Summer surprised us ...

Eliot had met King Ludwig's second cousin Countess Marie Larisch and talked with her. Although he had probably not read the countess's book My Past, which discusses King Ludwig at length, he got information about her life and times from her in person, and the remarks made in lines 7-17 are hers. They distill a sense of romantic decadence that Eliot associates with this period of European history.

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