23 JANUARY 1926, Page 24

Ix writing pleasantly about trivial objects, such as pins or

needles, the modern essayist inevitably seems to adopt the frayed but lovable coat of Charles Lamb, and when he draws upon his own memories of childhood or boyhood, he slips on the velvet jacket of R. L. S. Mr. Morley has not escaped always from such influences, he seems more often to adapt his per- sonality to the essay form than to express himself. But his essays are pleasurable, at times vivid, and in the turn of a sentence, he achieves grace. The preface by Mr. Tomlinson is a little essay in itself, almost a touchstone of criticism.