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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

The pageantry of his disillusion took shape in a world-old procession 

of Prophets, Athenians, Martyrs, Saints, Scientists, Don Juans, Jesuits, 

Puritans, Fausts, Poets, Pacifists; like costumed alumni at a college 

reunion they streamed before him as their dreams, personalities, and 

creeds had in turn thrown colored lights on his soul; each had tried to 

express the glory of life and the tremendous significance of man; each 

had boasted of synchronizing what had gone before into his own rickety 

generalities; each had depended after all on the set stage and the 

convention of the theatre, which is that man in his hunger for faith 

will feed his mind with the nearest and most convenient food. 

 

Women--of whom he had expected so much; whose beauty he had hoped to 

transmute into modes of art; whose unfathomable instincts, marvellously 

incoherent and inarticulate, he had thought to perpetuate in terms of 

experience--had become merely consecrations to their own posterity. 

Isabelle, Clara, Rosalind, Eleanor, were all removed by their 

very beauty, around which men had swarmed, from the possibility of 

contributing anything but a sick heart and a page of puzzled words to 

write. 

 

Amory based his loss of faith in help from others on several sweeping 

syllogisms. Granted that his generation, however bruised and decimated 

from this Victorian war, were the heirs of progress. Waving aside petty 

differences of conclusions which, although they might occasionally 

cause the deaths of several millions of young men, might be explained 

away--supposing that after all Bernard Shaw and Bernhardi, Bonar Law 

and Bethmann-Hollweg were mutual heirs of progress if only in agreeing 

against the ducking of witches--waiving the antitheses and approaching 

individually these men who seemed to be the leaders, he was repelled by 

the discrepancies and contradictions in the men themselves. 

 

There was, for example, Thornton Hancock, respected by half the 

intellectual world as an authority on life, a man who had verified and 

believed the code he lived by, an educator of educators, an adviser to 


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