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VOL II., NO. 29
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 15, 1870.
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* * * * *
MYSTERY OF MR. E. DROOD,
By ORPHEUS C. KERR.
Continued in this Number.
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THE MYSTERY OF MR. E. DROOD.
BY ORPHEUS C. KERR.
When Miss POTTS and Mr. SIMPSON rejoined Mr. DIBBLE, in the office of the latter, across the street, it was decided that the flighty young girl should be made less expensive to her friends by temporary accommodation in an economical boarding-house, and that the Gospeler, returning to Bumsteadville, should persuade Miss CAROWTHERS to come and stay with her until the time for the reopening of the Macassar Female College.
Subsequently, with his homeless ward upon his arm, the benignant old lawyer underwent a series of scathing rebuffs from the various high-strung descendants of better days at whose once luxurious but now darkened homes he applied for the desired board. Time after time was he reminded, by unspeakably majestic middle-aged ladies with bass voices, that when a fine old family loses its former wealth by those vicissitudes of fortune which bring out the noblest traits of character and compel the letting-out of a few damp rooms, it is significant of a weak understanding, or a depraved disrespect of the dignity of adversity, to expect that such families shall lose money and lower their hereditary high tone by waiting upon a parcel of young girls. A few Single Gentlemen desiring all the comforts of a home would not be considered insulting unless they objected to the butter, and a couple of married Childless Gentlemen with their wives might be pardoned for respectfully applying; but the idea of a parcel of young girls! Wherever he went, the reproach of not being a few Single Gentlemen, or a, couple of married Childless Gentlemen with their wives, abashed Mr. DIBBLE into helpless retreat; while FLORA'S increasing guilty consciousness of the implacable sentiment against her as a parcel of young girls, culminated at last in tears. Finally, when the miserable lawyer was beginning to think strongly of the House of the Good Shepherd, or the Orphan Asylum, as a last resort, it suddenly occurred to him that Mrs. SKAMMERHORN, a distant widowed aunt of his clerk, Mr. BLADAMS, had been known to live upon boarders in Bleecker Street; and thither he dragged hastily the despised object on his arm.
Being a widow without children, and relieved of nearly all the weaknesses of her sex by the systematic refusal of the opposite sex to give her any encouragement in them, Mrs. SKAMMERHORN was a relentless advocate of Woman's Inalienable Rights, and only wished that Man could just see himself in that contemptible light in which he was distinctly visible to One who, sooner than be his Legal Slave, would never again accompany him to the Altar.
"I tell you candidly, DIBBLE," said she, in answer to his application, "that if you had applied to be taken yourself, I should have said 'Never!' and at once called in the police. Since SKAMMERHORN died delirious, I have always refused to have his sex in the house, and I tell you, frankly, that I consider it hardly human. If this girl of yours, however, and the elderly female whom, you say, she expects to join her in a few days, will make themselves generally useful about the house, and try to be companions to me, I can give them the very room where SKAMMERHORN died."
Perceiving that FLORA turned pale, her guardian whispered to her that she would not be alone in the room, at any rate; and then respectfully asked whether the late Mr. SKAMMERHORN had ever been seen around the house since his death?
"To be frank with you," answered the widow, "I did think that I came upon him once in the closet, with his back to me, as often I'd seen the weak creature in life going after a bottle on the top shelf. But it was only his coat hanging there, with his boots standing below and my muff hanging over to look like his head."
"You think, then," said Mr. DIBBLE, inquiringly, "that it is such a room as two ladies could occupy, without awaking at midnight with a strange sensation and thinking they felt a supernatural presence?"
"Not if the bed was rightly searched beforehand, and all the joints well peppered with magnetic powder," was the assuring answer.
"Could we see the room, madam?"
"If the shutters were open you could; as they're not;" returned the widow, not offering to stir; "but ever since SKAMMERHORN, starting up with a howl, said 'Here he comes again, red-hot!' and tried to jump out of the window, I've never opened them for any single man, and never shall. I couldn't bear it, DIBBLE, to see one of your sex in that room again, and hope you will not insist."
Broken in spirit as he was by preceding humiliations, the old lawyer had not the heart to contest the point, and it was agreed, that, upon the arrival of Miss CAROWTHERS from Bumsteadville, she and FLORA should accept the memorable room in question.
Upon their way back to the hotel, guardian and ward met Mr. BENTHAM, who, from the moment of becoming a character in their Story, had been possessed with that mysterious madness for open-air exercise which afflicted every acquaintance of the late EDWIN DROOD, and now saluted them in the broiling street and solemnly besought their company for a long walk. "It has occurred to me," said the Comic Paper man, who had resumed his black worsted gloves, "that Mr. DIBBLE and Miss POTTS may be willing to aid me in walking-off some of the darker suicidal inclinations incident to first-class Humorous Journalism in America. Reading the 'proof' of an instalment of a comic serial now publishing in my paper, I contracted such gloom, that a frantic rush into the fresh air was my only hope of on escape from self-destruction. Let us walk, if you please."
Led on, in the profoundest melancholy, by this chastened character, Mr. DIBBLE and the Flowerpot were presently toiling hotly through a succession of grievous side-streets, and forlorn short-cuts to dismal ferries; the state of their conductor's spirits inclining him to find a certain refreshingly solemn joy in the horrors of pedestrianism imposed by obstructions of merchandise on side-walks, and repeated climbings over skids extending from store doors to drays. Inspired to an extraordinary flow of malignant animal spirits by the complexities of travel incident to the odorous mazes of some hundred odd kegs of salt mackerel and boxes of brown soap impressively stacked before one very enterprising Commission house, Mr. BENTHAM lightened the journey with anecdotes of self-made Commission men who had risen in life by breaking human legs and city ordinances; and dwelt emotionally upon the scenes in the city hospitals where ladies and gentlemen were brought in, with nails from the hoops of sugar-hogsheads sticking into their feet, or limbs dislocated from too-loftily piled firkins of butter falling upon them. Through incredible hardships, and amongst astounding complications of horse-cars, target companies, and barrels of everything, Mr. BENTHAM also amused his friends with circuits of several of the fine public markets of New York; explaining to them the relations of the various miasmatic smells of those quaint edifices with the various devastating diseases of the day, and expatiating quite eloquently upon the political corruption involved in the renting of the stalls, and the fine openings there were for Cholera and Yellow Fever in the Fish and Vegetable departments. Then, as a last treat, he led his panting companions through several lively up-hill blocks of drug-mills and tobacco firms, to where they had a distant view of a tenement house next door to a kerosene factory, where, as he vivaciously told them, in the event of a fire, at least one hundred human beings would be slowly done to a turn. After which all three returned from their walk, firmly convinced that an unctuous vein of humor had been conscientiously worked, and abstractedly wishing themselves dead.
The exhilarating effect of the genial Comic Paper man upon FLORA did not, indeed, pass away, until she and Miss CAROWTHERS were in their appointed quarters under the roof of Mrs. SKAMMERHORN, whither they went immediately upon the arrival of the elder spinster from Bumsteadville.
"It could have been wished, my good woman," said Miss CAROWTHERS, casting a rather disparaging look around the death-chamber of the late Mr. SKAMMERHORN, "that you had assigned to educated single young ladies, like ourselves, an apartment less suggestive of Man in his wedded aspects. The spectacle of a pair of pegged boots sticking out from under a bed, and a razor and a hone grouped on the mantle-shelf, is not such as I should desire to encourage in the dormitory of a pupil under my tuition."
"That's much to be deplored, I'm sure, CAROWTHERS," returned Mrs. SKAMMERHORN, severely, "and sorry am I that I ever married, on that particular account. I'd not have done it, if you'd only told me. But, seeing that I married SKAMMERHORN, and then he died delirious, his boots and razor must remain, just as he often wished to throw the former at me in his ravings. Once married is enough, say I; and those who never were, through having no proposals, must bear with those who have, and take things as they come."
"There are those, I'd have you know, Mrs. SKAMMERHORN, to whom proposals have been no inducement," said Miss CAROWTHERS, sharply; "or, if being made, and then withdrawn, have given our sex opportunities to prove, in courts of law, that damages can still be got. I'm afraid of no Man, my good woman, as a person named BLODGETT once learned from a jury; but boots and razors are not what I would have familiar to the mind of one who never had a husband to die in raging torments, nor yet has sued for breach."
