File: devdict.out

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dico 2.9-2
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* Introduction

This file contains the text of "The Devil's Dictionary" by Ambrose Bierce,
converted to outline format, for testing various aspects of Dico functionality.

* url
     http://wiretap.area.com/Gopher/Library/Classic/devils.txt

* Languages
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* MIME
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=US-ASCII
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 8bit

* Description

THE DEVIL'S DICTIONARY ((C)1911 Released April 15 1993)

* Info

This file was converted from the original database on:
Sun May 18 12:45:30 EEST 2008

The original data is available from:
     http://wiretap.area.com/Gopher/Library/Classic/devils.txt

The original data was distributed with the notice shown below.  No
additional restrictions are claimed.  Please redistribute this
changed version under the same conditions and restriction that
apply to the original version.

   
   
               The Internet Wiretap 1st Online Edition of
   
   
                         THE DEVIL'S DICTIONARY
   
                                   by
   
                             AMBROSE BIERCE
   
   
              Copyright 1911 by Albert and Charles Boni, Inc.
                  A Public Domain Text, Copyright Expired
   
                          Released April 15 1993
   
                    Entered by Aloysius of &tSftDotIotE
                        aloysius@west.darkside.com
   
   
   
                                 PREFACE
   
   _The Devil's Dictionary_ was begun in a weekly paper in 1881, and was
   continued in a desultory way at long intervals until 1906.  In that
   year a large part of it was published in covers with the title _The
   Cynic's Word Book_, a name which the author had not the power to
   reject or happiness to approve.  To quote the publishers of the
   present work:
       "This more reverent title had previously been forced upon him by
   the religious scruples of the last newspaper in which a part of the
   work had appeared, with the natural consequence that when it came out
   in covers the country already had been flooded by its imitators with a
   score of 'cynic' books -- _The Cynic's This_, _The Cynic's That_, and
   _The Cynic's t'Other_.  Most of these books were merely stupid, though
   some of them added the distinction of silliness.  Among them, they
   brought the word 'cynic' into disfavor so deep that any book bearing
   it was discredited in advance of publication."
       Meantime, too, some of the enterprising humorists of the country
   had helped themselves to such parts of the work as served their needs,
   and many of its definitions, anecdotes, phrases and so forth, had
   become more or less current in popular speech.  This explanation is
   made, not with any pride of priority in trifles, but in simple denial
   of possible charges of plagiarism, which is no trifle.  In merely
   resuming his own the author hopes to be held guiltless by those to
   whom the work is addressed -- enlightened souls who prefer dry wines
   to sweet, sense to sentiment, wit to humor and clean English to slang.
       A conspicuous, and it is hope not unpleasant, feature of the book
   is its abundant illustrative quotations from eminent poets, chief of
   whom is that learned and ingenius cleric, Father Gassalasca Jape,
   S.J., whose lines bear his initials.  To Father Jape's kindly
   encouragement and assistance the author of the prose text is greatly
   indebted.
                                                                     A.B.
   
   
* Dictionary   
   
                                     A
   
   
   
** ABASEMENT

ABASEMENT, n.  A decent and customary mental attitude in the presence
of wealth of power.  Peculiarly appropriate in an employee when
addressing an employer.


** ABATIS

ABATIS, n.  Rubbish in front of a fort, to prevent the rubbish outside
from molesting the rubbish inside.


** ABDICATION

ABDICATION, n.  An act whereby a sovereign attests his sense of the
high temperature of the throne.

    Poor Isabella's Dead, whose abdication
    Set all tongues wagging in the Spanish nation.
    For that performance 'twere unfair to scold her:
    She wisely left a throne too hot to hold her.
    To History she'll be no royal riddle --
    Merely a plain parched pea that jumped the griddle.
                                                                  G.J.


** ABDOMEN

ABDOMEN, n.  The temple of the god Stomach, in whose worship, with
sacrificial rights, all true men engage.  From women this ancient
faith commands but a stammering assent.  They sometimes minister at
the altar in a half-hearted and ineffective way, but true reverence
for the one deity that men really adore they know not.  If woman had a
free hand in the world's marketing the race would become
graminivorous.


** ABILITY

ABILITY, n.  The natural equipment to accomplish some small part of
the meaner ambitions distinguishing able men from dead ones.  In the
last analysis ability is commonly found to consist mainly in a high
degree of solemnity.  Perhaps, however, this impressive quality is
rightly appraised; it is no easy task to be solemn.


** ABNORMAL

ABNORMAL, adj.  Not conforming to standard.  In matters of thought and
conduct, to be independent is to be abnormal, to be abnormal is to be
detested.  Wherefore the lexicographer adviseth a striving toward the
straiter [sic] resemblance of the Average Man than he hath to himself. 
Whoso attaineth thereto shall have peace, the prospect of death and
the hope of Hell.


** ABORIGINIES

ABORIGINIES, n.  Persons of little worth found cumbering the soil of a
newly discovered country.  They soon cease to cumber; they fertilize.


ABRACADABRA.

    By _Abracadabra_ we signify
        An infinite number of things.
    'Tis the answer to What? and How? and Why?
    And Whence? and Whither? -- a word whereby
        The Truth (with the comfort it brings)
    Is open to all who grope in night,
    Crying for Wisdom's holy light.

    Whether the word is a verb or a noun
        Is knowledge beyond my reach.
    I only know that 'tis handed down.
            From sage to sage,
            From age to age --
        An immortal part of speech!

    Of an ancient man the tale is told
    That he lived to be ten centuries old,
        In a cave on a mountain side.
        (True, he finally died.)
    The fame of his wisdom filled the land,
    For his head was bald, and you'll understand
        His beard was long and white
        And his eyes uncommonly bright.

    Philosophers gathered from far and near
    To sit at his feat and hear and hear,
            Though he never was heard
            To utter a word
        But "_Abracadabra, abracadab_,
            _Abracada, abracad_,
        _Abraca, abrac, abra, ab!_"
            'Twas all he had,
    'Twas all they wanted to hear, and each
    Made copious notes of the mystical speech,
            Which they published next --
            A trickle of text
    In the meadow of commentary.
        Mighty big books were these,
        In a number, as leaves of trees;
    In learning, remarkably -- very!

            He's dead,
            As I said,
    And the books of the sages have perished,
    But his wisdom is sacredly cherished.
    In _Abracadabra_ it solemnly rings,
    Like an ancient bell that forever swings.
            O, I love to hear
            That word make clear
    Humanity's General Sense of Things.
                                                       Jamrach Holobom


** ABRIDGE

ABRIDGE, v.t.  To shorten.

        When in the course of human events it becomes necessary for
    people to abridge their king, a decent respect for the opinions of
    mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel
    them to the separation.
                                                       Oliver Cromwell


** ABRUPT

ABRUPT, adj.  Sudden, without ceremony, like the arrival of a cannon-
shot and the departure of the soldier whose interests are most
affected by it.  Dr. Samuel Johnson beautifully said of another
author's ideas that they were "concatenated without abruption."


** ABSCOND

ABSCOND, v.i.  To "move in a mysterious way," commonly with the
property of another.

    Spring beckons!  All things to the call respond;
    The trees are leaving and cashiers abscond.
                                                             Phela Orm


** ABSENT

ABSENT, adj.  Peculiarly exposed to the tooth of detraction; vilifed;
hopelessly in the wrong; superseded in the consideration and affection
of another.

    To men a man is but a mind.  Who cares
    What face he carries or what form he wears?
    But woman's body is the woman.  O,
    Stay thou, my sweetheart, and do never go,
    But heed the warning words the sage hath said:
    A woman absent is a woman dead.
                                                            Jogo Tyree


** ABSENTEE

ABSENTEE, n.  A person with an income who has had the forethought to
remove himself from the sphere of exaction.


** ABSOLUTE

ABSOLUTE, adj.  Independent, irresponsible.  An absolute monarchy is
one in which the sovereign does as he pleases so long as he pleases
the assassins.  Not many absolute monarchies are left, most of them
having been replaced by limited monarchies, where the sovereign's
power for evil (and for good) is greatly curtailed, and by republics,
which are governed by chance.


** ABSTAINER

ABSTAINER, n.  A weak person who yields to the temptation of denying
himself a pleasure.  A total abstainer is one who abstains from
everything but abstention, and especially from inactivity in the
affairs of others.

    Said a man to a crapulent youth:  "I thought
        You a total abstainer, my son."
    "So I am, so I am," said the scrapgrace caught --
        "But not, sir, a bigoted one."
                                                                  G.J.


** ABSURDITY

ABSURDITY, n.  A statement or belief manifestly inconsistent with
one's own opinion.


** ACADEME

ACADEME, n.  An ancient school where morality and philosophy were
taught.


** ACADEMY

ACADEMY, n.  [from :ACADEME:]   A modern school where football is
taught.


** ACCIDENT

ACCIDENT, n.  An inevitable occurrence due to the action of immutable
natural laws.


** ACCOMPLICE

ACCOMPLICE, n.  One associated with another in a crime, having guilty
knowledge and complicity, as an attorney who defends a criminal,
knowing him guilty.  This view of the attorney's position in the
matter has not hitherto commanded the assent of attorneys, no one
having offered them a fee for assenting.


** ACCORD

ACCORD, n.  Harmony.


** ACCORDION

ACCORDION, n.  An instrument in harmony with the sentiments of an
assassin.


** ACCOUNTABILITY

ACCOUNTABILITY, n.  The mother of caution.

    "My accountability, bear in mind,"
        Said the Grand Vizier:  "Yes, yes,"
    Said the Shah:  "I do -- 'tis the only kind
        Of ability you possess."
                                                            Joram Tate


** ACCUSE

ACCUSE, v.t.  To affirm another's guilt or unworth; most commonly as a
justification of ourselves for having wronged him.


** ACEPHALOUS

ACEPHALOUS, adj.  In the surprising condition of the Crusader who
absently pulled at his forelock some hours after a Saracen scimitar
had, unconsciously to him, passed through his neck, as related by de
Joinville.


** ACHIEVEMENT

ACHIEVEMENT, n.  The death of endeavor and the birth of disgust.


** ACKNOWLEDGE

ACKNOWLEDGE, v.t.  To confess.  Acknowledgement of one another's
faults is the highest duty imposed by our love of truth.


** ACQUAINTANCE

ACQUAINTANCE, n.  A person whom we know well enough to borrow from,
but not well enough to lend to.  A degree of friendship called slight
when its object is poor or obscure, and intimate when he is rich or
famous.


** ACTUALLY

ACTUALLY, adv.  Perhaps; possibly.


** ADAGE

ADAGE, n.  Boned wisdom for weak teeth.


** ADAMANT

ADAMANT, n.  A mineral frequently found beneath a corset.  Soluble in
solicitate of gold.


** ADDER

ADDER, n.  A species of snake.  So called from its habit of adding
funeral outlays to the other expenses of living.


** ADHERENT

ADHERENT, n.  A follower who has not yet obtained all that he expects
to get.


** ADMINISTRATION

ADMINISTRATION, n.  An ingenious abstraction in politics, designed to
receive the kicks and cuffs due to the premier or president.  A man of
straw, proof against bad-egging and dead-catting.


** ADMIRAL

ADMIRAL, n.  That part of a war-ship which does the talking while the
figure-head does the thinking.


** ADMIRATION

ADMIRATION, n.  Our polite recognition of another's resemblance to
ourselves.


** ADMONITION

ADMONITION, n.  Gentle reproof, as with a meat-axe.  Friendly warning.

    Consigned by way of admonition,
    His soul forever to perdition.
                                                              Judibras


** ADORE

ADORE, v.t.  To venerate expectantly.


** ADVICE

ADVICE, n.  The smallest current coin.

    "The man was in such deep distress,"
    Said Tom, "that I could do no less
    Than give him good advice."  Said Jim:
    "If less could have been done for him
    I know you well enough, my son,
    To know that's what you would have done."
                                                         Jebel Jocordy


** AFFIANCED

AFFIANCED, pp.  Fitted with an ankle-ring for the ball-and-chain.


** AFFLICTION

AFFLICTION, n.  An acclimatizing process preparing the soul for
another and bitter world.


** AFRICAN

AFRICAN, n.  A nigger that votes our way.


** AGE

AGE, n.  That period of life in which we compound for the vices that
we still cherish by reviling those that we have no longer the
enterprise to commit.


** AGITATOR

AGITATOR, n.  A statesman who shakes the fruit trees of his neighbors
-- to dislodge the worms.


** AIM

AIM, n.  The task we set our wishes to.

