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A Victorian Scrapbook

A Scrapbook of Newspaper Articles Compiled by George Burgess (1829-1905)

Victorian Family, People and Relationships

Doting Mother and her Baby

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Transcript from original newspaper article: -


“HELPLESS infancy.” That’s what they call it – although that baby, by one little smile or cunning little trick, can make me fetch and carry, go and come, rise and sit down, all the same as if I were born without any will or preference of my own. I may rashly assert that I will be at such a place, at such an hour of the clock, without fail; but if that baby catches sights of my departing bonnet, and enters a vigorous protest against it, unless I can mollify her with a piece of the moon, it is doubtful, very doubtful, whether I go or stay. I may say that my side aches, and that the baby grows heavy, and that I must let nurse carry her more, even if she does whimper a little; and I may really mean to do it, too; but what has she such a pretty little red mouth for, and such a distracting way of fixing her lips, and such a pleading look in her eyes, and such a musical little coax to imitate speech, unless it be foreordained that her dimpled white feet shall always and eternally be on my obedient neck? There may be those who could contemplate her all the same as if she were a rag-baby. I can’t. It is ridiculous, too, that no force or reasoning can persuade me that anybody can wash her softly enough save myself; or that any proficiency in the art of dressing, save mine, can avail to tie her little bonnet or cloak right; or button her little red boots so that no fold of her mite of a stocking may double under her ridiculous little toes. But so it is. It is absurd, too, that I like to feed her out of my plate with bits of things, instead of leaving her in the nursery and eating a quiet dinner myself; but you’d understand it all if you had my baby; but you haven’t; and although your own is undoubtedly very cunning, and “looks just like its Pa,” and all that, it can no more be named in the same year with mine than anything that I ever wrote can bear comparison with that which I wish I could write; and, I am sure, I couldn’t possibly state the case stronger.