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Title: Mr Punch Afloat - The Humours of Boating and Sailing
Author: Hammerton, John Alexander, Sir, 1871-1949 [Editor], Tenniel, John, Sir, 1820-1914 [Illustrator]
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 "Mr Punch Afloat - The Humours of Boating and Sailing" ***

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Edited by J. A. HAMMERTON

Designed to provide in a series of volumes, each complete in itself, the
cream of national humour, contributed by the masters of comic
draughtsmanship and the leading wits of the age to "Punch," from its
beginning in 1841 to the present day


       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "MR. PUNCH AFLOAT"]

       *       *       *       *       *








       *       *       *       *       *


_Twenty-five volumes, crown 8vo. 192 pages
fully illustrated_



       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: MR. PUNCH AT THE HELM!

(_By way of Introduction_)

River and sea, with their teeming summer life as we know them in Great
Britain and around our coasts, have yielded a rich supply of subjects
for the pens and pencils of MR. PUNCH'S merry men. In Stevenson's famous
story of "The Merry Men," it is the cruel side of the sea that is
symbolised under that ironic description; but there is no touch of gall,
no sinister undertone, in the mirth of MR. PUNCH'S "merry men."

It may be protested that in the pages of this little book, where we have
brought together for the first time all MR. PUNCH'S "happy thoughts"
about boating and sailing, the miseries of travel by sea and the
discomforts of holiday life on our inland waters are too much insisted
upon. But it is as much the function of the humorist as it is the
business of the philosopher to hold the mirror up to nature, and we are
persuaded that it is no distorted mirror in which MR. PUNCH shows us to

After all, although as a nation we are proud to believe that Britannia
rules the waves, and to consider ourselves a sea-going people, for the
most of us our recollections of Channel passages and trips around our
coasts are inevitably associated with memories of _mal-de-mer_, and it
says much for our national good humour that we can turn even our
miseries into jest.

Afloat or ashore, MR. PUNCH is never "at sea," and while his jokes have
always their point, that point is never barbed, as these pages
illustrative of the humours of boating and sailing--with MR. PUNCH at
the helm--may be left safely to bear witness.


       *       *       *       *       *





    'Ot weather at last! Wot a bloomin' old slusher it's bin,
    This season! But now it do look as though Summer was goin' to begin.
    Up to now it's bin muck and no error, fit only for fishes and frogs,
    And has not give a chap arf a chance like of sporting 'is 'oliday togs.

    Sech a sweet thing in mustard and pink, quite _reshershay_ I tell you,
      old man.
    Two quid's pooty stiff, but a buster and blow the expense is my plan;
    With a stror 'at and _puggeree_, Charlie, low shoes and new mulberry
    If I didn't jest fetch our two gals, it's a pity;--and wasn't they

    We'd three chaps in the boat besides me,--jest a nice little party
      of six,
    But they didn't get arf a look in 'long o' me; they'd no form, them
      two sticks.
    If you'd seen me a settin' and steerin' with one o' the shes on each
    You'd a thought me a Turk in check ditters, and looked on your 'Arry
      with pride.

    Wy, we see a swell boat with three ladies, sech rippers, in crewel
      and buff,
    (If _I_ pulled arf a 'our in their style it 'ud be a bit more than
    Well, I tipped 'em a wink as we passed and sez, "Go it, my beauties,
      well done!"
    And, oh lor! if you'd twigged 'em blush up you'd a seen 'ow they
      relished the fun.

    I'm dead filberts, my boy, on the river, it ain't to be beat for
      a lark.
    And the gals as goes boating, my pippin, is jest about "'Arry,
      his mark."
    If you want a good stare, you can always run into 'em--accident quite!
    And they carn't charge yer nothink for looking, nor put you in quod
      for the fright.

    'Ow we chivied the couples a-spoonin', and bunnicked old fishermen's
    And put in a Tommy Dodd Chorus to Methodys practisin' hymns!
    Then we pic-nic'd at last on the lawn of a waterside willa. Oh, my!
    When the swells see our bottles and bits, I've a notion some
      language'll fly.

    It was on the Q. T., in a nook snugged away in a lot of old trees,
    I sat on a bust of Apoller, with one of the gurls on my knees!
    Cheek, eh? Well, the fam'ly was out, and the servants asleep,
      I suppose;
    For they didn't 'ear even our roar, when I chipped orf the
      himage's nose.

    We'd soon emptied our three-gallon bottle, and Tommy he pulled a
      bit wild,
    And we blundered slap into a skiff, and wos jolly near drownding
      a child.
    Of course we bunked off in the scurry, and showed 'em a clean pair
      o' legs,
    Pullin' up at a waterside inn where we went in for fried 'am and

    We kep that 'ere pub all-alive-oh, I tell yer, with song and with
    To the orful disgust of some prigs as wos progging two tables afore
    I do 'ate your hushabye sort-like, as puts on the fie-fie at noise.
    'Ow on earth can yer spree without shindy? It's jest wot a feller

    Quaker-meetings be jiggered, I say; if you're 'appy, my boy, give
      it tongue.
    I tell yer we roused 'em a few, coming 'ome, with the comics we sung.
    Hencoring a prime 'un, I somehow forgot to steer straight, and
      we fouled
    The last 'eat of a race--such a lark! Oh, good lor', _'ow_ they
      chi-iked and 'owled!

    There was honly one slight _country-tong_, Tommy Blogg, who's a bit
      of a hass,
    Tried to splash a smart pair of swell "spoons" by some willers we
      'appened to pass;
    And the toff ketched the blade of Tom's scull, dragged 'im close,
      and jest landed 'im _one_!
    Arter which Master Tom nussed his eye up, and seemed rayther out of
      the fun.

    Sez the toff, "You're the pests of the river, you cads!" Well,
      I didn't reply,
    'Cos yer see before gals, it ain't nice when a feller naps one
      in the eye;
    But it's all bloomin' nonsense, my boy! If he'd only jest give
      _me_ a look,
    He'd a seen as _my_ form was O.K., as I fancy ain't easy mistook.

    Besides, I suppose as the river is free to all sorts, 'igh and low.
    That I'm sweet on true swells you're aweer, but for stuck-ups I
      don't care a blow.
    We'd a rare rorty time of it, Charlie, and as for that younger gurl,
    I'll eat my old boots if she isn't dead-gone on

  Yours bloomingly,


       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: MAKING THE BEST OF IT]

       *       *       *       *       *


In punting, a good strong pole is to be recommended to the beginner.]

       *       *       *       *       *


_Custom House Officer_ (_to sufferer_). "Now, sir, will you kindly pick
out your luggage? It's got to be examined before you land."]

       *       *       *       *       *


_Old "Salt" at the helm._ "Rattlin' fine breeze, gen'lemen." _Chorus of
Yachtsmen_ (_faintly_). "Y--yes--d'lightful!"]

       *       *       *       *       *



    O Pyrrha! say what youth in "blazer" drest,
      Woos you on pleasant Thames these summer eves;
    For whom do you put on that dainty vest,
      That sky-blue ribbon and those _gigot_ sleeves?

    "_Simplex munditiis_," as Horace wrote,
      And yet, poor lad, he'll find that he is rash;
    To-morrow you'll adorn some other boat,
      And smile as kindly on another "mash."

    As for myself--I'm old, and look askance
      At flannels and flirtation; not for me
    Youth's idiotic rapture at a glance
      From maiden eyes: although it comes from thee.

       *       *       *       *       *

THE EXCURSION SEASON.--_First Passenger_ (_poetical_). "Doesn't the
sight o' the cerulean expanse of ocean, bearing on its bosom the
white-winged fleets of commerce, fill yer with----"

_Second Ditto._ "Fi---- not a bit of it." (_Steamer takes a slight
lurch!_) "Quite the contrary!"

    [_Makes off abruptly!_

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "LIFE'S LITTLE IRONIES"

(Cheerful passage in the life of a Whitsuntide Holiday maker)]

       *       *       *       *       *


(_A Trew Fact as appened at Great Marlow on Bank Olliday_)


    I was setting one day in the shade,
      In the butifull month of August,
    When I saw a most butifull maid
      A packing of eggs in sum sawdust.

    The tears filled her butifull eyes,
      And run down her butifull nose,
    And I thort it was not werry wise
      To let them thus spile her nice close.

    So I said to her, lowly and gently,
      "Shall I elp you, O fair lovely gal?"
    And she ansered, "O dear Mr. Bentley,
      If you thinks as you can, why you shall."

    And her butifull eyes shone like dimans,
      As britely each gleamed thro a tear,
    And her smile it was jest like a dry man's
      When he's quenching his thirst with sum beer.

   Why she called me at wunce Mr. Bentley,
     I sort quite in wain to dishcover;
   Or weather 'twas dun accidently,
     Or if she took me for some other.

    I then set to work most discreetly,
      And packed all the eggs with great care;
    And I did it so nicely and neatly,
      That I saw that my skill made her stare.

    So wen all my tarsk was quite ended,
      She held out her two lilly hands,
    And shook mine, and thank'd me, and wended
      Her way from the river's brite sands.

    And from that day to this tho I've stayed,
      I've entirely failed to diskever
    The name of that brite dairy-maid
      As broke thirteen eggs by the river.


       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: LOCKS ON THE THAMES

_Sculler._ "Just half a turn of the head, love, or we shall be among the

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: THE STEAMER

Old Mr. Squeamish, who has been on deck for his wrapper, finds his
comfortable place occupied by a hairy mossoo!]

       *       *       *       *       *


(_A Sentimental Fragment from Henley_)

And so they sat in the boat and looked into one another's eyes, and
found much to read in them. They ignored the presence of the houseboats,
and scarcely remembered that there were such things as launches
propelled by steam or electricity. And they turned deaf ears to the
niggers, and did not want their fortunes told by dirty females of a
gipsy type.

"This is very pleasant," said Edwin.

"Isn't it?" replied Angelina; "and it's such a good place for seeing all
the events."

"Admirable!" and they talked of other things; and the time sped on, and
the dark shadows grew, and still they talked, and talked, and talked.

At length the lanterns on the river began to glow, and Henley put on its
best appearance, and broke out violently into fireworks. It was then
Mrs. Grundy spied them out. She had been on the look out for scandal all
day long, but could find none. This seemed a pleasant and promising

"So you are here!" she exclaimed. "Why, we thought you must have gone
long ago! And what do you say of the meeting?"

"A most perfect success," said he.

"And the company?"

"Could not be more charming," was her reply.

"And what did you think of the racing?" Then they looked at one another
and smiled. They spoke together, and observed:--

"Oh, we did not think of the racing!"

And Mrs. Grundy was not altogether satisfied.

       *       *       *       *       *


_She_ (_on her first trip to Europe_). "I guess you like London?"

_He._ "Why, yes. I guess I know most people in London. I was over there
last fall!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "VIDE UT SUPRA"

"The sad sea waves"]

       *       *       *       *       *


_Or, A Girl's best Friend is the River_

  [This is to be a river season. Father Thames is an excellent
  matchmaker.--_Lady's Pictorial._]

    Oh, what is a maid to do
    When never a swain will woo;
      When Viennese dresses
      And eddying tresses
    And eyes of a heavenly blue,

    Are treated with high disdain
    By the cold and the careless swain,
      When soft showered glances
      At dinners and dances
    Are sadly but truly vain?

    Ah, then, must a maid despair?
    Ah, no, but betimes repair
      With her magical tresses
      And summery dresses
    To upper Thames reaches, where

    She turns her wan cheek to the sun
    (Of lesser swains she will none);
      Her glorious flame,
      Well skilled in the game,
    Flings kisses that burn like fun

    And cheeks that had lost their charm
    Grow rosy and soft and warm;
      Eyes lately so dull
      Of sun-light are full
    As masculine hearts with alarm.

    For jealousy by degrees
    Steals over the swain who sees
      The cheek he was slighting
      Another delighting,
    And so he is brought to his knees.

       *       *       *       *       *


_Extract from Miss X's letter to a friend in the country_:--"Mr. Robin
Blobbs offered to take us in his boat. Aunt accepted for Jenny, Fanny,
Ethel, little Mary, and myself. Oh, such a time! Mr. Blobbs lost his
head and his scull, and we were just rescued from upset by the police.
'Never again with you, Robin!'"]

       *       *       *       *       *



(_A Nautical Song of the Period_)

    I'm bad when at sea, yet it's pleasant to me
      To charter a yacht and go sailing,
    But please understand I ne'er lose sight of land,
      Though hardier sailors are railing.
    If only the ship, that's the yacht, wouldn't dip,
      And heel up and down and roll over,
    And wobble about till I want to get out,
      I'd think myself fairly in clover.

    But, bless you! my craft, though the wind is abaft,
      Will stagger when meeting the ripple,
    Until a man feels both his head and his heels
      Reversed as if full of his tipple.
    In vain my blue serge when from seas we emerge,
      Though dressed as a nautical dandy;
    I can't keep my legs, and I call out for "pegs"
      Of rum, or of soda and brandy.

    A yacht is a thing, they say, fit for a king,
      And still it is not to my liking;
    My short pedigree does not smack of the sea,--
      I can't pose a bit like a viking.
    It's all very well when there isn't a swell,
      But when that comes on I must toddle
    And go down below, for a bit of a blow
      Upsets my un-nautical noddle.

    Britannia may rule her own waves,--I'm a fool
      To try the same game, but, believe me,
    Though catching it hot, yet to give up my "Yot"
      Would certainly terribly grieve me.
    You see, it's the rage, like the Amateur Stage,
      Or Coaching, Lawn-Tennis, or Hunting:
    So, though I'm so queer, I go yachting each year,
      And hoist on the Solent my bunting.

       *       *       *       *       *

A HENLEY TOAST.--"May rivals meet without any sculls being broken!"

       *       *       *       *       *

OF COURSE!--The very place for a fowl--Henley!

       *       *       *       *       *

Lock Times_.

       *       *       *       *       *


_Cheery Official._ "All first class 'ere, please?"

_Degenerate Son of the Vikings_ (_in a feeble voice_). "_First class?_
Now do I _look it_?"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "LIFE ON THE OCEAN WAVE"

Next to the charming society, the best of the delightful trips on our
friend's yacht is, that you get such an admirable view of the coast
scenery, and you acquire such an excellent appetite for lunch.]

       *       *       *       *       *



It was ony a week or so ago as I was engaged perfeshnally on board a
steam Yot that had been hired for about as jolly a party as I ewer
remembers to have had on board a ship, and the Forreners among 'em had
ewidently been brort for to see what a reel lovely River the Tems is. I
must say I was glad to get away from Town, as I 'ad 'ad a shock from
seeing a something dreadful on an old showcard outside of the Upraw
which they tells me is now given up to Promenades. So we started from
Skindel's, at Madenhed Bridge, and took 'em right up to Gentlemanly
Marlow, and on to old Meddenham, and then to Henley, and lots of other
butiful places, and then back to Skindel's to dinner. And a jolly nice
little dinner they guv us, and sum werry good wine, as our most
critical gests--and we had two Corporation gents among 'em--couldn't
find not no fault with. But there's sum peeple as it ain't not of no use
to try to sattisfy with butiful seenery--at least, not if they bees
Amerrycains. They don't seem not to have the werry least hadmiration or
respect for anythink as isn't werry big, and prefur size to buty any day
of the week.

"Well, it's a nice-looking little stream enuff," says an Amerrycain, who
was a board a grinnin; "but it's really quite a joke to call it a River.
Why, in my country," says he, "if you asked me for to show you a River,
I should take you to Mrs. Sippy's, and when we got about harf way across
it, I guess you'd see a reel River then, for it's so wide that you
carn't see the land on either side of it, so you sees nothink else but
the River, and as that's what you wanted for to see, you carn't werry
well grumble then." I shood, most suttenly, have liked for to have asked
him, what sort of Locks they had in sitch a River as that, and whether
Mrs. Sippy cort many wales when she went out for a day's fishing in that
little River of hers, but I knows my place, and never asks inconvenient

However, he was a smart sort of feller, and had 'em I must say werry
nicely indeed a few minutes arterwards. We was a passing a werry butiful
bit of the river called a Back Water, and he says, says he, "As it's so
preshus hot in the sun, why don't we run in there and enjoy the shade
for a time, while we have our lunch?" "Oh," says one of the marsters of
the feast, "we are not allowed to go there; that's privet, that is."
"Why how can that be?" says he, "when you told me, just now, as you'd
lately got a Hact of Parliament passed which said that wherever Tems
Water flowed it was open to all the world, as of course it ort to be."
"Ah," said the other, looking rayther foolish, "but this is one of the
xceptions, for there's another claws in the hact as says that wherever
any body has had a hobstruction in the River for 20 years it belongs to
him for hever, but he musn't make another nowheres."

The Amerrycain grinned as before, and said, "Well, I allers said as you
was about the rummiest lot of people on the face of the airth, and this
is on'y another proof of it. You are so werry fond of everythink as is
old, that if a man can show as he has had a cussed noosance for twenty
years, he may keep it coz he's had it so long, while all sensible peeple
must think, as that's one more reeson for sweeping the noosance clean
away." And I must say, tho he was a Amerrycane, that I coodn't help
thinking as he was right.

It's estonishing what a remarkabel fine happy-tight a run on the butiful
Tems seems to give heverybody, and wot an adwantage we has in that
partickler respect over the poor Amerycans who gos for a trip on Mrs.
Sippy's big River, with the wind a bloing like great guns, and the waves
a dashing mountings hi. But on our butiful little steamer on our luvly
little river, altho the gests had most suttenly all brekfasted afore
they cum, why we hadn't started much about half-a-nour, afore three or
fore on 'em came creeping down into the tite little cabin and asking for
jest a cup of tea and a hegg or two, and a few shrimps; and, in less
than a nour arterwards, harf a duzzen more on 'em had jest a glass or
two of wine and a sandwich, and all a arsking that most important of all
questions on bord a Tems Yot, "What time do we lunch?" And by 2 a clock
sharp they was all seated at it, and pegging away at the Sammon and the
pidgin pie, het settera, as if they was harf-starved, and ewen arter
that, the butiful desert and the fine old Port Wine was left upon the
table, and I can troothfully state that the cabin was never wunce quite
empty till we was again doing full justice to Mr. Skindel's _maynoo_.


       *       *       *       *       *


       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "EXEMPLI GRATIA"

_Ancient Mariner_ (_to credulous yachtsman_). "A'miral Lord Nelson!
Bless yer, I knowed him; served under him. Many's the time I've as'ed
him for a bit o' 'bacco, as I might be a astin' o' you; and says he,
'Well, I ain't got no 'bacco,' jest as you might say to me; 'but here's
a shillin' for yer,' says he"!!]

       *       *       *       *       *


_Gallant Member of the L.R.C._ "Can I put you ashore, mum?"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "IT'S AN ILL WIND," &c.

_Rescuer._ "Hold on a bit! I may never get a chance like this again!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


       *       *       *       *       *



    Three bold sailormen all went a-sailin'
      Out into the Northern Sea,
    And they steered Nor'-West by three quarters West
      Till they came to Norwegee.
    They was three bold men as ever you'd see,
      And these was their Christian names:
    There was Long-legged Bill and Curly Dick,
      And the third was Bo'sen James;--
    And they went to catch the Great Sea-Sarpint,
      Which they wished for to stop his games.


    Long-legged Bill was in the main-top a-watchin'
      For Sea-Sarpints, starn and grim,
    When through the lee-scupper bold Curly Dick peeped,
      And he says, says he, "That's him!"
    Then quick down the rattlins the long-legged 'un slid--
      Which pale as a shrimp was he--
    While Dick he rolled forrard into the cuddy,
      Where Bo'sen James happened to be,
    For James he was what you'd call the ship's cook,
      And he was a-makin' the tea.

    Then says Curly Dick, says he, "Bless my peepers!"
      (Which his words were not quite those)
    "Here's the Great Sea-Sarpint a-comin' aboard,
      With a wart upon his nose!
    Which his head's as big as the jolly-boat,
      And his mouth's as wide as the Thames,
    And his mane's as long as the best bower cable,
      And his eyes like blazin' flames--
    And he's comin' aboard right through the lee-scupper!"
      "Belay there!" says Bo'sen James.

    Howsever, bold Bo'sen he went down to leeward,
      While Curly Dick shook with funk;
    And Long-legged Bill he hid in the caboose,
      A-yellin' "We'll all be sunk!"
    You might a'most heard a marlinspike drop
      As Bo'sen James he looked out.
    Then down through the scupper his head it went,
      And there came a tremenjous shout,
    "Sea-Sarpint be blowed, ye darned landlubbers!
      Who's left this here mop hangin' out?"


       *       *       *       *       *

A WORD TO THE Y.'S AT HENLEY.--Try again; you will be Yale-fellow, well

       *       *       *       *       *


(_At the Service of Visitors wishing to be comfortable_)

Take care to be invited to the best situated houseboat.

If you can, get permission to ask a few friends to join your host's
party at luncheon.

Be sure to secure the pleasantest seat, the most amusing neighbour, and
all the periodicals.

If you are conversationally inclined, monopolise the talk, and if you
are not, plead a headache for keeping every one silent.

Mind that "No. 1" is your particular numerical distinction, and that the
happiness of the rest of the world is a negligible quantity.

If you are a man, keep smoking cigars and sipping refreshing beverages
until it is time to eat and drink seriously; if you are of the other
sex, flirt, chatter, or sleep, as the impulse moves you.

And when you are quite, _quite_ sure that you have nothing better to do,
give a glance to the racing!

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: HOPE DEFERRED

_Jones_ (_who is not feeling very well_). "How long did you say it would
take us to get back?"

_Boatman._ "'Bout 'n 'our an' a 'arf agin this tide."]

       *       *       *       *       *


Get a houseboat and be sure that it is water-tight and free from rats
and other unpleasant visitors.

Take care that your servants have no objection to roughing it, and can
turn their hands to anything usually supplied in town by the stores.

Accustom yourself to food in tins and bottles, and learn to love insects
with or without wings.

Acclimatise yourself to mists and fogs and rainy days, and grow
accustomed to reading papers four days old and the advertisements of
out-of-date railway guides.

Try to love the pleasures of a regatta. Do not quarrel with the riparian
owners or the possessors of other houseboats. Enjoy the pleasantries of
masked musicians, and take an intelligent interest in the racing.
Illuminate freely, and do your best to avoid a fire or an explosion. And
if you have fireworks, don't sort them out with the light of a blazing
squib or some illuminant of a similar character.

Be good, and mild and long-suffering. Rest satisfied with indifferently
cooked food, damp sheets, and wearisome companions. And make the best of
storms of rain and hurricanes of wind. In fact, bear everything, and
grin when you can't laugh.

_Another and a better way._--Put up at a comfortable riparian hotel, and
when the weather is against you, run up to town and give a wide berth to
the Thames and its miseries.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: A STORY WITHOUT WORDS Freddy's first day at Henley]

       *       *       *       *       *


(_Described by a Landlubber_)

_Sailing in the Wind's Eye._--In order to accomplish this difficult
manoeuvre, you must first of all discover where the wind's eye is, and
then, if it be practicable, you may proceed to sail in it. It is
presumed for this purpose that the wind's eye is a "liquid" one.

_Hugging the Shore._--When you desire to hug the shore, you first of all
must land on it. Then take some sand and shingle in your arms, and give
it a good hug. In doing this, however, be careful no one sees you, or
the result of the manoeuvre may be a strait-waistcoat.

_Wearing a Ship._--This it is by no means an easy thing to do, and it is
difficult to suggest what will make it easier. Wearing a chignon is
preposterous enough, but when a man is told that he must wear a ship, he
would next expect to hear that he must eat the Monument.

_Boxing the Compass._--Assume a fighting attitude, and hit the compass
a "smart stinger on the dial-plate," as the sporting papers call it. But
before you do so, you had best take care to have your boxing-gloves on,
or you may hurt your fingers.

_Whistling for a Wind._--When you whistle for a wind, you should choose
an air appropriate, such as "_Blow, gentle gales_," or "_Winds, gently

_Reefing the Lee-scuppers._--First get upon a reef, and then put your
lee-scuppers on it. The manoeuvre is so simple, that no more need be
said of it.

_Splicing the Main-brace._--When your main-brace comes in pieces, get a
needle and thread and splice it. If it be your custom to wear a pair of
braces, you first must ascertain which of them _is_ your main one.

       *       *       *       *       *

A DELICATE HINT.--_Brighton Boatman._ "There's a wessel out there, sir,
a labourin' a good deal, sir! Ah, sir, sailors works werry
'ard--precious 'ard lines it is for the poor fellers out
there!--Precious hard it is for everybody just now. I know _I_ should
like the price of a pint o' beer and a bit o' bacca!"

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: SCENE--A quiet nook, five miles off anywhere. Jones has
gone down to the punt to fetch up the luncheon-basket, and has dropped
it overboard.

PUZZLE.--What to do--or say?--except----]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "THE ANCHOR'S WEIGHED"

(Sketched on an excursion steamer)]

       *       *       *       *       *


To place his rugs, carpet-bags, and umbrellas on the six best seats on
the boat.

To worry the captain with remarks about the state of the weather and the
performance of the steamer: to observe to the steward that there is a
change in the weather, and that there were more passengers the last time
he crossed.

To speak to the man at the wheel, and ask him whether there was much sea
on last trip.

To change his last half-crown into French money, and squabble with the
steward as to the rate of exchange.

To stare at his neighbours, read aloud their names on their luggage, and
remark audibly that he'll lay anything the lady with the slight twang is
an American.

To repeat the ancient joke on "Back her! stop her!"

If the passage is rough, to put his feet on his neighbour's head, after
appropriating all the cushions in the cabin.

To call for crockery in time. N.B.--Most important.

To groan furiously for an hour and a half, if a sufferer; or, if utterly
callous to waves and their commotions, to eat beef and ham, and drink
porter and brandy-and-water, during the entire voyage, with as much
clattering of forks and noise of mastication as is compatible with

To kiss his hand, on entering the harbour, to the _matelottes_ on the
quays, or send his love in bad French to the Prefect of Police.

To struggle for a front place, in crowding off the steamer, as if the
ship was on fire. And finally--

To answer every one who addresses him in good English in the worst
possible French.

       *       *       *       *       *

"What with the horse-boats," said Mrs. Ramsbotham, "the steam-lunches,
the condolers, the out-ragers, the Canadian caboose, and the banyans, we
had the greatest difficulty, at Henley, in getting from one side of the
river to the other."

       *       *       *       *       *


       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: THE "CENTIPEDE"

A new flexible, patent-jointed, vertebral outrigger. (Seen--and
drawn--by our artist (the festive one), after an unusually scrumptious
lunch on board a houseboat at Henley).]

       *       *       *       *       *


_Egeria._ "Surely, Mr. Swinson, it must have been here, and on such a
day as this, that you wrote those lines that end--

"'Give me the white-maned steeds to ride,
The Arabs of the main'----wasn't it?"

_Mr. Swinson_ (_faintly_). "N-no. Reading party--half-way up

       *       *       *       *       *


    The butiful River's a-running to Town,
    It never runs up, but allers runs down,
    Weather it rains, or weather it snos;
    And where it all cums from, noboddy nose.

    The young swell Boatmen drest in white,
    To their Mothers' arts must be a delite;
    At roein or skullin the gals is sutch dabs,
    For they makes no Fowls and they ketches no Crabs.

    The payshent hangler sets in a punt,
    Willee ketch kold? I hopes as he wunt.
    I wotches him long, witch I states is fax,
    He dont ketch nothin but Ticklebacks.

    The prudent Ferryman sets under cover,
    Waiting to take me from one shore to t'other;
    I calls out "Hover!" and hover he roes,
    If he aint sober then hover we goes.

    When it's poring with rane and a tempest a-blowin,
    A penny don't seem mutch for this here rowin;
    And wen the River's as ruff as the Sea,
    I thinks of the two I'd sooner be me.

    For when I'm at work at Ampton or Lea,
    Waitin at dinner, or waitin at tea,
    I gits as much from a yewthful Pair
    As he gits in a day for all that there.

    Then let me bless my lucky Star
    That made me a Waiter and not a Tar;
    And the werry nex time I've a glass of old Sherry,
    I'll drink to the pore chap as roes that 'ere Ferry.


       *       *       *       *       *


_Boy_ (_standing in mid-stream at Kew, to boating party_). "'Ere ye are!
Tow ye up to Richmond Lock! All by water, sir!"

