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Title: Punch or the London Charivari, Vol. 147, October 7, 1914
Author: Various
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Punch or the London Charivari, Vol. 147, October 7, 1914" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.

Transcriber's note: In the article "THE HELPMEET", various words and
phrases have been struck through in the printed version. These passages
are marked thus:- ~Maybe love was~


  VOL. 147

  OCTOBER 7, 1914.


General VILLA has now declared war on President CARRANZA. Everybody's
doing it.

       * * *

Is there, we wonder, a single unfair weapon which the Germans have not
used? It is now said that not infrequently a German band is made to play
when the enemy's infantry advances to attack.

       * * *

A regrettable mistake is reported from South London. A thoroughly
patriotic man was sat upon by a Cockney crowd for declaring that the
KAISER was a Nero.

       * * *

Servia, _The Times_ announces, will in future be called Serbia in our
contemporary's columns. We would suggest that in the same way Bavaria
might be called Babaria.

       * * *

All German soldiers are close-cropped. To show, apparently, that they
have the courage of the conviction they deserve.

       * * *

The German officers in France are said to be extremely careful as to
what they eat, betraying a great fear of being poisoned. It is, of
course, a fact that one grain of vermin-killer would dispose of any one
of them.

       * * *

It has been suggested that the explanation of the KAISER may be that he
is a "throw-back." His parents were gentlefolk, but his ancestor,
FREDERICK WILLIAM I., was a well-known undesirable.

       * * *

It is now stated that the reason why the German troops destroyed the
historic edifices of Louvain and Rheims was the KAISER'S order that no
stone was to be left unturned to prove that the Germans are the apostles
of Culture.

       * * *

It has been decided, after all, that SHAKSPEARE may be played in
Germany; and the proposal that the name of the bard should be changed to
Wilhelm Säbelschüttler has been dropped in deference to the wishes of
the KAISER, who thought it might lead to confusion.

       * * *

It has, we are glad to see, been denied that CARPENTIER, the famous
boxer, has been wounded. This reminds us, by-the-by, of one more
miscalculation that the German War Party made. In choosing their date
for the outbreak of war they relied on the fact that CARPENTIER was not
yet liable for service.

       * * *

The Germans have had a bright new idea, and are calling us a nation of
shopkeepers. Certainly we have been fairly successful so far in
repelling their counter attacks.

       * * *


Sound policy this. The enemy cannot fight without his commissariat.

       * * *

A well-known Floor Polish firm has issued a notice declaring that it is
entirely a British concern. However, we shall not complain of their
dealing with an alien enemy if they care to supply a little of it for
the benefit of German manners.

       * * *

Dr. KARL VOLLMÖLLER, who is chiefly notable for his spectacle "The
Miracle," has, _The Express_ tells us, been acting for the past month as
Germany's head Press agent in Rome, and has now sailed for New York. One
would have thought that there was greater need for him in Germany, where
only a miracle can save the situation.

       * * *

Publishers seem to be realising that books, to sell nowadays, must have
warlike titles. Mrs. KATE DOUGLAS WIGGIN'S new volume is, we note,
called _A Summer in a Cañon_.

       * * *

By the way, _The Price of Love_ is announced. It is six shillings.

       *       *       *       *       *

Illustration: Hawker. "THIS AIN'T MY USUAL WAY O' GITTIN' A LIVIN',



       *       *       *       *       *


The dramatic critic of _The Daily Chronicle_, speaking of the first
performance of _Mameena_, observes, "Mr. Oscar Asche, jutting,
preponderant and softly corrugated, was a splendid Zulu chief."

Following this distinguished example, we have endeavoured to express the
histrionic inwardness of some of our leading actors and actresses on
similar lines:--

Sir GEORGE ALEXANDER, dolicocephalic, fimbriated and supra-lapsarian,
interpreted the _rôle_ of the archdeacon with consummate skill.

Sir HERBERT BEERBOHM TREE, goliardic, tarantulated and pontostomatous,
invested the character of the great financier with a fluorescent charm.

Mr. AINLEY, prognathous, salicylic and partially oxydised, made a superb

Miss GLADYS COOPER, lambent, pyramidal and turturine, fully realized the
polyphonic cajoleries of _Seraphina_.

       *       *       *       *       *

A Coincidence.

_Thursday._--The Kaiser distributes 30,000 iron crosses.

_Friday._--Great Britain declares pig-iron contraband of war.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "Members of the Tooloona Rifle Club have collected 1,000 fat sheep
    as a gift to the British troops. The price of butter has been
    reduced to £4 per ton, and the wheels of the export trade will be
    immediately set in motion."

_Daily Chronicle._

How fortunate that the price of lubrication fell just in time.

       *       *       *       *       *


    [_"The Times" of October 1st vouches for the following Army Order
    issued by the German KAISER on August 19th: "It is my Royal and
    Imperial Command that you concentrate your energies, for the
    immediate present, upon one single purpose, and that is that you
    address all your skill and all the valour of my soldiers to
    exterminate first the treacherous English and walk over General
    French's contemptible little Army."_]

  WILHELM, I do not know your whereabouts.
    The gods elude us. When we would detect your
  Earthly address, 'tis veiled in misty doubts
          Of devious conjecture.

  At Nancy, in a moist trench, I am told
    That you performed an unrehearsed lustration;
  That there you linger, having caught a cold,
          Followed by inflammation.

  Others assert that your asbestos hut,
    Conveyed (with you inside) to Polish regions,
  Promises to afford a likely butt
          To Russia's wingéd legions.

  But, whether this or that (or both) be true,
    Or merely tales of which we have the air full,
  In any case I say, "O WILHELM, do,
          Do, if you can, be careful!"

  For if, by evil chance, upon your head,
    Your precious head, some impious shell alighted,
  I should regard my dearest hopes as dead,
          My occupation blighted.

  I want to save you for another scene,
    Having perused a certain Manifesto
  That stimulates an itching, very keen,
          In every Briton's best toe--

  An Order issued to your Army's flower,
    Giving instructions most precise and stringent
  For the immediate wiping out of our
          "Contemptible" contingent.

  Well, that's a reason why I'd see you spared;
    So take no risks, but rather heed my warning,
  Because I have a little plan prepared
          For Potsdam, one fine morning.

  I see you, ringed about with conquering foes--
    See you, in penitential robe (with taper),
  Invited to assume a bending pose
          And eat that scrap of paper!

  O. S.

       *       *       *       *       *


No. III.


MY VERY DEAR BROTHER AND BEST FRIEND,--I seize a few moments of leisure
to write and congratulate you, as I congratulate myself, on this
constant succession of almost incredible victories that have brought new
laurels to your arms. Your presence in Paris at the head of the splendid
troops whom you have conducted from triumph to triumph places the
coping-stone on your life's work. Oh, that it had been possible for your
dear old grandfather--I did not always value him as he deserved--to have
lived to see this glory. But, then, I suppose your part in the work
would have been less brilliant and prominent, so, perhaps, all is for
the best as it is.

To have captured the whole French army; to have driven the English army
into the sea and drowned them in what they call their own element (by
the way, when are you going to make your triumphal entry into London?);
to have brought the ungrateful Belgians to recognise you not merely as
their conqueror but also as their benefactor--all this is really almost
enough of honour for one man. But in addition you have made the plans
which have kept so many of the disgraceful Russians cooped up in their
own country, and you will soon, I am sure, lead your troops to Moscow
and on to Petersburg. My own brave fellows shall march shoulder to
shoulder with them. Nothing will be impossible to these armies thus
united and thus led.

