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Punch, Or The London Charivari, Vol. 100., Jan. 31, 1891 by Various

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PUNCH,

OR THE LONDON CHARIVARI.

VOL. 100.

January 31, 1891.

VOCES POPULI.

A ROW IN THE PIT; OR, THE OBSTRUCTIVE HAT.

SCENE--_The Pit during Pantomime Time._

_The Overture is beginning._

[Illustration]

_An Over-heated Matron_ (_to her Husband_). Well, they don't give
you much _room_ in 'ere, I _must_ say. Still, we done better than
I expected, after all that crushing. I thought my ribs was gone
once--but it was on'y the umbrella's. You pretty comfortable where you
are, eh. Father?

_Father_. Oh, I'm right enough, I am.

_Jimmy_ (_their Son; a small boy, with a piping voice_). If _Father_
is, it's more nor what _I_ am. I can't see, Mother, I can't!

_His Mother_. Lor' bless the boy! there ain't nothen to _see_ yet;
you'll see well enough when the Curting goes up. (_Curtain rises on
opening scene_). Look, JIMMY, ain't _that_ nice, now? All them himps
dancin' round, and real fire comin' out of the pot--which I 'ope it's
quite safe--and there's a beautiful fairy just come on, dressed so
grand, too!

_Jimmy_. I can't see no fairy--nor yet no himps--no nothen! [_He
whimpers_.

_His Mother_ (_annoyed_). Was there ever such a aggravating boy to
take anywheres! Set quiet, do, and don't fidget, and look at the
hactin'!

_Jimmy_. I tell yer I can't _see_ no hactin', Mother. It ain't my
fault--it's this lady in front o' me, with the 'at.

_Mother_ (_perceiving the justice of his complaints_). Father, the
pore boy says he can't see where he is, 'cause of a lady's hat in
front.

_Father._ Well, _I_ can't 'elp the 'at, can I? He must put up with it,
that's all!

_Mother._ No--but I thought, if you wouldn't mind changing places with
him--you're taller than him, and it wouldn't be in your way 'arf so
much.

_Father._ It's always the way with you--never satisfied, _you_ ain't!
Well, pass the boy across--I'm for a quiet life, I am. (_Changing
seats._) Will _this_ do for you?

[_He settles down immediately behind a very large, and furry,
and feathery hat, which he dodges for some time, with the
result of obtaining an occasional glimpse of a pair of legs on
the stage._

_Father_ (_suddenly_). D---- the 'at!

_Mother._ You can't wonder at the _boy_ not seeing! P'raps the lady
wouldn't might taking it off, if you asked her?

_Father._ Ah! (_He touches_ The Owner of the Hat _on the shoulder._)
Excuse me, Mum, but might I take the liberty of asking you to kindly
remove your 'at? [The Owner of the Hat _deigns no reply._

_Father_ (_more insistently_). _Would_ you 'ave any objection to
oblige me by taking off your 'at, Mum? (_Same result._) I don't know
if you _'eard_ me, Mum, but I've asked you twice, civil enough, to
take that 'at of yours off. I'm a playin' 'Ide and Seek be'ind it 'ere!

[_No answer._

_The Mother._ People didn't ought to be allowed in the Pit with sech
'ats! Callin' 'erself a lady--and settin' there in a great 'at and
feathers like a 'Ighlander's, and never answering no more nor a
stuffed himage!

_Father_ (_to the Husband of The Owner of the Hat_). Will you tell
your good lady to take her 'at off, Sir, please?

_The Owner of the Hat_ (_to her Husband_). Don't you do nothing of the
sort, SAM, or you'll _'ear_ of it!

_The Mother._ Some people are perlite, I must say. Parties might
_beyave_ as ladies when they come in the Pit! It's a pity her 'usband
can't teach her better manners!

_The Father._ _'Im_ teach her! 'E knows better. 'E's got a Tartar
there, _'e_ 'as!

_The Owner of the Hat._ SAM, are you going to set by and hear me
insulted like this?

_Her Husband_ (_turning round tremulously_). I--I'll trouble you
to drop making these personal allusions to my wife's 'at, Sir. It's
puffickly impossible to listen to what's going on on the stage, with
all these remarks be'ind!

_The Father._ Not more nor it is to _see_ what's going on on the stage
with that 'at in front! I paid 'arf-a-crown to see the Pantermime, I
did; not to 'ave a view of your wife's 'at!... 'Ere, MARIA, blowed if
I can stand this 'ere game any longer. JIMMY must change places again,
and if he can't see, he must stand up on the seat, that's all!

[_JIMMY is transferred to his original place, and mounts upon
the seat._

_A Pittite behind Jimmy_ (_touching up JIMMY's Father with an
umbrella_). Will you tell your little boy to set down, please, and not
block the view like this?

_Jimmy's Father_. If you can indooce that lady in front to take off
her 'at, I will--but not before. Stay where you are, JIMMY, my boy.

_The Pittite behind._ Well, I must stand myself then, that's all. I
mean to see, _somehow_! [_He rises._

_People behind him_ (_sternly_). Set down there, will yer?

[_He resumes his seat expostulating._

_Jimmy_. Father, the gentleman behind is a pinching of my legs!

_Jimmy's Father._ Will you stop pinching my little boy's legs! He
ain't doing you no 'arm--is he?

_The Pinching Pittite_. Let him sit down, then!

_Jimmy's Father._ Let the lady take her 'at off!

_Murmurs behind._ Order, there! Set down! Put that boy down! Take orf
that 'at! Silence in front, there! Turn 'em out! Shame!... &c., &c.

_The Husband of the O. of the H._ (_in a whisper to his Wife_). Take
off the blessed 'at, and have done with it, do!

_The O. of the H._ What--_now_? I'd sooner _die_ in the 'at!

[_An Attendant is called._

_The Attendant._ Order, there, Gentlemen, please--unless you want to
get turned out! No standing allowed on the seats--you're disturbing
the performance 'ere, you know!

[_JIMMY is made to sit down, and weeps silently; the hubbub
gradually subsides--and The Owner of the Hat triumphs--for
the moment._

_Jimmy's Mother._ Never mind, my boy, you shall have Mother's seat in
a minute. I dessay, if all was known, the lady 'as reasons for keeping
her 'at on, pore thing!

_The Father._ Ah, I never thought o' that. So she may. Very likely her
'at won't _come_ off--not without her _'air!_

_The Mother._ Ah, well, we musn't be 'ard on her, if that's so.

_The O. of the H._ (_removing the obstruction_). I 'ope you're
satisfied _now_, I'm sure?

_The Father_ (_handsomely_). Better late nor never, Mum, and we take
it kind of you. Though, why you shouldn't ha' done it at fust, I
dunno; for you look a deal 'ansomer without the 'at than, what you did
in it--_don't_ she, MARIA?