       *       *       *       *       *


It is a well-known fact that the songs of Dibdin had a wonderful effect
on the courage of the Navy, and there is no doubt that the Ben Blocks,
Ben Backstays, Tom Tackles, and Tom Bowlings, were, poetically speaking,
the fathers of our Nelsons, our Howes, our St. Vincents, and our
Codringtons. It will be the effort of _Punch's Naval Songster_ to do for
the Thames what Dibdin did for the Sea, and to inspire with courage
those honest-hearted fellows who man the steamers on the river. If we
can infuse a little spirit into them--which, by the bye, they greatly
want--our aim will be fully answered.



    It blew great guns when Sammy Snooks
      Mounted the rolling paddles;
    He met the mate with fearful looks--
      They shook each other's daddles.
    The word was given to let go,
      The funnel gave a screamer,
    The stoker whistled from below,
    And off she goes, blow high, blow low,
      The _Atalanta_ steamer.

    His native Hungerford he leaves,
      His Poll of Pedlar's Acre,
    Who now ashore in silence grieves
      Because he did not take her.
    There's a collision fore and aft;
      Against the pier they squeeze her.
    "Up boys, and save the precious craft,
    We from the station shall be chaff'd--
      Ho--back her--stop her--ease her."

    Aha! the gallant vessel rights,
      She goes just where they want her;
    She nears at last the Lambeth lights,
      The trim-built _Atalantar_.
    Sam Snooks his messmates calls around;
      He speaks of Poll and beauty:
    When suddenly a grating sound
    Tells them the vessel's run aground
      While they forgot their duty.


    My name's Ben Bounce, d'ye see,
      A tar from top to toe, sirs.
    I'm merry, blithe and free,
      A marling-spike I know, sirs.
    In friendship or in love,
      I climb the top-sail's pinnacle,
    But in a storm I always prove
      My heart's abaft the binnacle.

    I fear no foreign foe,
      But cruise about the river;
    As up and down I go
      My timbers never shiver.
    When off life's end I get,
      I'll make no useless rumpus;
    But off my steam I'll let,
      And box my mortal compass.


    Away, away, we gaily glide
      Far from the wooden pier;
    And down into the gushing tide
      We drop the sailor's tear.
    On--with the strong and hissing steam,
      And seize the pliant wheel;
    Of days gone by I fondly dream,
      For oh! the tar _must_ feel!

    Quick, let the sturdy painter go,
      And put the helm a-port;
    Lay, lay the lofty funnel low,
      And keep the rigging taut.
    'Tis true, my tongue decision shows,
      I act the captain's part;
    But oh! there's none on board that knows
      The captain's aching heart.

    Upon the paddle-box all day
      I've stood, and brav'd the gale,
    While the light vessel made her way
      Without a bit of sail.
    And as upon its onward flight
      The steamer cut the wave,
    My crew I've order'd left and right,
      My stout--my few--my brave!


    Afloat, ashore, ahead, astern,
      With winds propitious or contrary.
    (I do not spin an idle yarn.)
      No--no, belay! I love thee, Mary.
    Amidships--on the Bentinck shrouds,
      Athwart the hawse, astride the mizen,
    Watching at night the fleecy clouds,
      Your Harry wishes you were his'n.

    Then let us heave the nuptial lead,
      In Hymen's port our anchors weighing;
    Thy face shall be the figure-head
      Our ship shall always be displaying.
    But when old age shall bid us luff,
      Our honest tack will never vary,
    But I'll continue Harry Bluff,
      And thou my little light-built Mary.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: CUMULATIVE!

_Tourist_ (_on Scotch steamer_). "I say, steward, how do you expect
anybody to dry their hands on this towel? It's as wet as if it had been
dipped in the sea!"

_Steward._ "Aweel--depped or no depped, there's a hundred fouk hae used
the toowl, and ye're the furrst that's grummelt!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: The Margate excursion boat arrives at 2.30 P.M., after a
rather boisterous passage.

_Ticket Collector_ (_without any feeling_). "Ticket, sir! Thankye, sir!
Boat returns at 3!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _Mothers Pet._ "Oh, there's ma on the beach, looking at
us, Alfred; let's make the boat lean over tremendously on one side!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


(_By Mr. Punch's Vagrant_)

    Take four pretty girls
      And four tidy young men;
    Add papa and mamma,
      And your number is ten.

    Having ten in your party
      You'll mostly be eight,
    For you'll find you can count
      Upon two to be late.

    In the packing of hampers
      'Tis voted a fault
    To be rashly forgetful
      Of corkscrew and salt.

    Take a mayonnaised lobster,
      A tasty terrine,
    A salmon, some lamb
      And a gay galantine.

    Take fizz for the lads,
      Claret-cup for the popsies,
    And some tartlets with jam
      So attractive to woppses.

    Let the men do the rowing,
      And all acquire blisters;
    While the boats go zigzag,
      Being steered by their sisters.

    Then eat and pack up
      And return as you came.
    Though your comfort was _nil_,
      You had fun all the same.

       *       *       *       *       *


       *       *       *       *       *


Just starting down Southampton Water in jolly old Bigheart's yacht, _The
Collarbone_--or _Columbine_? I wonder which it is? Dear old Bigheart,
the best fellow in the world, and enthusiastic about yachting. So am I
(theoretically, and whilst in smooth water). Try to act as nautically as
possible, and ask skipper at frequent intervals "How does she bear?"
Don't know what it means; but, after all, what _does_ that matter?
Skipper stares at me rather helplessly, and mutters something about
"Nothe-nor-east-by-sou-sou-west." Feel that, with this lucid
explanation, I ought to be satisfied, so turn away, assume cheery aspect
and with a rolling gait seize the topsail-main-gaff-mizen sheet and pull
it lustily, with a "Yo, heave ho!"

The pull, unfortunately, releases heavy block, which, falling on
Bigheart's head, seems to quite annoy him for the minute. We plunge into
Solent, and then bear away for West Channel. Skipper remarks that we
shall make a long "retch" of it (_absit omen_). He then adds that we
could "bring up"--why these unpleasantly suggestive nautical
expressions?--off Yarmouth. Not wishing to appear ignorant, I ask
Bigheart, "Why not make a course S.S. by E.?" He replies, "Because it
would take us ashore into the R. V. Yacht Club garden," and I retire
somewhat abashed.

Out in West Channel we get into what skipper calls "a bit of a bobble."
Don't think I care quite so much for yachting in "bobbles." Bigheart
shows me all the varied beauties of the coast, but now they fail to
interest me. He says, "I say, we'll keep sailing until quite late this
evening, eh? That'll be jolly!" Reply, "Yes, that'll be jolly," but
somehow my voice lacks heartiness.

An hour later I was lying down--I felt tired--when Bigheart came up, and
with a ring of joy in his manly tones exclaimed, "I tell you what, old
man; we'll carry right on, now, through the night. We're not in a hurry,
so we'll get as much sailing as we can." ... Then, with my last ounce of
failing strength, I sat up and denounced him as an assassin.

After passing a night indescribable, lying on the shelf--I mean berth--I
was put ashore at Portland next morning. Should like to have procured
dear old Bigheart a government appointment there for seven years, as a
due reward for what he had been making me suffer.

       *       *       *       *       *

SUITABLE SONG FOR BOATING MEN.--The last _rows_ of summer.

       *       *       *       *       *


_Owner._ "I'll 'eave it to you, partner!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _Mr. Dibbles_ (_at Balham_). "Ah, the old Channel Tunnel
scheme knocked on the head at last! Good job too! Mad-headed
project--beastly unpatriotic too!"]

[Illustration: _Mr. Dibbles_ (_en route for Paris. Sea choppy_.)
"Channel Tunnel not a bad idea. Entire journey to Paris by train. Grand
scheme! English people backward in these kind of things. Steward!"

  [_Goes below._


       *       *       *       *       *


(_A Confidential Carol, by a Cockney Owner, who inwardly feels that he
is not exactly "in it," after all_)

    What makes me deem I'm of Viking blood
      (Though a wee bit queer when the pace grows hot),
    A briny slip of the British brood?
                              My Yot!

    What makes me rig me in curious guise?
      Like a kind of a sort of--I don't know what,
    And talk sea-slang, to the world's surprise?
                              My Yot!

    What makes me settle my innermost soul
      On winning a purposeless silver pot,
    And walk with a (very much) nautical roll?
                              My Yot!

    What makes me learned in cutters and yawls,
      And time-allowance--which others must tot--,
    And awfully nervous in sudden squalls?
                              My Yot!

    What makes me sprawl on the deck all day,
      And at night play "Nap" till I lose a lot,
    And grub in a catch-who-can sort of a way?
                              My Yot!

    What makes me qualmish, timorous, pale,
      (Though rather than own it I'd just be shot)
    When the _Fay_ in the wave-crests dips her sail?
                              My Yot!

    What makes me "patter" to skipper and crew
      In a kibosh style that a child might spot,
    And tug hard ropes till my knuckles go blue?
                              My Yot!

    What makes me snooze in a narrow, close bunk,
      Till the cramp my limbs doth twist and knot,
    And brave discomfort, and face blue-funk?
                              My Yot!

    What makes me gammon my chummiest friends
      To "try the fun"--which I know's all rot--
    And earn the dead-cut in which all this ends?
                              My Yot!

    What makes me, in short, an egregious ass,
      A bore, a butt, who, not caring a jot
    For the sea, as a sea-king am seeking to pass?
                              My Yot!

       *       *       *       *       *

AT WHITBY.--_Visitor_ (_to Ancient Mariner, who has been relating his
experiences to crowd of admirers_). "Then do you mean to tell us that
you actually reached the North Pole?"

_Ancient Mariner._ "No, sir; that would be a perwersion of the truth.
But I seed it a-stickin' up among the ice just as plain as you can this
spar, which I plants in the sand. It makes me thirsty to think of that
marvellous sight, we being as it were parched wi' cold."

  [_A. M.'s distress promptly relieved by audience._

       *       *       *       *       *


_Voice from the bridge above._ "Oh, lor, Sarah, I've bin and dropped the
strawberries and cream!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _His Fair Companion_ (_drowsily_). "I think a Canadian is
the best river craft, after all, as it's less like _work_ than the

       *       *       *       *       *


(_As Deduced from a late Collision_) The rule of the river's a
mystery quite, Other craft when you're steering among, If you starboard
your helm, you ain't sure you are right, If you port, you may prove to
be wrong.

       *       *       *       *       *


    To what snug refuge do I fly
    When glass is low, and billows high,
    And goodness knows what fate is nigh?--
              My Cabin!

    Who soothes me when in sickness' grip,
    Brings a consolatory "nip,"
    And earns my blessing, and his tip?--
              The Steward!

    When persons blessed with fancy rich
    Declare "she" does not roll, or pitch.
    What say--"The case is hardly sich"?--
              My Senses!

    What makes me long for _real_ Free Trade,
    When no Douaniers could invade.
    Nor keys, when wanted, be mislaid?--
              My Luggage!

    What force myself, perhaps another,
    To think (such thoughts we try to smother)
    "The donkey-engine is our brother"?--
              Our Feelings!

    And what, besides a wobbling funnel,
    Screw-throb, oil-smell, unstable gunwale,
    Converts me to a Channel Tunnel?--
              My Crossing!

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: 'ARRY CATCHES A CRAB]

       *       *       *       *       *


    Where is the sweetest river reach,
      With nooks well worth exploring,
    Wild woods of bramble, thorn and beech
      Their fragrant breath outpouring?
    Where does our dear secluded stream
                            Most gaily gleam?
                                At Goring.

    Where sings the thrush amid the fern?
      Where trills the lark upsoaring?
    Where build the timid coot and hern,
      The foot of man ignoring?
    Where sits secure the water vole
                            Beside her hole?
                                At Goring.

    Where do the stars dramatic shine
      'Mid satellites adoring?
    And where does fashion lunch and dine
      _Al fresco_, bored and boring?
    Where do we meet confections sweet
                            And toilets neat?
                                At Goring.

    Where are regattas? Where are trains
      Their noisy crowds outpouring?
    And bands discoursing hackneyed strains,
      And rockets skyward soaring?
    Where is this _urbs in rure_?--where
                            This Cockney Fair?
                                At Goring.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: NOTES FROM COWES

"Call this pleasure? Well, all I say is, give me Staines and a

       *       *       *       *       *



(_Extracts from the Travel Diary of Toby, M.P._)

_Gulf of Lyons, Friday._--The casual traveller on Continental railways,
especially in France, is familiar with the official attitude towards the
hapless wayfarer. The leading idea is to make the journey as difficult
and as uncomfortable as possible. The plan is based on treatment of
parcels or baggage. The passenger is bundled about, shunted, locked up
in waiting-rooms, and finally delivered in a limp state at whatever hour
and whatsoever place may suit the convenience of the railway people.
Discover the same spirit dominant in management and arrangements of the
sea service. Steamer from Marseilles to Tunis advertised to sail to-day
at noon. On taking tickets, ordered to be on board at ten o'clock.

Why two hours before starting? Gentleman behind counter shrugs his
shoulders, hugs his ribs with his elbows, holds out his hands with
deprecatory gesture and repeats, "_À dix heures, Monsieur_."

Gestures even more eloquent than speech. Plainly mean that unless we are
alongside punctually at ten o'clock our blood, or rather our passage,
will be on our own heads. Spoils a morning; might have gone about town
till eleven o'clock; breakfasted at leisure; sauntered on board a few
minutes before noon. However, when in Marseilles chant the

Down punctually at ten; found boat in course of loading; decks full of
dirt and noise, the shouting of men, the creaking of the winch, the
rattling of the chains. Best thing to do is to find our cabin, stow away
our baggage, and walk on the quay, always keeping our eye on the boat
lest she should suddenly slip her moorings and get off to sea without
us. Look out for steward. Like the Spanish fleet, steward is not yet in
sight. Roaming about below, come upon an elderly lady, with a lame leg,
an alarming squint, and a waist like a ship's. (Never saw a ship's
waist, but fancy no mortal man could get his arm round it.) The elderly
lady, who displayed signs of asthma, tells me she is the stewardess. Ask
her where is our cabin. "_Voilà_," she says. Following the direction of
her glance, I make for a berth close by. Discover I had not made
allowance for the squint; she is really looking in another direction.
Carefully taking my bearings by this new light, I make for another
passage; find it blocked up; stewardess explains that they are loading
the ship--apparently through the floor of our cabin. "_Tout à l'heure_,"
she says, with comprehensive wave of the hand.

Nothing to be done but leave our baggage lying about, go on deck, and
watch the loading. Better not leave the ship. If the laborious Frenchmen
in blouses and perspiration see our trunks, they will certainly pop them
into the hold, where all kinds of miscellaneous parcels, cases and bales
are being chucked without the slightest attempt at fitting in.

A quarter to twelve; only fifteen minutes now; getting hungry; had
coffee and bread and butter early so as not to miss the boat. Watch a
man below in the hold trying to fit in a bicycle with a
four-hundredweight bale, a quarter-ton case, and a barrel of cement.
Evidently piqued at resistance offered by the apparently frail,
defenceless contrivance. Tries to bend the fore wheel so as to
accommodate the cask; that failing, endeavours to wind the hind wheel
round the case; failing in both efforts, he just lays the bicycle loose
on the top of the miscellaneous baggage and the hatch is battened down.
In the dead unhappy night that followed, when the sea was on the deck, I
often thought of the bicycle cavorting to and fro over the serrated
ridge of the cargo.

Ten minutes to twelve; a savoury smell from the cook's galley. Suppose
_déjeuner_ will be served as soon as we leave the dock. Heard a good
deal of superiority of French cooking aboard ship as compared with
British. Some compensation after all for getting up early, swallowing
cup of coffee and bread and butter, and rushing off to catch at ten
o'clock a ship that sails at noon. Perhaps the cloth is laid now; better
go and secure places. Find saloon. Captain and officers at breakfast,
their faces illumined with the ecstasy born to a Frenchman when he finds
an escargot on his plate.

Evidently they are breakfasting in good time so as to take charge of the
ship whilst _nous autres_ succeed to the pleasures of the table. What's
our hour, I wonder? Find some one who looks like a steward; ask him;
says, "_Cinq heures et demie_." A little late that for breakfast, I
diffidently suggest. Explains not breakfast but dinner; first meal at
5.30 P.M. Can't we have _déjeuner_ if I pay for it? I ask,
ostentatiously shaking handful of coppers in trousers-pocket. No, he
says, severely; that's against the _règlement_.

Steamer starts in seven minutes; noticed at dock-gates women with
baskets of dubious food; dash off to buy some; clutch at a plate of
sandwiches, alleged to be compacted of _jambon de York_. Get back just
as gangway is drawn up. Sit on deck and munch our sandwiches. "I know
that Ham," said Sark, moodily. "It came out of the Ark."

Recommitted it to the waves, giving it the bearings for Ararat. Ate the
bread and wished half-past five or Blucher would come.

       * * * * *

A lovely day in Marseilles; not a breath of wind stirred the blue water
that laved the white cliffs on which Château d'If stands. Shall have a
lovely passage. Make ourselves comfortable on deck with cushions and
books. Scarcely outside the harbour when a wind sprang up from S.E. dead
ahead of us. The sea rose with amazing rapidity; banks of leaden-hued
clouds obscured the sun-light; then the rain swished down; saloon deck
cleared; passengers congregated under shelter in the saloon; as the
cranky little steamer rolled and pitched, the place emptied. When at
5.30 the dinner-bell rang, only six took their places, and all declined
soup. With the darkness the storm rose. If the ship could have made up
its mind either to roll or to pitch, it could have been endured. It had
an agonising habit of leaping up with apparent intent to pitch, and,
changing its mind, rolling over, groaning in every plank. Every third
minute the nose of the ship being under water, and the stern clear out,
the screw leaped full half-length in the air, sending forth
blood-curdling sounds. Midway came a fearsome crash of crockery, the
sound reverberating above the roar of the wind, and the thud of the
water falling by tons on the deck, making the ship quiver like a spurred

"I begin to understand now," said Sark, "how the walls of Jericho fell."

Much trouble with the Generalissimo. When he came aboard at Marseilles
he suffused the ship with pleasing sense of the military supremacy of
Great Britain. Has seen more than seventy summers, but still walks with
sprightly step and head erect. The long droop of his carefully-curled
iron-grey moustache is of itself sufficient to excite terror in the
bosom of the foe. The Generalissimo has not the word retreat in his
vocabulary. He was one of the six who to-night sat at the dinner-table
and deftly caught scraps of meat and vegetable as the plates flew past.
But after dinner he collapsed. Thought he had retired to his berth;
towards nine o'clock a faint voice from the far end of the cabin led to
discovery of him prone on the floor, where he had been flung from one of
the benches. We got him up, replaced him tenderly on the bench, making a
sort of barricade on the offside with bolsters. A quarter of an hour
later the ship gave a terrible lurch to leeward; the screw hoarsely
shrieked; another batch of crockery crashed down; above the uproar, a
faint voice was heard moaning, "Oh, dear! Oh, dear!"

We looked at the bench where we had laid the Generalissimo, his martial
cloak around him. Lo! he was not.

Guided by former experience, we found him under the table. Evidently no
use propping him up. So with the cushions we made a bed on the floor,
and the old warrior securely slept, soothed by the swish of the water
that crossed and recrossed the cabin floor as the ship rolled to leeward
or to starboard.

When the Generalissimo came aboard at Marseilles, surveying the
fortifications of the harbour as if he intended storming them, his
accent suggested that if not of foreign birth, he had lived long in
continental courts and camps. Odd to note how, as his physical
depression grew, an Irish accent softened his speech, till at length he
murmured of misery in the mellifluous brogue of County Cork.

Pretty to see the steward when the flood in the saloon got half a foot
deep ladle it out with a dustpan.

_Tunis, Monday_, 1 A.M.--Just limped in here with deck cargo washed
overboard, bulwarks stove in, engine broken down, an awesome list to
port, galley so clean swept the cook doesn't know it, the cabins
flooded, and scarce a whole bit of crockery in the pantry. Twenty-one
hours late; not bad on a thirty-six-hours' voyage.

Captain comforts us with assurance that having crossed the Mediterranean
man and boy for forty years, he never went through such a storm. Have
been at sea a bit myself; only once, coasting in a small steamer off
Japan, have I seen--or, since it was in the main pitch dark,
felt--anything like it. Generalissimo turned up at dinner last night,
his moustache a little draggled, but his port once more martial. His
chief lament is, that going down to his berth yesterday morning, having
spent Friday night in the security of the saloon floor, he found his
boots full of water. This brings out chorus of heartrending experience.
Every cabin flooded; boxes and portmanteaus floating about. Sark and I
spent a more or less cosy night in the saloon. To us entered
occasionally one of the crew ostentatiously girt with a life-belt. Few
incidents so soothing on such a night. Fortunately, we did not hear
till entering port how in the terror of the night two conscripts, bound
for Bizerta, jumped overboard and were seen no more.

"If this is the way they usually get to Tunis," says Sark, "I hope the
French will keep it all to themselves. In this particular case, there is
more in the Markiss's 'graceful concession' than meets the eye."

       *       *       *       *       *

RIVER GAMBLING.--"Punting," says the _Daily News_, "has become a very
fashionable form of amusement on the Upper Thames." So it is at Monte
Carlo. Punting is given up by all who find themselves in hopelessly low

       *       *       *       *       *

LIVE WHILE YOU MAY.--_Timid Passenger_ (_as the gale freshened_). "Is
there any danger?" _Tar_ (_ominously_). "Well, them as likes a good
dinner had better hev it to-day!"

       *       *       *       *       *

SATISFACTORY.--We are glad to be able to report that the gentleman who
one day last week, while walking on the bank of the Thames near Henley,
fell in with a friend, is doing well. His companion is also progressing

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: TOO SOLID

_Skipper._ "Did ye got the proveesions Angus?"

_Angus._ "Ay, ay! A half loaf, an' fouer bottles o' whiskey."

_Skipper._ "An' what in the woarld will ye be doin' wi' aal that

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: RESIGNATION

_Sympathetic Old Gentleman._ "I'm sorry to see your husband suffer so,
ma'am. He seems very----"

_Lady Passenger_ (_faintly_). "Oh dear! He isn't my husband. 'Sure I
don't know who the ge'tleman is!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: A FLIGHT OF FANCY

_Visitor._ "Good morning: tide's very high this morning, eh?"

_Ancient Mariner._ "Ar, if the sea was all _beer_, there wouldn' be no
bloomin' 'igh tides!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


"Unbidden guests are often welcomest when they are

       *       *       *       *       *


_Old Lady._ "Goodness gracious, Mr. Boatman! What's that?"

_Stolid Boatman._ "That, mum! Nuthun, mum. Only the Artillery a
prac-_ti_-sin', and that's one o' the cannon balls what's just struck
the water!!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: POOR HUMANITY!

_Bride._ "I think--George, dear--I should--be better--if we walked

_Husband_ (_one wouldn't have believed it of him_). "You can do as you
like, love. I'm very well (!) as I am!!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _Intelligent Foreigner._ "I am afraid zey are not much
use, zeze grand works of yours at Dovaire. Vot can zey do against our
submarines?--our leetle Gustave Zêde? Ah, ze submarine e' is mos
terrible, an' ze crews also--ze matelots--zey are 'eroes! Vy, every time
zey go on board of him zey say goodbye to zer vives an' families!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: A TRYING MOMENT

_Doris._ "Oh, Jack, here come those Sellerby girls! Do show them how
beautifully you can punt."]

       *       *       *       *       *


_Miss Grundison, Junior._ "There goes Lucy Holroyd, all alone in a boat
with young Snipson, as usual! So imprudent of them!"

_Her Elder Sister._ "Yes; how shocking if they were upset and
drowned--without a chaperon, you know!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: LOCAL OPTION

_Captain of Clyde steamer_ (_to stoker, as they sighted their port_).
"Slack awee, Donal', slack awee"--(_he was interested in the liquors
sold_)--"they're drencken haurd yenoo!!"]

       *       *       *       *       *



    Dear Charlie,--It's 'ot, and no error!
    Summer on us, at last, with a bust;
    Ninety odd in the shade as I write, I've a 'ed, and a thunderin'
    Can't go on the trot at this tempryture, though I'm on 'oliday
    So I'll pull out my _eskrytor_, Charlie, and give you a touch of
      my quill.

    If you find as my fist runs to size, set it down to that quill,
      dear old pal;
    Correspondents is on to me lately, complains as I write like a gal.
    Sixteen words to the page, and slopscrawly, all dashes and blobs.
      Well, it's true;
    But a quill and big sprawl is the fashion, so wot is a feller to do?

    Didn't spot you at 'Enley, old oyster--I did 'ope you'd shove in
      your oar.
    We 'ad a rare barney, I tell you, although a bit spiled by the pour.

    'Ad a invite to 'Opkins's 'ouse-boat, prime pitch, and swell party,
      yer know,
    Pooty girls, first-class lotion, and music. I tell yer we did let
      things go.

    Who sez 'Enley ain't up to old form, that Society gives it the slip?
    Wish you could 'ave seen us--and heard us--old boy, when aboard of
      our ship.
    Peonies and poppies ain't in it for colour with our little lot,
    And with larfter and banjos permiskus we managed to mix it up 'ot.

    My blazer was claret and mustard, my "stror" was a rainbow gone
    I ain't one who's ashamed of his colours, but likes 'em mixed
      midd-lingish strong.
    'Emmy 'Opkins, the fluffy-'aired daughter, a dab at a punt or canoe,
    Said I looked like a garden of dahlias, and showed up her neat
      navy blue.


    Fair mashed on yours truly, Miss Emmy; but that's only jest by the
    'Arry ain't one to brag of _bong jour tunes_; but wot I wos wanting
      to say
    Is about this here "spiling the River" which snarlers set down to
      our sort.
    Bosh! Charlie, extreme Tommy rot! It's these sniffers as want to
      spile sport.

    Want things all to theirselves, these old jossers, and all on the
      strictest Q. T.
    Their idea of the Thames being "spiled" by the smallest suggestion
      of spree,
    Wy, it's right down rediklus, old pal, gives a feller the dithreums
      it do.
    I mean going for them a rare bat, and I'm game to wire in till
      all's blue.

    Who are they, these stuckuppy snipsters, as jaw about quiet and
    Who would silence the gay "constant-screamer" and line the Thames
      banks with perlice;
    Who sneer about "'Arry at 'Enley," and sniff about "cads on the
    As though it meant "Satan in Eden"? I'll 'owl at sich oafs till
      I'm 'oarse!

    Scrap o' sandwich-greased paper 'll shock 'em, a ginger-beer
      bottle or "Bass,"
    Wot 'appens to drop 'mong the lilies, or gets chucked aside on
      the grass,
    Makes 'em gasp like a frog in a frying-pan. Br-r-r-r! Wot old
      mivvies they are!
    Got nerves like a cobweb, I reckon, a smart banjo-twang makes
      'em jar.

    I'm toffy, you know, and no flies, Charlie; swim with the swells,
      and all that,
    But _I_'m blowed if this bunkum don't make me inclined to turn
      Radical rat.
    "Riparian rights," too! Oh scissors! They'd block the backwaters
      and broads,
    Because me and my pals likes a lark! Serve 'em right if old Burns
      busts their 'oards!

    Rum blokes, these here Sosherlist spouters! There's Dannel the
      Dosser, old chap,
    As you've 'eard me elude to afore. Fair stone-broker, not wuth
      'arf a rap--
    Knows it's all Cooper's ducks with _him_, Charlie; won't run to
      a pint o' four 'arf,
    And yet he will slate me like sugar, and give me cold beans with
      his charf.

    Sez Dannel--and dash his darned cheek, Charlie!--"Monkeys like
      you"--meaning _Me_!--
    "Give the latter-day Mammon his chance. Your idea of a lark or
      a spree
    Is all Noise, Noodle-Nonsense, and Nastiness! Dives, who wants
      an excuse
    For exclusiveness, finds it in _you_, you contemptible
      coarse-cackling goose!

    "Riparian rights? That's the patter of Ahab to Naboth, of course;
    But 'tis pickles like you make it plausible, louts such as you give
      it force.
    You make sweet Thames reaches Gehennas, the fair Norfolk Broads
      you befoul;
    You--_you_, who'd make Beulah a hell with your blatant Bank
      Holiday howl!

