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E are inclined to think that long-suffering and heavilytaxed individual, the British Public, has by this time learnt to form its own estimate of the very flowery promises which, like the profuse blosscm in the orchards this year, burden the prospectuses of new publications now-a-days, but which too often fail to be followed by the fruits of performance, or are succeeded by very small pippins indeed. We should be ashamed of ourselves if— after distributing orders for the Gardens of the Hesperides —we only admitted folks to view the Dead-Sea apple-trees.

It is not our intention, therefore, to draw up, with the fanciful imagery of an auctioneer, a long list of great things to be done, an inventory of pledges which may not be redeemed. We refer our readers to our pages for a sample of what we can do and will do, merely stating here the principles by which we shall be guided.

Our first aim will be to secure "the greatest laughter of the greatest number." Our politics will be entirely new ones; we might almost venture to say Brand-new, except for the fact that we shall constitute ourselves "Whip" to all parties—when they deserve it. We shall avoid extreme Liberalism as well as the fervid Conservatism that has hitherto marked these pages, and shall only give our entire adhesion to the one great statesman of the day—Fdn.

For the rest—Fact, Fiction, Fancy, and Folly, all commence with the same initial as Fun, and we hope by a judicious blending of them to produce an F-fervescence which our readers will appreciate. We shall also keep a critical eye on Art, Literature, and the Stage.

With these few words we take our place in the race for public favour, relying implicitly on proverbial British fairness to give us encouragement so long as we deserve it ; and merely add that we intend our first number as a fair sample of what we hope to do. We do not mean to put so much of our strength into the start as to leave none for the rest of the course, but hope to maintain a long steady stroke like that which this year placed the Dark Blue at the head of the river in spite of the spirited spurts of her defeated but gallant opponents. Having let go the bung, we now rest our hope of success upon what we can do with our sculls.


AlthouGu our natural modesty prevents us from following the example held out by many high-class periodicals, and advertising a long list of distinguished contributors (who don't write for the first number), we don't mind satisfying public curiosity to some extent, and, therefore, publish a couple of samples of the sort of thing that may be expected.

By K*b*kt Be»wn*no.

Wheee'er there's a thistle to feed a linnet—

And linnets are plenty, thistles rife—
Or an acorn-cup to catch dewdrops in it, ,

There's ample promise of further life.
Now, mark how we begin it.

For linnets will follow, if linnets arc minded,

As blows the white-feather parachute;
And ships will reel by the tempest blinded—

Ay, ships, and shiploads of men to boot!
How deep whole fleets you'll find hid.

And wc blow the thistle-down hither and thither,

Forgetful of linnets, and men, and God.
The dew !—for its want an oak will wither—

By the dull hoof into the dust is trod,
And then who strikes the cithar?

But thistles were only for donkeys intended,
And that donkeys are common enough is clear.

And that drop! What a vessel it might have befriended!
Does it add any flavour to Glugabib's beerf

Well, there's my musing ended.



By The P**t Liz.

I Said, at last the time has come
When that great voice shall plainly speak-
Shall bid the myriad mist-wreaths break,

And strike the puny babblers dumb.

As one who through the dim-eyed dawn
Discerns a figure, faintly traced,
Grow nearer o'er the wailing waste,

As swathe on swathe is slow withdrawn,

And knows not what shall be the end,
Or whose the shape that darkly looms,
But probes with eager glance the glooma

To learn if it be foe or friend,

Until at length he sees conf est
The man ho hungered to embrace
With all the dawn-fire on his face—■

Then runs and clasped him to his breast;

So I, while many a year has run,
From waxing spring to autumn's wane,
While burned tho sun and beat the rain,

Watched for the avatar of Fun.

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By Ths Saunteber In Society.

