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  • It is not for nothing that Zenith is in matters social rapidly becoming known as the choosiest inland city in the country.
  • It delighted him, as always; it was the neat yard of a successful business man of Zenith, that is, it was perfection, and made him also perfect.
  • CHAPTER III To George F. Babbitt, as to most prosperous citizens of Zenith, his motor car was poetry and tragedy, love and heroism.
  • He was the employment-manager and publicity-counsel of the Zenith Street Traction Company.
  • And all the while he was conscious of the loveliness of Zenith.
  • He was, for a spring-enchanted moment, the lyric and almost unselfish lover of Zenith.
  • , Oberlin Avenue & 3d St., N.E Zenith Omar Gribble, Esq., 376 North American Building, Zenith.
  • , Oberlin Avenue & 3d St., N.E Zenith Omar Gribble, Esq., 376 North American Building, Zenith.
  • Himself, he could not have given the average salary of teachers in Zenith or anywhere else.
  • As always he ignored the next two blocks, decayed blocks not yet reclaimed from the grime and shabbiness of the Zenith of 1885.
  • III The Zenith Athletic Club is not athletic and it isn’t exactly a club, but it is Zenith in perfection.
  • III The Zenith Athletic Club is not athletic and it isn’t exactly a club, but it is Zenith in perfection.
  • At the Zenith Athletic Club, privacy was very bad form.
  • They talked to the secretary of the Zenith Foundry Company about an interesting artistic project—a cast-iron fence for Linden Lane Cemetery.
  • Updike was Zenith’s professional bachelor; a slim-waisted man of forty-six with an effeminate voice and taste in flowers, cretonnes, and flappers.
  • And at that moment in Zenith, a cocaine-runner and a prostitute were drinking cocktails in Healey Hanson’s saloon on Front Street.
  • At that moment in Zenith, two men sat in a laboratory.
  • He had come from the Civil War straight to a farm which, though it was officially within the city-limits of Zenith, was primitive as the backwoods.
  • Of the larger cities of the land, only Zenith had hesitated to submit its vices to Mike Monday and his expert reclamation corps.
  • "Zenith’s a city with gigantic power—gigantic buildings, gigantic machines, gigantic transportation," meditated Doane.
  • No, what I fight in Zenith is standardization of thought, and, of course, the traditions of competition.
  • Then this boosting—Sneakingly I have a notion that Zenith is a better place to live in than Manchester or Glasgow or Lyons or Berlin or Turin—
  • VI At that moment in Zenith, Jake Offutt, the politician, and Henry T. Thompson were in conference.
  • At that moment in Zenith, three hundred and forty or fifty thousand Ordinary People were asleep, a vast unpenetrated shadow.
  • Vecchia was not a caterer, he was The Caterer of Zenith.
  • In Floral Heights and the other prosperous sections of Zenith, especially in the "young married set," there were many women who had nothing to do.
  • A stranger suddenly dropped into the business-center of Zenith could not have told whether he was in a city of Oregon or Georgia, Ohio or Maine, Oklahoma or Manitoba.
  • II There was nothing of the giant in the aspect of the man who was beginning to awaken on the sleeping-porch of a Dutch Colonial house in that residential district of Zenith known as Floral Heights.
  • At that moment in Zenith, there was a conference of four union officials as to whether the twelve thousand coal-miners within a hundred miles of the city should strike.
  • BABBITT By Sinclair Lewis To Edith Wharton BABBITT CHAPTER I THE towers of Zenith aspired above the morning mist; austere towers of steel and cement and limestone, sturdy as cliffs and delicate as silver rods.
  • Supposing Lyte and I were stinking enough to want to ruin any fellow human, don’t you suppose we know it’s to our own selfish interest to have everybody in Zenith prosperous?
  • Since national prohibition was now in force, and since Zenith was notoriously law-abiding, they were compelled to keep the cocktails innocent by drinking them out of tea-cups.
  • At that moment the steel and cement town which composed the factory of the Pullmore Tractor Company of Zenith was running on night shift to fill an order of tractors for the Polish army.
  • The room displayed a modest and pleasant color-scheme, after one of the best standard designs of the decorator who "did the interiors" for most of the speculative-builders’ houses in Zenith.
  • IV At that moment In the city of Zenith, Horace Updike was making love to Lucile McKelvey in her mauve drawing-room on Royal Ridge, after their return from a lecture by an eminent English novelist.