"Miss POTTS is but a chicken, I'll admit," retorted Mrs. SKAMMERHORN; "but you're not such, CAROWTHERS, by many a good year. On the contrary, quite a hen. Then, you being with her, if the boots and razor make her think she sees that poor, weak SKAMMERHORN a-ranging round the room, when in his grave it is his place to be, you've only got to say: 'A fool you are, and always were,'—as often I, myself, called at him in his lifetime,—and off he'll go into his tomb again for fear of broomsticks."
"FLORA, my dear," said Miss CAROWTHERS, turning with dignity to her pupil, "if I know anything of human nature, the man who has once got away from here, will stay away. Only single ghosts have attachments for the houses in which they once lived. So, never mind the boots and razor, darling; which, after all, if seen by peddlers, or men who come to fix the gas, might keep us safe from robbers."
"As safe as any man himself, young woman, with pistols under his head that he would never dare to fire if robbers were no more than cats rampaging," added Mrs. SKAMMERHORN, enthusiastically. "With nothing but an old black hat of SKAMMERHORN'S, and walking-cane, kept hanging in the hall, I haven't lost a spoon by tramps or census takers for six mortal years. So, make yourselves at home, I beg you both, while I go down and cook the liver for our dinner. You'll find it tender as a chicken, after what you've broke your teeth upon in boarding-schools; though SKAMMERHORN declared it made him bilious in the second year, forgetting what he'd drank with sugar to his taste, beforehand."
Thus was sweet FLORA POTTS introduced to her new home; where, but for looking down from her windows at the fashions, making-up hundreds of bows of ribbons for her neck, and making-over all her dresses, her woman's mind must have been a blank. What time Miss CAROWTHERS told her all day how she looked in this or that style of wearing her hair, and read her to sleep each night with extracts from the pages of cheery HANNAH MORE. As for the object nearest her young heart, to say that she was wholly unruffled by it would be inaccurate; but by address she kept it hidden from all eyes save her own.
[Footnote 1: Ordinary readers, while admiring the heavy humor of this unexpected open-air episode, may wonder what on earth it has to do with the the Story; but the cultivated few, understanding the ingenious mechanics of novel-writing, will appreciate it as a most skilful and happy device to cover the interval between the hiring of Mrs. SKAMMERHORN's room, and the occupation thereof by FLORA and her late teacher—another instance of what our profoundly critical American journals call "artistic—elaboration." (See corresponding Chapter of the original English Story.)]
GOING HOME IN THE MORNING.
After having thrown all his Ritualistic friends at home into a most unholy and exasperated condition of mind, by a steady series of vague remarks as to the extreme likelihood of their united implication in the possible deed of darkness by which he has lost a broadcloth nephew and an alpaca umbrella, the mournful Mr. BUMSTEAD is once more awaiting the dawn in that popular retreat in Mulberry Street where he first contracted his taste for cloves. The Assistant-Assessor and the Alderman of the Ward are again there, tilted back against the wall in their chairs; their shares in the Congressional Nominating Convention held in that room earlier in the night having left them too weary for further locomotion. The decanters and tumblers hurled by the Nominating Convention over the question of which Irishman could drink the most to be nominated, are still scattered about the floor; here and there a forgotten slungshot marks the places where rival delegations have confidently presented their claims for recognition; and a few bullet-holes in the wall above the bar enumerate the various pauses in the great debate upon the perils of the public peace from Negro Suffrage.
Reclining with great ease of attitude upon an uncushioned settee, the Ritualistic organist is aroused from dreamy slumber by the turning-over of the pipe in his mouth, and majestically motions for the venerable woman of the house to come and brush the ashes from his clothes.
"Wud yez have it filled again, honey?" asks the woman. "Sure, wan pipe more would do ye no harrum."
"I'mtooshleepy," he says, dropping the pipe.
"An' are yez too shlapey, asthore, to talk a little bissiness wid an ould woman?" she asks, insinuatingly. "Couldn't yez be afther payin' me the bit av a schore I've got agin ye?"
Mr. BUMSTEAD opens his eyes reproachfully, and wishes to know how she can dare talk about money matters to an organist who, at almost any moment, may be obliged to see a Chinaman hired in his place on account of cheapness?
"Could the haythen crayture play, thin?" she asks, wonderingly.
"Thairvairimitative," he tells her;—"Cookwashiron' n' eatbirdsnests."
"An' vote would they, honey?"
"Yesh—'f course—thairvairimitative, I tell y'," snarls he: "do'tcheapzdirt."
"Is it vote chaper they would, the haythen naygurs, than daycint, hardworkin' white min?" she asks, excitedly.
"Yesh. Chinesecheaplabor," he says, bitterly.
"Och, hone!" cries the woman, in anguish; "and f'hat's the poor to do then, honey?"
"Gowest; go'nfarm!" sobs Mr. BUMSTEAD, shedding tears. "I'd go m'self if a-hadn't lost dear-er-rerelative.—Nephew'n' umbrella."
"Saint PAYTHER! an' f'hat's that?"
"EDWINS!" cries the unhappy organist, starting to his feet with a wild reel. "Th' pride of'suncle'sheart! I see 'm now, in'sh'fectionatemanhood, with whalebone ribs, made 'f alpaca, andyetsoyoung. 'Help me!' hiccries; 'PENDRAGON'sash'nate'n me!' hiccries—and I go!"
While uttering this extraordinary burst of feeling, he has advanced towards the door in a kind of demoniac can-can, and, at its close, abruptly darts into the street and frantically makes off.
"The cross of the holy fathers!" ejaculates the woman, momentarily bewildered by this sudden termination of the scene. Then a new expression comes swiftly over her face, and she adds, in a different tone, "Odether-nodether, but it's coonin' as a fox he is, and it's off he's gone again widout payin' me the schore! Sure, but I'll follow him, if it's to the wurruld's ind, and see f'hat he is and where he is."
Thus it happens that she reaches Bumsteadville almost as soon as the Ritualistic organist, and, following him to his boarding-house, encounters Mr. TRACEY CLEWS upon the steps.
"Well, now!" calls that gentleman, as she looks inquiringly at him, "who do you want?"
"Him as just passed in, your Honor."
"Ah. Where does he play the organ?"
"In St. Cow's Church, down yonder. Mass at seven o'clock, and he'll be there in half an hour."
"It's there I'll be, thin," mumbles the woman; "and bad luck to it that I didn't know before; whin I came to ax him for me schore, and might have gone home widout a cint but for a good lad named EDDY who gave me a sthamp.—The same EDDY, I'm thinkin', that I've heard him mutter about in his shlape at my shebang in town, whin he came there on political business."
After a start and a pause, Mr. CLEWS repeats his information concerning the Ritualistic church, and then cautiously follows the woman as she goes thither.
Unconscious of the remarkable female figure intently watching him from under a corner of the gallery, and occasionally shaking a fist at him, Mr. BUMSTEAD attends to the musical part of the service with as much artistic accuracy as a hasty head-bath and a glass of soda-water are capable of securing. The worshippers are too busy with risings, kneelings, bowings, and miscellaneous devout gymnastics, to heed his casual imperfections, and his headache makes him fiercely indifferent to what any one else may think.
Coming out of the athletic edifice, Mr. CLEWS comes upon the woman again, who seems excited.
"Well?" he says.
"Sure he saw me in time to shlip out of a back dure," she returns, savagely; "but it's shtrait to his boording-house I'm going afther him, the spalpeen."
Again Mr. TRACEY CLEWS follows her; but this time he allows her to go up to Mr. BUMSTEAD'S room, while he turns into his own apartment where his breakfast awaits him. "I can make a chalk mark for the trail I've struck to-day," he says; and then thoughtfully attacks the meal upon the table.
(To be Continued.)
[Footnote 2: At this point, the English original of this Adaptation—the "Mystery of EDWIN DROOD"—breaks off forever.]
* * * * *
THE PLAYS AND SHOWS.
Nilsson has come; and, sad to say, has brought dissension and discord with her. Not that there is any discord in her matchless voice, but there is a vast amount of wrangling as to her precise merits. Do you doubt this? Then come with me in my light Fourth Avenue car, while the stars are bright and the sky is blue, (this is an adaptation of a once popular love-song by Dr. WATTS,) and we will go to Steinway Hall to hear the Improved Swedish Nightingale, and feast our eyes on STRAKOSCH'S flowers.
