"From the Paperback edition."
STEPHEN LEACOCK was born in Swanmore, Hampshire, England, in 1869. His family emigrated to Canada in 1876 and settled on a farm north of Toronto. Educated at Upper Canada College and the University of Toronto, Leacock pursued graduate studies in economics at the University of Chicago, where he studied under Thorstein Veblen. Even before he completed his doctorate, Leacock accepted a position as sessional lecturer in political science and economics at McGill University. From 1908 until his retirement in 1936, he chaired the Department of Political Science and Economics. The author of nineteen books and countless articles on economics, history, and political science, Leacock turned to the writing of humour as his beloved avocation. His first collection of comic stories, Literary Lapses, appeared in 1910, and from that time until his death he published a volume of humour almost every year. DAVID STAINES is the general editor of the New Canadian Library. He is a professor of English and acting director of the Institute of Canadian Studies at the University of Ottawa.