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Season of Gift-Giving

During this season of gift-giving, it is important to remember the example of British barrister Cecil Chubb.  In 1915, Stonehenge, that iconic standing stone circle of southern England, was up for sale because the noble family that had previously owned the prehistoric pillars had seen their line of descendants depleted by World War I. Meanwhile, Mr. Chubb was sent by his wife, Mary, to an auction in the town of Salisbury to purchase some furnishings or knickknackery to help decorate their home. On a whim, he decided to acquire Stonehenge as a unique decorative piece for his wife, believing that nothing helps cement a marriage bond like a monument of masonry. Mrs. Chubb, however, was petrified by the purchase, and Cecil eventually decided in 1918 to donate Stonehenge to the British state, allowing the public to patronize this priceless piece of prehistory in perpetuity.

Now, we can't be too critical of Mr. Chubb's somewhat erratic actions, his wife had given him a note that she was looking for "an item 18'' high", but the two apostrophes blurred together on the page and he thought she had meant "an item 18' high" . This notation has confused people on occasion.

Next up, Ladies and Gentlemen, is this massive, mysterious monument of the Neolithic age. Shall I start the bidding at 20 shillings?