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PREFACE This work is based on the article on Shakespeare which I contributed last year to the fifty-first volume of the ‘Dictionary of National Biography.’  But the changes and additions which the article has undergone during my revision of it for separate publication are so numerous as to give the book a title to be regarded as an independent venture.  In its general aims, however, the present life of Shakespeare... more...

EARLY DAYS To be born on the 28th of February is not altogether without its compensations. It affords a subject of conversation when you are asked to put your name in birthday books. It is evident that many people suppose it to be almost an intrusion to appear on that day. However, it was perfectly satisfactory to me so long as it was not the 29th. As a boy, that was all for which I cared. Still, I used at times to be oppressed by the danger,... more...

CTESIPHON In India, in the early days of the war, a newly gazetted subaltern of the Indian Army Reserve of Officers was sent for a month's preliminary training to one of the few remaining British regular battalions. Afterwards he was attached to an Indian Regiment, and, if fortunate, went on service with the same battalion. A great number, however, were sent off to join other units in the field. In this way I found myself arriving in Basra on... more...

I said it was, very, and wet in the dryest weather. "Wooded all the way?" he asked. I told him that it was, and, what was more, so winding that you could not see ten feet ahead anywhere between here and Conde. "Humph," he said. "Perfectly clear, thank you very much. Please wait right there a moment." He looked up the hill behind him, and made a gesture in the air with his hand above his head. I turned to look up the hill also. I saw the... more...

A FAIR PENITENT Charles Pineau Duclos was a French writer of biographies and novels, who lived and worked during the first half of the eighteenth century. He prospered sufficiently well, as a literary man, to be made secretary to the French Academy, and to be allowed to succeed Voltaire in the office of historiographer of France. He has left behind him, in his own country, the reputation of a lively writer of the second class, who addressed the... more...


INTRODUCTION In recent years American literature has been enriched by certain autobiographies of men and women who had been born abroad, but who had been brought to this country, where they grew up as loyal citizens of our great nation. Such assimilated Americans had to face not only the usual conditions confronting a stranger in a strange land, but had to develop within themselves the noble conception of Americanism that was later to become for... more...

—I—To My New Readers In the summer of 1893, after nine years of hard but happy literary life in Boston and New York, I decided to surrender my residence in the East and reëstablish my home in the West, a decision which seemed to be—as it was—a most important event in my career. This change of headquarters was due not to a diminishing love for New England, but to a deepening desire to be near my aging parents, whom I... more...

'The first poetess I can recollect is Mrs. Barbauld, with whose works I became acquainted—before those of any other author, male or female—when I was learning to spell words of one syllable in her story-books for children.' So says Hazlitt in his lectures on living poets. He goes on to call her a very pretty poetess, strewing flowers of poesy as she goes. The writer must needs, from the same point of view as Hazlitt, look upon Mrs.... more...

"The silent workings, and still more the explosions, of human passion which bring to light the darker elements of man's nature present to the philosophical observer considerations of intrinsic interest; while to the jurist, the study of human nature and human character with its infinite varieties, especially as affecting the connection between motive and action, between irregular desire or evil disposition and crime itself, is equally... more...

PREFACE The kind reception given to the rough notes from the Author's Diary, which appeared first in the daily papers in Canada, encouraged the production of this book. These notes, in order to make them more readable, have been put in narrative form. There is no pretence that this is a history of the war. It is only a string of pen pictures describing life and incidents of the campaign common to almost every corps in the field. Where... more...