The Project Gutenberg EBook of The Art of Amusing, by Frank Bellew

This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with
almost no restrictions whatsoever.  You may copy it, give it away or
re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included
with this eBook or online at

Title: The Art of Amusing
       Being a Collection of Graceful Arts, Merry Games, Odd
              Tricks, Curious Puzzles, and New Charades

Author: Frank Bellew

Illustrator: Frank Bellew

Release Date: July 23, 2012 [EBook #40309]

Language: English

Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1


Produced by Chris Curnow and the Online Distributed
Proofreading Team at (This file was
produced from images generously made available by The
Internet Archive)


Beautifully printed and elegantly bound.

The Art of Conversation,

With Directions for Self-Culture. An admirably conceived and entertaining book—sensible, instructive, and full of suggestions valuable to every one who desires to be either a good talker or listener, or who wishes to appear to advantage in good society. ⁂ Price $1.50.

The Habits of Good Society.

A Handbook for Ladies and Gentlemen. With thoughts, hints, and anecdotes concerning social observances; nice points of taste and good manners; and the art of making oneself agreeable. The whole interspersed with humorous social predicaments; remarks on fashion, etc. ⁂ Price $1.75.

The Art of Amusing.

A collection of graceful arts, merry games, and odd tricks, intended to amuse everybody, and enable all to amuse everybody else. Full of suggestions for private theatricals, tableaux, charades, and all sorts of parlor and family amusements. With nearly 150 illustrative pictures. ⁂ Price $2.00.

These three books are the most perfect of their kind ever published. They
are made up of no dry stupid rules that everybody knows, but
are fresh, sensible, good-humored, entertaining, and
readable. Every person of taste should possess
them, and cannot be otherwise than delighted
with them. ⁂ Each will be sent
by mail, free, on receipt
of price, or the
three books
for $5.00.

Carleton, Publisher,
New York.

BY Frank Bellew



Art of Amusing









Carleton, Publisher, 413 Broadway.
London: S. Low, Son & Co.

[Pg iv]

Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1866, by


In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States for the Southern District of New York.



To J. C. W.

To you, my little kinsman, I dedicate these pages,
Tho' not so wise, perhaps, as some you've read by graver sages;
They're not without a purpose, and I trust a kind and true one,
Older than eighteen hundred years, still good as any new one.

If they could cheer some winter nights, and make some days seem brighter,
    I'd feel I'd paid a groat or so,
    Of that great debt of love I owe,
To one at rest who, long ago, dealt kindly by the writer.
F. B.

[Pg v]


CHAPTER I.Something censorious.Declaration of Independence.Card puzzle.The magic coin.A hoax.The telescopic visitor.Boy's head knocked off.7
CHAPTER II.Colored mesmerism.17
CHAPTER III.Lemon pig and root dragon.Portrait of the gorilla.Creature comforts.High shoulders.Theatre and theatrical performances.Nose turned up and teeth knocked out without pain.The Long-nosed Night-howler, or Vulgaris Pueris cum Papyrus Capitus.Imitation banjo on piano.Some conjuring tricks.The reduced gentleman, or dwarf perforce.20
CHAPTER IV.The voice of the Night-howler.The play of Punch and Judy, with full directions for producing the same.Charade on rattan.38
CHAPTER V.Parlor arts and ornaments, comprising apple-seed mice, turnip roses, beet dahlias, and carrot marigolds.Counting a billion.The algebraic paradox.Answer to charade on rattan.Riddles, etc.56
CHAPTER VI.A patent play.72
CHAPTER VII.Pragmatic and didactic discourse.Aunty Delluvian, her party.The duck and double-barrelled speech.The dwarf.Trick with four grains of rice.Riddles, etc.81
CHAPTER VIII.The dancing Highlander and Matadore.99
CHAPTER IX.—Answer to trick with four grains of rice.—How to make an old apple-woman out of your fist.105
CHAPTER X.—About giants, and how to make them.110
CHAPTER XI.A merry Christmas.The boomerang.Optical illusion.How to turn a young man's head.The tiger-dog, how to make him.The elephant, how to make him.Two queer characters.Captain Dawk and Colonel Gurramuchy.113
CHAPTER XII.Hanky-panky, instruction in the art.[Pg vi]134
CHAPTER XIII.A tranquil mood.Transparencies of paper.The dancing pea.Artificial teeth.138
CHAPTER XIV.Artemus Ward, parlor edition.157
CHAPTER XV.Bullywingle the Beloved. A drama for private performance.164
CHAPTER XVI.A quiet evening.Fruit animals.Window staining.Oddities with pen and ink.189
CHAPTER XVII.A country Christmas.The trick trumpet.Eatable candle.How to cut off a head.Ventriloquism.The jumping rabbit.Santa Claus arrives.199
CHAPTER XVIII.The bird-whistle, how to make it.219
CHAPTER XIX.A quiet party.Electric nose.Miniature camera.The hat trick.The magician of Morocco.222
CHAPTER XX.Theatrical red and green fire, how to make them.How to get up a theatrical storm.232
CHAPTER XXI.Card-board puzzles, the cross, the horseshoe, the arch.238
CHAPTER XXII.The muffin man.Earth, air, fire, and water.The broken mirror.243
CHAPTER XXIII.At a watering-place.A ladies' fair.Three sticks a penny.Smoking a cigar under water.Firing at a target behind you.Firing firewater.A practical joke.Explosive spiders.254
CHAPTER XXIV.Arithmetical puzzles.The wolf, the goat, and the cabbage.Alderman Gobble's six geese, etc., etc.264
CHAPTER XXV.Charades.271
CHAPTER XXVI.The art of transmuting everything into coral.274
CHAPTER XXVII.Acting charades.279
CHAPTER XXVIII.The worship of Bud.299

The Art of Amusing.
All work and no play,
 Makes Jack a dull boy.

[Pg 7]


erhaps one of the great social faults of the American is, that he does not amuse himself enough, at least in a cheerful, innocent manner. We are never jolly. We are terribly troubled about our dignity. All other nations, the French, the German, the Italian, and even the dull English, have their relaxation, their merry-making; but we—why, a political or prayer-meeting is about the most hilarious affair in which we ever indulge. The French peasant has his ducas almost every week, when in some rustic[Pg 8] orchard, lighted with variegated lamps, ornamented with showy booths, he dances the merry hours away with Pauline and Josephine, or sips his glass of wine with the chosen of his heart in a canvas cabaret, whilst the music of a band and the voices of a hundred merry laughers regale his ears. He has, too, numberless fêtes, which he celebrates with masquerades and other undignified kinds of jollification. At these entertainments all are welcome, high and low, and all conduct themselves with a politeness worthy of our best society—only more. We, the writer of this, have often and often danced at these bals champêtres with a hired girl, a cook, or a nurse for our partner. Does it not sound plebeian? The Germans enjoy endless festivals and gift periods, when they have the meanness to offer each other little presents "that an't worth more than two or three cents;" but they are tokens of love and kindness, which make them all feel better and happier. Then our grumpy friend, John Bull, has his free-and-easies, and his cosy tavern parlor-meetings, and song-singings, and his dinner-parties, and his tea-fights, at which latter, be the host rich or poor, you will get a good cup of tea, and tender muffins, and buttered toast, and cake, and shrimps, and fresh radishes, and Scotch marmalade, or similar delicacies.[Pg 9]

A delightful repast and a cosy chat, followed, perhaps, by a rubber of whist and a glass of wine or whiskey-punch, or mug of ale, according to the condition of the entertainer; then there is a general "unbending of the bow," and no one is troubled about his dignity. We have seen, ourselves, in England, in a stately old castle, a party of lords and ladies—for we, like the boy who knew what good victuals were, having been from home several times—even we have seen good company—we say that we have seen a party of lords and ladies, knights and dames of high degree, and of mature years, romping and frolicking together, like a lot of children, playing Hunt the Slipper, Puss in the Corner, and Blindman's Buff, without the remotest idea that they had such a thing as dignity to take care of; and no one seemed to have the slightest fear that any one of the party could by any possibility do anything that would offend or mortify any one else. The fact is, gentlemen or gentlewomen can do anything; all depends on the way of doing it. If you are a snob, for heaven's sake don't be playful; keep a stiff upper lip and look grave; it is your only safety.

However, we are improving. We have skating clubs. We play cricket and base ball. We dine later, and take things a trifle more leisurely.[Pg 10] Theatre-going, our chief amusement, can hardly be reckoned a healthy relaxation, though well enough now and then. Sitting in a cramped attitude, in a stifling atmosphere, is not conducive to moral or physical development. What we need are informal social gatherings, where we may laugh much and think little, and where dignity won't be invited; where we need not make ourselves ill with bad champagne and ice-starch, nor go into the other extreme of platitudes, ice-water and doughnuts: but where both body and mind will be treated considerately, tenderly, generously.

Now we are going to give a few hints that may help to make little meetings such as we mention pass pleasantly; and should any of our austere readers be afraid to risk our programme in full, they can call in the children and make them shoulder the responsibility. "It is," you can say, "a child's party," and then you can enjoy all the fun yourself. The juveniles will not object.

If merely for the purpose of promoting conversation, something ought to be done, on all occasions of social gatherings, something to talk about, something that will afford people an excuse for getting from their seats, something to bring people together, something to break the ice. We have seen a whole party of very estimable people sit round the[Pg 11] room for hours together in an agony of silence, only broken now and then by a small remark fired off by some desperate individual, in the forlorn hope that he would bring on a general conversation.

In our little sketches we shall be discursive, erratic, and unsystematic, just as the fancy takes us. Still, there will be a method in our madness; we shall try to give in each chapter a programme somewhat suited to some one season, and of sufficient variety and quantity to afford amusement for one evening.

In the first place, we must remark, in a general way, that we like a large centre-table. It is something to rally round, it is handy to put things on, and convenient for the bashful to lean against. On this table I would accumulate picture-books, toys, and knick-knacks—little odds and ends which will serve as subjects for conversation. If you can do no better, make a pig out of a lemon and four lucifer matches, or an alligator out of a carrot. But we will give some detailed instructions on this point in a future chapter. Any simple puzzles, numbers of which can be made out of cards, will be found helpful. Take, for example, a common visiting-card, and bend down the two ends, and place it on a smooth table, as represented in the annexed diagram, and then ask any one to blow it over. [Pg 12]This seems easy enough; yet it is next door to an impossibility. Still, it is to be done by blowing sharply and not too hard on the table, about an inch from the card. Another little trick consists in making a coin (if such a thing is to be found nowadays) stick to the door. This is done by simply making a little notch with a knife on the edge of the coin, so that a small point of metal may project, which, when it is pressed against the woodwork, will penetrate, and so cause the dime or half-dime to appear to adhere magically to a perpendicular surface. When you have exhibited one or two tricks of this kind, some other member of the party may have something to show. Then, having secured the confidence of your audience, you may venture to play a hoax upon them. Never mind how trifling or how old these things are, they will serve the purpose of making people talk. Say, for example: "Now, ladies and gentlemen, I will show a trick that is worth seeing. There are only two people in the United States that can execute it[Pg 13]—myself and the Siamese Twins. First of all, I must borrow two articles from two ladies—a pocket-handkerchief and—a boot-jack." Of course no one has the boot-jack; so, pretending to be a little disappointed, you say: "Never mind; I must do without it. Will some gentleman be kind enough to lend me three twenty-dollar gold pieces?" Of course no one has these, either; so you content yourself with borrowing two cents. You place one in each hand, and extending your arms wide apart, assure your audience that you will make both pennies pass into one hand without bringing your arms together. This you do by laying one on the mantel-piece, and turning your whole body round, your arms still extended, till the hand containing the other coin comes over the place where you laid down the cent; then you quietly take it up, and the trick is performed.

After a little conversation, you can try something which requires a little more preparation. The servant, whom you have previously instructed, comes into the room and announces that "that" gentleman has called to look at the pictures. You desire him to be shown in, and a short, broad-shouldered man makes his appearance. Soon after he enters, he turns his back on the company and begins to examine the works of art on the wall, lengthening[Pg 14] and shortening his body to suit the height of the object he wishes to inspect. This is performed by your little brother or son, aided by a broom, a couple of cloaks, and a hat. How, you will doubtless be able to understand by looking at the subjoined picture.

Another trick of the same order can be per[Pg 15]formed in this wise: The servant comes in to inform you that a naughty little boy—Jacky or Willy—in another room won't eat his custard, but will cry for ice-cream, or roast-beef, or alligator-soup. Every one is invited into the room to see this singular child. You find him seated on a high[Pg 16] chair, with a very dirty face, making grimaces. You take the dish of custard in one hand and a large spoon (the larger the better) in the other, and begin to expostulate with him on his perversity, but all to no effect; he only cries and makes faces. You then tell him if he does not behave better you will be obliged to knock his head off. He continues not to behave better, whereupon you give him a tap with the spoon, and, to the surprise of all, his head rolls off on to the floor. Your audience then find out that the naughty boy was made of a pillow and a few children's clothes, whilst the head was supplied by Master Jacky or Willy, ingeniously concealed behind the chair.

[Pg 17]


A good practical joke to play in a rollicking party, where you can venture to do it, is that of mesmerizing; you of course manage beforehand to lead the conversation to the subject of mesmerism, then profess to have wonderful powers in that line yourself. After more or less persuasion, allow yourself to be induced to operate. You then say:

"Well, I will try if there is any person in the company who is susceptible to the magnetic influence. It is only in rare cases we find this susceptibility; the person must be of exquisitely fine organization and steady nerve. Few people can look one long enough in the face to come under the influence; and, if the current be suddenly broken, the result is apt to be very serious, if not fatal, by producing suspended action of the heart and vital organs generally."[Pg 18]

Having now fully impressed on your audience the absolute necessity of keeping still, you begin to look into the eyes of different persons, press their hands, make passes at them, etc., as though you were searching for the right temperament. At last you come to your intended victim, and pronounce him just the man. You now seat him in a chair, whilst you go into another room to prepare the necessary implements. These are two plates, each having on it a tumblerful of water. One plate, however, must be thoroughly blackened at the bottom, by holding it in the smoke of a lamp or candle. This done, you carry the plates and tumblers into the audience, and hand the one which is black to the victim, who is seated in a chair.

Before commencing operations, you must warn the audience that it is absolutely necessary that they observe strict silence, as the least word or exclamation will break the charm, and be attended with painful effects to both operation and operatee. You may tell how, after being once disturbed in this manner, you had most painful shooting-pains in your nose for fifteen minutes, that being the point in contact with your finger at the moment of interruption. All this is to prevent any one giving vent to some exclamation calculated to betray the trick to your victim.


[Pg 19]

You now seat yourself opposite the subject, and desire him to keep his eyes steadily on yours, and imitate the motions of your fingers. You then commence. First, you dip your finger in the water, and draw it down the centre of your nose; he does the same; then you rub the bottom of your plate with your fingers, and draw it over your chin; he follows your example, and makes a black smudge on his face; you rub the bottom of the plate again, and draw your finger over your nose, and so on for several minutes, till the victim has smeared himself all over with black. You then rise and compliment him on the steadiness with which he underwent the ordeal, adding, however, that he has too powerful a nervous organization for you to operate on. The victim will generally rise with a rather complacent smile at these compliments, at which point the audience will generally explode with laughter. The victim looks puzzled—more laughter—the victim, thinking they are laughing at your failure, joins in the merriment, which generally has the effect of convulsing every one, when the climax is reached by handing a mirror to the unhappy operatee, who usually looks glum, and does not see much fun in the joke.

[Pg 20]


We will now describe a little party we attended at a country house one Christmas, some years ago; and should any of our readers find aught in the entertainment they think worth copying, they can do so.

When we arrived at Nix's house all the company had assembled—it consisted of about ten grown people and a dozen children. All were in a chatter over a couple of little objects on the centre-table. The one a pig manufactured out of a lemon, and the other a dragon, or what not, adapted from a piece of some kind of root our friend Nix had picked up in the garden. We alluded to these works of art in our last chapter, and now give a couple of sketches of them. As will be seen, they are very easy of manufacture, and not excessively exciting when made, but they serve to set [Pg 21]people talking. One person told the story of Foote, or some other old wit, who, at a certain dinner-table, after numerous fruitless efforts to cut a pig out of orange-peel, retorted on his friend who was quizzing him on his failure: "Pshaw! you've only made one pig, but (pointing to the mess on the table) I have made a litter." Then some one else discovered a likeness between the dragon and a mutual friend, which produced a roar of laughter. Then a child exclaimed, "Oh! what a little pig!" and some one answered her: "Yes, my dear, it's a pigmy." Then a young lady asked how the eyes were painted, and a young gentleman replied: "With pigment." Whereupon a small boy called out, "Go in lemons!" which was considered rather smart in the small boy, and he was told so, which induced him to be unnecessarily forward and pert for the rest of the evening; but as he never succeeded in making another hit, he gradually simmered down to his normal condition towards the end of the entertainment. One group got into con[Pg 22]versation about the dragon, the dragon led to fabulous animals generally, fabulous animals to antediluvian animals, these to pre-Adamite animals, and so in a few minutes they were found deep in the subject of Creation; whilst the group next to them, owing to some one's having conjectured whether my friend's piece of sculpture could walk, and some one else having suggested that it might be made to do so by means of clock-work or steam, had got on to the subject of machinery, modern improvements, flying-machines, and were away two thousand years off in the future, making a difference of no less than ten thousand years between themselves and the other party. At about this juncture of affairs, we happened to notice a book on the table treating of a certain very interesting animal, the newly discovered African ape, a subject which was attracting a good deal of attention at that time. We took the work in our hand and read on the cover the inscription: "Portrait of the Gorilla." "Nix," we said to our friend, still holding the book in our hand, "if all we hear of this gorilla be true, it must be a most extraordinary animal, although I am rather inclined to be sceptical in the matter; however, I have no right, perhaps, to form an opinion, as I have never looked into the subject; but I'll get you to lend me this book to-morrow. I will take[Pg 23] the greatest care of it, and return it; yes, I will, upon my word of honor. You never knew me fail to return any work you lent me." This we said rather warmly, thinking we detected a somewhat suspicious smile playing round the corner of our friend's mouth. "Oh! yes, certainly," replied he; "you can have it with pleasure—though I think your doubts will vanish when you have looked into it." We did not notice specially that all eyes were upon us. We carelessly opened the volume, and there, by all the spirits ever bought and sold! was a neat little mirror between the covers of the book, and reflected in it our own lovely countenance. Portrait of the Gorilla! eh? This was what the boys would call rather rough, but every one except ourself seemed to think it quite funny. It was some satisfaction, however, to know that every one of the party had been taken in in like manner before our arrival.

A slight but pleasant tinkling now fell upon our ear, and behold! a maiden entered, bearing a tray covered with tall crystal minarets, and transparent goblets, which sparkled and twinkled in the lamplight, followed by a more youthful figure supporting vessels of porcelain and implements of burnished silver, above which wreathed and curled clouds of aromatic incense; or, in other and better words, two[Pg 24] hired girls brought in coffee and punch. Punch! was it punch, or was it negus, or was it sherbet? We don't know, but it was a pleasant, moderately exhilarating beverage, compounded of whiskey, raspberry syrup, sugar, and orange-flower water, and manufactured by Nix, as he subsequently explained, at a cost of about thirty cents per bottle. A few little cakes and some plates of thin, daintily cut slices of bread-and-butter accompanied the beverages, and were handed round with them. We are great believers in eating and drinking at all social gatherings. It is convenient to have something to do with your mouth when you are stumped in the way of conversation. If suddenly asked a puzzling question, or hit in the chest with a sarcasm, what a resource is a glass of wine or cup of coffee, in which to dip your nose whilst you collect your ideas, or recover your breath. Besides, they give you something to do, generally, in a small way. They afford opportunities for small attentions, and excuses for rising from your seat, or moving from one part of the room to the other. Added to which, wine and coffee and cakes are nice things to take—you have the gratification of an additional sense. Then, too, these little things are refreshing, and put you all in good-humor. Therefore, for all these good reasons, and many more, we insist on refreshments, and we[Pg 25] insist, too, upon some kind of vinous stimulant; this ice-water and doughnut business has been carried altogether too far; had we less of it in our homes, less money would pour into the coffers of the bar-keeper. If persons are teetotallers, all very well; we respect their opinions, and, perhaps, decline their invitations; but for people who have no moral scruples on the subject, to ask you to visit them, and then insist on your drinking red-hot weak green tea, when you are already nervous, perspire readily, have a tender gullet, and hate the confounded stuff any way, is downright tyranny, and the very opposite of all hospitality and true Christian charity. However, our friend Nix held orthodox views on this question; so all went well. By dint of helping each other to things we did want, and offering each other things we didn't want, with the aid of a cup of coffee for those that liked coffee, and a glass of punch for those who liked punch, not to forget the little cakes, which came in quite handy to nibble at occasionally, we all began to feel wonderfully at our ease, and quite sociable. The conversation did not flag much; but once when it showed a slight tendency to wobble, Nix set it in motion again by introducing the subject of optical illusions in connexion with the height of objects. After inform[Pg 26]ing us that a horse's head was exactly as long as a flour-barrel, and that a common stove-pipe hat was as broad across the crown as it was high from the brim to the top (both of which statements were argued pro and con), he drew our attention to the vast difference the position of the shoulders make in a man's height. This he illustrated by walking from the audience with his shoulders in their natural position, until, having traversed half the length of the room, he suddenly raised them, as represented in the accompanying sketches. The effect was quite startling, and very ludicrous. All the male part of the company tried [Pg 27]their shoulders at this experiment, even down to Freddy Nix, a little three-year-old, who, after ducking his head down on his chest, and toddling off across the room, returned swaggering, evidently under the impression that he had made a perfect giant of himself by the operation.

This was nominally a child's party, so we were to have some performances. The folding-doors into the adjoining parlor were closed, and one or two members of the company who were to be performers retired. In a few moments the doors opened and revealed an extempore stage. The kitchen clothes-horse, beautifully draped and decorated, formed the background; while on a line with the foot-lights were two heads, one at each side of the stage, intended to represent Tragedy and Comedy. They were simply two large pumpkins with grotesque faces marked on them with black and white paint. In less than no time a most remarkable-looking stranger stepped forward and began to address us. Every one stared, and wondered whence this singular-looking person could have come, for we hardly supposed that Nix could have had him secreted in the house all the evening for our special surprise. At last it dawned upon us, one by one, that the individual in question was no other than Mr. Graham, a very [Pg 28]staid gentleman, who had been with us a moment before. The annexed brace of sketches will show the appearance of Mr. Graham off and on the stage. But how was this change effected? We will explain. In the first place he had procured a narrow strip of black silk, which he had drawn round one of his front teeth, with the two ends inside his mouth, which, at a very short distance, looked exactly as though he had lost one of his teeth. (A little piece of court-plaster stuck on the tooth will answer the same purpose.) Then he had made a loop of horse-hair or grey thread, and securing two of the ends to the lining inside his hat, had hooked up the end of his nose with the other; in fact, he had put his nose in a sling. This altered the character of his whole face, so that his own[Pg 29] wife would not have known him had she not heard him speak. He now addressed the audience in a long, funny, showmanic rigmarole, of which we only remember the following:

"Ladies and gentlemen, you have all heard of the Ornithorhyncus, which, as you are aware, is a species of duck-billed Platypus. You are familiar with the habits and appearance of the Ororo Wow; and you have listened to the sweet notes of the Catomonsterbung; but you are entirely ignorant of the newly-discovered creature known to scientific men as the Long-nosed Night-Howler, or Vulgaris Pueris cum Papyrus Capitus. This extraordinary animal is chiefly sugariverous in its diet, though it will eat almost everything when driven by hunger. It is perfectly tame, and will only attack human beings when it feels like it. I will now proceed to exhibit this extraordinary creature, requesting you only not to run pins into the animal, as it does not like that style of thing. Bring in the Night-Howler!!"

The last words were addressed in a loud voice to an assistant outside, who immediately appeared, leading an animal such as is represented in the annexed cut. This monster began immediately to emit the most hideous and unearthly noises, as became the Night-Howler. After walking round[Pg 30] among the audience once or twice, the Vulgaris Pueris retired behind the curtain. The accompanying sketch will explain how the Night-Howler is made. Beyond the boy and the boots and the brown-paper cap, all that is wanted is a rough shawl or large fur cape. The howl is produced by means of one or two instruments, into the construction of which we will in a future chapter initiate our readers. With one of these instruments the most varied tones may be produced, from the grunt of the hog to the most delicate notes of the canary.

The performance now proceeded: the second act[Pg 31] being some feats of strength by one of our party who had the necessary physical ability for that kind of display. These embraced the following programme, each feat being announced by Mr. Showman with some extravagantly pompous title:

Balancing chair on chin.

Holding child three years old at arm's length.

Lying with the head on one chair and the heels on another without any intermediate support, and in this position allowing an apparently heavy but really light trunk to be placed on his chest.

The whole wound up by his dancing a negro breakdown to imitation banjo[A] on the piano, the entire audience patting Juba.

Now another performer appeared on the stage, dressed in extravagant imitation of the one who had preceded him, and commenced parodying in a still more extravagant style all the motions of the professional acrobat. We expected something grand! After innumerable flourishes he brought forward a small three-pound dumb-bell, laid it on the floor, and, bowing meekly to the audience in different parts of the house, he stooped down as though about to make an immense muscular effort, grasped[Pg 32] the dumb-bell, slowly stretched it forth at arm's length, held it there a second or two, and then laid it down again, made a little flourish with his hands, and a low bow, just as they do in the circus after achieving something extra fine. In this way the performer went on burlesquing till we all roared with laughter. When he had retired, a conjuror appeared and exhibited numerous tricks, such as the ring trick, tricks with hat and dice, cup and ball, etc.; but as all these need machinery, we will not describe them at present. One or two, however, we may explain. No. 1. The performer presented a pack of cards to one of the audience and begged him to select a card; this the performer then took in his own hand, and carried it with its face downward, so that he could not see it, and placed in the middle of the floor of the stage; he then produced a large brown-paper cone, and placed it over the card, and commenced talking to the audience, telling them what he could do and what he could not do: finally he informed the audience that he could make that card pass to any place he or they chose to name. Where would they have it? One said one place, one another, till finally he pretended reluctantly to accede to one particularly importunate person's wishes, and declared that it should be found in the leaves of a[Pg 33] certain book on a certain table at the back of the audience—and there it was, sure enough. This was done by having a piece of waxed paper attached to a thread lying ready in the middle of the floor; on this waxed paper the conjuror pressed the card, the thread being carried out under the screen at the back, where stood a confederate, who quietly pulled the card out from under the cone, and while the conjuror was talking he walked round, entered by another door, and placed the card in the book, where it was subsequently found.

Another trick consisted in his allowing a person to draw a card which he was requested to examine carefully, and even to mark slightly with a pencil. While the spectator was doing this, the performer turned round the pack in his hand so as to have all the faces of the cards upwards except the top one, which showed its back; he then desired that the card might be slipped anywhere into the pack; he then shuffled them well. Of course, on inspecting the pack he soon detected the selected card, it being the only one with its face down, which, after various manipulations, putting under cones and what not, he returned to the audience much to their surprise.

These efforts at legerdemain were certainly not very brilliant, but they amused the audience and[Pg 34] were easy to do. We should like to give a few more of his simple tricks, but with one illusion-trick we will close the chapter, for which purpose it will serve, as it formed the finale to the conjuror's performance.

He stepped forward and said:

"I have shown you many wonderful things, but they are as nothing compared to what I can do. My supernatural power is such that I can lengthen or compress the human frame to any extent I please. You doubt it? Well, I will show you. You see Mr. Smith, yonder; he is a rather tall man; six feet two, I should judge? Well, I will throw him into a trance, and while he is in that state, I will squeeze him down to a length of about three feet, and I will have him carried to you in that condition. I must only insist upon one thing, and that is, that you do not say hokey pokey winkey fumm while he is in the trance; for if you do it might wake him up, and then he would be fixed at the height of three feet for the rest of his life; I could never stretch him out again."

Mr. Smith was requested to step behind the curtain. He walked forward, pale but firm and collected. Soon after he had disappeared we heard strange noises and fearful incantations, accompanied by a slight smell of brimstone and a strong smell[Pg 35] of peppermint. After a few minutes the tall Mr. Smith was carried in on the shoulders of two men a perfect dwarf, as promised by the conjuror, and as represented in the following cut.

How this is managed will become tolerably clear to the reader on examining the next diagram.

The tall Mr. S. had put a pair of boots on his hands, a roll of sheeting round his neck, so as to form something resembling a pillow, behind his head; then something on his arms under his chin to represent his chest (which is not shown in the diagram), and over that a baby's cradle-quilt, and then he rested his boots on another gentleman's[Pg 36] shoulders; two long sticks were provided and slung as represented, and the miracle was complete. We have seen the figure lengthened to an inordinate extent by the same process, the only difference being that the gentlemen were further apart.

Mr. Nix's party concluded, after several other games and amusements, with a neat but inexpensive entertainment, consisting of sandwiches, sardines, cold chicken, cakes, oranges, apples, nuts, candies, punch, negus, and lemonade. But everything was good of its kind; the sandwiches were sandwiches, and not merely two huge slices of bread plastered with butter, concealing an irregular piece of sinew and fat, which in vain you try to sever with your teeth, till you find yourself obliged[Pg 37] to drop the end out of your mouth, or else to pull the whole piece of meat out from between the bread, and allow it to hang on your chin till you cram it all into your mouth at once. His were not sandwiches of that kind, but, as we said before, sandwiches; the cakes had plenty of sugar in them, and so had the lemonade. But, above all, what made these little trifles the most enjoyable was the taste displayed by some one in the decoration of the table with a few evergreens, some white roses made out of turnip, and red roses out of beets, not to mention marigolds that once were carrots, nor the crisp frills of white paper which surrounded the large round cakes, nor the green leaves under the sandwiches, the abundance of snowy linen, shining knives and forks, and spoons. But we must conclude; what we wish particularly to impress upon the minds of our readers by thus dwelling on sandwiches and fine linen is, that you cannot afford to ignore one sense while you propose to gratify another; they are all intimately related and bound together like members of a fire company; if you offend one, all the others take it up.

[A] Should any of our friends not know how to produce an imitation of the banjo on a piano, we may as well inform them that it is done by simply laying a sheet of music over the strings during the performance.

[Pg 38]


In our last chapter we promised to explain the nature of the little instrument by which the Night-Howler produced those "hideous and unearthly noises" to which we alluded. We will now proceed to do so; and as this instrument is the same as that used by showmen in the play of Punch and Judy, we cannot do better, while we are about it, than instruct our readers how to get up a Punch and Judy show.

First, with regard to the instrument. It is a very simple affair: get two small pieces of clean white pine, and with a sharp knife cut them of the shape and size of the diagram marked 1. Then put these two pieces together as represented in Figure 2, having previously slipped between them a piece of common tape, also represented in the diagram (the tape must be just the same width as the[Pg 39] wood); then wind some thread round the whole thing lengthwise (to keep the bits of wood together and the tape taut), and the Punch-trumpet is made, as represented in figure 3. Place the instrument between your lips and blow; if you cannot produce noise enough to distract any well-regulated family in three-quarters of an hour, we are very much mistaken.

