The Project Gutenberg eBook, Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 93. September 17, 1887, by Various, Edited by F. C. Burnand

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Title: Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 93. September 17, 1887

Author: Various

Editor: F. C. Burnand

Release Date: September 13, 2010 [eBook #33717]

Language: English

Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1



E-text prepared by Neville Allen, Malcolm Farmer,
and the Project Gutenberg Online Distributed Proofreading Team




SEPTEMBER 17, 1887.

[Pg 121]


(Lament by a Reader of "Letters to the Papers.")

Oh! bless us and save us! Like men to behave us

We Britons once held it our glory;

Now Party bids fair to befool and enslave us.

We're lost between Liberal and Tory!

Some quidnunc inditeth a letter to Gladstone,

The style of it, "Stand and deliver!"

Its speech may be rude, and its tone quite a cad's tone,

Its logic may make a man shiver.

Au contraire it may be most lucid and modest,

In taste and in pertinence equal

(Though such a conjunction would be of the oddest),

But what, anyhow, is the sequel?

Rad papers all cry, "We've once more before us

An instance of folly inrushing."

Whilst all the Conservative Journals in chorus

Declare "it is perfectly crushing!"

"Little Pedlington's" snubbed by the Liberal Press,

And urged such fool tricks to abandon.

Cry Tories, "I guess the Old Man's in a mess,

He hasn't a leg left to stand on!"

Oh! save us and bless us! The shirt of old Nessus,

Was not such a snare to the hero,

As poisonous faction. Crass fools we confess us,

With sense and with spirit at zero.

If thus we comport us like blind sprawling kittens,

Or pitiful partisan poodles,

'Twill prove Party makes e'en of freeminded Britons,

A race of incontinent noodles!


Londoners who like but are weary of the attractions of Eastend-on-Mud, and want a change, can scarcely do better than spend twenty-four hours in that rising watering-place Teapot Bay. I say advisedly "rising," because the operation has been going on for more than forty years. In these very pages a description of the "juvenile town," appeared nearly half a century ago. Then it was said that the place was "so infantine that many of the houses were not out of their scaffold-poles, whilst others had not yet cut their windows," and the place has been growing ever since—but very gradually. The "ground plan of the High Street" of those days would still be useful as a guide, although it is only fair to say that several of the fields then occupied by cabbages are now to some extent covered with empty villas labelled "To Let." In the past the High Street was intersected by roads described as "a street, half houses, half potatoes," "a street apparently doing a good stroke of business," "a street, but no houses," "a street indigent, but houseless," "a street which appears to have been nipped in the kitchens," "a street thickly populated with three inhabitants," and last but not least, "a street in such a flourishing condition that it has started a boarding-house and seminary." The present condition of Teapot Bay is much the same—the roads running between two lines of cellars (contributions to houses that have yet to be built) are numerous and testify to good intentions never fulfilled. There is the same meaningless tower with a small illuminated clock at the top of it, and if the pier is not quite so long as it was thirty or forty years ago, it still seems to be occupying the same site.

Cheap and Picturesque Roots

Cheap and Picturesque Roots for Tourists.

The means of getting to Teapot Bay is by railway. Although no doubt numbered amongst the cheap and picturesque routes for tourists, the place is apparently considered by the authorities as more or less of a joke. Margate, Ramsgate, Westgate and Broadstairs, are taken au sérieux, and have trains which keep their time; but Teapot Bay, seemingly, is looked upon as a legitimate excuse for laughter. If two trains are fixed to start at 12, and 12.30, the twelve o'clock train will leave at 12.30, and the 12.30 at 1. The authorities endeavour to have a train in hand at the end of the day, and I fancy are generally successful in carrying out their intentions. But between London and Teapot Bay there are many slippery carriages, which stop at various Junctions, and refuse to go any further in the required direction. When this happens, the weary traveller has to descend, cross a platform, and try another line. If he is a man of determination, and is not easily disheartened, nine times out of ten he ultimately reaches Teapot Bay, where his arrival causes more astonishment than gratification.

When I got to this "rising watering-place" the other day, I found an omnibus in waiting, ready to carry me to the town, which is some little distance from the station. We travelled by circular tour, which included a trot through many of the fields of my boyhood, now, alas! potatoless, and covered with weeds! In one of these fields I noticed a canvas booth, three or four flags, and a group of about twenty spectators, inspecting a gentleman in a scarlet coat, mounted on rather a large-boned horse.

"They still have a country-fair here?" I suggested to the person who had collected my sixpence.

"That isn't a fair, Sir—them's the Races," was the reply.

"Not very well attended, I fear?" I observed.

A Circular Tour

A Circular Tour.

"Better than they was last year—why the whole town has gone to see them this time."

A little later we reached the principal inn of the place, which was described in a local Handbook as "an old-established hotel, but comfortable." Rather, to my annoyance (as I was anxious to preserve my incognito), I was received by the landlord with respectful cordiality. "Glad you have honoured us, Sir—proud of your presence."

I made a sign to him not to betray me, and asked for my room.

"Well, Sir, we must put you into the Rotunda."

Again by a gesture inviting silence as to my identity, I mounted a flight of stairs, and found myself in a room that once, I think, must have been entirely arbour. Much of the arbour still remained, but a large slice had been partitioned off affording space for a chimney-piece, two chairs, a washstand and a bed. By opening a window which reached to the ground, I found myself on a balcony covered in with creepers, and beneath which was a gas-lamp labelled "Hotel Tap." In front of me was a field with the foundation (long since completed) for some houses at the end of it. On my left another field in the same state of passive preparation, and on my right a side view of the Ocean. It was growing dark, so after an "old-fashioned but comfortable" dinner, I went out for a stroll.

"Pleased you should honour us," said the landlord, as he opened the door to allow me to pass. Again to my annoyance, as it was vexatious to be thus identified in this out-of-the-way place as one of the celebrities of the hour.

