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To show how much I logic love, in course
I'll make thee master of a chestnut-horse."
"A horse!" quoth Tom, "blood, pedigree, and paces!
Oh, what a dash I'll cut at Epsom races!"
Tom dreamt all night of boots and leather breeches,
Of hunting cats and leaping rails and ditches;
Rose the next morn an hour before the lark,
And dragged his uncle, fasting, to the park;
Bridle in hand, each vale he scours of course
To find out something like a chestnut-horse;
But no such animal the meadows cropt;
Till under a large tree Sir Peter stopt,
Caught at a branch and shook it, when down fell
A fine horse-chestnut in its prickly shell.
"There, Tom, take that;" "Well, sir, and what beside ?" Why, since you're booted, saddle it and ride."
"Ride! what, a chestnut, sir ?"
For I can prove that chestnut is a horse:
Not from the doubtful, fusty, musty rules
Of Locke and Bacon, antiquated fools;
Nor old Malebranche, blind pilot into knowledge;
But by the laws of wit and Eton college:
As you have proved, and which I don't deny,
That a pie-John's the same as a John-pie.
The matter follows, as a thing of course,
That a horse-chestnut is a chestnut-horse."
21. THE COMET AND THE GREAT BEAR.—Anonymous.
Farmer Grumbo, they say, had but just come to town,
With his daughter so fair and so bright;
As the streets all the day they walked up and down,
The wondrous report met the ears of the clown,
Of the comet appearing at night.
Now the farmer much wished this famed comet to see,
But to look for it could not tell where;
So a stranger he asked, where the object could be.—
"If the night should be fine, I fancy," said he,
""Twill be seen very near the great bear."
Now the farmer knew nothing about the great bear,
Thus as wise as before was he ;-
So he says to another, "Pray can you tell where
The great bear I may see?" Says the man with a stare, "At the tower I fancy it be."
Now thinking the tower some well-chosen spot,
From whence might be viewed such a sight,
And near it stood some public-house, or what not,
Which for its sign, too, a great bear had got,
He received the reply with delight.
So straight to the tower the old farmer goes,
And approaching the yeoman that's there,
Saith he, "Here be I, and my own daughter Rose,
We wishes to see the fine sight ere it goes,
So pray, sir, show us the great bear."
"Give me sixpence a-piece then," the old yeoman said,
The farmer and daughter both stare;
After musing awhile, the shilling is paid,
They are straight to the royal menagerie led,
And the yeoman shows Grumbo, the-bear.
Now Grumbo, astonished, the animals eyed,
And the den he approached in great fear;
Then looking about him, he eagerly cried,
"I don't see the comet!" The yeoman replied—
"Bless you, sir, we have no such beast here."
The farmer perceiving some trick he was played,
In a rage asks his money again;
To the yeoman he told what the two men had said,
But the yeoman was not at his rudeness dismayed,
And he thus did the mystery explain :-
"What the gentlemen told you," said he, "is quite true,
For lo! in your daughter, so fair,
A comet in beauty's bright sphere we may view,
And while she keeps close to a brute such as you,
She is seen very near the great bear!"
Grumbo now left the place in a rage and despair,
And returned to his lodgings once more:
Says he to his host, with a look full of care,
"Folks may think what they please of the famous great bear, It to me proves a very great-bore!"
22. THE PAIR OF BEASTS.—Anonymous.
Ralph Clod, a yeoman of the west,
The sun of science ne'er had blest;
Yet fortune managed so his store,
His flocks increased, his bags ran o'er,
Resolved (though Tommy was no fool)
To send his darling son to school;
In haste to Master B-
To show the lad, and end his cares.
He came; he bowed; and thus began―
(For Ralph was a well-spoken man!)
Why Master B― I understand
That larning's better far than land;
And so I've brought my boy along,
To beg you'll teach him right from wrong!
For Tom, if means are rightly follord,
Will make a most prodigious schollard!
So Master B- -, as I hate arguing,
"Twere best 'forehand to strike a bargain;
Name you your terms, or high or low,
And then I'll answer yes or no."
"Sir," says the scholar, "if my skill
You'd make subservient to your will,
To guide the youth through learning's grounds
I for my labor ask ten pounds."
Amazed the astonished rustic cries,
(Fixed like the statue of surprise.)
"Ten pounds! why, what in wonder!-what! Am I awake or not?
Why sure, my friend, you do but jest.--
Ten pounds! adzooks! 'twill buy a beast!"
"A beast!"-the tutor cried-"'tis true!
And in the end you'll find you've two!"
23. APOLOGY FOR THE PIG.-Southey.
Jacob, I do not love to see thy nose
Turned up in scornful curve at yonder pig.
It would be well, my friend, if we, like him,
Were perfect in our kind. And why despise
The sow-born grunter? He is obstinate,
Thou answerest; ugly; and the filthiest beast
That banquets upon offal. Now I pray thee
Hear the pig's counsel.
We must not, Jacob, be deceived by words,
By sophist sounds. A democratic beast,
He knows that his unmerciful drivers seek
Their profit and not his. He hath not learned
That pigs were made for man, born to be brawned
And baconized. As for his ugliness-
Nay, Jacob, look at him;
Those eyes have taught the lover flattery.
Behold his tail, my friend; with curls like that
The wanton hop marries her stately spouse:
And what is beauty but the aptitude
Of parts harmonious; give fancy scope,
And thou wilt find that no imagined change
Can beautify the beast. All would but mar
His pig perfection.
The last charge, he lives
Here I could shelter him
With precedents right reverend and noble,
And show by sanction of authority
That 'tis a very honorable thing
To thrive by dirty ways. But let me rest
On better ground the unanswerable defense.
The pig is a philosopher, who knows
No prejudice. Dirt? Jacob, what is dirt?
If matter, why the delicate dish that tempts
The o'ergorged epicure is nothing more.
And there, that breeze
Pleads with me, and has won thee to the smile
That speaks conviction. O'er yon blossomed field
Of beans it came, and thoughts of bacon rise.
24. HODGE AND THE VICAR.-Anonymous.
Hodge, a poor honest country lout,
Not overstocked with learning,
Chanced, on a summer's eve, to meet
The vicar, home returning.
"Ah! master Hodge," the vicar cried, "What still as wise as ever?
The people in the village say
That you are wondrous clever."
"Why, master parson, as to that I beg you'll right conceive me, I do na brag, but yet I know
A thing or two, believe me."
"We'll try your skill," the parson cried,
"For learning what digestion:
And this you'll prove, or right or wrong,
By solving me a question:
"Noah of old three babies had,
Or grown-up children rather;
Shem, Ham, and Japhet they were called:
Now, who was Japhet's father?"
"Rat it!" cried Hodge, and scratched his head, "That does my wits belabor:
But howsomde'er, I'll homeward run,
And ax old Giles, my neighbor."
To Giles he went, and put the case
With circumspect intention:
"Thou fool," cried Giles, "I'll make it clear,
To thy dull comprehension.
"Three children has Tom Long, the smith,
Or cattle-doctor rather;
Tom, Dick, and Harry, they are called:
Now, who is Harry's father?"
"Adzooks! I have it," Hodge replied,
"Right well I know your lingo;
Who's Harry's father? stop-here goes-
Why Tom Long Smith, by jingo."
Away he ran to find the priest
With all his might and main,
Who with good humor instant put
The question once again: