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An old-fashioned alarm clock

[Originally published at the now defunct group blog explananda.com]

Posted on July 19, 2005
From Thomas Hardy’s The Mayor of Casterbridge:
Poor Abel, as he was called, had an inveterate habit of over-sleeping himself and coming late to his work. His anxious will was to be among the earliest; but if his comrades omitted to pull the string that he always tied round his great toe and left hanging out of the window for that purpose, his will was as wind.