Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 93, September 24, 1887
Author: Various
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VOL. 93

SEPTEMBER 24, 1887.

Illustration: RECORD OF THE SESSION—422.


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Royat Improved.—I have said Royat ought to be rebuilt. The Grand Hotel is of a sort of Doll's House order of architecture, splendid front, no depth to speak of, and built on so steep an ascent that it is hoisted up at the back like a lady's skirt by a dress-improver. Beau site all the same, and magnificent view.

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Last year the Hotel Continental formed part of a group of hotels—which seemed to have been the result of some violent volcanic eruption, when the mountain threw up several hotels, and left them there anyhow—is at present separated from the Splendide and its other former companions by an impromptu wall, and from all its front windows it commands varied, beautiful, and, on the Clermont-Ferrand side, extensive views. It has a pleasant garden, a most enjoyable terrace, and it only wants to be in the hands of a firmly fixed and intelligent management to make it quite the best hotel in Royat. "Personally recommended," that is, as managed under the direction of M. HALL this year.

The service at the Etablissement de Bains is about as good as it can be. There are, however, no bains de luxe. A few of these would attract those "whom" as the appeals to the charitable used to have it, "Providence has blessed with affluence."

"La Compagnie Brocard," which manages Royat's bathing arrangements and undertakes a portion of the mild yet (to my mind as a serious bather) sufficient amusements, is not, unfortunately for the public, in accord with M. SAMIE, the spirited Proprietor of an opposition Casino, where there is a small theatre, in its way a perfect gem. Here all the "Stars" of any magnitude make their appearance on visiting Royat. As a "Baigneur de Royat" puts it, in a local journal, the Compagnie Brocard cannot consider their stuffy little room ("le petit etouffoir") where theatrical performances are given as a real theatre. It is a pity that M. SAMIE and La Compagnie Brocard cannot, like the "birds in their little nests," agree. But as to Theatres and spectacles, my rule at Royat, or at any other Water-cure place, would be this:—

"Any baigneur found out of his hotel or lodgings after 10.15, p.m., shall be arrested, conducted back to his hotel, his number taken, and for the second offence he shall be fined. The fine to go to such objects as the Direction shall determine."

In short there should be introduced here the English University system of Proctors and bull-dogs.

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Another Rule.—No theatrical entertainment should last more than two hours with entr'actes of seven minutes each. The ventilation of the salle de spectacle should be assured.

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If a company wanted to play a piece in four Acts, they must stop here two days; and, if they couldn't do that, then they must begin their performance in the afternoon, have one entr'acte of an hour and a half to allow for dinner, and recommence at eight o'clock. I would discourage all evening indoor entertainments. Music, coffee, petits chevaux, M. GUIGNOL'S show, ombres chinoises, everything in fact that can be done al fresco—(and why not good plays al fresco? After the Laboucherian Midsummer Night's Dream, at Twickenham, which I am told was perfection)—cafes chantants, and so forth, including the "consommation devoutly to be wished," and all the lights out by 9.30. Lights in bedrooms to be extinguished same hour. This rule would mean, Early to bed, and early to rise, and the "baigneurs" would receive double the benefit they derive from these places, as now constituted. Life in the open air should be the rule; plenty of exercise, riding and walking, and regular hours for everything for three weeks. The baigneurs to choose their own hours, and be kept to them strictly.

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But I have personally no sympathy with the baigneurs who find such a water-cure place as Royat dull. What do they want? If they cannot get on without a sort of continuation of the London Season, let them stay away altogether. Don't let them come and make night hideous with balls, suppers, dances, and won't-go-home-till-morning parties.

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The above are my suggestions for the improvement of Royat; and now I go on to La Bourboule, and Mont Dore. By the way, the waters at these places are all supplied, as I am credibly informed, from the same source; but the waters flowing towards La Bourboule and Mont Dore traverse certain couches on their way, and come out arsenical. It is strong drinking at La Bourboule and Mont Dore.

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One Joanne Guide introduces you to another Joanne Guide, or a history, you can't help yourself. The Joanne Guides are so united a family, that as soon as any member of it establishes itself on a friendly footing with you, your hand is always in your pocket while you are travelling on that Guide Joanne's account. An insidious tribe: and they make themselves absolutely essential to the traveller's existence and comfort.

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Each Guide Joanne tells you about his own country all that is requisite for you to know, and just so much more as inspires you with a thirst for further information. Say for example you see an old Chateau. Let us say Le Chateau de Jean. You want to know everything about it. Good. You inquire of the Guide Joanne which professes to show you all over France, and which does it, mind you, in what would be an exhaustive style if it was not written with such an evident eye to the bookselling business. For example suppose you are looking for information about the well-known ancient Chateau de Jean, here is a specimen of what Joanne would say on the subject:—

"Sur la rive g. (V. ci-dessous B.) restes d'un chateau, style ogival, (mon. hist.,) bati par le celebre Jean Bienconnu-aux-enfants (V. mon. hist, xe et xiie s.), beau portail, jolis details d'architecture (mon. hist.) et en particulier l'appartement dit de la Donzelle toute desespere (pour le visiter, s'addresser au gardien, pourboire), qui a conserve une grande partie de sa decoration originale et de sa peinture (mon. hist. xie). Le donjon renfermait une oubliette profonde nommee DU RAT DEVORANT, qui autrefois servait de grenier au malt (V. mon. hist.). Ascension des Obelisques sur la terrasse (splendide panorama) et belles promenades autour de la petite chapelle dite DU PRETRE CHAUVE. (V. vi. L'ITINERAIRE DU PAYS-DE-BONNES, GUIDE DIAMANT.)"

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JUPITER PLUVIUS, Sluicer, full-spout, Downpour diluvious, Pumped on the Drought. Checked, aloud crying, The voice of the Swain; The rootcrops be dying, From long lack of rain!

PLUVIUS poured away, While the wind blew; TONANS, he roared away, Hullaballoo, Kicking up, dweller In quarters on high, He, Cloud Compeller; The Czar of the sky.

Clouds, in convulsion, Or calm, he keeps under; Rules, by compulsion: The reason of thunder. So did he lately Compel them to rise, Piled up in stately Array on the skies.

Castles aerial, Splendid when falls, Sheen on etherial Vapoury halls, Battlements, bartizans, Phantoms of towers, Fenced round with partisans; Cloud-cauliflowers.

