PUNCH, OR THE LONDON CHARIVARI
VOLUME 104, MAY 27TH 1893
edited by Sir Francis Burnand
AN APPEAL FOR INSPIRATION.
[Mr. LEWIS MORRIS has been requested to write an ode on the approaching Royal Marriage.]
AWAKE my Muse, inspire your LEWIS MORRIS To pen an ode! to be another Horris! "HORACE" I should have written, but in place of it You see the word—well, I'm within an ace of it. Awake my muse! strike up! your bard inspire To write this—"by particular desire." Wet towels! Midnight oil! Here! Everything That can induce the singing bard to sing. Shake me, Ye Nine! I'm resolute, I'm bold! Come, Inspiration, lend thy furious hold! MORRIS on Pegasus! Plank money down! I'll back myself to win the Laureate's Crown!
* * * * *
THE CHIEF SECRETARY'S MUSICAL PERFORMANCE, WITH ACCOMPANIMENT. —Mr. JOHN MORLEY arrived last Friday at Kingston. He went to Bray. He was "accompanied" by the Under Secretary. Surely the Leader of the Opposition, now at Belfast, won't lose such a chance as this item of news offers.
* * * * *
THE "WATER-CARNIVAL."—Good idea! But a very large proportion of those whom the show attracts would be all the better for a Soap-and-Water Carnival. Old Father Thames might be considerably improved by the process.
* * * * *
* * * * *
(The Rajah of Bobbili arrived by P.& O. at Marseilles, where he was received by Col. Humphrey on behalf of the Queen.)
There was a gay Rajah of Bobbili Who felt when a steamer on wobblely, "Delighted," says he, "Colonel HUMPHREY to see," So they dined and they drank hobby-nobbeley.
* * * * *
IS THE TIMES ALSO AMONG THE PUNSTERS?—In its masterly, or rather school-masterly, article last Saturday, on "The Divisions on the Home-Rule Bill," written with the special intention of whipping up the Unionist absentees, the Times said, "There is an opinion that, with a measure so far-reaching in its character as the Home-Rule Bill, pairing should be resorted to as sparingly as possible." The eye gifted with a three-thousand-joke-search-light power sees the pun at once, and reproduces it italicised, to be read aloud, thus—"Pairing should be resorted to as pairingly as possible." What shall he have who makes a pun in the Times? Our congratulations. Henceforth, to the jest-detectors this new development may prove most interesting.
* * * * *
IMPERIAL INSTITUTE NOTICE AT THE RECEPTION.—"Guests must retain their wraps and Head Coverings." Evidently no bald men admitted.
* * * * *
AUSTRALIAN SONG IN MINOR KEY FOR ANY NUMBER OF VOICES. —"I Know a Bank!"
* * * * *
A BUSINESS LETTER.
["Marriage is daily becoming a more commercial affair." —A Society Paper.]
DEAR FRED,—Your favour of the 3rd, Has had my very best attention, But yet I cannot, in a word, Accept you on the terms you mention; Indeed, wherever you may try, According to the last advices You'll meet, I fear, the same reply— "It can't be done, at current prices!"
In vain an ancient name you show, In vain for intellect are noted, Blue blood and brains, you surely know, At nominal amounts are quoted; And then, I see, you're weak enough To offer "love, sincere, unstudied,"— Why, Sir, with such Quixotic stuff The market's absolutely flooded!
But—every day this fact confirms— The time is over for romances, And whether we can come to terms Depends alone on your finances. So, would you think me over-bold If I, with deference, requested A statement of what funds you hold? In what securities invested?
For, candidly, in such affairs A speedy bid your only chance is, A boom in Yankee millionnaires May soon result in marked advances; With you I'd willingly be wed, To like you well enough I'm able, But first submit your bank-book, FRED, To your (perhaps) devoted MABEL!
* * * * *
(By a Fogey.)
I would I were a boy! Not for the tarts we once were fain to eat, The penny ice, the jumble sticky-sweet, The tip's deciduous joy—
Not; for the keen delight Of break-neck 'scapes, the charm of getting wet, The joy of battle (strongest when you get Two other chaps to fight).
No! times have changed since then. The social whirlpool has engulfed the boys; Robb'd of their simple, hardy, rowdy joys, They start from scratch as men.
The winners in the race! Secure of worship, each his triumphs tells, Weighing with faintly-praising syllables The fairest form and face.
Once, in the mazy crush, Ingenuous youth, half timid, and half proud, By girlhood's pity had its claims allow'd, And worshipp'd with a blush.
Time was when tender years Would hug sweet sorrow to the heart, and blur The cross-barr'd bliss of the confectioner With crushed affection's tears.
That humbleness is sped, The vivid blazon of self-conscious youth, The unwilling witness to whole-hearted truth, Ne'er troubles boyhood's head.
Now with a solemn pride, Lord of the future's limitless expanse, The Stoic stripling tolerates the dance Weary, yet dignified.
Propping the mirror'd wall, No joy of motion, no desire to please, Thaws those high-collar'd Caryatides, Inane, imperial.
Girls, with their collars too, Their mannish maskings, and their unveil'd eyes, Would feel, if girls can be surprised, surprise Should courteous worship woo.
From their exalted place The boys their favours dole, as seems them well, Woman's calm tyrants, showing, truth to tell, More tolerance than grace.
