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Mr. Gilbert?
Yes - Good morning
We thought you might have caught
the earlier train, sir...
Yes I did, but it was late - and getting a
taxi wasn't easy...
Allow me...
The historic Hall - built 1550;
destroyed by fire, rebuilt 1732,
restored 1874...
It's very beautiful...
Great Chapel, built in the year 13...
Wilson, you're late...
Not very...
I don't care...three
minutes...Cromwells...Write it
down...tomorrow...
Any boy late for morning prayer is
given Cromwells, which is the
word here for punishment... Ah! If you
ask me why it's called Cromwells I'll
say
Y is a crooked letter and you can't
make it straight... Don't worry, sir you'll soon get the hang of it...
Mr Gilbert - new master for next term show him in, please...
Mr Harris-Foster - trouble with the
alarm clock again, sir?
Morning boys!
Morning sir!
Announcements.
The interhouse boat race was won by
Ironsides, and we have to thank, for
the excellent organization,
Mr Hunter...
Tomorrow, 2pm cricket match Staff
and Old Boys versus School First
Eleven.
And tomorrow evening at 8:30 pm concert by Small Choir from the
Library Steps.

Now, Prizegiving on Friday...will be at


the earlier time of 9 am - this is to
enable Mr Fletcher to reach London
in order to join the MCC squad in
preparation for their match against the
Australians at Lord's...
Now...now, now now...there's no need
to get over-excited...there'll be tears
before bedtime...
Right...now as you know Mr Fletcher is
giving up teaching to become a
professional cricketer...
Now I'm sure you want to wish him
well for the future at Prizegiving...
Now. You will also want to show your
appreciation...to...Mr Crocker-Harris on
Friday.
Mr Crocker-Harris is resigning because
of ill-health.
He's been with us for eighteen
years...he's taking up less arduous
duties at another school...
and I'm sure we're all very, very sorry
to lose him...
And of course we'll be sorry to lose his
wife, also...
She's been with us for fifteen of those
eighteen years and she's endeared
herself to us all so much.
Now. Hymn number 555 , 'Lead us,
Heavenly Father, lead us'.
Who do you think's the best left-arm
bowler in the country?
You are, sir...!
No really...come on...don't be
ridiculous...
Good morning...make way...for Mr
Harris....
I'll do it on the back...where would you
like it...?
Just there...all right....
Don't worry, sir...it's the end of term,
sir....
Oh yes - please sir...!
You promised...!

2
Well, I hope...?
I never promised. I never make
promises to juvenile delinquents.
You did sir...
Just want to see me blow myself up,
don't you, you little monsters...?
Franck - excuse me Frank, good
morning. I still need the details of your
classes for next term...
OK, right....sorry, Andrew, could I get
them to you today...?
I'd be obliged...just the final piece of
the jigsaw, as it were...
Would twelve o'clock at my house be
convenient...?
Listen. One more experiment. But if
you let anyone know, I'll have your
heads, you
understand...?
You're like policemen...
Sorry...?
You get younger and younger... Laura
Crocker-Harris.
Tom Gilbert. I'm taking over from
your husband.
I know. You're going to be Head of the
new Languages Department. Andrew,
my
husband, is only Head of Classical
Languages.
Could you do me a favour? Could
you point our to me Mr Frank Hunter?
I'll do better than that. Follow me.
Laura!
Diana!
Are we still going into town...?
Darling...I'll be right back...
Ah - Laura. I'm going to miss your
regular attendance at morning
prayers...
Thank you, Headmaster. I shall miss it
too... It's a nice way to start the day.
And the library won't be the same
without you....Tell me...how is Andrew
taking all this...?

Yes, thank you, Headmaster,


he's...bearing up....
Very sad...very sad....
Taplow! Did you get your switch to
science?
I don't know - I'm just going to ask...
You work in the library?
Just two days a week...
I have to see parents. I'd like you to
supervise the sound system.
All right...
We need about twenty Tannoys...
Good morning!
Hello Laura...
Excuse me for interrupting...this is
Keith Rafferty, Head of Sciences
-frightfully important and Frank Hunter. Tom Gilbert Andrew's successor...
Hello.
Hello.
Hello. The Headmaster asked me to
show you to your room.
If you don't mind...
No, not at all...
I hear you did a bit of rowing up at
Oxford...?
O God! Another sportsman! The Head
loves them! I'm waiting to see who
wins Wimbledon...
We'll need someone to take over from
Frank in Chemistry when he goes back
to the Colonies...
Well - we must keep our bodies in
shape, mustn't we...?
Sir! I was wondering if I could have a
word with you...?
Certainly not, the bell's gone - it's too
late...

3
I should say hello to Mr CrockerHarris....
Listen - you can talk to him later...I
mean...you don't want to keep the
Headmaster waiting...
I'll show you where you're sleeping...
Sir...? Do I disturb you, sir...?
Perhaps...
I know the rules, sir. But it's very
important to me... Have I got my
switch to Upper-Fifth science, sir?
You have obtained exactly what you
deserve: no less, and certainly no
more...
And, Taplow, I shall expect you at the
house, for extra work, at 12:15
precisely.
What is it...?
I'd fixed to play golf, sir...
Well then you must unfix it, mustn't
you...? You missed an hour last week!
You can't expect me to take
money from your father under false
pretences...
He won't mind, sir...
I'm not sure I should take your word
for that, Taplow...
No, sir...
The point is that we mind, don't we...?
Yes, sir. We mind.
12:15. Extra work.
You're on an exchange, I take it?
Yes. Just finished my first year. I'm
here for three.
You like it?
Yeah! It's a great place to teach...You
just feel the history...the tradition...
They put me up here when I first came
for my interview...I didn't sleep a wink.
The beds also date back to 1667,
I think.
I'll be fine...it's only two nights....
Are you married?
Yes.
Kids?
Yes, two. We'll all be here next term.
You found a place to stay?

Yes - we're taking the Crocker-Harris


house...
Most of our classrooms are in this
building. Up here is the Upper Fifth
Science, where Mr Hunter
manufactures foul-smelling
concoctions for his own perverted
branch of learning.
Not as perverted as the
Classics...Won't Mr Gilbert be teaching
the boys about rape, murder, incest...?
Unworthy, Mr Hunter! If you knew
more about the Classics, you
scientists, you might be less keen to
destroy this little planet of ours...
Wasn't it Einstein who said, 'We don't
understand science properly'...?
No, I believe he said we don't know
how to use it sensibly....Have a nice
day, Mr Gilbert...
If only he had a little more discipline...
Of course, he's an American...
Now boys...Mr Crocker-Harris not here
yet?
No, sir.... There's six minutes to go yet,
sir...
Six minutes....hello Watson, how's your
father?
He's quite well, thank you, sir - but my
name's Wilson, sir...
Wilson - is it really? But your father's
all right, just the same...?
Yes, thank you sir...He's quite dried out
now...
Well, well, well....Now boys, this is Mr
Gilbert - he's going to be Head of our
new Languages Department. I trust
those of you who remain in this class
next term will be as well behaved with
Mr Gilbert as I am sure you were with
Mr Crocker-Harris...
Good morning, boys...
It might interest you to sit in on this
period Mr....Mr...?

4
...Gilbert...
Gilbert...yes...Mr Gilbert...and observe
your future pupils in action...
Yes - if I see him, I'll warn him...
Thank you sir.
Pay attention to Mr Gilbert, boys. He
doesn't take over his official duties
until next term, but he can still report
your
misdoings to me...today!
I put 150 milliliters of hydrogen
peroxide solution in this water bottle.
Biggles had a nose bleed this morning
and was kind enough to donate this
blood.
So we just mix this with the Hydrogen
peroxide solution....
Biggles? What have we got in this jar
here...?
Iron Sulphate.
That's right. Nick - can you tell me the
chemical formula for Iron Sulphate?
FeSO4, sir.
That's very good...
Now hang on....this has never
happened before...
Boys! I think you ought to just back
off, now...!
(cheers(
What have you got in your blood,
Biggles...?
*
You tried to see me this morning...
Yes, sir...
Well. why are you following me
around...? Are you with the CIA, KGB,
MI5...?
No sir, the Lower Fifth, sir...
Same thing! What's your name, boy?
Taplow, sir.
I'll be in your class next term if I get
my switch...
This isn't next term, this is this term...
Taplow...what's the chemical formula
for ethanol?
C2H5OH, sir...

Taplow...you'll know...what's up with


the Crock? Why's he being forced to
retire...?
There's nothing wrong with him...the
Head just wanted to give him the
chop, that's all...
It's his heart...
It can't be his heart - he hasn't got
one...
Right...

He's a sadist...
Now cut it out, boys...I'm nor really
interested...
It is his heart, sir... I have extra lessons
with him...
Sadists don't have hearts, anyway...
Are you going to be running special
projects...
Yes, I believe so...
Well the fact is, we both want to start
a magazine...and you allocate the
funds, sir..
Mr Crocker-Harris is still in charge, isn't
he? So he should settle this...
Well, sir, you see, Mr Crocker-Harris
always says no to anything new...
I don't think he does hate people. I
don't think he likes people, either. And
he doesn't care whether people like
him...
I'd say he hasn't a care in the world:
'You have obtained exactly what you
deserve:
no less and certainly no more...
'You have obtained exactly what you
deserve: no less, and certainly no
more...'
If he gave us the chance, I think we'd
quite like him...
Now, I won't tell you again.

