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THE

MUDFOG

PAPERS,

ETC.

EY

CHARLES DICKENS, AUTHOR OF "THE PICKWICK PAPERS,"

ETC.

NOW FIRST COLLECTED.

LONDON

:

RICHARD BENTLEY AND |tablisfyers

in ©rbittarg 10 fjtx Pajeaig i\t

{All rights reserved.)

SON, %wtm*


The

little

volume

were written by Charles Dickens

for the

papers contained in this

numbers of

early

The

"

Bentley's

Miscellany."

manuscripts of the two meetings of the of " Mr.

Mudfog

Association, and

Bolton,

the gentleman connected

Press/' in

my

with the

possession, are covered with

corrections, erasures,

time Charles

Robert

and additions.

Dickens wrote a

At

freer

that

and

bolder hand than he came to write in later years,

and

these

manuscripts

decipherable.

765936

are

easily


IV

Something perhaps of the comparative freedom of the handwriting of these sketches,

when "

set

by the side of the manuscript of

Our Mutual

quill pen,

of that

Friend,"

may be owing

with whose exit has gone out

free

and

graceful

to the

much

penmanship of

which Mr. Lupton reminds us that Thomas

Tomkins, of

Paul's School,

St.

was so un-

rivalled a teacher.

GEORGE BENTLEY.

New Burlington July 26th,

Street,


PUBLIC LIFE OF MR. TULRUMBLE, ONCE MAYOR OF MUDFOG.

Mudfog

is

a pleasant town

— situated pleasant town by the

in

side of a river, from

—a

remarkably

a charming hollow

which

river,

Mud-

fog derives an agreeable scent of pitch,

tar,

and rope-yarn, a roving population in oil-skin hats, a pretty steady influx of drunken coals,

bargemen, and a great many other maritime advantages. There is a good deal of water about Mudfog, and yet it is not exactly the sort of town for a watering-place, either.

Water

is

a perverse sort of element at the

best of times, and in larly so.

In winter,

Mudfog it

it

is

particu-

comes oozing down I


Public Life of

2

Mr. Tulrumble.

the streets and tumbling over the

fields,

—nay,

rushes, into the very cellars

and kitchens of

a lavish

prodigality that

the

houses,

-.villi

might well be dispensed with but in the hot summer weather it will dry up, and turn ;

green

:

and, although green

colour in

its

way, especially

is

a very good

in grass, still

it

and

it

not becoming to water cannot be denied that the beauty of is

certainly

is

;

Mudfog

rather impaired, even by this trifling

cumstance. healthy

;

Mudfog

is

a healthy place

cir-

— very

— damp, perhaps, but none the worse

for that.

It's

quite a mistake to suppose that

damp is unwholesome plants thrive best in damp situations, and why shouldn't men ? The inhabitants of Mudfog are unanimous in :

asserting that there exists not a finer race of

people on the face of the earth here we have an indisputable and veracious contra;

diction

of the

admitting state that

vulgar error at once.

Mudfog it is

to

So,

be damp, we distinctly

salubrious.


Public Life of Mr. Tulrutnble.

The town

of

Mudfog

is

Limehouse and

turesque.

3

extremely pic-

Ratcliff

Highway

but they give you There are a a very faint idea of Mudfog.

are both something like

great

many more

more than

in

public-houses in

We

are very imposing.

town-hall

one

of the

and the

simplicity of

passing beauty.

window on one

its

There

it is

design

is

orders

;

of sur-

idea of placing a large

side

small one on the other, is

:

consider the

tea-garden-box,

The

—

specimens of a combination

finest

shed architecture, extant of the pig-sty and

Mudfog

Highway and LimeThe public buildings,

Ratcliff

house put together. too,

it,

the

of is

door,

and a

particularly happy.

a fine bold Doric beauty, too, about

the padlock and scraper, which

is

strictly in

keeping with the general effect. In this room do the mayor and corporation of Mudfog assemble together in solemn council for the public weal.

massive

Seated on the

wooden benches, which, with the


Public Life of Mr. Titlrumble.

4

table in the centre, form the only furniture of

the whitewashed apartment, the sage

men

of

Mudfog spend hour after hour in grave deliberation. Here they settle at what hour of the night the public-houses shall be closed, at

what hour of the morning they

permitted to open, ful for

how soon

it

shall

shall

be

be law-

people to eat their dinner on church

and other great political questions and sometimes, long after silence has fallen on the town, and the distant lights from the shops days,

;

and houses have ceased

to twinkle, like far-

off stars, to the sight of the

boatmen on the

river,

the illumination in the two unequal-

sized

windows of the

inhabitants of

Mudfog

town-hall, warns the that

its

little

body

of

a larger and better-known body of the same genus, a great deal more noisy, and not a whit more profound, are

legislators, like

patriotically dozing

away

in

company,

far

into the night, for their country's good.

Among

this

knot of sage and learned


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

5

men, no one was so eminently distinguished, during

many

years, for the quiet

modesty of

appearance and demeanour, as Nicholas Tulrumble, the well-known coal-dealer. How-

his

ever exciting the subject of discussion, however animated the tone of the debate, or

however warm the

personalities exchanged,

(and even in Mudfog we get personal sometimes,) Nicholas Tulrumble was always the

same.

To

say truth,

Nicholas,

being

an

and always up betimes, was asleep when a debate began, and

industrious man,

apt to

fall

remain asleep till it was over, when he would wake up very much refreshed, and to

give his vote with the greatest complacency.

The

fact was, that

Nicholas Tulrumble, know-

ing that everybody there had made up his mind beforehand, considered the talking as just a long botheration about nothing at all

and

to the present

whether, on

hour

it

;

remains a question,

this point at all events, Nicholas

Tulrumble was not pretty near

right.


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

6

Time, which strews a man's head with silver, sometimes fills his pockets with gold. As he gradually performed one good office for

Nicholas Tulrumble,

enough,

began

not to

he

was obliging

omit the other.

Nicholas

a wooden tenement of four feet

life in

and ninepence, trade of three bushels and

square, with a capital of two

and a stock

in

a-half of coals, exclusive of the large

lump

which hung, by way of sign-board, outside. Then he enlarged the shed, and kept a truck; then he

left

the shed, and the truck too, and

donkey and a Mrs. Tulrumble then he moved again and set up a cart the cart

started a

;

;

was soon afterwards exchanged for a waggon and so he went on like his great predecessor

;

Whittington

— only without a cat

— increasing

in

for a partner

wealth and fame, until at

last

he gave up business altogether, and retired with Mrs. Tulrumble and family to Mudfog Hall, which he had himself erected, on something which he attempted to delude himself


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble. into the belief

was a

hill,

7

about a quarter of

a mile distant from the town of Mudfog.

About in

this time,

that

Mudfog

it

to

began

be murmured

Nicholas Tulrumble was

growing vain and haughty that prosperity and success had corrupted the simplicity of ;

and tainted the natural goodness heart in short, that he was setting up

his manners,

of his

;

and a great gentleman, look down upon his old com-

for a public character,

and

affected to

panions

compassion and contempt. these reports were at the time

with

Whether

well-founded, or not, certain

it

is

Mrs.

that

Tulrumble very shortly afterwards started a four-wheel chaise, driven by a

—that

tall

postilion in

Mr. Tulrumble junior took to smoking cigars, and calling the footman a " feller/' and that Mr. Tulrumble a yellow

cap,

—

from that time

forth,

was no more seen

in his

old seat in the chimney-corner of the Lighter-

man's

Arms

more than

at night.

this, it

This looked bad

began

to

;

but,

be observed that


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

8

Mr. Nicholas Tulrumble attended the

cor-

more frequently than hereand he no longer went to sleep as he

poration meetings tofore

;

had done

for so

many

eyelids open with his

years, but

two

propped

fore-fingers

;

read the newspapers by himself at

and that he was

that he

home

;

indulging

and mysterious allusions to masses of people," and " the property of

abroad "

in the habit of

his

in distant

" the country,'' and productive power," and

"

the

monied

"

interest

:

all

of which denoted

and proved that Nicholas Tulrumble was either mad, or worse and it puzzled the good ;

people of

At

Mudfog amazingly.

length, about the middle of the

month

of October, Mr. Tulrumble and family

up

to

London

as Mrs. in

;

went

the middle of October being,

Tulrumble informed her acquaintance

Mudfog, the very height of the fashionable

season.

Somehow

or other, just about this time,

despite the health-preserving air of Mudfog,


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble. the

Mayor

was a most extraordinary he had lived in Mudfog for

died.

circumstance eighty-five

;

It

The

years.

understand

it

difficulty that

9

corporation

didn't

was with great one old gentleman, who was

at all

indeed

;

it

a great stickler for forms, was dissuaded from

proposing a vote of censure on such unac-

Strange as it was, howwithout taking the slightest

countable conduct. ever, die

he

did,

notice of the corporation

were imperatively successor.

;

called

So, they

met

and the corporation

upon for

to elect his

the purpose

;

and being very full of Nicholas Tulrumble just then, and Nicholas Tulrumble being a very important man, they elected him, and wrote off to London by the very next post to acquaint Nicholas Tulrumble with his new elevation.

Now,

it

being

November

time,

and Mr.

Nicholas Tulrumble being in the capital, it fell out that he was present at the Lord

Mayors show and

dinner, at sight of the


Public Life of

io

Mr. Tulrumble.

glory and splendour whereof, he, Mr. Tul-

was greatly mortified, inasmuch as the reflection would force itself on his mind, rumble,

that,

had he been born

in

London

instead of

Mudfog, he might have been a Lord Mayor too, and have patronized the judges, and been in

Lord Chancellor, and friendly with the Premier, and coldly condescending

affable to the

to the Secretary to the Treasury,

and have

dined with a flag behind his back, and done a great many other acts and deeds which

Lord Mayors of London peculiarly The more he thought of the appertain. unto

Lord Mayor, the more enviable a personage he seemed. To be a King was all very well;

King to the Lord Mayor King made a speech, everybody

but what was the

When knew

the

!

was somebody else's writing; whereas here was the Lord Mayor, talking away for it

half an hour

—

all

out of his

own head

— amidst

the enthusiastic applause of the whole com-

pany, while

it

was notorious that the King


Public Life of Mr. TiUrttmble.

might

talk to his parliament

till

1 1

he was black

without getting so much as a single As all these reflections passed through

in the face

cheer.

mind of Mr. Nicholas Tulrumble, the Lord Mayor of London appeared to him the

the

greatest sovereign on the face of the earth,

beating the Emperor of Russia

all

to nothing,

and leaving the Great Mogul immeasurably behind.

Mr. Nicholas Tulrumble was pondering over these things, and inwardly cursing the fate

which had pitched

fog,

when

Mud-

the letter of the corporation was put

into his hand. his face as

his coal-shed in

A

crimson flush mantled over

he read

it,

for visions of brightness

were already dancing before his imagination. My dear," said Mr. Tulrumble to his 11

wife,

"

they have elected me,

Mayor

of

Mud-

fog." " "

n

Lor-a-mussy

!

said

Mrs.

Tulrumble

:

"

why what's become of old Sniggs ? " The late Mr. Sniggs, Mrs. Tulrumble,

,,


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

12

Mr. Tulrumble sharply, for he by no

said

means approved of the notion of unceremoniously designating a gentleman the high office of Mayor, as

—

"

The

late

"

who

filled

Old Sniggs,"

Mr. Sniggs, Mrs. Tulrumble,

is

dead."

The communication was very unexpected

;

but Mrs. Tulrumble only ejaculated " Lor-a" once again, as if a Mayor were a mussy !

"mere ordinary Christian, at which Mr. Tul-

rumble frowned gloomily. "

said

What

a pity

"

'tan't in

London,

ain't

it ?

Mrs. Tulrumble, after a short pause

;

"

what a pity 'tan t in London, where you might have had a show." "

I

might have a show

in

Mudfog, if I apprehend," said Mr. Tul-

thought proper, I rumble mysteriously. "

Lor

!

so you might,

I

declare,"

replied

Mrs. Tulrumble.

"And rumble.

a good one too," said Mr. Tul-


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble. "

"

Delightful

Mrs.

exclaimed

!

1

3

Tul-

rumble. "

One which would rather astonish the Tulignorant people down there/' said Mr. rumble. 11

It

would

kill

them with envy,"

said Mrs.

Tulrumble.

So

was agreed that his Majesty's lieges in Mudfog should be astonished with splendour, and slaughtered with envy, and that' it

such a show should take place as had never been seen in that town, or in any other town before,

On the

— no, not even

in

London

itself.

the very next day after the receipt of

down came

letter,

post-chaise,

but inside

— not

the

tall

postilion in a

upon one of the horses,

— actually

inside the chaise,

—and,

driving up to the very door of the town-hall,

where the corporation were assembled, delivered a letter, written by the Lord knows who, and signed by Nicholas Tulrumble, in which Nicholas said, all through four sides of


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

14

closely-written, gilt-edged, hot-pressed,

Bath

post letter paper, that he responded to the of his fellow-townsmen with feelings of

call

he accepted the arduous which their confidence had imposed

heartfelt delight; that office

upon him

that they

;

would never

him

find

shrinking from the discharge of his duty that he would endeavour tions with

all

that dignity which their magni-

tude and importance demanded

more not

to the

all.

same

The

;

to execute his func-

tall

effect.

postilion

and a great But even this was ;

produced from

his

right-hand top-boot, a damp copy of that afternoons number of the county paper and ;

running the whole length column, was a long address

there, in large type,

of the very

first

from Nicholas Tulrumble to the inhabitants of Mudfog, in which he said that he cheer-

complied with their requisition, and, in short, as if to prevent any mistake about the

fully

them over again what a grand fellow he meant to be, in very much the same

matter, told


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

terms as those

them

in

which he had already told

about the matter in his

all

The

corporation stared

very hard at

all

this,

at

letter.

one another

and then looked as

for explanation to the tall postilion, tall

postilion

was

15

if

but as the

intently contemplating the

gold tassel on the top of his yellow cap, and could have afforded no explanation whatever,

even

if

his thoughts

engaged,

had been

they contented

entirely dis-

themselves with

coughing very dubiously, and looking very The tall postilion then delivered grave. another

letter, in

which Nicholas Tulrumble

informed the corporation, that he intended repairing to the town-hall, in grand state and

gorgeous procession, on the Monday afternoon next ensuing. At this the corporation looked

still

more solemn

wound up with

;

a formal

but, as the epistle

invitation

to

the

whole body to dine with the Mayor on that day, at

Mudfog

they began

Hall,

Mudfog

Hill,

Mudfog,

to see the fun of the thing directly,


1

Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

6

and sent back

their compliments,

and they'd

be sure to come.

Now somehow in

there happened to be in Mudfog, as or other there does happen to be,

almost every town

and perhaps

in

the British dominions,

in foreign

dominions too

—we

very likely, but, being no great there haptraveller, cannot distinctly say pened to be, in Mudfog, a merry-tempered,

think

it

—

pleasant-faced, good-for-nothing sort of vaga-

bond,

with an invincible dislike to manual

and an unconquerable attachment to strong beer and spirits, whom everybody knew, and nobody, except his wife, took the labour,

trouble to quarrel with, his

ancestors

the

who

inherited from

appellation

of

Edward

Twigger, and rejoiced in the sobriquet of Bottle-nosed Ned. He was drunk upon the average once a day, and penitent upon an and equally fair calculation once a month ;

when he was the very last

he was invariably in stage of maudlin intoxication.

penitent,


Public Life of Mr. Ttilrumble.

17

He

was a ragged, roving, roaring kind of fellow, wi$i a burly form, a sharp wit, and a ready head, and could turn his hand to anything when he chose to do it. He was by no

means opposed to hard labour on principle, for he would work away at a cricket-match

—

by the day together, running, and catching, and batting, and bowling, and revelling in

He which would exhaust a galley-slave. would have been invaluable to a fire-office

toil

;

never was a

man

for

engines, running

pumping

with such a natural taste

up

ladders,

and

throwing furniture out of two-pair-of-stairs windows nor was this the only element in which he was at home he was a humane :

;

society in himself, a portable drag,

an animated

and had saved more people, from drowning, than the Plymouth

life-preserver, in his time, life-boat,

With his

all

or

Captain

dissipation,

general

Manby's

apparatus.

these qualifications, notwithstanding

favourite

Bottle-nosed ;

and the

Ned was authorities

a of


1

8

Ptiblic Life

of Mr. Tulrumble.

Mudfog, remembering

his

to the population, allowed

numerous services

him

in

return to

get drunk in his own way, without the fear of stocks, fine, or imprisonment. He had a general licence, and he showed his sense of

the compliment by making the most of

it.

We have

been thus particular in describing the Character and avocations of Bottle-nosed

Ned, because

it

enables us to introduce a fact

without hauling it into the readers presence with indecent haste by the head and politely,

and brings us very naturally to relate, that on the very same evening on which Mr. Nicholas Tulrumble and family

shoulders,

Mudfog, Mr. Tulrumble's new just imported from London, with a

returned to secretary,

pale face and light whiskers, thrust his head down to the very bottom of his neckcloth-tie,

tap-room door of the Lighterman's Arms, and inquiring whether one Ned Twigger was luxuriating within, announced him-

in at the

self as the bearer of

a message from Nicholas


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

19

Tulrumble, Esquire, requiring Mr. Twigger's immediate attendance at the hall, on private

and particular business. It being by no means Mr. Twigger's interest to affront the

Mayor, he rose from the fire-place with a slight sigh, and followed the light-whiskered secretary through the dirt and streets,

fog

up

to

Mudfog

wet of Mudwithout

Hall,

further ado.

Mr. Nicholas Tulrumble was seated

in

a

small cavern with a skylight, which he called

a plan of the procession on a large sheet of paper; and into the cavern the secretary ushered Ned his library, sketching out

Twigger. Nicholas Tul-

"Well, Twigger!" said rumble, condescendingly.

was

There would that

have

was

in

a

replied,

time

when

"Well,

Twigger Nick!" but

the days of the truck, and a

couple of years before the donkey only bowed.

;

so,

he


Public Life of Mr. Ttdrumble.

20 "

want you

I

to

go

into training,

Twigger,"

said Mr. Tulrumble. "

What

sir?" inquired Ned, with a

for,

stare. "

"

said the Mayor. Hush, hush, Twigger Shut the door, Mr. Jennings. Look here, !

"

Twigger."

As

the

closet,

high

said this, he unlocked a

Mayor

and disclosed a complete

suit of

brass armour, of gigantic dimensions. "

I

want you

to

wear

next Monday,

this

Twigger," said the "

Ned,

Mayor. Bless your heart and "

"

soul, sir

me

you might as well ask

replied

!

wear a

to

seventy-four pounder, or a cast-iron boiler." "

Nonsense, Twigger,

nonsense

" !

said

the Mayor. "

couldn't

I

Twigger of me, "

" ;

if 1

it

stand under

attempted

I

said

it."

"

Mayor.

sir,"

would make mashed potatoes

Pooh, pooh, "

it,

tell

Twigger you

I

!

returned the

have seen

it

done


Public Life of Mr, Tulrumble.

my own

with

eyes, in

wasn't half such a

21

London, and the man

man

as

you are, either." I should as soon have thought of a man's wearing the case of an eight-day "

clock

save

to

his

said

Twigger, brass the at a of look casting apprehension linen,"

suit.

"

the easiest thing in the world,"

It's

rejoined the Mayor. "

It's

nothing," said Mr. Jennings.

"When

you're used to

it,"

"

"

You do it by degrees," You would begin with one

added Ned.

said the

Mayor.

piece to-morrow,

and two the next day, and so on, till you had Mr. Jennings, give Twigger got it all on. a glass of rum.

Stay

Twigger.

;

Help me

first.

Stand as

Just try the breast-plate,

firm,

heavy as

take another glass of to

Twigger

lift !

There

so,

a

Mr. Jennings. !

—

it

isn't half

" it

looks,

is it ?

Twigger was a good after

it,

rum

great

deal

strong, stout fellow

of

;

staggering, he


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

22

to

managed

breast-plate,

keep himself up, under the and even contrived, with the

aid of another glass of rum, to walk about in

and the gauntlets

it,

He made

trial

instantly,

Tulrumble

bargain.

of the helmet, but was not

successful,

equally

over

a

into the

—an

clearly

inasmuch as he tipped Mr. accident which

demonstrated to be occa-

sioned by his not having a counteracting

weight of brass on his "

Now, wear

and

I'll

make your

"Til try what "

legs.

with grace and pro-

on Monday next," said Tulrumble,

priety "

that

I

fortune."

can do,

sir,"

said Twigger.

must be kept a profound

It

secret,"

said Tulrumble. " "

Of

course,

sir,"

replied Twigger.

And you must

rumble

" ;

be sober," said Tul-

perfectly sober."

Mr. Twigger at once solemnly pledged himself to be as sober as a judge, and Nicholas Tulrumble was

satisfied,

although,


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

23

had we been Nicholas, we should certainly have exacted some promise of a more specific nature

inasmuch

;

assizes in

Mudfog once,

we

having attended the the evening more than

as,

can solemnly testify to having seen

judges with very strong symptoms of dinner under their wigs. However, that's neither here nor there.