  • Though he did know the market-price, inch by inch, of certain districts of Zenith, he did not know whether the police force was too large or too small, or whether it was in alliance with gambling and prostitution.
  • At that moment Lloyd Mallam, the poet, owner of the Hafiz Book Shop, was finishing a rondeau to show how diverting was life amid the feuds of medieval Florence, but how dull it was in so obvious a place as Zenith.
  • Neither the Advocate-Times, the Evening Advocate, nor the Bulletin of the Zenith Chamber of Commerce had ever had an editorial on the matter, and until one of them had spoken he found it hard to form an original opinion.
  • You haven’t unless they lie in the Cemetery Beautiful, LINDEN LANE the only strictly up-to-date burial place in or near Zenith, where exquisitely gardened plots look from daisy-dotted hill-slopes across the smiling fields of Dorchester.
  • —all she wants is to marry a millionaire, and live in Europe, and hold some preacher’s hand, and simultaneously at the same time stay right here in Zenith and be some blooming kind of a socialist agitator or boss charity-worker or some damn thing!
  • At that moment Seneca Doane, the radical lawyer, and Dr. Kurt Yavitch, the histologist (whose report on the destruction of epithelial cells under radium had made the name of Zenith known in Munich, Prague, and Rome), were talking in Doane’s library.
  • "Say, gee, I had a wild old time in Zenith!" he gloried.
  • Of course the average fellow in Zenith has got more Individual Initiative than the fourflushers here, but I got to hand it to New York.
  • The nervous loquacity and opinionation of the Zenith Athletic Club dropped from them.
  • Since it was to be his last before he reached Zenith, he finished it down to an inch stub.
  • He did go and support the team, and enhance the glory of Zenith, by yelling "Attaboy!" and "Rotten!"
  • In Zenith it was as necessary for a Successful Man to belong to a country club as it was to wear a linen collar.
  • It was to hold its annual convention at Monarch, Zenith’s chief rival among the cities of the state.
  • Martin Lumsen’s little boy Willy carried a tasseled banner inscribed "Zenith the Zip City—Zeal, Zest and Zowie—1,000,000 in 1935."
  • He leaped on a bench, shouting to the crowd: "What’s the matter with Zenith?"
  • He was to share a room at the Hotel Sedgwick with W. A. Rogers, that shrewd, rustic-looking Zenith dealer in farm-lands.
  • Next morning, with tremendous casualness, Babbitt asked the girl at the hotel news-stand for the newspapers from Zenith.
  • It was composed of the Zenith brokers, dressed as cowpunchers, bareback riders, Japanese jugglers.
  • Snothin’ you can’t find in Zenith.
  • In the morning, when he returned to Zenith, his desire for rebellion was partly satisfied.
  • Babbitt’s excursion was never known to his family, nor to any one in Zenith save Rogers and Wing.
  • Seneca Doane, though he was a lawyer and a graduate of the State University, was candidate for mayor of Zenith on an alarming labor ticket.
  • II Crowded in his car, they came driving up to Turnverein Hall, South Zenith—Babbitt, his wife, Verona, Ted, and Paul and Zilla Riesling.
  • III Mr. Lucas Prout and Sound Business defeated Mr. Seneca Doane and Class Rule, and Zenith was again saved.
  • His reputation for oratory established, at the dinner of the Zenith Real Estate Board he made the Annual Address.
  • And it’s because Zenith has so large a proportion of such men that it’s the most stable, the greatest of our cities.
  • I tell you, Zenith and her sister-cities are producing a new type of civilization.
  • There are many resemblances between Zenith and these other burgs, and I’m darn glad of it!
  • I claim that Zenith is the best partner and the fastest-growing partner of the whole caboodle.
  • He had gone on, had captured the construction-company once owned by the Dodsworths, best-known pioneer family of Zenith.
  • Zenith ardently received Sir Gerald (who had come to America to buy coal).
  • At the Zenith Athletic Club they discussed it amply.
  • His church, the Chatham Road Presbyterian, was one of the largest and richest, one of the most oaken and velvety, in Zenith.
  • Mr. Eathorne was the seventy-year-old president of the First State Bank of Zenith.
  • He was the great-grandson of one of the five men who founded Zenith, in 1792, and he was of the third generation of bankers.
  • It’s the fourth largest in Zenith, but there’s no reason why we should take anybody’s dust.