We pass up the steep staircase—with many misgivings as to our ankles, if we belong to the sex which considers the possession of those anatomical features a fact to be carefully concealed, provided they are not symmetrical. We pass the door-keeper, who, as is the custom of his kind, frowns malignantly at us, and evidently asks himself—"How much longer can I refrain from tearing up the tickets of these impudent pleasure-seekers, and throwing the pieces in their infamously contented countenances?" We gain the hall, and are sent to the inevitable "other aisle," by the usher, (by the way, why is it that one always gets into the wrong aisle, only to be ignominiously ordered to the opposite side of the house?) and we finally turn various illegal occupants out of our seats, and begin to fan ourselves in fervid anticipation of the coming musical treat. A buzz of conversation is everywhere going on. Did any one ever notice the curious fact that a middle-aged man and woman can converse at a theatre or concert room without either one finding any difficulty in hearing what the other says, while no young man can make his accompanying young lady hear a single word unless his mouth is in close proximity to her ear? This singular state of things is doubtless due to the peculiar acoustical properties of public buildings. We manage, however, to hear a good deal of both young and middle-aged conversation, of the following improving type.
RURAL PERSON. "I've heard most everybody that's sung in our Philadelphy opera house, and some of 'em are pretty hard to beat. NILSSON may beat 'em, you know. Mind, now, I don't say she won't, but she's got a mighty hard row to hoe."
CRITIC. (Who sent for seats for his eight sisters and their friends—but who did not get them.) "There comes the Scandinavian Society—fifty Irishmen at fifty cents a head. Did you see the flowers piled up in the lobby? MAX paid seven hundred dollars for the lot."
YOUNG MAN. "Dearest! I wish you wouldn't look at that fellow across the way. You know how your own darling loves you, and—"
YOUNG LADY. "Hush! Don't bother. Here comes VIEUXTEMPS."
VIEUXTEMPS plays, and the audience listens with the air of people who are dreadfully bored, but are afraid to show it. He disappears with an amount of applause carefully graduated so as to express enthusiasm without the desire for hearing him again. The Rural Person remarks that "he doesn't think much of fiddlers anyhow. Give him a trombone, or a banjo, for his money."
MR. WEHLI then trifles with the piano. Him, too, the audience politely endure, but plainly do not appreciate. They have come to hear NILSSON, and feel outraged at having to hear anybody else. A cornet solo by the Angel GABRIEL himself would be secretly regarded as undoubtedly artistic, but certainly a little out of place.
CHORUS OF RIVAL PIANO-MAKERS. "What a wretched instrument that poor fellow is made to play upon. Nobody can produce any effect on a STEINWAY piano. It's good for nothing but for boarding-school practice."
CRITIC, (who knows Mr. STEINWAY.) "Anybody can please people by playing on a STEINWAY. I defy WEHLI or any other man to play badly on such a superb instrument as that."
YOUNG MAN. "Dearest! Do you remember the day when you gave me one of your hair-pins? I have worn it next my—"
YOUNG LADY. "Oh, don't bother. NILSSON is just going to sing."
And she does sing, with that voice so matchless in its perfect purity, that even the disappointed critic grows uneasy as he tries in vain to find some reasonable fault with it. She ceases, and amid wild cheers from the paying part of the audience, silent approval from the deadheads, and shouts of "Hooroo!" and "Begorra!" from the Scandinavian Society, MAX'S flowers are brought in solemn procession up the aisle, and laid at the feet of the Improved Nightingale.
CRITIC. "Those flowers will just be taken out of the back door, and brought in again to be used the second time. There's a hand-cart waiting for them now, at the Fifteenth Street entrance."
SIX PRIME DONNE, (who were not asked to sing at the NILSSON concerts.) "Well, did you ever hear 'Angels Ever Bright' sung in a more atrocious style? If that is NILSSON's idea of expression, the sooner she leaves the stage to artists, the better."
CYNICAL OLD MUSICIAN. "Bah! NILSSON infuses religious sentiment into her singing, and these envious creatures don't know what religious sentiment is, so they think she is all wrong. If she had sung HANDEL with a smile, and a coquettish tossing of her head, they would still have hated her, but they would not have ventured to call her "inartistic.""
YOUNG MAN. "Darling! I had rather hear your sweet voice, than listen to NILSSON or a choir of angels for the rest of my—"
YOUNG LADY. "CHARLES, you will drive me wild, with your intolerable spooniness. I'll never come out with you again. See how the SMITH girls are looking at you."
RURAL PERSON. "—So I says to the usher, 'If you think I'm a countryman who don't know what's what, you're everlastingly sold.' 'I'm from Philadelphy,' says I, 'and we've got singers there that can knock spots out of your NILLOGGS and KELSONS and the rest of 'em.' So he just—"
RIVAL MANAGER. "My tear fellow, you shust mind dis. MAX vill lose all his monish. NILSSON can't sing, my tear! She vanted me to encage her a year ago, but I vouldn't do it. Dere ish no monish in her, now you mind vot I says."
DISTINGUISHED TEACHER. "You call her an artist! Why, look here, if one of my scholars were to phrase as wretchedly as she does, I'd never show my face in public again. Her voice is so-so, but her school is simply infamous."
CELEBRATED TEACHER. "Well, I don't mind saying that I never heard her equal in point of quality of voice. She gives you pure tone, which is what hardly any other singer does."
NINE TENTHS OF THE AUDIENCE. "She is perfectly lovely. There never was anybody like her."
CONNOISSEUR, (who really does know something about music, but who actually has no prejudices.) "Her voice is such a one as MARGARET must have had when she sang by her spinning-wheel, before fate threw her in the way of FAUST. And these professional musicians will tear her reputation to pieces among themselves! Why should musical people be, of all others, most fond of discord?"
CRITIC. "There! those fools are determined to make her sing again. I can't stand this. I'll see MAX once more, and if he don't do the right thing, I'll say that NILSSON was played out in Europe before she came here, and that she is a complete failure."
YOUNG MAN, "Sweetest! may I ask you one question?"
YOUNG LADY. "No, you shan't. Will you keep quiet? Everybody is looking at you."
EVERYBODY. "Sh! sh! sh!"
NILSSON sings again. As her delicious notes die out in the thunder of applause, I make my way out of the Hall, into the clear and silent night. For not even the witchery of VIEUXTEMPS'S violin is fit to mate in memory with the peerless tones of NILSSON.
Here I meant to do some fine writing, but as this is PUNCHINELLO, and not the "Easy Chair" of Harper's Magazine, I conquer the temptation. Wherefore I accept the gratitude of my readers, and sign myself
* * * * *
Congestion at "The Sun."
PUNCHINELLO is pained to know that the circulation of his bewitching contemporary, The Sun, is daily growing more and more languid. Paralysis has set in, and the patient but seldom has the energy to dictate the daily bulletin giving the state of his circulation.
* * * * *
Only a Suggestion.
It will be bad enough for the Prussian Cavalrymen to water their horses in the Seine, but if they go to driving their stakes in the Bois de Boulogne, won't the Parisians think it looks a little like running things into the ground?
* * * * *
OUR MASTERS OF ART.
MR. PUNCHINELLO: The knights of the pencil and easel, having returned from their usual visits to their summer haunts, and having exchanged the blue skies and grassy vales of Nature for the smoky ceilings and dirty floors of Art, (I believe that is the proper way to commence this kind of an article,) your correspondent has visited a number of them, and has obtained authentic accounts of their present occupations, and has also been permitted to make slight sketches of some of their principal works.
BIERSTADT, as usual, is painting Yos. Having entirely exhausted the Yo Semite, he is now at work on a grand picture of a Southdown Ewe, and will soon commence a view of his studio,—at sunrise. He well deserves his title of the Yeoman of Art.
JAMES HAMILTON, of Philadelphia, is painting a sunset. It may not be generally known, but it is a fact, that he paints the sun every time it sets. The following sketch will give a good idea of his next great picture. The nails are inserted in the sun to keep it from going down any further, and spoiling the scene.
WILLIAM T. RICHARDS, of the same city, is hard at work on a picture which is intended to represent, to the life, water in motion; a specialty which he has lately adopted. It is entitled "A Scene on the Barbary Coast; Water in Motion, Steamer in the Distance." The subjoined sketch represents the general plan of the picture.
