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CHAPTER I It was late summer-time, and the perfume of flowers stole into the darkened room through the half-opened window. The sunlight forced its way through a chink in the blind, and stretched across the floor in strange zigzag fashion. From without came the pleasant murmur of bees and many lazier insects floating over the gorgeous flower beds, resting for a while on the clematis which had made the... more...

Part I Happy in the hope that the news was "exclusive", the Despatch had thrown the name of Stephen Hallowell, his portrait, a picture of his house, and the words, "At Point of Death!" across three columns. The announcement was heavy, lachrymose, bristling with the melancholy self-importance of the man who "saw the deceased, just two minutes before the train hit him." But the... more...

INTRODUCTORY—1864 AND WAR TIME. The war between the North and South has sent a wail of grief into thousands of homes throughout the land, and the dreadful death-roll is daily being added to, for battle follows battle, and the slaughter is appalling, even to those who have been hardened to the sight by months of action. No wonder that the faces of wives and mothers are white with anguish—that... more...

CHAPTER I MARY I have never dared even inquire why our best man began calling my husband the Angel. He was with us a great deal during the first months of our marriage, and he is very observing, so I decided to let sleeping dogs lie. I, too, am observing. It is only fair to state, in justice to the best man, that I am a woman of emotional mountain peaks and dark, deep valleys, while the Angel is one... more...

by: John Fox
I. THE BLIGHT IN THE HILLS High noon of a crisp October day, sunshine flooding the earth with the warmth and light of old wine and, going single-file up through the jagged gap that the dripping of water has worn down through the Cumberland Mountains from crest to valley-level, a gray horse and two big mules, a man and two young girls. On the gray horse, I led the tortuous way. After me came my small... more...

The “Pampered Pet.” “There goes the ‘Pampered Pet’ again! Got its little keeper with it, as usual. Why don’t they lead her by a chain, and be done with it?” Miles stood by the schoolroom window, hands jingling in pockets, as he surveyed a prospect, sufficiently grey and drear to make any diversity doubly welcome, and at his words there came the sound of a general pushing-back of chairs,... more...

CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTORY, CONCERNING THE PEDIGREE OF THE CHUZZLEWIT FAMILY As no lady or gentleman, with any claims to polite breeding, can possibly sympathize with the Chuzzlewit Family without being first assured of the extreme antiquity of the race, it is a great satisfaction to know that it undoubtedly descended in a direct line from Adam and Eve; and was, in the very earliest times, closely... more...

In the year eighteen hundred and twenty, and for many years before and after, Abel Reddy farmed his own land at Perry Hall End, on the western boundaries of Castle Barfield. He lived at Perry Hall, a ripe-coloured old tenement of Elizabethan design, which crowned a gentle eminence and looked out picturesquely on all sides from amongst its neighbouring trees. It had a sturdier aspect in its age than it... more...

CHAPTER I This is the story of how a middle-aged spinster lost her mind, deserted her domestic gods in the city, took a furnished house for the summer out of town, and found herself involved in one of those mysterious crimes that keep our newspapers and detective agencies happy and prosperous. For twenty years I had been perfectly comfortable; for twenty years I had had the window-boxes filled in the... more...

I begin a life without a similitude with a simile—Start off with four horses—And, finally, I make my first appearance on any stage, under the protection of the “Crown.” In the volume I am going to write, it is my intention to adhere rigidly to the truth—this will be bonâ fide an autobiography—and, as the public like novelty, an autobiography without an iota of fiction in the whole of it,... more...