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Punch, or the London Charivari, Volume 104, May 6, 1893   By:

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VOLUME 104, MAY 6TH 1893

edited by Sir Francis Burnand


( Respectfully addressed to one of the Promoters of the Anti Advertisement League by a Repentant Subscriber. )



BEING gifted with decent taste and a sensitive eye, I have never been much beguiled By advertisements, crude in colour, and ten feet high (Which, in fact, I rather reviled); And, as for gigantic signs swinging up in the sky They drove me perfectly wild!


Then the lurid posters on paling and chimney stack Were the terror of every town Till a League was started by Mr. WILLIAM BLACK For the purpose of putting them down; And the sympathetic invited its efforts to back With an annual half a crown.


So I cheerfully paid the fee, and my name was enrolled, And a solemn oath I swore; (As is usual on such occasions, or so I'm told) That, in future, no shop or store Which aggressively advertised any article sold I would patronise any more!


But that mad rash oath I recall with a vain regret, As I brood in bitter complaint, On the number of useful things that I'm dying to get And my conscience tells me I mayn't! As their various virtues are vaunted in letters of jet, Or gaudier gilding and paint!


I should like to be clean if I could but I cannot cope, Without saponaceous aid, With a shower of London smuts and I'm losing hope, Getting daily a dingier shade, In a futile search for a genuine Toilet soap That has shunned meretricious parade!


My villa would be when it's furnished the cosiest nest, But I fear it is doomed to be bare; For upholsterers' puffs are now a persistent pest, And so shamelessly each will declare His "Elegant Dining and Drawing room suites" are the "cheapest and best" That I daren't choose so much as a chair !


I would fly to the Ocean shore, or the Continent, To escape from a lot accurst; But here, by my own parole, I'm a prisoner pent! I must find a Company first That doesn't resort to obtrusive advertisement And the Railway ones are the worst !


And now I'm developing symptoms of bodily ills, But, however sanguine I've felt, Of a cure from So and So's Syrup, Elixir, or Pills, Or his Neuro magnetic Belt Can I buy, when their fame is based on a stratum of bills Down every area dealt?


And even my path to a tranquil tomb is barred While that oath continues to bind; For a coffin and funeral car will be somewhat hard For a faithful adherent to find When already each undertaker has left a card With his terms and "inquiries kind"!


So you see, Mr. WILLIAM BLACK, what a mess I've made! And you'll own my dilemmas are due To the oath which I took when I followed your precious crusade. If its terms were drafted by you , You may know some ingenious means their effect to evade Kindly drop me a line if you do!


( The Australian Cricketers have arrived in England. )

WELCOME, JOHN MCCARTHY BLACKHAM, And his boys! 'Tis safe to back 'em, GIFFEN, BANNERMAN, and TURNER, To teach BULL a cheerful learner! Austral Cricket "up to date." BRUCE and TRUMBLE rather late Owing to Lutetia's charms! Soon will join their chums in arms. LYONS and M'LEOD are ready; Dashing GEORGE and ALEC steady, And the others, prompt to pitch 'em (Stumps) on the old sward at Mitcham. Punch will wish you all fair weather, And fair luck! Now, all together!!! May we meet 'em oft and whack 'em Fairly these brave boys of BLACKHAM!

HABEAS CORPUS SUSPENDED. What is wanted just now is a "J bez Corpus" Act .

[Illustration: "SCOT FREE."

Sir Henry Hawkins ( to Justice )... Continue reading book >>

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