Still another Philadelphia artist, Mr. ROTHERMEL, is very busy at a great work. He is putting the finishing-touches to his vast painting of the Battle of Gettysburg. On this enormous canvas may be seen correct likenesses of all the principal generals, colonels, captains, majors, first and second lieutenants, sergeant-majors, sergeants, corporals and high privates who were engaged in that battle; and by the consummate skill of the artist, each one of them, to the great gratification of himself and his family, is placed prominently in the foreground. Such distinguished success should meet appropriate reward, and it is now rumored that the artist will soon be commissioned by Congress to paint for the Rotunda of the Capitol a grand picture of our late civil war, with all the incidents of that struggle, upon one canvas.
Of the artists who affect the "shaded wood," we learn that Mr. HENNESSY, now absent in Europe, is drawing another "Booth." Whether this is intended particularly for "Every Saturday," I cannot say, but I suppose it will answer for any other week-day. At any rate, here is his last "Booth."
NAST is at work on a series of sarcastic pictures illustrating the miseries of France. Most of them show how LOUIS NAPOLEON ought to finish up his career and dynasty. In fact, should this gifted artist ever travel among Bonapartists, he will certainly be hunted down in an astounding manner, and the populace, adopting American customs, will probably congregate to see him astride a rail. Two of his smaller studies are very interesting. One of them, called "An Astray," is simply a ray of black light; and another, intended for the contemplation of persons who desire light and airy pictures, is simply a portrait of himself, entitled "A Nasturtium."
The well-known Miss EDMONIA LEWIS has been exhibiting her statue of "HAGAR," in Chicago. As HAGAR was the first woman who suffered anything like divorce, Chicago is a capital place for her statue, and Miss LEWIS evidently knows what she is about. Her name reminds me that our great landscapist, LEWIS, is at work on a picture which he calls "A Scene in France after a Reign." This little sketch will give an idea of the painting.
Most of our other artists are also worthily engaged, but time, (I believe that is the regular way to end an article of this kind) will not permit present mention of them.
* * * * *
HAM AND EGGS.
War always brings with it its signs and portents. A hen somewhere in Virginia, according to a local paper, has lately produced an egg on the white of which the word "War" was plainly written in black letters. Now, when we consider that the career of LOUIS NAPOLEON was more or less influenced by Ham, there is something very significant in the advent of this providential egg; nor should we be surprised to learn, ere long, that the same hen had laid another egg, this time with a Prussian yolk.
* * * * *
Reading an old traveller's description of the famous Cathedral of Strasbourg, we note that he dwells particularly on its "fretted windows."
Ah! yes. They have much to fret about, now, have these old windows; and that makes us think whether the larmiers of the roof over them do not run real tears.
* * * * *
The cunning of the red Indian of the Plains.
* * * * *
A gaunt, tall, spectacled creature, gender feminine, number singular, person first, case always possessive, that's the standard bearer; a broomstick from the top of which floats a petticoat, that's the standard. Under that standard march in the U.S. at least 20,000,000 feminines, and—horrible to relate—gal children are on the increase.
Certainly the devil must have invented petticoats. After EVE had finished up that little apple job, she went into the petticoat business, and—hence all our tears. Instantly petticoat government became a possibility. Then, as her daughters became wiser, they invented the weeping business, the swooning business, and the curtain lecture business; they went for our pocket-books and they got them, and petticoat government became a probability. Not satisfied with the pocket-books, they are now going for the business by means of which we fill the books, and oh, what a hankering they have for public pap! They stick to the curtain lecture business, but now they do it before the curtain. Alas, petticoat government is now a certainty!
It's all very well for you to talk about the grandeur of the governments of BOADICEA, and ELIZABETH and CATHERINE, but I don't believe that BOA, or LIZZY, or KATE would have been very nice as a companion, if she and you were sitting before the fire, and she wanted stamps and was going for them as a matter of business. Besides, there was only one of them at a time, and they didn't trouble common people much, but in this enlightened nineteenth century I have seen a poor, miserable, six foot dry-goods clerk turned out of a retail store by a strapping little female, who couldn't jump a counter worth shucks. I have seen him in his misery industriously study "What I Know About Farming," squat on a farm in the West, and bring himself, his wife, and four miserable offshoots to the alms-house by endeavoring to apply the rules set down in "What I Know About Farming" to 160 acres of land. I have seen the poor, half-paid type-setters strike for their altars, their sires, and more wages, and I have seen a troop of petticoats, with gal children inside them, trot into the type-setter's place, so that the miserable compositors were compelled to return and starve on four or five dollars a day. That's petticoat government with a vengeance. Putting your nose to the grindstone isn't nice at any time, but it's awful when the gal children turn.
But that is only the beginning. They have struck for bigger things. In the expressive language of the immortal JOHNNY MILTON, they are going for the whole hog. They want to vote; some of them have been caught repeating already; they want to sit on juries, and they want to go to Congress. Heaven forbid that any of them should ever reach the House of Representatives! Imagine the size of the Congressional Globe if we should send women there! Why, there would be as great a dearth of paper in Washington as there is now in Paris. They want to shave you, dress you, doctor you into your coffins, preach a funeral discourse over your remains, and then take your will into the Surrogate's Court and fight over the little property they have left you.
They say all this means that they are our equals, and intend to show it. Listen. In a town some hundreds of miles distant there is a law firm whose sign reads thus:
MRS. SMITH and husband.
Shades of our forefathers! Ghost of BLUEBEARD! Spirit of HENRY VIII! can this thing be? Imagine old LABAN'S daughter starting in business, and hanging out a sign something like this:
- MRS. JACOB and husband, Having large orders from the West, SOLICIT CUSTOM. N.B. Gentlemen attended to by Mr. JACOB. The Original Mrs. JACOB. -
Don't you suppose that JACOB, if he had found that sign over his doorstep, would have raised a row, and if he had been overcome, don't you suppose he would have wondered what he served those seven years for?
Oh, young man, sitting by the side of that dainty damsel, looking so spoonily into her deep blue eyes, playing so daintily with her golden curls, sucking honey so frequently from her ruby lips, beware! beware! BEWARE! Remember, when she wants stamps, you can't put her off as your pa did your ma. You can't say, "Business is awful dull," because she'll do the business, and make you her book-keeper or porter or something of that sort
Petticoat government is all very well for those who like it. Some men go through life playing a sort of insane tag, in which, first their mothers' petticoats, and then their wives', are hunk, and they never leave hunk. As for me, give me trouser government, or give me a first class funeral procession with me for the corpse.
Brethren, listen! Give me your ears! (the big ones first.) This thing must be stopped now. Let us form an association for the suppression of women, or a society for the prevention of cruelty to men. There is but one way to cure this thing. Far out on the Western prairies dwells the only sensible man on this continent. In the city ruled by him a man may come home as tired as gin can make him, and his wife opens not her mouth; he may jump over as many counters as he pleases, and none of his wives will desire to go and do likewise. There she is the weaker vessel, and it takes so many of her to equal one man, that she is kept in a proper state of subjection. That's the secret; marry her a good deal. The old maids are the ones who start the rows. Let them all be married to some one man of a peaceable, loving, quiet disposition—say WENDELL PHILLIPS. Let the President, if necessary, issue his proclamation making the United States one vast Utah, and let us all be Young.
* * * * *
BY MOSE SKINNER.
MR. PUNCHINELLO: If I should tell you that I particularly excelled in writing verses you'd hardly believe me. But such is the fact. I've sent poem after poem to all the first-class magazines in the country, which, if they'd been published, would have enabled me to pay my debts, and start new accounts from Maine to Georgia. But they've never been published—and why? It's jealousy. A child with half an eye can see that. Those boss poets who get the big salaries, probably see my verses, and pay the publishers a big price not to print 'em.
How little the public know of the inside workings of these things!
I'm disgusted with this trickery, and am going to shut right down on the whole thing. Oh! they may howl, but not another line do they get!
I'm going into the song business. That's something that isn't overdone. I composed a perfect little gem lately. It is called "Lines on the death of a child." I chose this subject because it is comparatively new. A few have attempted it, but they betray a crudeness and lack of pathos painful to witness.
Whether I have supplied that deficiency or not is for the public, not me, to judge. But if the public, or any other man, be he male or female, thinks that by ribaldry and derision I can be induced to publish the whole of this work before it's copyrighted, they're mistaken. The salt that's going on the tail of this particular fowl ain't ripe yet.
It's going to be set to music and it'll probably hatch a song. I called on a publisher last week about it.
"Don't you think," said I, "that it'll take 'em by storm?"
"Worse than that," he replied. "It's a reg'lar line gale."
I knew he'd be enthusiastic about it.
He said he hadn't got any notes in, that would fit it just then, but be expected a lot in the next steamer, and I could have my choice. He was very polite, and I thanked him kindly.
Jealous as I am of my reputation, I am willing to stake it on this poem. A man don't collect the obituary notices of one hundred infants and boil 'em down over a slow fire without something to be proud of, you know.
Here is a sample of it:
LINES ON THE DEATH OF A CHILD.
"Tell me, dear mother, Hast the swallows homeward flode When the clock strikes nine? Does our WILLIE'S spirit roam In that home Beyond the skies, Along with LIZE? Say, mother Say—"
The other verses are, if anything, better than this. If you are anxious to publish this poem entire, why not leave out the pictures and all the reading matter from PUNCHINELLO for two weeks, and show the public what genius, brains, and ability can accomplish, unaided? If you publish it in detachments, it weakens it, you see. If the verses can't lean against each other, they pine away immediately.
* * * * *
* * * * *
SARSFIELD YOUNG HAS HIS HEAD EXAMINED.
DEAR PUNCHINELLO:—The last time I visited a barber's shop I wanted my hair trimmed. Being in somewhat of a hurry for the train, I told the proprietor to cut it short. As a matter of course, I was left. As for my hair, there was precious little of that left, though. Science was too much for it. A hand-glass, brought to bear upon a mirror, opened up a perspective of pretty much all the back country belonging to my skull, that is seldom equalled outside the State Prison or the Prize Ring.
I was indignant. I was so mad that my hair stood on end—voluntarily. The barber talked soothingly of making a discount on the bill; and I, looking at it in a strictly diplomatic light, gradually permitted myself to grow calmer. He went further, and did the handsome thing by me—as if it wasn't enough to cut under his price! A phrenologist by profession, so he said, he had resorted to barbering simply for amusement, and under the circumstances he would give me a professional sitting gratuitously.
It has always been a cherished ambition with me to have my head surveyed and staked out scientifically; SO I told him at once he might take it and look it over.
"My friend," said I, as I gracefully described an imaginary aureole about my brain factory, "you abolish the poll-tax. I grant you full leave to explore."
This was the first time I ever had my head examined. The whole of me, it is true, was once examined before a Trial Justice; but as that was years ago, and it was "the other boy" that was to blame, I refrain from incorporating the details into the history of our country.
It occurred to me that old Scissors couldn't have been much of a scholar; at all events he breathed very hard for an educated man, and he had a rough, muscular way of moving his fingers about my upper story, that made those regions ache every time he touched them. You may fancy my feelings. I certainly didn't fancy his.
For the benefit of those who come after us, (I don't refer to Sheriffs and Constables, so much as I do to posterity,) I append a few results of the gentleman's vigorous researches.
* * *
"There's a great deal of surface here; in fact, everybody that is acquainted with this head must be struck at once with its superficial contents."
"Thickness—obvious. Great breadth between the ears, indicating longevity. You will never die of teething, or cholera infantum; nor is it likely you will ever become a murderess.
"Forehead, large and imposing; that is, it might impose on people who don't know you.
"Your intellect may be pronounced massive, dropsical, in fact. You have brilliant talents, but your bump of cash payments is remarkably small.
"Locality, 20 to 30. You are always somewhere, or just going there. Eventuality, 18 carat fine; absorption, 99 per cent. This means you will eventually absorb a good deal of borrowed money.
"I find here acquisitiveness and secretiveness enough to stock an entire Board of Aldermen and a Congressional Committee."
"Ambition, combativeness, and destructiveness are all on a colossal scale. Happily they are balanced by gigantic caution, else you would be in imminent danger of subverting the liberties of your country.
"If I owned that sanguine temperament of yours, I should proceed at once to marry into President GRANT'S family, and take some foreign mission.
"You're a good feeder. Alimentiveness and order well developed. No man better fitted to order a waiter around. From the immature condition of your organ of benevolence, I shouldn't care, however, to be the waiter.
"Self esteem doesn't seem to have been kept back by the drought.
"Ideality, I discover from the depression in the S. W. corner, is missing. Nature beautifully compensates this loss by making language very full—more words than ideas. In profane language, I dare say, now, you are particularly gifted.
"In one respect your head resembles that of the Father of His Country. It lacks adhesiveness. So does GEORGE'S—on the postage stamps.
"Unlike most subjects, your organ of firmness is not confined to any one spot, but is spread over the entire skull. This phenomenon is due to your being what we technically call 'mule-headed'—a fine specimen which—"
"Excuse me," said I, unwilling any longer to impose on his good nature, "I feel I must make sure of that other train, so I will just trouble you for that organ of firmness and the rest of them. I never travel without them." Then, hurrying all my phrenology into my hat, I started down the street.
I wonder he didn't say something about my memory's being below par—somehow I quite forgot to pay him for shaving me.
Yours, without recourse,
* * * * *
* * * * *
HIRAM GREEN IN GOTHAM.
He Strays among Sharpers, and "Sees the Elephant."
There's many things in the big city which pleases me, and causes us all to feel hily tickled over our success as a Republic.
At the present writin', many furrin' nations would give all their old butes and shoes if, like us, they could throw their roolers overboard every 4 years, and have a new deel.
Our institutions are, many of 'em, sound: altho' I've diskivered to my sorrer, that some of the inhabitants of New York are about as puselanermus a set of dead-beats which ever stood up.
While sojernin' here, my distinguished looks kicked up quite a sensation wherever I put in an appearance. On one occasion, a man stepped up to me who thought I was a banker, and richer than Creosote, and wanted me to change a $100 bill. I diden't do it. Not much. No, sir-ee!—they coulden't fool the old man on that ancient dodge.
But, friend PUNCHINELLO, to my disgust and shagrin', I must acknolidge the corn, and say, I hain't quite so soon as I allers give myself credit for bein', as the sekel of this letter will show.
Last Saturday P.M. I was a sailin' down Dye Street with my bloo cotton umbreller under my arm, feelin' all so fine and so gay.
When near the corner of West Street I turned around just in time to see a ragged boy pick up a pocket-book.
As the afoursaid boy started to run off, a well dressed lookin' man ketched him by the cote coller.
"What in thunder are you about?" says the boy.
"That pocket-book belongs to this old gentleman," said the man, pintin' to me. "I saw him drop it."
"No it don't, nether," said the boy, tryin' to break away, "and I want yer to let go my cote coller."
The infatuated youth then tried his level best to jerk away, while his capturer yanked and cuffed him, ontil the boy sot up a cryin'.
I notissed as the youth turned around that he partly opened the wallet, which was chock full of greenbax.
A thought suddenly struck me. That 'ere boy looked as if he was depraved enuff to steel the shoe-strings off'n the end of a Chinaman's cue, so the Monongohalian's hair woulden't stay braided.
Thinks I, if the young raskel should keep that pocket-book, like as not he mite buy a fashinable soot of close and enter on a new career of crime, and finally fetch up as a ward polertician.
I must confess, that as I beheld that wallet full of bills, my mouth did water rather freely, and I made up my mind, if wuss come to wusser, I would not allow too much temptashun to get in that boy's way. The man turned to me and says:
"Stranger, this is your pocket-book, for I'le swear I saw you drop it."
What could a poor helpless old man like me do in euch a case, Mister PUNCHINELLO? That man was willin' to sware that I dropped it, and I larnt enuff about law, when I was Gustise of the Peece, to know I coulden't swear I diden't drop it, and any court would decide agin me; at the same time my hands itched to get holt of the well filled wallet.
I trembled all over for fear a policeman, who was standin' on the opposite corner, mite come over and stick in his lip.
But no! like the wooden injuns before cigar stores, armed with a tommyhawk and scalpin' knife, these city petroleums, bein' rather slippery chaps, hain't half so savage as they look.