Mountainous forms In the realms of felicity, By Jove, to move storms, Fraught with force—electricity, They serve to betoken What mortals may tell; The weather is broken: Summer, farewell!

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Light from Wind.

The Times says that experiments are being made at Cap de la Heve, near the mouth of the Seine, on the production of electricity for lighthouse purposes by means of the force obtained by windmills. Light from wind! Could the notion be applied at St. Stephen's? The Session just over has been mainly wind, so exceptionally "ill wind," that it has blown no good to anybody, and most certainly has thrown no "light" on anything. By all means let M. DE L'ANGLE-BEAUMANOIR be empowered to experiment on the windbags of the House of Commons when they next meet.

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(New Version, as Sung by the Comte de Paris.)

Here I come in complete Constitutional coat (That's English, you know; quite English, you know): The type of true Monarchy based on the Vote. (That's English, you know; quite English, you know.) To have a legitimate King on the throne, To make all the Country's best interests his own, Great, grand, patriotic, but not overgrown (That's English, you know; quite English, you know).


Oh, the things that you see and the things that you hear Are English, you know; quite English, you know. My mind, like my last Manifesto, 'tis clear, Is English, quite English, you know!

Just now a great calm meets the national eyes (That's English, you know; quite English, you know). But imminent perils it cannot disguise (That's English, you know; quite English, you know). We have deserved well of Conservative France; A Monarchy only her bliss can enhance; And now of its nature I'll give you a glance (That's English, you know; quite English, you know).


The things will much please which you're going to hear (They're English, you know; quite English, you know). Legality banished must soon reappear (That's English, quite English, you know).

What one Congress does can't another undo? (That's English, you know; quite English, you know.) The Eternal Republic has gone all askew (Not English, you know; not English you know). 'Twill presently get quite incurably queer, And then will the Monarchy promptly appear. I fancy myself that the moment is near. (That's English, you know; quite English, you know.)


Mark the things which you see and the things which you hear (That's English, you know; quite English, you know). There's nothing that's solid or stable, I fear (That's English, quite English, you know.)

Direct, universal, free suffrage, my friends, (That's English, you know; quite English, you know). Will vote—well for Me, and all trouble then ends (That's English, you know; quite English, you know). The King, with the Chamber's concurrence, will rule. The Deputies then can no more play the fool,— CLEMENCEAU, BOULANGER, and men of that school (That's English, you know; quite English, you know).


Heed the things which you see and the things you now hear (That's English, you know; quite English, you know). Economy, Order, and Justice sans fear! (They're English; quite English, you know!)

The Soldier and Citizen then will agree, (That's English, you know; quite English, you know,) The Press and the Priesthood alike will be free (That's English, you know; quite English, you know). Then will France to her ancient pre-eminence rise; The German will watch her with reverent eyes; All the Powers rush forward to be her allies (That's French, you know; very French, you know).


These things you shall see which you now only hear (That's certain you know; quite certain, you know): If only you'll let my new System appear. (That's English; quite English, you know!)

Constitutional principles, these, my good friend! (They're English, you know; quite English, you know)— They Conservative needs and Equality blend, (That's English, you know; quite English, you know). Do at my new Royal rig-out take a glance! In this to the front I shall proudly advance, As the true King of all, and first Servant of France, (But English, you know; quite English, you know).


The things which I say it is time you should hear (They're English, you know; quite English, you know). The principles these to make France without peer (Though they're English; quite English, you know)!

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Illustration: THE STATE OF THE GAME.




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(By a Snubbed Poet.)

"A Thing of Beauty is a joy for ever;" Except a pretty girl, who thinks she's clever.

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NOMENCLATURE.—Somebody calls the "Thunderer's" daily fulmination against Mr. GLADSTONE an ignis fatuus, or foolish fire of Party journalism. Would not "Whip poor Will" be a more suitable title?

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MEM. FROM DERBYSHIRE.—The real "Lovers' Leap"—Marriage.

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I have seen The Barrister at the Comedy, and want to see him again, because he is a most amusing gentleman and figures in a case full of good things. There are two authors—as there should be—a Leader and his Junior. Mr. GEORGE MANVILLE FENN (a very excellent novelist) is the "silk," and he has for his junior Mr. DARNLEY. This latter gentleman be it understood, represents only the best kind of "stuff," for the play is good throughout. It is in three Acts, and there is not a dull moment from commencement to finish. I do not feel equal to describing the plot, which is bustling and clever, nor to jotting down the jests which are funny and novel, nor to criticising the acting, which is all that it should be. My time was fully employed on the first night, in laughing, an occupation shared by the entire audience. The play was never in danger. There was not a weak spot. No, not even the space covered by Mr. DARNLEY'S moustache. It may be said that an earnest Barrister should be clean shaven, but the remark would only emanate from those who are bachelors. The married advocate has not only to consider his Judge and Jury, but also his wife, and nine times out of ten she combines in her own person the judicial functions with the power of the executive. Where all are good it seems invidious to particularise, but had I to call witnesses for the defence, I think I should choose Miss SUSIE VAUGHAN, and Messrs. MERVIN, CAFFREY AND PRINCE MILLER. Another great merit of The Barrister is that he is closely associated with the word "brief." He makes his appearance every evening at nine and has retired for the night before eleven. I fancy, that unlike many other "gentlemen of the long robe," he will have plenty of work to do during the Long Vacation and after.

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Illustration: Winning a Verdict.

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Illustration: A Witness for the Defence.