The visitors and other inhabitants of Teapot Bay had returned from the Races, and were walking on the pier listening to the band. The gentlemen were in flannels, the ladies decorated with yards of white ribbon. The band was more select than numerous. Its conductor beat time with his left hand, while with his right he played the "air" of the tune at the moment attracting his attention upon an elaborate instrument that looked like a cross between a clarionet and an old-fashioned brass serpent. There was not much drumming, because the drummer spent nearly all his ample leisure on more or less successful efforts to vend programmes. The band was in a gusty alcove at one end of the pier, a small room covered with placards of a Wizard who, after making the acquaintance of "The Crowned Heads of Europe," was to perform there "to-night," was at the other. Having soon exhausted the pleasure derivable from listening to the band, I sought out the wizard.

"Oh, he ain't going to do it again until next Saturday," was the answer of a little girl who had charge of a turnstile, when I asked for a ticket. "But you can see him then."

You're up

"You're up!"

I retired. As all the shops (possibly a couple of dozen) were closed, I returned to my hotel—really a very comfortable one. In the morning I thought I would have a sea-bath. There were a few machines, which were manipulated with ropes and windlasses. There was an elderly man in charge, who informed me that he could not lower one of these vehicles until his mate returned.

"Gone to breakfast?" I suggested.

"Breakfast—no one here has time for breakfast!" was the reply.

When I left, the landlord again murmured his thanks for the honour I had done him by patronising his hotel. Still anxious to preserve my incognito, in bidding him adieu I begged him not to allow my name to appear in the Visitors' List.

"You may be sure I won't Sir," said he with a bow as he opened the door, and a tip-inviting "boots" put my portmanteau on the omnibus starting for the station,—"as I don't know it!"

On the whole I prefer Eastend-on-Mud to Teapot Bay!

[Pg 122]


(Mr. Bull's Song on Miss Columbia's Hundredth Birthday.)

"The chief authorities of the several States of this Union have resolved to celebrate, on the 15th, 16th, and 17th days of September next, at Philadelphia, the first centennial anniversary of the framing of the Constitution of the United States, with military and industrial displays, and with other suitable ceremonies."—Letter of Invitation to Mr. Gladstone from the Constitutional Centennial Commission.

A Hundred Years Old

John Bull. "A Hundred Years Old, my Dear! Who would have thought it! But then you have such a wonderful constitution!"

Air.—"I'm getting a Big Boy now."

You have passed through the troubles of national youth,

(To have safely survived them's a boon,)

You have out your eye-teeth, you look pretty, in truth,

But much the reverse of a "spoon."

We gaze on you fondly, admiringly, dear;

Few traces of age on your brow.

A hundred this year? Then it's perfectly clear

You are getting a great girl now.

[Pg 123]

You are getting a great girl now,

And you know it, Columbia, I trow.

Philadelphia's "boom"

Leaves for doubt little room

That you're getting a great girl now.

I feel like Papa, who though elderly's fresh,

And with younkers can sympathise still;

You are bone of my bone, you are flesh of my flesh,

And I bear you the warmest good-will.

My centennial dates which have rapidly run,

I have given up counting, somehow;

Like me, you'll be learning life is not all fun,

For you're getting a great girl now.


You are getting a great girl now.

With health and that radiant brow,

One hardly would say

You're a hundred to-day,

Though you're getting a great girl now.

You've gone in for Parties.—my plague, dear, at home;

If anyone's sick of 'em I am,—

Your land is so large you need hardly to roam,

Yet you're known from St. James's to Siam.

We greet you as Cousin, our family throng

Is wide, but you're welcome, I vow.

Come often, stay long, you can hardly do wrong,

Though you're getting a great girl now.


You are getting a great girl now,

The rawness of youth you outgrow.

I am proud of your looks,

Like your art, and your books;

You are getting a great girl now.

To your big birthday party 'twas kind to invite

My William; I'm sure he'd have come

And danced at your ball with the greatest delight,

But for years, and some business at home.

He's really a marvel, you know, for his age;

At your great Philadelphia pow-wow

He'd have reeled you off columns of talk, I'll engage,

Though he's getting an Old Boy now.


He's getting an Old Boy now,

Yet but for our big Irish row,

He'd have come like a shot,

And orated a lot,

Though he's getting an Old Boy now.

Your health, my Columbia! A hundred? Seems queer!

What a sweet Centenarian you make!

I suppose it's your fine "Constitution," my dear;

Which nothing, I hope, will e'er shake.

You have proved you have not only swiftness, but stay;

Well, long may you flourish and grow!

Many happy—and hearty—returns of the Day!

You are getting a great girl now!


You are getting a great girl now;

May you prosper, and keep out of row;

Shun bunkum and bawl,

All that's shoddy and small,

For you're getting a great girl now!


A case of some interest to Self-made Men, the conviction of a boy fined half-a-crown for playing, with some other boys, the game of "brag," occasioned Mr. Shiel, on the Southwark Bench, to observe that "Gambling was the first step towards crime. Boys who began with gambling, very often ended by being thieves." Too often, perhaps, but, it may be hoped, not always. The boy who begins by playing at pitch-and-toss, surely doesn't always grow up to be a man who actually commits manslaughter. He may possibly stop short of larceny, burglary, or housebreaking, and do nothing worse than getting a useless, but not absolutely criminal livelihood, by betting on the Derby and the St. Leger, or speculating on the Stock Exchange.



Public School Boy (to General Sir George, G.C.B., G S.I., V.C., &c. &c. &c.) "I say, Grandpapa,—a—would you mind just putting on your Hat a little straighter? Here comes Codgers—he's awfully particular—and he's the Captain of our Eleven, you know!"


News are by no means wanting in the newspapers. A surprising telegram from Vienna announces that:—

"A large shark has been captured close to the harbour of Fiume. It is four and a half mètres long, and weighs 1,460 kilogrammes. The stomach contained a pair of human feet with the boots on."

The shark with two feet, and boots inside of it to boot, beats Jerrold's "San Domingo Billy," in Black Eyed Susan, with a watch in his maw—whereby hung a yarn. Provincial journals, please copy, and report a jack that was so big as to have swallowed jack-boots. You may calculate that they will go down with some of your readers too. Nothing like leather.

