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THE BOOK OF WONDER

by

Lord Dunsany

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PREFACE

Come with me, ladies and gentlemen who are in any wise weary of London: come with me: and those that tire at all of the world we know: for we have new worlds here.

THE BRIDE OF THE MAN-HORSE
In the morning of his two hundred and fiftieth year Shepperalk the centaur went to the golden coffer, wherein the treasure of the centaurs was, and taking from it the hoarded amulet that his father, Jyshak, in the year of his prime, had hammered from mountain gold and set with opals bartered from the gnomes, he put it upon his wrist, and said no word, but walked from his mother's cavern....
DISTRESSING TALE OF THANGOBRIND THE JEWELLER
When Thangobrind the jeweller heard the ominous cough, he turned at once upon that narrow way....
THE HOUSE OF THE SPHINX
When I came to the House of the Sphinx it was already dark....
PROBABLE ADVENTURE OF THE THREE LITERARY MEN
When the nomads came to El Lola they had no more songs, and the question of stealing the golden box arose in all its magnitude....
THE INJUDICOUS PRAYERS OF POMBO THE IDOLATER
Pombo the idolater had prayed to Ammuz a simple prayer, a necessary prayer, such as even an idol of ivory could very easily grant, and Ammuz has not immediately granted it....
THE LOOT OF BOMBASHARNA
Things had grown too hot for Shard, captain of pirates, on all the seas that he knew....
MISS CUBBIDGE AND THE DRAGON OF ROMANCE
This tale is told in the balconies of Belgrave Square and among the towers of Pont Street; men sing it at evening in the Brompton Road....
THE QUEST OF THE QUEEN'S TEARS
Sylvia, Queen of the Woods, in her woodland palace, held court, and made a mockery of her suitors....
THE HOARD OF THE GIBBELINS
The Gibbelins eat, as is well known, nothing less good than man....
HOW NUTH WOULD HAVE PRACTISED HIS ART UPON THE GNOLES
Despite the advertisements of rival firms, it is probable that every tradesman knows that nobody in business at the present time has a position equal to that of Mr. Nuth....
HOW ONE CAME, AS WAS FORETOLD, TO THE CITY OF NEVER
The child that played about the terraces and gardens in sight of the Surrey hills never knew that it was he that should come to the Ultimate City, never knew that he should see the Under Pits, the barbicans and the holy minarets of the mightiest city known....
THE CORONATION OF MR. THOMAS SHAP
It was the occupation of Mr. Thomas Shap to persuade customers that the goods were genuine and of an excellent quality, and that as regards the price their unspoken will was consulted....
CHU-BU AND SHEEMISH
It was the custom on Tuesdays in the temple of Chu-bu for the priests to enter at evening and chant, "There is none but Chu-bu...."
THE WONDERFUL WINDOW
The old man in the Oriental-looking robe was being moved on by the police, and it was this that attracted to him and the parcel under his arm the attention of Mr. Sladden, whose livelihood was earned in the emporium of Messrs. Mergin and Chater, that is to say in their establishment....
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EPILOGUE

Here the fourteenth Episode of the Book of Wonder endeth and here the relating of the Chronicles of Little Adventures at the Edge of the World. I take farewell of my readers. But it may be we shall even meet again, for it is still to be told how the gnomes robbed the fairies, and of the vengeance that the fairies took, and how even the gods themselves were troubled thereby in their sleep; and how the King of Ool insulted the troubadours, thinking himself safe among his scores of archers and hundreds of halberdiers, and how the troubadours stole to his towers by night, and under his battlements by the light of the moon made that king ridiculous for ever in song. But for this I must first return to the Edge of the World. Behold, the caravans start.

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