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CHAPTER I BOYHOOD OF LINCOLN The subject of this memoir is revered by multitudes of his countrymen as the preserver of their commonwealth. This reverence has grown with the lapse of time and the accumulation of evidence. It is blended with a peculiar affection, seldom bestowed upon the memory of statesmen. It is shared to-day by many who remember with no less affection how their own fathers fought against him. He died with every circumstance of... more...

CHAPTER I INTRODUCES ONE YOUNG MAN The boys in the office were, I fancy, a bit prejudiced against him before he arrived. It wasn't his fault, for he was a stranger to them all, but it got about that the dear old "chief" had decided to engage a real good Sunday-school boy. Someone had heard him say, or, more likely, thought it would be funny to imagine him saying, that the advent of such a boy might "improve the general tone" of the place. That,... more...

INTRODUCTION [Lockhart, 1794-1854] "Nations yet to come will look back upon his history as to some grand and supernatural romance. The fiery energy of his youthful career, and the magnificent progress of his irresistible ambition, have invested his character with the mysterious grandeur of some heavenly appearance; and when all the lesser tumults and lesser men of our age shall have passed away into the darkness of oblivion, history will still... more...

Confession There is a woman in the state of Nevada to whom I once lied continuously, consistently, and shamelessly, for the matter of a couple of hours. I don't want to apologize to her. Far be it from me. But I do want to explain. Unfortunately, I do not know her name, much less her present address. If her eyes should chance upon these lines, I hope she will write to me. It was in Reno, Nevada, in the summer of 1892. Also, it was fair-time,... more...

I. USES OF GREAT MEN. It is natural to believe in great men. If the companions of our childhood should turn out to be heroes, and their condition regal, it would not surprise us. All mythology opens with demigods, and the circumstance is high and poetic; that is, their genius is paramount. In the legends of the Gautama, the first men ate the earth, and found it deliciously sweet. Nature seems to exist for the excellent. The world is upheld by... more...


"MEN OF MIND" In the companion volume of this series, "Men of Action," the attempt was made to give the essential facts of American history by sketching in broad outline the men who made that history—the discoverers, pioneers, presidents, statesmen, soldiers, and sailors—and describing the part which each of them played. It was almost like watching a great building grow under the hands of the workmen, this one adding a stone and... more...

INTRODUCTION BY FIELD-MARSHAL SIR EVELYN WOOD, V.C. I regard John Denton French as the man who for the last twelve years has been the driving force of tactical instruction in the British Army. He made use of all the best ideas of the Generals who preceded him in the Aldershot Command, and he was, I think, instrumental in causing the appointment of Horace Smith-Dorrien and Douglas Haig to succeed in turn to that nursery of soldiers. How sound... more...

I The Zone Of Paris From the balcony you look down upon massed and variegated tree- tops as though you were looking down upon a valley forest from a mountain height. Those trees, whose hidden trunks make alleys and squares, are rooted in the history of France. On the dusty gravel of the promenade which runs between the garden and the street a very young man and a girl, tiny figures, are playing with rackets at one of those second-rate ball games... more...

PREFACE I began these memoirs when about twenty-five years old, having from youth kept a diary of some sort, which perhaps from habit made me think of recording my inner and secret life. When I began it, I had scarcely read a baudy book, none of which excepting "Fanny Hill" appeared to me to be truthful, that did, and it does so still; the others telling of recherche eroticisms, or of inordinate copulative powers, of the strange twists, tricks,... more...

HIS BIRTH Leonardo Da Vinci, the many-sided genius of the Italian Renaissance, was born, as his name implies, at the little town of Vinci, which is about six miles from Empoli and twenty miles west of Florence. Vinci is still very inaccessible, and the only means of conveyance is the cart of a general carrier and postman, who sets out on his journey from Empoli at sunrise and sunset. Outside a house in the middle of the main street of Vinci... more...