OR, THE LONDON CHARIVARI.
MARCH 22, 1890.
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JUSTISS FOR THE PORE.
I've jest been told another staggerer. Well, it seems then that, in one of the werry largest and werry poppularest of all the Citty Parishes, sum grand old Cristian Patriots of the holden times left lots of money, when they was ded, and didn't want it no more, to be given to the Pore of the Parish, for warious good and charitable hobjecs, such as for rewarding good and respectabel Female Servants as managed to keep their places for at least four years, in despite of rampageous Marsters, and crustaceous Missuses; also for selling Coles to werry Pore Peeple at sumthink like four pence per hundredweight, be the reglar price what it may; also for paying what's called, I think, premeums for putting Pore Boys or Pore Gals as aprentisses to warious trades, so as to lern and laber truly to get a good living when they growd up, insted of loafing about in dirt and hignorence; likewise for allowing little pensions to poor old women as is a striving all their mite and main to keep themselves out of the hated Workhouse; and there are seweral other similar good purposes as the good Citizens of old left their money for, and hundreds if not thowsands of pore but honest men and women has had good cause to be grateful to 'em for their kind and pious thortfulness.
Well, I hardly xpecs to be bleeved when I says, that a law has been passed that allows sutten werry respectabel but werry hignerant Gents, called Charity Commissioners, to sweep away ewerry one of those truly charitable hinstitutions, and to make use of all this money somewheres else, and for sum other objecs, and for sum other peeple!
I ain't so werry much supprized as I ort to be, to learn that the ouse of Commons—ouse of "Short Commons," I shud call 'em—has passed this most wicked Law, cos werry pore peeple ain't got no votes; but I do confess as I am supprised at the most respectabel and harrystocrattick House of Lords a condesendin not merely to rob a pore man of his Beer, but to rob a poor Made Servant of her 2 Ginneys reward for behaviour like a Angel for four long weary years in the same place, be it a good 'un or a werry ard 'un, and to purwent a lot of pore hard working Men and Women from getting their little stock of Coles in at about a quarter of the reglar price! In course it ain't to be supposed as Washupfool Books and Honnerabel Markisses can know or care much about the price of Coals, altho there is one Most Honnerabel Markis, from whom I bort a hole Tun larst year at rayther a high figger, who coud have told em, and shood have told em all about it, tho' praps he's agin cheap Coles on principal. And besides all this, it won't I shood think, be a werry plezzant thort to come across a Noble Dook's or a Wirtuous Wiscount's mind—if such eminent swells has em, like the rest on us—when they sees a lot of dirty raggid boys and gals a loafing about the streets, to think that if the money that was left hundreds of years ago by good men, had been still used as it was ordered to be used, and has been used for sentrys, these same raggid boys and gals wood have bin a learning of some useful trade by which they might have hearnd a desent living.
In course I can hear, with my mind's ear, as Amlet says, my thowsends of simperthising readers shouting out, "What's the use of your crying over spilt milk?" Well, none, of course, but I happens to have herd that there's still jest one chance left. It seems that there is what's called, I think, "a appeal" to sum werry heminent Swells called "the Lords of the uncommon Counsel on Eddication," and the kind-hearted Church Wardens, as I has before eluded to, means to make one; and ewery kind-hearted Cristian Man and Woman as reads my truthful statement, and can feel, as me, and Lords, and Ladies as well, can, and ort to, and must feel, will wish 'em thurrur suksess in their good, and kind, and mussiful atemt to hobtane justiss for them as carnt no hows obtane it for theirselves.
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HOW WE DO BUSINESS NOW.
BEAR COURT CHAMBERS, BULL LANE, E.C.
TELEGRAPHIC ADDRESS—SPIDER. TELEPHONE NUMBER—BILLION.
MY DEAR SIR,—Now is the time to remit to me for the forthcoming big movements I intend to make during the current Month. If my last Circular proved true down to the very last letter, this one will be ten times truer. What did I say last month? I said there would be a big rise in Boomerang Rails, which were then at 11 3/4. In 57 1/2 hours after my Circular was issued they had risen to 110-7/16, and many of my clients made thousands of pounds. One of them actually making the magnificent sum of L27,876 11s. 4 1/4d. I love to be accurate, so I give the exact amount.
Now is the time, I repeat. No one out of the millions of clients, from an Exalted Lady, whom delicacy forbids me to name, down to the junior waiter at the Pomona, ever lost by coming to me. I also advised, and I repeat it this month,
CHUCKSTER TOLL BAR BINKSES.
They were hardly quoted on the Stock Exchange—hardly known even—when I took them up on the 1st of April last year. Where are they now? At 119! And they will move on to 219 before the year ends. I have means of information possessed by none besides me. I have a wire of my own laid on to every Embassy house on the Continent; every attache, every dragoman is my correspondent, and more than one Crowned Head has honoured me with the secrets of his last Council, or of his resolves on War or Peace. I myself am a Power. I can make and unmake and ruin homes as well as any Czar or Emperor.
But I bind the clients who trust me with bands of iron.
Again I say buy
CHUCKSTER TOLL BAR BINKSES.
Remit the necessary Cover to me at once. Small sums combined make large ones, and you cannot be in too soon. Five-pence (a sum you would throw at a crossing-sweeper) covers Five Pounds. Here is my scale:—
L1 covers L1000. L5 " L5000. L20 " L200,000.
But send me whatever you like, and it will prove the most important act of your life; one you will never forget.
Again I say buy
CHUCKSTER TOLL BAR BINKSES.
There is fascination in their very name. Don't do the thing weakly. Act on the advice of that great man BARRY LYNDON, and speculate grandly. Take the history of one out of thousands of fortunes made by me for others:—
A BANK CLERK, hard up, desperately pressed by his duns, had received a small remittance from his father, a struggling Clergyman. The sum amounted to L50, just enough to pay the young fellow's bills, and leave him a paltry sovereign. Do you think he was such a fool as to have read my Circular in vain? He very wisely brought the money to me. I bought Boomerangs at 11 3/4. In 57 1/2 hours that young man was a millionnaire. He has magnificent chambers on the Embankment; shows himself in the Row at the present time; would not look at a cigar under half-a-crown; and has not entirely forgotten the claims of his family, for to my knowledge he has remitted several pounds to his younger brothers.—Again I say,
BUY BOOMERANGS OR CHUCKSTERS.