What my noble soldiers have hitherto done has been tremendous and
overwhelming. You have, of course, read the bulletins issued by our War
Office. These, however, give an inadequate idea of what has taken place,
and you will, I am sure, forgive me if with the natural pride of an old
man I relate to you these matters in their true proportions. We have
made a military promenade through Montenegro and Servia and have annexed
both these troublesome countries. Only ten Servians and four
Montenegrins have been left alive, so that in future, it may be hoped,
we shall not be vexed by any of their conspiracies. In the Adriatic, we
have made mincemeat of the combined British and French fleets, and have
thus removed from the wretched Italians any temptation to join in the
war against us. It was a magnificent victory, quite equal to that in
which your grand fleet sunk the whole of the British fleet in the North
Sea. Finally, as you know, we have driven the Russians before us like
chaff before the wind. Many hundred thousand Russians, with guns,
ammunition and battle flags, have been taken prisoners and are interned
here in Vienna. All these mighty deeds have been performed by our
soldiers and sailors at an infinitesimal cost. I doubt if we have had
two hundred men killed and wounded. Surely it is a great thing to be
alive in these glorious days.

What pleases me, I may say, as much as anything else, is the wonderful
example of generosity and humanity which your army and mine have been
able to offer to the world. I shudder to think what would have happened
to Belgium, to Germany and to ourselves, had the French, the Russians
and the English been victorious. Villages would have been burnt,
civilians with their women and children would have been massacred,
churches and cathedrals would have been laid in ruins, and whole
countries would have been devastated. It is to our glory that nothing of
this sort has happened; but, after all, we need not take credit for
having acted as Christians and gentlemen. We could do no other.

I am arranging for a _Te Deum_ in St. Stephen's church to thank God for
all the blessings He has vouchsafed to our arms. I wonder if you would
consent to attend. I would arrange the date to suit you. And I hope you
will bring with you some of those fine upstanding fellows of yours who
have fought through the war. Some foolish persons consider them stiff
and hard, but, for myself, I like to see their soldierly pride. Pray
give my regards to your gracious Empress, and my love to the little
princes. But, of course, they must be quite grown up by now.

Your devoted Brother and Friend,


P.S.--I have just heard that a large number of Russians are approaching
Vienna. No doubt they are sent to sue for peace.

       *       *       *       *       *

How to be Useful in War Time.

    "The usefulness of the map is increased by its giving weights in
    mètres."--_Morning Post._

       *       *       *       *       *


_New Arrival at the Front._ "WHAT'S THE PROGRAMME?"



       *       *       *       *       *

Illustration: _Very proper Cook_ (_horrified at reports of German

       *       *       *       *       *



I HAVE said that our motto is "Soldier and Civilian Too." That is our
strength and our weakness; our weakness because it leaves us a little
uncertain as to how we stand in matters of discipline.

I happened to be Corporal of the Guard the other evening--a delightful
position. For the first time I had a little authority. True I sometimes
give the man next to me a prod in the wind and whisper, "Form fours,
idiot," but it is an unofficial prod, designed to save him from the
official fury. Now for the first time I was in power, with the whole
strength of military law behind me. So of course I got busy. As soon as
the first guard had been set, and the rest of them, with their
distinguished corporal and commonplace sergeant, were in the guard tent,
I let myself go.

"Now then, my lad," I said to one, "look alive. Just clear this tent a
bit, and then fetch some straw for my bed to-night. When you've done
that, I'll think of something else for you. We've all got to work these
days. Bustle up."

Without looking up from the paper he was straining his eyes to read, he
murmured lazily, "Oh, go and boil your head," and bent still lower over
the news. The others sniggered.

For a moment I was taken aback. Then I saw that there was only one
dignified thing to do. I went out and consulted my solicitor.

"James," I said, as soon as I had found him, "I desire your advice.
Free," I added as an afterthought.

"Go on," said James, sitting up and putting the tips of his fingers

"It is like this. I am Corporal of the Guard." James looked impressed.
"Corporal of the Guard," I repeated; "a responsible position.
Practically the whole safety of the camp depends upon me. In the
interests of that safety I found it necessary to give some orders just
now. The reply I received was, 'Go and boil your head.' What ought I to

James was thoughtful for a little.

"It depends," he said at last.

"How depends?" I asked indignantly. "He told me to go and boil my----"

"Exactly. So that it depends on who told you. If it was the Sergeant of
the Guard whom you accidentally addressed----"

"Help!" I murmured, struck by a horrible fear.

"In that case," went on James, "it would be your duty to obey orders.
Obtaining a large saucepan of fresh water, you would heat it to,
approximately, 212 degrees Fahrenheit, at which point bubbles would
begin to appear upon the surface of the pan. Then, immersing the head
until the countenance assumed a ripe beetroot colour, you would return
it to the Sergeant of the Guard, salute, and ask him if he had any
further instructions to give you ... No," added James, "I think I am
wrong there. It would not be necessary for you to salute. Only
commissioned officers are saluted in the British Army."

I had been thinking furiously while James was speaking.

"It _wasn't_ the sergeant," I said eagerly. "I'm sure it wasn't. I
noticed him particularly when we were forming up. No, James, it was an
ordinary private."

"In that case the position is more complicated. On the whole I think it
would be your duty to convene a court-martial and have the fellow shot."

I looked at my watch.

"How long does it take to convene a court martial?" I asked. "I've
never convened one before."

"What matter the time!" said James grandly. "The mills may grind slowly,
but they grind exceeding small."

"Quite so. But in about an hour and a quarter the guard is changed; and
if, as is probable, the man who insulted me is then on guard himself,
_he_ will have the rifle. And if he has the rifle, I don't quite see how
we are going to shoot him."

"You mean he mightn't give it up?"

"Yes. It would be rank insubordination, I admit, but in the
circumstances one would not be surprised at his attitude."

"That is a good point," said James. "It had escaped me." He was silent
again. "There's another thing, too, I was forgetting," he added. "If he
were shot, his wife might possibly object and make a fuss. The affair
would very likely get into the papers--you know what the Press is. It
might give the Corps a bad name."

We were both silent for a little.

"Suppose," I said, "the death penalty were not enforced, and he were
merely given three days in cells?"

"But he has to get back to his work on Monday."

"True. Really, it's very hard to see how discipline _can_ be maintained.
I almost wish now that I wasn't a temporary non-commissioned officer. As
a private one simply has the time of one's life, telling corporals all
day long to go and boil their heads. I wish I were a private again."

"There's one thing you can do," said James. "You can report him to the
Sergeant of the Guard."

"And what's the good of that?"

"Only that it's probably your duty," said James austerely. "And I should
think it's also your duty to get back to the guard-tent as soon as

I rose with dignity.

"I do not consult my solicitor simply to be told my duty," I said
stiffly. "All I want to know is, can I bring an action against him?"

"No," said James.

"In that case I will return. Good evening."

I went back to the guard-tent. The mutineer was still reading, but now
there was a light to read by. He looked up as I came in. I had had that
uneasy feeling all along, and now I knew. It _was_ the Sergeant.

I saluted. It may be wrong, as James says, but a salute or two thrown in
can't do any harm.

"May I speak to you, Sergeant?" I said respectfully, yet with an air
which implied that the Germans were upon us and that the news must be
kept from the others.

We went outside together.

"Awfully sorry," I said; "it was rather dark. I'm an ass."

"My dear man, that's all right," he said. "By the way you'd better see
about getting some straw in. I've got to see the Adjutant." He went off,
and I returned to the tent.

"I want one of you to help me get some straw," I said mildly.

Three of them jumped up at once. "You stay here," they said, "_we_'ll
get it."

So there you are; there's nothing wrong with the discipline. At the same
time if it _were_ necessary to shoot anybody, I am not quite sure how we
should proceed.

