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The Rose and the Ring, by William Makepeace Thackeray

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he sent his children, who knew the forest well, to summon this
nobleman and that; and when his eldest son, who had been rubbing
the horse down and giving him his supper, came into the house for
his own, the Marquis told him to put his boots on, and a saddle
on the mare, and ride hither and thither to such and such people.

When the young man heard who his companion in the cart had been,
he too knelt down and put her royal foot on his head; he too
bedewed the ground with his tears; he was frantically in love
with her, as everybody now was who saw her: so were the young
Lords Bartolomeo and Ubaldo, who punched each other's little
heads out of jealousy; and so, when they came from east and west
at the summons of the Marquis degli Spinachi, were the Crim
Tartar Lords who still remained faithful to the House of
Cavolfiore. They were such very old gentlemen for the most part
that Her Majesty never suspected their absurd passion, and went
among them quite unaware of the havoc her beauty was causing,
until an old blind Lord who had joined her party told her what
the truth was; after which, for fear of making the people too
much in love with her, she always wore a veil. She went about
privately, from one nobleman's castle to another; and they
visited among themselves again, and had meetings, and composed
proclamations and counterproclamations, and distributed all the
best places of the kingdom amongst one another, and selected who
of the opposition party should be executed when the Queen came to
her own. And so in about a year they were ready to move.

The party of Fidelity was in truth composed of very feeble old
fogies for the most part; they went about the country waving
their old swords and flags, and calling 'God save the Queen!' and
King Padella happening to be absent upon an invasion, they had
their own way for a little, and to be sure the people were very
enthusiastic whenever they saw the Queen; otherwise the vulgar
took matters very quietly, for they said, as far as they could
recollect, they were pretty well as much taxed in Cavolfiore's
time, as now in Padella's.


Her Majesty, having indeed nothing else to give, made all her
followers Knights of the Pumpkin, and Marquises, Earls, and
Baronets; and they had a little court for her, and made her a
little crown of gilt paper, and a robe of cotton velvet; and they
quarrelled about the places to be given away in her court, and
about rank and precedence and dignities;--you can't think how
they quarrelled! The poor Queen was very tired of her honours
before she had had them a month, and I dare say sighed sometimes
even to be a lady's-maid again. But we must all do our duty in
our respective stations, so the Queen resigned herself to perform

We have said how it happened that none of the Usurper's troops
came out to oppose this Army of Fidelity: it pottered along as
nimbly as the gout of the principal commanders allowed: it
consisted of twice as many officers as soldiers: and at length
passed near the estates of one of the most powerful noblemen of
the country, who had not declared for the Queen, but of whom her
party had hopes, as he was always quarrelling with King Padella.

When they came close to his park gates, this nobleman sent to say
he would wait upon Her Majesty: he was a most powerful warrior,
and his name was Count Hogginarmo, whose helmet it took two
strong negroes to carry. He knelt down before her and said,
'Madam and liege lady! it becomes the great nobles of the Crimean
realm to show every outward sign of respect to the wearer of the
Crown, whoever that may be. We testify to our own nobility in
acknowledging yours. The bold Hogginarmo bends the knee to the
first of the aristocracy of his country.'

Rosalba said, 'The bold Count of Hogginarmo was uncommonly kind.'
But she felt afraid of him, even while he was kneeling, and his
eyes scowled at her from between his whiskers, which grew up to

'The first Count of the Empire, madam,' he went on, 'salutes the
Sovereign. The Prince addresses himself to the not more noble
lady! Madam, my hand is free, and I offer it, and my heart and
my sword to your service! My three wives lie buried in my
ancestral vaults. The third perished but a year since; and this
heart pines for a consort! Deign to be mine, and I swear to
bring to your bridal table the head of King Padella, the eyes and
nose of his son Prince Bulbo, the right hand and ears of the
usurping Sovereign of Paflagonia, which country shall thenceforth
be an appanage to your--to OUR Crown! Say yes; Hogginarmo is not
accustomed to be denied. Indeed I cannot contemplate the
possibility of a refusal: for frightful will be the result;
dreadful the murders; furious the devastations; horrible the
tyranny; tremendous the tortures, misery, taxation, which the
people of this realm will endure, if Hogginarmo's wrath be
aroused! I see consent in Your Majesty's lovely eyes-- their
glances fill my soul with rapture!'

'Oh, sir!' Rosalba said, withdrawing her hand in great fright.
'Your Lordship is exceedingly kind; but I am sorry to tell you
that I have a prior attachment to a young gentleman by the name
of--Prince Giglio--and never--never can marry any one but him.'

Who can describe Hogginarmo's wrath at this remark? Rising up
from the ground, he ground his teeth so that fire flashed out
of his mouth, from which at the same time issued remarks and
language, so LOUD, VIOLENT, AND IMPROPER, that this pen shall
never repeat them! 'R-r-r-r-rr--Rejected! Fiends and
perdition! The bold Hogginarmo rejected! All the world shall
hear of my rage; and you, madam, you above all shall rue it!'
And kicking the two negroes before him, he rushed away, his
whiskers streaming in the wind.

Her Majesty's Privy Council was in a dreadful panic when they
saw Hogginarmo issue from the royal presence in such a towering
rage, making footballs of the poor negroes--a panic which the
events justified. They marched off from Hogginarmo's park very
crestfallen; and in another halfhour they were met by that
rapacious chieftain with a few of his followers, who cut,
slashed, charged, whacked, banged, and pommelled amongst them,
took the Queen prisoner, and drove the Army of Fidelity to I
don't know where.

Poor Queen! Hogginarmo, her conqueror, would not condescend to
see her. 'Get a horse-van!' he said to his grooms, 'clap the
hussy into it, and send her, with my compliments, to His
Majesty King Padella.'

Along with his lovely prisoner, Hogginarmo sent a letter full
of servile compliments and loathsome flatteries to King
Padella, for whose life, and that of his royal family, the
HYPOCRITICAL HUMBUG pretended to offer the most fulsome
prayers. And Hogginarmo promised speedily to pay his humble
homage at his august master's throne, of which he begged leave
to be counted the most loyal and constant defender. Such a
WARY old BIRD as King Padella was not to be caught by Master
Hogginarmo's CHAFF and we shall hear presently how the tyrant
treated his upstart vassal. No, no; depend on's, two such
rogues do not trust one another.

So this poor Queen was laid in the straw like Margery Daw, and
driven along in the dark ever so many miles to the Court, where
King Padella had now arrived, having vanquished all his
enemies, murdered most of them, and brought some of the richest
into captivity with him for the purpose of torturing them and
finding out where they had hidden their money.

Rosalba heard their shrieks and groans in the dungeon in which
she was thrust; a most awful black hole, full of bats, rats,
mice, toads, frogs, mosquitoes, bugs, fleas, serpents, and
every kind of horror. No light was let into it, otherwise the
gaolers might have seen her and fallen in love with her, as an
owl that lived up in the roof of the tower did, and a cat, you
know, who can see in the dark, and having set its green eyes on
Rosalba, never would be got to go back to the turnkey's wife to
whom it belonged. And the toads in the dungeon came and kissed
her feet, and the vipers wound round her neck and arms, and
never hurt her, so charming was this poor Princess in the midst
of her misfortunes.

At last, after she had been kept in this place EVER SO LONG,
the door of the dungeon opened, and the terrible KING PADELLA
came in.

But what he said and did must be reserved for another chapter,
as we must now back to Prince Giglio.


The idea of marrying such an old creature as Gruffanuff
frightened Prince Giglio so, that he ran up to his room, packed
his trunks, fetched in a couple of porters, and was off to the
diligence office in a twinkling.

It was well that he was so quick in his operations, did not
dawdle over his luggage, and took the early coach, for as soon
as the mistake about Prince Bulbo was found out, that cruel
Glumboso sent up a couple of policemen to Prince Giglio's room,
with orders that he should be carried to Newgate, and his head
taken off before twelve o'clock. But the coach was out of the
Paflagonian dominions before two o'clock; and I dare say the
express that was sent after Prince Giglio did not ride very
quick, for many people in Paflagonia had a regard for Giglio,
as the son of their old sovereign; a Prince who, with all his
weaknesses, was very much better than his brother, the
usurping, lazy, careless, passionate, tyrannical, reigning
monarch. That Prince busied himself with the balls, fetes,
masquerades, hunting-parties, and so forth, which he thought
proper to give on occasion of his daughter's marriage to Prince
Bulbo; and let us trust was not sorry in his own heart that his
brother's son had escaped the scaffold.