    "Cheer up!  Have you no aim in life?"
        She tenderly inquired.
    "An aim?  Well, no, I haven't, wife;
        The fact is -- I have fired."
                                                                  G.J.


** AIR

AIR, n.  A nutritious substance supplied by a bountiful Providence for
the fattening of the poor.


** ALDERMAN

ALDERMAN, n.  An ingenious criminal who covers his secret thieving
with a pretence of open marauding.


** ALIEN

ALIEN, n.  An American sovereign in his probationary state.


** ALLAH

ALLAH, n.  The Mahometan Supreme Being, as distinguished from the
Christian, Jewish, and so forth.

    Allah's good laws I faithfully have kept,
    And ever for the sins of man have wept;
        And sometimes kneeling in the temple I
    Have reverently crossed my hands and slept.
                                                         Junker Barlow


** ALLEGIANCE

ALLEGIANCE, n.

    This thing Allegiance, as I suppose,
    Is a ring fitted in the subject's nose,
    Whereby that organ is kept rightly pointed
    To smell the sweetness of the Lord's anointed.
                                                                  G.J.


** ALLIANCE

ALLIANCE, n.  In international politics, the union of two thieves who
have their hands so deeply inserted in each other's pockets that they
cannot separately plunder a third.


** ALLIGATOR

ALLIGATOR, n.  The crocodile of America, superior in every detail to
the crocodile of the effete monarchies of the Old World.  Herodotus
says the Indus is, with one exception, the only river that produces
crocodiles, but they appear to have gone West and grown up with the
other rivers.  From the notches on his back the alligator is called a
sawrian.


** ALONE

ALONE, adj.  In bad company.

    In contact, lo! the flint and steel,
    By spark and flame, the thought reveal
    That he the metal, she the stone,
    Had cherished secretly alone.
                                                           Booley Fito


** ALTAR

ALTAR, n.  The place whereupon the priest formerly raveled out the
small intestine of the sacrificial victim for purposes of divination
and cooked its flesh for the gods.  The word is now seldom used,
except with reference to the sacrifice of their liberty and peace by a
male and a female tool.

    They stood before the altar and supplied
    The fire themselves in which their fat was fried.
    In vain the sacrifice! -- no god will claim
    An offering burnt with an unholy flame.
                                                           M.P. Nopput


** AMBIDEXTROUS

AMBIDEXTROUS, adj.  Able to pick with equal skill a right-hand pocket
or a left.


** AMBITION

AMBITION, n.  An overmastering desire to be vilified by enemies while
living and made ridiculous by friends when dead.


** AMNESTY

AMNESTY, n.  The state's magnanimity to those offenders whom it would
be too expensive to punish.


** ANOINT

ANOINT, v.t.  To grease a king or other great functionary already
sufficiently slippery.

    As sovereigns are anointed by the priesthood,
    So pigs to lead the populace are greased good.
                                                              Judibras


** ANTIPATHY

ANTIPATHY, n.  The sentiment inspired by one's friend's friend.


** APHORISM

APHORISM, n.  Predigested wisdom.

    The flabby wine-skin of his brain
    Yields to some pathologic strain,
    And voids from its unstored abysm
    The driblet of an aphorism.
                                           "The Mad Philosopher," 1697


** APOLOGIZE

APOLOGIZE, v.i.  To lay the foundation for a future offence.


** APOSTATE

APOSTATE, n.  A leech who, having penetrated the shell of a turtle
only to find that the creature has long been dead, deems it expedient
to form a new attachment to a fresh turtle.


** APOTHECARY

APOTHECARY, n.  The physician's accomplice, undertaker's benefactor
and grave worm's provider.

    When Jove sent blessings to all men that are,
    And Mercury conveyed them in a jar,
    That friend of tricksters introduced by stealth
    Disease for the apothecary's health,
    Whose gratitude impelled him to proclaim:
    "My deadliest drug shall bear my patron's name!"
                                                                  G.J.


** APPEAL

APPEAL, v.t.  In law, to put the dice into the box for another throw.


** APPETITE

APPETITE, n.  An instinct thoughtfully implanted by Providence as a
solution to the labor question.


** APPLAUSE

APPLAUSE, n.  The echo of a platitude.


** APRIL FOOL

APRIL FOOL, n.  The March fool with another month added to his folly.


** ARCHBISHOP

ARCHBISHOP, n.  An ecclesiastical dignitary one point holier than a
bishop.

    If I were a jolly archbishop,
    On Fridays I'd eat all the fish up --
    Salmon and flounders and smelts;
    On other days everything else.
                                                              Jodo Rem


** ARCHITECT

ARCHITECT, n.  One who drafts a plan of your house, and plans a draft
of your money.


** ARDOR

ARDOR, n.  The quality that distinguishes love without knowledge.


** ARENA

ARENA, n.  In politics, an imaginary rat-pit in which the statesman
wrestles with his record.


** ARISTOCRACY

ARISTOCRACY, n.  Government by the best men.  (In this sense the word
is obsolete; so is that kind of government.)  Fellows that wear downy
hats and clean shirts -- guilty of education and suspected of bank
accounts.


** ARMOR

ARMOR, n.  The kind of clothing worn by a man whose tailor is a
blacksmith.


** ARRAYED

ARRAYED, pp.  Drawn up and given an orderly disposition, as a rioter
hanged to a lamppost.


** ARREST

ARREST, v.t.  Formally to detain one accused of unusualness.

    God made the world in six days and was arrested on the seventh.
                                            _The Unauthorized Version_


** ARSENIC

ARSENIC, n.  A kind of cosmetic greatly affected by the ladies, whom
it greatly affects in turn.

    "Eat arsenic?  Yes, all you get,"
        Consenting, he did speak up;
    "'Tis better you should eat it, pet,
        Than put it in my teacup."
                                                             Joel Huck


** ART

ART, n.  This word has no definition.  Its origin is related as
follows by the ingenious Father Gassalasca Jape, S.J.

    One day a wag -- what would the wretch be at? --
    Shifted a letter of the cipher RAT,
    And said it was a god's name!  Straight arose
    Fantastic priests and postulants (with shows,
    And mysteries, and mummeries, and hymns,
    And disputations dire that lamed their limbs)
    To serve his temple and maintain the fires,
    Expound the law, manipulate the wires.
    Amazed, the populace that rites attend,
    Believe whate'er they cannot comprehend,
    And, inly edified to learn that two
    Half-hairs joined so and so (as Art can do)
    Have sweeter values and a grace more fit
    Than Nature's hairs that never have been split,
    Bring cates and wines for sacrificial feasts,
    And sell their garments to support the priests.


** ARTLESSNESS

ARTLESSNESS, n.  A certain engaging quality to which women attain by
long study and severe practice upon the admiring male, who is pleased
to fancy it resembles the candid simplicity of his young.


** ASPERSE

ASPERSE, v.t.  Maliciously to ascribe to another vicious actions which
one has not had the temptation and opportunity to commit.


** ASS

ASS, n.  A public singer with a good voice but no ear.  In Virginia
City, Nevada, he is called the Washoe Canary, in Dakota, the Senator,
and everywhere the Donkey.  The animal is widely and variously
celebrated in the literature, art and religion of every age and
country; no other so engages and fires the human imagination as this
noble vertebrate.  Indeed, it is doubted by some (Ramasilus, _lib.

II., De Clem._, and C. Stantatus, _De Temperamente_) if it is not a
god; and as such we know it was worshiped by the Etruscans, and, if we
may believe Macrobious, by the Cupasians also.  Of the only two
animals admitted into the Mahometan Paradise along with the souls of
men, the ass that carried Balaam is one, the dog of the Seven Sleepers
the other.  This is no small distinction.  From what has been written
about this beast might be compiled a library of great splendor and
magnitude, rivalling that of the Shakespearean cult, and that which
clusters about the Bible.  It may be said, generally, that all
literature is more or less Asinine.

    "Hail, holy Ass!" the quiring angels sing;
    "Priest of Unreason, and of Discords King!"
    Great co-Creator, let Thy glory shine:
    God made all else, the Mule, the Mule is thine!"
                                                                  G.J.


** AUCTIONEER

AUCTIONEER, n.  The man who proclaims with a hammer that he has picked
a pocket with his tongue.


** AUSTRALIA

AUSTRALIA, n.  A country lying in the South Sea, whose industrial and
commercial development has been unspeakably retarded by an unfortunate
dispute among geographers as to whether it is a continent or an
island.


** AVERNUS

AVERNUS, n.  The lake by which the ancients entered the infernal
regions.  The fact that access to the infernal regions was obtained by
a lake is believed by the learned Marcus Ansello Scrutator to have
suggested the Christian rite of baptism by immersion.  This, however,
has been shown by Lactantius to be an error.

    _Facilis descensus Averni,_
        The poet remarks; and the sense
    Of it is that when down-hill I turn I
        Will get more of punches than pence.
                                                        Jehal Dai Lupe


                                  B



** BAAL

BAAL, n.  An old deity formerly much worshiped under various names. 
As Baal he was popular with the Phoenicians; as Belus or Bel he had
the honor to be served by the priest Berosus, who wrote the famous
account of the Deluge; as Babel he had a tower partly erected to his
glory on the Plain of Shinar.  From Babel comes our English word
"babble."  Under whatever name worshiped, Baal is the Sun-god.  As
Beelzebub he is the god of flies, which are begotten of the sun's rays
on the stagnant water.  In Physicia Baal is still worshiped as Bolus,
and as Belly he is adored and served with abundant sacrifice by the
priests of Guttledom.


** BABE

BABE or BABY, n.  A misshapen creature of no particular age, sex, or
condition, chiefly remarkable for the violence of the sympathies and
antipathies it excites in others, itself without sentiment or emotion. 
There have been famous babes; for example, little Moses, from whose
adventure in the bulrushes the Egyptian hierophants of seven centuries
before doubtless derived their idle tale of the child Osiris being
preserved on a floating lotus leaf.

            Ere babes were invented
            The girls were contended.
            Now man is tormented
    Until to buy babes he has squandered
    His money.  And so I have pondered
            This thing, and thought may be
            'T were better that Baby
    The First had been eagled or condored.
                                                               Ro Amil


** BACCHUS

BACCHUS, n.  A convenient deity invented by the ancients as an excuse
for getting drunk.

    Is public worship, then, a sin,
        That for devotions paid to Bacchus
    The lictors dare to run us in,
        And resolutely thump and whack us?
                                                                Jorace


** BACK

BACK, n.  That part of your friend which it is your privilege to
contemplate in your adversity.


** BACKBITE

BACKBITE, v.t.  To speak of a man as you find him when he can't find
you.


** BAIT

BAIT, n.  A preparation that renders the hook more palatable.  The
best kind is beauty.


** BAPTISM

BAPTISM, n.  A sacred rite of such efficacy that he who finds himself
in heaven without having undergone it will be unhappy forever.  It is
performed with water in two ways -- by immersion, or plunging, and by
aspersion, or sprinkling.

    But whether the plan of immersion
    Is better than simple aspersion
        Let those immersed
        And those aspersed
    Decide by the Authorized Version,
    And by matching their agues tertian.
                                                                  G.J.


** BAROMETER

BAROMETER, n.  An ingenious instrument which indicates what kind of
weather we are having.


** BARRACK

BARRACK, n.  A house in which soldiers enjoy a portion of that of
which it is their business to deprive others.


** BASILISK

BASILISK, n.  The cockatrice.  A sort of serpent hatched form the egg
of a cock.  The basilisk had a bad eye, and its glance was fatal. 
Many infidels deny this creature's existence, but Semprello Aurator
saw and handled one that had been blinded by lightning as a punishment
for having fatally gazed on a lady of rank whom Jupiter loved.  Juno
afterward restored the reptile's sight and hid it in a cave.  Nothing
is so well attested by the ancients as the existence of the basilisk,
but the cocks have stopped laying.


** BASTINADO

BASTINADO, n.  The act of walking on wood without exertion.


** BATH

BATH, n.  A kind of mystic ceremony substituted for religious worship,
with what spiritual efficacy has not been determined.

    The man who taketh a steam bath
    He loseth all the skin he hath,
    And, for he's boiled a brilliant red,
    Thinketh to cleanliness he's wed,
    Forgetting that his lungs he's soiling
    With dirty vapors of the boiling.
                                                          Richard Gwow


** BATTLE

BATTLE, n.  A method of untying with the teeth of a political knot
that would not yield to the tongue.


** BEARD

BEARD, n.  The hair that is commonly cut off by those who justly
execrate the absurd Chinese custom of shaving the head.


** BEAUTY

BEAUTY, n.  The power by which a woman charms a lover and terrifies a
husband.


** BEFRIEND

BEFRIEND, v.t.  To make an ingrate.


** BEG

BEG, v.  To ask for something with an earnestness proportioned to the
belief that it will not be given.

    Who is that, father?

                          A mendicant, child,
    Haggard, morose, and unaffable -- wild!
    See how he glares through the bars of his cell!
    With Citizen Mendicant all is not well.

    Why did they put him there, father?

                                         Because
    Obeying his belly he struck at the laws.

    His belly?

                Oh, well, he was starving, my boy --
    A state in which, doubtless, there's little of joy.
    No bite had he eaten for days, and his cry
    Was "Bread!" ever "Bread!"

                                What's the matter with pie?

    With little to wear, he had nothing to sell;
    To beg was unlawful -- improper as well.

    Why didn't he work?

                         He would even have done that,
    But men said:  "Get out!" and the State remarked:  "Scat!"
    I mention these incidents merely to show
    That the vengeance he took was uncommonly low.
    Revenge, at the best, is the act of a Siou,
    But for trifles --

                        Pray what did bad Mendicant do?

    Stole two loaves of bread to replenish his lack
    And tuck out the belly that clung to his back.

    Is that _all_ father dear?

                                There's little to tell:
    They sent him to jail, and they'll send him to -- well,
    The company's better than here we can boast,
    And there's --

                    Bread for the needy, dear father?

                                                       Um -- toast.
                                                              Atka Mip


** BEGGAR

BEGGAR, n.  One who has relied on the assistance of his friends.


** BEHAVIOR

BEHAVIOR, n.  Conduct, as determined, not by principle, but by
breeding.  The word seems to be somewhat loosely used in Dr. Jamrach
Holobom's translation of the following lines from the _Dies Irae_:

        Recordare, Jesu pie,
        Quod sum causa tuae viae.
        Ne me perdas illa die.

    Pray remember, sacred Savior,
    Whose the thoughtless hand that gave your
    Death-blow.  Pardon such behavior.


** BELLADONNA

BELLADONNA, n.  In Italian a beautiful lady; in English a deadly
poison.  A striking example of the essential identity of the two
tongues.


** BENEDICTINES

BENEDICTINES, n.  An order of monks otherwise known as black friars.

    She thought it a crow, but it turn out to be
        A monk of St. Benedict croaking a text.
    "Here's one of an order of cooks," said she --
        "Black friars in this world, fried black in the next."
                                   "The Devil on Earth" (London, 1712)


** BENEFACTOR

BENEFACTOR, n.  One who makes heavy purchases of ingratitude, without,
however, materially affecting the price, which is still within the
means of all.


** BERENICE'S HAIR
BERENICE'S HAIR, n.  A constellation (_Coma Berenices_) named in honor
of one who sacrificed her hair to save her husband.

    Her locks an ancient lady gave
    Her loving husband's life to save;
    And men -- they honored so the dame --
    Upon some stars bestowed her name.

    But to our modern married fair,
    Who'd give their lords to save their hair,
    No stellar recognition's given.
    There are not stars enough in heaven.
                                                                  G.J.


** BIGAMY

BIGAMY, n.  A mistake in taste for which the wisdom of the future will
adjudge a punishment called trigamy.


** BIGOT

BIGOT, n.  One who is obstinately and zealously attached to an opinion
that you do not entertain.


** BILLINGSGATE

BILLINGSGATE, n.  The invective of an opponent.


** BIRTH

BIRTH, n.  The first and direst of all disasters.  As to the nature of
it there appears to be no uniformity.  Castor and Pollux were born
from the egg.  Pallas came out of a skull.  Galatea was once a block
of stone.  Peresilis, who wrote in the tenth century, avers that he
grew up out of the ground where a priest had spilled holy water.  It
is known that Arimaxus was derived from a hole in the earth, made by a
stroke of lightning.  Leucomedon was the son of a cavern in Mount
Aetna, and I have myself seen a man come out of a wine cellar.


** BLACKGUARD

BLACKGUARD, n.  A man whose qualities, prepared for display like a box
of berries in a market -- the fine ones on top -- have been opened on
the wrong side.  An inverted gentleman.


** BLANK-VERSE

BLANK-VERSE, n.  Unrhymed iambic pentameters -- the most difficult
kind of English verse to write acceptably; a kind, therefore, much
affected by those who cannot acceptably write any kind.


** BODY-SNATCHER

BODY-SNATCHER, n.  A robber of grave-worms.  One who supplies the
young physicians with that with which the old physicians have supplied
the undertaker.  The hyena.

    "One night," a doctor said, "last fall,
    I and my comrades, four in all,
        When visiting a graveyard stood
    Within the shadow of a wall.

    "While waiting for the moon to sink
    We saw a wild hyena slink
        About a new-made grave, and then
    Begin to excavate its brink!

    "Shocked by the horrid act, we made
    A sally from our ambuscade,
        And, falling on the unholy beast,
    Dispatched him with a pick and spade."
                                                      Bettel K. Jhones


** BONDSMAN

BONDSMAN, n.  A fool who, having property of his own, undertakes to
become responsible for that entrusted to another to a third.
    Philippe of Orleans wishing to appoint one of his favorites, a
dissolute nobleman, to a high office, asked him what security he would
be able to give.  "I need no bondsmen," he replied, "for I can give
you my word of honor."  "And pray what may be the value of that?"
inquired the amused Regent.  "Monsieur, it is worth its weight in
gold."


** BORE

BORE, n.  A person who talks when you wish him to listen.


** BOTANY

BOTANY, n.  The science of vegetables -- those that are not good to
eat, as well as those that are.  It deals largely with their flowers,
which are commonly badly designed, inartistic in color, and ill-
smelling.


** BOTTLE-NOSED

BOTTLE-NOSED, adj.  Having a nose created in the image of its maker.


** BOUNDARY

BOUNDARY, n.  In political geography, an imaginary line between two
nations, separating the imaginary rights of one from the imaginary
rights of the other.


** BOUNTY

BOUNTY, n.  The liberality of one who has much, in permitting one who
has nothing to get all that he can.

        A single swallow, it is said, devours ten millions of insects
    every year.  The supplying of these insects I take to be a signal
    instance of the Creator's bounty in providing for the lives of His
    creatures.
                                                    Henry Ward Beecher


** BRAHMA

BRAHMA, n.  He who created the Hindoos, who are preserved by Vishnu
and destroyed by Siva -- a rather neater division of labor than is
found among the deities of some other nations.  The Abracadabranese,
for example, are created by Sin, maintained by Theft and destroyed by
Folly.  The priests of Brahma, like those of Abracadabranese, are holy
and learned men who are never naughty.

    O Brahma, thou rare old Divinity,
    First Person of the Hindoo Trinity,
    You sit there so calm and securely,
    With feet folded up so demurely --
    You're the First Person Singular, surely.
                                                        Polydore Smith


** BRAIN

BRAIN, n. An apparatus with which we think what we think.  That which
distinguishes the man who is content to _be_ something from the man
who wishes to _do_ something.  A man of great wealth, or one who has
been pitchforked into high station, has commonly such a headful of
brain that his neighbors cannot keep their hats on.  In our
civilization, and under our republican form of government, brain is so
highly honored that it is rewarded by exemption from the cares of
office.


** BRANDY

BRANDY, n.  A cordial composed of one part thunder-and-lightning, one
part remorse, two parts bloody murder, one part death-hell-and-the-
grave and four parts clarified Satan.  Dose, a headful all the time. 
Brandy is said by Dr. Johnson to be the drink of heroes.  Only a hero
will venture to drink it.


** BRIDE

BRIDE, n.  A woman with a fine prospect of happiness behind her.


** BRUTE

BRUTE, n.  See :HUSBAND:.


                                  C



** CAABA

CAABA, n.  A large stone presented by the archangel Gabriel to the
patriarch Abraham, and preserved at Mecca.  The patriarch had perhaps
asked the archangel for bread.


** CABBAGE

CABBAGE, n.  A familiar kitchen-garden vegetable about as large and
wise as a man's head.
    The cabbage is so called from Cabagius, a prince who on ascending
the throne issued a decree appointing a High Council of Empire
consisting of the members of his predecessor's Ministry and the
cabbages in the royal garden.  When any of his Majesty's measures of
state policy miscarried conspicuously it was gravely announced that
several members of the High Council had been beheaded, and his
murmuring subjects were appeased.


** CALAMITY

CALAMITY, n.  A more than commonly plain and unmistakable reminder
that the affairs of this life are not of our own ordering.  Calamities
are of two kinds:  misfortune to ourselves, and good fortune to
others.


** CALLOUS

CALLOUS, adj.  Gifted with great fortitude to bear the evils
afflicting another.
    When Zeno was told that one of his enemies was no more he was
observed to be deeply moved.  "What!" said one of his disciples, "you
weep at the death of an enemy?"  "Ah, 'tis true," replied the great
Stoic; "but you should see me smile at the death of a friend."


** CALUMNUS

CALUMNUS, n.  A graduate of the School for Scandal.


** CAMEL

CAMEL, n.  A quadruped (the _Splaypes humpidorsus_) of great value to
the show business.  There are two kinds of camels -- the camel proper
and the camel improper.  It is the latter that is always exhibited.


** CANNIBAL

CANNIBAL, n.  A gastronome of the old school who preserves the simple
tastes and adheres to the natural diet of the pre-pork period.


** CANNON

CANNON, n.  An instrument employed in the rectification of national
boundaries.


** CANONICALS

CANONICALS, n.  The motley worm by Jesters of the Court of Heaven.


** CAPITAL

CAPITAL, n.  The seat of misgovernment.  That which provides the fire,
the pot, the dinner, the table and the knife and fork for the
anarchist; the part of the repast that himself supplies is the
disgrace before meat.  _Capital Punishment_, a penalty regarding the
justice and expediency of which many worthy persons -- including all
the assassins -- entertain grave misgivings.


** CARMELITE

CARMELITE, n.  A mendicant friar of the order of Mount Carmel.

    As Death was a-rising out one day,
    Across Mount Camel he took his way,
        Where he met a mendicant monk,
        Some three or four quarters drunk,
    With a holy leer and a pious grin,
    Ragged and fat and as saucy as sin,
        Who held out his hands and cried:
    "Give, give in Charity's name, I pray.
    Give in the name of the Church.  O give,
    Give that her holy sons may live!"
        And Death replied,
        Smiling long and wide:
        "I'll give, holy father, I'll give thee -- a ride."

        With a rattle and bang
        Of his bones, he sprang
    From his famous Pale Horse, with his spear;
        By the neck and the foot
        Seized the fellow, and put
    Him astride with his face to the rear.

    The Monarch laughed loud with a sound that fell
    Like clods on the coffin's sounding shell:
    "Ho, ho!  A beggar on horseback, they say,
        Will ride to the devil!" -- and _thump_
        Fell the flat of his dart on the rump
    Of the charger, which galloped away.

    Faster and faster and faster it flew,
    Till the rocks and the flocks and the trees that grew
    By the road were dim and blended and blue
        To the wild, wild eyes
        Of the rider -- in size
        Resembling a couple of blackberry pies.
    Death laughed again, as a tomb might laugh
        At a burial service spoiled,
        And the mourners' intentions foiled
        By the body erecting
        Its head and objecting
    To further proceedings in its behalf.

    Many a year and many a day
    Have passed since these events away.
    The monk has long been a dusty corse,
    And Death has never recovered his horse.
        For the friar got hold of its tail,
        And steered it within the pale
    Of the monastery gray,
    Where the beast was stabled and fed
    With barley and oil and bread
    Till fatter it grew than the fattest friar,
    And so in due course was appointed Prior.
                                                                  G.J.


** CARNIVOROUS

CARNIVOROUS, adj.  Addicted to the cruelty of devouring the timorous
vegetarian, his heirs and assigns.


** CARTESIAN

CARTESIAN, adj.  Relating to Descartes, a famous philosopher, author
of the celebrated dictum, _Cogito ergo sum_ -- whereby he was pleased
to suppose he demonstrated the reality of human existence.  The dictum
might be improved, however, thus:  _Cogito cogito ergo cogito sum_ --
"I think that I think, therefore I think that I am;" as close an
approach to certainty as any philosopher has yet made.


** CAT

CAT, n.  A soft, indestructible automaton provided by nature to be
kicked when things go wrong in the domestic circle.