  • The Eathorne Mansion preserves the memory of the "nice parts" of Zenith as they appeared from 1860 to 1900.
  • When Ted had returned to Zenith, Babbitt was lonely.
  • ’Member we met in Zenith, at Charley McKelvey’s?
  • Embarrassed, standing, wondering how he could retreat, Babbitt maundered, "Well, I suppose you been having a great trip since we saw you in Zenith."
  • I often feel that way in Zenith.
  • I wish to thunder we’d been better acquainted in Zenith.
  • And remember whenever you get to Zenith, the latch-string is always out.
  • In Zenith he called on her.
  • None of these is more ardent than the Zenith Boosters’ Club.
  • The second March lunch of the Zenith Boosters was the most important of the year, as it was to be followed by the annual election of officers.
  • Presently he called on the visiting secretary of the Zenith Rotary Club, a rival organization.
  • CHAPTER X No apartment-house in Zenith had more resolutely experimented in condensation than the Revelstoke Arms, in which Paul and Zilla Riesling had a flat.
  • Without request, the Zenith delegates (except Rountree) gathered round a marble dancing nymph and sang "Here we come, the fellows from Zenith, the Zip Citee."
  • Without request, the Zenith delegates (except Rountree) gathered round a marble dancing nymph and sang "Here we come, the fellows from Zenith, the Zip Citee."
  • —aside from these three, it’s evident to any one with a head for facts that Zenith is the finest example of American life and prosperity to be found anywhere.
  • All of them, save Cecil Rountree, who was such a snob that he never wore badges, displayed celluloid buttons the size of dollars and lettered "We zoom for Zenith."
  • The entrance lobby of the Athletic Club was Gothic, the washroom Roman Imperial, the lounge Spanish Mission, and the reading-room in Chinese Chippendale, but the gem of the club was the dining-room, the masterpiece of Ferdinand Reitman, Zenith’s busiest architect.
  • He had faith; he was certain that if Lincoln were alive, he would be electioneering for Mr. W. G. Harding—unless he came to Zenith and electioneered for Lucas Prout.
  • Babbitt usually sat at the one near the door, with a group including Gunch, Finkelstein, Professor Pumphrey, Howard Littlefield, his neighbor, T. Cholmondeley Frink, the poet and advertising-agent, and Orville Jones, whose laundry was in many ways the best in Zenith.
  • Well, it’s been worth it, to be able to associate with the finest gentlemen in Zenith, at the clubs and so on, and I wouldn’t want you to drop out of the gentlemen class—the class that are just as red-blooded as the Common People but still have power and personality.
  • "No, but still, there was snow at Tiflis, Montana, yesterday," said the Scholar, "and you remember the blizzard they had out West three days ago—thirty inches of snow at Greeley, Colorado—and two years ago we had a snow-squall right here in Zenith on the twenty-fifth of April."
  • They were staying at the modest Eden Hotel, because Zenith business men always stayed at the Eden, but they had dinner in the brocade and crystal Versailles Room of the Regency Hotel.
  • This residential settlement, Floral Heights, was on a rise; and though the center of the city was three miles away—Zenith had between three and four hundred thousand inhabitants now—he could see the top of the Second National Tower, an Indiana limestone building of thirty-five stories.
  • There were two especially distinguished guests: the leading man of the "Bird of Paradise" company, playing this week at the Dodsworth Theater, and the mayor of Zenith, the Hon. Lucas Prout.
  • CHAPTER XIV THIS autumn a Mr. W. G. Harding, of Marion, Ohio, was appointed President of the United States, but Zenith was less interested in the national campaign than in the local election.
  • And—I remember once in London I saw a picture of an American suburb, in a toothpaste ad on the back of the Saturday Evening Post—an elm-lined snowy street of these new houses, Georgian some of ’em, or with low raking roofs and—The kind of street you’d find here in Zenith, say in Floral Heights.
  • Once, in the rotogravure section of the Sunday Advocate-Times, there was a photograph of Babbitt and a dozen other business men, with the caption "Leaders of Zenith Finance and Commerce Who Back Prout."
  • Every intelligent person knows that Zenith manufactures more condensed milk and evaporated cream, more paper boxes, and more lighting-fixtures, than any other city in the United States, if not in the world.
  • Our greatness, however, lies not alone in punchful prosperity but equally in that public spirit, that forward-looking idealism and brotherhood, which has marked Zenith ever since its foundation by the Fathers.
  • Course—competition—brings out the best—survival of the fittest—but—But I mean: Take all these fellows we know, the kind right here in the club now, that seem to be perfectly content with their home-life and their businesses, and that boost Zenith and the Chamber of Commerce and holler for a million population.
  • Warren Whitby, the broker, who had a gift of verse for banquets and birthdays, had added to Frink’s City Song a special verse for the realtors’ convention: Oh, here we come, The fellows from Zenith, the Zip Citee.
  • In the city of Zenith, in the barbarous twentieth century, a family’s motor indicated its social rank as precisely as the grades of the peerage determined the rank of an English family—indeed, more precisely, considering the opinion of old county families upon newly created brewery barons and woolen-mill viscounts.
  • CHAPTER XIX I THE Zenith Street Traction Company planned to build car-repair shops in the suburb of Dorchester, but when they came to buy the land they found it held, on options, by the Babbitt-Thompson Realty Company.
  • When I remind you that we have one motor car for every five and seven-eighths persons in the city, then I give a rock-ribbed practical indication of the kind of progress and braininess which is synonymous with the name Zenith!
  • She merely hinted that Orville Jones wore a toupe, that Mrs. T. Cholmondeley Frink’s singing resembled a Ford going into high, and that the Hon. Otis Deeble, mayor of Zenith and candidate for Congress, was a flatulent fool (which was quite true).
  • The Pompeian Barber Shop was in the basement of the Hotel Thornleigh, largest and most dynamically modern hotel in Zenith.
  • All along the highway into Zenith, under the low and gentle moon, motors were parked and dim figures were clasped in revery.
  • With melancholy he looked back at the last suburb of Zenith.
  • That moment he started for Zenith.
  • In his journey there was no appearance of flight, but he was fleeing, and four days afterward he was on the Zenith train.
  • II Five hours after he had arrived in Zenith and told his wife how hot it was in New York, he went to call on Zilla.
  • The university was at Mohalis only fifteen miles from Zenith, and Ted often came down for the week-end.
  • There was no one in Zenith who talked of anything but the strike, and no one who did not take sides.
  • In Zenith it is impossible to lunch with a neighbor’s wife without the fact being known, before nightfall, in every house in your circle.
  • CHAPTER XXX I THE summer before, Mrs. Babbitt’s letters had crackled with desire to return to Zenith.
  • To the League belonged most of the prosperous citizens of Zenith.
  • You mean here in Zenith.
  • He had often and weightily pondered flappers smoking in Zenith restaurants, but he knew only one woman who smoked—Mrs. Sam Doppelbrau, his flighty neighbor.
  • Then he was in Zenith.
  • No, nor all of Zenith.
  • His convention paper had given him the beginning of a reputation for oratory, so the Republican-Democratic Central Committee sent him to the Seventh Ward and South Zenith, to address small audiences of workmen and clerks, and wives uneasy with their new votes.
  • One evening a number of young men raided the Zenith Socialist Headquarters, burned its records, beat the office staff, and agreeably dumped desks out of the window.
  • He was dwarfed and dumb and a little awed, but that insignificance freed him from the pomposities of being Mr. George F. Babbitt of Zenith; saddened and freed his heart.
  • When Zenith’s lone Conscientious Objector came home from prison and was righteously run out of town, the newspapers referred to the perpetrators as an "unidentified mob."
  • But on the train his pride was restored by meeting delegates from Sparta, Pioneer, and other smaller cities of the state, who listened respectfully when, as a magnifico from the metropolis of Zenith, he explained politics and the value of a Good Sound Business Administration.
  • Out of the dozen contradictory Zeniths which together make up the true and complete Zenith, none is so powerful and enduring yet none so unfamiliar to the citizens as the small, still, dry, polite, cruel Zenith of the William Eathornes; and for that tiny hierarchy the other Zeniths unwittingly labor and insignificantly die.
  • Out of the dozen contradictory Zeniths which together make up the true and complete Zenith, none is so powerful and enduring yet none so unfamiliar to the citizens as the small, still, dry, polite, cruel Zenith of the William Eathornes; and for that tiny hierarchy the other Zeniths unwittingly labor and insignificantly die.