HE Edmunds Committee has wound up its labours with great 'eclat—I mean an icltt dc l ire. For when, it gravely lectures the Chancellor for doing exactly what it does itself in allowing Mr. Edmunds to retain the spoils of retirement, ono can hardly help attributing tho virtuous indignation to some less pure causo than a lofty sense of justice. The effect is pernicious, for the "Spelling - book for Civil Serrants " must print tho story, for those who have got to two syllables with a moral somehow in this wise, "mas-ter Ed-munds was a ve-ry naught-y boy. He took poor old Mis-ter Bull's mo-ney, and so ho was giv-en a pen-sion as a re-ward." It is all very well to say that this allowance will bo mulcted to repay the deficit, but unfortunately until tho author of Great Expectations is Chancellor of the Exchequer, and " Pip's Margin " is considered wise economy, we shall hardly he sufficiently educated in finance to see the exact profit and advantage of taking your money out of ono pocket to put it into another, which is exactly what the British public will be expected to do by this committee of Solons—or perhaps 1 should say Solan geese. It is interesting to contrast this treatment of a—well, we'll say official kleptomaniac, with tho harsh measures dealt out to tho young men in Pall Mall, who had a failing for chicken hazard, and only squandered their own money after all. Think of such a reward for such misdoings, and compare it with tho condition of the recentlydismissed War-ofliae clerks, who were calmly done out of their legal claim for a quarter's salary on dismissal, for no particular reason, after many years of faithful service. I wonder what has become of them. They were going to resist, but I suppose when they stood up for their rights they were bowled over like nine-pins, or skittles, by that martinet of an Under-Secretary, Loiro Haktixoton.

A Bimi'lp. and most efficacious method was adopted to squash the "Reform Bill, Limited," brought forward by Mb. Baines. On this matter the great Liberal party, despite its having nerved itself for its labours with that notorious large tea-party at Willis's Rooms, is in the position of the late Loud Macaulay's Etruscan army—

"Those behind cried 'Forward !1
And those bifore cried ' Hack I'"

I can't help thinking though that when some of the so-called M.P.'s go back to their constituencies thoy will find this slighted measure a "Bill of Baines and Penalties." Loud Ei.ciio has already got into hot water about it with his people. That fiue young nobleman would do better to stick to his volunteering line, as he is in every way fitted for tho " officer and gentleman" business. He has been, in his limited time, a Conservative, a liberal Conservative and Liberal, and is now beginning over again, and these repeated alterations don't look nice. It is true that other men have done the same thing—for instance, both Peel and Gladstone changed their minds. But then they had minds to change.

There is a spirit of Bantino in our literature just at present. There is a mental fastinsr, an addiction to literary dry toast and stale bread, in vogue now, which should be curbed. Why should not we laugh and grow fat P But the critics, some of them, object to this, and decry burlesque as if it wero new bread buttered on both sides. Let those gentlemen just drop in for half an hour at the Prince of Wales's Theatre (which, by the way, is tastefully decorated—quite a bijou), and if their intellectual waistcoats don't want letting out after that, I pity them. La! Sonnambula is one of tho cleverest burlesques we remember to have seen—and wo have seen those vaunted extravaganzas, now quoted to depreciate tho talent of this day, but just as warmly depreciated in their own time. As for tho acting, even a laudator tetnporu acti—which I supposo means a good-tempered theatrical critic—is not needed to speak of that, when Marie Wllton takes the stage as Cleveland charming as ever.

What is the truth of this rumour about the Athttueum? It is alleged (and denied with equal force) that it is in the market. Anyhow it isn't sold, and I don't wonder at it. A literary journal which has come to such a pass as to have its unfavourable notices regularly quoted as indications of the real merit of tho books it condemns is in a poor state, and I doubt if all the pilgrimages ever undertaken to tho Holy Land can restore its prestige.


Miss Bateman has made her appearance in a third character, Bianca, in Bean Milman's sparkling tragedy, Faxio. With every disposition to deal gently with a very charming young lady, it is impossible to say that Miss Bateman's appearance in this lively littlo piece is at all calculated to advance her professional reputation. It is really time that tho truth were spoken about this young lady; she is not, and, as far as we can form an opinion, never will be a great actress. She has beauty, grace, and dignity, and when you havo said that you have said all. Her calmer scenes are cold and unimpassioncd, and her ebullitions of jealousy or anger are simply the demoniacal ravings of a female fiend. Even the audience on Monday last began to see this, for there was no symptom of a "call" before the end of the third act. It is only fair to Miss Bateman to state that that dismal actor Mr. Jordan was playing in the same piece, and it is impossible to say how much his depressing presence may have told upon the animal spirits of tho audience. Tho excessively disagreeable part of Aldebella was played with great care and judgment by Mrs. Billinqton. When we say that the piece was put upon the stage as all Adelphi pieces arc, it will be underst od that the audienco saw more " flics," "grooves," dead wall, dirty scenery, and unsatisfactory "supers" than they would at any theatre in Whitechapel. Wo will qualify our condemnation. Let the playgoer wait outside until the third act approaches its close, and then let him enter tho theatre and witness the scene between Bianca and that unfortunate silent senator whom she collars, cries over, and abuses. This gentleman's demeanour under these trying circumstances is a thing to be witnessed and to bo remembered. Having seen this the playgoer cannot do better than turn into Evans's without delay, or the curtain will rise on tho fourth act.

A pleasant little drama, by Mr. Palorayb Simpson* was produced at the Prince of Wales's Theatre on Wednesday. A lair l'rettnder is based upon the story of the loves of Will Seymour and Lady Arabella Stuart, and explains how one Susanna Spritt (Miss Marie Wilton) connived at their escape from the fortress in which tho unfortunate lady was imprisoned. The jealousy excited in tho bosom of a certain soldier, ono Gideon Gubbins, by Susanna's constant meetings with Will Seymour, who, in the disguiso of a pedlar and subsequently of a soldier, is present hi the fortress to assist his wife in effecting her escape, is the exciting cause of the greater portion of the laughter which decided the success of the piece. It is utterly impossible to speak too highly of Miss Marie Wllton's performance in the part of Susanna. In every class of character undertaken by this young lady, from Juliet to Pippo, and that a tolerably extensivo range, she is equally charming.

By the bye, Mr. Leigh Murray is about to take a complimentary benefit at l)rury Lane. This admirable actor has for months past been confined to his room, and wo are sure that it is only necessary to mention this fact to send crowds of sympathizers into the theatre on that occasion.


Dear Fun,—Don't you anxiously overhaul all the new ballad music as fust as it is published, and get all tho words by heart 'e I do. Sometimes you don't want to read the ballad to know what it's about, because it speaks for itself, as, for instance, in the subjoined case, which I clip from tho Illustrated London Xctcs:—■

TirlSS C. M. E. OUTER'S New Sbnp, «• Ladybird, ladybird, fly upon me!" -L,J- Price, 2s. 6d. Abiii^WN And Pajiii Y, 18, Uunover-.-quitre.

Now, all that can be said about a ladybird flying upon you, can bo said in sixteen lines, and here they are :—


Ladybird, ladybird, fly upon me,

Although it is whispered, it's true,
That when you're matured you begin with a B,

And the letter that follows is U.
You won't find a poet your praises to sing,

When you happen to end with a G;
But in the meantimo you're a beautiful thing,

So, ladybird, fly upon me!

Ladybird, ladybird, fly upon me,

And do me tho favour to sip
Tho delicate nectar you happen to sco

On the bud of my roseate lip.
If, when you're dcvelopod, you happen to cling

To my drapery, squashed you will be;
But in the meantime you're a beautiful thing,

So, ladybird, ily upon me!

There! Oh, it's beautiful! Ta! ta!

Thine, Tien Tsino.

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Our swains at preterit are much'too sago

To live as men lived of old;
So they couplo the crook of the Golden Age

With a hook in the Age of Gold.

From Cortdon's reed the mountains round

Had news of his latest flamo;
And Tityrus made tho woods resound

With echoes of Daphne's namo.
They hare left one musical heritage—

A gift of a god, we're told—
And the Pandean pipe of the Golden Age

Brings Fun to the Age of Gold.

Dwellers in huts or in marble halls,

From shepherdess up to- queen,
Cared little for bonnets and less for shawls,

And nothing for crinoline.
At present Simplicity's not tho rage,

And it's funny how scant and cold
The costume worn in the Golden Ago

Appears to the Age of Gold.

Electric telegraphs, printing, gas,

Tobacco, balloons and steam,
Are some of the things that hare come to pass

Since tho days of that old regime.
Yes, " Men of the Time " beat Lempiuere's page,

And hotter a thousand-fold
Than a century spent in the Golden Age

Ib a day in the Ago of Gold.