    This is a dog,
        This is a cat.
    This is a frog,
        This is a rat.
    Run, dog, mew, cat.
    Jump, frog, gnaw, rat.
                                                             Elevenson


** CAVILER

CAVILER, n.  A critic of our own work.


** CEMETERY

CEMETERY, n.  An isolated suburban spot where mourners match lies,
poets write at a target and stone-cutters spell for a wager.  The
inscriptions following will serve to illustrate the success attained
in these Olympian games:

        His virtues were so conspicuous that his enemies, unable to
    overlook them, denied them, and his friends, to whose loose lives
    they were a rebuke, represented them as vices.  They are here
    commemorated by his family, who shared them.

        In the earth we here prepare a
        Place to lay our little Clara.
                                             Thomas M. and Mary Frazer
        P.S. -- Gabriel will raise her.


** CENTAUR

CENTAUR, n.  One of a race of persons who lived before the division of
labor had been carried to such a pitch of differentiation, and who
followed the primitive economic maxim, "Every man his own horse."  The
best of the lot was Chiron, who to the wisdom and virtues of the horse
added the fleetness of man.  The scripture story of the head of John
the Baptist on a charger shows that pagan myths have somewhat
sophisticated sacred history.


** CERBERUS

CERBERUS, n.  The watch-dog of Hades, whose duty it was to guard the
entrance -- against whom or what does not clearly appear; everybody,
sooner or later, had to go there, and nobody wanted to carry off the
entrance.  Cerberus is known to have had three heads, and some of the
poets have credited him with as many as a hundred.  Professor
Graybill, whose clerky erudition and profound knowledge of Greek give
his opinion great weight, has averaged all the estimates, and makes
the number twenty-seven -- a judgment that would be entirely
conclusive is Professor Graybill had known (a) something about dogs,
and (b) something about arithmetic.


** CHILDHOOD

CHILDHOOD, n.  The period of human life intermediate between the
idiocy of infancy and the folly of youth -- two removes from the sin
of manhood and three from the remorse of age.


** CHRISTIAN

CHRISTIAN, n.  One who believes that the New Testament is a divinely
inspired book admirably suited to the spiritual needs of his neighbor. 
One who follows the teachings of Christ in so far as they are not
inconsistent with a life of sin.

    I dreamed I stood upon a hill, and, lo!
    The godly multitudes walked to and fro
    Beneath, in Sabbath garments fitly clad,
    With pious mien, appropriately sad,
    While all the church bells made a solemn din --
    A fire-alarm to those who lived in sin.
    Then saw I gazing thoughtfully below,
    With tranquil face, upon that holy show
    A tall, spare figure in a robe of white,
    Whose eyes diffused a melancholy light.
    "God keep you, strange," I exclaimed.  "You are
    No doubt (your habit shows it) from afar;
    And yet I entertain the hope that you,
    Like these good people, are a Christian too."
    He raised his eyes and with a look so stern
    It made me with a thousand blushes burn
    Replied -- his manner with disdain was spiced:
    "What!  I a Christian?  No, indeed!  I'm Christ."
                                                                  G.J.


** CIRCUS

CIRCUS, n.  A place where horses, ponies and elephants are permitted
to see men, women and children acting the fool.


** CLAIRVOYANT

CLAIRVOYANT, n.  A person, commonly a woman, who has the power of
seeing that which is invisible to her patron, namely, that he is a
blockhead.


** CLARIONET

CLARIONET, n.  An instrument of torture operated by a person with
cotton in his ears.  There are two instruments that are worse than a
clarionet -- two clarionets.


** CLERGYMAN

CLERGYMAN, n.  A man who undertakes the management of our spiritual
affairs as a method of better his temporal ones.


** CLIO

CLIO, n.  One of the nine Muses.  Clio's function was to preside over
history -- which she did with great dignity, many of the prominent
citizens of Athens occupying seats on the platform, the meetings being
addressed by Messrs. Xenophon, Herodotus and other popular speakers.


** CLOCK

CLOCK, n.  A machine of great moral value to man, allaying his concern
for the future by reminding him what a lot of time remains to him.

    A busy man complained one day:
    "I get no time!"  "What's that you say?"
    Cried out his friend, a lazy quiz;
    "You have, sir, all the time there is.
    There's plenty, too, and don't you doubt it --
    We're never for an hour without it."
                                                          Purzil Crofe


** CLOSE-FISTED

CLOSE-FISTED, adj.  Unduly desirous of keeping that which many
meritorious persons wish to obtain.

    "Close-fisted Scotchman!" Johnson cried
        To thrifty J. Macpherson;
    "See me -- I'm ready to divide
        With any worthy person."
    Sad Jamie:  "That is very true --
        The boast requires no backing;
    And all are worthy, sir, to you,
        Who have what you are lacking."
                                                         Anita M. Bobe


** COENOBITE

COENOBITE, n.  A man who piously shuts himself up to meditate upon the
sin of wickedness; and to keep it fresh in his mind joins a
brotherhood of awful examples.

    O Coenobite, O coenobite,
        Monastical gregarian,
    You differ from the anchorite,
        That solitudinarian:
    With vollied prayers you wound Old Nick;
    With dropping shots he makes him sick.
                                                          Quincy Giles


** COMFORT

COMFORT, n.  A state of mind produced by contemplation of a neighbor's
uneasiness.


** COMMENDATION

COMMENDATION, n.  The tribute that we pay to achievements that
resembles, but do not equal, our own.


** COMMERCE

COMMERCE, n.  A kind of transaction in which A plunders from B the
goods of C, and for compensation B picks the pocket of D of money
belonging to E.


** COMMONWEALTH

COMMONWEALTH, n.  An administrative entity operated by an incalculable
multitude of political parasites, logically active but fortuitously
efficient.

    This commonwealth's capitol's corridors view,
    So thronged with a hungry and indolent crew
    Of clerks, pages, porters and all attaches
    Whom rascals appoint and the populace pays
    That a cat cannot slip through the thicket of shins
    Nor hear its own shriek for the noise of their chins.
    On clerks and on pages, and porters, and all,
    Misfortune attend and disaster befall!
    May life be to them a succession of hurts;
    May fleas by the bushel inhabit their shirts;
    May aches and diseases encamp in their bones,
    Their lungs full of tubercles, bladders of stones;
    May microbes, bacilli, their tissues infest,
    And tapeworms securely their bowels digest;
    May corn-cobs be snared without hope in their hair,
    And frequent impalement their pleasure impair.
    Disturbed be their dreams by the awful discourse
    Of audible sofas sepulchrally hoarse,
    By chairs acrobatic and wavering floors --
    The mattress that kicks and the pillow that snores!
    Sons of cupidity, cradled in sin!
    Your criminal ranks may the death angel thin,
    Avenging the friend whom I couldn't work in.
                                                                  K.Q.


** COMPROMISE

COMPROMISE, n.  Such an adjustment of conflicting interests as gives
each adversary the satisfaction of thinking he has got what he ought
not to have, and is deprived of nothing except what was justly his
due.


** COMPULSION

COMPULSION, n.  The eloquence of power.


** CONDOLE

CONDOLE, v.i.  To show that bereavement is a smaller evil than
sympathy.


** CONFIDANT

CONFIDANT, CONFIDANTE, n.  One entrusted by A with the secrets of B,
confided by _him_ to C.


** CONGRATULATION

CONGRATULATION, n.  The civility of envy.


** CONGRESS

CONGRESS, n.  A body of men who meet to repeal laws.


** CONNOISSEUR

CONNOISSEUR, n.  A specialist who knows everything about something and
nothing about anything else.
    An old wine-bibber having been smashed in a railway collision,
some wine was pouted on his lips to revive him.  "Pauillac, 1873," he
murmured and died.


** CONSERVATIVE

CONSERVATIVE, n.  A statesman who is enamored of existing evils, as
distinguished from the Liberal, who wishes to replace them with
others.


** CONSOLATION

CONSOLATION, n.  The knowledge that a better man is more unfortunate
than yourself.


** CONSUL

CONSUL, n.  In American politics, a person who having failed to secure
and office from the people is given one by the Administration on
condition that he leave the country.


** CONSULT

CONSULT, v.i.  To seek another's disapproval of a course already
decided on.


** CONTEMPT

CONTEMPT, n.  The feeling of a prudent man for an enemy who is too
formidable safely to be opposed.


** CONTROVERSY

CONTROVERSY, n.  A battle in which spittle or ink replaces the
injurious cannon-ball and the inconsiderate bayonet.

    In controversy with the facile tongue --
    That bloodless warfare of the old and young --
    So seek your adversary to engage
    That on himself he shall exhaust his rage,
    And, like a snake that's fastened to the ground,
    With his own fangs inflict the fatal wound.
    You ask me how this miracle is done?
    Adopt his own opinions, one by one,
    And taunt him to refute them; in his wrath
    He'll sweep them pitilessly from his path.
    Advance then gently all you wish to prove,
    Each proposition prefaced with, "As you've
    So well remarked," or, "As you wisely say,
    And I cannot dispute," or, "By the way,
    This view of it which, better far expressed,
    Runs through your argument."  Then leave the rest
    To him, secure that he'll perform his trust
    And prove your views intelligent and just.
                                                    Conmore Apel Brune


** CONVENT

CONVENT, n.  A place of retirement for woman who wish for leisure to
meditate upon the vice of idleness.


** CONVERSATION

CONVERSATION, n.  A fair to the display of the minor mental
commodities, each exhibitor being too intent upon the arrangement of
his own wares to observe those of his neighbor.


** CORONATION

CORONATION, n.  The ceremony of investing a sovereign with the outward
and visible signs of his divine right to be blown skyhigh with a
dynamite bomb.


** CORPORAL

CORPORAL, n.  A man who occupies the lowest rung of the military
ladder.

    Fiercely the battle raged and, sad to tell,
    Our corporal heroically fell!
    Fame from her height looked down upon the brawl
    And said:  "He hadn't very far to fall."
                                                         Giacomo Smith


** CORPORATION

CORPORATION, n.  An ingenious device for obtaining individual profit
without individual responsibility.


** CORSAIR

CORSAIR, n.  A politician of the seas.


** COURT FOOL

COURT FOOL, n.  The plaintiff.


** COWARD

COWARD, n.  One who in a perilous emergency thinks with his legs.


** CRAYFISH

CRAYFISH, n.  A small crustacean very much resembling the lobster, but
less indigestible.

        In this small fish I take it that human wisdom is admirably
    figured and symbolized; for whereas the crayfish doth move only
    backward, and can have only retrospection, seeing naught but the
    perils already passed, so the wisdom of man doth not enable him to
    avoid the follies that beset his course, but only to apprehend
    their nature afterward.
                                                    Sir James Merivale


** CREDITOR

CREDITOR, n.  One of a tribe of savages dwelling beyond the Financial
Straits and dreaded for their desolating incursions.


** CREMONA

CREMONA, n.  A high-priced violin made in Connecticut.


** CRITIC

CRITIC, n.  A person who boasts himself hard to please because nobody
tries to please him.

    There is a land of pure delight,
        Beyond the Jordan's flood,
    Where saints, apparelled all in white,
        Fling back the critic's mud.

    And as he legs it through the skies,
        His pelt a sable hue,
    He sorrows sore to recognize
        The missiles that he threw.
                                                            Orrin Goof


** CROSS

CROSS, n.  An ancient religious symbol erroneously supposed to owe its
significance to the most solemn event in the history of Christianity,
but really antedating it by thousands of years.  By many it has been
believed to be identical with the _crux ansata_ of the ancient phallic
worship, but it has been traced even beyond all that we know of that,
to the rites of primitive peoples.  We have to-day the White Cross as
a symbol of chastity, and the Red Cross as a badge of benevolent
neutrality in war.  Having in mind the former, the reverend Father
Gassalasca Jape smites the lyre to the effect following:

    "Be good, be good!" the sisterhood
        Cry out in holy chorus,
    And, to dissuade from sin, parade
        Their various charms before us.

    But why, O why, has ne'er an eye
        Seen her of winsome manner
    And youthful grace and pretty face
        Flaunting the White Cross banner?

    Now where's the need of speech and screed
        To better our behaving?
    A simpler plan for saving man
        (But, first, is he worth saving?)

    Is, dears, when he declines to flee
        From bad thoughts that beset him,
    Ignores the Law as 't were a straw,
        And wants to sin -- don't let him.


** CUI

CUI :BONO:?  [Latin]  What good would that do _me_?