* * * * *
DOUBLE RIDDLE.—Why is a whist-player, fast asleep after his fifth game, like one of the latest-patented cabs? Because he can be briefly alluded to as "Rubber Tires." (Riddle adaptable also to exhausted manipulator in Turkish Bath after a hard day's work.)
* * * * *
Pity the sorrows of a poor "Old Man," Whose pouch is emptied of its golden store; Whose girth seems dwindling to its shortest span, Who needs relief, and needs it more and more.
Punch's appeal for the marsupial martyr Is based upon an ancient nursery model; But he will find that he has caught a Tartar, Who hints that Punch is talking heartless twaddle.
Knocked out this round, and verily no wonder! The Money-boxing Kangaroo is plucky: But when a chance-blow smites the jaw like thunder, A champion may succumb to fluke unlucky.
The Australian Cricketers in their first game Went down; but BLACKHAM'S bhoys high hopes still foster; Duffers who think 'twill always be the same, Reckoned without their GIFFEN! Just ask GLO'STER!
So our pouched pugilist, though his chance looks poor, Will come up smiling soon, surviving failure; And an admiring ring will shout once more, (Pardon the Cockney rhyme!) "Advance, Australia!!!"
* * * * *
THE ARMS (AND LEGS) OF THE ISLE OF MAN.—At a discussion on Sunday-trading, one day last month, there was an attempt made to raise a question as to breach of privilege. The Speaker, however, stopped this at the outset, advising them that they "hadn't a leg to stand upon." Very little advantage in having three legs on such an occasion. The odd part of these Manx-men's legs is that they are their arms. It was originally selected as pictorially exhibiting the innocent character of the Manx Islanders. For their greatest enemy must own that "the strange device" of the three legs is utterly 'armless.
* * * * *
THE END OF THE DROUGHT.
(By a Cab-horse.)
Don't talk to us in praise of rain! When we are slipping once again; This beastly shower Has made wood-pavements thick with slime. Suppose you try another time, By mile or hour;
See how you'd like to trot and trip, To stop and stagger, slide and slip, Pulled up affrighted, Urged madly on, then checked once more, Whilst from some omnibus's door Some lout alighted.
You would not find much cause to laugh, Like us, you would not care for chaff Were you such draggers; Your shoes would soon be off, or worn, You'd get, what we don't often, corn, And end with staggers.
You'd long to be put out to grass, Infrequent so far with your class— NEBUCHADNEZZAR Was quite an isolated case— You would be tired of life's long-race; Slaves who in Fez are,
On the Sahara could not bear Such toil as falleth to our share, For death would free them. You say the farmer wants the wet For meadows; pray do not forget We never see them.
Philanthropists, why don't you walk? Of slaves' hard lives you blandly talk, Like "Uncle TOM"—nay, You think what your own horses do, But we—there, get along with you! Allez vous promener!
* * * * *
CHANGE ITS NAME!—An estate in the Island of Fowlness, Essex, of 382 acres, was put up to auction last week, and, according to the Daily News there was only one bid at a little short of eight pounds per acre. "The property was withdrawn." This step was judicious and correct. It was an act of fairness to Fowlness. But then, does it sound nice for anyone to say, "I'm living in the midst of Fowlness"? It may be a Paradise, but it doesn't sound like it.
* * * * *
* * * * *
The Mellor of the C.
AIR—"The Miller of the Dee."
There was a jolly MELLOR, The Chairman of Com-mittee; They worried him from noon till night— "No lark is this!" sighed he; And this the burden of his song For ever seems to be, "I care for e-ve-rybody,—why Does nobody care for me?"
* * * * *
VESTRIES, PLEASE COPY!—Sir RICHARD TEMPLE has announced a reduction of the School-Board Rate by a farthing in the pound. May he never become a ruined Temple owing to such economies! The Rate-payers will be grateful for even a fraction of a penny, so long as it is not an improper fraction. This sort of saving is far better than squabbling over Theology. Says Mr. Punch to Schoolboardmen, "Rate the public lightly, and don't rate each other at all!"
* * * * *
NEW SARUM VERSION OF "DERRY DOWN."—"Derry up! up! Up, Derry, up!"
* * * * *
Poor Letter H.
SCENE—Undergraduate's Room in St. Boniface's College, Oxford. Breakfast time.
Servant. I see, Sir, you don't like the butter. Summer hair will get to it this 'ot weather.
Testy Undergrad. Confound it, LUKER, I don't mind the—ahem—hair, but kindly let me have my butter bald the next time!
[He had swallowed a hair.
* * * * *
Under the Great Seal is a new work by Mr. JOSEPH HATTON. The Busy Baron hath not yet had time to read it, but, from answers given to his "fishing interrogatories," he gathers that international piscatorial questions are ably discussed in the work. JOSEPH has lost a chance in not dedicating it to SEALE-HAYNE, M.P., and, instead of being brought out by HUTCHINSON & Co., it ought to have been published by SEELEY. However, even JOSEPHUS HATTONENSIS can't think of everything, though he does write on most things.
* * * * *
AT THE NEW GALLERY.
IN THE CENTRAL HALL.
A Potential Purchaser (meeting a friend). Ha—just come in to take a look round, eh? So did I. Fact is—(with a mixture of importance and apology) I rather thought of buying a picture here, if I see anything that takes my fancy—y' know.
His Friend (impressed). Not many who can afford to throw money away on pictures, these hard times!
