While I thus was far more obnoxious to the Tory interest, and to many Conservative Liberals than I had formerly been, the course I pursued in Parliament had by no means been such as to make Liberals generally at all enthusiastic in my support. It has already been mentioned, how large a proportion of my prominent appearances had been on questions on which I differed from most of the Liberal party, or about which they cared little, and how few occasions there had been on which the line I took was such as could lead them to attach any great value to me as an organ of their opinions. I had moreover done things which had excited, in many minds, a personal prejudice against me. Many were offended by what they called the persecution of Mr Eyre: and still greater offence was taken at my sending a subscription to the election expenses of Mr Bradlaugh. Having refused to be at any expense for my own election, and having had all its expenses defrayed by others, I felt under a peculiar obligation to subscribe in turn where funds were deficient for candidates whose election my was desirable. I accordingly sent subscriptions to nearly all the working class candidates, and among others to Mr Bradlaugh. He had the support of the working classes; having heard him speak, I knew him to be a man of ability and he had proved that he was the reverse of a demagogue, by placing himself in strong opposition to the prevailing opinion of the democratic party on two such important subjects as Malthusianism and Personal Representation. Men of this sort, who, while sharing the democratic feelings of the working classes, judged political questions for themselves, and had courage to assert their individual convictions against popular opposition, were needed, as it seemed to me, in Parliament, and I did not think that Mr Bradlaugh's anti-religious opinions (even though he had been intemperate in the expression of them) ought to exclude him. In subscribing, however, to his election, I did what would have been highly imprudent if I had been at liberty to consider only the interests of my own reelection; and, as might be expected, the utmost possible use, both fair and unfair, was made of this act of mine to stir up the electors of Westminster against me. To these various causes, combined with an unscrupulous use of the usual pecuniary and other influences on the side of my Tory competitor, while none were used on my side, it is to be ascribed that I failed at my second election after having succeeded at the first. No sooner was the result of the election known than I received three or four invitations to become a candidate for other constituencies, chiefly counties; but even if success could have been expected, and this without expense, I was not disposed to deny myself the relief of returning to private life. I had no cause to feel humiliated at my rejection by the electors; and if I had, the feeling would have been far outweighed by the numerous expressions of regret which I received from all sorts of persons and places, and in a most marked degree from those members of the liberal party in Parliament, with whom I had been accustomed to act.
OF THE detailed historical events of this age of fluctuation I cannot recover much. Of the war which is present to me as I write this book I remember almost nothing. A few shreds of recollection suggest that it resulted in a British victory of sorts, but I place no reliance on this surmise. If it is correct, the great opportunity afforded by this victory, the opportunity of a generous peace and a federal order in Europe, must have been missed; for rival imperialisms continued to exist after that war and real peace was not established. Subsequent wars and upheavals come rather more clearly into my mind. For instance, I seem to remember a defeat of the democratic peoples, led at first by the British, but later by the North Americans, against a totalitarian Europe. For a while the struggle was between Britain alone and the whole of Europe, martialled once more by Germany. Not till the remnant of the British forces had been driven into Scotland, and were desperately holding a line roughly equivalent to the Roman Wall, did the American power begin to make itself felt, and then only for a while; for in America, as elsewhere, the old order was failing, its leaders had neither the imagination nor the courage to adjust themselves to the new world-conditions. Consequently, when at last their turn came they were quite incapable of organizing their haphazard capitalism for war. The American people began to realize that they were the victims of incompetence and treachery, and the population of the Atlantic seaboard demanded a new regime. In this state of affairs resistance became impossible. Britain was abandoned, and North America reverted to a precarious isolationism knowing that the struggle would very soon begin again.
The gun flashed and boomed as Bond jerked his head under cover of the coal-tender. Scaramanga laughed harshly. "Watch your lip, limey, or you'll end up without it." The hoods hawhawed.
our body language, which includes your posture,X your expressions and your gestures, accounts formore than one-half of what other people respond to andmake assumptions about.
There is no writer of the present day who has so much puzzled me by his eccentricities, impracticabilities, and capabilities as Charles Reade. I look upon him as endowed almost with genius, but as one who has not been gifted by nature with ordinary powers of reasoning. He can see what is grandly noble and admire it with all his heart. He can see, too, what is foully vicious and hate it with equal ardour. But in the common affairs of life he cannot see what is right or wrong; and as he is altogether unwilling to be guided by the opinion of others, he is constantly making mistakes in his literary career, and subjecting himself to reproach which he hardly deserves. He means to be honest. He means to be especially honest — more honest than other people. He has written a book called The Eighth Commandment on behalf of honesty in literary transactions — a wonderful work, which has I believe been read by a very few. I never saw a copy except that in my own library, or heard of any one who knew the book. Nevertheless it is a volume that must have taken very great labour, and have been written — as indeed he declares that it was written — without the hope of pecuniary reward. He makes an appeal to the British Parliament and British people on behalf of literary honesty, declaring that should he fail —“I shall have to go on blushing for the people I was born among.” And yet of all the writers of my day he has seemed to me to understand literary honesty the least. On one occasion, as he tells us in this book, he bought for a certain sum from a French author the right of using a plot taken from a play — which he probably might have used without such purchase, and also without infringing any international copyright act. The French author not unnaturally praises him for the transaction, telling him that he is “un vrai gentleman.” The plot was used by Reade in a novel; and a critic discovering the adaptation, made known his discovery to the public. Whereupon the novelist became angry, called his critic a pseudonymuncle, and defended himself by stating the fact of his own purchase. In all this he seems to me to ignore what we all mean when we talk of literary plagiarism and literary honesty. The sin of which the author is accused is not that of taking another man’s property, but of passing off as his own creation that which he does not himself create. When an author puts his name to a book he claims to have written all that there is therein, unless he makes direct signification to the contrary. Some years subsequently there arose another similar question, in which Mr. Reade’s opinion was declared even more plainly, and certainly very much more publicly. In a tale which he wrote he inserted a dialogue which he took from Swift, and took without any acknowledgment. As might have been expected, one of the critics of the day fell foul of him for this barefaced plagiarism. The author, however, defended himself, with much abuse of the critic, by asserting, that whereas Swift had found the jewel he had supplied the setting — an argument in which there was some little wit, and would have been much excellent truth, had he given the words as belonging to Swift and not to himself.