It was very cold weather, and the snow was on the ground, and
Giglio, who gave his name as simple Mr. Giles, was very glad to
get a comfortable place in the coupe of the diligence, where he
sat with the conductor and another gentleman. At the first
stage from Blombodinga, as they stopped to change horses, there
came up to the diligence a very ordinary, vulgar-looking woman,
with a bag under her arm, who asked for a place. All the
inside places were taken, and the young woman was informed that
if she wished to travel, she must go upon the roof; and the
passenger inside with Giglio (a rude person, I should think),
put his head out of the window, and said, 'Nice weather for
travelling outside! I wish you a pleasant journey, my dear.'
The poor woman coughed very much, and Giglio pitied her. 'I
will give up my place to her,' says he, 'rather than she should
travel in the cold air with that horrid cough.' On which the
vulgar traveller said, 'YOU'D keep her warm, I am sure, if it's
a MUFF she wants.' On which Giglio pulled his nose, boxed his
ears, hit him in the eye, and gave this vulgar person a warning
never to call him MUFF again.

Then he sprang up gaily on to the roof of the diligence, and
made himself very comfortable in the straw.

The vulgar traveller got down only at the next station, and
Giglio took his place again, and talked to the person next to
him. She appeared to be a most agreeable, well-informed, and
entertaining female. They travelled together till night, and
she gave Giglio all sorts of things out of the bag which she
carried, and which indeed seemed to contain the most wonderful
collection of articles. He was thirsty--out there came a pint
bottle of Bass's pale ale, and a silver mug! Hungry--she took
out a cold fowl, some slices of ham, bread, salt, and a most
delicious piece of cold plum-pudding, and a little glass of
brandy afterwards.

As they travelled, this plain-looking, queer woman talked to
Giglio on a variety of subjects, in which the poor Prince
showed his ignorance as much as she did her capacity. He
owned, with many blushes, how ignorant he was; on which the
lady said, 'My dear Gigl-- my good Mr. Giles, you are a young
man, and have plenty of time before you. You have nothing to
do but to improve yourself. Who knows but that you may find
use for your knowledge some day? When--when you may be wanted
at home, as some people may be.'

'Good heavens, madam!' says he, 'do you know me?'

'I know a number of funny things,' says the lady. 'I have been
at some people's christenings, and turned away from other
folks' doors. I have seen some people spoilt by good fortune,
and others, as I hope, improved by hardship. I advise you to
stay at the town where the coach stops for the night. Stay
there and study, and remember your old friend to whom you were

'And who is my old friend?' asked Giglio.

'When you want anything,' says the lady, 'look in this bag,
which I leave to you as a present, and be grateful to--'

'To whom, madam?' says he.

'To the Fairy Blackstick,' says the lady, flying out of the
window. And then Giglio asked the conductor if he knew where
the lady was?

'What lady?' says the man; 'there has been no lady in this
coach, except the old woman, who got out at the last stage.'
And Giglio thought he had been dreaming. But there was the bag
which Blackstick had given him lying on his lap; and when he
came to the town he took it in his hand and went into the inn.

They gave him a very bad bedroom, and Giglio, when he woke in
the morning, fancying himself in the Royal Palace at home,
called, 'John, Charles, Thomas! My chocolate--my
dressing-gown--my slippers'; but nobody came. There was no
bell, so he went and bawled out for water on the top of the

The landlady came up.

'What are you a hollering and a bellaring for here, young man?'
says she.

'There's no warm water--no servants; my boots are not even

'He, he! Clean 'em yourself,' says the landlady. 'You young
students give yourselves pretty airs. I never heard such

'I'll quit the house this instant,' says Giglio.

'The sooner the better, young man. Pay your bill and be off.
All my rooms is wanted for gentlefolks, and not for such as

'You may well keep the Bear Inn,' said Giglio. 'You should have
yourself painted as the sign.'

The landlady of the Bear went away GROWLING. And Giglio
returned to his room, where the first thing he saw was the
fairy bag lying on the table, which seemed to give a little hop
as he came in. 'I hope it has some breakfast in it,' says
Giglio, 'for I have only a very little money left.' But on
opening the bag, what do you think was there? A blackingbrush
and a pot of Warren's jet, and on the pot was written

Poor young men their boots must black:
Use me and cork me and put me back.

So Giglio laughed and blacked his boots, and put back the brush
and the bottle into the bag.

When he had done dressing himself, the bag gave another little
hop, and he went to it and took out--

1. A tablecloth and a napkin.

2. A sugar-basin full of the best loaf-sugar.

4, 6, 8, 10. Two forks, two teaspoons, two knives, and a pair
of sugar-tongs, and a butter-knife all marked G.

11, 12, 13. A teacup, saucer, and slop-basin.

14. A jug full of delicious cream.

15. A canister with black tea and green.

16. A large tea-urn and boiling water.

17. A saucepan, containing three eggs nicely done.

18. A quarter of a pound of best Epping butter.

19. A brown loaf.

And if he hadn't enough now for a good breakfast, I should like
to know who ever had one?

Giglio, having had his breakfast, popped all the things back
into the bag, and went out looking for lodgings. I forgot to
say that this celebrated university town was called Bosforo.

He took a modest lodging opposite the Schools, paid his bill at
the inn, and went to his apartment with his trunk, carpet-bag,
and not forgetting, we may be sure, his OTHER bag.

When he opened his trunk, which the day before he had filled
with his best clothes, he found it contained only books. And
in the first of them which he opened there was written--

Clothes for the back, books for the head:
Read and remember them when they are read.

And in his bag, when Giglio looked in it, he found a student's
cap and gown, a writing-book full of paper, an inkstand, pens,
and a Johnson's dictionary, which was very useful to him, as
his spelling had been sadly neglected.

So he sat down and worked away, very, very hard for a whole
year, during which 'Mr. Giles' was quite an example to all the
students in the University of Bosforo. He never got into any
riots or disturbances. The Professors all spoke well of him,
and the students liked him too; so that, when at examination,
he took all the prizes, viz.--

{The Spelling Prize {The French Prize
{The Writing Prize {The Arithmetic Prize
{The History Prize {The Latin Prize
{The Catechism Prize {The Good Conduct Prize,

all his fellow-students said, 'Hurrah! Hurray for Giles! Giles
is the boy--the student's joy! Hurray for Giles!' And he
brought quite a quantity of medals, crowns, books, and tokens
of distinction home to his lodgings.

One day after the Examinations, as he was diverting himself at
a coffee-house with two friends--(Did I tell you that in his
bag, every Saturday night, he found just enough to pay his
bills, with a guinea over, for pocketmoney? Didn't I tell you?
Well, he did, as sure as twice twenty makes forty-five)--he
chanced to look in the Bosforo Chronicle, and read off, quite
easily (for he could spell, read, and write the longest words
now), the following:--

'ROMANTIC CIRCUMSTANCE.--One of the most extraordinary
adventures that we have ever heard has set the neighbouring
country of Crim Tartary in a state of great excitement.

'It will be remembered that when the present revered sovereign
of Crim Tartary, His Majesty King PADELLA, took possession of
the throne, after having vanquished, in the terrific battle of
Blunderbusco, the late King CAVOLFIORE, that Prince's only
child, the Princess Rosalba, was not found in the royal palace,
of which King Padella took possession, and, it was said, had
strayed into the forest (being abandoned by all her attendants)
where she had been eaten up by those ferocious lions, the last
pair of which were captured some time since, and brought to the
Tower, after killing several hundred persons.

'His Majesty King Padella, who has the kindest heart in the
world, was grieved at the accident which had occurred to the
harmless little Princess, for whom His Majesty's known
benevolence would certainly have provided a fitting
establishment. But her death seemed to be certain. The
mangled remains of a cloak, and a little shoe, were found in
the forest, during a hunting-party, in which the intrepid
sovereign of Crim Tartary slew two of the lions' cubs with his
own spear. And these interesting relics of an innocent little
creature were carried home and kept by their finder, the Baron
Spinachi, formerly an officer in Cavolfiore's household. The
Baron was disgraced in consequence of his known legitimist
opinions, and has lived for some time in the humble capacity of
a wood-cutter, in a forest on the outskirts of the Kingdom of
Crim Tartary.