The gooseberry season is over, but if this were the height of it, the prodigious fruit of that family would be unmentionable to any scientific assembly. Nevertheless, Dr. C. Falberg read a paper to an audience at the British Association upon "Saccharine, the New Sweet Product of Coal Tar," which, in connection with the John Hopkins' University (U.S.) he discovered in 1879. Coal tar has been brought to a pretty pitch. He averred this saccharine to be 250 times sweeter than sugar. Must have used nice means to calculate that quantity of the quality of sweetness. Said it had become an article of commerce—had a large sale in Germany, was perfectly harmless, he had himself used it for nine years, and it produced no injurious effect upon him. Apparently, then, he used to eat it, and if he didn't might have invited his hearers likewise to eat him. This "Saccharine" bears a somewhat long name, which, as it is a commercial article, might perhaps be compendiously replaced with "Sugarine."

The sea-serpent, Python marinus—Python Ambulatoris, or Python Walkerii—seems not just yet to have been satisfactorily sighted either by sailors or marines. However, he may be expected to turn up again very soon, this time probably coiled in constrictor fashion, as an oceanic ophidian, around a Laocoön or leviathan of a species very like a whale.

The Duke's Motto.

Mr. Duke, Secretary to the Liberal-Unionists, says that they consider Liberal reunion as desirable, but "with one opinion" they decline to do anything until publicly authorised to do so by Lord Hartington and the Liberal-Unionist leaders. This Duke's motto is evidently "Ditto to Lord Hartington." Duke's "Dittos" may in future pair off with Gladstone's "Items."

[Pg 124]


My Dear Mr. Punch,

In producing The Winter's Tale at the Lyceum, that most charming young actress, Miss Mary Anderson, deserves well, not only of her country (if she insists upon calling England "abroad," like some of her compatriots), but also of our country, which, I presume, was furthermore the country of her ancestors. If the shade of Master William Shakspeare will pardon the liberty, the play is a very good one. It has an interesting plot, with plenty of scope for good acting, good music, and last, and not least, good scenery. Why it should not have been revived before I cannot imagine, unless it be that London theatres have men and not ladies to manage them. Had it been produced in the Irving régime, Miss Ellen Terry could have played—and played well—the parts of Hermione and Perdita; but I fail to see where the name of the lessee would have come in. Leontes is not a very prominent personage, and even had it been coupled with Autolycus, still the demands upon Mr. Irving's talent would have been insufficient, not only to please himself, but also (which is of equal importance) to satisfy the audience.

A Picture from the Stone.

A Picture from the Stone.

However, when Miss Anderson takes the reins of stage management in to her own fair and shapely hands, the necessity of providing for a tragedian of the first class disappears. The "leading man" of her company is Mr. Forbes-Robertson—a most talented person. He can paint pictures, and play remarkably well in certain characters. His Captain Absolute was far from bad, and his Romeo more than good. As Leontes he has a part rather out of his line; but, all things considered, he fills it very well. It may be objected that he is rather effeminate, and that his costume would have been more becoming had he worn what the ladies (I believe) term "half sleeves;" but for all that, his reading of the character was entirely conscientious, if not absolutely right. But naturally the success of Saturday evening was Miss Anderson, who was as matronly dignified as Hermione, as she was deliciously girlish as Perdita. She "looked" both parts to perfection. It may be my fancy, but I imagine she has greatly improved since we saw her last in London. The bass notes of her silvery voice have mellowed, and her attitudes, always graceful, are seemingly now more spontaneous, and consequently more natural. Charming as Juliet, she is more charming as Hermione, and most charming as Perdita. Nothing prettier than her dance in the "Pastoral Scene" has been seen in a London Theatre for many a long year.

Young and Harpy.

Young and Harpy.

And my reference to the "Pastoral Scene," (by Mr. Hawes Craven) recalls the fact to my mind that all the scenery is excellent. The Palace of Leontes by Mr. W. Telbin, is only equalled by Mr. W. Telbin's Queen's Apartment, and a wonderful cloth of a roadside with a view of a flock of sheep grazing on the brow of a hill (again by Mr. Hawes Craven, who seems to have become Artist in Ordinary to Arcadia), is not more remarkable than Mr. Hann's Court of Justice. In the last stage-picture it is possible, but not probable, that the hypercritical might suggest that the accessories are slightly suggestive of a kitchen, on the score that the altar is something like a silver grill, and the Court Herald appears, during a portion of the action of the piece, to be cooking chops. Personally, I think this idea rather far-fetched, although, of course, there is some resemblance (no doubt purely accidental) between the helmets of the soldiers and the brass coal-scuttle of a modern drawing-room. And I will even go further, and admit that, to a careless observer, some of the warriors may appear to be wearing the garb of Harlequin; but when it is hinted that Leontes, in his first attitude on his throne, is not unlike a Guy on the Fifth of November, I feel that the wish must be father of the thought, and that the resemblance is purely imaginary.

A Scene on its Metal.

A Scene on its Metal.

Leaving the scenery to come to the acting, I may say that the play is generally well cast. Mr. Maclean and Mr. Charles Collette are both very amusing, the first as Camillo, and the last as Autolycus, and Mr. George Warde is quietly humorous with the baby. When I say quietly humorous, I do not mean that he trenches in the least on the ground occupied by either the Clown of Pantomime or the Clown of Shakspeare. He does not sit upon the infant, or throw it about—no, nor even sing to it a little comic song. He gets all his effects by merely carrying it quietly about, and showing it, with an assumption of gravity that is killing, to Mr. Forbes-Robertson. To turn to the less important characters of the play, Mr. Davies as a gaoler suggests that in "those days" prison officials were sometimes whatever happened to be the equivalent of the period to the modern "masher." Miss Zeffie Tilbury, Miss Helena Dacre, and Miss Desmond ("1st Lady with a song" and gigantic lyre) are all equally good, and even the subordinate female parts have efficient representatives.

