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nine times out of ten is the full accomplishment of modern gallantry.
Dang. Egad, Sneer, you will be quite an adept in the business!
Puff. Now, sir, the puff collateral is much used as an appendage to advertisements, and may take the form of anecdote: "Yesterday, as the celebrated George Bonmot was sauntering down St. James' Street, he met the lively Lady Mary Myrtle coming out of the park. 'Good God! Lady Mary, I'm surprised to meet you in a white jacket, for I expected never to have seen you but in a full-trimmed uniform and a light horseman's cap!' 'Heavens! George, where could you have learned that?' 'Why,' replied the wit, 'I just saw a print of you in a new publication called the Camp Magazine; which, by-the-bye, is a devilish clever thing, and is sold at No. 3, on the right hand of the way, two doors from the printing-office, the corner of Ivy Lane, Paternoster Row; price only one shilling.""
Sneer. Very ingenious indeed!
Puff. But the puff collusive is the newest of any, for it acts in the disguise of determined hostility. It is much used by bold booksellers and enterprising poets: An indignant correspondent observes, that the new poem called 'Beelzebub's Cotillon, or Proserpine's Fête Champêtre,' is one of the most unjustifiable performances he ever read. The severity with which certain characters are handled is quite shocking; and as there are many descriptions in it too warmly coloured for female delicacy, the shameful avidity with which this piece is bought by all people of fashion is a reproach on the taste of the times, and a disgrace to the delicacy of the age." Here, you see, the two strongest inducements are held forth: first, that nobody ought to read it;
and, secondly, that everybody buys it, on the strength of which the publisher boldly prints the tenth edition, before he had sold ten of the first; and then establishes it by threatening himself with the pillory, or absolutely indicting himself for scan. mag.
Dang. Ha-ha-ha! 'Gad, I know it is so.
Puff. As to the puff oblique, or puff by implication, it is too various and extensive to be illustrated by an instance. It attracts in titles and presumes in patents; it lurks in the limitation of a subscription, and invites in the assurance of crowd and incommodation at public places; it delights to draw forth concealed merit, with a most disinterested assiduity; and sometimes wears a countenance of smiling censure and tender reproach. It has a wonderful memory for parliamentary debates, and will often give the whole speech of a favoured member with the most flattering accuracy. But, above all, it is a great dealer in reports and suppositions. It has the earliest intelligence of intended preferments that will reflect honour on the patrons; and embryo promotions of modest gentlemen, who know nothing of the matter themselves. It can hint a ribbon for implied services in the air of a common report; and with the carelessness of a casual paragraph, suggest officers into commands to which they have no pretension but their wishes. This, sir, is the last principal class of the art of puffing-an art which I hope you will now agree with me is of the highest dignity, yielding a tablature of benevolence and public spirit; befriending equally trade, gallantry, criticism, and politics: the applause of geniusthe register of charity-the triumph of heroism-the selfdefence of contractors-the fame of orators-and the gazette of ministers." The Critic."
Lord Erskine's Simile
LORD ERSKINE, at woman presuming to rail,
A canister's useful and polished and bright,
And if dirt its original purity hide,
'Tis the fault of the puppy to whom it is tied.
SHERIDAN said to a tailor who asked him at least for the interest of his bill, "It is not my interest to pay the principal, nor my principle to pay the interest."
Sheridan made his appearance one day in a pair of new boots. These attracting the notice of some of his friends, "Now guess," said he, "how I came by these boots." Many guesses then took place. "No," said Sheridan, "no, you've not hit it, nor ever will. I bought them, and paid for them!"
At a party, one evening, the conversation turned upon young men's allowance at college. Sheridan's father lamented the ill-judged parsimony of many parents in that respect. "I am sure, Dick," said he, “you need not complain; I always allowed you eight hundred a year." "Yes, father, I must confess you allowed it; but then it was never paid."
Thomas Sheridan bought a gallon of gin to take home, and, by way of a label, wrote his name upon a card, which happened to be the seven of clubs, and tied it to the handle. His son Richard observing the jug, quietly remarked, "That's an awfully careless way to leave that liquor!" "Why?" "Because someone might come along with the eight of clubs and take it."
Sheridan, being on a parliamentary committee, one day entered the room as all the other members were seated and ready to commence business. Perceiving no empty seat, he bowed, and, looking round the table with a droll expression of countenance, said, "Will any gentleman move that I may take the chair?"
Burke, in the course of a debate in the House of Commons in 1793, drew a dagger from his breast and threw it upon the floor of the house, saying, "That is what you are to obtain from an alliance with France." "The gentleman has brought his knife," exclaimed Sheridan, "but where is the fork?"
Being asked whether he thought Mr. O'Brien was right. in his assertion that many thousands of the electors of Westminster would vote for the Duke of Northumberland's porter, were he put up, Sheridan coolly replied, "No, my friend; O'Brien is wrong. But they might vote for Mr. Whitbread's porter."
Sheridan was down at Brighton, one summer, when Fox, the manager, desirous of showing him some civility, took him all over the theatre and exhibited its beauties. "There, Mr. Sheridan!" said Fox, who combined twenty occupations without being clever in one, “I built and painted all these
boxes, and I painted all these scenes." "Did you?" said Sheridan, surveying them rapidly; "well, I should not, I am sure, have known you were a Fox by your brush."
"Now, gentlemen," said Sheridan to his guests, as the ladies left the room, “let us understand each other. Are we to drink like men or beasts?" Somewhat indignant, the guests exclaimed, "Like men of course!" "Then," he replied, "we are going to get jolly drunk, for brutes never drink more than they want."
Once, when charged with inconsistency, Sheridan retorted that the accusation reminded him of the reasoning of the entertainer of a convivial party, who, hearing his friends observe that it was time to take leave, as the watchman was crying, "Past three," said, "Why, you don't mind that fellow, do you? He's the most inconsistent fellow out. Why, he changes his story every half-hour."
Sheridan was dining with Lord Thurlow, when he produced some admirable Constantia, which had been sent him from the Cape of Good Hope. The wine tickled the palate of Sheridan, who saw the bottle emptied with uncommon regret, and set his wits to work to get another. The old Chancellor was not to be so easily induced to produce his rare Cape in such profusion, and foiled all Sheridan's attempts to get another glass. Sheridan, being piqued, and seeing the inutility of persecuting the immovable pillar of the law, turned toward a gentleman sitting farther down, and said, "Sir, pass me up that decanter, for I must return to Madeira, since I cannot double the Cape."