To produce variety of notes and tones, as well as to speak through it, after the manner of the Punch showmen, the instrument must be placed well back in the mouth near the root of the tongue, in such a position that you can blow through it and at the same time retain free use of your tongue. A little practice will enable you to do this, and to pronounce many words in a tolerably understand[Pg 40]able manner. To discover this last item in the use of the instrument, simple as it is, cost the writer of this an infinity of trouble and some money; and it was not until after two years' hunting and inquiry, and the employment of agents to hunt up professors of Punch and Judy, that we discovered an expert who, for a handsome fee, explained the matter; and then, of course, we were amazingly surprised that we had never thought of it before. From the same expert we learned how to make another instrument by means of which it is possible to imitate the note of almost every animal, from the hog to the canary-bird. We soon compassed the hog, the horse, the hen, the dog, the little pig, and something that might be called the horse-linnet, or the hog-canary; but ere long we found that considerable practice was necessary to enable us to accomplish the finer notes of the singing-birds. How to make this latter instrument we will explain in a future chapter; at present we must go on with the play of Punch and Judy.

We commence instructions with a view taken behind the scenes, which will help the description (see cut on page 40). We may state that the London showmen carry about with them a species of little theatre of simple construction, which is of course better than a mere door-way; but as the [Pg 41]latter will answer the purpose, and many people will not care to make a theatre, we will at present content ourselves with that which every house affords.


In the play of Punch and Judy there are many characters—indeed, you can introduce almost as great a variety as you please; but the leading ones are:

Mr. Punch, a merry gentleman, of violent and capricious temper.

Judy (wife of Punch).

Baby (offspring of Punch and Judy).



The heads of these characters can be made in several ways. The first is to get the necessary number of common round wooden lucifer match-boxes and some red putty. With the putty you make the noses and chins of the characters (all except the Ghost, who requires no nose). With a camel's-hair brush and a little India-ink or black paint you mark out the features strongly, taking care to make the eyes and eyeballs of a good size, so as to be seen at a distance. With a little red paint or red chalk you can color the cheeks, and with a little white paint or white chalk give brilliancy to the teeth and eyes. The annexed cut will show what the[Pg 42] style of countenance ought to be of each, No. 1 being the Constable, No. 2 Judy, and No. 3 Mr. Punch himself. The Ghost is not represented. In feature he is much like the Constable, only that his face must be made as white as possible, and the features simply marked out in blue or green or black. The Baby can be made out of an ordinary clothes-pin or stick of wood.

If the match-boxes cannot be easily obtained, just roll up a good-sized card, as represented in this figure, and paint on it the features. The nose and chin can be made of a bit of red rag or paper folded up of the desired shape, and either sewed or gummed on. Another and far better way of making these heads (though it takes more trouble), is to get a carpenter to cut out for you four or five pieces [Pg 43]of white pine or other fine wood of the shape of the sketch annexed, with a hole in each large enough to easily admit your fore-finger. From this block you can carve as elaborate a head as you please, and one of larger size than the match-box, which will be advantageous. The diagram marked O will show you how to set about making the carving. Having now made the bald heads, you must proceed to dress them. Punch must have a bright red cap with yellow tassel and binding, like the one in the accompanying sketch. Judy must have a white cap with broad frill and black ribbon. The Constable must have a wig made out of some scrap[Pg 44] of fur (the remains of a tippet or cuff), or if fur cannot be procured, a piece of rope unravelled will make a good wig. The Ghost only requires his winding-sheet drawn over his head. All these can be nailed on the heads of the actors with small tacks without hurting their feelings.

Having got the heads complete, we will proceed to construct their bodies. These merely consist of empty garments, the operator's hand supplying the bone and sinew. The dresses must be neatly fastened round the neck of the head, so that when the performer puts his hand inside the dress, he can thrust his fore-finger into the hole in the head. They must of course be sufficiently large to admit the hand of the showman, each sleeve to admit a thumb or finger, and the neck large enough for the passage of the fore-finger. Thus the thumb[Pg 45] represents one arm, the middle finger another arm, whilst the fore-finger, thrust into the head, supports and moves it about. The style of dress of Punch and Judy can be easily seen in the small sketch. The color of Punch's coat should be red, with yellow facings, with a hump sewed on his back and a paunch in front. Judy should have a spotted calico and white neck-handkerchief. The Constable had better be attired in black, and the Ghost and Baby in white. Each of the sleeves should have a hand fastened into it. The hands can be made of little slips of wood, with fingers and thumbs marked on them. They should be about two and a half or three inches long, only about three-quarters of an inch of which, however, will project beyond the sleeve; the rest, being inside, will serve to give stiffness to the arm when the performer's fingers are not long enough to reach the whole way.

Mr. Punch requires a club wherewith to beat his wife, and to perform his various other assaults and batteries. A gallows, too, should be provided, on the plan represented in the diagram, the use of which will be explained hereafter[Pg 46].

So much for the performers. Now for the theatre and the play. The theatre is easily made. A narrow board about three or four inches wide should be fixed across an open doorway just about one inch higher up than the top of the head of the exhibitor. From this board hangs a curtain long enough to reach the floor. Behind this curtain stands the operator, with his actors all ready on a chair or table at his side. He puts his Punch-trumpet in his mouth, gives one or two preliminary root-et-too-teet-toos, puts his hand fairly inside Mr. Punch's body, and hoists him up so that half his manly form may be seen above the screen. A glance at our picture, Behind the Scenes, will explain anything our words have failed to convey. The audience are of course on the opposite side of the curtain to which the performer stands.

Before we commence with the dialogue of the play, we must mention one very important part of the exhibition. As Mr. Punch's voice is, at the best of times, rather husky, it is necessary that the exhibitor should have a colleague or interpreter among the audience who knows the play by heart, and who, from practice, can understand what Mr. Punch says better than the audience. This person must repeat after Punch whatever he may say, only not to wound his feelings; he must do so in the[Pg 47] form of questions—for example, suppose Mr. Punch says, "Oh! I've got such a pretty baby!" the showman outside must repeat: "Oh! you've got a pretty baby, Mr. Punch, have you? Where is she?" The outside showman ought to have some instrument to play on—a tin tea-tray or tin pan will do—and if there is any one to accompany him on the piano when Mr. Punch sings a song or dances, so much the better. Now for the play.

Mr. Punch makes his début by dancing round his small stage in an extravagant and insane manner, singing some rollicking song in his own peculiar style. Having indulged himself in this way for a few seconds, he pulls up suddenly, and looking over the edge of the screen at the showman outside, exclaims:

Punch. "I say, old hoss!"

Showman. "I say, 'old hoss!' Mr. Punch, that's not a very polite way to address a gentleman. Well, what do you say?"

P. "I say!"

S. "Well, what do you say?"

P. "I say!"

S. "Well, you've said 'I say!' twice before. What is it you have to say?"

P. "I say!"

S. "What?"[Pg 48]

P. "Nothing particular!"

Mr. Punch dances off, hilariously singing.

S. "Nothing particular! Well, that is a valuable communication."

P. (Stopping again). "Oh, you April fool!"

S. "April fool? No, Mr. Punch, I'm not an April fool. This isn't the first of April."

P. "Isn't it? Well, salt it down till next year."

S. "Salt it down till next year? No, thankee, Mr. Punch. Guess you'll want it for your own use."

P. "Mr. Showman!"

S. "Well, Mr. Punch?"

P. "Have you seen my wife?"

S. "Seen your wife? No, Mr. Punch."

P. "She's such a pretty creature!"

S. "Such a pretty creature, eh? Well, I'd like to be introduced."

P. "She's such a beauty! She's got a nose just like mine" (touching his snout with his little hand).

S. "Got a nose just like yours, eh? Well, then, she must be a beauty."

P. "She's not quite so beautiful as me, though."

S. "Not so beautiful as you? No, of course not, Mr. Punch; we couldn't expect that."

P. "You're a very nice man. I like you."[Pg 49]

S. "Well, I'm glad you like me, Mr. Punch."

P. "Shall I call my wife?"

S. "Yes, by all means call your wife, Mr. Punch."

P. (Calling loudly). "Judy! Judy, my dear! Judy! come up-stairs!"

Judy now makes her appearance. Punch draws back and stands gazing at her for a few minutes in mute admiration. Without moving, he exclaims: "What a beauty!" then, turning to the audience, he asks earnestly: "Isn't she a beauty?" He now turns to Judy and asks her for a kiss; they approach and hug each other in a prolonged embrace, Mr. Punch all the time emitting a species of gurgling sound expressive of rapture. This is repeated several times, interspersed with the remarks of Mr. Punch on the beauty of his spouse; after which, at Mr. P.'s suggestion, the couple dance together to lively music and the enlivening tones of Mr. P.'s voice; the performance winding up by Mr. Punch's leaning up against the door of the theatre exhausted and delighted, and giving vent to a prolonged chuckle of gratification.

Punch now turns to the Showman and asks him if he has ever seen his Baby. The Showman replying in the negative, Punch extols the beauty of his offspring in the same extravagant strain as he[Pg 50] has already done that of his wife, makes the same comparison between his own and the Baby's nose, declares that the Baby never cries, and that she is "so fond of him."

The Baby is now ordered to be brought up-stairs, and Judy disappears to obey her lord's mandate. During her absence Punch favors the company with a song. When Judy returns, bearing the infant Punch in her arms, Mr. P. goes into raptures, calls it a pretty creature, pats its cheek, and goes through all the little endearing ceremonies common to fathers. After again informing the Showman that his Baby never cries, and is fondly attached to him, he takes the infant in his arms, whereupon she immediately sets up a continuous howl. Punch tries to hush and pacify it for some time, but at last, losing his temper, shakes it violently and throws it out of the window, or in other words, at the feet of the audience. Judy is of course distracted, weeps bitterly, and upbraids her husband, when the enraged Mr. Punch dives down-stairs and gets his club, and whilst Mrs. P. is still weeping, gives her three or four sound blows on the back of the head. This makes Mrs. P. cry still more, which, in turn, increases Mr. P.'s wrath, who ends by beating her to death and throwing her after the Baby. The Showman upbraids Punch[Pg 51] with his crime, but Punch defends himself by saying it served her right. However, he finally admits that he is naturally a little hasty, but then he adds, "It's over in a minute," and that's the kind of disposition he likes. He further adds:

P. "I'm a proud, sensitive nature."

S. "You're a proud, sensitive nature, are you, Mr. Punch? I don't see much pride in killing a baby."

P. "That's because you don't understand the feelings of a gentleman."

S. "Because I don't understand the feelings of a gentleman? Well, if those are the feelings of a gentleman, I don't want to understand them, Mr. Punch."

This dialogue can be carried on to suit the taste and invention of the exhibitor.

Presently, while Mr. P. is recklessly glorying in his crime, declaring that he is afraid of nothing, and laughing to scorn the Showman's admonition, the Ghost makes his appearance close to Mr. P.'s shoulder, and stands there for some time, listening unobserved to Punch's brag. After a while, however, turning round, Punch catches sight of him, and is rooted to the spot with horror for a few seconds; then he retreats backwards, his whole body trembling violently, till he reaches the side of the[Pg 52] theatre; here he turns round slowly to hide his face from the awful apparition. When, by turning away, he loses sight of the Ghost for a few seconds, he recovers his voice so far as to say to the Showman in trembling tones: "W-h-h-a-a-t a hor-r-r-rid creature! What an awful creature!" Then he turns round very slowly to see whether the "horrid creature" is gone, but finding it still there, suddenly jumps back—jambs himself up in the corner—pokes his head out of the window, and screams, "Murder! murder! murder!" shaking all the time violently. This he repeats several times, till at last the Ghost disappears. Then Mr. P. recovers his courage and swaggers about as before, vowing he is afraid of nothing, etc., etc.

Now appears on the stage the Constable, who twists himself about in a pompous style for some seconds, and then addressing Mr. Punch, says:

Constable. "I've come to take you up!"

P. "And I've come to knock you down!" (which he accordingly does with his club).

The Constable gets up, and is again knocked down several times in succession. Not relishing this style of thing, however, he disappears and returns with a club, and a battle royal ensues, part of which—that is to say, one round of the battle—shows the skill of the Constable in dodging Mr. P.'s[Pg 53] blows, and can be made immensely funny if properly performed. It is done in this way: The Constable stands perfectly still, and Punch takes deliberate aim; but when he strikes, the Constable bobs down quickly, and the blow passes harmlessly over his head. This is repeated frequently, the Constable every now and then retaliating on Mr. P.'s "nob" with effect. Not succeeding with the sabre-cut, Punch tries the straight or rapier thrust. He points the end of his baton straight at the Constable's nose, and after drawing back two or three times to be sure of his aim, makes a lunge; but the Constable is too quick, dodges on one side, and Punch's club passes innocently out of the window. This is repeated several times, till the Constable sails in and gives Punch a whack on the head, crying: "There's a topper!" Punch returns the compliment with the remark: "There's a whopper!" Now they have a regular rough and tumble, in which Punch is vanquished.

The Constable disappears and returns with the gallows, which he sticks up in a hole already made in the stage (four-inch board previously mentioned), and proceeds to prepare for the awful ceremony of hanging Mr. P. Punch, never having been hung before, cannot make out how the machine is intended to operate—at least he feigns profound[Pg 54] ignorance on the subject. When the Constable tells him to put his head into the noose, he puts it in the wrong place over and over again, inquiring each time, "That way?" till at last the executioner, losing all patience, puts his own head in the loop, in order to show Mr. P. how to do it, saying: "There! that's the way! Now do you understand?" To which Punch responds, "Oh! that's the way, is it?" at the same time pulling the end of the rope tight, and holding on to it till the struggling functionary is dead, crying all the time: "Oh! that's the way, is it? Now I understand!"

Punch dances a triumphant jig, and so ends the immoral drama of Punch and Judy.

Many more characters can be added at the option of the performer, besides which, jokes and riddles can be introduced to any extent. We have given the skeleton of the play, with all the necessary information for getting up the characters.

We will conclude this chapter with an excellent charade, the answer to which will be given in the next chapter:


My whole is the name of the school-boy's dread,
My first is the name of a quadruped;
My first transposed a substance denotes,
Which in carts or in coaches free motion promotes;
[Pg 55] Transpose it again, and it gives you the key
Which leads to the results of much industry.
My second is that which deforms all the graces
Which cluster around the fair maidens' fair faces;
Transpose it, and it gives you the name of a creature
Of no little notice in the history of nature.
Now take my whole in transposition,
And it will give you the dress of a Scotch musician.

[Pg 56]


Heretofore the fireside amusements recorded by us have been rather masculine in their character. In this chapter we shall have the pleasure of describing an entertainment of more feminine qualities. It was a small party, of the description which the Scotch call a cookeyshine, the English a tea-fight, and we a sociable. A few young ladies in a country village had conspired together to pass a pleasant evening, and the head[Pg 57] conspirator wrote us a note, which consisted of several rows of very neat snake-rail fences (not "rail snake" fences, as the Irishman said), running across a pink field. We got over the fences easily, and found ourselves in a pretty parlor, with six pretty young ladies, one elderly ditto, and a kind of father. The ladies, as we entered, were engaged in making tasty little scent-bags. We had often seen the kind of thing before, but never so completely carried out.

The principal idea consisted in making miniature mice out of apple-seeds, nibbling at a miniature sack of flour. But in this case they had filled the sack with powdered orris-root, and the small bottles with otto of roses, making altogether a very fragrant little ornament. The subjoined sketch will convey the idea to any one wishing to try her hand at this kind of art.[Pg 58]

As to the process of manufacture, that is simple enough: you first make neat little bags of white muslin, and with some blue paint (water color) mark the name of the perfume, in imitation of the ordinary brands on flour-bags; then fill the bag with sachet-powder and tie it up. You then get some well-formed apple-seeds, and a needle filled with brown thread or silk with a knot at the end; after which pass the needle through one side of the small end of the seed, and out through the middle of the big end; then cut off your thread, leaving about half an inch projecting from the seed; this represents the tail of the mouse. After this you make another knot in your thread, and pass it through the opposite side of the small end of the seed, bringing it out, not where you did the other thread, but in the middle of the lower part, that part, in fact, which represents the stomach of the mouse. You can now sew your mouse on the flour-sack. It should be borne in mind that the two knots of thread, which represent the ears, must appear near the small end of the seed. We once saw some mice made of apple-seeds where the ears were placed at the big end, producing the most ridiculous effect. We annex enlarged diagrams of each style.

It will be seen that one looks like a mouse,[Pg 59] whilst the other resembles a pollywog, or a newly-hatched dragon.

You must now get a good-sized card, and if you wish to have it very nice, paint it to resemble the boards of a floor. On this you sew your sack, and one or two stray mice who are supposed to be running round loose. Then having provided yourself with a couple of those delicate little glass bottles of about an inch and a half in length, which are to be found in most toy-stores, you fill them with otto of roses or any other perfume; and with a little strong glue or gum, stick them to the card in the position represented. If glass bottles are not to be obtained, you may cut some out of wood, a small willow stick perhaps being the best for the purpose; blacken them with ink, and varnish them with weak gum-water, at the same time sticking on them little pieces of paper to represent the labels, and, if you please, a little lead-paper round the neck and mouth of the bottles, to give the flasks a champagney flavor. The boxes and jars are likewise cut out of wood,[Pg 60] and easily painted to produce the desired appearance.

After a time, while the young ladies were still at work on the mice like so many kittens at play, a practical young gentleman, in spectacles and livid hands, came in, and asked of what use were those articles. Upon which one of the young ladies very properly replied that they did not waste their time in making anything useful. This seemed to afford an opportunity to the young gentleman to say something agreeable in connection with beauty; but he put his foot in it, and we heard him late in the evening, as the party was breaking up, trying to explain his compliment, which, though well intended, had unfortunately taken the form of an insult, and had not been well received.

We had observed, on entering, that one of the young ladies present wore in her hair a very beautiful white rose, and that another held in her hand a small bunch of marigolds. As the season was mid-winter, this fact attracted our attention, and we very gracefully complimented said damsel on the beauty of her coiffure, at the same time expressing our ardent admiration for flowers generally, roses particularly, and white roses above all other roses. "We had made a study of them." We spoke rapturously of them as the poetry of vegetation, as ves[Pg 61]tals among flowers, as the emblems of purity, the incarnation of innocence. Then the young lady asked us how we liked them boiled, and taking the one from her head begged us to wear it next our heart for her sake. We received it reverentially at her hand—it was heavy as lead. Her somewhat ambiguous language immediately explained itself as she gaily stripped off the leaves and revealed a good-sized turnip-stock on a wooden skewer. We felt slightly embarrassed, but got over the difficulty by saying that when we spoke so poetically we had no idea what would turn-up.

"Ah!" sighed one of the young ladies, "it is the way of the world; the flower worshipped from afar, possessed, will ever turn out a turnip!"

"Or," added we, "as in the case of Cinderella's humble vegetable turn up, a turnout."

This inoffensive little joke, being rather far-fetched, perhaps, was immediately set upon and almost belabored to death by those who understood it; whilst for the enlightenment of those who did not, we had to travel all the way to fairy-land, so that it was some time before we got back to vegetable flowers—a subject on which we felt not a little anxious to be enlightened, as we saw therein something that might interest our friends who meet by the fireside and help us in our occupation of un[Pg 62]bending the bow. Marvellously simple were the means employed in producing such beautiful results. A white turnip neatly peeled, notched all round, stuck upon a skewer, and surrounded by a few green leaves, and behold a most exquisite white rose, perfect enough to deceive the eye in broad daylight at three feet distance. The above sketch will explain the whole mystery at once.


On the same principle a marigold may be cut out of a round of carrot with a little button of beet-root for the centre; a daisy can be made from a round[Pg 63] of parsnip with a small button of carrot for the centre; a dahlia from a beet; and several other flowers from pumpkins. It will be easily seen that a beautiful bouquet can be compiled of these flowers with the addition of a few sprigs of evergreen. Indeed, great taste and ingenuity may be displayed in managing these simple materials. When the process had been explained to us, as above described, we expressed our delight, at the same time saying carelessly that there were doubtless millions of ladies in the country who would find pleasure in learning so graceful an accomplishment. The gen[Pg 64]tleman with the gold spectacles was down upon us in a moment.

"Did we know what a million meant?"

To which we promptly replied that a million meant ten hundred thousand.

"Did we know what a billion meant?"

A billion, according to Webster, was a million million.

A light twinkled out of the gold spectacles, and a glow suffused the expansive forehead, as, with a certain playful severity, he propounded the following:

"How long would it take you to count a million million, supposing you counted at the rate of two hundred per minute for twenty-four hours per day?"

We replied, after a little reflection, that it would take a long time, probably over six months.

With a triumphant air, the gold spectacles turned to our friend Nix. Nix, who is a pretty good accountant, thought it would take nearer six years than six months. One young lady, who was not good at figures, felt sure she could do it in a week. Gold Spectacles exhibited that intense satisfaction which the mathematical mind experiences when it has completely obfuscated the ordinary understanding.[Pg 65]

"Why, sir," he said, turning to us, "had you been born on the same day as Adam, and had you been counting ever since, night and day, without stopping to eat, drink, or sleep, you would not have more than accomplished half your task."

This statement was received with a murmur of incredulous derision, whilst two or three financial gentlemen, immediately seizing pen and paper, began figuring it out, with the following result:

200Number counted per minute.
60Minutes in an hour.
12000Number counted per hour.
24Hours in a day.
288000Number counted per day.
365Days in the year.
105120000Number counted per year.

From this calculation we see that by counting steadily, night and day, at the rate of two hundred per minute, we should count something over one[Pg 66] hundred and five millions in a year. Now let us proceed with the calculation:

105,12(0,000)1,000,000,00(0,000(9,512 years.

So that it would take nine thousand five hundred and twelve years, not to mention several months, to count a billion. Gold Spectacles chuckled visibly, and for the rest of the evening gave himself airs more worthy of a conquered Southerner than a victorious mathematician. He afterwards swooped down upon and completely doubled up a pompous gentleman bearing the cheerful name of Peter Coffin, for making use of the very proper phrase, "As clear as a mathematical demonstration."

"That may not be very clear, after all, Mr. Coffin," said Gold Spectacles.

"How is that, Mr. Sprawl (Gold Specks' proper[Pg 67] name being Sprawl); can anything be clearer than a mathematical demonstration?"

"I think, sir," answered Mr. Sprawl, "I could mathematically demonstrate to you that one is equal to two. What would you think of that, sir?"

"I think you couldn't do it, sir."

Thereupon Mr. Sprawl took a sheet of paper and wrote down the following equation—the celebrated algebraic paradox:

a = x
a x = x2
a x - a2 = x2 - a2
(x - a) × a = (x - a) × (x + a)
a = x + a
a = 2 a
1 = 2

Mr. Coffin examined it carefully standing up, and examined it carefully sitting down, and then handed it back, saying that Mr. Sprawl had certainly proved one to be equal to two. The paper was passed round, and those learned enough scrutinized it carefully. The demonstration all allowed to be positive, yet no one could be made to admit the fact.

Here a certain married lady avowed her great delight in knowing that one had at last been proved equal to two. She had been for years, she said, try[Pg 68]ing to convince her husband of this fact, but he always obstinately refused to listen to the voice of reason. She now trusted he would not have the effrontery to fly in the face of an algebraic paradox.

Seeing the talk had taken an arithmetical turn, and was moreover getting fearfully abstruse, our friend Nix thought he would gently lead the tide of conversation into some shallower channel, wherein the young ladies might dabble their pretty feet without danger of being swept away in the scientific torrent. To this end he submitted the well known problem: "What is the difference between six dozen dozen and half a dozen dozen?" Strange to say, no one present had ever before heard of it, but the best part of the joke consisted in Mr. Sprawl being completely taken by it.

"Why, they are both the same," he answered promptly.

All the rest seemed to think so too, and some could not get into their heads, although poor Nix spent half an hour trying to convince them, that half a dozen dozen was the same thing as six dozen, or 72; whilst six dozen dozen must of course be seventy-two dozen, or 864.

While Nix still spoke, a handmaiden appeared, bearing tinkling cups and vessels of aromatic tea[Pg 69] (not the weak green kind, bear in mind), and plates of sweet cookies and toast, and then bread and butter, and steaming waffles, and divers and sundry other delicacies known to true housewives and good Christian women, who love their fellow-creatures and respect their organs of digestion.

As the tea is being served, we walk up to a young gentleman and ask him if he knows why the blind man was restored to sight when he drank tea. The young gentleman gave it up precipitately.

"Because he took his cup and saucer (saw sir)."

The gentleman in gold spectacles says something about our being a sorcerer, but we heed him not, fearing he may put us through another algebraic paradox. Then comes a general demand for the answer to the charade we published in our last chapter, which commenced:

"My whole is the name of a school-boy's dread."

"The answer to this, ladies, is Rattan; and you will find it," said we, "a most excellent charade for children."

Now commenced a grand festival of puzzles and riddles. Specimens of all kinds were trotted out for inspection, from the ponderous construction of our ancestors, commencing in some such style as, "All round the house, through the house, and never[Pg 70] touching the house," etc., to the neatly turned modern con.

Our friend Nix asked why Moses and the Jews were the best-bred people in the world?

Another wished to know why meat should always be served rare?

Both these individuals, however, refused to give the solution until the next meeting of the assembled company. Others were more obliging, but as their riddles were mostly old friends, somebody knew the answers and revealed them. It is a mistake to suppose that a good thing ought not to be repeated more than once. There are certain funny things that we remember for the last twenty years, and yet we never recall them without enjoying a hearty laugh. We have read Holmes's Autocrat of the Breakfast-Table once every six months, ever since it was published, and enjoy it better each time. We have been working away at the Sparrowgrass Papers for years, and yet we raise just as good a crop of laughter from them as ever. These books resemble some of our rich Western lands: they are inexhaustible. So when one of the company asked, "When does a sculptor die of a fit?" we waited quietly for the answer, "When he makes faces and busts," and laughed as heartily as though it were quite new, although we had been intimate with the[Pg 71] old con ever since it was made, some fifteen years ago. We even enjoyed the time-honored riddle: "What was Joan of Arc made of?" "Why, she was Maid of Orleans, of course." But then this was put by a seraph with amber eyes, and a very bewildering way of using them. The success attending this effort seemed to stimulate the gentleman in gold spectacles, who rushed into the arena with the inquiry: "What was Eve made for?" Most of us knew the answer well enough, but we waited politely to let him deliver it himself. Our surprise may be readily conceived when he informed us, with evident glee, that "she was made for Harnden's Express Company." Some looked blank, and others tittered, whilst Nix explained to the ladies the true solution. It was for Adam's Express Company that Eve was made. After this followed in quick succession a shower of riddles, some of them so abominably bad, that an old gentleman, who did not seem to take kindly to that sort of amusement, gave the finishing-stroke to the entertainment by the annexed:

Question. "Why is an apple-tart like a slipper?"

Answer. "Because you can put your foot in it—if you like."

After that we all went home.

[Pg 72]


A friend of ours, Dudley Wegger, who recently gave an extemporaneous entertainment, amongst other things, devised a new kind of play, of such exceedingly simple construction that we have judged it expedient to put it on record. It must be observed that it is his method especially which we applaud and recommend, and further be it observed, that we applaud and recommend it on account of no other excellence save that of simplicity.

Mr. Wegger possessed the power of imitating one or two popular actors. He had read our instructions on make-up—viz.: curled hair, turn-up nose, high shoulders, etc., and from these slender materials he made the body of his play. As soon as we arrived, he seized upon ourself, dragged us into a back room, put a hideous mask on our face[Pg 73] (which smelt painfully of glue and brown paper, by the way), and then commanded us to don sundry articles of female attire—to wit, a hat and gown. To our earnest appeals as to what we were to do, he only replied:

"Oh, nothing; just come on the stage, kick about, and answer my questions. You hold the stage and talk to the audience, whilst I go off and change my dress."

This we pledged ourself to do, and were nearly suffocated in the mask as a consequence.

When the curtain rose, Wegger marched on the stage attired in blue coat, brass buttons, striped pantaloons, yellow vest, and stylish hat stuck on one side. In his hand he held a small walking-cane, with which he frequently slapped his leg. This was the walking-gentleman part.

"Egad! here I am at last, after the fastest run across country on record. Slipped the Billies, took flying hollow at a leap, gave my admirable aunt the go-by, extracted the governor's lynch-pin, sent them all sprawling in the ditch, just in time to be picked up by old Hodge, the carrier, jogging along with his blind mare and rumbling old shandrydan. Gad, Mortimer, you are a sad rogue! I must turn over a new leaf, ecod! become steady, forget kissing and claret, go to church, read the Times, and in[Pg 74] fact, become a respectable member of society. Ah, ha, ha! What has brought me here? Gad, I deserve success. Heard from my valet last night that certain lady just come into immense fortune; lovely as she is wealthy, Venus and an heiress; total stranger, no means of procuring introduction; hired coach and four, gave post-boy guinea, told drive like devil, and here I am in a strange country, a strange house, and amongst strange people, to kill or conquer, veni, vidi, vici! Ha! ha! ha! first in the field—fair start and a free run; back myself at long odds to be in at the death. But gad! here she comes, the country Hebe, the pastoral Venus, the naiad of turnip-tops and mangel-wurzel.

Enter Heiress (ourself).

Gad! she is a devilish fine-looking woman. I must approach her (advances). Have I the honor to address the Lady Cicily de Rhino?"

Lady Cicily de Rhino. "You get eout!"

Mortimer (aside). "Charming! Gad! I am over head and ears in love already. Oh, bright divinity, why hide those radiant charms in sylvan shades, when charms of fashion and bon-ton beckon you away! With me your life shall be one live-long summer's day, and you and I two butterflies sipping sweet nectar from the ruby rims of endless brim[Pg 75]ming goblets. Say you'll be mine! A chaise awaits us, and on the wings of love we'll fly away! Say, charmer, say the word, and I am your slave for life."

Lady Cicily de Rhino. "Wal, slavery's bin abolished even in New Jersey—guess you forgot that. However, I don't keer if I do; jist hold on till I git my things."

Mortimer. "Gad! I took the citadel by storm—but some one approaches; I must withdraw for a moment."

Re-enter Lady C., with bundle and umbrella.

Lady C. "Wal, if the young man arn't gone; now that's mean."

Enter Reginald Spooneigh (Wegger, in a new dress).

Reginald. "Kynde fortune has thrown me in the angel's path. The belue skuye already smyles more beounteously on my poor fate. Fayer laydee, turn not away those gentle eyes, that e'en the turtle-dove might sigh, and dying, envy, envying, die of envy."

Lady C. "Oh, git eout!"

Reginald. "Say not so, fair laydee. A wanderer on this cruel earth, a lover of the sweet songs of birds, the murmuring of streams, the gay garb of nature, from mighty mountain-tops to rustling[Pg 76] glens. I bring an aching spirit seeking sympathy to thee."

Lady C. "Dew tell!"

Reginald. "A sympathetic heart within your bosom burns; say, let it beat in unison with mine?"

Lady C. "Well, I don't keer if I do; only hurry up, there's some one coming."

Reginald. "Coming? sayest though; then will I retire for a brief space."

Lady C. "He seems a pretty nice kind or young man, tho' he ain't got so much style into him as tother feller. Wal, them folks didn't come this way arter all, so he'd no call to be so scart," etc., etc.

Enter General Hab-grabemall (Wegger again).

General. "Thunder and Mars! I thought I should never have got here. Road as dusty as a canteen of ashes; coach as slow as a commissary mule. Had half a mind to bivouac on the roadside—make a fire of the axletrees, and roast the postilion for dinner. But shells and rockets! I must beat up the quarters of this fair one, or some jackanapes civilian will be stealing a march upon me (sees Lady C.). Gad! there she is! I must make a charge on her left wing. Hey! my little[Pg 77] beauty, here's a battered old soldier, wounded everywhere except in his heart, crying surrender at your first fire. He yields himself prisoner-of-war, and gives up his untarnished sword to you and you alone."

Lady C. "Wal, I ain't no use for swords, and there are summeny solgers straggling round now with old weppins—"

General. "I have fought for my king and country through many a burning summer noon, and many an Arctic winter night, and now I would plant my laurels in the sunshine of your eyes, that they may bring forth bright blossoms."