    "Decent property-owners abhor you; you spread your coarse feasts
      on their lawns,
    And 'Arry's a hog when he feeds, and an ugly Yahoo when he yawns;
    You litter, and ravage, and cock-sky; you romp like a satyr obscene,
    And the noise of you rises to heaven till earth might blush red
      through her green.

    "You are moneyed, sometimes, and well-tailored; but come you from
      Oxford or Bow,
    You're a flaring offence when you lounge, and a blundering pest when
      you row;
    Your 'monkeyings' mar every pageant, your shindyings spoil
      every sport,
    And there isn't an Eden on earth but's destroyed when it's
      'Arry's resort.

    "Then monopolist Mammon may chuckle, Riparian Ahabs rejoice;
    There's excuse in your Caliban aspect, your hoarse and ear-torturing
    You pitiful Cockney-born Cloten, you slum-bred Silenus, 'tis you
    Spoil the silver-streamed Thames for Pan-lovers, and all the
      nymph-worshipping crew!"

    I've "reported" as near as no matter! I don't hunderstand more
      than arf
    Of his patter; he's preciously given to potry and classical charf.
    But the cheek on it, Charlie! A Stone-broke! I _should_ like to give
      him wot for,
    Only Dannel the Dosser's a dab orf of whom 'tain't so easy to score.

    But it's time that this bunkum was bunnicked, bin fur too much on
      it of late--
    Us on 'Opkins's 'ouse-boat, I tell yer, cared nix for the
      ink-spiller's "slate."
    _I_ mean doin' them Broads later on, for free fishing and shooting,
      that's flat.
    If I don't give them dash'd Norfolk Dumplings a doing, I'll eat my
      old 'at.

    Rooral quiet, and rest, and refinement? Oh, let 'em go home and
      eat coke.
    These fussy old footlers whose 'air stands on hend at a row-de-dow
    The song of the skylark sounds pooty, but "skylarking" song's
      better fun,
    And you carn't do the rooral to-rights on a tract and a tuppenny bun.

    As to colour, and kick-up, and sing-song, our party was fair to
      the front;
    But we wosn't alone; lots of toppers, in 'ouse-boat, or four-oar,
      or punt,
    Wos a doin' the rorty and rosy as lively as 'Opkins's lot,
    Ah! the swells sling it out pooty thick; _they_ ain't stashed by no
      ink-spiller's rot.

    Bright blazers, and twingle-twang banjoes, and bottles of Bass,
      my dear boy,
    Lots of dashing, and splashing, and "mashing" are things every man
      must enjoy,
    And the petticoats ain't fur behind 'em, you bet. While top-ropes
      I can carry,
    It ain't soap-board slop about "Quiet" will put the clear kibosh
      on 'Arry.

       *       *       *       *       *


(_A Lay of Medmenham, by a Broken-hearted Boating Man landing from the
Thames, who was informed that, by the rules of the Hotel, visitors were
not allowed jam with their tea if served in the garden._)

    There's a river hotel that is known very well,
      From the turmoil of London withdrawn,
    Between Henley and Staines, where this strange rule obtains--
      That you must not have jam on the lawn.

    In the coffee-room still you may eat what you will,
      Such as chicken, beef, mutton, or brawn,
    Jam and marmalade too, but, whatever you do,
      Don't attempt to eat jam on the lawn.

    Young Jones and his bride sought the cool river side,
      And she said, as she skipped like a fawn,
    "As it _is_, it is nice, but 'twould be paradise,
      Could we only have jam on the lawn!"

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: THE THAMES

(Development of the houseboat system)]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "DOWN IN THE DEEP"

Fun at Henley Regatta. Bertie attempts to extricate his punt from the

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "I say, you girls, we shall be over in a second, and if
you can't swim better than you punt, I'm afraid I shan't be able to save
both of you!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: A PLEDGED M.P. (1869).

_M.P.'s Bride._ "Oh! William, dear--if you are--a Liberal--do bring in a
Bill--next Session--for that underground tunnel!!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


(_Examination for a Master's Certificate_)

1. Can you dance a hornpipe? If so, which? (_Vivâ voce._) If dancing
unaccompanied by fiddle, whistle the first eight bars of College
Hornpipe. Also, dance the three first figures of the hornpipe,
announcing the distinctive name of each beforehand.

2. Explain the terms "Ahoy!" "Avast!" "Belay!" Whence derived? Also of
"Splice my main-brace." Is "main-brace" a part of rigging, or of
sailor's costume? Which? If neither, what? Is "Lubber" a term of
opprobrium or of endearment? State varieties of "Lubber." Give
derivations of the terms "Bum-boat woman," "Marlin' spike," "Son of a
sea-cook," "Dash my lee-scuppers!" "Pipe your eye," "Tip us your
grapplin' iron."

3. How many mates may a sea captain legally possess at any one time?

4. Is "sextant" the feminine of "sexton"?

5. How often do "the red magnetic pole" and "the blue pole" require
repainting? At whose expense is the operation performed?

6. Are only Royal Academicians eligible as "painters" on board?

7. Is it the duty of the surgeon on board ship to attend the "heeling"?

8. In case the needles of the compass get out of order, will pins do as

9. At what time in the day, whether previous or subsequent to dinner, is
it necessary to "allow for deviations"?

10. Draw a picture of "Three Belles." Give classic illustration from the
story of Paris.

11. What rule is there as to showing lights on nearing Liverpool?

12. When in doubt, would you consult "the visible horizon," "the
sensible horizon," or "the rational horizon"? Give reason for your

13. Can sailors ever trust "the artificial horizon"? If so, under what

14. Is "Azimuth" an idol, or something to eat?

15. Would "mean time" always refer to lowering wages or diminishing

16. Presuming you know all about the "complement of an arc," explain
that of Noah's.

17. Who was "Parallax"? Give a brief sketch of his career.

18. Give example of "meridian altitude of a celestial object," by
drawing a picture of the Chinese giant who was over here some time ago.

19. Give history of "the Poles." Who was Kosciusko? Is this spelling of
his name correct?

20. "Civil time." Illustrate this term from English history.

21. Can a "first mate's ordinary certificate" be granted by Doctors'
Commons or the Archbishop of Canterbury?

(_On these questions being satisfactorily answered, the next Examination
Paper will be issued._)

       *       *       *       *       *


Jones says there is only one _really_ safe way of changing places in a

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: DE GUSTIBUS, ETC.

_Philosophical Sea-faring Party_ (_who manages our friend's yacht_).
"Well, ladies and genelmen, I s'pose this is what _you_ calls
_pleasure_, and comes all the way from London for?"

  [_Brown, the funny man, with the eye-glass, thinks it an _Idyachtic_ kind
  of pleasure, but is actually too far gone to say so._


       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "Nice piece o' biled mutton, sir?"]

       *       *       *       *       *



(_Mr. Punch in the Ocean on the broad of his back, singeth_)

    I'm afloat, I'm afloat, what matters it where?
    So the devils don't know my address, I don't care.
    Of London I'm sick, I've come down to the sea,
    And let who will make up next week's number for me!
    At my lodgings, I know, I'm done frightfully brown,
    And e'en lobsters and shrimps cost me more than in town;
    I've B. flats in my bed, and my landlady stern,
    Says from London I've brought 'em to give her a turn.
    Yet I'm happier far in my dear seaside home,
    Than the Queen on Dee side, or Art-traveller in Rome;
    A Cab-horse at grass would be nothing to me,

    On the broad of my back floating free, floating free!
    On the broad of my back floating free, floating free!
        Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha! ha!
        Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha! ha!

    With the lodging-house-keepers all day on the bite,
    And the insects I spoke of as hungry at night,
    With the organs "_Dog-traying_" and "_Bobbing Around_,"
    And extra-size Crinolines sweeping the ground,
    You may think _Mr. Punch_ might be apt to complain
    That the seaside's but Regent Street over again:
    But from devils and copy and proof-sheets set free,
    I've a week to do nothing but bathe in the sea.
    In steamers and yachts I've been rocked on its breast,
    And didn't much like it, it must be confessed;
    But a cosy machine and shoal water give me,
    And there let me float--let me float and be free!
        Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha! ha!
        Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha! ha!

       *       *       *       *       *


    Come, George, give your clubs and your Haskells a rest, man:
      You can't spend the whole of your lifetime in golf;
    If it pleases your pride I'll admit you're the best man
      That ever wore scarlet or teed a ball off;
    I'll allow they can't match you in swinging or driving,
      That your shots are as long as they always are true,
    And I'll grant that what others effect after striving
      For years on the green comes by nature to you.


    But the sun's in the sky, and the leaves are a-shiver
      With a soft bit of breeze that is cool to the brow;
    And I seem to remember a jolly old river
      Which is smiling all over--I think you know how.
    There are whispers of welcome from rushes and sedge there,
      There's a blaze of laburnum and lilac and may;
    There are lawns of close grass sloping down to the edge there;
      You can lie there and lounge there and dream there to-day.

    There are great spreading chestnuts all ranged in their arches
      With their pinnacled blossoms so pink and so white;
    There are rugged old oaks, there are tender young larches,
      There are willows, cool willows, to chequer the light.
    Each tree seems to ask you to come and be shaded--
      It's a way they all have, these adorable trees--
    And the leaves all invite you to float down unaided
      In your broad-bottomed punt and to rest at your ease.

    And then, when we're tired of the _dolce far niente_,
      We'll remember our skill in the grandest of sports,
    Imagine we're back at the great age of twenty,
      And change our long clothes for a zephyr and shorts.
    And so, with a zest that no time can diminish,
      We will sit in our boat and get forward and dare,
    As we grip the beginning and hold out the finish,
      To smite the Thames furrows afloat in a pair.

       *       *       *       *       *


       *       *       *       *       *


It is quite a mistake to suppose that Henley Regatta was not anticipated
in earliest times.]

       *       *       *       *       *



    I sat in a punt at Twickenham,
    I've sat at Hampton Wick in 'em.
    I hate sea boats, I'm sick in 'em--
    The man, I, Tom, and Dick in 'em.
    Oh, gentles! I've been pickin 'em.
    For bait, the man's been stickin 'em
    (Cruel!) on hooks with kick in 'em
    The small fish have been lickin 'em.
    And when the hook was quick in 'em,
    I with my rod was nickin 'em,
    Up in the air was flickin 'em.
    My feet so cold, kept kickin 'em.
    We'd hampers, with _aspic_ in 'em,
    Sandwiches made of chicken, 'em
    We ate, we'd stone jars thick, in 'em
    Good liquor; we pic-nic-ing 'em
    Sat: till our necks a rick in 'em
    We turned again t'wards Twickenham.
    And paid our punts, for tickin 'em
    They don't quite see at Twickenham.

       *       *       *       *       *


_British Tourist_ (_to fellow-passenger, in mid-Channel_). "Going
across, I suppose?"

_Fellow-Passenger._ "Yaas. Are you?"]

       *       *       *       *       *


_Very fair._--Really delightful. Nothing could be pleasanter. Sunshine.
Ozone. Does everyone a world of good. Would not miss such a passage for

_Fair._--Yes; it is decidedly an improvement upon a railway carriage.
Room to move about. I don't in the least mind the eighty odd minutes. If
cold, you can put on a wrap, and there you are.

_Change._--Always thought there was something to be said in favour of
the Channel Tunnel. Of course, one likes to be patriotic, but the
movement in a choppy sea is the reverse of invigorating.

_Wind._--There should be a notice when a bad passage is expected. It's
all very well to describe this as "moderate," but that doesn't prevent
the beastly waves from running mountains high.

_Stormy._--It is simply disgraceful. Would not have come if I had known.
Too depressed to say anything. Where is the steward?


       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: EUPHEMISM

_Man in Boat._ "Come along, old chap, and let's pull up to Marlow."

_Man on Shore._ "I think I'll get you to excuse me, old man. I don't
like sculling--it--er--hurts the back of my head so!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: A CRISIS

_His Better and Stouter Half._ "Oh, Charley, if we're upset, you mean to
say you expect me to get into _this_?"

[_Horror-stricken husband has no answer ready._


       *       *       *       *       *


    They met, 'twas in a storm,
      On the deck of a steamer;
    She spoke in language warm,
      Like a sentimental dreamer.

    He spoke--at least he tried;
      His position he altered;
    Then turn'd his face aside,
      And his deep-ton'd voice falter'd.

    She gazed upon the wave,
      Sublime she declared it;
    But no reply he gave--
      He could not have dared it.

    A breeze came from the south,
    Across the billows sweeping;
    His heart was in his mouth,
    And out he thought 'twas leaping.

    "O, then, Steward," he cried,
    With the deepest emotion;
    Then tottered to the side,
    And leant o'er the ocean.

    The world may think him cold,
    But they'll pardon him with quickness,
    When the fact they shall be told,
    That he suffer'd from sea-sickness.

       *       *       *       *       *


"_Richmond_ is on the seas."

_Richard III., Act iv., Scene 4._]

       *       *       *       *       *



We were present when the accomplished Professor Brick recently delivered
a series of lectures on yachting, which were very well attended. By his
kind permission, we have preserved bits of the discourses here and
there. We extract, _à discrétion_:--

"I come now," went on the Professor, "to your most important
yachters--your genuine swells. Their cutters are in every harbour; you
trace their wake by empty champagne bottles on every sea. To such dandy
sea-kings I would now say one word.

"About your choice of cruising ground you cannot have much difficulty.
The Mediterranean is your proper spot. It is true that we will not
tolerate its being made a French lake--its proper vocation is that of
English pond!

"I would advise you all to be very particular in not letting your
'skipper' have too much authority. Remember always, that _you are the
owner_--high-spirited gentlemen do. Surely a man may sail his own yacht,
if anybody may! It is as much his property as his horse is. To be sure,
when the weather is very bad, I would let the fellow take charge then.
There is a very odd difference between the Bay of Biscay and the water
inside the Isle of Wight, when it blows. And a skipper _too much
snubbed_ gets rusty at awkward times.

