The traveller who approaches Athens for the first time, whether it be across that historic sea, over which, as the last morning of his journey breaks, the shadowy forms of opal-tinted isles float one after another into sight, until before him the Acropolis grows out of the early haze, framed in the hollow of Parnes, Pentelicon, and Hymettus, or whether it be along the rich vineyard-clothed shore of the Corinthian Gulf, in view of that unsurpassed panorama where Parnassus and Helicon rise beyond the bluest of blue waters, will probably find himself susceptible to a twofold influence: a sense, on the one hand, that is partly awe and partly gladness at finding himself at last face to face with scenes that have hitherto belonged to imagination, so familiar and yet so new, touched with the magic of youthful memories, and sacred, perhaps, from maturer associations; while, on the other hand, he can hardly fail to be possessed by an overwhelming feeling of wonder and delight at the loveliness of the nature around him.
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