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Mr. BEERBOHM TREE, who has become lessee of the Haymarket, has commenced his management by producing a one-act romantic play, called The Ballad Monger, a version (capitally adapted by the two WALTERS—POLLOCK and BESANT) of M. THEODORE DE BANVILLE'S GRINGOIRE. I remember the same piece was "done into English" some twenty years ago at a Gaiety matinee, when the translator, Mr. ALFRED THOMPSON, appeared himself as the principal character, with the probably unlooked-for result of shelving the drama, so far as London was concerned, from that distant date until last Thursday evening. However, the motif of the play is pretty well known. Gringoire, a revolutionary "Poet of the People," with the connivance of Louis the Eleventh of France, is induced to recite an anti-Royalist song in His Majesty's presence, and is then promised his forfeited life by the same amiable sovereign if he can woo, and win, a maiden who has never set eyes on him before, within a quarter of an hour. In the scene at the Haymarket a table is discovered spread with a meal (I could not quite make out from the text whether it was intended to represent breakfast, dinner, supper, or tea), including some wine, a few grapes, and a freshly-cooked goose redolent of savoury perfumes. Mr. BEERBOHM TREE is the poet, and were his method of performance only equal to his power of imagination, he would be very good indeed. Unhappily his excellent ideas are not carried fully into action, and consequently, after seeing him for forty minutes, or thereabouts, sniffing at a property goose, staggering about the stage with a wine-cup, and declaiming poetry of unequal merit to Miss MARION TERRY, one feels that the piece could only have "a happy ending" were Gringoire to be carried away for immediate execution. It is a little unfortunate, too, that the maiden to be wooed and won should be the charming actress I have just mentioned. Miss MARION TERRY, in a "piece of absurdity" called Engaged, made a great hit some years ago by appearing as a young lady with a chronic appetite for food, that she was for ever seeking to satisfy. Since then I have always looked upon her as one craving for her meals. Consequently when I found her within easy reach of a goose and in an atmosphere of herbs of a savoury character, it seemed unnatural to me that she should deliberately turn her back upon all these good things to listen to Mr. TREE'S poetically (but lengthily) expressed views upon liberty. I could but wonder why her choice had not fallen upon the goose on the table. Mr. BROOKFIELD as Louis the Eleventh, incidentally suggests that that wily monarch was guilty of a crime with which he has not hitherto been credited—a proneness to give imitations of Mr. IRVING in the character of Mephistopheles. For the rest, the piece itself is most interesting, is capitally staged, and in the subordinate characters, fairly acted. In the Red Lamp, which followed the Ballad Monger, Mrs. TREE appeared as Princess Claudia, the part originally played, and excellently played, by Lady MONCKTON. Although probably accustomed to roles of a lighter kind, she was fairly equal to the occasion. As for her husband, as Demetrius, he was simply admirable and inimitable.

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Illustration: Beerbohm Tree-son.

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Illustration: A Shooting Party in September.

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At the Olympic Mr. WILLARD has made his mark as the Pointsman. Since this clever actor first attracted attention by his wonderfully striking assumption of a "gentleman-burglar," in one of the earlier successes of Mr. WILSON BARRETT at the Princess's, he has never had so good a chance of showing what he can do in the polished-scoundrelly line. He is the most accomplished murderer on the modern stage, and really, if one were forced to die a violent death, Mr. WILLARD seems to be the individual one would naturally select to perform the necessary, but unpleasant, operation. It does not in the least matter to an Olympic audience how he comes to be the proprietor of a low Thames-side tavern when he seems better qualified to lead a cotillon in quite a fashionable West-End Square. All that is required of him by the Pit and Gallery, ay, and the Private Boxes and Stalls—is to do his little assassinations and kindred villanies in an educated and refined manner that can be appreciated by those who have benefited either from the good offices of the School Board or the careful tuition of the leading Universities. Mr. WILLARD is so good that no one pays particular attention to the efforts to please of his fellow-actors and actresses. The scenery of the Pointsman is sufficiently ingenious to satisfy the cravings for sensation of a typical British audience. The Railway collision worked as a sort of transformation scene,—the interior of a signal-box changes into the site of a fatal accident—creates much enthusiasm, but the winsome if vindictive WILLARD still remains the centre of attraction. In the last Act a good deal of gunpowder is burned advantageously to the simplification of the issue. It is scarcely necessary to say that, when the Curtain falls, what remains of Virtue is triumphant, and all that is left of Vice is on the road to justly merited punishment. The Pointsman is likely to remain on the line of the Olympic bills for many a week to come. I should not be surprised to find him still there at Christmas.

Exhausted with the labour of looking in at all the principal London Theatres,

I have the honour to remain, my dear Mr. Punch,


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Hooray for the Thistle! Scotch yacht without peer; May she win in her race with the smart Volunteer. Punch hopes, Captain BARR, that no "slip" may turn up 'Twixt your lip and the yearned-for American Cup. On both sides the Border we wish you success, And we trust of the race you'll not make a BARR mess. Your health in a cocktail, although you're afar, And we can't call you—yet—an American BARR!

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Illustration: INDEPENDENCE.



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SIR,—I am writing in the name of all the righteously indignant sons of Erin, to protest against the base shameless and infamous treatment accorded to that glorious champion and apostle of National freedom, the hero, WILLIAM O'BRIEN, by the despicable set of traitors, who, under cover of the title of "Her Majesty's Government," are trampling, at Westminster, the liberties of my beloved country in the mud and preparing to fling her sons by thousands into the depths of the foul and filthy dungeons already marked out for their reception. It is reported that this, the first victim of their malignant spleen and hatred, is to be subjected to the gross indignity of receiving the ordinary treatment of a common criminal, and be subjected to the usual regulations of gaol discipline. Now, Sir, in the name of all that is enlightened and progressive, I ask, if, at the close of the nineteenth century, such outrage is to be committed? Surely in answer to my appeal the generous people of England will rise in their might and with one voice compel the myrmidons appointed to carry out the malignant and iniquitous behests of the Castle to provide the noble spirit that they had intended to torture with chains and darkness with a comfortable and roomy four-post bedstead, cheerful apartments, a champagne dinner with not less than seven courses, daily carriage exercise, the use of a piano and billiard-table if required, and an introduction to the best society of the neighbourhood, including the Bishop, the Mayor and other notables. Thus, and thus only, should Irish martyrs be allowed to suffer for Ireland's wrongs, and in this way alone will the Irish people in their thousands consent even to the momentary incarceration of the heralds of that mighty struggle with a tyrannic despotism that they are heroically maintaining, backed by the hearty and enthusiastic support of an onlooking and applauding Universe, against the blind and blustering bullying of a blood-thirsty Government. If I write with moderation and temperately it is because I feel confidently that the trivial relaxations I propose must, if not at once conceded by, be forthwith instantly wrung from the thieves and scoundrels who at the present moment are responsible for the Executive of my patient and law-abiding country. Relying on the generous impulse of all those who would not wish to see the patriot deprived of his home comforts, I beg, Sir, with much self-restraint, to subscribe myself,

