This is the first paragraph of the novel Bones in London by Edgar Wallace: “There was a slump in the shipping market, and men who were otherwise decent citizens wailed for one hour of glorious war, when Kenyon Line Deferred had stood at 88 1/2, and even so poor an organization as Siddons Steam Packets Line had been marketable at 3 3/8.”

(The story takes place after WWI. During the war, business was doing great and stock kept rising, but right alfter the war, the market slumped and businessmen were upset.)

I'm confused about "wailed for one hour of glorious war" in the sentence, especially the meaning of "for" and "of" in there. Does that mean the decent citizens cried for another glorious war, even if it would only last for an hour, during this time stock price would rise again? Or does this mean they complained about the late war for a long time? Or is there any more reasonable explanations for that?

Thanks in advance!


I think your first theory is correct. They "wailed for" (cried out to have) one more hour of war to raise stock prices again (maybe just long enough to sell the stocks).

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