The

next day, and the day following, and

the day after that,

Ned Twigger was

securely

locked up in the small cavern with the skyWith light, hard at work at the armour.

every additional piece he could manage to stand upright in, he had an additional glass of

rum

;

and

in

it,

and

many

partial

suf-

he contrived to get on the whole

focations, suit,

at last, after

up and down the room an intoxicated effigy from West-

to stagger

like

minster Abbey.

Never was man so delighted as Nicholas Tulrumble never was woman so charmed as ;

Nicholas Tulrumble's

wife.

Here was a


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

24

sight for the live

man

common

in brass

people of

armour

go wild with wonder

Mudfog

Why,

!

!

A

they would

!

The day— the Monday — arrived.

morning had been made to order, couldn't have been better adapted to the If the

it

They never showed

purpose. in

London on Lord Mayor's

a better fog

day, than en-

wrapped the town of Mudfog on that eventful occasion. It had risen slowly and surely from the green and stagnant water with the first light of morning, until it reached a little

above the lamp-post tops stopped, with a sleepy,

;

and there

it

had

sluggish obstinacy,

which bade defiance to the sun, who had got up very blood-shot about the eyes, as if he

had been

at a drinking-party over night,

and

work with .the worst

pos-

was doing

his day's

The

hung over All was the town like a huge gauze curtain. dim and dismal. The church steeples had

sible grace.

thick

damp

mist

bidden a temporary adieu to the world be-


Ptiblic

low

;

Life of Mr. Tulmmble.

and every object of

25

lesser importance

houses, barns, hedges, trees, and barges all

taken the

The

—

—had

veil.

church-clock struck one.

A cracked

trumpet from the front garden of Mudfog Hall produced a feeble flourish, as asthmatic person had coughed into dentally

;

the gate flew open, and out

some

if it

acci-

came

a

gentleman, on a moist-sugar coloured charger, intended to represent a herald, but bearing a

much

stronger resemblance to a court-card on

horseback. people, at that

This was one of

the

Circus

who always came down to Mudfog time of the year, and who had been

engaged by Nicholas Tulrumble expressly for the occasion. There was the horse, whisking his tail about, balancing himself on his hind-legs, and flourishing away with his fore-feet, in a

gone

manner which would have

and souls of any reasonBut a Mudfog crowd never was

to the hearts

able crowd.

a reasonable one, and in

all

probability never


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

26

will be.

Instead of scattering the very fog

with their shouts, as they ought most indubitably to have done, and were fully intended to do,

by Nicholas Tulrumble, they no sooner

recognized the herald, than they began to growl forth the most unqualified disapprobation at the bare notion of his riding like

any other man. If he had come out on his head indeed, or jumping through a hoop, or flying through a red-hot drum, or even standing on one leg with his other foot in

mouth, they might have had something to say to him but for a professional gentlehis

;

man

to sit astride in the saddle, with his feet

was rather too good a joke. So, the herald was a decided failure, and the crowd hooted with great energy, as he in the stirrups,

pranced ingloriously away. On the procession came. to

say

how

We

are afraid

many supernumeraries

there

were, in striped shirts and black velvet caps, to imitate the London watermen, or how


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

many base imitations how many banners,

27

of running-footmen, or

which,

owing

to

the

heaviness of the atmosphere, could by no

means be prevailed on to display their still less do we feel disposed scriptions :

how

in-

to

men who

played the wind instruments, looking up into the sky (we mean the fog) with musical fervour, walked relate

the

through pools of water and hillocks of mud, till they covered the powdered heads of the running-footmen aforesaid with splashes, that looked curious, but not ornamental or how ;

the barrel-organ performer put on the stop,

wrong

and played one tune while the band

or how the horses, being played another used to the arena, and not to the streets, ;

would stand

and dance, instead of going on and prancing all of which are matters which might be dilated upon to great still

—

;

advantage, but which

we have

not the least

intention of dilating upon, notwithstanding.

Oh

!

it

was a grand and

beautiful sight to


Public Life of Mr, Tulrumble,

28

behold a corporation in glass coaches, provided at the sole cost and charge of Nicholas

Tulrumble,

coming

rolling

along,

like

a

funeral out of mourning, and to watch the

attempts the corporation made to look great and solemn, when Nicholas Tulrumble himself,

in

the four-wheel chaise, with the rolled

postilion,

tall

Mr.

out after them, with

Jennings on one side to look like a chaplain, and a supernumerary on the other, with an old

sabre,

life-guardsman's

sword-bearer;

and

the

imitate

to see the tears rolling

down

the faces of the

with

merriment.

so was

to

mob

as they screamed

This was beautiful

and

!

the appearance of Mrs. Tulrumble

and son, as they bowed with grave dignity out of their coach-window to all the dirty were laughing around them but not even with this that we have to do,

faces that it is

:

but with the sudden stopping of the procession at another blast of the trumpet, whereat, and whereupon, a profound silence


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

,

ensued, and

eyes were turned towards

all

confidant anticipation of

Mudfog Hall, in the some new wonder. "

29

They won't laugh now, Mr.

Jennings,"

said Nicholas Tulrumble. "

I

think not,

sir,"

said Mr. Jennings.

"

See how eager they look," said Nicholas " Aha the laugh will be on Tulrumble. !

our side "

No

now

eh,

;

ddubt of

Mr. Jennings

" ?

that, sir," replied

Mr. Jen-

nings; and Nicholas Tulrumble, in a state of pleasurable excitement, stood up in the four-

wheel

chaise,

and telegraphed

gratification to

the Mayoress behind.

While

all

this

was going forward, Ned

Twigger had descended

Mudfog Hall

for the

osity that

was

to burst

somehow

or other,

into the kitchen of

purpose of indulging the servants with a private view of the curi-

upon the town and, the footman was so com;

panionable, and the housemaid so kind, and

the cook so friendly, that he could not resist


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

30

the offer of the first-mentioned to

and take something master So,

sit

down

—just to drink success

to

in.

down Ned Twigger

sat himself in his

brass livery on the top of the kitchen-table

and

in a

mug

;

of something strong, paid for

by the unconscious Nicholas Tulrumble, and provided by the companionable footman, drank success to the Mayor and his procession; and, as

Ned

laid

by

his

helmet to imbibe the

something strong, the companionable footman put it on his own head, to the immeasurable

and unrecordable delight of the cook and housemaid. The companionable footman was very facetious to Ned, and Ned was very gallant to the cook and housemaid by turns.

They were

all

very cosy and comfortable

;

and the something strong went briskly round. At last Ned Twigger was loudly called for,

by the procession people

had his helmet fixed

:

and, having

on, in a very complicated

manner, by the companionable footman, and


Public Life of Mr. Ttdrtcmble.

3

1

housemaid, and the friendly cook,

the kind

he walked gravely

forth,

and appeared before

—

was not with won-

the multitude.

The crowd it

der,

roared

was not with

it

surprise

it

;

was most

decidedly and unquestionably with laughter. "

up If

What

in

"

said

!

Mr. Tulrumble, starting "

the four-wheel chaise.

Laughing

?

man in real brass armour, when their own fathers were

they laugh at a

they'd

dying.

laugh

Why

Mr. Jennings towards us for "I

am

doesn't he ? ?

What's

go

into his place,

he

rolling

down

he has no business here "

afraid, sir

faltered

" !

Mr. Jen-

nings. "

Afraid of what,

"

sir ?

said Nicholas Tul-

rumble, looking up into the secretary's "

I

am

afraid he's drunk, sir

face.

" ;

replied

Mr.

Jennings.

Nicholas Tulrumble took one look at the extraordinary figure that was bearing

upon them

;

and then, clasping

his

down

secretary


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

32

by the arm, uttered an audible groan

in

anguish of spirit. It is a melancholy fact that Mr. Twigger having full licence to demand a single glass of

rum on

the putting on of every piece of

the armour, got, by

some means or

other,

rather out of his calculation in the hurry

confusion of preparation, and drank

and

about

four glasses to a piece instead of one, not to

mention the something strong which went on the top of it. Whether the brass armour checked the natural flow of perspiration, and thus prevented the spirit from evaporating,

we

are not scientific

whatever the

enough to know but, Mr. Twigger no ;

cause was,

sooner found himself outside

Mudfog

the

gate of

Hall, than he also found himself in

a very considerable state of intoxication

hence

;

and

his extraordinary style of progressing.

This was bad enough, fortune had conspired

but, as

if

against

fate

and

Nicholas

Tulrumble, Mr. Twigger, not having been


Public Life of Mr. Tttlrumble.

33

penitent for a good calendar month, took

it

head to be most especially and par-

into his

ticularly sentimental, just

when his repentance

could have been most conveniently dispensed

down

his

was vainly endeavouring

to

Immense

with.

cheeks, and he

tears

were

rolling

conceal his grief by applying to his eyes a blue cotton pocket-handkerchief with white spots,

— an article not strictly in keeping with

a suit of armour some three hundred years old, or thereabouts. "

Twigger, you villain!" said Nicholas

Tulrumble, quite forgetting his dignity,

"

go

back." "

Never," said Ned.

wretch.

I'm a miserable

never leave you." by-standers of course received this I'll

The

declaration right, "

"

with

acclamations

of

"

That's

Ned; don't!" don't intend

Ned, with all the " I'm very obstinacy of a very tipsy man. I'm the wretched father of an unhappy. I

it,"

said

3


Public Life of Mr. Tulrttmble.

34

unfortunate sir.

ful,

family;

I'll

but

am

I

never leave

reiterated this

very

Having

you."

Ned

obliging promise,

faith-

pro-

broken words to harangue the ceeded crowd upon the number of years he had in

Mudfog, the excessive respectability character, and other topics of the like

lived in

of his nature.

"Here!

will

anybody lead him away?"

said Nicholas: "if they'll call on

wards,

reward them

I'll

Two

me

after-

well."

men stepped forward, with bearing Ned off, when the secre-

or three

the view of

tary interposed. "

Take "

nings.

care

I

better not falls

!

take care

" !

beg your pardon,

said Mr. Jensir

but they'd

;

go too near him, because,

if

he

over, hell certainly crush somebody."

At

this hint the

crowd

retired

to a very respectful distance, like the

Duke

of his own.

on

and

of Devonshire, in a

all

left

sides

Ned,

little circle


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble. "

35

But, Mr. Jennings," said Nicholas Tul-

rumble, u

"

he'll

be suffocated."

I'm very sorry for

replied Mr.

sir,"

it,

"

but nobody can get that armour Jennings; I'm quite off, without his own assistance.

from the way he put it on." Here Ned wept dolefully, and shook

certain of

it

helmeted head,

in a

manner

touched a heart of stone

his

that might have

but the crowd had

;

not hearts of stone, and they laughed heartily. "

Dear me, Mr. Jennings,"

said Nicholas,

turning pale at the possibility of

Neds

being " costume Dear antique me, Mr. Jennings, can nothing be done with

smothered

him

his

"

Nothing

all.

at all," replied

in.

this poetical idea of his

Ned

Ned,

"

nothing Gentlemen, I'm an unhappy wretch.

I'm a body, gentlemen,

At

—

?

"

at

in

cried so

much

get sympathetic,

a brass

own

conjuring up,

that the people

and

to ask

coffin."

began

to

what Nicholas

Tulrumble meant by putting a man

into such


'

36

Public Life of Mr. Tttlrumble.

a machine as that

;

and one individual

hairy waistcoat like the top of a trunk,

in

a

who

had previously expressed his opinion that if Ned hadn't been a poor man, Nicholas wouldn't have dared do it, hinted at the propriety of breaking the four-wheel chaise, or

Nicholas's head, or both, which last

compound

proposition the crowd

consider a

seemed

to

very good notion.

was not acted upon, however, for it had hardly been broached, when Ned TwigIt

ger's wife

the

made her appearance

little circle

abruptly in

before noticed, and

Ned no

sooner caught a glimpse of her face and form, than from the mere force of habit he set off

towards his home just as

fast as his legs

could

and that was not very quick in the present instance either, for, however carry

him

;

ready they might have been to carry him, they couldn't get on very well under the brass armour.

So, Mrs.

Twigger had plenty

of time to denounce Nicholas Tulrumble to


Life of Mr. Ttdrmjtble.

Ptiblic

his face

to express her opinion that

:

a decided monster

;

and

37

.

he was

to intimate that,

if

her ill-used husband sustained any personal damage from the brass armour, she would

Tulrumble

have the law of Nicholas

for

When she had said all this manslaughter. with due vehemence, she posted after Ned, who was dragging could,

himself along as best he

and deploring

his

unhappiness

in

most

dismal tones.

What

and screaming Ned's children raised when he got home at last a wailing

!

Mrs, Twigger tried to undo the armour, first in one place, and then in another, but she couldn't

manage

it;

so she tumbled

bed, helmet, armour, gauntlets,

and

Ned all.

into

Such

a creaking as the bedstead made, under Ned's

weight

in

his

down though anonymous

;

new

suit!

It

and there Ned

vessel in the

Bay

didn't break lay,

like the

of Biscay,

till

next day, drinking barley-water, and looking miserable and every time he groaned, his :


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

38

good lady all

said

it

served him right, which was

the consolation

Ned Twigger

Nicholas Tulrumble procession went

amid the

hall,

spectators,

on

hisses

got.

and the

gorgeous

together to the town-

and groans of

who had suddenly taken

all it

the into

heads to consider poor Ned a martyr. Nicholas was formally installed in his new

their

office, in

acknowledgment of which ceremony

he delivered himself of a speech, composed by the secretary, which was very long, and no doubt very good, only the noise of the people outside prevented anybody from hearing it, but Nicholas Tulrumble himself. After which, the procession got back to

how

it

could

tion sat

;

down

and Nicholas and the corporato dinner.

But the dinner was disappointed.

Mudfog Hall any

flat,

and Nicholas was

They were such

old fellows, that corporation.

dull

Nicholas

sleepy

made

Lord Mayor of London had done, nay, he said the very same

quite as long speeches as the


P

lib lie

Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

39

Lord Mayor of London had

things that the

and the deuce a cheer the corporation gave him. There was only one man in the and he party who was thoroughly awake said,

;

was insolent and

What would

anybody presuming

Mayor

should like to

would say

know what ;

to call the

"Nick!"

London

of

to that

toast-master, or

of the

!

be the consequence, thought

Nicholas, of

Lord

Nick

him Nick.

called

He

the sword-bearer

or the recorder, or the

any other of the great

officers

They'd nick him. But these were not the worst of Nicholas city.

Tulrumble's doings. If they had been, he might have remained a Mayor to this day,

and have talked contracted

till

a relish

philosophical

;

and

he

lost his voice.

for

statistics,

the

statistics

philosophy together, led

him

into

He

and got and the an

act

which increased his unpopularity and hastened his downfall.

At

the very end of the

Mudfog High-


40

Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

and abutting on the river-side, stands the Jolly Boatmen, an old-fashioned lowstreet,

bay-windowed house, with a bar, kitchen, and tap-room all in one, and a

roofed,

large fire-place with a kettle to correspond,

round which the working men have congregated time out of mind on a winter's night, refreshed by draughts of

good strong

beer,

and cheered by the sounds of a fiddle and tambourine the Jolly Boatmen having been :

duly licensed by the Mayor and corporation, to scrape the fiddle and thumb the tambourine

from time, whereof the memory of the oldest inhabitants goeth not to the contrary.

Now

Nicholas Tulrumble had been reading pamphlets on crime, and parliamentary reports,

or had

which

made is

the

—

the secretary read them to him,

same thing

in effect,

—and he

at

once perceived that this fiddle and tambourine must have done more to demoralize Mudfog, than any other operating causes that ingeSo he read up for the nuity could imagine.


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

subject,

and determined

41

come out on the

to

corporation with a burst, the very next time

the licence was applied

The

for.

day came, and the redfaced landlord of the Jolly Boatmen walked licensing

into the town-hall, looking as jolly as be,

need

having actually put on an extra fiddle for

that night, to

commemorate the anniversary It was

of the Jolly Boatmen's music licence. applied for in due form, and

was

just about

to be granted as a matter of course,

rose Nicholas Tulrumble, and

when up

drowned the

astonished corporation in a torrent of elo-

quence.

He

descanted

in

glowing terms

upon the increasing depravity of his native town of Mudfog, and the excesses committed by its population. Then, he related how shocked he had been, to see barrels of beer sliding

down

Boatmen week sat

men

into after

the

cellar

week

;

of the

Jolly

and how he had

a window opposite the Jolly Boatfor two days together, to count the

at


42

Public Life of Mr. Tttlrumble.

people who went in for beer between the hours of twelve and one o'clock alone which,

—

by-the-bye,

was the time

at

which the great

Mudfog people dined. Then, he went on to state, how the number of people who came out with beer-jugs, averaged majority of the

twenty-one

in five minutes, which,

being mul-

by twelve, gave two hundred and fiftytwo people with beer-jugs in an hour, and multiplied

by fifteen (the number of hours during which the house was open daily) yielded three thousand seven hundred and tiplied again

eighty people with beer-jugs

per day,

or

twenty-six thousand four hundred and sixty

Then he people with beer-jugs, per week. proceeded to show that a tambourine and moral degradation were synonymous terms, and a fiddle and vicious propensities wholly inseparable. All these arguments he strength-

ened and demonstrated by frequent references to a large book with a blue cover, and sundry quotations from the Middlesex magistrates

;


Public Life of Mr. Ttdrumble.

and

in the end,

the corporation,

43

who were

posed with the figures, and sleepy with the speech, and sadly in want of dinner into the bargain, yielded the

palm

to

Nicholas Tul-

rumble, and refused the music licence to the Jolly

Boatmen.

But although Nicholas triumphed, his triumph was short. He carried on the war against beer-jugs and fiddles, forgetting the

time one,

when he was glad and

to

dance to the other,

hated, and his old friends

grew

of the

tired

Mudfog

to drink out of the

Hall,

and

the people

He

shunned him.

lonely his

till

magnificence

heart

of

yearned toHe wished

wards the Lighterman's Arms. he had never set up as a public man, and sighed for the good old times of the coalshop, and the chimney corner.

At

length old Nicholas, being thoroughly

miserable,

took heart of grace,

secretary a quarter's

packed

Âť

him

off

to

wages

paid

in advance,

London by

the

the

and next


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

44 coach.

on

hat

Having taken his

and

head,

pocket, and walked

this step,

down

the

Lighterman's Arms.

two

of the

old

Tulrumble "

in

his

room

at

There were only there, and they

Nicholas as he proffered

Are you going "

pride

to the old

fellows

looked coldly on his hand. "

his

he put his

to put

down

pipes,

Mr.

said one.

?

Or trace the

progress of crime to 'bacca?"

growled another. "

Neither," replied

Nicholas Tulrumble,

shaking hands with them both, whether they

would or

"

not.

I've

come down

made a

I'm very sorry for having self,

and that

I

hope

you'll give

to say that fool of

me

my-

up, the

old chair, again."

The

old fellows opened their eyes,

three or four door, to

more old

whom

story.

opened the

Nicholas, with tears in his

eyes, thrust out his

same

fellows

and

They

hand

too,

and

told the

raised a shout of joy, that


Public Life of Mr. Tulrumble.

made

the bells in the ancient church-tower

vibrate again,

warm

the into

45

it,

and wheeling the old chair

corner, thrust old Nicholas

and ordered

in the

into

down

very largest-sized

bowl of hot punch, with an unlimited number of pipes, directly.

The

next day, the Jolly Boatmen got the licence, and the next night, old Nicholas and

Ned

Twigger's wife led off a dance to the

music of the fiddle and tambourine, the tone of which rest,

for

before.

seemed mightily improved by a little they never had played so merrily

Ned Twigger was

in the

very height

of his glory, and he danced hornpipes, and

balanced chairs on his chin, and straws on his nose,

till

the whole company, including the

corporation, were in raptures of admiration at the brilliancy of his acquirements.

Mr. Tulrumble, junior, couldn't make up his mind to be anything but magnificent, so he went up to London and drew bills on his father and when he had overdrawn, and got ;


Public Life of Mr. Tulrwmble.

46

into debt,

he grew penitent, and came home

again.

As

to old Nicholas,

he kept

and

his word,

having had six weeks of public life, never tried it any more. He went to sleep in the townvery next meeting and, in full proof of his sincerity, has requested us to wish it write this faithful narrative. at the

hall

;

We

could have the effect of reminding the Tul-

rumbles of another sphere, that puffed-up conceit little

not dignity, and that snarling at the

is

pleasures they were once glad to enjoy,

because they would rather forget the times when they were of lower station, renders

them

objects of contempt and ridicule.

This

is

the

first

time

any of our gleanings source.

may

Perhaps, at

venture

Mudfog.

to

we have

from

some

open

this

published particular

future period,

the

chronicles

we of


FULL EEPOKT OF THE EIKST MEETING OE THE MUDFOG ASSOCIATION FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF EVERYTHING.

