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104. He Wouldn't Copy

When Mahatma Gandhi was at the high school in the first year, an incident occurred at the time of examination which is worth recording. Mr. Giles, the Educational Inspector, had come on a visit of inspection. He had set them five words to write as a spelling exercise. One of the words was "Kettle".

Mohandas had miss pelt it. The teacher tried to prompt him with the point of his boot, but he would not be prompted. It was beyond him to see that the teacher wanted him to copy the spelling from his neighbour's slate, for he thought that the teacher was there to supervise them against copying.

The result was that all the boys, except him, were found to have spelt every word correctly. Only he had been stupid. The teacher tried later on to bring this stupidity home to him, but without effect. He could never learn that art of "copying".