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Majesty will do't.

' Adam, Enoch, Lamech, Cainan, Mahaleel, Methusela,
Lived nine hundred years apiece, and mayn't the King

as well as. they ?'
'Fervently/ exclaimed the Keeper, 'fervently I trust

he may. 7

' He to die?' resumed the Bishop. 'He a mortal

like to us?
Death was not for him intended, though communis

omnibus :
Keeper, you are irreligious, for to talk and cavil thus.

'With his wondrous skill in healing ne'er a doctor

can compete,
Loathsome lepers, if he touch them, start up clean

upon their feet ;
Surely he could raise the dead up, did his Highness

think it meet.

' Did not once the Jewish captain stay the sun upon
the hill,

King Canute 245

And the while he slew the foemen, bid the silver

moon stand still !
So, no doubt, could gracious Canute, if it were his

sacred will.'

* Might I stay the sun above us, good Sir Bishop ? '

Canute cried ;
1 Could I bid the silver moon to pause upon her

heavenly ride?
If the moon obeys my orders, sure I can command

the tide.

' Will the advancing waves obey me, Bishop, if I

make the sign ? '
Said the Bishop, bowing lowly, ' Land and sea, my

lord, are thine.'
Canute turned towards the ocean ' Back ! ' he said,

'thou foaming brine.

c From the sacred shore I stand on, I command thee

to retreat ;
Venture not, thou stormy rebel, to approach thy

master's seat :
Ocean, be thou still ! I bid thee come not nearer to

my feet ! '

But the sullen ocean answered with a louder, deeper

246 William Makepeace Thackeray

And the rapid waves drew nearer, falling sounding on

the shore ;
Back the Keeper and the Bishop, back the King and

courtiers bore.

And he sternly bade them never more to kneel to

human clay,
But alone to praise and worship that which earth and

seas obey :
And his golden crown of empire never wore he from

that day.
King Canute is dead and gone : Parasites exist alway.


YE Genii of the nation,

Who look with veneration,
And Ireland's desolation onsaysingly deplore ;

Ye sons of General Jackson,

Who thrample on the Saxon,
Attend to the thransaction upon Shannon shore.

When William, Duke of Schumbug,

A tyrant and a humbug,
With cannon and with thunder on our city bore,

Our fortitude and valliance

Insthructed his battalions
To rispict the galliant Irish upon Shannon shore.

The Battle of Limerick 247

Since that capitulation,

No city in this nation
So grand a reputation could boast before,

As Limerick prodigious,

That stands with quays and bridges,
And the ships up to the windies of the Shannon shore.

A chief of ancient line,

Tis William Smith O'Brine,
Reprisints this darling Limerick, this ten years or more :

O the Saxons can't endure

To see him on the flure,
And thrimble at the Cicero from Shannon shore !

This valliant son of Mars

Had been to visit Par's,
That land of Revolution, that grows the tricolor ;

And to welcome his returrn

From pilgrimages furren,
We invited him to tay on the Shannon shore.

Then we summoned to our board

Young Meagher of the sword :
'Tis he will sheathe that battle-axe in Saxon gore ;

And Mitchil of Belfast,

We bade to our repast,
To dthrink a dish of coffee on the Shannon shore.

248 William Makepeace Thackeray

Convaniently to hould

These patriots so bould,
We tuck the opportunity of Tim Doolan's store ;

And with ornamints and banners

(As becomes gintale good manners)
We made the loveliest tay-room upon Shannon shore.

'T would binifit your sowls,

To see the butthered rowls,
The sugar-tongs and sangwidges and craim galyore,

And the muffins and the crumpets,

And the band of harps and thrumpets,
To celebrate the sworry upon Shannon shore.

Sure the Imperor of Bohay
Would be proud to dthrink the tay

That Misthress Biddy Rooney for O'Brine did pour ;
And, since the days of Strongbow,
There never was such Congo

Mitchil dthrank six quarts of it by Shannon shore.

But Clarndon and Corry

Connellan beheld this sworry
With rage and imulation in their black hearts' core ;

And they hired a gang of ruffins

To interrupt the muffins,
And the fragrance of the Congo on the Shannon shore.

The Battle of Limerick 249

When full of tay and cake,

O'Brine began to spake,
But juice a one could hear him, for a sudden roar

Of a ragamuffin rout

Began to yell and shout,
And frighten the propriety of Shannon shore.

As Smith O'Brine harangued,
They batthered and they banged :

Tim Doolan's doors and windies, down they tore ;
They smashed the lovely windies
(Hung with muslin from the Indies),

Purshuing of their shindies upon Shannon shore.