'Last Tuesday week Baron Spinachi and a number of gentlemen,
attached to the former dynasty, appeared in arms, crying, "God
save Rosalba, the first Queen of Crim Tartary!" and surrounding
a lady whom report describes as "BEAUTIFUL EXCEEDINGLY." Her
history MAY be authentic, is certainly most romantic.

'The personage calling herself Rosalba states that she was
brought out of the forest, fifteen years since, by a lady in a
car drawn by dragons (this account is certainly IMPROBABLE),
that she was left in the Palace Garden of Blombodinga, where
Her Royal Highness the Princess Angelica, now married to His
Royal Highness Bulbo, Crown Prince of Crim Tartary, found the
child, and, with THAT ELEGANT BENEVOLENCE which has always
distinguished the heiress of the throne of Paflagonia, gave the
little outcast a SHELTER AND A HOME! Her parentage not being
known, and her garb very humble, the foundling was educated in
the Palace in a menial capacity, under the name of BETSINDA.

'She did not give satisfaction, and was dismissed, carrying
with her, certainly, part of a mantle and a shoe, which she had
on when first found. According to her statement she quitted
Blombodinga about a year ago, since which time she has been
with the Spinachi family. On the very same morning the Prince
Giglio, nephew to the King of Paflagonia, a young Prince whose
character for TALENT and ORDER were, to say truth, none of the
HIGHEST, also quitted Blombodinga, and has not been since heard

'What an extraordinary story!' said Smith and Jones, two young
students, Giglio's especial friends.

'Ha! what is this? ' Giglio went on, reading--

'SECOND EDITION, EXPRESS.--We hear that the troop under Baron
Spinachi has been surrounded, and utterly routed, by General
Count Hogginarmo, and the soidisant Princess is sent a prisoner
to the capital.

'UNIVERSITY NEWS.--Yesterday, at the Schools, the distinguished
young student, Mr. Giles, read a Latin oration, and was
complimented by the Chancellor of Bosforo, Dr. Prugnaro, with
the highest University honour--the wooden spoon.'

'Never mind that stuff,' says GILES, greatly disturbed. 'Come
home with me, my friends. Gallant Smith! intrepid Jones!
friends of my studies--partakers of my academic toils--I have
that to tell which shall astonish your honest minds.'

'Go it, old boy!' cries the impetuous Smith.

'Talk away, my buck!' says Jones, a lively fellow.

With an air of indescribable dignity, Giglio checked their
natural, but no more seemly, familiarity. 'Jones, Smith, my
good friends,' said the PRINCE, 'disguise is henceforth
useless; I am no more the humble student Giles, I am the
descendant of a royal line.'

'Atavis edite regibus, I know, old co--' cried Jones. He was
going to say old cock, but a flash from THE ROYAL EYE again
awed him.

'Friends,' continued the Prince, 'I am that Giglio, I am, in
fact, Paflagonia. Rise, Smith, and kneel not in the public
street. Jones, thou true heart! My faithless uncle, when I
was a baby, filched from me that brave crown my father left me,
bred me, all young and careless of my rights, like unto hapless
Hamlet, Prince of Denmark; and had I any thoughts about my
wrongs, soothed me with promises of near redress. I should
espouse his daughter, young Angelica; we two indeed should
reign in Paflagonia. His words were false--false as Angelica's
heart!--false as Angelica's hair, colour, front teeth! She
looked with her skew eyes upon young Bulbo, Crim Tartary's
stupid heir, and she preferred him.' Twas then I turned my
eyes upon Betsinda--Rosalba, as she now is. And I saw in her
the blushing sum of all perfection; the pink of maiden modesty;
the nymph that my fond heart had ever woo'd in dreams,' etc.

(I don't give this speech, which was very fine, but very long;
and though Smith and Jones knew nothing about the
circumstances, my dear reader does, so I go on.)

The Prince and his young friends hastened home to his
apartment, highly excited by the intelligence, as no doubt by
the ROYAL NARRATOR'S admirable manner of recounting it, and
they ran up to his room where he had worked so hard at his

On his writing-table was his bag, grown so long that the Prince
could not help remarking it. He went to it, opened it, and
what do you think he found in it?

A splendid long, gold-handled, red-velvet-scabbarded,
cut-and-thrust sword, and on the sheath was embroidered

He drew out the sword, which flashed and illuminated the whole
room, and called out 'Rosalba for ever!' Smith and Jones
following him, but quite respectfully this time, and taking the
time from His Royal Highness.

And now his trunk opened with a sudden pony, and out there came
three ostrich feathers in a gold crown, surrounding a beautiful
shining steel helmet, a cuirass, a pair of spurs, finally a
complete suit of armour.

The books on Giglio's shelves were all gone. Where there had
been some great dictionaries, Giglio's friends found two pairs
of jack-boots labelled, 'Lieutenant Smith,' '--Jones, Esq.,'
which fitted them to a nicety. Besides, there were helmets,
back and breast plates, swords, etc., just like in Mr. G. P. R.
James's novels; and that evening three cavaliers might have
been seen issuing from the gates of Bosforo, in whom the
porters, proctors, etc., never thought of recognising the young
Prince and his friends.

They got horses at a livery stable-keeper's, and never drew
bridle until they reached the last town on the frontier before
you come to Crim Tartary. Here, as their animals were tired,
and the cavaliers hungry, they stopped and refreshed at an
hostel. I could make a chapter of this if I were like some
writers, but I like to cram my measure tight down, you see, and
give you a great deal for your money, and, in a word, they had
some bread and cheese and ale upstairs on the balcony of the
inn. As they were drinking, drums and trumpets sounded nearer
and nearer, the marketplace was filled with soldiers, and His
Royal Highness looking forth, recognised the Paflagonian
banners, and the Paflagonian national air which the bands were

The troops all made for the tavern at once, and as they came up
Giglio exclaimed, on beholding their leader, 'Whom do I see?
Yes! No! It is, it is! Phoo! No, it can't be! Yes! It is
my friend, my gallant faithful veteran, Captain Hedzoff! Ho!
Hedzoff! Knowest thou not thy Prince, thy Giglio? Good
Corporal, methinks we once were friends. Ha, Sergeant, an' my
memory serves me right, we have had many a bout at

'I' faith, we have, a many, good my Lord,' says the Sergeant.

'Tell me, what means this mighty armament,' continued His Royal
Highness from the balcony, 'and whither march my Paflagonians?'

Hedzoff's head fell. 'My Lord,' he said, 'we march as the
allies of great Padella, Crim Tartary's monarch.'

'Crim Tartary's usurper, gallant Hedzoff! Crim Tartary's grim
tyrant, honest Hedzoff!' said the Prince, on the balcony, quite

'A soldier, Prince, must needs obey his orders: mine are to
help His Majesty Padella. And also (though alack that I should
say it!) to seize wherever I should light upon him.'

'First catch your hare! ha, Hedzoff!' exclaimed His Royal

'--On the body of GIGLIO, whilome Prince of Paflagonia' Hedzoff
went on, with indescribable emotion. 'My Prince, give up your
sword without ado. Look! we are thirty thousand men to one!'

'Give up my sword! Giglio give up his sword!' cried the Prince;
and stepping well forward on to the balcony, the royal youth,
WITHOUT PREPARATION, delivered a speech so magnificent, that no
report can do justice to it. It was all in blank verse (in
which, from this time, he invariably spoke, as more becoming
his majestic station). It lasted for three days and three
nights, during which not a single person who heard him was
tired, or remarked the difference between daylight and dark.
The soldiers only cheering tremendously, when occasionally,
once in nine hours, the Prince paused to suck an orange, which
Jones took out of the bag. He explained, in terms which we say
we shall not attempt to convey, the whole history of the
previous transaction, and his determination not only not to
give up his sword, but to assume his rightful crown; and at the
end of this extraordinary, this truly GIGANTIC effort, Captain
Hedzoff flung up his helmet, and cried, 'Hurray! Hurray! Long
live King Giglio!'

Such were the consequences of having employed his time well at

When the excitement had ceased, beer was ordered out for the
army, and their Sovereign himself did not disdain a little! And
now it was with some alarm that Captain Hedzoff told him his
division was only the advanced guard of the Paflagonian
contingent, hastening to King Padella's aid; the main force
being a day's march in the rear under His Royal Highness Prince

'We will wait here, good friend, to beat the Prince,' His
Majesty said, 'and THEN will make his royal father wince.'