_The O. of the H._ (_mollified_). SAM, ask the gentleman behind if his
boy would like a ginger-nut.

[_This olive-branch is accepted; compliments pass; cordiality
is restored, and the Pantomime proceeds without further
disturbance._

* * * * *

SOMETHING LIKE A SUBSCRIPTION!

(_A PAGE FROM THE BOOK OF PHILANTHROPY._)

The Committee waited impatiently the arrival of the Great and Good
Man. It was their duty to obtain a donation--an ample one--from the
Millionnaire whose charity was renowned far and wide, from one end of
the world to the other. At length he appeared before them.

[Illustration]

"What can I do for you?" he asked, with a smile that absolutely shone
with benevolence.

"You know, Sir, that the claims of the poor in the Winter are
numerous, and difficult to meet?"

"Certainly I do," returned the Man of Wealth, "and hope that you are
about to ask me for a subscription."

"Indeed we were," cried the spokesman of the Committee, his eyes
filling with grateful tears. "May I put you down for five pounds?"

"Five pounds!" echoed the Millionnaire, impatiently, "What is five
pounds?--_five thousand_ is much more like the figure! Now, I will
give you five thousand pounds on one condition."

"Name it!" cried the Deputation in a breath.

"The simplest thing in the world," continued the Millionnaire. "I
will give you five thousand pounds on the condition that you get
ninety-nine other fellows to do the same. Nay, you shall thank me when
all is collected. I can wait till then."

* * * * *

The above words were spoken more than thirty years ago. Since then
the Deputation have been waiting for the other fellows--and so has the
Millionnaire!

* * * * *

PROFESSOR V. PROFESSOR.

PROFESSOR VIRCHOW seems by no means Koch-sure about the _tuberculosis_
remedy. Indeed Professor KOCH finds that there is not only "much
virtue in an 'if,'" but much "if" in a VIRCHOW! He is inclined to sing
with SWINBURNE:--

"Come down, and redeem us from VIRCHOW."

* * * * *

THE FRIEND OF IRELAND AND THE WORDY KNIFE-GRINDER.

(_IMITATION SAPPHICS SOME WAY AFTER CANNING AND FRERE._)

[Illustration: _Wordy Knife-Grinder_. "STORY! GOD BLESS YOU! I HAVE
NONE TO TELL, SIR!"]

_Friend of Ireland_:--

"Wordy Knife-Grinder! Whither are you going?
Dark is your way--your wheel looks out of order--
Mitchelstown palls, and there seems no more spell in
O'BRIEN's breeches!

"Wordy Knife-Grinder, little think the proud ones,
Who in their speeches prate about their Union-
Ism, what hard work 'tis to keep a Party
Tightly together!

"Tell me, Knife-Grinder, what _your_ little game is.
Do you mean playing straight with me and others?
Or would you jocky Erin like a confounded
Saxon attorney?

"Give us a glimpse of that same Memorandum!
Pledge yourself clear to what needs no explaining!
Prove that your plan is not quite a sham, sly-whittled
Down into nullity!

"Ere I depart (if go I must, TIM HEALY)
Give me a pledge that I'm not sold for nothing.
Tell us in plain round words, without evasion, the
_True_ Hawarden story."

_Knife-Grinder_.

"Story! God bless yer! I have none to tell, Sir!
_Never_ tell stories, I; 'tis my sole business
This Wheel to turn with treadle and cry, 'Knives and
Scissors to grind O!'

"Constabulary? Question of Land Purchase?
Number of Irish Members due in justice?
Never said aught about 'em; don't intend to--
Not for the present.

"I shall be glad to do what honour urgeth;
Grind on alone, if you will give me _carte-blanche_,
Make room for JUSTIN, and forbear to meddle
With politics, Sir!"

_Friend of Ireland_.

"_I_ give thee _carte-blanche?_ I will see thee blowed first--
Fraud! whom no frank appeal can move to frankness--
Sophist, evasive, garrulous, word-web-spinning
Subtle Old Spider!!!"

[_Kicks the Knife-Grinder, overturns his Wheel, and exit in a fury of
patriotic enthusiasm and forcible language._

* * * * *

CAPITAL AND LABOUR FORECAST;

_OR, SIX OF ONE AND HALF-A-DOZEN OF THE OTHER._

Though in some quarters a better feeling was reported to have
prevailed, still, according to latest accounts, the outlook can
scarcely be regarded as satisfactory. A meeting of the Amalgamated
Engineering Tram-Drivers' Mutual Stand-Shoulder-to-Shoulder
Strangulation Society was held on Glasgow Green yesterday afternoon,
at which, amid a good deal of boisterous interruption, several
delegates addressed the assembled audience and recounted their recent
experiences up to date. There were still 1700 of the Company's old
hands out of work, and though, thanks to the profound enthusiasm,
"their just cause" had excited amidst the Trade Societies in the
South, by which, owing to subscriptions from no less important
bodies than the Bootmakers' Benevolent Grandmothers' Association, and
Superannuated Undertakers' Orphan Society, they had been able to stay
out and defy the Company, receiving all the while, every man of them,
a stipend of 3s. 9d. a-week, still they had almost come to the end
of their resources, and all that they had in hand towards next week's
fund for distribution, was L1 13s. 7-1/2d., received in coppers from
the Deputy-Chairman of the Metropolitan Boys' Boot-blacking Brigade,
accompanied with an intimation that that help must be regarded as
the last that can be counted on from that quarter. Under these
circumstances it became a question whether it was not almost time to
consider some terms of compromise.

In the above sense one of the speakers addressed the meeting, but
he was speedily followed by another, who insisted that, "come
what might," they would stick to their latest terms, which were, a
three-hours' day--(_loud cheers_)--and time-and-three-quarters for
any work expected after three o'clock in the afternoon. (_Prolonged
cheering_.)

A Delegate here rose, and said it was all very well their cheering,
but could they get it? (_A Voice, "We'll try!"_) For his part, the
speaker continued, he had had enough of trying. With wife and children
starving at home, he had only one course open to him, and that was,
to knock under to the Company and their ten-hours' day, if they would
have him. (_Groans, amid which the Speaker had his hat knocked over
his eyes, and was kicked out of the assembly_.)

The discussion was then continued, much in the same vein, and
eventually culminated in a free fight, in which the Chairman got his
head broken, on declaring that a Motion further limiting the working
day to two hours and a half, was lost by a narrow majority.

Yesterday afternoon the Directors' Mutual Anti-Labour Protection
Company met at their Central Offices for the despatch of their usual
business. The ordinary Report was read, which announced that though
the affairs of three great Railway Companies had "gone" literally "to
the dogs," still, the Directors of each had to be congratulated on
showing a firm front, in refusing to acknowledge even the existence
of their _employes_. The usual congratulatory Motions were put,
_pro forma_, and passed, and, amid a general manifestation of gloomy
satisfaction, the meeting was further adjourned.

