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Title: Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 109, September 14th, 1895
Author: Various
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 109, September 14th, 1895" ***

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PUNCH, OR THE LONDON CHARIVARI

Volume 109, 14th September, 1895

_edited by Sir Francis Burnand_



SCRAPS FROM CHAPS.

"A-hoy!"--A chance for any person desirous of escaping from the
[Greek: hoi polloi], and making his home upon an island "all to
himself." Hoy, one of the celebrated Orkney group of islands, is for
sale. This is a healthy spot, in fact it may now be said to be most
saleubrious. Information gleaned from the _Liverpool Courier_ shows
that "the island comprises 40,000 acres, rises abruptly"--like the
angry hero of a novelette--"from the sea, consists of a mountain
having different eminences or peaks"--this piques one's curiosity--"is
very steep, and has a noble and picturesque effect from all points of
view." We trust it may also have a beautifying and ennobling effect
upon the purchaser. Besides all these advantages, it possesses a large
pillar of rock, 300 feet high, known as "The Old Man of Hoy." The
legend attached to this promontory is as follows:--

  There was an old party of Hoy,
  Who in life couldn't find any joy,
    So he sold all his stock,
    Got transformed into rock,
  Did this marvellous "broth of a bhoy."

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: WHAT'S IN A NAME?

_Old Gent_ (_lately bitten with the Craze_). "AND THAT CONFOUNDED MAN
SOLD ME THE THING FOR A SAFETY!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

Best congratulations to the First Lord of the Treasury on his happy
idea of promoting a scheme for the presentation of a testimonial to
old TOM MORRIS, doyen of golf professionals, and keeper of the Green
of the Royal and Ancient Club, at St. Andrews. An undeviating devotion
of sixty years to the interests of the Scotch sport has won for Tom
the thankful admiration of all lovers of the game, and it is sincerely
to be hoped that Mr. BALFOUR'S appeal will result in a bunker--we
mean a bumper--testimonial to the Grand Old Golfic Gladiator. For the
edification of a future generation of golf devotees there should also
be constructed a statuette of the veteran,

  To stand in the Club smoking-room
    Plain for all folk to see;
  TOM MORRIS just about to "putt"
    A ball across the Dee;
  And underneath be written,
    In letters all of gold,
  How gloriously he kept the green
    In the brave days of old.

       *       *       *       *       *

FOOD FOR REFLECTION.--Readers of the _Daily Telegraph_ have become
vegetarians. They are subsisting on a diet of lov(e)age.

       *       *       *       *       *

THE INTERESTING CASE OF MR. BRIEFLESS.

I have been requested by a large number of the profession to which
I have the honour to belong, to bring a matter of some personal
importance before the public in an appropriate manner. It seems to
me that I cannot carry out this instruction more judiciously than by
communicating with the Editor of a paper representing by universal
consent the Bench, the Bar, and the Populace. I am assisted in this
task--one of considerable delicacy--by a document that came into my
hands at a time when the scheme, now full grown, was in its infancy.
It is a note from "Mr. Senior," who presided at my mess in Hall some
weeks before the commencement of the present Long Vacation. It speaks
for itself:--

    "MY DEAR BRIEFLESS,--In reply to your letter, 'No, I certainly
    was not joking.' It is true that we four had got to the third
    bottle of our after-dinner port; but in that admission I see
    no reason for assuming that our intellectual faculties had
    failed us. No; I shall be only too pleased if the proposed
    Testimonial should become an accomplished fact. To put it
    tersely, if Athletics are to be rewarded, why should Learning
    wait? Yours sincerely, ----."

I purposely omit the signature--an influential one--as I have no
desire to bring undue pressure to bear in a cause so purely personal
to myself. I need scarcely say that a Testimonial, even when it takes
the shape preferred by _Mr. Micawber_, is highly gratifying. But when
the matter was first broached, I had serious doubts whether I would
maintain the dignity of the Bar if I became a party to the proceedings
that would bring it to a successful issue. This being so, I have
little hesitation in laying before you this case and opinion. The
first--at request--was prepared by myself; the latter was appended by
a Counsel whose name, if revealed, would carry great weight, not only
with lawyers but the community at large.

CASE.

It is proposed to give Mr. A. BRIEFLESS, Jun., a Testimonial, which it
is intended shall take the shape of a bag of money, in consideration
of his services to the Bar. It is in contemplation that this money
shall be collected from the human race in general, and the British
public in particular. It may be suggested--not that the contention
has as yet arisen--that there is something derogatory in a
Barrister-at-Law receiving pecuniary assistance from persons other
than those of his kith and kin. Mr. A. BRIEFLESS, Jun., although
enjoying a very considerable practice as things go--he has held no
less than three consent briefs during the last five years--is not
very wealthy, and it must be admitted that a grant would not be an
unwelcome incident in his career. For all that he would shrink from
doing anything that might be considered derogatory to his title of
"esquire"--a distinction that he not only holds as his father's heir,
but by the usage of his office.

You are requested therefore kindly to say--

1. Can Mr. A. BRIEFLESS, Jun., receive a Testimonial of a bag of money
without laying himself open to the charge of being an accessory before
and after the fact of an act of maintenance?

2. Assuming that there is nothing in the first suggestion, will Mr. A.
BRIEFLESS, Jun., in accepting the sum of money it is proposed to hand
to him, be guilty of an act of contributory negligence, bringing about
a loss of dignity to the Bar?

3. Should there be nothing in the latter suggestion, is it desirable
that, instead of a bag of money, the Testimonial should take the shape
of a golden snuff-box, a service of plate, or some equally costly
article? It is strongly urged that, if practicable, this course should
not be advised, as such articles are invariably embarrassing.

And to consult and advise generally.

OPINION.

I do not think that the reception of a bag of money by Mr. A.
BRIEFLESS, Jun., would amount to maintenance. But it would be
advisable that the learned gentleman should undertake not to use any
of the sum in defraying costs.

As the ancient manner of paying counsel was to drop an honorarium into
the bags worn at the back of their robes, I can see nothing derogatory
to the profession in Mr. A. BRIEFLESS, Jun., accepting the proposed
Testimonial.

I do not see that a distinction can be drawn between coins of the
realm and their equivalent. Both are equally acceptable. If Mr. A.
BRIEFLESS. Jun., prefers cash to snuff-boxes, there is no reason why
he should not receive the former in preference to the latter.

I would advise that the Testimonial be collected at once, and
presented as quickly as possible.

  (_Signed_) ----.

I have nothing further to say beyond hinting that the project has
already been taken up with a fair amount of enthusiasm. Many firms
of manufacturers have expressed a desire to send subscriptions (which
they wish to see published in the daily papers) on the score
"that they have been happy enough never to have had cause to avail
themselves of my valuable professional services."

And now I must apologise for so lengthy a contribution. I have nothing
to add, save that should a Testimonial be organised, I shall be glad
were the subscriptions fixed at £1 3_s._ 6_d._ Out of that sum I
should, of course, deduct half-a-crown as an appropriate recognition
of the services of my admirable and excellent clerk, Mr. PORTINGTON.

  (_Signed_) A. BRIEFLESS, JUN.

_Pump-handle Court, September 9, 1895._

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: THE TURTLE-DOVE OF PEACE; OR, THE LORD MAYOR IN FRANCE.