One Word of Caution, and I conclude Circular 1059. BE VERY CAUTIOUS OF SOME PEOPLE I KNOW. Once trust yourself to them, and it is all U.P.—Wire immediately (and send the necessary cover) to
P.S.—When once you have tasted the joys of speculation, you will think and care for nothing else. The click of the Tape Machine is music to you. I have one going all night in my bed-room.
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SUGGESTION FOR ADVERTISEMENT OF ST. JAMES'S THEATRE.—"As You Like It",—come and see it!
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Diogenes. What are these better possessions you speak of?
Krates. Wisdom, self-sufficiency, truth, plain-speaking, freedom.
LUCIAN'S Dialogues of the Dead.
Ah! Madame La France, after trials all round Of great Chiefs and their squabbling political progenies, Like him of Sinope, at last you are found With lantern in hand, a true Lady Diogenes. The precinct is dark, and seems growing still dimmer, Your wandering light shows a devious glimmer.
A right Honest Man? He was scarce in the Courts. He seems very nearly as scarce in the Caucuses. You've had leaders of late of all sizes and sorts, And the gloom of the outlook is utter as Orcus's. Imperial, Royalist, Red Flag or White, Not one of them leads La Belle France to the light.
Wisdom, truth and plain-speaking? Ah, where are they found? As scarce in these days as is genuine freedom! They all prate of Honour, yet Honour all round They'll sell for the first mess of pottage from Edom. Well, Madame, Punch wishes you luck with your lantern, And up, soon or late, may a true Honest Man turn!
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STANZAS TO RHUBARB.
(By The O'Greedy.)
O bright new-comer, I have seen, I see thee, and rejoice; Though what the coster-man may mean I judge not, by his voice. I see thee, and to either eye The tears unbidden start; O rhubarb! shall I call thee pie, Or art thou truly tart?
I was not wont thy charms to see When childhood stubborn stood Fix'd in the faith, that thou must be Too wholesome to be good. Just as we loved the cloying jam, By no effects dismay'd, Regarding as a bitter sham The honest marmalade.
When daffodillies deck the shops, And hyacinths indoors Recall the flavour of the drops We used to suck by scores (Pear-drops they were,—a subtle blend Of hyacinthine smell, And the banana's blackest end,— We loved them, and were well);
When chrysalis-buds are folded thick, And crocuses awake, And, like celestial almonds, stick In Flora's tipsy-cake; Before the crews are on the Thames, The swallows on the wing, The radiant rhubarb-bundle flames, The lictor-rod of Spring.
Still, still reluctant Winter keeps Some chill surprise in store, And Spring through frosty curtain peeps On snowdrifts at her door; The full moon smites the leafless trees, So full, it bursts with light, Till the sharp shadows seem to freeze Along the highway white.
Yet the keen wind has heard the song Of summer far away. And, though he's got the music wrong, We know what he would say. For in the vegetable cart Thy radiant stalks we spy. O rhubarb, should we call thee tart, Or art thou merely pie?
And why not so? The cushat dove To such a shrine we trust, Though in dumb protest she will shove Her tootsies through the crust; And larks, that sing at Heaven's gate When April clouds are high, Not seldom gain the gourmet's plate Through portals of the pie.
So thou, sweet harbinger of Spring, Gules of her blazon'd field, If in a pie thy praise we sing, To worthy fate wilt yield. Enough! I sing; let others eat: Be mine the poet's lot. The thought of thee is all too sweet— The taste of thee is not.
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"I'LL CALL THEE HAMLET."
Mr. BENSON, the enterprising young Lessee of the Globe Theatre, on two evenings of the week affords a spectacle of the greatest possible interest to every Shakspearian student. His Hamlet is rather given to noisy declamation when greatly moved, but, barring this, seems to be a thoroughly good-natured harmless creature, who, as fond of dabbling in private theatricals, would probably be hailed as an acquisition at the Meistersingers Club and cognate institutions. The innovations introduced into the action relieve the gloom of the Tragedy. Take for instance, the treatment of Ophelia, which is full of quiet humour. That she should look as old as Hamlet's Mother, is of course, accidental, and is purely attributable to the Globe Gertrude being exceptionally comely and youthful, still it has a very quaint effect. But the idea of the unfortunate maid, after she has committed suicide, being carried a la GUY FAUX into the throne-room with a sort of "See what we have found" air, is broadly comic. The funeral with its "maimed rites," is also very funny. Apparently, the Bishop (whose garb, by the way, seems to be a compromise between an eccentric Jewish Rabbi and that of a decidedly demented Roman Catholic Priest) has "contracted" for the procession, with the result of collecting together a heterogeneous company, consisting of modern High Church curates, a few members of some humorous Confraternity, and a sprinkling of other amusing grotesques. But the fun reaches its climax, when the body of Ophelia herself is produced in, what seemed to me to be, a hamper! The above example of what is being done twice a week in Newcastle Street, Strand, will show how well worthy of the scholar's notice is the present revival of Hamlet at the Globe Theatre. As actors, Mr. BENSON'S company are not entirely satisfactory. As thinkers, however, they are worthy of the greatest possible respect. Under these circumstances, it is to be hoped, that should they ultimately, for sufficient reason, decide to give up acting, they will yet resolve to continue what they do so well, and, in three words—go on thinking. (Signed) BENE VESTITUS.
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COVENT GARDENING PROSPECTS.—The prospectus of the Italian Opera Season lies on Mr. Punch's table; but though this is its attitude, there is no reason to doubt the truthfulness of its statements. More anon. En attendant, we may say that the stage-management, in the hands of AUGUSTUS DRURIOLANUS, is a guarantee for the excellence of the mises-en-scene, of the misses-en-scene, and of the "hits"-en-scene.
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(By Mr. Punch's Own Type-Writer.)
No. V.—THE DILETTANTE.