  • He found opportunities to remark that Dr. Angus was a benefactor to humanity, Maxwell and Howard Littlefield profound scholars, Charles McKelvey an inspiration to ambitious youth, and Mrs. McKelvey an adornment to the social circles of Zenith, Washington, New York, Paris, and numbers of other places.
  • CHAPTER XXVII I THE strike which turned Zenith into two belligerent camps; white and red, began late in September with a walk-out of telephone girls and linemen, in protest against a reduction of wages.
  • He scanned again his discovery that he could never run away from Zenith and family and office, because in his own brain he bore the office and the family and every street and disquiet and illusion of Zenith.
  • He scanned again his discovery that he could never run away from Zenith and family and office, because in his own brain he bore the office and the family and every street and disquiet and illusion of Zenith.
  • Out of the dozen contradictory Zeniths which together make up the true and complete Zenith, none is so powerful and enduring yet none so unfamiliar to the citizens as the small, still, dry, polite, cruel Zenith of the William Eathornes; and for that tiny hierarchy the other Zeniths unwittingly labor and insignificantly die.
  • Out of the dozen contradictory Zeniths which together make up the true and complete Zenith, none is so powerful and enduring yet none so unfamiliar to the citizens as the small, still, dry, polite, cruel Zenith of the William Eathornes; and for that tiny hierarchy the other Zeniths unwittingly labor and insignificantly die.
  • He had heard it said that "conditions" in the County Jail and the Zenith City Prison were not very "scientific;" he had, with indignation at the criticism of Zenith, skimmed through a report in which the notorious pessimist Seneca Doane, the radical lawyer, asserted that to throw boys and young girls into a bull-pen crammed with men suffering from syphilis, delirium tremens, and insanity was not the perfect way of educating them.
  • He had heard it said that "conditions" in the County Jail and the Zenith City Prison were not very "scientific;" he had, with indignation at the criticism of Zenith, skimmed through a report in which the notorious pessimist Seneca Doane, the radical lawyer, asserted that to throw boys and young girls into a bull-pen crammed with men suffering from syphilis, delirium tremens, and insanity was not the perfect way of educating them.
  • He sang eloquently the advantages of proximity of school-buildings to rentable homes, but he did not know—he did not know that it was worth while to know—whether the city schoolrooms were properly heated, lighted, ventilated, furnished; he did not know how the teachers were chosen; and though he chanted "One of the boasts of Zenith is that we pay our teachers adequately," that was because he had read the statement in the Advocate-Times.
  • Where Zilla mocked him as a country boy, Myra said indignantly that he was ever so much solider than the young dandies who had been born in the great city of Zenith—an ancient settlement in 1897, one hundred and five years old, with two hundred thousand population, the queen and wonder of all the state and, to the Catawba boy, George Babbitt, so vast and thunderous and luxurious that he was flattered to know a girl ennobled by birth in Zenith.
  • Where Zilla mocked him as a country boy, Myra said indignantly that he was ever so much solider than the young dandies who had been born in the great city of Zenith—an ancient settlement in 1897, one hundred and five years old, with two hundred thousand population, the queen and wonder of all the state and, to the Catawba boy, George Babbitt, so vast and thunderous and luxurious that he was flattered to know a girl ennobled by birth in Zenith.
  • IV The Zenith branch of the League of the Higher Illumination met in the smaller ballroom at the Hotel Thornleigh, a refined apartment with pale green walls and plaster wreaths of roses, refined parquet flooring, and ultra-refined frail gilt chairs.
  • They were large, resolute, big-jawed men, and they were all high lords in the land of Zenith—Dr. Dilling the surgeon, Charles McKelvey the contractor, and, most dismaying of all, the white-bearded Colonel Rutherford Snow, owner of the Advocate-Times.
  • The guests were Howard Littlefield, the doctor of philosophy who furnished publicity and comforting economics to the Street Traction Company; Vergil Gunch, the coal-dealer, equally powerful in the Elks and in the Boosters’ Club; Eddie Swanson the agent for the Javelin Motor Car, who lived across the street; and Orville Jones, owner of the Lily White Laundry, which justly announced itself "the biggest, busiest, bulliest cleanerie shoppe in Zenith."
  • Some time I hope folks will quit handing all the credit to a lot of moth-eaten, mildewed, out-of-date, old, European dumps, and give proper credit to the famous Zenith spirit, that clean fighting determination to win Success that has made the little old Zip City celebrated in every land and clime, wherever condensed milk and pasteboard cartons are known!
