Punch, or the London Charivari, Volume 101, December 19, 1891 online

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VOL. 101.

December 19, 1891.


[Illustration: King Cracker the Millionth, of the Bonbon Dynasty.]

The Baron's Assistants say that of the Christmas works published by
Messrs. HUTCHINSON & CO. they can and do recommend _The Children of
Wilton Chase_ by L.J. MEAD, to which they accord their mead of praise,
which likewise they bestow on FLORENCE MARRYAT's _The Little Marine
and the Japanese Lily_, a book of adventures in the land of the Rising
Sun, which will delight many rising sons for whom chiefly was this
book intended. There are always "more ways than one," and so _Where
Two Ways Meet_ there is like to be a puzzle, solved in this instance
by the authoress, SARAH DOUDNEY. Put down the books! Come to the
festive board! Down - (the right way of course) with the mince-pie and
plum-pudding! Strange is it that the source of so much enjoyment, the
very types of Christmas good cheer, should themselves be so "down in
the mouth" as invariably are Mathew Mince-pie and Peter Plum-pudding
at this festive season. And they being gone and cleared off, enter a
gentleman bearing the unusual and remarkable name of SMITH - familiarly
welcomed as "TOM" of that ilk - and then pop go the crackers! "But
we must keep the secret," whisper the Baron's Assistants, and they
strongly advise everyone not to peep into this _boîte à surprise_
until Christmas Day itself. So, for SPARAGNAPANE's "charming
confections, which," as the Baron's young lady clerks, BLYTHE and GAY,
observe, "are in the very highest style of 'High Art'; and the same
Mr. SPARE-NA-PAIN's _Darkest Evening, and How to Get Out of It_, will
be tidings of comfort and joy to many a holiday-making household."


* * * * *



Sorry, indeed, are all London lovers of music at the sudden departure
from our midst and mist of _Cavalleria Rusticana_, the Rustic
Cavalier. It is no comfort to us to be told that the Rustic Cavalier
will go into the provinces and appeal to the country. His province at
present should have been to remain in London, where, with nothing to
speak of in the way of _mise-en-scène_, he - that is, his composer,
PIETRO MASCAGNI - has made a decided hit. Wise was our Signor LAGO "_al
factotum_" in producing this, and knowing, too, must he be in his
use of Windsor soap to have so speedily "taken the cake." Nay more,
did not HER GRACIOUS MAJESTY absolutely retain a Royal Box at the
Shaftesbury up to the last night of the run of this one-Act Opera?
"_Ah, bravo, Figaro, bravissimo! Fortunatissimo_!" What a treat,
too, to hear again the "_Che faro_." which brought down the Curtain,
and brought down the House, on this termination to GLUCK's _Orfeo_.
Strong, indeed, must be the _Cavalleria_ to be successful after the
_Che taro_: but it was.

The Overture, the solo sung, by way of novelty, behind the Curtain, by
TURIDDU, - (what a name! like the commencement of a comic nonsensical
chorus! TURIDDU ought to have been in love with Tulla Lieti and have
behaved badly to Tralala. "But this is another story.") - the choruses,
and most of the concerted pieces are charming; and, above all, the
_intermezzo_, which, were the piece in two Acts, would he the overture
to the Second Act is simply so fascinating, that without a dissentient
voice from a full house it was warmly and heartily encored, and would
have been called for a third time had the judicious Signor ARDITI
shown the slightest sign of conceding a supply to a fresh demand. None
of the solos, except the one sung behind the Curtain, are particularly
catching, or dramatically effective. Mlle. ELANDI, as _Santuzza_, acts
and sings well; and Signor BERTINI, with a good voice, is about as
stiff in action as a rustic Cavalier would naturally be; while Signor
BROMBARA's _Alfio_ the Mule-driver is histrionically just about
perfect. Of course it will not he long ere we hear it again, and under
vastly improved conditions.

