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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 363 pages of information about The German Classics of the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, Volume 01.

ALTMAYER (aside)

I guess, they’re from the Rhenish land.

MEPHISTOPHELES

Fetch me a gimlet here!

BRANDER

Say, what therewith to bore? 
You cannot have the wine-casks at the door?

ALTMAYER

Our landlord’s tool-basket behind doth yonder stand.

MEPHISTOPHELES (takes the gimlet)
(To FROSCH)

Now only say! what liquor will you take?

FROSCH

How mean you that?  Have you of every sort?

MEPHISTOPHELES

Each may his own selection make.

ALTMAYER (to FROSCH)

Ha!  Ha!  You lick your lips already at the thought.

FROSCH

Good, if I have my choice, the Rhenish I propose;
For still the fairest gifts the fatherland bestows.

MEPHISTOPHELES (boring a hole in the edge of the table opposite to where FROSCH is sitting)

Get me a little wax—­and make some stoppers—­quick!

ALTMAYER

Why, this is nothing but a juggler’s trick!

MEPHISTOPHELES (to BRANDER)

And you?

BRANDER

Champagne’s the wine for me;
Right brisk, and sparkling let it be!

[MEPHISTOPHELES bores, one of the party has in the meantime prepared the, wax-stoppers and stopped the holes.]

BRANDER

What foreign is one always can’t decline,
What’s good is often scatter’d far apart. 
The French your genuine German hates with all his heart,
Yet has a relish for their wine.

SIEBEL (as MEPHISTOPHELES approaches him)

I like not acid wine, I must allow,
Give me a glass of genuine sweet!

MEPHISTOPHELES (bores)

Tokay
Shall, if you wish it, flow without delay.

ALTMAYER

Come! look me in the face! no fooling now! 
You are but making fun of us, I trow.

MEPHISTOPHELES

Ah! ah! that would indeed be making free
With such distinguished guests.  Come, no delay;
What liquor can I serve you with, I pray?

ALTMAYER

Only be quick, it matters not to me.

[After the holes are all bored and, stopped.]

MEPHISTOPHELES (with strange gestures)

Grapes the vine-stock bears,
Horns the buck-goat wears! 
Wine is sap, the vine is wood,
The wooden board yields wine as good. 
With a deeper glance and true
The mysteries of nature view! 
Have faith and here’s a miracle! 
Your stoppers draw and drink your fill!

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