["Sir JOSEPH RENALS said he hoped his visit would serve to dissipate
the idea that there was a spirit of hostility towards France in
England. If he succeeded in removing that misunderstanding,
he considered he would have rendered a great service to his
country."--_Westminster Gazette._]]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: A CONTINENTAL TRIP.

_First Man (tasting beer)._ "HULLO! I ORDERED LAGER. THIS ISN'T
LAGER!" _Second Man (tasting)_. "NO; BUT IT'S JOLLY GOOD, ALL THE
SAME!" _Third Man (tasting)_. "C'EST MAGNIFIQUE! MAIS CE N'EST PAS
LAGER-R-R!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

HAPPY HARROGATE.

(_A Traveller's Thank-Offering._)

  Faith! I feared I was bound for that general bourne, which we all
                    must approach through one narrow gate,
  But, oh! once again I have felt heart and brain hurried up by the
                    waters of Harrogate.
            (Here's jolly good luck to them!)
  Doctor BLACK of that place of my bothersome case did _not_ make a
                    muddle or mull, for,
  I owe strength of limb, heart and stomach, to him, and those
                    terrible doses of sulphur!
            (And stoutly I _stuck_ to them.)
  And true gratitude rules at present my mood (though gratitude's
                    rather a rarity),
  And that's why I'd say just a good word to-day for an excellent
                    Harrogate charity,
            (A regular A-Wonner!)
  That fine Yorkshire Home for Incurables! Come, ye who've got from
                    the sulphur springs benefit,
  And put in your "mite" in the slot, which will quite hold a pound,
                    yet a shilling or penny fit.
            (You just ask the "Stunner!")
  The Duchess of DEVONSHIRE opened the _fête_ and bazaar, driving
                    over from Bolton,
  The Abbey, you know, a most picturesque show, which the tourist has
                    got a firm "holt" on,
            (I use the vernacular!)
  Her Grace by her kirtle had good Dr. MYRTLE, who unto the Tykes
                    introduced her,
  And when that she pleaded for funds sorely needed I hoped there
                    were few who refused her.
            (That's neat and oracular!)
  The good _Yorkshire Post_ says the Home may well boast of much
                    honoured names as subscribers,
  And Alderman FORTUNE (appropriate name!) and SAVERY (two
                    blameless bribers
            Of folks to do duty)
  Spake up for the Home. Shall poor invalids roam, in pain, and
                    alone and untended,
  When at brave Harrogate it may be their kind fate to be doctored,
                    and fed, and befriended?
            (By Wisdom _and_ Beauty!)
  Doctors MYRTLE and SOLLY, it makes me feel jolly--by sulphur wells
                    made sulphur weller--
  To say a good word! Mr. JOSHUA WHITWORTH--Hon. Sec.--is "a jolly
                    good feller"
            (And so's Miss M. SMITH).
  The Leeds Engineers' Band was all there, gay and grand, and Sir
                    --what was it?--ha!--MATTHEW DODSWORTH,
  Not lengthily clatters about such Home matters, he knows what a
                    wink or a nod's worth
            (In point there is pith).
  Oh, MYRTLE! Oh, BLACK! Should I ever come back to that
                    doctor-ruled, sulphur-drenched region,
  May potions and baths, and those brisk plateau-paths cure my
                    pains as before, though they're legion
            (And spare me that narrow gate).
  But--here's to that Home for Incurables! Rome was not built in a
                    day, so they tell us,
  But Charity always beginneth at home, and I'd say, if Bath will
                    not be jealous--
            That Home is--at Harrogate!

       *       *       *       *       *

Q. E. D.

    [Mr. CHAMBERLAIN said that Sir E. ASHMEAD-BARTLETT "appeared
    to be intellectually incapable of distinguishing between
    charges and proof."]

  What, only just found out _that_ fact?
    As soon expect sense from Dame _Partlet_
  As reason, in speech or in act,
    From rash, indiscriminate BARTLETT.
  In foreign affairs he's a ferret,
    But sense from his "charge" holds aloof;
  For all know that SILOMIO'S spirit,
    Is many degrees above "proof"!

       *       *       *       *       *

We hear that the salmon-fishing season on the Dee has been a
satisfactory one. Some especially good sport was obtained in a pool
"near Overton Bridge where the fish collected, when unable, owing to
the lowness of the water, to get over the weir." Notwithstanding an
equal inability of Members "to get over the Weir," there was not much
sport during the recent Session "near Westminster Bridge."

       *       *       *       *       *

TORR-RESTIAL NOTES.

[Illustration]

_Happy Thought._--Ilfracombe, just now. If it be a question of "Ways
and Means," then Ilfracombe offers you "the ways" in the matter of
drives, walks, rides, excursions by rail, by sea, likewise by river
and road almost _ad infinitum_, and sometimes by sea _ad nauseam_.
Sea-bathing naturally excellent, but still open, considerably open, to
improvement. Still, as the man of no politics replied, when asked why
he belonged to the Reform Club, "There is in this world nothing so
good but what it is capable of improvement," and Ilfracombe cannot
claim exemption from this rule of universal application. Should an
Ilfracombe-ination require suggestions, mine are at the service of the
I. I. C. (Ilfracombe Improvement Committee).

  * * *

On a bench at the summit of the Torrs sat three Elders. Gray-bearded
and full of confidence in their own wisdom. On another bench facing
them sat a cherry-cheeked maiden of some nineteen summers, evidently
an elder sister in charge of a little brother, with whom in a shy sort
of way, as if old enough to know better, and yet unable to resist the
temptation, she was sharing, with very evident relish, some succulent
toffy recently extracted from one of the many "penny-in-the-slot"
machines, which, as "bits of colour," are such brilliant ornaments to
the Torrs Walks, and such universal favourites with youth of all ages.
The three Elders were discoursing on the mysteries of creation, with
such a "cock-sureness" of tone as seemed to imply that they themselves
had been on some committee of management when the first idea of making
this particular planet, called the world, had occurred to its Creator.
"These rocks," said one grandly, "were in existence long before
the date assigned to the creation." Whereat the toffy-sucking girl
sniggered foolishly as if somehow personally implicated, while the boy
stared, open mouthed, with toffy, yet untasted, in his dexter
hand. "No one," observed the second Elder, blandly, his eyes on the
maiden,--not by any means a SUSANNA but rather a fairly educated
AWDREY,--"no one now accepts the Mosaic account of Creation as given
in Genesis." The boy looked up, inquiringly, at his sister. The girl
giggled bashfully as if, in presence of so much learning and
such reverend seniors, she were suddenly somewhat ashamed of the
home-teaching she had received, and in which her trust had never been
shaken, at least until this minute. The third Elder, his eye too on
the girl and boy,--and perhaps the toffy,--now joined in. "It was
absurd," quoth he, supremely, "to believe that this"--here with a
wave of his hand he took in air, earth, sky, and all points of the
compass--"was made in six days." Then both boy and girl sniggered at
one another. "I suppose they teach you that all this," said the
third Elder, straightly addressing the girl, and again explaining
his allusion to the universe by waving his right hand about in an
all-embracing gesture, "that this was made in six days, eh?" With a
demure and silly giggle the damsel admitted that her education on
the subject had tended in the direction indicated. The three Elders
regarded one another with a sad, despondent air, as though here were
another case of crass ignorance which they had a special mission
to enlighten. "Why," said the second Elder, "the Chinese"--here the
little boy became suddenly interested--"the Chinese possess records
which reach back to a date anterior, by some thousands of years, to
that popularly assigned by Christians to the creation of the world."
The girl opened her eyes, but the boy, having lost his suddenly
awakened interest in the Chinese (probably he had expected some
stories about the war with Japan, or another tale of _Aladdin_), had
resumed his toffy-sucking process. At this point my companion, who had
been fidgetting on our bench, suddenly cut in and took a hand. "You
remind me, Sir," said he, quite pleasantly, speaking to the second
Elder, but addressing all three, "of the ancient and royal Irish
family of O'Toole, whose records, as you will of course remember, went
back for some millions of years; and in which, at a comparatively late
date, occurred the famous entry, 'N.B.--About this time the world
was created.'" As this was told with perfect good humour, and with
an inimitably comic imitation of a brogue, the damsel and boy were
greatly amused, and the Three Wise Men looked as black as the trio of
Anabaptists in _Le Prophète_ when there is a danger of the truth being
told by _Fides_, as to _Jean of Leyden_ being no heaven-descended
prophet but only her commonplace peasant-born son. So girl and boy
departed, laughing, to gather more sweets, and perhaps to recount at
home the Irish story, which, thank heaven, is more likely to dwell in
their memory than is the second-hand philosophy "falsely so-called" of
the Three Wise Men of the Mountain.