When the boy heerd the man say I owned the pocket-book he caved in, and began to blubber. Said he, whimperin':
The well dressed individual, still holdin' onto the boy, then said to me:
"My friend, I'me a merchant, doin' bizziness on Broadway, at 4-11-44. You've had a narrer escape from losin' your pocket-book. Give this rash youth $50, to encourage him in bein' honest in the futer, and a glorious reward awaits you. Look at me, sir!" said he, vehemently; "the turnin' pint of my life was similar to this depraved youth's; but, sir! a reward from a good lookin', beneverlent old gent like you, made a man of me, and to-day I'me President of a Society for the Penny-Ante corruption of good morrils,' and there hain't a judge in the city who wouldn't give me a home for the pleasure of my company."
Such a man, I knew, woulden't lie about seein' me drop that pocket-book. I took another look at the Guardian (?) of the public peace, morrils, etc., who, when he was on his Beat, haden't the least objection to anybody else bein' on their beat. He wasen't lookin' our way, but was star-gazin', seein' if the sines was rite for him to go and take another drink.
"You are sure you saw me drop this wallet?" said I, addressin' the President of the Penny-antee Society.
"I'le take my affidavy on it," said he.
I pulled out $50 and handed it to the boy, who handed me the pocket-book.
"Mrs. GREEN! Mrs. GREEN!" soliloquised I, as I walked away, feelin' as rich as if I held a good fat goverment offis, "if you could only see your old man now, methinks you'd feel sorry that you hid all of his close one mornin' last spring, so he coulden't go and attend a barn raisin'. Yes, madam, your talented husband has struck ile."
I stepped in a stairway to count my little fortin. I was very much agitated. The wallet was soon opened; when—
"Ye ministers fallen from grace, defend us!" was the first exclamation which bust 4th from my lips; for I hope to be flambusticated if I hadn't gone and paid $50 for a lot of brown paper, rapt up into patent medesin advertisements, printed like greenbax.
For a few minnits I was crazier than a loon.
I rusht madly into the street, runnin' into an old apple woman, nockin' her "gally west."
I quickly jumped to my feet and begun hollerin':
"Murder! Thieves! Robbers!"
The Policemen scattered, while a crowd of ragged urchins colected about me. "My youthful vagabones," roared I, as loud as I could scream, "bring along your stuffed wallets. The market price of brown paper is $50 an ounce on call.—If you are lookin' for a greenhorn, I'me your man."
I then broke my umbreller over a lamp-post, and button-hold a passer by, offerin him a $100 if he'd send me to a loonatic asilum.
Seein' a sine on the opposite corner which read: "Weigher's Office," I rusht wildly in, and said to a man:
"Captin, I've been litened. If you've got such a thing as a pair of apothecary's scales about your premises, dump me on and give me the figgers."
I then tried to jump through a winder, but the man caught me by the cote tails, and haulin' me back, sot me down into a cheer.
I soon got cooled down, when I told the man how I'de been swindled, and asked him what I had better do.
"Do?" said he, laffin' as if heed bust. "My advice is, for you to take the next train for your home, and then charge your loss to the acc't of seein' the elefant."
It hain't often I git took in, but that time I was swallered, specturcals, white hat and all, as slick as if I'de been buttered all over.
I don't intend to let Mrs. GREEN know anything about this little adventoor, but just as like as not, some day when I hain't thinking she will worm it out of me, when Mariar will no doubt say:
"Sarved you rite, you old ignoramus; that's what you git for stoppin' takin' the weekly noosepapers, because they won't print the darned nonsents you set up to rite, when you orter be to bed and asleep."
Ewers, lite as a fether,
HIRAM GREEN, Esq.,
Lait Gustise of the Peece.
* * * * *
A Serious Complication.
The English language is a "mighty onsartin" one. Here, now, in a magazine sketch, we find it stated that one of the characters of the story was "as rich as CROESUS, and a good fellow to boot." Vernacularly, this is correct; and yet so equivocal is it that it puzzles one to think why the acquisition of wealth should subject the holder of it to the liability of being kicked.
* * * * *
"Modern physiologists," said the Doctor, "have arrived at the conclusion that man begins as a cell."
"And what about woman?" returned the Scalper, "doesn't she begin as a sell, continue as a sell, and depart as a sell?"
"She does," replied the doctor.
* * * * *
A Relative Question.
Would the marriage of a Daughter of a Canon to a Son of a Gun come within the laws prohibiting marriage between relatives too nearly connected?
* * * * *
* * * * *
A CRABBED HISTORY.
Most people have a peculiar fondness for crabs. A dainty succulent soft shell crab, nicely cooked and well browned, tempts the eye of the epicure and makes his mouth water. Even a hard shell is not to be despised when no other is attainable. We eat them with great gusto, thinking they are "so nice," without considering for a moment that they have feelings and sentiments of their own, or are intended for any other purpose than the gratification of our palate. But that is a mistake which I will try to rectify in order that the bon vivant may enjoy hereafter the pleasures of a mental and bodily feast conjointly.
Most crabs are hatched from eggs, and begin life in a very small way. They float round in the water, at first, without really knowing what they are about. They have but little sense to start with, but after a while improve and begin to strike out in a blind instinctive way, which, after a few efforts, resolves itself into real genuine swimming. They commence walking about the same time. Awkward straggling steps, to be sure, but they get over the ground, and that is the most they care for.
When they are about a month old they begin to feel that life has its realities, and that they must do something towards the end for which they were made. The thought is faint at first, but by degrees grows weightier, till at last they can stand it no longer, and, making a great effort to throw off the incubus of babyhood that weighs so heavily upon them, they burst open the back door of their shell and slowly creep out backwards. It takes about five minutes for them to get entirely out, head, legs and all, and then for a moment or two they gaze in stupefaction at their old shell, amazed to find that they have, by their own efforts, unaided and alone, accomplished such a wonderful change.
The thought is overwhelming. It fills them with pride; rejoicingly they exult, and swell with gratification. This state of self-gratulation lasts about twenty minutes, at the end of which time they have increased their bulk to nearly double its former size, and they remain so.
They can't get back into the old shell now, for it won't fit them, and as there is no other for them to go into, the only thing left for them to do is to build another house.
It takes three or four days before they get fairly to work, and during this time they are called soft-shell crabs. This stage is particularly dangerous to the delicate creatures, for they, in their tender beauty, are so attractive to hungry fishes that it is really a wonder any escape. Tender, helpless, innocent and beautiful, they are almost sure to be victimized and gormandized.
Some, however, escape the fate intended for them, and in a few days begin to enjoy life in a crabbed sort of a way. Another month passes on. They become restless and uneasy, and feel that it won't do to stay too long in one place. They think they had better make another change, and so this time, in a more self-confident manner, they pack up and move out at the back door again. They are no more provident now, however, than they were at first, for, after having given up the old house, they have no new one to move into. They are not troubled as we are with house-hunting; they are good builders, and can make one to suit themselves. A wise provision of nature, for these interesting creatures are really obliged monthly to go out doors to grow.
This state is to them doubly dangerous. Mankind they always have to fear, but now they are tempting to their own race. A wicked old crab goes out for a stroll. The walk gives him an appetite; he looks around for something to eat and spies a younger brother just moving. Treacherously be plants himself behind a stone or shell, and watches the process, chuckling in his inmost stomach over the dainty meal in prospect. The youthful one has just got clear of his old home and its restraints, and is delighting in his freedom, when up walks the vampire, strikes him a blow on his defenceless head, knocks the life out of him, and then sits down to a dinner of soft-shell crab. He is an old sportsman, and enjoys exceedingly the meal gained by his own prowess.
Dinner over, he wipes his claws on the muddy table-cloth and walks out for his digestion. Off in the distance he spies a young gentleman crab making love to a beautiful female. He looks at her with a discriminating eye. Sees she is fair to look upon, and thinks he would like to be acquainted. He makes several sideway moves in the direction, ungraceful, but satisfactory to himself, and as he advances his admiration increases, his courage improves; he feels almost heroic. The observant lover with staring eyes perceives the advancing strides of another gentleman crab, and instantly, seized with jealous fears, clasps his inamorata to his shelly breast with his numerous little legs, holds her tightly so that she can't fall, and walks off on his hands.