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The fact is, I feel sorry for him!
Sorry for old Hitler!?
Stop it, now! That's it!
Good morning, sir. I'm Gilbert.
Good morning!
Wilson?
Yes, sir?
Apparently you were late for chapel.
Just a few seconds. I was in the library
and you can't hear the bell...
No doubt you will recount those
excuses to your Housemaster - I fear
I'm not interested in them...
Sir...
These are your Latin verses. Only one
boy's efforts - Buller's - had any merit,
and that somewhat doubtful. The
rest were mainly...abominable.
It seems to me that the best way of
employing the first part of this period
would be for all of you to attempt the
verse again.
And if you should find the disturbance
from the Upper Fifth Science too
distracting, you may console
yourselves, as good Classicists, with
the thought that (to amend an
aphorism) scientia est celare
scientiam.
Taplow?
Yes, sir...?
You laughed at my little epigram...
Yes, sir...
I am flattered at the obvious advance
your Latin has made, that you should
so readily understand what the rest of
the class did not...
Perhaps you would be good enough to
explain it to them, so that they can
share your pleasure...
Come along, Taplow...don't be so
selfish...as to keep a good joke to
yourself...tell the others...
I didn't hear it properly, sir...

Didn't hear it? Indeed! Then why, may


I ask, did you laugh? Why did you
laugh at what you did not hear...?
Politeness, sir.
I beg your pardon...?
Politeness, sir.
Toujours la politesse.... I'm touched,
Taplow. But if you really wish to show
me politeness, you will do so now....by
translating verses less appalling than
the ones I corrected this morning...Sit.
Yes, sir...
Still feel sorry for him?
Finish now.
As this is the, uh...last time
we shall meet as a class,
it may not be amiss for me to say
good-bye
and wish you all the best of good
fortune.
And now the end of term treat.
We will read a scene from the
Agamemnon by Aeschylus.
Agamemnon is perhaps the greatest
play ever written.
The scene I have selected starts with
Clytemnestra
standing over the bodies of
Agamemnon her husband
and the prophetess Cassandra,
both of whom shes just murdered.
Very well, Laughton, begin.
porsunon thelois
dokusin enai hermounes arkustat an
pharksein hupsos kreisson...
...elthe, soun krono ge men:
esterka
hstka
hstka de nth epais ep
exeirgasmnois
Uh, forgive me for interrupting, but I
have the impression
you understand nothing of what you're
reading.

6
No, sir. I...
Clytemnestra has just committed
murder.
She is describing her foul deed.
She's unrepentant.
Hmm?
Do you not think she would show some
emotion?
Well, of course, sir. I was just...
I realize, Laughton, that you may not
have met a wife
who has destroyed her husband.
Nor perhaps had Aeschylus.
Nevertheless, he knew, alas, that such
wives do exist.
He used his imagination, Laughton.
Imagination... a word I think not in
your vocabulary.
For example...
hstka de nthe apaisa ep
exeirgasmnois...
"I stand upon mine act.
Yea, where I struck..."
Do you not think, uh, in saying those
words
she might reveal a flash of, uh, cruelty
and of pride?
Hmm?
Defiant creature...!
And then here...
houto de epraxa, kai tad ouk
arnsomai :
hos mte feugein mte munesthai
moron...
"And I confess it,
"I did use such craft he could not fly
nor fend him against death..."
apeiron anpsiblestron hosper ichthun
peristixidzo....
"I caught him in a nets men catch
fish...
...pluton heimatos kakon...

"No room, no rathole in his loopless


robe....
paio de nin dis - paio de nin dis
"I struck him twice...
"And once and twice he groaned, he
doubled up his limb....
kai peptokti
triten ependidimi tou kata xthonos
dios nekrn sotros euktaian xrim.
"And with that stroke,
committed him to Zeus that keeps the
dead."
houto ton hautou thumon hormainei
pesn:
kakpsusin zeian haimatos sphagn
ballei me eremn psakdi phoinas
drsou....

Very well, you may leave.


Good-bye, sir.
Cheerio, sir.
Good-bye, sir.
Good-bye, Mr Crocker-Harris.
Thank you very much, sir.
Good-bye, sir. Good luck.
Fa-la-la-la-la-la
Fa-la-la-la-la-la
In the winsome month of May...
Oy! Walk!
Thank you, sir.
I realize, of course,
you will not be putting so much
emphasis
on the study of Greek and Latin.
Perhaps they may be even dropped
from the curriculum,
or made optional extras.
My remit from the headmaster is to
organize
a new language department, sir.
That really means modern languages.
I believe we need a greater
concentration

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on German, French, Spanish.
It is, after all, a multicultural society.
Ah, yes, yes...the modern approach.
Not so many years ago,
the great passion was to learn
Russian.
Then came perestroika.
Russian wasn't trendy any more.
Yes, well, thank you for allowing me to
observe.
Not at all.
Perhaps we shall see each other later.
Hello. Anybody home?
Just me, sir.
Taplow.
You are following me around.
No Sir. I've got extra work with Mr.
Crocker-Harris.
Uh-huh.
But he's not here yet.
And Mrs. Crocker-Harris?
Uh... no, shes not here either.
What are you studying?
Aeschylus, sir. The Agamemnon.
Have you ever read it?
Well, no. I can't say that I have. Is it
any good?
Oh, um... well, as a matter of fact, it is,
really.
Yeah, well, whats it about?
It... it's about a wife whos unfaithful,
and murders
her husband.
I get it. A comedy.
Say... say, listen, did you get a chance
to talk to Mr. Crocker-Harris about your
transfer
to my science class?
Yes.
And?
What did he say?
What he always says for everything.
Now, come on. What is it?
You have obtained exactly what you
deserve...
no less, and certainly no more.
Andrew? Andrew,
is that you?
Oh. What pleasant surprise.
Hi ya, Laura.

Didn't expect to see you here.


Hello, Taplow.
Oh, Andrew asked me to come by.
It's about my timetable for next term.
Oh, and he's not here.
Well, it's not like Andrew to be late,
now, is it, Taplow?
No, Mrs. Crocker-Harris.
Well, excuse me, gentlemen.
I think I'll just go put these things
upstairs.
Do you think she heard?
Heard what?
Me impersonating...
Frank.
Oh, I, uh... I've got your timetable
here, Andrew.
Oh, excellent.
Just what I wanted.
Sorry I'm late, Taplow.
I'll just put these down.
Frank, we see you too rarely.
Hello, Laura.
Andrew, you were late for Taplow.
I have apologized.
I do hope you're going
to be joining us at the concert
tomorrow evening.
Oh, yes. I'm looking forward to it.
Taplow, why don't you go and get the
lemonade?
You know where everything is.
Thank you, Mrs. Crocker-Harris.
How have you been?
Frank, would you like
to see the timetable for next term?
Yes, I'd like that very much, Andrew.
Take that outside, Taplow.
We'll have our glass in the garden
today.
Let's see. There you are.
You've really done a beautiful job,
Andrew.
Well, thank you. It has the merit
of clarity, I think.
I don't know what were going to do
without you.
You'll find somebody else, I expect.
Or, uh... perhaps theyll buy a
computer.

8
Say, what exactly is this new job
of yours, Andrew?
Teaching English to foreigners.
Andrew's doctor believes
it will be less of a strain than the lower
fifth.
Well, I'm really sorry, Andrew.
There's nothing to be sorry about.
I'm looking forward to the change.
See you later.
So long, Andrew.
Begin, Taplow.
"Oh, Clytemnestra,
we are surprised that..."
"We marvel at...."
"We marvel at thy tongue...
Mm...
"...how bold thou art, that thou can...
"Canst," is more poetic....
Canst....
"...canst utter such a boastful
speech..."
Mm....
"...over the... the bloody corpse of
the husband,
you've just so foully murdered."
Taplow, I presume you're using a
different text
to mine.
No, sir.
That's strange, I see no
"foully murdered,"no "bloody corpse."
Simply..."husband."
Yes, sir.
Why do you insist on inventing words
that are simply not there?
Go on, Taplow.
Go on, I wish to understand.
I was thinking a bit like this, sir.
There she is, Clytemnestra,
she really hates her husband
Agamemnon.
He returns from winning the war,
and what does she do?
She welcomes him back
and then murders him.
She stabs him over and over and then
makes a speech...
I'm... I'm delighted in your interest
in the more lurid aspects

of dramaturgy, Taplow.
But I still fail to understand
why you should wish to improve
Aeschylus.
Today in class, sir...
for the first time I got a sense of the
horror.
lt was so vivid.
I mean, why can't we put more life into
the translation, sir,
like you did?
Why can't we use words like,
like, "bloody" and "corpse"
and "murder?"
Hmm.
When I was a very young man,
not much older than you are now,
I wrote for my own pleasure
a translation of the Agamemnon,
a very free translation, I remember, in
rhyming couplets.
That must have been hard work.
Yes, it was, it was.
Very hard work.
But I derived great pleasure from it,
because the play had excited and
moved me as it did you,
and I wanted to communicate,
however imperfectly,
some of that emotion.
A little like what happened in class
today.
My translation, I remember thinking
was very beautiful...
almost more beautiful than the
original.
Was it ever published?
I'm sorry?
Was it ever published?
Oh, no, no.
No, it was never published.
Shall I go on, sir?
Uh, no, I fear weve run out of time.
Um...
may I go now, sir?
Yes.
And, Taplow...scientia est celare
scientiam....
"The art of learning
is to conceal learning."

