Welcome to Part Nine of G K Chesterton's very popular contribution to Tales for Our Time - The Man Who Was Thursday, from an earlier age of anarchy: the years before the First World War. Thank you for your many comments about this latest caper. Sue Sims, a First Month Founding Member of The Mark Steyn Club from beautiful Dorset in England, is short and sweet:
Great book, great reading.
Thank you, Sue. Tonight's episode finds Syme and the professor bearding the black-goggled Dr Bull:
Syme had been haunted by a half historic memory in connection with these empty rooms and that austere daybreak. The moment he saw the garret and Dr. Bull sitting writing at a table, he remembered what the memory was—the French Revolution. There should have been the black outline of a guillotine against that heavy red and white of the morning. Dr. Bull was in his white shirt and black breeches only; his cropped, dark head might well have just come out of its wig; he might have been Marat or a more slipshod Robespierre.
Yet when he was seen properly, the French fancy fell away. The Jacobins were idealists; there was about this man a murderous materialism. His position gave him a somewhat new appearance. The strong, white light of morning coming from one side creating sharp shadows, made him seem both more pale and more angular than he had looked at the breakfast on the balcony. Thus the two black glasses that encased his eyes might really have been black cavities in his skull, making him look like a death's-head. And, indeed, if ever Death himself sat writing at a wooden table, it might have been he.
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