King Padella made very similar proposals to Rosalba to those
which she had received from the various princes who, as we have
seen, had fallen in love with her. His Majesty was a widower,
and offered to marry his fair captive that instant, but she
declined his invitation in her usual polite gentle manner,
stating that Prince Giglio was her love, and that any other
union was out of the question. Having tried tears and
supplications in vain, this violent-tempered monarch menaced
her with threats and tortures; but she declared she would
rather suffer all these than accept the hand of her father's
murderer, who left her finally, uttering the most awful
imprecations, and bidding her prepare for death on the
following morning.

All night long the King spent in advising how he should get rid
of this obdurate young creature. Cutting off her head was much
too easy a death for her; hanging was so common in His
Majesty's dominions that it no longer afforded him any sport;
finally, he bethought himself of a pair of fierce lions which
had lately been sent to him as presents, and he determined,
with these ferocious brutes, to hunt poor Rosalba down.
Adjoining his castle was an amphitheatre where the Prince
indulged in bull-baiting, rat-hunting, and other ferocious
sports. The two lions were kept in a cage under this place;
their roaring might be heard over the whole city, the
inhabitants of which, I am sorry to say, thronged in numbers to
see a poor young lady gobbled up by two wild beasts.

The King took his place in the royal box, having the officers
of his Court around and the Count Hogginarmo by his side, upon
whom His Majesty was observed to look very fiercely; the fact
is, royal spies had told the monarch of Hogginarmo's behaviour,
his proposals to Rosalba, and his offer to fight for the crown.
Black as thunder looked King Padella at this proud noble, as
they sat in the front seats of the theatre waiting to see the
tragedy whereof poor Rosalba was to be the heroine.

At length that Princess was brought out in her nightgown, with
all her beautiful hair falling down her back, and looking so
pretty that even the beef-eaters and keepers of the wild
animals wept plentifully at seeing her. And she walked with
her poor little feet (only luckily the arena was covered with
sawdust), and went and leaned up against a great stone in the
centre of the amphitheatre, round which the Court and the
people were seated in boxes, with bars before them, for fear of
the great, fierce, red-maned, black-throated, long-tailed,
roaring, bellowing, rushing lions. And now the gates were
opened, and with a wurrawarrurawarar two great lean, hungry,
roaring lions rushed out of their den, where they had been kept
for three weeks on nothing but a little toast-and-water, and
dashed straight up to the stone where poor Rosalba was waiting.
Commend her to your patron saints, all you kind people, for she
is in a dreadful state!

There was a hum and a buzz all through the circus, and the
fierce King Padella even felt a little compassion. But Count
Hogginarmo, seated by His Majesty, roared out 'Hurray! Now for
it! Soo-soo-soo!' that nobleman being uncommonly angry still
at Rosalba's refusal of him.

But O strange event! O remarkable circumstance! O
extraordinary coincidence, which I am sure none of you could BY
ANY POSSIBILITY have divined! When the lions came to Rosalba,
instead of devouring her with their great teeth, it was with
kisses they gobbled her up! They licked her pretty feet, they
nuzzled their noses in her lap, they moo'd, they seemed to say,
'Dear, dear sister don't you recollect your brothers in the
forest?' And she put her pretty white arms round their tawny
necks, and kissed them.

King Padella was immensely astonished. The Count Hogginarmo
was extremely disgusted. 'Pooh!' the Count cried. 'Gammon!'
exclaimed his Lordship.' These lions are tame beasts come from
Wombwell's or Astley's. It is a shame to put people off in
this way. I believe they are little boys dressed up in
door-mats. They are no lions at all.'

'Ha!' said the King, 'you dare to say "gammon" to your
Sovereign, do you? These lions are no lions at all, aren't
they? Ho! my beef-eaters! Ho! my bodyguard! Take this Count
Hogginarmo and fling him into the circus! Give him a sword and
buckler, let him keep his armour on, and his weather-eye out,
and fight these lions.'

The haughty Hogginarmo laid down his opera-glass, and looked
scowling round at the King and his attendants. 'Touch me not,
dogs!' he said, 'or by St. Nicholas the Elder, I will gore you!
Your Majesty thinks Hogginarmo is afraid? No, not of a hundred
thousand lions! Follow me down into the circus, King Padella,
and match thyself against one of yon brutes. Thou darest not.
Let them both come on, then!' And opening a grating of the
box, he jumped lightly down into the circus.

In about two minutes
The Count Hogginarmo was
those lions,
bones, boots, and all,
There was an
End of him.

At this, the King said, 'Serve him right, the rebellious
ruffian! And now, as those lions won't eat that young woman--'

'Let her off!--let her off!' cried the crowd.

'NO! ' roared the King. 'Let the beef-eaters go down and chop
her into small pieces. If the lions defend her, let the
archers shoot them to death. That hussy shall die in

'A-a-ah!' cried the crowd. 'Shame! shame!'

'Who dares cry out shame?' cried the furious potentate (so
little can tyrants command their passions). 'Fling any
scoundrel who says a word down among the lions!'

I warrant you there was a dead silence then, which was broken
by a Pang arang pang pangkarangpang, and a Knight and a Herald
rode in at the further end of the circus: the Knight, in full
armour, with his vizor up, and bearing a letter on the point of
his lance.

'Ha!' exclaimed the King, 'by my fey, 'tis Elephant and Castle,
pursuivant of my brother of Paflagonia; and the Knight, an' my
memory serves me, is the gallant Captain Hedzoff! What news
from Paflagonia, gallant Hedzoff? Elephant and Castle, beshrew
me, thy trumpeting must have made thee thirsty. What will my
trusty herald like to drink?'

'Bespeaking first safe conduct from your Lordship,' said
Captain Hedzoff, 'before we take a drink of anything, permit us
to deliver our King's message.'

'My Lordship, ha!' said Crim Tartary, frowning terrifically.
'That title soundeth strange in the anointed ears of a crowned
King. Straightway speak out your message, Knight and Herald!'

Reining up his charger in a most elegant manner close under the
King's balcony, Hedzoff turned to the Herald, and bade him

Elephant and Castle, dropping his trumpet over his shoulder,
took a large sheet of paper out of his hat, and began to

'O Yes! O Yes! O Yes! Know all men by these presents, that we,
Giglio, King of Paflagonia, Grand Duke of Cappadocia, Sovereign
Prince of Turkey and the Sausage Islands, having assumed our
rightful throne and title, long time falsely borne by our
usurping Uncle, styling himself King of Paflagonia--'

'Ha!' growled Padella.

'Hereby summon the false traitor, Padella, calling himself King
of Crim Tartary--'

The King's curses were dreadful. 'Go on, Elephant and Castle!'
said the intrepid Hedzoff.

'--To release from cowardly imprisonment his liege lady and
rightful Sovereign, ROSALBA, Queen of Crim Tartary, and restore
her to her royal throne: in default of which, I, Giglio,
proclaim the said Padella sneak, traitor, humbug, usurper, and
coward. I challenge him to meet me, with fists or with
pistols, with battle-axe or sword, with blunderbuss or
singlestick, alone or at the head of his army, on foot or on
horseback; and will prove my words upon his wicked ugly body!'

'God save the King!' said Captain Hedzoff, executing a
demivolte, two semilunes, and three caracols.

'Is that all?' said Padella, with the terrific calm of
concentrated fury.

'That, sir, is all my royal master's message. Here is His
Majesty's letter in autograph, and here is his glove, and if
any gentleman of Crim Tartary chooses to find fault with His
Majesty's expressions, I, Tuffskin Hedzoff, Captain of the
Guard, am very much at his service,' and he waved his lance,
and looked at the assembly all round.

'And what says my good brother of Paflagonia, my dear son's
father-in-law, to this rubbish?' asked the King.

'The King's uncle hath been deprived of the crown he unjustly
wore,' said Hedzoff gravely. 'He and his axminister, Glumboso,
are now in prison waiting the sentence of my royal master.
After the battle of Bombardaro--'

'Of what?' asked the surprised Padella.

'Of Bombardaro, where my liege, his present Majesty, would have
performed prodigies of velour, but that the whole of his
uncle's army came over to our side, with the exception of
Prince Bulbo.'

'Ah! my boy, my boy, my Bulbo was no traitor!' cried Padella.

'Prince Bulbo, far from coming over to us, ran away, sir; but I
caught him. The Prince is a prisoner in our army, and the most
terrific tortures await him if a hair of the Princess Rosalba's
head is injured.'