The Modern Dilettante will have been in boyhood a shorn lamb, for whom it was necessary to temper the wind of an English education by a liberal admixture of foreign travel. A prolonged course of interrupted studies will have filled him with culture, whilst a distaste for serious effort, whether mental or physical, and an innate capacity for mastering no subject thoroughly will have produced in him that special refinement which is to the Dilettante as a trade-stamp to Britannia metal. In after-life, he will speak with regretful fondness, and with an accuracy which he fails to apply to other matters of his "days" (four in number) at a German University, and will submit with cheerfulness to the reputation of having drunk deep from the muddy fountains of metaphysical speculation, which are as abundant and as ineffective in Germany, as her springs of mineral water.
Having passed his period of storm and stress without committing any of those follies or indulging in any of those excesses by which the parents of ordinary young men are afflicted, he will arrive without reproach at the borders of an apparently blameless middle age, and, finding himself after the death of his father, in the enjoyment of a settled income of considerable size, he will set up in life as an acknowledged amateur of all that is truly precious. In order that nothing may be wanting to him for the proper pursuit of this calling, he will gather round him a little band of boneless enthusiasts, who after paying due devotion to themselves, and to one another, will join him in worshipping the dead or living nonentities whose laurelled photographs adorn his rooms. He will cover his couches with soft silks, his walls will be hung with impressionist etchings and engravings of undraped ladies of French origin, terra-cotta statuettes principally of the young Apollo, will be placed in every corner, and a marble bust of the young AUGUSTUS will occupy the place of honour next to the grand piano, on which, will be ranged the framed cabinet photographs of interesting young men. Each photograph will bear upon it an appropriate inscription, announcing it to be, for instance, a gift "From BOBBY to TODDLEKINS." Nothing more is necessary for the perfect life of dilettantism, except to settle an afternoon for tea, and an evening for music. When this is done the Dilettante is complete.
It is curious, however, that although he aims at being considered a poet, an artist, a dramatist, and a musical composer, the Dilettante rather affects the society of those who are amateurs of imperfect development, than of those who have attained fame by professional effort. Yet since his nature is tolerant, he does not exclude the latter from the scope of his benevolence, and they may occasionally be seen at his parties, wondering how so strange a medley of second-rate incompetencies can have been gathered together into one room.
It is noticeable, that the Dilettante loves the society of ladies, and is not averse to encouraging amongst his intimates the belief, which none of them holds though all express it, that he is in reality a terrible fellow and much given to the destruction of domestic happiness. He finds a sense of rest and security in fancying that he is suspected of an intrigue. But it is somewhat remarkable, that the evil tongues which make sad havoc of many unwilling reputations are very slow to gratify the willing Dilettante in this respect. No Dilettante can be considered genuine, unless he expresses a pitying contempt for everything that is characteristically English, and for the unfortunate English who are imbued with the prejudices of their native land. He gives a practical expression to his scorn by quavering in a reedy voice, the feeble chansonnettes of an inferior French composer, and by issuing a volume of poems in which the laws of English Grammar are trampled under foot, and the restrictions of English metre are defied. In his lyrical effusions he breathes the passionate desire of a great soul for Love that is not of the earth. He aspires to the stars, and invokes the memory of dead heroes, his intimates. He sets out to win imperishable glory amidst the embattled ranks of his country's foes. He lashes the cold and cruel heartlessness of the world with a noble scorn. He addresses the skeletons of departed friends with passionate longing. He finds that life and its gaudy pleasures are as dust and ashes in the mouth.
Having read these efforts to an admiring circle, he betakes himself with infinite zest to the discussion of aesthetic tittle-tattle over a cup of tea and a toasted bun. "Dear fellow," his friends will say of him at such a moment, "he is so etherial; and his eyes, did you observe that far-away, rapt look in them?" They will then take pleasure in persuading one another without much difficulty, that they are the fine flower of created beings.
The Dilettante, moreover, is a constant attendant at the first nights of certain theatres. He figures with equal regularity as a large element in the society gossip of weekly journals. He is a delicate eater and never drinks too much out of the Venetian glasses, which his butler ruthlessly breaks after the manner of domestics. There is amongst the inner circle of the Dilettanti a jargon, both of voice and of gesture, which passes muster as humour, but is unintelligible to the outer world of burly Philistines. They dangle hands rather than shake them, and emphasise their meaning by delicate finger-taps. Their phrases are distinguished by a plaintive cadence which is particularly to be remarked in their pronunciation of the word "dear."
At charitable concerts in aristocratic drawing-rooms the Dilettante is in great request. On these occasions, he astonishes and delights his friends with a new song, of which, he will have composed both the words and the music, if he may be believed, whilst he was leaning from his casement "watching the procession of the moon-lit clouds." He sometimes smokes cigarettelets (a word must be coined to express their size and strength), but he never attempts cigars, and loathes the homely pipe. In gait and manner he affects a mincing delicacy, by which he seeks to impress the thoughtless with a sense of his superior refinement. In later life, he is apt to lose his hair, and to disguise the ravages of time upon his cheeks by the aid of rouge. Yet he deceives nobody, and having grown stout and wheezy is eventually carried off by a common cold in an odour of pastilles. He will be buried in a wicker-work coffin covered with lilies, and a rival Dilettante having written a limp and limping sonnet to his memory, will take his evening.
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(The Story of the Next Battle, written in advance for Next Month's "Powder Magazine," by a Soldier in the Ranks.)
The Victory of Rumtumidity was certainly one of the most amusing things I ever saw in my life. We landed at six o'clock in the evening, and finding a grog-shop, were soon gone coons. Speaking for myself, I saw the colours of the Regiment magnified by twenty! Well, we were ordered to march, and off we started, staggering along in fine style. Out came the moon, and one of us fell down in a dead faint.
"Suffering from sunstroke!" said the Surgeon, who was a Welsh Irishman. "Leave him in the sand, and he will soon come to himself when he finds you gone—if he doesn't, the vultures will hasten his movements."
This jest made us all laugh. Our Captain hearing one of us roaring a trifle too loud, put his sword through him. Immense!
We marched along to the music of the prisoners, who yelled out bravely when they were prodded by the guards set over them.
"Did you see the like!" said TIM O'FLANAGAN (from Edinburgh), who, no doubt, would have developed the idea, had not his head at that moment been carried off by a cannon-ball. Very comic!