* * * * *



Last Thursday the Fishmongers gave a banquet in their hall to the
Duke of BEAUFORT and other Masters of Hounds. But why should the
Fishmongers thus publicly advertise themselves as "going to the dogs."
What fishly a-fin-ity is there between hounds and herrings, except in
the running of a drag? However, the Lord MAYOR improved the occasion,
which we dare say judging from the liberal hospitality, or, in this
instance hoss-pitality, of the Fishmongering Corporation, scarcely
required improvement, to inform His Grace of BEAUFORT and other noble
sportsmen that he too was a hunting man, and that Lord Mayors of
London ought as a rule to he hunting men if they would keep up the
ancient traditions of their office. Why doesn't his sporting and
equestrian Lordship revive the "Lord Mayor's Hounds" of the time of
GEORGE THE FIRST? The meet might be in Leadenhall Market, or in a
still meater place, Smithfield, and a bag fox being turned out, they
might, on a good scenting day, have a fine burst of a good forty
minutes, taking Houndsditch in their stride away across Goodman's
Fields then away across Bethnal Green, tally-hoing down Cambridge
Road, and then with a merry burst, into Commercial Road East, gaily
along Radcliff Highway, and running into sly Reynard in Limehouse
Basin. Stepney! Yoicks! On hunting days there would be a placard on
the Mansion House door with the words, "Gone Away!" And of course
there would be a list of the meets appended to all the usual notices.
Let the present Lord MAYOR start this, and his Mayoralty will indeed
be a memorable one.

* * * * *


[Mr. ERNEST HART said, in a recent Lecture, that snakes,
frogs, and lobsters could be hypnotised like human beings.]

'Tis the voice of the Lobster, I hear him complain,
That hypnotic suggestion is on me again;
I was mesmerised once and behold, since that time,
I have yielded myself to suggestions of crime:
I have compassed the death of an innocent "dab,"
And attempted to poison an elderly crab.

You'll not wonder my tricks give my relatives shocks,
And they're holding a meeting just now in the rocks
To decide whether I, who was once quite a saint,
Should be put, as the doctors say, under restraint.
I intend to go there in the midst of a trance.
And, may I be boiled, but I'll lead them a dance!

It's a terrible thing, when to virtue inclined.
That some vile Mesmeriser debauches your mind;
When awake I recoil from the things that I've done,
Such as scrunching the poor little mussels for fun.
In these fetters hypnotic a foe holds me fast,
And you'll find that they'll hang me, in seaweed, at last.

* * * * *



Last Friday there appeared a startling paragraph, announcing the first
appearance of a New Island. Appropriately, it was on the face of _The
Globe_. The intelligence came to us _viâ_ Marseilles. Did it come
up to the surface ready furnished for occupation, as in our second
National Anthem about "Britons never being slaves" Britain is
described as doing? The quotation is: - "When Britain first at Heaven's
command, Arose from out the azure main," (or words to that effect),
She (the Island) came up with a ready-made charter, and was open to be
taken furnished. If this is the case, with the new Island, the sooner
some parties "who won't be missed" pack off, bag and baggage, and take
possession of the property, the better. It's a chance. "Island to Let.
Ready furnished. Quite ready for occupation when thoroughly dry. No
Agents need apply. Ground-Swell Landlord, Neptune, C. district."

* * * * *




And thou shalt sit at ease, and mock
The Tory Shepherds of the flock,
The Squire and Parson, o'er whose fall
The Primrose Dames already squall.

And I will give thee cots most cosy,
Of structure sound and aspect rosy;
True homes, salubrious if not garish,
And proper influence in the parish.

One-Man-one-Vote, the Ballot, School,
And rating on a fairer rule;
A Charity less harsh and cold
To warm thine heart when thou grow'st old.

A chance upon the land to dwell,
Free, independent, faring well;
And if these pleasures may thee move,
Come live with me, and be _my_ love!