  A. A. M.

       *       *       *       *       *


Dear Mr. Punch,--Having recently dropped into several London theatres
and halls of variety I have been struck by the numerical strength,
agility and apparently abounding vitality of the young men forming the
chorus. These gallant fellows sing and caper with the utmost spirit
throughout the whole evening, both in musical comedy or revue; and in
London alone, where revues are now being postponed at many of the
outlying halls, there must be more than a thousand of them. Now and then
they even go so far as to impersonate recruits--the chorus to the
recruiting songs which have crept into more than one programme--and they
make, I can assure you, Sir, a very brave show with their rifles and
their military paces, a little accelerated perhaps by the exigencies of
the tune, but a marvel of discipline none the less.

Watching these brisk and efficient male choruses at work, the thought
has come to me--in fact has often been forced upon me by the martial
nature of the musical number which they were engaged in rendering with
so much capability and cheerfulness--that at a time when England is
particularly in need of her young men in the field, the audiences of
London might consent to forgo a little of the pleasure that comes from
watching athletic youths covered with grease-paint and gyrating in the
limelight, and, by expressing their readiness to see those necessary
evolutions carried out by older men, liberate so much good material to
join the Army. Such is the power of the make-up (I am told) that a man
of fifty could easily be arranged to look sufficiently like a man of
half his age, at any rate without imperilling the success of the
entertainment from the point of view of the spectator. And of course the
girls will remain in all their charm, since girls cannot enlist.

The point may be worth considering. The decision, I feel sure, rests
entirely with the public. If the public says: "Let the young men go, and
give us more mature choristers for a while, and we will patriotically
endeavour to endure the privation"--then all the young men will, of
course, enlist as one. But unless the public says this they must remain
in the choruses against the grain.

I am, Sir, Yours gratefully,


       *       *       *       *       *

The Censor at Work.

Beneath a photograph of a naval officer _The Daily Mirror_ says:--

    "A daring raid has just been made by Commander Samson ... The small
    picture shows the commander."

Beneath the same photograph _The Daily Mail_ says:--

    "A famous British naval airman (nameless by order of the Censor)."

But the order of the Censor came too late. _The Mirror_ had given the
great secret away to the KAISER, and the whole course of the war was

       *       *       *       *       *

Illustration: _Recruiting Officer._ "WHAT'S THE GOOD OF COMING HERE AND

       *       *       *       *       *


       *       *       *       *       *


[_It has been decided, we gather, to go on playing SHAKSPEARE in Berlin,
because SHAKSPEARE is so closely connected with the German race._]

  This was so good of you, so like your grace,
    Ye on whose brows the brand of Rheims is graven,
  To spare the poet of our common race
    And find forgiveness for the Bard of Avon;
  And all the little lore he feebly guessed,
    Phantasy, rhetoric, and trope and sermon,
  To clasp politely to your mailéd breast,
    Refine, transmute and render wholly German.

  Seeing in _Henry V._ a Prussian King,
    Tracing in _Hamlet_ a more moody KAISER,
  You put new might into the master's wing,
    He seems more wonderful to us, and wiser;
  Not as he dimly sang in ages gone
    He warbles to us now, but wild with culture,
  Exchanging for the mere parochial Swan
    The full-mouthed war notes of the Potsdam Vulture.

  So shall he live, and live eternally
    (In humble homage to the War Lord's mitten)
  "This precious stone set in the silver sea,"
    Heligoland, of course, and not Great Britain:
  A thousand carven saints are lain in dust
    In lands the Prussian Junker sets his boot on,
  But WILHELM SHAKSPEARE and his honoured bust
    Shall save themselves by being partly Teuton.

  And when the hooves of those imperial swine
    Leap, as of course they will, the ocean's borders,
  And England's trampled down from Thames to Tyne,
    And Wells is burnt, and Winchester, by orders,
  It may be tears shall start into the eyes
    Of helméd colonels in our Midland valleys,
  And they shall spare the tomb where SHAKSPEARE lies;
    He was a German (_Deutschland über alles_).

  Almost I seem to see the Uhlans stand,
    Paying their pious sixpences to enter
  That little homestead of the Fatherland
    That housed the dramatist in Stratford's centre;
  A trifle flushed, maybe, with English beer,
    But mutely reverent and not talking chattily,
  They write beneath their names: "A friend lives here;
    Not to be ransacked. Signed, _The Modern ATTILÆ_."

  A glorious scene. The voice of KRUPP is dumb;
    Not pining now for Frankfort or for Münich,
  The sub-lieutenant slides with quivering thumb
    A picture-postcard underneath his tunic.
  Till then, if any dawn of doubt creeps in
    How best to judge the Bard and praise him rightly,
  Let me implore the actors of Berlin
    To play _Macbeth_ to crowded houses nightly.


       *       *       *       *       *


"May I go into the village to get my hair cut?" asked Sinclair of my
wife. "I'll promise to be back for tea."

Upon her assurance that Madame Mercier was lying down and was not at all
likely to appear, permission was granted. We do not generally allow
Sinclair to go out of the grounds at present. He is acting as the
central link which makes the continuance of the social life possible to
us. For I do not think that we could have undertaken (with our
deplorable ignorance of French) to entertain Belgian refugees at all had
he not been staying with us. As it is, it works beautifully, though
Madame Mercier and her two daughters speak no English, for Sinclair's
French is perfectly adequate.

It was during his absence that we learned that my neighbour, Andrew
Henderson, the dairy farmer, had also taken in a Belgian--a woman who
was to work on the farm during the winter.

"Here's another chance for you, Sinclair," said I, as he appeared at the
gate. "It looks as if you will have to call round every morning to
interpret and give 'em a good start for the day."

Sinclair was full of zeal and set off next day after breakfast. From the
drawing-room window we watched his triumphant entry into the farm-yard
at the foot of the hill. But he came back in a dejected frame of mind.

"She's called Suzanne," he told us, "and she's quite a nice-looking sort
of woman, and she handles a turnip-cutter like an expert; but she talks
nothing but Flemish."

"We might have thought of that," said the Reverend Henry. "Still, I
daresay they'll manage all right."

"On the contrary," said Sinclair. "Henderson sent Suzanne to get the
letters last night. She was gone a long, long time, and at last came
back with three live fowls in a sack. She had been chasing them round
the hen-house for all she was worth. Things can't go on like that, you

The Reverend Henry had an idea. "The only way out of it," he said, "is
for you and Madame Mercier both to go. She knows Flemish."

"Yes, that's it," said I. "Henderson tells you what he wants; you hand
it on to Madame Mercier in French; she transmits it to Suzanne in
Flemish--and there you are!"

"Right-o!" said Sinclair. "We'll have a shot to-morrow morning."

Madame Mercier, who is a kindly, gentle creature, was most anxious to
help, and again we viewed the operations in the farm-yard. The Reverend
Henry got out his field-glasses (which have since been sent to Lord
ROBERTS) and we watched the little corps of interpreters getting to
work, while Suzanne, eager and expectant, like a hound on the leash,
waited, shovel in hand. But it all ended in confusion and head-shaking
and a dreary retreat up the hill. Madame Mercier seemed to be much

"We have decided to adjourn," said Sinclair. "The truth is, we were not
getting on at all. It looks as if you will have to come too."

"I was always afraid there were weak spots in you, after all, Sinclair,"
said the Reverend Henry. "It does not surprise me. You are all right in
table French or even in domestic, railway or restaurant French, but as
soon as we get outside of your beat into agricultural French----"

"It isn't that," said Sinclair. "I'm all right. It's that confounded
fellow, Henderson. I'm hanged if I can understand a word of his Scotch.
Never heard such a lingo in my life."