Your calm and dispassionate Correspondent,


SIR,—What's all this fuss about pushing this fellow O'BRIEN into a cell, nine feet by six? By all means push him in, or into one six feet by six, for anything I care. If he can't breathe the fresh air he wants inside, what of that? Serve him right. He has been egging on the dupes and fools who have listened to him to commit acts that, if the Executive were a trifle stronger, would soon crowd every gaol in the country to the roof, and now he has got a taste of the same medicine himself. I hope he likes it. As to his talking of "suffering in his health," who, I should like to know, supposes he goes to prison to improve it. Again, I say, "Serve him right!" and if he is let out some eighteen months hence well broken down, perhaps the experience will teach him to hold his tongue in future, and not go posturing on a platform with his political claptrap, for the purpose of interfering with the vested interests and inalienable rights of

Yours, rabidly,


SIR,—That political prisoners should not be regarded precisely in the same light as common criminals, public opinion, by a very generally accepted consent, readily admits. Yet Mr. W. O'BRIEN can hardly expect to find residence in a Government gaol in all respects as comfortable as that supplied to him in his own chambers. Still he may probably reasonably expect no harsh, certainly no vindictive treatment, at the hands of the Authorities, but merely that constraint and subjection to ordinary discipline which his detention necessarily involves. As, after the issue of the warrant for his arrest, he was allowed virtually to choose his own time for its service, ride on an open car with a Mayor, preceded by a brass band, playing a solemn march, take up his residence at an hotel, and subsequently address a crowd from the balcony, the Executive cannot be said to have been very hard on him, at least in their preliminary treatment, and probably they will follow it up somewhat in the same lines, and, without making his incarceration a farce, allow it to be softened with such relaxations that, while not incompatible with the surrender of his liberty, may yet be found consistent with a due regard to the requirements of his health, and the circumstances which have led to his rather injudiciously placing it in jeopardy. Such, at least, Sir, is the view of the situation taken by

Your devoted and constant Correspondent,


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* * * * *


I had been reading a lot of "Letters to the Times." That may account for any little confusion in the details of the subsequent events.

My interlocutor was tall and thin, and looming up lanky against a dusky sky, reminded me equally of an attenuated M.P., a phantom telegraph-pole, and PETER SCHLEMIL, the Shadowless Man.

"TYNDALL is quite right," murmured he.

"Glad to hear it," said I, earnestly. "I had been thinking lately that the distinguished savant was going decidedly wrong."

"Ah! he understands me!" sighed the Spectre.

It was more than I did; and I said so.

"Who and what are you, anyhow?" I inquired.

The lines of Long-thin-and-hungry seemed to shift and reshape.

"Ah!" came his voice, the same yet not the same, "elevation does not always give coolness, and one may be torrid and tempestuous even among the Alps."

Somehow this statement, though a truism, did not seem to fit on to previous remarks.

"I was once said to be 'Up in a balloon,'" continued Proteus (now looking rather like the Ancient Mariner,) "long and lean and brown, but letters written to the Times even from the utmost height lately attained by the French Aeronauts—to say nothing of the top of the tallest Lightning Conductor—would, I fear, be hot and ill-balanced. Look at Mr. H. O. ARNOLD-FOSTER!"

"Perhaps—in a sense—we are Lightning Conductors, you know," pursued my companion.

"As how?" I asked vaguely.

"Well we attract, and carry off harmlessly—it doesn't hurt us you see—the accumulated political electricity, which otherwise might rend and rive the State about which these Angry Amateurs are so passionately anxious."

I felt more mystified than ever.

"TYNDALL, GRIMTHORPE, and SYMONS, F.R.S., are entirely right," continued old Length-without-breadth; "A Lightning Conductor which does not conduct lightning, like a Leader who cannot lead, or a Follower who will not follow, is worse than a nullity, it is a nuisance and a danger."

"Quite so," I rejoined, grasping eagerly at something which seemed definite and comparatively relevant.

"Lightning Conductors are, in their way, as essential as Law and Order. But as TYNDALL says, in one case, and as I should say in the latter, all depends upon quality, efficiency, accurate adaptation to ends. Would you say, Oh! never mind about their quality or fitness, the first duty of the Executive is to maintain its Lightning Conductors?"

I replied that it really had not occurred to me to make any such statement, but I dared say I should.

"The Times said of the 'Report of the Lightning Rod Conference,' 'The book is one of the highest practical value, and all who are responsible for the preservation of public buildings should endeavour to render themselves familiar with the contents.' How true! That's my find old temperate 'Thunderer.'"

"Who are you who are so down upon TYNDALL?" I asked.

"I down on the learned Professor?" retorted my companion, shifting, dislimning, and elongating singularly. "On the contrary, I am grateful to him for being 'down upon' the incompetent architects and careless surveyors who would make of me a pitiful sham. Only" (here another phantasmagorical shift) "when he angrily declares a certain prominent political personage, who shall be nameless, to be also 'a pitiful sham,' why, then I think, like so many other and unscientific 'writers to the papers,' he needs the Conductor of cool Common Sense to divert, carry off, and disperse his too furious fulminations."

"Then you are only a Lightning Conductor, after all?" I queried, with some sense of being disappointed, not to say "sold."

"Only!" retorted my spectral and shifting visitant, again shifting spectrally. "Why, I'm thinking of writing, for the Nineteenth Century, an article on 'Political Lightning Conductors,' which, I rather flatter myself, will comprehend everything, convince everybody, and conciliate even Professor TYNDALL. If you like I will read, from the advance-sheets, a few passages which——"

But here I roused myself to determined resistance, and—awoke.

* * * * *

On the Wing.

In getting fair hold of the Coburg, Prince FERDINAND, Bulgaria palpably thought she'd a "bird in hand," But the Prince and the Bulgars, when put to the push, Will probably wish the "bird" back in the bush.

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Illustration: "OVERLOOKED!"