We

have made the most unparalleled and

extraordinary exertions to place

before our

readers a complete and accurate account of the proceedings at the late grand meeting of

the of

Mudfog Mudfog

Association, holden in the

affords us great happiness to

it

;

town

lay the result before them, in the shape of

various

communications received from our

able, talented,

pressly sent

and graphic correspondent, ex-

down

immortalized

us,

association, all

We

at

for the purpose,

who

has

Mudfog, and the one and the same time.

himself,

have been, indeed,

to determine

who

for

some days unable

will transmit the greatest


Report of the First Meeting

48

name

to posterity

ourselves,

;

who

sent our

correspondent down; our correspondent, who wrote an account of the matter or the asso;

ciation,

who gave

our correspondent some-

We

rather incline to thing to write about. the opinion that we are the greatest man of

the party, inasmuch as the notion of an exclusive this

and authentic report originated with us; may be prejudice it may arise from a :

prepossession on our part in our

Be

it

so.

We have

tleman concerned is

troubled with

own

favour.

no doubt that every gen-

in this

the

mighty assemblage in a

same complaint

greater or less degree; and

it is

a consolation

know that we have at least this feelcommon with the great scientific stars,

to us to

ing in the

brilliant

and

extraordinary luminaries,

whose speculations we

record.

We

give our correspondent's letters in the order in which they reached us. Any

attempt at amalgamating them into one beautiful

whole, would only destroy that glowing


of the Mudfog Association.

and

tone, that dash of wildness, interest,

picturesque

which

49

rich vein of

them

pervade

throughout. "Mudfog, Monday "

We

here.

night, seven o'clock.

are in a state of great excitement

Nothing

is

spoken

of,

but the approach-

ing meeting of the association.

The

inn-

doors are thronged with waiters anxiously looking for the expected arrivals; and the

numerous

bills

which are wafered up

in the

windows of private houses, intimating

that

there are beds to let within, give the streets

a very animated and cheerful appearance, the wafers being of a great variety of colours, and the monotony of printed inscriptions

being relieved by every possible size and style of hand-writing.

It is confidently

rumoured

Snore, Doze, and Wheezy have engaged three beds and a sitting-room at the Pig and Tinder-box. I give you the that

Professors

rumour as as yet,

it

vouch

has reached

me

for its accuracy.

;

but

I

cannot,

The moment 4


Report of the First Meeting

50 I

have been enabled

to obtain

any certain

information upon this interesting point, you

may depend upon

it."

receiving

"

"

I

have

Half-past

just returned from a

seven.

personal

interview with the landlord of the Pig and

Tinder-box.

He

speaks confidently of the

probability of Professors

Snore,

residence

taking up their

Wheezy

Doze, and at

his

house during the sitting of the association, but denies that the beds have been yet

engaged

;

in

which representation he

firmed by the chambermaid,

—a

is

girl of artless

manners, and interesting appearance. boots denies that

it is

here

;

man the

but

all

have reason

The

likely that Pro-

and Wheezy

fessors Snore, Doze, I

at

con-

will

put up

to believe that this

has been suborned by the proprietor of Original

hotel.

Pig,

which

Amidst such

is difficult

is

the opposition

conflicting testimony

to arrive at the real truth

may depend upon

;

it

but you

receiving authentic infor-


of the Mudfog Association. mation upon is

this point the

ascertained.

A

tinues.

boy

The fell

5

moment

excitement

1

the fact con-

still

through the window of

the pastrycook's shop at the corner of the High-street about half an hour ago, which has

occasioned pression

heaven

much

is,

it

that

The

confusion. it

may prove

was an so

accident.

of

At

all

an early hour

!

this

Tuesday, noon.

morning the

the churches struck seven o'clock

effect of

bells ;

the

which, in the present lively state of

the town, was extremely singular.

was

Pray

"

"

"

general im-

at breakfast, a yellow gig,

While

I

drawn by a

dark grey horse, with a patch of white over his right eyelid, proceeded at a rapid pace in the direction of the Original Pig stables; currently

it is

reported that this gentleman has

arrived here for the purpose of attending the association, and,

consider

it

from what

extremely

nothing decisive

is

yet

I

have heard,

probable,

I

although

known regarding

him.


Report of the First Meeting

52

You may are

conceive the anxiety with which

we

looking forward to the arrival of the

all

four o'clock coach this afternoon. "

Notwithstanding the excited state of the populace, no outrage has yet been committed, to the admirable discipline

owing

cretion of the police,

A

seen.

who

barrel-organ

is

and

dis-

are nowhere to be

playing opposite

my

window, and groups of people, offering fish and vegetables for sale, parade the streets.

With these exceptions everything and

is

trust will continue so."

I

"Five "

quiet,

It

now

o'clock.

beyond all doubt, that Professors Snore, Doze, and Wheezy will not repair to the Pig and Tinder-box, but is

ascertained,

have actually engaged apartments at the This intelligence is exclusive ; Original Pig.

and their

I

leave you and your readers to draw

own

inferences from

Wheezy, of

all

it.

Why

Professor

people in the world, should

repair to the Original

Pig

in preference to


of the Mitdfog Association. the Pig and Tinder-box, conceive.

be above

The all

is

not easy to

man who should petty feelings. Some people

professor

such

it

53

is

a

here openly impute treachery, and a distinct

breach of faith to Professors Snore and Doze

;

while others, again, are disposed to acquit

them of any culpability in the transaction, and to insinuate that the blame rests solely with Professor Wheezy. to the latter opinion

me

great pain to

;

and

dent genius

bound

reached

my

know what "

if all

if

make

it

gives

man

of such transcenstill

I

am

suspicions be well

my

the reports which have I

really

do not well

of the matter.

Mr. Slug, so celebrated

for his statistical

researches, arrived this afternoon o'clock stage.

incline

terms of censure

ears be true, to

I

in

acquirements,

to say that,

founded, and

that

and although

speak

or disapprobation of a

own

I

His complexion

by the four is

a dark

and he has a habit of sighing conHe looked extremely well, and stantly.

purple,


Report of the First Meeting

54 appeared

in

high health and

Woodensconse conveyance.

was

also

The

fast asleep

on

Mr.

spirits.

came down

same

in the

distinguished gentleman his arrival,

and

am

I

in-

formed by the guard that he had been so the whole way. He was, no doubt, preparing for approaching fatigues but what gigantic visions must those be that flit through the his

;

brain of such a state of torpidity "

The

moment.

man when

his

am

in

a

told (I

know

increases every

not

how

two post-chaises have arrived

that

is

!

influx of visitors I

body

truly)

at the

Original Pig within the last half-hour, and

I

myself observed a wheelbarrow, containing three carpet bags and a bundle, entering the

yard of the Pig and Tinder-box no longer ago than five minutes since. The people are still

tions

quietly pursuing their ordinary occupa;

but there

and an unwonted

is

a wildness in their eyes,

rigidity in

their countenances,

the muscles of

which shows to the ob-


of the Mudfog Association.

55

servant spectator that their expectations are strained to the very utmost pitch.

unless

some very extraordinary

this

fear,

arrivals take

place to-night, that consequences

from

I

may

arise

popular ferment, which every

man

of sense and feeling would deplore." " "

I

have

Twenty mimctes past

just heard that the

six.

boy who

fell

through the pastrycook's window last night He was suddenly has died of the fright.

pay three and sixpence for the damage done, and his constitution, it seems, was not strong enough to bear up against the called

shock.

upon

to

The

to-morrow.

inquest,

it

is

said, will

be held

,,

"

Three-quarters past seven.

"

Professors Muff and Nogo have just driven up to the hotel door they at once ;

We

ordered dinner with great condescension. are all very much delighted with the urbanity of their manners, and the ease with which

they adapt themselves to the forms and cere-


56

Report of the First Meeting

monies

of ordinary

their arrival

life.

they sent for

Immediately on the head waiter,

and privately requested him to purchase a live dog, as cheap a one as he could meet

—

with,

— and to send

him up after dinner, with a knife and fork, and a clean

a pie-board, It

plate.

ments

is

conjectured that

some

experi-

be tried upon the dog to-night if any particulars should transpire, I will forward will

them by

;

,,

express. "

u

The

Half-past

animal has been procured.

eight,

He

is

a

pug-dog, of rather intelligent appearance, in good condition, and with very short legs. He

has been tied to a curtain-peg in a dark room,

and

is

howling dreadfully." " Ten minutes to nine.

"

The dog

has just been rung for. With an instinct which would appear almost the result of reason, the sagacious animal seized

the waiter

by the

when he and made a despe-

calf of the leg

approached to take him,


of the Mudfog Association.

57

though ineffectual resistance. I have not been able to procure admission to the

rate,

apartment occupied by the scientific gentlemen but, judging from the sounds which ;

reached

my

ears

when

I

stood upon the land-

ing-place outside the door, just now,

should

I

be disposed to say that the dog had retreated growling beneath some article of furniture,

and was keeping the professors conjecture

is

This

at bay.

confirmed by the testimony of

the ostler, who, after peeping through the keyhole, assures

Professor

me

Nogo on

that he distinctly

saw

his knees, holding forth a

prussic acid, to which the

small

bottle

animal,

who was crouched beneath an armYou obstinately declined to smell.

chair,

of

cannot imagine the feverish state of

we

are

in, lest

be sacrificed creature,

sense

to

who

irritation

the interests of science should to the is

foresee

a brute

prejudices of

not endowed with sufficient the

incalculable

which the whole human race

benefits

may

derive


Report of the First Meeting

58

from so very

a concession on his

slight

part." "

"

The

down

dog's

stairs

to

cumstance we

Nine d clock.

and ears have been sent

tail

be washed infer

from which

;

that the animal

cir-

is

no

His forelegs have been delivered to the boots to be brushed, which strengthens more.

the supposition/' u "

My

feelings

are

so

Half after

ten.

overpowered

by

what has taken place in the course of the last hour and a half, that I have scarcely strength to

detail the

rapid

succession

which have quite bewildered are cognizant of

their

all

of

those

occurrence.

pears that the pug-dog mentioned in

was

—by

surreptitiously obtained,

—

some person attached

events

who

It

ap-

my

last

stolen, in fact,

to the

stable

department, from an unmarried lady resident Frantic on discovering the in this town. loss of her favourite, the lady

rushed

dis-


of the Mudfog

A ssociation.

59

tractedly into the street, calling in the

most

heart-rending and pathetic manner upon the

—

passengers to restore her, her Augustus, for so the deceased was named, in affection-

remembrance of a former lover of

ate

his

whom

he bore a striking personal resemblance, which renders the circum-

mistress, to

am

not yet

a condition to inform you what

circum-

stances additionally affecting. in

I

stance induced the bereaved lady to direct

her steps to the hotel which had witnessed the last struggles of her protdgd. state

that

instant

she arrived

when

his

there,

detached

I

can only

at the

very

members were

passing through the passage on a small tray.

Her

shrieks

still

reverberate in

my

ears

!

I

grieve to say that the expressive features of Professor lacerated

Muff were much scratched and by the

Professor Nogo,

injured

lady;

and

that

besides sustaining several

severe bites, has lost some handfuls of hair

from the same cause.

It

must be some


60

Report of the First Meeting

know

consolation to these gentlemen to

that

their ardent attachment to scientific pursuits

has alone occasioned these unpleasant confor which the sympathy of a sequences ;

grateful country will sufficiently reward them.

The

unfortunate lady remains at the Pig and

Tinder-box, and up to this time

is

reported in

a very precarious state. "

need scarcely

I

tell

you that

looked-for catastrophe has cast a

gloom upon us tion

in the

natural in

;

hanced

in this,

whole of

damp and

midst of our exhilara-

but greatly enby the amiable qualities of

any

case,

who

appears to have and deservedly respected by the

the deceased animal,

been much

this un-

his acquaintance." " Twelve

"

take the

d clock.

opportunity before sealing my parcel to inform you that the boy who fell through the pastrycook's window is not I

last

dead, as was universally believed, but alive

and

well.

The

report appears to have had


61

of the Mudfog Association. his

in

its

origin

He

was found

mysterious disappearance. on the pre-

half an hour since

mises of a sweet-stuff maker, where a

had been announced

for a

raffle

second-hand

skin cap and a tambourine

;

seal-

and where

—a

number of members not having

sufficient

been obtained at first

—he had patiently waited

was completed. This fortunate discovery has in some degree restored our It is proposed to gaiety and cheerfulness. until the list

a

up

get

subscription

delay. "

Everybody

what to-morrow

is

for

him

without

nervously anxious to see

will bring forth.

If

any one

should arrive in the course of the night,

have

left strict

directions to be called

I

imme-

should have sat up, indeed, but the agitating events of this day have been too diately.

I

much

me.

"

for

No news

sors Snore, "

strange

!

yet of either of the Profes-

Doze, or Wheezy.

It

is

very


62

Report of the First Meeting "

"

All

at least,

now over

is

am

I

;

at length

minds of your readers

Wednesday afternoon.

and, upon one point

enabled to set the

The

at rest.

three

professors arrived at ten minutes after two o'clock, and,, instead of taking ters at the Original Pig, as

understood

in the course of

would

they

assuredly

straight to the

they threw announced Professor

it

up their quarwas universally yesterday that

have

done,

drove

Pig and Tinder-box, where

off the

mask

at once,

intention

their

Wheezy may

of

and openly remaining.

reconcile this

very

extraordinary conduct with his notions of fair

and equitable dealing, but

I

would

re-

commend Professor Wheezy to be cautious how he presumes too far upon his well-earned How such a man as Professor reputation. Snore,

or,

which

is

still

more extraordinary,

such an individual as Professor Doze, can quietly allow himself to be

mixed up with

such proceedings as these, you will naturally


Mudfog Association,

of the

Upon

inquire.

this head,

rumour

63 is

silent

;

have

my speculations, but forbear to give utterance to them just now." I

"

"

The town

is

filling fast

Four

o'clock.

eighteenpence has been offered for a bed and refused. ;

Several gentlemen were under the necessity last night of sleeping in the brick fields, and

on the steps of doors, taken before this

the

for

which they were

magistrates

a

in

body

morning, and committed to prison as

vagrants for various terms.

persons

I

One

of

these

understand to be a highly-respect-

able tinker, of great practical

skill,

who had

forwarded a paper to the President of Section D. Mechanical Science, on the construction of pipkins with copper bottoms and safetyvalves, of

which report speaks highly.

incarceration of this gentleman

be regretted, as his absence discussion on the subject. "

The

bills

will

are being taken

is

The

greatly to

preclude any

down

in

all


Report of the First Meeting

64

and lodgings are being secured on almost any terms. I have heard of fifteen directions,

shillings a

week

for

two rooms, exclusive of

coals

and attendance, but

lieve

it.

informed

I

can scarcely be-

The

excitement

this

morning that the

is

dreadful. civil

I

was

authori-

apprehensive of some outbreak of popufeeling, had commanded a recruiting ser-

ties,

lar

geant and two corporals to be under arms and that, with the view of not irritating the

;

people unnecessarily by their presence, they had been requested to take up their position before daybreak in a turnpike, distant about

a quarter of a mile from the town.

The

vigour and promptness of these measures cannot be too highly extolled. "

Intelligence has just been brought me,

that an elderly female, in a state of inebriety,

has declared in the open street her intention to

'

do

'

for

Mr. Slug.

turns compiled

by

Some

statistical

re-

that gentleman, relative to

the consumption of raw spirituous liquors in


of the Mttdfog Association.

65

supposed to be the cause of It is added that this the wretch's animosity. place, are

this

was loudly cheered by a crowd of persons who had assembled on the spot and that one man had the boldness to designate declaration

;

Mr. Slug aloud by the opprobrious epithet of u Stick-in-the-mud " It is earnestly to be !

hoped

that

now, when

the

moment

has

arrived for their interference, the magistrates

not shrink from

will

the exercise

of

vested in them by the consti-

power which

is

tution of our

common

country.'' " Half-past

"

The

that

disturbance,

I

am happy

ten.

to inform

you, has been completely quelled, and the

ringleader taken into custody.

She had a

water thrown over her, previous to being locked up, and expresses great conWe are all in a fever trition and uneasiness. pail of cold

of anticipation about to-morrow that

we

;

but,

now

are within a few hours of the meeting

of the association, and at last enjoy the proud


66

Report of the First Meeting

consciousness of having bers amongst us,

and hope everything

trust

I

may go

off peaceably.

report

of

I

shall

I

send you a

open

" Eleven

my

letter to

I

folded "

The

hour.

I

sun rose

this

dclock.

say that nothing

whatever has occurred since

"

full

to-morrow's proceedings by the

night coach." "

mem-

illustrious

its

morning

it

up."

Thursday.

at the usual

did not observe anything particular

in the aspect of the glorious planet,

that he appeared to

a delusion of

my

with more than

me

(it

except

might have been

heightened fancy) to shine

common

brilliancy,

and to

shed a refulgent lustre upon the town, such This is the as I had never observed before.

more extraordinary, as the sky was perfectly cloudless, and the atmosphere peculiarly fine.

At

half-past nine o'clock the general

com-

mittee assembled, with the last year's presi-

dent in the

chair.

The

report of the council


of the

67

Mudfog Association.

and one passage, which stated that the council had corresponded with no

was read

;

than three thousand five hundred and

less

seventy-one

persons,

of

(all

whom

paid

own

postage,) on no fewer than seven thousand two hundred and forty-three topics,

their

was received with a degree of enthusiasm which no

The

efforts could suppress.

ous committees and appointed, and the

sections

vari-

having been

more formal business

acted, the great proceedings of the

trans-

meeting

eleven o'clock precisely. commenced had the happiness of occupying a most at

I

eli-

gible position at that time, in

"Section A.

—Zoology

and Botany.

GREAT ROOM, PIG AND TINDER-BOX.

President— Professor Snore.

Vice-Presidents

— Professors

Doze and Wheezy. "

The

scene at this

larly striking.

moment was

particu-

The sun streamed through

the windows of the apartments, and tinted the

whole scene with

its

brilliant rays,

bringing


68

Report of the First Meeting

out in strong relief the noble visages of the professors and scientific gentlemen, who,

some

with bald heads, some with red heads, some with brown heads, some with

some with black

grey heads, heads, some with block

heads, presented a coup d'ceil which no eye-

In front of these

witness will readily forget.

gentlemen were papers and inkstands and round the room, on elevated benches extend;

ing as far

as the forms could reach,

assembled a

brilliant

were

concourse of those lovely

and elegant women

which

for

Mudfog

is

acknowledged to be without a rival in the whole world. The contrast between their

justly

fair faces

and the dark coats and trousers of

the scientific gentlemen to

I

shall

never cease

remember while Memory holds her "

Time having been

seat.

allowed for a slight

confusion, occasioned by the falling

down

of

the greater part of the platforms, to subside, the president called on one of the secretaries to

read

a communication

'

entitled,

Some


of the

Mudfog Association.

remarks on the industrious

fleas,

69

with con-

siderations on the importance of establishing infant-schools

society

and

;

among

that

numerous

class of

of directing their industry to useful

and of applying the surtowards providing for them

ends

practical

;

plus fruits thereof,

a comfortable and respectable maintenance in their old age.' "

The

author stated,

having long

that,

turned his attention to the moral and social condition of these interesting animals, he had

been induced street,

London,

designation

He

to visit

had

of

there

certainly in

an exhibition

in

Regent-

commonly known by the '

The

seen

Fleas/

Industrious

many

fleas,

occupied

various pursuits and avocations,

but occupied, he

was bound

to

add, in a

manner which no man of well-regulated mind could

One

fail

flea,

to regard with sorrow

and

regret.

reduced to the level of a beast of

burden, was drawing about a miniature gig, containing a particularly small effigy of His


yo

Report of the First Meeting

grace the

Duke

was staggering golden model of

of Wellington

;

while another

beneath the weight of his great adversary

a

Napoleon

as mounte-

Some, brought up Bonaparte. banks and ballet-dancers, were performing a figure-dance (he regretted to observe, that, of

the fleas so employed, several were females) others were in training, in a small card;

—

board box, for pedestrians, mere sporting characters— and two were actually engaged in the cold-blooded and barbarous occupation of duelling; a pursuit from which humanity recoiled with horror

and

He

disgust.

sug-

gested that measures should be immediately

taken to employ the labour of these

fleas as

part and parcel of the productive

the country, which might easily the

establishment

power of be done by

among them

of

infant

schools and houses of industry, in which a

system of virtuous education, based upon sound principles, should be observed, and moral precepts

strictly inculcated.

He

pro-


of the Mudfog Association. posed that

flea

every

exhibit, for hire,

7

who presumed

1

to

music, or dancing, or any

theatrical entertainment, without

species of

a licence, should be considered a vagabond,

and treated accordingly in which respect he only placed him upon a level with the ;

He

mankind.

rest of

that their control

would further suggest labour should be placed under the

and

regulation

of

should set apart from the the

support of

fleas,

view,

their

he

the

who

state,

profits,

a fund for

superannuated or disabled

With

widows and orphans. that

proposed

liberal

this

premiums

should be offered for the three best designs for

a general

almshouse

insect architecture

;

from which

was well known

a very advanced and perfect state possibly derive

many

to

— as

be

in

— we might

valuable hints for the

improvement of our metropolitan universinational galleries, and other public ties, edifices. "

The President

wished to be informed


Report of the First Meeting

72

how

the ingenious

gentleman proposed to open a communication with fleas generally, in the first instance, so that they might be thoroughly imbued with a sense of the ad-

vantages they must necessarily derive from

changing their mode of life, and applying themselves to honest labour. This appeared to him, the only difficulty. "

The Author

culty

was

there

was no

easily

submitted that this

diffi-

overcome, or rather that at all in

difficulty

the

case.