Though Tory Swains thy vote may crave
To keep thee still the Landlord's slave,
If freedom's joys thy mind may move,
Come live with _me_ and be _my_ love!


(_Some way after Sir Walter Raleigh._)

If I were sure 'twere sooth thou'st sung,
That truth were on thy silvery tongue;
These pleasures must my passion move
To live with thee and be thy love.

But art _thou_ sure the Allotted Field
A present paradise will yield,
Making a lady of a thrall,
As dreamed at the Memorial Hall?

Thy Village Council, Cottage cosy,
Present in sooth a prospect rosy,
But promises so oft are rotten;
I've oft been wooed - and oft forgotten!

Free vote, fair rating, open school,
Good wage, intelligent self-rule, -
These are enticements me would move
To live with thee and be thy love.

If thy zeal last, if love, indeed,
Fire thee my hapless lot to heed;
Then such delights my mind shall move
To live with thee and be thy love.

* * * * *

A LOST OPPORTUNITY. - During a recent _cause célèbre_ in the Divorce
Court the petitioner was asked by Sir CHARLES RUSSELL, Q.C., M.P.,
P.T.P.C., "Did he do anything?" to which the reply was, "He took up
a salt-cellar and threw the contents in my face." Mr. FRANK LOCKWOOD,
Q.C., M.P., V.P.T.P.C. has been lamenting ever since that he could
not have appeared as _amicus curiæ_ to point out that this testimony,
until flatly contradicted, "must be taken as _primâ facie_ evidence of
_a salting her_."

* * * * *



One, two, crimson and blue;
Two, three, treaclyness free;
Three, four, gilding galore;
Four, five, bogies alive;
Five, six, spectres from Styx;
Six, seven, angels from heaven;
Seven, eight, big "extra plate";
Eight, nine, wassail and wine;
Nine, ten, pencil and pen;
Ten, eleven, commercial leaven;
Eleven, twelve, "high-art" shelve;
Thirteen, fourteen, pictures of sporting;
Fifteen, sixteen, ghost-stories, fixt een;
Seventeen, eighteen, advertisements great in;
Nineteen, twenty, profit in plenty!

* * * * *

[Illustration: "WHEN A MAN DOES NOT LOOK HIS BEST." - NO. 5.


* * * * *


SCENE - _Interior of a Publisher's Office, shortly after the
trial of Pinnock v. Chapman and Hall._

_Publisher_. We have given our best attention to your Manuscript of
a three-volumed novel, called - let me see, what did you call it? Oh,
yes, here it is! - called, _Haunted by Sixteen Goblins_, and we are
afraid it won't do.

_Literary Aspirant_ (_pained_). Won't _do_!

_Pub._ (_calmly_). No. Won't do a bit - at least, not in its present
form. You see, you introduce a Pirate Chief, named Captain WILDFIRE,
who lives at Singapore, and who murders the mate, the steward, five
seamen, and all the Passengers of the _Jolly Seamew_, the vessel that
he commands, and appropriates five million dollars belonging to his
employers, the vessel's owners.

_Lit. Asp._ Quite so. I thought those incidents would be rather
exciting. They're so new. Do you object to the murders, or what?

_Pub._ Oh, dear no! But now this name, Captain WILDFIRE.
(_Suspiciously._) Are you sure there is nobody whose name is at all
like it, and who also resides at Singapore?

_Lit. Asp._ I took the name quite by chance. I've never been near
Singapore in my life.

_Pub._ (_relieved_). Glad to hear it. One has to be so careful
nowadays. Here's an Army List - let us see if anybody called WILDFIRE
figures in it. Ha! What's this! "Major WILDMAN, 217th Hussars."
(_Gazes at Lit. Aspirant sternly._) Is your Captain WILDFIRE
intended as a caricature of Major WILDMAN, Sir, or is it not?

_Lit. Asp._ (_astonished_). Why, of course not! I never heard of the

_Pub._ Very likely not. _We_ should hear of him precious soon if we
published your novel as it stands.