Returning to the gentlemen (a difficult task when it entails leaving such pleasant company) Mr. F. H. Macklin as Polixenes is sufficiently robust in his manly bearing to suggest the necessary contrast with Leontes, and Mr. Fuller Mellish is picturesque, painstaking and conscientious as Florizel.

An Infant Phenomenon

An Infant Phenomenon.

I began with Miss Anderson and (much to my regret) I must end with her. She is equally charming as Hermione and Perdita. Her cry of horror and dead faint in the Hall of Justice on learning of the loss of Mamillius, is one of many points that profoundly impressed the audience, and in her comedy scene with Polixenes in Act I, in which she asks him à propos of Leontes, "Was not my lord the verier wag o' the two?" her smiling glance at her sombre lord is simply inimitable. I can quite fancy that Leontes when he saw Hermione, and Florizel Perdita, must have talked of their condition (allowing for the loss of their hearts) as I describe myself when I assume the signature of

One who has gone to Pieces.

[Pg 125]


(To the Ladies of England.)

Lo! the sea-gulls slowly whirling

Over all the silver sea,

Where the white-toothed waves are curling,

And the winds are blowing free.

There's a sound of wild commotion,

And the surge is stained with red;

Blood incarnadines the ocean,

Sweeping round old Flamborough Head.

For the butchers come unheeding

All the torture as they slay,

Helpless birds left slowly bleeding,

When the wings are reft away.

There the parent bird is dying,

With the crimson on her breast,

While her little ones are lying

Left to starve in yonder nest.

What dooms all these birds to perish,

What sends forth these men to kill,

Who can have the hearts that cherish

Such designs of doing ill?

Sad the answer: English ladies

Send those men, to gain each day

What for matron and for maid is

All the Fashion, so folks say.

Feathers deck the hat and bonnet.

Though the plumage seemeth fair,

Punch, whene'er he looks upon it,

Sees that slaughter in the air.

Many a fashion gives employment

Unto thousands needing bread,

This, to add to your enjoyment,

Means the dying and the dead.

Wear the hat, then, sans the feather,

English women, kind and true;

Birds enjoy the summer weather

And the sea as much as you.

There's the riband, silk, or jewel,

Fashion's whims are oft absurd;

This is execrably cruel;

Leave his feathers to the bird!


"Here we are again!" as the Clown says in the Pantermine, at butiful Great Marlow, looking jest as bootiful as ever, though there is jest a few tears a falling from the dark clowds coz the sun doesn't shine as it did when we was in grand old Lundon last week, and turn all the drops of rain into reel dimons. My son William has cum with us, and he says as how this lovely place makes quite a Poet of him, so he dashed off the following description of it larst nite when the rain was a coming down in palefuls, witch we all thinks to be amost as butiful as it's trew:—

"To Marlow have we come, a little city,

Famous for pretty girls and boating, he

Who has not seen it, will be much to pity,

So says King Robert, and I quite agree

Of all the towns on Thames there's none more pretty,

Pangbourne perhaps, but that you soon may see.

Our nice clean lodging's near the flowing river,

A noble stream, much like the Guadalquiver."

I haven't corrected none of his rayther rum spelling, but writ it down jest as he wrote it all out of his hone hed. Not having ever herd of the place that he says the River is like, I natrally arsked him where it were, and he said in Sow Ameriky. What it is to be not only a Poet but a geolergist as well! ah, it's all owing to the Bellowsmender's Skool.

I don't find much difference in the old Place xcep that it's gitting bigger, witch it's a pity, but how can one be surprized. If peeple finds out a perfec pairodice they natrally tells their friends of it, and so more cums ewery year. Among others we've got a real live Hem Pea, but he's here on the sly, having told the Tory Whip as he's bin obligated to go to Swizzerland to see his pore sick Mother-in-Law! A nice sort of green Whip he must ha' bin to be so eesily gammond. His wally told me as he had shaved off his beard so nobody knowed him, but for fear of accidence he passes ewery Satterday and Sunday at a farm yard inland. Wot a lively life for a reel Swell!

I've ony bin here jest a few days, and I've had another startling adwenture. I never seed such a plaice as this is for adwentures. I had taken my favorit stroll to Temple Lock, and had my customary chat with the werry intellegent Lock Keeper there on things in general, and Locksmen's trubbles in partickler, and was walking gently home, wen I herd the most unusual report of Guns close by me, on the hopposite Bank; and jest as I came up to where they was a shooting, I seed three Gents raise their sanguinary Rifels and haim bang at my dewoted hed! I hadn't time to shout tout or to run away, so I had to stand it like a traitor or a dezerter. Luckely they missed me, and, laying down their murdrous weppons, went into the ouse. I was so prostrated with estonishment that I remaned fixt on the spot. Luckely my son William came by in a Bote, so I hollowed to him, and, getting in, he pulled me across the foaming River. I luckely remembered hearing 2 of the Tems Consewatifs a torking at the Lord Mare's Bankwet about the Buy Lors, and that one on em was a fine of 40s. for ewerrybody as shot a gun across the River. So, harmed with this nollidge, I at wunce adrest myself to the estonished Gents about the enormous sum as they wood have to pay me if as how as I went and told. I had bin a making the Calkerlashon all the way across, so I was able to say boldly, eleven shots, at 40s. per shot, is twenty-too pound! One of the gents turned gashly pail, and another sed as they woodn't do it not never no more, so I kindly promist not to do wot I might do, and rode away in our Bote with the feeling of a Judge a pardoning 3 criminals. They did say as they could not have bin a haiming at me becoz they fired up in the hair, where the birds was; but how was I to know that, wen the dedly weppens was pinted bang at me, and how, too, about the falling bullets? They must have bin quite fust-rate shots, for wen a hole flock of pidgeons flew into their garden, amost close to 'em, they all three fired at the lot, and acshally wounded one of 'em, poor thing.