The old cannibal observes the change of base, feels insulted at the implied distrust, and resolves to have satisfaction. Increasing his efforts, he soon overtakes the runaway lovers, challenges his rival by giving him a dig with his claw, and tells him to "come out and show himself a crab." Of course no crab of spirit is going to receive an insult before his beloved and not resent it; with one painful quiver of his little legs, he sets the lady crab down, and then the two amorous lovers proceed to deadly combat. Love strengthens the young crab's heart. Justice nerves his arm; and soon a lucky blow from the sharp claw pierces in a vital part the hardened sinner, who, with a gulp, gives up the contest and his life at once.
An exultant shout bubbles up in the water, and then the heroic defender of crabbed maidenhood leads his beloved to view the remains of this ravager of hard-shell rights.
They rejoice over the fallen adversary a while, and then, to make their happiness more complete, and to prosper his wooing, the victor invites his love to dine on the tender part of the victim.
The invitation is gladly accepted, and they enjoy a delicious meal, rendered doubly tasteful from the fact that they are feasting on an enemy.
The facts deduced from the above history prove that crabs have tastes and feelings just as mankind have. They are gallant to their females; never engage in combat with the weaker sex; fight and kill each other when angry; love good eating, and are cannibalistic—which last habit they may have learned from their ancestors of the Feejee Islands.
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BAITED BREATH.—That of the boy who had "wums fur bait" in his mouth.
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Attracted by the dulcet strains of a brass band, a day or two since, PUNCHINELLO ascended to the summit of the N.E. tower of his residence, looking from which he beheld a target company all with crimson shirts ablaze marching up the Bowery. Then, glancing over towards Long Island, he observed that Nature was already assuming her russet robes, which circumstance, combined with that of the target company, reminded him that the shooting season had just commenced. A few hints to young sportsmen, then, from so old a one as PUNCHINELLO, will not, be hopes, be taken amiss—not even though, in shooting phrase, a miss is generally as good as a mile.
Before taking the field, look well to your shooting-irons. Fowling-pieces are far more apt to Get Foul while they are lying away during the off season, than when they are taken out for a day's sport by the fowlers.
On releasing your gun from its summer prison, always examine it carefully, to ascertain whether it is loaded. This you can do by looking down into the barrel and touching the trigger with your toe. If your head is blown off, then you may be sure that the gun was loaded. Otherwise not.
Should your gun be a breech-loader, always load it at the muzzle. This will show that you know better than the man who made it, or, at least, that he is no better than you.
If you are a novice in gunnery it will be safest for you to put the shot in before the powder. By doing this you will not only provide against possible accidents, but will secure for yourself the reputation of being a very safe man to go out shooting with.
When you go out with your gun, always dress in a shootable costume. For instance, if you want to bag lots of Dead Rabbits, TWEED will be the best stuff you can wear—especially about November 8th, on which day you will be certain to find Some Quail about the polling places. (N.B. They are beginning to quail already.)
The best time to acquire the art of shooting flying is fly time. Always carry a whiskey flask about you, so that you can practice at Swallows.
When you hear the drum of the ruffed grouse, steal silently through the thicket and let drive in the direction of the sound. Should you bring down a target company instead of a ruffed grouse, so much the better. It will only be bagging ruffs of another kind, and by silencing their drums you will have conferred an obligation upon humanity.
There is much diversity of opinion regarding the best kind of dog for fowling purposes. It all depends upon what work you want your dog to do for you. If you want to have birds pointed, a pointer is best for your purpose. If set, a setter. But if you want a dog that will go in and kill without either pointing or setting, be sure that the Iron Dog is the dog for your money. You can procure one of Staunch Blood by application at Police Head-Quarters.
Before going out for a day's sport, resolve yourself into a committee of one for the preservation of choice ornithological specimens. By this we do not mean that you are to set up in business as a taxidermist, but that you are bound—if a true sportsman—to protect the song birds, and the birds that are useful in destroying noxious vermin, and all the beautiful feathered creatures that ornament our woods, and fields, and parks, from the depredations of the ignorant, loutish, pestilent, pernicious pot-hunter. The Sportsmen's Clubs that have been organized throughout the country should be supported by every true sportsman; and if you lay a thick stick vigorously across the back of the first fool you see about to kill Cock Robin, you will have established a very efficacious Sportsman's Club of your own, and will have earned the best regards of Mr. PUNCHINELLO to boot—by which he means, if you choose, that you have his leave and license to boot the fellow into the bargain.
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MORE ABOUT CHIGNONS.
The chignon is coming to the front again. By this we do not mean that it is worn, or likely to be worn before—in saying which the word "before" is not used by us in its acceptation of previously, but in that of front; although, now that we come to think of it, the chignon certainly has been worn before, as may be seen by consulting old-fashioned prints, in which it is shown worn behind. This, to the ordinary mind, may seem rather confused; and so it is; but what else could you expect from a writer when he has got chignon upon the brain?
For newspapers the chignon is just now a teeming subject. Every day or so somebody writes to a paper, saying that be has discovered a new kind of parasite, hatched by the genial warmth of woman's nape from some deleterious padding or other used in the manufacture of her chignon. Sometimes it is vegetable stuff, sometimes animal, but it always teems with pedicular creatures akin to that low and vulgar kind not usually recognized in polite society. All these horrors come and and don't make much difference in the chignon market; but PUNCHINELLO has a new one that is calculated to create a sensation—about the nape of the female neck—and here it is.
In the beech forests of Hungary, as is well known to Danubian explorers, there exists a very remarkable breed of pigs, one of their peculiarities being that they are covered with wool instead of with bristles. These pigs are shorn regularly every year, like sheep. Their wool, which is very stiff and curly, is used for stuffing cushions and mattresses of the cheap and nasty kind. Since chignons have come into fashion, a vast amount of pig's wool has been imported for their manufacture. By microscopic investigation the wool of the Hungary pig has been found swarming with trichinae; to a fearful extent. Now, it is easy to imagine that the trichinae obtained from a hungry pig must be of a very insatiable and ravenous disposition, and this is but too often realized by the silly wearers of the porcine chignons, into whose brains, (when they happen to have any,) the horrible little parasites worm their way in myriads, rendering their hapless victims pig-headed to an extent that defies description either with pen or pencil.
The Pig-faced Woman exhibited some time ago in Europe was once a very pretty girl, her hideous deformity being the result of wearing a chignon stuffed with Hungary pigs' wool.
In purchasing a pig chignon, then, the Girl of the Period had better look out that she does not get "too much pork for a shilling."
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MATCHING THE MATCHLESS.
Matchmaking has always been traditionally supposed to be the chief end of woman. No wonder that, with the spread of the new theories of woman's rights, therefore, we find them invading departments of industry which were formerly supposed to be peculiarly the domain of the stronger sex. We have recently seen running matches, swimming matches, rowing matches, and other fancy matches, made by women. And why not? The women are wise in thus preparing themselves for proficiency in the arts of primary elections, ballot stuffing and the rest, incidental to untrammelled suffrage.
In regard to this, also, it may not be amiss to suggest that this passion for match-making lies at the bottom of the recent increase in divorce, which so alarms some timid moralists. Certain it is that easy divorce enlarges the opportunities for its gratification, and to be "fancy" and "free" is no longer a charm peculiar only to "maiden meditation."
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Card to the Public.
The undersigned, having recently increased their facilities for the manufacture of History upon an unusually large scale, would hereby announce to their patrons and the public in general that they have associated with them Messrs. VICTOR EMANUEL and General TROCHU.
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A proof of the present great depression in the Whaling business is the fact that the editor of the Sun still walks about unflogged.
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THE CHOICE OF PARIS (IN AMERICA.)
One drink, dear friend, before we part— Before I tempt the shining sea; One drink to pledge each constant heart— Yet stay, what shall the tipple be?
My eyes are dazed with bar-room "signs" In which, I pray, shall friendship conquer? Can alien I drink "native" wines? Are Jew-lips Christian tipple, mon coeur?
This "cobbler"—is't a heeling drink? A "smash" were surely inauspicious; Toute de-suite, two "sours"—yet I think Ah! qu'est-ce-qui c'est!—acetate is vicious!
Garcon! two "skins"—the name is 'cute—- You Yankees "twig" the pharmaceutical; But hold! art sure the flay-vor'll suit? Will it not smack too much of cuticle?
No, boy, no "skins." Let's try some beer, A milder fluid for to-day; Ottawa bring us—c'est a dire, Some beer that keeps the 'ot away.
