how to handle them.

Although born to the ease of plantation life, waited on hand and
Foot since infancy, the faces of the three on the porch were
Neither slack nor soft. They had the vigor and alertness of
Country people who have spent all their lives in the open and
Troubled their heads very little with dull things in books. Life
In the north Georgia county of Clayton was still new and,

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Margaret mitchell – gone with the wind. part 1