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by Arthur Christopher Benson
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Arthur Christopher Benson (1862-1925) was a British essayist, poet and author. He was one of six children of Edward White Benson, a late nineteenth-century Archbishop of Canterbury. The Benson family were exceptionally literate and accomplished, but their history was somewhat tragic. A son and daughter died young, and another daughter, as well as Benson himself, suffered badly from a mental condition that was probably manic-depressive psychosis. Despite his illness, Benson was a distinguished academic and a most prolific author. He was associated with Eton College, and was Master of Magdalene College of Cambridge University. His poems and volumes of essays, such as From a College Window (1906), were famous in his day, and he left one of the longest diaries ever written, some four million words.
"Yes, of course it is an experiment! But it is made in corpore vili. It is not irreparable, and there is no reason, more's the pity, why I should not please myself. I will ask - it is a rhetorical question which needs no answer - what is a hapless bachelor to do, who is professionally occupied and tied down in a certain place for just half the year? What is he to do with the other half? I cannot live on in my college rooms, and I am not compelled to do so for economy."
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