'Do they?' exclaimed the furious Padella, who was now perfectly
LIVID with rage.' Do they indeed? So much the worse for Bulbo.
I've twenty sons as lovely each as Bulbo. Not one but is as
fit to reign as Bulbo. Whip, whack, flog, starve, rack,
punish, torture Bulbo--break all his bones--roast him or flay
him alive--pull all his pretty teeth out one by one! But
justly dear as Bulbo is to me,--joy of my eyes, fond treasure
of my soul!--Ha, ha, ha, ha! revenge is dearer still. Ho!
tortures, rack-men, executioners--light up the fires and make
the pincers hot! get lots of boiling lead!--Bring out ROSALBA!'


Captain Hedzoff rode away when King Padella uttered this cruel
command, having done his duty in delivering the message with
which his royal master had entrusted him. Of course he was
very sorry for Rosalba, but what could he do?

So he returned to King Giglio's camp, and found the young
monarch in a disturbed state of mind, smoking cigars in the
royal tent. His Majesty's agitation was not appeased by the
news that was brought by his ambassador. 'The brutal ruthless
ruffian royal wretch!' Giglio exclaimed. 'As England's poesy
has well remarked, "The man that lays his hand upon a woman,
save in the way of kindness, is a villain." Ha, Hedzoff!'

'That he is, your Majesty,' said the attendant.

'And didst thou see her flung into the oil? and didn't the
soothing oil--the emollient oil, refuse to boil, good
Hedzoff--and to spoil the fairest lady ever eyes did look on?'

'Faith, good my liege, I had no heart to look and see a
beauteous lady boiling down; I took your royal message to
Padella, and bore his back to you. I told him you would hold
Prince Bulbo answerable. He only said that he had twenty sons
as good as Bulbo, and forthwith he bade the ruthless
executioners proceed.'

'O cruel father--O unhappy son!' cried the King. 'Go, some of
you, and bring Prince Bulbo hither.'

Bulbo was brought in chains, looking very uncomfortable.
Though a prisoner, he had been tolerably happy, perhaps because
his mind was at rest, and all the fighting was over, and he was
playing at marbles with his guards when the King sent for him.

'Oh, my poor Bulbo,' said His Majesty, with looks of infinite
compassion, 'hast thou heard the news?' (for you see Giglio
wanted to break the thing gently to the Prince), 'thy brutal
father has condemned Rosalba--p-p-p-ut her to death,
P-p-p-prince Bulbo! '

'What, killed Betsinda! Boo-hoo-hoo,' cried out Bulbo.
'Betsinda! pretty Betsinda! dear Betsinda! She was the dearest
little girl in the world. I love her better twenty thousand
times even than Angelica,' and he went on expressing his grief
in so hearty and unaffected a manner that the King was quite
touched by it, and said, shaking Bulbo's hand, that he wished
he had known Bulbo sooner.

Bulbo, quite unconsciously, and meaning for the best, offered
to come and sit with His Majesty, and smoke a cigar with him,
and console him. The ROYAL KINDNESS supplied Bulbo with a
cigar; he had not had one, he said, since he was taken

And now think what must have been the feelings of the most
MERCIFUL OF MONARCHS, when he informed his prisoner that, in
consequence of King Padella's cruel and DASTARDLY BEHAVIOUR to
Rosalba, Prince Bulbo must instantly be executed! The noble
Giglio could not restrain his tears, nor could the Grenadiers,
nor the officers, nor could Bulbo himself, when the matter was
explained to him, and he was brought to understand that His
Majesty's promise, of course, was ABOVE EVERY THING, and Bulbo
must submit. So poor Bulbo was led out, Hedzoff trying to
console him, by pointing out that if he had won the battle of
Bombardaro, he might have hanged Prince Giglio. 'Yes! But that
is no comfort to me now!' said poor Bulbo; nor indeed was it,
poor fellow!

He was told the business would be done the next morning at
eight, and was taken back to his dungeon, where every attention
was paid to him. The gaoler's wife sent him tea, and the
turnkey's daughter begged him to write his name in her album,
where a many gentlemen had written it on like occasions!
'Bother your album!' says Bulbo. The Undertaker came and
measured him for the handsomest coffin which money could buy
--even this didn't console Bulbo. The Cook brought him dishes
which he once used to like; but he wouldn't touch them: he sat
down and began writing an adieu to Angelica, as the clock kept
always ticking, and the hands drawing nearer to next morning.
The Barber came in at night, and offered to shave him for the
next day. Prince Bulbo kicked him away, and went on writing a
few words to Princess Angelica, as the clock kept always
ticking, and the hands hopping nearer and nearer to next
morning. He got up on the top of a hatbox, on the top of a
chair, on the top of his bed, on the top of his table, and
looked out to see whether he might escape as the clock kept
always ticking and the hands drawing nearer, and nearer, and

But looking out of the window was one thing, and jumping
another: and the town clock struck seven. So he got into bed
for a little sleep, but the gaoler came and woke him, and said,
'Git up, your Royal Ighness, if you please, it's TEN MINUTES TO

So poor Bulbo got up: he had gone to bed in his clothes (the
lazy boy), and he shook himself, and said he didn't mind about
dressing, or having any breakfast, thank you; and he saw the
soldiers who had come for him. 'Lead on!' he said; and they
led the way, deeply affected; and they came into the courtyard,
and out into the square, and there was King Giglio come to take
leave of him, and His Majesty most kindly shook hands with him,
and the 'Take off that marched on:--when hark!


A roar of wild beasts was heard. And who should come riding
into the town, frightening away the boys, and even the beadle
and policeman, but ROSALBA!

The fact is, that when Captain Hedzoff entered into the court
of Snapdragon Castle, and was discoursing with King Padella,
the lions made a dash at the open gate, gobbled up the six
beef-eaters in a jiffy, and away they went with Rosalba on the
back of one of them, and they carried her, turn and turn about,
till they came to the city where Prince Giglio's army was

When the KING heard of the QUEEN'S arrival, you may think how
he rushed out of his breakfast-room to hand Her Majesty off her
lion! The lions were grown as fat as pigs now, having had
Hogginarmo and all those beefeaters, and were so tame, anybody
might pat them.

While Giglio knelt (most gracefully) and helped the Princess,
Bulbo, for his part, rushed up and kissed the lion. He flung
his arms round the forest monarch; he hugged him, and laughed
and cried for joy. 'Oh, you darling old beast, oh, how glad I
am to see you, and the dear, dear Bets--that is, Rosalba.'

'What, is it you? poor Bulbo!' said the Queen.' Oh, how glad I
am to see you,' and she gave him her hand to kiss. King Giglio
slapped him most kindly on the back, and said, 'Bulbo, my boy,
I am delighted, for your sake, that Her Majesty has arrived.'

'So am I,' said Bulbo; 'and YOU KNOW WHY.' Captain Hedzoff
here came up. 'Sire, it is half-past eight: shall we proceed
with the execution? '

'Execution! what for?' asked Bulbo.

'An officer only knows his orders,' replied Captain Hedzoff,
showing his warrant, on which His Majesty King Giglio smilingly
said, 'Prince Bulbo was reprieved this time,' and most
graciously invited him to breakfast.


As soon as King Padella heard, what we know already, that his
victim, the lovely Rosalba, had escaped him, His Majesty's fury
knew no bounds, and he pitched the Lord Chancellor, Lord
Chamberlain, and every officer of the Crown whom he could set
eyes on, into the cauldron of boiling oil prepared for the
Princess. Then he ordered out his whole army, horse, foot, and
artillery; and set forth at the head of an innumerable host,
and I should think twenty thousand drummers, trumpeters, and

King Giglio's advance guard, you may be sure, kept that monarch
acquainted with the enemy's dealings, and he was in nowise
disconcerted. He was much too polite to alarm the Princess,
his lovely guest, with any unnecessary rumours of battles
impending; on the contrary, he did everything to amuse and
divert her; gave her a most elegant breakfast, dinner, lunch,
and got up a ball for her that evening, when he danced with her
every single dance.

Poor Bulbo was taken into favour again, and allowed to go quite
free now. He had new clothes given him, was called 'My good
cousin' by His Majesty, and was treated with the greatest
distinction by everybody. But it was easy to see he was very
melancholy. The fact is, the sight of Betsinda, who looked
perfectly lovely in an elegant new dress, set poor Bulbo
frantic in love with her again. And he never thought about
Angelica, now Princess Bulbo, whom he had left at home, and
who, as we know, did not care much about him.