  * * *

Kodakers everywhere. Bathing, walking, resting, admiring the scenery,
no matter what you are doing, out pops Mr., Mrs., with the Misses
and Masters KODAKER, and you are taken in the act. The snap-shooting
season is at its height.

  * * *

Startling to see staring advertisement over a shop in the Arcade,
"_Dark Room for Amateurs_." Sounds like a punishment. Bad amateur
actor, or entertainer, sentenced to dark room would, probably, deserve
it.

  * * *

The visitor to the delightful Torrs can have one penn'orth or two
penn'orth of Torrs. Twopence is the top price. Well worth it, as a
treat, now and then. Ordinarily penn'orth of Torrs will suffice.
There should be shelters on the Torrs. Immediate attention of I. I. C.
requested.

  * * *

The hedges in the lanes are redolent of honey-suckle; and the Torrs
Walks are sweet with honey-mooners.

  * * *

Beware of taking too much of the cream of Devon. "Is it possible to
take too much?" asks my friend and companion, to whom half a pound of
it at breakfast, another half-pound at lunch, and a third at dinner,
are but as a dozen natives, at a single sitting, to a champion
devourer of bivalves. I cannot resolve my friend's question. But,
after emulating, as far as my limited powers would permit me, his
excellent example, I had the following curious dream. For particulars,
see next paragraph.

  * * *

[Illustration]

_The Dream._--I was seated opposite a lady, popular alike in the
social and political world, whom I will designate as "Lady JAY." It
was at a dinner-party, I _think_, though it might have been some other
sort of entertainment, as there seemed to me to be, between Lady JAY
and myself, the narrow width of a very long table, the ends of which
were out of sight. This table was covered with a white cloth, not too
clean; and there were no knives, forks, plates, or dishes. The room
was inconveniently crowded by persons, inextricably mixed up, none of
whom, however, incommoded us in the least, or, indeed, seemed to
take the slightest notice of our presence. Somehow, this struck me
as delicate conduct on _their_ part. Lady JAY was insisting that an
Archimandrite could, or could not, do something or other officially.
But, having more than once demonstrated to Lady JAY that this act,
whatever it was, had no essential bearing on his clerical position, I
continued to take very slight interest in the discussion; at least, I
thought I did not, until, on Lady JAY suddenly becoming dreadfully in
earnest, and most positive as to her being in the right, a Whip of
the late Government, whose name I could not recall, but with whose
lineaments I was perfectly familiar, interposed some conciliatory
remarks. Then Mr. GLADSTONE, in the absence, unaccountably sudden,
of both Lady JAY and the Government Whip, strode up and down on the
hearth-rug, rubbing the back of his head with his left hand; whereupon
I became aware that we were no longer wherever I had been until the
appearance of Mr. GLADSTONE on the scene, but that we were in the
library of the Prime Minister's official residence in Downing Street.
I was seated in an odd sort of spider-legged arm-chair. Mr. GLADSTONE,
bringing himself to a halt, turned round, and asked me, pointedly,
"Whether I could play the piano." Being rather nettled at the tone
of this inquiry, which seemed to imply a doubt of my proficiency as a
pianist, I replied, somewhat testily, "Certainly; rather better than
BEETHOVEN." Apparently satisfied with my answer, Mr. GLADSTONE said
that "if I would oblige _him_ by not continuing my discussion with
Lady JAY, in which I had been," he admitted, "absolutely right"--and
here he made some facetious allusion as to ladies in general, of which
I could not catch one word--"I should," he went on, "_have a seat in
the Cabinet_." Oddly enough, this offer of his did not strike me as
anything so very extraordinary; and I at once replied, "No, thank you,
I'd rather not." But Mr. GLADSTONE would take no refusal; he said,
"I have come to a decision on this subject," and then abruptly
disappeared, through the wall. Whether it was a few minutes, or hours,
afterwards, I could not for the life of me determine, being only
conscious of some time having elapsed, before I found myself in an
avenue on the Bayswater side of Hyde Park, walking up and down with
Mr. JOHN MORLEY. Our conversation there was, I suppose, on the subject
of Bulgaria, as this topic was continued by us in a kind of narrow
box-room, with hat-pegs on the walls, on which bathing-towels were
suspended; there were also trunks on the floor, and school-desks all
about, on one of which Mr. MORLEY rested his elbow, swaying himself
backwards and forwards like a pendulum, while always talking to me
(I was seated on a box), and uttering platitudes about Bulgaria. I
interrupted him by saying curtly, "It is no use talking to me like
that, as _I am in the Cabinet_." Mr. JOHN MORLEY was staggered; but,
recovering himself, he turned to HERBERT GARDNER (to whom I apologised
for not remembering his title, while he, sitting on a smaller box,
smilingly refused to enlighten me), and asked for corroboration of
my statement. Whereupon I produced _an autograph letter of_ Mr.
GLADSTONE'S _to me_, which entirely satisfied Mr. JOHN MORLEY, who,
having handed it to HERBERT GARDNER, now candidly disclosed the
schemes of the Government on the subject in question, putting forcibly
before me "_how we are going to deal with Bulgaria_." Not a single
word of what he said could I understand. Still, as a member of the
Cabinet, I felt bound to give his explanations my gravest attention,
my difficulty being not to expose my hopeless ignorance by any
inappropriate question. It was with some new-born sense of importance
that I found we were once again in Lady JAY'S company, this time in
her drawing-room, and seated in a low chair, while JOHN MORLEY had
brought with him the school-desk, on which he was still leaning his
elbow, and still swaying and swinging like a pendulum. Lady JAY was
all for resuming her discussion about the Archimandrite, refusing to
credit the assurances given by Mr. MORLEY (balancing himself on his
elbow) and myself as to my being in the Cabinet secrets. At this point
rushed in someone, who was alternately HERBERT GARDNER and a PONSONBY,
until he settled down into being HERBERT GARDNER for certain, who
exclaimed excitedly, "I have just seen Mr. GLADSTONE! He says, '_It is
absurd to suppose that his letter ever meant anything of the sort!_'"
I quietly demanded the restoration of Mr. GLADSTONE'S letter to me; so
did Mr. JOHN MORLEY. The protean representative of HERBERT GARDNER or
PONSONBY, or anybody else, replied simply, "I haven't got it." This
seemed to perfectly satisfy everybody, and no further questions being
forthcoming, Lady JAY seized the opportunity to declare triumphantly,
addressing me personally--JOHN MORLEY and the protean representative
having disappeared--how she had "ascertained from a Cardinal that"....
But what was the solution of the difficulty, or what was the original
difficulty itself, I shall never know in this world, though I may do
so in the World of Dreams, as here I awoke, and was so impressed
with the reality of the events that had passed, and with the present
necessity for recording them, that I at once entered them in my
note-book, and here they are.

