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Ambrose Bierce

The Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce, Volume 8 / Epigrams, On With the Dance, Negligible Tales

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    the company did not hold itself responsible for the verbal accuracy of "the following message," and did not consider itself either morally or legally bound to forward or deliver it, nor, in short, to render any kind of service for the money paid by the sender.
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    So now we will dismiss this uninteresting young aristocrat, retaining merely his outer shell, the fashionable morning-coat, which Mr. Stenner, the gentleman, who had offered the wager, has quietly thrown across his arm and is conveying away for his own advantage.
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    No sooner, therefore, had he got himself into a neat, fashionable suit of clothing than he selected his morning walking-stick and sallied out upon the town with a vague general determination to attack something.
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    Mr. Algernon Jarvis, of San Francisco, got up cross.
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    he turned about and looked at the speaker, whom he found to be a stranger—one that most persons would prefer should remain a stranger.
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    Still it is annoying to have one's skill questioned by one's social inferiors, particu
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    larly when one has doubts of it oneself, and is otherwise ill-tempered.
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    necessity compelled us to go to work.
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    My mother opened a select private school for instruction in the art of changing the spots upon leopard-skin rugs;
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    in a voice trembling with emotion sentenced me to life and liberty.
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    "his instincts were all domestic and he loved a quiet life."
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    My counsel, a brother of the deceased Coroner,
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    Since I have known your Honor you have done nothing but commit.
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    An impressive silence ensued.
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    I slept the peaceful and refreshing sleep of youth and innocence.
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    The Judge, elected by a Republican ballot-box with a sliding bottom,
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    His sudden death was, therefore, a deep disappointment to him;
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    I knelt before her, carried her hand to my lips and bathed it with tears of sensibility.
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    the profanity of my fellow-prisoners, two clergymen, whose theological training had given them a fertility of impious ideas and a command of blasphemous language altogether unparalleled.
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    When I was nineteen years of age my father had the misfortune to die.
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