The King, dancing the twenty-fifth polka with Rosalba, remarked
with wonder the ring she wore; and then Rosalba told him how
she had got it from Gruffanuff, who no doubt had picked it up
when Angelica flung it away.

'Yes,' says the Fairy Blackstick, who had come to see the young
people, and who had very likely certain plans regarding them.
'That ring I gave the Queen, Giglio's mother, who was not,
saving your presence, a very wise woman; it is enchanted, and
whoever wears it looks beautiful in the eyes of the world, I
made poor Prince Bulbo, when he was christened, the present of
a rose which made him look handsome while he had it; but he
gave it to Angelica, who instantly looked beautiful again,
whilst Bulbo relapsed into his natural plainness.'

'Rosalba needs no ring, I am sure,' says Giglio, with a low
bow. 'She is beautiful enough, in my eyes, without any
enchanted aid.'

'Oh, sir!' said Rosalba.

'Take off the ring and try,' said the King, and resolutely drew
the ring off her finger. In HIS eyes she looked just as
handsome as before!

The King was thinking of throwing the ring away, as it was so
dangerous and made all the people so mad about Rosalba; but
being a Prince of great humour, and good humour too, he cast
eyes upon a poor youth who happened to be looking on very
disconsolately, and said--

'Bulbo, my poor lad! come and try on this ring. The Princess
Rosalba makes it a present to you.'

The magic properties of this ring were uncommonly strong, for
no sooner had Bulbo put it on, but lo and behold, he appeared a
personable, agreeable young Prince enough--with a fine
complexion, fair hair, rather stout, and with bandy legs; but
these were encased in such a beautiful pair of yellow morocco
boots that nobody remarked them. And Bulbo's spirits rose up
almost immediately after he had looked in the glass, and he
talked to their Majesties in the most lively, agreeable manner,
and danced opposite the Queen with one of the prettiest maids
of honour, and after looking at Her Majesty, could not help

'How very odd! she is very pretty, but not so EXTRAORDINARILY

'Oh no, by no means!' says the Maid of Honour.

'But what care I, dear sir,' says the Queen, who overheard
them, 'if YOU think I am good-looking enough?'

His Majesty's glance in reply to this affectionate speech was
such that no painter could draw it. And the Fairy Blackstick
said, 'Bless you, my darling children! Now you are united and
happy; and now you see what I said from the first, that a
little misfortune has done you both good. YOU, Giglio, had you
been bred in prosperity, would scarcely have learned to read or
write--you would have been idle and extravagant, and could not
have been a good King as now you will be. You, Rosalba, would
have been so flattered, that your little head might have been
turned like Angelica's, who thought herself too good for

'As if anybody could be good enough for HIM,' cried Rosalba.

'Oh, you, you darling!' says Giglio. And so she was; and he
was just holding out his arms in order to give her a hug before
the whole company, when a messenger came rushing in, and said,
'My Lord, the enemy!'

'To arms!' cries Giglio.

'Oh, mercy!' says Rosalba, and fainted of course.

He snatched one kiss from her lips, and rushed FORTH TO THE
FIELD of battle!

The Fairy had provided King Giglio with a suit of armour, which
was not only embroidered all over with jewels, and blinding to
your eyes to look at, but was water-proof, gun-proof, and
sword-proof; so that in the midst of the very hottest battles
His Majesty rode about as calmly as if he had been a British
Grenadier at Alma. Were I engaged in fighting for my country,
_I_ should like such a suit of armour as Prince Giglio wore;
but, you know, he was a Prince of a fairy tale, and they always
have these wonderful things.

Besides the fairy armour, the Prince had a fairy horse, which
would gallop at any pace you pleased; and a fairy sword, which
would lengthen and run through a whole regiment of enemies at
once. With such a weapon at command, I wonder, for my part, he
thought of ordering his army out; but forth they all came, in
magnificent new uniforms, Hedzoff and the Prince's two college
friends each commanding a division, and His Majesty prancing in
person at the head of them all.

Ah! if I had the pen of a Sir Archibald Alison, my dear
friends, would I not now entertain you with the account of a
most tremendous shindy? Should not fine blows be struck?
dreadful wounds be delivered? arrows darken the air? cannon
balls crash through the battalions? cavalry charge infantry?
infantry pitch into cavalry? bugles blow; drums beat; horses
neigh; fifes sing; soldiers roar, swear, hurray; officers shout
out 'Forward, my men!' 'This way, lads!' 'Give it 'em, boys!'
'Fight for King Giglio, and the cause of right!' 'King Padella
for ever!' Would I not describe all this, I say, and in the
very finest language too? But this humble pen does not possess
the skill necessary for the description of combats. In a word,
the overthrow of King Padella's army was so complete, that if
they had been Russians you could not have wished them to be
more utterly smashed and confounded.

As for that usurping monarch, having performed acts of velour
much more considerable than could be expected of a royal
ruffian and usurper, who had such a bad cause, and who was so
cruel to women,--as for King Padella, I say, when his army ran
away, the King ran away too, kicking his first general, Prince
Punchikoff, from his saddle, and galloping away on the Prince's
horse, having, indeed, had twenty-five or twenty-six of his own
shot under him. Hedzoff coming up, and finding Punchikoff
down, as you may imagine, very speedily disposed of HIM.
Meanwhile King Padella was scampering off as hard as his horse
could lay legs to ground. Fast as he scampered, I promise you
somebody else galloped faster; and that individual, as no doubt
you are aware, was the Royal Giglio, who kept bawling out,
'Stay, traitor! Turn, miscreant, and defend thyself! Stand,
tyrant, coward, ruffian, royal wretch, till I cut thy ugly head
from thy usurping shoulders!' And, with his fairy sword, which
elongated itself at will, His Majesty kept poking and prodding
Padella in the back, until that wicked monarch roared with

When he was fairly brought to bay, Padella turned and dealt
Prince Giglio a prodigious crack over the sconce with his
battle-axe, a most enormous weapon, which had cut down I don't
know how many regiments in the course of the afternoon. But,
Law bless you! though the blow fell right down on His Majesty's
helmet, it made no more impression than if Padella had struck
him with a pat of butter: his battle-axe crumpled up in
Padella's hand, and the Royal Giglio laughed for very scorn at
the impotent efforts of that atrocious usurper.

At the ill success of his blow the Crim Tartar monarch was
justly irritated. 'If,' says he to Giglio, 'you ride a fairy
horse, and wear fairy armour, what on earth is the use of my
hitting you? I may as well give myself up a prisoner at once.
Your Majesty won't, I suppose, be so mean as to strike a poor
fellow who can't strike again?'

The justice of Padella's remark struck the magnanimous Giglio.
'Do you yield yourself a prisoner, Padella?' says he.

'Of course I do,' says Padella.

'Do you acknowledge Rosalba as your rightful Queen, and give up
the crown and all your treasures to your rightful mistress?'

'If I must, I must,' says Padella, who was naturally very

By this time King Giglio's aides-de-camp had come up, whom His
Majesty ordered to bind the prisoner. And they tied his hands
behind him, and bound his legs tight under his horse, having
set him with his face to the tail; and in this fashion he was
led back to King Giglio's quarters, and thrust into the very
dungeon where young Bulbo had been confined.

Padella (who was a very different person in the depth of his
distress, to Padella, the proud wearer of the Crim Tartar
crown), now most affectionately and earnestly asked to see his
son--his dear eldest boy--his darling Bulbo; and that
good-natured young man never once reproached his haughty parent
for his unkind conduct the day before, when he would have left
Bulbo to be shot without any pity, but came to see his father,
and spoke to him through the grating of the door, beyond which
he was not allowed to go; and brought him some sandwiches from
the grand supper which His Majesty was giving above stairs, in
honour of the brilliant victory which had just been achieved.

'I cannot stay with you long, sir,' says Bulbo, who was in his
best ball dress, as he handed his father in the prog, 'I am
engaged to dance the next quadrille with Her Majesty Queen
Rosalba, and I hear the fiddles playing at this very moment.'

So Bulbo went back to the ball-room and the wretched Padella
ate his solitary supper in silence and tears.

