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A Victorian Scrapbook

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

Victorian Culture and Life


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Transcript from original newspaper article: -

Page Contents

A Good Hint

A Rule Without An Exception

An Embarrassing Demand

The Blackcap’s Return To His Native Land



  • Somebody says that politeness is like an air cushion – there may be nothing in it, but it eases our jolts wonderfully.
  • We once heard of a dog who had a whistle which grew on the end of his tail. He always called himself when wanted.

“Has that cookery book any pictures?” said Miss C, to a bookseller.
“No, none,” was the answer.
“Why,” exclaimed the witty and beautiful young lady, “what is the use of telling us how to make a good dinner, if they give us no plates?”

. – There never yet lived that young lady who did not like to be told she was pretty.

AN IRISH ADVERTISEMENT. – Lost, on Saturday last, but the loser does not know where, an empty sack with a cheese in it. On the sack the letters P.G. are marked, but so completely worn out as not to be legible.

  • Be diligent and careful to improve the smallest shreds or broken ends of time.
  • A woman charged with being drunk and disorderly, denied the latter charge, saying that she was too drunk to be disorderly.

“I’m glad that this coffee don’t owe me anything,” said Brown, a boarder, at breakfast.
“Why?” said Smith
“Because I don’t believe it would ever settle.”

  • Do you want to know the man against whom you have most reason to guard yourself? Your looking-glass will give you a fair likeness of his face.
  • To dread danger from the progress of any truth, physical, moral, or religious, is to manifest a want of faith in God’s power, or his will to maintain his own cause.

A good hint by Sam SlickA GOOD HINT.
– If you want a son not to fall in love with any spenderiferous gal, praise her up to the skies, call her an angel, say she is a whole team and horse to spare, and all that. The moment the crittur sees her he is a little grain disappointed, and says, “Well, she is handsome, that’s a fact, but she is not so very, very, everlastin’ after all.” Then he criticises her. “Her foot is too thick in the instep; her elbow-bone is sharp, she rouges, is affected,” and so on; and the more you oppose him the more he abuses her, till he swears she is misroped and ain’t handsome at all. Say nothing to him, and he is spooney over head and ears in a minute. He sees all beauties and no defects, and is for walking into her affections at once. Nothin’ damages a gal, or preacher, like overpraise. A hoss is one of the onliest things in natur’ that is helpet by it.

Sam Slick.

- It is a fact admitted by all careful observers, that the blackcap, like the nightingale, regularly revisits, year after year, the scenes of his childhood. Where he was born there lies his heart. This cannot be a matter for wonder or surprise; indeed, appreciating their instinct as we do, it would be strange were it otherwise. This very year, we recognised most readily, by the peculiarity of his voice and richness of his notes, one of our favourites that left us last autumn. There is so much difference in the quality of their song, and also in the arrangement of their notes, that you might really “swear” to a particular bird. We speak of this identical bird, because of his rare excellence. Doubtless many others, of second-rate powers, accompanied him to their old quarters. Nature is always true to herself. –

Kidd’s Shilling Treatise on the Blackcap

– We see there is a new song by Balfe called The First Kiss. Is there not some degree of danger in such a title? For instance, what would a shopman think, and how would he behave, if a pretty young lady went up to him, and smilingly said, “If you please, Sir, I want you to give me The First Kiss?”

*The year Balfe's song The First Kiss was published was 1859. The words were by Desmond Ryan, a friend of Balfe's who was deputy Editor of the periodical The Musical World. Information provide with thanks from Basil Walsh.

Scraps from Punch.