  • Babbitt read aloud at breakfast-table: ’Twixt the original and Oriental decorations, the strange and delicious food, and the personalities both of the distinguished guests, the charming hostess and the noted host, never has Zenith seen a more recherche affair than the Ceylon dinner-dance given last evening by Mr. and Mrs. Charles McKelvey to Sir Gerald Doak.
  • A line of fifty trucks from the Zenith Steel and Machinery Company was attacked by strikers-rushing out from the sidewalk, pulling drivers from the seats, smashing carburetors and commutators, while telephone girls cheered from the walk, and small boys heaved bricks.
  • Down the echoing spaces of the hall the delegates paraded after Willy Lumsen’s banner, the men waving their cigars, the women conscious of their new frocks and strings of beads, all singing to the tune of Auld Lang Syne the official City Song, written by Chum Frink: Good old Zenith, Our kin and kith, Wherever we may be, Hats in the ring, We blithely sing Of thy Prosperity.
  • On the way back Babbitt picked up his partner and father-in-law, Henry T. Thompson, at his kitchen-cabinet works, and they drove through South Zenith, a high-colored, banging, exciting region: new factories of hollow tile with gigantic wire-glass windows, surly old red-brick factories stained with tar, high-perched water-tanks, big red trucks like locomotives, and, on a score of hectic side-tracks, far-wandering freight-cars from the New York Central and apple orchards, the Great…
  • …was supposed that the Babbitt-Thompson Company were merely agents for Glen Oriole, serving the real owner, Jake Offutt, but the fact was that Babbitt and Thompson owned sixty-two per cent. of the Glen, the president and purchasing agent of the Zenith Street Traction Company owned twenty-eight per cent., and Jake Offutt (a gang-politician, a small manufacturer, a tobacco-chewing old farceur who enjoyed dirty politics, business diplomacy, and cheating at poker) had only ten per cent.,…
  • …fool girls with their dresses up to their knees and powdered and painted and rouged and God knows what all as if they were chorus-girls, then you’d know—and you’d suppose—that if there’s any one thing that I stand for in the real-estate circles of Zenith, it is that we ought to always speak of each other only in the friendliest terms and institute a spirit of brotherhood and cooperation, and so I certainly can’t suppose and I can’t imagine my hating any realtor, not even that dirty,…
  • It did not become the largest school in Zenith—the Central Methodist Church kept ahead of it by methods which Dr. Drew scored as "unfair, undignified, un-American, ungentlemanly, and unchristian"—but it climbed from fourth place to second, and there was rejoicing in heaven, or at least in that portion of heaven included in the parsonage of Dr. Drew, while Babbitt had much praise and good repute.
  • Well, zize saying: You see I happen to know what a big noise Senny Doane is outside of Zenith, but of course a prophet hasn’t got any honor in his own country, and Senny, darn his old hide, he’s so blame modest that he never lets folks know the kind of an outfit he travels with when he goes abroad.
  • But aside from these three cities, which are notoriously so overgrown that no decent white man, nobody who loves his wife and kiddies and God’s good out-o’doors and likes to shake the hand of his neighbor in greeting, would want to live in them—and let me tell you right here and now, I wouldn’t trade a high-class Zenith acreage development for the whole length and breadth of Broadway or State Street!
  • Darn shame for two married people to drift apart after all these years; darn rotten shame; but nothing could bring them together now, as long as he refused to let Zenith bully him into taking orders—and he was by golly not going to let anybody bully him into anything, or wheedle him or coax him either!
  • Though Babbitt had deserted his family and dwelt with Joe Paradise in the wilderness, though he had become a liberal, though he had been quite sure, on the night before he reached Zenith, that neither he nor the city would be the same again, ten days after his return he could not believe that he had ever been away.
  • When I add that we have an unparalleled number of miles of paved streets, bathrooms vacuum cleaners, and all the other signs of civilization; that our library and art museum are well supported and housed in convenient and roomy buildings; that our park-system is more than up to par, with its handsome driveways adorned with grass, shrubs, and statuary, then I give but a hint of the all round unlimited greatness of Zenith!
  • Of a decent man in Zenith it was required that he should belong to one, preferably two or three, of the innumerous "lodges" and prosperity-boosting lunch-clubs; to the Rotarians, the Kiwanis, or the Boosters; to the Oddfellows, Moose, Masons, Red Men, Woodmen, Owls, Eagles, Maccabees, Knights of Pythias, Knights of Columbus, and other secret orders characterized by a high degree of heartiness, sound morals, and reverence for the Constitution.
