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Table of contents
AMORY, SON OF BEATRICE
SPIRES AND GARGOYLES
THE EGOTIST CONSIDERS
NARCISSUS OFF DUTY
THE DEBUTANTE
EXPERIMENTS IN CONVALESCENCE
YOUNG IRONY
THE SUPERCILIOUS SACRIFICE
THE EGOTIST BECOMES A PERSONAGE

own generation. 

 

"You're not sorry to go, of course. With people like us our home is 

where we are not," said Monsignor. 

 

"I _am_ sorry--" 

 

"No, you're not. No one person in the world is necessary to you or to 

me." 

 

"Well--" 

 

"Good-by." 

 

***** 

 

THE EGOTIST DOWN 

 

Amory's two years at St. Regis', though in turn painful and triumphant, 

had as little real significance in his own life as the American "prep" 

school, crushed as it is under the heel of the universities, has 

to American life in general. We have no Eton to create the 

self-consciousness of a governing class; we have, instead, clean, 

flaccid and innocuous preparatory schools. 

 

He went all wrong at the start, was generally considered both conceited 

and arrogant, and universally detested. He played football intensely, 

alternating a reckless brilliancy with a tendency to keep himself as 

safe from hazard as decency would permit. In a wild panic he backed out 

of a fight with a boy his own size, to a chorus of scorn, and a week 

later, in desperation, picked a battle with another boy very much 

bigger, from which he emerged badly beaten, but rather proud of himself. 

 

He was resentful against all those in authority over him, and this, 

combined with a lazy indifference toward his work, exasperated every 

master in school. He grew discouraged and imagined himself a pariah; 

took to sulking in corners and reading after lights. With a dread of 

being alone he attached a few friends, but since they were not among 

the elite of the school, he used them simply as mirrors of himself, 

audiences before which he might do that posing absolutely essential to 

him. He was unbearably lonely, desperately unhappy. 

 

There were some few grains of comfort. Whenever Amory was submerged, 

his vanity was the last part to go below the surface, so he could still 

enjoy a comfortable glow when "Wookey-wookey," the deaf old housekeeper, 

told him that he was the best-looking boy she had ever seen. It had 

pleased him to be the lightest and youngest man on the first football 


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