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Select Conversations with an Uncle

by H.G. Wells

He was, I remember, short, but by no means conspicuously short, and of a bright, almost juvenile, complexion, very active in his movements and garrulous—or at least very talkative. His judgments were copious and frequent in the old days, and some at least I found entertaining. At times his fluency was really remarkable. He had a low opinion of eminent people—a thing I have been careful to suppress, and his dissertations had ever an irresponsible gaiety of manner that may have blinded me to their true want of merit. That, I say, was in the old days, before his abrupt extinction, before the cares of this world suddenly sprang upon, and choked him. I would listen to him, cheerfully, and afterwards I would go away and make articles out of him for the Pall Mall Gazette, so adding a certain material advantage to my mental and moral benefit. But all that has gone now, to my infinite regret; and sorrowing, I have arranged this unworthy little tribute to his memory, this poor dozen of casual monologues that were so preserved. The merits of the monument are his entirely; its faults entirely my own.

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