Obviously the course to be pursued, if Her Majesty's government could be prevailed

upon

to take

up the

plan,

would

be, to secure

remunerative salary the individual to whom he had alluded as presiding over the

at a

exhibition in Regent-street at the period of his visit.

That gentleman would

able to put himself

the mass of the

in

fleas,

at

once be

communication with

and

to

instruct

them

pursuance of some general plan of education, to be sanctioned by Parliament, until

in


of the Mudfog Association. such time as

more

the

73

intelligent

them were advanced enough

among

to officiate as

teachers to the rest "

The

President and several

members

of

the section highly complimented the author of the paper last read, on his most ingenious

and important

treatise.

was determined

It

that the subject should be

recommended

to

the immediate consideration of the council. "

Wigsby produced

Mr.

somewhat

larger

a

than

a cauliflower

chaise-umbrella,

which had been raised by no other

means than the simple

artificial

application of highly

carbonated soda-water as manure.

He

ex-

by scooping out the head, which would afford a new and delicious species of plained that

nourishment for principle

structed

tained

;

the poor,

something similar

a parachute, in to

by M. Garnerin, was

at

that

con-

once ob-

the stalk of course being kept down-

He

added

he was perfectly willing to make a descent from a height of wards.

that


Report of the First Meeting

74

not less than three miles and a quarter

had

;

and

proposed the same to the proprietors of Vauxhall Gardens, who in the handsomest manner at once consented to in fact already

his wishes,

summer

and appointed an early day next

for the

undertaking

;

merely stipu-

lating that the rim of the cauliflower should

be previously broken

in three or four places

to ensure the safety of the descent. "

The

President

public on the

the

congratulated

grand gala

in store for

them,

and warmly eulogised the proprietors of the establishment alluded

to,

for

their love of

and regard for the safety of human both of which did them the highest

science, life,

honour. "

A

Member wished

to

know how many

thousand additional lamps the royal property

would be illuminated

with,

on the night

after

the descent. "

Mr. Wigsby

replied that the point

not yet finally decided;

was

but he believed

it


of the Mitdfog Association.

75

was proposed, over and above the ordinary illuminations, to exhibit

devices

in various

eight millions and a-half of additional lamps.

"The Member gratified with this "

much

expressed himself

announcement.

Mr. Blunderum delighted the

section

with a most interesting and valuable paper *

on the

moments

last

of the learned

pig,'

which produced a very strong impression on the assembly, the account being compiled

from

the

personal

favourite attendant.

of

recollections

The

his

account stated in

the most emphatic terms that the animal's

name was

not Toby, but Solomon

and

;

dis-

proved that he could have no near

tinctly

relatives in the profession, as

persons had

falsely stated,

father,

mother, brothers and

fallen

victims

times.

An

to

the

many

sisters,

butcher

uncle of his

designing

inasmuch as his

at

indeed,

had

all

different

had with

very great labour been traced to a sty in

Somers

Town

;

but as

he was

in

a very


Report of the First Meeting

76

infirm state at the time, being afflicted with

measles, and shortly afterwards disappeared,

there appeared too that he

The

much reason

had been converted

to conjecture

into sausages.

disorder of the learned pig was origi-

nally a severe cold, which, being aggravated

by excessive trough indulgence, finally settled upon the lungs, and terminated in a general

A melancholy decay of the constitution. instance of a presentiment entertained by the animal of his approaching dissolution, was recorded.

After gratifying a numerous

and fashionable company with his performances, in which no falling off whatever was he fixed his eyes on the biographer, and, turning to the watch which lay on the visible,

floor,

and on which he was accustomed to

point out the hour, deliberately passed his

snout twice

round

the

dial.

In

precisely

four-and-twenty hours from that time he had

ceased to exist 11

!

Professor

Wheezy

inquired

whether,


of the Mudfog Association.

77

previous to his demise, the animal had expressed, by signs or otherwise, any wishes

regarding the disposal of his "

Mr. Blunderum

little

property.

replied, that,

when

the

biographer took up the pack of cards at the conclusion of the performance, the animal

grunted several times

and nodding to do, it

when

his

in

head as he was accustomed

gratified.

was understood

a significant manner,

From

these gestures

that he wished the attend-

keep the cards, which he had ever He had not expressed any wish since done. relative to his watch, which had accordingly

ant

to

been pawned by the same individual. " The President wished to know whether any

Member

of

the section had ever

seen or conversed with the pig-faced lady,

who was

reported to

have worn

a black

velvet mask, and to have taken her meals

from a golden trough. " After some hesitation a that the pig-faced lady

was

Member

replied

his mother-in-law,


Report of the First Meeting

78

and that he trusted the President would not violate the sanctity of private "

life.

The President begged

pardon.

He

had considered the pig-faced lady a public character.

Would

member

the honourable

object to state, with a view to the advance-

ment

of science, whether she

was

connected with the learned pig "

The Member

any way

?

replied in the

the question

that, as

tone,

in

same low

appeared to

in-

volve a suspicion that the learned pig might be his half-brother, he must decline answering

it.

"

Section B.

— Anatomy

and Medicine.

COACH-HOUSE, PIG AND TINDER-BOX. President

— Dr.

Toorell.

Vice-Presidents

— Professors

Muff and Nogo. "

Dr. Kutankumagen

to the section a report

occurred within his illustrative

of

the

Moscow) read of a case which had

own

(of

practice,

power

of

strikingly

medicine, as

exemplified in his successful treatment of a


of the Mtidjog Association.

He

virulent disorder.

had been

79

called in to

visit

the patient on the 1st of April 1837.

He

was

peculiarly

then

under symptoms to any medical man.

labouring

alarming

His frame was stout and muscular,

his step

plump and

firm and elastic, his cheeks

red,

his voice loud, his appetite good, his pulse full

He

and round.

was

habit of eating three meals

drinking at least one bottle

in

the constant

per diem, and of of wine, and one

glass of spirituous liquors diluted with water, in the course of the

four-and-twenty hours.

He

laughed constantly, and in so hearty a manner that it was terrible to hear him. By dint

of powerful

bleeding,

the

medicine,

symptoms

in

diet,

the

course of

three days perceptibly decreased.

perseverance

ment

in

the

and

low

A

same course of

rigid treat-

one week, accompanied with small doses of water-gruel, weak broth, and for only

barley-water, led to their entire disappearance.

In the course of a

month he was

sufficiently


80

Report of the First Meeting

down

recovered to be carried nurses,

and

present

moment he was

stairs

by two

enjoy an airing in a close At the carriage, supported by soft pillows.

to

to

walk about, with the

crutch and a boy.

little,

" Dr.

W.

honourable

he had "

slept

It

little,

and was never heard

by any accident whatever.

to laugh

patient

slight assistance of a

would perhaps be gratithe section to learn that he ate little,

fying to

drank

so far as

restored

R. Fee,

in

complimenting the

member upon

the triumphant cure

effected,

begged

bled freely

still

to ask

?

Kutankumagen

Dr.

whether the

replied

the

in

affirmative. "

Dr.

W.

R.

Fee.— And you

found that

he bled freely during the whole course of the disorder "

most

?

Dr. Kutankumagen.

— Oh

dear,

yes;

freely.

"Dr. patient

Neeshawts supposed,

had not submitted

to

that

if

the

be bled with


of

the

Mudfog Association.

great readiness and perseverance, so extra-

ordinary a cure

been

could never, in

accomplished.

Dr.

fact,

have

Kutankumagen

rejoined, certainly not.

Knight Bell (M.R.C.S.) exhibited a wax preparation of the interior of a gentleman who in early life had inad-

"Mr.

vertently swallowed a door-key.

It

was a

curious fact that a medical student of dissi-

pated habits, being present at the post mortem examination, found means to escape unobserved from the room, with that portion of the coats of the stomach upon which an exact

model of the instrument was

distinctly im-

pressed, with which he hastened to a lock-

smith of doubtful character,

who made

key from the pattern so

shown

With

to

a

new him.

key the medical student entered the house of the deceased gentleman, and this

-

committed a burglary to a large amount, for which he was subsequently tried and executed. 6


82

Report of the First Meeting "

The President

became of the

wished to know what

original

key

after the lapse of

Knight Bell replied that the gentleman was always much accustomed to punch, and it was supposed the acid had Mr.

years.

gradually devoured "

it.

Dr. Neeshawts

members were

and several

"

lain

heavy upon the

Mr. Knight Bell believed

it

did at

was worthy of remark, perhaps, that some years the gentleman was troubled

first.

for

the

of opinion that the key must

very cold and gentleman's stomach.

have

of

It

with a night-mare, under the influence of which he always imagined himself a winecellar door.

"

Professor Muff related a very extraordinary and convincing proof of the wonderful efficacy of the system of infinitesimal

doses,

which

the

section

were

doubtless

aware was based upon the theory that the very minutest amount of any given drug,


of the

Mudfog

Association.

83

human

properly dispersed through the

frame,

would be productive of precisely the same very large dose administered in the usual manner. Thus, the fortieth part of a

result as a

was supposed to be equal to calomel pill, and so on in propor-

grain of calomel

a five-grain

tion throughout the

whole range of medicine.

He

experiment

had

tried the

manner upon a

publican

in

a curious

who had been

brought into the hospital with a broken head, and was cured upon the infinitesimal system in the incredibly short space of three

man was

This

a hard drinker.

months.

He (Professor

had dispersed three drops of rum through a bucket of water, and requested the Muff)

man

to

result

was

?

drink the whole.

What was

Before he had drunk

the

a quart, he

a state of beastly intoxication and five other men were made dead drunk with in

;

the remainder. "

The President wished to know whether

an infinitesimal dose

of soda-water

would


Report of the First Meeting

84

have recovered them plied

that

the

Professor part

twenty-fifth

properly

spoonful,

?

Muff

a tea-

of

administered

re-

each

to

would have sobered him immediately. The President remarked that this was a most

patient,

important discovery, and he hoped the Lord

Mayor and Court ize

it

Aldermen would patron-

immediately.

A

"

of

whether

Member begged it

to

would be possible

be

informed

to administer

bread

say, the twentieth part of a grain of

and cheese

to

all

—

grown-up paupers, and the

fortieth part to children, with the

same

satis-

fying effect as their present allowance. "

his

Professor

Muff was

willing to stake

professional

reputation

on the

perfect

adequacy of such a quantity of food to the support of human life in workhouses the

—

;

addition of the fifteenth part of a grain of

pudding twice a week would render

it

a high

diet.

"

Professor Nogo called the attention of


of the Mudfog Association.

85

the section to a very extraordinary case of

A

animal magnetism. private watchman, at looked by the operator from being merely the opposite side of a wide street, was at once a very drowsy and languid was followed to his box, and

observed to be

He

state.

in

being once slightly rubbed on the palms of the hands, fell into a sound sleep, in which he continued without intermission for ten hours. " Section C.

— Statistics.

HAY-LOFT, ORIGINAL PIG.

— Mr.

President

Woodensconce.

Vice-Presidents

— Mr.

Ledbrain and Mr. Timbered. "

Mr. Slug

result of

some

stated

to

the

calculations he

the

section

had made with

great difficulty and labour, regarding the state of infant education of London.

He

among

found

the middle classes

that, within

a circle

of three miles from the Elephant and Castle,

the following were the children's

names and numbers of

books principally

in circulation

:


86 "

Report of the First Meeting Jack the Giant-killer

.


of the Mitdfog Association.

sword

hand

in

87

for the deliverance of captive

and the promiscuous slaughter of Not one child among the number

princesses, giants.

interrogated had ever heard of

—some

nected with the black crossing

;

had not

man

the

that swept

the Regent's

principles

considered

Sinbad

enterprising

the

in any-

Park.

They

conception of

slightest

commonest

Park,

at all con-

and others whether he was

related to

way

Mun^o

inquiring whether he was

the

of mathematics, and

the

Sailor

voyager that

the

most

the

world

had

ever produced. "

of

A

all

Member

strongly deprecating the use

the other books mentioned, suggested

and

might perhaps be exempted from the general censure, inasmuch as the that Jack

Jill

hero and heroine,

in

the very outset of the

were depicted as going up a hill to fetch a pail of water, which was a laborious and tale,

useful linen

occupation,

— supposing

was being washed,

the

for instance.

family


88

Report of the First Meeting " Mr. Slug feared that the moral

effect of

passage was more than counterbalanced by another in a subsequent part of the poem, this

which very gross allusion was made to the mode in which the heroine was personally

in

chastised

by her mother

"

'

For laughing

besides, the fault, it

"

whole work had

was not

The

at Jack's disaster

one great

t7'ue.

President

honourable member tinction

this

'

;

he had drawn.

the

complimented on the excellent Several other

dis-

Mem-

upon the immense and urgent necessity of storing the minds of children which with nothing but facts and figures

bers, too, dwelt

;

process the President very forcibly remarked,

had made them (the section) the men they were. "

Mr. Slug then

stated

some

curious

calculations respecting the dogs'-meat barrows

of London.

He

found that the

total

number


of the

Mudfog Association.

89

of small carts and barrows engaged in dispensing provision to the cats and dogs of the

metropolis was one thousand seven hundred and forty-three. The average number of

skewers delivered daily with the provender, by each dogs'-meat cart or barrow, was thirty-six.

Now,

multiplying the

number of

skewers so delivered by the number of barrows, a total of sixty-two thousand seven

hundred and forty-eight skewers daily would be obtained. Allowing that, of these sixty two thousand seven hundred and forty-eight skewers, the odd two thousand seven hundred

and

were accidentally devoured with the meat, by the most voracious of the forty-eight

animals supplied, it followed that sixty thousand skewers per day, or the enormous num-

twenty-one millions nine hundred thousand skewers annually, were wasted in

ber

of

the kennels and dustholes of if

;

and warehoused, would in ten time afford a mass of timber more than

collected

years'

London which,


Report of the First Meeting

90

sufficient for the construction of

vessel of

war

first-rate

The Royal Skewer/ and that name the terror of all

navy, to be called to

a

for the use of her Majesty's

become under

'

the enemies of this island. "

Mr. X. Ledbrain read a very ingenious

communication, from which

number of

the total

it

appeared that

legs belonging to the

manufacturing population of one great town in Yorkshire was, in round numbers, forty thousand, while the total number of chair and stool legs

in

their

houses was only thirty

thousand, which, upon

the very favourable

average of three legs to a seat, yielded only ten thousand seats in all. From this calculation

it

would appear,

— not

taking wooden or

cork legs into the account, but allowing two legs

to

every person,

—that

ten

thousand

individuals (one-half of the whole population)

were either destitute of any rest for their legs at all, or passed the whole of their leisure time

in sitting

upon boxes.


of the Mudfog Association. "

D.— Mechanical

Section

COACH-HOUSE, ORIGINAL President— Mr.

Carter.

91

Science. PIG.

Vice-Presidents— Mr.

Truck

and Mr. Waghorn. "

Professor

Queerspeck

exhibited

an

elegant model of a portable railway, neatly mounted in a green case, for the waistcoat pocket.

By

attaching this

beautiful instru-

any Bank or public-office clerk could transport himself from his place

ment

to his boots,

of residence to his place of business, at the

easy rate of sixty-five miles an hour, which, to

gentlemen of sedentary pursuits, would be

an incalculable advantage. " The President was desirous of knowing whether it was necessary to have a level surface on which the gentleman

was

to run.

"

Professor Queerspeck explained that City gentlemen would run in trains, being handcuffed together to prevent confusion or unpleasantness. start

For

instance, trains

would

every morning at eight, nine, and ten


Report of the First Meeting

92

Camden

from

o'clock,

Town,

Islington,

Camberwell, Hackney, and various other places in which City gentlemen are accus-

tomed

would be necessary to but he had provided for this

to reside.

have a

level,

It

by proposing that the best line that the circumstances would admit of, should be difficulty

taken through the sewers which undermine the streets of the metropolis, and which, well

immediately

from the gas pipes which run above them, would form a

pleasant and

commodious

lighted

by

jets

in winter-time,

when

arcade, especially

the inconvenient custom

of carrying umbrellas,

now

so general, could

be

In reply to wholly dispensed with. another question, Professor Queerspeck stated that no substitute for the purposes to which

these arcades were at present devoted

had

yet occurred to him, but that he hoped no fanciful

objection on this head would be allowed

an undertaking. " Mr. Jobba produced a forcing-machine on a novel plan, for bringing joint-stock

to interfere with so great


of the

Mudfog Association.

The

prematurely to a premium. instrument was in the form of an elegant

gilt

weather-glass, of most dazzling appear-

railway shares

ance, after

was worked behind, by strings, the manner of a pantomime trick, the and

by the directors which the machine be-

strings being always pulled

of

the

longed. placed,

company

to

The quicksilver was that when the acting

so ingeniously directors held

shares in their pockets, figures denoting very small expenses and very large

returns ap-

peared upon the glass but the moment the directors parted with these pieces of paper, ;

the estimate of needful expenditure suddenly increased

itself to

statements

the

reduced

in the

an immense extent, while

of certain

same

never once 11

known

A Member

was

had been

some months it

to

past,

in constant

and he had

fail,

expressed his opinion that

extremely neat wished to know whether

it

became

Mr. Jobba

proportion.

stated that the machine requisition for

profits

and it

pretty.

was not

He

liable to


Report of the First Meeting

94

Mr. Jobba said derangement ? the whole machine was undoubtedly

accidental that

liable to

be blown up, but that was the

objection to "

only-

it,

Professor

Nogo

arrived

from

the

anatomical section to exhibit a model of a

which could be fixed

safety fire-escape,

at

than half an hour, and by means of which, the youngest or most infirm

any time,

in less

persons (successfully resisting the progress of the flames until it was quite ready) could be preserved if they merely balanced themselves for a few minutes on the

bed-room window, and got

sill

of their

into the escape

The

Pro-

of boys

who

without falling into the street. fessor stated that the

number

had been

the daytime by this

rescued

in

machine from houses which were not on

was almost

incredible.

Not a

fire,

conflagration

London

had occurred

in

many months

past to which the escape had

the whole of

for

not been carried on the very next day, and

put

in action before a

concourse of persons.


of the Mudfog Association. "

The President

was not some

95

inquired whether there

difficulty in ascertaining

which

was the top of the machine, and which the bottom, in cases of pressing emergency. "

Nogo

Professor

course

that

of

could not be expected to act quite

it

as well

explained

when

was not a

there

fire

was a

fire,

when

as

there

but in the former case he

;

would be of equal service whether the top were up or down."

thought

it

With the

our correspondent

last section

concludes his most able and faithful Report,

which

him

will

never cease to

reflect credit

for his scientific attainments,

upon and upon

us for our enterprising spirit. It is needless to take a review of the subjects which have

been discussed

have been examined which they have

The

and

;

of the

elicited.

before the world, and to consider,

mode

of the

;

we

in

which they

great truths

They

are

now

leave them to read,

to profit.

place of meeting for next year has


Report of the First Meeting.

96

undergone discussion, and has at length been decided, regard being had to, and evidence being taken upon, the goodness of its wines, the supply of its markets, the hospitality of its

We

and the quality of

inhabitants,

its

hotels.

at this next

meeting our correspondent may again be present, and that we may be once more the means of placing his com-

hope

munications before the world. period this

to

we have been

Until

that

prevailed upon to allow

number of our Miscellany the public, or wholesaled

to

be retailed

to the trade,

without any advance upon our usual price.

We

have

only to add, that the com-

now broken

and that Mudfog is once again restored to its accustomed that Professors and Members tranquillity, mittees are

up,

—

have had

and suppers, and great mutual complimentations, and have at and

balls,

length dispersed

soirdes,

to their several

homes,

—

whither all good wishes and joys attend them, until next year Boz. Signed !


FULL

KEPOBT OF THE SECOND MEETING OF THE MUDFOG ASSOCIATION FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF EVERYTHING.

In October

last,

we

did ourselves the immor-

credit of recording, at

tal

an enormous ex-

pense, and by dint of exertions unparalleled in

the

history of periodical publication, the

Mudfog Association

for

of Everything, which

in

proceedings of the the

Advancement

that

month held

its

first

great

half-yearly

meeting, to the wonder and delight of the whole empire. announced at the con-

We

clusion of

that extraordinary

markable Report, that

when

and most the

re-

Second

Meeting of the Society should take place, we should be found again at our post, renewing our gigantic and spirited endeavours, and once more making the world ring with the 7


Report of the Second Meeting

98

accuracy, authenticity, immeasurable superi-

and intense remarkability of our account

ority,

of

its

pledge, to

In redemption of this

proceedings.

we caused

Oldcastle

be despatched per steam which place this second

to

(at

meeting of the Society was held on the 20th instant),

same

the

gentleman who

superhumanly-endowed

furnished the former report,

and who,

—gifted by nature with transcendent

abilities,

and furnished by us with a body of

assistants scarcely

inferior to

forwarded a series of fulness of

letters,

description,

himself,

— has

which, for faith-

power of language,

fervour of thought, happiness of expression,

and importance of subject-matter, have no equal in the epistolary literature of any age or country.