[Tire following fragment was picked up a few days ago on the summit of Primrose-hill, the highest mountain in the metropolis. The intrepid adventurer to whom we owo its discovery has reasons for wishing his namo and address kept a profound secret ]

"1st April, 1965.—It is now exactly one hundred years—calculating hy the notches on this gold-mounted walking-stick—sinco our snug little craft ascended from tho Crystal Palace, for the purpose of carrying provisions to tho distressed operatives in Georgium Sidus. Since I dropped my "Poor Richard's Almanack," which fell down into Now Zealand some years ago, and probably beat out the brains of some bald Maori, these notches form tho only method hy which I can compute the lapse of time. I am forced to make them with my teeth, my only penknifo having been stolen by a dishonest eaglo who borrowed it to cut a point to his beak with. Alas! birds are not much better than men and women after all.

"15th May.—I begin to feel hungry. Nothing has passed these lips since I finished tho last remains of Coxwell. Poor Coxwell! ho was very nice. I miss him already, hut starvation stared mo in the face; what could I do P At present there is nothing on board worth eating, except a telescope and a broken thermometer.

"1st June.—I am in better spirits, but still hungry. In the placo I come from—I think they call it London—this is known as the ' glorious 1st of June.' I continuo to take a feeble interest in earthly affairs. By

tho bye, I wonder what has become of my wife and family. When I left home for the Crystal Palace in the year 1865, I positively declared that I should be back in three-quarters of an hour. Perhaps at this moment they are waiting dinner for me.

"8th June.—To-day I began tho telescope, and enjoyed the magnifying lens very much. It reminded me of a jujube that I once eat, but was a good deal more nourishing. This afternoon I read, for tho first time, a hook called Robinton Crusoe, the only work of fiction I brought up with me. How singular that I should havo forgotten it until now!

"16th Juno.—A violent shock aroused me soon after daybreak. I discovered to my great alarm that the balloon had run aground on a cloud of immense extent and solidity. Seeing that there was no chance of getting her off again, I resolved to jumpout and oxplore the strange region into which fortuno had east me. Thoro was not a tree to bo seen, nor could I find, any signs of a human dwelling. However, I had not gone dot when I boheld some glittering object in my path, and on examination it proved to be a very handsome gold watch, of a manufacture utterly unlike any that I had seen before. While I was meditating on this singular discovery, I heard a voice above mo, and on looking up I beheld a machine, resembling a large'bcll, descending rapidly. As soonias it touched the ground a door was opened, and a black man of commanding stature issued from it. His first words were, '(Golly, golly, you dam white nigger, just yougib din child dat 'ere watch!' I obeyed> and his manner immediately.changed into one of extreme civility. In answer to my questions ho informed me that ho was Inspector Friday, of the Georgium •Sidus ^police. A great robbery, he said, had been committed at a jewcller'B in that planet, and, from information received, ho had descended in a diving-bell to recover one of the missing watches which had been throwniover a bridge by the burgUuB. Luckily tho cloud hud stopped the valuable article in its descent. I asked the inspector whether he could take me hack with him, andihe readily consented. OPhis afternoon we are to ascend, thoreforod think it unnecessary to,prolong thisdiary, since my aerial adventures)have reached a,conclusion, and. I shall now settle down in an entirely new world.

"F.-W.—il trust that theffragment I am about to drop into space may kill nobody and instruct everybody upon earth."


The fine old "liner" is dying out. He is dying hard, hut still ho is dying. He fights as hard for the fine old crusted traditions of the press as docs a popular tragedian for the fine old five-act traditions of tho stage. But it won't do. Foolish and chuckle-headed as the British public is, it is beginning to see through both of them, and tho liner and the tragedian must die tho death.

When a liner introduces the subject of a thunderstorm in tho following words, it will be seen that the days of his craft ore numbered:

"Tut: Tiiuniierstobm.Wkymovtii, Tuesday.—One of the most terrific thunderstorms, tt in believed, that have occurred during the lifetime of any i crson residing here, burst over this town and neighbourhood this morning about half-past one o'clock."

