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title: 'The Day book. (Chicago, Ill.) 1911-1917, July 07, 1914, NOON EDITION, Image 18',
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Image provided by: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL
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DR. SYNTAX'S DISCOVERY
By Elmer Phillips.
(Copyright.by W. G. Chapman.)
Doctor Syntax-was not more than
forty, though he seemed bowed be
neath the weight of his recondite in
vestigations. He Was seated at his
library table, looking out across the
quiet village street toward the camp
us. Inside the halls of those magnifi-
? "Can't You Solve It by Algebra?"
cent Gothic buildings which he could
just see from "his library he had
' taught for 15 years.
f When Aloysius Benton, his friend
j and colleague, died, ten years before,
leaving his twelve-year-old daughter
j to Doctor Syntax, it was the most
. natural thing in the world that the
kindly old doctor should take the
, child into his household. . After old
s Janet died, Milly quite naturally be
came the doctor's housekeeper.
And now certain persons had whis
peredthat it was not proper for an
unmarried man, even a professor, to
live alone in the house with the girl.
With Milly! Why, she ruled him
with an iron hand, cased in velvet
though it was! Did a north wind blow,,
his peace of mind was not worth a
moment's purchase unless he put on
his comforter to step across the
campus. He was sent to bed even in
the midst of the most abstruse prob
lems, when eleven o'clock arrived,
and he had a lecture on the following
day. Neyertheless, life without Milly
seemed an impossible, hopeless thing.
Doctor Syntax had been in love
when he was a young man. The ob
ject of his devotion had married an
other; but, though he had long ceased
to think of her, the memory of that
first love had clung around him like a
radiant cloud, softening his spirit and
fitting it for high idealism. Sometimes
the thought of Milly had, of late, un
accountably revived that memory.
The professor did not at first under
But when the ultimatum went forth
that society considered Milly ought to
be relegated to another sphere, the
professor had a ridiculous dream. It
was absurd, to hope that Milly, the
belle of the little town . . . and
he an old fogy of forty! But he con
tinued to dream it Even a professor
of mathematics has the right . to
At any rate, he must tell Milly.
And he did so, when he met her in the
library after dinner, which the profes
sor always took alone, because he had
to read and eat at the same time. This
was the only point on which he had
never ventured to defy Milly.
"My dear," he said, "I have an un
pleasant thing to say to you. It is a
"Can't you solve" it by algebra?" in
quired Milly, looking at him with &.
twinkle in her eyes. You know, you
always say everything can be solved
"And so it can, my dear," said Doc
tor Syntax. This was one of his pet