2nd draft, December 1923, I.4§2 draft level 1

MS British Library 47471b 12, 16 Draft details

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Even should not the framing up of such fictions in the evidential order bring any truth to light in good time as fortuitously as some false setting of a starchart might (heaven helping) reveal the presence of an unknown being in chaos of space the soundest opinion now holds that by so playing possum our highest common ancestor most effectually saved his brush for posterity. Dogs of all breeds were speaking with |1inter1| pronounced provincial accents, hot to run him, on a scent breasthigh keen for the worry, but from the good Friday he last was viewed pointing for home in his sevenmile rolltop boots a deaf fox's wisdom kept him safe in covert miraculously ravenfed and sustained by the creamclotted sherriness of cinnamon syllabub. Preservative perseverance in the reeducation of his intestines was thus the rebuttal whereby he sort of got the big bulge on the whole bunch of spasoakers in that sometime onestreet town. Vainly virulence, violence & vituperation sought wellnigh utterly to end the interregnum of the great shipping mogul and linen overlord.

|1And men |aspoke murmureda|.1|

He had laid violent hands on himself, lain down, fagged out, with equally melancholy death. He had left this country via a
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subterranean tunnel shored with bedboards. |1Peacefully general astonishment assisted by sorrow had put a term to his existence: he saw the |1saggarth soggarth1|, resigned himself & then was taken & comforted by his Maker.1| An infamous private ailment (variolovenereal) had claimed him. He had walked into a pond while intoxicated up to the point where braced shirts meet knickerbockers when ten helping hands had rescued him from seven feet of semifresh water. Aerials buzzed of finding a bloody antichill cloak, its tailor's tab reading V.P.H, and several shivered to think what manner of beast had devoured him. On his postern had been nailed a title: Move up, humpty dumpty. Make room for humpty! and this go no mistake there had been real murder, the boys it was that done him in. Indeed not a few |1thick & thin1| wellwishers even went so far as to buy or loan copies of the evening editions, so as to make sure of his being genuinely quite dead. But on the morrow morn of the suicidal murder of the unrescued expatriate a quarter to nine o'clock saw the infallible spike of smoke plume punctual from the 7th gable while and ten thirsty p.m., the lamps of maintenance being lighted for the long night, a suffusion of leadlight panes. Wherefore, let it be by hardly |1anyone any thinking being1| either said or thought that the inhabitant of that sacred edifice was at his
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best a parable merely or, more strictly, HCE a nonens, for not one of his contemporaries cared seriously or for long to doubt of his legitimate existence as a tesseract.

And women wondered.

Who, but who, was then the scourge of Lucalizod, it was wont to be asked, as in long ages behind where is Peabody's money and in periods more to the front who struck Buckley though every schoolgirl by now |1knows has learnt to know1| how it was Buckley who struck and the Russian general in place of Buckley who was struck when by himself by him. What fullpay poison spy or which hatefilled woman? And that such vitriol of venom a quiet stamp could coverº The lounge lizards of the pumproom had their nine nights' jeer. Still believing that |1the upper part of her1| her face was the best part of her one nearer, dearer than all stood forth to crush the slander's head. |1Would we vision her |a(subconscious editor)a| with stereoptican relief1|
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|1For it was she who still |ahoped believeda| that her face was the best part of her & hoped for1|