* * * * *

"A SALVAGE MAN."

Rudyard Kipling has hit on a picturesque plan;
He describes in strong language "the savage in Man."
Whilst amongst the conventions he raids and he ravages.
We'd like just a leetle more "Man" in his savages.

* * * * *

[Illustration: IN SELF-DEFENCE.

_Jones_ (_who has just told his best Story, and been rewarded with
a gentle smile_). "UPON MY WORD, WOMEN HAVEN'T GOT THE REAL SENSE OF
HUMOUR! WHY, WHEN I HEARD THAT STORY FOR THE FIRST TIME, ONLY LAST
WEEK, I SIMPLY ROARED!"

_Miss Smith_. "SO DID I--ONLY IT WAS LAST YEAR!"]

* * * * *

FROM OUR MUSICAL BOX.

We sent our Musical Box (Cox being unable to accompany him on the
piano or any other instrument, by reason of the severe weather) to
hear STAVENHAGEN at St. James's Hall, Thursday last, the 22nd. Our
Musical B. was nearly turned out of the hall, he was in such ecstasies
of delight over a Beethovenly _concerto_, which "bangs Banagher," he
said, subsequently translating the expression by explaining, "that
is, beats BEETHOVEN." Our M.B. wept over a _cadenza_ composed by the
performer, and was only restored by the appearance--her first--of
Madame STAVENHAGEN, who gave somebody's grand _scena_ far better,
probably, than that somebody could have given it himself, set as
it was to fine descriptive music by the clever STAVENHAGEN, which
delighted all hearers, especially those who were Liszt-eners.
"Altogether," writes our Musical Box, "a very big success. Music is
thirsty work. I am now about to do a symphony in B. and S."

* * * * *

VICE VERSA.

A poet in the _Forum_ asks the question,
"Is Verse in Danger?" 'Tis a wild suggestion!
Is Verse in Danger? Nay, _that_'s not the curse;
Danger (of utter boredom) is in Verse!

* * * * *

"ODD MAN OUT."--On Saturday last, the last among the theatrical
advertisements in the _Daily Telegraph_ was the mysterious one,
"MR. CHARLES SUGDEN AT LIBERTY," and then followed his address. "At
Liberty!" What does it mean? Has he been--it is a little difficult to
choose the right word, but let us say immured--has he been immured in
some cell?--for it does sound like a "sell" of another sort--and
has he at last effected a sensational escape? No doubt CHARLES, our
friend, will be able to offer the public a satisfactory explanation
when he re-appears on the Stage which suffers from his absence.

* * * * *

PLAYING OLD GOOSEBERRY AT THE HAYMARKET;

_OR, THE DOOK, THE DANCING GIRL, AND THE LITTLE LAME DUCK._

What is to be admired in ENERY HAUTHOR JONES is not so much his work
but his pluck,--for has he not, in the first place, overcome the
prudery of the Lord Chamberlain's Licensing Department, and, in the
second place, has he not introduced on the boards of the Haymarket a
good old-fashioned Melodrama, brought "up to date," and disguised in
a Comedy wrapper? Walk in, Ladies and Gentlemen, and see _The Dancing
Girl_, a Comedy-Drama shall we call it, or, generically, a Play?
wherein the prominent figures are a wicked Duke,--_vice_ the "wicked
Baronet," now shelved, as nothing under the ducal rank will suit us
nowadays, bless you!--a Provincial Puritan family, an honest bumpkin
lover, a devil of a dancing woman who lives a double-shuffling sort of
life, an angel of a lame girl,--who, of course, can't cut capers but
goes in for coronets,--a sly, unprincipled, and calculating kind
of angel she is too, but an audience that loves Melodrama is above
indulging in uncharitable analysis of motive,--a town swell in the
country, a more or less unscrupulous land-agent, and a genuine,
honest "heavy father," of the ancient type, with a good old-fashioned
melodramatic father's curse ready at the right moment, the last relic
of a bygone period of the transpontine Melodrama, which will bring
tears to the eyes of many an elderly playgoer on hearing the old
familiar formula, in the old familiar situation, reproduced on
the stage of the modern Haymarket as if through the medium of a
phonophone.

[Illustration: FINAL TABLEAU, ACT I.

"O does not a Meeting (House) like this make amends?"

_Ham Christison_ (_Clown_). "Ullo! Oh my! I'm a looking at yer!"]

At all events, _Drusilla Ives, alias_ "the Dancing Girl "--though as
to where she dances, how she dances, and when she dances, we are left
pretty well in the dark, as she only gives so slight a taste of her
quality that it seemed like a very amateurish imitation of Miss KATE
VAUGHAN in her best day,--_Drusilla Ives_ is the mistress, neither
pure nor simple, of the _Duke of Guisebury_,--a title which is
evidently artfully intended by the, at present, "Only JONES" to be a
compound of the French "Guise" and the English "Bury,"--who from his
way of going on and playing old gooseberry with his property, might
have been thus styled with advantage: and so henceforth let us think
and speak of him as His Grace or His Disgrace the Duke of Gooseberry.

This Duke of Gooseberry visits, "quite unbeknown,"--being, for this
occasion only, the Duke of Disguisebury,--his own property, the Island
of St. Endellion, just to see, we suppose, what sort of people the
Quaker family may be from which his mistress, the Dancing Quakeress
(and how funny she used to be at the Music Halls and at the Gaiety!),
has sprung. For some reason or other, the Dancing Quakeress has gone
to stay a few weeks with her family in the country, and while this
hypocritical Daughter of HERODIAS is with her Quaker belongings at
prayers in the Meeting House, the spirit moveth her to come out,
and to come out uncommonly strong, as, within a yard or so of the
building, she laughs and talks loudly with Gooseberry, and then in a
light-hearted way she treats the Dook to some amateur imitations of
ELLEN TERRY, finishing up with a reminiscence of KATE VAUGHAN; all
of which _al fresco_ entertainment is given for the benefit of the
aforesaid Gooseberry within sound of the sermon and within sight of
the Meeting House windows. Suddenly her rustic Quaker lover, a kind
of _Ham Peggotty_, lounges out of the Conventicle, which, as these
persons seem to leave and enter just when it suits them, ought rather
to be called a Chapel-of-Ease,--and, like the clown that he is, says
in effect, "I'm a-looking at yer! I've caught yer at it!" Dismay
of Dook and Dancer!! then Curtain on a most emphatically effective
situation.

