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5.8 THE CARPENTER AND THE COFFINS.
Where anchor'd,(doom'd to make no voyages more)
A carpenter first cousin to the may'r,
Hight Master Screw, a man of reputation,
Got leave, through borough-int'rest, to prepare Good wooden lodgings for the Gallic nation—
I mean, for luckless Frenchmen that were dead;
And very well indeed Screw's contract sped.
His good friend. Death, made wonderful demands,
Wishing to make as much as e'er they could,
By this same contract coffin-wood, For such as Death had thrown upon their backs.
This Carpenter like men of other trades, * •
Whom conscience very easily persuades,
To take from neighbours useless superfluity; Resolv'd upon an economic plan, Which shews, that in the character of man,
Economy is not an incongruity.
For, lo! this man of economic sort
THE FOREST BEAU. 59
Copied from a Board over the Door of John Grove, of Wldte Waltham, Berks, England.
John Grove, grocer, and dealer in coffee and tea,
Sells the finest of Congo's and best ofBohea;
A dealer in coppice, a ineas'rerof land,
Sells the finest of snuffs, and the finest white sand.
A singer of psalms, and asrriv ner of money;
Collects the land-tax. and sells fine virgin's honey.
A ragman, a canier a baker of bread,
And a clerk to the living as well as the dead:
Vestry clerk, petty constable; sells scissars and
knives. Best Virginia and buckles, collects the small tythes; Is atreas'rerto clubs, and maker of wills: He surveys men's estates, and vends Anderson's
pills. Woollen-draper, and hosier; sells all sorts of shoes; With the best earthen ware ; also takes in the news. Deals in hurdles and eggs ; sells the best of small
beer, The finest sea coals, and 's elected o'erseer, Deputy surveyor; sells fine writing paper; Has a vote for the county—and linen-draper, A dealer in cheese, and the best Hampshire bacon, Plays the fiddle divinely, if I 'm not mistaken.
THE FOREST BEAU.
When first to feel love's fire J Vck Straw begins, He combs his hair, and eweks his hat with pins, Views in some stream, his face, with fond regard, Flacks from his upper lip the bristly beard,
60 THE KOYAL SHEEP.
With soap and sand his homely visage scours
This he admires, and this best pleases her—
THE ROYAL SHEEP.
Some time ago, a dozen lambs.
And one good motherly old ewe,
Where, with the sweetest innocence, alas!
And motherly old ewe, were nibbling grass;
All the fair property of our great King—
Whose dcath did much the royal bosom wring.
THE HOYAL SHKEP. 61
?T\vas said, that dogs had tickled them to death; Play'd with their gentle throats, and stopp'd their breath.
Like Homer's heroes, on th' ensanguin'd plain, Stalk'd Mr. Robinson* around the slain:
And never was more frighten'd in his life. So shock'd was Mr. Robinson's whole face, Not stronger horrors could have taken place,
Had Cerberus devour'd his wile!
With wild, despairing looks, and sighs,
And wet, and pity-asking eyes,
He, trembling, to the royal presence ventur'd—
White as- the whitest napkin, when he enter'd!
White as the man, who sought king Priam's bed,
And told him, that his warlike son was dead.
• Oh! please your majesty'—he, blubb'ring, cry'd
And then stopp'd short— 'What? what? what? what? (the staring King reply'd)— 'Speak, Robinson, speak, speak, what, what's the hurt?'
'0 sire,' said Robinson again—
'Speak—(said the king)—put, put mc out of pain
'Don't, don't, in this suspense, a body keep'—
• 0 sire!' cry'd Robinson, ' the sheep, the sheep!'
* What of the sheep,' reply'd the king, 'pray, pray
* Dead, Robinson? dead? or run away?' 'Dcad,(answer'd Robinson;)dcad, dead, dead dead' Then, like a drooping lilly, hung his head.
'How? how" the monarch ask'd, with visage sad,. ; By dogs,' said Robinson, ' and likely mad;'
* The hind. G
62 THE ROYAL SHEEP.
'No, no. they can't be mad—they can't be mad— 'No, no, things ar'n't so bad—things ar'n't so bad.*
Rejoin'd the king— 'Off with them quick to market—quick depart; 'In with them, in, in with them in a cart—.
'Sell, sell them, for as much as they will bring."
Now to Fleet-Market, driving like the wind,
All in the royal cart so great,
To try to sell the royal meat.
The news of this rare batch of lambs,
And ewe and rams, Design'd for many a London dinner, Reach'd the fair ears of Master Sheriff Skinner, Who with a hammer and a conscience clear, Gets glory, and ten thousand pounds a year: And who, if things go tolerably fair, Will be one day proud London's proud Lord Mayor.
The alderman was in his pulpit shining.
'Midst gentlemen, with night-caps, hair and wigs; In language most rhetorical, defining
The sterling merit of a lot of pigs:
When suddenly the news was brought,
That in Fleet-Market, were unwholesome sheep;
As nimble as ataylor, or as thought.
For justice panting, and unaw'd by fears,
Like lightning did he gallop up Cheapside!
Like thunder down through Ludgate did he ride, To catch the man, who sold this dreadful mutton.
Now to Fleet-Market, full of wrath he came: