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THE MOUTH, LIPS, TEETH, AND BREATH.

THE MOUTH AND LIPS.

THE

'HE home of smiles and merry laughter, the spot

where love seals its vows, and friendship offers its warmest pledges, whence winged words bring to us, like carrier pigeons, the thoughts of other souls, the mouth next comes before us for study. Its parts and outlines must be in keeping with each other and with the remaining members of the face. Here, more distinctly than in any other feature, does a debased ancestry leave a vicious imprint, and a countenance please or displease us. More than one woman lives in history by her mouth.

There, for example, is Margaret Maultasche, Margaret the Pouch mouth,“ rugged dragoon major of a woman,” as Carlyle calls her, conspicuous enough in her day and generation, now five hundred years agone, not only by her thick lips and big mouth, but by her huge possessions in Austria, and the knack she had for

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MARGARET MAULTASCHE.

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keeping them in those troublesome times.

She is sure to be remembered “when your Pompadour, Duchess of Cleveland, of Kendal, and other high-rouged, unfortunate females, whom it is not proper to speak of without necessity, shall have sunk beneath the Historical." Let us hope so, for with all her ruggedness she was true wife and of sterling metal, and worth more than the whole crowd of the others.

The mouth should be of moderate size, the corners symmetrical, when closed the line perfectly horizontal, the lips well defined and rosy red, the lower slightly more prominent than the upper, both covering readily the teeth but not redundant. The crowning charm of a pretty mouth are wreathed smiles.

“ Such as hang on Hebe's cheek,

And love to live in dimple sleek ;'

or, lest we put the mark discouragingly high, such as may wreathe almost any face, if the owner will take care to cultivate it. How many there are whom mirth robs of half their good looks ! It often demands practice before the mirror in order to correct one's self of ungracious tics, which mar the pleasure we would otherwise give by a smile. The lips should part moderately, disclosing the teeth, but not the gums, and not contorting the rest of the visage, while yet the whole face sympathizes in the mirthfulness.

It is anything but pleasing to see a grin without gladness. The ancients called such a grimace the

Sardonic laugh, because it was supposed to be produced by eating the poisonous herb sardonica. Some persons rather affect it. Dickens, in one of his novels, speaks of a character whose nearest approach to gayety was to have his moustache move up and his nose come down, and when the blasé style is in vogue, a vacant grin is the nearest approach to a smile permissible.

For cosmetic reasons, immoderate laughter is objectionable. It keeps the muscles on the stretch, destroys the contour of the features, and produces wrinkles. It is better to cultivate a classic repose."

Still more decidedly should the habit of "making mouths" be condemned, whether it occur in conversing in private, or to express emotions. It never adds to the emphasis of the discourse, never improves the looks, and leads to actual malformations.

Children sometimes learn to suck and bite their lips. This distorts these organs, and unless they are persuaded to give it up betimes a permanent deformity will arise.

When the lips have once assumed a given form, it is difficult to change them. Those that are too thin can occasionally be increased by adopting the plan of sucking them. This forces a large quantity of blood to the part, and consequently a greater amount of nutriment. When too large, compresses can sometimes, but not always, be used to effect. We have employed silver plates connected by a wire spring, or a mould of stiff

ALBERT THE ONE-EYED.

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leather. Either may be worn at night, or in the house during the day.

Such a malformation is often peculiar to some races and families. Negroes notoriously have their thick, coarse lips as a trait of race. The Hapsburgs, the royal house of Austria, are distinguished by a hanging nether lip. They have always been an ill-favored family, and though they have managed to marry rich heiresses, and absorb quantities of land, their homeliness has been in their way. Albert I, son of Rudolf of Hapsburg, founder of the line, an ugly, loose-lipped man, blind of an eye, was rejected as Emperor by Pope Boniface on account of his looks. 66 What !” said the Pope, “that one-eyed, clownish, thick-lipped fellow? he is not fit to be Emperor.” But Albert killed with his own hand his rival for the imperial purple, and dia become Emperor in spite of his big lips, the Pope, and the whole set of them.

Girls who have a scrofulous tendency in their constitutions are liable to an excessive growth of their upper lip. It becomes hard, puffed out, and twice as thick as natural. The veins are large, but there is little or no pain. This is an obstinate complaint, but it can be cured if a skilful surgeon is consulted in time.

We have seen not a few unfortunate people who, when they smile or laugh, turn the upper lip almost inside out, and show a fold or crease of the red, mucous membrane which lines it. This is a most disagreeable

spectacle, fatal to comeliness. It can, and it should be, cured. An operation is necessary, but only a slight and not very painful one, or it can be rendered entirely painless by ether.

If tumors and local swellings appear on the lips, they should be promptly submitted to a medical adviser, as they can only be successfully treated by the more recondite arts of medicine.

A deformity of birth only too common is that familiarly known as "hare-lip,” so called because the upper lip is cleft or divided by a fissure, like that of hares or rabbits. This not only gives a hideous expression to the features, but frequently interferes with the pronunciation of words. It can be very neatly remedied by a surgeon, and no one should hesitate to undergo the necessary operation. In children it is best to have it remedied either just before or after they have their first teeth; that is, either when they are five or six months, or between two and three years of age.

Coral lips, cherry lips, rosy lips, such as those of beauteous Queen Guinevere:

“A man had given all other bliss,

And all his worldly worth for this,
To waste his whole heart in one kiss

Upon her perfect lips,". have inspired many a poet with immortal songs. But there is many a fair one whose lips are neither coralline nor roseate, but pale and faded, or puffed and purple.

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