       *       *       *       *       *

CABBY; OR, REMINISCENCES OF THE RANK AND THE ROAD.

(_By "Hansom Jack."_)

No. III.--SPORT--THE OVAL--GOOD OLD W. G.

[Illustration]

[Illustration]

  _Sportsman?_ You bet! Where's the Cabby as isn't? It's born in the
          bones of us, somehow, I fancy.
  'Ighly improper, I s'pose; but life's dull, and it's livened by
          something a little bit _chancey_.
  Trying your luck's a temptation to most of us, own it or not. Wy,
          there's old BILLY BARLOW
  Got as excited at winning a pig in a raffle as though 'e 'ad broke
          Monty Carlow.

  Wot did _'e_ want with a pig? But 'twas pickings. Fifty-to-one
          chance pulled off; that's wot done it.
  BILL swears 'is crock once run third in some 'Andicap. Wouldn't 'e
          like to 'ave owned it, _and_ run it?
  I 'ave drove cast-offs myself before now, broken-down old bits of
          blood. Ah! it's rummy
  How "cracks"--of all sorts--come down in this world. It's fur
          easier, p'r'aps, to be cocktail or dummy.

  Still I like "form," and I cannot help backing it, when there's a
          chance, in a oss most pertikler.
  But all kinds o' sport cum excitin' to me, down from racin' to
          crioketin',--_I_'m not a stickler.
  Few things more nicer, when summer sets in, than a chance fare out
          Kennington way in the day-time.
  Bless yer. I've sit by that old Oval hoarding two hours by St.
          Mark's--ah! and more, during play-time.

  Perched on my box with a heasy leg cock-over, _I_'m quite at 'ome
          in my private pavilion,
  (That's wot _I_ call it), a puffing my briar. Ah! cricket's the
          sport, after all, for the million.
  Slap over from 'Arleyford Road to the Gasworks, I sweep the whole
          field and pay nothink. Wy, bless yer,
  Young THORNTON once slogged a hoff-ball through my winder as cost
          me two bob,--and I stood it with pleasure.

  Seen Grace spank up more than one of 'is centuries, done "while I
          waited," most kind, like boot-soleing,
  _I_ know the old "Surrey Ring," and its chaff; and I'm not a bad
          judge of a bit of good bowling.
  Lor! when the Mayblossom's out, and GRACE in, with young
          RICHARDSON pounding away at 'is wicket,
  JACK isn't eager for no blooming fare as will take 'im away from
          the pick o' the cricket.

  Well I remember that blue-gilled old buffer as wanted "King's
          Cross, and look sharp!" quite stercato
  As TENOR TIM calls it. 'E weighed sixteen stun, and 'ad got a
          round face like a blooming tomato.
  "Engaged, Sir!" I arnswers, quite heasy and haffable. Lor! 'ow 'e
          fumed, did that angry old josser,
  Talked to me like a Dutch uncle, 'e did, or some Hemperor snubbin'
          a fourpenny dosser.

  "Engaged, Sir, who by?"--"_Mister Grace_," I sez, artful,
          a-tipping the wink on the sly to the Peeler.
  "Hordered me sharp for six-thirty, hay, constable?" "Right," _sez_
          the Slop. "Better try a four-wheeler.
  Afternoon's 'ot, and you're not a light weight, Sir!" Oh lor! 'ow
          old crumpet-face slanged me _and_ cricket.
  Swore 'e'd ask W. G. if 'twos true, and 'e _wanted to call 'im
          away from the wicket!_

  "Oh, shut your face and eat snuffers!" I sez; for the bowling just
          then was a-bein' fair collared,
  And I 'ad missed two or three boundary 'its, all along o' this
          "fare," as 'e floundered and hollered.
  "_You_ ain't no sportsman!" That finished 'im proper, for 'e was a
          deacon, it seemed, out by Stockwell;
  And didn't know _Ladas_ from lucky _Sir Visto_, or SHREWSBURY'S
          "cut" from the "drive" of young BROCKWELL.

  Well, I _do_ get cricket-cracks for my fares. How the crowd
          gathers round with their eyes all a-glisten!
  And 'ow big I feel; and lor! wot a temptation to look through the
          trap for a squint or a listen.
  I've often druv Bishops and Premiers and such; but I doubt if the
          whole 'Ouse o' Lords took together,
  Would match--say, TOM SAYERS, or STODDART or GRACE after one of
          their six hours' slambanging the leather.

  _Sportsman?_ Oh yes, in my own 'umble way. But I ain't got the
          fever like JERRY-GO-NIMBLE!
  Poor JERRY! 'E _carn't_ resist no sort of gamble, from Derby or
          Oaks to the pea and the thimble.
  Mad on it, JERRY is. Bad when it's _that_ way, the mischief in
          fack I like sport and a flutter
  A bit within bounds; and if t'aint the _best_ biz,--well there,
          life, after all, isn't _all_ bread-and-butter!

       *       *       *       *       *

"Hail, divinest Melancholy!" Decidedly the town of Penarth must adopt
this Miltonian line as its motto. At a meeting of the Public Works
Committee of the District Council, a letter was read in which a
citizen complained bitterly of the frivolous name given to the street
wherein he had his habitation. Gay Street! How too shocking! "The
whole neighbourhood objected to it," and not even the assurance that
the thoroughfare had merely been thus designated out of compliment to
a noble lady of the locality, whose Christian name was "Gay," served
to allay the righteous indignation. Away with the demoralizing title
and the base insinuation borne with it! It was proposed that the
street--being in the vicinity of All Saints--be known for the future
as "Amen Corner," a name suitable to the unswerving sobriety and
solemnity of the city. The proposal was put to the vote and carried
with only a couple of dissentients. Is it possible that there are even
two Penarthians in favour of gaiety?

       *       *       *       *       *

A MATTER OF "GORSE."--Why will picnicers persist in being so careless?
The _Liverpool Courier_ reports that a party of them succeeded
in setting fire to and destroying some 200 acres of gorse on land
belonging to Lord CHOLMONDELEY and Sir PHILIP GREY EGERTON, at Broxton
Hills, in Cheshire. Not only was the furze completely burnt, but a
"valuable fox cover" was also destroyed. Shades of _Jorrocks, M.F.H._,
and his huntsman, _James Pigg_, the "canny" Novocastrian! Pity, that
these reckless _al fresco_ diners--ready enough with their indignant
resentment if turned off any domain--could not be apprehended, and
summarily dealt with. Sportsmen will echo the words--adapted to the
case in point--in _Handley Cross_, "Cut 'em down, and hang 'em up to
dry!"

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: THE CONTRARINESS OF THINGS.

_He._ "THAT LITTLE TRIP OF OURS TO BOULOGNE NEVER CAME OFF, AFTER
ALL!"

_She._ "NOTHING EVER _DOES_ COME OFF--EXCEPT _BUTTONS!_"]

       *       *       *       *       *

STRICTLY ACCORDING TO PRECEDENT.