"Now, my lads," said our Captain, who wasn't much of an orator, "look here—England expects every man to do his duty; and, if you don't, why I am having you all watched, and, as sure as beans is beans, the laggards will be bayoneted."
This little speech had the desired effect, especially after it had been strengthened by a double ration of grog.
Then came the order to charge. We charged, and killed everyone we saw, including our own officers. This simplified matters. A little later the whole place was in our hands. Rumtumidity was taken!
Then came the order to bury the dead. But we did more—we buried the living with them! Oh, how it made us laugh! Then came supper, and we amused ourselves by telling to one another our adventures. I was just recounting how I had emptied the pockets of a deceased officer, when—"whisk!"—up came a cannon-ball and struck me! I was able to say nothing more at that time; as, when the cannon-ball had passed, I found it had left me defunct! And I have been dead ever since. My companion and chum, whose name I must not give without permission, will vouch for every word I've said.
(Signed) A. MUNCHAUSEN,
Late Lance-Ensign, the Lincoln Longbowers.
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"ENGLISH, YOU KNOW, QUITE ENGLISH."
Perhaps, the good old rule that, "You should never look a gift-horse in the mouth," cannot be so rigorously applied to gifts of pictures to the Nation as to other things. Nevertheless, Mr. TATE'S munificent proffer of his Collection to the National Gallery, is surely too good a thing to be missed through matters of mere detail. Mr. Punch's view is—well, despite Touchstone's attack on "the very false gallop of verses," there are two things that come most insinuatingly in metre; offers of love, and of friendly advice:—
ENGLISH Art no longer paints Those "squint-eyed Byzantine saints" Mr. ORROCK so disparages. Martyrdoms and Cana Marriages Over-stock our great Art Gallery, Giving ground for ORROCK'S raillery. Scenes in desert dim, or dun stable, Than Green English lanes by CONSTABLE Are less welcome, or brown rocks And grey streams by DAVID COX. Saint Sebastian's death? Far sweeter Sylvan scenes by honest PETER; There's a charm in dear DE WINT Cannot be conveyed in print.
Verdant landscapes, sea-scapes cool, Painted by the English School. Must be welcome to our British Taste, which is not grim or skittish; Rather Philistine, it may be. Sweet on cornfields and the Baby; Yet of ROMNEY'S grace no spurner, Or the golden dreams of TURNER. Moral? Will a moral, bless us! Comes like that old shirt of NESSUS. Still, here goes! An Art-official Should be genial, but judicial. When an Art-Collection's national, It is obviously rational It should be a bit eclectic, Weeding out the crude or hectic. He who'd have his country's honour, As a liberal Art-donor, Thinks more of his country's fame Than of his particular name. Would you win true reputation As benefactor of the Nation. Trust me 'tis not "special room" Keeps that glory in full bloom. Punch is a plain-speaking chap; Here's his view of things. Verb. sap.!
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PICTURES IN THE HAYMARKET.—"And there stood the 'tater-man, In the midst of all the wet; A vending of his taters in the lonely Haymarket." So sang one of the greatest of Mr. Punch's singers, years agone. If he had sung in the present day, he would have substituted pictures for 'taters; for surely this pleasant thorough-fare has become a mart for pictures and players rather than potatoes. Look in at TOOTH'S Gallery, and you will stay a long while, indeed you will age considerably, and may be said to be "long in the TOOTH," before you come out, as you will find the exhibition so paletteable. Then having refreshed your eye with the spring sunshine—if there happens to be any about—you will turn into MCLEAN'S salon and see a marvellous picture of Jaffa, by G. BAUERNFEIND, and other works by English and foreign painters. The County Council will have to change the title of this street into the A-market, "A" standing for Art, of course.
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THE GRAND OLD HAT.
When this old hat was new, ('Tis not so many years,) My followers did not view My course with doubts and fears. CHAMBERLAIN then would praise, And HENRY JAMES was true; Ah! this was in the days When this old hat was new.
When this old hat was new My head was smaller—yes! Now I'd have much ado To get it on, I guess. The cause I cannot tell, I only know 'tis true; My head has seemed to swell Since this old hat was new.
Perhaps, as some maintain, My cranium may have grown, Owing to stretch of brain, Or thickening of bone. "The hat has shrunk?" Eh? What? That nonsense will not do! My head has grown, a lot, Since this old hat was new.
What TYNDALL dares to call, In wrath, my "traitorous" head, Is "growing still," that's all; (Of "MARIAN" this was said) My cranial vertex flat? Pah! Tories may pooh-pooh; I wore a smaller hat When this old hat was new!
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THE NEW BISHOP OF DURHAM.—WESTCOTT and,—no, Bishops don't wear them—so His Reverend Lordship will be known as "WESTCOTT and Apron."
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ODE ON A BLACK BALL.
(A Fragment, some way after Addison, picked up in the neighbourhood of the Athenaeum Club.)
What though in solemn silence all Drop in the dark the fatal ball? What though no overt voice or sound Amidst the voting throng be found? In reason's ear they speak of choice, And utter forth a boding voice, Saying, as silent they recline, "Your company we must decline!"
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PIPING TIMES FOR THE EMPIRE.—The bagpipes were not heard playing, "The Campbells are Coming," at the relief of Lucknow. Why? Because the regiment hadn't got any. The regimental bagpipes were first introduced by Mr. BOUCICAULT, in his drama of The Relief of Lucknow (that was the subject, whatever the name might have been) at Astley's. Miss AMY ROSELLE'S recitation of the thrilling story specially written for her by Mr. SAVILE CLARKE is most dramatic, and thrills the audience at the Empire. The journalistic discussion, as to the pipes, comes in very appropriately, and will assist to raise the wind and pay the piper. This recitation, is a great "Relief" to the ordinary Music-hall entertainments, and the Empire has "Luck now."
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"PROPRIA QUAE MARIBUS."
PENTHESILEA straddling on the pigskin? Surely a male biped need not dwell In a prejudiced pedantic prig's skin, Not to like that prospect passing well. CARLYLE, who scoffed at Man, had deemed it caddish To picture Woman as "a mere forked radish."
