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with more than the average dimensions, and mutual accommodation was out of the question. We see you now, Madam, wriggling and ramming yourself in like a wedge; the gentlemen on either side of you, in admirable temper, merely observed under the operation, that it was not the thin end of the wedge. We marked your scornful look of virtuous indignation. It certainly was not a very polite remark; but if ladies will persist in dovetailing themselves between gentlemen, especially ladies of your embonpoint, Mrs. Budgenought, you must expect a joke or two at the expense of your make and manners.
Mr. Michael Mainchance, you are here, are
you? Our popularity in our own line of things has drawn you here to-day. We often meet you, Mr. Mainchance, in the City, but you scarcely notice us there, you are always so excessively busy. We can't serve your turn there, eh!
That short sharp cough we know comes from the old baronet, Sir Charity Snugnest. You are close under the pulpit, eh! Sir. We quite expected you among the number ones. We must tell you then, as you are here, that
we don't intend to ask you for another subscription for any benevolent object; we shall keep our promise. There don't rub your bony hands down there with so much glee; we can hear the osseous rattle of your satisfaction. Charity always begins at home with you, and ends there too. We admire the domestic virtues, Sir Charity, but society would be better pleased, and you would enjoy better health if you ventured a little more abroad.
How is that, beadles, how is that? Where does that smoke come from? Something must be smouldering outside under the belfry! Shut all the doors, beadles, but one, and only leave that half-open. Bolt the other half well top and bottom. Keep the smoke out. a strong smell, too, of gas in the church! Mrs. Budgenought, you know the smell of gas, don't you detect it? Worse and worse! Surely the main pipe is burst! What is that noise outside, beadles? Actually they are shouting "Fire! fire!" Don't be alarmed, Mrs. Budgenought. Mr. Mainchance, pray be less excited; help poor Sir Charity down there, he must have fainted and fallen for something rattles just below us like a box of dominos. Fire!
Fire! Surely the Church is on fire, and the gas is escaping! Ah! up and off with you! True to your maxim, ye number ones; knock one another about like skittles; tumble over one another; trample, push, elbow away. Don't open the doors, beadles; capital joke, let them squeeze and pitch each other out one by one, 'tis their favourite number. Don't open the doors! Scream away! Capital joke! Fire! Fire! The gas is escaping!
[We awoke, the gas was in fact escaping, but as we always sleep with the windows open we were instantly sensible that there was no apprehension of danger.]
"I say put money in thy purse."
PERFECTLY true, Mr. Needy, all
you say is perfectly true, you are a member of society-a highly civilized society, abounding in all the conveniences and luxuries of life, capable of ministering to every human want, and indulging every itching fancy, we are short of nothing,
absolutely nothing,-indeed we have a great
deal more than we know what to do with. Such is the superfluity of things, that we are puzzled by their very names, and literally dumbfounded to conceive their use. There are manufactories and markets for everything, delectations and temptations for everybody, so that we may make ourselves as thoroughly comfortable or supremely ridiculous as we please. The social wealth is prodigious-it seems as if all the ingenuity and skill, all the industrial toil, all the natural and unnatural productions of this earth's soil, and this world's brains, had emptied their fulness into the capacious lap of our highly-favoured society. You have not exaggerated in the least the omnifariousness of our social opulence. English society is a perfect omnium gatherum of the comfortable utilities and exuberant perplexities of human
'What d' ye lack? What d' ye lack?'
Of 'prentices of yore,
As they trumpeted their wares
In the merry thoroughfares
Before their masters' door.