Good morning.
Morning.
Sleep well?
Yes, fine, thanks.
And you?
Yes, fine, thank you.
There you are.
Oh, there's a...
a letter for you.
Is everything all right?
Your mother all right?
Yes. Fine, fine.
Um... I forgot to cancel the papers.
Do you need anything from the
village?
No, no, thank you.
Laura!
Were you expecting someone else?
I thought we agreed that we wouldn't
meet here.
Who were you expecting?
Gilbert, the new guy.
Laura...
come away from the window please.
Would you please come away from the
window?
*
Anyone home?
Oh, yes, come in,
Headmaster.
Ah, Andrew, Andrew, cant stay long.
Lovely day.
Beautiful, yes. Uh, would you like to
sit down?
Two things I wanted to discuss with
you.
Can I offer you tea or anything?
Oh, no, dont bother about tea.
You have enough to do.
Two most stressful thing sin life...
moving and divorce.
You know,
it's extremely unlucky...
ill health should have forced your
retirement.
Well, I felt that I could have continued,
Headmaster...
If you remember, it was yourself

and the governors who thought that


my health...
Well, quite so, quite so.
I was going on to say that it's unlucky
about you having to retire
before becoming entitled to a pension.
You have decided not to award me a
pension.
Not I. Not I.
Lord Baxter and the governors
thought long and hard about it.
They were felt
unable to, um...make an exception.
But, uh...
exceptions have been made in the
past, have they not?
Ah. Richardson, you mean.
Well, those were
exceptional circumstances.
After all, it was in playing football,
staff against school, he received his
injury.
I understand.
The second thing I wanted...
Oh, Headmaster.
I was just leaving.
Oh, uh... well, can I offer you a coffee
or... it's too early for sherry, isn't it?
Oh, it's far too early.
No, I'll leave you to it. You're very busy.
Oh, Headmaster,
I've completed
the timetable...
Would you like to take
it with you?
Oh, thank you very much.
Thank you very much, Andrew.
Oh, what do you make of your
successor, young Tom Gilbert?
He seems very agreeable.
Very agreeable.
High academic honors at Oxford.
Chancellor's Prize for Latin verse.
Oh, Andrew got that, too.
And a double First.
Of course you did.
Sometimes it's hard to remember, you
know,

10
but you must be one of the most
brilliant scholars
ever to come to this school.
You're very kind.
Oh, when I say
it's hard to remember,
it's because you've done so many
other good things.
You know, timetable, your heroic battle
for so long with the soul-destroying
lower fifth.
Well, I haven't found that my soul
has been destroyed by the lower fifth,
Headmaster.
Oh. Uh...
No, I was only joking.
I see, well...
Uh, what was the, uh, other matter
you wished to discuss?
Oh, nothing, nothing at all, Andrew.
And, uh, I was just saying, Laura,
the two most stressing things in life...
moving house and divorce.
Well, bad luck, Andrew
and, um, I'll see you later.
Bye-bye.
Good-bye, sir.
Well, do we get it?
Do we get what?
The pension.
Do we get the pension?
No.
What?
No.
Why not?
It's against the rules.
Well, Richardson got one.
Why couldn't they give one to you?
It was special circumstances.
He received his injuries playing soccer
for the staff against the school.
And what did you say?
Just stood there
and made some joke in Latin, I
suppose.
There was very little I could say
in Latin or any other language...
Ah, Mrs... Mrs, uh...- Mrs
...- Wilson.

Wilson. How are you?


Ah, King Abakendi.
Do you know he owns most of Nigeria?
Really?
Oh, Your Majesty, how lovely to see
you.
Dr. Frobisher.
Ah. You know my wife Jane.
Madam. Of course.
And Lord Baxter, head of Eurospace
Industries,
chairman of our governors.
Yes, and, uh, Lady Baxter.
Delighted, delighted.
Oh, he's doing very well.
You know, he's doing very well, this
boy.
Marvelous job hes doing, yes.
Now, Your Majesty, you know, Lord
Baxter and I would like
to discuss our proposed center for
Islamic...
What a lovely hat.
Thank you.
Lovely.
Opening the batting...
is their captain, David Fletcher.
This will probably be the last time
that we'll ever see David playing
amateur cricket,
as he goes to London tomorrow to join
the MCC.
*
I'm...sorry, sir.
Oh. No, no.
It is I who should apologize.
After all, this is your room now, not
mine.
If you'll allow me
to continue with the chore of packing.
I only came in here
because this room into become the
center
of the new language block,
and, well, I didn't expect anyone to be
here.
I shan't be very long, I promise you.
Please don't hurry, sir.
The fact is, this afternoon, I was
feeling rather nervous.