When warking by the side of the River this arternoon, I was arsked by a young, but not werry successful angler, what o'clock it was. I told him, in course, and he said as he coudn't fish no more, as it was lunch time, so we warked along together, and he told me all his trubbels. He had bin at it for five days, and had never cort but one fish, and he was too little to keep. He was a nice brite young chap, so I simpathised with him. He said other peeple cort plenty of fish, but they came and looked at his bait, and then turned round and swum away; so I gave him a bit of adwice as I had wunce herd of. Don't buy your flys, I ses, but make 'em yourself. Anythink will do if it has 4 legs, and 2 wings made of gorze. And when the fishes sees it they will say to one another, "Hullo, Bill, here's a rum-looking fly—I never tasted one like him—so here goes," and he gobbles up your fly, and so you has him slick. How my young frend did larf. Ah, says he, that's the frute of indulging your curiossity. I'll set to work this evening and make one, as I've no dout he did.

I took a walk this morning in butiful Quarry Woods, but O what a site met my gaze! It used to be one of the atrakshuns of the place for anyboddy as could walk. What is it now? All the roads as bin dug up, and left so, and at the entrance to the lovely paths there are orrid bords put up, saying, "No path—trespassers persecuted." But it isn't true. They are Paths, and they leads everywhere, and I wasn't persecuted. All the finest trees are smeared over with dirty bills, saying, "No person allowed to camp, land, or picknick," and sumbody had added, "Or cough, or sneeze, without permission!" As a poor feller said to me, who was hobbling along on the horful road, and who knew the late propryeter, "Ah, a kind, Cristian Landlord ought to live as long as he posserbly can, for he never can tell what's to foller."

There's a place there where the Wolunteers practises firing, and I'm afraid they must be werry careless, for they writes up, "No one must damage the property of the Corpse," which is werry kind of 'em, so far.


[Pg 126]


"What does t'Lass want wi' yon Boostle for? It aren't big enough to Smoggle things, and she can't Steer herself wi' it!"


Being a British Workman's View of the Cheap Female Labour Question, respectfully submitted to the Trades Union Congress.

Bill Smith to his Shopmate, Ben Jones, loquitur:—

Eh? Give 'em the Suffrage—the Women? Why not?

What else, that's worth having, lads, haven't they got?

If it's levelling up, let 'em have it all round,

And we shan't be the first to complain, I'll be bound.

They've cut down our wages, and copied our coats,

And I really don't see why they shouldn't have Votes.

Wish I was a woman, old fellow, that's flat;

I should then have a chance, and know what to be at.

I have just got the "bullet," Mate—sacked without notice,

I wonder what pull my possessin' the Vote is?

She hasn't got ne'er a one—she's got my job,

I lose a fair crib, and the boss saves ten bob!

I've been at it five years, kept a family on it,

And she—well, the first thing she buys is a bonnet!

They're cutting us out, Mate—the Women are—straight,

And I s'pose it's no use for to kick agen Fate,

But it seems blooming hard on the wife and the kids,

She's a woman, of course, though she can't earn the "quids,"

But then, being married, she's out of the hunt

For earning or votes. Look here, Bill! If they shunt

You and me, and our like, as they're doing all round,

Because Women are cheap, and there's heaps to be found,

Won't it come to this, sooner or later, my boy,

That the most of us chaps will be out of employ,

Whilst the Women will do all the work there's to do,

And keep us, and the kids, on about half our "screw"?

Who's a-going to gain by that there but the boss?

And for everyone else it is bound to be loss.

A nice pooty look-out! Oh, I know what they say;—

That the women work better than us for less pay,

And are much less the slaves of the pint and the pot;

What's that got to do with it? All tommy rot!

We have all got to live, and if women-folk choose

To collar our cribs or to cut down our screws,

They will have to be bread-winners, leaving us chaps

To darn stockings at home with the kids on our laps.

Well, I hope as they'll like it. I tell you what, neighbour,

The world's being ruined by petticoat labour.

Besides, Mate, in spite of this Woman's Rights fuss,

Work don't make 'em better as women, but wus.

It mucks 'em for marriage, and spiles 'em for home,

'Cos their notion of life is to racket and roam.

Just look at that work-girl there, her with the fringe!

She's a nice pooty specimen! Makes a chap cringe

To think of that flashy young chit as a wife,

That's what cheap woman labour will do for our life.

Oh, give 'em the Vote, and the breeks, while you're at it,

Make 'em soldiers, and Bobbies, and bosses. But, drat it,

If this blessed new-fangled game's to prewail,

I pities the beggar who's born a poor Male!


The movements of Prince Ferdinand, as recently reported, appear to be shrouded in some mystery. It was announced that his Mamma was about to join him, and that a suite of apartments was being already prepared for her reception at the Palace. No sooner, however, was this encouraging piece of news published, than it was followed by a sinister rumour that the Prince himself was about to hurry off from Sofia to Baco, one of his country-seats on the frontiers of Hungary. As there is no mention of his being accompanied by his suite, it is doubtful if, in going to Baco, the Prince intended to take "returns." Naturally the Sobranje would like to be assured that, in going to Baco, he was really only going there and back, and did not mean, as the name of the place might suggest, to back out of the situation altogether. But perhaps there may not be, after all, any good foundation for the story of the proposed journey, in which event all this disturbing talk of a visit to Baco will probably end, as it naturally should, in smoke.

Dear at the Price.—The farmers of Derbyshire have been meeting together and trying to fix "the price of milk during the ensuing winter." Well, the price that we in London pay for milk seems only too often to be—scarlet fever. That price requires regulating.

[Pg 127]



[Pg 128]
[Pg 129]


(Sketched on the spot, Arundel Street, Victoria Embankment.)


My Dear Moneypenny,

Pray excuse one more refusal of your kind and seasonable invitation, so often repeated, to come and stay with you at the "Sycamores." Believe me, there is nobody in the world than yourself I had rather live with if obliged to choose somebody. But to pass more than a few hours at a stretch in anyone's house besides my own, is more than I can abide, unless now and then for a night or so at an hotel, where I am not expected to notice anybody, and nobody minds me except the waiters in attendance, whom I am not ashamed of giving trouble. Besides, my dear fellow, you have no idea of what my making myself at home in your quarters as I do in my own would mean. Am in the first place, a very late riser. If my mind is occupied with any problem, usually lie in bed and think it out, very often until noon, or, even later.