We

give this gentleman's cor-

respondence entire, and it reached our office.

in the

order in which

" Saloon of Steamer Thursday night, half-past eight. ,

"

When

evening

I

left

in the

New Burlington hackney

Street this

cabriolet,

number


of the Mudfog Association.

99

four thousand two hundred and eighty-five,

experienced sensations as novel as they sense of the importance were oppressive.

I

A

of the task

that still,

had undertaken, a consciousness

I

was leaving London, and, stranger going somewhere else, a feeling of loneI

and a sensation of

liness

wildered

me

dered

my

quite be-

thoughts, and for a time ren-

even insensible

my carpet-bag

jolting,

to the presence of

and hat-box.

I

shall

grateful to the driver of a Blackwall

ever

feel

omnibus

who, by thrusting the pole of his vehicle through the small door of the cabriolet,

awakened me from a tumult of imaginings But of such

that are wholly indescribable.

materials "

I

is

our imperfect nature composed

am happy

to say that

I

am

the

!

first

passenger on board, and shall thus be enabled to give you an account of all that happens in the order of its occurrence. The chimney is

smoking a good deal, and so are the crew and the captain, I am informed, is very drunk ;


ioo

Report of the Second Meeting

a

house upon deck, something like a black turnpike. I should infer from all I in

little

hear that he has got the steam up. "

ings

You I

berth

will

readily guess with

what

feel-

have just made the discovery that is

in the

same

closet with those

my

engaged

by Professor Woodensconce, Mr. Slug, and Professor Grime. Professor Woodensconce has taken the shelf above me, and Mr. Slug and Professor Grime the two shelves oppo-

Their luggage has already arrived. On Mr. Slug's bed is a long tin tube of about

site.

three inches in diameter, carefully closed at

both ends. powerful

What

can this contain

instrument of a

new

?

Some

construction,

doubtless. " Ten minutes past nine.

"

Nobody has thing fresh come

yet arrived, nor has anyin

my way

except several

and mutton, from which I conclude that a good plain dinner has been pro-

joints of beef

vided for to-morrow.

There

is

a singular


of the Mudfog Association.

me some

smell below, which gave at first

there,

but as the steward says

;

and never goes away,

fortable again.

uneasiness it is

iliÂŤ?di

always

"quite

cpfrii-

man

h^-;

learn /from jth$3-

I

101

'

the different sections

wii'l

be distributed

Boy and Stomach-ache, and

the Black

Boot-jack and Countenance.

gence be true (and it),

your readers

I

write

will

occur to

me, or as

knowledge,

may I

down

in

the

If this intelli-

have no reason to doubt

I

draw such conclusions

as their different opinions "

at

may

these

the facts

order that

my

suggest.

remarks as they

come

first

to

my

impressions

lose nothing of their original vividness.

shall

despatch them

in small

packets as

,,

opportunities arise. "

"

Some dark

upon the wharf.

Half-past

nine.

has just appeared think it is a travelling

object I

carriage ." "

"

No,

it

isn't."

A

quarter

to ten.


102

Report of the Second Meeting

"

ten.

Half-past u

'-'

Tj if- passengers are pouring in every instant -Four omnibuses full have just arrived

upon the wharf, and all is bustle and activity. The noise and confusion are very great. Cloths are laid in the cabins, and the steward is

at

placing blue plates-full of knobs of cheese

equal distances

He

tables.

down

the centre of

the

many knobs

but,

drops a great

being used to great dexterity, sleeve,

throws them back into

He

a young

is

man

sessing appearance

but

I

"

;

it, picks them up again with and, after wiping them on his

the

plates.

of exceedingly prepos-

— either dirty or a mulatto,

think the former.

An

interesting old gentleman,

who came

an omnibus, has just quarrelled violently with the porters, and is staggering towards the vessel with a large to the

wharf

in

trunk in his arms.

may

reach

it

I

in safety

and hope that he but the board he has

trust ;


of the Mtidfog Association. to cross

splash

is

narrow and

Was

slippery.

Gracious powers

?

103 that a

!

have just returned from the deck. The trunk is standing upon the extreme brink of 11

1

the wharf, but the old gentleman

is

nowhere

The watchman is not sure whehe went down or not, but promises to

to be seen.

ther

drag for him the

first

May his humane

ing.

"

Professor

Nogo

thing to-morrow mornefforts

prove successful

has this

!

moment arrived

He

with his nightcap on under his hat.

has

ordered a glass of cold brandy and water, with a hard biscuit and a bason, and has gone straight to bed. "

The

whom

What

can this

mean

?

three other scientific gentlemen to

have already alluded have come on board, and have all tried their beds, with the I

exception of Professor Woodensconce, sleeps in one of the top ones, into

it.

top one,

have

his

Mr. Slug, who sleeps is

unable to get out of

who

and cant get in his,

the other

and

is

supper handed up by a boy.

to I


1

Report of the Second Meeting

04

have had the honour to introduce myself to these gentlemen, and we have amicably arranged the order in which we shall retire to rest which it is necessary to agree upon, ;

because, although the cabin able, there

is

not

room

very comfortmore than one

is

for

gentleman to be out of bed at a time, and even he must take his boots off in the passage. "

As

I

anticipated, the

were provided

now

are

knobs of cheese

for the passengers' supper,

in course of

and

Your

consumption.

readers will be surprised to hear that Professor

Woodensconce

cheese for eight

has

years,

abstained

although he takes

butter in considerable quantities.

Grime having

from

Professor

lost several teeth, is unable,

I

observe, to eat his crusts without previously

soaking them

in his bottled

porter.

interesting are these peculiarities "

"

How

" !

Half-past

eleven.

Professors Woodensconce and Grime,

with a degree of good humour that delights


of the Mudfog Association.

105

have just arranged to toss for a bottle of mulled port. There has been some discusus

all,

sion whether the

by the

first

payment should be decided

toss or the best out of

three.

Eventually the latter course has been determined on. Deeply do I wish that both gen-

tlemen could win I

as

own

that

an

either

my

;

but that being impossible,

personal aspirations

individual,

and do

you or your readers by

of feeling) are with Professor I

(I

speak

not compromise this expression

Woodensconce.

have backed that gentleman to the amount

of eighteenpence." " 11

Professor

Twenty minutes

Grime

to twelve.

has

inadvertently tossed his half-crown out of one of the cabin-

windows, and

it

on any side

any amount, but there are no

has been arranged that the steward shall toss for him. Bets are offered to

takers. i]

1

Professor

woman

;'

Woodensconce has

just called

but the coin having lodged in a


1

06

Report of the Second Meeting

beam,

is

a

long time coming

The

interest

ment

are

and suspense of

this

" Twelve

The

again.

one mo-

beyond anything that can be ima-

gined/' "

down

o'clock.

smoking on the table before me, and Professor Grime has won. Tossing is a game of chance but on every mulled port

is

;

ground, whether of public or private character,

intellectual

attainments,

I

endowments, or

cannot

opinion that Professor

have come

and

my

There

is

to

an exul-

Grime incompatible,

I

with true greatness." "

"

expressing

Woodensconce ought

off victorious.

tation about Professor fear,

help

scientific

A

quarter past twelve.

Professor Grime continues to boast of his victory in

to exult,

no very mea-

sured terms, observing that he always does win, and that he knew it would be a head '

'

beforehand, with similar nature.

many

other remarks of a

Surely this gentleman

is

not


Mudfog Association.

of the

107

so lost to every feeling of decency and pro-

and know the superiority Is Professor of Professor Woodensconce ? priety as not to feel

Grime insane minded

or does he wish to be re-

?

language of his true

in plain

'position

and the precise level of his acquirements and abilities ? Professor Grime will in society,

do well

to look to this." "

" is

I

am

writing in bed.

illuminated

by the

The

One

o'clock.

small cabin

feeble light of a flicker-

ing lamp suspended from the ceiling; Professor

Grime

is

on the broad of open.

The

The

lying on the opposite shelf his back, with his

scene

is

mouth wide

indescribably solemn.

rippling of the tide, the noise of the

sailors' feet

river, the

overhead, the gruff voices on the

dogs on the shore, the snoring of

the passengers, and a constant creaking of

every plank in the vessel, are the only sounds that

meet the

all is

profound

ear.

With

silence.

these exceptions,


Report of the Second Meeting

108 "

My

been within the

curiosity has

moment very much

last

Mr. Slug, who

excited.

above Professor Grime, has cautiously withdrawn the curtains of his berth, and, lies

after looking anxiously out, as

if

to satisfy

himself that his companions are asleep, has

taken up the spoken, and

What

tin

is

tube of which

regarding

it

I

with great interest.

rare mechanical combination

contained in that mysterious case dently a profound secret to "

"

have before

?

can be It is evi-

all."

A

quarter past one.

The

behaviour of Mr. Slug grows more and more mysterious. He has unscrewed the

top

of the tube, and

now renews

his

observations upon his companions, evidently to

make

He

is

sure that he

is

wholly unobserved.

on the eve of some great exPray heaven that it be not a

clearly

periment.

dangerous one but the interests of science must be promoted, and I am prepared for the ;

worst/'


of the Mudfog Association.

109

" Five minutes

"

later.

He

has produced a large pair of scissors, and drawn a roll of some substance, not unlike

parchment

in

appearance, from the tin

The experiment

case.

must

is

about to begin.

I

eyes to the utmost, in the attempt to follow its minutest operation." strain

my

" "

have

I

Twenty minutes

at length

been enabled to ascer-

tain that the tin tube contains a

some

celebrated plaster,

few yards of

recommended

discover on regarding the label

through

my

— eye-glass- as

against sea-sickness. into small portions,

over himself

in

before two.

a

I

attentively

preservative

Mr. Slug has cut it up and is now sticking it

every direction." " Three

"

— as

o'clock.

Precisely a quarter of an hour ago we

weighed anchor, and the machinery was suddenly put in motion with a noise so appalling, that Professor Woodensconce (who had ascended to

his berth

by means of a platform


1

Report of the Second Meeting

10

of carpet bags arranged by himself on geometrical principles) darted from his shelf head

foremost, and, gaining his feet with

all

the

of extreme terror, ran wildly into

rapidity

the ladies' cabin, under the impression that

we were aid.

I

sued

and uttering loud cries for assured that the scene which en-

sinking,

am

baffles all description.

hundred and forty-seven

There were one

ladies in their re-

spective berths at the time. "

Mr. Slug has remarked, as an additional instance of the extreme ingenuity of the steam-engine as applied to purposes of navigation, that in whatever part of the vessel a passenger's berth

may be

situated, the machi-

nery always appears to be exactly under his pillow. ful,

He

intends stating this very beauti-

though simple discovery, to the associa-

tion." "

"

We are

say, in as

still

in

Half-past

smooth water

;

three.

that

is

to

smooth water as a steam-vessel ever


of the Mudfog Association. can be,

for,

has just

as Professor

woke

1 1 1

Woodensconce (who

up) learnedly remarks, another

great point of ingenuity about a steamer that

is,

always carries a little storm with it. can scarcely conceive how exciting the

it

You

jerking pulsation of the ship becomes.

a matter of positive "

"

I

plaster

regret

difficulty to

It is

get to sleep."

Friday afternoon, six

o'clock.

you that Mr. Slugs has proved of no avail. He is in to inform

great agony, but has applied several large, additional pieces notwithstanding. fecting

is

this

How

T

af-

extreme devotion to science

and pursuit of knowledge under the most trying circumstances "

ing,

!

We

were extremely happy this mornand the breakfast was one of the most

animated description.

Nothing unpleasant occurred until noon, with the exception of Doctor Foxey

s

brown

silk

umbrella

and

white hat becoming entangled in the machinery while he was explaining to a knot of


H2

Report of the Second Meeting

ladies the construction of the steam-engine. I

fear the

We

gravy soup

was

for lunch

injudi-

a great many passengers almost immediately afterwards." cious.

lost

"

"

I

am again

in bed.

Half-past

six.

Anything so heart-

rending as Mr. Slug s sufferings yet been my lot to witness." "

it

has never

Seven

dclock.

"A

messenger has just come down for a clean pocket-handkerchief from Professor

Woodensconce s

bag, that unfortunate gentle-

man

being quite unable to leave the deck, and imploring constantly to be thrown overboard.

From

this

man

I

understand that

Professor Nogo, though in a state of utter exhaustion, clings feebly to the hard biscuit

and cold brandy and water, under the impression that they will yet restore him. Such is the triumph of mind over matter. " Professor Grime is in bed, to

ance quite well

;

but he will

all

eat,

appear-

and

it

is


of the Mudfog Association.

113

disagreeable to see him. Has this gentleman no sympathy with the sufferings of his fellowcreatures

he

?

call for

he has, on what principle can " mutton-chops and smile ? If

—

" Black

Boy and Stomach-ache Oldcastle,

"

You

will

be happy to learn that

at length arrived is

lodgings and hotels are

intellect that is in

"

filled

all

I

have

The town

here in safety.

excessively crowded, and

both sexes.

',

Saturday noon.

the private

with savans of

The tremendous assemblage one encounters

in

of

every street

the last degree overwhelming. Notwithstanding the throng of people

have been fortunate enough to meet with very comfortable accommodation on here,

I

very reasonable terms, having secured a sofa in the first-floor passage at one guinea per

which includes permission to take my meals in the bar, on condition that I walk

night,

about the streets at

room

for other

all

other times, to

gentlemen similarly

make

situated. 8


H4 I

Report of the Second Meeting

have been over the outhouses intended to

be devoted

to

the reception of the various

both here and at the Boot-jack and Countenance, and am much delighted with

sections,

the arrangements.

Nothing can exceed the fresh appearance of the saw-dust with which the floors are sprinkled.

The

forms are of

unplaned deal, and the general effect, as you can well imagine, is extremely beautiful." "

"

The number and

Half-past

nine.

rapidity of the arrivals

are quite bewildering.

Within the

last ten

minutes a stage-coach has driven up to the door, filled inside and out with distinguished characters,

comprising

Mr.

Muddlebranes,

Mr. Drawley, Professor Muff, Mr. X. Misty, Mr. X. X. Misty, Mr. Purblind, Professor

Rummun, The Honourable and Reverend Mr. Long Eers, Professor John Ketch, Sir William Joltered, Doctor Buffer, Mr. Smith (of London),

Hookham

Mr. Brown (of Edinburgh), Sir

Snivey, and Professor Pumpkin-

'


of the Mudfog Association.

The ten

skull.

115

last-named gentlemen were wet

through, and looked extremely intelligent." " "

Sunday, two

d clock, p.m.

The Honourable and Reverend Mr.

accompanied by Sir William Joltered, walked and drove this morning.

Long

Eers,

They accomplished and the rally "

latter in

the former feat in boots,

a hired

given rise to

much

fly.

This has natu-

discussion.

have just learnt that an interview has taken place at the Boot-jack and Countenance I

between Sowster, the active and

intelligent

beadle of this place, and Professor Pumpkinskull, who, as your readers are doubtless aware, I

to

an

is

influential

member

forbear to communicate

which

has given

this

of the council.

any of the rumours

very extraordinary proceeding I have seen Sowster, and

rise until

endeavoured to ascertain the truth from him." " "

I

engaged

a

Half-past six.

donkey-chaise

after writing the above,

shortly

and proceeded

at a


1 1

Report of the Second Meeting

6

brisk trot in the direction of Sowster's resi-

dence, passing through a beautiful expanse of

country,

with

red

brick

buildings

on

and

stopping in the marketplace to observe the spot where Mr. KwakIt is an ley's hat was blown off yesterday. either

side,

uneven piece of paving, but has certainly no appearance which would lead one to suppose that

any such event had recently occurred

there.

From

— passing tallow-melter's — to a lane

this point

the gas-works and

I

proceeded

which had been pointed out to me as the beadle's place of residence and before I had ;

driven a dozen yards further, fortune to

I

had the good

meet Sowster himself advancing

towards me. "

Sowster

is

a fat man, with a more en-

larged development of that peculiar conformation of countenance which is vulgarly

termed a double chin than have ever seen before.

He

I

remember

to

has also a very

red nose, which he attributes to a habit of


of the Mudfog Association. early rising

— so

explanation

I

red, indeed, that

117

but for this

should have supposed

it

to

He inproceed from occasional inebriety. formed me that he did not feel himself at what had passed between himself and Professor Pumpkinskull, but had

liberty to relate

no objection to state that

was connected

it

with a matter of police regulation, and added with peculiar significance Never wos sitch '

times "

' !

You

will easily believe that this intelli-

gave me considerable surprise, not wholly unmixed with anxiety, and that I lost no time in waiting on Professor Pumpkin-

gence

and stating the object of my visit. After a few moments' reflection, the Professor, skull,

who,

I

am bound

to say,

behaved with the

utmost politeness, openly avowed the passage in

Sowster

to

;

that he

attend on the

the Boot-jack

boys

italics)

and

had

(I

mark

requested

Monday morning at

Countenance, to keep off the

and that he hadfurther

desired that the


1 1

Report of the Second Meeting

8

under-beadle might be stationed, with the same object, at the "

Now

I

Black Boy and Stomach-ache ! leave this unconstitutional pro-

ceeding to your comments and the consideration of your readers. I have yet to learn that a beadle, without the precincts of a church, churchyard, or workhouse, and acting

under the express orders of churchwardens and overseers in council

otherwise

than

assembled, to enforce the law against people who come upon the parish, and other offen-

any lawful authority whatever over the rising youth of this country. I have yet

ders, has

be called out by exercise a domination and

to learn that a beadle can

any

civilian

to

I have despotism over the boys of Britain. yet to learn that a beadle will be permitted

by the commissioners of poor law regulation to wear out the soles and heels of his boots in

illegal

interference with the

liberties

of

people not proved poor or otherwise criminal. I have yet to learn that a beadle has power


of the Mudfog Association.

119

up the Queen's highway at his will and pleasure, or that the whole width of the

to stop

street

or

not free and open to any man, boy,

is

woman

in existence,

houses — ay,

to the very walls

up

be they Black Boys and Stornach-aches, or Boot-jacks and Counte-

of the

I

nances,

care not."

"Nine "

have procured a

I

o'clock.

local artist to

make

a

sketch of the tyrant Sowster, which,

faithful

as he has acquired this infamous celebrity,

no doubt wish to have engraved

will

you

for

the purpose of presenting a copy with every

copy of your next number.

The life,

enclose

I

it.

under-beadle has consented to write his but

"

it is

to

be

strictly

The accompanying

from the

Even

if

likeness

is

of course

and complete in every respect. had been totally ignorant of the

life,

I

man's real character, and before

anonymous.

me

had been placed without remark, I should have

shuddered involuntarily.

it

There

is

an intense


1

20

Report of the Second Meeting

malignity of expression in the features, and a baleful ferocity of purpose in the ruffian's eye, is

His whole

which appals and sickens.

rampant with

cruelty, nor is the

characteristic of his

stomach

less

demoniac propensities." "

"

air

Monday.

The

I great day has at length arrived. have neither eyes, nor ears, nor pens, nor ink,

nor paper, for anything but the wonderful proceedings that have astounded my senses.

me

Let

collect

my

energies and proceed to

the account. " Section

A.— Zoology and

Botany.

FRONT PARLOUR, BLACK BOY AND STOMACH-ACHE. Vice-Presidents President— Six William Joltered. Muddlebranes and Mr. Drawley.

"

— Mr.

Mr. X. X. Misty communicated some

remarks on the disappearance of dancing bears from the streets of London, with observations

on the

connected

with

exhibition

of

barrel-organs.

had observed, with

feelings

monkeys

The

as

writer

of the utmost


Thv Tyrant SowSter

%


of the

Mudfog Association.

pain and regret, that

1

23

some years ago a sud-

den and unaccountable change taste took place with reference

in the public

to itinerant

who, being discountenanced by the populace, gradually fell off one by one from bears,

the streets of the metropolis, until not one

remained to create a taste in the breasts of the

One

indeed,

bear,

for natural history

poor and uninstructed.

—a

brown

and

ragged haunts of about the lingered his former triumphs, with a worn and dejected animal, — had

visage and feeble limbs, and had essayed to wield his quarter-staff for the amusement of the multitude

;

but hunger, and an utter want

of any due recompense for his abilities, had at length driven

him from the

field,

was only too probable that he had sacrifice to the

and

it

fallen a

rising taste for grease.