  • It may be that his frightened repentance of the night and morning had not eaten in, but this dehumanizing interment of her who had been so pathetically human shook him utterly, and as he crouched again on the high stool in the laboratory he swore faith to his wife …. to Zenith …. to business efficiency …. to the Boosters’ Club …. to every faith of the Clan of Good Fellows.
  • …the highest-paid conductors on the market, providing he ain’t a Hun—it goes right into Beantown and New York and Washington; it plays at the best theaters to the most cultured and moneyed people; it gives such class-advertising as a town can get in no other way; and the guy who is so short-sighted as to crab this orchestra proposition is passing up the chance to impress the glorious name of Zenith on some big New York millionaire that might-that might establish a branch factory here!
  • Since he is not here, I trust that you will bear with me if, as a friend and neighbor, as one who is proud to share with you the common blessing of being a resident of the great city of Zenith, I tell you in all candor, honesty, and sincerity how the issues of this critical campaign appear to one plain man of business—to one who, brought up to the blessings of poverty and of manual labor, has, even when Fate condemned him to sit at a desk, yet never forgotten how it feels, by heck, to…
  • CHAPTER XXXIV I THE Good Citizens’ League had spread through the country, but nowhere was it so effective and well esteemed as in cities of the type of Zenith, commercial cities of a few hundred thousand inhabitants, most of which—though not all—lay inland, against a background of cornfields and mines and of small towns which depended upon them for mortgage-loans, table-manners, art, social philosophy and millinery.
  • Besides these hearty fellows, these salesmen of prosperity, there were the aristocrats, that is, the men who were richer or had been rich for more generations: the presidents of banks and of factories, the land-owners, the corporation lawyers, the fashionable doctors, and the few young-old men who worked not at all but, reluctantly remaining in Zenith, collected luster-ware and first editions as though they were back in Paris.
  • Oh, the G. C. L. has to have some other ostensible purposes—frinstance here in Zenith I think it ought to support the park-extension project and the City Planning Committee—and then, too, it should have a social aspect, being made up of the best people—have dances and so on, especially as one of the best ways it can put the kibosh on cranks is to apply this social boycott business to folks big enough so you can’t reach ’cause otherwise.
  • She said that Mrs. Mudge would now make it plain to the simplest intellect how the Sun Spirit could be cultivated, and they who had been thinking about cultivating one would do well to treasure Mrs. Mudge’s words, because even Zenith (and everybody knew that Zenith stood in the van of spiritual and New Thought progress) didn’t often have the opportunity to sit at the feet of such an inspiring Optimist and Metaphysical Seer as Mrs. Opal Emerson Mudge, who had lived the Life of Wider…
  • …Mudge would now make it plain to the simplest intellect how the Sun Spirit could be cultivated, and they who had been thinking about cultivating one would do well to treasure Mrs. Mudge’s words, because even Zenith (and everybody knew that Zenith stood in the van of spiritual and New Thought progress) didn’t often have the opportunity to sit at the feet of such an inspiring Optimist and Metaphysical Seer as Mrs. Opal Emerson Mudge, who had lived the Life of Wider Usefulness through…
  • That was the beginning and quite completely the end of his investigations into Zenith’s charities and corrections; and as to the "vice districts" he brightly expressed it, "Those are things that no decent man monkeys with.
  • You don’t want to just look at what these small towns are, you want to look at what they’re aiming to become, and they all got an ambition that in the long run is going to make ’cause the finest spots on earth—they all want to be just like Zenith!"
  • "At that, though," announced the first "they’re selling quite some booze in Zenith.
  • A broker from Minnemagantic said, "Monarch is a lot sportier than Zenith.
  • You Zenith tightwads haven’t got any joints like these here."
  • (In Zenith, an Old Family is one which came to town before 1840.
  • Seems to think I’m a little tin archangel, and the best-looking man in Zenith."
  • Thought you’d gone back to Zenith."
  • I’ll hand her a good fairy-story when I get back to Zenith."
  • If a fellow is keyed up to what you might call intensive living, the way you get it here in Zenith—all the hustle and mental activity that’s going on with a bunch of live-wires like the Boosters and here in the Z.A.C., why, he’s got to save his nerves by having the best."
