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Cheerful Yesterdays


page xi


Part I
Chapter I
1875–1925—Fifty years of a varied career—The Author's fears—"Dere is too moch ego in your cosmos"
pp. 37
Chapter II
Denmark And The Danes
I change my nationality and my mother-tongue—A characteristic story of King Christian IX—Hamlet as a typical Dane—Best-mannered people in Europe, and the best fed—Tivoli—Legend of Holger Danske
pp. 819
Chapter III
How I Learned English
Arrival at Napier, N.Z.—Dinner at a vicarage—"Tak for mad"— The curse of Ollendorf—I pick up the vernacular: "Dat lamb haf ver-r-i fine vool"—"Robinson Crusoe" and the Bible—My father's first job: "Repairs executed with neatness and despatch"
pp. 2031
Chapter IV
School Days
Denominational schools at one shilling a week—My first schoolmaster, drunken but lovable—I become a "pupil-teacher" at twelve and a half— My education begins in earnest—A Kingdom for a shilling: "Dick's Shakespeare"—Palgrave's "Golden Treasury"—Wm. Colenso, missionary, printer, and pioneer botanist—A new friend—My first play—Tradesman's clerk—I conduct a night-school for working men in my seventeenth year and teach German without knowing any—Old pupils on my first jury, 1925
pp. 3248page xii
Chapter V
College Days
Expelled from School of Art and the Normal School—A full-fledged undergraduate—The beginnings of a University, a quad with two sides only—Professor Macmillan Brown—I punish a vulgarian—Gown & Trencher versus Sock & Buskin—College theatricals—'E ain't no bloomin' hamatoor—Mediæval monks and modern professors—Arm-in-arm with ut and the subjunctive—Bohn's translations v. Bass's beer—Locum tenens of the Chair of English, Sir Ernest Rutherford, O.M., and Sir William Harris among my pupils
pp. 4966
Chapter VI
The typical schoolmaster: "drifts" into the profession—Fifteen years as assistant master—Driven out at last by under-payment—Low ideals of education in New Zealand—The curse of examinations—An Aberdonian pedant—Corporal punishment—"Old boys" among my colleagues at the Bar—Some memories
pp. 6783
Chapter VII
The tyranny of the proof-reader—A collection of stories—"Is thy servant a dog?"—"The ox-eyed Juno"—Mark Twain's chamois—A Yorkshireman's pun—"A school in my eye"—"Le Jew ne vaut pas la chandelle"—Actors I have met—GenevièveWard—Janet Achurch—Charles Warner in "Hamlet"—The stage-hands' revenge—A new but true story of J. L. Took
pp. 84100
Chapter VIII
Samuel Butler
I correspond with Butler—A gift of bis complete works—How treated by the Philistines—Two of his letters to me—A literary Ishmael—Two huts on the Rakaia River—A new Butler story: "Claude Duval"
pp. 101111page xiii
Chapter IX
Literary Hackwork
Correspondent of the Morning Post—An historical parallel—The Land Laws of Tiberius Gracchus and Sir John Mackenzie—"Possessores" and squatters—The Roman and the New Zealand "dummy"—The story of a magazine article, accepted, kept for twenty years, then returned but never paid for: a warning to unwary authors
pp. 112120
Chapter X
Some Harmless Cranks and a Knavish Impostor
A surveyor who believed the earth was flat—An eccentric genius, painter, and philosopher: Van der Velden—A Lutheran church becomes a free-thought hall and then a "spookery"—A Yankee crook, "Dr." A. B. Worthington—The Temple of Truth—Exposure and flight, a sevenfold bigamist—The high priest and hard labour
pp. 121136
Part II
Chapter XI
A Layman Among the Lawyers
Back to the classroom—A "cribbing" incident—Fusion of the professions in New Zealand—"Walking textbooks" and "perambulating digests"—Prosecuting for the Crown at Timaru—My first affidavit— Wasted eloquence—An infanticide case—Salvation Army "conversions"
pp. 139153
Chapter XII
'Prentice Days in the Courts
Warners v. Lyttelton Times, my first civil case—The New Zealand Court of Appeal—Experiences in the lower Courts—Bridget O'Halloran and her pig—"Nothing like leather"—A typical West-Coaster—The martyrfires of Smithfield—Poaching and the Treaty of Waitangi pp.
154164page xiv
Chapter XIII
At the Bar in Christchurch
The Public Trustee—A monopoly in widows—A forensic tour de force— From draper's assistant to cinema hero—"Leading cases" and how to use them—A statute unique in the history of legislation—Killed by Act of Parliament—"They can't divorce me: I'm dead"
pp. 165182
Chapter XIV
Judges I have Known
The Judge and the javelin-men—The Judge and the cabby—The astonished burglar—Slovenly attire at the Bar—"Barmaid's collars"—Sir John Denniston, scholar and wit—The mot juste—The Bar at Westport— "Impossible"—"I'm damned glad I stole them cattle"—A great Judge, Sir Joshua Williams, P.C.—His first death-sentence—The story of the bloody shirt
pp. 183202
Chapter XV
A chapter of "modern instances" without any "wise saws"—Cross-examination to credit, once much abused, now sparingly used—I receive a sharp lesson—An expensive question—The "Vigilantes" and the "invisible door"—A Barrister "Pooh-bah"—Watching a surgical operation —"Insurance mind"—The "expert witness"—The doctor scores— Children and women witnesses—"Mashin' the little woman"—Counsel attacks the servant-girl and loses the case—A lucky hit in cross-examination
pp. 203223
Chapter XVI
In praise of juries—The deaf juryman—A shrewd foreman—The juryman's prayer—A perverse verdict, but no harm done—My method of challenging—My record short speech to a jury—Independence of juries— New trial, damages doubled—The devout lover and the steamer ticket
pp. 224242page xv
Chapter XVII
The Western Circuit
The romance of the West Coast: the glamour of gold—A mining swindle—£15,000 for a mullock heap—A raspberry-tart tragedy—R. J. Seddon's first appearance in public life—Mining mates: an old debt paid— West-Coasters at Mr. Seddon's funeral
pp. 243252
Chapter XVIII
Some Genial Crooks
"Snowy" the burglar and the Prisons Board—Two clever pickpockets— Sleight-of-hand—"German Charlie"—The gaoler's tribute—"A gintle-manly burr-glar"—The bogus Count and the faked diamonds—"Sammy" the horse-coper—The Johnson-Burns Fight—I get in front of the camera— The "Babe, B.A."—Sammy's love of "The Game"
pp. 253269
Chapter XIX
My Friend Parkinson
A prince of confidence men—A deal in merino ewes—Too smart for the auctioneers: but he gets a "Kath"—He passes for a gentleman—He hustles the hustlers—His most daring exploit, cattle from the Never-Never Land
pp. 270282
Chapter XX
A Murder Charge that Failed
Retained for the defence in a murder trial—The sleeping child—A question of motive—Admissibility of evidence: was the Judge right? Cross-examination—The question I didn't ask—Extract from my address
pp. 283299
Chapter XXI
The Mystery of the Severed Hand
A mysterious drowning case—Insurance companies suspicious—A human hand found on the beach: was it a man's or a woman's?—The "deceased" working in Wellington—Arrested and convicted—Seven bodies exhumed, but found intact—Where did the hand come from?
pp. 300314page xvi
Chapter XXII
Two Famous Poisoning Trials
A remarkable criminal—Plans the murder of a young girl and marries her to carry out his plan—A popular figure in Society—An apparently devoted husband administers antimony for two months—The doctors puzzled—"Taylor on Poisons"—Convicted of attempt to murder his wife—Subsequently convicted of murdering her father with the same poison—Second conviction quashed—R. v. Hall, 5 N.Z.L.R. C.A. 93
pp. 315338
Chapter XXIII
My Appointment to a Judgeship
Invited to accept a Judgeship—The sacrifices. involved—Consul for Denmark for eighteen hours: "Consuls Caninio"—My reception in the Christchurch theatre: "in tbeatro cum tibi plausus"—"A good Press"— Bar and Bench: Lord Wensleydale's epigram—New colleagues and old friends—Vale 1
pp. 339349
A Celt at the Antipodes pp. 353364
Index pp. 365370