11
You know, attack of the jitters, and, uh,
I thought that if I came in here
and rehearsed taking a class or
something,
it... it might calm me.
Um, I expect you'd laugh at me
for that.
Why would you expect that?
You keep such order.
I saw that yesterday morning, and,
well, after all, they call youth "Hitler of
the Lower Fifth."
That was clumsy of me, sir.
I'm sure nothing's meant by it.
It-it's just that you...you keep such
wonderful
discipline, that's all.
The Hitler of the Lower Fifth....?
They're, uh, not bad boys.
Sometimes a little wild and unfeeling,
perhaps,
but not bad.
In the beginning, I tried very hard
to communicate some of my own joy
in the great literature of the past.
I failed...
as, of course, you will fail 999
times out of a thousand.
But a single success can atone
for all the failures in the world
and sometimes...very rarely, it's true...
sometimes, I had that success.
The Hitler of the Lower Fifth....
I'm desperately sorry.
Don't apologize.
I, uh, should have known for myself
that I'm not only not liked, but
positively disliked.
I realized many long years ago that
the...
the boys no longer laughed at me, but
I...
I don't know why they no longer found
me funny.
Perhaps when you became ill.
No.
No, I don't think so.
I really don't know.
In the earlier years, they used to laugh
at me.

At me, not with me.


At my... uh...
funny mannerisms and tricks of
speech,
which we all develop.
The Hitler of the Lower Fifth.
I would have thought that by now
that epithet would have lost its
significance.
Apparently not.
Undoubtedly...it will become my
epitaph.
I'm sure theyll come up
with something much worse for me.
Well...
I bequeath you this room.
I wish you great success in it.
I'll do my best, sir.
And good luck to you
in your future career.
My future career?
Yes. Thank you.
The, uh...
The boys do still call me The Crock,"
though, don't they?
*
And there's another four runs to
Fletcher.
*
Ah, Laura, Andrew.
Headmaster, Lord Baxter.
Good afternoon.
Uh, Lord Baxter and I would like to ask
you, uh...
have a little chat with you, Andrew.
Uh, good time for a word?
Well, the great thing about cricket is
you can talk and watch at the same
time.
Precisely: well put, Laura.
A little favor I have to ask you,
Andrew.
And what favor would that be,
Headmaster?
It concerns tomorrows Prize Giving.
I take it you're prepared to say a few
words?
Yes. Well, I have...have made a few
notes.
Oh, well hit.

12
Well hit, Fletcher.
Good, good, good.
I know I can trust your discretion,
not to mention your wit.
And I'm sure youll agree with me
that we don't want these things
to become too longhand distressing.
Well, I have included a few, uh, puns
and jokes in my speech.
That would be extremely acceptable.
Oh. Fine stroke, Fletcher.
Oh, yes.
Yes, that's good, just the thing.
I...I also want to touch on a matter of
some gravity.
No doubt, no doubt.
Now, the favor I want to ask you is
this.
You see, Fletcher...
Fletcher is much, much junior to you,
of course,
and, uh, as such, his speech would
come first,
and yours last.
Absolutely.
But, uh, you knowhow the boys feel
about David.
They adore him.
They simply adore him.
Now, there could well be a terrific
display
of emotion tomorrow,
which would be difficult to cut short.
Fletcher's simply racing
to his hundred....
So, uh, do you wish met speak first?
Well, I feel wretched about asking you
this, Andrew.
I really do.
But, you know, a thing
that must comet a proper climax.
You know, I'm sure youd agree with
me there.
You understand, dont you, Laura?
Well, naturally, Headmaster,
I would not wish to provide an
anticlimax.
I'll speak first.
Don't take it amiss, Andrew.
Nothing personal. Boys will be boys.

I mean, theyd much rather applaud


the-the sportsman than the scholar.
It's only natural.
But it's quite impersonal, I promise
you.
Well played! Well played!
The possibility of a century here for
David Fletcher.
Laura.... Ah.
Isn't Fletcher batting superbly?
Oh, uh, just fantastic, but I got to tell
you,
every time he hits the ball,
I think he's going to drop the bat
and run to first base.
Oh, really...! Good heavens. He's 95.
This could be his 100...
*
Yes, that's 100 for Fletcher.
Tea, I think, everybody. Before the
rush.
Are you coming to tea?
I'd rather watch a little more cricket if
you don't mind.
Frank? Could you escort Laura to tea,
please?
Sure.
Thank you.
*
Sir?
Uh, I'm sorry to disturb you, sir,
but-but I did want to see.
Disturb me, indeed.
Well?
Um...
Well, Taplow?
I...
I thought this might interest you, sir.
Verse translation
of the Agamemnon, sir.
Good heavens!
The Browning version.
Very interesting, Taplow.
It... it's for you, sir.
For me?
Yes, sir. I - I've written in it.
Did you... buy this?
Yes, sir. Its only secondhand.
You shouldn't spend your pocket
money in that way.