"Your conduct in harbour will be regulated by circumstances--which
means, dinners. Generally speaking, the fact of having a yacht will
carry you everywhere. As every aëronaut is 'intrepid' by courtesy, so
every yachtsman is a 'fashionable arrival.' This great truth is scarcely
enough appreciated in England. I have known very worthy men spend in
trying to get into great society in London, sums which, judiciously
invested _in a yacht_, would have taken them to dozens of great people's
houses abroad. You will get asked to dinner; you will be feasted well,
generally. Anything in the way of excitement--particularly good, rich,
hospitable excitement--is heartily welcome in our colonial settlements
and stations.

"But I am not now speaking only to those who yacht, because to have a
yacht is a fine thing. I recognise also an imperial class of
yachtsmen--the swans of the flock of geese. I have seen a coronet on a
binnacle, before now. I have seen a large stately schooner sail into a
Mediterranean port--as into a drawing-room--splendid and serene. The
harbour-master's boat is on the alert these mornings. The men-of-war
send their boats to tow; the dandiest lieutenant goes in the barge; the
senior captain offers his services. When such a yacht as that goes into
the Golden Horn, the Sultan is shown to these yachters--like any
curiosity in his capital--like any odd thing in his town! They are
presented to him, as it is called, that _he_ may be looked at.

"To this magnificent class I have not much to say. They don't snub their
skipper--they are far too fine to do that. They are scarcely distinctive
as travellers, for they are the same abroad as at home. In them, England
is represented. England floats in a lump through the sea, like Delos
used to do. As they say and do just the same as they have always said
and done at home--see and mix with the same kind of people--I often
wonder what they learn by it. When they go to visit Thermopylæ or
Marathon, it is with a lot of tents, donkeys, camp-stools,
travelling-cases, guides, and servants--such as Xerxes might have had.
They encumber the ruins of temples with the multitude of their baggage.
The position seems so unnatural, that I can't fancy their getting any
moral or intellectual profit from it. They are too well off for
that--like a fellow who cannot see for fat. Depend on it, you cannot see
much through a painted window, however fine it is."

Professor Brick concluded his first sketch amidst much applause.

       *       *       *       *       *


_Old Lady._ "Are you not afraid of getting drown'd when you have the
boat so full?"

_Boatman._ "Oh, dear, no, mum. I always wears a life-belt, so I'm safe

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: STANCH!

_Complaisant Uncle_ (_who has remembered his nephew in his will, and is
up to his ankles in water_). "I say, John, do you know your boat leaks?"

_Nephew_ (_high and dry on the thwarts_). "Like old boots!"

_Uncle._ "But I---- What's to be done?"

_Nephew._ "Wait till she fills, and then put on a spurt for the

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: MASTER JOHN BULL IN TROUBLE (1851)

_Mr. Punch._ "Why, Johnny, what's the matter?"

_Johnny._ "If you please, sir, there's a nasty ugly American been
beating me."]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: SERVING HIM OUT

_Mrs. T._ (_to T._) "Feel a little more comfortable, dear? Can I get
anything else for you? Would you like your cigar case now? (_Aside._)
I'll teach him to go out to Greenwich and Richmond without me, and sit
up half the night at his club!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


    Row, ladies, row! It will do you good:
    Pleasant the stream under Cliefden Wood:
    When our skiff with the river drops down again,
    Glad you will be of some iced champagne.
    O, a boat on the river is doubly dear
    When you've nothing to do but adore and steer.

    Row, darlings, row! Whether stroke or bow
    Is sweeter to look at, better to row,
    Is a question that plagues not me, as I laze,
    And on their graceful movement gaze.
    'Tis the happiest hour of the sultry year:
    The swift oars twinkle; I smoke and steer.

    Row, beauties, row! 'Tis uncommon hot:
    I _can_ row stroke, but I'd rather not.
    As we meet the sunset's afterglow,
    Two absolute angels seem to row;
    Wingless they are, so of flight no fear--
    Home to dinner I mean to steer.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _Father Thames_ (_to Henley Naiads_). "Don't be alarmed,
my dears. If he comes within our reach, I'll soon settle his business!"

  ["The G. W. R. Company must have known that their contemplated line
  from Marlow to Henley would raise a storm of opposition against any
  interference with the Thames at spots so sacred to all
  oarsmen."--_Vide "A Correspondent" in "Times."_]


       *       *       *       *       *


(_Page from the Diary of a Sweet Girl Clubbist_)

_Monday._--Very pleased I have been chosen for the boat. So glad to have
been taken before Amy and Blanche. I am sure I shall look better than
either of them. They needn't have been so disagreeable about it. Amy
asking for her racquet back, and Blanche refusing to lend me her cloak
with the feather trimmings. Fanny should make a first-rate stroke, and
Kate a model coach.

_Tuesday._--We were to have practice to-day, but postponed it to decide
on our colours. Blouses are to be left optional, but we are all to wear
the same caps. We had a terrible fight over it. Fanny, Rose and I are
blonde, so naturally we want light blue. Henrietta is a brunette, and
(selfish thing!) stood out for yellow! However, we settled it amicably
at last by choosing--as a compromise--pink. Then I made a capital
suggestion, which pleased everybody immensely. Instead of caps we are to
wear picture-hats.

_Wednesday._--Went out in our boat for the first time. Such a fight for
places! I managed to secure bow, which is a long way the best seat, as
you lead the procession. Everybody sees you first, and it is most
important that the crew should create a good impression. Henrietta
wanted the position, and said that her brother had told her that the
lightest girl should always be bow. I replied "quite right, and as I
had lighter hair than hers, and my eyes were blue and hers brown, of
course it should be me." Fanny and Rose agreed with me, and Kate (who
was annoyed at not being consulted enough) placed her five. Henrietta
was in such a rage!

_Thursday._--We are in training! Think it rather nonsense. Why should we
give up _meringues_ and sponge-cakes? And as to cigarettes, that isn't
really a privation, as none of us really like them. A mile's run isn't
bad, but it wears out one's shoes terribly. Kate wanted us all to drink
stout, but we refused. We have compromised it by taking _fleur d'orange_
mixed with soda-water instead. The Turkish bath is rather long, but you
can read a novel after the douche. Take it altogether, perhaps training
is rather fun. Still, I think it, as I have already said, nonsense,
especially in regard to sponge-cakes and _meringues_.

_Friday._--Spent the whole of the morning in practising starts.
Everybody disagreeable--Kate absolutely rude. Fancy wanting me to put
down my parasol! And then Henrietta (spiteful creature!) declaring that
I didn't keep my eye on the steering (we have lost our coxswain--had to
pay a visit to some people in the country) because I _would_ look at the
people on the banks! And Kate backing her up! I was very angry indeed.
So I didn't come to practice in the afternoon, saying I had a bad
headache, and went instead to Flora's five o'clock tea.

_Saturday._--The day of the race! Everybody in great spirits, and
looking their best. Even Henrietta was nice. Our picture-hats were
perfectly beautiful. Fanny came out with additional feathers, which
wasn't quite fair. But she said, as she was "stroke" she ought to be
different from the rest. And as it was too late to have the hat altered
we submitted. We started, and got on beautifully. I saw lots of people I
knew on the towing-path, and waved to them. And just because I dropped
hold of my oar as we got within ten yards of the winning-post they all
said it was _my_ fault we lost! Who ever heard the like? The crew are a
spiteful set of ugly frumps, and on my solemn word I won't row any more.
Yes, it's no use asking me, as I say I won't, and I will stick to it.

       *       *       *       *       *


(_Specially engaged for the Cross-Channel Service_)

["Dr. Paul Farez asserts that he has found in hypnotism an absolutely
infallible remedy for sea-sickness and similar discomforts."--_Daily


       *       *       *       *       *


Squeamish accepts Stunsel's invitation for a month's cruise in his
10-ton yawl. He suffers much.

_Stunsel._ "Come, come, Squeamish, old fellow, cheer up! You'll be all
right in a week or so!!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


_She_ (_reading a scientific work_). "Isn't it wonderful, Charley dear,
that the sun is supposed to be millions of miles away!"

_Charley Dear_ (_suffering from the heat_). "Millions of miles, darling?
Good thing for all of us that it isn't any nearer."]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "'ERE'S YOUR WERRY GOOD 'ELTH, SIR!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "O WOMAN, IN OUR HOURS OF EASE!"

"Poor soul, 'e do look lonely all by 'isself! Ain't you glad you've got
us with you, 'Enry?"]

       *       *       *       *       *


    If you were only here, George,
      I think--in fact, I know,
    We'd get a girl to steer, George,
      And take a boat and row;
    And, striking mighty bubbles
      From each propulsive blade,
    Forget that life had troubles
      At ninety in the shade.

    We'd swing along together,
      And cheerily defy
    This toasting, roasting weather,
      This sunshine of July.
    Our feather might be dirty,
      Our style might not be great;
    But style for men of thirty
      (And more) is out of date.

    You'd note with high elation--
      I think I see you now--
    The beaded perspiration
      That gathered on your brow.
    Oh, by that brow impearled, George,
      And by that zephyr wet,
    I vow in all the world, George,
      There's nothing like a "sweat."

    To row as if it mattered,
      Just think of what it means:
    All cares and worries shattered
      To silly smithereens.
    To row on such a day, George,
      And feel the sluggish brain,
    Its cobwebs brushed away, George,
      Clear for its work again!

    But you at Henley linger,
      While I am at Bourne-End.
    You will not stir a finger
      To come and join your friend.
    This much at least is clear, George:
      We cannot row a pair
    So long as I am here, George,
      And you remain up there.

       *       *       *       *       *

"PERILS OF THE DEEP."--_Unprotected Female_ (_awaking old Gent, who is
not very well_). "Oh, mister, would you find the captain? I'm sure we're
in danger! I've been watching the man at the wheel; he keeps turning it
round first one way and then the other, and evidently doesn't know his
own mind!!"

       *       *       *       *       *


_Ernest_ (_faintly_). "Vera, darling, I do believe I'm the worst sailor
on earth!"

_Vera_ (_ditto_). "I wouldn't mind _that_ so much, if _I_ wasn't so bad
on the water!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


_Steward._ "Will either of you, gentlemen, dine on board? There's a
capital hot dinner at three o'clock."]

       *       *       *       *       *


(_Dedicated to the Thames Conservancy_)

9 A.M.--Got out my boat, and made immediately for the centre of the

10 A.M.--Spent some three-quarters of an hour in attempting to avoid the
swell of the City steamboats. Within an ace of being swamped by one of

11 A.M.--Run into by a sailing-barge. Only saved by holding on to a
rope, and pushing my boat aground.

12 NOON.--Aground.

1 P.M.--After getting into deep water again, was immediately run into by
a coal-barge. Exchange of compliments with the crew thereof.

2 P.M.--Pursued by swans and other savage birds. Pelted with stones
thrown from the shore by ragged urchins out of reach of my vengeance.

3 P.M.--Amongst the fishing-punts. Lively communication of opinions by
the angry fishermen. Attempted piracy.

4 P.M.--Busily engaged in extricating my boat from the weeds.

5 P.M.--Disaster caused by a rope coming from the towing-path.

6 P.M.--Lock-keeper not to be found. Daring and partially successful
attempt to shoot the rapids.

7 P.M.--Run down by a steam-launch travelling at express-rate speed.

8 P.M.--Just recovering from the effects of drowning.

9 P.M.--Going home to bed!

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "DROWSILY! DROWSILY!"

_Energetic Male_ (_reclining_). "Now then, girls, work away! Nothing
like taking real exercise!"]

       *       *       *       *       *



       *       *       *       *       *


(_By Isaac Walton Minimus_)

    There used to be buttercups once on these meads,
      There used to be reeds by the bank,
    But now these same meadows have not even weeds,
      And the water's decidedly rank.
    The pastures are crowded with mannerless shows,
      And the river with refuse is blocked;
    There isn't a corner for quiet repose,
      While the nose is most constantly shocked!
    The houseboats and tents may with rich colour glow,
      And the course be more bright than before,
    But there isn't the thought for the men who will row,
      As there was in the brave days of yore!
    How Willan and Warre and stout "Johnny" Moss
      Must recurrence of past time re-wish,
    And the sight be to them and to rowing a loss,
      But _I_ only can think of the fish
    Who are poisoned by garbage and bloated with food,
      And oppressed with the bottles o'erthrown!
    My sentiments, though by the many pooh-poohed,
      By the few will be met with a moan!

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _The Man in the Boat._ "I'm sorry, sir, but it was your
own fault. Why didn't you get out into mid-stream?"

_The Victim._ "Why, that's just what I've done!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


(_Read on the Channel_)

Splendid Weather. I never mind the sea myself.
                    The rougher for me the
                    better. Have a cigar?

Very Fine.        One certainly does feel that
                    only Englishmen can be
                    sailors. Somehow or other
                    they take naturally to the
                    sea--now, don't they?

Fine.             Yes. I always come by
                    Folkestone. I never _could_
                    see the use of the _Castalia_.
                    We are not foreigners, you
                    know. Most of us have our
                    sea-legs. Eh?

Moderate.         Yes. Perhaps a little
                    brandy-and-water _would_
                    be a good thing.

Sea slight.       The _very_ roughest passage
                    I remember. But I am
                    an excellent sailor. Still,
                    would you mind putting
                    out that cigar?

Rather Rough.     It's simply disgraceful. The
                    _Castalia_ ought to be established
                    by Act of Parliament.
                    Shall write to the _Times_.
                    I shall go down below--to
                    think about it!

Rough             Oh! Here, somebody! Will
                    it be more--than five
                    minutes? Oh! oh! oh!

Very Rough.       (_Far too dreadful for

       *       *       *       *       *


_Enthusiastic Skipper_ (_to friend_). "Ah, my boy! this is what you
wanted. In a short time you'll feel yourself a different man!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


    Unnumbered are the trees that fling
      O'er Pangbourne Reach their shade,
    Unnumbered there the birds that sing
      Melodious serenade;
    But as the leaves upon the boughs
      Or feathers on the birds,
    So are the trippers who carouse
      Along the banks in herds.

    Punt, centre-board, launch, skiff, canoe,
      Lunch-laden hither hie,
    Each bearing her expectant crew
      To veal and chicken-pie;
    And from the woods around Hart's Lock
      Reports ring loud and clear,
    As trippers draw the festive hock
      Or democratic beer.

    From one to three, below, above,
      Is heard the crisp, clear crunch
    Of salad, as gay Damons love
      To linger over lunch.
    From three to six a kettle sings
      'Neath every sheltering tree
    As afternoon to Phyllis brings
      The magic hour of tea.

