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Title: Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 150, June 14, 1916
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. 150, June 14, 1916" ***

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       *       *       *       *       *


VOL. 150

JUNE 14, 1916

       *       *       *       *       *


The German IMPERIAL CHANCELLOR'S Reichstag speech with regard to the
Battle of Jutland was, according to _The Daily Mail_, delivered with
"an eye on Washington." Not GEORGE, of course.

       * * *

According to the German official announcement, the sinking of the
_Lützow_ was concealed for "military reasons." It is only reasonable
to assume that other and larger prevarications concerning the North
Sea battle may be ascribed to "naval reasons."

       * * *

A remarkable omission from the German account of the Naval battle off
Jutland is observed. There is no mention of the destruction of H.M.S.

       * * *

According to the Croydon Public Library Committee, "readers are
turning to Thackeray, Dickens, George Eliot and Jane Austen for relief
from war worry." This authoritative statement will come as a great
shock to Mr. BALFOUR, who appears to have been under the impression
that WINSTON CHURCHILL was the popular author of the moment.

       * * *

Under the heading, "Fish-shaped Zeppelin," _The Daily Mail_, quoting
the Zurich correspondent of the _Nieuwe Courant_, describes a monster
supposed to have been recently launched by the Germans, which fires
an aerial torpedo weighing 420 lbs. a distance of nine miles. We
ourselves would have preferred the heading, "Fish-shaped Story."

       * * *

An A.B., fresh from the Naval fight, had read a statement in the Press
that the KAISER had given three Hochs! for his Navy. "Well, I don't
give a Dam for it!" said the British tar.

       * * *

The President of the Republic of San Domingo has resigned, "to save
the State from armed American intervention." We fear that somebody has
been pulling the gentleman's leg.

       * * *

_The Pall Mall Gazette_ on the Jumble Sale at the Caledonian Market:
"But there were bargains for everybody, whether it was an elephant or
a daintily bejewelled carrier, a Paris hat or a three-year-old, or a
motor-car, or an elephant." One of the lady helpers, discovering at
the last moment that she had a duplicate elephant, appears to have
brought it along just in time to catch our contemporary before it went
to press.

       * * *

In connection with the occupation of Fort Rupel by the Bulgarians it
is announced that General SARRAIL is taking the "necessary steps." Yet
we cannot be blind to the fact that it would have been better to have
forestalled the enemy and taken the necessary front-door.

       * * *

At a meeting of the Church Reading Union at Sion College, Sir FRANCIS
FOX, J.P., said that a boy who was arrested for setting fire to a
church had told him that he "had seen it on the cinematograph." This
statement has drawn a spirited protest from a number of our leading
film manufacturers, who point out that the thing could not possibly
have happened, as in all their dramas they have always made it a rule
never to burn anything less expensive than a cathedral.

       * * *

An advertisement from _The Times:_ "Very stout gentleman, ineligible
Army, requires permanent engagement to act for Cinema. Had some
experience in comedy pictures; fatter than any other movey actor;
weight 22 stone; exceptional opportunity for British producers, but
willing go abroad." What about an exchange, on a weight basis, with
America, who might send us Sir HERBERT TREE and CHARLIE CHAPLIN?

       * * *

At the Bow County Court a man who was questioned regarding his
occupation said that he was a tinsmith, a carrier, a job-buyer,
a milkman and a general dealer; that he was training about
120 carrier-pigeons for the Government and also did a bit of
prize-fighting. There the matter seems to have ended, but one cannot
help thinking that a really expert cross-examiner would not have let
him go without finding out what he did in his spare time.

       * * *

Reports from all the agricultural districts refer in glowing terms to
the cheerful manner in which women workers on the farms are carrying
on their duties. We are, however, informed that in one district a
woman voluntary worker was heard to express the opinion that she
would be more keen upon her part of the work if the ground were not so
horribly far down.

       * * *

The popularity of police passes is due to the fact that they can often
be kept and used as a testimonial to character. Thus a well-known
Irishman of county family, on applying for a pass to England, received
the following: "Mr. ---- is known to all the police of the county, and
they consider him a fit man to leave Ireland."

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _Member of the Royal Flying Corps (first day out of
hospital)._ "SPEED UP, MAN--SPEED UP!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

The Decline of Chivalry.

    "The Minister for Lands, the Minister for Agriculture, and the
    Under-Secretary for Agriculture paid a visit to the old Zoo
    at Moore Park, and decided to adopt the suggestion that it be
    utilised as a horticultural college for women students. It is
    expected the animals will take up their new quarters by July
    next."--_Australian Paper._

       *       *       *       *       *

Headline to an account of German outrages in the Baltic:--


  _Rand Daily Mail._

This quite takes us back to the LLOYD GEORGE of the old days.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "SWEET maid (experienced) for restaurant."

  _Scottish Paper._

We hope she knows her KINGSLEY:--"Be good, sweet maid."

       *       *       *       *       *

A New Gas Attack?

    "With whatever object, offensive or defensive, the German
    General Staff is concentrating all EGGS SEVENPENCE EACH."

  _Glasgow Evening Times._

       *       *       *       *       *

    "Kind Motherly Person wanted urgently to mind baby girl during
    day; easy distance from Reservoir:."--_Auckland Star._

So, if the child becomes too troublesome----

       *       *       *       *       *

To the Memory


Field-Marshal Earl Kitchener.

BORN JUNE 24TH, 1850.


  Soldier of England, you who served her well
    And in that service, silent and apart,
  Achieved a name that never lost its spell
          Over your country's heart;--

  Who saw your work accomplished ere at length
    Shadows of evening fell, and creeping Time
  Had bent your stature or resolved the strength
          That kept its manhood's prime;--

  Great was your life, and great the end you made,
    As through the plunging seas that whelmed your head
  Your spirit passed, unconquered, unafraid,
          To join the gallant dead.

  But not by death that spell could pass away
    That fixed our gaze upon the far-off goal,
  Who, by your magic, stand in arms to-day
          A nation one and whole,

  Now doubly pledged to bring your vision true
    Of darkness vanquished and the dawn set free
  In that full triumph which your faith foreknew
          But might not live to see.

  O. S.

       *       *       *       *       *



_She._ You are late again, Theobald. How often must I----

_He._ Oh, please do not worry me, my dear Martha. After what I have
been forced to go through it is a wonder that I am here at all.

_She._ What--have you been seeing _him_ again? I thought he was away
with one of the armies and you would be having a holiday.

_He._ So did I think; but it was not to be. Holiday, indeed! When do I
ever get even a moment in which to think my own thoughts?

_She._ At any rate I hope he acknowledged what Germany owes to you.
Where would he have been, I wonder, if it had not been for your
constant devotion to his service throughout this terrible time? Does
he realise what that has meant for him and his?

_He._ Kaisers never realise anything. That's my experience of one of
them, at any rate. If you flatter them they smile on you and take all
the credit of your work. But I am not cut out of that sort of wood,
and the result is that he looks at me as if he had bitten into a lemon
by mistake. You know that look, don't you?

_She._ Yes, my poor Theobald, I know that look. It makes everything
black and uncomfortable. But if he is like that and does not consider
your feelings, why do you continue to serve him? You should assert
yourself, and if he does not improve you should send in your
resignation. After all there are better things in the world than to be
Chancellor to a man who does not appreciate your work.

