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Some of the sceptical methods applied to the world's origin might be applied to my origin, and a grave and earnest enquirer come to the conclusion that I was never born at all.
But I prefer to believe that common sense is something that my readers and I have in common; and that they will have patience with a dull summary of the facts.
He then approached my grandfather as if the old gentleman had been a sort of shrine, with profound bows and reverential apostrophes.
"You are a Monument," said the strange gentleman, "Sir, you are a Landmark." My grandfather, slightly flattered, murmured politely that they had certainly been in Kensington for some little time.
One peculiarity of this middle-class was that it really was a class and it really was in the middle.I may add that my grandfather, when the story was told, always used to insist that he had added to the phrase "I don't care how they are conducted," the qualifying words (repeated with a grave motion ot the hand) "provided it is with reverence and sincerity." But I grieve to say that sceptics in the younger generation believed this to have been an afterthought.The point is, however, that my grandfather was pleased, and not really very much amazed, to be called a monument and a landmark.Bowing down in blind credulity, as is my custom, before mere authority and the tradition of the elders, superstitiously swallowing a story I could not test at the time by experiment or private judgment, I am firmly of opinion that I was born on the 29th of May, 1874, on Campden Hill, Kensington; and baptised according to the formularies of the Church of England in the little church of St.George opposite the large Waterworks Tower that dominated that ridge.