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May 26, 1962


JAMA. 1962;180(8):685-687. doi:10.1001/jama.1962.03050210047013

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Anybody who has paid any attention whatsoever to writing English, but especially those who attend closely, knows well the name and fame of Quiller-Couch. His name, by the way, is not the same as the stock-in-trade of the psychoanalyst, but rhymes with hooch. This pleases me. This striking name I recall seeing first in an anthology of poetry of which he was editor. More years ago than I can recall exactly, I borrowed a copy of his book On the Art of Writing. I did not react very enthusiastically, fancying then that books on writing or grammar were necessarily suspect if not actually poisonous. Later, when I read for pleasure to be found in style as well as content, it came over me with great force that Quiller-Couch was a master of prose style, both in precept and example. In the last few years I have snared from the shelves