Dear Diana after hounds a riding Like—a clothes-peg on a clothes-line? Nay! Rub out all unnatural laws dividing Sex from sex,—'tis the World's drift to-day. Let ladies mount the 'bus, or Hansom Cab it, But let not custom new banish old Habit.
Paint, write poems, pose as prandial wit, Ma'am, Perorate upon the public platform; Even in the County Council sit, Ma'am, If Law lets you, and your taste takes that form; But take Punch's tip, and do not straddle; Stick to common-sense and the side-saddle.
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Lines on the Labour Conference.
The youthful German Emperor may try By Socialistic plans to prop his rule. Some think 'twill all result in a great cry, And little (Berlin) wool. Still, all good souls will wish young WILLIAM luck. The Teutons may not relish Swiss suggestion, But anyhow it shows the Emperor's pluck In handling Berne-ing questions.
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Q. Shall Privates in uniform be admitted to the stalls and boxes in theatres? A. Certainly, if covered with "Orders." Private Boxes henceforth will be Boxes for Privates.
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Mr. Punch loquitur:—
"Begone brave army, don't kick up a row!"— GRANDOLPHO mine, it were sheer superfluity For you to bid your forces scatter now. The troopers two, of curious incongruity, With the long drummer, and the fifer short, That formed the old stage-army were more numerous Than is your following. You have given us sport In many scenes, but this is hardly humorous.
The general of ARTAXOMINOUS Was far less terrible than—well, thrasonic. To tear a thing to tatters, shout and "cuss," In an assembly callous and sardonic, Savours a bit too much of sheer burlesque, Scarce to the level of fine acting rises. The unexpected's piquant, picturesque, But a sound drama is not all surprises.
Thought you had taken to the "Temperance" line, This looks much more like angry inebriety. A little freakishness is vastly fine, But even of surprise there comes satiety. If you and FUSBOS JENNINGS can't agree, There seems small prospect of a growing Party, Verb. sap. They thought BOMBASTES dead, you see. But the finale found him up, and hearty!
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OUT OF IT.—The Amazons who doff the skirt, and don the, the—other things, can never be considered in Rotten Row as "habituees."
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HE CAN'T ALP IT!
"My only desire is to meet you on the terms on which long ago we stood when you gallantly offered to take me up the Matterhorn."—Mr. Gladstone's Letter to Professor Tyndall.
Mr. GLADSTONE and Professor TYNDALL discovered seated on the edge of a Crevasse.
Mr. Gladstone. I didn't know a glacier was so frightfully slippery.
Prof. Tyndall. Slippery—ha! Like some politicians I might mention!
Mr. Gladstone. That last avalanche, too, bowled us over so neatly that I feel distinctly limp.
Prof. Tyndall (severely). You should try and avoid this "subserviency to outside influences." I always do.
Mr. Gladstone (ignoring the remark). What range is that over there?
Prof. Tyndall. The Pennine Alps, stoopid! From their name they would seem a suitable residence for a person who scribbles twaddle in Magazines—ahem! No personal allusion, of course.
Mr. Gladstone (gaily). Of course not! But isn't it rather dangerous sitting here, with that bank of snow just above us? Suppose it came down on us!
Prof. Tyndall. As the Judges came down on your Parnellite allies, eh? Perhaps, as we're getting to some nasty places, we might be tied together now.
Mr. Gladstone (warmly). Quite so. A union of hearts, in fact.
[After a few hours' more climbing, they reach the summit of the Matterhorn.
Prof. Tyndall. Sorry to leave you, but you see I only promised to take you up, not to see you safe down again. Ta, ta! I may as well mention that I consider you a "ubiquitous blast-furn——"
[Disappears suddenly over the edge.
Mr. Gladstone. Dear me! what dreadful language! And he appears to have cut the rope! He must be a Separatist, after all! If it were PITT, now, I should call his conduct rather "base and blackguardly." Perhaps I shall meet the "Professor at the Tea-Table"—at Zermatt!
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THE BURGLAR'S BACK.
"Lord ESHER is greatly concerned about the probable condition of a burglar's back after a couple of floggings."—Times.
AIR—"Those Evening Bells."
The burglar's back, the burglar's back! 'Twill soon be rash a crib to crack. BILL SIKES will sigh for happier times, When "cats" were not the meed of crimes.
The burglar's back! Lord ESHER pales When thinking of its crimson wales. His feelings will not stand the strain, Of dwelling on the ruffian's pain.
The brute may "bash," the scoundrel shoot, Hack with his knife, "purr" with his boot; But though he "bash," or "purr," or hack, You must not touch the burglar's back.
No, let the brutal burglar burgle; Whilst sentiment will calmly gurgle Bland platitudes, but not attack That sacred thing, the burglar's back!
[Footnote: 1 "The Burglar's Back"—Is he? then the sooner he's caught and sent to penal servitude the better.—ED.]
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"MAY FARE WORSE!"
Or, The Difference between Goode and Baird.
What a sweet little supper!—two fire-eating "pros.," And a person "of no occupation," Who got both his eyes blacked and was cut on the nose, Though "there wasn't the least provocation." And they cursed and they throttled, they gouged, and they swore, And they battered and bled, and they tumbled and tore, And they fetched the police, and they rolled down the stair, Did these blue-blooded dwellers in merry Mayfair.
Mr. ARTHUR COCKBURN will probably not want to see Mr. BAIRD in bed again, the penalty being two black eyes (no relation to the two that were lovely), and a cut nose. What's the good of being called GOODE if you are going to get your eyes gouged out, and be beaten on the head with a poker, and, in fact worsted all round? But there, if one gentleman is "slightly intoxicated," while another is "undoubtedly drunk," and a third is "slightly mixed," there's no knowing what may happen. Did GOODE "keep his hair on" when he got hit on the head with a poker? What a beautiful picture of genuine Mayfair manners it is! The case is still sub (Punch and) judice, and Mr. Justice Punch reserves his decision.