_He._ Of course I have thought of that, but I have put the idea aside.
If I were to resign now it would only give joy to my enemies, and they
are the last people in the world to whom I wish to give joy. He
won't get rid of me just yet, for he finds me too useful as a
lightning-conductor. Still, I know that some day he'll give me a push
by sending me a letter condoling with me on the state of my health,
and then good-bye to the office of Chancellor.

_She._ And, for my part, Theobald, I hope that time will come soon,
though I shudder to think what will become of the country when you go.
However, we won't talk of that any more. Tell me rather what he has
been saying to you to-day.

_He._ Oh, to-day he was displeased with my speech in the Reichstag.

_She._ Displeased with that beautiful speech so sun-clear and
patriotic! Why, the man must be mad. Never in all my life have I read
anything so patriotic and convincing. What _does_ he complain of?

_He._ What does he not complain of? First, he is angry that I defend
myself against attacks made in an anonymous pamphlet.

_She._ Then I am sure he wrote it himself or inspired it.

_He._ I have not the evidence to prove that, but it is, of course,
possible. It would be just like him to play me a trick like that.
But what chiefly provoked his anger was what I said about the naval

_She._ Yes, I remember you said that England was not thereby defeated.
If you will pardon me, Theobald, I myself thought that this was a rash

_He._ So you're going to turn against me too, are you? It was a true
statement, whatever he or you may say. They lost ships, yes, and we
lost ships too, and we can afford to lose ships much less that the
English can. What is the use of pretending that we've won the War
and beaten down England because our sailors shot straight and fought
bravely? So did the English, and they've got more ships left than we
have, more's the pity.

_She._ But _he_ has made a glorification speech about it, hasn't he?

_He._ Yes, he has. In another day or two he will have worked himself
up to the point of believing that he commanded our ships in the
battle. I know him; but he needn't think _I_'m going to encourage him
in this laughable pretension.

_She._ Do not think about him any more, but go to bed and have a good

_He._ I will try, but the telephone will ring, I am sure, and he will
command me to come and see him. (_The telephone rings._) There, I told
you so.

       *       *       *       *       *

Is it true that the KAISER intends to confer upon Admiral VON SCHEER
the title of Baron von Sheer-off?

       *       *       *       *       *

Our Classicists.

    "Another relic was a torpedo propeller. 'It came from a German
    submarine that got into an awkward place rather foolishly--but
    de mortibus, and the rest of it.'"--_Provincial Paper._

Never mind about the rest of it. "De mortibus" is enough, thank you.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "Deep down in the ship I came across a strange sight. Some
    twenty or thirty boys, seated at desks, were being taught
    the mysteries of compound fractures by a petty
    officer."--_Liverpool Daily Post._

As a preliminary to teaching the German Fleet the art of recurring

       *       *       *       *       *

    "Private Willie----has returned from France looking extremely
    robust and well. He will, I understand, enter for a course of
    instruction at Baal College, Oxford, before proceeding again
    to the front."--_Irish Paper._

As this new foundation, originally intended no doubt for the German
Rhodes Scholars, has apparently been diverted to better use, the
authorities might now alter the name.


_German Father._ "Can't we see our victorious fleet?"

_Official._ "No, you can't. Nobody can!"]

       *       *       *       *       *




       *       *       *       *       *


The milkman told Jimmy that the KAISER was like a gambler who had
mortgaged his resources up to bursting point, and now with every tooth
drawn was chewing the bitter dregs of remorse to the bone. The milkman
says these things come to him whilst he is milking, and the reason is
that when he presses his head to the cow's side the heat of the cow
thaws the blood in his brain for a time.

He told Jimmy that he could make a speech with anybody when he had got
his brain like that, and that he thought of addressing meetings, but
that the cow would be uneasy on a public platform.

Then he looked round to see where Jimmy's bloodhound, Faithful, was.
You see Faithful sometimes makes the milkman's horse try to get into
the milk-cart and hide its head under the seat, you know, like an
ostrich in the dreary desert when it is pursued by its enemies. But
Faithful was chained up for the sake of the deaf-and-dumb woman who
comes round once a fortnight. The deaf-and-dumb woman has a blind
husband, who squeezes a concertina whilst she shakes some coppers in a
tin cup at you. Jimmy's mother always gives her sixpence.

Jimmy says bloodhounds don't like coppers jumping about in tin cups;
it makes them harbour resentment, and then you have to show people
where the piece came out of your dress. The milkman told Jimmy that he
had met the deaf-and-dumb woman that morning. She was all by herself
in one of his fields, practising "Where is my wandering boy to-night"
Her husband had enlisted, that was why, and she had sold the business.
Jimmy wanted to see the woman, but she never came past, so he went
down to the railway-station with Faithful to see if she were there.
But there was only a man with a parcel under his arm looking about for
a train.

Jimmy says that people often go to the station like that, just to see
if there is a train in it; they want to use up their return tickets,
Jimmy says. But there is only the porter to look at, Jimmy says. The
man seemed to think the porter was hiding the trains somewhere, and
asked him for a _Bradshaw_. Jimmy says the porter scratched his head
so hard that Jimmy thought he would get a splinter in his finger,
you know, like they tell you at school, and then he fetched the man a
bradawl. "Didn't he ask me for a gimlet and didn't I bring him one?"
the porter appealed to Jimmy.

Jimmy says the man was very rude to the porter; he said things you
have to be sorry about when you have time to think them over. Jimmy
says the man actually made the porter unlock the waiting-room door and
throw open the window, although the porter told him that he had a hen
sitting on some eggs there.

The man seemed very restless, Jimmy says, because he didn't stay long
in the waiting-room. You see Jimmy's bloodhound wanted to see what the
hen smelt like, and how it was getting on; but the hen was not quite
herself that day, and would keep on flying about the waiting-room at
Faithful, just to try and vex him.

Jimmy says Faithful did his best to get the hen to go back and be busy
sitting on eggs again, but she wouldn't listen to reason.

Jimmy says the man tried to throw the waiting-room at Faithful and the
hen, so Faithful came out through the window, until the furniture
had settled down. Bloodhounds are like that, Jimmy says, they avoid a
disturbance; Faithful is a very good avoider, Jimmy says.

Jimmy says he thinks one of eggs must have been addled, and come
undone in the excitement of the moment, by what the man said. He
didn't seem to like addled eggs much, Jimmy says, and he called
Faithful an animal.

There was a luggage train due, and Jimmy thought he would just see it
come in and then take Faithful away, when on looking round he saw that
his bloodhound had suddenly thrown himself on the Spy trail. He
kept sniffing at the parcel the man had placed on the seat, and then
sniffed hard at the man; after that he sat down and scratched himself
whilst he compared the sniffs. Jimmy says it is splendid to see a
prize bloodhound sifting evidence like that; Faithful is a very good
sifter, Jimmy says.

Jimmy says the man picked up the parcel and put it under his arm; you
could see he was anxious by the way he kept one foot drawn back at the
ready. But Jimmy knows all about parcels under people's arms; you do
it with a fishing-line, and it is a surprise to cure people when they
have got the hiccough.

What you have to do is to get the fishing-line ready, and when the
train comes in to the station you tie one end of the line to one of
the railway trucks, and then, if you are lucky, you manage to hook the
other end through the string of the parcel.