With throwing of brickbats,
Drowned puppies, and dead rats,

These ruffin democrats themselves did lower ;
Tin kettles, rotten eggs,
Cabbage-stalks, and wooden legs,

They flung among the patriots of Shannon shore.

O the girls began to scrame,

And upset the milk and crame ;
And the honourable gintlemin, they cursed and swore :

And Mitchil of Belfast,

'Twas he that looked aghast,
When they roasted him in effigy by Shannon shore.

250 William Makepeace Thackeray

O the lovely tay was spilt
On that day of Ireland's guilt ;
Says Jack Mitchil, ' I am kilt ! Boys, where's the

back door?

'Tis a national disgrace ;
Let me go and veil me face ; '

And he boulted with quick pace from the Shannon

* Cut down the bloody horde ! '

Says Meagher of the sword,
This conduct would disgrace any blackamore : '

But the best use Tommy made

Of his famous battle blade
Was to cut his own stick from the Shannon shore.

Immortal Smith O'Brine

Was raging like a line ;

'Twould have done your sowl good to have heard him

In his glory he arose,

And he rush'd upon his foes,
But they hit him on the nose by the Shannon shore.

Then the Futt and the Dthragoons

In squadthrons and platoons,
With their music playing chunes, down upon us bore ;

And they bate the rattatoo,

But the Peelers came in view,
And ended the shaloo on the Shannon shore.


(The late Dean MansePs Phrontisterion, the most
excellent piece of university wit produced in this century
at least, was composed on the first Oxford Commission,
and is in great part a severe satire on its interference
with university and collegiate endowments. But the
author was a very strong Tory, and it frequently
diverges, as here, into matter of wider application^)



(Enter Just Discourse and Unjust Discourse)

U. D. Where be they, the dreaming dotards, bigots

of the olden time,
Purblind patrons of abuses, champions of corruption's

Pudding-headed, narrow-minded, noddynoodledoodle-


252 Henry Longueville Mansel

Poops, who doubt our right of dealing as we please

with college income?

J. D. Where be they, the shameless spoilers, vio-
lating private right,
Riding roughshod over justice, crushing equity with

Turning from its proper channels wealth our fathers'

bounty left,
Sullying reform with rapine, public ends with private

theft ?
U. D. Theft, my friend ! the gods have pity on

your weak and watery brain !
How can they who own the total steal a portion ?

pray explain.
Men in nature's state are equal : property, conferred

by laws,
From the sanction of the people all its rights and

safeguards draws.
You but hold it at their pleasure, you must yield it at

their summons :
And the pleasure of the people, seek it in the House

of Commons.
J. D. Have you then no higher standards, fixed

ere human laws began
By the voice of man's Creator, by the moral sense of

Rules may alter, codes may perish, customs change,

but these abide,

Phrontisterion 253

Truths no practice can abolish, no enactment over-

Vain the fine-drawn web of sophisms, vain the brazen
mail of lies ;

Means condemned by God and Conscience, no ex-
pedience justifies.

U. D. Moral sense ! a mere delusion : prejudice
of education ;

Amiable in individuals, childish weakness in a nation.

Pious scruples, tender conscience, doubtless suit a
private station ;

Public interest's the rule for all enlightened legislation.

So in debts : one's private duty pleads, perhaps, for
liquidation :

In a free enlightened people, who shall blame repudia-

J. D. Yet bethink thee that the spirit whence those
pious bounties flowed

To the ties of private feeling all its force and being

Severed from the bonds of kindred, taught his lonely
heart to school

By his Father's chastening kindness or his Church's
sterner rule,

Oft to spots by memory cherished, where his earliest
love began,

In his age's desolation, fondly turned the childless

254 Henry Longueville Mansel

Then the quickening drops of kindness through the

drooping soul were felt
From the home his youth that nurtured, from the

church where first he knelt.
Then the long-neglected feelings claimed once more

their moving part,
And the pent-up tide of bounty forced its passage

through the heart.
U. D. Stuff and nonsense ! why should feeling

public spirit clog and cumber.
When the greatest happiness is wanted for the greatest

number ?
Private ties, you can't disprove it if you argue to


Hamper in their narrow fetters Cosmopolitan Frater-

Close Foundations, limited to one particular locality,
Might as well be left to foster open vice and immor-
ality :
I should feel far more compunction, laying hands to

spoil and pillage
On the brothel of an empire than the college of a


j t _>. Shameless Robber !
U. D. Owl-eyed Bigot !

/. D. Hear'st thou

Heaven, and sleeps thy thunder ?
Right Divine proclaimed for rapine, Laws invoked to

sanction plunder !

