Page by Page Books
Read Books Online, for Free
5. In The Land Of The Forgotten Peoples H. G. [Herbert George] Wells

Section 4

Page 3 of 3

Table Of Contents: The Secret Places of the Heart

Previous Page

Previous Chapter

Next Chapter

More Books

More by this Author

"I don't know," said the doctor. So little is known."

"Very like children they must have been. The same unending days. They must have thought that the world went on for ever-just as they knew it--like my damned Committee does. . . . With their fuel wasting away and the climate changing imperceptibly, century by century. . . . Kings and important men followed one another here for centuries and centuries. . . . They had lost their past and had no idea of any future. . . . They had forgotten how they came into the land . . . When I was a child I believed that my father's garden had been there for ever. . . .

"This is very like trying to remember some game one played when one was a child. It is like coming on something that one built up with bricks and stones in some forgotten part of the garden. . . . "

"The life we lived here," said the doctor, has left its traces in traditions, in mental predispositions, in still unanalyzed fundamental ideas."

"Archaeology is very like remembering," said Sir Richmond. "Presently we shall remember a lot more about all this. We shall remember what it was like to live in this place, and the long journey hither, age by age out of the south. We shall remember the sacrifices we made and the crazy reasons why we made them. We sowed our corn in blood here. We had strange fancies about the stars. Those we brought with us out of the south where the stars are brighter. And what like were those wooden gods of ours? I don't remember. . . . But I could easily persuade myself that I had been here before."

They stood on the crest of the ancient wall and the setting sun cast long shadows of them athwart a field of springing wheat.

Tired of reading? Add this page to your Bookmarks or Favorites and finish it later.

"Perhaps we shall come here again," the doctor carried on Sir Richmond's fancy; "after another four thousand years or so, with different names and fuller minds. And then I suppose that this ditch won't be the riddle it is now."

"Life didn't seem so complicated then," Sir Richmond mused. "Our muddles were unconscious. We drifted from mood to mood and forgot. There was more sunshine then, more laughter perhaps, and blacker despair. Despair like the despair of children that can weep itself to sleep. . . . It's over. . . . Was it battle and massacre that ended that long afternoon here? Or did the woods catch fire some exceptionally dry summer, leaving black hills and famine? Or did strange men bring a sickness--measles, perhaps, or the black death? Or was it cattle pest? Or did we just waste our woods and dwindle away before the new peoples that came into the land across the southern sea? I can't remember. . . . "

Sir Richmond turned about. "I would like to dig up the bottom of this ditch here foot by foot--and dry the stuff and sift it--very carefully. . . . Then I might begin to remember things."

Page 3 of 3 Previous Page   Next Chapter
Who's On Your Reading List?
Read Classic Books Online for Free at
Page by Page Books.TM
The Secret Places of the Heart
H. G. [Herbert George] Wells

Home | More Books | About Us | Copyright 2004