[Sir EDWARD HAMLEY served in the Eastern Campaign of 1854-55, including the affairs of Bulganac and McKenzie's Farm, the Battles of the Alma (horse shot), Balaklava, and Inkerman (horse killed), the Siege and Fall of Sebastopol, and repulse of the Sortie on the 26th October, 1854 (mentioned in Despatches, Medal with four clasps, Brevets of Major and Lt.-Colonel, Knight of the Legion of Honor, Sardinian and Turkish Medals, and 2nd Class of the Medjidie and C.B.). Sir Edward Hamley is the Author of The Operations of War, a work that may confidently be characterised as one of the most valuable modern Military books extant—"There exists nothing to compare with it in the English language for enlightened, scientific, and sober teaching in the general art of war"—vide the Times of 1st November, 1869. Served in the Egyptian War of 1882, in command of the 2nd Division, and was present at the Battle of Tel-el-Kebir, where he led the Division (received the thanks of both Houses of Parliament, twice mentioned in Despatches, K.C.B., Medal with clasp, 2nd Class of the Osmanieh, and Khedive's Star).—Hart's Army List, July 1, 1887.]

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The young Reciter is seldom happy in his delivery of blank verse. To which the unsympathetic may retort, that he does not deserve to be. Mr. Punch, however, recommends his pupils to treat such sneers with the contempt they merit, and to study the little dramatic exercise which has just been thrown off by a Blank Verse Bard who is kept on the premises. It can be announced on programmes as


(You should have an ordinary wooden elbow-chair and a print wrapper within easy reach. Come on crouching, with an air of tigerish anticipation.)

'Tis he! Can I mistake the clustered curls Upon his hated hyacinthine head? Have they not wiled from me the fickle heart Of perjured BANDOLINA! There, he stands Before my window, where a winsome form, Rotating slow with measured self-display, Has caught his errant eye. Now, demi-siren,

[Hands extended in passionate invocation.

Make languorous those lustrous crystal orbs! Wreathe, waxen arms, and lure him in, to me! So—once again!—he falters—he is Mine!

[Savage exultation, with eyebrows.

Let me be calm.

(Self-restraint, indicated by violent heaving of shirt-front.)

Good morning, Sir, to you. I pray you—

(With a forced sickly smile)

—step within, and seat yourself. I will attend you in a moment.

(Hold open imaginary door; then resume soliloquy in fierce undertone.)

... Trapped! He knows me not.

(With dark suspicion, which is easily conveyed by half closing eyes and pressing knuckle of bent forefinger against lower lip.)

Unless I be deceived, No hazard freak of hooded Fortune's urn,

[A nasty line for the "h"-less.

But BANDOLINA'S dainty insolence Decreed this visit ... Ha! my victim calls! I come anon. Sir

(fawningly, with a side-glance of withering hate at your chair.)

Patience, peevish worm! Are you in such a hurry, then, to writhe?

[Fierce aside. (Here you draw the chair forward, and, placing yourself behind it, speak the following lines with easy fluency, accompanied by such pantomime as may suggest itself to you.)

I crave your pardon for my tardiness,— Allow me to dispose these lendings—thus:

[Here you shake out the wrapper.

This band above the elbows—tighter—so. I do assure you, Sir, this is no gag— 'Tis but a poor contrivance of mine own To guard the mouth against th' encroaching sud. Refreshing, Sir, indeed, this change of weather! But one more knot.... and now

(here you stride to a position in front of the chair, which you survey with folded arms, and a mocking smile)

—my feigning's done!

Writhe as you will, I have you at my mercy. BALDWIN MCASSIR, have we met at last?

[In a terrible voice.

You know me not?—then quail, for I am he By you bereft of BANDOLINA'S love! Fear not that I would stoop to seek your life— My vengeance shall be sated on your hair, And that is doomed to perish past recall! Cast up your eyes to yonder whirling wheel:

[Point to ceiling with air of command.

Then on this brush—'tis set with bristling wires (Some frivoller termed it my Cheveux de Frizz), Which, with revolving teeth, shall shortly rake Those curls by BANDOLINA oft caressed,

[With a cold sneer.

You like the prospect? I have fluids here— "Elixirs to evolve the latent hair," With others, christened (in some franker mood) "Depilatory Agents,"—scarce less potent: Upon your helpless head I'll pour them all!

(Arm raised—savage and threatening aspect.)

Nay, smile not thus defiance through your gag— I swear to lay that haughty crest so low, That never shall it soar in pride again! Enough of words—to action!... Still that smile— So bitter, yet so calm—it maddens me, I'll stay my hand no longer!—

(violent plunge with right arm—after which you recoil and seem to gaze aghast at some object you are holding)

—juggling fiend! Was this the secret of your dauntless port? And could my practised eye be so deceived?

(In a tone of lofty and dignified resignation.)

Yet, seeing I am thus forestalled by Fate, I do renounce my purpose—since I must: Take back your wig, MCASSIR, go in peace.

[Bitter scorn.

Stay—while, in token that my heart is changed, I coax it into comeliness anew. Permit me to unloose you—you are free, And owe me but a trifle—eighteenpence,


Pay at the counter as you pass without.

(Here you are supposed to watch your rival's exit with a gloomy scowl.)

Thus ends my vengeance as some idle dream, Yet no—'tis but deferred, with interest!

(You conclude with a bitter apostrophe to your intended victim.)

Back to your BANDOLINA, plumaged daw! Be bald, but resolute, in your disguise, Till haply on her honeymoon she learns How you have drawn her with that single hair, And I may be avenged! Till then, adieu!

(Stalk gloomily off, and allow somebody else to remove the chair.)

* * * * *

ON THE STUMP, IN TWO SENSES.—So the Parliamentary Session and the Cricket Season are over at last, and contemporaneously. The latter has been productive of long scores and high averages, the former of little but long speeches and low language. And now two teams of British Cricketers are outward bound by the Iberia, for a holiday campaign in Australia. Nobody knows exactly how many teams of slogging politicians are also going for their holiday campaign—"on the stump," all over the Kingdom. Mr. Punch wishes the two lots of willow-wielders, led respectively by Mr. VERNON and ARTHUR SHREWSBURY, a far merrier time and much better "scores" than he fears will fall to the lot of the peripatetic Parliamentarians.

* * * * *

THE HOME RULE CURE.—Mrs. M. understands that the only remedy possible for Irish complaints is Antimony.