Lady C. "Wal, if them's the case, they makes a difference."

General (aside). "Now for a bold charge! (aloud). Share, oh fairest of your sex, my niche in the Temple of Fame, my hand and heart as true as steel. Say, will you accept a rough old soldier's hand and a Major-General's cocked hat."

Lady C. "Wal, I don't mind if I dew, only don't you fool me as them other fellers did."

General. "What, blood and ouns! have any fellers dared to fool the fairest of her sex. I will demand satisfaction; where are they?"

Lady C. "I want to know! Ef the Genrl ain't gone off to whip them two fellers! O my! won't[Pg 78] there be a muss, jest. But Lor! he'd no call to be so mad about it. I didn't keer.

(Sings)—"When the moon is on the mountain,
My heart it is with you,
And stirring thoughts come stirring up
The extra oyster stew."

Enter Adolphus Tinkletop (Wegger again).

Adolphus. "Well I declare, if here ain't a feminine young woman of the female persuasion a-singing a song. Go on, most charming of your sex, and I'll jine in the chorus. But hold! pause—be calm, Tinkletop: this must be she, the lovely heiress I have come in search of. The young and lovely female heiress, who has just dropt into a very large fortune in silver and gold, sing tooral lol, looral, lol looral le day. Tinkletop, my boy, you are a lucky fellow. I think I may venture to remark, without any immediate dread of contradiction, that I am an exceedingly fortunate individual. I must put on my most insinuating manner without further procrastination, which is the thief of time. Ah! ahem! how shall I begin? Ahem! how de do, my dear? How's the folks?"

Lady C. "Purty well; how's yourself?"

Adolphus. "Oh! I'm exceedingly well; remark[Pg 79]ably well; excessively well. I've quite got over that pain in my chest."

Lady C. "Ye don't say!"

Adolphus. "Fact! Hembold's Cosmos cured me immediately, if not sooner. Oh, yes! I'm all right, thank ye. But excuse me, young woman. I've come down here on a little matter of business of the highest importance. Your name is Lady Cicily Rhino?"

Lady C. "Wal, 'taint nothin' else."

Adolphus. "That is precisely what I want to arrive at. I am in the dry-goods business, than which there is no higher social position in the world. I am not rich, but I expect to be. Of my personal appearance you can form a more just and adequate opinion than any language of mine could convey. In other words, I am more easily conceived than described. Now, the question is, whether you will accept my hand and heart."

Lady C. "Wal, I don't keer if I do."

Adolphus. "Most charming little pippetsy poppetsy; let me embrace those virgin lips."

Lady C. "Oh, lor! Now wait a minute." (Turns her head away bashfully, and puts up her umbrella. Both parties retire behind the umbrella, when a loud smack is heard—such a smack as has been compared to the noise produced by a horse dragging his foot[Pg 80] out of a mud-hole. Then both strike an attitude with the umbrella between them, and the curtain descends in a blaze of red light.)



Now if this is not a simple way of building a drama, we are no judge.

Our adjoining illustration represents the interview between General Hab-grabemall and the lady. The General acquires a gigantic appearance by tying a folded shawl or small pillow on each shoulder before he puts on his cloak; his face is made up chiefly of curled hair and diachylon. Reginald Spooneigh has long flaxen hair, made out of some rope unravelled for the purpose, and sewed on to a tightly-fitting cap, moustache and beard to match, and turn-down collar. The rest of his attire may be in any style most convenient.

Mr. Tinkletop is remarkable for a red nose, turned up, and one tooth missing (both according to our prescription given in a previous chapter). His vest and cravat are of bright colors, and his coat also, if possible.


[Pg 81]


Mankind in general, and we modern Americans in particular, are perpetually striving to come a "gouge game" over nature. We feel that this expression is very slangy and low-lived, but as none other seems so precisely to convey our idea, we must for once borrow a phrase from the ring and the race-course. So we repeat that we are, most of us, perpetually striving to "gouge" nature; but nature is too smart for us, and will not allow herself to be fooled by any clumsy device it is in our power to invent. Nature starts us in the business of life with a certain amount of capital in mental, physical, and nervous power; and just so much capacity for enjoyment; and we, instead of investing this in the best manner to produce the largest legitimate amount of interest, are perpetually engaged in trying some "dodge" whereby we may spend the capital and[Pg 82] still draw the interest. A young man starts in business with the resolution that he will make a fortune in such and such a number of years, and then he will retire while he is still young, and lead the most glorious life mortal ever knew. And so he pitches in, buys, sells, wheedles, bullies, tricks, cheats, works night and day, without any let-up at all. There will be plenty of time, he thinks, for recreation when he has made his fortune. Then he will go to Europe, build himself a house on the Hudson, buy the fastest pair of horses, cultivate society, purchase pictures, and be supremely happy. The years trot on, but the hopeful man finds it is slower work making a pile than he thought; or perhaps he raises his figure, so he sets to work with renewed vigor. His nerves are allowed no rest to recover their tone; his stomach is allowed no leisure to perform its work; his body gets no healthful exercise; and his soul no ray of light from the beautiful and lovable. "There will be time for all these things by and by, when he has made that two hundred thousand dollars." At last the sum is made, though our hopeful man is a few years older than he intended he should be on retiring. Still the money is made, and he is going to enjoy it. He builds himself a fine house in the country, with "lots of style into it," and plants around it a number of small trees, which will be of[Pg 83] decent size about twenty years after he is buried. But that is of no consequence—there is beautiful scenery all around. But what is this the rich man discovers? Why, that the trees and hills and streams are not the same that they were when he was young. He finds, too, that pictures "don't amount to much." He is rather nervous about driving fast horses; and as to society, he has got quite out of the way of that whilst making his fortune. He finds that collecting round one congenial and agreeable people is a work of time and care, besides which, there is no society in the country any way. Then his wife hates the country. So our rich man sells his house in the country, returns to the city, and enters into some new business operations just to pass the time away; having made the melancholy discovery that whilst engaged in acquiring means, he has lost the capacity for enjoyment. The fact is, nature will not stand much nonsense. If you think you are going to work her without mercy or consideration the best part of your life, and then expect that she will gaily bear you on her back, sporting through valleys of delight, you are very much mistaken.

Another man thinks he will get the maximum enjoyment out of life by aid of wine, and so he mortgages his whole capacity of enjoyment for a few years' excessive excitement, and is amazingly[Pg 84] surprised when he finds himself a bankrupt. Nature will not cash his draft at any price. He is not aware that every thrill of pleasure derived from excessive stimulating has to be paid for with usury. Others again fancy they will get ahead of nature by forcing the minds of their children as they would cucumbers; but after an incalculable amount of trouble, expense, and cruelty, the child comes of age a bankrupt, mentally and physically. The soil has run out; it can produce no more—and what wonder! It was never allowed to lie fallow; it was never renewed; and now it is fit for little or nothing.

These are some of the ways in which we attempt to gouge nature. We overtax her in every way, until we drive the willing horse to death, and then our journey ends; all the load of fine goods we have been to market for, must be dumped into the mud for the next traveller coming along with a fresh horse.

Now, one great aim of this book on "Fireside Amusements," is to persuade people to let up on nature. We should all be so much healthier, so much kinder, so much better Christians, if we would only amuse ourselves and each other a good deal more. We should get such infinitely better work out of ourselves, and more of it, so that we should be richer into the bargain. No man can expect to[Pg 85] win the race with a jaded horse. Suppose you owned Flora Temple, and in your eagerness to make money, should oblige her to run two or three races every day; why, the chances are you would lose every time, and soon be a beggar. But suppose you only match her at proper intervals, when she is fresh and in good condition; you don't run so many races, but you win every time. Why should you treat yourself so much worse than a horse? Is it because you are ——? No, you have simply adopted a bad national custom.


We have a female relative whom we have playfully christened Aunty Delluvian—an old-fashioned person, who is particularly opposed to all "new-fangled notions," who loves the "good old times" and "good old ways;" who thinks there are no young men nowadays to compare with those of her day. She tells how straight they used to carry themselves, and she draws herself bolt upright and throws back her shoulders to give effect to her words, and "they didn't wear those nasty things—pshaw!—over their lips." She has never become reconciled to moustaches. She thinks, too, the girls are not so pretty nowadays as they used to be;[Pg 86] then, their cheeks were so bright and red, "just like roses," and their eyes were so bright they fairly snapped and twinkled; "but now, my dear, it's all dough and boiled gooseberries—dough and boiled gooseberries!" She tells us, too, of many persons, long since gone, among whom stands, out in bold relief and heroic proportions one 'Squire Dexter. Then there is another person, Sally Mason, of whom we hear repeatedly, who must have been a very deceitful character, from what Aunty Delluvian tells us. But why does she take such pains to tell us so much about Sally Mason, and to convince us that she was not pretty "one mite," only "she had those forward, pushing ways with her, my dear, which men find out sooner or later, my dear, and 'Squire Dexter found her out at last, to his sorrow." Why does she tell us this, and ask our opinion as to whether getting into a seat in a gig, which had been expressly reserved for another person, was not conduct unworthy of a girl of proper modesty and self-respect? When we answer, as we invariably do, with feigned surprise that such conduct "would be unpardonable," she straightens herself up, saying: "Well, my dear, Sally Mason did just that thing!" Why does Aunty Delluvian consult us on this point, and many other trivial points concerning the pro[Pg 87]per conduct of a "modest, right-minded maiden?" It is hard to say. But, though we laugh and quizz Aunty Delluvian about many things, we feel that this is, somehow or another, sacred ground, and tread gently over the graves of her dead memories.

Aunty Delluvian is a great favorite in our circle. She has many stories to tell, popular legends in her girlhood, of General George Washington and the Hessians and Red-Coats; and though she does not understand the humor of the present day, she knows some very funny verses by George Coleman the Younger, and some riddles of the composite order of architecture.

Well, Aunty Delluvian has taken quite an interest in our theory on "Fireside Amusements." She thinks its tendency good, for, as she justly observes, "young people are far too stuck up nowadays; too stuck up, my dear." So, in the goodness of her heart, the other evening she gave a little party, built on our principle, which we herewith beg to report.

At the back of her old-fashioned country-house spreads a green lawn, surrounded by old apple and cherry-trees, with trunks as big round as the body of a horse. On this lawn she gave her party. When we arrived we found tables spread out with[Pg 88] a goodly array of eatables and drinkables, the aroma of the tea mingled with the songs of the birds, whilst the perfume of the ripe strawberries, the grape-jelly, the steaming biscuits, and the hundred other country delicacies, blended harmoniously with the chirp of the crickets and the drone of the bees. It was a pretty, a very pretty sight; the long rows of snow-white table-cloth, the old china, the shining silver and steel, the glittering glass, the mountains of red strawberries surrounded by grape-leaves, and the innumerable nosegays of bright flowers. Not far off, in the little barn-yard, we heard the "peet-peet," of the young chickens, whilst the occasional double-bass of the family cow gave delightful assurance of the freshness of the milk and the purity of the cream. Aunty Delluvian, clad in brown silk with full sleeves and scanty skirt, was all bustle and smiles. Her old handmaiden, and hired boy from the farm-yard, and two women who were strangers in the land of Delluvian, aided with enthusiasm.

Between forty and fifty persons, little (some very little) and big (some very big), sat down to tea, and did generously by the repast. The meal concluded, dignity received informal notice to quit, and all pitched in to clear away the things. A circle of humanity formed itself, and behold the noble sport[Pg 89] of "Oats, peas, beans, and barley grows." Leading moral philosophers, eminent divines, weather-beaten old vikings, gallant soldiers, and care-worn editors, sowed their seed, took their ease, stamped their feet, clapped their hands, viewed their lands, and, after waiting for a partner, became united in the bonds of juvenile matrimony with little curly-headed toddlers, and seemed to enjoy the fun just as much as though they had never looked into a Greek lexicon, heard the boom of cannon, or written a leader.

We would like to dwell long upon this merry-making under the sky, for there occurred enough pretty incidents and enough funny things out there to bear telling for a week; but our mission is to instruct our friends how to amuse others; so we must pass from the romps in the open air to the amusements which took place inside, after darkness had driven the merry-makers from the lawn.

First in order came a great duck, chiefly made out of a boy and a sheet. First of all we were requested to introduce the bird, and expatiate to the company on its qualities. For who, they said, could speak better on the virtues of a great canard than an editor? Some one, however, maliciously mentioned that the family doctor, Mr. Pillules, was the best person to show up a quack. Some one else argued that some lady would be better qualified[Pg 90] to speak on Ducks; but no lady could be found with courage enough to attempt the task, so it was finally agreed that Dr. Pillules and ourself should deliver a double-barrelled speech. This novel idea was, of course, rapturously received, so the doctor and editor were compelled, nolens volens, to stand up and deliver, which we did something after the following manner:

Doctor. "This bird which you now see before you, ladies and gentlemen, is one of those detestable creatures known as the Canard. This specimen was recently captured down South by some of the brave soldiers in General Grant's army on the occasion of that gentleman's recent visit to Richmond.[Pg 91] This bird was formally the property of several newspaper editors, and was used by them for the purpose of raising fowl for the English market, where—"

Editor. "They found a ready sale, being served up in the columns of the Times with peace-pudding, and subsequently rehashed with coal lies and bully sauce, to satisfy the cravings of the British public. This curious bird has, however—"

Doctor. "Fallen into disrepute of late, and the people of England will have to take a big dose of truth (a very unpleasant thing to an Englishman) to counteract the disease which their gross indulgence in the flesh of this foul bird has engendered; they will likewise—"

Editor. "Be obliged to confine their diet to the wholesome but unsavory humble pie. A kind of pie—"

Doctor. "We have often prescribed for them before. However, the cloud-capped summits of the mountains of Jehoshaphat—"

Editor (a little nonplussed). "May have summit to do with the question, and then again they may not. We are inclined to think that Jehoshaphat was not half so fat as John Bull, and would have scorned to eat a canard anyhow, particularly one raised by "niggers," and hatched by steam; a bird which Shakspeare justly remarked—"

[Pg 92]

Doctor (a little puzzled this time). "Didn't know beans, or at all events did not care about that wholesome and nutritious vegetable, preferring to pick up the sentiments falling from the lips of Bull Run Russell, or the revolting food provided for travellers at refreshment saloons on the Camden and Amboy Railway, which, as every one knows—"

Editor. "Are simply provided by that company to kill off transient citizens of loyal States, which they do as effectually as the greatest quack, even were he as large as the specimen now before us. I do not of course refer to our friend the——"

How long this double-barrelled speech might have continued, this chronicle cannot say, had not the duck at this moment declared, in very plain English, that "Oh thunder! he couldn't stand it any longer, he was getting tired," which terminated that part of the entertainment.

The latent principle, the motive power, the core, the occult substratum of the duck is, of course, as in the case of the vulgaris pueris—a small boy. The mode of transforming him into a duck needs scarcely any explanation; the illustrations save all that trouble. A board tied on the youth's back, a sufficiency of wadding in the way of rags, and a sheet properly arranged over all; then a ball of [Pg 93]rags, with a couple of sticks for the bill, making the head, and a newspaper cut into strips representing the tail, and web-feet cut out of brown paper—and there is your duck! The next thing in order for the evening's entertainment proved to be a little dwarf, who was exhibited on a table. He made a speech, danced a jig, took snuff, and altogether made himself very amusing and entertaining. The mode of manufacturing this lusus naturæ is, as usual, with the substratum of small boy. The small boy paints a pair of moustaches on his upper lip and puts a pair of boots on his hands, resting his booted hands on a table, whilst a taller person stands behind him and reaches his arms over the first one's shoulders, as represented in the engrav[Pg 94]ing; then a loose cloak or great-coat or shawl is arranged about the dwarf so as to allow the arms of No. 2 to project and appear as if they belonged to No. 1. This performance should take place in a window or doorway, where a curtain can be so arranged as to hide the head and body of No. 2. Then you have the dwarf all complete, as represented in the annexed sketch. It is almost impossible to describe this performance with precision, as much of the arrangement must be left to the intelligence of the exhibitor. The dwarf, however, we[Pg 95] may state, is very easily made when you once get the idea.

Aunty Delluvian was very much amused with the dwarf; it reminded her of a trick that was played on her mother's father—who was once Governor of Massachusetts—and described by her uncle George, who was such a droll fellow, he always had some of his puns to get off. She did not remember the story exactly, but it was something about a dwarf being served up in a pie at the Governor's table, in such a way that the dwarf popped out when the Governor was[Pg 96] about to carve the pie. "Oh! it was such a funny story; if you could only have heard her uncle George tell it," and Aunty Delluvian went into silent convulsions of laughter at the bare memory of the exquisite humor of uncle George's narration. "But that was before your time, my dear; and between you and me, the young men are very dull nowadays, with their cigars, and their moustaches, and their fiddle-faddle—but mum, mum, my dear," and Aunty Delluvian laid her fingers on her lips, as though she had been communicating a most important secret. As to the dwarf of this evening, having no control over his hands, for the reason that they belonged to the person behind him, he was subject to the most grievous annoyance from those members; they would persist in pulling his own nose to a fearful extent, and performing that manual evolution known as taking a sight in the middle of his prettiest speech to the ladies; he, however, enjoyed a limited revenge on one of these occasions by catching the extended thumb between his teeth and doing something to it, the nature of which could only be inferred from the howl of agony proceeding from the person immediately behind him, and a general dislocation and disintegration of his various members, which occurred amidst the shouts of the spectators.[Pg 97]

A slight pause ensuing on the completion of the dwarf performance, afforded an opportunity to the young man in gold spectacles to come upon the stage. He had something very ingenious to show us. It was a trick performed with four small seeds, and was invented by a certain poor tutor at one of the English universities. Although exceedingly simple, no one had been able to discover the secret, when finally some English nobleman, whose name he mentioned, gave the poor tutor five hundred pounds to reveal the mystery. Having concluded this little introduction, the gentleman in gold spectacles turned to Aunty Delluvian, and asked her if she would be kind enough to let him have four grains of rice. "Lor' bless the man! to be sure I will, as much as ever you like!" exclaimed Aunty, in the fulness of her generous heart, as she turned round and called to the servant at the other end of the room: "Here, Katy, fetch up what was left of that cold rice-pudding we had yesterday." The gentleman in gold spectacles hastily explained that he did not wish the rice to be boiled, and four grains would be ample. However, Aunty Delluvian insisted upon all the rice in the establishment being produced. The gentleman in gold spectacles selected four grains, and throwing them on the table, challenged us to arrange them in such a man[Pg 98]ner that each grain should be precisely the same distance from every other grain, and yet the grains not touch each other. We all took our turn till we were tired, and then gave it up, save a couple of determined fellows, who requested they might have till their next meeting to find it out, which respite was accordingly granted.

We were now tumultuously beset with demands for the solution of two riddles in our last chapter. First came the question: "Why were Moses and the Jews the best bred people in the world?"

Answer. "Because they got their manna (manner) from heaven."

The second was: "Why meat should always be cooked rare?"

Answer. "Because what is done cannot be helped."

After this came cakes and nuts and cider. Aunty Delluvian thought nuts and cider could never come amiss, and we agree with her when the cider is such as she produced, clear, fruity, sparkling, which, as it courses down your gullet, seems like health incarnate, and as far superior to that bedevilled liquid which city boobies call champagne, and pay three dollars a bottle for, as faith is to smartness. So ended our evening at Aunty Delluvian's.

[Pg 99]


The Highlanders are a hardy race, inhabiting the north of Scotland. They are brave, hospitable, and exceedingly fond of dancing.

When you reflect that a very moderate nigger used to fetch one thousand dollars, it will be exhilarating to know that you can have a Highlander, with all his natural characteristics, for nothing. Yet such is our proposition to you on the present occasion.

Will you have him for nothing?

We assume, of course, that you have at least one hand. A foot will not answer.

You have a hand?


Get an old glove and cut off the thumb and fingers to about the extent represented in the annexed diagram.[Pg 100]

Place the glove on your hand, and then hold your hand in the position represented below. You will now have a general idea of what is to constitute the substratum of the Highlander.

Now make a pair of little socks to fit your first and second fingers. Here is a picture of the style in which they should be gotten up. These socks can be made of white linen or calico, and painted with water-colors of the desired pattern—the shoes black and the socks plaid. If the colors are mixed with very little water they will not run on the cloth. [Pg 101]We suggest water-colors because the plaid can be very neatly represented by cross lines of red and green. If, however, you have no water-colors, you can stitch the stockings across with red and green thread. It will be well to bear in mind that as your second finger is longer than the first, the stocking for the first must be stuffed out with cotton or wool to make it equal in length to the second.


Now make a careful copy of our full-page picture opposite; stitch it on to the back of the glove; put the socks on your fingers, and your Highlander is ready to dance, as represented in the above cut.

You move about the fingers, simulating a man[Pg 102] dancing the Highland-fling or double-shuffle, and the result will be very curious and eminently satisfactory.

Another variation of the same performance can be made, which will save the trouble of drawing a Highlander. It is done thus: You procure a kid glove, and cut it down as before. You will see by the subjoined cut how the hand looks with the glove on before it has been fixed up. A white kid glove is best, because on the white kid you can paint almost the entire dress with water-colors—blue vest, red sash, and black pantaloons. A little piece of some gay rag must, however, be stitched on each side to represent the jacket; the chief object of[Pg 103] the jacket being to hide the knuckles of the third and fourth fingers.

Now, having fixed your glove and put it on, paint on your hand a face in the style of the following sketch, and your dancing Spaniard, or Terpsichorean Matadore, is ready for action. The glove forms a complete suit (barring the boots), which you can slip off and on with the greatest ease at pleasure.

If you have not a white kid glove wherewith to make the dress of the above-mentioned gentleman, you will have to sew a small piece of calico or paper in the proper place, for the shirt. You will[Pg 104] also be obliged to make him a vest out of some little scrap of red or blue silk; in short, you must use your needle instead of your paint-brush. But this is plain enough and needs no further explanation.

There is one more item, however, which we must mention. It will be found rather difficult to paint moustaches on the hand so as to give them the right merry expression. The teeth, which lend so much life to the face, are troublesomely small to represent. We therefore think it best to draw a pair of moustaches exactly similar to the ones we subjoin, which can be made to stick in their place by the aid of a little diaclon or shoemaker's wax.

[Pg 105]


The scientific gentleman at our last meeting bewildered us all with four grains of rice. It will be remembered that he challenged us to arrange those four seeds in such a manner that each should be an equal distance from each, and yet not touch each other. Did we belong to the betting class, we would be willing to wager a moderately-sized cobble-stone that not one of our readers has yet solved the problem. It is explained thus: You lay three of the seeds on the table in the form of an equilateral triangle; then taking the fourth seed between the finger and thumb, you hold it above the other three, in the position represented in diagram on page 106. In this way, and this alone, can the objects be so arranged as to be each equidistant from each. It is a very simple matter when once explained, but we never yet knew any one to find it out.[Pg 106]

Our friend Nix is in very fervid condition concerning a new picturesque trick he has learned. It is an old affair, but very funny, and consists in making an old woman's face with your fist, and is done as follows: You double your fist, as represented in the above diagram, and draw on it a face as also represented.

[Pg 107]

Then you make a species of hood something like a mitten, with a hole in the side, around which hole you sew a frill, to make it look like a cap, which we also illustrate with a diagram. The mitten is placed on the hand, and a shawl pinned carefully round it, as shown in our diagram on page 108, and you have the old woman complete.

Now, in order to make the old woman appear to speak, you must move the knuckle of the thumb up and down, at the same time simulate a cracked, squeaky old voice. By moving your thumb in time to your voice, the illusion becomes perfect. You can, of course, make the old woman say whatever you please; but the more emphatic the style[Pg 108] of her conversation the better, as you can make the jaw more energetic, and the pauses more marked. The conversation might commence something in this style (you in your natural tone of voice): "Well, aunty, how are you to-day?"

Aunty Grummidge: "How am I? Ah! Hum! I'm well enough if it warn't for them plaguey boys! Drat the boys! Heavin' stones at my geese! I'll geese them, if I ketch 'em! Drat 'em! and tramplin' all over my string-beans! Drat 'em! I'll string-bean 'em, if I ketch hold of 'em! And then the pesky young warmints callin' me old Dot-and-[Pg 109]go-one! I'll old Dot-and-go-one them, if I ketch hold of 'em."

It will require a little practice to keep time between the thumb and the voice; but by making the phrases short and emphatic, it will be soon learned. When the old woman has done talking, you can stick a pipe in her mouth, and make her look quite comfortable.

[Pg 110]


"In those days there were giants." Those days were the days when our mother was a young lady, and, as we devoutly believe, the most beautiful woman of her period; when our father's side-whiskers were glossy black; when he wore his hat just a leetle bit on one side, and when they twain used now and then to go forth magnificently arrayed after the lamps were lit, to balls and parties, whilst we little ones sat up in our white beds to receive the parting kiss and injunction flavored with blessings and eau de cologne. In those days, we repeat, there were giants. Giants in our story-books, giants in our young imaginations, mere suckers from the parent stem of the story-books, but terrible in their proportions. There were giants, too, in our narrow path, springing out of our waywardness and evil passions, and the evil passions of[Pg 111] others; there were giants, too, on the road to knowledge; oh, such monstrous giants all of them, far bigger and fiercer than any we ever met in after life. But there was another giant of a far different sort, who used to make his appearance at our little parties about Christmas-time, and in sustaining whose character we have over and over again sweltered and staggered and suffered martyrdom the most terrible. Still he was a pleasant giant (particularly to the upper-story boy), and welcome to the whole company. He had a very youthful look, in spite of his ferocious moustache; his hat had a tendency to drop over his eyes and his gait was erratic; though his proportions inspired awe in the hearts of the tiny portion of the audience. We have but rarely met this gentleman in later days, partially, we fancy, from a difficulty in procuring legs; we have observed a growing disinclination in persons to perform these members; indeed, we have ourself shrunk several times from the task. It is, indeed, an ordeal rather severe, after partaking heartily of Christmas dinner, and, perhaps, generously of wine, to walk about a hot room with a warm boy on your shoulders, and your entire person—head, face, and all—enveloped in a heavy cloak or overcoat, and not a breath of fresh air to be taken under penalty of spoiling the giant.[Pg 112]

A small and cool boy is placed on the shoulders of a man or boy who is stout in the legs; a long military cloak or overcoat is thrown over the two, and the monster is made. You can embelish him with moustaches, a hat, and a long walking-cane, and then you will have the creature complete, as represented in the picture opposite.


[Pg 113]


Folly is better than physic. If no one ever made this aphorism before, we at once lay claim to and include it in our copyright; entered according to act of Congress in the clerk's office, and all the rest of it. A good old-fashioned time we had of it last Christmas evening at the house of our[Pg 114] friend Nix. What a happy, merry, jolly crowd of noodles, ninnies, judies, tomfools, and undignified people we were to be sure! Nix gave himself unheard-of moustaches and eyebrows with India-ink, and then washed himself into the likeness of a boss chimney-sweep, in which condition he remained the whole evening, and came to business the next day with a faint tinge of the dusty pigment under his left ear, although he averred that he had parboiled himself over night with scalding soap and water in honest efforts to remove the oriental stain.

At this distance of time it would be hard to recall who were the guests at this tomfool's festival, even had we ever known them all; but a fluttering of little faces and pink sashes, and very bunchy frocks suggestive of new crinoline—indeed, now we think of it, one wee thing told us emphatically she had on a "noo hoop-stirt," and raised her short red frock to show us the inestimable treasure; and that again reminds us of another toddler, of the masculine persuasion, who thrice called our attention to his new boots, and once requested us to feel the soles where his mother had scratched them with her scissors to prevent his slipping on the carpets. But, as we were saying, a certain confused picture of fluttering pink sashes, bunchy crinoline,[Pg 115] blue eyes, and flushed cheeks, is one of the chefs-d'œuvre in the private gallery of our memory, and was nearly all we carried away from that foolish Christmas carnival. We remember, though, Aunty Delluvian, in all the pomp, pride, and circumstance of a dress which might have been described by some fashionable modiste of fifty years ago, but before which the steel nibs of a modern pen grow parched and gape inkless in their course over the cream laid. We can state that it was of silk, and very thick, and rustled, and had an odor, not of myrrh—for that we have purchased at the drug stores as being good for the gums—though perhaps of frankincense, but certainly of some Eastern perfume; and there our descriptive capacity ends. Concerning certain gems and trinkets, also worn by that worthy lady, we are equally humble and bewildered; but if our memory serves us rightly, they were chiefly of pale and yellow stones surrounded by pearls, and of oval and slender forms, save one sombre brooch (she wore in the neck of her dress under a bow of ribbon), which has hair in it, and was shown us as a rare piece of workmanship and a great relic; indeed, Aunty Delluvian informed us, very confidentially, that a person by the name of Sally Mason would have given her ears to possess it once—from which we judged it to be of great value.[Pg 116]

The scientific gentleman was there; and others "too numerous to mention," as the advertisements say. One of the company, whom we had never met before, left a particular impression on our mind, partly because he came from a far-off land, with a large budget of strange knowledge and exotic ideas, and partly because he showed us a quite curious and simple little toy. Among other things he expatiated on the dexterity of the Australasian savages in the use of the boomerang, which they would throw in such a way as to make it skim entirely around a house and return to their feet. He told us that one of these savages would seize his boomerang and send it whirling into a flock of parrots, bringing down half a dozen of the birds, and then return to his feet. He added that parrot-pie was excellent eating; a statement which sent a thrill of indignation through the juvenile portion of the company. The idea of cooking birds that say "Pretty Poll!" While the young were indignant, many of the elders felt incredulous, touching the boomerang; one person, indeed, delicately hinting that "throwing the boomerang" must be the Australasian equivalent of our expression "pulling the long bow;" but Aunty Delluvian, who had just heard the latter part of the discourse, came gallantly to the rescue (she had taken rather a notion to the[Pg 117] young Australian). She assured the company that there could be no doubt of the existence of the boomerang, for an uncle of hers had on a certain occasion brought one from China, and that it grew so tame that it would come and feed out of your hand. This statement, as may be supposed, produced a profound sensation, which good breeding alone prevented from being an explosion. Several persons present tried to hush the matter up by suggesting that the good lady probably confounded the instrument in question with a baboon or orang-outang. But Aunty Delluvian would listen to nothing of the kind; no compromises for her. "Bless the child, she had seen it with her own eyes, and it went all round the house and came back to her feet, and caught the pigeon, and killed the parrot, just as the gentleman described." However, the young antipodean asserted his own veracity very effectively by offering to manufacture a model of the weapon then and there.

"If you will only provide me," he said, "with a good stiff card—an old playing-card will do as well as anything—I will soon satisfy you that what I described can be done."

The card was produced, and in a couple of minutes he had with a pair of scissors clipped out a piece of the size and shape of the subjoined dia[Pg 118]gram. He then borrowed a book and a lead pencil, and placed the miniature boomerang on the former, with one end projecting over the edge of the book about an inch. He then took the book in his left hand, and holding it at a slight angle as represented in the diagram, page 119, struck the projecting end a smart blow with the pencil. This sent it whirling through the air towards the opposite corner of the ceiling, which it nearly though not quite reached—then it came fluttering back to the very feet of the performer. This operation was repeated several times with almost universal applause, the only dissentient voice being that of a little shaver of five, who wanted to see the parrots come down.

About this time it became evident that some[Pg 119] mysterious preparations were being made outside. A good deal of whispering occurred, and Nix, with one or two others, disappeared from the apartment. We, in the meantime, amused ourselves with sundry time-honored experiments. First came an optical illusion-trick, the fun of which consisted in the futile efforts of several persons to knock a cork off a fork with the fore-finger; and is performed thus: A steel fork, or some other sharp instrument, is stuck in the door, and a cork placed on the end of it.