  • "Pictures and books are fine for those that have the time to study ’em, but they don’t shoot out on the road and holler ’This is what little old Zenith can put up in the way of Culture.’
  • Then Chum Frink addressed them: "Some of you may feel that it’s out of place here to talk on a strictly highbrow and artistic subject, but I want to come out flatfooted and ask you boys to O.K. the proposition of a Symphony Orchestra for Zenith.
  • Come now, Lady Wycombe, if you’ll take the Duke of Zenith’s arm, we will proambulate in to the magnolious feed!"
  • The Advocate-Times reported this speech with unusual fullness: "One of the livest banquets that has recently been pulled off occurred last night in the annual Get-Together Fest of the Zenith Real Estate Board, held in the Venetian Ball Room of the O’Hearn House.
  • Then Babbitt slid into a sea of eloquence: "Ladies and gentlemen of the Sixteenth Ward, there is one who cannot be with us here to-night, a man than whom there is no more stalwart Trojan in all the political arena—I refer to our leader, the Honorable Lucas Prout, standard-bearer of the city and county of Zenith.
  • He devoured the statistics which were given to him, and marveled to his roommate, W. A. Rogers, "Of course this town isn’t a patch on Zenith; it hasn’t got our outlook and natural resources; but did you know—I nev’ did till to-day—that they manufactured seven hundred and sixty-three million feet of lumber last year?
  • IV Babbitt lay abed at his hotel, imagining the Zenith Athletic Club asking him, "What kind of a time d’you have in Chicago?" and his answering, "Oh, fair; ran around with Sir Gerald Doak a lot;" picturing himself meeting Lucile McKelvey and admonishing her, "You’re all right, Mrs. Mac, when you aren’t trying to pull this highbrow pose.
  • But in nothing was he more clearly revealed as the Prominent Citizen than in his lecture on "Brass Tacks Facts on Real Estate," as delivered before the class in Sales Methods at the Zenith Y.M.C.A. The Advocate-Times reported the lecture so fully that Vergil Gunch said to Babbitt, "You’re getting to be one of the classiest spellbinders in town.
  • Voices thick, satisfied, authoritative, hurtled along the marble walls, bounded from the ceiling of lavender-bordered milky tiles, while the lords of the city, the barons of insurance and law and fertilizers and motor tires, laid down the law for Zenith; announced that the day was warm-indeed, indisputably of spring; that wages were too high and the interest on mortgages too low; that Babe Ruth, the eminent player of baseball, was a noble man; and that "those two nuts at the Climax…
  • " ’But it’s here in Zenith, the home for manly men and womanly women and bright kids, that you find the largest proportion of these Regular Guys, and that’s what sets it in a class by itself; that’s why Zenith will be remembered in history as having set the pace for a civilization that shall endure when the old time-killing ways are gone forever and the day of earnest efficient endeavor shall have dawned all round the world!
  • " ’But it’s here in Zenith, the home for manly men and womanly women and bright kids, that you find the largest proportion of these Regular Guys, and that’s what sets it in a class by itself; that’s why Zenith will be remembered in history as having set the pace for a civilization that shall endure when the old time-killing ways are gone forever and the day of earnest efficient endeavor shall have dawned all round the world!
  • They were the Bunch, wise and beautiful and amusing; they were Bohemians and urbanites, accustomed to all the luxuries of Zenith: dance-halls, movie-theaters, and roadhouses; and in a cynical superiority to people who were "slow" or "tightwad" they cackled: "Oh, Pete, did I tell you what that dub of a cashier said when I came in late yesterday?
  • He smelled again that polite stuffiness to be found only in church parlors; he recalled the case of drab Sunday School books: "Hetty, a Humble Heroine" and "Josephus, a Lad of Palestine;" he thumbed once more the high-colored text-cards which no boy wanted but no boy liked to throw away, because they were somehow sacred; he was tortured by the stumbling rote of thirty-five years ago, as in the vast Zenith church he listened to: "Now, Edgar, you read the next verse.
  • Babbitt’s porter was an obsequious gray-haired negro who did him an honor highly esteemed in the land of Zenith—greeted him by name.

  • There are no more uses of "zenith" in the book.


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  • He met her when her career was at its zenith.
  • ...and the sun passed the zenith and started down.
    John Steinbeck  --  The Grapes of Wrath

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