* * * * *


I have just received intelligence of so astounding a character and fraught with such glorious results to the great majority of mankind, that, although I may be said to have partly promised to keep the wondrous secret to myself until after I had turned the information to my own enormous advantage, I do not hesitate to reveal to a delighted universe, information which, if true, will so revolutionise the whole constitution of society, that every individual member of the almost innumerable class of the indebted, will feel at once enfranchised from the demon that now pursues him with his insatiable demand for more, and his poor oppressed soul will, as of old, sing with joy. What then is this glorious discovery that is thus wondrously to relieve the gentlemen of society from the base bondage of debt? I am naturally forbidden to reveal all its minute details, but a general outline I feel justified in laying before the world.

My informant, then, who will be one of the very first to take advantage of the discovery directly it has reached a practical stage, assures me that in an island somewhere in the Pacific Ocean, named I rather think Ungyway, a discovery has been made of a Gold Mine of so extraordinary a character that the precious metal lies in it in huge seams like those of a copper or lead mine.

Now comes the financial part of this great discovery. My friend has calculated that the money, owing by the various respectable classes of society to whom I have already alluded, and the great National Debt, could all be paid off for, say, a sum of 2000 millions. This somewhat considerable amount could be raised from the Ungyway Gold Mine at a cost of two millions of money only, and leave a large profit. The quantity of gold to be so raised would be a mere trifle of 20,000 tons, which, at the fixed price of L3 17s. 10d. per ounce, at which price the Bank of England is compelled to purchase any quantity offered to it, would be amply sufficient for all the glorious purposes to which I have referred. The members of the class above alluded to, would be permitted to purchase the quantity required by them to free them from their cruel liabilities, at the cost price of the gold, so that a debt of L1,000 could be extinguished by, say, an expenditure of twenty shillings! and the crushing National Debt by an immediate payment of about L750,000! Away fly at once the iniquitous Income-Tax, and the duties on tea and coffee, and wine and beer, and figs, and almonds and raisins!

No wonder that both France and Germany have been sending out expeditions to discover this Fortunate Island, but all in vain; and long before these lines meet the gaze of my astonished readers, the flag that has braved a thousand years the battle and the breeze will be fluttering bravely on the topmost towers of Ungyway. I need scarcely add that we shall in future pay for all our imports in gold, and send away our superabundant pauper population, native and foreign, each with about one hundred golden sovereigns in his capacious pockets, the cost price of which being about two shillings.

Of course the one thing to do before the great scheme is finally settled by Messrs. ROTHSCHILD and BARING, will be to get largely into debt at the present price of gold, and pay it off at the price of the future, and so, as ROBINSON says, spoil the Israelites; and so great is his faith in the success of the scheme, that he actually offers to join me in the transaction, and to obtain the money on our joint security. I am to give him my final answer on Saturday.


* * * * *


A Ballad of Bulgaria.

It was the little Bulgar boy, and oh! it was the Bear, Whose affectionate relations were remarkable as rare; For the Bulgar boy of Bruin was the glory and the joy, And if anyone loved Bruin, 'twas that little Bulgar boy. It was very very touching, for your Bear, however good, Has seldom any liking for your boy—except as food; And your boy—or man—from feelings that humanity may blame, Has commonly no yearning for your Bear—unless as game. But this Bear—on his own showing—was a Bear of simple worth, He was not a western "Grizzly," but a Bruin from the North, Which we know is "true and tender," or at least so poets swear, And these Northern traits—who doubts it?—are conspicuous in the Bear.

Had he not that boy befriended in the kindest sort of style, In a fashion full of valour, as 'twas destitute of guile, When a Bubblyjock gigantic from the Bosphorus who hailed, Had assaulted that small Bulgar boy, and—thanks to Bruin—failed? And all that Bear expected in return for what he'd done, (And who of such a sentiment will venture to make fun?) Was the gratitude, and confidence, and love, and—well subjection, Of the boy whom he had taken 'neath his paws—I mean protection.

But alas for human nature, which is radically bad! (And conservatively sinful) this same little Bulgar lad, When he found himself in safety from that Stamboul Bubblyjock, Took and acted in a manner that humanity must shock, For says he, "Oh, thank you, Bruin dear,—and now I'll go and play, And I'll just select the game myself, and work it my own way. You were quite disinterested, for you said so your own self, And I'm sure you don't want power, and of course you can't seek pelf, At your little friend's expense, Bear. No, I thank you very much, You have made a free boy of me—and I mean to act as such."

So he ups and makes selection, this ungratefullest of boys, Of his soldiers, and his swords and guns, and crowns, and other toys; And when Bruin put his paw down in expostulation vain, The Bulgar boy suggested he should—take it up again.

You may easily imagine gentle Bruin's sore disgust, At this sad reciprocation of his fondness and his trust. Says he, "This little rascal is just rushing on his ruin, For his only place of safety is the guardian arms of Bruin." And sundry other animals, and birds, and things, agreed with him, And cried, "The boy is mad, Bear; we must preach to him, and plead with him. Ay, even if 'tis needful, though against our natures mild, We must—well, we mustn't spare the rod, and spoil the—Bulgar—child." There were several Eagles thought this way; the Lion didn't quite, But he had a sort of feeling that this fight was not his fight; And the Bubblyjock at Stamboul was found acting with the Bear, From rather mingled motives, which that fowl did not declare.

Well, the Bulgar boy persisting still in making his own game, The Bear assumes a sternness it is difficult to blame, From the Bruin point of view, at least, for strength must be put forth Now and then, e'en by a (so-called) Divine Figure from the North. And so Bruin rears his carcase, and his sanctimonious "mug," Takes a menacing expression, "Come," he cries, "into my hug, And be happy, naughty Bulgar boy; what can you have to fear?" And the rest of the Menagerie of Europe say, "Hear! hear!"

But like another "little boy," of whom you may have heard, With a cabalistic action as discourteous as absurd, (The Bulgar boy maintains it means no more than prudent doubt) He "puts his thumb unto his nose, and spreads his fingers out."

Now whether Bear will bear it, after all his love and care, Or whether that small Bulgar boy will cave in to the Bear, And how those Birds, the Eagles and the Bubblyjock, will turn, Are questions none can answer now; but he who lives will learn.