13
That's all right.
It wasn't very much.
The price isn't still inside, is it?
No.
Only what you wrote.
Nothing else.
What's the matter, sir?
Have I put the accents wrong?
No.Forgive me...
Taplow, I've...
I've been under rather a strain.
Yes, sir. I understand.
Well...
...good-bye, sir.
And the best of luck.
*
That's tea!
Ladies and gentleman,
the umpire has called tea...
Mr Crocker-Harris...?
Uh, excuse me, sir.
Do you remember us, sir?
Now, don't tell me, dont tell me.
Wait a moment.
Trimmer, and you're Newton.
Yes, sir.
We just saw you there, sir,
thought we'd say hello, sir.
And what have you two been up to?
I'm in banking, sir.
Actually, I'm the managing director of
National Western.
Are you, indeed?
And I'm in the Army, sir.
Communications.
Well, actually, sir, Newtons the
youngest
brigadier in the British Army.
Indeed? Congratulations.
Stand easy, Brigadier.
Well, it's very nicety see you both.
Yes, sir.
I see Fletcher got his hundred, sir.
Oh, well, its only to be expected.
He's a superb player.
And...quite, uh,
quite beautiful to watch, isn't he?
Yes.
Well, continued success to you.
And to you, sir. Good luck, sir.

Sorry you're leaving.


Wonderful innings....David!
Thank you, sir.
Splendid.
Andrew, have a seat.
Oh, thank you.
Hello, Andrew.
You're looking pleased with yourself.
What have you been up to?
Well, I'm looking pleased with reason,
I think... I've just been given a present.
Oh, by whom?
Taplow.
Taplow?
That's fantastic. Hey.
So, what was the present?
Well, it's, uh, a translation of The
Agamemnon,
by, uh, by Robert Browning.
Great. Let me see.
Oh, he's inscribed it.
What does it mean?
Darling...what does it say?
Uh, it's, hits all Greek to me...!
Mr. Gilbert,can you enlighten us,
please?
Uh, how marvelous!It's a hexameter.
Yes, but what does it mean?
Well, I'm not familiar
with the-the Browning version,
but, uh, roughly, it translates as:
"God from afar looks graciously
upon a gentle master."
Oh, how sweet!
And very apt.
Can't imagine a boy giving me a
present.
Nor me.
A very wonderful thing to do, dont
you think?
Yes
Yes, very much, so, yes.
And he, he bought it with his own
pocket money.
What was the inscription again?
"God from afar looks graciously
upon a kind master?"
Well, perhaps not "kind master,"
but..."gentle master."
Yes, I agree, uh, with Mr. Gilbert.

14
I think "gentle"is a better translation.
Uh, all right. It's a lovely gift.
I would rather have this present
than anything else could think of.
Cunning little brat.
Why cunning, Laura?
Andrew, you dont have any wine.
Can I give you some champagne?
Because......yesterday, I saw Taplow
doing an impersonation of you for
Frank.
Well, obviously he was afraid that I
would tell you,and that you would put
him on Cromwell's,
or stop his switch to Frank's form, or
some other Hitlerian torture.
The book is clearly an insurance
policy...
a sweetener....a bribe...
I see....
*
Laura, go and tell him it was a lie.
Certainly not. It wasn't a lie.
Then I'll tell him.
I wouldn't do that if I were you.
He'll only hate you for your sympathy.
Andrew doesn't need sympathy.
That's his strength.
*
Andrew?
I want to make something clear about
Taplow.
He has a genuine affection
for you.Andrew, please believe me.
I think you should treasure that book.
I'd rather like to be left alone at the
moment, thank you.
You may find that it'll...have a special
meaning to you.
Oh, yes, it will mean something.
It will remind me of my own
foolishness.
You don't deserve this.
I mean...You've be entreated badly, sir.
By the school, you mean?
Not just by the school.
Never, presume to know the secrets
of a marriage.

Take my advice... sir.Make a new start


for yourself. You could still find
someone
who will care for you, who'll...
who'll be loyal, and who won't...
who'll... be faithful.
Ah. Hmm...
We...We were incompatible from the
moment we met. Although... neither of
unrealized that at the time. Of course,
Laura was, uh...was only 22 years of
age. We both required love, but of
different kinds. Worlds apart....Worlds
apart.
So, it's not really very tragic...or
abnormal.
Just the problem oaf dissatisfied wife
and an inadequate husband.
Often, I believe, a subject for farce.
Is there anything I can do to help you?
I'd like to help... you.
Yes. Don't take sides. It's so very
unbecoming.
*
Hey! Did you see that, Andrew?
112 not out - and seven for 23.
Trimmed out the school!
Skittled them out!
*
Let me do that.
You left Taplows present behind.
I put it in your study.
Thank you.
It wasn't a very good impersonation.
I'm...I'm sorry.
Laura.... We, uh...we inhabit different
worlds, you and I.We always have. We
always will.
What are you saying?
I'm saying "No."I'm saying, "Enough."
*
Better not keep the headmaster
waiting.
Do you still expect met come to your
Prize Giving?
I...I don't think either of us
has the right any longer
to expect anything of the other.
Right.Well, I'll leave first thing
tomorrow morning then.