It is true that Henderson, who comes from some obscure district far
North even of this, is a little difficult to understand. I have found
him so myself.

"He said he wanted Suzanne to 'redd up the fauls,' as far as I could
gather. Well, I have no idea what the fauls are, and I don't see how she
is going to read them up in a language she doesn't understand. I had to
give him up. We can't get on without your help."

That afternoon the Interpretation Committee, now increased to four
active members, for Henry had insisted on coming too as referee, took up
its position in the farm-yard in the form of a chain, along which
communication was to pass from Henderson, through me, Sinclair and
Madame Mercier to Suzanne. It was a little embarrassing for Suzanne, but
she stood her ground well and waited in an admirably receptive mood,
while the various items percolated through. Henderson gave me in careful
detail the whole of his commands for her normal daily life, and
everything seemed to go splendidly. But I am afraid the thing must have
passed through too many hands before it reached its destination; for
Suzanne, after many cheerful nods, suddenly broke off and turned on her
heel. Then she secured an axe, which was lying against the bothy door,
and walked with a steady and fixed purpose, never turning her head, out
into the lane, through the gate and up the hill. We watched her
spellbound till she reached the horizon, and there saw her pause, roll
up her sleeves and furiously attack an old spruce tree.

It is impossible to say who was to blame. But it is clear that the
instructions (as the Frenchman said of BRAHMS' Variations) had been
_diablement changés en route_.

       *       *       *       *       *

INDIA: 1784-1914.

  The job was for us, grin and bear;
    We'd lit on India's dust an' drought;
  We knew as we were planted there,
    But scarcely how it came about;
  And so, in rough and tumble style,
    And nothing much to make a shout,
  We set our backs to graft a while,
    And meant to stay and stick it out.

  Ten hundred risky, frisky Kings,
    And on the whole a decent lot;
  And several hundred million things
    That trusted us with all they'd got;
  And so we blundered at it straight,
    And found the times was pretty hot;
  And so they smiled and called it Fate,
    And Fate it was, as like as not.

  Our law was one for great and small--
    We heard 'em honest, claim for claim;
  We smooth'd their squabbles for 'em all,
    And let 'em pray by any name;
  And so we left enough alone,
    But learnt 'em plenty all the same;
  We show'd 'em what they should be shown,
    And tried to play the decent game.

  For all our work we've not got much?
    P'r'aps not: but now there's come a scrap
  That's got us good with lies and such,
    And gave 'em just the chance to snap;
  And fools had thought they likely would
    (That's German-made and rattle-trap);
  They'd shout--the KAISER said they should--
    And, happen, wipe us off the map.

  From snow to sand that shout has burst,
    And German lies are well belied;
  And flood calls field for who'll be first--
    They're proud to share the Empire-pride.
  It's them for Britain at the test;
    We knew they'd never stand aside;
  For when we tried and did our best
    The beggars must have known we tried.

       *       *       *       *       *

The German Campaign of Lies.

From a book of reference:--

    "'Berlin Work.' See 'Embroidery.'"

       *       *       *       *       *

News of a serious character reaches us from _The Toronto Daily Mail_,
which announces in its index of contents:--

    "Austrian Fleet Bombards Montenegro's Only Teapot."

Another one of true Britannia metal is being sent to our gallant ally.

       *       *       *       *       *



Illustration: "NO!--NOT 'IM--THAT'S FARVER!"


       *       *       *       *       *


       *       *       *       *       *


The contents of a poster of an esteemed contemporary (I confess that I
got no further than the poster), which announced "Training Eagles to
Fight Airships," have led me to speculate whether something further
might not be achieved in similar directions.

Why, for instance, should not rabbits be trained to upset siege guns?
The innocent and docile character of the creatures would be a valuable
asset in work of this nature. Even if seen--and among grass or
undergrowth on a dark night a rabbit of ordinary intelligence might
reasonably hope to escape detection--their real purpose might be
cleverly masked until it was too late. Leisurely approaching the object
of attack, lulling the suspicions of a dull-witted sentinel or patrol by
stopping now to cull a leaf, now to wash a whisker, the well-trained
rabbit would have no difficulty in creeping to within striking distance.
Then suddenly rushing forward and throwing its whole weight against the
nearest wheel of the cannon it would tilt it from its foundation and
fling it headlong to irretrievable destruction, very likely pinning
several members of the gun company among its ruins.

If it is objected that the strength of an average rabbit would be
unequal to the task, are there not, I would ask, strong rabbits among
rabbits, just as there are strong men among men? None of the rabbits of
my acquaintance could, I admit, overturn a mowing-machine; but then
neither could I myself balance a coach-and-four upon my neck, yet I have
seen men upon the stage who could and did. The first object of the
efficient trainer would be, of course, to select suitable rabbits.

Surely something too might be done with white mice? By gnawing through
the tent ropes of a sleeping enemy--especially on wet and stormy
nights--they would engender a sense of strain and insecurity among our
opponents that could not be without an appreciable influence on their
temper and _moral_ throughout the campaign. The tents of commanding
officers of notoriously choleric nature should be the objects of
persistent attention in this way.

The suitability of parrots for use in warfare is obvious. Their especial
duty would be to give misleading words of command at points of critical
importance during a battle. A stealthy night attack might be converted
into a hasty "strategic retirement" by an observant parrot ingratiating
itself among the enemy's ranks and raising the cry, "Up, Guards, and at

It is perhaps late in the season to utilise the services of trained
wasps to any extent, but the possibilities of other insect auxiliaries
should not be overlooked.

       *       *       *       *       *

The Prime Minister of New Zealand as reported in _The Timaru Herald_:--

    "Just one word more. With regard to Canada's offer that is reported
    in this evening's paper, my opinion of it may be summed up in three
    words: Dibra, Jukova and Ipek."

This is one of the things we could have summed up more lucidly
ourselves, though perhaps not so concisely.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "Will the Soldiers who saw Lady Thrown off Tramcar on Saturday
    evening, about 8 o'clock, please communicate."

    _Advt. in "Northampton Daily Chronicle."_

Another lovers' tiff in the gloaming?

       *       *       *       *       *

Illustration: THE ROAD TO RUSSIA.

       *       *       *       *       *

Illustration: _Cyclist_ (_taking initiative on being
caught without a light_). "DOUSE YOUR GLIM, MATE; WE'LL BE HAVING THEM

       *       *       *       *       *


  Belgian soldiers, martial heroes, in a world of fire and flame,
  By their fortitude and daring have achieved immortal fame,
  But there's one, a mere civilian, who a _vates sacer_ lacks--
          Burgomaster MAX!

  Therefore let a sorry rhymer offer you his humble meed,
  And salute your priceless service to your country in her need,
  All unarmed yet undefeated, never turning in your tracks--
          Burgomaster MAX!

  _Athanasius contra mundum_--you remind us of the tag,
  You whose fearless manifestoes never brooked the German gag;
  Bucking up your fellow-townsmen when their hearts were weak as wax--
          Burgomaster MAX!

  Now, alas! we read the foemen have decided to deport
  And intern you for a season in some dismal German fort,
  For your presence was distasteful to the Hun who sacks and "hacks"--
          Burgomaster MAX!

  Yet, whatever fate befalls you, as the ages onward roll
  You will live in deathless lustre on your country's Golden Roll,
  For you faced the German bullies with the stiffest of stiff backs--
          Burgomaster MAX!

       *       *       *       *       *

There are German financiers who now allude to him as "Dishonoured BILL."