_Lit. Asp._ But what reason is there to suppose this Major WILDMAN has
ever been to Singapore? And how can a captain of a merchantship like
the _Jolly Seamew_ be confused with a Major in the Army who has never
commanded a vessel in his life?

_Pub._ (_doggedly_). All very well; but the name must come out. Then
I don't like this description of the Ninth Goblin at all. Where is it?
Oh, here! (_Reads._) "Even the cerements of the tomb enveloping the
form of the Ninth Goblin could not hide - nay, seemed rather to bring
prominently forward - the malignant expression of the one-eyed
face, with its crop of red whiskers, beetle brows, and low receding

_Lit. Asp._ What's wrong with _that_?

_Pub._ Wrong! Everything's wrong! There are lots of people about with
red whiskers and low receding foreheads, and they'll all bring actions
of libel.

_Lit. Asp._ But _my_ Goblin has only one eye.

_Pub._ Well, so may they. They're equal to taking one eye out and
putting it back when the trial's over, if they thought it'd help them
to get money out of _us_. There may be a fellow called Mr. GOBLIN
somewhere, too. Oh, no; it won't do at all. All the chapters with the
Ninth Goblin in must come out.

_Lit. Asp._ (_aghast_). But that would spoil the book - it would mean
leaving out half of it.

_Pub._ Yes, it would reduce the bulk, no doubt. In any case we could
not produce it in a three-volume form. But we are bringing out a
series of cheap fictions, and we might include yours.

_Lit. Asp._ (_making the best of things_). Well, _some_ good books
have appeared in a shilling form.

_Pub._ Yes. But it's not a shilling form we should propose. The fact
is, that there is a great run on Penny Novelettes just now, and -

_Lit. Asp._ (_rising_). And you dare to propose bringing out the
_Sixteen Goblins_ as a Penny Novelette!

_Pub._ Certainly, and in view of the risk of actions for libel,
you would have to pay the printing-bill, and give us a contract of
indemnity in case your _Captain Wildfire_ did turn out to be identical
with some retired pirate who feels himself hurt at your description.
You don't think much of the proposal? Well, nor do we of the book, to
tell you the truth. Ta, ta!

[_Disappears into inner room. Literary Aspirant slowly folds
up his novel, and exit._

* * * * *

MOTTO FOR THE DIVORCE COURT. - Marry, and come up!

* * * * *



SCENE - _The Tombs of the SCALIGERS at Verona. A seedy and
voluble Cicerone, who has insisted upon volunteering his
services, is accompanying Miss TROTTER, BOB PRENDERGAST,
and CULCHARD. It is a warm afternoon, and CULCHARD, who
has been intrusted with Miss T.'s recent purchases - two
Italian blankets, and a huge pot of hammered copper - is
not in the most amiable of moods._

_The Cicerone_ (_in polyglot_). Ecco, Signore (_pointing out the
interlaced ladders in the wrought-iron railings_), l'échelle, la
scala, c'est tout flexible - (_He shakes the trellis_) - molto, molto

_Culch._ (_bitterly, to the other two_). I _warned_ you how it would
be! We shall have this sort of thing all the afternoon _now_!

_Miss T._ Well, I don't mind; he's real polite and obliging - and
that's something, anyway!

[Illustration: "Bellissimo scultore!"]

_Culch._ Polite and obliging! Now I _ask_ you - has he given us the
slightest atom of valuable information _yet_?

_Miss T._ I guess he's too full of tact to wish to interfere with your
special department!

_The Cic._ (_to CULCHARD, who looks another way_). Ici le tombeau di
GIOVANNI DELLA SCALA, Signore. Verri grazioso molto magnifique, joli
conservé! (_He skins up on the pedestal, and touches a sarcophagus_.)
Non bronzo - verde-antique!

[_Nods at CULCHARD, with a beaming smile._

_Culch._ (_with a growl_). Va bene, va bene - _we_ know all about it!

