On a Chinese Screen

On a Chinese Screen

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On a Chinese Screen by W. Somerset Maugham

Published:

1922

Pages:

192

Downloads:

3,817

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On a Chinese Screen

By

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There are fifty-eight sketches in this collection, portraits including European residents in China as well as native types.

Book Excerpt

few strokes, but with such a power of suggestion, with so great a feeling for nature and such a playful tenderness, that it took your breath away. There were sprigs of plumblossom that held in their dainty freshness all the magic of the spring; there were sparrows in whose ruffled plumage were the beat and the tremor of life. It was the work of a great artist.

"Will these American students ever produce anything like this ?" he asked with a rueful smile.

But to me the most charming part of it was that I knew all the time that he was a rascal. Corrupt, inefficient, and unscrupulous, he let nothing stand in his way. He was a master of the squeeze. He had acquired a large fortune by the most abominable methods. He was dishonest, cruel, vindictive, and venal. He had certainly had a share in reducing China to the desperate plight which he so sincerely lamented. But when he held in his hand a little vase of the colour of lapis lazuli his fingers seemed to curl about it with a charming tenderness, his m

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