       *       *       *       *       *


  Ponto in town is strictly _comme il faut_,
    A member of the most exclusive set
  (His pedigree and dwelling all may know
    Who read page 90 in the "Dogs' Debrett").

  His mien is dignified, his gait is slow;
    If upstart strangers try to catch his eye
  He kicks the dust behind with scornful toe,
    Averts his lifted nose and passes by.

  His friends he greets with careful etiquette,
    Permits his well-poised tail-tip to vibrate,
  Then treads with them the solemn minuet
    That antique custom and good form dictate.

  But Ponto by the sea! ah, who would know
    This damp wild ragamuffin on the strand
  Who importunes the passers-by to throw
    Big stones across the opal-shining sand?

  Ponto dishevelled, ears turned inside out,
    Has suffered some sea change; his social worth
  Is all forgot; he leads a Comus rout,
    Tykes of the shore and curs of lowly birth.

  Yelping with joy he brings his wolfish pack
    About my legs, as, dripping from the sea,
  I pick my way thro' shingle and wet wrack
    Beleaguered by this bandit company.

  But when the day comes round to leave the shore
    Ponto puts off this maniac _Mr. Hyde_;
  Becomes a _Dr. Jekyll_ dog once more
    And homeward goes serene and dignified.

       *       *       *       *       *



Those who are not in the mood just now for a whole evening of exotic
melodrama might look in at the Globe Theatre about 9.15, and derive a
few moments' distraction from a Zulu wedding dance. I found it a better
show than anything I have ever seen in the native compounds at Earl's
Court. The company, of course, was mixed, but the white contingent had
caught the local colour (coffee) and showed great aptitude in imitating
the methods of the aborigines. Naturally there were conventions; the
chiefs talked fluent English, while the Zulu supers employed their own
vernacular, except in certain formal phrases, as when the "praisers" (my
programme's name for a sort of universal _claque_) punctuated the
speeches of their king with cries of "Yes, O Lion!" or "Yes, Great
Beast!" No doubt our honoured visitors could perceive many technical
points in which the ruling race exposed itself as having something yet
to learn, but they tactfully concealed all signs of superior
civilisation; and the British audience, well pleased with the novelty
and picturesqueness of the scenes, were content to waive invidious

The little brochure that was thrown in with the programme informs me
that the martial spirit of the Zulus (at that time under their own
_régime_) was "identical in many respects with 'Prussian Militarism.'"
Certainly there was a savagery about the way in which they progged the
air with their assegais that made one picture them as _capables de
tout_. But any comparison, whether in point of costume or royal bearing,
between _King Mpande_ and the GERMAN KAISER must have been in favour of
the latter. On the other hand, his son _Umbuyazi_ was a far nobler
figure than my conception of the CROWN PRINCE.

I may perhaps be excused if I do not dwell on the merits of the chief
actors or of the plot--not too easy to grasp at the first, thanks to the
difficulty we found in following the unfamiliar names of the characters.
Both these interests were dominated by the attraction of the admirable
setting. Fortunately the scenes were numerous and brief, but we still
suffered considerable tedium from the affected and drawling delivery of
the heroine. The frequent assurances which we received as to the
exceptional quality of _Mameena's_ beauty, and the fact that, to our
knowledge, she had three husbands in the course of the play, never quite
convinced us of the overwhelming character of her charms. Whether, with
a fair chance, she would have worked them successfully on a fourth man,
_Allan Quatermain_--the one white man who retained his native hue--I
cannot say, for somehow a stage diversion always intervened just as they
had begun to embrace. The reason, by the way, for _Quatermain's_
existence was never made too clear. Sportsman and dealer in general
stores, his habit of hanging vaguely about Zulu kraals and Zulu impis,
on nodding terms with just anybody, did not greatly increase my pride of
race, notwithstanding the statement made to him by _Mameena_: "I shall
never love another man as I love you, however many I marry."

Mr. OSCAR ASCHE, who dramatised Sir RIDER HAGGARD'S _Child of Storm_,
did not aim at subtlety. But a rather nice question arose over the rival
immoralities of _Mameena's_ second and third husbands. _Prince Umbuyazi_
(No. 3) had expressed regret to his old friend and comrade, _Saduka_
(No. 2), for appropriating his wife; but the apology was not received in
the spirit in which it was tendered, and during the fight between
_Umbuyazi_ and his brother _Cetshwayo_ the wronged husband went over
with his impis to the camp of the enemy. _Umbuyazi_ made a strong
protest against this treachery, but he must have seen (for he had much
intelligence) that his case was a bad one; and this reflection no doubt
had something to do with the final act by which (in the old Roman way)
he fell upon his own assegai and dropped backwards--an admirable
gymnastic--off one of the high rocks above the Tugela.

I have already referred to the difficulties of Zulu nomenclature, and I
would add that the native custom of addressing a man by his proper name
in the course of every sentence materially extended the operation of the
play. It must have made a difference--which I, for one, bitterly
grudged--of nearly half-an-hour. How much more satisfactory the economy
of a certain author of whom CHARLIE BROOKFIELD used to say: "He read his
play to the company, and it took three solid hours, _and even so he
didn't put in any of the 'h's.'_"

  O. S.

       *       *       *       *       *


_Recently discovered, by German research, to have been of Teutonic







       *       *       *       *       *

    "An official telegram from Nish received in London states that the
    Servian commanders agree that the enemy all along the front is
    employing explosive bullets. Every soldier carries 20 per cent. of
    explosive cartridges."

    _Daily Graphic._

The fact that 80 per cent. of Austrian cartridges refuse to explode may
account for the Austrian "victories."

       *       *       *       *       *

    "Whelan replied: 'Yes, I sold the beef.' The military authorities
    pressed the case."

    _Liverpool Echo._

A case of pressed beef, we presume.

       *       *       *       *       *

Illustration: _Doctor (at Ambulance Class)._ "MY DEAR LADY, DO YOU

       *       *       *       *       *


When we are not running out after "specials" we are absorbed in the
mimic fight of Acacia Avenue--the desperate conflict between Mrs.
Studholm-Brown, of The Hollies, and Mrs. Dawburn-Jones, of Dulce Domum.
They have husbands, these amiable ladies, but the husbands are mainly
concerned with the commissariat and supply department, and are neither
allowed nor desired in the actual fighting line.

The very day the war began, a huge flagstaff with a Union Jack of
proportionate size rose in the grounds of Dulce Domum. It must have been
ordered in advance. I present this fact to the German Press Bureau as
showing that, at any rate, Mrs. Dawburn-Jones always intended war. But
the next day Mrs. Studholm-Brown went six feet better with a flagstaff
and three square yards better with a Union Jack.

Then we knew that it was war to the death in our Avenue and waited for
the next move in the campaign.

"The Hollies" broke out into Red Cross notices; "Dulce Domum" announced
itself to be the office for the organisation of local relief.

One morning we rose with a sort of idea that there was an eruption in
the air, and found the flags of Servia, France, Russia and Belgium
waving over "Dulce Domum." That day Mrs. Studholm-Brown met me in the
Avenue. She condescended to me. "Oh, could you tell me the colours of
the Montenegrin flag?" I couldn't; but it was the first time the great
lady had ever spoken to me. "Pink with green stripes," I replied

The very next day seven Allied flags (including a pseudo-Montenegrin)
flew over "The Hollies." Mrs. Studholm-Brown had added Japan before the
MIKADO'S ultimatum had expired--which will prove to the German Press
Bureau that there was a secret understanding between our Far-Eastern
Ally and Mrs. Studholm-Brown.

But flags were not the only things that were flaunted. "Dulce Domum"
opened fire with an array of flannel shirts hung on clothes-lines across
the tennis-court. "The Hollies" replied with a deadly line of pyjamas.