All was now joy in King Giglio's circle. Dancing, feasting,
fun, illuminations, and jollifications of all sorts ensued.
The people through whose villages they passed were ordered to
illuminate their cottages at night, and scatter flowers on the
roads during the day. They were requested, and I promise you
they did not like to refuse, to serve the troops liberally with
eatables and wine; besides, the army was enriched by the
immense quantity of plunder which was found in King Padella's
camp, and taken from his soldiers; who (after they had given up
everything) were allowed to fraternise with the conquerors; and
the united forces marched back by easy stages towards King
Giglio's capital, his royal banner and that of Queen Rosalba
being carried in front of the troops. Hedzoff was made a Duke
and a FieldMarshal. Smith and Jones were promoted to be Earls;
the Crim Tartar Order of the Pumpkin and the Paflagonian
decoration of the Cucumber were freely distributed by their
Majesties to the army. Queen Rosalba wore the Paflagonian
Ribbon of the Cucumber across her riding-habit, whilst King
Giglio never appeared without the grand Cordon of the Pumpkin.
How the people cheered them as they rode along side by side!
They were pronounced to be the handsomest couple ever seen:
that was a matter of course; but they really WERE very
handsome, and, had they been otherwise, would have looked so,
they were so happy! Their Majesties were never separated
during the whole day, but breakfasted, dined, and supped
together always, and rode side by side, interchanging elegant
compliments, and indulging in the most delightful conversation.
At night, Her Majesty's ladies of honour (who had all rallied
round her the day after King Padella's defeat) came and
conducted her to the apartments prepared for her; whilst King
Giglio, surrounded by his gentlemen, withdrew to his own Royal
quarters. It was agreed they should be married as soon as they
reached the capital, and orders were dispatched to the
Archbishop of Blombodinga, to hold himself in readiness to
perform the interesting ceremony. Duke Hedzoff carried the
message, and gave instructions to have the Royal Castle
splendidly refurnished and painted afresh. The Duke seized
Glumboso, the Ex-Prime Minister, and made him refund that
considerable sum of money which the old scoundrel had secreted
out of the late King's treasure. He also clapped Valoroso into
prison (who, by the way, had been dethroned for some
considerable period past), and when the Ex-Monarch weakly
remonstrated, Hedzoff said, 'A soldier, sir, knows but his
duty; my orders are to lock you up along with the Ex-King
Padella, whom I have brought hither a prisoner under guard.'
So these two Ex-Royal personages were sent for a year to the
House of Correction, and thereafter were obliged to become
monks of the severest Order of Flagellants, in which state, by
fasting, by vigils, by flogging (which they administered to one
another, humbly but resolutely), no doubt they exhibited a
repentance for their past misdeeds, usurpations, and private
and public crimes.

As for Glumboso, that rogue was sent to the galleys, and never
had an opportunity to steal any more.


The Fairy Blackstick, by whose means this young King and Queen
had certainly won their respective crowns back, would come not
unfrequently, to pay them a little visit--as they were riding
in their triumphal progress towards Giglio's capital--change
her wand into a pony, and travel by their Majesties' side,
giving them the very best advice. I am not sure that King
Giglio did not think the Fairy and her advice rather a bore,
fancying it was his own velour and merits which had put him on
his throne, and conquered Padella: and, in fine, I fear he
rather gave himself airs towards his best friend and patroness.
She exhorted him to deal justly by his subjects, to draw mildly
on the taxes, never to break his promise when he had once given
it--and in all respects to be a good King.

'A good King, my dear Fairy!' cries Rosalba. 'Of course he
will. Break his promise! can you fancy my Giglio would ever do
anything so improper, so unlike him? No! never!' And she
looked fondly towards Giglio, whom she thought a pattern of

'Why is Fairy Blackstick always advising me, and telling me how
to manage my government, and warning me to keep my word? Does
she suppose that I am not a man of sense, and a man of honour?'
asks Giglio testily. 'Methinks she rather presumes upon her

'Hush! dear Giglio,' says Rosalba. 'You know Blackstick has
been very kind to us, and we must not offend her.' But the
Fairy was not listening to Giglio's testy observations, she had
fallen back, and was trotting on her pony now, by Master
Bulbo's side, who rode a donkey, and made himself generally
beloved in the army by his cheerfulness, kindness, and
good-humour to everybody. He was eager to see his darling
Angelica. He thought there never was such a charming being.
Blackstick did not tell him it was the possession of the magic
rose that made Angelica so lovely in his eyes. She brought him
the very best accounts of his little wife, whose misfortunes
and humiliations had indeed very greatly improved her; and, you
see, she could whisk off on her wand a hundred miles in a
minute, and be back in no time, and so carry polite messages
from Bulbo to Angelica, and from Angelica to Bulbo, and comfort
that young man upon his journey.

When the Royal party arrived at the last stage before you reach
Blombodinga, who should be in waiting, in her carriage there
with her lady of honour by her side, but the Princess Angelica!
She rushed into her husband's arms, scarcely stopping to make a
passing curtsey to the King and Queen. She had no eyes but for
Bulbo, who appeared perfectly lovely to her on account of the
fairy ring which he wore; whilst she herself, wearing the magic
rose in her bonnet, seemed entirely beautiful to the enraptured

A splendid luncheon was served to the Royal party, of which the
Archbishop, the Chancellor, Duke Hedzoff, Countess Gruffanuff,
and all our friends partook, the Fairy Blackstick being seated
on the left of King Giglio, with Bulbo and Angelica beside her.
You could hear the joy-bells ringing in the capital, and the
guns which the citizens were firing off in honour of their

'What can have induced that hideous old Gruffanuff to dress
herself up in such an absurd way? Did you ask her to be your
bridesmaid, my dear?' says Giglio to Rosalba. 'What a figure
of fun Gruffy is!'

Gruffy was seated opposite their Majesties, between the
Archbishop and the Lord Chancellor, and a figure of fun she
certainly was, for she was dressed in a low white silk dress,
with lace over, a wreath of white roses on her wig, a splendid
lace veil, and her yellow old neck was covered with diamonds.
She ogled the King in such a manner that His Majesty burst out

'Eleven o'clock!' cries Giglio, as the great Cathedral bell of
Blombodinga tolled that hour. 'Gentlemen and ladies, we must
be starting. Archbishop, you must be at church, I think,
before twelve?'

'We must be at church before twelve,' sighs out Gruffanuff in a
languishing voice, hiding her old face behind her fan.

'And then I shall be the happiest man in my dominions,' cries
Giglio, with an elegant bow to the blushing Rosalba.

'Oh, my Giglio! Oh, my dear Majesty!' exclaims Gruffanuff; 'and
can it be that this happy moment at length has arrived--'

'Of course it has arrived,' says the King.

'--and that I am about to become the enraptured bride of my
adored Giglio!' continues Gruffanuff. 'Lend me a
smelling-bottle, somebody. I certainly shall faint with joy.'

'YOU my bride?' roars out Giglio.

'YOU marry my Prince?' cried poor little Rosalba.

'Pooh! Nonsense! The woman's mad!' exclaims the King. And all
the courtiers exhibited by their countenances and expressions,
marks of surprise, or ridicule, or incredulity, or wonder.

'I should like to know who else is going to be married, if I am
not?' shrieks out Gruffanuff. 'I should like to know if King
Giglio is a gentleman, and if there is such a thing as justice
in Paflagonia? Lord Chancellor! my Lord Archbishop! will your
Lordships sit by and see a poor, fond, confiding, tender
creature put upon? Has not Prince Giglio promised to marry his
Barbara? Is not this Giglio's signature? Does not this paper
declare that he is mine, and only mine?' And she handed to his
Grace the Archbishop the document which the Prince signed that
evening when she wore the magic ring, and Giglio drank so much
champagne. And the old Archbishop, taking out his eyeglasses,
read-- "'This is to give notice, that I, Giglio, only son of
Savio, King of Paflagonia, hereby promise to marry the charming
Barbara Griselda, Countess Gruffanuff, and widow of the late
Jenkins Gruffanuff, Esq."

'H'm,' says the Archbishop, 'the document is certainly a--a

'Phoo!' says the Lord Chancellor, 'the signature is not in His
Majesty's handwriting.' Indeed, since his studies at Bosforo,
Giglio had made an immense improvement in caligraphy.

'Is it your handwriting, Giglio?' cries the Fairy Blackstick,
with an awful severity of countenance.

'Y--y--y--es,' poor Giglio gasps out, 'I had quite forgotten
the confounded paper: she can't mean to hold me by it. You
old wretch, what will you take to let me off? Help the Queen,
some one--Her Majesty has fainted.'