Jimmy says that when you see the parcel you are carrying suddenly jump
from under your arm and go bumping along after the train as it goes
out of the station, you forget to hiccough.

You can do it with buns in refreshment rooms or with the green baize
on bookstalls--it only depends on who has got the hiccough, Jimmy

Jimmy says the man hadn't got the hiccough, but he was very surprised
to see his parcel start chasing the luggage train; it was because of
its activity, Jimmy says. Jimmy was on the bridge watching. Jimmy says
the parcel gave a squeak every time it bumped, and Faithful followed
the squeak all down the platform, and when the parcel burst he hurled
himself at it.

It was the blind man's concertina! and when Jimmy saw Faithful emerge
with the deaf-and-dumb label which the woman used to wear he ran for a
policeman as hard as he could.

The man wanted the policeman to take Jimmy in charge for destroying
his property, Jimmy says. He explained to the policeman about the
concertina; he said he had bought it from a woman who did not know its
value, and that it was a genuine "Strad."

Jimmy says the policeman might have let the man off if it hadn't been
for the porter. You see when the man's parcel was bumping along after
the train, the man opened his mouth so wide that some German words
fell out, and the porter had heard them. The porter knows German,
Jimmy says; he learned it before the War began from a German whose
luggage he had put into the wrong train.

When the German spy was searched it was found that he hadn't much
money, and the policeman said he must have bought the concertina and
label to try to get people to give him money and so work his way to
the coast.

It turned out afterwards that he had escaped from a concentrated camp,
Jimmy says. When Jimmy told the milkman about it, the milkman said
that it was "Ha, ha, one more feather plucked from the horde of German
rats that pollute the air with their diabolical designs."

He was just telling Jimmy that the KAISER was standing on the brink of
a deep abscess, when he heard Jimmy's bloodhound taking his horse home
to put it to bed, and this disturbed his flow of thought.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _The Mess Bore (innocent of small gunpowder plot)._

       *       *       *       *       *

A testimonial:--

    "I have much pleasure in recommending Mrs. D---- as a very
    efficient masseuse after breaking my wrist."

It was the least she could do to put it right.

       *       *       *       *       *


    [_The Tägliche Rundschau_ has published an article by Judge
    VON ZASTROW, of Berlin, on the Future National Church. It is
    to unite religion and love of the Fatherland; to reconcile
    the Sermon on the Mount with war; to make room for Pietists,
    Materialists, and Laodiceans; and to remove all sectional and
    sectarian differences. In short, the Church will bathe itself
    in "the new streams of German power, it will drink from the
    water which will make our German Will strong and healthy for
    battle. Our German piety, our German Christianity will assume
    an heroic colouring, in place of the sentimental tone which
    has hitherto characterised it."]

  When the fighting is finally over,
    And victory smiles on our land,
  And we 're living in comfort and clover,
    We must take our religion in hand;
  We must make it heroic and German,
    With "Fatherland-love" as its fount;
  We must reconcile War with the Sermon
      Once preached on the Mount.

  'Twill embrace the disciples of HAECKEL'S
    Monistic material creed,
  The Mammonite worship of shekels,
    The gospel of hunger and greed;
  And the layman, so Laodicean,
    No more his devotions will shirk,
  But will kneel with the mild Manichean,
      The amiable Turk.

  In fine, there'll be nothing sectarian
    In Germany's National Church;
  And the pedants, Pelagian and Arian,
    Will be knocked from their petulant perch;
  All paltry divisions 'twill level
    That tend to enfeeble the Hun,
  And the worship of God and the Devil
      Will merge into one.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "Miss ---- has a sweet voice.... Perhaps her greatest appeal
    was simplicity and an entire lack of effectiveness."

  _"Journal," Meriden, Conn._

We have singers just like that in the old country, too.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "Lieutenant ---- is reported wounded by the War
    Office."--_Liverpool Daily Post._

He is not the only one who has been hurt by this agency.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "WANTED immediately for Boys' Industrial School (temporarily
    and possibly permanently), an All-round Tanner."--_Natal

There is evidently a good deal of leathering to be done.

       *       *       *       *       *

From JACK LONDON'S _A Son of the Sun_:--

    "She had been hung up by one arm in the sun for two days and

Somewhere north of the Arctic Circle, we presume.

       *       *       *       *       *


He boarded the 'bus just as it was leaving Piccadilly Circus. "Full
ahtside," chanted the conductor, so the A.B. squeezed into a totally
inadequate space between a girl of sixteen and an elderly and
benevolent-looking lady. Squaring himself forward, he placed a hand
like a boxing-glove on either knee and glanced genially up and down
the 'bus. He was a large man, dark and hairy, and it was quite easy
to associate him with pigtails, tar and cutlasses. After the first
impression there came to one a sense of something odd and un-nautical.
Then one became suddenly aware that, instead of the regulation Navy
cap, he was wearing a rough woollen tam-o'-shanter, which hung coyly
over one ear.

A thin man in a top-hat was the first to notice it.

"Still pretty cold in the North Sea?" he ventured, with an eye upon
the tam-o'-shanter.

"So I've 'eard," the sailor replied guardedly; "but this 'ere," he
touched his headgear, "ain't an Arctic brow-mitten. I got this from
a friend, 'avin' lost me own little 'at jest after the second torpedo
was fired."

"Gracious!" ejaculated the elderly lady, and the occupants of the 'bus
became magnetised to attention.

"Now that's extremely interesting," exclaimed the thin man with a
nervous movement of his hand; "could you tell us the name of the

"Can't say as I can, Sir," was the discouraging reply.

"Of course not, of course not," spluttered a testy old gentleman in
white spats; "a very injudicious question in a public conveyance." He
glared at the thin man with intention.

"Sort o' fancy name she 'ad," the sailor continued, quite unmoved by
this outburst; "fact she was a bit fancy all round."

"Ha! disguised, I presume?" exclaimed the old gentleman, his
discretion for a moment overcome.

"Did she float for any length of time after being torpedoed?" The thin
man put the question with a legal incisiveness.

"Went to pieces like a paymaster's digestion as soon as the second
mouldy got 'er. Most unnatural."

He rubbed his forehead with the back of his hand and ruminated on the
peculiarity of it.

"I suppose you got dreadfully wet?" the elderly lady asked feelingly.

"Well, Mum," he said gravely, "I wasn't exactly dry. Yer see, after
the show sharp squalls set in from the Sou'-west, an' me 'avin' made
fast to my mate's bow awnin', I 'adn't no claim to the umbereller. So
I did get a bit soused round the superstructure, but not, so to speak,
flooded right down to my propeller casins."

"Dear! dear! How truly terrible."

She relapsed into silence convulsively, while the old gentleman
wheezed with great ferocity and muttered something about a good answer
to a d----d silly question.

"A submarine, of course?" The thin man pursued his examination

"So we presoomed from events which 'appened later."

"Artful them blinkin'--beg pardon, ladies--pirits is," vouchsafed a
man of toil from the far end of the 'bus; "my brother wot's----"

"All this occurred at night, I assume?" the old gentleman interrupted

"Yes, Sir, it was an evenin' performance." He glanced out into
the murky night. "Put me down at Sydney Terrace," he said to the

"Wy, ye're there nah," grumbled that caustic individual as he jerked
sharply at the bell-cord.

