Henry James on Eliot on "a curved ball"

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Fri Oct 5 10:58:37 UTC 2012

Here is an excerpt from the Atlantic article mentioning "a feint to
throw a ball in one direction and then throwing it in ANOTHER!"

Cite: 1929 November, The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 144, As Seen By a
Disciple: President Eliot by Le Baron Russell Briggs, Start Page 588,
Quote Page 599 and 600, The Atlantic Monthly Company, Boston.
(Verified on paper)

[Begin excerpt]
At a Faculty meeting the President had
been commenting on the shabbiness of
the University baseball team, which
was undeniable. Finally he spoke of
one man in the team who was, he said, a
Special Student in the Law School, but
never attended his classes. 'The students,'
he added, like him because he
is "up to all the professional tricks."'
After the meeting, Barrett Wendell and
I went to Mr. Eliot, saying in effect:
'We know little about that player and
care little about him; but we have seen
him play ball many times, and have
never seen him do anything mean or
dirty.' The President drew himself up
in the magnificent attitude that was
all his own and exclaimed with triumphant
finality, 'Why! They boasted of
his making a feint to throw a ball in
one direction and then throwing it in
ANOTHER!' He was superb. It was as if
he said, 'You young men don't know
what you are talking about,' yet said it
with regal courtesy. Still again, he
maintained that the manly way to play
football is to attack the strongest part
of the opponent's line.
[End excerpt]


On Thu, Oct 4, 2012 at 5:15 PM, Joel S. Berson <Berson at att.net> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Joel S. Berson" <Berson at ATT.NET>
> Subject:      Re: Henry James on Eliot on "a curved ball"
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> I got the following from the underground at the Harvard
> Archives.  The page of the James biography has been discussed here
> before, but I don['t think anyone has tried to follow up the sources
> the (mole?) says James cites.
>>         In his 1930 biography of Charles W. Eliot (volume 2, page
>> 69), Henry James relays the story of Eliot's disdain for the
>> pitcher who delivers a curve ball.
>>         James cites an October 9, 1883 speech to the Harvard Club
>> of San Francisco and an Atlantic Monthly article (LeBaron Russell
>> Briggs, November 1929:  600) as his sources.  A quick look at our
>> holdings has found neither of these sources, although you are
>> welcome to visit the Archives to conduct a more thorough search in
>> Eliot's personal papers, presidential records and biographical materials.
> Joel
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

More information about the Ads-l mailing list