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Civilization Tales of the Orient   By: (1873-1961)

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Note: Images of the original pages are available through the Kentuckiana Digital Library. See http://kdl.kyvl.org/cgi/t/text/text idx?c=kyetexts;cc=kyetexts;xc=1&idno=B92 224 31182876&view=toc

Transcriber's Note: Inconsistent hyphenation and dialect in the original book have been preserved. Obvious typographical errors have been corrected in this text. For a complete list, please see the end of this document.

CIVILIZATION

Tales of the Orient

by

ELLEN N. LA MOTTE

Author of "The Backwash of War," Etc

New York George H. Doran Company Copyright, 1919, by George H. Doran Company Printed in the United States of America

The stories "Under A Wineglass," "Homesick" and "The Yellow Streak" are published by courtesy of the Century Magazine .

CONTENTS

PAGE

I THE YELLOW STREAK 11

II ON THE HEIGHTS 33

III HOMESICK 65

IV CIVILIZATION 93

V MISUNDERSTANDING 121

VI PRISONERS 141

VII CANTERBURY CHIMES 177

VIII UNDER A WINEGLASS 217

IX CHOLERA 235

X COSMIC JUSTICE 247

THE YELLOW STREAK

I

THE YELLOW STREAK

He came out to Shanghai a generation ago, in those days when Shanghai was not as respectable as it is now whatever that says to you. It was, of course, a great change from Home, and its crude pleasures and crude companions gave him somewhat of a shock. For he was of decent stock, with a certain sense of the fitness of things, and the beach combers, adventurers, rough traders and general riff raff of the China Coast, gathered in Shanghai, did not offer him the society he desired. He was often obliged to associate with them, however, more or less, in a business way, for his humble position as minor clerk in a big corporation entailed certain responsibilities out of hours, and this responsibility he could not shirk, for fear of losing his position. Thus, by these acts of civility, more or less enforced, he was often led into a loose sort of intimacy, into companionship with people who were distasteful to his rather fastidious nature. But what can you expect on the China Coast? He was rather an upright sort of young man, delicate and abstemious, and the East being new to him, shocked him. He took pleasure in walking along the Bund, marvelling at the great river full of the ships of the world, marvelling at the crowds from the four corners of the world who disembarked from these ships and scattered along the broad and sunny thoroughfare, seeking amusements of a primitive sort. But in these amusements he took no part. For himself, a gentleman, they did not attract. Not for long. The sing song girls and the "American girls" were coarse, vulgar creatures and he did not like them. It was no better in the back streets bars and saloons, gaming houses and opium divans, all the coarse paraphernalia of pleasure, as the China Coast understood the word, left him unmoved... Continue reading book >>




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