Gargantua and Pantagruel eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 952 pages of information about Gargantua and Pantagruel.

Then Loire came into the hall at one door, and his wife with the gentlewomen at another, in nuptial accoutrements.  Oudart, in pontificalibus, takes them both by their hands, asketh them their will, giveth them the matrimonial blessing, and was very liberal of holy water.  The contract written, signed, and registered, on one side was brought wine and comfits; on the other, white and orange-tawny-coloured favours were distributed; on another, gauntlets privately handed about.

Chapter 4.XV.

How the ancient custom at nuptials is renewed by the catchpole.

The catchpole, having made shift to get down a swingeing sneaker of Breton wine, said to Basche, Pray, sir, what do you mean?  You do not give one another the memento of the wedding.  By St. Joseph’s wooden shoe, all good customs are forgot.  We find the form, but the hare is scampered; and the nest, but the birds are flown.  There are no true friends nowadays.  You see how, in several churches, the ancient laudable custom of tippling on account of the blessed saints O O, at Christmas, is come to nothing.  The world is in its dotage, and doomsday is certainly coming all so fast.  Now come on; the wedding, the wedding, the wedding; remember it by this.  This he said, striking Basche and his lady; then her women and the levite.  Then the tabor beat a point of war, and the gauntlets began to do their duty; insomuch that the catchpole had his crown cracked in no less than nine places.  One of the bums had his right arm put out of joint, and the other his upper jaw-bone or mandibule dislocated so that it hid half his chin, with a denudation of the uvula, and sad loss of the molar, masticatory, and canine teeth.  Then the tabor beat a retreat; the gauntlets were carefully hid in a trice, and sweetmeats afresh distributed to renew the mirth of the company.  So they all drank to one another, and especially to the catchpole and his bums.  But Oudart cursed and damned the wedding to the pit of hell, complaining that one of the bums had utterly disincornifistibulated his nether shoulder-blade.  Nevertheless, he scorned to be thought a flincher, and made shift to tope to him on the square.

The jawless bum shrugged up his shoulders, joined his hands, and by signs begged his pardon; for speak he could not.  The sham bridegroom made his moan, that the crippled bum had struck him such a horrid thump with his shoulder-of-mutton fist on the nether elbow that he was grown quite esperruquanchuzelubelouzerireliced down to his very heel, to the no small loss of mistress bride.

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Gargantua and Pantagruel from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.