[Illustration: Two "Regular Dawgs" having a _tete-a-tete._]

The Second Act is far away the best of the lot, damaged, however, by
vain repetitions of words and actions. To the house where Miss Dancing
Girl is openly living under the protection of Gooseberry, the Duke's
worthy Steward actually brings his virtuous and ingenuous young
daughter! If ever there were a pair of artful, contriving, scheming
humbugs, it is this worthy couple. Because the Duke saved her from
being run over by his own horses, therefore she considers herself
at liberty to limp after him, and round him, and about him, on every
possible occasion, to say sharp, priggish things to him, to make love
to him, and in the Third Act so craftily to manage as to spot him just
as he is about to drink off a phial of poison, which operation, being
preceded by a soliloquy of strong theatrical flavour and considerable
length, gives the lame girl a fair chance of hobbling down the stairs
and arresting the thus "spotted Nobleman's" arm at the critical
moment. Curtain, and a really fine dramatic situation. "Which nobody
can deny."

[Illustration: ACT III. Pantaloon David Peggotty Gladstone Ives.]

It is in this same Third Act that the fine old crusted melodramatic
curse is uncorked, and a good imperial quart of wrath is poured out on
his dancing daughter's head by the heavy father, who, in his country
suit, forces his way into the gilded halls of the Duke's mansion, past
the flunkeys, the head butler, and all the rest of the usual pampered
menials. An audience that can accept this old-fashioned cheap-novel
kind of clap-trap, and witness, without surprise, the marvellous
departure of all the guests, supperless, for no assigned cause, or
explicable reason, not even an alarm of fire having been given, will
swallow a considerable amount.

The Fourth Act is an anticlimax, and shows up the faulty construction
of the drama. Of course the news comes that the Dancing Girl is dead,
and this information is brought by a Sainte Nitouche of a "Sister" of
some Theatrical Order (not admitted after half-past seven), whose very
appearance is a _suggestio falsi_. Equally, of course, a letter is
found, which, as exculpating Gooseberry, induces the old cuss of a
Puritan father to shake hands with the converted "Spotted Nobleman";
but, be it remembered, the Dook is still his landlord, and the value
of the property is going up considerably. Then it appears that the old
humbug of an agent has sagaciously speculated in the improvement of
the island, and poor Gooseberry feels under such an obligation to that
sly puss of an agent's daughter, that, in a melancholy sort of way,
he offers her his hand, which she, the artful little hussy of a _Becky
Sharp_, with considerable affectation of coyness, accepts, and down
goes the Curtain upon as unsatisfactory and commonplace a termination
to a good Melodrama as any Philistine of the Philistines could
possibly wish. It would have been a human tragedy indeed had poor
Gooseberry poisoned himself, and the girl whose life he had saved had
arrived just too late, only to die of a broken heart. But that "is
quite another story."

The piece is well played all round, especially by the men. Mr. TREE
is excellent, except in the ultra-melodramatic parts, where he is too
noisy. The very best thing he does is the perfect finish of the Second
Act, when, without a word, he sits in the chair before the fire lost
in dismal thought. This is admirable: as perfect in its dramatic force
as it is true to nature. It is without exception the best thing in the
whole piece. Mr. F. KERR as _Reginald Slingsby_, achieves a success
unequalled since Mr. BANCROFT played the _parvenu_ swell _Hawtree_. It
should be borne in mind that Mr. KERR only recently played admirably
the poor stuttering shabby lover in _The Struggle for Life. Il ira
loin, ce bon_ M. KERR. Miss JULIA NEILSON looks the part to the life:
when she has ceased to give occasional imitations of Miss ELLEN TERRY,
and can really play the part as well as she looks it, then nothing
more could be possibly desired. All the others as good as need be, or
can be.

[Illustration: FINAL TABLEAU.

Triumph of the Artful Agent and his lame Duck of a Daughter, Sybil
Slyboots, _alias_ Becky Sharp, afterwards the Merry Duchess of
Gooseberry.]

* * * * *

THE BOGEY, MAN!

(_RETORT OF A LADY-PLAYER WHO PLAYS "FOR LOVE."_)

["No game was ever yet invented which held the female mind in
thrall save by indirect means. Where would croquet have been,
so far as the Ladies were concerned, without its Curates, or
lawn-tennis without its 'Greek gods' ... If men played for
nothing, they would find it dull enough."--JAMES PAYN]

'Tis mighty well for Menfolk at Womankind to gibe,
And swear they do not care for games without some lure or bribe,
But e'en in JAMES PAYN's armour there seems some weakish joints;
He does not care for "glorious Whist" unless for "sixpenny points!"
Whist! Whist! Whist! It charms the Bogey, Man:
Whist! Whist! Whist! He'll play it when he can.
But "pointless Whist," as PAYN admits, is not at all his plan;
You must have "money on" to please the Bogey, Man!

Now, Ladies like to play "for love," a fault male hucksters blame,
But only sordid souls deny _that_ is the true "grand game."
Man's vulgarer ambition's not just to play well and win;
His eye is ever on the stakes, his interest on the "tin."
Whist! Whist! Whist! That blatant Bogey, Man!
Whist! Whist! Whist! He'll flout us when he can.
"Indirect means" though, after all, are portions of _his_ plan;
For all his brag he loves the "swag," the Bogey, Man!

* * * * *

MUM'S THE WORD!

[Mr. CHAMBERLAIN presided lately at a Deaf-and-Dumb Meeting.]

JOSEPH _reflecteth_:--
Deaf-mutes make the best audience, I see;
_They_ gave me no rude flood of gibes to stem.
True, they were deaf, and so could not hear _me_,
But they were dumb, so _I_ could not hear them!

* * * * *

MADAME ROLAND RE-EDITED (_from a sham-Japanese point of view_).--O
LIBERTY! what strange (decorative) things are done in thy name!

* * * * *

JACK'S APPEAL.

["It is impossible for warrant-officers in the Navy not to
see that they are placed at a disadvantage as compared with
non-commissioned officers in the Army, and it must be
very difficult to persuade them that the two cases are
so essentially different as to afford no real ground for
grievance."--_The "Times," on "An Earnest Appeal on Behalf of
the Rank and File of the Navy_."]

_Jack Tar to Tommy Atkins, loquitur_:--

TOMMY ATKINS, TOMMY ATKINS, penmen write pertikler fine
Of the Wooden Walls of England, and likeways the Thin Red Line;
But for those as form that Line, mate, or for those as man them Walls,
Scribes don't seem so precious anxious to kick up their lyric squalls.
Not a bit of it, my hearty; for one reason--it don't pay;
There is small demand, my TOMMY, for a DIBDIN in our day.
Oh, I know that arter dinner your M.P.'s can up and quote
Tasty tit-bits from old CHARLEY, which they all reel off by rote;
But if there _is_ a cherub up aloft to watch poor JACK,
That there cherub ain't a poet,--bards are on another tack.