"Well," exclaimed the thin man as the sailor rose to go, "I
congratulate you very heartily on your good luck--very heartily

For the first time the hero of the incident seemed to exhibit signs of

"Good luck!" he repeated sarcastically. "Call it good luck to 'ave
your cap pinched out o' the 'arf-dollar seats an' then 'ave to take
yer best girl 'ome in this crabbin' _chappoo_. I'm goin' to see the
brass-'atted owner to-morrow, an' if 'e don't pay out I'll wreck
the 'ole bloomin' theatre. Good luck, yer call it!" He swung off the
foot-board and disappeared into the gloom, muttering incoherently.

       *       *       *       *       *

"He--he!" tittered the flapper. It was the only audible comment on the

       *       *       *       *       *

    "A War Office statement this afternoon reports another
    successful operation by Australian and New Zealand mounted
    troops in Egypt.

    At the enemy port of Barsalmana the enemy were compelled to
    abandon their camp, and were then combed by aeroplane."

  _Liverpool Echo._

An appropriate sequel to a brush with the Cavalry.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "If you stand the piano out into the room, you will want a
    cur-choke soup, mayonaise of lamb, macaroni with tomatoes."

  _Ladies' Paper._

In the interests of the cur it would be more merciful to keep the
piano in the corner.

       *       *       *       *       *



"A GENTLEMAN seeking information for forthcoming book about the recent
developments and inventions in Glass and Pottery manufacture, also
Bottle-making, would be pleased to hear from anyone capable of
furnishing such information."--_The Times._


DEAR SIR,--It is very fortunate that I caught sight of your
advertisement, for I am just the man you need. You want to know all
about bottles and things. I can tell you.

Let us begin with pottery.

Pottery is made in the Five Towns, a district in the Midlands to which
references may be found by the industrious, using a microscope, in the
works of Mr. ARNOLD BENNETT, the famous Caledonian Market salesman.
How it is made I have not room here to indicate, but its effect on
those who make it is to fill their lives with romance and excitement.
Thus, if they don't become Town Councillors for Hanbridge they join
the School Board at Hanley; and if they are not taking the new tram to
Burslem they are catching the fast train to Manchester at Knype.

And now for glass.

Glass is an invisible substance made in some mysterious way. It is
used for a multiplicity of things, but principally for windows and
bottles. It is when used for windows that its special quality of
transparency comes in so happily, for it enables you to see through.
This, when it is the window of a hat shop and you are out with your
wife or fiancée, is not an unmixed blessing, but at other times it
can be very convenient. Thus, when looking through the window, oneself
being carefully concealed behind the blind, one can see undesirable
callers approaching and beat a safe retreat. Windows can also be shut,
both in houses and railway carriages, and thus keep the place warm and
pleasantly insanitary and comfortable. It has been said that the pure
air of many German towns is due to the fact that the Germans keep
their windows shut.

Glass is also used for the chimneys of lamps, which, when the wick
is turned up too high, as it usually is, break. It is employed
furthermore in the manufacture of glass eyes, which, as all who have
visited _A Kiss for Cinderella_ know, do not always match the real

But the best thing that glass does is to become bottles. Bottles are
of two kinds: one kind for medicine, and the less said about those
the better; and the other for wine. It was a happy thought which
substituted glass for the skin and leather of which earlier bottles
were made, for one can now see, by holding it to the light, how little
the bottle contains, and order another. The principal fault of bottles
is that they are rarely big enough. A half-bottle does not contain
sufficient for one, and a whole bottle rarely satisfies two. Some men
are so lost to shame as to set only one bottle of wine before three or
even four persons.

Before the War old bottles were used chiefly as targets in rifle
saloons. Now that they have become scarce, and targets are made in
Germany, they are worth money and should be carefully saved.

Glass is useful also for making glasses--the receptacles from which
wine is drunk. Without glasses we should be hard put to it to consume
our liquor and should have to resort to half-cocoanuts, cups, the
hollow of the hand, or even sponges.

Just at the moment bottles--I mean the more genial variety--are under
a cloud. It is a penal offence to sell a bottle before noon, between
half-past two and half-past six, and after half-past nine at night.
But they are expected to come to their own again when Peace is

I think that is all.

  Yours, etc.,

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _Niece._ "HURRAH, AUNTIE! TED HAS BEEN MADE A


       *       *       *       *       *



  I went up to the Hay-market upon a summer day,
  I went up to the Hay-market to sell a load of hay--
  To sell a load of hay and a little bit over,
  And I sold it all to a pretty girl for a nosegay of red clover.

  A nosegay of red clover and a hollow golden straw;
  Now wasn't that a bargain, the best you ever saw?
  I whistled on my straw in the market-place all day,
  And the London folk came flocking for to foot it in the hay.


        The Angel flew down
        One morning to town,
  But didn't know where to rest;
    For they shut her out of the East End
  And they shut her out of the West.

        The Angel went on
        To Islington,
  And there the people were kinder.
    If ever you go to Islington
  That's where you will find her.

       *       *       *       *       *

Those who _do_ hold the victory--BEATTY _possidentes_.

       *       *       *       *       *

Commercial Candour.

    "---- & SON, WINDOW-CLEANERS. We spare no panes."

       *       *       *       *       *

Our Optimists.

    "As a result of Wednesday's battle the strength of the British
    Fleet is now greater, not relatively, but absolutely, than it

  _Daily Telegraph._

       *       *       *       *       *

Ships in WOLFF'S clothing: the "victorious" German Fleet.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "Villagers here are heartily congratulating Mr. Charles Gibbs
    on his marvellous escape from the great North Sea Battle,
    from one of our lost cruisers. He reached home on Sunday, and
    brings with him a portion of a shell that pierced his cap,
    and an engine of the vessel tattered in the conflict."--_Thame

"Some" souvenir.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "The Germans are using guns twenty-one centimetres in length,
    which can be fired from railway lines and transported with

  _Westminster Gazette._

This appears under the heading, "Big Guns the Deciding Factor." But
should it not have been "Pocket Pistols"?

       *       *       *       *       *

    "Talking parrots from 12s. 6d., 3 months' trial."--_Daily

After that you get used to it.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "WANTED, MAN for Tipping Russian Army by hand, piece work."

  _Northampton Chronicle._

It should be rather a long job.

       *       *       *       *       *


       *       *       *       *       *


It is very odd how suddenly and completely a new idea gets about.
Yesterday you had never heard of it, or not in any way to take notice
of it; to-day you hear about it consciously for the first time, and
to-morrow it is a commonplace of conversation.

It is so with U.A.

I had, of course, heard of U.A. as a menace, a hidden terror, the
old man's dread, the _bon vivant's_ heritage, and so forth. But
only vaguely. No one had talked about it; I had seen the words in
advertisements and had forgotten them again. I had never associated
myself with them. Whatever might happen to me, U.A. would be

And then the blow fell. Suddenly U.A. became omnipresent. I met a
friend who only last week I had found doing himself with his customary
thoroughness at dinner. This evening he was dining again, but his sole
companion was a chilly and depressing bottle of French natural water.

"What is this?" I asked. "War economy?"

"No," he said; "merely U.A."