The person wishing to test his skill places himself in front of it; fixing his eyes on the cork, he then walks slowly backwards ten or twelve feet, his eyes still fixed on the cork; having done which, he extends his right hand, closes an eye, and advances [Pg 120]towards the cork, till he thinks he has reached near enough to knock the cork from its position with one blow of the finger. Nine times out of ten the performers fail, as they did on the occasion in question. This experiment seemed to afford a good excuse to a certain little witch, with black eyes, to propose the performance of pinning a thimbleful of water to the wall. The thimble was filled with water, a pin borrowed, and mademoiselle, escorted by her cavalier—a young gentleman in patent-leather boots, and breathing incense from every curl of his hair, and from every part of his dress, to a degree calculated to drive Phalon mad and ruin the reputation of Arabia. Escorted by this exqui[Pg 121]site being, the young lady repaired to the spot selected for the experiment; but, alas! just as she was about to fix the thimble to the wall the pin dropped to the floor. In an instant the perfumed gallant was on his knees searching for the lost article, and with equal promptitude the treacherous belle had emptied the water on his fragrant pate, amid the roars of laughter of those around—for in this consisted the trick.

While we were still laughing the door opened, and Nix entered, somewhat flushed, and with a comical frown on his brow.

"Ladies and gentlemen," he began, "I have a serious complaint to make—really it is too bad. Upon my life it is. I think Miss Mary Fenn and Miss Julia Farley, and several of the other young ladies, ought to be spoken to" (the ladies mentioned and several others here colored up and looked rather scared). "I think they ought to be very seriously spoken to, going round in this reckless way. Why, upon my life, there's no knowing what may happen—and they don't care one bit. They care no more for a fellow-creature than I do for a fly. Ah! (with a sigh) there is one feller-creature which I wish they would think a little more of. In common honesty they ought to do something to their eyes—wear spectacles, or something of that sort; and for[Pg 122] their lips, since nature has seen fit not to provide them with moustaches, they might use respirators or—or—or—well, something has to be done, or there won't be a sane man in the neighborhood. I myself have a severe pain in my left side; and here, when I go outside—I don't mean the left side, but outside the room—for a little temporary relief, I find a poor fellow maimed, probably for life—his head completely turned."

At this point a figure resembling the opposite sketch walks in, and declares that he would not have his head turned back for the world; on the contrary, he finds his present position far more comfortable than any other, etc., etc., etc.

The construction of this figure is so simple that it seems almost superfluous to explain it. The person performing it puts on a loose coat and vest, wrong side foremost, fastens a false face to the back of his head, and a wig over his face, and the whole is complete. The wig may be made of curled hair from an old mattress, sewed on to a black silk cap. By the way, while we are on the subject, we may as well say a word or two more concerning this curled hair, which will be found very useful for amateur theatricals. With a handful of this cheap material (the imitation or grass substitute will answer just as well), you can make beards, whiskers, and mous[Pg 123]taches of any desired shape. All that is required is to twist, stretch, or mould the tangled mass into the desired shape, and then, in the proper place, stick on a small piece of diachylon, and the appendage is ready for use. The diachylon can be purchased in lump form of any druggist. In order to adhere it to the face, it should be slightly warmed before the fire.

[Pg 124]

"Why, bless my soul alive, if the poor fellow's head isn't turned!" exclaimed Aunty Delluvian, in unfeigned surprise. "Well, some foolish fellows do get their heads turned by the girls," and the good old lady laughed heartily, honestly believing she had made a joke. Indeed, she patted us on the knee to draw our attention, as she added, in an explanatory way:

"You know, when I was a girl, and any young fellow fell in love with one of the girls, we used to say his head was turned; so I say that young man's head is turned—don't you see!" and again the old lady went off in a transport of merriment at her own wit. But in a moment it was over, and when we turned there was something glistening in her eye, as she looked dreamily before her out of that Christmas-day away off, doubtless, to some other Christmas-day when young men had their heads turned by designing young women. But there was no time for reverie; for Nix, who had assumed the position of showman, now made himself heard, bellowing through his nose:

"Now, ladies and gentleman, I will proceed to show you a highly moral exhibition, some of the four-footed works of nature, or, as they are commonly called, quadrupedals. This exhibition, by calling the mind to contemplate the works of na[Pg 125]ture, elevates the soul to things above, and makes us all better fathers, husbands, wives, sweethearts, sons, and girls to do general housework. Now, ladies and gentlemen, I would ask you who, after contemplating the rhinoceros, would fail to return home a more dutiful parent or respectful sweetheart? But, to step from the realms of fancy to the practical regions of fact, I will proceed to interdooce to you that splendid anumile Saladin, the royal Bengal tiger, from Botteny Bay, in the West Injees. This wonderful creature measures sixteen feet from the tip of the tail to the tip of the snout, and sixteen feet from the tip of the snout to the tip of the tail, making in all thirty-two feet."

At this point of his oration the showman paused, opened the door, and gave a loud whistle, when in scampered a creature more easily sketched than de[Pg 126]scribed. At first we did not recognise the stub-tailed bull-terrier Snap, so completely was he disguised and bestriped with black paint, more to resemble a zebra, however, than a tiger. Snap, all unconscious of his new character, began frisking and capering round, wagging his tail vociferously, as Nix expressed it.

"This beautiful but terrible creature," continued Nix, "is exquisitely marked by nature. His, however, are not good-conduct marks, for, in his native wilds, his behavior is anything but proper. He will devour anything that comes in his way, having been known, when pressed by hunger, to eat even an alderman. Such being the nature of the beast, I will now proceed to show you a more amiable specimen of this moral exhibition. This, ladies and gentlemen, is the largest of all animals. It belongs to Asia and Africa. We have no elephants, naturally, in America, any more than we have Irishmen. They are all imported at great expense, two ships being required to bring over each creature, one for himself, and one for his trunk, I believe."

Enter elephant (adjoining page).

"The elephant lives chiefly on ginger-snaps, sugar, rice, and cayenne pepper, which, at the present price of groceries, makes his board come rather heavy. You have all heard of the sagacity of the [Pg 127]elephant—how he squirted the dirty water over that injudicious tailor who ran his needle into the elephant's trunk. But, ladies and gentlemen, I was witness to a more singular instance of intelligence on the part of this elephant here, which is, perhaps, the largest of its kind ever imported to this country. While passing through the streets of one of our inland towns during the late election, this very anumile seized a slip of paper from one of the crowd, rushed up to the polls, and actually voted the Union ticket before we knew what he was about."


In this strain Nix continued for some time, while the elephant walked round the room. Little boys were mounted on his back for a ride, and enjoyed the fun hugely.

The scientific gentleman with gold spectacles threw a temporary damper on the merriment by asking, in a sombre voice, whether we knew how many times round the elephant's foot was equal to his height, and then equally solemnly informing us that it was "Twice." Having said "twice!" very emphatically, he became silent, and the fun went on.

Now comes the question—How was the elephant made? A glance at the annexed picture will throw considerable light on the subject at once.[Pg 128]

Here we have the usual human substratum. Two gentlemen, wearing rubbers, place themselves in the position represented, while the foremost one holds something in his hands. This is a grey shawl or table-cover, rolled up to represent the elephant's trunk, which the performer swings about to produce a life-like effect. All that now remains to be done is to procure another grey shawl and spread it over the united operators, fastening two pieces of round paper, with black dots on them, in the proper places, for eyes, and a couple of rags or old gloves for ears. The elephant is now complete, save the tusks. These can be made out of long pieces of twisted white paper, pinned to the inside of the shawl, and there you have a first-rate elephant for a small tea-party. Dish, and serve up with lots of sass, as the cookery books say. But let us listen to Nix; he is spouting some more nonsense:

"Ladies and gentlemen: This elephant was captured and imported into this country by a Bengal officer, Colonel Gurramuchy, whom I shall have much pleasure in introducing to you. You have all heard of Cumming—well, he is coming."

Here entered the most extraordinary being we had ever beheld; a very military-looking person, with a very small head and an exceedingly long neck. However, refer to the illustration, where [Pg 129]you see him faithfully portrayed. Following him was an equally singular person, who was presented to us as Captain Dawk, a particular friend of the Colonel's, whose portrait we likewise subjoin. These gentlemen chatted with Nix, and told us one or two of their hunting adventures—the most extravagant yarns. We have only space for one, which we shall condense as much as possible. Captain Dawk once, while hunting the wild boar in India, had the misfortune to have his horse ripped open by the tusks of the infuriated beast. His horse of course fell heavily, and died almost immediately. While he was standing at the side of the poor creature, deploring his loss, and wondering [Pg 130]how he should ever reach home, he beheld at some distance from him, on the open plain, a huge tiger approaching. There was no tree within miles; to run away would have been useless; he at once bethought himself of an idea. Seizing his hunting-knife, he rapidly removed the internals of the horse, and crept into the cavity himself. The tiger, on coming up, seized the horse by the neck, and dragged it several miles to its den in the jungle, where it commenced at once to feast upon the carcass. Watching a favorable opportunity, when the tiger had eaten a hole in the horse's side, Captain Dawk drew a small revolver from his pocket, and[Pg 131] shot the animal dead. He was just in the act of crawling from his place of concealment when he beheld five more tigers approaching. Four of these he shot one after the other from inside the horse, and then all his ammunition was exhausted, and one tiger was left alive; but, drawing his knife, he resolved to sell his life dearly. Here the Captain gave us a most harrowing account of his encounter with the last tiger, which was larger than any of the others. First it broke both his legs, then his arms, then his back, and finally the ferocious beast got the officer's head into its mouth—but to conclude in his own words: "I felt the hot breath in my face, the sharp teeth pressing both sides of my skull. In another instant I felt all would be over, and my worst fears were realized. With one gripe the wretched brute bit off my head, and then tearing me limb from limb, devoured me on the spot." This story was pronounced a stunner.

But how were these extraordinary faces produced? First, we will refer our readers to the diagram, which will explain a good deal, and then throw what light we can on the subject with words.

The face of the Colonel was made by painting an entire set of features on the forehead with India-ink. The white of the eyes in both cases was effected by wetting the finger and rubbing it on an[Pg 132] enamelled visiting-card; by this means you take a good deal of the white from the card which can be transferred to the proper place on the forehead. In the case of the Colonel, if the performer moves his eyebrows up and down as he is speaking, it will communicate a motion to the pointed moustaches, and a most comical expression to the entire face.

To make the second face, you must, if possible, get some one with very light eyebrows and no moustaches; then paint eyes and eyebrows on the forehead, which must be done artistically, shadows and all, and connect them, as represented, with the bridge of the nose, paint heavy black moustaches,[Pg 133] and your performer will have the appearance of possessing an immensely long face; he must, however, keep his eyes shut, or the illusion will be dispelled.

After this performance, the scene, as painted on our memory, resolves itself into blue eyes, pink ribbons, bunchy skirts, oranges, candies, lemonades, wax-lights, Christmas-trees, Aunty Delluvian, and endless smiling faces.

May all good people have as foolish, merry a Christmas as we had at Aunty Delluvian's!

[Pg 134]


Hanky-panky is the name of a certain art practised by pantomimists of the clown and harlequin school, and is the subject of no little study and practice. We do not think it within our power to define hanky-panky, composed as it is of fictitious whackings and kickings and smackings, unless, indeed, that be a definition. We can, however, give a couple of illustrations of the art as it may be practised in the family circle. We may look further into the matter at some future day, and possibly issue a volume of Parlor hanky-panky, beautifully illustrated by the author.

The first example we shall now give is how to knock your knuckles on the edge of a marble mantel-piece or other hard substance without hurting them. It is done thus: You raise your clenched fist high in the air, hold it poised there some[Pg 135] seconds for all the audience to see, and then bring it swiftly down; but just before your hand reaches the object, open your fingers quickly, so they will strike the object with a sharp slap, then close them quickly; if this is neatly done, it will appear as if you had struck your knuckles a violent blow. This will make the ladies scream, and every one else thrill of horror.

The second feat of hanky-panky consists in knocking your head against the edge of a door with such apparent force as to break your skull, provided it be anything under an inch thick.

This you do by holding your hand which is farthest from the audience on a level with your face,[Pg 136] as represented in the annexed picture. At the moment your forehead touches the edge you must give the side of the door a good smart bang with the palm of your hand. To the audience on the other side of the door, who do not see this motion of the hand, you appear to have given your poor head a terrific blow.

Another piece of hanky-panky frequently prac[Pg 137]tised on the stage requires two performers. No. 1 aims a blow at the head of No. 2; No. 2, just as the blow reaches him, raises both hands as though to guard the blow, managing, however, as he does so to slap them smartly together so as to produce a loud report. If the blow and the report occur simultaneously, No. 1 will appear to have given No. 2 a most vicious box on the ear.

This is all we have to say about hanky-panky.

[Pg 138]


Being in a tranquil mood the other evening, and indisposed for the rollicking fun and tomfoolery in which, we are glad to say, we have so often indulged, we called upon our friend Nix to pass a quiet hour or two. When we had explained the object of our visit, Nix replied that it was well, for although he could not entertain us himself in the character of host, he could introduce us to a family to whom he happened to be engaged himself that evening.

"They are," said he, "the most charming people in the world—all ladies, excepting a little pickle of a boy, a child after your own heart, by the way; not one of your impulsive, high-spirited humbugs, who does all sorts of vicious things for twelve hours, and is sorry for them for five minutes; not one of your easy penitents, who is never ashamed of[Pg 139] owning himself in the wrong, and at the same time never too proud to do wrong; but a stubborn, sensitive, ingenuous, affectionate, fun-loving little fellow. Do you know I like people who, when they are mad, get sulky? I have found they make the best of friends, the best servants, and the best members of society generally. I wonder who started the admiration of impulsive people? 'Oh!' you hear a young lady say, who never really gave the subject five minutes' thought in her life, and is quite unconscious that she is repeating a hackneyed sentiment which has been knocking about the world for the last fifty years; 'oh!' you hear her say, 'I like quick-tempered people, who get into a passion and are over it in a minute.' Then you hear some one else: 'Oh, yes, he does wrong, but he is full of fine impulses!' For my part, I think these impulsive folks are the greatest humbugs in the world. In the first place, there is scarcely any villany which cannot be perpetrated in a moment, if you have only the necessary impulse; but then, to look into the origin of this impulsiveness, it arises altogether from a lack of self-control, a violent, self-indulgent spirit. Then, as to ready repentance and confession, that, to my mind, is the worst sign man, woman, or child can show; it simply shows they do not fully appreciate the serious[Pg 140]ness of their offence, or are so devoid of pride that they do not care in what estimation they are held by others; or, as is often the case, it is a cheap way of squaring accounts and starting afresh, perhaps on better terms than before, with people who like impulsive characters. Bah! Confession and repentance ought to come out of a man with tears of blood, and——"

"But about the ladies?" we broke in. "Your dissertation on character is very good, but I think you made use of the adjective charming in connection with the noun ladies."

"Oh, yes," answered Nix, suddenly changing his manner, for he had grown quite fierce and enthusiastic in his tirade against impulsive persons. "The ladies—'that man who would lay his hand on a lady in aught save kindness, is unworthy the name of a British officer and a gentleman.'

"'A wife, a dog, and a walnut-tree,
The more you lick 'em, the better they be.'

"Arguments pro and con. But you said something about the ladies. Well, this family comprises a widow, three daughters, and little pickle aforementioned. These ladies, I may tell you, are not only ladies, but gentlewomen—a very, very rare article, I can assure you."[Pg 141]

"True," we responded; "painfully true."

"These ladies have found out—no, there I am wrong; they never gave the subject a thought. But they are illustrations of the fact, though they are ignorant of it, for their good-breeding came to them partly by nature and partly by careful, motherly, Christian training. They are illustrations of the fact, that to be gentlewomen it is necessary to be gentle women."

"Women do not appear to be generally aware of that fact," we chimed in.

"These ladies, although full of intelligence and esprit, besides being highly educated and accomplished, could not, I believe, give a smart retort to—to—to save their eyes; and when you see their eyes you will be able to judge of the value of the stake. If any one were to make a rude or impertinent speech to them they would not understand him. As they never wound the feelings of others, they cannot imagine any one else doing so."

"But," said we, "there are certain forms of words which no one could possibly mistake—not even the simplest of human beings."

"Oh, of course, I don't refer to such cases as those! Under such circumstances, my friends would feel deeply grieved, and even rebuke the offender. But as to making one of those sharp re[Pg 142]torts in which underbred young women so greatly delight, why, they could no more do it than fly!"

Fortunately, at this point in Nix's harangue, we reached the door of the ladies under discussion; for be it understood that most of our conversation had occurred on our way thither.

We doubt whether it is a good plan to praise one's friends too highly before an introduction; it is calculated to produce a reaction. At least, we felt just the least shade of disappointment on being ushered into the presence of the subject of our companion's eulogy. Four plainly-dressed, oval-faced, soft-eyed ladies, seated round a large centre-table, on which were strewn water-colors, albums, scissors, and scraps of paper.

"Mr. Nix has told us all so much about you," said the eldest, "that I feel as though we were old friends. My daughters are now enthusiastic on the subject of transparencies, and I've no doubt your ingenuity will enable them to solve many knotty points beyond their amateur capacity."

We soon found, however, that we were the one to learn, for the work on which the white fingers were engaged was something entirely new to us. There were beautiful transparencies, mostly representing landscapes, and cut out of writing-paper. We immediately became a devoted student of the [Pg 143]art of transparent picture-making, with a single eye, of course, to the amusement of our readers. The soft, brown eyes, the taper fingers, and the gentle manners, had nothings to do with our assiduity, upon which we pledge our sacred honor, as a Calmuc Tartar.


We will now proceed to explain, if those white fingers do not get in the way, how these pictures are produced; and first, according to our custom, we refer the reader to the annexed diagram (No. 1)—a diagram is a good basis to start upon. Before you look at the diagram, it would be well to collect the necessary materials, which are as follows:

Several sheets of writing-paper.

One piece, say four inches square, of thick paper or card.

A pair of small fine-pointed scissors.

A sharp-pointed penknife.

A small piece of charcoal. Burnt grape-vine or cedar makes the best.

A piece of transparent tracing-paper. A black lead-pencil.

Pen and ink.

A thick pasteboard, or thin pine board, about the thickness of an ordinary book-cover, and at least two inches longer and wider than the picture[Pg 144] you are about to make. A sheet of glass will answer as well, perhaps better.

A small quantity of thin, fine paste, free from lumps, made of flour and water boiled. Mind that it is boiled and free from lumps.

Now see the diagram No. 1. This is the picture you wish to produce in the transparency. Take your tracing-paper, and with a pen and ink make an outline of this picture, having done which, rub the charcoal over the back of the tracing, then lay the tracing-paper on a sheet of letter-paper, take your lead-pencil in your hand; now, every mark you make on the tracing-paper with the pencil will leave a corresponding charcoal mark on the paper beneath it. Bearing this in mind, you will draw your pencil carefully round the outline of the moon, the window of the old castle, and the bright light in the water. Now carefully remove the tracing-paper, and you will find the forms of these objects faintly marked in charcoal lines on the writing-paper. Now, with the fine point (it must have a fine point) of your lead-pencil, travel over the charcoal lines, so as to make them distinct and permanent. You do so because the charcoal easily brushes off. You will then proceed to brush off the charcoal with a soft rag as soon as you have made your pencil outline. You will now, with the[Pg 145] scissors or penknife, whichever is most convenient for the purpose, cut out the parts you have traced—that is to say, a round hole for the moon, a small square patch for the castle window, and a few irregular slits for the water. Then you will have a piece of paper like diagram No. 2 (page 152).

There now, we think we managed to keep the white fingers out of that pretty well, though it was pretty hard work, rest assured. So far so good. Now you want to cut a piece of paper, which shall be your second tint, to represent the clouds and water. To this end you again lay your outline tracing on the white paper, and trace the shape of the clouds, the castle window, and the lights on the water, which will give you a form similar to that represented in diagram No. 3 (page 153). This you will cut out as before.

Now you wish for a tint to represent the distant mountains and the reflection of the old castle; therefore, trace and cut out as before directed a piece of paper corresponding with the outlines of these forms, which piece will correspond exactly with diagram No. 4 (page 154). Now you will cut out a piece of paper to represent the nearer mountains and the castle, which will correspond with diagram No. 5 (page 155). After which you will cut a piece to represent the castle alone; and[Pg 146] lastly, you cut out of your card the form of the fir-tree and old railing in the foreground, and the chief part of your labor is done.

Again we must congratulate ourself on keeping those little fingers out of our description, though they have been playing about like white mice among our ideas all the time. We only trust we have made the process clear to our readers.

We will now presume you wish to mount your transparency on a sheet of glass. First take the piece of white paper corresponding with diagram No. 2, and cover it with a thin coat of paste, being careful that it is free from lumps, and lay it on the glass, pressing it evenly all over with a soft handkerchief. Over this, in its proper place, paste No. 3, over that No. 4, and so on, one over the other, till they are all on. You can now hold it up to the light to see if the reflected lights in the water are correct; if not, wait till the transparency is dry, and brighten them up by cutting the necessary pieces out with the sharp point of a penknife. All that needs doing now is to paste over all a thin sheet of white paper. This need only be pasted round the edges just enough to make it keep its place. To give the picture a finish, it should either be put in a frame or have a border of gilt paper or other untranslucent material pasted round it to conceal the ragged[Pg 147] edges of the picture. Now your picture is complete. Hold it once more up to the light, and you will be surprised what a beautiful effect is produced.

If the transparency be not to be mounted in glass, the process is as follows: Cut a square hole, a trifle smaller than the picture, in the board you have provided; cut a piece of white paper of the same shape as the hole, only about one inch larger each way; moisten it slightly with a wet rag, then put some paste all round the edges of the paper, and paste it over the square hole in the board; keep the paper slightly moistened till the paste has thoroughly dried; then you can allow the paper to dry, when it will become smooth and tight like the head of a drum. On this you can paste the transparency in the same way you did on the glass.

Our young lady friends had a number of wonderful things produced in this way, into some of which they had introduced color with remarkable effect. In the design we have given as an example, being one of the simplest in their collection, the light in the castle window was red, and threw long rays of red light across the rocks, with a red reflection in the water. This was easily done with a little water-color (crimson lake); but we refrained from introducing it into our description, for fear of compli[Pg 148]cating the matter and puzzling the reader. However, when you have made the one we have described, you will soon see a number of other effects which can be produced—sunsets with a moving sun, rain-storms, floating clouds; skies and water painted blue, and trees green, etc., etc.

Little Pickle did not take any active part in the transparency business, though he looked on admiringly, occasionally throwing in a few words of applause or advice, something in this style:

"Oh! I say, Lucy, couldn't you put a cow in there; it would look fust-rate. I can draw a cow, all but the feet, and you can hide them behind the rocks, you know."


"Yes—ah—yes—that snow is pretty good, only that feller has only got one runner to his sled!"

It is strange that boys will always say feller and fust-rate.

Little Pickle was not, however, idle in his way. While we were studying white fingers, brown eyes, and transparencies, he had cut out a sled, a wheel-barrow, and manufactured a dancing-pea. The latter he made by running a pin half way through a pea, one end of which he stuck into a broken piece of tobacco-pipe. He then threw his head back till the tobacco-pipe attained a perpendicular position,[Pg 149] when he commenced blowing, which made the pea dance in the air in the most amusing manner for nearly a minute. The mode of arranging the pea, as well as of using it, is illustrated in the accompanying sketch.

He likewise horrified us all by suddenly appearing with a hideous double row of protruding yellow teeth, which he coolly dropped into the palm of his hand, when he thought our feelings had been sufficiently outraged.

"They are only made of orange-peel," he explained. "You just cut a slit there, and notch them along like that, and then put them into your mouth."[Pg 150]

Now, in order to convey to your mind, dear reader, the method of constructing this ornament, shall we tell you to cut an elliptical piece of orange, and then make a longitudinal incision here, with transverse incisions there, etc., etc.? No, we will not; we will fall back to our old friend the diagram, and if you cannot make yourself a set of false teeth after that, then remain in heathen darkness on all matters of dentistry, as you deserve. Cut a piece of orange-peel in the shape represented, and at the foot of the preceding diagram you will see how they look when you put them on.[Pg 151]

Diagram No. 2. Diagram No. 2.

[Pg 152]

Diagram No. 3. Diagram No. 3.

[Pg 153]

Diagram No. 4. Diagram No. 4.

[Pg 154]

Diagram No. 5. Diagram No. 5.

[Pg 155]

Diagram No. 6. Diagram No. 6.

[Pg 156]

Diagram No. 7. Diagram No. 7.

[Pg 157]


A friend of ours, who is an ardent admirer of that great humorist of the plains, Artemus Ward, has recently been edifying a large circle of private friends with imitations of the celebrated showman. He has had a wig and false nose made expressly for this entertainment, by the aid of which adjuncts he succeeds in establishing quite a respectable resemblance to the grand original, as may be seen by his portrait, which we have taken the trouble to get engraved.

Most of the jokes are those of Artemus repeated from memory. The more sober ones, we fancy, are original. The lecture runs thus:

"Ladies and Gentlemen:—Having recently paid a visit to Salt Lake City, the great Mormon capital, I think a short lecture on the subject may prove instructive as well as amusing. Although I[Pg 158] appear before you with the cap and bells, I would have you understand that when I speak of matters of fact I shall confine myself strictly to the truth. You may, therefore, rely upon all I shall tell you concerning the Mormons as being strictly true.

"When on the dock preparatory to start on my voyage, I found myself surrounded by a large concourse of people, who seemed perfectly willing that I should go. 'Go along,' they said, 'old feller, and[Pg 159] stay as long as you please.' I would like you to take a good look at the noble vessel in which I sailed (pointing to a crude delineation of a steamship), because, if you ever go to California, travel by some other boat.

"When we were fairly out at sea, I observed that many of the passengers ran frequently to look over the side of the vessel—to see if there were any dolphins alongside, I presume. One young couple sitting near me, newly married and very haggard, talked earnestly together. I could not avoid hearing a part of their conversation.

"'Oh, Julia,' said the gentleman, 'you are very noble; you have thrown up society, friends, everything for me.'

"'Do not say a word, Alfred,' replied the young lady; 'you have thrown up more than I have.'

"It was very touching, for they certainly threw up a great deal between them.

"In San Francisco I delivered an oration. It was not, perhaps, equal to Cicero's, but still I think—I don't know—but I think if old Cis had heard it he would have been astonished. I delivered an oration to the soldiers once. They were much delighted—very much delighted indeed—so delighted, in fact, that they come dooced near shooting me.

"The hotels on the road to Salt Lake City are,[Pg 160] as a rule, inferior to our leading ones in New York. At one of them they gave me a sack of oats for a pillow. That night I had nightmares. I suppose they were attracted by the oats. The next morning the landlord asked me how I was, old hoss! I replied that I felt my oats!

"After travelling several days, more or less, we reached Utah, and put up at this hotel (here a rude picture is produced). It is a temperance hotel. The only objection I have to temperance hotels is that—that—they keep such dooced poor licker. In the front of the hotel may be seen the coach in which we had been confined for the last eight days. Those among my audience who have served a term in the State prison will understand our feeling when we escaped from that vehicle.

"Utah is a beautiful city, laid out in broad streets, with avenues of fine trees. Brigham Young is the big injun of the place, next to whom comes Heber Kimball. Brigham has the largest number of wives—two hundred in all. He says his only hope now is to have his dying pillow smoothed by the hands of his family. Under the circumstances, it strikes me he'd have to go out of doors to die if he wishes to accomplish it.

"The number of his children is unknown, though, if you multiply two hundred wives by fifteen, you[Pg 161] will get a rough estimate. We mentioned this to Briggy, and he seemed to think it rather rough. Perhaps so. Brig is very exact in his calculations; he knows to a ton of beef what is consumed in his household daily. As an illustration of his exceeding accuracy in little matters, we may mention a fact. On one occasion one of his wives was missing. Five weeks had not elapsed before Brigham had discovered the fact. Those of my audience who have mothers-in-law will appreciate the advantage of two hundred wives. There must be a good deal of mother-in-law to that number; an amount highly calculated to keep things lively. Possibly Brigham is fond of excitement.

"On one occasion Briggy took a fancy to a certain young lady, and proposed for her hand. She replied that she could not accept his offer unless he also married her elder sister. To this he readily assented—went to her—the proposition was made—the sister said she should be obliged to decline unless he married her mother also. After some deliberation he proposed to the mother, but she refused unless he would also propose to her old grandmother. Finally he married the whole crowd.

"Of course Brigham cannot attend personally to the amount of courting necessary—that is to say,[Pg 162] in our old-fashioned style. No, he has his form of love done up in pamphlet form, which he sends to any lady to whom he wishes to be united. This saves trouble.

"Though the Mormons generally are a very steady people, they still have loose fish among them. On one occasion a gay Mormon Lothario gained access to a young ladies' seminary. In the morning it was found he had eloped with the entire establishment.

"I, even I did not escape without some difficulty. Just before my departure, a worthy gentleman in the pickle business died, leaving fourteen wives. They sent for me. When I called I found them all in tears.

"'Why is this thus?' I inquired.

"'Art going?' inquired they.

"'I ist,' I replied.

"'Oh, why! oh, why goest thou?'

"'Because when I gettest ready to doest a thing, I generally doest it,' replied I.

"'Wilt marry us?' said they.

"'I rather think not,' I replied.

"'Oh, this is too much!' cried they.

"'That's where it is,' rejoined myself. 'It's precisely on account of its being too much that I object to it.'[Pg 163]

"My lectures were very popular at Salt Lake, and always well attended. On one occasion I incautiously gave a family ticket to a certain Elder. That night my house was crowded to overflowing. It was entirely filled with the Elder's family. There was not room for a single paying visitor to come in. The next day they called to say they were very much pleased, and gave me their photograph in a very pretty pocket-case, something like a wallet. Subsequently it was taken out of my pocket by a young man on Broadway, but I detected him in the act and seized him by the collar. He at once acknowledged the deed, but said he did it in the name of the Confederate government in retaliation for outrages committed by our troops in the Shenandoah Valley."

Here the lecture ended. It generally received nearly as much applause as that of the great original, for my friend had studied Ward's peculiar manner and quaint enunciation till he had got it to a nicety.

[Pg 164]


This chapter we shall devote exclusively to a little play, written expressly for parlor performance. The characters are so few, and the materials—in the way of dress and scenery—so simple, that it can be easily gotten up in any household. In the full-page picture you will see our idea of the "make-up" of the Artist, but as Mr. Bullywingle does not come out so well on so small a scale, we annex a picture of his head and shoulders as a guide to the reader. We feel disposed, however, to allow the largest latitude to the performers as to make-up. They can modify the dress of the characters according to circumstances. Another reason we have for giving the portrait of Mr. Bullywingle is, that a large copy of it is required in the performance of the piece. In copying this it is no matter how ludicrously inaccurate your performance is, provided[Pg 165] you make the face fiery red, the hair white, and the spectacles green. Indeed, the worse the picture the funnier the effect.

Mr. Bullywingle.—Hat—white, with black band. Face very red, culminating in a bright crimson on the nose. The face should be colored with vermilion, which can be procured in a powdered state at any color store. If you get it in this state mix it with water, to which add a very small quantity of gum or glue. The best plan, however, is, if convenient, to purchase a cake of vermilion such as is used for water-colors.

Hair, eyebrows, and moustache must be very white. The hair and moustache can be made white[Pg 166] by dressing with plenty of pomatum, and then sprinkling them liberally with flour from the flour dredger. The imperial and eyebrows should be painted on the face with flake-white. Procure two ounces of flake-white (in powder) in any paint store; mix it carefully with water till it is about as thick as molasses. A small piece of glue, about the weight of two beans, should be dissolved in the water before it is added to the flake-white.