* * * * *


* * * * *



Homburg, Monday.—GEORGE TREVELYAN once told me that his eminent Uncle, having gone all abroad to Dieppe, wrote to his sister, describing voyage from Dover by five groans. Our journey from Dover to Calais might be described by five smiles. Sea not absolutely calm; but dancing waves, curling in sunlight, nothing to Victoria—not our Gracious Sovereign, but Queen of L. C. & D.'s fleet. Made passage smoothly and swiftly in little over hour. Railway journey hither, by Brussels and Coblenz, pretty fair for le Continong, but not a patch on the L. C. D. Express from Victoria Station to Dover. They manage some things better abroad; certainly not express trains or express boats.

Arrived here to find it raining in torrents. Everybody said it hadn't rained for two months before. Glad to hear this, but didn't keep us dry. Rain only just commenced; all the shops and doorways thronged with people, in full summer costume; not an umbrella among twenty; forgotten what rain was like; now forcibly reminded of its peculiarities. With intermission of one full day, and occasional hours, been raining ever since. If it must rain, Homburg as good a place to be in as most public haunts; lies within narrow compass; soil rapidly absorbent; if it rains in torrents at ten o'clock, and sun afterwards comes out, roadways dry by noon. Then there is the Kurhaus always open; palatial building, not to be outdone in size and beauty by Casino at Monte Carlo; but sound of roulette tablets silent. The "game is made" for ever; on ne va plus. Sometimes, on wet afternoons, there is found in the lofty, and otherwise cool room, one or two elderly gentlemen, who play doleful game of ecarte, poor shivering ghosts of departed gamesters. Gambling played out, but there remain the magnificent halls. The Ball-room still used, the music on the Terrace still listened to, the banqueting-hall still crowded, and the gardens still glowing with roses, and shaded by lindens. Only disappointed gamesters who call the place Bad Homburgs; even with the rain, it is not so bad after all.

By the way, talking of nature of soil, a dog I met here drawing milk-cart, told me curious story. Homburg resorted to by invalids of both sexes and all conditions; take the waters inside and out; but my friend told me of another cure not less remarkable. Soil of Homburg composed of Fuller's-earth, warranted to absorb superfluous grease from cloth substances. Obese Englishman hearing this on arrival, asked why this quality should be confined to application to cloth? if Fuller's-earth took superfluous fat from piece of cloth, why not from body of stout Englishman? Decided to solve question; dug hole in back-garden; lay in it for twenty minutes with loose soil shovelled over him up to chin; repeated bath on alternate days for three weeks; end of first week hole too roomy; end of second week had to be further filled in; end of third week his clothes no use to him; had to lie in bed for three days whilst re-fitted. Went home quite a slim person.

Prince of WALES still here when I arrived. Been the lifes and souls of the party for nearly three weeks. "You here, TOBY?" says he, when we met on first morning; "is House up, then?" "Not yet, Sir; but I've been all night. Doctor ordered me to be here at seven in morning; this an immaterial extension to us who have been sitting up at Westminster every night of week till three or four in morning. So had all-night sitting, and here I am punctually at seven o'clock."

Don't see how I'm going to keep it up though, through three weeks; must find some other way of getting up at half-past six. Can't imagine how H.R.H. does it; but here he is every morning at seven o'clock, taking his glasses of water with the rest of the "patients," and going the regulation walk in the intervals. For an invalid, looks uncommonly robust; does his final four miles well within the hour.

Saturday.—Rain again, but really so occupied with cure that haven't time to notice it, and certainly can't let it interfere with Doctor's orders. No more all-night sittings now. End of third went off to sleep at noon after bath. Didn't wake till six next morning, just in time to dress and down to Elizabeth Well with the rest. Found this much better arrangement. So now go to bed about nine in the afternoon; get up at 6.30 in dead of night. Arrived at Well, take glass of water, then march up and down for fifteen minutes by Homburg clock. Another glass and another fifteen minutes; a third glass, and hour's walk; after which allowed to totter home, and breakfast. Amount of things you are not to eat and drink amazing; some of them never tasted in my life; now strongly tempted. But hotels under sceptre of Doctor DEETZ. He watches unseen over table d'hote, and prevents most nice things from coming to dinner.

After breakfast (bread, tea, or coffee, no butter, much less mild breakfast bacon), bath on alternate days, between eleven and noon. Something like a bath; on first investigation, seems bottomless; but plummet reaches conclusion at last. Here sit up to the chin for twenty minutes, shivering at thought of what would happen supposing bath sprang a leak. Luncheon at one, strictly supervised; between three and five, more tumblers of water at another Well, with more vigorous walks round and round, as if you were looking for the Post Office, couldn't find it, and began to feel certain you would miss the next despatch. Dinner at six, with the shadow of the good Doctor DEETZ pervading the place, and ordering off all the toothsome dishes. Afterwards a stroll in the Kurhaus, where the band is playing, and men, maids, and matrons, not all quite so young as they were, chatter and flirt.

Such is our life in Homburg, enlivened, about a fortnight ago, by great scandal, which wild horses shall not drag from me. But ask any lady fresh from Homburg. Will, at first, say, "No, she really can't; too painful," and so on. But apres, le deluge of confidence.

* * * * *


In Professor SKITTLES' chair—with the sun in my eyes. He has not begun to read my character yet; he is still measuring—with tape this time. I must say he takes great pains. Blazer contingent has moved up closer; they pretend to recognise me as "Cousin BILL." Take no notice of them—try to fix my thoughts far away—on ETHEL DERING. How pretty she looked that night! Wonder, if I had plucked up my courage and spoken, whether she might not have——However, I didn't, and she couldn't. How full is life of these missed opportunities! ("You're leaving out his nose, Guv'nor!" from a Blazer, and giggles from idiotic girls in front.) I feel very forlorn and friendless up here. Professor has finished measuring, and is preparing to "delineate" me.

Cross my legs, and compose myself to listen seriously. ("Cheer up, Sir; he'll tell you when he's going to 'urt you!" yelps a beast in the background.)

