The Politeness of Princes - and Other School Stories
138 Pages
English
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The Politeness of Princes - and Other School Stories

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138 Pages
English

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The Project Gutenberg EBook of The Politeness of Princes, by P. G. Wodehouse #29 in our series by P. G. WodehouseCopyright laws are changing all over the world. Be sure to check the copyright laws for your country before downloadingor redistributing this or any other Project Gutenberg eBook.This header should be the first thing seen when viewing this Project Gutenberg file. Please do not remove it. Do notchange or edit the header without written permission.Please read the "legal small print," and other information about the eBook and Project Gutenberg at the bottom of thisfile. Included is important information about your specific rights and restrictions in how the file may be used. You can alsofind out about how to make a donation to Project Gutenberg, and how to get involved.**Welcome To The World of Free Plain Vanilla Electronic Texts****eBooks Readable By Both Humans and By Computers, Since 1971*******These eBooks Were Prepared By Thousands of Volunteers!*****Title: The Politeness of Princes and Other School StoriesAuthor: P. G. WodehouseRelease Date: May, 2005 [EBook #8178] [Yes, we are more than one year ahead of schedule] [This file was first postedon June 26, 2003]Edition: 10Language: English*** START OF THE PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK THE POLITENESS OF PRINCES ***Produced by Suzanne L. Shell, Charles Franks and the Online Distributed Proofreading TeamTHE POLITENESS OF PRINCES and Other School StoriesByP. G. Wodehouse[Transcriber's note: This ...