He

regretted to add that a similar, and no less

lamentable,

change

had

taken place with

These delightful monkeys. animals had formerly been almost as plentiful

reference

to


Report of the Second Meeting

124

as the organs on the tops of which they

accustomed to

sit

;

were

the proportion in the year

appeared by the parliamentary return) being as one monkey to three organs. Owing, however, to an altered taste in musical in1829

(it

struments, and the substitution, in

a great

measure, of narrow boxes of music for organs,

which

the

monkeys nothing to sit upon, source of public amusement was wholly

this

left

dried up.

deepest national

it

Considering

in

importance,

education, that

a matter of the connection

the

with

people should

not lose such opportunities of making themselves acquainted with the manners and

customs of two most interesting species of animals, the author submitted that some

measures should be

immediately taken for

the restoration of these pleasing and truly intellectual "

amusements.

The

President inquired by what means the honourable member proposed to attain this

most desirable end

?


of the "

Mudfog Association.

The Author and

most

fully

Her

Majesty's

submitted that

it

125 could be

satisfactorily accomplished, if

Government would cause

to

be brought over to England, and maintained at the public expense, and for the public amusement, such a number of bears as would enable every quarter of the town to be visited

— say

at least

difficulty

No

by three bears a week.

whatever need be experienced

providing a

fitting place for

these animals, as a

in

the reception of

commodious bear-garden

could be erected in the immediate neighbour-

hood of both Houses of Parliament

;

obvi-

ously the most proper and eligible spot for

such an establishment. "

Professor

Mull

doubted very much

whether any correct ideas of natural history were propagated by the means to which the honourable

On

member had

so ably adverted.

the contrary, he believed that they had

been the means of diffusing very incorrect He and imperfect notions on the subject.


Report of the Second Meeting

126

spoke from personal observation and personal experience, when he said that many children of great abilities had been induced to believe,

from what they had observed in the streets, at and before the period to which the honourable gentleman had referred, that

monkeys

red coats and spangles, and that

were born

in

their hats

and feathers

He

all

wished to know

also

came by

distinctly

nature.

whether the

honourable gentleman attributed the want of encouragement the bears had met with to the decline of public taste in that respect, or to

a want of ability on the part of the bears themselves ? "

Mr. X. X. Misty

replied, that

he could

not bring himself to believe but that there must be a great deal of floating talent among the bears and

monkeys generally

;

which, in

the absence of any proper encouragement,

was dispersed in other directions. " Professor Pumpkinskull wished

to

take that opportunity of calling the attention


of

the

Mudfog Association.

of the section to a

1

27

most important and serious

The

author of the treatise just read had alluded to the prevalent taste for bears'-

point.

grease as a means of promoting the growth of hair, which undoubtedly

very great and (as alarming extent. that section could

it

diffused to a

appeared to him) very

No fail

was

to

gentleman attending be aware of the fact

that the youth of the present age evinced, their behaviour in the streets,

and

by

at all places

of public resort, a considerable lack of that

and gentlemanly feeling which, in more ignorant times, had been thought be-

gallantry

coming.

He

wished to know whether

were possible that a constant outward cation of bears '-grease

men

by

the

young

it

appli-

gentle-

about town had imperceptibly infused

unhappy persons something of the He shudnature and quality of the bear.

into those

dered as he threw out the remark

;

but

if

on inquiry, should prove to be well-founded, it would at once explain a great

this

theory,


128

Report of the Second Meeting

deal of unpleasant eccentricity of behaviour,

some

which, without

such

discovery,

was

wholly unaccountable.

"The

President highly complimented the learned gentleman on his most valuable suggestion, which produced the greatest effect

upon the assembly and remarked that only a week previous he had seen some young ;

gentlemen at a theatre eyeing a box of ladies with a fierce intensity, which nothing but the influence of possibly explain. that our youth

some It

brutish appetite could

was dreadful

to reflect

were so rapidly verging

into

generation of bears. " After a scene of scientific enthusiasm

was resolved

a

it

that this

important question should be immediately submitted to the consideration of the council. "

The

President wished

to

know whe-

ther any gentleman could inform the section

what had become of the dancing- dogs " A Member replied, after some

?

hesit^-


of the

Mudfog

Association.

129

on the day after three glee-singers had been committed to prison as criminals by a late most zealous police-magistrate of tion, that

the metropolis, the dogs had abandoned their

and dispersed themselves quarters of the town to gain a

professional duties, in different

livelihood

was given

He dangerous means. understand that since that

less

by to

period they had lying in wait for

themselves by

supported

and robbing blind mens

poodles. "

Mr. Flummery

exhibited a twig, claim-

ing to be a veritable branch of that noble tree

known

to

Shak-

as the

naturalists

speare, which has taken root in every land

and

climate,

and gathered under the shade of

broad green boughs the great family of mankind. The learned gentleman remarked its

had been undoubtedly called by other names in its time but that it had been that the twig

;

pointed

out

to

him

Warwickshire, where

by an the

old

lady

great tree 9

in

had


1

Report of the Second Meeting

30

grown, as a shoot of the genuine Shakspeare, by which name he begged to introduce it to his

countrymen. "

The

President wished to know what

botanical definition the honourable gentleman

could afford of the curiosity. "

that

Mr. Flummery expressed it

his opinion

was a decided plant.

" Section B.

— Display

of Models and Mechanical Science.

large room, boot-jack and countenance. President

— Mr. Mallett.

Vice-Presidents

— Messrs. Leaver

and Scroo.

" ful

Mr. Crinkles exhibited a most

and

than

delicate machine, of

an ordinary

little

snuff-box,

beauti-

larger size

manufactured

and composed exclusively of steel, by the aid of which more pockets could be picked in one hour than by the pre-

entirely

by

himself,

sent slow and tedious process in four-and-

twenty.

The

inventor remarked that

been put into active operation

it

had

in Fleet Street,


of

the

Mudfog Association.

131

the Strand, and other thoroughfares, and had

never been once known to "

fail.

After some slight delay, occasioned by

the various

members

of the section buttoning

their pockets, "

The President

narrowly inspected the invention, and declared that he had never seen a machine of more beautiful or exquisite

Would

construction.

enough

the inventor be good

to inform the section

whether he had

taken any and what means for bringing into general operation "

Mr. Crinkles

it

?

stated

that,

after

en-

countering some preliminary difficulties, he had succeeded in putting himself in communication with Mr. Fogle Hunter, and other

gentlemen connected with the swell mob, who had awarded the invention the very highest and most unqualified approbation.

He

regretted to say, however, that these dis-

tinguished practitioners, in

gentleman

of

the

name

common of

with a

Gimlet-eyed


Report of the Second Meeting

132

Tommy, and

other

members

grade of the profession

of a secondary

whom

he was under-

stood to represent, entertained an insuperable objection to use,

its

being brought into general

on the ground that

inevitable

effect of

it

would have the

almost

entirely super-

seding manual labour, and throwing a great

number of highly-deserving persons out

of

employment. " The President hoped that no such fanciful objections would be allowed to stand in the

way

of such a great public improve-

ment. "

Mr. Crinkles hoped

feared that

mob

if

so too

the gentlemen

;

but he

of the swell

persevered in their objection, nothing

could be done. " in

Professor Grime suggested, that surely,

that

case,

Her

Majesty's

might be prevailed upon to take "

Mr. Crinkles

were found

to

said, that

if

government it

up.

the objection

be insuperable he should apply


of

the

to parliament, fail

Mudfog

Association.

133

which he thought could not

to recognise the utility of the invention. "

The President

observed

that,

up

to

parliament had certainly got on very well without it but, as they did their business on a very large scale, he had no this time

;

doubt they would gladly adopt the improveHis only fear was that the machine ment.

might be worn out by constant working. " Mr. Coppernose called the attention of the section to a proposition of great magni-

tude and interest, illustrated by a vast number of models, and stated with much clearness

and perspicuity in a treatise entitled Practical Suggestions on the necessity of providing '

some harmless and wholesome

relaxation for

the young noblemen of England/

His pro-

position was, that a space of less

than

ten miles in

ground of not length and four in

breadth should be purchased by a new company, to be incorporated by Act of Parliament, and inclosed by a brick wall of not less


Report of the Second Meeting

134

than twelve feet

He

in height.

proposed should be laid out with highway roads, turnpikes, bridges, miniature villages, and

that

it

every object that could conduce to the comfort and glory of Four-in-hand Clubs, so that they might be fairly presumed to require no drive

would be

fitted

and extensive

This

it

beyond

delightful

retreat

up with most commodious

stables, for the

convenience of

such of the nobility and gentry as had a taste for ostlering, and with houses of entertain-

ment furnished

handsome

style.

the most expensive and

in

It

would be further pro-

vided with whole streets of door-knockers

and bell-handles of extra

size,

so constructed

they could be easily wrenched off at night, and regularly screwed on again, by

that

attendants provided for the purpose, every day. glass,

There would

be gas lamps of real which could be broken at a compara-

tively small

also

expense per dozen, and a broad

and handsome

foot

pavement

for

gentlemen


of the Mudfog Association. to drive their cabriolets

— humorously disposed

135

upon when they were for the full

enjoyment

of which feat live pedestrians would be pro-

cured from the workhouse at a very small

charge per head. The place being inclosed, and carefully screened from the intrusion of the public, there would be no objection to

gentlemen laying aside any article of their costume that was considered to interfere with a pleasant

frolic, or,

indeed, to their walking

about without any costume at all, if they liked that better. In short, every facility of enjoy-

ment would be afforded

most gentlemanly person could possibly desire. But as even these advantages would be incomplete unless there were

that the

some means provided of

enabling the nobility and gentry to display

when they sallied forth after and as some inconvenience might be

their prowess

dinner,

experienced in the event of their being reduced tp the necessity of pummelling each other, the inventor

had turned

his attention


Report of the Second Meeting

136

to the construction of an entirely force,

composed exclusively

figures,

street, in in

Signor

Gagliardi,

of Windmill-

the Haymarket, he had succeeded

making with such

nicety, that a policeman,

woman, made upon the of the models exhibited, would walk

cab-driver,

principle

police

automaton

with the assistance of the

which,

ingenious

of

new

or old

about until knocked nay, more,

if

set

down

like

any

real

upon and beaten by

eight noblemen or gentlemen, after

man

;

six or it

was

down, the figure would utter divers groans, mingled

with

rendering the

entreaties illusion

enjoyment perfect. not stop even here be

built,

for

thus

mercy,

complete,

and

the

But the invention did ;

for station-houses

would

containing good beds for noblemen

and gentlemen during the night, and in the morning they would repair to a commodious police office,

where a pantomimic

investiga-

would take place before the automaton who would quite equal to life, magistrates, tion

—

—


of fine

them

the

in

Mudfog

so

many

Association.

1

37

counters, with which

they would be previously provided for the

This

purpose.

office

would be furnished

with an inclined plane, for the convenience of

any nobleman or gentleman who might wish to bring in his horse as a witness and the ;

prisoners would be at perfect liberty, as they were now, to interrupt the complainants as

much

as

make any The they thought proper.

they pleased, and

remarks that

to

charge for these amusements would amount to very

little

more than they already

cost,

and the inventor submitted that the public would be much benefited and comforted by the proposed arrangement. "

Professor Nogo wished

what amount of automaton proposed to raise "

to

be informed

police force

it

was

in the first instance.

Mr. Coppernose

replied,

that

it

was

proposed to begin with seven divisions of police of a score each, lettered from A to G inclusive.

It

was proposed that not more


1

Report of the Second Meeting

38

than half this number should be placed on active duty, and that the remainder should be

kept on shelves

in

the police office ready to

be called out at a moment's notice. "

The

President, awarding the utmost

merit to the ingenious gentleman

who had

doubted whether

originated the

idea,

automaton

police

purpose.

He

would quite answer the feared that noblemen and

gentlemen would perhaps require the

ment of threshing living subjects. " Mr. Coppernose submitted,

the

excite-

that as the

usual odds in such cases were ten noblemen or gentlemen to one policeman or cab-driver, it

could

make very

little

difference in point

of excitement whether the policeman or cabdriver were a

man

or a block.

The

great

advantage would be, that a policeman's limbs might be all knocked off, and yet he would be a condition to do duty next day. He might even give his evidence next morning with

in

his

head

in his

hand, and give

it

equally well,


of the Mudfog Association. "

— Will

Professor Muff.

to ask

you,

sir,

you allow

of what materials

me

is

in-

shall

be

— The magistrates

will

tended that the magistrates' heads

composed ? " Mr. Coppernose.

139

it

and they will be made of the toughest and thickest materials that can possibly be obtained.

have wooden

"

Professor Muff.

This "

heads

is

trates "

course,

I

am

I

see but one objec-

quite satisfied.

a great invention.

Professor Nogo.

tion to

of

appears to

It

it.

ought to

me

that the magis-

talk.

Mr. Coppernose no sooner heard

this

suggestion than he touched a small spring in each of the two models of magistrates which

were placed upon the

table

;

one of the

began to exclaim with that he was sorry to see

figures immediately

great

volubility

gentlemen

in

to express

intoxicated.

such a situation, and the other

a fear that the policeman

was


Report of the Second Meeting

140 "

The

invention

to lay

"

with one accord, de-

with a shout of

clared

much

section, as

was complete

excited, retired it

and the President, with Mr. Coppernose ;

before the council.

Mr. Tickle

applause that the

On his

displayed

his

return,

newly-in-

vented spectacles, which enabled the wearer to discern, in very bright colours, objects at

a great distance, and rendered him wholly blind to those immediately before him. It was, he said, a most valuable and useful invention, based strictly

human

the

"

upon the principle of

eye.

The

President required some informaHe had yet to learn tion upon this point. that the human eye was remarkable for the peculiarities of

man had "

hear

which the honourable gentle-

spoken.

Mr. Tickle was this,

when

rather astonished to

the President could not

fail

number of most

be aware that a large excellent persons and great statesmen could to


of the Mttdfog Association. see,

with the naked

horrors on

West

most

eye,

1

41

marvellous

India plantations, while they

could discern nothing whatever in the interior of Manchester cotton mills.

He

must know,

with what quickness of perception most

too,

people could discover their neighbours

faults,

and how very blind they were to their own. If the President differed from the great majority of men in this respect, his eye was a defective one, and

Mr. Blank

fashionable plates,

gold

to assist his vision

exhibited

annual, leaf,

was

were made.

that these glasses "

it

and

a

composed silk boards,

model of a of

copper-

and worked

by milk and water. Mr. Prosee, after examining the ma-

entirely "

chine, declared

it

to

be so ingeniously com-

posed, that he was wholly unable to discover

how "

it

went on

at

Mr. Blank.

the beauty of

it.

all.

— Nobody can, and

that

is


Report of the Second Meeting

142

" Section C.

—Anatomy

and Medicine.

BAR ROOM, BLACK BOY AND STOMACH-ACHE. President

— Dr. Soemup.

Vice-Presidents

— Messrs. Pessell

and Mortair. "

Dr. Grummidge stated

to the section a

monomania, and described the course of treatment he had most interesting case

of

pursued with perfect success. The patient was a married lady in the middle rank of life,

who, having seen another lady at an evening party in a

full

seized with

suit of pearls,

a desire to

was suddenly

possess a similar

equipment, although her husband's finances

were by no means equal outlay. fell sick,

the necessary

Finding her wish ungratified, she and the symptoms soon became so

alarming, called

to

that

in.

At

he

(Dr.

this

Grummidge) was

period the prominent

tokens of the disorder were sullenness, a total indisposition to perform domestic duties, great

peevishness,

when

pearls

and

extreme

languor,

were mentioned,

at

except

which times


of the Mtidfog Association. the pulse quickened, the eyes the pupils dilated,

and the

grew

143

brighter,

patient, after vari-

ous incoherent exclamations,

burst

into

a

passion of tears, and exclaimed that nobody

cared for her, and that she wished herself

Finding that the patient's appetite was affected in the presence of company, he dead.

began by ordering a total abstinence from all stimulants, and forbidding any sustenance but weak gruel he then took twenty ounces of ;

blood, applied a blister under each ear, one

upon the chest, and another on the back having done which, and administered five ;

grains of calomel, he repose.

The

left

the patient to her

next day she was somewhat

low, but decidedly better,

and

of irritation were removed.

she improved again.

On

still

the

further,

fourth

all

appearances next day

The

and on the next there

was

some

appearance of a return of the old symptoms,

which no sooner developed themselves, than he administered another dose of calomel, and


Report of the Second Meeting

144 left

strict

orders that,

a decidedly

unless

favourable change occurred within two hours, the

should be immediately

head

patient's

shaved to the very

moment she began

last

From

curl

that

mend, and, in less than four-and-twenty hours was perfectly restored. She did not now betray the least emotion at to

the sight or mention of pearls or any other

ornaments.

She was

cheerful

humoured, and a most beneficial been effected

in

and goodchange had

her whole temperament and

condition.

"Mr. Pipkin (M.R.C.S.)

read a short

but most interesting communication

in

which

he sought to prove the complete belief of Sir William Courtenay, otherwise Thorn, recently shot at Canterbury, in the

pathic system.

mind

The

that one of the

section

Homoeo-

would bear

in

Homoeopathic doctrines

was, that infinitesimal doses of any medicine

which would occasion the disease under which the patient laboured, supposing him to be in


of the Mudfog Association. a healthy state, would cure

a remarkable

it. ,

145

it

was

in

the

Now,

circumstance — proved

evidence — that the deceased Thorn employed

a

woman

pail

him about

day with a of water, assuring her that one drop (a

purely

to follow

homoeopathic

?

the

remedy,

would observe), placed upon death, would restore him. obvious inference

all

section

his tongue, after

What was the That Thorn, who was

marching and countermarching in osier beds, and other swampy places, was impressed with a presentiment that he should be drowned

;

in

which

case,

had

his instructions

plied with,

he could not

brought to

life

prescription.

fail

to

been com-

have been

again instantly by his

As

it

was,

if

this

own

woman, or

any other person, had administered an infinitesimal dose of lead and gunpowder immediately after

forthwith.

he

fell,

he would have recovered

But unhappily the

woman

con-

cerned did not possess the power of reasoning by analogy, or carrying out a principle, 10


Report of the Second Meeting

146

and thus the unfortunate gentleman had been sacrificed to the ignorance of the peasantry. " Section D.

— Statistics.

OUT-HOUSE, BLACK BOY AND STOMACH-ACHE.

— Mr.

President

Vice-Presidents

Slug.

and "

Mr. Kwakley

most ingenious

qualification

ment

Noakes

Styles.

stated the result of

statistical

to the difference

— Messrs.

inquiries

some

relative

between the value of the

of several

members

as published to the world,

of Parlia-

and

its

real

nature and amount.

After reminding the section that every member of Parliament for

a town or borough was supposed to possess a clear freehold estate of three hundred pounds per annum, the honourable gentleman excited

great

stating the

amusement exact amount

and

laughter

by

of freehold pro-

perty possessed by a column of legislators, It apin which he had included himself.

peared from this table, that the amount of such income possessed by each was o pounds,


of the

o

Mudfog

Association.

147

and o pence, yielding an average of the same. It was (Great laughter.) shillings,

known

pretty well

that there

were accommo-

dating gentlemen in the habit of furnishing

new members with temporary to

the

they swore course as a mere matter of

ownership

— solemnly of He

form.

was wholly

qualifications,

of which

argued from these data that unnecessary

for

members

it

of

Parliament to possess any property at all, especially as when they had none the public could get them so

much

"Supplementary Section,

cheaper. E.

— Umbugology

and

DlTCHWATERISICS. President

— Mr. Grub.

Vice-Presidents

— Messrs. Dull and

Dummy.

A

paper was read by the secretary descriptive of a bay pony with one eye, which had been seen by the author standing in a ?

butchers

cart

Market.

The communication

at

the

corner of

Newgate

described the

author of the paper as having, in the prose-


Report of the Second Meeting

148

cution of a mercantile pursuit, betaken him-

one Saturday morning

self

Somers of

Town

which

last

summer from

Cheapside in the course expedition he had beheld the to

;

appearance above described. pony had one distinct eye, and it had

extraordinary

The

been pointed out to him by his friend Captain Blunderbore,

of

the

assisted the author in

Horse Marines, who his search, that when-

ever he winked this eye he whisked his (possibly to drive the

flies off),

tail

but that he

always winked and whisked at the same time. The animal was lean, spavined, and tottering

;

and the author proposed

to constitute

the family of Fitfordogsrneataurious. tainly did occur to

him

that there

it

of

It cer-

was no case

on record of a pony with one clearly-defined and distinct organ of vision, winking and whisking at the same moment. "

Mr. Q.

J.

Snuffletoffle had heard of

a pony winking his eye, and likewise of a pony whisking his tail, but whether they were


of the Mudfog Association.

149

two ponies or the same pony he could not

At all events, undertake positively to say. he was acquainted with no authenticated of

instance

a

simultaneous

winking

and

whisking, and he really could not but doubt the existence of such a marvellous pony in opposition to

all

those natural laws by which

ponies were governed. to the

mere question of

Referring, however, his

one organ of

might he suggest the possibility of this pony having been literally half asleep at the time he was seen, and having closed only

vision,

one eye. "

The

President observed

that,

whether

the pony was half asleep or fast asleep, there

could be no doubt that the association was

wide awake, and therefore that they had better get the business over, and go to dinner.