** CUNNING

CUNNING, n.  The faculty that distinguishes a weak animal or person
from a strong one.  It brings its possessor much mental satisfaction
and great material adversity.  An Italian proverb says:  "The furrier
gets the skins of more foxes than asses."


** CUPID

CUPID, n.  The so-called god of love.  This bastard creation of a
barbarous fancy was no doubt inflicted upon mythology for the sins of
its deities.  Of all unbeautiful and inappropriate conceptions this is
the most reasonless and offensive.  The notion of symbolizing sexual
love by a semisexless babe, and comparing the pains of passion to the
wounds of an arrow -- of introducing this pudgy homunculus into art
grossly to materialize the subtle spirit and suggestion of the work --
this is eminently worthy of the age that, giving it birth, laid it on
the doorstep of prosperity.


** CURIOSITY

CURIOSITY, n.  An objectionable quality of the female mind.  The
desire to know whether or not a woman is cursed with curiosity is one
of the most active and insatiable passions of the masculine soul.


** CURSE

CURSE, v.t.  Energetically to belabor with a verbal slap-stick.  This
is an operation which in literature, particularly in the drama, is
commonly fatal to the victim.  Nevertheless, the liability to a
cursing is a risk that cuts but a small figure in fixing the rates of
life insurance.


** CYNIC

CYNIC, n.  A blackguard whose faulty vision sees things as they are,
not as they ought to be.  Hence the custom among the Scythians of
plucking out a cynic's eyes to improve his vision.


                                  D



** DAMN

DAMN, v.  A word formerly much used by the Paphlagonians, the meaning
of which is lost.  By the learned Dr. Dolabelly Gak it is believed to
have been a term of satisfaction, implying the highest possible degree
of mental tranquillity.  Professor Groke, on the contrary, thinks it
expressed an emotion of tumultuous delight, because it so frequently
occurs in combination with the word _jod_ or _god_, meaning "joy."  It
would be with great diffidence that I should advance an opinion
conflicting with that of either of these formidable authorities.


** DANCE

DANCE, v.i.  To leap about to the sound of tittering music, preferably
with arms about your neighbor's wife or daughter.  There are many
kinds of dances, but all those requiring the participation of the two
sexes have two characteristics in common:  they are conspicuously
innocent, and warmly loved by the vicious.


** DANGER

DANGER, n.

    A savage beast which, when it sleeps,
        Man girds at and despises,
    But takes himself away by leaps
        And bounds when it arises.
                                                          Ambat Delaso


** DARING

DARING, n.  One of the most conspicuous qualities of a man in
security.


** DATARY

DATARY, n.  A high ecclesiastic official of the Roman Catholic Church,
whose important function is to brand the Pope's bulls with the words
_Datum Romae_.  He enjoys a princely revenue and the friendship of
God.


** DAWN

DAWN, n.  The time when men of reason go to bed.  Certain old men
prefer to rise at about that time, taking a cold bath and a long walk
with an empty stomach, and otherwise mortifying the flesh.  They then
point with pride to these practices as the cause of their sturdy
health and ripe years; the truth being that they are hearty and old,
not because of their habits, but in spite of them.  The reason we find
only robust persons doing this thing is that it has killed all the
others who have tried it.


** DAY

DAY, n.  A period of twenty-four hours, mostly misspent.  This period
is divided into two parts, the day proper and the night, or day
improper -- the former devoted to sins of business, the latter
consecrated to the other sort.  These two kinds of social activity
overlap.


** DEAD

DEAD, adj.

    Done with the work of breathing; done
    With all the world; the mad race run
    Though to the end; the golden goal
    Attained and found to be a hole!
                                                        Squatol Johnes


** DEBAUCHEE

DEBAUCHEE, n.  One who has so earnestly pursued pleasure that he has
had the misfortune to overtake it.


** DEBT

DEBT, n.  An ingenious substitute for the chain and whip of the slave-
driver.

    As, pent in an aquarium, the troutlet
    Swims round and round his tank to find an outlet,
    Pressing his nose against the glass that holds him,
    Nor ever sees the prison that enfolds him;
    So the poor debtor, seeing naught around him,
    Yet feels the narrow limits that impound him,
    Grieves at his debt and studies to evade it,
    And finds at last he might as well have paid it.
                                                        Barlow S. Vode


** DECALOGUE

DECALOGUE, n.  A series of commandments, ten in number -- just enough
to permit an intelligent selection for observance, but not enough to
embarrass the choice.  Following is the revised edition of the
Decalogue, calculated for this meridian.

    Thou shalt no God but me adore:
    'Twere too expensive to have more.

    No images nor idols make
    For Robert Ingersoll to break.

    Take not God's name in vain; select
    A time when it will have effect.

    Work not on Sabbath days at all,
    But go to see the teams play ball.

    Honor thy parents.  That creates
    For life insurance lower rates.

    Kill not, abet not those who kill;
    Thou shalt not pay thy butcher's bill.

    Kiss not thy neighbor's wife, unless
    Thine own thy neighbor doth caress

    Don't steal; thou'lt never thus compete
    Successfully in business.  Cheat.

    Bear not false witness -- that is low --
    But "hear 'tis rumored so and so."

    Cover thou naught that thou hast not
    By hook or crook, or somehow, got.
                                                                  G.J.


** DECIDE

DECIDE, v.i.  To succumb to the preponderance of one set of influences
over another set.

    A leaf was riven from a tree,
    "I mean to fall to earth," said he.

    The west wind, rising, made him veer.
    "Eastward," said he, "I now shall steer."

    The east wind rose with greater force.
    Said he:  "'Twere wise to change my course."

    With equal power they contend.
    He said:  "My judgment I suspend."

    Down died the winds; the leaf, elate,
    Cried:  "I've decided to fall straight."

    "First thoughts are best?"  That's not the moral;
    Just choose your own and we'll not quarrel.

    Howe'er your choice may chance to fall,
    You'll have no hand in it at all.
                                                                  G.J.


** DEFAME

DEFAME, v.t.  To lie about another.  To tell the truth about another.


** DEFENCELESS

DEFENCELESS, adj.  Unable to attack.


** DEGENERATE

DEGENERATE, adj.  Less conspicuously admirable than one's ancestors. 
The contemporaries of Homer were striking examples of degeneracy; it
required ten of them to raise a rock or a riot that one of the heroes
of the Trojan war could have raised with ease.  Homer never tires of
sneering at "men who live in these degenerate days," which is perhaps
why they suffered him to beg his bread -- a marked instance of
returning good for evil, by the way, for if they had forbidden him he
would certainly have starved.


** DEGRADATION

DEGRADATION, n.  One of the stages of moral and social progress from
private station to political preferment.


** DEINOTHERIUM

DEINOTHERIUM, n.  An extinct pachyderm that flourished when the
Pterodactyl was in fashion.  The latter was a native of Ireland, its
name being pronounced Terry Dactyl or Peter O'Dactyl, as the man
pronouncing it may chance to have heard it spoken or seen it printed.


** DEJEUNER

DEJEUNER, n.  The breakfast of an American who has been in Paris. 
Variously pronounced.


** DELEGATION

DELEGATION, n.  In American politics, an article of merchandise that
comes in sets.


** DELIBERATION

DELIBERATION, n.  The act of examining one's bread to determine which
side it is buttered on.


** DELUGE

DELUGE, n.  A notable first experiment in baptism which washed away
the sins (and sinners) of the world.


** DELUSION

DELUSION, n.  The father of a most respectable family, comprising
Enthusiasm, Affection, Self-denial, Faith, Hope, Charity and many
other goodly sons and daughters.

    All hail, Delusion!  Were it not for thee
    The world turned topsy-turvy we should see;
    For Vice, respectable with cleanly fancies,
    Would fly abandoned Virtue's gross advances.
                                                        Mumfrey Mappel


** DENTIST

DENTIST, n.  A prestidigitator who, putting metal into your mouth,
pulls coins out of your pocket.


** DEPENDENT

DEPENDENT, adj.  Reliant upon another's generosity for the support
which you are not in a position to exact from his fears.


** DEPUTY

DEPUTY, n.  A male relative of an office-holder, or of his bondsman. 
The deputy is commonly a beautiful young man, with a red necktie and
an intricate system of cobwebs extending from his nose to his desk. 
When accidentally struck by the janitor's broom, he gives off a cloud
of dust.

    "Chief Deputy," the Master cried,
    "To-day the books are to be tried
    By experts and accountants who
    Have been commissioned to go through
    Our office here, to see if we
    Have stolen injudiciously.
    Please have the proper entries made,
    The proper balances displayed,
    Conforming to the whole amount
    Of cash on hand -- which they will count.
    I've long admired your punctual way --
    Here at the break and close of day,
    Confronting in your chair the crowd
    Of business men, whose voices loud
    And gestures violent you quell
    By some mysterious, calm spell --
    Some magic lurking in your look
    That brings the noisiest to book
    And spreads a holy and profound
    Tranquillity o'er all around.
    So orderly all's done that they
    Who came to draw remain to pay.
    But now the time demands, at last,
    That you employ your genius vast
    In energies more active.  Rise
    And shake the lightnings from your eyes;
    Inspire your underlings, and fling
    Your spirit into everything!"
    The Master's hand here dealt a whack
    Upon the Deputy's bent back,
    When straightway to the floor there fell
    A shrunken globe, a rattling shell
    A blackened, withered, eyeless head!
    The man had been a twelvemonth dead.
                                                       Jamrach Holobom


** DESTINY

DESTINY, n.  A tyrant's authority for crime and fool's excuse for
failure.


** DIAGNOSIS

DIAGNOSIS, n.  A physician's forecast of the disease by the patient's
pulse and purse.


** DIAPHRAGM

DIAPHRAGM, n.  A muscular partition separating disorders of the chest
from disorders of the bowels.


** DIARY

DIARY, n.  A daily record of that part of one's life, which he can
relate to himself without blushing.

    Hearst kept a diary wherein were writ
    All that he had of wisdom and of wit.
    So the Recording Angel, when Hearst died,
    Erased all entries of his own and cried:
    "I'll judge you by your diary."  Said Hearst:
    "Thank you; 'twill show you I am Saint the First" --
    Straightway producing, jubilant and proud,
    That record from a pocket in his shroud.
    The Angel slowly turned the pages o'er,
    Each stupid line of which he knew before,
    Glooming and gleaming as by turns he hit
    On Shallow sentiment and stolen wit;
    Then gravely closed the book and gave it back.
    "My friend, you've wandered from your proper track:
    You'd never be content this side the tomb --
    For big ideas Heaven has little room,
    And Hell's no latitude for making mirth,"
    He said, and kicked the fellow back to earth.
                                                 "The Mad Philosopher"


** DICTATOR

DICTATOR, n.  The chief of a nation that prefers the pestilence of
despotism to the plague of anarchy.


** DICTIONARY

DICTIONARY, n.  A malevolent literary device for cramping the growth
of a language and making it hard and inelastic.  This dictionary,
however, is a most useful work.


** DIE

DIE, n.  The singular of "dice."  We seldom hear the word, because
there is a prohibitory proverb, "Never say die."  At long intervals,
however, some one says:  "The die is cast," which is not true, for it
is cut.  The word is found in an immortal couplet by that eminent poet
and domestic economist, Senator Depew:

    A cube of cheese no larger than a die
    May bait the trap to catch a nibbling mie.


** DIGESTION

DIGESTION, n.  The conversion of victuals into virtues.  When the
process is imperfect, vices are evolved instead -- a circumstance from
which that wicked writer, Dr. Jeremiah Blenn, infers that the ladies
are the greater sufferers from dyspepsia.


** DIPLOMACY

DIPLOMACY, n.  The patriotic art of lying for one's country.


** DISABUSE

DISABUSE, v.t.  The present your neighbor with another and better
error than the one which he has deemed it advantageous to embrace.


** DISCRIMINATE

DISCRIMINATE, v.i.  To note the particulars in which one person or
thing is, if possible, more objectionable than another.


** DISCUSSION

DISCUSSION, n.  A method of confirming others in their errors.


** DISOBEDIENCE

DISOBEDIENCE, n.  The silver lining to the cloud of servitude.


** DISOBEY

DISOBEY, v.t.  To celebrate with an appropriate ceremony the maturity
of a command.

    His right to govern me is clear as day,
    My duty manifest to disobey;
    And if that fit observance e'er I shut
    May I and duty be alike undone.
                                                         Israfel Brown


** DISSEMBLE

DISSEMBLE, v.i.  To put a clean shirt upon the character.

    Let us dissemble.
                                                                  Adam


** DISTANCE

DISTANCE, n.  The only thing that the rich are willing for the poor to
call theirs, and keep.