TOMMY ATKINS, TOMMY ATKINS, BULL is sweet on "loyal toasts,"
And he spends his millions freely on his squadrons and his hosts,
But there isn't much on't, messmate, not so fur as _I_ can see,
Whether 'tis rant or rhino, that gets spent on you and me.
Still the _Times_ has took our case up,--werry handsome o' the _Times_!--
I have heard it charged with prejudice, class-hate, and similar crimes,
But it shows it's got fair sperret and a buzzum as can feel
When it backs us with a "Leader" arter printing our "Appeal."
You are better off, my TOMMY, than the Navy Rank and File,
You _may_ chance to get promotion,--arter waiting a good while--
But the tip-top of Tar luck's to be a Warrant Officer;
We ain't like to get no further, if we even get _as_ fur.
'Tain't encouraging, my hearty. As for me, I'm old and grey,
'Tis too late now for promotion if it chanced to come _my_ way;
And my knowledge, and my patter, and my manners--well I guess
They mayn't be percisely fitted for a dandy ward-room mess.
But the Navy of the Future, TOMMY ATKINS, is our care,
We have gone through many changes, and for others must prepare.
It will make the Navy popular, more prospect of advance;
And what I say is, TOMMY,--_let the young uns have a chance!_
Some I know will cry "Impossible," and slate the scheme like fun.
Most good things are "impossible," my TOMMY,--_till they're done!_
Quarter-decks won't fill from fokesels, not to any great extent;
But, give good men a better chance! I guess that's all that's meant.
As the _Times_ says, werry sensible and kind-like, preju_dice_,
Though strong at first, dies quickly, melts away like thaw-struck ice;
If every brave French soldier, with a knapsack on his back,
_May_ find a Marshal's baton at the bottom of that pack,
Why should not a true British Tar, with pluck, and luck, and wit,
Find at last a "Luff's" commission hidden somewheres in his kit?

* * * * *

WAKING THEM UP.

_FLY-LEAF FROM AN ENERGETIC KAISER'S DIARY._

10 P.M.--Slip out of Opera and take somebody else's overcoat from
cloak-room when nobody is looking, jump into a four-wheeler, and drive
to station. Am recognised, and a special train is called out. Give
them the slip, and get into a horse-box of third-class omnibus-train
just about to start.

10.15 P.M. t_ 2.30 A.M.--Still in horse-box.

2.45 AM.--Stop at a big town. Hurry out. Stopped for ticket. Throw off
disguise of somebody else's overcoat, and declare myself. Guard called
out to escort me. When they are looking the other way, hide under
refreshment-counter, and get out of station unobserved on all-fours.
Am collared by a policeman. Again have to declare myself. Give
policeman twenty marks, bind him to silence, and borrow his official
cloak. Find out Burgomaster's address. Hammer at his front door till I
have stirred up the whole household.

4 A.M. to 5 A.M.--Find out the Archbishop. Bang at his front door
till he puts his head out of window, and wants to know "What on
earth's the matter?" Hide round the corner. Repeat same business, with
more or less success, at the residence of the Chief Justice, then at
that of the Clerk of the Peace, and at those of any other officials
I can call to mind, winding up by a regular good row at that of the
General in Command. Trumpeter comes out. Take bugle from him, and give
the call. General in Command rubs his eyes sleepily, and says he'll be
down presently.

5 A.M.--Hurry back to station. Catch early cattle-train going back to
Berlin. Jump on engine, and declare myself. Wire approach down line,
and tear away with the cattle, at seventy miles an hour, getting
back to Berlin just in time for breakfast. Fancy I woke them up!
Altogether, a very enjoyable outing.

* * * * *

[Illustration: GENUINE ENTHUSIASM.

(_A Thaw Picture_.)

WHAT MATTER AN INCH OR TWO OF SURFACE-WATER, IF THE ICE BE STILL SOUND
UNDERNEATH!]

* * * * *

"ROUGE ET NOIR!"

OR, JONATHAN'S PERPLEXING PROBLEM.

(_SOME WAY AFTER HOSEA BIGLOW'S "JONATHAN TO JOHN."_)

_Jonathan (who has been reading the Articles on "The Negro Question in
the United States," in the English "Times") loq._:--

It may be ez you're right, JOHN,
And both my hands _are_ full;
_You_ know ez I can fight, JOHN,
(I've wiped out "Sitting Bull").
Ole Uncle S. sez he, "I guess
We see our fix," sez he.
"The 'Thunderer's' paw lays down the law,
Accordin' to J.B.
To square it's left to _me_!"

Blood ain't so cool as ink, JOHN;
Big words are easy wrote;
The "coons"--well, you don't think, JOHN,
I'll let 'em cut my throat.
Ole Uncle S. sez he, "I guess
Ghost-dance must stop," sez he.
"Suppose the 'braves' and black ex-slaves
Hed b'longed to ole J.B.
Insted of unto me?"

Ten art'cles in your _Times_, JOHN,
Hev giv me good advice.
I mind th' old Slavery crimes, JOHN.
I don't need tellin' twice.
Ole Uncle S. sez he, "I guess,
I only guess," sez he,
"Seven million blacks on his folks' backs
Would kind o' rile J.B.
Ez much ez it riles me!"

The Red Man,--well, I s'pose, JOHN,
We'll hev to wipe _him_ aout.
Sech pizonous trash ez those, JOHN,
The world kin do without.
Ole Uncle S. sez he, "I guess
Injuns must go," sez he.
"COOPER's Red Man won't fit our plan,
Though he once witched J.B.
As once he fetched e'en _me_!"

The Black Man! Ah, that's wuss, JOHN.
The chaps wuz right, ay _joost_,
Who said the Slavery cuss, JOHN,
Wud yet come home to roost.
Ole Uncle S. sez he, "I guess
The problem set," sez he,
"By that derned Nig. is black and big,
And fairly puzzles me,
Ez it wud do J.B."

Your _Times_ would right our wrongs, JOHN,
--Always _wuz_ sweet on us!--
But on dilemma's prongs, JOHN,
To fix me don't _you_ fuss.
Ole Uncle S. sez he, "I guess,
Though physic's good," sez he,
"It doesn't foller that he can swaller
Prescriptions signed J.B.
Put up by you for me!"

Thet swaggerin' black buck Nig., JOHN,
Is jest a grown-up kid;
Ez happy as a ---- pig, JOHN,
When doin' wut he's bid.
Ole Uncle S. sez he, "I guess
He's hateful when he's free.
Equal with _him_, that dark-skinn'd limb?
No; that will not suit _me_,
More than it wud J.B.!"

Emigrate the whole lot, JOHN?
Well, that's a tallish task!
In Afric's centre hot, JOHN,
Send 'em to breed and bask?
Ole Uncle S. sez he, "I guess
_I_'d be right glad," sez he,
"But--_will they go?_ 'Tain't done, you know,
As easy as J.B.
Wud settle it--for me!"

_Rouge_--there I see my way, JOHN.
But _Noir_--thet's hard to front!
It wun't be no child's play, JOHN,
Seven million Nigs to shunt.
Ole Uncle S. sez he, "I guess
We've a hard row," sez he,
"To hoe just now, but thet, somehow,
I fancy, friend J.B.,
Your _Times_ may leave to _me_!"