The P. P. (anxious to disclaim any idea of recklessness). Just the time to pick 'em up cheap, if you know what you're about. And you see, we've had the drawing-room done up, and the wife wants something to fill up the space over her writing-table, between the fireplace and one of the windows. She was to have met me here, but she couldn't turn up, so I shall have to do it all myself—unless you'll come and help me through with it?
His Friend. Oh, if I can be of any use—What sort of thing do you want?
The P. P. Well, that's the difficulty. She says it must match the new paper. I've brought a bit in my pocket with me. His Friend. Then you can't go very far wrong!
The P. P. I don't know. It's a sort of paper that—here, I'd better show it you. (He produces a sample of fiery and untamed colour.) That'll give you an idea of it.
His Friend (inspecting it dubiously). Um—yes. I see you'll have to be careful.
The P. P. Careful, my dear fellow! I assure you I've been all through the Academy, and there wasn't a thing there that could stand it for a single moment—not even the R.A.'s!
[They enter the West Room.
IN THE WEST ROOM.
An Insipid Young Person (before Mr. TADEMA'S "Unconscious Rivals"). Yes, that's marble, isn't it?
[Smiles with pleasure at her own penetration.
Her Mother (cautiously). I imagine so. (She refers to Catalogue.) Oh! I see it's a Tadema, so of course it's marble. He's the great man for it, you know!
First Painter (who had nothing ready to send in this year). H'm, yes. Can't say I care about the way he's placed his azalea. I should have kept it more to the left, myself.
Second Painter (who sent in, but is not exhibiting). Composition wants bringing together, and the colour scheme is a little unfortunate, but—(generously) I shouldn't call it altogether bad.
First Painter (more grudgingly). Oh, you can see what he was trying for—only—well, it's not the way I should have gone about it.
[They pass on tolerantly.
The I. Y. P. Can you make this picture out, Mamma? "The Track of the Strayed?" The Strayed what?
Her Mother. Sheep, I should suppose, my dear—but it would have been more satisfactory certainly if the animal had been shown in the picture.
The I. Y. P. Yes, ever so much. Oh, here's a portrait of Mr. GLADSTONE reading the Lessons in Hawarden Church. I do like that—don't you?
Her Mother. I'm not sure that I do, my dear. I wonder they permitted the Artist to paint any portrait—even Mr. GLADSTONE'S—during service!
The P. P. (before another canvas). Now that's about the size I want; but I'm not sure that my wife would quite care about the subject.
His Friend. I'm rather fond of these allegorical affairs myself—for a drawing-room, you know.
The P. P. Well, I'll just try the paper against it. (He applies the test, and shakes his head.) "There, you see—knocks it all to pieces at once!"
His Friend. I was afraid it would, y' know. How will this do you—"A Naiad"?
The P. P. I shouldn't object to it myself, but there's the Wife to be considered—and then, a Naiad—eh?
His friend. She's half in the water.
The P. P. Yes, but then—those lily-leaves in her hair, you know, and—and coming up all dripping like that—no, it's hardly worth while bringing out the paper again!
The I. Y. P. Isn't this queer—"Neptune's Horses"?—They can't be intended to represent waves, surely!
Her Mother. It's impossible to tell what the Painter intended, my dear, but I never saw waves so like horses as that.
IN THE NORTH ROOM.
The I. Y. P. "Cain's First Crime." Why, he's only feeding a stork! I don't see any crime in that.
Her Mother. He's giving it a live lizard, my dear.
The I. Y. P. But storks like live lizards, don't they? And ADAM and EVE are looking on, and don't seem to mind.
Her Mother. I expect that's the moral of it. If they'd taken it away from him, and punished him at the time, he wouldn't have turned out so badly as he did—but it's too late to think of that now!
A Matter-of-fact Person (behind). I wonder, now, where he got his authority for that incident. It's new to me.
IN THE BALCONY.
The Mother of the I. Y. P. Oh, CAROLINE, you've got the Catalogue—just see what No. 288 is, there's a dear. It seems to be a country-house, and they're having dinner in the garden, and some of the guests have come late, and without dressing, and there's the hostess telling them it's of no consequence. What's the title—"The Uninvited Guests," or "Putting them at their Ease," or what?
The I. Y. P. It only says, "The Rose-Garden at Ashridge (containing portraits of the Earls of PEMBROKE and BROWNLOW, the Countesses of ——").
[She reads out the list to the end.
Her Mother. What a nice picture! Though one would have thought such smart folks wouldn't have come to dinner in riding-boots, and shawls, and things—but of course they can afford to be less particular. And the dessert is beautifully done!
IN THE SOUTH ROOM.
The I. Y. P. Why, here are "Neptune's Horses" again! Don't you remember we saw a picture of them before? But I like this better, because here you get Neptune and his chariot.
Her Mother. He's made his horses a little too like fish, for my taste.
The I. Y. P. I suppose they were a sort of fish—and after all, one isn't expected to believe in all that nowadays, is one? So it doesn't really matter.
First Horsey Man. Tell you what, Old Neptune'll come to awful grief with that turn-out of his in another second.
Second H. M. Rather—regular bolt—and no ribbons to hold 'em by, either!
First H. M. Rummy idea, having cockleshells on the traces.
Second H. M. Oh, I don't know—one of the Hussar regiments has 'em.