I should have thought little of that were it not that half-an-hour
later I overheard two men talking about the difficulty of getting rid
of U.A. once it had established itself.

Another man, to whom I complained of some trifling discomfort, said it
was probably U.A.

An hour later I was sitting at a farce which, like all the farces in
London at the present moment, is the funniest thing ever staged--only
this, if the management is to be believed, is more so; and the only
thing I was able to laugh at was a joke about U.A.

The next morning I received a letter from a solicitous relation
warning me to be more careful or I should be at the mercy of U.A.

And to crown all I went to see a doctor about something really quite
negligible, and, after beginning by conjecturing that it was due to
U.A., he ended by feeling certain of it.

He asked me a hundred questions about myself, and after every reply he
said either, "That's U.A.," or "U.A. again."

"Almost everything that is wrong with people," he said finally, "is
caused by U.A."

I came away feeling thoroughly fashionable, but also dejected beyond
words, for he had condemned me to a _régime_ from which every spark of
happiness was excluded.

I have since become a source of embarrassment to my friends, for more
than half the nice things that everyone else eats and all the nice
things that they drink are denied me. U.A. forbids.

Wine--oh no. Spirits--not on your life. Underdone beef--poison.
Tobacco--very unwise. And so forth.

As for my own kitchen, which does not think very quickly, it considers
me mad; and after one of the melancholy meals that are now my lot I am
disposed to agree.

The question I ask myself is, Which is it to be--a long life of
joyless food and no U.A., or a shorter but merrier life with U.A.
thrown in? And "What's the harm in a little U.A. anyway?" I say as I
light a forbidden cigar.

However I answer the great problem, of one thing I am certain, and
that is that with all this U.A. about there ought to be a restaurant
with enough intelligence to provide an anti Uric Acid menu.

       *       *       *       *       *

From a description of the German assaults at Verdun:--

    "The last regiment, which attacked in ass formation, was
    terribly handled."

We understand that it was not led by the CROWN PRINCE in person.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "THAT the new Service Act will decimate the Hythe Town Band.

    THAT when the call has been answered there will only be five
    members left."

  _Kentish Express._

The present strength of the Hythe Town Band appears to be 5-5/9: five
men and five tailors?

[Illustration: THE LOST CHIEF.


       *       *       *       *       *


       *       *       *       *       *


The trouble started a week ago, when the eagle eye of a Very Great Man
chanced on a piece of paper lying in the neighbourhood of our camp.
On being hastily summoned, I could not offhand give any reasonable
explanation of its presence. To any lesser personage I should
undoubtedly have proved it to belong to one of the A.S.C. people who
live next door; but as it was I could only agree that it was a piece
of paper, and as such was serving no useful purpose.

Two days later the blow fell. The V.G.M. would inspect the camp, and
us in full marching order, the following day.

In the meantime we had learnt that several neighbouring camps had been
tried thus, found wanting, and soundly strafed. From them we gleaned
some useful hints:--

    (1) That any unnecessary oddments, human or other, left lying
    about in the camp would be certain to elicit caustic comment;

    (2) That tired or dissipated-looking animals, soiled harness
    or lustreless buttons would probably bring about atmospheric
    changes on parade; and

    (3) That pieces of paper would mean indefinite home leave for

It was still moonlight when our cloud of skirmishers was abroad. The
camp is entirely on soft sand, so that burying is a beautifully
simple operation. In every tent parties could be seen rapidly putting
home-made chairs, beds, boxes, tins and cooking utensils below ground.
Personally I was fastening my less sleek mules to a somewhat soiled
waggon, collecting odd men who wouldn't be nice for the great to see,
and despatching the lot behind a neighbouring wood. They looked very
like a troupe of roving gipsies. A sentry was posted in case the
V.G.M. should come round the wood, when the troupe would, with
infinite stealth, track round in his wake.

Eventually the camp was an absolute picture--not a superfluous
article in view; kits dressed with mathematical exactitute; cookhouse
spotless, with a faultlessly attired cook fingering his implements
in the manner indicated in the text-book. On the horse-lines were
stablemen, assiduously raking away at wisps of straw previously laid
down for the purpose.

He arrived about five minutes early, but the last tin of sardines was
safely concealed, and we felt almost confident. We were inspected very
minutely and asked seemingly ingenuous questions, each doubtless with
a subtle trap for the unwary. I shivered when his horse pawed the
ground and unearthed a bottle of Bass. I was also horrified to
perceive the faces of several particularly grimy cook's mates
continually popping round the edge of the wood. However, the
inspection of the wagons concluded without untoward incident, and when
the camp's turn came we felt we were on safe ground. We had that rare
and comfortable feeling that nothing had been forgotten. I saw the
Great Man start as his eye encountered the spotless scene. Then a look
of grim determination was apparent as he began his tour, his glance,
trained to an extraordinary pitch of perception, seeking its wonted
prey. But no prey was forthcoming. Up and down the lines he went,
peering into tents, digging at kits and deputing members of his
retinue to test them for tooth-brushes. Exasperation gradually took
the place of determination on his countenance. As he neared the end of
his tour he was swelling very visibly and muttering to himself. We saw
that some terrible eruption was about to occur, and we played our last
card. At a sign from me a stealthy figure emerged from behind a
bush, dropped a piece of orange peel and disappeared again. As the
procession turned the last corner a wild light broke upon the face
of the Central Figure. His step quickened as he approached the orange
peel. He turned and cleared his throat. "This piece of orange peel,"
he began, addressing our CO., and rapidly deflating the while. The
situation was saved.

We have a great reputation now, and intend to do "Inspections
Complete" at a reasonable figure, inclusive of harness,
bright-buttoned soldiers, guard for presenting arms, diggers, a
concealed spot for unsightly men and appliances, and--our special
line--a safety-valve.

       *       *       *       *       *






"NO, SIR."



       *       *       *       *       *


I have seen many flag-days and met many flag-sellers. Some were false
(they had flags with rusty pins and jabbed them treacherously into my
best blouse), and many were frivolous (that sort doesn't trouble about
old-maid customers); but of those who were neither false nor frivolous
Jack and Jill stand easily first.

I saw them coming up the garden path very early in the morning, Jack
in a sailor suit and Jill in a minute white frock. Their combined ages
might have totalled nine--at a generous guess.

There was a furious ring at the door, and when I opened it a small
brown hand was thrust in, full of flags, whose pins must have been
very prickly to hold, while he of the sailor suit addressed me

"Look! This sort's a penny. It's paper. And this sort's thruppence.
It's real silk. Which'll you have?"

The hand held two silk and four paper flags. I took a silk one, and
the girl nodded approval. "I think," said she, "the silk ones will
_wear_ better."

While I found my purse the boy had a sudden idea, which he instantly
communicated with the sincere intention of doing the best he could
for me. Said he, "You'd better have the bofe. You'll want one for
your--for the father." And then he had a brighter thought still. "And
the childrens. This paper kind would do for them. It's no use buying
_good_ ones for them, is it?"

"No, they're sure to lose them," agreed Jill. "You see, they're rather
loose on their pins," she added with commercial candour.

"Else they wouldn't waggle properly," put in the boy hastily, in case
I might be thinking this a defect.

"I'll take the lot," said I, "if you can tell me what it's all for."