    Well may the Cockney fly the Strand
      For this remoter nest,
    Where buses cease from rumbling and
      The motors are at rest.
    But would you shun your fellows--if
      To quiet you incline--
    Oh, rather scull your shilling skiff
      Upon the Serpentine.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: PRO BONO PUBLICO

_Brown (passenger by the Glasgow steamer, 8.30 a.m.)._ "I beg pardon,
sir, but I think you've made a mistake. That is my tooth-brush!"

_McGrubbie (ditto)._ "Ah beag years, mun, ah'm sure. Ah thoght 't
belanged to the sheip!!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


(_To be in force on or after the next Ultimo instant_)

_The Darkest Night._--Any man not knowing when the darkest night is will
be discharged.

Inquiries can be made any day at the Admiralty from 10 till 4, excepting
from 1 till 2, when all hands are piped to luncheon.

_The Rule of the Rowed_ at sea is similar to the rule of the sailed.

No ship must come into collision with another.

If two steamers are on the starboard tack, they must return to the
harbour and begin again.

Any steamship likely to meet another steamship must reverse and go
somewhere else.

Any admiral out after 12 o'clock will be locked up wherever he is.

Nobody, however high in command, can be permitted to sit on a buoy out
at sea for the purpose of frightening vessels.

All complaints to be made to the Admiralty, or to one of the mounted
sentries at the Horse Guards.


An admiral is on duty all night to receive complaints.

Every mounted marine on joining must bring his own fork, spoon and towel

If two vessels are meeting end on, take one end off. The other loses and
forfeits sixpence.

Any infringement or infraction of the above rules and regulations will
be reported by the head winds to the deputy toastmaster for the current
year at Colwell-Hatchney.

N.B.--On hand a second-hand pair of gloves for boxing the compass.
Remember the 26th of December is near, when they may be wanted. The
equivalent of a chaplain-general to the forces has been appointed. He is
to be called chaplain-admiral to the fleet. The cockpits are being
turned into pulpits. If not ready by next Sunday he will deliver his
first sermon from the main-top gallant jibboom mizen. The Colney-Hatches
will be crowded.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: OUT OF IT

The eldest Miss Blossom thinks that the part of double gooseberry is
rather monotonous.]

       *       *       *       *       *


_Madge._ "My dear George, there you've been sitting with your camera
since breakfast, and you haven't taken anything."

_George (intent on his own feelings)._ "Don't ask me to, darling, I
couldn't touch it!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


_On Board the "Athena," Henley-on-Thames_

    I like, it is true, in a basswood canoe
      To lounge, with a weed incandescent:
    To paddle about, there is not a doubt,
      I find it uncommonly pleasant!
    I love the fresh air, the lunch here and there,
      To see pretty toilettes and faces;
    But one thing I hate--allow me to state--
      The fuss they make over the Races!
          _I don't care a rap for the Races!_--
          _Mid all the Regatta embraces_--
          _I'm that sort of chap, I don't care a rap,_
          _A rap or a snap for the Races!_

    I don't care, you know, a bit how they row,
      Nor mind about smartness of feather;
    If steering is bad, I'm not at all sad,
      Nor care if they all swing together!
    Oh why do they shout and make such a rout,
      When one boat another one chases?
    'Tis really too hot to bawl, is it not?
      Or bore oneself over the Races!
          _I don't care a rap for the Races, &c., &c._

    Then the Umpire's boat a nuisance we vote,
      It interrupts calm contemplation;
    Its discordant tone, and horrid steam moan,
      Is death to serene meditation!
    The roar of the crowd should not be allowed;
      The gun with its fierce fulmination,
    Abolish it, pray--'tis fatal, they say,
      To pleasant and quiet flirtation!
          _I don't care a rap for the Races, &c., &c._

    If athletes must pant--I don't say they shan't--
      But give them some decent employment;
    And let it be clear, they don't interfere
      With other folks' quiet enjoyment!
    When luncheon you're o'er, tis really a bore--
      And I think it a very hard case is--
    To have to look up, from _páté_ or cup,
      And gaze on those tiresome Races!
          _I don't care a rap for the Races, &c., &c._

    The Races, to me, seem to strike a wrong key,
      Mid dreamy delightful diversion;
    There isn't much fun seeing men in the sun,
      Who suffer from over-exertion!
    In sweet idle days, when all love to laze,
      Such violent work a disgrace is!
    Let's hope we shall see, with me they'll agree,
      And next year abolish the Races!
          _I don't care a rap for the Races, &c., &c._

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: KNOW THYSELF!

_Miss Featherweight._ "I tell you what, Alfred, if you took me for a row
in a thing like that I'd scream all the time. Why, he isn't more than
half out of the water!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


_By Jingle Junior on the Jaunt_

All right -- here we are -- quite the waterman -- jolly -- young --
white flannels -- straw hat -- canvas shoes -- umbrella -- mackintosh --
provide against a rainy day! Finest reach for rowing in England -- best
regatta in the Eastern Hemisphere -- finest pic-nic in the world!
Gorgeous barges -- palatial houseboats -- superb steam-launches --
skiffs -- randans -- punts -- wherries -- sailing-boats -- dinghies --
canoes! Red Lion crammed from cellar to garret -- not a bed to be had in
the town -- comfortable trees all booked a fortnight in advance --
well-aired meadows at a premium! Lion Gardens crammed with gay toilettes
-- Grand Stand like a flower-show -- band inspiriting -- church-bells
distracting -- sober grey old bridge crammed with carriages --
towing-path blocked up with spectators -- meadows alive with pic-nic
parties! Flags flying everywhere -- music -- singers -- niggers --
conjurers -- fortune-tellers! Brilliant liveries of rowing clubs -- red
-- blue -- yellow -- green -- purple -- black -- white -- all jumbled up
together -- rainbow gone mad -- kaleidoscope with _delirium tremens_.
Henley hospitality proverbial -- invitation to sixteen luncheons --
accept 'em all -- go to none! Find myself at luncheon where I've not
been asked -- good plan -- others in reserve! Wet or fine -- rain or
shine -- must be at Henley! If fine, row about all day -- pretty girls
-- bright dresses -- gay sunshades. If wet, drop in at hospitable
houseboat just for a call -- delightful damsels -- mackintoshes --
umbrellas! Houseboat like Ark -- all in couples -- Joan of Ark in corner
with Darby -- Who is she? -- Don't No-ah -- pun effect of cup. Luncheons
going on all day -- cups various continually circulating -- fine view --
lots of fun -- delightful, very! People roaring -- rowists howling along
bank -- lot of young men with red oars in boat over-exerting themselves
-- lot more in boat with blue oars, also over-exerting themselves --
bravo! -- pick her up! -- let her have it! -- well pulled -- everybody
gone raving mad! Bang! young men leave off over-exerting themselves --
somebody says somebody has won something. Seems to have been a race
about something -- why can't they row quietly? Pass the claret-cup,
please -- Why do they want to interrupt our luncheon? -- Eh?

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "WHAT'S IN A NAME?"

(A sketch at a regatta. A warning to "the cloth" when up the river)]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: CUPID AT SEA

_Angelina (to Edwin, whose only chance is perfect tranquillity)._
"Edwin, dear! If you love me, go down into the cabin, and fetch me my
scent bottle and another shawl to put over my feet!"

[_Edwin's sensations are more easily imagined than described._


       *       *       *       *       *


    And have you not read of eight jolly young watermaids,
      Lately at Cookham accustomed to ply
    And feather their oars with a deal of dexterity,
      Pleasing the critical masculine eye?
    They swing so truly and pull so steadily,
    Multitudes flock to the river-side readily;--
    It's not the eighth wonder that all the world's there,
    But this watermaid eight, ne'er in want of a stare.

    What sights of white costumes! What ties and what hatbands,
      "Leander cerise!" We don't wish to offend,
    But are these first thoughts with the dashing young women
      Who don't dash too much in a spurt off Bourne End?
    Mere nonsense, of course! There's no "giggling and leering"--
    Complete ruination to rowing and steering;--
    "All eyes in the boat" is their coach's first care,
    And "a spin of twelve miles" is as naught to the fair.

       *       *       *       *       *


_Blenkinsop (on a friend's Yacht) soliloquises._ "I know one thing, if
ever I'm rich enough to keep a yacht, I shall spend the money in

       *       *       *       *       *


SCENE--_Houseboat in a good position._ TIME--_Evening during "the
Regatta week._" PRESENT (_on deck in cozy chairs_)--_He and She._

_She._ Very pretty, the lights, are they not?

_He._ Perfectly charming. So nice after the heat.

_She._ Yes, and really, everything has been delightful.

_He._ Couldn't possibly be better. Wonderful how well it can be done.

_She._ Yes. But, of course, it wants management. You know a lot comes
down from town.

_He._ Will the stores send so far?

_She._ Yes, and if they won't others will. And then the local
tradespeople are very obliging.

_He._ But don't the servants rather kick at it?

_She._ No, because they are comfortable enough. Put them up in the

_He._ Ah, to be sure. And your brother looks after the cellar so well.

_She._ Yes, he is quite a genius in that line.

_He._ And it's awfully nice chatting all day.

_She._ Yes, when one doesn't go to sleep.

_He._ And, of course, we can fall back upon the circulating libraries
and the newspapers.

_She._ And so much better than town. It must be absolutely ghastly in

_He._ Yes, so I hear. And then there's the racing!

_She._ Ah, to be sure. To tell the truth, I didn't notice that very
much. Was there any winning?

_He._ Oh, yes, a lot. But I really quite forget what----

_She._ Oh, never mind. We can read all about it in to-morrow's papers,
and that will be better than bothering about it now.

  [_Scene closes in to soft music on the banjo._

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: AT HENLEY--"IPSE DIXIT"

["For a mile and a half the river was covered with elegant craft, in
which youth was always at the prow and pleasure always at the
helm."--_Daily Paper._]


       *       *       *       *       *


(_To a Shipowner. By a Shell-back_)

    It's mighty fine, yer talkin', but you never done no trips
    In the bloomin' leaky foc'sle of yer leaky, rotten ships;
    And though you gulls the public with a sham Menoo for _us_,
    It isn't printed lies as makes provisions worth a cuss;
    And even silly emigrants will tell you straight and true
    That the test of grub is grubbin', not the advertised Menoo.

    I'm talkin' now, not beggin' for a chance to starve and work
    In an undermanned old tanker with a skipper like a Turk;
    With a cook as larnt 'is cookin' when 'e 'ad to cook or beg,
    Or go into an 'orspital to nurse a cranky leg;
    And what I says I means it, and my words is plain and true,
    Which is more than any sailorman will say for yer Menoo.

    I'll allow that in the look of it, the print of it I mean,
    That all you say is sarved to us; but is it good or clean?
    And wot's wet 'ash, or porridge, or any other stuff,
    When at the very best of it there's 'ardly 'arf enough?
    Not even with the cockroaches that's given with the stew,
    Though I notice they nor maggots wasn't down in yer Menoo.

    There's the tea and corfee talked of, but folks ashore ain't told
    That the swine as bought it for you winked 'is eye at them as sold.
    For sailormen's best Mocha was never further East
    Than a bloomin' Essex bean-field; and the tea ain't tea--at least
    It's on'y "finest sweepin's" from the docks, and wot a brew
    It makes when sarved in buckets to drink to yer Menoo!

    The pork and beef on paper, or a tin dish, makes a show,
    But you'd want yer front teeth sharpened if you tackled it, my bo'!
    For the beef is still the ancient 'orse wot worked on Portland Pier,
    And the pork is rotten reasty, that was inwoiced twice too dear
    If they charged you 'arf a thick 'un for the whack you gives the crew,
    With the pickles and the butter set out fine in yer Menoo.

    I'd like to take you jossers, as thinks as sailormen
    Is a grumblin' lot of skulkers, just one trip and 'ome agen;
    For when yer 'ands was achin' with sea cuts to the bone,
    And the Baltic talked north-easters, you'd be alterin' of yer tone,
    And might'nt think wot's wrote in print is necessary true,
    And perhaps when you was safe agen you'd alter our Menoo.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: A TRIAL OF FAITH

_Bertie (at intervals)._ "I used to---- What the---- do a lot of----
Conf---- rowing, one time!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: CRITICAL

_Boatman (spelling)._ "P-s-y-c-h-e. Well, that's the rummest way I ever
see o' spellin' _fish_!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


(_By Mr. Punch's Own Oarsman_)

Sir,--This letter is private and is not intended for publication. I
particularly beg that you will note this, as on a former occasion some
remarks of mine, which were intended only for your private eye, were
printed. I of course accepted your assurance that no offence was meant,
and that the oversight was due to a person whose services had since the
occurrence been dispensed with; but I look to you to take care that it
shall not happen again. Otherwise the mutual confidence that should
always exist between an editor and his staff cannot possibly be
maintained, and I shall have to transfer my invaluable services to some
other paper. The notes and prognostications which I have laboriously
compiled with regard to the final results of the regatta will arrive by
the next post, and will, I flatter myself, be found to be
extraordinarily accurate, besides being written in that vivid and
picturesque style which has made my contributions famous throughout the
civilised world.

There are one or two little matters about which I honestly desire to
have your opinion. You know perfectly well that I was by no means
anxious for the position of aquatic reporter. In vain I pointed out to
you that my experience of the river was entirely limited to an
occasional trip by steamboat from Charing Cross to Gravesend. You said
that was an amply sufficient qualification, and that no aquatic reporter
who respected himself and his readers, had ever so far degraded himself
as to row in a boat and to place his body in any of the absurd positions
which modern oarsmanship demands. Finding you were inexorable, and
knowing your ridiculously hasty temper, I consented finally to undertake
the arduous duties. These circumstances, however, make it essential that
you should give me advice when I require it. For obvious reasons I don't
much like to ask any of the rowing men here any questions. They are
mostly in what they call hard training, which means, I fancy, a
condition of high irritability. Their strokes may be long, but their
tempers are, I regret to say, painfully short. Besides, to be candid, I
don't wish to show the least trace of ignorance. My position demands
that I should be omniscient, and omniscient, to all outward appearance,
I shall remain.