First H. M. Ah, so they have. I suppose that's where he got the idea.
[They go out, feeling that the picture is satisfactorily accounted for.
The P. P. (before a small canvas). Yes, this is the right thing at last. The paper doesn't seem to put it out in the least, and the sort of subject, you know, that no one can object to. I've quite fallen in love with it. I don't care what it costs—I positively must have it. I'm sure the wife will be as fond of it as I am. I only hope it's not sold—here, let's go and see.
AT THE SECRETARY'S TABLE.
The P. P. (turning over the priced Catalogue). Ah, here it is! It's unsold—it's marked down at—(his face falls)—eleven—eleven —that's rather over my limit. (To his Friend.) Do you mind waiting while I try the paper on it once more? (His Friend consents; the P. P. returning, after an interval.) No, I had my doubts from the beginning—it won't do, after all!
His Friend. But I thought you said the paper didn't put it out?
The P. P. It doesn't—but the picture takes all the shine out of the paper.
His Friend. I suppose you couldn't very well change the paper—eh?
The P. P. Change the paper?—when it's only been up a week, and cost seven-and-six the piece! My dear fellow, what are you talking about? No, no—I must see if I can't get a picture to match it at MAPLE'S, that's all.
His Friend (vaguely). Yes, I suppose they understand all that sort of thing there.
[They go out, relieved at having arrived at a decision.
* * * * *
* * * * *
SHAKSPEARE ON ULSTER.
TO MR. PUNCH, SIRR,—You're a patriot, divil a less.
Is it fair, I ask you, Sirr, is it fair to quote the Universal Bard against us Ulster, et ne plus Ulster, Loyalists? Yet this is the line which a man who used to call himself "a friend of mine" sends me, and he puts a drawing with it, which I can't, and won't reproduce, representing a moon up in the sky, labelled "Home Rule," and a pack of wolves (a pack of idiots, for all they're like wolves, for that matter), on which he writes "Ulster," with their mouths open, looking up at it. And this, he says, is an illustration of a line in SHAKSPEARE,
"The howling of Irish wolves against the moon,"
which you'll find in As You Like It (whether you like it or not), Act V., Sc. 2. If the O'CHAMBERLAIN, or the O'SAUNDERSON, or any of 'em, can make use of this, they're welcome to it.
Yours, A PIP OF THE OLD ORANGE.
* * * * *
HOOK-Y SAILOR.—"Inauguration of a New Service to the Continent via Harwich and the Hook of Holland."
This sounds as if it ought to catch on. Is the Hook of Holland any relation to the THEODORE HOOK family of England? Were that eminent wit now alive, he would be the first to ask such a question. The route sounds a pleasant one.
Advice to Tourists,—Keep your Eye on the Hook.
* * * * *
A CIVIL NOTE FOR THE MILITARY.
MY DEAR MR. PUNCH,—I observe that in a preliminary notice that has been sent round to the Press by the Executive Council (I suppose that that is the proper title of the Governing Body of the forthcoming Royal Military Tournament), it is said that there is likely to be some novelty in the mimic warfare known as the Combined Display of all Arms. The circular informs those whom it may concern, that "it is intended that, so far as space will allow, the scene shall be that of one of the more recent conflicts in which British troops were actually engaged, and special information from those present on such occasions has been invited, so that the result is likely to be of more than ordinary interest."
Quite so. I call your particular attention to the last few words in the above sentence, in which reference is made to "the special information from those present on such occasions." I thought the idea so good, that I immediately prepared a scheme for the adoption of the Royal Military Tournament, founded upon my acquaintance with the manners and customs of the English army when at Islington and elsewhere. I give it for what it is worth—not much, but (to quote the once popular song) "better than nothing at all."
A dozen Infantry privates saunter leisurely into their places, half-way across the arena, and await events.
Enter Bridging Battalion, Royal Engineers. They bridge over an old cloth river. The dozen Infantry men wait until the erection is completed, and then fire a volley. The Sappers return the compliment. No one hurt, and the dozen retire to the tower-like gateway in the background. The Artillery at this point rush in and trot over the newly-erected bridge. They then fire in the direction of the dozen heroes, but without any apparent result.
Grand charge of Colonial Cavalry, with and without additional men. They act as Mounted Infantry. They are fired upon—in a half-hearted sort of way—by the dozen of Infantry seeking shelter in the gateway. The fire seems to agree with them.
Enter an Ambulance Corps to pick up one of the colonists who has obligingly been wounded by the blank cartridges of the dozen Infantry.
Sudden appearance of the strength of the entire company. The gateway is stormed, and the dozen Infantry men are overpowered. Music on the band—"Rule Britannia!" and the National Anthem. Great cheering while some one waves the Union Jack. End of the performances.
There, my dear Mr. Punch, that is what I have sent to the "powers that are" at Islington. Whether it has been accepted or rejected I do not know. You will be able to see for yourself when the proper time arrives.
But then, I can assure you, my sketch is exactly like the real thing. It is not unsuggestive of the Battle of Waterloo, the siege of Sebastopol, or the taking of Pekin. This is my "special information, as one present on such occasions," and it is heartily at the service of the Executive. To be worthy of my title, I would beg you to send me, say, a fiver, or even a sov, or (if that is too much) a dollar.
I do not ask for the money as a gift, but as a loan. I prefer the latter to the former, although a long experience has taught me that gift and loan have much the same meaning.
Yours truly, A VERY OLD SOLDIER.
* * * * *
INAUDIBLE PROCEEDINGS AT THE HOTEL VICTORIA.—We have had "The Funny Frenchman" over here, at the Albambra, and now we have "The Calculating Frenchman," M. JACQUES INAUDI, who, last week, at a seance, exhibited his marvellous powers of addition, multiplication, subtraction, and division. It is an error to suppose that he was educated for the French Navy, and has been appointed to a ship, which he was to have adorned as a "wonderful Figure-head." By the side of this Figure-head the "Calculating Buoy" would have been quite at sea.
* * * * *
* * * * *
THE MINSTREL BOY.
(Latest Ulsterical Version.)
The Minstrel-boy to the war is gone, By the Belfast road he's coming; His Party sword he has girded on And his wild harp loud he's thrumming. "Land of bulls!" said the warrior bard, "Though GLADSTONE'S gang betrays thee, One sword, at least, thy rights shall guard, One faithful harp shall praise thee!"
The Minstrel's loud—though a little late; What he hopes to gain some wonder; But he swears that harp shall preserve the State, Which his foes would rend asunder. He shouts, "Home Rule shall not sully thee, Ulster, thou soul of bravery! I'll harp wild war, aye, from sea to sea, Ere the Loyalists stoop to slavery!"
(For use in Clubs and other places where men—and minstrels—are confidential.)
The Minstrel's hot, and a trifle tired, For his Whitsun task is a torrid one; Such holiday-fervour must be admired, But the precedent's rather a horrid one. E'en Minstrel-boys of Ulsterical zeal, Might now and then like a jolly-day; And the brave bard's harp, and the warrior's steel, Take, together, occasional holiday.
* * * * *
A WYLDE VADE MECUM.
(By Professor H-xl-y.)
Question. What is rest?
Answer. Unperceived activity.
Q. Which is the best way of keeping awake?
A. By falling off to sleep.
Q. What is sleep?
A. Concealed consciousness.
Q. What is strength?
A. Weakness in excess.
Q. What is pessimism?
A. Optimism developed to its utmost possibilities.
Q. What are possibilities?
A. Impossibilities carried into action.
Q. What is selfishness?
A. Pity in the concrete.
Q. What is the summit of civilisation?
A. The commencement of barbarism.
Q. What is nature?
A. Art in its initial form.
Q. What is the survival of the fittest?
A. The Romanes Lecture.
Q. What was its comparative commencement?
A. Mr. GLADSTONE.
Q. And what has been its absolute end?
A. Positive ... bosh.
* * * * *
"THE WORLD'S FAIR."—Yes, so it is, perhaps, occasionally, to some people; but "The World's Unfair" to those on whom it chooses to sit in judgment.
* * * * *
[Some indignation has been expressed at the manners of many of the "well-dressed mob" at the Prince of WALES's Reception at the Imperial Institute on Wednesday night last, manners displayed in rudely "mobbing" the Royal party, and hissing, hooting, and shouting "Traitor!" at Mr. GLADSTONE, one of the Prince's guests.]
EH? Indignation? Why such passion waste? Gladstoneophobia has destroyed Good Taste; And rowdy rudeness does not shock, but please, "The mob of gentlemen who hoot with ease. As for the ladies, bless their angry hearts! They've Primrosed into playing fish-wife parts; And now 'tis one of Patriotism's tests That you should hiss and hoot your fellow-guests. Should they dare don a rival party vesture; Billingsgate rhetoric and Borough gesture Invade the (party) precincts of Mayfair— To express the vulgar wrath now raging there. We are Mob-ruled indeed—when Courtly Nob Apes, near his Prince, the manners of the Mob! The hoot is owlish; there are just two things That hiss—one venom-fanged, one graced with wings. Anserine or serpentine, ye well-dressed rowdies? Dainty-draped dames, or duffel-skirted dowdies, They who in rudeness thus their spite would slake, Have plainly head of goose, and heart of snake! So why indulge in indignation blind 'Gainst those who hiss or hoot—after their kind?
* * * * *
* * * * *
"O SINO SAN!"
A TRUTHFUL JAPANESE IDYLL.
O SINO SAN! O SINO SAN! Who waketh me at morn! Why is it that I feel of thee unutterable scorn?
When I behold thy greasy poll and little piggy eyes, I fear that they have told of thee unwarrantable lies! They told me when I wandered forth to seek thee in Japan, That I should find a priceless girl, too beautiful for man.
They told me of thy cherry cheeks, thy hair of night-dark sable, And how you squatted on the floor—the Japanese for table; They gushed about your merry ways, your manners without flaw, In thee, the girl idealised, you little fraud, we saw.
But now in wind-swept bleak Japan as our sore throats we muffle, We see thy senseless pudding face and irritating shuffle; As you go slopping thro' the streets of your foul-smelling city, You're far too common to be rare, too brainless to be witty.
Your senseless, everlasting grin, your squatting monkey shape, Proclaim your Ma marsupial, your ancestor an ape!
A curio they promised us to drive a lover crazy, With little soft canoodling ways, and sweetness of a daisy. We read of thee in tea-house neat, in cherry-blossomed pages, But find a girl of gin-saloon and Yoshiwara cages.
