From my earliest infancy I
have been a martyr to it. As a boy, the disease hardly ever left me for
a day. They did not know, then, that it was my liver. Medical science
was in a far less advanced state than now, and they used to put it down
"Why, you skulking little devil, you," they would say, "get up and do
something for your living, can't you?" - not knowing, of course, that I
And they didn't give me pills; they gave me clumps on the side of the
head. And, strange as it may appear, those clumps on the head often
cured me - for the time being. I have known one clump on the head have
more effect upon my liver, and make me feel more anxious to go straight
away then and there, and do what was wanted to be done, without further
loss of time, than a whole box of pills does now.
You know, it often is so - those simple, old-fashioned remedies are
sometimes more efficacious than all the dispensary stuff.
We sat there for half-an-hour, describing to each other our maladies. I
explained to George and William Harris how I felt when I got up in the
morning, and William Harris told us how he felt when he went to bed; and
George stood on the hearth-rug, and gave us a clever and powerful piece
of acting, illustrative of how he felt in the night.