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Cassell's Cabinet Portrait Gallery. In Number One are met together the Duke and Duchess of FIFE, SARAH BERNHARDT as Theodora, and the Archbishop of CANTERBURY, the last very properly looking another way. In Vol. II. there is rather a nice one of Mrs. STIRLING and MARY ANDERSON, but the photographer ought to have been more careful about the little finger of MARY'S right hand. In Vol. III., JAMES PAYN, reading a manuscript, with his spectacles up on his forehead, is very good. The picture of H.R.H. the Prince, in uniform, is too dark, and his expression is severe. Charming and clever Miss MAUD MILLETT is in Part IV., followed by the Duke of WESTMINSTER and Mr. LEWIS MORRIS, the Poet looking so awe-struck, that he must have been taken by surprise, and been "struck like it." Miss ANNA WILLIAMS leads off No. V., and, to express it musically, she is accompanied by the Duke of CONNAUGHT. Sir JAMES LINTON appears for the Water-colourists. In Part VI. the face of Mr. FRANK LOCKWOOD, Q.C., M.P., is full of light and shade, more light than shade, fortunately, and it is a really good likeness. The Duchess of LEINSTER looks lovely, and Sig. PIATTI uncommonly wise as he guards his 'cello.
Neatly and concisely done is Mr. BESANT'S Captain Cook, published in the MACMILLAN Series of English Men of Action. He discovered the Society Islands, whence, of course, are obtained our present supply of Society Papers. The natives of these Society Islands made great use of their Clubs, some of which proved fatal to Captain COOK and his men.
Captain COOK, had he been alive now, would have been among the first to appreciate The Pocket Atlas, in which the names of the chief places are clear enough for all practical purposes. There are seventy-two maps, and the publisher bears the honoured name of WALKER, though the map is not specially intended for the use of pedestrians.
MACMILLAN & CO.'S cheap edition of CHARLES KINGSLEY'S works is deservedly popular; easy to carry, good clean type, so that those who ride may read. Two Years Ago is just out. By the way, the same firm's CHARLOTTE YONGE and the other KINGSLEY Series, make a noble show in a library, on our "noble shelves." "MAC & CO."—i.e., the "Two MACS"—are to be congratulated; and, that being so, the Baron hereby and herewith congratulates them.
THE BARON DE BOOK-WORMS.
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MR. G'S. HEAD.—A "DUKE" writing to the St. James's Gazette last Thursday, joined in the discussion about Mr. GLADSTONE'S head, and observed that hats shrink, and that certain hatters, exceptionally sane, whose evidence can be trusted, allowed for the decrease in size. But do they allow for this in the bills? Is the decrease there proportionate? Considering what Mr. GLADSTONE once was, a Tory of the Tories, and what he is now, is it to be wondered at that a considerable change should have been going on in Mr. GLADSTONE'S head? Why he is finishing poles apart from where he commenced!
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THE King of the National Picture Donors is henceforth "the Potent TATE."
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MR. PUNCH'S DICTIONARY OF PHRASES.
(Which will be found useful in explaining certain Conventional Forms of Expression. Compiled by Professor Von Hombugh.)
"The Police have a clue." Meaning—"The Police know nothing about it, and are doing all they know."
"An exceptionally experienced Detective has charge of the case, and is actively engaged in investigating all matters concerning it;" i.e., "A promoted constable in plain clothes is loafing about the neighbouring public-houses, and standing drinks, generally without the exercise of much discrimination, to unlikely people."
"A young Woman of prepossessing appearance;" i.e., "A rather showy female."
"The Police are, however, very reticent about the whole affair;" i.e., "When ignorance is rife, 'tis folly to give tongue."
"It is believed that the most important discoveries will result from the investigations now in progress;" i.e., "Nothing is known as to whether anything is being done: but it finishes off the paragraph, and sounds well."
"I am assured on the best authority, that there is no truth in the rumour that H.S.H. the Prince of Katzendlenbogen has been laid up with chicken-pox;" i.e., "As there's no news, I may as well invent some, for the sake of contradicting it."
"As everybody knows;" i.e., "I have a certain space to fill, and nothing new to say, so I'll tell an ancient story, or bring in MACAULAY'S New Zealander."
"As all the world knows," "except myself (the writer), who has met with the information for the first time in a most valuable book of reference."
"We regret to hear that, &c.;" i.e., "Our sorrow is tempered by the fact that we are utter strangers to the individual in question, and that his or her affliction provides us with a certain amount of 'copy.'"
"The hall was tastefully decorated;" i.e., "two hired flags and an evergreen hoop."
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"How are you? Haven't seen you for an age!" i.e., "Didn't expect to see you, and didn't want to."
"Not at Home;" i.e., "Doesn't she know that I've got a 'day?' Not that I want to see her even then!"
"Of course I should have known it anywhere. I think you've caught the likeness most wonderfully!" i.e., "Why the deuce doesn't he tell one whom it's meant for?"
"Small and early;" i.e., "No supper, and something which will count as 'a party,' at the least possible cost and trouble."
"The Management regrets that, owing to previous arrangements, the piece must be withdrawn in the height of its popularity;" i.e., "Not drawing a shilling, company fearfully expensive, sooner we shut up the better."
"House full! Money turned away nightly;" i.e., Crammed with paper, two persons who wanted to pay for pit were refused admission by way of advertising.
"The new Play will probably be produced during the Summer at a West End Theatre;" i.e., "The author has had his comedy returned by every Manager in London, with the remark, that 'although excellent, it is scarcely suited to his present company.'"
"It would ill become me, after the able and eloquent speech of your Chairman;" i.e., "What on earth is the name of that retired cheesemonger who talked rubbish, and mispronounced my name?"
"When I look at this splendid meeting;" i.e., "I wonder why those back benches are empty. Some bungling on the part of the Secretary, as usual."
"I shall have to return to this subject later on;" i.e., "Can't remember anything more at present."
"If we all work shoulder to shoulder;" i.e., "Must say 'shoulder to shoulder,' or 'shoulders to the wheel,' or, 'leave no stone unturned,' in every speech."
"Well, I don't care if I do!" i.e., "Haven't had a drink for half an hour—waiting for you to stand treat this ten minutes past."
"Ah! he's a Gentleman, he is, every hinch of him!" i.e., He has "parted" freely, or "tipped" liberally.
"He's about as stingy as they make 'em;" i.e., He has declined to be abominally overcharged.