You lure the European on, admire his rings and collars, But never really love his lips, invariably his dollars; We'd all forgive thy grin, guffaw, and rancid-smelling tresses, If we could trace thy fraud, O SAN, in half-a-dozen guesses. It's lasted long, it's lasted strong, it cannot last much longer, For if the crank be competent, my common sense is stronger.
The English woman flashes scorn from all her comely features, To be compared by any man with such "disgusting creatures." And all the fair Americans, who roam the wide world over, Will trample down this windy chaff and Japaneesy clover. 'Tis not thy fault, O SINO SAN—we find the truth and strike it, Farewell, thou AUDREY of the East—grin on then "As you Like It!" But never more by writer bold be canonised or sainted, Deluded Doll! O SINO SAN, you're blacker than you're painted!
Yokohama, April 1, 1893.
* * * * *
Monday, May 15.—First Night of Italian-Opera Season no longer exclusively Italian. A great deal, though not everything, in a good start, so Sir DRURIOLANUS leads off with Warbling WAGNER'S Lohengrin, Signor VIGNAS for first time being White Knight. Crowded House at once takes to VIGNAS; applauds, and recalls him to bow before the curtain. So, as the now popular song might have it,
"Tenor came and made us a bow-wow!"
Madame MELBA good as ever as Elsa, and Mlle. MEISSLINGER most dramatic as Somebody Elser, i.e., Ortruda, the Intruder. Mons. DUFRICHE'S style is exactly suited to the light and airy part of Federico di Telramondo, while CASTELMARY is quite the gay Enrico. Treat to see VASCHETTI as smiling Herald, with a lot to say for somebody else, and pleasant to note that the last person in the dramatis personae included in the cast of the Opera is "Conductor, Signor MANCINELLI," who beats time, winning easily. BEVIGNANI conducts National Anthem, and all conduct themselves loyally on the occasion. Delightful, in Lohengrin, Act II., to observe how four players of trumps, each with one trump in his hand,—quite a pleasant whist party—(have they the other trumps up their sleeves?)—arouse the guests in the early morning, and marvellous is the rapidity with which all the gentlemen sleeping in the Castle are up and dressed in full armour, freshly burnished,—"gents suit complete,"—within the space of a couple of minutes!
General excellence of performance greatly assisted by Duke of TECK enthusiastically beating time with his dexter band. Such auxiliary conducting must be of unspeakable service to Signor MANCINELLI.
Tuesday Night.—Orfeo, with GIULIA RAVOGLI charming as ever in her representation of "Orpheus with his loot,"—his "loot" being Eurydice, who had become the private property of that infernal monarch Pluto. Welcome to Mlle. BAUERMEISTER as the Meister of Cupid's Bower, Cupid himself. Cavalleria Rusticana to follow, with Madame CALVE'S grand impersonation of the simple and sad Santuzza. Notably good is VIGNAS as the Rustic Swell, with the comic-chorus name of Turiddu. Beautiful intermezzo heartily encored. The thanks of Signors BEVIGNANI and MANCINELLI again due to the dexterous assistance rendered to them by the Duke of TECK, who is evidently well up in the Teck-nique of the musical craft. Crowded House. Forecast of season, full of promise and performance.
Thursday.—Carmen. Always "good BIZET-ness." But on this occasion Madame CALVE being indisposed, Mlle. SIGRID ARNOLDSON appears as heroine. A most captivating Carmen, but so deftly does she dissemble her wickedness that the audience do not realise how heartless is this artful little cigarette-maker. Mons. ALVAREZ a fine Don Jose. The premieres danseuses lively and picturesque in Act II., with dresses long and dance short; but in Last Act, when reverse of this is the case, a pretty general feeling that skirts might have been longer, and dance shorter. Chorus and Orchestra all that could be desired; absence of the musical Duke much regretted.
Friday.—First, GOUNOD'S charming burletta of Philemon et Baucis. Mlle. SIGRID ARNOLDSON charming and childlike as Baucis—evidently the classic original of Bo-peep—and Mons. PLANCON excellent as Jupiter Amans. At first afraid lest crowded house had expended all its enthusiasm before quarter past ten, when the event of the evening was to come off. "Not a bit of it," says Sir DRURIOLANUS, who knows his operatic public; "they've just warmed up for LEONCAVALLO'S Pagliacci. LEONCAVALLO," he continues, "is the composer for my money; and my advice is, LAY-ON-CAVALLO'S Pagliacci." So saying, the Musical Manager lightly touches his nasal organ with the index finger of his right hand, and, at the same time "winking the other eye," he marches in a procession of one down the lobby and disappears.
Great as is the success to-night of new Opera, I feel sure that Cavalleria, with its simple story, and its marvellous intermezzo, is still at the head of the poll. Yet is Pagliacci melodious and dramatic. Madame MELBA at her best in Nedda, and the dramatic power, specially of Signor DE LUCIA as Canio and of Mons. ANCONA as Tonio, would have carried the piece, as a piece, even without the musical setting. To-night De Lucia shows himself a great actor. There were encores in plenty. Ancona Tonio interrupts the overture in order to sing a prologue. This he does admirably, both vocally and histrionically. But cui bono? It is as pointless as is nowadays the prologue of CHRISTOPHER SLY to the Taming of the Shrew. It seems as if LEONCAVALLO said to himself, "Mascagni gave 'em a novelty in his intermezzo; I'll give 'em something new in the shape of a prologue." Pagliacci and Cavalleria will assist each other, and Sir DRURIOLANUS is fortunate in being able to run two winners. The new Opera is admirably rendered in every respect, and when Mr. RICHARD GREEN, as the gallant young farmer, is matured—that is, has less of the GREEN about him and more of the ripeness of artistic perfection—there will not be a single fault to find with the representation. To-night second Opera didn't end till just on twelve. Too late; but the hospitable RULE'S in Maiden Lane is open to exceptions for half an hour or so, and, "after the Opera is over," a little supper chez BAYLISS is a B(ay)lissful idea.