"Here we 'ave a gentleman," says the Professor, passing his hand along the top of my head, "in some respects rather a contrast to our last subject." (I should hope so, indeed!) "This gentleman's 'ed is the second largest we have had under examination to-day." ("'Ear-'ear!" from the Blazers, and a meaningless suggestion that I should "make a good 'atter!") "His Mental Brain is scarcely so large as we might expect; in fact, if the development of the lower brain were in proportion, we should find the gentleman—well, I was going to say, an idiot. Fortunately the brain, though not tall, is wide. He has Firmness, Energy, and what we call Driving Power, very large. This is a very curious gentleman"—("Oughter be stuffed!" puts in a ruffian, and everybody laughs—even the Professor—confound him!—smiles indulgently.) "He likes to go everywhere, and see everything. He can sit down to a good dinner, and enjoy it." (Shouldn't have thought that a rare characteristic—but it delights the audience.) "His Self-Esteem is large." (There he is quite wrong—I haven't nearly enough!) "Acquisitiveness also large; this gentleman believes in getting the full value for his money." (Don't believe I shall get it here, at all events!) "He is very cheerful and social." ("Don't he look it, too!" from a Blazer, and, of course, roars of laughter.) "In fact, if he were a little less social, it would be better." (This to me—who have come down here for absolute seclusion. This Professor is a fool!) "He will be fond of his children and of his wife." ("And can't she comb his 'air for him!" from the usual quarter. I am a bachelor, and this sort of thing is getting scandalous.) Professor says, "I must appeal to this gentleman's friends"—(this gentleman's "friends!")—"to keep a little more quiet while we are delineating. There is very small Eventuality—we should like to see a little more Eventuality—he must try to cultivate his Eventuality." (Indeed? Perhaps he will kindly tell me how I am to set about it!) "Approbativeness large; so we shall see him very anxious to gain the good opinion of others." (When I don't care a straw what people say of me! Phrenology is bosh—absolute bosh!) "Destructiveness small; this is not a gentleman who will do very much damage." (Sighs of mock relief from Blazers.) "Nor is he, we should find, particularly combative." ... ("You 'aven't seen 'im of a Saturday night," interrupts some vulgar brute.) Psha!—I won't listen; regard the audience with calm reproach. What a face that is on the second bench! what a pair of brown eyes!—kind of eyes Juliet must have had. ETHEL'S are light grey—what a serious, simple expression! She is not giggling, like all those fools—I could almost fancy she feels for me. How superior she seems to all the rest. ETHEL DERING herself could not look more exquisitely out of place. In fact, I am not sure that ETHEL would keep her countenance so well as this girl, who is bending forward with parted lips, and that sweet, interested light in her eyes.... I am getting sentimental. Was Romeo ever "delineated"? Professor is summing me up—I may as well listen.

* * * * *

Illustration: July yet.

* * * * *

Illustration: Row me O!

* * * * *

Illustration: "Parting is such sweet sorrow." Shakspeare.

* * * * *

Illustration: "Here's for thy panes." Shakspeare.

* * * * *

"This is a gentleman of excellent business ability, and I should say he would be perfectly capable of managing a tolerably large business concern." ("Then how was it he got the sack from the 'am-and-beef shop?" inquired one of the pests.) "He is pushing and energetic, and he would get on well—even in a 'olesale business." (He is growing absolutely fulsome!) "If in business for himself, we shall not find him in a hurry to shut up his shop exactly at the hour of closing, if he thinks he could make more by keeping open a little longer." (Considering that I am in Government employ, with a decided leaning to literary pursuits, which has not, as yet, met with much support—this is rather too much, but it would be snobbish, perhaps, to say anything.) "I may add," concludes the Professor, with the air of a man who is conceding somewhat, "that this gentleman would be qualified to succeed, would do very well, as an artistic decorator. Are there any questions you would like to ask?"

Not after that—no, none; I haven't the heart to ask him if he thinks I could write even a creditable Nautical Drama! Besides, my faith in Phrenology is shaken. Let me get away—out of sight and hearing of these infernal Blazers.

Rise and leave with ironical dignity. Professor calls me back—thinks I forgot to pay my shilling. Annoying, because it had escaped me. "You didn't tell us he had a bump for bilking!" jeers a fiend—"bilking," I believe, is 'Arryan for going away without paying. Ironical dignity a failure. "Will I pay half-a-crown extra, and have a written report of my character?" I will not. Blazers seem sorry to part with me.

Afternoon.—Too much depressed to work at Drama. Sands again. Crowd—Conjuror. I shall see this time. "I want a soft gentleman's hat," he says, suddenly. "Do you mind?" He takes mine—the crowd roar. "Will I assist him in this trick?" I did not mean to catch his eye—but I don't like to be disobliging.

I am in the centre with the Conjuror. "May he do what he pleases with my hat?" "By all means," I say, graciously. Then he'll keep it, he says. Childish joke that! "You're quite sure there's no hole in it?" he asks. I am not, I tell him, in the habit of wearing a hat with a hole in it. "Ain't you really? how do you get your head in?" he retorts, sharply. Very old—but Starmouth people easily amused.

"Do I ever toss for drinks?" No, I do not. Then he will show me how to do so, and win every time. He tosses up a penny on the little table, and covers it with my hat. "Which do I think it is?" I say heads—to please him. Again. "Now, Sir, heads or tails?" I happen to have seen it fall head uppermost—but no doubt he has manipulated it some way—if I say tails, he will look rather foolish. Tails, then. Will I lift my hat? I do—a guinea-pig! Renewed roars. I ought to be above feeling annoyed at this tomfoolery—but these conjuring fellows go too far.

Evening,—On Pier. Military Band. Bazaar: ladies and children touting for it. Wonder whether my "Firmness" is as large as Professor SKITTLES declared.—Because I certainly never intended to buy a box of cracker-bonbons, or a basket of ripe tomatoes—and yet here I am, carrying them about! And when I took a ticket for a raffle, I hardly counted upon winning this particularly gaudy sofa-cushion. Clergyman wants to sell me a very small plumcake, only three shillings.... I find I can be firm after all.

The girl with the brown eyes is on the pier, too, with a stout respectable old female—probably her maid. I think they recognise me as the victim of Phrenology; they glance at me with interest. Ah me! I wish—I wish, but what is the use of wishing?

In the Bazaar again. Young lady proposes to tell me my fortune for a penny, with a revolving card. I am in a superstitious mood—I want encouraging. She spins the card; the dial indicates, as she informs me, with unnecessary glee, "You spend your time in trifles."—Is a Nautical Drama a "trifle," I should like to know? I can't be quite the thing, for this incident affects me almost to tears. I have had a depressing day. Bed in low spirits.

* * * * *

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


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