"You c'n see," said Jack, "it's on the back of them," and he poked
one round. "'For Woun-ded He-roes,'" he read out with pride and great

"_He_ can't read very well," said Jill, who was a wee bit jealous. "It
doesn't mean dead. It only means wounded."

But Jack smiled at me understandingly, refusing to argue with anything
so small as Jill, and they departed, counting the spoil.

At the gate Jack turned and came back. "If you have more than four
children," he said earnestly, "I could bring you some more paper

I think they must have had a successful day.

       *       *       *       *       *



    Used throughout Wales for 40 years."

  _Baptist Times._

As the posters should have said, "It is worse than unpatriotic, it is
bad form, to wear new clothes in war-time."

       *       *       *       *       *


George and I had been discussing the prospect for elderly and slightly
shop-soiled _littérateurs_ under present circumstances. The result was
not wholly enlivening.

"If I had a few hundreds clear," said George at last, "I'd give up
Fleet Street and start a farm. I've always loved the country."

"My dear George," I answered, speaking slowly, "for a man to take a
farm because he loves the country is to make a master of what should
remain a mistress."

Just like that. Because I was going slowly I was able at the last
moment to substitute the word "mistress" for "servant," which would
have been merely banal. Not till then did I recognise the bright
perfection of the completed remark. No wonder George stared enviously.

"What's that out of?" he asked.

"Nothing as yet." But I had already determined that it should not
long remain unset. I mean, in these days one simply can't afford to
go chucking gems about in gratuitous conversation. The difficulty was
what exactly to do with it.

The sparkling _causerie_ was my first idea. That evening I refilled my
fountain-pen, opened a fresh packet of foolscap, and began:--


"It has been wittily observed that for a man to start farming

But there the adverb began to worry me. After all, perhaps it wasn't
quite so witty as I had hoped, or at least others might not think
it so. And in any case I got no personal credit. Subsequent pages
recorded other attempts, as--"Who was the cynical philosopher
who----?" or "It may perhaps be objected by the prudent that for a man
to start----"

After this I must have decided against starting at all, for nothing
more came of the _causerie_.

My next attempt took the form of fiction. I resolved to enshrine the
masterpiece in a short story. "The Farm that Failed" seemed to me,
and does still, an attractive title. You see the idea of it? Pastoral
humour; George, as an amateur husbandman, scored off by sheep and
confused by cows. Arrival of town friend, _Amber Dextrius_, on visit.
Some sort of love interest. And finally the Epigram. "Ah, my dear
fellow," said _Dextrius_, as he flung away his cigarette, "after all
you have only proved the great truth that----" And so on.

It looked promising. I hardly know why I abandoned it. Perhaps the
love interest proved an obstacle. Perhaps I feared lest George
(that good sort) should detect himself and be hurt. Anyhow it got no

The inspiration that followed had even less fortune. It is represented
by a sheet headed:--


(_A Fantastic Comedy in Five Acts._)

    [ACT I.--_Morning-room of_ Lord Amber Dextrius' _house in Hill
    Street, W. A large luxuriously-furnished apartment. Doors in
    right and left wall. Two doors in back wall. Three windows
    also in back wall. The light is that of a brilliant morning in

_Enter_ Lord Amber, _a handsome faultlessly-dressed man of about
five-and-thirty. He walks towards the door_ L."

But he never reached it. Perhaps an entire ignorance of what he should
do when he got there paralysed him, as it did his creator. After all,
you can hardly run a five-Act comedy on stage directions and a single
epigram, though I admit that the attempt has been made.

So there the thing rested. From time to time I had wild ideas of
advertising it in the literary papers: "For sale, original epigram,
mint condition, wide application, never been used. Cheap; or would
accept typewriter, or workable film-plots." But even then I might have
no offers. I began to think that my little property was going to prove

But only yesterday something happened.

"I'm awfully sorry, dear," said Ursula, entering the study with an
air of contrition. "It isn't my fault; but the Carter girls are here
having tea, and the eldest one has brought her birthday-book." She
held out the detestable little volume as she spoke.

"You know perfectly well that I never---- Is the eldest the one with
dark eyes?"

"Yes, that's the girl. She's going to be a lady-gardener."

It was like a voice from heaven. "For this once," I said benevolently,
"I will make an exception." I took the book, already open at some
absurd date in April, and wrote in a clear hand:--

"The professional horticulturist should beware lest he (or she) make
that a master which should remain a mistress."

Ursula read it twice. "It's awfully clever," she said, "and on
the spur of the moment too! I can't imagine how you think of these

"Oh, they just come," I said. So it was not wholly wasted, though
I own I should have preferred cash on delivery. Still we can't have

       *       *       *       *       *



    [Lines written for the Catalogue of the Royal Horticultural
    Society's Exhibition to be held at the Society's Hall in
    Vincent Square, on June 27, 28 and 29, for the benefit of the
    Red Cross.]

  Think not that Earth unheeding lies
    Tranced by the summer's golden air,
  Indifferent, under azure skies,
    What blows of War her children bear.

  She that has felt our tears like rain,
    And shared our wounds of body and soul,
  Gives of her flowers to ease our pain,
    Gives of her heart to make us whole.

  O. S.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "A Swiss cinematograph periodical learns that the hissing of
    the Kaiser's picture occurred decently at one of the largest
    cinema houses in Berlin."--_Glasgow Evening Times._

One of the few decent things the Prussians have done in this War.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _Recruiting Sergeant (to Brown)._ "ARE YOU IN A


       *       *       *       *       *


  Essay-writing in my schooldays certainly was not my forte;
  "Lack of concentration" always figured in the term's report,
  And my undistinguished diction made my worthy master snort.

  Now enlisted as an usher--so a freakish fate ordains--
  I employ my best endeavours and the remnant of my brains
  Setting and correcting essays written by scholastic swains.

  "Whether they derive advantage from this mental interplay,
  Modesty, if not misgiving, makes it hard for me to say,
  But I'm much inclined to fancy that it's just the other way.

  Anyhow, from this experience I have learned a lot of things
  Hidden from the ken of scholars or Prime Ministers or Kings,
  Though revealed to youthful schoolboys lately freed from

  On the relative importance of the classics, "maths," and "stinks";
  On the charm of pink-hued ices, on the choice of gaseous drinks;
  On the special sort of sermon which induces forty winks;

  On the various ways of pulling pompous seniors by the leg;
  On effective ways of bringing uppish juniors down a peg;
  On the scientific mode of blowing any kind of egg;

  On the forms of condescension which the human boy insult;
  On the picture-palace mania, on the CHARLIE CHAPLIN cult;
  On the latest modern weapons which supplant the catapult--

  On these elemental matters, and indeed on many more,
  I have now accumulated quite a valuable store
  Of instructive, entertaining and authoritative lore.

  And I hope, on my returning to my humdrum normal life--
  When we've scotched the KAISER's yearning after sanguinary strife--
  Fortified by modern learning, to electrify my wife.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "VAN (sleeping), on iron wheels, to accommodate two men, not
    under 12ft. by 6ft."--_Glasgow Herald._

Such giants should certainly go in the van.

       *       *       *       *       *


Extract from official memo.:--

    "This man has been medically examined ... with the result that
    he is believed to be feigning decease. The penalty attached to
    trial by C.M. on this charge has been explained to him, and he
    has elected to return to duty."