(_Fragment of a Romance found between Fleet Street and the Kaatskill
Mountains._)

RIP VAN WINKLE had slept (thanks to a hypnotic trance) for a
considerable time. On opening his eyes he called for a paper. He
eagerly glanced through the columns, and was absolutely baffled by the
nature of their contents.

"What is the matter?" asked a bystander, who had watched his
movements, not without amusement. "Can I help you?"

"Well, yes," replied the sleeper awakened. "When I commenced my
slumbers all the world was talking about the Armenian question. Pray
tell me, are the Powers going to coerce the Turks?"

"No one knows, and no one cares," was the prompt reply.

"And then there was the excitement about our relation with the French
in Africa. Will the matter lead to international complications?"

"My good fellow, the matter does not attract the smallest attention."

"Once more, there was the boom in gold mines. Surely that is a topic
of interest to some one?"

"No, I fancy not," came the answer. "Perhaps a few stockbrokers think
about it--but I doubt it."

"And how about the reserve of ammunition? Have we got enough Cordite
powder or have we not?"

"Really I don't know, and don't care," smilingly replied the person
RIP had accosted.

"And how about the SHAHZADA?"

"I believe His Highness has left England, but the movements of the
Afghan Prince remain nowadays unreported in the daily papers."

"You astonish me!" exclaimed RIP. "Does nothing interest you?"

"Well, not such out-of-date matters as those to which you have
referred. My good friend, you are talking of things that happened
ages--or to be quite accurate, about three weeks--ago. They belong to
the past."

"Then what is now engaging your attention?"

"Why, one subject to the exclusion of all others--how to spend the
recess!"

"Oh, indeed!" exclaimed RIP; and being a reasonable sort of person
he again sought the good services of the hypnotist and went to sleep,
hoping to return to consciousness when his countrymen had finished
their holiday.

       *       *       *       *       *

THE THREE CHOIRS.

    _A Song of the 172nd musical meeting of the Three Choirs of
    Gloucester, Worcester and Hereford, which opens at Gloucester
    on Tuesday, Sept. 10._

AIR--"_The Three Ravens._"

  There are Three Choirs--melodious three!--
            _Down-a-down-a-down-hey-down!_
  They are as fine as fine can be,
            _With a down!_--
  They're going at Gloucester for to meet,
  By TUBAL CAIN, they're bad to beat.
            _With a down, derry, derry down!_

  Gloucester--Worcester--Hereford! Three!!!
            _Down-a-down, &c._
  Hear them perform the "Mass in C"!
            _With a down!_--
  COWEN, SCHÜTZ, PARRY, LLOYD, MACFARREN!
  You bet your boots they won't be barren!
            _With a down, &c._

  ALBANI strong, clear EDWARD LLOYD!
            _Down-a-down, &c._
  BEN DAVIES--won't _he_ be enjoyed?--
            _With a down!_--
  And then there's clever W. HANN,
  A brick, as fiddler or as man;
            _With a down, &c._

  Again, Miss ROSALIND ELLICOTT!
            _Down-a-down, &c._
  That Bishop's daughter knows what's what,
            _With a down!_--
  Then C. LEE WILLIAMS, Gloucester's pride,
  Conducts--himself and all beside.
            _With a down, &c._

  They'll all go off, each Great Old Gun,
            _Down-a-down, &c._,
  HANDEL, BEETHOVEN, MENDELSSOHN,--
            _With a down!_--
  Nor, 'midst the old Titanic lot,
  Shall HENRY PURCELL be forgot,
            _With a down, &c._

  Ah! well-a-day! London admires,--
            _Down-a-down-a-down-hey-down_
  This Festival of the Three Choirs.
            _With a down!_--
  So heaven spare, music for to foster,
  Hereford, Worcester, "Good old Gloucester!"
            _With-a-down-derry-derry-derry-derry-down!_

       *       *       *       *       *

NEWS FROM THE PROVINCES.--A gentleman who was trying to cut a joke
hurt himself severely. He says he will never again attempt the
experiment, and his family express themselves satisfied.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: "FORTY WINKS!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: A HASTY INFERENCE.

"AND, ME DEAR, IF YE FOIND MISTHRESS A BIT HOT-TEMPERED AT TOIMES,
YE MUSTN'T MOIND IT. THE FAMILY HAVE BLACK BLOOD IN THEIR VEINS. JUST
LOOK AT THEM PORTRAITS OF THEIR ANCESTORS!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

ANOTHER DIALOGUE OF THE NIGHT.

SCENE--_The Shades at Nightfall. Swiftian Interlocutors as before._

_Mr. Neverout_ (_reading_). "I cannot but with some pride, and much
pleasure, congratulate with my dear country, which has outdone all the
nations of Europe, in advancing the whole art of conversation to the
greatest height it is capable of reaching."

_Colonel Alwit._ Ha! ha! ha! So wrote the Dean in the Eighteenth
Century. I wonder what he would say now!

_Mr. Neverout_ (_continuing_). "The whole genius, humour, politeness,
and eloquence of England are summed up in it."

[Illustration]

_Miss Notable._ Oh la! Let anyone now take a matron down to dinner, or
sit out a dance with a pretty girl!

_Lord Sparkish._ "The whole genius, humour, politeness, and eloquence
of England" must have gone out with full-bottomed wigs and hooped
petticoats.

_Lady Answerall._ I protest that a neat repartee, or a "smart turn of
wit or humour," is the rarest of things nowadays.

_Lord Smart._ Save among cabmen and costers.

_Sir John Linger._ Faith, my Lord, your street Arabs and gutter-snipes
have a smack of it. _They_ are the true NEVEROUTS and NOTABLES of the
time.

_Miss Notable._ Sir JOHN, you do me proud!

_Mr. Neverout._ Out on this pestilent, levelling democracy, which
brings even wit to its last refuge, the gutter!

_Colonel Alwit._ Better lie, like SHERIDAN, with Wit in the gutter,
than perch, like H----Y, with Dulness on the Woolsack!

_Mr. Neverout._ Egad! Miss NOTABLE has wit at will.

_Miss Notable._ And Mr. NEVEROUT would be Echo, were he not Narcissus.

_Lady Smart._ Humph! We've had the "humour" and the "politeness," now
for the eloquence.

_Mr. Neverout._

  "CHLOE, of every coxcomb jealous,
  Admires how girls can talk with fellows."

_Miss Notable._

  In dinner's blanks, in dancing's whirls,
  The fellows cannot talk with girls.

_Lord Sparkish._ Well capped, i' faith!

_Sir John Linger._ Will the New Woman talk, I wonder?

_Lady Answerall._ Nay; as she claims all Man's special privileges,
from votes to cigarettes, from bicycles to latch-keys, she will hardly
forego his most cherished and distinctive one--taciturnity!

_Mr. Neverout._ There was a travelling fellow awhile ago who hung
himself up in a cage in the tropical forests, to study the language
of--monkeys. Why did not he turn his attention to the equally scanty,
inarticulate, and unintelligible utterance of that Society Simian,
the haw-haw "Masher"--is not that the term for an up-to-date dandy, my
Lord?--of the banquet and the ball-room?

_Lady Smart._ Ah! now the eloquence-tap is turned on!

_Mr. Neverout._ But not like the Mulberry One's, at the main, your
Ladyship!

_Miss Notable._ Ah! if they had but companies to turn on talk at
pleasure, as they do gas and water!