Saturday.—Faust to finish. MELBA as Marguerite. First week augurs well for the season.
* * * * *
* * * * *
THE LITIGANTS VADE MECUM.
Q. What is your opinion about Chancery?
A. That, thanks to work being given to Solicitors in preference to Barristers, litigation is more expensive in that branch of the science than in any other.
Q. How comes it that this should be so?
A. A Barrister is forced to do his best for his client, but a Solicitor is not. As a rule the Solicitor deputes to his Chief Clerk if he has one, or somebody in the office if he has not, the duties of conducting a suit through Chambers.
Q. What is the practical result of this arrangement?
A. That a suit when it once gets into Chambers takes a precious long time in coming out.
Q. But making allowance for these little drawbacks, what is your opinion of the Law in England?
A. That emphatically it consists of the best forensic regulations in the universe.
* * * * *
A NEW CLAUSE IN THE HOME-RULE BILL.—Instead of a Parliament in Dublin, let the Governing Body be called "A Diet," as it is in Bohemia. There would be a First House, to be called the "High Diet," and a Second House, to be called "Short Commons, or Low Diet." There would be no "Parliamentary Rules," but everything would be ordered according to a "Dietary." Perhaps Dr. ROBSON ROOSE might be induced to take a leading part in suggesting some of these arrangements. The "Orders of the Day" would be "Prescriptions," the Bills "Dinner-Bills," or "Menus." A Chairman, not a Speaker, would preside, and the subordinates—such as Clerks, Sergeant-at-Arms, and Assistants—would be Stewards, Head Waiters, and other Waiters. Prayers would be said by "The Ordinary."
* * * * *
ODDS in favour of Australian Cricketing Team—"GIFFEN" and taken.
* * * * *
ESSENCE OF PARLIAMENT.
EXTRACTED FROM THE DIARY OF TOBY, M.P.
Home of Commons, Monday, May 15.—Mr. G. reminded of advance of time by appearance on Parliamentary scene of new generations. All remember when JOEY C. arrived from Birmingham, and have watched his meteoric flight from level of Provincial Mayor to loftiest height of Parliamentary position. Only the other week Mr. G. was paying well-deserved compliment to a younger CHAMBERLAIN making his maiden speech; to-day he has a kindly, fatherly word of friendly recognition of maiden speech of youngest CAVENDISH. No mere compliment this, extorted by old associations and personal predilections. Young VICTOR went about his work in style reminiscent of middle-aged HARTINGTON. Abstained from oratorical effort. Neither exordium nor peroration. Got some business in hand, and plodded on till it was finished. Modest mien, simple, unaffected manner, instantly won friendly attention of crowded House.
"Ay de mi! TOBY," said Mr. G. "These things make me think I'm not so young as I was."
"Younger Sir," I said. "Pup and dog, I've known you twenty years; heard most of your speeches in that time; honestly declare that for lightness of touch, swiftness of attack, wariness of defence, not to speak of eloquence, I've never heard you excel some of your speeches this Session."
"Well, well, TOBY," said Mr. G., blushing in fashion never learned by youth of to-day, "that's due to your too friendly way of looking at things. What I was about to say is, that ever since I entered public life I have always known a CAVENDISH to the fore. Ministries may rise and fall; the CAVENDISHES remain. Curious thing is they have not—at least in recent times—personally a passion for politics, as PITT had, or such as, in some degree, influences me. They would, if they had their own way, be out of it.
But the CAVENDISHES have had their place in English public life throughout the Century, and, it being their duty to fill it, they fill it. Young VICTOR'S speech on Friday night carried me back over space of thirty-four years. I remember another CAVENDISH coming out. He moved resolution which defeated DERBY'S Government in 1859. I remember the difficulty we had in bringing him up to the scratch. It was BRIGHT who finally succeeded. BRIGHT always had great opinion of HARTINGTON'S ability, a view, as we have seen, amply justified. A great deal has happened since 1859, and now here's another CAVENDISH moving another Amendment, and, oddly enough"—here Mr. G.'s face wrinkled into smile of delighted humour—"it's ME who would be turned out of office if the Amendment were carried."
Being thus in melting mood, Mr. G. suddenly turned upon inoffensive JESSE COLLINGS, who had been saying a few words, and almost literally rent him into, fragments. Scarcely anything left of him but benevolent though feeble smile.
Business Done.—Very little in Committee on Home-Rule Bill.
Tuesday Night.—AMBROSE, Q.C., roused at last. House known him for eight years; only to-night learned that it has been cherishing upon its bosom a sleeping volcano. Following fortunes of Conservative leaders, AMBROSE has crossed and re-crossed floor, always taking up seat about centre of Bench immediately behind PRINCE ARTHUR; has occasionally risen thence and offered a few observations. Characteristic of him that he was born in a Cathedral town; is a Bencher of the Middle Temple.
