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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...

CHAPTER I. ANCIENT AND MYTHICAL The Church of Rome, though admitting no women to a share in performing its services, has yet made a woman the patron saint of music. The religions of antiquity have paid even more homage to the weaker sex in the matter, as the multitude of musical nymphs and fostering goddesses will show. Of Saint Cecilia herself little is known accurately. The very apocryphal legend states that about the year 230 a noble... 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...

CHAPTER I It all came to me one election day. It was on a warm California afternoon, and I had ridden down into the Valley of the Moon from the ranch to the little village to vote Yes and No to a host of proposed amendments to the Constitution of the State of California. Because of the warmth of the day I had had several drinks before casting my ballot, and divers drinks after casting it. Then I had ridden up through the vine-clad hills and... more...

In the fifty-second year of my age, after the completion of an arduous and successful work, I now propose to employ some moments of my leisure in reviewing the simple transactions of a private and literary life. Truth, naked unblushing truth, the first virtue of more serious history, must be the sole recommendation of this personal narrative. The style shall be simple and familiar; but style is the image of character; and the habits of correct... more...


PREFACE. The history of our race is the record mainly of men's achievements, in war, in statecraft and diplomacy. If mention is made of woman it is of queens and intriguing beauties who ruled and schemed for power and riches, and often worked mischief and ruin by their wiles. The story of woman's work in great migrations has been told only in lines and passages where it ought instead to fill volumes. Here and there incidents and anecdotes... more...

PREFACE This book was written during the three last months of 1915 and the first month of this year in the form of letters from France, Greece, Serbia, and England. The writer visited ten of the twelve sectors of the French front, seeing most of them from the first trench, and was also on the French-British front in the Balkans. Outside of Paris the French cities visited were Verdun, Amiens, St. Die, Arras, Chalons, Nancy, and Rheims. What he... more...

Peter In any group of men I have ever known, speaking from the point of view of character and not that of physical appearance, Peter would stand out as deliciously and irrefutably different. In the great waste of American intellectual dreariness he was an oasis, a veritable spring in the desert. He understood life. He knew men. He was free—spiritually, morally, in a thousand ways, it seemed to me. As one drags along through this... more...

I. FIRST MEMORIES My father's ancestors were the Shaws of Rothiemurchus, in Scotland, and the ruins of their castle may still be seen on the island of Loch-an-Eilan, in the northern Highlands. It was never the picturesque castle of song and story, this home of the fighting Shaws, but an austere fortress, probably built in Roman times; and even to-day the crumbling walls which alone are left of it show traces of the relentless assaults upon them.... more...

Chapter 12. Gen. Gates — bon mot of British general Lee — how an army ought not to march — De Kalb prophecies — chickens counted before they are hatched, alias, Marion and the author sent by Gen. Gates to prevent the escape of Cornwallis, before he had run — the British and American armies meet — Gates and his militia-men leave De Kalb in the lurch — his gallant behavior, and glorious death. When a poor... more...