_Colonel Alwit._ As it is, it comes like fountains in the desert or
Trafalgar Square--only in intermittent spurts and squirts, not like
the water company's never-failing service, on the "constant supply"
system.

_Sir John Linger._ Humph! An East-end fishmonger's comment might throw
some light on that subject, Colonel.

_Lady Sparkish._ Well, Sir JOHN, we must admit that the growth of
Science keeps pace with the spread of Stupidity. So doubtless the time
will soon come when pocket-phonographs will obviate the necessity of
individual vocal efforts, and leave men to give undivided attention to
their dinners, matrons to their daughters' marriage-chances, maidens
to the marriageable men, and marriageable men to their--moustaches!

_Mr. Neverout._ Unless, indeed, when we know all we shall be silent
about everything.

_Lord Sparkish._ Quite likely, my dear NEVEROUT. Already talk--except
in spurts and spasms--is confined mainly to childhood--first
or second. Of the Seven Ages of Man--I say nought about Woman,
ladies!--why, the first and last only are loquacious.

_Lady Smart._ In which of the two garrulous stages would you place
Parliament, my Lord?

_Lord Sparkish._ The Commons in the former; the Lords in the latter.

_Colonel Alwit._ And the Hibernian Members?

_Lord Sparkish._ Oh, faith! an "iligant" blend of _both!!!_

_Lady Answerall._ Well, _I_ agree with sweet WILLIAM'S _Gratiano_,
that--

                          "Silence is only commendable
  In a neat's tongue dried, and a maid not vendible."

_Mr. Neverout._ While your Ladyship speaks, speech will ever be
silvern!

_Miss Notable._ And silence is not yet golden--in the Shades.

       *       *       *       *       *

A BATTLE IN A SODA-WATER BOTTLE.

It appears that the enterprising commanders of the Royal Artillery
stationed at Dover have recently been getting themselves disliked by
the members of the National Alliance of Mineral Waters Associations
(Limited), by producing gaseous waters at the canteen under their
control, and offering them for sale to their comrades in garrison.
According to a story laid before the Secretary of State for War, the
representatives of the scientific branch of the army in question have
had dealings with the gallant West Surrey and the equally gallant West
Riding, much to the disgust of the trading producers of non-alcoholic
compounds. The 3rd Battalion of the King's Own Rifle Corps (late
60th) are also at Dover, but there is no evidence to show that these
warriors have preferred "R. A. aërateds" to brands as yet better
known to the consumers of effervescing drinks. According to the _Daily
Telegraph_, this labour, savouring more of peace than of war, enabled
the controllers of the cannon to contribute some £40 in prizes to the
garrison sports held at Dover on Saturday last. Whether the financial
game was worth the athletic candle is a matter that must be decided
by military experts qualified to weigh the respective advantages of
burning "villainous saltpetre" and preparing that exhilarating liquid
known amongst civilians as "fizzle." Admittedly, lemonade and its
companion "ginger pop" when they scintillate are grateful drinks,
but it would scarcely be advisable if through the, no doubt, well
intentioned efforts of those concerned, the Royal Artillery gained an
equally appropriate but less impressive designation. It would indeed
be a sad thing if it ever became necessary for some General to have to
sing out, "Here, you Sir, in command of those Royal Ginger Popgunners,
limber up your soda-water manufacturing apparatus and retire at the
gallop to the canteen in the rear!" Such a direction, if delivered in
the piping time of peace would sound incongruous, and might predict
disaster if uttered in the hideous hour of war.

       *       *       *       *       *
THE CRICKET THREE.

  Great GRACE to young MACLAREN yields his place,
    And RANGITSINHJI follows after GRACE.
  Mid Harrow's noblest sons let MAC be reckoned,
    Who tops the list with such a mighty second.
  And well I know that RANJIT'S fame will stand
    Firm and secure on India's coral strand.
  Oft have I seen upon the level sward
    That's owned, or used to be, by Mr. LORD,
  While countless thousands, watching ball and bat
    Rang out loud cheers and waved th' applausive hat,
  Oft have I seen that cricketer or this
    Bat, bowl, or field, or catch (or even miss),
  And oft, astounded by some piece of play,
    Have marked with letters red th' auspicious day;
  Yet ne'er before three heroes have I seen
    More apt and splendid on the well-rolled green;
  Men of one skill, though varying in race,
    MACLAREN, RANJITSINHJI, Grand Old GRACE.

       *       *       *       *       *

Old Saw Re-set.

  Mr. GEORGE NATHANIEL CURZON
  May be a "superior purzon,"
  But Mr. TOMMY GIBSON BOWLES
  Is the sturdiest of souls;
  And "those who at Bowles will play
  Must expect rubbers,"--so men say!

       *       *       *       *       *

[Illustration: MUCH ADO.

"MAMMA-A-A! BOO-HOO! WE'S CRYING! TUM UP 'TAIRS AN' SEE WHAT'S DE
MATTER WIV US!"]

       *       *       *       *       *

THE LAY OF THE LANCASHIRE LASS.

    ["What will Lancashire think to-day when she reads
    the declarations of Lord GEORGE HAMILTON and Mr. A. J.
    BALFOUR?"--_Leeds Mercury._]

  Oh, was it for this that I rushed to the poll
    To register votes for the Tories?
  When they told me repeal was the Unionist goal,
    Were they tales of (Stan) hope, or mere stories?
  The snare of the FOWLER they'd help me to scape
    They vowed--on each Lancashire platform.
  But Indian Finance _their_ excuse? A poor jape!
    I thought they _would_ rise above _that_ form!
  Oh, ARTHUR, oh, GEORGIE! Reeds broken and rotten
    I fear you are both, on reviewing it.
  You hinted at taking those duties off cotton,
    You don't seem to cotton to doing it!
  And now, when I'm trying your pity to move,
    Why seem you so deaf to my prayers?
  Perhaps you are bound to dissemble your love,
    But oh!--_must_ you kick me down stairs?

       *       *       *       *       *

That excellent association, the Society of Women Journalists, has just
issued its first annual report. From this interesting document, the
world learns that the members have derived many benefits from a body
that could justly adopt the motto of "Defence, not Defiance." The
institution very properly claims for the authoress the right to
receive no wrong.

       *       *       *       *       *

OUR BOOKING-OFFICE.

[Illustration]

I have just finished _Napoléon et les femmes_, by FREDÉRIC MASSON. On
the cover is "_dix-huitième édition_," which shows what a success
the book has obtained. The author is an apologist for NAPOLEON.
The Emperor can do no wrong. What in the private individual is rank
blasphemy, is, to this author, in the Emperor only a pardonable
weakness. Whatever NAPOLEON may have been as the "Man of Destiny" and
as the greatest military genius of his time, he was, if most of these
stories be true, as a man, a satyr, a cad (there is no other English
word for it), and a snob. Satyr he was apparently always; satyr and
cad in certain instances, especially as regards the "WALEWSKA affair,"
in which so many personages took part; everyone of them outraging
morality, and all disregarding the sacredness of marriage; though to
Madame WALEWSKA herself must be apportioned the least share of the
guilt in which all were steeped up to the hilt. Madame WALEWSKA
yielded herself as a victim to a most cruel combination of
circumstances; and of this NAPOLEON availed himself to the utmost.
It was in his power to have behaved as a gentleman for once, but he
allowed the opportunity to slip. That he appears, on one occasion,
to have permitted a poor terrified, artless victim to escape is put
forward triumphantly by his apologist as a proof of his magnanimity;
but even a satiated animal will refuse food, though if the food be in
his possession he will play the dog in the manger. He had a tigerish
admiration for the deepest tragedy, and abhorred farce and comedy.
He could play like a child with the one child of whom he hoped great
things. Cad he was always, in his dealings with men and women. As
an imperial cad he was toadied by his grovelling courtiers; but when
there is much to be gained by toadying a cad, and everything to lose
by not toadying him, all will be toadies from the highest to the
lowest. The exceptions are rare. A thorough snob did "the Corsican
upstart" show himself in his eager anxiety for recognition by the
royal and aristocratic families of Europe, and by his servility to
the Austrian EMPEROR, in order to obtain the hand of the high-born
MARIE-LOUISE. If ever tyrant deserved defeat and disgrace NAPOLEON did
so. Like Cardinal WOLSEY, what "best became him in his life was the
leaving of it." Those interested, and who is not, in "the NAPOLEON
Legend," should not fail to read this book, says

  THE STUDIOUS BARON DE BOOK-WORMS.

