T. Tims, Esq.
ANSWER FROM “THE DITTO DITTO” TO “THE DITTO DITTO.”
OLD FELLOW,—Glad to hear you are so fresh! Give you joy—wish I was with you, but can’t come. Damn the last Derby—regularly stump’d—cleaned out—and done Brown!—not a feather to fly with! Need I say how sorry I am. Here’s your health in Burgundy. Must make a raise for my Opera-box and a new tilbury. Just lost my last fifty at French hazard.
Ever, your most devoted friend,
F. Smith, Esq.
* * * * *
THE BARBER OF STOCKSBAWLER.
A TALE OF THE SUPERNATURAL.
At the little town of Stocksbawler, on the Lower Rhine, in the year of grace 1830, resided one Hans Scrapschins, an industrious and close-shaving barber. His industry met with due encouragement from the bearded portion of the community; and the softer sex, whose greatest fault is fickleness, generally selected Hans for the honour of new-fronting them, when they had grown tired of the ringlets nature had bestowed and which time had frosted.
Hans continued to shave and thrive, and all the careful old burghers foretold of his future well-doing; when he met with a misfortune, which promised for a time to shut up his shop and leave him a beggar. He fell in love.
Neighbours warned Hans of the consequences of his folly; but all remonstrance was vain. Customers became scarce, wearing out their patience and their wigs together; the shop became dirty, and winter saw the flies of summer scattered on his show-board.
Agnes Flirtitz was the prettiest girl in Stocksbawler. Her eyes were as blue as a summer’s sky, her cheeks as rosy as an autumn sunset, and her teeth as white as winter’s snow. Her hair was a beautiful flaxen—not a drab—but that peculiar sevenpenny-moist-sugar tint which the poets of old were wont to call golden. Her voice was melodious; her notes in alt were equal to Grisi’s: in short, she would have been a very desirable, loveable young lady, if she had not been a coquette.
Hans met her at a festival given in commemoration of the demise of the burgomaster’s second wife—I beg pardon, I mean in celebration of his union with his third bride. From that day Hans was a lost barber. Sleeping, waking, shaving, curling, weaving, or powdering, he thought of nothing but Agnes. His love-dreams placed him in all kinds of awkward predicaments. And Agnes—what thought she of the unhappy barber? Nothing, except that he was a presumptuous puppy, and wore very unfashionable garments. Hans received an intimation of this latter opinion; and, after sundry quailings and misgivings, he resolved to dispose of his remaining stock in trade, and, for once, dress like a gentleman. The measure