“A duel to the death”

“A modern man,” said Dr. Cyrus Pym, “must, if he be thoughtful, approach the problem of marriage with some caution. Marriage is a stage — doubtless a suitable stage — in the long advance of mankind towards a goal which we cannot as yet conceive; which we are not, perhaps, as yet fitted even to desire. What, gentlemen, is the ethical position of marriage? Have we outlived it?”

“Outlived it?” broke out Moon; “why, nobody’s ever survived it! Look at all the people married since Adam and Eve — and all as dead as mutton.”

“This is no doubt an inter-pellation joc’lar in its character,” said Dr. Pym frigidly. “I cannot tell what may be Mr. Moon’s matured and ethical view of marriage –”

“I can tell,” said Michael savagely, out of the gloom. “Marriage is a duel to the death, which no man of honour should decline.”

“Michael,” said Arthur Inglewood in a low voice, “you must keep quiet.”

Manalive (1912).

Published in: on July 2, 2008 at 6:00 am  Comments (6)