Then the proprietress of the latter threw open her grounds--a croquet
court and a drying ground--as a place of rest for Territorials off duty.
Mrs. Dawburn-Jones promptly enlisted her husband as a special constable
and had squads drilled on her tennis lawn.

So the fight went on--with slight successes on both sides, but nothing
decisive--till one day when Mrs. Dawburn-Jones went to town in a taxi
and returned with a family of negroes from the Congo. It was a splendid
sight to see her leading them through the grounds and discoursing to
them in her best Boulognese. Mrs. Studholm-Brown wriggled with

Then her chance of a counter-attack arrived. She had, or her husband
had, or her husband's brother-in-law had, a second cousin who was an
officer, and, what was more, a wounded officer. He was persuaded to
spend a week-end of his convalescence at "The Hollies." His hostess
walked him proudly up and down all the paths which were in full view of
"Dulce Domum." It was magnificent to see her adjust his sling. At that
moment I dare not have trusted Mrs. Dawburn-Jones with a gun or the
officer would have been in as great peril as in the trenches. How it
will end I can scarcely imagine. I like to picture a great day of
victory. Then, if the CROWN PRINCE be allowed to take up his abode on
_parole_, in some quiet suburban home, I am sure "The Hollies" will snap
him up. And if "The Hollies" secures the CROWN PRINCE no power in this
world can prevent Mrs. Dawburn-Jones from securing the KAISER.

       *       *       *       *       *


"May I come in?" said Cecily, knocking at my study door.

"If you insist," said I.

"I only want to use the telephone," she explained, as if that made it
any better.

"You couldn't take it away and use it somewhere else?" I asked.

She was unmoved. "It needn't disturb you," she said. "I'll be as quiet
as a mouse."

"Won't that be rather dull for the people at the other end of the
line?" I ventured.

"Now, you go on with your writing," she said severely. So I went on.

_Herbert closed the door softly behind him and went out, leaving
Ermyntrude alone. She had let him go. He had gone. He had left her
alone. Her--Ermyntrude--alone. It has been truly said that women are
queer creatures. They do not like being left alone._


_Herbert picked up his hat and stick and passed out of the spacious hall
into the street, closing the door softly behind him. It was his habit
when angry to close doors softly behind him. He was frequently angry;
men often are, and with reason._

"There's something I want to ask you," said Cecily.

"Ask away," I said brusquely.

"Not _you_," said Cecily, frowning at me and then smiling at the

_And so Herbert found himself in the street. Where should he go? What
should he do ... say ... think ... feel...? He was quite unable to
decide. Somehow he couldn't bring his mind to bear on the subject. He
could hardly recall the name of the lady with whom he had been
conversing, let alone what all the trouble was about. He paused and lit
a cigarette. Absolutely there was nothing else for it._

"How are you getting on?" I asked Cecily a little peevishly.

"Nicely, thanks," she answered. "And you?"

"Oh, nicely, too," said I, with a sigh.

_As for ~Whatshername~ Ermyntrude, she was in little better case. She felt
as if nothing was ever going to happen to her again; almost, she
thought, things had given up happening for good. She felt ... but she
hardly knew what she felt. ~After all, love wasn't~ ~Maybe love was~ She
could not bear to think of love. Engaged? That is what she had been but
wasn't any longer. Who was to blame? Was it Herbert? Was it she? Was it
~Exchange~ Providence? The more thought she gave to the matter the further
she seemed to be from a definite conclusion. ~At times it seemed as if~ ~At
one time it appeared as though~ ~At one time~ ~At times~ ~At 2284 Mayfair~
~Mayfair 2248~ ~2248 Mayfair~ ~Twice two is four, twice four is eight.~_

"Are you coming to the end of your friends?" I asked Cecily.

"If I'm not wanted I'll go," said she snappily.

"You're always wanted, of course," I apologised.

"Then I'll stay," said she brightly.


_As Herbert turned his back on Kensington and walked towards ~Gerrard~
Piccadilly, he would, had he looked behind him, have seen a malevolent,
sinister man emerge from the shadow and follow him stealthily. ~But
Herbert did not look behind him.~ ~And why not?~ ~It is impossible to say.~
~Suffice it that he didn't.~ Nay, that is exactly what Herbert did see
when he looked behind him. "My God," said he, turning pale...._

"Can we dine with the Monroes on Tuesday?" asked Cecily.

"That depends a good deal on whether they invite us," I answered.

"It's only Jack trying to be funny," Cecily told the receiver.

_"As I was saying," continued Herbert, "it's James MacClure."_

_"No less," said the other, with a fiendish smile._

_It is necessary to go back a little in order ~to property~ properly to
appreciate the momentous importance of the arrival of this man at this
juncture. He was destined to play a large part in Herbert's future; the
manner of their acquaintance was this._

_~Many years ago McClure had~ ~James was the son of rich but~ ~Jas, as his
college friends used to call~ ~McClure~ ~James~ Producing a revolver from his
hip pocket, Herbert shot James McClure through the heart._

Cecily flapped about with the Directory.

"Trying to find a number that you haven't used already?" I enquired.








_On the whole it must be agreed that Herbert was well rid of this
Ermyntrude person. There was nothing particular against her except that
she was a woman, but surely to goodness that is enough. When Eve arrived
the trouble began; when telephones were invented it came to a head.
Think what literature might have achieved had it not always been
obsessed by its desire to find some brief definition good enough for
woman! I think it is our chief difficulty in appreciating the supposed
greatness of VERGIL that he couldn't do any better than "Varium et
mutabile semper." If VERGIL had been a butcher or a grocer or any other
unhappy shopkeeper liable to the daily insult of receiving household
orders, he must have expressed it more thoroughly. For my own part,
sitting here in my study and thinking the matter over to myself, I
cannot do better than adopt the phraseology of the telephone
instructions: "Intermittent Buzz."_

_And so Herbert didn't marry, but lived happily ever afterwards. After
all, Ermyntrude was essentially a woman; they all are, confound them,
but some of us are not so lucky as was Herbert in finding out in time._

And that, of course, was the chapter that Cecily suddenly chose to read
... nor was it less than an hour before peace was declared again. The
terms, however, were not unfavourable. I was partially forgiven, and,
what was better still, Cecily wholly departed. I then wrote a revised
version of


_Ermyntrude was still where we left her, but was beginning to collect
her scattered thoughts when Herbert re-entered. He closed the door
behind him, neither softly nor loudly, but just ordinarily, and without
more ado took Ermyntrude in his arms._

_"We will never again think of all that came between us," he murmured._

_She smiled up at him._

_"It shall be as nothing," he added._

_"It shall," said she._

"It shall indeed," say I.

       *       *       *       *       *


    (_Children in the Midlands give this name to the disc shaped fruit
    of Honesty._)

  My garden is a beggar's pitch
    That Heaven throws its coins upon;
  And in the Summer I am rich,
    And in the Winter all is gone;
  Yet as the long days hurry by
    I keep my pitch, content and free,
  Where in a sweet profusion lie
    Fair Marigolds and Honesty;
  And oft I turn and count for fun
    My largess from the night and noon--
  The golden tokens of the sun,
    The silver pennies of the moon!

       *       *       *       *       *


       *       *       *       *       *


(_Thus the War Party designates the rank and file of the German army._)

  They are coming like a tempest, in their endless ranks of grey,
  While the world throws up a cloud of dust along their awful way;
  They're the glorious cannon fodder of the mighty Fatherland,
  Who shall make the kingdoms tremble and the nations understand.
      Tramp! tramp! tramp! the cannon fodder comes.
      God help the old; God help the young; God help the hearths and homes.
      They'll do his will that taught them, on the earth and on the waves,
      Then, like faithful cannon fodder, still salute him from their graves.