       *       *       *       *       *

The annual "Timmer" Market, or Timber Fair, has been waking the echoes
of sober Aberdeen "with lively din." The Aberdonian youth, so says the
_Daily Free Press_, "shook the nerves of peace-loving citizens by the
hideous and discordant noise of tin trumpets and corncrakes." This
is odd, for one might imagine that the Caledonian ear, which attunes
itself so easily, willingly, and often to the screeches of
that national instrument of torture the bagpipe, would hail the
comparatively soothing strains of tin trumpet and corncrake with eager
enthusiasm. Not so, however. For the "bra' laddie" the _only_ music
is that which is emitted by the bagpipe. It appeals to his delicate
artistic sense, and, like a much advertised remedy, "it touches the
spot." _Vive la bag(pipe)atelle!_

       *       *       *       *       *

ESSENCE OF PARLIAMENT.

EXTRACTED FROM THE DIARY OF TOBY, M.P.

[Illustration: When in doubt, consult the Cap'en.]

_House of Commons, Monday, September 2._--A sight for Lords and
Commons to see Lord High Admiral JOKIM seated between Cap'en TOMMY
BOWLES and ARNOLD-FORSTER, imbibing naval information at the pores, as
_Joey Ladle_, in far-off-days, deep in the recesses of his employer's
cellar, took his spirituous refreshment.

"How happy could I be with either were t'other instructor away," said
JOKIM, rubbing his pleased sides with rapturous content. "Or, happier
still," he added, _sotto voce_, "if both would take themselves off."

In his secret heart the CAP'EN looks upon ARNOLD-FORSTER as a
landlubber.

"He wouldn't," he says, with fine scorn, "know how to belay a sheet
when a ship was stepping fore and aft under a booming north-wester.
I'd lay a rope's end to a bumboat-man's back that he couldn't pass a
spare spar through the man-hole without first pulling up the trysail."

ARNOLD-FORSTER, on his part, suspects the CAP'EN hasn't seen nearly
so much of the wild ocean as casual observations dropped by him may
indicate. He makes much of certain variations in the old salt's story
of how he came to lose his hand in the service of his country. There
is, certainly, some doubt as to whether it was the Prince Consort or
ALBERT Prince of Wales who sent him that famous letter accompanying
the hook which at this day enables the CAP'EN to overhaul the
estimates. But this is due rather to wealth of experience than to
poverty of veracity. When a man has seen everything, gone so far, and
knows so much as TOMMY, he may be forgiven if occasionally he mixes up
a name or two, a date, or an episode.

Some uneasiness in ministerial circles last week upon observation of
MACARTNEY going about his country's business in white ducks. These
are, so to speak, Cap'en TOMMY'S colours. Always ducks them when he
goes on the warpath against the Admiralty. For the Secretary of all
men, he the only man, to follow TOMMY'S example in this respect didn't
look well. Was said to be a hint to whom it might concern that if the
department didn't treat him with more respect, MACARTNEY would carry
over to the enemy his stored wealth of naval knowledge. Since Private
HANBURY got his stripes, and is now referred to in debate as "The
Honourable Corporal," CAP'EN has no party. With MACARTNEY forming the
nucleus of one, who knows what might not happen?

House relieved to-night to find Secretary to Admiralty has hauled down
sign of revolt, and put on ordinary trousers. If there was anything in
the incident, all is well now. That there may have been appears from
the CAP'EN'S unusually embittered tone when the subject is alluded to.

"Call _them_ ducks!" he cried in scorn. "They were only white drawers.
No member of this House should attempt to walk up the floor in ducks
unless he is prepared to keep on his domestic staff a man who has made
the garment a life-long study; who knows how to wash it, starch it,
iron it, and, above all, to fold it up."

_Business done._--Appropriation Bill brought in.

_Tuesday._--One decided advantage of change of position of sections of
parties on formation of new Ministry is to bring SILOMIO within reach
of HEMPRER JOE'S knobstick. In last Parliament, united against common
enemy, SILOMIO was most deferential to "my right hon. friend," while
JOSEPH'S respect for patriotic instinct of Swazi Chief, whose fathers,
having come over with the Conqueror, went out in the _Mayflower_, was
sometimes past expression. Now HEMPRER JOE has come into his kingdom;
his knobstick is exchanged for a sceptre, whilst SILOMIO begins to
realise something of the feelings of the Red Man when harried by his
haughty ancestors. Like him, SILOMIO'S possessions are taken from
him. His Civil Lordship of the Admiralty is given to another, and
that other the son of his former trusted right hon. friend. When,
therefore, to-night SILOMIO, from his arid exile below the gangway,
sings again his old song with its low lament--

  Swaziland, my Swaziland!

and when HEMPRER JOE, to the delight of scoffers opposite, rolls him
over and over, pinks his fluffy eloquence with scornful stiletto, no
wonder he turns at bay, and reminds L'HEMPRER of things he said about
HERCULES ROBINSON at a time he sat untrammelled on Opposition benches.

[Illustration: "Swaziland, my Swaziland."]

Shaft goes home. L'HEMPRER very angry. "A statement that ought not
to be made," he says, withering SILOMIO with direful look.
Ministerialists loyally cheer; Opposition lightly laugh; SILOMIO,
buffeted on all sides, comforts himself with thoughts of faithful
friends in far-off Swaziland. There is at least one spot on earth
where he is appreciated. Soon he may shake off from his mocassins the
dust of civilisation, and hie him thither.

_Business done._--Appropriation Bill read second time.

_Wednesday._--Lo! the poor Indian Budget at last. 'Tis the poor
relation of Parliamentary Bills. At commencement of every Session
Members interested in India protest against Budget being postponed
till very last hours, when most people are gone away, and those who
remain are hopelessly weary. SECRETARY OF STATE promises amendment.
Here we are something later than usual. Yesterday's sitting was
solemnly set apart for Indian Budget. Other things--Chitral, Cotton
Duties--crowded it out. Meekly looks in to-day, hoping it doesn't
intrude.