[_Left considering it._

* * * * *

WELCOME BACK!

[Mr. SANTLEY, who has been long absent in Australia,
reappeared at St. James's Hall on Jan. 19, and was received
with great enthusiasm.]

Back from your Australian trip!
_Punch_, my CHARLES, your fist must grip.
You have lighted on a time
When we're all chill, choke, and grime.
'Twere no marvel, O great baritone,
Did you find your voice had nary tone.
But there's none like you can sing
"_To Anthea_," "_The Erl-King_."
SCHUBERT, GOUNOD, English HATTON,
Equally your Fine Art's pat on.
_Punch_ can never praise _you_ scantly.
_A votre sante_, good CHARLES SANTLEY!

* * * * *

[Illustration: "ROUGE ET NOIR!"]

* * * * *

[Illustration: OUR SPORT AND ART EXHIBITION.

"ON THE SCENT."]

* * * * *

FOR _BETTER_--OR WORSE.

[At the Anti-Gambling Demonstration recently held in Exeter
Hall, Sir RICHARD WEBSTER, the Attorney-General, said that it
was supposed by many that it was impossible to enjoy athletic
pursuits without becoming interested in a pecuniary sense. He
should therefore like to add, not for the purpose of holding
himself up as an example, that, during his entire interest in
sports of all kinds, he had never made a bet.]

Ah! these are days when Recklessness, bereft of ready cash,
Will strive to remedy the void by speculative splash;
It is a salutary sight for Bankruptcy and Debt--
Our good Attorney-General who never made a bet.

His interest in manly sports, an interest immense,
Was ne'er degraded to a mere "pecuniary sense;"
His boyhood's love of marbles leaves him nothing to regret--
Our good Attorney-General who never made a bet.

Next, when a youth, the cricket-bat he first began to wield,
And "Heads or Tails?" re-echoed for the Innings through the field.
He sternly scorned to toss the coin, howe'er his friends might fret--
Our good Attorney-General who never made a bet.

And when, an Undergraduate, he swiftly skimmed his mile,
And comrades staked with confidence on him their little pile,
He'd beg them not on his account in gambling ways to get--
This good Attorney-General who never made a bet.

To play for money ruins whist: and seldom can his Club
Persuade him to put counters (coins for Zulus!) on the rub;
He _has_ been known for lozenges to dabble with piquet;
He wasn't Chief Attorney then, nor was it _quite_ a bet.

His wise profession's ornament, he looks on all such games
Far otherwise than RUSSELL does, than LOCKWOOD, HALL, or JAMES;
For pure platonic love of play he stands, unequalled yet--
Our good Attorney-General who never made a bet.

St. Stephen's, too, thinks much of him; but ah! his soul it pains
To know that Speculation o'er the lobby sometimes reigns;
He's chided OLD MORALITY and RANDOLPH and the set,
Beseeching them on bended knees to never make a bet.

We all are fond of him, in short, the Boxes with the Gods;
That he's a first-rate fellow we would gladly lay the odds.
But no!--himself would veto that. We must not wound our pet
Precise Attorney-General who never made a bet.

* * * * *

THE ARISTOTELIAN TREASURE-TROVE.

All have heard of "a Manuscript found in a Bottle,"
But here is a waif with romance yet more fraught:
A newly-found treatise by old ARISTOTLE
Is flotsam indeed from the Ocean of Thought.
Oh, happy discoverer, lucky Museum!
Not this time the foreigner scores off JOHN BULL.
Teuton pundits would lift, for such luck, their _Te Deum_!
No SHAPIRA, _Punch_ hopes, such a triumph to dull!
May it all turn out right! Further details won't tire us.
We _may_ get some straight-tips from that Coptic papyrus!

* * * * *

ROBERT ON SKATIN'.

Well, I begins to agree with them as says, and says it too as if they
ment it, that noboddy can reelly tell what is reel grand injiyment
till they trys it, and trys it farely, and gives it a good chance. I
remembers how I used to try and like Crikkit, when I was much yunger
than I am now, and stuck to it in spite of several black eyes when I
stood pint, and shouts of, "Now then, Butter-Fingers!" when I stood
leg, till a serten werry fast Bowler sent me away from the wicket with
two black and blew legs, and then I guv it up. I guv up Foot Ball for
simler reesuns, and have never attemted not nothink in the Hathlettick
line ewer since, my sumwat rapid increase in size and wait a hading me
in that wise resolooshun.

But sumhow it appened, dooring the hawful whether we has all bin a
shivering threw for this long time, that I found my atenshun direckted
to the strange fack that, whilst amost ewerybody was busily engaged
in a cussin and swarin at the bitter cold and the dirty slippery sno,
ewerybody else seemed to be injying of theirselves like wun-a-clock.
Now it so appened that when waiting one day upon the young swell I
have before spoken of, at the "Grand 'Otel," he was jined by another
swell, who told him what a glorius day's skating he had been avin in
Hide Park! and how he ment to go agen to-morrer, "if the luvly frost
wood but continue!"

So my cureosety was naterally egsited, and nex day off I gos to Hide
Park, and there I seed the xplanation of what had serprised me so
much. For there was hunderds and hunderds of not only spectably drest
Gents, but also of reel-looking Ladys, a skatin away like fun, and
a larfing away and injying theirselves jest as if it had bin a nice
Summer's day. Presently I append to find myself a standing jest by a
nice respectabel looking man, with a nice, cumferal-looking chair,
and seweral pares of Skates; and presently he says to me, quite
permiscus-like, "They all seems to be a injying theirselves, don't
they, Sir?" which they most suttenly did; and then he says to me, says
he, "Do you skate, Sir?" to which my natral pride made me reply, "Not
much!" "Will you have a pair on. Sir," says he, "jest for a trial?"
"Is there any fear of a axident?" says I. "Oh no. Sir," says he, "not
if you follers my hinstrucshuns." So I acshally sets myself down
in his chair, and lets him put me on a pair of Skates! The first
differculty was, how to get up, which I found as I coudn't manage
at all without his asistance; for, strange to say, both of my feet
insisted on going quite contrary ways. Howewer, by grarsping on him
quite tite round his waste, I at last manidged to go along three or
four slides, and then I returned to the chair, and sat down again; and
he was kind enuff to compliment me, and to say that he thort I was a
gitting on fust-rate, and, if I woud only cum ewery day for about a
week or so, he had no dowt but he shood see me a skating a figger of
hate like the best on 'em!