"During the lifetime of any person residing here!" Poor " oldest inhabitant!" To what a periphrasis have you been subjected! But observe tho improvement, observe tho increased dramatic powor obtained by this apparently roundabout way of putting it. When an event is said to have been " unprecedented in tho memory of the oldest inhabitant," the implication is that some ono hoary-headed patriarch to whom the residents in tho town or village look up as their oldest fellow-townsman, has been referred to, and (being probably in his dotage) has been unable to recollect anything like the fire, or tho thunderstorm, or the overflow, or the railway accident, or the enormous gooseberry, which is exciting tho mind of the local liner for the time being. But when a thunderstorm is described as being tho most "terrific" (liner, I thank theo for that word) that has occurred "during the lifetime of any person residing here," you escape from the narrow limits of the town or village, and embrace the whole world in tho scope of your inquiries. You take the experiences of all your fellow-townsmen, experiences gathered not only in Weymouth (or wherever tho thunderstorm may have bcon), hut from every part of tho habitable globe, and then you say that the'Weyniouth thunderstorm bungs them all.

But our author has not lost all his traditions. The word "terrific" (as applied to a thunderstorm, and to nothing else in nature) still holds with him, and our old friends tho "electric fluid" and "electrical commotion in tho atmosphere" find a place in his record of tho Weymouth storm. But in a description of a fire which resulted from "the electric fluid striking the chiranoy of a house," no mention is made of tho "devouring element," and wo do not hear whether or not the " sufferer was insured." We hope his fraternity will take tlte matter up.



Scene.Somerset Some.

Member of the Moral Force {to Cabby w!u> lias been severely handled by the Inland Revenue):—" Too Heavy? Ok, Nonsense! Unless We


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This is one of the dearest friends I have in the world, and his name is Peregrine Poppytop.

If I were stricken down this very afternoon by the most lingering and painful of maladies—whichever that may he—I should find Peregrine sitting beside my bed of pain very early to-morrow morning, smoothing my feverish bolster with his own hands, and with his own hands offering me the most nauseous of medicines. If I were driven by madness, liquor, or natural corruptness of heart to commit the most hideous and sanguinary of crimes—whichever that may be— Pereghinb would go through fire and water to spare mo the shame and agony of the fatal tree, either by conveying prussic acid into my dungeon, or by appearing on the outskirts of the mob mounted on a foaming charger, and waving an immense reprieve, just as Ketch was beginning to fumble about my neck.

If any testimony beyond my own is necessary to establish tho goodness of Poppytop's character, let mo givo it in the last words of a dialogue I overheard last night between, say, Brown and Jones :—

"But you must acknowledge that Pofpytop is awfully"

"Well, yes, I confess he is a frightful"

"Of course, and so tremendously"

"But, after all, the poor fellow has"

"Has whatf"

"Why, a good heart!"

Peregrine calls himself, modestly enough, a man of letters. Those who best know him, and havo oftenest heard him talk, call him a "man of words." He has the reputation of having said more and meant less than any conversationalist of the present century, which is

no slight praise, considering that Poppttop is still in tho flower of his youth. Ho has served in his timo as a chopping-block for much amiable satire; and a wag of our acquaintance once told him, in a fine spirit of antithesis, that he was not only dull himself, but tho causo of wit in others. Another asked him, with deep interest, what ho did for a change when ho grew tired of being stupid—a remark which was friendly enough, but illogical, for nobody ever gets tired of tiring other people, and the being who is sent into this universe to bore his fellow-creatures never feels happier than while pursuing his hideous destiny.

Poppttop is the only talker of our acquaintance who contrives to extract dulncss from the most interesting materials. Try him upon tho death of a rich uncle or tho settlement of a tailor's bill, and you find him ditch-water all over. Yet the heart of Peregrine PoppyTop is as much above suspicion as Cesar's wife. His literary character is entirely destroyed by the goodness of his disposition; for no publisher, no editor, no managor has over been known to listen to an author with a good heart.

In short, Peregrine Pofpytop is a living and breathing warning to inconsiderato people against destroying the reputation of a literary man by any ill-timed allusion to the goodness of his heart.

No, A-Fence I

Prince Napoleon has ordered a Glasgow firm to erect a largo deerfence round his grounds at Moudon. For Scotchmen to teach the art of fence to a Frenchman is certainly a most unexpected feat of arms; but no doubt the canny Scots felt themselves at home, for in tho large grounds of Meudon they must have found the broad-sward—and the clay-more(over).


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