No? Well, some ale: in limpid Bass We'll drown our thirst and parting grief; Come drink—arretez! this must pass— 'Twould look too much like bas-relief!
The hour arrives; our lips are dry; What shall it be? Oh, name it for me! A tasse of gin? I drink and fly To toss upon the ocean stormy.
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"NOTHING LIKE LEATHER."
Freedom of action is one of the greatest boons enjoyed by mankind in modern days. Its rate of progress is encouraging, especially since the Liberal Club of this city has taken it under its protection. It is a very significant association, is the Liberal Club; rather iconoclastic, to be sure, but only a little ahead of the times, perhaps, in that respect; Some of our cherished forms of speech have already been rendered obsolete by the Liberal Club. It used to be such a clincher to say, when one wanted to enforce a point by indicating an impossibility, "I will eat my boots unless"—etc., etc. That clincher has gone to the place whither good clinchers go, forever. At a late meeting of the Liberal Club, Professor VAN DER WEYDE contributed to the evening collation a pudding made of an old boot. The pudding was garnished with the wooden pegs that had kept the boot together, sole and body, while it walked the earth. The boot-jack with which the original source of the pudding used to be pulled off was also exhibited, and excited great interest. It is the intention, of the Professor to subject this implement to some process by which it will be resolved into farina, or sawdust, and then to make a Jack Pudding of it. Many of the ladies and gentlemen present partook of the boot pudding, and pronounced it excellent. One lady, (a member of Sorosis, we believe,) said that she thought it tasted like a pear. The Professor assured her, however, that he had used but one boot in making it, not a pair. Altogether, the pudding was a success. Freedom of action had been vindicated, and the absurd prejudice that had hitherto prevented men from utilizing their old boots as food, except in extreme cases, was shattered with one blow.
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PANOPLY FOR OUR POLICE.
PUNCHINELLO felicitates the Municipal Police Force on the magnificent new shields with which the manly breasts of its members are decorated. Nevertheless, PUNCHINELLO considers it sheer mockery to call that a shield by which nothing is shielded. A buckle might as well be called a buckler as the policeman's badge a shield. Already our noble skirmishers of the side-walk are fully provided for the offensive, and, considering the risks run by them from the roughs, the toughs and the gruffs, it is high time that they were furnished with something in the defensive line. Curb-chain undershirts have been suggested, but an objection to their use is that links of them are apt to be carried into the interior anatomy by pistol bullets, thus introducing a surplus of iron into the blood,—an accession which is apt to steel the heart of the officer thus experimented on, and so render him deaf to the cries of innocence in distress. PUNCHINELLO suggests, then, that the policeman's shield should be a shield. Let it be made sufficiently large to cover the most vulnerable portion of the person, as shown in the annexed design. If made of gong-metal, so much the better, as the wearer could then ring out signals upon it with his locust far more effectively than by the present ridiculous mode of beating up rowdydow upon the flag-stones. Although our gallant Municipal Blue is never backward in facing danger, yet it might be judicious for him to wear a shield upon his back as well as upon his front, because it is just possible that, in case of a row, his large, heavy boots might be conveying him away in a direction diametrically opposite to the spot at which the shooting was going on.
A. T. Stewart & Co. ARE OFFERING EXTRAORDINARY BARGAINS LADIES' ENGLISH HOSE, FULL REGULAR MAKES, From 25 cents per pair upward. ALSO, GENTLEMENS' HALF HOSE, EXTRA QUALITY, 25 cents per pair upward. LADIES LINES OF Ladies' and Gentlemens' Silk and Merino Underwear. BROADWAY, 8th Avenue, 9th and 10th Streets. Grand Exposition. A. T. STEWART & CO. HAVE OPENED A Splendid Assortment of PARIS MADE DRESSES, From Worth E Pingnet and other Celebrated Makers ALSO, LARGE ADDITIONS, OF THEIR OWN MANUFACTURE, Cut and Trimmed by Artists equal, if not superior, to any in this city. Millinery, Bonnets, & Hats Eligantly Trimmed, from Virot's and other Modletes of the highest Parisian standing. The Prices of the Above are Extremely Attractive. BROADWAY 4th Avenue, 9th and 10th Streets. Extraordinary Bargains. A. T. Stewart & Co. ARE OFFERING GRAY MIXED SUITS, MADE OF BEST QUALITY FRINGED CHEVIOT SUITINGS, $8 EACH. Scotch Plaid Fringed Suits, VERY HANDSOME, ALSO $8 EACH. WATERPROOF SUITS, WITH DEEP OVERSKITS, $10 EACH. A LARGE STOCK OF POPLIN ALPACA SUITS, CHOICE SHADES OF COLOR, From $12 each upward. Heavy Rich SILK AND POPLIN SUITS, ELEGANTLY TRIMMED, FROM $60 EACH UPWARD ONE CASE PARIS-MADE SUITS, One Case Handsome Millinery, THREE CASES CHILDREN'S Part, and London Made Dresses, Suits, Robes and Underwear, One Case Pattern Velvet and Cloth. Cloaks, Sacques and Richly Embroidered Breakfast Jackets, AT VERY ATTRACTIVE PRICES. BROADWAY 4TH AVE., 9TH AND 10TH STREETS, PUNCHINELLO. The first number of this Illustrated Humorous and Satirical Weekly Paper was issued under date of April 2, 1870. The Press and the Public in every State and Territory of the Union endorse it as the best paper of the kind ever published in America. CONTENTS ENTIRELY ORIGINAL Subscription for one year, (with $2.00 premium,) . . $4.00 " " six months, (without premium,) . . . 2.00 " " three months, . . . . . . . . . . . 1.00 Single copies mailed free, for . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 "We offer the following elegant premiums of L. PRANG & CO'S CHROMOS for subscriptions as follows: A copy of paper for one year, and "The Awakening," (a Litter of Puppies.) Half chromo. Size 8-3/8 by 11-1/8 ($2.00 picture,) for. . . . . . $4.00 A copy of paper for one year and either of the following $3.00 chromos: _Wild Roses._ 12-1/8 x 9. Dead Game. 11-1/8 x 8-5/8. Easter Morning. 6-3/5 x 10-1/4 for. . . . . . . . . $5.00 A copy of paper for one year and either of the following $5.00 chromos Group of Chickens; Group of Ducklings; Group of Quails. Each 10 x 12-1/8. The Poultry Yard. 10-1/8 x 14 The Barefoot Boy; Wild Fruit. Each 9-3/4 x 13. Pointer and Quail; Spaniel and Woodcock. 10 x 12 for $6.50 A copy of paper for one year and either of the following $6.00 chromos The Baby in Trouble; The Unconscious Sleeper; The Two Friends. (Dog and Child.) Each 13 x 16-3/4 Spring; Summer; Autumn 12-1/8 x 16-1/2. The Kid's Play Ground. 11 x 17-1/2 for . . . . . . $7.00 A copy of paper for one year and either of the following $7.50 chromos Strawberries and Baskets. Cherries and Baskets. Currants. Each 13 x 18. Horses in a Storm. 22-1/4 x 15-1/4 Six Central Park Views. (A set.) 9-1/8 x 4-1/2 for . $8.00 A copy of paper for one year and Six American Landscapes. (A set.) 4-3/8 x 9, price $9.00 for . . . . . . . . . . . . $9.00 A copy of paper for one year and either of the following $10 chromos: Sunset in California. (Bierstadt) 18-1/8 x 12 Easter Morning. 14 x 21. Corregio's Magdalen. 12-1/2 x 16-1/8 Summer Fruit, and Autumn Fruit. (Half chromes.) 15-1/2 x 10-1/2, (companions, price $10.00 for the two), for $10.00 Remittances should be made in P.O. Orders, Drafts, or Bank Checks on New York, or Registered letters. The paper will be sent from the first number, (April 2d, 1870,) when not otherwise ordered. Postage of paper is payable at the office where received, twenty cents per year, or five cents per quarter, in advance; the CHROMOS will be _mailed free on receipt of money. CANVASSERS WANTED, to whom liberal commissions will be given. For special terms address the Company. The first ten numbers will be sent to any one desirous of seeing the paper before subscribing, for SIXTY CENTS. A specimen copy sent to any one desirous of canvassing or getting up a club, on receipt of postage stamp. Address, PUNCHINELLO PUBLISHING CO., P.O. Box 2783. No. 83 Nassau Street. New York.