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Michael Gilbert

Smallbone Deceased

Hodder & Stoughton 1950
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Michael Gilbert - Smallbone Deceased

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Michael Gilbert

Sample and Synopsis of Michael Gilbert's - Smallbone Deceased
Could such a thing really happen in the impeccably legal firm of Horniman, Birley and Craine ? The use of hermetically sealed deed-boxes was one of the finer points of the Horniman System ; and it was scarcely to be expected that the body of one of the firm's clients should be found dead, after some weeks, in the Ichabod Stokes Trust box. If there was any consolation for this occasion it was that Henry Bohun had newly joined the firm ; a remarkable man, and a friend, moreover, of Inspector Hazlerigg of Close Quarters fame, who took the case in hand.

First will be set out the Parties, each by his full name and address and by a Description, as, Lieutenant-Colonel in His Majesty's Grenadier Regiment of Foot-guards, Solicitor to the Supreme Court of Judicature, Clerk in Holy Orders, Butcher, or as the case may be and (where of the female sex) wife, widow, spinster or feme sole. "THE thoughts of all present to-night," said Mr. Birley, "will naturally turn first to the great personal loss—the very great personal loss—so recently suffered by the firm, by the legal profession and. if I may venture to say so without contradiction, by the British public."

No one did contradict him; partly, no doubt, owing to the fact that Mr. Birley was personally responsible for the salaries of the greater number of those present, but also because the principal speaker at a staff dinner very rarely is contradicted; Mr. Birley, therefore, proceeded. "It is difficult to speak without emotion of such a loss. Abel Horniman, our founder and our late senior partner, was a man whose name will be long remembered. Even those who are not qualified to appreciate the worth of his legal—ah—laurels, will remember him in connection with those innovations in office management which bear his name. The Horniman Self-Checking Completion System, the Horniman Alphabetical Index

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