Phrontisterton 255

Take a warning in thy triumph. Godless power is

frail to trust :
Sure the millstone of his vengeance ; late it grinds,

but grinds to dust.
Search the tale of fallen nations. Justice banished,

rights forgot.
History's record tells the sequel. Seek her place, and

she is not.
U.D. Worn out notions, musty fancies, redolent

of Church and king,

Guardian -Angels, George -and -Dragons, that old-
fashioned sort of thing.
Master spirits, leading statesmen, all to circumstances

bow :
Public Conscience, State Religion, even Gladstone

scouts them now.
Tut, man, look to facts and figures : truce to all this

idle bustle :
Bluif King Hal is praised in Christchurch ; plundered

Woburn breeds a Russell.
Look at France's half-fledged eaglet, gazing with un-

dazzled eye
On the sunbeams of his glory, and the Orleans

Look at Prussia's champion-heroes, men in freedom's

tale immortal,
Chalking 'national possession' on their tyrant's

palace portal.

256 Henry Longueville Hansel

Look at England's Church Commission, holy work

by Bishops blest
Half your Chapters burked already j Blandford's bill

will do the rest.
If you bandy rights and duties, great reforms will

ne'er begin.
Give the cards a thorough shuffle : cut again ; first

knave to win.
J. D. Tis in vain, I see, to argue. Modern light

must have its way.
Public morals sapped and rotted, knaves must even

win the day.
Fare thee well. Should after-ages bring to pass the

scene foretold,
When our future is a memory, and our days are days

of old.
When New Zealand's travelled native from some

ruined arch looks down
On old Thames's silent current, London's desolated

On the banks no groaning warehouse, on the stream

no flag unfurled,
Where the modern Carthage traded long ago with half

a world.
Then if History's bitter lesson wake the patriot's

anxious care,
Thus the warning voice may mingle in the accents of

his prayer.

Phrontisterion 257

Thou that holds the fate of nations in the scales of

Justice weighed,
Not alone 'gainst foreign armies ; 'gainst ourselves we

ask thy aid.
Never may my country's counsels traffic's sordid spirit

Selling birthrights, cheapening pottage, trading with

a nation's weal.

Never may a craven pilot at our vessel's helm preside,
Swayed by mob-tongued agitation, taking demagogues

for guide,
Truckling to the voice of faction, listening for the

loudest cry,
Gauging pressures, measuring noises, what to grant

and what deny.
Never may the scoundrel maxims of a money-making

Pawn the charter of our freedom, blight the sinews of

our land.
Thou whose gifts are might and wisdom, purge from

mists my country's eyes;
Teach her in the hour of trial where alone her safety

Bid her scorn the shout of faction, bid her spurn the

lust of pelf,
Trusting still through good and evil in her God and

in herself.


258 Henry Longueville Mansel

And if ever public feeling, led by selfish tongues

Gloat o'er traffic's heaped-up riches, smile when Church
and State decay,

Though our blindness ask out curses, still do Thou
vouchsafe to bless,

Spare us England's tradesmen-senate, spare her cotton-
spun success.


(Of 'whom , as happily living, I shall say no more
than that 1 owe him my best thanks for permitting me
to fish in his abundant and lucent streams, which still
flow, but from the freshest of which I have, for reasons,
not drawn. The three pieces here given are taken
from Recaptured Rhymes.)


OH, Philosopher crazed from the Island of Crazes,
Explored and depicted by Jonathan Swift,

Let us hear what your judgments on us and our ways

Permit us your mental impressions to sift.

For we have our follies of wisdom fantastic,
Some high-philosophic, political some,

And would fain ascertain, in no spirit sarcastic,
If you, my dear pundit, can match them at home.

260 Henry Duff Traill

When a man in Laputa falls sick unto danger,
Then is it the rule in that singular place

To throw up the window and ask the first stranger
To kindly come in and prescribe on the case ?

When in legal perplexities, slighter or deeper,
For counsel in law a Laputan applies,

Does he seek the next crossing and beg of its sweeper,
When business is done, to step round and advise ?

Are your pilots 7 certificates commonly given

To men who have not even looked on the seas ?

Are your coachmen selected for not having driven ?
Say, have you Laputans got customs like these ?

You haven't ? Then off with your bee-bearing bonnet,
Illustrious guest from Luggnaggian shores !

And down on your knee and do homage upon it
Profound to a State that is madder than yours !

For though we select not attorney, physician,
Or pilot who steers us, or coachman who drives,

From the ignorant crowd, who would gain erudition
At risk of our fortunes, our limb, or our lives ;

Yet this Ignorance dense that we do not let lead us
In private concerns, lest disaster befall,

Laputa Outdone 261

This, that may not make wills for us, dose us, or bleed

May rule us the business that's hardest of all !