Hencouraged by his truthfool remarks, I at larst wentured to let go of
him and try a few slides by myself, and shood no dowt have suckseeded
hadmerably, but my bootifal stick to which I was a trustin to elp me
from falling, slided rite away from me in a most unnatral manner,
and down I came on my onerabel seat, with such a smasher as
seemed to shake all my foreteen stun into a cocked-hat, to speak,
hallegorically, and there I lay, elpless and opeless, and wundring how
on airth I shood ever get up again. But my trusty frend and guide was
soon at my side, as the Poet says, but all his united force, with that
of too boys who came to his assistance, and larfed all the wile, as
rude boys will, coud not get me on my feet agen 'till my too skates
was taken off, and I agen found myself on _terror fermer_ on my
friend's chair. It took me longer to recover myself than I shood have
thort posserbel, but at larst I was enabled to crawl away, but not
'till my frend had supplied me with jest a nice nip of brandy, which
he said he kept andy in case of any such surprisin axidents as had
appened to me.

So what with paying for the use of the skates, and the use of the
Brandy, and the use of the too boys, and the use of a handsum Cab to
take me to the "Grand," that was rayther a deer ten minutes skating,
and as it was reelly and trewly my fust attemt at that poplar and
xciting passtime, I think I may safely affirm--as I have alreddy done
to my better harf--whose langwidge, when I related my hadwentur,
is scarcely worth repeating, as it was most certenly not
complementary--that it shall be my larst. ROBERT.

* * * * *

[Illustration: REMINISCENCES OF SPORT IN THE SNOW.]

* * * * *

A FREEZING POINT.

(_BY A FROZEN-OUT LOVER._)

They tell me thou art cold, my sweet--
A fact that scarcely odd is.
Gales half so cruel never beat
Against poor human bodies.
Cupid's attire is far too light
To weather Thirty Fahrenheit.

How can a glow the soul entrance,
When frostbite nips the finger,
And blushes quit the countenance
To nigh the nostril linger!
Warmth were a miracle, in sight
And grip of Thirty Fahrenheit.

Chill! chill to _me_, my Paradise!!
I'll not complain or curse on.
One cannot well be otherwise
To any mortal person.
Mere icebergs ambulant, we fight
Ferocious Thirty Fahrenheit.

Cold art thou? Not so cold as I--
Nought living could be colder.
I'm far too cold to sob or sigh,
Still less in passion smoulder.
I'm turning fast to something quite
As numb as Thirty Fahrenheit.

* * * * *

INFORMATION REQUIRED.--"Sir, I see a Volume advertised entitled,
_Unspoken Sermons_. I should be glad to know where these are preached,
as that's the place for yours truly, ONE WHO SNORES."

* * * * *

NEW BOOK OF IRISH LIFE.--_The Bedad's Sons_. By the Author of the tale
of Indian Life, _The Begum's Daughters_.

* * * * *

[Illustration: THE DELIGHTS OF TRIAL BY JURY.

THESE GENTLEMEN ARE EXPECTED TO BE IN A JUDICIAL FRAME OF MIND AFTER
HANGING ABOUT THE PRECINCTS OF THE COURT FOR SEVERAL DAYS, UNDER
PENALTY OF A HEAVY FINE, WHILE THEIR PRIVATE BUSINESS IN THE CITY AND
ELSEWHERE IS GOING TO THE DOGS. (WHY SHOULD NOT HALF-PAY OFFICERS DO
THE WORK, AND RELIEVE BUSY MEN?)]

* * * * *

ESSENCE OF PARLIAMENT.

EXTRACTED FROM THE DIARY OF TOBY, M.P.

_House of Commons, Thursday, January 22_.--Both Houses met to-day
after Christmas Recess. No QUEEN's Speech; no moving and seconding of
Address; no Royal Commission and procession of SPEAKER to Lords. All
seems strange, and spirits generally a little depressed. Only ROBERT
FOWLER rises superior to circumstances of hour. Blustering about the
Lobby "like Boreas," says CAUSTON.

[Illustration: King Yah! Yah!]

"Only not so rude," says HARRY LAWSON, jealous for the reputation of
Metropolitan Members, even though some sit on the Benches opposite.
With folded hands thrust behind coat-tails, rollicking stride,
thunderous voice, and blooming countenance, Sir ROBERT positively
pervades the Lobby. Personally receives POPE HENNESSY; shakes
hands with everybody; and finally halting for a moment under the
electric-lit archway leading into House, presents interesting and
attractive picture of the Glorified Alderman.

Scotch Members take possession of Commons to-night. LORD ADVOCATE
brings in Bill, providing new machinery for private legislation; the
Scotch Members with one accord fall upon proposal, and tear it to
ribbons. Meanwhile other Members troop off to Lords, where spectacle
is provided which beats the pantomimes into fits. Two new Peers to
take their seats; procession formed in back room outside; enters from
below Bar. First comes Black Rod, with nothing black about him; then
Garter King-at-Arms, a herculean personage, fully five feet high, with
a dangerous gleam in his eye, and the Royal Arms of England quartered
in scarlet and blue and gold on his manly back. Behind, in red cloaks
slashed with ermine, the new Baron and his escort of two brother
Peers. There being no room for them to advance in due procession, they
fall into single file, make their way to the Woolsack, where sits that
pink of chivalry, that mould of fashion, that perfection of form, the
LORD HIGH CHANCELLOR.

New Peer drops on one knee, presents bundle of paper to LORD
CHANCELLOR. L.C., coyly turning his head on one side, gingerly takes
roll, hands it to Attendant. New Peer gets up; procession bundles back
to table; here Gentleman in wig and gown gabbles something from long
document. New Peer writes his name in a book (probably promising
subscription towards expenses of performance.) Garter King-at-Arms
getting to the front trots off with comically short strides for
so great a dignity; New Peer and escort follow, Black Rod solemnly
bringing up rear. Garter King makes for Cross Benches by the
door; passes along one, the rest following, as if playing game of
Follow-my-leader. Garter King suddenly making off to the right, walks
up Gangway to row of empty Benches. Stops at the topmost row but one,
and passes along. New Peer wants to follow him. Garter King prods him
in chest with small stick, and tells him to go on to the Bench above.
This he does, with escort. Meanwhile, Black Rod left out in the cold.
Garter King motions to three Peers to be seated; tells them to put on
their cocked-hats; counts ten; nods to them; they rise to feet, uplift
cocked-hats in direction of LORD CHANCELLOR on Woolsack. He raises his
in return of salute. Three Peers sit down again. Garter King counts
ten; nods; up they get again, salute LORD CHANCELLOR; sit down once
more. "One--two--three--four--ten," Garter King mumbles to himself.
Once more they rise; salute LORD CHANCELLOR; then Garter King leading
the way, they march back to Woolsack.

Garter King now introduces new Member to LORD CHANCELLOR. L.C. starts
as if he had never seen him before; then extends right hand; New Peer
shakes it, procession reformed, walks out behind Bar. A few minutes
later, another comes in, all the business done over again. Impressive,
but a little monotonous, and as soon as possible after its conclusion
Noble Lords go home.

_Business done_.--In Commons, Private Bill Legislation Bill read a
Second Time.

