1 Yet the newly-arrived guest kept his head sufficiently to contrive to murmur some such compliment as might fittingly come from a middle-aged individual of a rank neither excessively high nor excessively low.
2 The two friends exchanged hearty embraces, and Manilov then conducted his guest to the drawing-room.
3 Next, Manilov wondered whether, for some unknown reason, his guest had lost his wits; wherefore he spent some time in gazing at him with anxious intentness.
4 I should be greatly to blame if I were to omit that, as soon as Manilov had pronounced these words, the face of his guest became replete with satisfaction.
5 Nevertheless the guest did at least execute such a convulsive shuffle that the material with which the cushions of the chair were covered came apart, and Manilov gazed at him with some misgiving.
6 Then he re-entered the drawing-room, seated himself upon a chair, and surrendered his mind to the thought that he had shown his guest most excellent entertainment.
7 But the guest declined the proffered heel-tickling, and, on his hostess taking her departure, hastened to divest himself of his clothing, both upper and under, and to hand the garments to Fetinia.
8 Even before the soup had been served, he had poured out for each guest a bumper of port and another of "haut" sauterne.
9 Host and guest greeted one another in friendly fashion, and Nozdrev inquired how Chichikov had slept.
10 This functionary conducted Chichikov into the hall, where he was met by the master of the house himself, who requested his guest to enter, and then led him into the inner part of the mansion.
11 As host and guest crossed the dining-room Chichikov directed a second glance at his companion.
12 At length they reached the drawing-room, where Sobakevitch pointed to an armchair, and invited his guest to be seated.
13 Upon this Theodulia Ivanovna requested her guest to be seated, and accompanied the invitation with the kind of bow usually employed only by actresses who are playing the role of queens.
14 In the drawing-room the company found dessert awaiting them in the shape of pears, plums, and apples; but since neither host nor guest could tackle these particular dainties the hostess removed them to another room.
15 Somehow he seemed to have taken offence at Chichikov's almost joyous exclamation; wherefore the guest hastened to heave a profound sigh, and to observe that he sympathised to the full with his host's misfortunes.