We say to It * Courage ! Nay, go not so shyly !

In time you will master the work you are at ;
Your country presents you her own corpus vile,

See, here is the commonwealth, practise on that !

' Away with the notion (we echo in chorus)
Of power withheld until knowledge be gained/

(Too long, cry the carts, have the horses before us
Unjust and unworthy precedence obtained !)

< The use of the scalpel in surgical functions
Will give you the skill of a surgeon professed,

And by much engine-driving at intricate junctions
One learns to drive engines along with the best.'

For is it not thus our political preachers
Discourse to us daily, in bidding us note

That ' the franchise itself is the truest of teachers,'
That ' voting instructs in the use of the vote '?

So, off with it ! Off with your bee-bearing bonnet,
Illustrious guest from Luggnaggian shores !

And down on your knee, and do homage upon it
Profound to a State that is madder than yours !

262 Henry Duff Traill


OF all the accomplished Professors who ever

From learning contrived common-sense to dissever

Of all who delight, on a question of tongue,

To foment agitation the peoples among

None goes with such thoroughness into the thing

As the erudite Slav whose proceedings I sing ;

And whose name if your jaws I may venture to tax

Is Professor Baloonatics Craniocracs.

International law has his sovereign contempt ;
From restraints of political prudence exempt,
He holds that when races for union clamour,
The question's but one of comparative grammar.
No * national movement, 7 whatever its fruits,
That starts from a real relation of roots,
The strenuous aid and encouragement lacks
Of the famous philologist, Craniocracs.

To many a cause of the ' national ' sort
The Professor has lent his enlightened support ;
But of all his distinctions, his pride was to be a
High priest of the Pan-Macaronic Idea,

Ballad of Baloonatics Craniocracs 263

And first to have raised the Spaghettian claim
To inherit the true Macaronian name :
A position sustained against many attacks
By Professor Baloonatics Craniocracs.

The Spaghetts had been living in decent content, a
Race subject for centuries past to Polenta,
With liberties local and customs respected,
And lenient taxes with justice collected,
And ample permission their children to teach
That poetic and grandly cacophonous speech
Which first to their true nationality's tracks
Had directed Baloonatics Craniocracs.

But they, when he set their ethnology right,
With the free Macaronians burned to unite :
And the worthy Professor went round through their


Establishing Pan-Macaronic Committees,
Until they rebelled in a war to the knife,
And after two years of the bloodiest strife,
Forced haughty Polenta her grasp to relax,
To the joy of their champion Craniocracs.

From this struggle the rise of the Union dates
Of the Pan-Macaronic Confederate States,
Which, besides the Spaghetts, of a kindred as true
Raviolians counts and Lasagnians too.

264 Henry Duff Traill

But above them the Pateditalians claim

A supremacy, due to generical name ;

And their claim the Professor unswervingly backs,

For philologist always is Craniocracs.

Are the freed populations content with their lot ?

Well, candour compels me to say they are not.

Already the Union is deeply in debt

And taxed to the skin is the wretched Spaghett.

And the Pateditalians forbid him to teach

His poetic and grandly cacophonous speech,

On the ground that of modern corruption it smacks

As is even admitted by Craniocracs.

But the worst of it is (if the murder must out),
The Professor's researches have led him to doubt
If his first ethnologic conclusions were sound,
Since he, as it seems, a new ' factor ' has found,
The * Vermicellenic,' so named from a race
Whose affinities throw a new light on the case ;
Transforming, indeed, into whites all its blacks
To the mind of Baloonatics Craniocracs.

Through the Vermicellenes the Spaghett and his


Are clearly of kin to Polenta and other
Great nations ; and though they could only unite
By involving the world in a general fight,

To a Famous Parliament 265

The Professor, intrepid of logic as ever,
Will work day and night at that noble endeavour.
All hobbies are wild, but the wildest of hacks
Is bestrid by Baloonatics Craniocracs.


Hunc neque dira venena nee hosticus auferet ensis
Nee laterum dolor aut tussis nee tarda podagra ;
Garrulus hunc quando consume! cumque ; loquace
Si sapiat, vitet, simul atque adoleverit setas.

As one who from the glacier past the vine

Follows the slow debasement of the Rhine

To where its foiled and sluggish waters creep

Through sand-obstructed channels to the deep

As such an one may in fantastic mood

Muse on the checkered fortunes of the flood,

The source majestic whence its streams descend,

Its proud career and its ignoble end,

Thus but in sober earnestness are we,

O English Parliament, to think of thee ?

Of thee on flats of dull Obstruction found

The long-descended and the high-renowned !