"Could you tell me wot's about the right time, Guv'nor?" i.e., "Isn't it about time to send me up some more beer?"
"A Lady is desirous of recommending;" i.e., "Getting rid of."
"The Property of a Gentleman going abroad;" i.e., "Mr. BROOKS (of Sheffield)."
"Owner's sole Reason for parting with him is"—i.e., "The one he omits to mention." (To be continued.)
* * * * *
* * * * *
"O RARE 'BEN'!"
In aid of The Actor's Benevolent Fund, the Irving Amateur Dramatic Club are going to give a performance of Henry IV. (Part I.), at the Lyceum Theatre, Saturday afternoon, March 29, when in consequence of H.R.H. The Princess of WALES having accorded her gracious patronage, the Welsh song will be sung by Miss ELEANOR REES on the stage, as Lady Mortimer, which will be a melodious illustration of rhyme and REES-on. The Amateurs appearing for the Actors is as it should be. The President of the Club is HENRY, not the Fourth, but the First, yclept HENRY IRVING, and the Vice, with numberless virtues, is Mr. JUSTIN MCCARTHY, M.P., whom if it be JUSTIN Pater (not JUSTIN MARTYR), we should like to have seen in spectacles in the Tavern Scene, as Francis the Drawer,—a drawer would have been an immense attraction. If JUSTIN Junior could play the other Drawer, the attraction would be doubled. "Sure such a pair!" But we must not jest in too Shakspearian a manner. We hope the Actors' Benevolent will benefit largely by the acting of the Benevolent Amateurs. Let the Benevolent Public too go and see Henry IV. (Part 1st), and let them "part first."
* * * * *
NOTE (by One who doesn't pretend to know French). The Tirard Cabinet couldn't go on, because it was too Tirard!!
* * * * *
* * * * *
THE NEW AMAZON.
Ride-a-cock horse To Banbury Cross, To see a young Lady A-straddle, o'course. If the new notion Very far goes, What she'll do next Nobody knows.
* * * * *
SPECTACULAR.—How is it that among the guests at the Livery Dinner—(ugh! horrid expression! Yet I dare say the dinner wasn't more livery than any other City banquet)—of the Spectacle Makers' Company, were not to be found AUGUSTUS DRURIOLANUS, quite the best spectacle maker in London, and that from among the list of toasts as reported, Art, Literature, and the Drama were omitted? Through what spectacles do the Spectacle Makers see?
* * * * *
REFLECTION ON THE RECENT VALUABLE DISCOVERY AT CANTERBURY.—If cremation had been the practice in 1228 there would have been no remains of STEPHEN LANGTON to-day. Without the remains of the Archbishop, is it likely that the treasures, historically so valuable, would have been permitted to come down to us?
* * * * *
MR. C. M. WOODFORD has just brought out a book entitled A Naturalist among the Head Hunters. Ahem! It doesn't sound nice. Is it procurable at every hairdresser's?
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* * * * *
ESSENCE OF PARLIAMENT.
EXTRACTED FROM THE DIARY OF TOBY, M.P.
House of Commons, May 9.—This has been great occasion for Windbag SEXTON. Excelled himself, and there is no other point of comparison useful or usable. SAUNDERSON, who always takes friendly views of his countrymen opposite, pleads that SEXTON'S windbaggism is partly due to his birth. In Ireland, he assures me, a mile is longer than in other parts of the Empire; and so, kind-hearted Colonel pleads, some allowance should be made for SEXTON when he gets on the oratorical tramp. That's all very well; but, for a man to talk two hours and three-quarters in a so-called Debate, is even more than the national tendency towards exaggeration illustrated by the Irish mile will excuse. Why couldn't SEXTON have windbagged on some day of last week? Suppose, for example, his self-sacrificing friends had made a House for him at a quarter to nine on Friday night, and he had then talked for three hours and a quarter?—or on Wednesday there was opportunity; whilst openings might have been made on Tuesday or Thursday.
"No, TOBY," said SEXTON, when I suggested this in interests of House and public time, "you're a well-meaning fellow, but you don't understand everything. You see in debate of this kind all principal men stand off till the last day. We might have twinkled on several days of last week, but we prefer to coruscate on last night. Sure of an audience; Whips out; crowds in; excitement everywhere. I and HARCOURT, and CHAMBERLAIN, and BALFOUR, all save ourselves for the last night. Can't all speak, perhaps, especially if I get on first: but they must take their chance. With the Universe waiting and listening for me, other things and other people must stand aside. Very serious thing to disappoint the Universe."
So SEXTON, rising at five o'clock, with the windbag conveniently disposed under arm, pumped and pumped away for two mortal hours, and an odd three-quarters that seemed more than mortal. GRANDOLPH waiting to make a speech; ARTHUR BALFOUR longing to be at 'em. Members knowing what was in store, "expecting," as SHEEHY said, that "every moment would be his next." But SEXTON flowed on for ever, with aggravating pauses, with a smile of sublime, unruffled satisfaction, that made the position ten times as aggravating as it otherwise would have been. To smile and smile, and play such a villanous trick as this on a suffering House was worse than most disordered fancy painted.
"If," said ARTHUR BALFOUR, in one of his agonised asides, "the fellow did not undisguisedly enjoy such supreme happiness, our lot would be more bearable."
"Never mind," said OLD MORALITY. "Bad enough, I admit. But do you know why persons are sometimes killed by having a charcoal fire in their bedrooms? Because the carbon of burning charcoal unites with the oxygen of air, and forms carbonic acid gas, which is a narcotic poison. So it is here. SEXTON has got hold of some good points; he is not inapt as a speaker; if his inordinate vanity had only permitted him to be satisfied with occupying time of House for half an hour, or, say, three-quarters, he would have made damaging speech; as it is, he wearies House to death, swamps us all and himself in waste of verbiage, and the people he attacks escape in the general misery. In other words, his carbon of burning vanity, uniting with the oxygen of opportunity, forms a speech two hours and three-quarters long; which is a narcotic poison."
Mr. G., with the ardour of youth, and the training of an athlete, proposed to himself to hear what SEXTON had to say. Accordingly took up convenient seat below Gangway. Stayed there an hour. Then walked back an altered man; shattered; aged; almost in a state of coma.
