19 MAY 1923, Page 20


TEE first sixty-seven pages of Mr. Clews's book are occupied with a breathless, Rabelaisian torrent of invective against everything modern, and principally against science, demo- cracy, votes for women and modem art. In words which tumble over his pages in unordered riot : in words some of which are English, some of which are American, and some of which are Clews, he proclaims the ideals of Divine inequality and the abolition of steam-power. He regrets the disappear- ance of the fine old civilizations founded on slavery. In " the stylized, solicitous family butler, who, alas ! is rapidly disappearing," he finds " one of the few remaining symbols of civilization . . . for without him and his traditional mutton-chop whiskers or smooth-shaven face—an insignia of service of which every honest servant is proud—there can be no art or culture." Here is a taste of his style :—

" Beelzebub, enthroned on his steam-roller of machine science and communism, is at our garden gate, with his ever-increasing hordes of disciples and dupes : necromancing matoids, ' arty ' jukes, scientific hooligans. literary morons, mechanized submen, egocentric reformers, serialized - snorting democrats, gold brick swamis, willy-nilly silly Fabians and Shavians, I.W.W. defectives, militant vulgarians, news-delirians, press-phobians, gutter and parlour . Socialists, apostate muddlemental Engelists, Tolstoyists, Russellists and Kropotkinists ; beetle-browed mephitic syndicalists, Semitic Marxists, megalomaniacal internationalists, half-fool collec- tivists, paranoiac Bolshevists."

In short, he attacks all that may be symbolized by jazz, and regrets the old days of quiet refinement in the most

uproariously vulgar prose that we have ever read ; and, as we read,. we felt impelled to exclaim : " Go hon, Mister Clews,

yer're jokini." The next sixty-two pages of abuse are set into the description of the characters of the play, and then, at last, is Act I. The play itself is intended to expose the

• Piccadilly. By Kathleen Coyle. London : Jonathan Cape. [7e. ed. net.) t Mumbo Jumbo. By Henry Clews, Jr. Landon: Grant Richards. [73. Od. net.]

vile machinations of modern art-dealers and the gullibility of modern art-patrons. It is all preposterously impossible and very amusing.