       *       *       *       *       *

In the Line of Methuselah.

    "In France the northern men were accorded high honours.
    Louis had a bodyguard of twenty-four Scotsmen, and this band
    continued in existence as a Royal guard to nine monarchs for
    one hundred and fifty years." _The War Illustrated._

What happened at this point of their interesting career we are not
told--possibly they went into the Reserves.

       *       *       *       *       *


I have been made a fool of by the Government. No, you needn't all hold
up your hands at once. Mine Was different from yours. I have always
looked upon myself as an efficient uncle, but now--well, one more
incident of this kind and I shall be definitely _passé_.

The technique of being an uncle I mastered quite early. For instance,
at stated seasons in the year I choose with some concentration two
toys and two improving books. The toys I give to my nieces, Lillah and
Phyllis; the books I send to a hospital. In the same spirit, when I
take them for a treat and they over-eat themselves, I simply finance
the operation and at the same time buy a large bottle of castor oil
and send it anonymously to St. Bartholomew's. You see the idea? It
is simply technique. I have explained this system to Margaret, their
mother. But she is not one who sees reason very easily.

In spite of opposition, however, I continue to do my duty.

In this spirit I dashed into the nursery the other day and declared
my afternoon and my finances at the service of Lillah and Phyllis.
Margaret definitely forbade a cinema, from a curious notion that
their patrons consisted exclusively of bacilli. So Lillah and Phyllis
declared at once for CHARLIE CHAPLIN or nothing. This was only
natural, so I bought two tickets for the latest exhibition of War
cartoons and sent them to my Aunt Julia at Harpenden. Then I took the
children to the Pictures.

This is just to show you that I know my job. But mark now how Fate
rushed me on to destruction.

"Uncle James," said Lillah, "I love you!"

I braced myself up.

"So do I," said Phyllis.

It looked like trouble.

"Can we go and see the tin soldiers before they go to bed?" said

"The horseback ones," added Phyllis.

Oh, this was too simple: a nice quiet look at the guardians of
Whitehall, with perhaps a glimpse for the infant mind of the vast
resources of the British Empire; a word in season, perhaps, from Uncle
James; and a detailed report to Margaret of instruction combined with

Of course we went.

"This," I said, as Phyllis gazed round-eyed at one of the motionless
warriors--"this is but a symbol of the dignity of that great Empire
upon which the sun----"

"Soldiers," said Phyllis with a wisdom beyond her years, "like girls
to look at them ever so long."

Then she went away to Lillah, and I saw them with their heads close
together. A wonderful thing, the child-mind. Only beginning perhaps,
but they were learning doubtless to think imperially. The foundation
of that pride of race----? I broke the thread of thought and looked
up. Instantly I was gibbering with horror.

Phyllis, standing on tiptoe and clinging precariously to his
saddle-cloth, was dropping a roll of paper neatly into the jackboot of

"Phyllis!" I gasped. "What are you doing?"

She turned to me happily.

"That's what Nannie does," she said, without a blush for her sex. "I
put 'I love you.--PHYLLIS.' Do you think he'll be pleased?"

I seized both girls and hurried into the Park. My soul cried out for
the open spaces. I stole a look at Hercules over my shoulder, but he
was granite.

On Olympus the Olympians are above shame.

"Phyllis," I said gravely, "don't you think that was very naughty of

"No," said that small Delilah firmly; "soldiers like it."

The even voice of Lillah broke in.

"And soldiers ought to have what they like, oughtn't they?"

"Certainly," I answered patriotically.

"Well, then," said Phyllis crushingly.

"If I had done that I should feel very much ashamed of myself," I

"Well, you didn't," said Lillah, and that finished it.

They evidently had an offensive and defensive alliance against this
sort of thing.

"If your mother," I began.

"Sand!, Sand!" shrieked Phyllis.

"Sand,", echoed Lillah, and both children were gone.

They had just noticed the present possibilities of the empty lake as
a substitute for Margate. Two best frocks! Essentially a moment for

I stepped firmly across the railings. And there the British Government
stepped in. I turned to regard a policeman (out-size).

"May I call your attention to this, Sir?" he said.

I gazed at the notice like a fish:--


It is still there; you can go and see it for yourself. I argued, I
entreated. Either the constable had a sense of humour (and should be
reported) or else a perverted sense of duty.

A crowd collected. Out of the corner of my eye I could see those two
best frocks.

"As usual," I said bitterly but with dignity, "the British Government
is too late."

By the time I had persuaded the children that tea was superior to sand
castles their clothes--but no, why repeat what Margaret said? I'm sure
she regretted it when I had gone.

But my reputation as an uncle of any technical knowledge is finished.

I was so moved that I even forgot my gift to St. Bartholomew's after
tea--and now I am writing a personal letter to Mr. SAMUEL about that
notice in the Park.

       *       *       *       *       *


(_In Training._)

  We've got our foreign-service boots--we've 'ad 'em 'alf a day;
  If it wasn't for the Adjutant I'd sling the brutes away;
  If I could 'ave my old ones back I'd give a fortnight's pay,
        And chuck 'em in the pair I got this morning!

  We've marched a 'undred miles to-day, we've 'undreds more to go,
  An' if you don't believe me, why, I'll tell you 'ow I know--
  I've measured out the distance by the blister on my toe,
        For I got my foreign-service boots this morning!

  We've got our foreign-service boots--I wish that I was dead;
  I wish I'd got the Colonel's 'orse an' 'im my feet instead;
  I wish I was a nacrobat, I'd walk upon my 'ead,
        For I got my foreign-service boots this morning!

  We're 'oppin' and we're 'obblin' to a cock-eyed ragtime tune,
  Not a soul what isn't limpin' in the bloomin' 'ole balloon.
  But buck you up, my com-e-rades, we're off to Flanders soon,
        For we got our foreign-service boots this morning!

       *       *       *       *       *

    "The full tale of the German losses is being sedulously
    concealed. Their battered ships are licking their wounds under
    the Kaiser's moustache, which has been badly singed."--_The

It is thought that by this time they have had quite enough of his lip.

       *       *       *       *       *

    "No further infantry attack had been delivered by either side
    in this area between June 3rd and June 5th. At least four
    battleships belonging to three different German regiments have
    been identified as having taken part in the original attack."

  _Newcastle Daily Journal._

Now we understand why the Germans were in such a hurry to get home
from Jutland.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _Town Lady._ "BY-THE-BY, SIR WILLIAM, DO TELL ME.

