Hal, Interesting! ";And so on"; reminds me of Vonnegut's ";and so it goes"; in _Slaughterhouse-Five_. But, as you say, indicate an acceptance of or resignation to the the cyclical nature of things and deny any real progress. I think Twain's use of the phrase comes more from years of observing history's resistance to essential change; Vonnegut's use suggests more of a catch phrase. And Vonnegut's use seems to carry a more pessimistic outlook than Twain's. Twain may be just refusing to conclude on any given subject. Oh well! Jason G. Horn Gordon College Barnesville, Georgia