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The Surgeon and the House Painters.

PAINTERS are like the dry-rot, if we let 'em
Fix on our pannels and our planks,

There's no ejectment that can get 'em

Out till they've fairly play'd their pranks. There is a time, however, when the ghastly Spectres cease to haunt our vision;

And as my readers, doubtless, would like vastly
To calculate it with precision,

I'll tell them for their ease and comfort
What happen'd t'other day at Romford.

In that great thoroughfare for calves,
Destined to pacify the yearnings
Of Norton Falgate, gormandizing,
There dwelt a Surgeon, who wenț halves
With the apothecary, in the earnings
From broken limbs and accidents arising.
But somehow the good Romford drones
Were so confounded careful against harms,
They neither broke their legs nor arms,
Nor even slipp'd their collar-bones.
In short, he couldn't find one benefactor
Among these cruel calf and pig-herds,
To treat him with a single fracture.

Was ever such a set of niggards!

The fact is, that they never took the road,
Except on vehicles which God bestow'd-
But if with other legs you take a journey,
What wonder if they sometimes overturn ye?

One morn a Patent Safety Coach

Departed from the Swan with the Two Necks, A sign that seems intended to reproach

Those travellers of either sex,

Who deem one neck sufficient for the risks

Of ditches, drunkards, wheels, and four-legg'd frisks.
Just as they enter'd Romford with a dash,

Meaning to pass the Opposition,

The front wheel came in violent collision
With a low post-was shiver'd, smash!

And down the coach came with a horrid crash.

"Zooks!" cried the coachman, as he swore and cursed,
"That rascal Jack will get to Chelmsford first:-
We might have had worse luck on't, for I sees
None of the horses hasn't broke their knees."
As to his fare-or any human limb,

Had ten been broken, 'twas all one to him.
Luckily for the passengers, the master

Of the Plough Inn, who witness'd the disaster,
Ran with his men, and maids, and spouse,

Th' imprison'd sufferers unpounded,
Convey'd the frighten'd, sick, and wounded
Into his house;

Then hied himself into the town, to urge on
The speed of the aforesaid Surgeon.

He came inquired the wounds and spasms
Of all the mistresses and masters;
Applied lint-poultice-balsams-plasters,
And cataplasms,

Bandaging some, and letting others blood,
And then ran home to tell how matters stood.
Like Garrick 'twixt Thalia and Melpomene,

His wife put on her tragi-comic features:-
She had a heart-but also an uncommon eye

To the main chance, and so she cried-" Poor creatures Dear me, how shocking to be wounded thus!—



A famous God-send certainly for us!
Don't tell me any more, my dear Cathartic;
The horrid story really makes my heart ach.
One broken rib-an ankle sprain'd-that's worse,
I mean that's better, for it lasts the longer;
Those careless coachmen are the traveller's curse,
How lucky that they hadn't got to Ongar!
Two bad contusions-several ugly wounds,
Why this should be a job of fifty pounds!—
So now there's no excuse for being stingy;
'Tis full twelve years-no matter when it was—
At all events, the parlour's horrid dingy,
And now it shall be painted-that is poz !”—

The Painters come-two summer-days they give
To scrape acquaintance with each pannel,
Then mix the deadly stuff by which they live,
(The smell's enough to make the stoutest man ill,)
And now, in all their deleterious glory,

They fall upon the wainscot con a more.

The parlour 's done-you wouldn't know the room,
It looks four times as large, and eight times lighter,
But most unluckily, as that grew whiter,

The hall look'd less, and put on tenfold gloom.

"There's no use doing things by halves, my dear,
We must just titivate the hall, that's clear.”
66 Well, be it so, you've my consent, my love,
But when that's done, the painters go, by Jove !"-
They heard him, and began. All hurry-scurry
They set to work instanter,

But presently they slacken'd from their hurry
Into a species of snail's canter.

The Surgeon, who had had his fill

Of stench, and trembled for his bill,

Saw day by day, with aggravated loathing,
That they were only dabbling, paddling,
Twiddling, and fiddle-faddling,

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And helping one another to do nothing;
So call'd the foreman in, and begg'd to know,

As a great favour, when they meant to go.


Why," quoth the honest man, scratching his nob,
"Not afore master gets another job.”—

The Surgeon storm'd and swore, but took the hint,
Laid in a double stock of lint,

And to his patients at the Plough dispenses,
Week after week, new pills and plasters,
Looks very grave on their disasters,
And will not answer for the consequences,
If they presume to use their arms or feet,
Before their cure is quite complete.

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No, no," he mutters, "they shall be
Served as the painters treated me;
And if my slowness they reproach,
I'll tell them they shall leave the place
The moment there's another race
Run by the Patent Safety Coach.


The very head and front of my offending

Hath this extent-no more.


I HATE the man who can never see more than one side of a question-who has but a single idea, and that perhaps a wrong one.-No; I adopt an impression zealously, perhaps erroneously, but I forget not the "audi alteram partem." I can plead my own cause; but I have not given myself a retaining fee; I am therefore open to conviction, and forward to acknow

ledge all that may be reasonably claimed by my opponents. Candour and liberality are my motto, in the spirit of which I begin with confessing, that there are occasions when that bulbous excrescence termed a head may be deemed a handy appendage. As a peg to hang hats on-as a barber's block for supporting wigs, or a milliner's for showing off bonnets—as a target for shooting at when rendered conspicuous by a shining helmet-as a snuff-box or a chatter-box-as a machine for stretching nightcaps, or fitting into a guillotine, or for shaking when we have nothing to say: in all these capacities it is indisputably a most useful piece of household furniture. Yet, as far as my own experience goes, its inconveniences so fearfully predominate over its accommodations, that if I could not have been born a column without any capital, made compact and comfortable by an ante-natal decollation, I would at least have chosen to draw my first breath among

"The Anthropophagi, and men whose heads
Do grow beneath their shoulders ;"-

that by carrying mine adversary in this manner, locked up as it were in mine own chest, I might keep him in as good subjection as St. Patrick did when he swam across the Liffey, and be the better enabled to stomach whatever miseries he might entail upon me.

Away with the hackneyed boast so pompously put forth by simpletons who have no pretensions to the distinction they claim for the race-that man only has a reasoning head! Tant pis pour lui. If he possess this fine privilege, he treats it as worldlings sometimes

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