       *       *       *       *       *


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

If you only like listening to a talker with whom you agree, who is
of your type and school, then don't bother with _What is Coming?_
(CASSELL), which purports to be H. G. WELLS'S forecasts of things
after the War. It's perhaps hardly so serious as that, but just
good speculative talk, the kind that offers the first thing that is
signalled to the lips from a quick reflective brain without pauses
to consider objections by the way. Yet perhaps, after all, the author
cannot be dismissed too lightly as a prophet. He did see further into
the air than most, at the time when the experts were blandly proving
all sorts of impossibilities; and, as he recalls, he made a lucky shot
in foretelling the immobility of trench warfare. He still believes in
the BLOCH deadlock, and gives victory to the Allies merely for better
staying power. For British training and method he naturally has
nothing but scorn, which takes him further than most of us can follow
him. At least when he says that the university-trained class has been
found "under the fiery test of war an evasive, temporising class of
people, individualistic, ungenerous and unable either to produce or
obey vigorous leadership," he badly needs to justify the confining of
that diagnosis to _that_ particular class. And when he further says of
British administration of subject territories that "the British are
a race coldly aloof. They have nothing to give a black people and
no disposition to give"--well, it isn't an obvious truth. These
are blemishes of a kind to which a quick-thinking man, a little too
anxious to set everybody right by wholesale methods, is naturally
subject. But you will miss a good deal of fresh-air sanity, of
illumination (for the man _can_ see and find the vivid phrase to
express his vision) on war and peace and education and feminism and
internationalism and citizenship, if you let yourself be alienated by
such lapses. So please don't.

       *       *       *       *       *

"If only those old things could speak, what stories, etc., etc.!"
Most of us, at one time or another, have endured or inflicted that
well-intentioned banality. And here is Miss MARJORIE BOWEN, most
skilful of historical romancers, setting out to tell us precisely what
stories. She calls her volume _Shadows of Yesterday_ (SMITH, ELDER),
explaining in a preface that is by no means the least attractive
chapter that they are supposed to be the histories attached to a
collection of antique oddments in a little Italian museum. No one who
remembers with what persuasive charm Miss BOWEN has handled her long
costume novels will be astonished at the atmosphere with which she
manages to invest these little episodes; a ring, a jewel, a CHARLES
II. jug--these are the materials out of which by aid of fancy she
recreates the past. Of the lot, I myself should give the palm to the
jug's story, a spirited little thing enough, in which a country maid,
awaiting in a cottage the coming of a lover, whom she knows as "Lord
Anthony," meets instead my Lady CASTLEMAINE, who tells her that the
defaulting swain is really His Majesty, and explains that there
exist (to put it tactfully) certain prior engagements of the royal
affection. The end is a brilliant comedy stroke, which I will not
spoil by anticipation for you. It is this capacity for the unexpected
that saves Miss BOWEN from the danger, obviously inherent in her plan,
of being too tightly bound down by the need of forcing her catalogue
of relics into prominence. She has done larger work, but nothing more

       *       *       *       *       *

I could not, if I would, apply quite the customary severities of
criticism to _Twilight_ (HUTCHINSON). It is too personal, and the
death of its author, the clever woman who elected to be known as FRANK
DANBY, is too fresh in memory for me to regard it with detachment. It
is one of the tragedies of literature that only in her last two books,
this and the one that preceded it, did the author give the world a
taste of her true quality. There is evidence in _Twilight_ of gifts
that might well have raised its writer to a place among the greatest.
But frankly it is not possible to consider it apart from the
circumstances of its origin. Two stories there are in it: one
personal, autobiography at its most intimate; the other a work of
imagination. It is supposed that the writer, a woman novelist, wrecked
with disease and the drugs that bring endurance, goes down into the
country and there becomes obsessed with the history of another woman,
in circumstances much like to her own, who had once lived and loved in
the same remote house. So, side by side, you have the two tragedies,
one of the sick bed, one of the soul, both told with an incisive and
compelling art, and with a realism often painful. But, as at once
a document of fact and imagination, the book is perhaps unique.
Certainly no one can read it without feeling that the death of its
author has left literature poorer by the loss of a personality whose
real power was yet to be shown.

       *       *       *       *       *

The demand for an eleventh edition of Lord ERNEST HAMILTON'S book,
_The First Seven Divisions_ (HURST AND BLACKETT) is no more than a
deserved tribute to what has already taken rank as the best history,
so far, of the most critical period of the World War. Lord ERNEST
HAMILTON writes as one having authority. He tells the facts as he
knows them--facts in many cases hitherto undisclosed, and given here
with adequate detail and just; enough of explanation to make the
account clear even to the most unmilitary reader. There has been no
attempt by the writer to embellish his theme. It remains a simple
story of sheer heroism, told in a straightforward soldierly
manner--and the reading of it must make the most unemotional Briton
feel the thrill of pride and pity and gratitude. "Nothing," says the
writer, "can ever surpass, as a story of simple sublime pluck, the
history of the first three months of England's participation in the
Great War." This is what you can follow day by day in these pages.
There are many new maps in the present edition, which greatly help to
explain the situation, as it developed from Mons, through the battle
of the Marne, to the trenches before Ypres. I can only say that I hope
there will soon be few school libraries in which this most inspiring
book has not an honourable place.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _Elderly Gentleman (alone in a compartment with
fully-armed soldier, next stop one hour)._ "EXCUSE ME, MY MAN, BUT

_Soldier (with meaning)._ "QUITE LIKELY, SIR, SEEIN' AS YOU WERE

       *       *       *       *       *

When Mr. FRANKFORT MOORE is not out to be funny I enjoy his novels,
and _The Rise of Raymond_ (HUTCHINSON) is pleasantly free from
humorous intent. _Raymond's_ father, a cheap house-furnisher by trade,
was a terribly blighting person of peculiar religious views. By rod
and rote he tried to instil his narrow creed into his son, and the
latter's suffering during this process is revealed all the more
forcibly because it is not unduly insisted upon. Though _Raymond_ has
his quiverful of virtues, one's powers of belief in them, though taxed
heavily enough, are not super-taxed. It may seem curious that this
young man, whose vocation it was during some of the best years of his
life to handle and sell uninspiring things like linoleum, should have
had artistic tastes; but as the reason for this endowment is not given
away until the very end of the story I prefer not to give it away
at all. In contrast to the scorn and ridicule scattered over the
puritanical sect of which _Raymond's_ parents were members, the Church
of England parson, _Mr. Bosover_, receives a very warm pat on the
back. "The tradition of gentleman is kept alive by the English parson.
He is the only remaining interpreter of that ancient _culte_." So now
you know.

       *       *       *       *       *

_A Woman in the Balkans_ (HUTCHINSON) is a book of which the
publishers very properly observe that it "will undoubtedly make a wide
appeal at the present moment." These are times when the records of
anybody intelligent "in the Balkans" must be attractive reading; and
Mrs. WILL GORDON (WINIFRED GORDON) is not only intelligent, but--what
is even more important in the writer of a popular memoir--excellent
good company. Her vivid account of her pre-War travels in Serbia,
Bulgaria, and Roumania gives one the feeling of being the fortunate
friend of a correspondent whose views on home-writing are not confined
to picture post-cards. In short a pleasant, not too professional,
record of adventure and observation. The many excellent photographs
that illustrate it are in precisely the same style, being, many of
them, the successful little snapshots of an artistic amateur, such
as often convey a far better impression of places and people than
the more ambitious products of expert science. Not all the pictures,
however, are from the writer's own camera. Two, which, with a
grim sense of drama, are placed next to each other, represent the
Coronation of King PETER of Serbia, and the tragic ride of the Monarch
from his invaded country. There is a whole tremendous chapter of
European history in the contrasted pictures. Small wonder if books
about the Balkans should make "a wide appeal."

       *       *       *       *       *

From a trade circular:--

    "Since the beginning of the War we have encouraged our men to
    enlist, and have filled their places with girls of military

But why not give the girls of our fighting men a chance?

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 150, June 14, 1916" ***

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