When I have done breakfast (invariably taken in my own room), I always smoke a pipe, and then set-to at reading or writing for a longer or shorter time, and go on smoking at intervals in the meanwhile. Sometimes sit and meditate till I lapse into a brown study, and am then liable to dream day-dreams, and fall into fits of unconscious cerebration, in which I frequently start up and spout Shakspeare, or sing songs, or hum passages in operas, oratorios, symphonies, and overtures, a trick which, as my voice is very harsh and discordant, would of course be most irritating and offensive to anybody who could hear me, as would be generally the case anywhere out of my own den. Could never bear to be punctual to meal times, must always dine at what time it suits me; am utterly incapable of observing regular hours.

So I might go on. But I trust I have now said enough to show you what a bore I should be if I were to repay your generous importunity to become your guest and do whatever I pleased so ill as to comply with it. Enough. I am afraid I have already bored you with much too long a letter. Let me only add that almost all social amusements, particularly cards and dancing, and every sort of small talk, common-place conversation, chaff, or gossip, or discussion of any subject, except philosophy, science, politics and theology, on which I am prone to argument, whilst my opponents generally lose their temper—are all so many bores of the very first magnitude to your sincerely candid and scrupulously outspoken friend,

Tub Snuggery.

Antony Cavebear.


Brief libretto for a Trades-Unionist Grand Opera written up to date.

The Scene represents a Country Mansion surrounded by its grounds. Members of the New Labour Electoral Association discovered hanging about in threatening attitudes. As the Curtain rises they sing the following Chorus:—


See us here, in jubilation,

A brand-new Association.

Still, the truth to tell, although

What we want we don't quite know.

We are bound the world to wake,

If sufficient noise we make.

Hail our programme then with bliss,

Which is, briefly stated, this:

No longer we'll trust representative nous,

But force for ourselves Parliamentary gates,

As Members we'll take our own seats in the House,

And have our expenses paid out of the rates.

A Local Ratepayer (andante).

Nay, nay! To take your seats, you're free,

But not, oh! not, to burthen me!

Enough am I already charged,

And would not see the sum enlarged,

Your pay,—that is your own affair;

I care not whence it emanates:

I only most distinctly swear,

You shall not get it from the rates.

Chorus (advancing on him threateningly).

Be still, and know that the whole nation,

Bows down to the Association!

[The Local Ratepayer cowers before them.

And yet this question of the land

We own we don't quite understand.

Is there no specialist who'll try

To make it clear?

Enter Mr. Joseph Arch. He bounds into their midst.

Mr. Joseph Arch.

Why here am I!

You want your intellect to march?

[They express assent.

Then listen all to Joseph Arch.

[They group themselves in attentive

    positions gracefully about him.


A man may own jewels and gold,

A piano, horse, railway shares,

A cellar of wine, new or old,

A house, and the clothes that he wears.

Everything he may sell, or may buy,

That is purchased by wealth or by toil;

But he mustn't own—no matter why—

A single square yard of the soil.

He this who from Hodge, its true owner, perverts,

Is a brigand, and merits a brigand's deserts!

This park that around you you see,

These gardens you so much admire,

Each hedgerow, each copse, every tree,

Is the owner's bequeathed from his sire.

He may have remitted his rents!

What of that till the Nation cries "Quits!"

His land, with the march of events,

Being purloined and cut up into bits?

For until to its true owner, Hodge, it reverts,—

He's a brigand, and merits a brigand's deserts!

[At the conclusion of the ballad Mr. Joseph Arch gives a signal and the Owner of the Property is led on in the custody of Trade-Union Myrmidons.


Rob him! fleece him! gag him! seize him!

Drive him from his country place.

Of his right of tenure ease him;

Call him "Brigand" to his face!

Owner of the Property (recitative).

Oh, outrage horrible

And entirely unsatisfactory,

Thus to fasten with salutations

Eminently unpalatable

On the defenceless monied one of the County!

Know ye not that my venerated sire,

A Soap-boiler successful in his line of business

Beyond his wildest visions,

Purchased for eighty thousand pounds sterling,

These acres, as an investment

Speculative and commercial.

Say, then, is it reasonable that I,

His hopeful heir and offspring,

Should be defrauded of what,

At present prices agricultural,

Is but a return dim and disappointing

On his original outlay.

Why call me "Brigand"? Tell me why?

Mr. Joseph Arch (con fuoco).

Your father had no right to buy,

And, as the land to Hodge is due,

We take it thus by force from you!

A Crowd of Radical Land Reformers rush in, and seizing on the property, hew down the timber, cut away the brushwood, and parcel it out into small allotments.
Owner of the Property (con animo).

And is there for no compensation room?

Mr. Joseph Arch.

No! none! And now, behold the Brigand's doom!

[Points triumphantly to the work at the back, while he waves the draft of a new Act of Parliament over the prostrate form of the Owner of the Property, as the Curtain slowly descends.

[Pg 130]


Materfamilias (flurried). "Oh, please, will Mr. Charkle come to our House directly—the Soot is falling into the Nursery, and——"

Mrs. Charkle. "Certainly, M'um. Leastways my 'Usband ain't in Black hisself to-day, M'um, But I'll send Somebody at once, M'um!"


Victim.—We should not advise you to prosecute the constable who "pummeled you severely," and then took you up for being drunk and disorderly, because you happened to drop your hymn-book on the pavement on returning from Church last Sunday evening. We cannot, either, recommend your going to the Police Station to lodge a complaint, unless you are an expert pugilist or take the precaution to wear sheet-iron next the skin. Perhaps the poor fellow was trying to introduce the massage treatment to your attention.

