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TONO-BUNGAY

give him for a background that distressed, uneasy sky that was popular in the eighteenth century, and at a convenient distance a throbbing motor-car, very big and contemporary, a secretary hurrying with papers, and an alert chauffeur.

Such was the figure that created and directed the great property of Tono-Bungay, and from the successful reconstruction of that company passed on to a slow crescendo of magnificent creations and promotions until the whole world of investors marvelled. I have already, I think, mentioned how, long before we offered Tono-Bungay to the public, we took over the English agency of certain American specialities. To this was presently added our exploitation of Moggs' Domestic Soap, and so he took up the Domestic Convenience Campaign that, coupled with his equatorial rotundity and a certain resolute convexity in his bearing, won my uncle his Napoleonic title.


§2

It illustrates the romantic element in modern commerce that my uncle met young Moggs at a city dinner—I think it was the Bottle-makers' Company—when both were some way advanced beyond the initial sobriety of the occasion. This was the grandson of the original Moggs, and a very typical instance of an educated, cultivated, degenerate plutocrat. His people had taken him about in his youth like the Ruskins took their John, and fostered a passion for history in him, and the actual management of the Moggs' industry had devolved upon a cousin and a junior partner. Mr. Moggs, being of a studious and refined disposition, had just decided—after a careful search for a congenial