Spectacles—green, which you can either borrow from a friend, buy at a store, or steal anywhere. If, however, you are too proud to steal, and you cannot get the specs any other way, you may cut them out of card-board and paint the proper color. As Mr. Bullywingle wears his specs on the end of his nose, never using them to look through, it is of little consequence whether they be transparent or not.

Cravat—large and white.

Shirt collar—large; can be cut out of writing-paper.

Coat—blue, with gilt buttons.

Vest and pants—light; the latter short in the legs.


Mr. Puttyblow (the artist).—Nose red; eyebrows black, and painted above the natural eyebrows.[Pg 167] This gives the eyebrows a continued elevated appearance, which is very comical in effect.

The moustache and beard can either be painted with burnt cork or India-ink, or, which is far better, made out of curled hair and a little diachylon, as described in a previous chapter. If you wish to make the character very comic, you can turn up the nose with a piece of thread and stick a patch of court-plaster over one of your teeth, all of which has been described in earlier chapters.

Cap—something fancy, of bright color if possible.

Coat—anything comical and shabby. The young man is poor.

Pants—short in the legs.

Miss MacSlasher must be attired in walking costume, and make herself look as elegant and pretty as possible. Or in case the ladies won't act, or you happen to be out of pretty girls, you can get Miss MacSlasher up as an old lady, and make her look as comical as you can. You see our play is on a compensating, self-adjusting principle. Now we will give you a list of all the things you will require in the way of "properties," as they are called in stage parlance. Before doing so, however, we must impress upon you the necessity of having a stage manager, otherwise you will surely get into a state of confusion and spoil the play. It is the[Pg 168] duty of the stage-manager to collect the properties together and see that they are all in their right places. He will arrange the stage, and, if desirable, act as prompter.

Vermilion—To be procured at a paint store.

Flake-white and green paint—paint store.

Card-board for imitation spectacles, and glue—paint store.

Three or four camel's-hair pencils—paint store.

India-ink or burnt cork.

Pomatum, butter or lard for hair.

Ten cents' worth of diachylon (in lump form, not plaster—remember this; also remember that the diachylon must be warmed before the fire to make it stick), which can be had at any drug store.

Flour for hair can be procured from the kitchen, if the barrel ain't gin' out.

Green spectacles.

White cravat and large shirt-collar.

Blue or green coat, with bright buttons.

Vest and pantaloons, light in color.

Small piece of court-plaster or black silk, for tooth.

Curled hair from stuffing of mattresses.

Cap for artist, of bright color.

Coat for artist.

Pants for ditto, legs short.[Pg 169]

Slippers for ditto.

Large portrait of Mr. Bullywingle.

Easel or stand for portrait.

Palette (the palette should be cut out of pasteboard, the cover of a large book, or something of that kind—a wooden palette would break when sat upon); a maul-stick and brushes, pictures, casts, etc., to give the artist's studio an artistic appearance.

Stale hard loaf of bread.

Knife—palette knife if possible.

Tray with two cups.

Tea-pot containing very weak tea.

Plates, butter, and pieces of crockery, to make a clatter.

Sheets, comfortable, shawls, or Turkey-red, to make proscenium and drop-curtain.

Several sheets of tissue-paper, red and blue, to ornament proscenium.

Lamps to light the stage.

Deeds and legal documents for Mr. Bullywingle.

Umbrella for Mrs. Bullywingle.

White hat with black band.

Towels, or rags, to cover and conceal artist's breakfast on a chair.

Slice of bread prepared with diachylon or hooked pins to stick to Mr. Bullywingle's coat-tail.[Pg 170]



Dramatis Personæ.

Mr. Puttyblow, an artist.
Mr. Bullywingle, a bachelor who is beloved by women, or thinks himself so.
Miss MacSlasher.

Scene.An artist's studio.

Curtain rises, or is pulled down, and discovers Mr. Puttyblow seated at an easel opposite a picture which is so placed that the audience cannot see the face of it.

Mr. Puttyblow (yawning). Oh—on—on—awe—awe—oo—oo! Oh, thunder! Oh, pickled thunder, turnip-tops, trust, tick, and tomatoes! I wish to goodness, goose-pies, and the goddess of fame, some one would give me a commission to paint a picture—one thousand dollars—half cash in advance, and the balance on completion of the work—some grand heroic subject, which would send my name and fame resounding through the nations of the earth like the mighty avalanche of the Alps, till the human race with one[Pg 171] voice should stand back and exclaim—"That's him!"

Now, I think I could paint a picture of Washington Crossing the Delaware in a style of art equally creditable to my feelings as an artist and an American citizen. I'd make Washington—yes—I would not make him as they generally do, in a great, big, comfortable boat, with a new suit of clothes, looking up to heaven, while a lot of other fellows are shoving the boat through lumps of ice with hooks and pikes, and things of that kind. No! I'd make him swimming across, with the stars and stripes between his teeth and a horse-pistol of the period behind each ear. That's what I should call something like a picture. But all this is vain; instead of painting big pictures, and building my palatial villa on the Hudson, I am stuck and starved in this miserable chamber—a poor artist with scarcely anything to feed upon but tobacco-smoke and my own ideas. Talking about feed reminds me that I have had no breakfast yet. Now breakfast is one of those ideas about which I have my own ideas—namely, to wit: that you can't continually do without it—that's to say, not as a steady thing. It grows monotonous after a time. That tea has been standing three-quarters of an hour, and ought to be now fit for human nourishment (pours out tea, which is[Pg 172] quite colorless). Rather weak—I may even go so far as to say exceedingly weak. It is like Hancock's veterans, will stand any amount of fire for any length of time without changing color. But you are very weak, poor tea; like women, let us respect your weakness. The butter is strong enough to take care of you (smells butter). I wonder whether this butter is not manufactured near Forty-second street, N. Y. It strikes me I have smelt something very like it near the soap factory on the Hudson River Railroad. Where's the knife (takes knife and loaf)? Ah! here it is (tries to cut loaf, which resists all his efforts). This loaf is beginning to get slightly obstinate. Most extraordinary thing how hard a loaf becomes after you have kept it for a week or two. However, I ain't the kind of man to let any darned baker's bread—ever baked—get the best of me. No! (Takes up hatchet at one side, places bread on floor, and begins chopping it. Cuts off a piece which he butters, and lays upon a chair.) Now, Puttyblow, my boy; you shall have bread and chops for breakfast. C-h-e-o-p-s—chops! Chops with a large C. (A loud knocking is heard at the door.) Oh, thunder! there's some one at the door—it will never do to let them see these things around (piles up cups and saucers on tray and covers them with towels.[Pg 173] He leaves the slice of bread and butter, however, on the chair). It doesn't look prosperous; and nobody ever thinks anything of any one who isn't prosperous. (Seats himself at easel, and pretends to be busy painting.) Come in!

Enter Mr. Bullywingle.

Mr. B. Ha! I've found a refuge at last, thank goodness! I'm all in a flutter—she nearly caught me. It was a dooced close shave. Here am I tormented to death by women who will insist upon marrying me. 'Pon my soul it is rather too bad that a man, because he is rather nice-looking and has a little money saved up, cannot leave his house without being pursued by all the women in creation wanting to marry him. I don't want to marry them. I don't see any particular fun in dividing all my property, my time, my comfort, my amusement, with another individual, besides giving that individual the life-long privilege of—the life-long right to dictate the temperature of the apartment in which I sit, the amount of light which shall illuminate my chamber; who shall be my associates; where I shall live; what I shall eat; what I shall drink—there's the rub! actually putting the power into the hands of a mortal like yourself to come between you and your social tod. Oh, it's horrible to think[Pg 174] of! Marriage is a humbug. I wouldn't marry the Bearded Lady herself. But I wonder what kind of an office this is I've rushed into—not a lawyer's; no—doesn't smell of Russia leather. Not a Government office; no—don't smell any whiskey. Not p-e-t—yes, r-o—l-e-u-m; there's certainly a smell of oil around. Ah, oh—yes, I see; it's some kind of a paint shop. I must trump up some business with the proprietor as an excuse for coming in. Wonder, by the way, whether there's anybody about, after all? Ah! yes, to be sure; bless my soul, there he is. (Takes a step towards artist, and coughs. Artist pretends to be deeply engaged in his art, and does not hear him.) Ahem! ahem! wonder whether the poor creature is deef and dumb. Ahem! ah, excuse me, sir, but—ah, that is fine day—ahem! good-morning, sir.

Artist. Good-morning, sir.

Mr. B. You are a painter, are you not, sir?

Artist. That is my name—ah, that is to say, that is my profession.

Mr. B. I want you to paint me a sign for my store.

Artist. A what, sir?

Mr. B. A sign. Jothan H. Bullywingle, wholesale——

Artist. Wholesale fiddlestick![Pg 175]

Mr. B. Wholesale dealer in——

Artist. Sir, I would have you to understand that I don't paint signs, sir. I am an artist—historical and portrait delineator.

Mr. B. Oh, ah! yes, exactly; that's what I mean. I want you to paint my portrait—Jothan H. Bullywingle, wholesale—no, exactly as you were saying, my portrait. (Aside)—By Jove, I—I'm in for it.

Artist. Would you like a full face?

Mr. B. (thoughtfully). Why, pretty full.

Artist. Or a side face?

Mr. B. Oh, yes—a side face.

Artist. Or a three-quarter face?

Mr. B. Yes, a three-quarter face. Yes, she was a blue one, I think, this last one.

Artist (prepares seat). Will you take a seat, Mr. Bully—Bully——

Mr. B. Wingle.

Artist. Will you take a seat, Mr. Wingle?

Mr. B. Bully, sir.

Artist. Take a seat, Mr. Winglebully.

Mr. B. Yes, yes, certainly. (Aside—I'm regularly stuck for a portrait.) Certainly, sir; though you haven't got my name exactly right—not quite correct, my young friend. My name is Bullywingle. (Aside—The first one was purple and diamonds.)[Pg 176]

[Mr. B. seats himself at opposite side of stage to artist, who sits down and prepares to paint.]

Artist. Will you smile, sir?

Mr. B. (aside.) Really, a very polite young man. Thank you, I don't mind if I do—the least drop in the world; Bourbon, or anything that's handy.

Artist. I mean, sir, will you be pleased to smile with your mouth?

Mr. B. (aside.) With my mouth? Of course, with my mouth. Does the young man fancy that I propose to drink through my nose, like an elephant? (Aloud.) Oh, yes, I'll smile with my mouth, of course.

Artist. I perceive you do not understand me, sir. I allude to the expression.

Mr. B. Oh! I'm perfectly familiar with the expression—perfectly familiar with the expression.

Artist. Mr. Winglebully, I wish you to assume an agreeable expression of countenance in order that I may transfer your beautiful features to my canvas in a manner satisfactory to yourself, myself, and mankind generally.

Mr. B. Oh, ah! yes, certainly—exactly—to be sure—bless my soul—yes. (Mr. B. grins in an exaggerated manner).

Artist. Ah—yes; that's it—that's it—just so. A little to the left. I'm afraid—keep your head up[Pg 177]—I cannot give you a very long sitting to-day—I'm so crowded with sitters. (Mr. B. forgets that he is sitting for his portrait and begins to look very melancholy and miserable.) I am obliged to—smile, if you please. (Mr. B. starts and resumes his exaggerated grin.) I'm obliged to fix certain days and hours to receive my friends and patrons, otherwise they—will you smile, if you please?—otherwise they would not leave me a—will you smile, if you please, sir? Look at me and think of something pleasant. Think of a lady (Mr. B. looks miserable and frightened). (Aside—He doesn't look as if he were thinking of a lady, does he?) Think of something pleasant, now—something pleasing. Think of Hash (Mr. B. brightens up). Yes, hash. Keep on thinking of hash, hash, hash! Good gracious! will you smile, sir? Hash—hash—hash! Keep smiling—hash—that's it; hash! There, sir, will you be kind enough to look at that? You are a little rough and raw (Mr. B. starts), but, of course, I have only rubbed you in. You will come out better at the second painting.

Mr. B. (rising and advancing towards the picture). Oh, yes—yes, very good. The shirt-collar and the cravat are extremely like; but don't you think you might alter the rest?

Artist. Well—ah—umph! I don't know. I[Pg 178] think I have hit your eye exactly. (Mr. B. starts slightly.) The hair is very fair, and I've got hold of your nose very satisfactorily. (Mr. B. rubs his nose.) The mouth might look all the better, perhaps, for a little madder, but——

Mr. B. Oh, dear, no, it's quite mad enough. I don't wish to have a severe expression of countenance.

Artist. I refer to the color—the pigment.

Mr. B. The color the pig meant. The pig—the pig. I meant what I said, sir; and if you think to call me a pig with impunity you are very much mistaken.

Artist. Oh, no—no—no, my dear sir; you mistake me. We artists use a beautiful pink color called madder, and I spoke of this as a pigment—no offence, not for the world. But allow me to place the picture in a better light; you can hardly judge of it in its present position. (Turns easel and picture round facing the audience.) (Aside.)—Now won't he be an unreasonable old polypus to object to that as a likeness? (Aloud.)—There, sir, now you can see it better. (They both sit down in chairs, the artist on his own palette and Mr. B. on the slice of bread and butter left by the artist.)

Artist. Now, sir, I think I have caught the expression of your eyes and spectacles; and as for[Pg 179] the nose, it literally speaks, while the chin and mouth—

Mr. B. Yes—yes, but I don't think you have stuck quite closely enough to nature. There is nothing like sticking to a thing. (Rises and moves towards picture, showing slice of bread sticking to his coat-tails. Advances and examines picture critically.)

Artist. I declare, if the idiotic old grampus has not been sitting down on my bread and butter. It is most extraordinary that some people will never look where they sit down. (Rises to remove bread and butter, and shows palette sticking to his dressing-gown behind.) The carelessness of some people is marvellous—really astonishing.

Mr. B. The shirt-collar is certainly very like; but don't you think the complexion is a little high? because I am really rather pale, you know.

Artist (making futile endeavors to remove the bread and butter with one hand). Ah, yes, perhaps that might be toned down a little. (Aside.) I'll whitewash the old brute if he likes. (Aloud.) If you will be kind enough to take a seat for two minutes I will try to avail myself of your valuable suggestion (looks around for his palette). Now, where on earth can be my palette? (Looks suspiciously at old Mr. B.) He can't have been sitting[Pg 180] down on that too—and yet I do believe he's stupid enough for anything. (Looks for palette again.) No. (At this moment Mr. B. sits down on the chair where Mr. P. has concealed his breakfast, and everything goes with a crash.)

Artist. There goes that old porpoise again! All my breakfast gone—my beautiful tea and my elegant bread and butter. (To Mr. B., who apologizes.) Ah, never mind, sir—no consequence; only a few paint saucers, that's all. No consequence; take a seat over here. (Seats old gent in the chair which Mr. B. first occupied, and which artist has since used.) But my palette—where can it have gone? Where's that d—d palette? Let me see; I think I laid it on that chair. Will you kindly rise for one moment, Mr. Winglebully? (Looks at Mr. B.'s back.) No! strange—let me see—oh! ah! yes—I—he sat over there. (A thought seems to have struck him. He begins to feel behind his own coat, where he finds the palette. Produces it—his own fingers covered with paint.) There it is—I knew I'd put it somewhere. (Here a knocking is heard at the door. Mr. B. jumps up and grasps the artist by the hand, getting his own covered with paint in the operation.)

Mr. B. Here she is! For heaven's sake, conceal me!


[Pg 181]

Artist. Here is who?

Mr. B. The blue woman.

Artist. The blue woman?

Mr. B. Yes—they pursue me wherever I go. It's a blue woman now. Yesterday it was a red woman. Oh, all sorts of women—black women—green women—white women—for pity's sake, conceal me! They'd make a Mormon or polygamist of me. (Wipes his painted fingers over his face.) Oh, my dear sir, you would not have me commit trigamy—you would not—but hide me somewhere—hide me!

Artist. Here—here, behind the curtain.

Lady enters.

Lady. Is there a gentleman here?

Artist. Em—ah! gentleman? no—no; that is to say, not exactly.

Lady. This is an artist's studio, is it not?

Artist. Yes, madam; this is an artist's studio.

Lady. There is no other studio in this building?

Artist. This is the only studio in this building. Will you take a seat, madam?

Lady. I was to meet an elderly gentleman here—my father—who was going to have his portrait taken.[Pg 182]

Mr. B. (aside.) Her father—that's a deep dodge. Pretends to be after her father, the artful thing.

Artist. Yes, madam.

Lady. He should have been here some time ago—that is to say, if I have come to the right place.

Artist. Ah, yes; this is the right place. (Aside.) Hooray! here's another job.

Mr. B. (aside.) Send her away! send her away! Ah, you villain, are you going to betray me?

Lady. You seem to have a great many pretty pictures here.

Artist. Ah—oh—well, a few little trifles. Are you fond of art?

Lady. Oh, yes—very.

Artist. I shall be happy to show you some of my sketches. If you will excuse me for a moment, I will bring them from the other room.

Lady. Certainly, It will give me great pleasure to look at anything in the shape of pictures. I once studied Poonah Painting and Potichomanie myself; and mamma's uncle, who was a great artist, and used to draw things with a red-hot poker, said he couldn't tell my pictures from life, almost—only I could never learn to do trees. Don't you find trees very difficult? Mamma's uncle used to say the only fault with my trees was that they looked[Pg 183] like cabbages. I can paint cabbages very well; but then they don't look pretty in a picture, you know.

Artist. Indeed, I doubt not your delicate hand would lend a charm to any object it might portray. Nature is full of beauties, and there is a world of loveliness even in a cabbage.

Mr. B. (aside.) In a cabbage-head.

Artist. But I will bring you my portfolio—a few unworthy sketches which may serve to while away the moments till the arrival of your estimable father.

Mr. B. (aside.) Good heaven! He is going to keep me here all day while he makes a fool of himself to that young woman. This will never do! I must escape. I must throw myself on her mercy. She has an awful vicious expression of countenance, though. However, she must have the heart of a woman. Perhaps she has a brother; and how would she like to have him married against his will by fifteen women in blue? I will—yes, I will throw myself on her mercy. I will implore her to spare me. Poor thing! I shall be sorry to break her heart—but it must be done.——Courage, Bullywingle—courage! (Rushes out and throws himself at her feet.) My good young woman, spare me! Think of your own brother, and spare me!
[Lady screams and rushes off.

[Pg 184]

I cannot marry you all. If I did marry you I should make the red lady miserable for life, and the green lady would die of jealousy, and the yellow lady might commit suicide.

Enter Artist, with portfolio, which falls on the floor.

Artist. You venerable reptile, what are you about! What do you mean, sir? Get up, sir! I'll knock you down, sir! You've driven away one of my best customers. (They scuffle.)

Mr. B. But my dear sir—my good young friend, what was I to do? Hear me—listen—leave go—you'll tear my coat—let go, or she'll be back, and then I'm lost! Do you hear, you rascal! You'll tear my coat—there go my suspenders—there goes something else! I'll have you arrested for intent to do grievous bodily battery and commit violent matrimony—let go!

Artist. You old rascal—you old polypus—you old humbug—you are ruining me! (Rushes to one side and returns with club or stick. A fight ensues. Old gent strikes an attitude with umbrella.)

Mr. B. Come on, Mac what's your name! and damned be he who first cries hold—enough!

Artist (aside). I'll be hanged if the old buffer ain't swearing! (Aloud.) By all the powers I'll be revenged! As sure as my name is Puttyblow I[Pg 185] will be re-ve-n-ged! (Is about to rush at old gent.)

Mr. B. Pause, rash man! Did you say Puttyblow?

Artist. I did.

Mr. B. Have you a strawberry mark on your left arm?

Artist. Nature has ornamented me in the manner you describe.

Mr. B. Are you short-sighted in your left eye?

Artist. Such is my affliction.

Mr. B. Do you snore at nights?

Artist. So I have been informed by the people over the way, who have sent over several times to expostulate with me in the most offensive terms possible.

Mr. B. And sleep late in the morning?

Artist. I do.

Mr. B. (rushing forward.) My long-lost son!

Artist. Excuse me for one moment. Have you a gooseberry bush on your left arm?

Mr. B. Gooseberry? No—no—not specially.

Artist. Do you wear corns or paper collars?

Mr. B. Well, I've had chilblains.

Artist. Are you subject to hydrophobia?

Mr. B. Well, not precisely; but I've been run over by a Broadway omnibus.[Pg 186]

Artist. Are you in the habit of committing suicide?

Mr. B. Well—I—I—don't know—I travel on the Hudson River Railroad sometimes.

Artist. Come to my arms, my long-lost father!
[They embrace.

Mr. B. Bless you, my boy—bless you! bless you!

Enter Lady. Artist sees her, and struggles to escape from Mr. B.'s grasp.

Artist. Let go—let me go—drat it all, let go.

Mr. B. Bless you, my boy—bless you!

Lady. I have left my portemonnaie in your studio—will you be kind enough to let me have it?

Mr. B. Young woman, spare me!

Lady (to Artist). Pray protect me from this venerable ruffian.

Mr. B. (aside.) Venerable ruffian! Come, now, that is what the boys call rather rough. (Aloud.) Then you don't love me?

Lady. If you insult me further, I shall inform my father.

Mr. B. Then you have a father?—wonderful! Are you sure of it—no deception? What is his name? Where does he live? Tell me quick—quick—do not deceive me![Pg 187]

Lady. My father, sir, is General MacSlasher, who will not allow his daughter to be insulted with impunity.

Mr. B. MacSlasher! The brave MacSlasher, who married my half-cousin Columbia Ann, of Pickleville, Indiana?

Lady. Indeed, it is true.

Mr. B. Come to my arms, my long-lost niece! No, not niece; cousin—second cousin—oh, hang the relationship! Come to my arms, any way! But hold—you are the richest heiress in New York. I have the deeds in my pocket to prove it. By the will of your late grandfather Grampus you are the sole possessor of six blocks on Broadway, Trinity Church, Erie Railroad, two steamboats on the Hudson River that won't burst, and vast territories on Coney Island.

Artist. Good gracious!

Mr. B. Happy hour—auspicious moment! to have thus met my son and niece on the same day. Puttyblow, my son—no longer Puttyblow, but Bullywingle—this is the lady I have destined for you for ten long years, if I could only have found you. She is rich and beautiful. I know you love each other; and if you don't, make believe you do, or you'll spoil the play. Bullywingle, junior, embrace your bride! Take her and be happy! Bless you, my children—bless you![Pg 188]

Grand tableau. Mr. Puttyblow and Miss MacSlasher embrace. Mr. Bullywingle opens his umbrella, and, standing on one leg, holds it over them.

[Pg 189]


It may be remembered that in a recent chapter we mentioned being in a tranquil mood, and, while in that condition, calling on our friend Nix, and further, that Nix introduced us that same evening to some ladies with brown eyes.

Since that event the tranquil moods have come over us periodically, with rapidly increasing virulence. So much so that latterly we have found it desirable to dispense with the cumbrous ceremony of going round to call for Nix. The fact is we have taken a great fancy to that boy Little Pickle; he is certainly a very fine boy.

It occurs to us at this moment that we have not yet given a name to this family. Their real name is one of those which recall old revolutionary times directly it is uttered. One of those names which, to ourself at least, at once summons up a picture of[Pg 190] marching ranks of men in three-cornered hats and yellow breeches, toiling forward with glistening muskets over their shoulders, past rows of quaint gabled houses. We cannot give the real name, of course—that is out of the question—so we will call them Adams, because that is not their name. Then we will subdivide them as follows: Mrs. Adams, Bud, Blossom, and Berry. We christen them thus because these were the titles they received in a little floral and pomological game we once played.

The Adams family were going to give a party. We were called in as consulting engineer, to suggest attractions. We readily accepted the office. The reader knows our system and will easily guess our first order. Objects to provoke conversation!

Pig made out of lemon. Good! The pig was made and applauded.

"But," suggested Bud, "why confine ourselves to a pig; surely we can make something else."

"Surely," we assented. So all of us set our wits to work at zoology.

Bud made the first discovery. "Oh!" she exclaimed, "I have found out something beautiful—a whole litter of little pigs to go with the lemon!"

And, indeed, 'twas true. In a few seconds she had some almonds soaking in a cup of boiling[Pg 191] water. In a few seconds more she was peeling off their brown jackets, revealing the smooth white nut, as white as the tips of her own taper fingers. The almonds were soon converted into sucking-pigs, and were admitted on all hands to look quite cunning, and as natural as nature, with their little white bodies grouped round the maternal lemon—some running, some standing, and some seated on their haunches.

We need not explain to the gifted reader the modus operandi. It is much the same as with the lemon, only the eyes are dotted with a black lead pencil and the ears are made from small slips of wood.

Stimulated by the success of Bud, Blossom dived down into the depths of her imagination, and fished out a goat. The goat was unquestionably a triumph. The body consisted of a pear, the head of an unbleached[Pg 192] almond, the legs, horns, and beard of raisin stalks.

On the same principle, and with wonderful celerity, Berry took up the idea, gracefully acknowledged her indebtedness to the original inventor, and produced a deer—a deer with wide-spreading antlers made of raisin stalks, and legs of the same material, which counterfeited nature even to the knee-joints. The neck cost some little mental exertion, but was finally triumphed over in the following shape, neatly cut out of wood.

The deer now appeared truly a monarch of the forest; a little weak in the shoulders perhaps, and rather full-chested behind, but still a noble animal.

Not to be outdone with her own idea, Blossom wrestled vigorously with her subject, and ere we had ceased admiring the deer, had very nearly completed a sheep—a sheep so fleecy and[Pg 193] short in the legs that it was at once voted the greatest triumph of all, though WE personally and privately thought, and still think, that, for true genius, Bud's idea of the pigs far exceeded any of them. The white almond certainly made a most admirable sheep's head, but then apple, of which the body was made, grew rapidly rusty when once peeled—so much so that we had to scrape our sheep once or twice in the course of the evening to restore its fleeciness.

Having made large herds of deer, flocks of goats and sheep, not to mention litters of pigs, we disposed some of them on the mantel-piece and what-nots, while others were reserved to make a grand pastoral scene on the supper table. Having finished these, we devoted our energies to constructing scent-bags and mice, the latter made out of apple-seeds, as described in a previous chapter. Here the transcendent genius of Bud again as[Pg 194]serted itself—she invented a rat; a rat made out of an unbleached almond. When grouped with the mice and flour-sacks the effect was truly grand.

What now?

"What shall we make next?" was the general inquiry.

"Oh, can't you make something that will jump up?" eagerly suggested Little Pickle, who had kept pretty quiet during our zoological researches.

"Can't you make something that will jump up?" This was so vague that we were fain to demand further light.

"Oh, you know at our school one of the boys made a kind of thing with a bit of wax that jumped up and frightened you."

This was still far from clear, but whatever it might be, it was evidently calculated to frighten somebody, and so was immediately voted down by the ladies.

"Oh, make that gorilla portrait, you know," again entreated Little Pickle; "that makes such fun."

This proposition, though received coolly, was, nevertheless, discussed at some length, till Blossom called her sister's attention to the fact that one of their invited guests would be a certain Dr. O'Tang, who really did resemble a gorilla, and should the[Pg 195] glass fall into his hands, he would feel hurt at the joke; so Little Pickle's second proposition was voted down.

We now felt a heavy weight of responsibility hanging on our shoulders. Six brown eyes were resting upon us, each as deep and brown as a mountain pool.

"Can we not do something with paper?" suggested Bud, her exquisite genius again coming to our aid. This suggestion gave us the cue.

"I have it," we exclaimed; "I will teach you to make stained glass. To be sure, it is only a variation of your own beautiful art of making transparencies; still, if you have never heard of the process, it may afford some amusement, and help you to decorate your rooms."

One apartment in the house of Adams was of the kind known as extension room. The two windows which separated this apartment from the back parlor served admirably to exhibit the new art. The object of the process is to produce an effect somewhat similar to the heraldic painting on the casements of old European houses, and is done thus:

You procure several sheets of tissue paper of various colors, a pair of scissors, and some fine boiled paste. You fold a sheet of the paper twice,[Pg 196] then cut out of the folded paper a form—say, for example, like the one on the left: so that when the sheet is open there will be two pieces like the one on the right.

Paste one of these in the centre of the window-pane you wish to decorate, then paste the other over it, only lapping over a little on one side and below, as represented in this diagram.

When this is dry it will have a very pretty effect. Of course you can cut the papers in any form you choose and have them in different colors—red over green, or yellow over blue. You may also stitch one pattern of a smaller size right in the centre of another, or paste three or four different patterns one above the other, as illustrated by our subjoined cuts.

Having delivered our short lecture (illustrated[Pg 197] with examples) to the six brown eyes, and also to the six white ears—like quaint sea-shells from the shores of Elysium—we all proceeded to operate on the windows before mentioned, and we are glad to say with the most pleasing results.

Our scissorings with the colored paper brought to light an accomplishment of Little Pickle, which set us all to work anew with scissors and pen and ink for some time.

Master Adams's system was this: he took a small piece of writing paper, and dropping a minute quantity of ink in the centre, then folded it right across the blot and rubbed it over with his finger. When the paper was opened it displayed some curious form or another. This, with a few touches of the pen, we generally made to resemble some object in nature. Bud made an excellent stag's head on one occasion, which we subjoin.

But Little Pickle's course of instruction did not stop with blots. He folded bits of paper and cut them into grotesque patterns, and set us all to filling them up with pictures. The great art consisted in making your design conform to the outline[Pg 198] of the paper. One of these, which we happened to have brought away by accident, we have here engraved. It was drawn by Bud, and is really very clever.

That was a very delightful evening we passed with the Adams's. Little Pickle is a very fine boy; guess we will call for him on our road up in the afternoon—to go skating.

That night, when we reached home, we found Nix had called and left us a very curious work—The Veda, or the Sacred Writings of the Hindoos. We slept sweetly, and dreamed we were reclining on the banks of the Ganges conversing pleasantly with Brahma. Singular dream, was it not?

[Pg 199]


Blue and white Christmas, with his henchman, Santa Claus, having come and gone, leaving behind him, however, for a while, his raiment of white and blue, with a host of dear memories for our hearts' nourishment through the next twelvemonth's stage in this journey of life, we think we cannot better show our appreciation of his goodness than by painting a portrait of that small fraction of the universal jollity which fell to our individual lot.

We have some friends who live in the country, a long way from sidewalks and gas and railroads, or at least far enough off to debar the dear souls from many tastes of city pleasures. So, as these friends cannot well go to town for amusement, and as they have a large love of fun and several small children, they try to bring amusements home on all festive occasions.[Pg 200]

To this house, with a small party of mutual acquaintances, we went our way on the twenty-fifth of December last. Before starting there were great business operations to be performed, and such a time as we had of it! One item was easily managed, and caused no mental anxiety. We went en masse to Ridley's, and, after waiting in a crowd of crinoline for some time, came away each with his dexter coat-pocket swelled out with a pound package of mixed candies. That, of course, was simple enough; but when it came to buying something else—something of a more durable nature—then our ingenuity was, indeed, put to the test. It will be seen that our task was no ordinary one. There were three of us, and we each wished, according to our annual custom, to present each member of the family with some appropriate gift; and as there were five in the family, namely—papa, mamma, daughter aged eleven, son aged four, and another daughter aged two, and assuming that we each only gave one object to each of the individuals in the country house, it would make—three fives are fifteen—fifteen different objects to be purchased, every one of which ought to differ from the other, besides being unlike anything they would be already likely to possess. When we came to compare notes, we found that we had, to a man, privately[Pg 201] and separately resolved to present papa with a meerschaum pipe; two out of the three had thoughts of giving mamma a dressing-case; while the unanimity on the subject of work-boxes, dolls, and jumping-jacks was really marvellous.