  From the barrack and the fortress they are pouring in a flood;
  They sweep, a herd of winter wolves, upon the scent of blood;
  For all their deeds of horror they are told that death atones
  And their master's harvest cannot spring till he has sowed their bones.

  Into beasts of prey he's turned them; when they show their teeth and growl
  The lash is buried in their cheeks; they're slaughtered if they howl;
  To their bloody Lord of Battles must they only bend the knee,
  For hard as steel and fierce as hell should cannon fodder be.

  Scourge and curses are their portion, pain and hunger without end,
  Till they hail the yell of shrapnel as the welcome of a friend;
  They rape and burn and laugh to hear the frantic women cry
  And do the devil's work to-day, but on the morrow die.

  A million souls, a million hearts, a million hopes and fears,
  A million million memories of partings and of tears
  March along with cannon fodder to the agony of war.
  Have they lost their human birthright? Are they fellow-men no more?
      Tramp! tramp! tramp! the cannon fodder comes.
      God help the old; God help the young; God help the hearths and homes.
      They'll do his will that taught them, on the earth and on the waves,
      Then, like faithful cannon fodder, still salute him from their graves.

       *       *       *       *       *

The War and Physical Development.

    "Here some words have been exercised by the Censor."

    _Manchester Evening News._

       *       *       *       *       *

    "Kiel is very delightful in its own way, but it misses _in toto_ the
    charm and originality of Cowes."

So said _The Tatler_ in the very early days of the war, and yet the
Germans still seem to prefer the waters of Kiel to the superior
attractions of the Solent.

       *       *       *       *       *



He was manicuring himself when I called, and I was asked whether I would
see him now, or wait two hours till he had finished. I said I would see
him now; so I was shown into his dressing-room.

"I am sorry," said Mr. FitzJenkins, "but if you will call at such an
early hour----" It was twelve o'clock, but I apologised. "And what can I
do for you?" asked my host.

"My paper," I said, "would like to have your views on the War."

"Well, if you ask me what I think of the War," said Mr. FitzJenkins,
"it's a noosance--an unmitigated noosance. No one talks anything but War
nowadays--and the papers contain nothing but War news. Even the Men's
Dress Columns have disappeared. I can tell you it has caused the
greatest inconvenience to me personally. You may wonder why I am
manicuring myself. I'll tell you why. My manicurist--the only man in
London who knew how to manicure--turned out to be a beastly German or
Austrian or something, and has gone off to his beastly War. I even
offered to double the man's fees--at which the fellow, instead of being
grateful, was grossly impertinent. If he hadn't been such a great
hulking brute I'd have knocked him down.... So I have to do the business
myself. Couldn't trust it to anyone else.... And then look here. You see
this little pot of pink paste, which has to be used to give the nails
the necessary blush? Do you know that the price of that has doubled
since the War?"

I expressed my horror by a suitable gesture.

"Of course," said Mr. FitzJenkins, "I don't want to be hard on the
Government--I know they have a lot to think of--but I do consider they
ought to have prevented this somehow. They regulate the price of food,
but forget that there are other necessities.... Again, some of my
dividends have not been paid. A nice thing if one is to be forced to
earn one's own living!"

"You haven't volunteered to fight, then?" I said.

"Good lor, no! That might suit some people, but not me. It's not a job
for anyone of any refinement. Why, I am told that, when they are
fighting, for days together even the officers don't shave or change
their linen. I'm not that sort, thank you. There are plenty of rough
fellows to do it, I suppose. And in any event I could not fight
alongside of French soldiers. Have you seen the cut of their trousers?"

Mr. FitzJenkins laughed outright.

"And are you doing anything to help in the crisis?" I asked.

"Oh yes, oh yes," said Mr. FitzJenkins. "You mustn't imagine that it is
only those who fight who are helping. What about the women who are left
behind? I help amuse 'em--keep 'em bright. I'm 'carrying on.' I'm not of
your panicky sort. It's just as well that there should be a few men like
me left in town. We give it a tone."

"I trust, Mr. FitzJenkins," I said, "that you are not opposed to the

"Oh, dear, no. Please don't imagine that. It had to be fought, I
suppose. And, although I am not taking an active part in it myself, I
wish the War well, and hope that the KING and KITCHENER will pull it off
all right."

"May I publish that? I think it would encourage them."

"Certainly. And you might say this. I am convinced we are going to win.
No good could ever come to a man who wears an out-of-date moustache like
the KAISER.... Oh, certainly I am in favour of the War. Why, I have just
ordered several pairs of khaki spats.... Believe me, I wish our
soldier-fellows well, and in my opinion they ought to be encouraged. I
met a lot of 'em trudging along in Pall Mall yesterday, poor devils of
Territorials, I fancy, and I waved my stick to 'em. Nothing would please
me more than to see the country to which that impudent manicurist has
returned receive a thrashing."

Just then the young man who had opened the door to me came in and asked
his master if he could see him privately for a minute. Mr. FitzJenkins
begged me to excuse him, and I did so. When he came back his face was
flushed and almost animated.

"Atrocious! Infamous! I shall write to the papers about it," he said.
"How dare he leave me helpless like this? Off to enlist, indeed!"

"Who?" I asked.

"My man," said Mr. FitzJenkins.

       *       *       *       *       *



       *       *       *       *       *


    ["One cannot receive news of victories every day."--_German Official

  True, as you say, there is no cause for grieving,
    When in your pages no triumphs appear,
  But, gentle Sir, when you talk of "receiving,"
    Are you not wandering out of your sphere?
  Yours not to wait for a foe's retrogression,
    Yours not to heed the belligerents' fate;
  You're higher up in the writer's profession;
    Perish "receiving," 'tis yours to create.

  What though you dabble in newspaper diction,
    Common reporters deserve your disdain;
  You should be ranked with the masters of fiction,
    Weaving your victories out of your brain.
  Stories are needed, and you must supply 'em;
    That should be easy; so gifted a man
  Surely can compass a triumph _per diem_,
    Seeing the truth is no part of your plan.

  Even although inspiration is flagging,
    Let not your output grow markedly less;
  Fiction gives precedents (plenty) for dragging
    Out an old yarn in a different dress.
  But, if your brain is too weary for spinning
    Words to re-tell our habitual rout,
  Don't blame the army that hasn't been winning;
    Frankly confess that you feel written out.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "London Lady (twenties) well-educated, fair linguist, deeply
    interested in psychology and the things that matter in life, considered
    clever by inmates, but not brilliant, would greatly appreciate
    broadminded and friendly companion to share walks."

  _T. P.'s Weekly._

We must remember that the inmates' standard would not be a very high

       *       *       *       *       *

Illustration: _First Native._ "WE'RE DOIN' FINE AT THE WAR, JARGE."




