HUMAN FACULTY 279
prizes of much value were to be awarded to the best made men in Sandow's gymnastic classes, as estimated by three examiners, of whom Sir A. Conan Doyle was one, while Sandow himself acted as referee.
I regret to have destroyed or mislaid the notes I made, so the following description of the very instructive ceremony may be inaccurate in small details.
The prizes were three, of an aggregate value of not far from £ i ooo, and given by Mr. Sandow. H e had made a tour to his many centres of gymnastic teaching in England, and picked out from each of them the man or men who were most likely to stand well in the competition. The day arrived ; I got a good seat, and was prepared with an opera glass. The competitors marched into the arena ; they were about eighty in number, and they were in ranks of ten abreast. They were stripped to the waist, but calico cloths coloured something like a leopard skin were thrown over their shoulders. So they marched round the arena, then the front row discarded their leopard skins, and jumped each man on to one of a row of pedestals arranged in front of the organ. The electric light was thrown on them. The three examiners walked in front and behind, taking notes and interchanging views. The man who was selected as the best of this batch went to one side ; the others rejoined their companions. The same proceeding was gone through with the second row, and so on successively to the end. Then the selected ones came forward and stood on the pedestals as before, and were examined still more minutely, if possible. Finally, the first, second, and third man in