But we must not linger around fancy-stores, and over candy counters, and in city streets. We have a long evening before us away off in the country, over miles of snowy roads. It is enough that, by the aid of a steaming locomotive, which whizzed and buzzed and thundered us through the lonely snow-clad cuttings, as though it were saying: "Come along! come along! come along! Hurry up! Pish! phew! Here's another stoppage! Clear the track! Don't keep us waiting!" stopping only now and then, stock still, to brighten up the mean way-station into a glow of mysterious grandeur, with fitful flashes of light, as though it were some monster fire-fly of the season. By means of this lusty bug at first, and afterwards by a rickety, ramshackle, old shandradan of a hack, tortured along by two horses, one of which was balky, we reached the house of our entertainers, where the light streamed out through the red curtains to meet us, and glorified the snow in our path long before we pulled up at the hospitable door.[Pg 202]

Mr. and Mrs. Merryweather both greeted us heartily before we had kicked the snow from our boots; while the former, with a celerity equally creditable to his head and legs, dashed into the kitchen, and reappeared with three smoking glasses of hot brandy-punch.

"Here, boys," he cried, "take this. It will keep the cold out. Come, I insist upon it."

Mr. Greeley and other good people tell us that it is all wrong to drink spirituous liquors, and we are not quite clear ourself as to the propriety of the practice. But there was something genial in the thoughtful attention of our friend Merryweather, and something else grateful in the aroma of the brandy-punch, that certainly made us all feel more truly welcome and happy than had we been politely shown up-stairs to wash our hands in a cold bedroom, with the prospect of two doughnuts and a cup of weak tea to follow.

Aunty Delluvian was of the party, being a very old friend of the family. With regard to the company generally, it may be defined as mixed. Some of the children, whose parents were neighbors, betrayed their status by the excess of starch and bright colors which characterized their dresses; while others from the city displayed all the ostentatious simplicity of cultivated taste.[Pg 203]

Mr. Merryweather opened the entertainment with an exceedingly well intentioned, though rather transparent, display of prestidigitation (if that is the way to spell the abominable word); but as most of his tricks depended upon the use of a new and complete set of conjuring apparatus he had purchased for the occasion, we will not linger over his magic rings and dice and cups. Two items, however, in his performance being attainable by very simple means, we will describe.

At one stage in the entertainment it seemed absolutely necessary that he should have the aid of a small boy, in order to make six copper cents pass from under a hat to the top of a bird-cage. Making known his want, a red-faced youth with black curly hair volunteered his services. The juvenile, be it observed, had rendered himself somewhat conspicuous by declaring at the end of every trick that he knew how it was done, and by inquisitively desiring to inspect the interior of goblets and the bottoms of boxes. Merryweather's eyes twinkled as this gentleman tendered his assistance.

"Here," he said, producing a small trumpet, "this is my magic horn. Take it in your right hand, till I say: 'Heigh! presto! pass!' Then, if your lungs are strong enough, and you blow with[Pg 204] sufficient force, those six cents will pass from under the hat to the top of that cage yonder."

The youth took his stand firmly, looked knowingly, and placed the trumpet to his lips confidently.

"Are you ready?" asked Mr. Merryweather. "Then, heigh! presto! pass!"

In an instant the face of the bold volunteer, black hair, red cheeks, and all, were white as the driven snow; and comic enough he looked, as he gaped round with a chap-fallen expression, puzzled beyond measure to know into what condition he had blown himself. He had, in truth, blown himself all over flour, the trumpet being constructed for that special purpose.

This instrument is very simple. You first procure a tube of tin, or wood, or card-board, of about two inches in diameter. A box of the desired shape can be found in the store of almost any druggist, or in default of that, a wide-mouthed vial can be made to answer. The next thing required is a thin tube, for which a piece of elder or a stick of maccaroni will answer. These, with a large cork or bung, are all the materials that are required. Having cut a slice off the cork of about half an inch in thickness, you fit it tightly into the centre of the large tube; then cut another slice of the cork to fit[Pg 205] into one end of the tube; but, before fixing it, cut some notches round the edge, and make a hole in the centre large enough to hold firmly the smaller tube. Now fix the smaller tube in the second cork, so that it will extend about two-thirds of the way down one of the compartments in the larger tube; fix the second cork (the one with the notches in it)[Pg 206] in the mouth of the large tube, and the trumpet is made. By referring to the diagram, you will probably get a better idea of the construction of this weapon than from our description.

When you wish to use the instrument, pour flour through the notches you have cut in the cork, and it is ready. Any one blowing sharply through the small tube will, of course, blow all the flour in his own face.

The second item in Mr. Merryweather's entertainment we propose to describe is still more simple. One of his feats consisted in burning a hole in a pocket-handkerchief. To do this he required fire, so he ordered his assistant to bring in a candle, which was accordingly done, the candle being already lighted. As soon as Mr. Merryweather cast his eyes upon the luminary, he feigned to fly into a terrible passion, roundly rating the unfortunate attendant for presenting him with such a miserable fag-end of an old kitchen dip. Then taking the candle from the candlestick, he held the wretched stump up to the audience, and appealed to them whether it was not disgraceful that he, the great Wizard of the Western World, should be presented with such a paltry luminary.

"Why," he exclaimed, "I could eat a dozen such for lunch!"[Pg 207]

And, suiting the action to the word, blew out the light, and popped the offending morsel in his mouth, and quietly munched it up.

A subdued cry of horror echoed through the apartments, above which was heard the exclamation of Aunty Delluvian:

"If the man isn't crunching his candle!"

To those not familiar with it, this trick is certainly startling. The truth is that the candle in question is made out of a piece of apple, with a small peg cut from a nut or almond for a wick. The almond wick will light readily, and burn brightly for some time, so that the deception is perfect. These diagrams will show the form in which to[Pg 208] cut the candle and the wick, No. 1 representing the candle in its completed state, and No. 2 the wick before it is inserted.

The great wizard having completed his performances and retired into private life, even to the extent of handing cake round to the ladies and drinking a glass of wine himself, he mingled freely with the throng, but did not, however, unbend immediately, but smiled condescendingly when the ladies expressed admiration and surprise at the supernatural powers he had just displayed.

Aunty Delluvian continued to evince considerable disgust at our friend for eating the tallow candle, a feeling which found vent in utterance of the monosyllables:

"Finn! The Finn! The Finn!"

This good Aunty favored us with a narrative concerning an uncle of hers, who was a sea-captain, and once made a voyage to "Moscow!" It was a peculiarity, be it observed, of Aunty Delluvian, that she appeared to have uncles ready at hand for all emergencies. She told us that this uncle, when at the Sclavonic capital, invited some Russian officers on board his ship to dine. The dinner was of the most sumptuous description, but the Muscovites seemed to take but little interest in the repast, until something on deck happened to [Pg 209]call the host up-stairs; on his return he found all the guests looking more cheerful. They chatted pleasantly until the party broke up; and then, and not till then, he discovered that his friends, during his absence, had drunk all the oil out of the lamps, eaten six boxes of candles stowed away under the table, and had even devoured the shaving-soap off his dressing-table.


We had a faint recollection of having heard this story before, and quite pleased Aunty Delluvian by telling her so; she considered it quite a tribute to her uncle's popularity.

The second feature of the evening's programme was of a less cheerful character than the first, consisting of the display of a no more pleasing object than a bodyless head. Our illustration on next page will at once place the scene before our readers, bereft, however, of some of the grim features of the real spectacle; for, as we beheld it, there was the real flesh tint, and the eyes rolled fearfully.

Startling and complete as is the illusion in this case, it is very simply managed. Get some person with a high forehead and tolerably long hair, and paint under the eyes a pair of eyebrows, and on the forehead a nose and pair of moustaches, as represented in the annexed cut. Then make the person[Pg 210] lie down on his back under a table, in such a way that you can arrange a curtain so as to conceal all the body and half the face. Brush the hair out to resemble a beard, and you have a perfect representation of a bodyless head.

For painting the moustaches and eyebrows, Indian-ink or burnt cork will answer.

There is one advantage which the spectacle can boast of: it affords the ladies an opportunity for giving those sweet little musical shrieks which are so charming, and of being frightened generally—some ladies look very bewitching when they are frightened—besides giving ladies an excuse for clinging to gentlemen's arms, which is very pleasant for the gentlemen.[Pg 211]

Mr. Merryweather now introduced to our notice a young gentleman who was detailed to amuse us with some specimens of ventriloquism. We had no notion before this time, when our attention was particularly drawn to the subject, how much suitable action has to do with ventriloquial illusions. As performed before us by the young gentleman in question, whose name was Noddles, the deception was capital; but when the sounds were reproduced in a private room, without action, for our special instruction, we marvelled that any one could have been deluded by them. First of all, Mr. Noddles imitated the drawing of a cork. To give effect to this, he turned his back to the audience, and feigned to have a bottle between his knees. The method of doing this is so simple that we think we can almost describe it in words. First you make three or four chirps in succession, such as people are in the habit of making to birds; this sounds like driving in the corkscrew. Then you place your fore-finger in your mouth, and force it out so as to make a loud pop, which signifies that the cork is drawn. Then you smack your lips together, producing a sound something like "Pop—pop—pop—pop—pop—pop" rapidly, to imitate the wine bubbling from the bottle. Voilà tout!

After that, Mr. Noddles pretended to call to a[Pg 212] mason up the chimney, the mason answering in a husky voice from above, and finally proceeding with his work of knocking out a brick. The knocking was produced much in the same way as the pouring out the wine, by parting the lips suddenly; only, in the case of the brick, the note was in a deeper key, more resembling "Bubp—bubp—bubp—bubp." We noticed particularly that when the performer addressed the person up the chimney, he spoke with especial clearness, delivering the words, as much as possible, from the lips. This was in order to produce a strong contrast to the tones of the man up the chimney, which were produced far down in his own throat.

Another of his performances was to pretend that a dog was under the lounge, which refused to come out, and finally bit him when he tried to drag it out by the leg.

Still another consisted in imitating a man outside the door trying to force it open. Sometimes the supposed man would succeed in forcing the door a short way, when a gush of his loud voice would rush in, to be immediately cut short by the sudden closing of the door.

Mr. Noddles concluded his part of the entertainment by the performance of the jumping rabbit—the rabbit on this occasion being made out of a [Pg 213]lady's fur cuff tied up with a piece of string. This crude counterfeit of bunny he laid on the palm of his left hand, with one end resting against his fingers, as represented in the cut, while with the other hand he stroked and caressed it, saying at the same time, "Be still, bunny—don't run away; if you run away the dogs will catch you, and you will be made into chicken-pie, and your skin will be made into a fur cap and sold in the Bowery to—hallo! hold on! hi!" the latter exclamations being elicited by the rabbit jumping up his arm, while he struggled to capture it and bring it back with his right hand. The first jump made by the rabbit was[Pg 214] produced by a sharp jerk of the fingers, which sometimes sends him flying into the middle of the room with a most lifelike effect.

But now a more imposing portion of the programme claims our attention. A subdued jingling of bells is heard at the door, a few spasmodic bumps, and in trots the patron saint of the day—good Santa Claus, sleigh, reindeer, red cap, and all. (See next page.) It may not have been polite, but we could not help it, and greeted the good saint with an unrestrained roar of laughter. Surely never before was seen out of Noah's Ark such a comical steed, such legs, such proportions, and such a dislocated style of locomotion. No matter, he amused us more than a whole troop of the veritable article from Spitzbergen; and, as a simple act of justice between man and beast, we must admit that he propelled Santa Claus and his turn-out in a most efficient, not to say intelligent, style around the room. This was the Merryweather substitute for a Christmas-tree. Santa Claus came to distribute the Christmas-gifts—a task he performed with a discretion beyond his years. It is pleasing to record that no one, not even the dullest in the company, recognised Master Georgy in his disguise; but one and all, with admirable tact, feigned to be completely taken in, and fully believed that [Pg 215]they were receiving a visit from the good saint himself.


After the vulgaris pueris, the elephant, and other specimens of zoology, it is almost needless to explain how the reindeer was constructed. Our illustration seems almost superfluous; still, something may be made a little clearer by them; and to them we refer the reader who wishes to learn how to build a reindeer. In the case before us, the hide of the deer was made out of a pair of army blankets, purchased by Merryweather for five dollars in Chambers street—about the best material that could possibly be selected for the purpose. These he cut out and fitted himself, and had them sewed[Pg 216] on his wife's sewing-machine. The head and horns were made of thick brown paper, and here is the most difficult part of the animal to describe—not the most difficult to make, bear in mind. We hate long explanations, and yet we feel puzzled now, as we have often been before, to tell you how to make this reindeer mask. However, here goes: You require two or three sheets of thick brown paper, a bowl of paste (flour and water boiled), and a block of wood, from the wood-pile, of about six or seven inches in diameter. (See annexed cut.) You moisten one sheet of the paper slightly, and then mould it over the block; having done this, you smear the entire surface with paste, and mould another sheet [Pg 217]of paper over that; then you smear the second sheet over with paste, and mould a third sheet over all; then let them stand till dry. This, when dry, can be removed from the block, and will give you a hollow cone on which you can paint the eyes and mouth of the deer, and to which you can likewise paste the horns, as indicated in this diagram. It[Pg 218] may strike you that the diagram looks more like a bottle-nosed shark than the face of any denizen of the forest. You must not, however, be discouraged on this account; it will look all right when you get it in its proper place.

Need we add, that after this we had supper; when good-humor culminated in the grand old song of "Auld Lang Syne," all singing and joining hands round the table, down even to the little two and a half year old Dolly, whose auld lang syne dated no further back than two strawberry seasons. The idea of taking a "richt gude wully wut" with such a wee mite of a thing was so very comic that we all laughed right merrily, while Mrs. Merryweather, with tears in her eyes, clasped the child to her bosom as though she would protect it from some impending danger, possibly the approach of the monster "richt gude wully wut."

The ladies and children retired. And we gentlemen soothed our excited nerves with a quiet cigar in Mr. Merryweather's library.

[Pg 219]


We shall now amuse the fireside with a little song, or rather we will try to tell our friends how to gladden their own chimney-corners with the songs of birds through the long winter evenings. It will be pleasant when the wind is howling without among the snow-laden limbs of the trees, to be reminded of the gay summer by the counterfeit notes of the woodland songsters. Still, we must warn our readers, that to acquire the art thoroughly needs patience and perseverance; we can but tell them how to make and use the instrument, and the rest they must learn for themselves. First look at the annexed diagram, and then procure a leek and cut off from the green leaf thereof a piece about the size of the diagram; then lay it on a smooth table, and with the thumb-nail delicately scrape away a semicircular patch of the green pulpy sub[Pg 220]stance of the leaf (as represented in the diagram), being careful to leave the fine membrane or outer skin of the leaf uninjured—and there is the instrument complete. It may require several experiments to make the first one, but once having discovered the right way, they are very easily manufactured. The reader may not be aware of the fact that the leaf of the leek has a fine transparent outer skin which is quite tough, but by breaking and carefully examining one or two leaves, he will soon find out to what we allude.

The way of using this instrument is to place it in the roof of the mouth with the side on which is the membrane downwards; then press it gently in its place with the tongue, and blow between the tongue and the upper teeth. After the first two or three attempts, you will be able to produce a slight sound like a mild grunt; then as you practise it you will find that you can prolong and vary the sound somewhat, so that in the course of a couple of days you can imitate the barking of a dog and the neighing of a horse. With two or three weeks' practice, you[Pg 221] will be able to imitate some of the song-birds; but to produce exact counterfeits of the best singing-birds will probably require months of study; the result, however, will reward you for all your pains; for certainly to be able to carry a mocking-bird, canary, thrush, cat-bird, and sucking-pig in your vest-pocket is no small accomplishment.

When not using the instrument, it should be kept in a glass of water to prevent its drying.

[Pg 222]


Those tranquil moods of which we have twice spoken come over us with still increasing frequency. Little Pickle is certainly a very smart boy. We are giving him lessons in drawing; he comes on rapidly, but requires a great deal of attention. Our time passes peaceably enough in study and contemplation. Nix has procured us some more works of Brahminical lore. It is a curious religion, that of the Hindoos, resembling in many points Christianity. Nix declares, in his good-natured way, that we are more than half converted already, and threatens to send a missionary to reason us back from heathenism, as we need a minister badly. He is an exceedingly good-natured fellow is Nix, though a little broad, perhaps, at times, in his style of jocularity. Our readers are probably not aware that there is a certain form of vulgar humor known as a sell, which consists in inducing[Pg 223] some person to ask you a question, and then giving some idiotic answer in reply. The other day Nix overtook us in Broadway. After talking a few minutes he exclaimed:

"Oh, by the way, I have a note for you," at the same time feeling vigorously in his pockets.

"When did you get it? Who is it from?" we inquired, with some earnestness, for we were expecting a letter from some one.

"Don't know—don't know," he replied, continuing to fumble in his pockets. "Ah, here it is."

At the same time grasping one hand, he placed in it an oat—one seed of the grain upon which horses and Scotchmen are fed.

Nix laughed boisterously, and told us we were sold. We don't see very much fun in it.

We have spent another pleasant evening at the Adams'. We mentioned in a recent chapter making some preparations for a little party they were about to give. Well, it went off very pleasantly indeed; there were no hitches and no awful pauses. Indeed, our own pleasure would have been unalloyed had it not been for the presence of one officious person with large whiskers, who (there are always one or more such persons in every assembly) obtruded his attentions too much on the ladies; we observed that Bud, amongst[Pg 224] others, was quite embarrassed by them. She was too well bred, however, to allow him to perceive her vexations, though I must say I think there is is such a thing as carrying complaisance and self-abnegation too far.

The scientific gentleman with gold spectacles was there, and had an electrical novelty for us which attracted much attention. At first we supposed the gentleman named was giving Little Pickle lessons in skating, for he was directing that youth's movements as he shuffled up and down the hearth-rug in his slippered feet. Rather jealous for the credit of our pupil, we informed the spectacles that there was nothing in the way of skating he could teach Master Pickle, he being already a proficient in that art. To which he only replied:

"Put your knuckle to his nose."

Rather staggered by this request, which savored somewhat of the ruder style of badinage, and the very last thing we expected from the decorous gentleman of science, we replied, with just a shade of hauteur:


"Put your knuckle to his nose."

"Really, I do not comprehend you."

"Put your finger to his nose and you will get a shock."[Pg 225]

All this time Little Pickle was sliding and slithering up and down the rug in a manner highly calculated to wear out that costly piece of furniture.

"You perceive," continued spectacles, in an explanatory way, "that he has slippers on his feet. By keeping his feet in close contact with the rug, and rubbing them violently up and down, he generates electricity in his body to such an extent that he can transmit quite a sensible shock to another person.[A] Now try!"

We tried. Tick! A most unmistakable spark passed from the nose of L. P. to our knuckle.

The guests now began to crowd round, applying their knuckles to the poor boy's nose to that extent that it grew quite red, which, combined with a trifling unsteadiness his legs acquired from the unusual exertion, gave the dear boy quite a groggy appearance. Indeed, we observed his mother soon after draw him towards her and, stooping down, whisper something in his ear, at which he colored up, shook his head, and replied quickly, "No, only lemonade."

The scientific person, who was really a very amiable gentleman after all, taught us during the evening to make quite a curious little toy—to wit, [Pg 226]a miniature camera. Having enlisted the services of Little Pickle, he procured a small pill-box, a minute fragment about half an inch square of broken looking-glass, and a fragment of beeswax. He first bored a small hole in the centre of the lid of the pill-box and another in the side; he then, with the aid of the beeswax, stuck the piece of the mirror across the bottom of the box at an angle of forty-five degrees to the axis of the disc of the box, so that by looking through one hole he could see objects through the other hole, thus enabling a person to look behind him. We feel that this description is not very clear, and yet for the life of us we do not know how to make it clearer. The best plan for the reader will be to look well at the diagrams showing the inside and outside of the camera, get the wax, glass, and pill-box, and then potter about with them till he gets it right.

Camera led the conversation in our corner of the[Pg 227] room to the subject of optical illusions, when some one of course suggested the hat experiment. There is probably nothing the proportions of which are so deceptive as a hat. Reader, if you have never tried the experiment, take a stick and point out on the wall how high you think a hat would reach from the floor if placed on its crown, as represented in our sketch.

Aunty Delluvian, the first to try, took the stick and boldly measured off a distance of between two and three feet, and utterly laughed to scorn the moderate persons who satisfied themselves with ten inches. After each of the measurements was marked with a pencil, and the hat itself put beside[Pg 228] them, showing every one to be wrong, Aunty's amazement knew no bounds. Indeed, she would not be satisfied till we brought our own hat to convince her that some deception had not been practised.

This was Aunty Delluvian's first visit to the Adams', having only recently been introduced through the agency of Nix. I was, therefore, not unprepared for some criticism on our friends; but when the good lady, towards the close of the evening, took us to one side and said confidentially and emphatically, nodding her head at the same time knowingly, "No flippery, flummery. I like her!" we were a little surprised, the statement was so emphatic and yet so vague. That was all she said, walking away briskly when she had so delivered herself, as though she had rendered a final verdict. To which of the family did she refer? To Mrs. Adams, we presume, and yet she might have said something about the other members of the family. She is a queer creature is Aunty Delluvian.

We are disposed to think that the ART of entertaining is rarely if ever regarded as an ART, and certainly never treated as such. We, however, on this occasion, laid our plans and arranged our forces with as much care and skill as a general [Pg 229]exercises in laying out a campaign. We have as profound a respect for a good commissary as ever did Napoleon Bonaparte. We had our reserve, too, and our signal corps, so that should the battle waver at any moment, it might be immediately set going again. Amongst other resources, we had a number of surprise pictures concealed in a certain place, which were to be produced when occasion might require. One of these will be found on opposite page, and comprises fifteen faces in one. Pictures of this kind always amuse, and are fine provocatives of conversation.


Reader, when you give a party, do not bring your entire force into action at first; always have a reserve to fall back upon.

We saw a whole group which was showing alarming symptoms of demoralization rallied with a pocket-handkerchief. Nix saw the emergency, drew his handkerchief, tied one end round the tip of his finger, on which, with a few dots of the pen, he had indicated a comic face, and threw himself into the dispirited crew, exclaiming:

"This is Rantepolefungus, the mysterious magician of Morocco." Then, in a feigned voice:

"How do, pretty ladee and gentlemen? Me tell fortune, work spell, makee incantation. Me tell you fortune, pretty missee; you be, by-a-by, sixt wife [Pg 230]great street contractor; favorite wife, he givee dust-cart full of greeny-back; much lovee you; cut off head of all other wife, makee you much happy; he givee you large gold ring big's flour-[Pg 231]barrel to wear in your nosee, and six whiskey cocktails every morning. Pretty ladee, give great magician buckshees," and a whole string of other nonsense, the little Moor moving his head and hands all the time, suiting the action to the words.

The sketches opposite will show how the Moor is made.

As we walked home with Nix, smoking our cigars, we agreed that the party had been managed with consummate generalship. As we parted, he asked us if we should like to have a small statue of Vishnu? Wonder what he meant.

[A] The spark emitted is sufficiently powerful to light a jet of gas.

[Pg 232]


Those red and green lights which lend such a glory to the final tableaux of fairy pieces on the public stage, can easily be introduced into private parlor performances. There is no danger in using them; they are quite inexpensive, and very easily managed. Warning, however, should be given to all asthmatic persons to vacate the ranch before firing off, as their fumes are apt to produce unpleasant results. When we first performed the play of Bullywingle the Beloved, the red light was calculated on as a startling feature of the performance. At the proper moment the match was applied, the combustibles behaved handsomely, everybody was entranced, all save one unfortunate gentleman, subject to asthma, who created quite a sensation by rushing out of the house in a choking condition,[Pg 233] and remaining speechless in the snow for over twenty minutes.

The mode of working these lights is to place one of the powders, for which we shall presently give you prescriptions, in an iron shovel, and apply a lighted match. The powder will begin to burn slowly, emitting a bright red or green light, accompanied by volumes of smoke. Before exhibiting these lights, all others in the room, gas or lamps, should be turned down as low as possible.

If the operator stands behind the scenes, so as to be out of sight during the performance, the effect is what Artemus Ward would call Trooly Grand.

In order to procure the lights, go to some druggist and give him the following prescriptions. He will procure the necessary materials and mix them for you.


Forty parts of dry nitrate of strontian, thirteen parts of finely powdered sulphur, five parts of chlorate of potash, and four parts of sulphuret of antimony. The chlorate of potash and sulphuret of antimony should be powdered separately in a mortar, and then mixed together on paper; after which they may be added to the other ingredients, previously powdered and mixed.

[Pg 234]


Green fire, when burned in a reflector, sheds a beautiful light on all surrounding objects. Take of flour of sulphur thirteen parts, of nitrate of baryta seventy-seven, of oxymuriate of potassa five, of metallic arsenic two, of charcoal three. The nitrate of baryta should be well dried and powdered; it should then be mixed with the other ingredients, all finely pulverized, and the whole triturated until perfectly blended together. A little calamine may be occasionally added, in order to make the compound slower of combustion; and it is above all things requisite that the rubbing together of the materials should be continued until they are completely mixed.

It may so happen that in some of your parlor theatricals you may wish to introduce a storm, so we will tell you how to manage it.

There are several elements in a storm which can be counterfeited.



The sound of rain or hail.



The noise of thunder is produced by shaking a[Pg 235] sheet of iron behind the scenes. The sheet should be about three feet square, and can be procured at any stove store.

Snow can be represented by throwing handfuls of small scraps of paper from above.

It is best to mount on a chair or step-ladder behind the scenes, and strew them down in the proper direction. The scraps of paper should be of course white and torn, not cut, of the requisite size.

The sound of rain or hail is produced thus: Get the carpenter to make for you a box, from eight to twelve feet in length, and of about four inches inside diameter; put in a couple of handfuls of dried peas, and then fasten up the box; when you wish to make rain, tilt up one end of the box and let the peas run down to the other end, then reverse the box and let them run back again. As long as you continue to do this you will have an excellent imitation of rain, at least as far as the sound is concerned.

Lightning is imitated by having a lamp in a box; whenever you want to produce a flash, open the lid suddenly and close it again. Of course all the other lights in the room must have been previously lowered.

Wind. Sufficient wind to blow about the flakes[Pg 236] of snow can be produced with a very large fan, a wooden frame with calico stretched over it being as good as anything. But to simulate the effects of a gale, some other means must be adopted.

We will assume that the curtain rises on a storm scene; thunder and hail are heard, and fitful flashes of lightning illumine the landscape. Enter a wandering female, a little girl, we will presume, in search of shelter; as she walks on to the stage leaning[Pg 237] forward as though struggling against the blast, her shawl and dress are violently agitated by the wind. To produce this effect attach two or three strong threads to the garments named, and at the proper time jerk and pull them with a tremulous motion, to impart the natural action. The preceding diagram will illustrate our meaning.

These instructions may be found useful to amateur players, and will certainly heighten the effect of the performance when they can be introduced.

There is another point in connection with make-up to which we may as well call the reader's attention before closing this chapter. All persons, no matter how ruddy their complexions may be, look pale or sallow under the influence of the bright light necessary to illuminate a stage; to counteract this effect it is absolutely necessary to rouge, or in other words, paint the cheeks pink; a little carmine from your paint-box will serve for this purpose, if you have not the regular rouge powder on hand.

[Pg 238]


It is marvellous how much amusement, in a quiet way, can be got out of a pair of scissors and a piece of card-board. Moreover, if the fingers be plump and white, we know of no position in which they look more tantalizingly bewitching, than when harnessed like a couple of white mice in the iron yoke of a pair of liliputian shears. We have passed many a pleasant evening in contemplating and cutting. On one occasion which we remember well, as it led to sudden and unexpected matrimony of a valued friend, we sat till twelve o'clock at night and used up a whole pack of cards, except the jack of diamonds, in making boomerangs and other mechanical notions. The boomerang we have already introduced to our readers, and some of the other contraptions we shall now proceed to explain. So scare up all the cards you can, and bring out your army of scissors.[Pg 239]

One card puzzle we have often tried, and with which most persons are familiar, is that of the cross. You cut out of card or stiff paper, five pieces similar in shape and size to the following, viz. one piece of fig. 1, one piece of fig. 2, and three pieces of fig. 3.[Pg 240]

These five pieces you put together so as to make a cross like Figure 4.

If you cannot solve the problem, look at the following cut, and you will cease to be puzzled.

Now we will try another card puzzle. Cut a piece of card or paper in the shape of a horse-shoe, and mark on it the places for the nails as represented in the subjoined sketch.[Pg 241]

The puzzle is with two cuts to divide it into six parts, each part containing one nail.

Of course you cannot do it; we could not do it ourselves, and had to get the white mice to show us the way.

Somehow or another we never can find out anything with half a dozen taper fingers fluttering before our eyes. They bewilder us terribly, getting between the feet of our ideas, so to speak, and tripping us up; as young lambs might serve an awkward shepherd.

Well, the mystery is solved thus: you cut off the upper circular part, containing two of the nails; then by changing the position of the piece, another cut will divide the horse-shoe into six portions, each containing one nail.

The next trick is of a slightly different style. Cut two pieces of card like those represented in the diagram and place them in the position represented;[Pg 242] the problem is, with a small stick or lead-pencil, to raise them from the table, without of course touching them with your fingers. You may try this as often as you like. If you succeed, well and good; if you do not, you can come back here and refer to the solution.

Here is a picture (No. 2) representing the way in which it is done; need we add anything in the way of explanation? We think not—so we won't do it.

[Pg 243]


Nix has a sister married to a wealthy leather merchant, whose place of business is in that odoriferous part of New York city called The Swamp. She is very beautiful, so we call her the Swamp Angel, and her husband's counting-house, Araby the Blest. Her children we have christened Findings, the youngest being always spoken of as the last. We have numerous jokes, of course, about the cobbler sticking to his last, the best quality of calf, and so on. She is very good-natured, and enjoys our badinage heartily, having a healthy vein of fun of her own, which transmutes all the little events of domestic life into the most refined humor. We like humor in a woman, or we should rather say in a gentlewoman; her culture and the natural tact peculiar to her sex, seem to eliminate any of those grosser particles which the coarse sensibilities of[Pg 244] a man would not detect. Humor is as fascinating in a woman as sarcasm is abominable; it requires the very highest breeding to make the latter quality moderately safe in the hands of young women. For our own part, we would rather see a woman chew tobacco than hear her say sharp things. However, this is a digression. Mrs. Crofton, as we said, is very fond of fun, and in her house there is that perfect ease and abandon which can only be enjoyed by well-bred people; whoever visits there is at home; and a favored few, of whom the writer has the honor of being one, are treated quite as enfants de famille.

If, on calling, we find the heads of the house from home, we know where the claret and cigars are kept. Cicero, the negro waiter, obeying standing orders, promptly serves up some repast, and presses the hospitality of the house upon us with all the aplomb and grace for which his race are remarkable.

We drop into breakfast whenever we feel so disposed, and invite ourselves to dinner or tea as freely as though our friends kept a hotel; indeed we jocularly call their mansion by various public names: "The Crofton House," "Fifth Avenue Hotel," "The Shoe and Leather House," etc., etc. We have perpetrated more sheer, downright non[Pg 245]sense in their saloons than any forty strait-laced country school-children ever condescended to commit in their rural play-ground.

One day during the holidays, when some fourteen or fifteen friends had dropped in quite promiscuous, and were playing all kinds of tricks, a certain gentleman, imported from England, an officer in the Guards, genus Swell, "pwoposed" that we should play the Muffin man. As none of us had ever heard of this gentleman or the muffin business, there was a general cry for light.