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The Project Gutenberg EBook of The Politeness ofPrinces, by P. G. Wodehouse #29 in our series byP. G. WodehouseCopyright laws are changing all over the world. Besure to check the copyright laws for your countrybefore downloading or redistributing this or anyother Project Gutenberg eBook.This header should be the first thing seen whenviewing this Project Gutenberg file. Please do notremove it. Do not change or edit the headerwithout written permission.Please read the "legal small print," and otherinformation about the eBook and ProjectGutenberg at the bottom of this file. Included isimportant information about your specific rights andrestrictions in how the file may be used. You canalso find out about how to make a donation toProject Gutenberg, and how to get involved.**Welcome To The World of Free Plain VanillaElectronic Texts****eBooks Readable By Both Humans and ByComputers, Since 1971*******These eBooks Were Prepared By Thousandsof Volunteers!*****Title: The Politeness of Princes and Other School
StoriesAuthor: P. G. WodehouseRelease Date: May, 2005 [EBook #8178] [Yes, weare more than one year ahead of schedule] [Thisfile was first posted on June 26, 2003]Edition: 10Language: English*** START OF THE PROJECT GUTENBERGEBOOK THE POLITENESS OF PRINCES ***Produced by Suzanne L. Shell, Charles Franks andthe Online Distributed Proofreading TeamTHE POLITENESS OF PRINCES and OtherSchool StoriesByP. G. Wodehouse[Transcriber's note: This selection of early
Wodehouse stories was assembled for ProjectGutenberg. The original publication date of eachstory is Contentlists.]ed in square brackets in the Table of
CONTENTSTHE POLITENESS OF PRINCES [1905]SHIELDS' AND THE CRICKET CUP [1905]AN INTERNATIONAL AFFAIR [1905]THE GUARDIAN [1908]A CORNER IN LINES [1905]THE AUTOGRAPH HUNTERS [1905]PILLINGSHOT, DETECTIVE [1910]
THE POLITENESS OF PRINCESThe painful case of G. Montgomery Chapple,bachelor, of Seymour's house, Wrykyn. Let usexamine and ponder over it.It has been well said that this is the age of thespecialist. Everybody, if they wish to leave theworld a better and happier place for their stay in it,should endeavour to adopt some speciality andmake it their own. Chapple's speciality was beinglate for breakfast. He was late not once or twice,but every day. Sometimes he would scramble inabout the time of the second cup of coffee,buttoning his waistcoat as he sidled to his place.Generally he would arrive just as the rest of thehouse were filing out; when, having lurked hiddenuntil Mr. Seymour was out of the way, he wouldenter into private treaty with Herbert, the factotum,who had influence with the cook, for SomethingHot and maybe a fresh brew of coffee. For therewas nothing of the amateur late-breakfaster aboutChapple. Your amateur slinks in with blushesdeepening the naturally healthy hue of his face,and, bolting a piece of dry bread and gulping downa cup of cold coffee, dashes out again, filled morewith good resolutions for the future than with food.Not so Chapple. He liked his meals. He wanted agood deal here below, and wanted it hot and fresh.Conscience had but a poor time when it tried tobully Chapple. He had it weak in the first round.
But there was one more powerful than Conscience—Mr. Seymour. He had marked the constantlateness of our hero, and disapproved of it.Thus it happened that Chapple, having finished anexcellent breakfast one morning some twentyminutes after everybody else, was informed as hesat in the junior day-room trying, with the help ofan illustrated article in a boys' paper, to construct ahandy model steam-engine out of a reel of cottonand an old note-book—for his was in many ways agiant brain—that Mr. Seymour would like to have afriendly chat with him in his study. Laying aside hishandy model steam-engine, he went off to thehousemaster's study."You were late for breakfast to-day," said Mr.Seymour, in the horrid, abrupt way housemastershave."Why, yes, sir," said Chapple, pleasantly."And the day before.""Yes, sir.""And the day before that."Chapple did not deny it. He stood on one foot andsmiled a propitiating smile. So far Mr. Seymourwas entitled to demand a cigar or cocoanut everytime.The housemaster walked to the window, lookedout, returned to the mantelpiece, and shifted the
position of a china vase two and a quarter inchesto the left. Chapple, by way of spirited repartee,stood on the other leg and curled the disengagedfoot round his ankle. The conversation was gettingquite intellectual."You will write out——""Sir, please, sir——" interrupted Chapple in an "I-represent-the defendant-m'lud" tone of voice."Well?""It's awfully hard to hear the bell from where Isleep, sir."Owing to the increased numbers of the house thisterm Chapple had been removed from hisdormitory proper to a small room some distanceaway."Nonsense. The bell can be heard perfectly well all"over the house.There was reason in what he said. Herbert, whowoke the house of a morning, did so by ringing abell. It was a big bell, and he enjoyed ringing it.Few sleepers, however sound, could dream onpeacefully through Herbert's morning solo. Afterfive seconds of it they would turn over uneasily.After seven they would sit up. At the end of thefirst quarter of a minute they would be out of bed,and you would be wondering where they picked upsuch expressions.
Chapple murmured wordlessly in reply. He realisedthat his defence was a thin one. Mr. Seymourfollowed up his advantage."You will write a hundred lines of Vergil," he said,"and if you are late again to-morrow I shall doublethem."Chapple retired.This, he felt, was a crisis. He had been pursuinghis career of unpunctuality so long that he hadnever quite realised that a time might come whenthe authorities would drop on him. For a momenthe felt that it was impossible, that he could notmeet Mr. Seymour's wishes in the matter; but thebull-dog pluck of the true Englishman caused himto reconsider this. He would at least have a dash atit."I'll tell you what to do," said his friend, Brodie,when consulted on the point over a quiet pot of teathat afternoon. "You ought to sleep without somany things on the bed. How many blankets doyou use, for instance?""I don't know," said Chapple. "As many as theyshove on."It had never occurred to him to reckon up theamount of his bedclothes before retiring to rest."Well, you take my tip," said Brodie, "and onlysleep with one on. Then the cold'll wake you in themorning, and you'll get up because it'll be more
comfortable than staying in bed."This scientific plan might have worked. In fact, to acertain extent it did work. It woke Chapple in themorning, as Brodie had predicted; but it woke himat the wrong hour. It is no good springing out ofbed when there are still three hours to breakfast.When Chapple woke at five the next morning, aftera series of dreams, the scenes of which were laidmainly in the Arctic regions, he first sneezed, thenhe piled upon the bed everything he could find,including his boots, and then went to sleep again.The genial warmth oozed through his form, andcontinued to ooze until he woke once more, thistime at eight-fifteen. Breakfast being at eight, itoccurred to him that his position with Mr. Seymourwas not improved. While he was devoting a fewmoments' profound meditation to this point thegenial warmth got in its fell work once again. Whenhe next woke, the bell was ringing for school. Helowered the world's record for rapid dressing, andwas just in time to accompany the tail of theprocession into the form-room."You were late again this morning," said Mr.Seymour, after dinner."Yes, sir. I overslebbed myselb, sir," repliedChapple, who was suffering from a cold in thehead."Two hundred lines.""Yes, sir".
Things had now become serious. It was no goodgoing to Brodie again for counsel. Brodie had donefor himself, proved himself a fraud, an idiot. In fine,a rotter. He must try somebody else. Happythought. Spenlow. It was a cold day, when Spenlowgot left behind. He would know what to do. Therewas a chap for you, if you liked! Young, mind you,but what a brain! Colossal!"What I should do," said Spenlow, "is this. I shouldput my watch on half an hour.""What 'ud be the good of that?""Why, don't you see? You'd wake up and find itwas ten to eight, say, by your watch, so you'dshove on the pace dressing, and nip downstairs,and then find that you'd really got tons of time.What price that?""But I should remember I'd put my watch on,"objected Chapple."Oh, no, probably not. You'd be half asleep, andyou'd shoot out of bed before you remembered,and that's all you'd want. It's the getting out of bedthat's so difficult. If you were once out, youwouldn't want to get back again.""Oh, shouldn't I?" said Chapple."Well, you might want to, but you'd have the sensenot to do it.""It's not a bad idea," said Chapple. "Thanks."