** DISTRESS

DISTRESS, n.  A disease incurred by exposure to the prosperity of a
friend.


** DIVINATION

DIVINATION, n.  The art of nosing out the occult.  Divination is of as
many kinds as there are fruit-bearing varieties of the flowering dunce
and the early fool.


** DOG

DOG, n.  A kind of additional or subsidiary Deity designed to catch
the overflow and surplus of the world's worship.  This Divine Being in
some of his smaller and silkier incarnations takes, in the affection
of Woman, the place to which there is no human male aspirant.  The Dog
is a survival -- an anachronism.  He toils not, neither does he spin,
yet Solomon in all his glory never lay upon a door-mat all day long,
sun-soaked and fly-fed and fat, while his master worked for the means
wherewith to purchase the idle wag of the Solomonic tail, seasoned
with a look of tolerant recognition.


** DRAGOON

DRAGOON, n.  A soldier who combines dash and steadiness in so equal
measure that he makes his advances on foot and his retreats on
horseback.


** DRAMATIST

DRAMATIST, n.  One who adapts plays from the French.


** DRUIDS

DRUIDS, n.  Priests and ministers of an ancient Celtic religion which
did not disdain to employ the humble allurement of human sacrifice. 
Very little is now known about the Druids and their faith.  Pliny says
their religion, originating in Britain, spread eastward as far as
Persia.  Caesar says those who desired to study its mysteries went to
Britain.  Caesar himself went to Britain, but does not appear to have
obtained any high preferment in the Druidical Church, although his
talent for human sacrifice was considerable.
    Druids performed their religious rites in groves, and knew nothing
of church mortgages and the season-ticket system of pew rents.  They
were, in short, heathens and -- as they were once complacently
catalogued by a distinguished prelate of the Church of England --
Dissenters.


** DUCK-BILL

DUCK-BILL, n.  Your account at your restaurant during the canvas-back
season.


** DUEL

DUEL, n.  A formal ceremony preliminary to the reconciliation of two
enemies.  Great skill is necessary to its satisfactory observance; if
awkwardly performed the most unexpected and deplorable consequences
sometimes ensue.  A long time ago a man lost his life in a duel.

    That dueling's a gentlemanly vice
        I hold; and wish that it had been my lot
        To live my life out in some favored spot --
    Some country where it is considered nice
    To split a rival like a fish, or slice
        A husband like a spud, or with a shot
        Bring down a debtor doubled in a knot
    And ready to be put upon the ice.
    Some miscreants there are, whom I do long
        To shoot, to stab, or some such way reclaim
    The scurvy rogues to better lives and manners,
    I seem to see them now -- a mighty throng.
        It looks as if to challenge _me_ they came,
    Jauntily marching with brass bands and banners!
                                                          Xamba Q. Dar


** DULLARD

DULLARD, n.  A member of the reigning dynasty in letters and life. 
The Dullards came in with Adam, and being both numerous and sturdy
have overrun the habitable world.  The secret of their power is their
insensibility to blows; tickle them with a bludgeon and they laugh
with a platitude.  The Dullards came originally from Boeotia, whence
they were driven by stress of starvation, their dullness having
blighted the crops.  For some centuries they infested Philistia, and
many of them are called Philistines to this day.  In the turbulent
times of the Crusades they withdrew thence and gradually overspread
all Europe, occupying most of the high places in politics, art,
literature, science and theology.  Since a detachment of Dullards came
over with the Pilgrims in the _Mayflower_ and made a favorable report
of the country, their increase by birth, immigration, and conversion
has been rapid and steady.  According to the most trustworthy
statistics the number of adult Dullards in the United States is but
little short of thirty millions, including the statisticians.  The
intellectual centre of the race is somewhere about Peoria, Illinois,
but the New England Dullard is the most shockingly moral.


** DUTY

DUTY, n.  That which sternly impels us in the direction of profit,
along the line of desire.

    Sir Lavender Portwine, in favor at court,
    Was wroth at his master, who'd kissed Lady Port.
    His anger provoked him to take the king's head,
    But duty prevailed, and he took the king's bread,
            Instead.
                                                                  G.J.


                                  E



** EAT

EAT, v.i.  To perform successively (and successfully) the functions of
mastication, humectation, and deglutition.
    "I was in the drawing-room, enjoying my dinner," said Brillat-
Savarin, beginning an anecdote.  "What!" interrupted Rochebriant;
"eating dinner in a drawing-room?"  "I must beg you to observe,
monsieur," explained the great gastronome, "that I did not say I was
eating my dinner, but enjoying it.  I had dined an hour before."


** EAVESDROP

EAVESDROP, v.i.  Secretly to overhear a catalogue of the crimes and
vices of another or yourself.

    A lady with one of her ears applied
    To an open keyhole heard, inside,
    Two female gossips in converse free --
    The subject engaging them was she.
    "I think," said one, "and my husband thinks
    That she's a prying, inquisitive minx!"
    As soon as no more of it she could hear
    The lady, indignant, removed her ear.
    "I will not stay," she said, with a pout,
    "To hear my character lied about!"
                                                        Gopete Sherany


** ECCENTRICITY

ECCENTRICITY, n.  A method of distinction so cheap that fools employ
it to accentuate their incapacity.


** ECONOMY

ECONOMY, n.  Purchasing the barrel of whiskey that you do not need for
the price of the cow that you cannot afford.


** EDIBLE

EDIBLE, adj.  Good to eat, and wholesome to digest, as a worm to a
toad, a toad to a snake, a snake to a pig, a pig to a man, and a man
to a worm.


** EDITOR

EDITOR, n.  A person who combines the judicial functions of Minos,
Rhadamanthus and Aeacus, but is placable with an obolus; a severely
virtuous censor, but so charitable withal that he tolerates the
virtues of others and the vices of himself; who flings about him the
splintering lightning and sturdy thunders of admonition till he
resembles a bunch of firecrackers petulantly uttering his mind at the
tail of a dog; then straightway murmurs a mild, melodious lay, soft as
the cooing of a donkey intoning its prayer to the evening star. 
Master of mysteries and lord of law, high-pinnacled upon the throne of
thought, his face suffused with the dim splendors of the
Transfiguration, his legs intertwisted and his tongue a-cheek, the
editor spills his will along the paper and cuts it off in lengths to
suit.  And at intervals from behind the veil of the temple is heard
the voice of the foreman demanding three inches of wit and six lines
of religious meditation, or bidding him turn off the wisdom and whack
up some pathos.

    O, the Lord of Law on the Throne of Thought,
        A gilded impostor is he.
    Of shreds and patches his robes are wrought,
                His crown is brass,
                Himself an ass,
        And his power is fiddle-dee-dee.
    Prankily, crankily prating of naught,
    Silly old quilly old Monarch of Thought.
        Public opinion's camp-follower he,
        Thundering, blundering, plundering free.
                    Affected,
                        Ungracious,
                    Suspected,
                        Mendacious,
    Respected contemporaree!
                                                      J.H. Bumbleshook


** EDUCATION

EDUCATION, n. That which discloses to the wise and disguises from the
foolish their lack of understanding.


** EFFECT

EFFECT, n.  The second of two phenomena which always occur together in
the same order.  The first, called a Cause, is said to generate the
other -- which is no more sensible than it would be for one who has
never seen a dog except in the pursuit of a rabbit to declare the
rabbit the cause of a dog.


** EGOTIST

EGOTIST, n.  A person of low taste, more interested in himself than in
me.

    Megaceph, chosen to serve the State
    In the halls of legislative debate,
    One day with all his credentials came
    To the capitol's door and announced his name.
    The doorkeeper looked, with a comical twist
    Of the face, at the eminent egotist,
    And said:  "Go away, for we settle here
    All manner of questions, knotty and queer,
    And we cannot have, when the speaker demands
    To be told how every member stands,
    A man who to all things under the sky
    Assents by eternally voting 'I'."


** EJECTION

EJECTION, n.  An approved remedy for the disease of garrulity.  It is
also much used in cases of extreme poverty.


** ELECTOR

ELECTOR, n.  One who enjoys the sacred privilege of voting for the man
of another man's choice.


** ELECTRICITY

ELECTRICITY, n.  The power that causes all natural phenomena not known
to be caused by something else.  It is the same thing as lightning,
and its famous attempt to strike Dr. Franklin is one of the most
picturesque incidents in that great and good man's career.  The memory
of Dr. Franklin is justly held in great reverence, particularly in
France, where a waxen effigy of him was recently on exhibition,
bearing the following touching account of his life and services to
science:

        "Monsieur Franqulin, inventor of electricity.  This
    illustrious savant, after having made several voyages around the
    world, died on the Sandwich Islands and was devoured by savages,
    of whom not a single fragment was ever recovered."

    Electricity seems destined to play a most important part in the
arts and industries.  The question of its economical application to
some purposes is still unsettled, but experiment has already proved
that it will propel a street car better than a gas jet and give more
light than a horse.


** ELEGY

ELEGY, n.  A composition in verse, in which, without employing any of
the methods of humor, the writer aims to produce in the reader's mind
the dampest kind of dejection.  The most famous English example begins
somewhat like this:

    The cur foretells the knell of parting day;
        The loafing herd winds slowly o'er the lea;
    The wise man homeward plods; I only stay
        To fiddle-faddle in a minor key.


** ELOQUENCE

ELOQUENCE, n.  The art of orally persuading fools that white is the
color that it appears to be.  It includes the gift of making any color
appear white.


** ELYSIUM

ELYSIUM, n.  An imaginary delightful country which the ancients
foolishly believed to be inhabited by the spirits of the good.  This
ridiculous and mischievous fable was swept off the face of the earth
by the early Christians -- may their souls be happy in Heaven!


** EMANCIPATION

EMANCIPATION, n.  A bondman's change from the tyranny of another to
the despotism of himself.

    He was a slave:  at word he went and came;
        His iron collar cut him to the bone.
    Then Liberty erased his owner's name,
        Tightened the rivets and inscribed his own.
                                                                  G.J.


** EMBALM

EMBALM, v.i.  To cheat vegetation by locking up the gases upon which
it feeds.  By embalming their dead and thereby deranging the natural
balance between animal and vegetable life, the Egyptians made their
once fertile and populous country barren and incapable of supporting
more than a meagre crew.  The modern metallic burial casket is a step
in the same direction, and many a dead man who ought now to be
ornamenting his neighbor's lawn as a tree, or enriching his table as a
bunch of radishes, is doomed to a long inutility.  We shall get him
after awhile if we are spared, but in the meantime the violet and rose
are languishing for a nibble at his _glutoeus maximus_.


** EMOTION

EMOTION, n.  A prostrating disease caused by a determination of the
heart to the head.  It is sometimes accompanied by a copious discharge
of hydrated chloride of sodium from the eyes.


** ENCOMIAST

ENCOMIAST, n.  A special (but not particular) kind of liar.


** END

END, n.  The position farthest removed on either hand from the
Interlocutor.

    The man was perishing apace
        Who played the tambourine;
    The seal of death was on his face --
        'Twas pallid, for 'twas clean.

    "This is the end," the sick man said
        In faint and failing tones.
    A moment later he was dead,
        And Tambourine was Bones.
                                                         Tinley Roquot


** ENOUGH

ENOUGH, pro.  All there is in the world if you like it.

    Enough is as good as a feast -- for that matter
    Enougher's as good as a feast for the platter.
                                                      Arbely C. Strunk


** ENTERTAINMENT

ENTERTAINMENT, n.  Any kind of amusement whose inroads stop short of
death by injection.


** ENTHUSIASM

ENTHUSIASM, n.  A distemper of youth, curable by small doses of
repentance in connection with outward applications of experience. 
Byron, who recovered long enough to call it "entuzy-muzy," had a
relapse, which carried him off -- to Missolonghi.


** ENVELOPE

ENVELOPE, n.  The coffin of a document; the scabbard of a bill; the
husk of a remittance; the bed-gown of a love-letter.


** ENVY

ENVY, n.  Emulation adapted to the meanest capacity.


** EPAULET

EPAULET, n.  An ornamented badge, serving to distinguish a military
officer from the enemy -- that is to say, from the officer of lower
rank to whom his death would give promotion.


** EPICURE

EPICURE, n.  An opponent of Epicurus, an abstemious philosopher who,
holding that pleasure should be the chief aim of man, wasted no time
in gratification from the senses.