O thou whose shame or glory is our own,

Born with our birth, and with our growth upgrown !

Was it for this the wasting hand of time,

Perils of youth, and maladies of prime,

266 Henry Duff Traill

Spared thee so long ? O thou who first didst draw

In a rude age the infant breath of law,

And, storing silent increments of life

Through our long era of dynastic strife,

Take gradual heart of grace thy voice to raise

From whispering humbleness of Tudor days ;

Wrest the high sceptre from thy Stuart lords ;

Bend only for an hour to Cromwell's swords ;

Live faction down, break through corruption's chains,

And of the Walpole-poison purge thy veins ;

Wax stronger and still stronger, till the land

Saw all its forces gathered to thine hand

Didst thou thus triumph that thou thus shouldst fall ?

Is that proud head that towers over all

Destined to bow before unworthy foes ?

Had ever splendid life so mean a close

As thine will show, if thou, for all thy past,

Must die of talk and Irishmen at last ?


p. i.

Fraine> or better, frayne = 'ask.' A.-S./regnan.

P. 2.

Tancrete, O. F. tancrit, a queer form, as Professor Skeat
observes to me, for ' transcript. '

P. 3-

Under my nde> of course = undermine.
Coarted= coerced.

p. 4 .

Acisia (or rather accidia] is a mediaeval corruption of d/c^&'a,
used for that deadly sin which we rather inadequately translate
Sloth, and which signifies properly a brutal and hardened in-
difference to the dictates of reason and conscience.

Sygne we, i.e. cross ourselves.

Amamelek = a mameluke (?) or diabolical (?)

268 Notes

P. 5-

Sanke roiall, * blood royal ' ; a coarse gibe, but not a bad one.

Parde pardieu, * forsooth. '

Quatriuials . . . triuials. These (the proper form of the
former being ' quadrivials ') were the well - known ' Seven
Liberal Arts' of the Middle Ages Grammar, Logic, and
Rhetoric formed the Trivium ; Music, Arithmetic, Geometry,
and Astronomy the Quadrivium.

p. i 4 .

Emanuel. This College in Cambridge was founded avowedly
for the propagation of Puritanism by Sir H. Mildmay ; and it
long continued a fountain-head thereof.

r. 27.

When aged Thames. A reference (it may be barely neces-
sary to remind the reader) to the * Marriage of Thames and
Medway ' in the Fourth Book of the Faerie Queene.

Steward. Miss Stewart of the * little Roman nose.'

P. 28.

Pett. The ingenious but unlucky Commissioner of that

p. 30.

A medal with the legend Lcetamur was actually struck in
Shaftesbury's honour when the grand jury ignored the Bill of
High Treason against him in November 1681. Polish refers
to a gibe (of not clearly known original authority) against him,
to the effect that he had thought of putting in for the Crown of

Notes 269

Poland when John Sobieski was elected some years earlier.
The whole poem is a ferocious, but not absolutely false, satire
on his very remarkable history and character.

P. 35-

In order to bring the poem within compass, some hundred
lines or so have been omitted.

Stum. New and as yet incompletely fermented wine used
to freshen up stale. In the days when wine was almost always
drunk from the cask this was an easy trick, and the mixture was
very unwholesome.

P. 41-

D y, etc., Danby, Sunderland, Godolphin.

L 7, 'Lory,' is Lawrence Hyde, Lord Rochester.

p. 43-

It is hardly necessary to fill in 'James ' and ' Bancroft.'

P. 44-

Two Wives. The nonjuring and 'juring' churches.
Clancarty. 'Lady Clancarty' has been dramatised.
T n, Tillotson.

P. 46.

T ton, Torrington, to wit, Herbert. The reference is to

the unlucky battle of Beachy Head, wherein, I believe, modern
naval critics think the admiral not so much to blame as Whigs,
and not Whigs only, used to hold.

270 Notes

P. 62.

Celia. Madame de Maintenon.

P. 66.

BastimentoS) lit. 'buildings.' The forts and Treasury estab-
lishments at Portobello.

P. 68.

This exquisite piece ('Here lies Fred') is given with slight
variations in different places ; but this is, on the whole, the best
version. I do not think the author has ever been identified.

p. 93-

Whitehead. 'Paul the Aged,' a clever fellow, but a very
great scoundrel, chiefly famous, or infamous, for sharing in the
Medmenham orgies. I do not know that he was much less clever
or a much greater scoundrel than Churchill ; but he did not
write such good verses. On no account to be confounded with
William Whitehead, his contemporary and junior by only five
years, a poet laureate, a most respectable person, and one o
the worst poets possible.

P. 94-

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