THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF A SLANDER
MY FIRST STAGE
At last the tea came up, and so
With that our tongues began to go.
Now in that house you're sure of knowing
The smallest scrap of news that's going.
We find it there the wisest way
To take some care of what we say.
RECREATION. JANE TAYLOR
I was born on the 2nd September, 1886, in a small, dull, country
town. When I say the town was dull, I mean, of course, that the
inhabitants were unenterprising, for in itself Muddleton was a
picturesque place, and though it laboured under the usual
disadvantage of a dearth of bachelors and a superfluity of
spinsters, it might have been pleasant enough had it not been a
favourite resort for my kith and kin.
My father has long enjoyed a world-wide notoriety; he is not,
however, as a rule named in good society, though he habitually
frequents it; and as I am led to believe that my autobiography will