** EPIGRAM

EPIGRAM, n.  A short, sharp saying in prose or verse, frequently
characterize by acidity or acerbity and sometimes by wisdom. 
Following are some of the more notable epigrams of the learned and
ingenious Dr. Jamrach Holobom:

        We know better the needs of ourselves than of others.  To
    serve oneself is economy of administration.

        In each human heart are a tiger, a pig, an ass and a
    nightingale.  Diversity of character is due to their unequal
    activity.

        There are three sexes; males, females and girls.

        Beauty in women and distinction in men are alike in this: 
    they seem to be the unthinking a kind of credibility.

        Women in love are less ashamed than men.  They have less to be
    ashamed of.

        While your friend holds you affectionately by both your hands
    you are safe, for you can watch both his.


** EPITAPH

EPITAPH, n.  An inscription on a tomb, showing that virtues acquired
by death have a retroactive effect.  Following is a touching example:

    Here lie the bones of Parson Platt,
    Wise, pious, humble and all that,
    Who showed us life as all should live it;
    Let that be said -- and God forgive it!


** ERUDITION

ERUDITION, n.  Dust shaken out of a book into an empty skull.

    So wide his erudition's mighty span,
    He knew Creation's origin and plan
    And only came by accident to grief --
    He thought, poor man, 'twas right to be a thief.
                                                           Romach Pute


** ESOTERIC

ESOTERIC, adj.  Very particularly abstruse and consummately occult. 
The ancient philosophies were of two kinds, -- _exoteric_, those that
the philosophers themselves could partly understand, and _esoteric_,
those that nobody could understand.  It is the latter that have most
profoundly affected modern thought and found greatest acceptance in
our time.


** ETHNOLOGY

ETHNOLOGY, n.  The science that treats of the various tribes of Man,
as robbers, thieves, swindlers, dunces, lunatics, idiots and
ethnologists.


** EUCHARIST

EUCHARIST, n.  A sacred feast of the religious sect of Theophagi.
    A dispute once unhappily arose among the members of this sect as
to what it was that they ate.  In this controversy some five hundred
thousand have already been slain, and the question is still unsettled.


** EULOGY

EULOGY, n.  Praise of a person who has either the advantages of wealth
and power, or the consideration to be dead.


** EVANGELIST

EVANGELIST, n.  A bearer of good tidings, particularly (in a religious
sense) such as assure us of our own salvation and the damnation of
our neighbors.


** EVERLASTING

EVERLASTING, adj.  Lasting forever.  It is with no small diffidence
that I venture to offer this brief and elementary definition, for I am
not unaware of the existence of a bulky volume by a sometime Bishop of
Worcester, entitled, _A Partial Definition of the Word "Everlasting,"
as Used in the Authorized Version of the Holy Scriptures_.  His book
was once esteemed of great authority in the Anglican Church, and is
still, I understand, studied with pleasure to the mind and profit of
the soul.


** EXCEPTION

EXCEPTION, n.  A thing which takes the liberty to differ from other
things of its class, as an honest man, a truthful woman, etc.  "The
exception proves the rule" is an expression constantly upon the lips
of the ignorant, who parrot it from one another with never a thought
of its absurdity.  In the Latin, "_Exceptio probat regulam_" means
that the exception _tests_ the rule, puts it to the proof, not
_confirms_ it.  The malefactor who drew the meaning from this
excellent dictum and substituted a contrary one of his own exerted an
evil power which appears to be immortal.


** EXCESS

EXCESS, n.  In morals, an indulgence that enforces by appropriate
penalties the law of moderation.

    Hail, high Excess -- especially in wine,
        To thee in worship do I bend the knee
        Who preach abstemiousness unto me --
    My skull thy pulpit, as my paunch thy shrine.
    Precept on precept, aye, and line on line,
        Could ne'er persuade so sweetly to agree
        With reason as thy touch, exact and free,
    Upon my forehead and along my spine.
    At thy command eschewing pleasure's cup,
        With the hot grape I warm no more my wit;
        When on thy stool of penitence I sit
    I'm quite converted, for I can't get up.
    Ungrateful he who afterward would falter
    To make new sacrifices at thine altar!


** EXCOMMUNICATION

EXCOMMUNICATION, n.

    This "excommunication" is a word
    In speech ecclesiastical oft heard,
    And means the damning, with bell, book and candle,
    Some sinner whose opinions are a scandal --
    A rite permitting Satan to enslave him
    Forever, and forbidding Christ to save him.
                                                            Gat Huckle


** EXECUTIVE

EXECUTIVE, n.  An officer of the Government, whose duty it is to
enforce the wishes of the legislative power until such time as the
judicial department shall be pleased to pronounce them invalid and of
no effect.  Following is an extract from an old book entitled, _The
Lunarian Astonished_ -- Pfeiffer & Co., Boston, 1803:

    LUNARIAN:  Then when your Congress has passed a law it goes
        directly to the Supreme Court in order that it may at once be
        known whether it is constitutional?
    TERRESTRIAN:  O no; it does not require the approval of the
        Supreme Court until having perhaps been enforced for many
        years somebody objects to its operation against himself -- I
        mean his client.  The President, if he approves it, begins to
        execute it at once.
    LUNARIAN:  Ah, the executive power is a part of the legislative. 
        Do your policemen also have to approve the local ordinances
        that they enforce?
    TERRESTRIAN:  Not yet -- at least not in their character of
        constables.  Generally speaking, though, all laws require the
        approval of those whom they are intended to restrain.
    LUNARIAN:  I see.  The death warrant is not valid until signed by
        the murderer.
    TERRESTRIAN:  My friend, you put it too strongly; we are not so
        consistent.
    LUNARIAN:  But this system of maintaining an expensive judicial
        machinery to pass upon the validity of laws only after they
        have long been executed, and then only when brought before the
        court by some private person -- does it not cause great
        confusion?
    TERRESTRIAN:  It does.
    LUNARIAN:  Why then should not your laws, previously to being
        executed, be validated, not by the signature of your
        President, but by that of the Chief Justice of the Supreme
        Court?
    TERRESTRIAN:  There is no precedent for any such course.
    LUNARIAN:  Precedent.  What is that?
    TERRESTRIAN:  It has been defined by five hundred lawyers in three
        volumes each.  So how can any one know?


** EXHORT

EXHORT, v.t. In religious affairs, to put the conscience of another
upon the spit and roast it to a nut-brown discomfort.


** EXILE

EXILE, n.  One who serves his country by residing abroad, yet is not
an ambassador.
    An English sea-captain being asked if he had read "The Exile of
Erin," replied:  "No, sir, but I should like to anchor on it."  Years
afterwards, when he had been hanged as a pirate after a career of
unparalleled atrocities, the following memorandum was found in the
ship's log that he had kept at the time of his reply:

    Aug. 3d, 1842.  Made a joke on the ex-Isle of Erin.  Coldly
    received.  War with the whole world!


** EXISTENCE

EXISTENCE, n.

    A transient, horrible, fantastic dream,
    Wherein is nothing yet all things do seem:
    From which we're wakened by a friendly nudge
    Of our bedfellow Death, and cry:  "O fudge!"


** EXPERIENCE

EXPERIENCE, n.  The wisdom that enables us to recognize as an
undesirable old acquaintance the folly that we have already embraced.

    To one who, journeying through night and fog,
    Is mired neck-deep in an unwholesome bog,
    Experience, like the rising of the dawn,
    Reveals the path that he should not have gone.
                                                        Joel Frad Bink


** EXPOSTULATION

EXPOSTULATION, n.  One of the many methods by which fools prefer to
lose their friends.


** EXTINCTION

EXTINCTION, n.  The raw material out of which theology created the
future state.


                                  F



** FAIRY

FAIRY, n.  A creature, variously fashioned and endowed, that formerly
inhabited the meadows and forests.  It was nocturnal in its habits,
and somewhat addicted to dancing and the theft of children.  The
fairies are now believed by naturalist to be extinct, though a
clergyman of the Church of England saw three near Colchester as lately
as 1855, while passing through a park after dining with the lord of
the manor.  The sight greatly staggered him, and he was so affected
that his account of it was incoherent.  In the year 1807 a troop of
fairies visited a wood near Aix and carried off the daughter of a
peasant, who had been seen to enter it with a bundle of clothing.  The
son of a wealthy _bourgeois_ disappeared about the same time, but
afterward returned.  He had seen the abduction been in pursuit of the
fairies.  Justinian Gaux, a writer of the fourteenth century, avers
that so great is the fairies' power of transformation that he saw one
change itself into two opposing armies and fight a battle with great
slaughter, and that the next day, after it had resumed its original
shape and gone away, there were seven hundred bodies of the slain
which the villagers had to bury.  He does not say if any of the
wounded recovered.  In the time of Henry III, of England, a law was
made which prescribed the death penalty for "Kyllynge, wowndynge, or
mamynge" a fairy, and it was universally respected.


** FAITH

FAITH, n.  Belief without evidence in what is told by one who speaks
without knowledge, of things without parallel.


** FAMOUS

FAMOUS, adj.  Conspicuously miserable.

    Done to a turn on the iron, behold
        Him who to be famous aspired.
    Content?  Well, his grill has a plating of gold,
        And his twistings are greatly admired.
                                                       Hassan Brubuddy


** FASHION

FASHION, n.  A despot whom the wise ridicule and obey.

    A king there was who lost an eye
        In some excess of passion;
    And straight his courtiers all did try
        To follow the new fashion.

    Each dropped one eyelid when before
        The throne he ventured, thinking
    'Twould please the king.  That monarch swore
        He'd slay them all for winking.

    What should they do?  They were not hot
        To hazard such disaster;
    They dared not close an eye -- dared not
        See better than their master.

    Seeing them lacrymose and glum,
        A leech consoled the weepers:
    He spread small rags with liquid gum
        And covered half their peepers.

    The court all wore the stuff, the flame
        Of royal anger dying.
    That's how court-plaster got its name
        Unless I'm greatly lying.
                                                            Naramy Oof


** FEAST

FEAST, n.  A festival.  A religious celebration usually signalized by
gluttony and drunkenness, frequently in honor of some holy person
distinguished for abstemiousness.  In the Roman Catholic Church
feasts are "movable" and "immovable," but the celebrants are uniformly
immovable until they are full.  In their earliest development these
entertainments took the form of feasts for the dead; such were held by
the Greeks, under the name _Nemeseia_, by the Aztecs and Peruvians,
as in modern times they are popular with the Chinese; though it is
believed that the ancient dead, like the modern, were light eaters. 
Among the many feasts of the Romans was the _Novemdiale_, which was
held, according to Livy, whenever stones fell from heaven.


** FELON

FELON, n.  A person of greater enterprise than discretion, who in
embracing an opportunity has formed an unfortunate attachment.


** FEMALE

FEMALE, n.  One of the opposing, or unfair, sex.

    The Maker, at Creation's birth,
    With living things had stocked the earth.
    From elephants to bats and snails,
    They all were good, for all were males.
    But when the Devil came and saw
    He said:  "By Thine eternal law
    Of growth, maturity, decay,
    These all must quickly pass away
    And leave untenanted the earth
    Unless Thou dost establish birth" --
    Then tucked his head beneath his wing
    To laugh -- he had no sleeve -- the thing
    With deviltry did so accord,
    That he'd suggested to the Lord.
    The Master pondered this advice,
    Then shook and threw the fateful dice
    Wherewith all matters here below
    Are ordered, and observed the throw;
    Then bent His head in awful state,
    Confirming the decree of Fate.
    From every part of earth anew
    The conscious dust consenting flew,
    While rivers from their courses rolled
    To make it plastic for the mould.
    Enough collected (but no more,
    For niggard Nature hoards her store)
    He kneaded it to flexible clay,
    While Nick unseen threw some away.
    And then the various forms He cast,
    Gross organs first and finer last;
    No one at once evolved, but all
    By even touches grew and small
    Degrees advanced, till, shade by shade,
    To match all living things He'd made
    Females, complete in all their parts
    Except (His clay gave out) the hearts.
    "No matter," Satan cried; "with speed
    I'll fetch the very hearts they need" --
    So flew away and soon brought back
    The number needed, in a sack.
    That night earth range with sounds of strife --
    Ten million males each had a wife;
    That night sweet Peace her pinions spread
    O'er Hell -- ten million devils dead!
                                                                  G.J.


** FIB

FIB, n.  A lie that has not cut its teeth.  An habitual liar's nearest
approach to truth:  the perigee of his eccentric orbit.