He

had

certainly never seen anything analo-

gous to this pony, but he was not prepared to doubt its existence for he had seen many ;

queerer ponies in his time, though he did not


Report of the Second Meeting

150

pretend to have seen any more remarkable donkeys than the other gentlemen around him.

"Professor John Ketch was then to exhibit the skull of the

upon

called

Mr.

late

Greenacre, which he produced from a blue bag, remarking, on being invited to

make any

observations that occurred to him,

'

that he'd

as that 'ere 'spectable section

had

never seed a more gamerer cove nor he " most animated discussion upon

vos.'

pound

it

A

interesting relic ensued

;

and,

some

this

difference

of opinion arising respecting the real character of the deceased gentleman, Mr. Blubb delivered a lecture upon the cranium before

him, clearly

showing

that

Mr.

Greenacre

possessed the organ of destructiveness to a most unusual extent, with a most remarkable

development of the organ of carveativeness. Sir

Hookham Snivey w as

combat

r

this

suddenly

opinion,

interrupted

proceeding

to

when Professor Ketch the

proceedings

by


of the Mttdfog Association.

151

exclaiming, with great excitement of manner, \

Walker "

' !

The President begged

to

call

the

learned gentleman to order. "

Professor Ketch.

'

Order be Mowed

!

It ain't you've got the wrong un, I tell you. no e'd at all it's a coker-nut as my brother-in;

law has been

baked

a-carvin', to

tatur-stall

hornament

wots a-comin down

the 'sociation's in the town.

Hand

his

new

'ere vile

over,

vill

'

you

?

"With

these

words,

Professor

Ketch

hastily repossessed himself of the cocoa-nut,

and drew

forth the skull, in mistake for

he had exhibited

it.

versation ensued

;

A

which

most interesting con-

but as there appeared some

doubt ultimately whether the skull was Mr. Greenacre's, or a hospital patient's, or a paupers, or a man's, or a woman's, or a monkey's, no particular result was obtained." "

I

cannot," says our talented correspon-


Report of the Second Meeting

152

dent

in

conclusion,

"

I

account of these) gigantic

cannot

etc.

*,

close

researches

my and

sublime and noble triumphs without repeating a bon mot of Professor Woodensconce's, which

shows how the greatest minds may occasionally unbend when truth can be presented to listening ears, clothed in an attractive

and

was standing by, when, after a week of feasting and feeding, that learned

playful form.

I

gentleman, accompanied by the whole body of wonderful men, entered the hall yesterday,

where a sumptuous dinner was prepared where the richest wines sparkled on the ;

board, and fat bucks to *

— learning sent

Ah

' !

sacrifices

forth their savoury odours.

said Professor

his hands,

what

— propitiatory

*

this is

Woodensconce, rubbing what we meet for this is ;

what keeps us tothis is the gether, and beckons us onward spread of science, and a glorious spread it is/ inspires us

;

this

is

;

'


THE PANTOMIME OF

Before we plunge headlong let

LIFE.

into this paper,

us at once confess to a fondness for panto-

mimes

— to

a gentle sympathy with

and

— pantaloons

tion

of

clowns

an unqualified admirato a harlequins and columbines to

chaste delight in every action of their brief existence, varied

and many-coloured as those

and inconsistent though they occasionally be with those rigid and formal rules of propriety which regulate the proactions are,

ceedings of meaner and less comprehensive

minds.

We

revel in

pantomimes

— not

be-

cause they dazzle one's eyes with tinsel and

gold leaf; not because they present to us, once again, the well-beloved chalked faces,

and goggle eyes of our childhood because, like Christmas-day, and

;

not even

Twelfth-


The Pantomime of

154

Life.

and Shrove-Tuesday, and ones own birthday, they come to us but once a year night,

— our attachment

;

is

founded on a graver and

A

a very different reason. pantomime is to us, a mirror of life nay more, we maintain ;

that

it

is

so to audiences generally, although

they are not aware of

it,

circumstance

secret

the

is

amusement and a street

:

this

very

cause of their

delight.

Let us take a is

and that

slight example.

The

scene

an elderly gentleman, with a large

and strongly marked features, appears. His countenance beams with a sunny smile,

face

and a perpetual dimple cheek.

He

is

is

on

his broad, red

evidently an opulent elderly

gentleman, comfortable well-to-do in the world.

in circumstances,

He

is

and

not unmindful

of the adornment of his person, for he

is

say gaudily, dressed and that he indulges to a reasonable extent in the richly, not to

;

pleasures of the table

the joyous and oily

may be

manner

in

inferred from

which he rubs


The Pantomime of his stomach,

155

Life.

by way of informing the

ence that he

is

£oin£

home

audi-

In

to dinner.

the fulness of his heart, in the fancied security of wealth, in the possession

and enjoy-

ment of

the elderly

all

good things of

the

gentleman suddenly loses stumbles.

How

life,

his

and

footing,

the audience roar

!

He

is

upon by a noisy and officious crowd, who buffet and cuff him unmercifully. They set

scream with delight

!

Every time the

elderly

gentleman struggles to get up, his relentless persecutors knock him

down

convulsed

again.

with

spectators

are

And when

at last the elderly

The

merriment

!

gentleman does

get up, and staggers away, despoiled of hat, wig, and clothing, himself battered to pieces,

and

watch and money gone, they are exhausted with laughter, and express their his

merriment and admiration

in

rounds of ap-

plause. Is this like life

any

real street

;

?

Change the scene

to the

to

Stock Exchange, or


The Pantomime of

156

the City bankers

Life.

the merchant's counting-

;

See

house, or even the tradesman's shop.

—

any one of these men fall, the more suddenly, and the nearer the zenith of his pride

and

riches, the better.

raised

over

What

a wild hallo

is

by the shouting mob how they whoop and yell as he lies humbled beneath them Mark how his

prostrate

carcase

;

!

eagerly they set upon him

when he

is

down

;

and how they mock and deride him as he slinks away.

Why,

it

is

the

pantomime

to

the very letter.

Of we

all

the pantomimic dramatis personce,

consider the pantaloon the most worthless

and debauched. one naturally his

Independent of the

dislike

seeing a gentleman of years engaged in pursuits highly unbe-

coming

feels at

his gravity

and time of

life,

we

cannot

conceal from ourselves the fact that he

is

a

treacherous, worldly-minded old villain, con-

younger companion, the clown, into acts of fraud or petty larceny, and

stantly enticing his


The Pantomime of

157

Life.

generally standing aside to watch the result of the

If

enterprise.

it

be successful, he

never forgets to return for his share of the spoil but if it turn out a failure, he generally ;

retires

with remarkable caution and expedi-

and keeps carefully aloof until the affair His amorous propensities, has blown over.

tion,

are

too,

mode at

eminently disagreeable

and

his

of addressing ladies in the open street

noon-day

is

usually neither tible

;

downright improper, being less than a percep-

more nor

tickling of the aforesaid ladies in the

committing which, he starts back, manifestly ashamed (as well he may be) of his own indecorum and temerity continuing, nevertheless, to ogle and beckon to them

waist, after

;

from a distance

in

a very unpleasant and

immoral manner. Is there

any man who cannot count a

dozen pantaloons

in

his

own

social

circle ?

any man who has not seen them swarming at the west end of the town on a Is there


The Pantomime of

158

Life.

sunshiny day or a summer's evening, going through the last-named pantomimic feats with as

much

liquorish

energy, and as total an

absence of reserve, as stage

We

itself ?

they were on the very can tell upon our fingers if

a dozen pantaloons of our acquaintance at this

moment

—

capital pantaloons,

been performing to the great

all

who have

kinds of strange freaks,

amusement of

acquaintance, for years past

their friends ;

and who

and

to this

day are making such comical and ineffectual attempts to be young and dissolute, that all beholders are like to die with laughter.

Take

that

old gentleman

who

has just

emerged from the Cafd de F Europe in the Haymarket, where he has been dining at the expense of the young man upon town with whom he shakes hands as they part at the door of the tavern. The affected warmth of that shake of the hand, the courteous nod,

the obvious recollection of the dinner, the

savoury flavour of which

still

hangs upon

his


The Pantomime of lips,

are

tune,

characteristics of his great proto-

all

He

type.

hobbles away

and twirling

his

at

the

humming an opera

cane to and

fro,

with

—

Suddenly he stops window. He peeps

affected carelessness. 'tis

159

Life.

milliner's

through one of the large panes of glass and, his view of the ladies within being ;

obstructed by the India shawls, directs his attentions to the

box

in

window

young

her hand,

who

See

also.

!

girl is

with the band-

gazing

in at the

he draws beside

her.

He

He coughs; she turns away from him. draws near her again she disregards him. He gleefully chucks her under the chin, and, ;

retreating

with

few

a

fantastic

steps,

grimaces,

nods and beckons while the

girl

be-

stows a contemptuous and supercilious look upon his wrinkled visage. She turns away with a flounce, and the old gentleman trots after her

with a

pantaloon to the

But the

toothless

life

close

chuckle.

The

!

resemblance which

the


The Pantomime of Life.

160

clowns of the stage bear to those of everyis

life

day

Some

perfectly extraordinary.

people talk with a sigh of the decline of

pantomime, and murmur tones the

name

in

low and dismal

We

of Grimaldi.

mean no

disparagement to the worthy and excellent old

man when we

nonsense.

say that this

is

downright Clowns that beat Grimaldi all to

up every day, and more's the pity patronizes them nothing turn 11

dirty-faced

patron

down

the

nobody

!

know who you mean,"

I

laying

—

of

Mr.

Miscellany

says

some

Osbaldistone's,

when he has

and bestowing upon vacancy a most knowing glance " you mean C. J. Smith

got thus

far,

;

Guy Fawkes, and George Barnwell at The dirty-faced gentleman Garden."

as did

the

has hardly uttered the words,

when he

is

by a young gentleman in no shirt" collar and a Petersham coat. No, no," says " he means Brown, the young gentleman interrupted

;

King, and Gibson, at the 'Delphi."

Now,


The Pantomime of Life.

1

61

with great deference both to the first-named gentleman with the dirty face, and the last-

named gentleman in the non-existing shirtcollar, we do not mean either the performer

who

so grotesquely burlesqued the Popish

who

conspirator, or the three unchangeables

have been dancing the same dance under different imposing titles, and doing the same thing under various high-sounding

some

five or six years

no sooner made

who

last

names

We

past.

than the public, have hitherto been silent witnesses of

mean

and,

;

proceed to It

and

have

this avowal,

the dispute, inquire what on earth

do

for

is

tell

is

with becoming respect,

we we

them.

very well

known

pantomime-seers,

which a

it

theatrical

clown

that is

to all playgoers

the

at the

scenes

in

very height

of his glory are those which are described in

the play-bills as " Cheesemonger's "

shop

and Crockery warehouse/' or Tailor's shop, and Mrs. Queertable's boarding-house," or ii


1

The Pantomime of Life.

62

bearing some such title, where the great fun of the thing consists in the hero's places

taking

which

lodgings

slightest intention of

goods under

false

he

paying

has

for,

not

the

or obtaining

pretences, or abstracting

the stock-in-trade of the respectable shop-

robbing warehouse porters as they pass under his window, or, to shorten the catalogue, in his swindling

keeper

next

or

door,

everybody he possibly can, it only remaining to be observed that, the more extensive the swindling

is,

and the more barefaced the

impudence of the swindler, the greater the Now rapture and ecstksy of the audience. it is

a most remarkable fact that precisely this

sort of thing occurs in real

life

day

and nobody sees the humour of

after day,

it

Let us

our position by detailing the plot of this portion of the pantomime not of the illustrate

—

theatre, but of

life.

The Honourable Fiercy, attended

by

Captain

Fitz-Whisker

his livery servant

Do'em


The Pantomime of Life.

—a most respectable servant

163

to look at,

who

has grown grey in the service of the captain's family

—views,

treats for,

tains possession of,

the unfurnished house,

such a number, such a

men

in

and ultimately ob-

street.

All the trades-

the neighbourhood are in agonies of

competition

for

the captain's

custom

;

the

a good-natured, kind-hearted, easy man, and, to avoid being the cause of disapcaptain

is

pointment to any, he most handsomely gives orders to

all.

Hampers

of wine, baskets of

provisions, cart-loads of furniture, boxes of

jewellery, supplies of luxuries of the costliest description, flock to the house of the

able

Captain

Fitz-Whisker

Honour-

Fiercy,

where

they are received with the utmost readiness by the highly respectable Do'em while the ;

captain himself struts and swaggers about

with that

compound

air of conscious superi-

and general blood-thirstiness which a military captain should always, and does most

ority

times, wear, to the admiration

and

terror of


1

The Pantomime of Life.

64

But the tradesmen's backs

plebeian men.

are no sooner turned, than the captain, with all

the eccentricity of a mighty mind, and

assisted

by the

Do'em, whose devoted

faithful

not the least touching part of his

fidelity is

character,

disposes

advantage

;

of everything to great

although the

for,

small sums,

still

above cost

price,

they are sold considerably the cost to the captain

having been nothing at manoeuvres,

the

Fitz-Fiercy and federates,

Who

can

all.

imposture

After various is

discovered,

Do'em are recognized

and the police

are both taken

articles fetch

is

office to

as con-

which they

thronged with their dupes.

fail

to recognise in

this,

the

exact counterpart of the best portion of a

—

pantomime Fitz-Whisker Fiercy by the clown Do'em by the pantaloon and theatrical

;

;

tradesmen

supernumeraries by the best of the joke, too,

merchant who

is

against the person

is,

that the very coal-

loudest

who

The

?

in his

complaints

defrauded him,

is

the


The Pantomime of Life. identical

man who

sat in

very front row of the

165

the centre of the

pit

night and

last

laughed the most boisterously at

same

— and thing,

this

not so well done

Talk of Grimaldi,

we

say again

very

either. !

Did

Grimaldi, in his best days, ever do anything to

in this

way equal The mention

Da

Costa

?

of this latter justly cele-

brated clown reminds us of his last piece of

humour, the fraudulently obtaining certain stamped acceptances from a young gentleman in the

pen to

We

had scarcely laid down our contemplate for a few moments this

army.

admirable actor's performance of that ex quisite practical joke, than a new branch of our subject flashed suddenly upon take it up again at once. All scenes,

us.

So we

who have been behind the and most people who have been

people

before them, know, that in the representation of a pantomime, a

upon the stage

good many men are sent

for the express

purpose of


1

66

The Pantomime of Life.

being cheated, or knocked down, or both. Now, down to a moment ago, we had never

been able to understand

for

what possible

purpose a great number of odd, lazy, largeheaded men, whom one is in the habit of

meeting here, and there, and everywhere, could ever have been created. We see it all, now.

They

are the supernumeraries in the

pantomime of thrust into

life

it,

;

the

men who have been

with no other view than

to

be constantly tumbling over each other, and running their heads against all sorts of

We

sat opposite to one of strange things. these men at a supper-table, only last week.

Now we

he was exactly like the gentlemen with the pasteboard heads and faces, who do the corresponding business in think of

the theatrical

same broad leaden stare

;

it,

pantomimes stolid

—the

simper

;

there

— the

was the

same

dull

same unmeaning, vacant and whatever was said, or whatever eye

was done, he always came

in at precisely the


The Pantomime of

wrong place, or jostled

167

Life.

against something that

he had not the slightest business with. We looked at the man across the table again and again

;

and could not

race of beings to class

odd that

We much

this

satisfy ourselves

what

How

very

him

with.

never occurred to us before

will frankly

own

that

we have been

troubled with the harlequin.

harlequins of so

many pantomime, that we

hardly

know which

At one time we were

to

him of the disposed to

think that the harlequin was neither less

We see

kinds in the real living

select as the proper fellow of

theatres.

!

more nor

man of family and indewho had run away with an

than a young

pendent property, opera dancer, and was fooling his life and his means away in light and trivial amusements.

On

reflection,

however,

we remembered

harlequins are occasionally guilty

and even clever

acts,

that

of witty,

and we are rather

dis-

posed to acquit our young men of family and independent property, generally speaking, of


1

68

The Pantomime of

any such misdemeanours.

Life.

On

consideration of the subject,

a more mature

we have

arrived

at the conclusion that the harlequins of life

are just ordinary men, to be found in no particular station,

walk or degree, on

whom

a certain

or particular conjunction of circum-

magic wand. And this brings us to a few words on the pantomime of public and political life, which we shall say stances, confers the

at once,

and then conclude

in this

place that

we

— merely premising

decline any reference

whatever to the columbine, being

in

no wise

satisfied of the nature of her connection

with

her parti-coloured lover, and not feeling by any means clear that we should be justified introducing her to the virtuous and re-

in

spectable ladies

We

take

it

who

peruse our lucubrations.

that the

Session of Parliament

commencement is

neither

of a

more nor

than the drawing up of the curtain for grand comic pantomime, and that his

less

a

Majesty's most gracious speech on the open-


The Pantomime of Life. ing thereof

may be

are are

"

!

" !

My

69

not inaptly compared to

the clown's opening speech "

1

of

"

Here we

and gentlemen, here we our mind at least, to be a

lords

appears, to

very good abstract of the point and meaning of the propitiatory address of the ministry.

When we remember how speech

is

frequently this

made, immediately

after the change

too, the parallel is quite perfect,

and

still

more

singular.

Perhaps the cast of our political pantomime never was richer than at this day. We are

particularly strong in

former time,

we

At no have we had

clowns.

should say,

such astonishing tumblers, or performers so ready to go through the whole of their feats for the

amusement of an admiring throng.

Their extreme readiness to has given it

rise to

some

exhibit, indeed,

ill-natured reflections

;

having been objected that by exhibiting

gratuitously through the country theatre

is

when

the

closed, they reduce themselves to


1

The Pantomime of Life.

7째

the level of mountebanks, and thereby tend to degrade the respectability of the profes-

Certainly Grimaldi never did this sort

sion.

of thing

and though Brown, King, and Gibson have gone to the Surrey in vacation

time,

;

and Mr. C.

Sadler's Wells,

J.

we

Smith has ruralised

find

no

at

theatrical prece-

dent for a general tumbling through the country, except in the gentleman, name un-

known, who threw summersets on behalf of the late

Mr.

Richardson, and

who

is

no

authority either, because he had never been

on the regular boards. But, laying aside this question, which after all is

a mere matter of taste,

we may

reflect

with pride and gratification of heart on the proficiency of our clowns as exhibited in the season.

Night

tumble about, in the

after night will

till

morning

;

they twist and

two, three, and four o'clock

playing the strangest antics,

and giving each other the funniest

slaps

on

the face that can possibly be imagined, with-


The Pantomime of Life.

171

out evincing the smallest tokens of fatigue.

The

strange noises, the confusion, the shout-

ing and roaring, amid which too,

would put

to

all this is

done,

shame the most turbulent

sixpenny gallery that ever yelled through a boxing-night. It is

especially curious to behold

these clowns compelled

to

go through the

most surprising contortions by the influence of the

wand

of

leader or harlequin holds

one of

irresistible

office,

which his

above

his head.

Acted upon by this wonderful charm he will become perfectly motionless, moving neither hand,

foot,

nor finger, and will even lose the

faculty of speech at

an

on the other hand, he

will

animation

if

instant's notice

become

all life

;

or

and

required, pouring forth a torrent

of words without sense or meaning, throwing

himself into the wildest and most fantastic

and even grovelling on the earth and licking up the dust. These exhibitions are more curious than pleasing indeed, they contortions,

;


The Pantomime of Life.

172

are rather disgusting than otherwise, except to the admirers of such things, with

we

confess

we have no

Strange

tricks

whom

fellow-feeling.

—very strange

tricks

—are

performed by the harlequin who holds the time being the magic wand which we

also for

have just mentioned.

mans

before a

of

and

all

eyes

the notions it

fill

The mere waving

it

will dispossess his brains

previously stored there,

with an entirely

new

set of ideas

;

one gentle tap on the back will alter the colour of a man's coat completely and there ;

are this

some expert performers, who, having wand held first on one side and then on

the other, will change from side to side, turning their coats at every evolution, with so

much rapidity and

dexterity, that the quickest

eye can scarcely detect their motions.

Occa-

genius who confers the wand, from the hand of the temporary

sionally, the

wrests

it

possessor, and consigns

former

;

it

to

on which occasions

some new all

per-

the charac-


The Pantomime of Life.

1

73

change sides, and then the race and the hard knocks begin anew. We might have extended this chapter to ters

a

much

greater length

— we

might have

carried the comparison into the liberal professions

—we

might have shown, as was

in

our original purpose, that each is in itself a little pantomime with scenes and fact

own, complete but, as we fear we have been quite lengthy enough characters of

we

already,

where

it

unknown

its

shall

;

leave

this

chapter

just

A

gentleman, not altogether as a dramatic poet, wrote thus a

is.

year or two ago

—

" All the world's a stage,

And

all

the

men and women

and we, tracking out

his

merely players

footsteps

:"

at

the

scarcely-worth-mentioning little distance of a few millions of leagues behind, venture to

by way of new reading, that he meant a Pantomime, and that we are all actors in The Pantomime of Life. add,


SOME PARTICULARS CONCERNING A LION.