"Oh, its vewy jolly, I asshua yaw. We all sit wound in a wing, yaw know, and one of us, yaw know, sings:

"'Do yaw know the muffin man,
Do yaw know his name,
Do yaw know the muffin man,
That lives in Cwumpet Lane.'

Then the next person answers:

"'Oh, yes, I know the muffin man,
Oh, yes, I know the muffin man,
Oh, yes, I know the muffin man,
Who lives in Cwumpet[A] Lane.'

Then he turns to the next person, and when each[Pg 246] person has sung his verse, yaw know, he then joins in the cawus,[B] until it has gone all wound;[C] then, yaw know, we all sing together:

"'We all know the muffin man,
We all know his name;
We all know the muffin man,
Who lives in Cwumpet Lane.'

The game is, yaw know, to keep a gwave[D] face all the time. If yaw laugh yaw pay a forfeit."

"The muffin man, the muffin man," echoed half a dozen voices; "let us play the muffin man."

The proposition being carried nem. con., we all sat "wound in a wing," or round in a ring, a circle of individuals of every age from three up to seventy. The Englishman, as head instigator, started the game, but before he got half through his verse we were all in convulsions of laughter; the next person took it up, but it was utterly useless to think of collecting the forfeits; we were all, in spite of every effort, like a party of maniacs reeling in our seats with merriment. There was something so utterly idiotic and absurd in a large party of respectable, rational beings, congratulating themselves in song that they "knew the muffin man of Crumpet Lane."

[Pg 247]

The English swell was immediately made an honorary member of our order, which is, as yet, without a name.

As we had all laughed our throats dry, Mr. Crofton invited us into the next room to see a man, as the Immortal Artemus delicately expresses it, so we all went in and saw the man. Some of us saw him in ice claret, some in hot punch, and some in cool champagne. One of Crofton's children, a maiden aged three years, whom they called Toney, as the diminutive of her Christian name, Antonia, came toddling in with the rest and said:

"Me, Nooni, want see man." Whereupon her father gave her a goblet of lemonade. She just tasted it, and handed it back with supreme contempt, saying:

"Me, Nooni, want banny wasser;" which being translated into English means:

"Me, Toney, wants brandy and water."

The little voluptuary was satisfied with a glass of weak claret punch.

During this conversation, Bub, a patriarch of five years, who had been looking on with a very patronizing air, now came forward, and laying his hand on his sister's shoulder, lisped out:

"Oh, you tunnen witty sing, zats nice banny water." Then turning to us in a confidential way,[Pg 248] he continued: "She's a witty durl (little girl); she finks (thinks) zats banny water; banny water make witty durls fick (sick); me, big boy, banny water not make me fick."

We gave him a nondescript drink, flavored with every liquor on the table, which made him feel immensely proud.

"Let us play at earth, air, fire, and water," said Mrs. Crofton.

"Very well, Toney," answered her husband. "You can play at earth, and I will play with the fire-water." So saying, he filled himself a glass of punch, and stretched his limbs in an easy-chair.

"I think my husband is the laziest fellow living," laughed Mrs. Crofton. "I do believe if I were being carried off by wild Indians, he would make a note of it in his memorandum book, to have his porter attend to the matter next day."

Nix here interposed: "Dear, dear, these family quarrels are very painful. Come, Toney, and help to amuse the young people. Earth, air, fire, and water, whatever that may be, is the order of the day. How do you play it, Toney?"

"You all sit round the room, and then one of the party throws something at one of the others, at the same time naming one of the elements, earth, or air, or fire, or water; then he begins to count one,[Pg 249] two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, and before he says ten, the person struck must name some animal living in the element chosen."

"Well, but what do you throw at the person?" inquired Nix; "a bureau, or decanter, for instance?"

"No, no; something small and soft, like a pair of gloves, or—or—oh, I know, wait a minute and I will run up-stairs and get the baby's worsted ball; that will be just the thing."

While Mrs. Crofton was absent, and she was detained rather longer than her mission seemed to warrant, Nix, in poking about in his sister's work-basket in pursuit of mischief, discovered a piece of white beeswax.

"Eureka!" he exclaimed, "I have it; we will play Toney a trick before she comes back; we will make her think some one has broken her new mirror."

Saying this, he advanced to a large pier-glass between the windows, and marked on it a huge star with the white wax something like the accompanying diagram, and then instructed one or two of us to make lamentations over it when his sister should return. We had not to wait long: in a few minutes Mrs. C. entered the room, whereupon we conspirators set to work gesticulating, and talking over the supposed catastrophe.[Pg 250]

"Dear! dear!" said one, "how unfortunate!"

"How did it happen?" queried a second.

"I really don't know," answered a third. "I merely heard a crash, and——"

Here the lady came on the scene, looking quite flushed.

"I knew you children would be in some mischief," she said, "while I was away. I suppose this is some of my clumsy brother's work. He never comes into the house without destroying something."

"I'm very sorry," whined Nix, contritely; "it was quite an accident, I assure you; but I wonder whether it could not be mended?"

"Mended! you goose," exclaimed his sister.[Pg 251] "Who ever heard of mending a broken mirror! It will take a pretty big cheque on your banker to mend that, sir."

"I am not so sure of that," replied Nix. "If it is not very bad I might——any way I will try." Suiting the action to the words, he advanced towards the mirror in such a position that his sister could not see what he did, and very deliberately wiped out the wax marks with his pocket-handkerchief. The astonishment of Mrs. C. at this miracle knew no bounds, nor could the gift of any amount of new pier-glasses have given her more pleasure.

"Now, then, all take your seats; we are going to play earth, air, fire, and water."

The circle is formed; our hostess holds the woollen ball poised in her hand for an instant, and then sends it flying into the bosom of a grey-haired old gentleman, at the same time uttering the word "air," and commencing to count rapidly, "one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten." The old gentleman seemed utterly paralysed until she had finished counting, when he stammered out, "Wh—h—h—h—h—Pig!" amidst the roars of laughter of every one present. Of course he had to pay a forfeit, and took his turn at throwing the ball.

No one who has not seen this game played can conceive how ludicrous it is, or how much[Pg 252] good wholesome laughter may be got out of it. When a sufficient number of forfeits had accumulated, they were cried in the usual manner. A good deal of ingenuity was displayed in awarding the tasks as well as in executing them. One was that the owner of this "pretty thing" should make an impromptu containing the names of every one in the room, and was managed in the following style:

"Three Howards—Corsey, Toney, Archibald, and Nix,
Bub, Brown, Campbell, Jim and Jane have got me in a fix."

Another task imposed was, that the owner of a cigar-case should give us a riddle no one could solve. Going into the next room, this person procured a glass of wine, and holding it up said: "Gentlemen, I give you 'the ladies.'" No one attempted to solve this riddle. Another gentleman was ordered to point out the greatest goose in the room. This delicate task he set about performing in the following manner: he went to one young lady and asked her to hold up her face to the light, which she did, whereupon he imprinted a chaste salute on her lips; he then went to the next, but she persisted in holding down her head. He then turned round to his tasker and said: "Really it is impossible for me to determine which are the geese if they[Pg 253] will not allow me to examine their bills." He was let off.

When all the forfeits were restored, even to little Toney's pocket-handkerchief, which she recovered by throwing herself into her papa's arms and hugging him round the neck, as the prettiest, and wittiest, and one she loved best, we all adjourned to broiled oysters and chicken salad.

[A] This word means Crumpet.

[B] This word means Chorus.

[C] Round.

[D] Grave.

[Pg 254]


A few days ago when the blistering sun had converted the whole of New York city into one vast bake-oven, Nix called at our office, and proposed a flying trip to a certain watering-place. We will not mention its name for fear of incurring the suspicion of writing puffs. It was, however, sufficiently unfashionable to be tolerably comfortable. In order to reach our destination we took an early steamboat, leaving New York at six o'clock in the morning. With what intense satisfaction we became conscious of possessing lungs as we inhaled the cool air which had been washing itself all night in the great waves of the Atlantic ocean, or sleeping among the pine-woods of Delaware and New Jersey. There is nothing surely which makes one feel more grateful for the gift of life than to breathe the early morning air, laden with the perfume of[Pg 255] salt-water. On this occasion the bracing atmosphere gave a relish to everything. The crisp broiled ham, the clam-fritters, and even the miserable coffee we had for breakfast on board, all tasted like food worthy of the gods. And as for our cigars (genuine Havanas) which followed the meal, their incense fairly sent us up to the seventh heaven of delight. But our business is to write on the Art of Amusing, and although an early steamboat trip may be one of the most enjoyable of things, it scarcely comes within the sphere of our work.

When we arrived at the hotel, we found the lady guests were in process of organizing a fair for the benefit of the sufferers by the great Portland fire.

Nix rushed into the enterprise with his usual enthusiasm; and by that evening, when the fair commenced, had fully qualified himself to start in business as a Three-sticks-a-penny-man. This plebeian pastime he had picked up at some English race or fair he had once visited, and now attempted with considerable success to acclimatize in America. His first step was to go to the village store and purchase a number of penknives, jack-knives, pincushions, tobacco-boxes, and similar contraptions. His second care was to cut half-a-dozen hickory-sticks or wands, of about four feet six inches in length, and of the thickness of your[Pg 256] middle finger—that is, if you are blest with as spacious a paw as ourself; if not, we feel at a loss how to convey to your mind an approximate idea of the measurement. But suppose you take any healthy Irish day-laborer, and make his third finger the standard, not the part where the knobs are, but the spaces between them. Well, Nix cut six sticks of about the thickness of a healthy Irish day-laborer's third finger, in the spaces between the joints or knobs. He then cut a dozen other sticks of about the thickness of anybody's wrist, and about two feet long. Good! When he wished to commence operations on the fair-ground he selected a piece of level turf, and on one side of it dug six holes about the size of the late Daniel Webster's hat; these holes he half filled with sand, and in the centre of every hole he then stuck one of the sticks of about the thickness of a healthy Irish, etc., etc. Then on the top of each stick he balanced a jack-knife, pin-cushion, or some other object of more or less value. Now all his preparations were completed. He was prepared to receive customers. Standing in a commanding attitude, at a distance of about thirty feet from the arrangement we have described, he cried out in truly English style:

"Now, ladies and gents, ere yer are—three sticks a penny. Any lady or gent wishin to make[Pg 257] a immediate fortin, and marry the being of his art on the result, have only to invest a few dollars in my establishment, and he will retire wealthy in arf a nour. Here, ladies and gents, look at these ere sticks" (holding up one of the clubs about the thickness of anybody's wrist), "hall you ave to do is to throw one of these ere at them there" (pointing to the pincushions, etc.); "hany article you knock orf is yourn, provided it don't fall inter the ole. Now, all I charge you for the priviledge orf throwin' three of these sticks, is the radicerlously small sum of ten cents. You are sure to win five dollars each time. Now, walk up; walk up, and take yer chance, and make yer everlastin fortin; marry the hobject of yer haffections, and build yer pallatial willa on the Udson."

Here a courageous youth stepped up, examined the whole arrangement minutely, and concluded to invest ten cents. Fortunately for Nix and the cause this youth knocked off a dollar jack-knife at the first throw. The consequence was an immense rush of patronage; indeed, the sport became so exciting that two similar establishments could have been kept in active operation. As it was, Nix cleared fifty-four dollars over and above all expenses for the good of the fair, and the benefit of the poor folks of Portland.[Pg 258]

One of Nix's most profitable customers was a good-natured flashy young man of the wholesale dry-goods pattern, who appeared each day in some new shade of mustard-colored clothing, from the delicate yellow of freshly mixed pure Durham to the rich tones of stale German. He told us in confidence that he had intended to go to Saratoga, but the old gentleman and old lady (his father and mother) had insisted on his coming down with them to "this d——d hole;" then, suddenly recollecting that we had all probably come from chance, he added:

"Oh, this is a very nice place; first-rate; I don't say anything about that, only I had a party of friends going up to Saratoga, and they'll expect me; they know there's always fun going on where I am. It don't make any difference to me whether I spend fifty dollars or five hundred. I'm bound to have a good time. I appreciate anything; tha's—anything, you know—tha's got any wit into it, you know. Well, you know, there are some people who ain't got any idea; don't seem to appreciate, you know. Now, when I saw you throwin' sticks, well, I piled right in; I didn't care about it, of course, only I saw what you were doing it for, and I didn't care. Some people would think it awful vulgar, you know, but I don't care; that's the sort of man I[Pg 259] am. Perhaps I shouldn't have liked some of my aristocratic lady friends to have seen me; but then down here, you know. Oh, I'd just as lief have given the money to the fair; I'd spent thirty dollars before in slippers and things, and then gave 'em back. I didn't want 'em, you know, only I like to see things lively; there's bound to be fun when I'm round."

However, we will not follow our good-natured friend through his long monologue of refined egotism; we merely introduced him because he showed us a variety of tricks, two of which we think worth recording in our book on amusements. On the morning after the fair, Nix and ourself, in company with the mustard-colored aristocrat, took a bath in the ocean. The aristocrat appeared in the water attired in a sumptuous bathing dress, smoking a cigar which he told us cost $800 per thousand; which, he frankly confessed, he thought too high a price for a man to pay for cigars in these times. He further stated that he relished smoking in the water very much. To our inquiry whether there was no danger of the waves putting it out, he replied by informing us that he could dive under water with a lighted cigar in his mouth without extinguishing it.

"D'you see that boat there?" he said, pointing to[Pg 260] a small scow about a hundred and fifty yards distant. "Well, I will dive under that; you watch me, and you will see me come up." We thought there must be some hoax in the matter, and so kept a strict eye upon his movements. He swam out to the craft, gave a plunge and a kick, after the manner of ducks in a pond, disappeared, and came up on the other side, calmly puffing his weed. Never having seen or heard of the feat before, Nix and ourself were what the ancient Greeks used to call flabbergasterd. When he had enjoyed his triumph and our bewilderment for a few minutes, he showed us how it was done; simply by putting the lighted end of the cigar in his mouth just before going under water, that was all. He added: "I will show you something better if you will come up to the shooting-gallery after we get through bathing. Did you ever see a man ring the bell with his back to the target?"

Arrived at the shooting-gallery, our young friend procured a mirror which he hung on the wall opposite the target, then placing himself in front of the former, with his back to the latter, he held the pistol over his shoulder and took aim, looking at the image of the pistol in the glass as if it were the pistol itself; that is, in such a manner that the reflection of the object was covered by the reflec[Pg 261]tion of the pistol; he then fired, and came within an inch of the bull's-eye.

When we got back to the hotel he amused us by setting fire to a glass of alcohol with a burning glass. He placed a silver dollar (a red cent would have answered as well) in the spirit, and then directed the rays of the sun through the burning-glass on the metal; in an instant the liquid was all ablaze.

In the afternoon this same youth called us all to enjoy a trick he had played upon the old gentleman.

The old gentleman, it appeared, was engaged in reading Macaulay's History of England, and like a methodical old gentleman, whenever he laid down the book, marked the place where he left off. On the day in question his son had abstracted his book from its accustomed place, and painted on the page following the one he was, reading a very excellent imitation of a fly. At his usual hour the old gentleman was seen to put on his spectacles, and take up the book; all those in the secret were of course on hand; presently he came to the passage on which appeared the counterfeit fly; the old gentleman shook the book, but the fly stirred not; then he blew at it; then he laid down the volume, and deliberately taking out his handkerchief, made a pass at the offending insect with that weapon, replaced his handkerchief, settled his glasses, took[Pg 262] up the book again, but to his utter surprise the fly still remained. A light seemed now to dawn on him—the fly had got crushed between the leaves—so he essayed to remove it with his finger-nail; here his hopeful offspring could stand it no longer, and burst into a roar of laughter, in which several others joined. When the joke was explained to the worthy victim, he said: "Now, that's very good, isn't it; very good. I made sure it was a real fly, as true as you live. Look here, wife; look at this, some of Master Tom's doing; good, ain't it; as true as you live, that's a fact. Ah! Ha!"[A]

Later in the evening Young Hopeful horrified a circle of ladies by discovering at their feet a huge spider; in the midst of their shrieks and exclamations a courageous gentleman with large whiskers stepped forward to crush the intruder, raised his foot, and brought it down firmly, but staggered back astounded—the creature had exploded with a loud report, conveying an idea of vindictiveness and power truly appalling. The young gentleman took us aside and explained the mystery, at the same time producing from his pocket a small box containing some half-dozen similar spiders.

"I have them made on purpose for me," he said.[Pg 263] "A German porter in our store first put me up to it, and I told him to set to work and make me as many as he liked, and charge me any price he chose. I tell ye, that Dutchman thinks I'm a great boy. I pay him about five dollars a week for spiders; well, you know, that's a good deal for a man like him; only gets twelve dollars a week in the store."

We examined the specimen carefully, and found it was constructed very much on the plan of the torpedoes used by children on the Fourth of July; only the paper was brown and a little thicker, and there were legs of fine wire attached, which gave it a very lifelike and spidery appearance. The Dutchman had evidently gone into the matter con amore, for he had taken the pains to wash some of his specimens with gum, and then sprinkle them with wool-dust to produce the appearance of what are called hairy spiders. About one-third of a grain of fulminating silver produces the explosion in each. They are very easily made.

As we steamed back to the great city of New York next day, Nix said he thought we had made a very good investment of three red-hot days of mid-summer time. We thought so, too.

[A] We have since seen a somewhat similar trick played by painting a fly on the face of a watch or inside the glass.

[Pg 264]


We are not a great advocate for arithmetical puzzles as a pastime for festive occasions, that is to say not as a general rule; but there are certain tricks of figures which are quite amusing, and some few problems which from their very simplicity become almost ludicrous. We have seen many a tolerably wise head puzzled over the question:

"If a barrel of flour cost thirty-nine dollars thirteen and three quarter cents, what will a penny loaf come to?"

And consume considerable time and paper without discovering the obvious fact, that a penny loaf will of course come to a penny and nothing else.

We remember, too, an amiable Divine, who tortured his dear old head for three-quarters of an hour to solve the question:

"If a shovel, poker, and tongs, cost thirteen[Pg 265] dollars forty-three and a quarter cents, what will a ton of coals come to?"

And when informed that they would come to ashes, he seemed to feel quite hurt; and indeed, to labor for some time under a sense of having been trifled with. When told that it was merely a joke, a little fun, he replied that he was a great admirer of Don Quixote, could appreciate Gil Bias, and relished exceedingly the wit of Swift and Sterne; but failed to perceive the particular humor of our joke about the ton of coals.

With all due respect for the estimable prelate, we must venture to differ from him, fortified as we are in our opinion by a young lady, who, if not a divine herself, has a pair of eyes that are, in whose company we have solved some of the most intricate arithmetical jocularities and trivialities, till we were up to the eyes in ink and love. One we well remember, partly because it gave us so much trouble, and partly because there was a wild picturesqueness about the subject which appeals to our imagination. It ran thus:

A man has a wolf, a goat, and a cabbage, to carry over a river, but he can only convey them one at a time, his boat being very small. How is he to manage this, so that the wolf may not be left alone with the goat, nor the goat with the cabbage? It[Pg 266] is obvious if the wolf be left with the goat, he will eat it up; whilst if the goat be left with the cabbage, short work will be made of that classic vegetable.

Oh, how often we crossed and recrossed that river; how often we took the goat out, and put the wolf in; and how frequently we took out the wolf, and put in the goat. How we trembled for the poor man, fearing there could be no alternative for him but to sacrifice either the goat or the cabbage, or else kill the wolf. How varied and wild were our expedients, such as throwing the wolf across, sending the cabbage round by express, digging a tunnel under the bed of the river, forcing the proprietor to eat the cabbage himself, towing the goat behind the boat, and other devices too numerous to mention, all of which we were assured, by those holding the key to the mystery, were altogether inadmissible; and then when, with humbled pride, we reluctantly gave it up, how mad we were at the simplicity of the solution, which was this:

He first takes over the goat, and then returns for the wolf; he then takes back the goat, which he leaves, and takes over the cabbage, he then returns and takes over the goat All as simple as A, B, C, when you know how to do it; that knowing how to do it is the great difficulty in ninety-nine out of every hundred things in this world.[Pg 267]

Puzzles which involve long and laborious calculation are not in our line; they are too suggestive of the school and the country room. Something like the following is good for skirmishing:


Put down four nines, so that they will make one hundred.

After a short struggle you surrender at discretion, and in an instant get the



There is no delay, no tedious figuring up; you get your answer and are ready for something fresh. Some such abstruse calculation as the following, for instance:


If a herring and a half cost three cents, how many will you get for a dollar?

To ladies, who as a general rule have not the organ of calculation very largely developed, this will usually prove a poser. As the problem is to be solved by patience and study, we will leave them to do it, or give it up, and proceed to the next

[Pg 268]


A gentleman sent his servant with a present of nine ducks in a box, upon which was the following direction:—

"To Alderman Gobble with IX. ducks."

The servant, who had more ingenuity than honesty, purloined three of the ducks, and contrived it so that the number contained in the box corresponded with that upon the direction. As he neither erased any word or letter, nor substituted a new direction, how did he so alter it as to correspond with the contents of the box?

The dishonest but ingenious servant simply placed the letter S before the two Roman numerals, IX. The direction then read thus:

"To Alderman Gobble, with SIX ducks."

It will be seen that this problem is very easy of solution to every one, save Artemus Ward, who would spell it Sicks dux in a bocks.

Here is one, however, which would suit the taste, if not the ability, of the great showman to a nicety:


To distribute among three persons twenty-one casks of wine, seven of them full, seven of them empty, and seven of them half full; so that each of[Pg 269] them shall have the same quantity of wine, and the same number of casks.

This problem admits of two solutions, which may be clearly comprehended by means of the two following tables:

Persons.Full casks.Empty.Half full.

Persons.Full casks.Empty.Half full.

One more problem, and we shall have had enough mathematics for one chapter.

[Pg 270]

A figure similar to the preceding can be formed without removing the pencil from the paper, without crossing any line or retracing any part. Now set to work and do it.

If you do not succeed, you may refer to the annexed diagram and solution.

Draw a line from 1 to 2, 2 to 3, 3 to 4, 4 to 5, 5 to 6, 6 to 1, 1 to 7, 7 to 8, 8 to 9, 9 to 3, 3 to 10, and 10 to 1.

[Pg 271]


We have observed that Tableaux and Charades run in some families, and that these families are always ready to spend any amount of time and money to carry out their favorite ideas; we cannot help feeling considerable admiration for any one having some honest enthusiasm for any amusement in this toiling age of ours. But our mission is not to deal much with the costly or complicated. Those who wish to produce tableaux from Waverley or the Bride of Abydos, who desire to attire themselves as Mary Queen of Scots, Di Vernon, or Dolly Varden, we leave to their own devices, giving only our best wishes. There are, however, charades to be got up on the spur of the moment, which are not less entertaining than the more elaborate performances to which we allude. We will mention one or two which have come under our observation during[Pg 272] a chequered existence; they may serve to give the key-note, if nothing more.

On the occasion of a certain impromptu party, the lady of the house begged some of her guests to get up something which would entertain the rest, some charades, or what not. Two gentlemen consulted for a moment, and then took up their positions in the back of the parlor, which represented the stage. One sat down to read, whilst the other crept up slyly behind him, and much to his dismay turned off the gas. They then both rose and declared the charade completed, leaving it to the audience to divine the answer. Whether any one guessed it or not we do not know—but the answer was Gastric—Gas-trick.

Another gentleman then stepped into the stage, with a large hat at the back of his head, and began calling—"Mooley, mooley, mooley; com, com, mooley. Where kin that keow a poked herself now? she's allers a concealing of herself somewheres or another—mooley," etc.,

His riddle was now concluded, and he desired the audience to give him the answer.

The answer was Cow-hiding.

A famous physician and wit was the next to come forward, accompanied by a friend. They took positions in opposite corners of the room,[Pg 273] advanced towards each other, and as they passed, the friend said to the doctor, "How do, Doctor?" To the surprise of all, they declared the charade completed. No one could guess it, of course; the answer was metaphysician, met-a-physician.

Again they took their positions precisely as before, announcing that they were about to give another charade. Again they walked across the room, and as they passed, one said to the other, "How do, again?" This was the conclusion of the second charade; quite as puzzling as the first, only more so. The answer was metaphor—met-afore. This absurdity was received with roars of laughter and thunders of applause.

Charades of this kind, we are inclined to think, give more real pleasure after all, than the studied, costly elaborations. They are perhaps not so pretty; but, ye gods! where there are pretty women, what else could mortal man desire in the way of beauty!

[Pg 274]


A certain young lady with whom we are acquainted has discovered a new art, which seems to absorb a great portion of her being. It is a method by which almost anything may be transmuted into coral. The consequence of this discovery is that the English-basement house in which the maid in question dwells, is converted into a perfect mermaid's grotto. We told her so the other day, since which she has called us her Triton; and further intimated that in order to preserve the fitness of things, we might invite her to an oyster supper at Delmonico's. This hint we took with the avidity of a pickerel; but alas for the fickleness of woman, and our visions of marine happiness, the damsel changed her position and absolutely declined accepting our hospitality, even to the extent of a shrimp.[Pg 275]

It is marvellous what very poor jokes afford rich amusement, when they are passed amongst intimate friends. When we called the lady in question, South Coral-ina, every one present seemed quite amused; indeed only one person, an obnoxious individual with large whiskers, seemed to resent it at all:—but now that the title by frequent repetition has assumed the character of a nickname, it is always received as an exquisite piece of humor. Numerous ramifications of this subject afford us endless themes for badinage.

We profess to ridicule the idea that involuntary servitude is abolished, when South Coral-ina holds ourselves and so many others in slavery. She retorts by calling us Neptune, and asking after the telegraph cable. When this badinage had been going on for some time, our friend Nix played quite a pretty hoax on the ladies. He arrived one evening with a somewhat dirty-looking basket on his arm filled with oysters. This was rather an inelegant thing to bring into the parlor, and naturally excited some surprise; but when he began to take out the grimy-looking bivalves, and one by one, hand them round to the ladies, there was a commotion bordering on indignation; the first lady declined to receive so plebeian a gift, whereupon Nix took a penknife from his pocket and opened it;[Pg 276] revealing the inside lined with rich velvet, and bearing some trinket made of gold and pearls. This was in payment of a bet of an oyster supper which he had playfully made with and purposely lost to one of the ladies.

But to revert to our Coral. We often aided the fair mermaid in her manufactures, making sprays of coral nearly as large as in currant bushes, coral walking-canes, coral ear-rings, pen racks, paper weights, and other useful articles. We converted into coral—walnuts, small mud-turtles, birds' claws, sea-shells, and indeed almost everything on which we could lay our hands. Finally we took paterfamilias' felt hat one night and gave it a couple of coats of scarlet varnish, much to the astonishment of that good gentleman when he wished to put it on next morning.

The mode of making these coral ornaments is, of course, very simple; otherwise it would not find a place in this book:


To two drachms of fine vermilion, add one ounce of clear resin, and melt them together; paint the object with this mixture while hot, and then hold it over a gentle fire till it is perfectly covered and smooth.[Pg 277]

To make sprays of coral you should procure some twigs of thorn; peel and dry, before painting with the varnish.

The Nix gift of pearls has set all the ladies to work on a new idea—painting pictures in oil-colors on the inside of oyster shells; these are mostly marine subjects where the natural hues of the shell supply the requisite tints for the clouds and water. One of these little works represented a fish, where the sheen of the mother-of-pearl gave a marvellously natural effect to the scales and gills.

They have also taken to making pictures on egg-shells in water-colors, which are very pretty. One egg they tattooed all over with pen-and-ink arabesque, and emblazoned with crimson and gold. It looks very handsome, though possibly of not quite so much practical use as a locomotive or a reaping-machine. Still, let us always remember that quotation from Goethe:

"Encourage the beautiful, the useful will take care of itself!"

To which we might add a paraphrase of our own:

"Encourage the amusing, the dreary will take care of itself."

For our own part we have serious ideas of organ[Pg 278]izing a SOCIETY FOR THE ENCOURAGEMENT OF AMUSEMENT. We firmly believe that judicious and rational amusement tends more to make men healthy, wealthy, and wise, than ever did early rising, for which, nevertheless, we have profoundest respect.

[Pg 279]


To those who are fond of charades, and indeed to all those good people who love to be merry, we commend what the French call charades en action, or pantomime charades. These charades, as the name indicates, are acted, not spoken. The great rule to be observed is silence, nothing more than an exclamation being allowed. In extreme cases, where it is utterly impossible to convey the idea by actions, a placard may be introduced bearing some helpful inscription, as in the case of Mr. Cuffy (in the charade on carpet which we shall presently give), who draws from his bosom a monster letter from Mr. Swab, which he displays to the audience. In addition to the information it conveys, the production of this preposterously large note is calculated to create a laugh.

The chief merit in a charade actor is inventive ingenuity in so, adapting the domestic adjuncts of an[Pg 280] ordinary household as to supply the place of necessary theatrical properties and wardrobe. We have seen a very respectable Richard Cœur de Lion made up of the tinware of an ordinary cooking-range; and Queen Elizabeth, frill, hair and all, out of a few copies of the Daily Tribune. We have known a steam fire-engine to be manufactured out of a baby's crib and a tea-kettle; and Bunker Hill monument from two chairs, a fishing-rod, and a sheet. Those who have followed us so far through these pages, have gone through a good course of study, and will start with great advantages in the pursuit of charade-acting.

For the convenience of our clients we add a list of words which may be acted as charades.

[Pg 281]BustardBust—tarred.
Blacksmith                 Black—smith.
CartelCar—Tell (William).
[Pg 282]HumdrumHum—drum.
[Pg 283]PriorPry—oar.
SurtoutSir—tout, or Sir—two.

[Pg 284]




Car ——.

Dramatis Personæ,

Car-Driver.     Conductor.     Passengers.

SceneSixth Avenue, New York.

Scene opens and discovers street-car driving furiously along, drawn by two chestnut acquaintances. Conductor and driver represented by two small boys. Car composed of lounge, clothes-horse, and two chairs, judiciously arranged and draped; wheels of band box-lids or circular tea-trays. Noise of car simulated by confederates outside shaking sleigh-bells or hand-bells, and drumming on door with fingers and hand; also rattling on floor with feet.[Pg 285]

Enter some passengers, running and hailing car. Bell rings, by knocking goblet with spoon. Car stops.

Passengers rush towards car. Gentleman is in the act of stepping on car when bell rings, and car suddenly starts off, throwing gentleman violently to the ground. Great screaming and wailing; friends gather round and try to raise him; find he is insensible; all immediately begin shaking their[Pg 286] fists at conductor; then simultaneously they bethink themselves of the propriety of taking the number of the car. All draw out their memorandum-books and commence writing. Conductor and driver make gestures of defiance.

Grand tableau.


—— Pet.

Dramatis Personæ,

Husband and Wife.

Enter lady poutingly, followed by her husband, who tries to coax her into a good humor, but without avail. She persists in being in a pet. Husband [Pg 287]

by his gestures promises to buy her shawls,


a piano,

and even

[Pg 288]

a riding-horse.[A]

Finding all these promises are of no use, he begins to get excited; declares she shall have nothing; lady remains sulky; gentleman seizes his hat, rams it on his head, and exits. Lady walks off in the opposite direction, clenching her fists.

[Pg 289]

[A] To convey this idea, the gentleman must neigh while he prances.



Dramatis Personæ,

Irishman.     Colored Man.     Servant Girl.

SceneStreet-door of fashionable house—door-plate of white paper on door bearing the name of Swab.

Enter colored man,[A] with his face well spotted with whitewash, who rings at door of fashionable house.