15
As you wish.
*
And does your new school
provide spending accommodation for
staff?
We haven't found anything that we
like yet.
I've read somewhere the two worst
things in life are moving house and
divorce.
So, Laura, if I were you, I...
*
Well, I finished my rounds.
Do you know, I often think being a
headmaster's
like being a head waiter, except head
waiters
have to speak at least five languages.
*
This isn't the best moment, sir,
but we're not staying the night, so,
um...
if ever you need any financial advice,
uh, assistance indeed...anything of
that sort, please telephone.I'd like to
help.
Think of it as, um...well, as repayment.
Well, thank you very much.
This is extremely civil of you.
*
Yes!
Hello? Anybody there?
Oh, Foster.
Sorry to disturb you, sir.
I've come to pick up trunks. Mrs
Crocker-Harris.
Oh, yes, yes. She's upstairs.
Laura,Mr. Foster's here.
I'm coming!
Glorious day.
Indeed, sir. Glorious.
Sorry to hear about your...
mother-in-law, sir.
Ah, yes, yes.
Must be a disappointment, sir.
Your wife... not being there for your
farewell speech.
And...if I may be so bold, sir...
Well, what is it, Foster?
Well, I'd just like to say

the old place won't be the same


without you, sir.
Well, thank you, Foster.
That's very kind of you.
Ah, hello, Foster.Would you mind, uh...
there's a couple of suitcases upstairs.
Thank you.
I think there's, uh, just two more.
Well, I mustn't, uh, be late
for the Prize Giving.
No, eh...
You look very impressive.
Yes?
Good-bye.
Good-bye.
*
Ah, Andrew,
there you are.
Right, follow me, everyone.
Headmaster, I must tell you Ive
changed my mind.
I, uh, wish to speak second, as is my
right.
What about Mr Fletcher?
Mr Fletcher will have to speak first.
But you promised yesterday.
Yes, but I now see the matter
in an entirely different light,
and, uh, today's today.
*
Uh, we're ready for you now...
Just a second, please, Trubshaw.
Look, if you speak second...
It'll be the most dreadful anticlimax.
Be that as it may,as senior master it is
my privilege to so do.
We agreed yesterday....
All right, follow me, everyone.
The De Mill Prize for French studies:
S.R. Ryan. The Porson Prize for
Excellence:
S. Trubshaw.The Hanson Cup
for Biology: E.R. Morris.
Ladies and gentlemen,
it is my painful duty to listen with you
to a few sad words from two masters
who are leaving us.
First, I shall call upon...First, let us call
upon
Mr. David Fletcher.

16
I thought you were going to speak
first.
Well, chaps...I'm not much good, you
know...
you know, on my feet,
except when I'm running between the
wickets.
So I'll just sayI'm really...sad,
you know, to be leaving this wonderful
old place...I've loved it here.
So, you know...good luck and...goodbye.
Now, three cheers for David Fletcher!
Hip, hip...
Hooray!
Hip, hip...
Hooray!
Hip, hip...
Hooray!
And now...Mr. Andrew Crocker-Harris.
*
Study of the classics, in my view,
is a foundation of our culture.
And culture is simply an expression
of what is best in society.
Philosophy, decent government,
justice,
art, language.
Our classical heritage is no longer
valued.
And how can we help meld civilized
human beings...if we no...
if we no longer believein civilization?
*
I am sorry.I'm sorry because
I have deserved the epithet
"The Hitler of the Lower Fifth."
I am sorry because I have failed to
give you
what it is your right to demand of me
as your teacher:
sympathy,encouragement,
humanity.
I have degraded the noblest calling a
man can follow, the care and molding
of the young.
When I came to this school...
I still b-believed tha-that...

uh, that I...I had a-a vocation for


teaching.
I knew what I wanted to do,
and yet, I... I did not do it.
I can offer no excuses....I have failed,
and miserably failed. And I can only
hope
that you can find it in your hearts...
you and the countless others
who've gone before you...
to...forgive me for having let you
down.
I shan't find it...easy to forgive myself.
That is all.
*
Go on.
Sir?
Sir?
Taplow, boys.
Good-bye, sir.
Good-bye, Taplow.
Gentlemen.
Bye, sir.
Taplow?
Ave atque vale memor esto sed aliquii
nostri
[Bye bye, but remember people close
to you...]
Mm.
Well, it means
if you have any regard for me,
next term you will kindly refrain
from blowing yourself up when you
switch to science.
Thank you, sir.
Yes!
Well done, Taplow.
Thanks a lot.
Well done....!
*
Well...
You'll miss your train.
I'll...
I'll write....