Saturday, April 07, 2012

Amusing Remarks by George Bernard Shaw on Henry George

George Bernard Shaw, in a letter written in 1905 to Hamlin Garland, describes how, more than twenty years earlier, he had attended Henry George's first platform appearance in London. He knew at once, he said, that the speaker must be an American, for four reasons:

Because he pronounced 'necessarily' . . . with the accent on the third syllable instead of the first;

because he was deliberately and intentionally oratorical, which is not customary among shy people like the English;

because he spoke of Liberty, Justice, Truth, Natural Law, and other strange 18th-century superstitions; and

because he explained with great simplicity and sincerity the views of the Creator, who had gone completely out of fashion in London in the previous decade and had not been heard of there since.