_Friday_.--WM. O'BRIEN, standing with tear-stained face on pier at
Boulogne waving wet handkerchief across the main, has drawn away
JUSTIN McCARTHY, who can't be back till Monday. PARNELL was to have
come down to-day, and, making believe to be still Leader of United
Irishmen, asked OLD MORALITY to set aside day for discussion of his
Motion on operation of Crimes Act. BRER FOX accordingly looked in
shortly after SPEAKER took the Chair.

[Illustration: Dr. Channing in the Pulpit.]

"Seen BRER RABBIT anywhere about, TOBY?" he asked.

So I up and told him about McCARTHY's new journey to Boulogne.

"Oh, indeed," said BRER FOX; "if that's the case, I think I won't
trouble House to-night. Got an engagement elsewhere; think I'll go and
keep it. Not used to hanging about here, as you know; awful bore
to me; but as long as BRER RABBIT comes here, I must be on spot to
vindicate my position. So I'll say ta-ta. No--never mind ringing for
fire-escape; can walk down the steps to-day."

Thus there being no Irish Leader on the premises, and hardly any Irish
Members, had a rare chance for attending to British business. CHANNING
brought on question of working Overtime on the Railways; moved
Resolution invoking interference of Board of Trade. Question a little
awkward for Government. Couldn't afford to offend Railway Directors,
yet wouldn't do to flout numerous body of working-men, chiefly voters.
Proposed to shelve business by appointment of Select Committee.
Opposition not going to let them off so easily. Debate kept up all
night, winding up with critical Division; Government majority only 17.

"And this," said OLD MORALITY, with injured look, "after PLUNKET's
brilliant oration on the time-tables of the London and North-Western
Railway Company! If he'd only illustrated it with magic-lantern,
things would have gone differently." But he was obstinate; said there
would be difficulty in arranging the slides, and so rejected proposal.

_Business done_.--CHANNING's Resolution about Overtime on Railways
negatived by 141 Votes against 124.

* * * * *

HOMAGE TO SIR JAMES HANNEN.

Sir,--As the recognised organ of the legal profession, will you permit
me to address you? It is common knowledge that within the last few
days the Right Honourable Sir JAMES HANNEN has been raised to a
dignity greater than that he has been able to claim for the last
eighteen years, when he has sat as President of the Probate, Divorce,
and Admiralty Division of the High Court of Justice. On leaving the
Court in which so many of us were known to him, he was kind enough
to say, "Those eighteen years had been eighteen years of happiness to
him, chiefly arising from the advantage he had had in having before
him habitually practising in that Court Barristers who had felt that
their part was just as important as his in the administration
of Justice, and who had assisted him enormously. Without their
assistance, his task would have been an arduous one, whereas it had
been, as he had said, an agreeable one." As I personally have had the
honour of appearing before his Lordship for many years, I think that
it is only right that I should make some acknowledgment of this kind
recognition of my services.

It is quite true that I have felt, as Sir JAMES HANNEN suggests, that
my part (humble as it may have been) has been just as important as his
in the administration of Justice. But it is gratifying to me beyond
measure to learn that my invariable custom of bowing to his
Lordship on the commencement and conclusion of each day's forensic
duties--which has been the limit of my "habitual practice" in the
Probate Division--should "have assisted him enormously." I can only
say that, thanks to his unvarying kindness and courtesy, my daily
recognition of his greetings from the Bench, instead of being an
arduous task, has ever been an agreeable one. I have the honour to
remain, Sir, your very obedient servant,

(_Signed_)

A. BRIEFLESS, JUNIOR.

_Pump-Handle Court, January 24, 1891._

* * * * *

"PRO-DIGIOUS!"--In last Sunday's _Observer_ we read that at St.
Petersburg Madame MELBA, as _Juliette, "was recalled thirty-one times
before the proscenium._" The italics are ours, rather! If this sort of
thing is to be repeated during the Opera season here, and each gifted
singer is recalled in proportion to his or her merits, the audience
will not get away till the following morning. _Juliette_ must have
said, on the above-mentioned occasion, "Parting is such sweet sorrow,
That I could say 'good-night' until to-morrow." And the usual chorus
of operatic _habitues_ will be, "We won't go home till morning. Till
daylight doth appear!" with _refrain_, "For--she (or he)'s a jolly
good singer," &c., _ad infinitum_, or "_ad infi-next-nightum_."

* * * * *

THE FRIEZE OF THE PARTHENON.

ENGLAND TO ATHENS:--

O Queen of Cities, with a crown of woe,
Scarred by the ruin of two thousand years,
By fraud and by barbarian force laid low,
Buried in dust, and watered with the tears
Of unregarded bondmen, toiling on,
Crushed in the shadow of their Parthenon;

[Illustration]

Mother of heroes, Athens, nought availed
The Macedonian's triumph, or the chain
Of Rome; the conquering Osmanli failed,
His myriad hosts have trampled thee in vain.
They for thy deathless body raised the pyre,
And held the torch, but Heaven forbade the fire.

Then didst thou rise, and, shattering thy bands,
Burst in war's thunder on the Muslim horde,
Who shrank appalled before thee, while thy hands
Wielded again the imperishable sword,
The sword that smote the Persian when he came,
Countless as sand, thy virgin might to tame.

Mother of freemen, Athens, thou art free,
Free as the spirits of thy mighty dead;
And Freedom's northern daughter calls to thee,
"How shall I help thee, sister? Raise thy head,
O Athens, say what can I give thee now,
I who am free, to deck thy marble brow?"

ATHENS REPLIES:--

Shot-dinted, but defiant of decay,
Stand my gaunt columns in a tragic line,
The shattered relics of a glorious day,
Mute guardians of the lost Athena's shrine.
The flame of hope, that faded to despair
Ere Hellas burst her chains, is imaged there.

Yet one there was who came to her for gain,
Ere yet the years of her despair were run;
And with harsh zeal defaced the ruined fane
Full in the blazing light of Hellas' sun.
Spoiling my home with sacrilegious hand,
He bore his captives to a foreign land.

Ilissus mourns his tutelary god,
Theseus in some far city doth recline:
Lost is the Horse of Night that erstwhile trod
My hall; the god-like shapes that once were mine
Call to me, "Mother save us ere we die,
Far from thy arms beneath a sunless sky."

How shall I answer? for my arms are fain
To clasp them fast upon the rock-bound steep,
Their ancient home. Shall Athens yearn in vain,
And all in vain must woful Hellas weep?
Must the indignant shade of PHIDIAS mourn
For his dear city, free but how forlorn?

How shall I answer? Nay, I turn to thee,
England, and pray thee, from thy northern throne
Step down and hearken, give them back to me,
O generous sister, give me back mine own.
Thy jewelled forehead needs no alien gem
Torn from a hapless sister's diadem.

* * * * *

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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