We

have a great respect for lions in the abstract. In common with most other people, we have heard and read of many instances

We

have

self-denial

and

of their bravery and generosity.

duly admired

that

heroic

charming philanthropy which prompts them never to eat people except when they are hungry, and we have been deeply impressed with a becoming sense of the politeness they are said to display towards unmarried ladies All natural histories teem

of a certain state.

with anecdotes illustrative of their excellent qualities

;

and one old spelling book

in par-

touching instance of an old of high moral dignity and stern prin-

ticular recounts a lion,

ciple,

who

felt

it

his

imperative duty to


Some Particulars Concerning a Lion.

175

devour a young man who had contracted a habit of swearing, as a striking example to the rising generation. All this

extremely pleasant to reflect upon, and, indeed, says a very great deal in favour of lions as a mass. are bound to is

We

state,

however, that such individual lions as

we have happened forth

put

to

in

fall

any very striking

with have not characteristics,

and have not acted up to the chivalrous character assigned them by their chroniclers. We never saw a lion in what is called his natural state, certainly

have never met a

till

we

lair

happen to come But we have seen

his dinner should

some under the

influence of captivity,

pressure of misfortune

they appeared

heavy-headed

The

to say,

walking in a forest, under a tropical sun,

by, hot from the baker's.

that

is

lion out

or crouching in his

waiting

that

;

lion

to

;

and the

and we must say us

very apathetic,

fellows.

at the Zoological Gardens, for


1

Some Particulars Concerning a

76

instance.

He

is

all

very well

;

Lion.

he has an

undeniable mane, and looks very fierce but, Lord bless us what of that ? The lions of ;

!

the fashionable world look just as ferocious,

and are the most harmless creatures breathing.

A

roar

fearfully,

box-lobby lion or a Regent-street animal will put on a most terrible aspect, and if

affront

you

him

;

but he

will

never

him

manfully, will fairly turn tail

off.

Doubtless these creatures roam about

sometimes

bite,

and,

in herds,

if

and,

you

if

offer to attack

and sneak

they meet any

and peaceably-disendeavour to frighten him

especially meek-looking

posed fellow, will but the faintest show of a vigorous resistance is sufficient to scare them even then. These

;

are pleasant characteristics, whereas

we make

matter of distinct charge against the Zoological lion and his brethren at the fairs, that it

they are sleepy, dreamy, sluggish

quadru-

peds.

We

do not remember

to

have ever seen


Some Particulars Concerning a Lion.

177

one of them perfectly awake, except at feed-

we uphold

In every respect

ing-time.

the

biped lions against their four-footed name-

and we boldly challenge controversy

sakes,

upon the

subject.

With

these opinions

it

imagined that our curiosity

may be

and

easily

interest

were

very much excited the other day, when a lady of our acquaintance called on us and resolutely declined to accept our refusal of

an evening party; "for," have got a lion coming."

her invitation to "

said she,

I

We

once retracted our plea of a prior engagement, and became as anxious to go, as we

at

had previously been to stay away. We went early, and posted ourselves an

eligible part

of the drawing-room, from

whence we could hope of the

in

to obtain a

interesting animal.

Two

full

view

or three

hours passed, the quadrilles began, the room filled but no lion appeared. The lady of ;

the house

became

inconsolable,

—

for

it is

12

one


Some Particulars Concerning a Lion.

178

of the peculiar privileges of these lions to

make solemn appointments and never keep them, —when all of a sudden there came a tremendous double rap at the street door, and the master of the house, after gliding out (unobserved as he flattered himself) to

peep over the banisters, came into the room, rubbing his hands together with great glee,

and cried out "

My

dear, Mr.

moment

this

Upon

a very important voice, (naming the lion) has

arrived."

eyes were turned towards we observed several young

this, all

the door, and ladies,

in

who had been

laughing and convers-

ing previously with great gaiety and good

humour, grow extremely quiet and sentimental while some young gentlemen, who ;

had been cutting great figures in the facetious and small-talk way, suddenly sank very obviously in the estimation of the company, and were looked upon with great coldness

and

indifference.

Even

the young

man who


Some Particulars Concerning a Lion.

179

had been ordered from the music shop to play the pianoforte was visibly affected, and struck several false notes in the excess of his

excitement.

was a great talking

All this time there

more than once accompanied by a

outside,

loud laugh, and a cry of " cellent

was

" !

from which

we

Oh

!

capital

ex-

!

inferred that the lion

and that these exclamations w ere T

jocose,

occasioned by the transports of his keeper and our host. Nor were we deceived for ;

when

the lion at last appeared,

his keeper,

who was

a

little

we overheard

prim man, whis-

per to several gentlemen of his acquaintance, with uplifted hands, and every expression of half-suppressed admiration, that

(naming

the lion again) was in such cue to-night

The

lion

was a

there were a vast

who had admired

literary one.

number his

it

was

to see

course,

of people present

and were

roarings,

anxious to be introduced to him pleasant

Of

!

;

and very

them brought up

for


1

Some Particulars Concerning a Lion.

80

the purpose, and to observe the patient dig-

which he received

nity with

and

all

their patting

This brought forcibly to our mind what we had so often witnessed at caressing.

country

fairs,

pelled to

where the other

lions are

com-

go through as many forms of cour-

tesy as they chance to be acquainted with, just as often as admiring parties

happen

to

upon them. While the lion was exhibiting in this way, his keeper was not idle, for he mingled among the crowd, and spread his praises in

drop

most

To

industriously.

one gentleman he

whispered some very choice thing that the noble animal had said in the very act of

coming up

stairs,

the mental effort

which, of course, rendered still

more astonishing;

to

another he murmured a hasty account of a grand dinner that had taken place the day

where twenty-seven gentlemen had

before,

got up for

all

the

at once to

lion

;

and

demand an to

the

extra cheer

ladies

he made


Some Particulars Concerning a Lion.

181

sundry promises of interceding to procure the

majestic brute's

Then, there were

albums.

for

sign-manual little

their

private con-

sultations in different corners, relative to the

personal appearance and stature of the lion

;

whether he was shorter than they had expected to see him, or fatter,

or thinner, or

taller,

or younger, or older

;

like his portrait, or unlike

whether he was it

;

the particular shade of his eyes

and whether

was

black, or

blue, or hazel, or green, or yellow, or mixture.

At

all

these consultations the keeper assisted

and, in short, the lion

was the

subject of discussion

till

to whist,

We

they sat

and single him down

and then the people relapsed into

their old topics

and each

sole

;

of conversation

— themselves

other.

must confess that we looked forward

with no slight impatience to the announce-

ment of supper tame lion under

;

for

if

you wish to see a

particularly favourable cir-

cumstances, feeding-time

is

the period of

all


1

Some Particulars Concerning a Lion.

82

others

very

to pitch

much

among

We

upon.

were therefore

delighted to observe a sensation

the guests, which

to interpret,

we

well

knew how

and immediately afterwards to

behold the lion escorting the lady of the house downstairs. offered our arm to an

We

elderly female

dear old soul

who

of our acquaintance,

!

—

the very best person that

is

ever lived, to lead

—

down

to

any meal

for,

;

be

the room ever so small, or the party ever so

she

large,

of the

is

sure,

eligible,

and conductor table

;

—we

elderly

by some

intuitive perception

push and

to

herself

pull

close to the best dishes

say

female,

we

offered our

and,

arm

on the to this

descending the

shortly after the lion, were fortunate

stairs

enough

to obtain a seat nearly opposite him.

Of

course the keeper was there already.

He

had planted himself at precisely that distance from his charge which afforded him a decent pretext for raising his voice,

when he

addressed him, to so loud a key, as could not


Some Particulars Concerning a Lion. fail

to attract the attention of the

183

whole com-

pany, and immediately began to apply himself seriously to the task of bringing the lion out,

and putting him through the whole of his Such flashes of wit as he manoeuvres. elicited

from the

First

!

make puns upon a

to

began

lion

of

all,

they

and

salt-cellar,

then upon the breast of a fowl, and then upon the trifle but the best jokes of all were decidedly on the lobster salad, upon which ;

latter subject the lion

ously, and, in

is

society,

quite

a very excellent

and

is

vigor-

the opinion of the most com-

petent authorities,

This

came out most

founded,

outshone

himself.

mode of shining in we humbly conceive,

model of the dialogues upon between Mr. Punch and his friend the prothe

prietor, hill

classic

wherein the

work, and

is

latter takes all the

up-

content to pioneer to the

jokes and repartees of Mr. P. himself,

never

fails

much

laughter thereby.

to gain great credit

who

and excite

Whatever

it

be


1

Some Particulars Concerning a Lion.

84

founded on, however, we recommend all

instance

come

present and to

lions,

succeeded

it

to

;

it

to

for in this

admiration,

and

whole body of hearers. the salt-cellar, and the fowl's breast,

perfectly dazzled the

When and the

and the lobster salad were

trifle,

exhausted,

and

room

another

could

all

not afford standing witticism,

the

keeper performed that very dangerous

feat

for

which lions,

is still

solitary

done with some of the caravan

although in one instance

fatally,

of putting his head in

it

terminated

the animal's

mouth, and placing himself entirely at Boswell frequently presents mercy.

its

a

melancholy instance of the lamentable results of this achievement, and other keepers and jackals have been terribly lacerated for their daring.

It

is

due to our

he condesended to be

lion to state, that

trifled with,

in

the

most gentle manner, and finally went home with the showman in a hack cab perfectly :

peaceable, but slightly fuddled.


Some Particulars Concerning a Lion, Being

in

a contemplative mood,

make some

led to

reflections

and conduct of

185

we were

upon the cha-

genus of lions as we walked homewards, and we were not long racter

this

in arriving at the conclusion that

our former

was very much strengthened and confirmed by what we had While the other lions receive recently seen. impression in

their favour

company and compliments

a sullen, moody, not to say snarling manner, these appear flattered

them

;

by the

in

attentions

that

are

paid

while those conceal themselves to the

utmost of their power from the vulgar gaze, these court the popular eye, and, unlike their brethren, will

move

whom

nothing short of compulsion to exertion, are ever ready to dis-

play their acquirements throng.

We have known

the wondering bears of undoubted to

who, when the expectations of a large audience have been wound up to the utmost ability

have peremptorily refused to dance well- taught monkeys, who have unaccountpitch,

;


1

86

Some Particulars Concerning a Lion.

ably objected to exhibit on the slack wire

;

and elephants of unquestioned genius, who have suddenly declined to turn the barrelorgan

;

a biped state

it

but

we never once knew

lion,

literary

or otherwise,—and

as a fact which

the whole species,

or heard of

is

we

highly creditable to

—who,

occasion offering,

did not seize with avidity on any opportunity

which was afforded him, of performing his heart's content on the first violin.

to


MR. ROBERT BOLTON, THE

"GENTLEMAN CONNECTED WITH THE

PRESS."

In the parlour of the Green Dragon, a public-house in the immediate neighbourhood of

Westminster Bridge, everybody

talks politics,

every evening, the great political authority being Mr. Robert Bolton, an individual who " a gentleman connected defines himself as

with the press," which liar

indefiniteness.

is

a definition of pecu-

Mr.

Robert

Bolton's

regular circle of admirers and listeners are

an undertaker, a greengrocer, a hair-dresser, a baker, a large stomach surmounted by a man's head, and placed on the top of two particularly short legs, and a thin man in black,

name, profession, and pursuit unknown,


Mi\ Robert

who always displays the

opens his

in

sits

same

lips,

Bolton.

same

the

position, always

long, vacant

face,

surrounded as he

and never is

by most

enthusiastic conversation, except to puff forth

a volume of tobacco smoke, or give vent to a very snappy, loud, and shrill hem ! The conversation sometimes turns upon literature,

Mr. Bolton being a literary character, and always upon such news of the day as is exclusively possessed vidual.

I

by

that talented indi-

found myself (of course, accident-

Green Dragon the other evening, and, being somew hat amused by the following ally) in the

T

conversation, preserved " till

it.

Can you lend me a

Christmas

" ?

ten

pound note

inquired the hair-dresser of

the stomach. " "

it,

Where's your

My

security,

stock in trade,

—

Mr. Clip

there's

I'm thinking, Mr. Thicknesse.

wigs, two poles, half-a-dozen head a dead Bruin/'

" ?

enough of

Some

fifty

blocks,

and


Mr. Robert "

No,

nesse.

189

wont, then," growled out Thick-

I

"

Bolton.

nothing on the security

lends

I

of the whigs or the Poles either.

whigs,

they're

cheats

they've got no cash. to it

as

;

the

for

As

for

Poles,

never have nothing

I

do with blockheads, unless I can't awoid (ironically), and a dead bears about as

much "

me as

use to

I

could be to a dead bear."

" there's a Well, then," urged the other,

book as belonged

to

Pope, Byron's Poems, valued at forty pounds, because it's got Pope's identical scratch on the back what do you ;

think of that for security "

"

to

Well,

be sure

" ?

" !

But how d'ye mean, Mr. Clip 11

Mean

why, that

!

it's

the baker.

cried " ?

got the hottergruff

of Pope. "

Steal not this book, for fear of

For

it

hangman's rope

;

belongs to Alexander Pope."

All that's written on the inside of the binding of the

book

to believe

;

so, as

my

son says, we're boitnd

it."

13


Mr. Robert

190

"Well,

observed

sir,"

and

deferentially,

Bolton.

in

the

undertaker,

a half-whisper, leaning

and knocking over the hairdresser's grog as he spoke, " that argument's

over the

table,

very easy upset." "

Perhaps, "

you'll

pay

sir,"

said Clip, a

little flurried,

for the first upset afore

you thinks

of another." "

the

said

Now,"

undertaker,

bowing

" I think, I amicably to the hairdresser, says I think you'll excuse me, Mr. Clip, I think, you see, that won't go down with the present

—

company

— unfortunately,

honour of making the

my

master had the

coffin of that ere

Lord's

housemaid, not no more nor twenty year ago. Don't think I'm proud on it, gentlemen

;

others might be

;

but

I

hate rank of any sort.

no more respect for a Lord's footman than I have for any respectable tradesman in I've

this

room.

I

may

say no more nor

I

have

Mr. Clip (bowing). Therefore, that ere Lord must have been born long after Pope

for

!


Mr. Robert

And

died.

it's

191

a logical interferance to defer,

them

that they neither of

So what

time.

Bolton.

I

mean

lived at the this

is

same

here, that

Pope never had no book, never seed, felt, never smelt no book (triumphantly) as belonged to that ere Lord.

when

And, gentlemen, consider how patiently you have

I

what

have expressed, I feel bound, as the best way to reward you for the kindness you have exhibited, to sit down 'eared the ideas

I

—

without saying anything more partickler as I perceive a worthier visitor nor myself is I am not in the habit of just entered. paycompliments,

ing

I

therefore,

hope

gentlemen I

when

;

strikes

with

I

do,

double

force." "

Ah,

Mr.

Murgatroyd

!

what's

all

this

"

about striking with double force ? said the object of the above remark, as he entered. "

never excuse a man's getting into a rage during winter, even when he's seated so close I

to

the

fire

as

you

are.

It

is

very

inju-


Mr. Robert

192 dicious

to

put

yourself

What

spiration.

Bolton.

the

is

extreme physical and sir ?

into

such

cause

mental

a perof

this

excitement,

"

Such was the very philosophical address of Mr. Robert Bolton, a shorthand- writer, as

—a

he termed himself

bit of

equivoque passing current among his fraternity, which must give the uninitiated a vast idea of the establish-

ment of the initiated

claim

it

ministerial organ, while to the

signifies that

to the

no one paper can lay

enjoyment of their

services.

Mr. Bolton was a young man, with a somewhat sickly and very dissipated expression of countenance. His habiliments were composed of an exquisite union of gentility, slovenliness, assumption, simplicity, newness,

age.

Half of him was dressed

ter,

the other half for the summer.

was of the newest

for the win-

His hat

the D'Orsay

;

his

had been white, but the inroads of and ink, etc., had given them a piebald

trousers

mud

cut,

and old


Mr, Robert

Bolton.

193

he wore a very high black cravat, of the most tyrannical while his tout ensemble was hidden stiffness appearance

;

round

his throat

;

beneath the enormous folds of an old brown

was

poodle-collared great coat, which

closely

buttoned up to the aforesaid cravat. His fingers peeped through the ends of his black kid gloves, and two of the toes of each foot

took a similar view of society through the extremities of his high-lows. Sacred to the bare walls of his garret be the mysteries of his interior dress

!

He was

man, of a somewhat

a short, spare

inferior

deportment.

Everybody seemed influenced by his entry into the room, and his salutation of each

member partook of the patronizing. The hairdresser made way for him between himself

and the stomach.

A

minute afterwards

he had taken possession of his pint and pipe. A pause in the conversation took place.

Everybody was observation.

waiting, anxious for his

first


Mr. Robert

194 "

murder

Horrid

Bolton.

Westminster

in

this

morning," observed Mr. Bolton. their positions.

Everybody changed eyes were fixed upon the

"A him "

in

in

man

All

of paragraphs.

baker murdered his son by boiling a copper," said Mr. Bolton. "

Good heavens

!

exclaimed everybody,

simultaneous horror. "

"

added Mr. gentlemen Bolton, with the most effective emphasis Boiled

him,

!

;

"

boiled "

him

And

" !

the particulars, Mr. B.," inquired

the hairdresser,

"

the particulars

" ?

Mr. Bolton took a very long draught of porter, and some two or three dozen whiffs of tobacco, doubtless to cial capacities

of the

instil

into the

company the

commer-

superiority

of a gentleman connected with the press, and

then said "

—

The man was a

(Every one looked stared at Bolton.)

at the

His

baker, gentlemen. baker present, who

victim, being his son,


Mr. Robert

Bolton.

195

was necessarily the son of a baker. The wretched murderer had a wife, whom he was

also

frequently in the habit, while in an intoxicated state, of kicking,

pummelling-, flinging

mugs

knocking down, and half-killing while in bed, by inserting in her mouth a considerable

at,

portion of a sheet or blanket."

The speaker took another body looked "

Horrid

at

everybody

else,

draught, every-

and exclaimed,

" !

"It appears in evidence, gentlemen/' con"

on the evening of yesterday, Sawyer the baker came home in a Mrs. S., conreprehensible state of beer.

tinued Mr. Bolton,

that,

nubially considerate, carried

him

in that con-

and consigned In a minute or

dition upstairs into his chamber,

him

to their

mutual couch.

two she lay sleeping beside the man whom the morrow's dawn beheld a murderer !

(Entire silence informed the reporter that his picture had attained the awful effect he desired.)

The

son came

home about an hour


Mr. Robert

196 afterwards,

Bolton.

opened the door, and went up

to

bed.

Scarcely (gentlemen, conceive his feelings of alarm), scarcely had he taken off his indescribables,

when

shrieks (to his experi-

enced ear maternal shrieks) scared the silence of surrounding night.

He

put his indescrib-

on again, and ran downstairs. He opened the door of the parental bed-chamber. ables

His father was

What

dancing upon his mother. must have been his feelings In the !

agony of the minute he rushed at his male parent as he was about to plunge a knife into the side of his

shrieked.

The

female.

The mother

father caught the son

had wrested the

knife

(who from the paternal

grasp) up in his arms, carried him downstairs,

shoved him

among some

into a copper of boiling water

and jumped which position he was

linen, closed the lid,

upon the top of

it,

in

found with a ferocious countenance by the mother, who arrived in the melancholy wash-

house just as he had so settled himself.


Mr. Robert "

'

Where's

Bolton.

my boy

'

?

197

shrieked

the

mother.

"'In that copper, boiling/ coolly replied the benign father. "

Struck by the awful intelligence, the mother rushed from the house, and alarmed the neighbourhood.

minute afterwards. the wash-house

They dragged

The police entered a The father, having bolted

door,

had

bolted himself.

the lifeless body of the boiled

baker from the cauldron, and, with a promptitude

commendable

in

men

they immediately carried

it

of their station, to the

station-

Subsequently, the baker was apprehended while seated on the top of a lamphouse.

post in Parliament Street, lighting his pipe."

The whole teries of

horrible ideality of the

Mys-

Udolpho, condensed into the pithy

a ten-line paragraph, could not possibly have so affected the narrators auditory. effect of

Silence, the purest

of applause,

and most noble of

all

kinds

bore ample testimony to the


Mr. Robert

198

Bolton.

barbarity of the baker, as well as to Bolton's

knack of narration after

and

;

it

was only broken

some minutes had elapsed by

interjeo

tional expressions of the intense indignation

of every

how

man

present.

The baker wondered

a British baker could so disgrace himself

and the highly honourable calling to which he belonged and the others indulged in a ;

variety of subject

;

wonderments connected with the

among which

ment w as

not the least wonder-

was awakened by the genius and information of Mr. Robert Bolton, who, after a glowing eulogium on himself, and r

that which

unspeakable influence with the daily press, was proceeding, with a most solemn countehis

nance, to hear the pros and cons of the

autograph question,

and

when

I

took up

Pope

my

hat,

left.

THE END.

Simmons & Botten,

Printers, Shoe Lane, E.C. S.

& Sons.


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