Strange peace fallen over House. GEORGIE HAMILTON'S voice echoes over
spaces desolate as the outlook of the rupee. Not a single Irish
Member left to object to anything. For them the scene of conflict
is transferred to Ireland. There the inoffensive TIM stands at bay,
JUSTIN MCCARTHY having at length dealt him that "good hard knock" the
imminence of which E. R. lately forecast in these prophetic pages.
There WILLIAM O'BRIEN, with wet handkerchief mopping wetter eyes,
tells stories out of school of TIM'S unnatural naughtiness when good
Mr. G. was bringing in his Home-Rule Bill, and upon other enticing
occasions. There patriots bang their brothers in pursuit of peace, and
hate each other for the love of Ireland.

"Did you ever," I in weak moment asked the unsympathetic SARK, "read
_The Dead of Clonmacnois_, a Gaelic lyric of a time immemorial? There
are two verses of the musical English rendering that haunt me when I
listen to an Irish debate.

  In a quiet watered land, a land of roses,
    Stands Saint Kieran's city fair;
  And the warriors of Erin in their famous generations
    Slumber there.

  Many and many a son of CONN the Hundred Fighter
    In the red earth lies at rest;
  Many a blue eye of Clan COLMAN the turf covers,
    Many a swan-white breast."

"Pretty," said SARK, with quite unexpected approval. "First line
perfection. But, you will observe, the poet studiously refrains from
affirming the final extinction of the family of the estimable CONN.
'Many and many a son,' he says, in the red earth lies at rest. One
at least is left. They in their time had CONN the Hundred Fighter. We
have TIM the Hundred-and-Fifty Fighter."

[Illustration: Exit Toby.]

_Business done._--All.

_Thursday._--Parliament prorogued. World must go round as best it may
till February next.

       *       *       *       *       *

ROUNDABOUT READINGS.

In the London correspondence of a provincial paper it is stated that
"Lord HOTHFIELD, who recently gave up the errors and heresies of
Liberalism to seek security in Conservatism, has been elected a member
of the Carlton. His characteristic exclamation on entering the club
the first time after his election was, 'Thank God, I can now have
a quiet game of whist,' meaning I suppose, that his mind was now at
rest." This explanation of Lord HOTHFIELD'S meaning does credit to the
ingenuity of the correspondent. It is a sublime spectacle, that of a
Radical peer forswearing his errors merely that he may have a quiet
game of whist at the Carlton. Such a coruscating specimen of the wit
and wisdom of our hereditary peerage should go far to reconcile even
Mr. LABOUCHERE to the existence of the House of Lords.

       *       *       *       *       *

  Confusion on your programmes, your turbulence, your din:
    Your tattered mob of Radicals, how blind they are and lame.
  Lord HOTHFIELD proudly leaves your ranks, the Carlton takes him in;
    Behold him in the whist-saloon enjoying of his game.

  Some men are led by blighted hopes to leave the ancient fold,
    And some by mere conviction, and some by thirst for fame;
  And some because the Government were far too fond of gold;
    Lord HOTHFIELD quits the Radicals because he wants a game.

  A quiet game his Lordship loves; ex-Radical and peer,
    With what a wealth of irony he puts his foes to shame;
  And LABBY'S self amazed forbears the customary sneer,
    When HOTHFIELD in the Carlton sits enjoying of his game.

       *       *       *       *       *

I have been reading about the harvest festivals with which the
country has been lately teeming. They are all made on one pattern.
The interior of the building is very tastefully adorned with fruit and
foliage, supplied by friends connected with the church and others. The
subject of one reverend gentleman's discourse in the morning is, "Put
in the sickle." In the afternoon another reverend gentleman discourses
on "A stroll through a corn-field," and in the evening a third
clergyman poses his congregation with the question, "What shall be
done with the tares?" Thank-offerings in aid of the church funds
are then taken, the choir sings special harvest hymns, and somebody
invariably "presides" at the organ.

[Illustration]

       *       *       *       *       *

The temptations of the fruit are sometimes, I am sorry to say,
irresistible. I have seen an absent-minded landed proprietor steadily
pluck and eat his way through a whole bunch of grapes, while the
preacher held forth on the symbolic meaning attached to fruit. The
attention of the congregation, I need hardly say, was breathlessly
concentrated not on the preacher, but on the devourer of the grapes.
At a festival I attended last year, the fruits of the earth were
represented by dead rabbits on the window-sills of the church.

       *       *       *       *       *

By the way, why does one always "preside" at the organ? At the first
blush there would not seem to be anything peculiarly presidential
about the playing of the instrument, but then I may be dull. For
instance, I have never yet understood why young tobacconists are
always alluded to as "commencing." Other traders are content to
begin or to start, but a tobacconist must apparently "commence" or be
eternally disgraced.

       *       *       *       *       *

  Oh, dealer in the latest brand
    Of Claro and Maduro,
  One question agitates our land,
    From Ballater to Truro.
  In Belfast I have heard it put,
    Where men the Home Rule whim rue;
  'Tis asked amid our London soot,
    And in the realms of Cymru.
  On gray St. Andrews' windy links,
    So niblicky and cleeky;
  In far Glenlivet, famed for drinks;
    In Auld Athenian Reekie.

  Where Cornwall's rock-bound coast defies
    The surge of the Atlantic,
  One puzzle-question takes the prize,
    And drives the public frantic.
  One matchless question fairly burns,
    It leads us all a dance, Sir;
  Ye men who profit by Returns,
    Return me quick an answer;
  Explain, tobacconist to me,
    Without unduly fencing,
  Why those who end in smoke should be
    Unceasingly commencing.

       *       *       *       *       *

Mr. HENRY BLACKBURN has been visiting Manchester and Liverpool, and
has confided his impressions of these great cities to the editor of
the _Manchester Guardian_. He admires Manchester for "its admirable
tramway, street police, and other traffic arrangements," but there
is an _amari aliquid_ in the shape of the Manchester street Arab. Mr.
BLACKBURN has all an artist's tolerance; but, as might be expected
of a black and white artist, he feels bound to draw the line, and he
draws it before street Arabs. He thinks it worth while to mention--

    "A pedestrian's experience of his, generally, free fight with
    the street _gamin_ culminating on Saturday afternoon last at
    2.15 by being tripped up and thrown down in the middle of the
    road near the Central Station, and only saved from further
    contact with the said tramcars by rolling quickly round
    and round into the gutter. This rapid act was witnessed,
    doubtless, by several of your readers, two of whom rendered
    timely assistance. I am aware that it is the rule in any
    household or community for a guest to conform to its ways for
    the time being, and not to complain of any _contretemps_; but,
    having had a second encounter (of less consequence) on the
    very steps of the entrance to the Walker Art Gallery in
    Liverpool, on the same afternoon, I venture to think that the
    juvenile--and in some respects perfectly delightful--street
    vendors of matches, flowers, and football newspapers have a
    little too much of a free run in both these cities."

       *       *       *       *       *

AT LAST.--Mr. LANE, the Magistrate, appealed to by an Indian gentleman
as to whether he--the I. G.--might "turn round upon" rude street-boys,
who called him "Lulali," and asked whether he--the Magistrate--would
like it himself, replied that he had lived too long in the world
to care about such matters. This imperturbable "Beak" is evidently
then--at last--the often-talked-of "Long Lane that has no turning."

       *       *       *       *       *



Transcriber's Note

Obvious punctuation errors have been repaired.

Page 124: 'fidgetting' may have been correct, in England, in 1895, and
has been retained.

Page 129: 'bicyles' corrected to 'bicycles'

"from votes to cigarettes, from bicycles to latch-keys,..."

Page 132: Missing 'to' inserted into blank space.

"... that it is the rule in any household or community for a guest to
conform to its ways for the time being,..."





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