A Book of Words – XX

Selections from speeches and addresses delivered between 1906 and 1927

“A Return to Civilisation”

University of Strasbourg 26 November 1921

Notes edited by Leonee Ormond


Published in the Morning Post 28 November 1921. Collected in A Book of Words, Macmillan, London, 1928.


Kipling was receiving an Honorary Degree from the University of Strasbourg in Alsace. He spoke of Strasbourg as a city which had been handed over to Germany in 1871, after the Franco-Prussian War, and then returned to France after the First World War. He stressed the attempt to stifle freedom of speech during this period, feeling that his honorary degree was particularly precious in that context.

Notes on the Text

(the page and line numbers below refer to the Uniform Edition of A Book of Words Macmillan, London 1928)

[Page 209 line 6] University of Strasbourg founded in 1631, now the largest university in France.



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