Riparian Owner.—Yes, you can, if you think it worthwhile, sue the owners of the five houseboats which have moored themselves close to your front-garden, and to whose proximity you fancy the two cases of typhus and one of cholera in your family are to be attributed. You ask what the maximum costs would be. Costs are things which have no maximum. Multiply your yearly income by the number of boats, and you will be pretty near the amount.

Historical Student.—1. Thomas Cromwell was called the "Lord Protector" because he protected the Lord Chancellor (Wolsey) from the King's vengeance. 2. No, the expression "short commons" has nothing do with the Long Parliament.

Politician.—1. You are under a misapprehension in supposing that Mr. Chamberlain has undertaken to delimit the Afghan frontier. He has been appointed a Fishery Commissioner, with full power to investigate the condition of the Margate whelk-trade. 2. North Sea "Smacksmen" are not so called in consequence of their recent treatment by the Ostend fish-wives.

Votary of Science.—The Antarctic regions were so named to distinguish them from the Arctic regions. A rather illiterate sea-captain discovered them, and at once exclaimed, "Why, these Aint Arctic!" They have retained this quaint title ever since.—No, the British Association does not require its members to have, as you suppose, "a profound knowledge of Chemistry, Physiology, Dynamics, and all other branches of Modern Science." Payment of a guinea entrance-fee is all that is needed.

Nervous Invalid.—It is unfortunate that the last Southbourne Park train, should "blow off steam and whistle continuously for half an hour under your windows," at 1.30 A.M. Still, this does not quite excuse your smashing all the furniture and throwing the fire-irons into the street in one of the paroxysms you speak of. When you have a lucid interval write to the Company. No, don't "put a bullet through the engine-driver's head," as you suggest. Try a mandamus first,—also try some soothing syrup.

Anxious Engineer.—You ask "if there is any danger attending the experiment of mixing equal parts of nitro-glycerine, gun-cotton, and sulphuric acid in an iron tank in your back-garden?" We have never tried it, so cannot say. The best modus operandi would be to invite your landlord, mother-in-law, and nearest tax-collector to come and see the fun. Go off yourself to the seaside, and get one of them to do the mixing. You would be sure to be interested in the result.


(A Chaunt by an ex-Champion.)

Air—"The Lost Chord."

Running one day on the "Cinder,"

I led all the field with ease;

I felt I was going strongly,

I romped in quite "as you please."

I knew not what I was doing,

I was "fit as a fiddle" then,

I never shall make again.

It flooded the sporting papers,

I got the pedestrian palm.

They called me Champion of Champions;

The praise in my ears was balm.

But another "Ped."—confound him!—

"Cut" my record, in our next strife,

By exactly one-tenth of a second.

I should like to have his life!

I was Champion of Champions no longer,

Gone, gone was my pride, my peace.

Oh, the cheers for my hated supplanter!

I thought they would never cease.

I have struggled, but struggled vainly,

By practice and training fine,

To regain once more that "Record,"

Which for a brief month was mine.

It may be the man who licked me

Will be licked by yet better men,

But the "Record" I lost that morning

I never shall win again.

An "Orange Free State" that should have its Liberty Curtailed.—Peel on the pavement.

[Pg 131]



top of illustration
Bottom half of illustration

House of Commons, Tuesday, September 13.—The House is "up," or nearly so, and if not altogether, more shame for it. We are, as will be seen from thumb-nail sketch annexed. I'm not only up, but have been off for a clear week. Come back just to hear Harcourt's Speech. Liked to go finally before, but Arnold Morley wouldn't let me. "Get a pair," said he, when I again broached subject, "and go as soon as you like."

All very well to say, "Get a pair," but where do they grow? In moody thought, and growing despair, met Hartington's dog. Here was chance! "Roy" rather nondescript politician. Says he's a Liberal, but barks in favour of Government, and, though admits they're not always right (opposed them, for example, on CADOGAN'S Amendment to Land Bill, and on Proclaiming of National League), yet steadily votes for them. Is, in short, a Liberal-Unionist. We're asked not to pair with Liberal-Unionists. But exceptions to every rule; will make one here. "Roy" delighted. Says he's sick of politics, and would like a roll on pasture-land.

Nearly everyone else off, pair or no pair. Irish Members, with exception of Parnell, have nowhere else to go, so make up their minds not only to stop themselves, but to be the cause of stopping in others. Parnell long ago gone off shooting. The O'Gorman Mahon shook his hand all the way across Palace Yard, and assured him he might go without a sense of uneasiness.

"I'll keep mee oi on things when ye'er gone, dear Bhoy," he said, giving his Chief resounding whack on back that nearly knocked him down. "We learnt a thing or two when gettin' the Bill o' Roights through, and I've seen a thrifle since."

A dreary place the House, yet struggling through fag-ends of work. Not a cheery Session from any point of view. No new reputations made; some old ones shaken, some shattered.

[Pg 132]



Views after Breakfast.—Now to lay down the lines for my Drama....  Eleven—and the only lines I have laid down, as yet, are "Act I., Scene I!" I must stimulate my imagination by the sight of salt water.

On the Sands.—Dense crowd. Deafening noise. Penny bagpipes, comb and paper. Italian girls with accordion, trumpet from sailing-boat. '"Ere y'are for a jolly sail out, Sir!"—which happens to be just the precise thing I am not here for. Nor (I should have thought) do I look the kind of person likely to buy that "strong and emusing toy, one penny, the little Chinese Bandalore"—but these fellows have no eye for character. Several shoeblacks very anxious to black my boots, which, as I tell them, would be "painting the lily." Don't think they understand me. Stop thoughtlessly to look at a cage containing a tree-frog and two Japanese rats. Proprietor approaches with plate: "This little Jubilee Menagerie open free to the Public," he says—"we ope the Public will respond by a similar liberality." Well, well, if I must—but it really was not worth a penny.

