It is January 1805, just before the beginning of Lent Term, and the streets, roofs and lawns of Cambridge are laid deep with snow. A terrible chill is in the air: the sky is milky white with snow-cloud, so that this night is less dark than it would otherwise have been. Not far away from our scene, a crust of ice has formed over the top of the river: families of ducks and swans stare bewildered at its surface and huddle together for protection against the cold.
Strange, then, that such a figure as this should emerge around the corner of the University's Senate House: a figure, slight and feminine in build, dressed only in a white dress that falls only to her knees, and leaves her arms bare. Her skin is white as the dress, white as the snow, but there is no other sign that she feels the cold. A romantic mind might say she was warmed by the flame that crowns her head: a cascade of dark red hair, slightly wavy, that falls beyond her shoulders. But this is not so, for it is something else t