_Bob P. You_ may; but you might give Miss TROTTER and me a chance, you

_The Cic._ Zees, Marmor di Carrara; _zat_, Marmor di Verona - Verona
marbre. MARTINO PRIMO a fait bàtir. (_Counting on his fingers for
CULCHARD's benefit._) Quattuor dichièmé secolo - _fotteen_!

_Culch._ Will you kindly understand that I am quite capable of
estimating the precise period of this sculpture for myself.

_The Cic._ Si-si, Signore. Scultore BONINO DA CAMPIGLIONE. (_With a
wriggle of deferential enthusiasm._) Bellissimo scultore!

_Miss T._ He's got an idea you find him vurry instructive, Mr.
CULCHARD, and I guess, if you want to disabuse him, you'd better do it
in Italian.

_Culch._ I think my Italian is equal to conveying an impression that
I can willingly dispense with his society. (_To the Cic._) Andate
via - do you understand? An-da-te _via_!

_The Cic._ (_hurt, and surprised_). Ah, Signore!

[_He breaks into a fervent vindication of his value as guide,
philosopher, and friend._

_Miss T._ I guess he's endeavouring to intimate that his wounded
self-respect isn't going to be healed under haff a dollar. And every
red cent I had went on that old pot! Mr. CULCHARD, will you give him a
couple of francs for me?

_Culch._ I - er - really see no necessity. He's done nothing whatever to
deserve it!

_Bob P._ (_eagerly_). May _I_. Miss TROTTER? (_Producing a ten-lire
note_.) This is the smallest change I've got.

_Miss T._ No. I guess ten francs would start him with more
self-respect than he's got any use for. Mr. CULCHARD will give him
three - that's one apiece - to punish him for being so real mean!

_Culch._ (_indignantly_). Mean? because I - ! (_He pays and dismisses
the Cic._) Now we can examine these monuments in peace - they are
really - er - unique examples of the sepulchral pomp of Italian

_Miss T._ They're handsome tombs enough - but considerable cramped. I
should have thought these old Scallywags would have looked around
for a roomier burying lot. (_To CULCHARD, who shivers_.) You aren't
feeling sick any?

_Culch._ No - only pained by such a travesty of a noble name.
"Scallywags" for SCALIGERS seems to me, if I may say so, a very cheap
form of humour!

_Miss T._ Well, it's more than cheap - it isn't going to cost you a
cent, so I should think you'd appreciate it!

_Bob P._ Haw - score for _you_, Miss TROTTER!

_Culch._ I should have thought myself that mere personality is hardly
enough to give point to any repartee - there is a slight difference
between brilliancy and - er - _brutality_!

_Bob P._ Hullo! You and I are being sat upon pretty heavily, Miss

_Miss T._ I guess our Schoolmaster's abroad. But why Mr. CULCHARD
should want to make himself a train out of my coverlets, I don't just
see - he looks majestic enough without that.

[_CULCHARD catches up a blanket which is trailing, and says
bad words under his breath._


_Culch._ (_who is gradually recovering his equanimity_). Think of
it! the actual spot on which _Romeo_ and _Juliet_ - SHAKSPEARE's
_Juliet_ - drew their last breath! Does it not realise the tragedy for

_Miss T._ Well, no - it's a disappointing tomb. I reckoned it would
look less like a horse-trough. I should have expected _Juliet's_ Poppa
and Momma would want, considering all the facts of the case, to throw
more style into her monument!

_Culch._ (_languidly_). May not its very simplicity - er - attest the
sincerity of their remorse?

_Miss T._ Do you attach any particular meaning to that observation
now? (_CULCHARD bites his lip._) I notice this tomb is full of
visiting cards - my! but ain't that curious?

_Culch._ (_instructively_). It only shows that this place is not
without its pathos and interest for _most_ visitors, no matter what
their nationality may be. You don't feel inclined yourself to - ?