"Well, you ought to have known better," I said, somewhat sharply, having no sympathies with these vagaries.
"And I was so well and strong when I entered the House," Mr. G. said, wearily. "Quite elate with my correspondence with TYNDALL. Didn't you think that a nice turn in the concluding sentence?—'My only desire is to meet you on the terms on which, long ago, we stood when, under my roof, you gallantly offered to take me up the Matterhorn, and guaranteed my safe return! Wouldn't trust myself on the Matterhorn with TYNDALL now;" and Mr. G., warily shaking his head, walked forth in search of rest and refreshment.
Business done.—Mr. G.'s Amendment to OLD MORALITY'S Resolution on Parnell Commission Report negatived by 339 votes against 268.
Tuesday.—This has been GRANDOLPH'S night. Broke the silence of the still young Session with memorable speech; been in diligent attendance on Debate; sat through interminable speeches with patience only excelled by Mr. G.; sometimes looked as if were about to deliver his soul; but succeeded in bottling it up. To-night soul drove out the cork; burst the bottle, so to speak.
GRANDOLPH a man of many phases. Tonight presented himself in his highest character; a statesman; a champion of constitutional principles at whatever expense to prospects and sensibilities of his most revered friends on Treasury Bench and elsewhere. Quite a new style of speech for GRANDOLPH, testifying to remarkable range of his genius. Nothing personal: free from acrimony; inspired with profound, unfeigned, reverence for constitutional principles. Here and there a touch of pathos as he recalled former times when, as DIZZY said of PEEL on a famous occasion, "they had been so proud to follow one who had been so proud to lead them."
Awful splutter in Ministerial circles. A gleam of delight flashed through the shadow when it was discovered that JENNINGS had rebelled against RANDOLPH'S new revolt. "Ha! ha!" said the REVERBERATING COLOMB, after JENNINGS had made his speech, "the army has dismissed its general."
This all very well; not here concerned with GRANDOLPH'S relations with his Party or his faithful friend; merely note that the speech itself lifts GRANDOLPH once more into the very front rank of political personages. The Liberal Party cannot ignore nor the Conservatives dispense with the man who made that speech.
JOKIM not a particular friend of GRANDOLPH'S. "Leg quite on other boot," as SHEEHY says. But he did the enemy a service to-night. To complete GRANDOLPH'S triumph it only required that some Member of the Ministry whose ineptitude he had demonstrated should rise and, with loud voice, ungainly gestures, drag the Debate down from the heights to which it had been lifted, debasing it by personal attacks hoarsely shrieked across the table at former friends and colleagues. JOKIM did this amidst uproarious cheers from JOHNSTON of Ballykilbeg, who began to think that, after all, there is something in the Right Hon. Gentleman.
Business done.—OLD MORALITY'S Motion carried.
Wednesday.—Attempt by some noisy outsiders who know nothing of House to make things unpleasant for AKERS-DOUGLAS, because House Counted Out last Friday. Said he has been wigged; assume he will retire. All arrant nonsense. Everybody in House, Conservative, Liberal, Dissentient, Irish, whatever we be, all know AKERS-DOUGLAS as one of best Whips of present generation. Assiduous, persuasive, courteous, yet firm; always at his post, never fussy, never cross, apparently never tired, he is a model of a Whip. His Party could better spare an occasional Secretary of State.
For purely business arrangements Ministers have a unique combination of three men. OLD MORALITY, as Leader of House; AKERS-DOUGLAS, as Whip; and JACKSON, as Financial Secretary, are strong enough to balance effects of any reasonable amount of blundering in high politics. They take care of the pence of efficiency and popularity, and leave the MARKISS an occasional pound to spend.
Business Done.—New Irish Land Bill brought in, and cast out.
Thursday.—TEYNHAM on in the Lords, but what he's on about the Lords only know, and not all of them. Something to do with Camperdown; GRANVILLE not entirely out of it; and the MARKISS at least compromised. TEYNHAM, standing at Cross Benches, holding on to the rail of Bench before him, as if he were in pulpit, swings about his body, turns to right and left, sometimes presenting his back to LORD CHANCELLOR, whilst he contemplates emptiness of Strangers' Galleries. In plaintive voice, full of tears, he babbles o' Camperdown, green fields, nemine contradicente, and Standing Order No. XXI.
Pretty to watch HOBHOUSE whilst TEYNHAM on his legs. Sits intently listening; first crossed one knee, then the other; puts his two forefingers together as if connecting the matter of TEYNHAM'S speech; gradually, as muddle grows thicker, two locks of hair on top of his head slowly rise and remained standing, as it were, till TEYNHAM reseated himself. Most remarkable testimony to mental struggle. Even HOBHOUSE, having thus given his mind to it, couldn't make out what TEYNHAM was at. As for DENMAN he, after first ten minutes of speech, flouted out of House.
"TOBY," said he, passing me in the Lobby; "if this is what the House of Lords is coming to, I shall vote with ROSEBERY for its immediate reform. Don't like to say anything disrespectful of a Peer; but I must observe that TEYNHAM is a little lacking in coherency. His observations fail in point; in short, if he were not a Peer I should say his mind was wandering. Whatever we do, TOBY, let us be intelligent and intelligible. I trust I am not prejudiced, but I really can't stand TEYNHAM."
Business done.—In Commons, Government defeated, in resisting HAMLEY'S proposal to stump up for Volunteers.
Friday Night.—TREVELYAN brought forward Motion proposing that Parliament shall rise at beginning of July, making up necessary time in winter months. Supported proposition in speech graceful and strong, a model of rare combination of literary art, with Parliamentary aptitude. After brisk debate, resolution negatived by 173 votes against 169. "A majority of four won't long stand in our way," said CHARLES FORSTER, who having, some Sessions ago, fortuitously found his hat, never now deserts it.
Business done.—Government vainly tried to get into Committee of Supply.
* * * * *
THE DIFFERENCE.—Sir GEORGE TREVELYAN wants the House of Commons to "rise at the beginning of July." Mr. Punch wishes it to rise at all times—above rowdyism.
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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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