Join a crowd: a conjuror—good, I am fond of conjuring. Conjuror now going to introduce his "celebrated and favourite Shell-trick." Crowd very obligingly make way for me—capital place in front row. Conjuror takes a large Nautilus shell. I have never seen this trick—it looks a good one.... It appears this is his way of making a collection—he comes to me first. He is sure, he says (he is an impudent dog), that I shall feel hurt if he passes me over. No change. He begs me not to get flurried—sooner than deprive me of the pleasure of patronising him, he will give me change—he does. This is the end of the performance. Singular how depressed I feel by this petty incident. Blazers in great force on the sands. Teasing half-offended nursemaids, playing penny "nap" on newspapers, or lying in pits scooped out of sand, with their heads on the laps of their fair ones, or pursuing the fair ones, and putting sand down their backs.



Most flourishing institution on the Beach is certainly Phrenology. No less than three little platforms, each with a Consulting Chair, a table, on which stands a meek bust, and a canvas awning overhead, and row of garden-seats (free) in front. Have long wished to gain insight into this Science. Think there certainly is something in it. As a Blazer near me remarks, "Why, you'd say Cocoa-nuts looked all alike, till you come to see there's differences—and it's the same with 'eds." Cockney tone about this. To find his proper station, I should have to go, I fancy, to Charing Cross, Cannon Street, or Waterloo.

Canon's Treat

Canon's Treat.

Find a Lady-Professor on first platform giving a "delineation" of a live subject—a turnip-headed little boy of three, who sits with his tongue out, under the impression he is at the Doctor's. "His self-will is strong," she is announcing in Sibylline accents to his proud parents, "and I should say you would find him very strong-willed. I should check it by curbing his will. Conjugality large, and therefore we may say that he will be fond of his wife and of his home. Self-esteem only moderate. It will be useless to bring up this little boy to any trade or business of a mechanical kind, unless he developes an after-taste for it, which I do not say he may not—far from it. But he has a brain which will fit him for great success in some artistic profession. Give him colours and a brush, and you will see he will immediately commence to paint—likewise draw. Or he has an organ with which he can be a great Composer, if you care to develope him that way. Or he would write books or poetry—that would come very easy to him, he would have no difficulty in doing it at all. I think that is all with this subject."



Pass on to Professor Podder. Venerable gentleman with dark grey beard, and a certain ponderous playfulness. He has got a subject too—a pretty little impish girl of eight, who is struggling to suppress a fit of the giggles. "This is a thoughtful little one we 'ave here," he says, patting her hair in a fatherly way. "She thinks. Turns over things in her mind. Reflects. Compares. Memory for dates moderate. She will be fond of her home, fond of her parents. She will be capable of passing in an examination—if she takes pains. She finds no difficulty in doing anything that comes easy to her." (Here the patient giggles.) "There is one thing I should like to see—a little more Veneration. Where Veneration should be I find a distinct depression. This young lady has a keen sense of the ridiculous. Easily detects what is ridiculous." (Here the subject breaks into a scream of laughter by way of corroboration.) "I have done, young lady. Now, we have a nice large audience—I hope some other subject will oblige us by stepping up. We like to see one coming up briskly after another, you know. We don't like to be idle."

His eye seems glancing in my direction. Off to hear Professor Skittles. He is a bony, lantern-jawed young man, in velveteen jacket, with a puggaree round his hat. As I come up, he is delineating a lady of portentous plainness, who sits and sniggers with a dreadful bashfulness. "This young lady has a large and powerful brain," he says—"plenty of Wit and Humour, Thoughtfulness and Consideration for Others, Caution, and Memory for Events that impress her strongly. Her Social Brain is large; she is fond of Society, and likes to see others enjoying themselves. Thinks more of others' happiness than her own. We should like to see a little more 'ope."

This Professor, I find, enjoys the highest reputation; he measures more, for one thing, and has an Assistant, who enters all the measurements in a ledger, which naturally inspires confidence. The Lady delineator, I also hear, does not think it necessary to measure so much, and is of opinion that Professor Skittles "studies too hard."

New subject; quite a typical 'Arry, round back, hock-bottle shoulders, has shambled up, and taken the chair. No forehead nor chin worth mentioning; but, as he removes his hat (which he puts on the bust), a tall crest of yellow hair starts up like a trick wig. Professor measures him solemnly as he sits with a crooked grin.

Tennis-Sun and Miltin'

Tennis-Sun and Miltin'.

"The measurement of this brain is rather below the average," says the lecturer, forbearingly. "Here we have a brain measuring only eighteen and three-quarter inches. A very tall and narrow head. You would find that this gentleman arrives at his ideas without conscious reflection, or exercise of thought." ('Arry looks gratified.) "He takes a strong and deep interest in religious subjects." (Derisive "hor-hor!" from 'Arry.) "Language strong. He will find no difficulty in putting what he wishes to say into language with considerable fluency, though perhaps not with much variety. Great Firmness and Benevolence. The Moral Brain is large, and your moral standard"—("My what?" interrupts 'Arry, with a suspicious cock of his eye)—"Your moral standard is high." ("Right!" says 'Arry, mollified, and séance terminates.)



These delineators certainly put things very agreeably. One might get some useful hints, too. If Professor Skittles could tell me whether I am most poetic, or witty, or dramatic, I should know exactly what to aim at in my Nautical Drama. I have never been able to decide which I love the best—Tennyson, Milton, or Campbell. And, after what he found to say about 'Arry——but it is all so very public, I don't think I could bring myself to do it—I will go on....

I hardly know exactly how I came here—but here I am on the platform, sitting in the Professor's chair. He is measuring me with a sliding scale, the brass end of which feels cold against my forehead. Curious sensation, as if I was upside down at a Bootmaker's. Sun in my eyes. Tittering from girls on benches in front.

A party of Blazers has just come up—I fear in a frivolous spirit. Begin to wish now I had had this done privately.

The Land of the 'Arry'uns.—'Am'stead 'Eath.

pointing finger

NOTICE.—Rejected Communications or Contributions, whether MS., Printed Matter, Drawings, or Pictures of any description, will in no case be returned, not even when accompanied by a Stamped and Addressed Envelope, Cover, or Wrapper. To this rule there will be no exception.



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