Punch, or the London Charivari, Volume 1, Complete eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,359 pages of information about Punch, or the London Charivari, Volume 1, Complete.

“So,” said I, addressing the narrator, “you lost the opportunity of figuring at Miss Biddy’s wedding?”

“Yes,” replied the ‘wife-catcher;’ “but Terence soon retrieved his credit, for in less than three months after his disappointment with the heiress, we were legging it as his wedding with Miss Debby Doolan, a greater fortune and a prettier girl than the one he had lost:  and, by-the-bye, that reminds me of a funny scene which took place when the bride came to throw the stocking—­hoo! hoo! hoo! hoo!”

Here my friends, the boots, burst into a long and loud fit of laughter; while I, ignorant of the cause of their mirth, looked gravely on, wondering when it would subside.  Instead, however, of their laughter lessening, the cachinnations became so violent that I began to feel seriously alarmed.

“My dear friends!” said I.

“Hoo! hoo! hoo! hoo! hoo!” shouted the pair.

“This excessive mirth may be dangerous”—­

A peal of laughter shook their leathern sides, and they rolled from side to side on their chair.  Fearful of their falling, I put out my hand to support them, when a sense of acute pain made me suddenly withdraw it.  I started, opened my eyes, and discovered that I had laid hold of the burning remains of the renowned “wife-catchers,” which I had in my sleep placed upon the fire.

As I gazed mournfully upon the smoking relics of the ancient allies of our house, I resolved to record this strange adventure; but you know I never had much taste for writing, Jack, so I now confide the task to you.  As he concluded, my uncle raised his tumbler to his lips, and I could perceive a tear sparkling in his eye—­a genuine tribute of regard to the memory of the venerated “Wife Catchers.”

* * * * *


  Wrote Paget to Pollen,
    With face bright as brass,
  “T’other day in the Town Hall
    You mention’d an ass: 

  “Now, for family reasons,
    I’d like much to know,
  If on me you intended
    That name to bestow?”

  “My lord,” says Jack Pollen,
    “Believe me, (’tis true,)
  I’d be sorry to slander
    A donkey or you.”

  “Being grateful,” says Paget,
    “I’d ask you to lunch;
  But just, Sir John, tell me. 
    Did you call me PUNCH?”

  “In wit, PUNCH is equalled,”
    Says Pollen, “by few;
  In naming him, therefore,
    I couldn’t mean you,”

  “Thanks! thanks!  To bear malice,”
    Save Paget, “I’m loath;
  Two answers I’ve got, and I’m
    Charm’d with them both.”

* * * * *



  Lisette has lost her wanton wiles—­
    What secret care consumes her youth,
  And circumscribes her smiles?—­
    A spec on a front tooth!

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Punch, or the London Charivari, Volume 1, Complete from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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