In the first place, what is a "lightship"? As I travelled down to Henley
I read in one of the newspapers that "practice for the Royal Regatta was
now in full swing, and that the river was dotted with lightships of
every description." I remember some years ago passing a very pleasant
half hour on board of a lightship moored in the neighbourhood of
Broadstairs. The rum was excellent. I looked forward with a lively
pleasure to repeating the experience at Henley. As soon as I arrived,
therefore, I put on my yachting cap (white, with a gold anchor
embroidered in front), hired a boat and a small boy, and directed him to
row me immediately to one of the lightships. I spent at least two hours
on the river in company with that boy--a very impudent little
fellow,--but owing no doubt to his stupidity, I failed to find a single
vessel which could be fairly described as a lightship. Finally the boy
said they had all been sunk in yesterday's great storm, and with that
inadequate explanation I was forced to content myself. But there is a
mystery about this. Please explain it.

Secondly, I see placards and advertisements all over the place
announcing that "the Stewards Stand." Now this fairly beats me. Why
should the stewards stand? They are presumably men of a certain age,
some of them must be of a certain corpulence, and it seems to me a
refinement of cruelty that these faithful officials, of whom, I
believe, the respected Mayor of Henley is one, should be compelled to
refrain from seats during the whole of the Regatta. It may be necessary
for them to set an example of true British endurance to the crowds who
attend the Regatta, but in that case surely they ought to be paid for
the performance of their duties.

Thirdly, I have heard a good deal of talk about the Visitors' Cup. Being
anxious to test its merits, I went to one of the principal hotels here,
and ordered the waiter to bring me a quart of Visitors' Cup, and to be
careful to ice it well. He seemed puzzled, but went away to execute my
orders. After an absence of ten minutes he returned, and informed me,
with the manager's compliments, that they could not provide me with what
I wanted, but that their champagne-cup was excellent. I gave the fellow
a look, and departed. Perhaps this is only another example of the
asinine and anserous dunderheadedness of these crass provincials. Kindly
reply, _by wire_, about all the three points I have mentioned.

I have been here for a week, but have, as yet, not been fortunate enough
to see any crews. Indeed, I doubt if there are any here. A good many
maniacs disport themselves every day in rickety things which look
something like gigantic needles, and other people have been riding along
the bank, and, very naturally, abusing them loudly for their foolhardy
recklessness. But no amount of abuse causes them to desist. I have
puzzled my brains to know what it all means, but I confess I can't make
it out. I fancy I know a boat when I see one, and of course these
ridiculous affairs can't be boats.

Be good enough to send me, by return, at least £100. It's a very
difficult and expensive thing to support the dignity of your paper in
this town. Whiskey is very dear, and a great deal goes a very short way.

  Yours sincerely,


_Henley-on-Thames, July 4._

       *       *       *       *       *


_Jolly Young Waterman._ "Holloa! Hi! Police! Back water, Jack! We've got
into a nest of swans, and they're a pitchin' into me!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: THE SERPENTINE

(Gent thinks he is rowing to the admiration of everybody)

_Small Boy._ "'Old 'ard, guv'n'r! And take me and my traps acrosst--will

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _Fiend in human shape._ "Don't feel well! Try a cigar!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: Binks, who is the kindest creature possible, has
undertaken to fasten up the boat and bring along the siphons.
Unfortunately both sculls have gone, and his friends are out of

       *       *       *       *       *


"Why didn't we go by rail?"]

       *       *       *       *       *


(_By Our Own Æsthetic Bard_)

    The lilies are languid, the aspens quiver,
      The Sun-God shooteth his shafts of light,
    The ripples are wroth with the restless river;
      _And O for the wash of the weir at night_!

    The soul of the poet within him blenches
      At thought of plunge in the water bright,
    To witness the loves of the tender tenches:
      _And O for the wash of the weir at night_!

    The throstle is wooing within the thicket,
      The fair frog fainteth in love's affright;
    The maiden is waiting to ope the wicket;
      _And O for the wash of the weir at night_!

    The bargeman he knoweth where Marlow Bridge is.
      To pies of puppy he doth invite;
    The cow chews the cud on the pasture ridges;
      _And O for the wash of the weir at night_!

    So far from the roar of the seething city,
      The poet reposes much too quite,
    He trills to the Thames in a dainty ditty;
      _And O for the wash of the weir at night_!

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _Malicious Swell in the stern sheets_ (_to little party
on the weather quarter_). "Splendid breeze, isn't it, Gus?"

_Gus_ (_who, you see, has let his cigar go out_). "Ye-es; but I say,
what's o'clock? Isn't it time to turn back?--What d'ye think?"]

       *       *       *       *       *


(_Per Ocean Bottle-post_)

    _In the South Atlantic,
  Three miles off Land (perpendicularly).
    Six Bells, Feb. 27, 1898._

DEAR MR. PUNCH,--Yeo-ho and ahoy! If this ever reaches you, it is to
tell you that the very good ship _Triton_ (this is within a cable's
length of her name) has been at sea for just a fortnight, bound for the
Cape on her second trip. She bears on board about a thousand souls all
told, five horses, a couple of cows, two or three parrots, of
third-class behaviour, and a few canaries, which have not as yet taken
berths inside the ship's cat.

We left Southampton on an even keel, but there were plenty of French
rolls for breakfast next morning in the Bay of Biscay, so we were
ægrotat (_sic_) for the rest of the day in such seclusion as our cabin
granted. The next event of importance was Madeira. Here we had about
four hours in which to watch the natives (one of them a one-armed boy)
diving for our spare coppers, to breakfast on shore, to do the sights of
Funchal, to buy deck-chairs, if not whole drawing-room suites, of
wickerwork, to visit Santa Clara and the other suburban resorts, and,
most necessary of all, to ascend by the new mountain railway to the
church of Nossa Senhora de Monte, and then to descend two thousand feet
by _carro_, or toboggan over the cobble-stone pathway. It was a lot to
do, but we did it on our heads--especially the last-named athletic
performance. Our steersman, Manuel, certainly deserved his pint of
Madeira at the "Half-way House" for his agility and dexterity in taking
us down a decline of one in two, past corkscrew corners, and hordes of

English money seems to be quite the medium of currency at Funchal, and
English is spoken by the enterprising islanders while you wait (or until
your last shilling is spent). Even a tea-garden sort of place is
dignified by the name of "Earl's Court," to attract and solace the
homesick Londoner. Meanwhile, it was market-day on board the ship, and
great was the company of merchants with all kinds of wares. These are
bundled off neck and crop by 11 A.M., and we settled down to the serious
business of the voyage--the election of a Sports and Entertainment
Committee, the consumption of six meals a day, the daily sweepstakes and
auction on the run, the dissection of everybody's character, and the
other inevitable humours and incidents of an ocean trip.

We fetched a compass, or whatever the nautical phrase is, round the
Canaries in a sea-fog, for fear of running up against Teneriffe, and
since then we haven't sighted land, nor seen a ship, or even a whale or
waterspout, nothing more exciting than a few coveys of flying-fish, and,
I think, half-a-dozen porpoises. At the moment of writing, however, I
see a solitary albatross, and lose no time in informing your readers of
the fact. We crossed the line without feeling the slightest bump. We
have passed through the tropics with only one hot night, and our feet,
like our thoughts, are now turning towards Fleet Street and home, as we
near the Antipodes.

We have had the usual fancy-dress ball with some decidedly impromptu
costumes. One of a large theatrical company was quite unrecognisable as
Sheffield's Ape, taking the first prize, and has since been busy
restoring himself to human form. The captain's clerk appeared in a
series of quick-turn changes, such as a comic sailor or a deplorable old
lady; while the ship's doctor contributed an awe-inspiring impersonation
of Old Moore or somebody in the wizard profession.

The sports and other entertainments have passed off without bloodshed.
Our captain, a breezy, jovial Irishman, received the ladies with open
arms at the finish of their fifty yards race, and the comedians who
performed in "Are you there?" and the other humorous items fully rose,
or tumbled, to the occasion, as the case might be. Take it all round, we
have had a particularly good time of it. Pleasant company and pleasant
weather. Out of reach of letters and telegrams, and face to face with
the ocean.

We are now in the teeth of a strong south-easter, and the writing-room
is beginning to dance, I therefore hasten to catch the post.

    Yours, very much at sea,
        X. Y. Z.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: ASSURING!

_Passenger_ (_faintly_). "C'lect fares--'fore we get across! I thought

_Mate._ "'Beg y'r pardon, sir, but our orders is, in bad weather, to be
partic'lar careful to collect fares; 'cause in a gale like this 'ere,
there's no knowing how soon we may all go to the bottom!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


(_One so seldom finds an artist who realises the poetic conception_)

"We have fed our sea for a thousand years."--_Kipling._]

       *       *       *       *       *


Somehow or other, in those days, a breeze was more often forthcoming
when it was wanted, and the race did "occasionally" end in favour of the

       *       *       *       *       *


The most characteristic work of that important official, the clerk of
the weather.

The young lady who has never been before, and wants to know the names of
the eights who compete for the Diamond Sculls.

The enthusiastic boating man, who, however, prefers luncheon when the
hour arrives, to watching the most exciting race imaginable.

The itinerant vendors of "coolers" and other delightful comestibles.

The troupes of niggers selected and not quite select.

The houseboat with decorations in odious taste, and company to match.

The "perfect gentleman's rider" (from Paris) who remembers boating at
Asnières thirty years ago, when Jules wore when rowing lavender
kid-gloves and high top-boots.

The calm mathematician (from Berlin), who would prefer to see the races
represented by an equation.

The cute Yankee (from New York), who is quite sure that some of the
losing crews have been "got at" while training.

The guaranteed enclosure, with band, lunch and company of the same

The "very best view of the river" from a dozen points of the compass.

Neglected maidens, bored matrons, and odd men out.

Quite the prettiest toilettes in the world.

The Thames Conservancy in many branches.

Launches: steam, electric, accommodating and the reverse.

Men in flannels who don't boat, and men in tweeds who do.

A vast multitude residential, and a vaster come per rail from town.

Three glorious days of excellent racing, at once national and unique.

An aquatic festival, a pattern to the world.

And before all and above all, a contest free from all chicanery, and the
very embodiment of fairplay.

       *       *       *       *       *

The new lock at Teddington must be a patent one, as there is no quay.

       *       *       *       *       *


_Wife._ "Isn't it jolly to think we have the whole day before us? The
boatman says we couldn't go home, even if we wanted to, till the tide
turns, and that's not for hours and hours yet. I've got all sorts of
lovely things for lunch too!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: BIS DAT QUI CITO DAT

_Lock-keeper (handing ticket)._ "Threepence, please."

_Little Jenkins._ "Not me: I've just paid that fellow back there."

_Lock-keeper (drily)._ "'Im! Oh, that's the chap _who collects for the

       *       *       *       *       *


Flannels in moderation are pardonable, but they are slightly out of
place if you can't row and it rains.

The cuisine of a houseboat is not always limitless, so "chance" visitors
are sometimes more numerous than welcome.

The humours of burnt-cork minstrelsy must be tolerated during an aquatic
carnival, but it is as well to give street singers as wide a berth as

In the selection of guests for, say, _The Pearl of the North Pole_, or
_The Hushaby Baby_, it is as well to learn that none of them are cuts
with the others, and all are prepared to accept "roughing it" as the
order of the day.

Lanterns, music, and fireworks are extremely pretty things, but night
air on the river is sometimes an introduction to sciatica, rheumatism,
and chills.

In the selection of a costume, a lady should remember that it is good to
be "smart," but better still to be well.

Finally, it is desirable to bear in mind that, pleasant as riparian life
may be, Henley is, after all, a regatta, and that consequently some sort
of attention should be paid to the racing.

       *       *       *       *       *


_Mrs. Fleshpottle._ "Well, I must say, Mrs. Gumblewag, I like something
substantial for _my_ dinner. Nothing, I think, can be better than some
pea-soup to begin with; then a biled leg of mutton with plenty of fat,
with turnips and caper sauce; then some tripe and onions, and one or two
nice suet dumplings as a finish!"

_Mrs. Gumblewag._ "For my part, mum, I prefer something more tasty and
flavoursome-like. Now, a well-cooked bullock's heart, to be followed by
some liver and bacon, and a dish of greens. Afterwards a jam bolster,
and a black pudding, and some toasted cheese to top up with, is what I
call a dinner fit for a----"

  [_Mr. Doddlewig does not wait to hear any more!_


       *       *       *       *       *


(_For the use of Visitors, Male and Female_)

Take an umbrella to keep off the rain--unopened.

Beware of encouraging burnt-cork minstrels, or incurring their

Remember, it is not every houseboat that is sufficiently hospitable to
afford lunch.

After all, a travel down from town in the train is better than the
discomforts of dawn on the river in a houseboat.

Six hours of enforced company is a strong order for the best of friends,
sometimes leading to incipient enmity.

A canoe for two is a pleasant distraction if the man is equal to keeping
from an upset in the water.

Flirting is a not unpleasant accompaniment to an _alfresco_ lunch with
well-iced liquids.

If you really wish to make a favourable impression upon everyone, be
cheery, contented, good-natured, and, above all, slightly interested in
the racing.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: _Enthusiastic Skipper._ "Aha! my boy! You can't do this
sort of thing on shore!"]

       *       *       *       *       *


       *       *       *       *       *


(_Under the Consideration of the Thames Conservancy_)

No piano playing shall be permitted on houseboats during the racing, so
that the attention of coxswains shall not be thereby distracted.

To avoid a crowd collecting on the course, no craft shall be permitted
to leave the shores between the hours of 6 A.M. and 9 P.M.

To preserve decorum, only lemonade and ginger-beer shall be drunk during
the illuminations, and fireworks shall henceforth be restricted to one
squib and a couple of crackers to each houseboat.

Finally, recreation of every kind shall be discontinued, so that in
future the unpopularity of the County Council on land shall find its
reflection in the universal detestation in which the Thames Conservancy
shall be held by those living on the river.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: TRIALS OF A NOVICE

_Extract from Diary._--"WEDNESDAY. Went for a spin or trip, or whatever
it's called, on Bowlines' new racing yacht. Felt very nervous when we
turned the corners; nearly fell overboard while I was trying to balance
the thing; thought we should have been drowned. B. said it was a wonder
we weren't--thanks to _me_! Had a few words with B. _Mem._--Never

  [_N.B.--B. says the same._


       *       *       *       *       *



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