Persuasion tips his tongue whene'er he'll talk, And he has Chambers near the King's Bench Walk.
These things we knew; but not till to-night came discovery how persuasive AMBROSE can be.
It was the Tenth Clause of the Home-Rule Bill that roused the (attorney's) devil in him. Fact that Clause II. was under discussion, and consequently out of order to debate Clause X., an incident of no consequence, except that it indirectly supplied incentive to his passionate eloquence, and led to disclosure of the true AMBROSE. When he approached Clause X., cries of "Order! Order!" interrupted. The Chairman recalled him to consideration of Clause II. He came back, said a few words on amendment, then was off again at Clause X., pursued by howls. Had got a start, and kept it through some moments of thunderous excitement. Waved his arms, thumped his papers; shouted at top of voice; House still howling; Chairman on feet ineffectually protesting. "Glad to see the SOLICITOR-GENTLEMAN in his place," he observed, in one of the temporary pauses, (RIGBY usually alluded to as the SOLICITOR-GENERAL, but AMBROSE, once started in new character, was lavish in originality.) "Need I go further?" he asked, a few moments later. House, with one accord, shouted "No!" "Now Sir," he added, waving his notes in face of Chairman, "I've done with the Tenth Clause." But he hadn't; its mastery over him was irresistible, even uncanny. "I should like to know what the SOLICITOR-GENERAL" (got it right this time) "if he were at liberty to speak" (this with a withering glance at Mr. G.), "would say about the Tenth Clause?"
A roar angrier than ever burst forth; shouts of "Name! Name!" persistently heard above uproar; Chairman on his feet, with hands outstretched; crisis evidently arrived; AMBROSE will be named to a dead certainty; suspended, and, perhaps, in addition to his bench at the Middle Temple, will have one provided for him in Clock Tower. Would like to have said few more words on Tenth Clause, but numbers against him overwhelming. So wildly waved his notes in sort of forlorn despairing farewell, and resumed his seat. Incident created profound sensation.
"It's all very well CHAMBERLAIN insisting on keeping this thing going," said PRINCE ARTHUR, anxiously; "but I have my responsibilities. If Debate at this comparatively early stage thus affects a man like AMBROSE, where shall we all be in another week?"
Business done.—Still on Clause II.
Wednesday.—Pretty to see GORST just now balancing MACARTNEY'S hat by brim on tip of his nose. Looks easy enough when done by an expert; those inclined to scoff at the accomplishment should try it themselves. Opportunity came suddenly, and unexpectedly. No ground for supposing GORST had been practising the trick in the Cloak-room before entering House. No collusion; all fair and above-board—or, rather, above nose. Came about as incident in Committee on Home-Rule Bill. JOKIM, taking part in game of Chairman-baiting, challenged MELLOR'S ruling on putting Motion to Report Progress. House being cleared for a Division, rules of debate require Member to address Chair seated, and wearing his hat. What would happen to British Constitution if, in such circumstances, Member rose and addressed SPEAKER or Chairman in ordinary fashion, Heaven only knows. No mere man bold enough to try it. Even Mr. G., who has Disestablished a Church, and now tampers with Unity of the Empire, shrinks before this temptation.
JOKIM, making his complaint, got along all right. Performed task in due form; MELLOR justified his action; GORST proposed to follow. Hadn't got his hat with him; but that of no consequence, since JOKIM was at hand. "Lend me one of your hats," he whispered hurriedly to his Right Hon. Friend.
"What do you mean?" said JOKIM. "I've only one."
"Oh!" said GORST, raising his eyebrows with polite incredulity. MACARTNEY, sitting behind, proffered his. GORST planted it on his head; found it three sizes too small; still, if he held on to it, he might manage. "Mr. MELLOR," he commenced, but got no further with projected speech. Attention of House drawn to him his dilemma discovered: shout of laughter burst forth as hat gradually tilted forward, and GORST, deftly catching it by brim on tip of his nose, balanced it for fifteen seconds by Westminster Clock. Chairman seized opportunity of abstracted attention to put question, and when GORST, recapturing MACARTNEY'S hat, had fixed it again on summit of his head, division was called; too late for him to speak.
Business done.—Second Clause Home Rule Bill added.
Friday.—Treasury Chest Bill on for Third Reading. Has since introduction wrought singular effect upon HANBURY. Nobody knows what Bill is about, least of all HANBURY; but he has opposed it at every stage. Yesterday divided Committee on First Clause; returns to attack to-day. "Better let us get away for our hardly-earned holiday," I said.
"That's very well for you, TOBY," said HANBURY, beating his chest in default of getting at the Treasury's; "but there's a dark mystery under this business which I mean to fathom. You remember the case of another chest and its weird associations?
'Fifteen men on a dead man's chest— Ho! Ho! Ho! and a bottle of rum.'
HARCOURT may, or may not, have been one of the fifteen. I'm not quite clear on that point. Indeed I'm somewhat muddled in the main; but I suspect the SQUIRE is up to some deed of infamy, and I have done my best to plumb its slimy depths."
Bill passed nevertheless; other business wound up, and so off for holidays. Business done.—House adjourned for Whitsun Recess.
* * * * *
THE REAL "REJECTED ADDRESSES."—Those that cannot be deciphered at the General Post Office.
* * * * *