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.

We trust that portraits of members will be admitted.  BURDETT and GRAHAM, half-whig, half-tory, in the style of Death and the Lady, will make pretty companion pictures.

To do full pictorial justice to the wisdom of the senate, Parliament will want a peculiar artist:  that gifted man CAN be no other than the artist to PUNCH!


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For the first two months of the first winter session the fingers of the new man are nothing but ink-stains and industry.  He has duly chronicled every word that has fallen from the lips of every professor in his leviathan note book; and his desk teems with reports of all the hospital cases, from the burnt housemaid, all cotton-wool and white lead, who set herself on fire reading penny romances in bed, on one side of the hospital, to the tipsy glazier who bundled off his perch and spiked himself upon the area rails on the other.  He becomes a walking chronicle of pathological statistics, and after he has passed six weeks in the wards, imagines himself an embryo Hunter.

To keep up his character, a new man ought perpetually to carry a stethoscope—­a curious instrument, something like a sixpenny toy trumpet with its top knocked off, and used for the purpose of hearing what people are thinking about, or something of the kind.  In the endeavour to acquire a perfect knowledge of its use he is indefatigable.  There is scarcely a patient but he knows the exact state of their thoracic viscera, and he talks of enlarged semilunar valves, and thickened ventricles with an air of alarming confidence.  And yet we rather doubt his skill upon this point; we never perceived anything more than a sound and a jog, something similar to what you hear in the cabin of a fourpenny steam-boat, and especially mistrusted the “metallic tinkling,” and the noise resembling a blacksmith’s bellows blowing into an empty quart-pot, which is called the bruit de soufflet.  Take our word, when medicine arrives at such a pitch that the secrets of the human heart can be probed, it need not go any further, and will have the power of doing mischief enough.

The new man does not enter much into society.  He sometimes asks a few other juniors to his lodgings, and provides tea and shrimps, with occasional cold saveloys for their refection, and it is possible he may add some home-made wine to the banquet.  Their conversation is exceedingly professional; and should they get slightly jocose, they retail anatomical paradoxes, technical puns, and legendary “catch questions,” which from time immemorial have been the delight of all new men in general, and country ones in particular.

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