'Chop her head off!'} exclaim the impetuous
'Smother the old witch!' } Hedzoff, the ardent Smith, and
'Pitch her into the river!'} the faithful Jones.

But Gruffanuff flung her arms round the Archbishop's neck, and
bellowed out, 'Justice, justice, my Lord Chancellor!' so
loudly, that her piercing shrieks caused everybody to pause.
As for Rosalba, she was borne away lifeless by her ladies; and
you may imagine the look of agony which Giglio cast towards
that lovely being, as his hope, his joy, his darling, his all
in all, was thus removed, and in her place the horrid old
Gruffanuff rushed up to his side, and once more shrieked out,
'Justice, justice!'

'Won't you take that sum of money which Glumboso hid?' says
Giglio; 'two hundred and eighteen thousand millions, or
thereabouts. It's a handsome sum.'

'I will have that and you too!' says Gruffanuff.

'Let us throw the crown jewels into the bargain,' gasps out

'I will wear them by my Giglio's side!' says Gruffanuff.

'Will half, three-quarters, five-sixths, nineteen-twentieths,
of my kingdom do, Countess?' asks the trembling monarch.

'What were all Europe to me without YOU, my Giglio?' cries
Gruff, kissing his hand.

'I won't, I can't, I shan't,--I'll resign the crown first,'
shouts Giglio, tearing away his hand; but Gruff clung to it.

'I have a competency, my love,' she says, 'and with thee and a
cottage thy Barbara will be happy.'

Giglio was half mad with rage by this time. 'I will not marry
her,' says he. 'Oh, Fairy, Fairy, give me counsel?' And as he
spoke he looked wildly round at the severe face of the Fairy

"'Why is Fairy Blackstick always advising me, and warning me to
keep my word? Does she suppose that I am not a man of
honour?"' said the Fairy, quoting Giglio's own haughty words.
He quailed under the brightness of her eyes; he felt that there
was no escape for him from that awful inquisition.

'Well, Archbishop,' said he in a dreadful voice, that made his
Grace start, 'since this Fairy has led me to the height of
happiness but to dash me down into the depths of despair, since
I am to lose Rosalba, let me at least keep my honour. Get up,
Countess, and let us be married; I can keep my word, but I can
die afterwards.'

'Oh, dear Giglio,' cries Gruffanuff, skipping up, 'I knew, I
knew I could trust thee--I knew that my Prince was the soul of
honour. Jump into your carriages, ladies and gentlemen, and
let us go to church at once; and as for dying, dear Giglio, no,
no:--thou wilt forget that insignificant little chambermaid of
a Queen--thou wilt live to be consoled by thy Barbara! She
wishes to be a Queen, and not a Queen Dowager, my gracious
Lord!' And hanging upon poor Giglio's arm, and leering and
grinning in his face in the most disgusting manner, this old
wretch tripped off in her white satin shoes, and jumped into
the very carriage which had been got ready to convey Giglio and
Rosalba to church. The cannons roared again, the bells pealed
triple-bobmajors, the people came out flinging flowers upon the
path of the royal bride and bridegroom, and Gruff looked out of
the gilt coach window and bowed and grinned to them. Phoo! the
horrid old wretch!


The many ups and downs of her life had given the Princess
Rosalba prodigious strength of mind, and that highly principled
young woman presently recovered from her fainting-fit, out of
which Fairy Blackstick, by a precious essence which the Fairy
always carried in her pocket, awakened her. Instead of tearing
her hair, crying, and bemoaning herself, and fainting again, as
many young women would have done, Rosalba remembered that she
owed an example of firmness to her subjects; and though she
loved Giglio more than her life, was determined, as she told
the Fairy, not to interfere between him and justice, or to
cause him to break his royal word.

'I cannot marry him, but I shall love him always,' says she to
Blackstick; 'I will go and be present at his marriage with the
Countess, and sign the book, and wish them happy with all my
heart. I will see, when I get home, whether I cannot make the
new Queen some handsome presents. The Crim Tartary crown
diamonds are uncommonly fine, and I shall never have any use
for them. I will live and die unmarried like Queen Elizabeth,
and, of course, I shall leave my crown to Giglio when I quit
this world. Let us go and see them married, my dear Fairy, let
me say one last farewell to him; and then, if you please, I
will return to my own dominions.'

So the Fairy kissed Rosalba with peculiar tenderness, and at
once changed her wand into a very comfortable coach-and-four,
with a steady coachman, and two respectable footmen behind, and
the Fairy and Rosalba got into the coach, which Angelica and
Bulbo entered after them. As for honest Bulbo, he was
blubbering in the most pathetic manner, quite overcome by
Rosalba's misfortune. She was touched by the honest fellow's
sympathy, promised to restore to him the confiscated estates of
Duke Padella his father, and created him, as he sat there in
the coach, Prince, Highness, and First Grandee of the Crim
Tartar Empire. The coach moved on, and, being a fairy coach,
soon came up with the bridal procession.

Before the ceremony at church it was the custom in Paflagonia,
as it is in other countries, for the bride and bridegroom to
sign the Contract of Marriage, which was to be witnessed by
the Chancellor, Minister, Lord Mayor, and principal officers of
state. Now, as the royal palace was being painted and
furnished anew, it was not ready for the reception of the King
and his bride, who proposed at first to take up their residence
at the Prince's palace, that one which Valoroso occupied when
Angelica was born, and before he usurped the throne.

So the marriage party drove up to the palace: the dignitaries
got out of their carriages and stood aside: poor Rosalba
stepped out of her coach, supported by Bulbo, and stood almost
fainting up against the railings so as to have a last look of
her dear Giglio. As for Blackstick, she, according to her
custom, had flown out of the coach window in some inscrutable
manner, and was now standing at the palace door.

Giglio came up the steps with his horrible bride on his arm,
looking as pale as if he was going to execution. He only
frowned at the Fairy Blackstick--he was angry with her, and
thought she came to insult his misery.

'Get out of the way, pray,' says Gruffanuff haughtily. 'I
wonder why you are always poking your nose into other people's

'Are you determined to make this poor young man unhappy?' says

'To marry him, yes! What business is it of yours? Pray,
madam, don't say "you" to a Queen,' cries Gruffanuff.

'You won't take the money he offered you?'


'You won't let him off his bargain, though you know you cheated
him when you made him sign the paper?'

'Impudence! Policemen, remove this woman!' cries Gruffanuff.
And the policemen were rushing forward, but with a wave of her
wand the Fairy struck them all like so many statues in their

'You won't take anything in exchange for your bond, Mrs.
Gruffanuff,' cries the Fairy, with awful severity. 'I speak
for the last time.'

'No!' shrieks Gruffanuff, stamping with her foot. 'I'll have
my husband, my husband, my husband!'

'YOU SHALL HAVE YOUR HUSBAND!' the Fairy Blackstick cried; and
advancing a step, laid her hand upon the nose of the KNOCKER.

As she touched it, the brass nose seemed to elongate, the open
mouth opened still wider, and uttered a roar which made
everybody start. The eyes rolled wildly; the arms and legs
uncurled themselves, writhed about, and seemed to lengthen
with each twist; the knocker expanded into a figure in yellow
livery, six feet high; the screws by which it was fixed to the
door unloosed themselves, and JENKINS GRUFFANUFF once more trod
the threshold off which he had been lifted more than twenty
years ago!

'Master's not at home,' says Jenkins, just in his old voice;
and Mrs. Jenkins, giving a dreadful YOUP, fell down in a fit,
in which nobody minded her.

For everybody was shouting, 'Huzzay! huzzay!' 'Hip, hip,
hurray!' 'Long live the King and Queen!' 'Were such things ever
seen?' 'No, never, never, never!' 'The Fairy Blackstick for

The bells were ringing double peals, the guns roaring and
banging most prodigiously. Bulbo was embracing everybody; the
Lord Chancellor was flinging up his wig and shouting like a
madman; Hedzoff had got the Archbishop round the waist, and
they were dancing a jig for joy; and as for Giglio, I leave you
to imagine what HE was doing, and if he kissed Rosalba once,
twice--twenty thousand times, I'm sure I don't think he was

So Gruffanuff opened the hall door with a low bow, just as he
had been accustomed to do, and they all went in and signed the
book, and then they went to church and were married, and the
Fairy Blackstick sailed away on her cane, and was never more
heard of in Paflagonia.

and here ends the Fireside Pantomime.

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