_Miss T._ To leave a pasteboard? Why I shouldn't sleep any all night,
for fear she'd return my call!

_Culch._ (_producing a note-book_). It's fanciful, perhaps but, if you
don't mind waiting a little, I should like to contribute - not my card,
but a sonnet. I feel one on its way.

_Bob P._ Better make sure the tomb's _genuine_ first, hadn't you? Some
say it _isn't_.

_Culch._ (_exasperated_). I _knew_ you'd make some matter-of-fact
remark of that kind! There - it's no use! Let us go.

_Miss T._ Why, your sonnets seem as skeery as those lizards there! I
hope JULIET won't ever know what she's missed. But likely you'll mail
those verses on to her later.

[_She and BOB P. pass on, laughing._

_Culch._ (_following_). She only affects this vulgar flippancy to
torment me. If I didn't know _that_ - There, I've left that infernal
pot behind now!

[_Goes back for it, wrathfully._

_In the Amphitheatre; Miss PRENDERGAST, PODBURY, and VAN
BOODELER, are seated on an upper tier._

_Podb._ (_meditatively_). I suppose they charged highest for the
lowest seats. Wonder whether a lion ever nipped up and helped himself
to some fat old buffer in the Stalls when the martyrs turned out a
leaner lot than usual!

_Van. B._ There's an ingenuous modernity about our friend's historical
speculations that is highly refreshing.

_Miss P._ There is, indeed - though he might have spared himself and
_us_ the trouble of them if he had only remembered that the _podium_
was invariably protected by a railing, and occasionally by _euripi_,
or trenches. You surely learnt that at school. Mr. PODBURY?

_Podb._ I - I daresay. Forgotten all I learnt at school, you know!

_Van. B._ I should infer now, from that statement, that you enjoyed
the advantages of a pretty liberal education?

_Podb._ If that's meant to be cutting. I should save it up for that
novel of yours; it may seem smart - _there_!

_Miss P._ Really, Mr. PODBURY, if you choose to resent a playful
remark in that manner, you had better go away.

_Podb._ Perhaps I had. (_Rises, and moves off huffily_). D - - his
playfulness! 'Pon my word, poor old CULCHARD was _nothing_ to
that beggar! And she backs him up! But there - it's all part of my
probation! (_Here CULCHARD suddenly appears, laden with burdens._)
Hullo! are you _moving_, or what?

_Culch._ I am merely carrying a few things for Miss TROTTER. (_Drops
the copper pot, which bounds down into the arena._) Dash the thing!...
(_Returning with it_.) It's natural that, in my position, I should
have these - er - privileges. (_He trips over a blanket._) Conf - Have
you happened to see Miss TROTTER about, by the way?

_Podb._ Fancy I saw her down below just now - with BOB. I expect
they're walking round under the arches.

_Culch._ Just so. Do you know, PODBURY, I almost think I'll go down
and find her. I - I'm curious to hear what her impressions of a place
like this are. Such a scene, you know, - so full of associations
with - er - the splendours and cruelties of a corrupt past - must produce
a powerful effect upon the fresh untutored mind of an American girl,

_Miss T.'s voice_ (_distinctly from arena_). I'd like ever so much to
see Buffalo BILL run his Show in here - he'd just make this old circus

_Miss P.'s voice_ (_indistinctly from topmost tier_). Almost fancy
it all.... Senators - _equites - populus - pullati_... yellow sunlight
striking down through _vellarium_ ... crimsoned sand ... _mirmillo_
fleeing before _secutor_ ... DIOCLETIAN himself, perhaps, lolling over
there on _cubiculum_ ... &c., &c., &c.

_Culch._ The place appears to excite Miss PRENDERGAST's enthusiasm, at
all events! [_Sighs._

_Podb._ Rath-er! But then she's no end of a classical swell, you know!

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Online LibraryVariousPunch, or the London Charivari, Volume 101, December 19, 1891 → online text (page 1 of 3)