       *       *       *       *       *


(_By Mr. Punch's Staff of Learned Clerks._)

Why is it that novels with scamp-heroes are so much more interesting
than the conventional kind? _Bellamy_ (METHUEN) is a case in point, for
the central character, who gives his name to it, is about as worthless
an object, rightly-considered, as one need wish to meet. He steals and
lies and poses; he betrays most of his friends; and throughout a varied
life he only really cares for one person--himself. Yet Miss ELINOR
MORDAUNT never seems to have any difficulty in making us share
_Bellamy's_ delight in his own conscienceless career. Perhaps it is this
very delight that does the trick. Charlatan as he is, and worse,
_Bellamy_ is always so attractively amused at the success of his
impostures that it becomes impossible to avoid an answering grin. It was
not a little courageous of Miss MORDAUNT to write a story about a hero
from the Five Towns district; but, though this may look like trespass
upon the preserves of a brother novelist, _Bellamy_ is Miss MORDAUNT'S
very own. I have the feeling that she enjoyed writing about him--a
feeling that always makes for pleasure in reading. Perhaps of all his
manifold phases I liked best his _rôle_ of assistant necromancer at a
kind of psychical beauty parlour. There is some shrewd hitting here,
which is vastly well done. But none of the adventures of _Bellamy_
should be skipped. I am sorry to add that the copy supplied me for
review did not apparently credit me with this view, as it ruthlessly
omitted some forty of what I am persuaded were most agreeable pages. The
fact that it so far relented as to go back about ten, and repeat a
chapter I had already read, did little to console me. I could have
better spared part of a duller book.

       *       *       *       *       *

A story by Mr. DION CLAYTON CALTHROP, with the title _Wonderful Woman_
(HODDER AND STOUGHTON), may almost be regarded as a work of expert
reference. Because what he does not know about The Sex, and has not
already written in a galaxy of engaging romances, is hardly worth the
bother of remembering. So that his views on the matter naturally command
respect. _Wonderful Woman_ is perhaps less a novel than an
analysis--painfully close, with a kind of regretful brutality in it--of
one special type of femininity, and a glance at several others. Perhaps
its realistic quality may astonish you a little. You may have been
delighting in Mr. CALTHROP'S fantastic work (as I do myself) and yet
have cherished the suspicion that his Columbines and Chelsea fairies and
Moonbeam folk generally were the creations of a sentimentalist who would
have little taste for handling unsympathetic things. Well, if so,
_Philippina_ is the answer to that. Here is the most masterly
portraiture of a woman utterly without imagination or heart or anything
except a kind of futile and worthless attraction, that I remember to
have met for some time. As I say, it is all rather astonishing from Mr.
CALTHROP. The men who love _Flip_, and whose lives are ruined by her,
are easier to understand. About _Sir Timothy Swift_, for example, there
is a touch of the Harlequin, or rather Pierrot, that betrays his
origin. I will not tell you the story, for one reason because its charm
is too elusive to retrieve. I content myself by saying that it seems to
me the best work we have yet had from Mr. CALTHROP, combining his
special and expected graces with an unusual and moving sincerity.

       *       *       *       *       *

A month or two ago I have no doubt that the England of CHARLES II.'S
declining years would have seemed to me a monstrously exciting country
to live in; at the present moment (unfairly enough) I feel more like
congratulating the hero of Monsignor BENSON'S _Oddsfish!_ (HUTCHINSON)
on the mildness of his adventures for the furtherance of the Catholic
faith. It is true that _Mr. Roger Mallock_ beheld some notable
executions after the TITUS OATES affair, and on the night of the Rye
House Plot had a large meat chopper thrown at his head by one of the
conspirators; but, emissary of the Vatican as he was, he was actually
only once compelled to whip out his sword in self-defence, though on
that occasion he had the extreme bad luck to lose his _fiancée_ through
a misdirected dagger-thrust. Even this tragedy, sufficiently
overwhelming in an ordinary romance, is not, of course, wholly
disastrous in Monsignor BENSON'S eyes, since it enabled _Mr. Mallock_ to
resume the religious life and habit for which he had been originally
intended. For the rest the book is written in a most captivating manner,
and with a plausibility of incident and dialogue only too rare in novels
of the Restoration period. Evidently the author has studied his
authorities (and more particularly Mr. PEPYS) with a praiseworthy
diligence. But in view of the anti-Protestant bias which he naturally
exhibits I feel bound to bid him have a care. If he intends to pursue
his historical researches any further, and discover (let us say) virtue
in the Spanish Inquisition and villainy in Sir FRANCIS DRAKE, I shall
load my arquebus to the muzzle.

       *       *       *       *       *

The hero of _King Jack_ (HODDER AND STOUGHTON) "made sport," as his
creator, Mr. KEIGHLEY SNOWDEN, says, "nearly a hundred years ago" in
Yorkshire, and incidentally he also made records. For instance, he
cleared four-and-twenty feet at a "run-jump," and with this in my mind I
find it satisfactory to think that he lived in another century, or I
might find myself regretting the eclipse of the Olympic Games. As an
upholder of law and order I ought to be (I am not) ashamed to admire a
man who, to say the least of it, was a very prickly thorn in the side of
the police. My excuse is that _Jack Sincler_ and his brother _Lishe_
were kindly men withal. The game-laws were their trouble, but as far as
I could make out they did not poach for the sake of pelf but from sheer
love of sport. Among poachers they ought, anyhow, to be placed in Class
I., for they loved the open air and the freshness of the morning and all
the things that make for a clean mind in a clean body. _Jack_, though a
shade arrogant at times, is a stimulating figure, human both in his
weakness and his strength; and Mr. SNOWDEN deserves more than a little
gratitude for the care with which he has reproduced the atmosphere of
times that were conspicuously lawless and exciting.

       *       *       *       *       *

When _Dicky Furlong_, the brilliant and aspiring artist of _The
Achievement_ (CHAPMAN AND HALL) who was in love with _Diana Charteris_,
sloshed her husband, _Lord Freddy_, over the head with his own decanter
(_vide_ Chap. XXI.) he rather overdid it. For "the jagged thing fell
with a sullen thud behind his (_Lord Freddy's_) ear," and that
discourteous nobleman collapsed to rise no more. When the detective
arrived the following noon he convinced himself that there was no
necessity to detain any of the guests, even though no windows had been
found open or doors unlocked, and though Dicky had a contused lip from
the conflict overnight and everybody had coupled his name with
_Diana's_. However, the methodical sleuthhound ran his quarry to earth a
year or two later, just as he had put the finishing touches to his great
(seventeen-foot) canvas. And _Dicky_ took a little bottle out of his
pocket. In fact, our old friend the novelette, with its unexacting
canons of plausibility; tacked on, as it happens, to twenty chapters of
meandering incident, a long way after the well-known Five-Towns formula,
garnished with pleasantly romantic little notices of _Dicky's_ pictures
and _Dicky's_ love affairs. But you don't begin to see the _Dicky_ of
the decanter phase (even though a fight about an ill-treated dog is
lugged in for the purpose), or indeed any other _Dicky_ of real flesh
and blood, in this haphazard selection of episodes and comments. The
truth is there is more in that difficult and dangerous formula than Mr.
TEMPLE THURSTON is aware of. He has wandered into the wrong galley. A
pity. For _Mrs. Flint_ is a dear, if a stupid dear, and _Dicky_ himself
has his points.

       *       *       *       *       *

Illustration: _The Old Man._ "I SEE BY THE PAPER HERE THAT THE

       *       *       *       *       *


[_The London correspondent of a German paper announces that London is on
the verge of starvation, his own diet being "reduced to bread and rancid

  "There is a languor in this alien air;
  We are reduced, in fact, to famine fare;
  Mine, I may say, is dripping based on bread
  (Ugh!), and I gather I shall soon be dead.
  It is the same all over, East or West;
  Hungry each hollow just below the chest.
  Daily, I'm told, they rake the very dust,
  Hoping in vain to come across a crust.
  And, when our God-born WILHELM brings his Huns
  Here, he will find a few odd skeletons."
  Such is the tale a Teuton lately writ.
  How, then, I ask, does London look so fit?
  This is the reason, mainly, I surmise--
  We are fed up, of course, with German Lies.

       *       *       *       *       *

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Punch or the London Charivari, Vol. 147, October 7, 1914" ***

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