"Then I saw in my Dream, that on the morrow he got up to go forwards, but they desired him to stay till the next day also, and then said they, we will (if the day be clear) show you the delectable Mountains, which they said, would yet further add to his comfort, because they were nearer the desired Haven than the place where at present he was. So he consented and staid. When the Morning was up they had him to the top of the House, and bid him look South, so he did; and behold at a great distance he saw a most pleasant Mountainous Country, beautified with Woods, Vineyards, Fruits of all sorts; Flowers also, with Springs and Fountains, very delectable to behold."
Every one who has followed the fortunes of Christian in the stately diction of the Pilgrim's Progress must wish to know from whence came those wonderful word pictures with which the dreamer of Bedford Jail gems his masterpiece. That phrase "delectable mountains" conjures up in each individual reader's mind those particular hills wherever they may be, which are his own peculiar delight, and for which, exiled, his spirit so ardently longs.
It is not presuming too much to suppose that the scene in Bunyan's mind was that long range of undulating downs sometimes rising into bold and arresting shape, and always with their finest aspect toward the Bedford plains and him who cast longing eyes toward them. From almost any slight eminence on the south of Bedford town on a clear day the Dunstable and Ivinghoe hills are to be seen in