His face was fresh and rosy, his white-plumed hat, tilted to one side, disclosed his curled and pomaded hair besprinkled with powdery snow.
The very various periods named make it probable that the periodical return of the phoenix belongs only to vulgar legend, materializing what the priests knew to be symbolic. Of the birds of the heron family the gorgeous colours and plumed head spoken of by Pliny and others would be least inappropriate to the purple heron (Ardea purpurea), with which, or with the allied Ardea cinerea, it has been identified by Lepsius and Peters (Alteste Texte des Todtenbuchs, 1867, p. 51).
In the month of the " diminishing of waters " the rain gods or Tlalocs were propitiated by a procession of priests with music of flutes and trumpets carrying on plumed litters infants with painted faces, in gay clothing with coloured paper wings, to be sacrificed on the mountains or in a whirlpool in the lake.
The swamps covered with flax and giant bulrushes were often redeemed to the eye by sheets of golden-plumed toe-toe, a kind of pampas grass.
Carriages kept driving away and fresh ones arriving, with red-liveried footmen and footmen in plumed hats.