[Pg 290]

Irish servant appears with her sleeves rolled up and her dress pinned in the form of a dress-coat behind. She turns up her nose at darkey, who humbly intimates that he has called for the carpet. Girl slams the door in his face. Colored man considers this outrageous conduct, as he has been specially requested to call for orders, and produces the following note from Mr. Swab:[Pg 291]

"Mr. Cuffy:

                  "Please call at No. 13 Fifth Avenue, for carpet.

"John Swab."

He points to note and name on door to show he has come to the right house.

Enter Irishman, who approaches Mr. Swab's door and rings bell; reappear girl, who smiles as she produces a roll of carpet. Cuffy steps forward and expostulates, showing Mr. Swab's letter. Irishman pitches into Cuffy, and a furious fight ensues, in which the girl joins with a broom.


[A] The usual way of making a colored man is by blacking the face with burnt cork; but as gentlemen at evening parties sometimes object to undergoing this ordeal, a good nigger may be manufactured by stretching a piece of dark silk across the face and cutting out holes for the eyes and mouth. Hair can be made of cotton wadding.

[Pg 292]





Dramatis Personæ,

Cat.     Dog.     Old Gentleman.

SceneBackyard of city house, with small table placed on top of other table, to represent window.

Enter cat (head done up in brown paper, with cat's face painted on it, brown paper ears, tail made out of lady's boa, black silk handkerchief, or any suitable thing).[Pg 293]

Cat commences to meow and caterwaul. Old gentleman appears at window with nightcap on and sheet wrapped round him, and shakes his fist at cat. Cat continues to make a noise.

Old gentleman gets very angry, shakes both his fists, withdraws into room, reappears with hair-brush, which he throws at cat. Cat continues to make a noise. Old gentleman commences a fusilade of boots, books, combs, and toilet articles generally. Cat makes more noise than ever, putting up her back and spitting at the objects as they fell around her. The old gentleman is almost in despair, when suddenly a bright idea strikes him,[Pg 294] which he expresses by pantomime, placing his finger to the side of his nose and winking. He disappears from the window. Presently is heard the rattling of a chain and barking of a dog.

Enter dog, barking furiously, and pursues cat out of yard. Old gentleman rubs his hands with glee, and pats dog on head. Dog frisks about.



Dramatis Personæ,

Ass.     Rag and Soap-fat Man.     Servant Girl.

ScenePublic Street.

Enter rag and soap-fat man dragging donkey after him. Donkey dragging cart made of chair[Pg 295] with bandbox-lid wheels, cart filled with odds and ends of tinware, old rags, etc. Donkey very obstinate; driver beats him with roll of stiff paper. Servant hails soap-fat man and offers for sale several large jarsful of drippings, sheets, pillow-cases, etc., belonging to her mistress. They chaffer for some time over the bargain, but finally agree upon a price. The money (all copper pennies) is about to change hands when the donkey, close by, gives an unearthly bray, which, to their guilty consciences, sounds like the voice of some avenging spirit; both scream, drop the money on the floor, and rush off; donkey turns round and runs off too.

[Pg 296]



Dramatis Personæ,


SceneA camp, tents made of sheets hung over chairs, etc.

Enter soldiers, leading prisoners, and bearing ragged and shot-torn flag on broomstick, band playing trumpets (sheets of music rolled up), and beating drums (tin pails); they halt and form in line; the officer, by suitable gestures, calls attention to the trophy.

Enter general and staff. General makes a speech, pointing to the trophy, and then decorates their captain by pinning a medal (a circular soda-cracker fastened to a bit of red ribbon will do) on his breast. All strike an attitude, and the scene closes.

[Pg 297]



Dramatis Personæ,

Gentlemen.     Ladies.     Horses and Policemen.

SceneCentral Park.

A superb carriage, made out of the lounge with bandbox-lid wheels, and drawn by a span of spirited bay gentleman, is discovered; an elegant youth is seated on the box driving, whilst the carriage is filled with a gay and festive party of youthful ladies and gentlemen.

Presently the horses become restive, plunge wildly about, and, in spite of all the efforts of the driver, dash the vehicle against a post; the inmates [Pg 298]scream and tumble out. Enter two policemen, who seize the horses, put the driver on his legs, and carry the rest of the party to the hospital on stretchers made of the clothes-horse.

[Pg 299]


Those tranquil moods to which allusion has already been made on several occasions, have now become a decided feature in our character. There is certainly something very charming in the society of well-bred women. However, we hope before long we need not be forced from home to find that enjoyment. We have discovered the object of Nix's recent gifts of Brahminical works. It was a ponderous roundabout species of humor peculiar to Nix, the works in question being supposed to furnish appropriate study for a person in our presumed position as admirer of Bud (or Boodh).

Nix has for some time past made himself very wearisome with continual allusions to Vishnu, Siva, Buddhism, and so forth. We gained one idea, however, from his jest. We have written a Hindoo play, the plot of which turns on the love of[Pg 300] a devout Brahmin. The play is entirely finished save the last act, which is complete up to the point where Neer Je Haun declares his love for the Unblown Rose.


We took our play to the Adams' to-night, and told Bud that it was nearly completed, but we were in some embarrassment how to conclude it. We had consequently come to consult her on the subject, begging at the same time she would give it her most careful attention, as her decision was of vital importance. We were alone. We had read the whole play through with the utmost care, till we came to the final sentence in our manuscript, where the hero declares his passion for the Unblown Rose. It runs thus:

Neer Je Haun. "Light of my soul, whose voice is sweeter than the murmur of the Ganges, whose name is incense to my nostrils, whose eyes are brighter than the fire-flies by night—my highest ambition is to be thy slave, my greatest hope to guard thee from harm, to bask in the radiance of thine eyes. For thee I would sacrifice all other earthly happiness. When I pray thee to share my humble fortunes, turn not away thy proud head;[Pg 301] parch not my soul with scorn, though well I should deserve such a fate for my temerity."

Now turning to Bud, we asked her to decide what answer the lover should receive; should he be accepted or rejected?

"Oh, accepted, of course!" eagerly exclaimed Bud, her bright eyes kindling with sympathy for the ardent Hindoo.

"It is well!" we replied, and wrote down the maiden's answer.

"I will trust my life in thy hands from this day till death."

"Is that right?" we asked.

She said it was, though perhaps a little cold.

We then drew from our breast pocket one sheet of the manuscript she had not yet seen. It was the title of the play:


Bud colored—looked at us in an embarrassed way, and then with much hesitation was about to speak, when we stretched out our hand and said:

"You will not make us alter what we have written?"

She gave no answer, but from the pressure of her hand we knew we need doubt no more.[Pg 302]

Now this heathen idolator would not change places with the greatest Christian monarch in Europe.



A Catalogue of BOOKS
ISSUED BY Carleton, Publisher,
New York. 1866.


"There is a kind of physiognomy in the titles of
books no less than in the faces of men,
by which a skilful observer will
know as well what to expect
from the one as the


N E W   B O O K S
And New Editions Recently Issued by

N.B.—The Publisher, upon receipt of the price in advance, will send any of the following Books by mail, Postage Free, to any part of the United States. This convenient and very safe mode may be adopted when the neighboring Booksellers are not supplied with the desired work. State name and address in full.

Victor Hugo.
LES MISÉRABLES.The best edition, two elegant 8vo. vols., beautifully bound in cloth, $5.50;half calf, $10.00
LES MISÉRABLES.The popular edition, one large octavo volume, paper covers, $2.00;cloth bound, $2.50
LES MISÉRABLES.—In the Spanish language. Fine 8vo. edition, two vols., paper covers, $4.00;cloth bound, $5.00
JARGAL.—A new novel. Illustrated.12mo. cloth, $1.75
THE LIFE OF VICTOR HUGO.—By himself.8vo. cloth, $1.75
Miss Muloch.
JOHN HALIFAX.—A novel. With illustration.12mo. cloth, $1.75
A LIFE FOR A LIFE.—                 do. do.     $1.75
Charlotte Bronte (Currer Bell).
JANE EYRE.—     A novel. With illustration.12mo. cloth, $1.75
THE PROFESSOR.—do.           do. do.     $1.75
SHIRLEY.—           do.           do. do.     $1.75
VILLETTE.—          do.           do. do.     $1.75
Hand-Books of Society.
THE HABITS OF GOOD SOCIETY; with thoughts, hints, and anecdotes, concerning nice points of taste, good manners, and the art of making oneself agreeable. The most entertaining work of the kind ever published.12mo. cloth, $1.75
THE ART OF CONVERSATION.—With directions for self-culture. A sensible and instructive work, that ought to be in the hands of every one who wishes to be either an agreeable talker or listener.12mo. cloth, $1.50
THE ART OF AMUSING.—A collection of graceful arts, games, tricks, puzzles, and charades, intended to amuse everybody, and enable all to amuse everybody else. With suggestions for private theatricals, tableaux, parlor and family amusements, etc. With nearly 150 illustrative pictures.12mo. cloth, $2.00
Mrs. Mary J. Holmes' Works.4
'LENA RIVERS.—                     A novel.12mo. cloth, $1.50
MARIAN GREY.—                    $1.50
MEADOW BROOK.—               $1.50
ENGLISH ORPHANS.—             $1.50
DORA DEANE.—                     $1.50
COUSIN MAUDE.—                 $1.50
HUGH WORTHINGTON.—        $1.50
Artemus Ward.
HIS BOOK.—The first collection of humorous writings by A. Ward. Full of comic illustrations.12mo. cloth, $1.50
HIS TRAVELS.—A comic volume of Indian and Mormon adventures. With laughable illustrations.12mo. cloth, $1.50
Miss Augusta J. Evans.
BEULAH.—A novel of great power12mo. cloth, $1.75
MACARIA.—   do.      $1.75
ST. ELMO.—    do.           do.     Just     $1.75
By the Author of "Rutledge."
RUTLEDGE.—A deeply interesting novel.12mo. cloth, $1.75
ST. PHILIP'S.—               $1.75
ROUNDHEARTS AND OTHER STORIES.Just publisheddo.     $1.75
Josh Billings.
HIS BOOK.—All the rich comic sayings of this celebrated humorist. With comic illustrations.12mo. cloth, $1.50
Mrs. Ritchie (Anna Cora Mowatt).
FAIRY FINGERS.—A capital new novel.12mo. cloth, $1.75
THE MUTE SINGER.—     $1.75
A NEW BOOK.In     $1.75
New English Novels.
BEYMINSTRE.—A very interesting novel.12mo. cloth, $1.75
TAKEN UPON TRUST.—     $1.75
Geo. W. Carleton.
OUR ARTIST IN CUBA.—A humorous volume of travels; with fifty comic illustrations by the author.12mo. cloth, $1.50
OUR ARTIST IN PERU.In press.$1.50
A. S. Roe's Works.5
A LONG LOOK AHEAD.—     A novel12mo. cloth, $1.50
TIME AND TIDE.—            $1.50
I'VE BEEN THINKING.—      $1.50
TRUE TO THE LAST.—       $1.50
HOW COULD HE HELP IT?—     $1.50
LIKE AND UNLIKE.—         $1.50
LOOKING AROUND.—       $1.50
WOMAN, OUR ANGEL.Just     $1.50
Richard B. Kimball.
WAS HE SUCCESSFUL.—         A novel12mo. cloth, $1.75
UNDERCURRENTS.—           $1.75
SAINT LEGER.—                  $1.75
IN THE TROPICS.—              $1.75
EMILIE.—A sequel to "St. Leger." In     $1.75
Orpheus C. Kerr.
THE ORPHEUS C. KERR PAPERS.—Comic letters and humorous military criticisms. Three series12mo. cloth, $1.50
Edmund Kirke.
AMONG THE PINES.—A Southern sketch.12mo. cloth, $1.50
ADRIFT IN DIXIE.—           $1.50
A NEW BOOK.In press.     $1.50
T. S. Arthur's New Works.
LIGHT ON SHADOWED PATHS.—A novel.12mo. cloth, $1.50
OUT IN THE WORLD.—              $1.50
NOTHING BUT MONEY.—          $1.50
OUR NEIGHBORS.Just     $1.50
Robinson Crusoe.
A handsome illustrated edition, complete.12mo. cloth, $1.50
Joseph Rodman Drake.
THE CULPRIT FAY.—A faery poem.12mo. cloth, $1.25
AN ILLUSTRATED EDITION.—With 100 exquisite illustrations on wood. Quarto, beautifully printed and bound,$5.00
Epidemic Cholera.
A handy-book for successful treatment12mo. cloth, $1.00
Cuthbert Bede.6
VERDANT GREEN.—A rollicking, humorous novel of English student life; with 200 comic illustrations.12mo. cloth, $1.50
Private Miles O'Reilly.
BAKED MEATS OF THE FUNERAL.—A Comic book.12mo. cloth, $1.75
LIFE AND ADVENTURES—with comic     $1.50
M. Michelet's Remarkable Works.
LOVE (L'AMOUR).—From the French.12mo. cloth, $1.50
WOMAN (LA FEMME).—     $1.50
J. Sheridan Le Fanu.
WYLDER'S HAND.—A powerful new novel.12mo. cloth, $1.75
Rev. John Cumming, D.D., of London.
THE GREAT TRIBULATION.—Two series.12mo. cloth, $1.50
Ernest Renan.
THE LIFE OF JESUS.—From the French work.12mo. cloth, $1.75
THE APOSTLES.—        $1.75
Popular Italian Novels.
DOCTOR ANTONIO.—A love story. By Ruffini.12mo. cloth, $1.75
VINCENZO.—                     do.     $1.75
BEATRICE CENCI.—By Guerrazzi, with     $1.75
Charles Reade.
THE CLOISTER AND THE HEARTH.—A magnificent new novel—the best this author ever wrote.8vo. cloth, $2.00
The Opera.
TALES FROM THE OPERAS.—A collection of clever stories, based upon the plots of all the famous operas.12mo. cloth, $1.50
Robert B. Roosevelt.
THE GAME-FISH OF THE NORTH.—Illustrated.12mo. cloth, $2.00
SUPERIOR FISHING.—                $2.00
John Phœnix.
THE SQUIBOB PAPERS.—A new humorous volume, filled with comic illustrations by the author.12mo. cloth, $1.50
Matthew Hale Smith.
MOUNT CALVARY.—Meditations in sacred places.12mo. $2.00
P. T. Barnum.
THE HUMBUGS OF THE WORLD.—Two series.12mo. cloth, $1.75
Dr. J. J. Craven.7
THE PRISON-LIFE OF JEFFERSON DAVIS.—Incidents and conversations connected with his captivity.12mo. cloth, $2.00
Captain Raphael Semmes.
Pulpit Pungencies.
A new serio-comic religious book.—Very rich.12mo. cl., $1.75
The Abbe Guettee.
THE PAPACY.—Its origin and schism with the Greeks. Introduction by A. Cleveland Coxe, D. D.12mo. cloth, $1.75
Mansefield T. Walworth.
STORMCLIFF.—A new American novel.12mo. cloth, $1.75
Amelia B. Edwards.
BALLADS.—By author of "Barbara's History."12mo. cloth, $1.50
Mrs. Jervey (Caroline H. Glover).
HELEN COURTENAY'S PROMISE.—A new novel.12mo. cloth, $1.75
Walter Barrett, Clerk.
THE OLD MERCHANTS OF NEW YORK.—Personal incidents, sketches, bits of biography, and events in the life of leading merchants in New York. Four series.12mo. cloth, $1.75
Madame Octavia Walton Le Vert.
SOUVENIRS OF TRAVEL. New edition. Large12mo. cloth, $2.00
Kate Marstone.
A new and very interesting tale.12mo. cloth, $1.50
By "Sentinel."
WHO GOES THERE?—Or men and events.12mo. cloth, $1.50
Junius Brutus Booth.
MEMORIALS OF "THE ELDER BOOTH."—The actor.12mo. cloth, $1.50
H. T. Sperry.
COUNTRY LOVE vs. CITY FLIRTATION.—A capital new society tale, with twenty superb illustrations by Hoppin.12mo. cloth, $2.00
Epes Sargent.
PECULIAR.—A remarkable new novel.12mo. cloth, $1.75
Cuyler Pine.
MARY BRANDEGEE.—A very powerful novel12mo. cloth, $1.75
A NEW NOVEL.In     $1.75
Elisha Kent Kane.
LOVE-LIFE OF DR. KANE and Margaret Fox.12mo. cloth, $1.75
Mother Goose for Grown Folks.
HUMOROUS RHYMES for grown people.12mo. cloth, $1.25
Miscellaneous Works.8
NOTES ON SHAKSPEARE.—By Jas. H. Hackett.12mo. cloth, $1.50
THE MONTANAS.—A novel by Mrs. S. J.     $1.75
A SPINSTER'S STORY.—A new     $1.75
A LIFE OF JAMES STEPHENS.—Fenian     $1.00
NEPENTHE.—A new     $1.50
TOGETHER.—     $1.50
POEMS.—By Gay H.     $1.50
VICTOIRE.—A new     $1.75
POEMS.—By Mrs. Sarah T.     $1.50
CENTEOLA.—By author "Green Mountain Boys."do.     $1.50
TREATISE ON DEAFNESS.—By Dr. E. B.     $1.50
AROUND THE PYRAMIDS.—By Gen. Aaron     $1.50
CHINA AND THE CHINESE.—By W. L. G.     $1.50
THE YACHTMAN'S PRIMER.—By T. R.    50 cts.
MARRIED OFF.—Illustrated Satirical    50 cts.
THE FLYING DUTCHMAN.—J. G. Saxe,    75 cts.
ALEXANDER VON HUMBOLDT.—Life and     $1.50
LIFE OF HUGH MILLER.—The celebrated     $1.50
THE RUSSIAN BALL.—Illustrated satirical    50 cts.
THE SNOBLACE BALL.         do.       do.    50 cts.
COSMOGONY.—By Thomas A. Davies.8vo. cloth, $2.00
TWENTY YEARS around the world. J. Guy     $3.75
RURAL ARCHITECTURE.—By M. Field,     $2.00

End of the Project Gutenberg EBook of The Art of Amusing, by Frank Bellew


***** This file should be named 40309-h.htm or *****
This and all associated files of various formats will be found in:

Produced by Chris Curnow and the Online Distributed
Proofreading Team at (This file was
produced from images generously made available by The
Internet Archive)

Updated editions will replace the previous one--the old editions
will be renamed.

Creating the works from public domain print editions means that no
one owns a United States copyright in these works, so the Foundation
(and you!) can copy and distribute it in the United States without
permission and without paying copyright royalties.  Special rules,
set forth in the General Terms of Use part of this license, apply to
copying and distributing Project Gutenberg-tm electronic works to
protect the PROJECT GUTENBERG-tm concept and trademark.  Project
Gutenberg is a registered trademark, and may not be used if you
charge for the eBooks, unless you receive specific permission.  If you
do not charge anything for copies of this eBook, complying with the
rules is very easy.  You may use this eBook for nearly any purpose
such as creation of derivative works, reports, performances and
research.  They may be modified and printed and given away--you may do
practically ANYTHING with public domain eBooks.  Redistribution is
subject to the trademark license, especially commercial



To protect the Project Gutenberg-tm mission of promoting the free
distribution of electronic works, by using or distributing this work
(or any other work associated in any way with the phrase "Project
Gutenberg"), you agree to comply with all the terms of the Full Project
Gutenberg-tm License available with this file or online at

Section 1.  General Terms of Use and Redistributing Project Gutenberg-tm
electronic works

1.A.  By reading or using any part of this Project Gutenberg-tm
electronic work, you indicate that you have read, understand, agree to
and accept all the terms of this license and intellectual property
(trademark/copyright) agreement.  If you do not agree to abide by all
the terms of this agreement, you must cease using and return or destroy
all copies of Project Gutenberg-tm electronic works in your possession.
If you paid a fee for obtaining a copy of or access to a Project
Gutenberg-tm electronic work and you do not agree to be bound by the
terms of this agreement, you may obtain a refund from the person or
entity to whom you paid the fee as set forth in paragraph 1.E.8.

1.B.  "Project Gutenberg" is a registered trademark.  It may only be
used on or associated in any way with an electronic work by people who
agree to be bound by the terms of this agreement.  There are a few
things that you can do with most Project Gutenberg-tm electronic works
even without complying with the full terms of this agreement.  See
paragraph 1.C below.  There are a lot of things you can do with Project
Gutenberg-tm electronic works if you follow the terms of this agreement
and help preserve free future access to Project Gutenberg-tm electronic
works.  See paragraph 1.E below.

1.C.  The Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation ("the Foundation"
or PGLAF), owns a compilation copyright in the collection of Project
Gutenberg-tm electronic works.  Nearly all the individual works in the
collection are in the public domain in the United States.  If an
individual work is in the public domain in the United States and you are
located in the United States, we do not claim a right to prevent you from
copying, distributing, performing, displaying or creating derivative
works based on the work as long as all references to Project Gutenberg
are removed.  Of course, we hope that you will support the Project
Gutenberg-tm mission of promoting free access to electronic works by
freely sharing Project Gutenberg-tm works in compliance with the terms of
this agreement for keeping the Project Gutenberg-tm name associated with
the work.  You can easily comply with the terms of this agreement by
keeping this work in the same format with its attached full Project
Gutenberg-tm License when you share it without charge with others.

1.D.  The copyright laws of the place where you are located also govern
what you can do with this work.  Copyright laws in most countries are in
a constant state of change.  If you are outside the United States, check
the laws of your country in addition to the terms of this agreement
before downloading, copying, displaying, performing, distributing or
creating derivative works based on this work or any other Project
Gutenberg-tm work.  The Foundation makes no representations concerning
the copyright status of any work in any country outside the United

1.E.  Unless you have removed all references to Project Gutenberg:

1.E.1.  The following sentence, with active links to, or other immediate
access to, the full Project Gutenberg-tm License must appear prominently
whenever any copy of a Project Gutenberg-tm work (any work on which the
phrase "Project Gutenberg" appears, or with which the phrase "Project
Gutenberg" is associated) is accessed, displayed, performed, viewed,
copied or distributed:

This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with
almost no restrictions whatsoever.  You may copy it, give it away or
re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included
with this eBook or online at

1.E.2.  If an individual Project Gutenberg-tm electronic work is derived
from the public domain (does not contain a notice indicating that it is
posted with permission of the copyright holder), the work can be copied
and distributed to anyone in the United States without paying any fees
or charges.  If you are redistributing or providing access to a work
with the phrase "Project Gutenberg" associated with or appearing on the
work, you must comply either with the requirements of paragraphs 1.E.1
through 1.E.7 or obtain permission for the use of the work and the
Project Gutenberg-tm trademark as set forth in paragraphs 1.E.8 or

1.E.3.  If an individual Project Gutenberg-tm electronic work is posted
with the permission of the copyright holder, your use and distribution
must comply with both paragraphs 1.E.1 through 1.E.7 and any additional
terms imposed by the copyright holder.  Additional terms will be linked
to the Project Gutenberg-tm License for all works posted with the
permission of the copyright holder found at the beginning of this work.

1.E.4.  Do not unlink or detach or remove the full Project Gutenberg-tm
License terms from this work, or any files containing a part of this
work or any other work associated with Project Gutenberg-tm.

1.E.5.  Do not copy, display, perform, distribute or redistribute this
electronic work, or any part of this electronic work, without
prominently displaying the sentence set forth in paragraph 1.E.1 with
active links or immediate access to the full terms of the Project
Gutenberg-tm License.

1.E.6.  You may convert to and distribute this work in any binary,
compressed, marked up, nonproprietary or proprietary form, including any
word processing or hypertext form.  However, if you provide access to or
distribute copies of a Project Gutenberg-tm work in a format other than
"Plain Vanilla ASCII" or other format used in the official version
posted on the official Project Gutenberg-tm web site (,
you must, at no additional cost, fee or expense to the user, provide a
copy, a means of exporting a copy, or a means of obtaining a copy upon
request, of the work in its original "Plain Vanilla ASCII" or other
form.  Any alternate format must include the full Project Gutenberg-tm
License as specified in paragraph 1.E.1.

1.E.7.  Do not charge a fee for access to, viewing, displaying,
performing, copying or distributing any Project Gutenberg-tm works
unless you comply with paragraph 1.E.8 or 1.E.9.

1.E.8.  You may charge a reasonable fee for copies of or providing
access to or distributing Project Gutenberg-tm electronic works provided

- You pay a royalty fee of 20% of the gross profits you derive from
     the use of Project Gutenberg-tm works calculated using the method
     you already use to calculate your applicable taxes.  The fee is
     owed to the owner of the Project Gutenberg-tm trademark, but he
     has agreed to donate royalties under this paragraph to the
     Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation.  Royalty payments
     must be paid within 60 days following each date on which you
     prepare (or are legally required to prepare) your periodic tax
     returns.  Royalty payments should be clearly marked as such and
     sent to the Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation at the
     address specified in Section 4, "Information about donations to
     the Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation."

- You provide a full refund of any money paid by a user who notifies
     you in writing (or by e-mail) within 30 days of receipt that s/he
     does not agree to the terms of the full Project Gutenberg-tm
     License.  You must require such a user to return or
     destroy all copies of the works possessed in a physical medium
     and discontinue all use of and all access to other copies of
     Project Gutenberg-tm works.

- You provide, in accordance with paragraph 1.F.3, a full refund of any
     money paid for a work or a replacement copy, if a defect in the
     electronic work is discovered and reported to you within 90 days
     of receipt of the work.

- You comply with all other terms of this agreement for free
     distribution of Project Gutenberg-tm works.

1.E.9.  If you wish to charge a fee or distribute a Project Gutenberg-tm
electronic work or group of works on different terms than are set
forth in this agreement, you must obtain permission in writing from
both the Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation and Michael
Hart, the owner of the Project Gutenberg-tm trademark.  Contact the
Foundation as set forth in Section 3 below.


1.F.1.  Project Gutenberg volunteers and employees expend considerable
effort to identify, do copyright research on, transcribe and proofread
public domain works in creating the Project Gutenberg-tm
collection.  Despite these efforts, Project Gutenberg-tm electronic
works, and the medium on which they may be stored, may contain
"Defects," such as, but not limited to, incomplete, inaccurate or
corrupt data, transcription errors, a copyright or other intellectual
property infringement, a defective or damaged disk or other medium, a
computer virus, or computer codes that damage or cannot be read by
your equipment.

of Replacement or Refund" described in paragraph 1.F.3, the Project
Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation, the owner of the Project
Gutenberg-tm trademark, and any other party distributing a Project
Gutenberg-tm electronic work under this agreement, disclaim all
liability to you for damages, costs and expenses, including legal

defect in this electronic work within 90 days of receiving it, you can
receive a refund of the money (if any) you paid for it by sending a
written explanation to the person you received the work from.  If you
received the work on a physical medium, you must return the medium with
your written explanation.  The person or entity that provided you with
the defective work may elect to provide a replacement copy in lieu of a
refund.  If you received the work electronically, the person or entity
providing it to you may choose to give you a second opportunity to
receive the work electronically in lieu of a refund.  If the second copy
is also defective, you may demand a refund in writing without further
opportunities to fix the problem.

1.F.4.  Except for the limited right of replacement or refund set forth
in paragraph 1.F.3, this work is provided to you 'AS-IS', WITH NO OTHER

1.F.5.  Some states do not allow disclaimers of certain implied
warranties or the exclusion or limitation of certain types of damages.
If any disclaimer or limitation set forth in this agreement violates the
law of the state applicable to this agreement, the agreement shall be
interpreted to make the maximum disclaimer or limitation permitted by
the applicable state law.  The invalidity or unenforceability of any
provision of this agreement shall not void the remaining provisions.

1.F.6.  INDEMNITY - You agree to indemnify and hold the Foundation, the
trademark owner, any agent or employee of the Foundation, anyone
providing copies of Project Gutenberg-tm electronic works in accordance
with this agreement, and any volunteers associated with the production,
promotion and distribution of Project Gutenberg-tm electronic works,
harmless from all liability, costs and expenses, including legal fees,
that arise directly or indirectly from any of the following which you do
or cause to occur: (a) distribution of this or any Project Gutenberg-tm
work, (b) alteration, modification, or additions or deletions to any
Project Gutenberg-tm work, and (c) any Defect you cause.

Section  2.  Information about the Mission of Project Gutenberg-tm

Project Gutenberg-tm is synonymous with the free distribution of
electronic works in formats readable by the widest variety of computers
including obsolete, old, middle-aged and new computers.  It exists
because of the efforts of hundreds of volunteers and donations from
people in all walks of life.

Volunteers and financial support to provide volunteers with the
assistance they need are critical to reaching Project Gutenberg-tm's
goals and ensuring that the Project Gutenberg-tm collection will
remain freely available for generations to come.  In 2001, the Project
Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation was created to provide a secure
and permanent future for Project Gutenberg-tm and future generations.
To learn more about the Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation
and how your efforts and donations can help, see Sections 3 and 4
and the Foundation information page at

Section 3.  Information about the Project Gutenberg Literary Archive

The Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation is a non profit
501(c)(3) educational corporation organized under the laws of the
state of Mississippi and granted tax exempt status by the Internal
Revenue Service.  The Foundation's EIN or federal tax identification
number is 64-6221541.  Contributions to the Project Gutenberg
Literary Archive Foundation are tax deductible to the full extent
permitted by U.S. federal laws and your state's laws.

The Foundation's principal office is located at 4557 Melan Dr. S.
Fairbanks, AK, 99712., but its volunteers and employees are scattered
throughout numerous locations.  Its business office is located at 809
North 1500 West, Salt Lake City, UT 84116, (801) 596-1887.  Email
contact links and up to date contact information can be found at the
Foundation's web site and official page at

For additional contact information:
     Dr. Gregory B. Newby
     Chief Executive and Director

Section 4.  Information about Donations to the Project Gutenberg
Literary Archive Foundation

Project Gutenberg-tm depends upon and cannot survive without wide
spread public support and donations to carry out its mission of
increasing the number of public domain and licensed works that can be
freely distributed in machine readable form accessible by the widest
array of equipment including outdated equipment.  Many small donations
($1 to $5,000) are particularly important to maintaining tax exempt
status with the IRS.

The Foundation is committed to complying with the laws regulating
charities and charitable donations in all 50 states of the United
States.  Compliance requirements are not uniform and it takes a
considerable effort, much paperwork and many fees to meet and keep up
with these requirements.  We do not solicit donations in locations
where we have not received written confirmation of compliance.  To
SEND DONATIONS or determine the status of compliance for any
particular state visit

While we cannot and do not solicit contributions from states where we
have not met the solicitation requirements, we know of no prohibition
against accepting unsolicited donations from donors in such states who
approach us with offers to donate.

International donations are gratefully accepted, but we cannot make
any statements concerning tax treatment of donations received from
outside the United States.  U.S. laws alone swamp our small staff.

Please check the Project Gutenberg Web pages for current donation
methods and addresses.  Donations are accepted in a number of other
ways including checks, online payments and credit card donations.
To donate, please visit:

Section 5.  General Information About Project Gutenberg-tm electronic

Professor Michael S. Hart was the originator of the Project Gutenberg-tm
concept of a library of electronic works that could be freely shared
with anyone.  For forty years, he produced and distributed Project
Gutenberg-tm eBooks with only a loose network of volunteer support.

Project Gutenberg-tm eBooks are often created from several printed
editions, all of which are confirmed as Public Domain in the U.S.
unless a copyright notice is included.  Thus, we do not necessarily
keep eBooks in compliance with any particular paper edition.

Most people start at our Web site which has the main PG search facility:

This Web site includes information about Project Gutenberg-tm,
including how to make donations to the Project Gutenberg Literary
Archive Foundation, how to help produce our new eBooks, and how to
subscribe to our email newsletter to hear about new eBooks.