    When David said:  "All men are liars," Dave,
        Himself a liar, fibbed like any thief.
        Perhaps he thought to weaken disbelief
    By proof that even himself was not a slave
    To Truth; though I suspect the aged knave
        Had been of all her servitors the chief
        Had he but known a fig's reluctant leaf
    Is more than e'er she wore on land or wave.
    No, David served not Naked Truth when he
        Struck that sledge-hammer blow at all his race;
            Nor did he hit the nail upon the head:
    For reason shows that it could never be,
        And the facts contradict him to his face.
            Men are not liars all, for some are dead.
                                                        Bartle Quinker


** FICKLENESS

FICKLENESS, n.  The iterated satiety of an enterprising affection.


** FIDDLE

FIDDLE, n.  An instrument to tickle human ears by friction of a
horse's tail on the entrails of a cat.

    To Rome said Nero:  "If to smoke you turn
    I shall not cease to fiddle while you burn."
    To Nero Rome replied:  "Pray do your worst,
    'Tis my excuse that you were fiddling first."
                                                            Orm Pludge


** FIDELITY

FIDELITY, n.  A virtue peculiar to those who are about to be betrayed.


** FINANCE

FINANCE, n.  The art or science of managing revenues and resources for
the best advantage of the manager.  The pronunciation of this word
with the i long and the accent on the first syllable is one of
America's most precious discoveries and possessions.


** FLAG

FLAG, n.  A colored rag borne above troops and hoisted on forts and
ships.  It appears to serve the same purpose as certain signs that one
sees and vacant lots in London -- "Rubbish may be shot here."


** FLESH

FLESH, n.  The Second Person of the secular Trinity.


** FLOP

FLOP, v.  Suddenly to change one's opinions and go over to another
party.  The most notable flop on record was that of Saul of Tarsus,
who has been severely criticised as a turn-coat by some of our
partisan journals.


** FLY-SPECK

FLY-SPECK, n.  The prototype of punctuation.  It is observed by
Garvinus that the systems of punctuation in use by the various
literary nations depended originally upon the social habits and
general diet of the flies infesting the several countries.  These
creatures, which have always been distinguished for a neighborly and
companionable familiarity with authors, liberally or niggardly
embellish the manuscripts in process of growth under the pen,
according to their bodily habit, bringing out the sense of the work by
a species of interpretation superior to, and independent of, the
writer's powers.  The "old masters" of literature -- that is to say,
the early writers whose work is so esteemed by later scribes and
critics in the same language -- never punctuated at all, but worked
right along free-handed, without that abruption of the thought which
comes from the use of points.  (We observe the same thing in children
to-day, whose usage in this particular is a striking and beautiful
instance of the law that the infancy of individuals reproduces the
methods and stages of development characterizing the infancy of
races.)  In the work of these primitive scribes all the punctuation is
found, by the modern investigator with his optical instruments and
chemical tests, to have been inserted by the writers' ingenious and
serviceable collaborator, the common house-fly -- _Musca maledicta_. 
In transcribing these ancient MSS, for the purpose of either making
the work their own or preserving what they naturally regard as divine
revelations, later writers reverently and accurately copy whatever
marks they find upon the papyrus or parchment, to the unspeakable
enhancement of the lucidity of the thought and value of the work. 
Writers contemporary with the copyists naturally avail themselves of
the obvious advantages of these marks in their own work, and with such
assistance as the flies of their own household may be willing to
grant, frequently rival and sometimes surpass the older compositions,
in respect at least of punctuation, which is no small glory.  Fully to
understand the important services that flies perform to literature it
is only necessary to lay a page of some popular novelist alongside a
saucer of cream-and-molasses in a sunny room and observe "how the wit
brightens and the style refines" in accurate proportion to the
duration of exposure.


** FOLLY

FOLLY, n.  That "gift and faculty divine" whose creative and
controlling energy inspires Man's mind, guides his actions and adorns
his life.

    Folly! although Erasmus praised thee once
        In a thick volume, and all authors known,
        If not thy glory yet thy power have shown,
    Deign to take homage from thy son who hunts
    Through all thy maze his brothers, fool and dunce,
        To mend their lives and to sustain his own,
        However feebly be his arrows thrown,

    Howe'er each hide the flying weapons blunts.
    All-Father Folly! be it mine to raise,
        With lusty lung, here on his western strand
        With all thine offspring thronged from every land,
    Thyself inspiring me, the song of praise.
    And if too weak, I'll hire, to help me bawl,
    Dick Watson Gilder, gravest of us all.
                                                     Aramis Loto Frope


** FOOL

FOOL, n.  A person who pervades the domain of intellectual speculation
and diffuses himself through the channels of moral activity.  He is
omnific, omniform, omnipercipient, omniscience, omnipotent.  He it was
who invented letters, printing, the railroad, the steamboat, the
telegraph, the platitude and the circle of the sciences.  He created
patriotism and taught the nations war -- founded theology, philosophy,
law, medicine and Chicago.  He established monarchical and republican
government.  He is from everlasting to everlasting -- such as
creation's dawn beheld he fooleth now.  In the morning of time he sang
upon primitive hills, and in the noonday of existence headed the
procession of being.  His grandmotherly hand was warmly tucked-in the
set sun of civilization, and in the twilight he prepares Man's evening
meal of milk-and-morality and turns down the covers of the universal
grave.  And after the rest of us shall have retired for the night of
eternal oblivion he will sit up to write a history of human
civilization.


** FORCE

FORCE, n.

    "Force is but might," the teacher said --
        "That definition's just."
    The boy said naught but through instead,
    Remembering his pounded head:
        "Force is not might but must!"


** FOREFINGER

FOREFINGER, n.  The finger commonly used in pointing out two
malefactors.


** FOREORDINATION

FOREORDINATION, n.  This looks like an easy word to define, but when I
consider that pious and learned theologians have spent long lives in
explaining it, and written libraries to explain their explanations;
when I remember the nations have been divided and bloody battles
caused by the difference between foreordination and predestination,
and that millions of treasure have been expended in the effort to
prove and disprove its compatibility with freedom of the will and the
efficacy of prayer, praise, and a religious life, -- recalling these
awful facts in the history of the word, I stand appalled before the
mighty problem of its signification, abase my spiritual eyes, fearing
to contemplate its portentous magnitude, reverently uncover and humbly
refer it to His Eminence Cardinal Gibbons and His Grace Bishop Potter.


** FORGETFULNESS

FORGETFULNESS, n.  A gift of God bestowed upon doctors in compensation
for their destitution of conscience.


** FORK

FORK, n.  An instrument used chiefly for the purpose of putting dead
animals into the mouth.  Formerly the knife was employed for this
purpose, and by many worthy persons is still thought to have many
advantages over the other tool, which, however, they do not altogether
reject, but use to assist in charging the knife.  The immunity of
these persons from swift and awful death is one of the most striking
proofs of God's mercy to those that hate Him.


** FORMA

FORMA :PAUPERIS:.  [Latin]  In the character of a poor person -- a
method by which a litigant without money for lawyers is considerately
permitted to lose his case.

    When Adam long ago in Cupid's awful court
        (For Cupid ruled ere Adam was invented)
    Sued for Eve's favor, says an ancient law report,
        He stood and pleaded unhabilimented.

    "You sue _in forma pauperis_, I see," Eve cried;
        "Actions can't here be that way prosecuted."
    So all poor Adam's motions coldly were denied:
        He went away -- as he had come -- nonsuited.
                                                                  G.J.


** FRANKALMOIGNE

FRANKALMOIGNE, n.  The tenure by which a religious corporation holds
lands on condition of praying for the soul of the donor.  In mediaeval
times many of the wealthiest fraternities obtained their estates in
this simple and cheap manner, and once when Henry VIII of England sent
an officer to confiscate certain vast possessions which a fraternity
of monks held by frankalmoigne, "What!" said the Prior, "would you
master stay our benefactor's soul in Purgatory?"  "Ay," said the
officer, coldly, "an ye will not pray him thence for naught he must
e'en roast."  "But look you, my son," persisted the good man, "this
act hath rank as robbery of God!"  "Nay, nay, good father, my master
the king doth but deliver him from the manifold temptations of too
great wealth."


** FREEBOOTER

FREEBOOTER, n.  A conqueror in a small way of business, whose
annexations lack of the sanctifying merit of magnitude.


** FREEDOM

FREEDOM, n.  Exemption from the stress of authority in a beggarly half
dozen of restraint's infinite multitude of methods.  A political
condition that every nation supposes itself to enjoy in virtual
monopoly.  Liberty.  The distinction between freedom and liberty is
not accurately known; naturalists have never been able to find a
living specimen of either.

    Freedom, as every schoolboy knows,
        Once shrieked as Kosciusko fell;
    On every wind, indeed, that blows
            I hear her yell.

    She screams whenever monarchs meet,
        And parliaments as well,
    To bind the chains about her feet
            And toll her knell.

    And when the sovereign people cast
        The votes they cannot spell,
    Upon the pestilential blast
            Her clamors swell.

    For all to whom the power's given
        To sway or to compel,
    Among themselves apportion Heaven
            And give her Hell.
                                                          Blary O'Gary


** FREEMASONS

FREEMASONS, n.  An order with secret rites, grotesque ceremonies and
fantastic costumes, which, originating in the reign of Charles II,
among working artisans of London, has been joined successively by the
dead of past centuries in unbroken retrogression until now it embraces
all the generations of man on the hither side of Adam and is drumming
up distinguished recruits among the pre-Creational inhabitants of
Chaos and Formless Void.  The order was founded at different times by
Charlemagne, Julius Caesar, Cyrus, Solomon, Zoroaster, Confucious,
Thothmes, and Buddha.  Its emblems and symbols have been found in the
Catacombs of Paris and Rome, on the stones of the Parthenon and the
Chinese Great Wall, among the temples of Karnak and Palmyra and in the
Egyptian Pyramids -- always by a Freemason.


** FRIENDLESS

FRIENDLESS, adj.  Having no favors to bestow.  Destitute of fortune. 
Addicted to utterance of truth and common sense.


** FRIENDSHIP

FRIENDSHIP, n.  A ship big enough to carry two in fair weather, but
only one in foul.

    The sea was calm and the sky was blue;
    Merrily, merrily sailed we two.
        (High barometer maketh glad.)
    On the tipsy ship, with a dreadful shout,
    The tempest descended and we fell out.
        (O the walking is nasty bad!)
                                                     Armit Huff Bettle


** FROG

FROG, n.  A reptile with edible legs.  The first mention of frogs in
profane literature is in Homer's narrative of the war between them and
the mice.  Skeptical persons have doubted Homer's authorship of the
work, but the learned, ingenious and industrious Dr. Schliemann has
set the question forever at rest by uncovering the bones of the slain
frogs.  One of the forms of moral suasion by which Pharaoh was
besought to favor the Israelities was a plague of frogs, but Pharaoh,
who liked them _fricasees_, remarked, with truly oriental stoicism,
that he could stand it as long as the frogs and the Jews could; so the
programme was changed.  The frog is a diligent songster, having a good
voice but no ear.  The libretto of his favorite opera, as written by
Aristophanes, is brief, simple and effective -- "brekekex-koax"; the
music is apparently by that eminent composer, Richard Wagner.  Horses
have a frog in each hoof -- a thoughtful provision of nature, enabling
them to shine in a hurdle race.


** FRYING-PAN

FRYING-PAN, n.  One part of the penal apparatus employed in that
punitive institution, a woman's kitchen.  The frying-pan was invented
by Calvin, and by him used in cooking span-long infants that had died
without baptism; and observing one day the horrible torment of a tramp
who had incautiously pulled a fried babe from the waste-dump and
devoured it, it occurred to the great divine to rob death of its
terrors by introducing the frying-pan into every household in Geneva. 
Thence it spread to all corners of the world, and has been of
invaluable assistance in the propagation of his sombre faith.  The
following lines (said to be from the pen of his Grace Bishop Potter)
seem to imply that the usefulness of this utensil is not limited to
this world; but as the consequences of its employment in this life
reach over into the life to come, so also itself may be found on the
other side, rewarding its devotees:

    Old Nick was summoned to the skies.
        Said Peter:  "Your intentions
    Are good, but you lack enterprise
        Concerning new inventions.

    "Now, broiling in an ancient plan
        Of torment, but I hear it
    Reported that the frying-pan
        Sears best the wicked spirit.

    "Go get one -- fill it up with fat --
        Fry sinners brown and good in't."
    "I know a trick worth two o' that,"
        Said Nick -- "I'll cook their food in't."


** FUNERAL

FUNERAL, n.  A pageant whereby we attest our respect for the dead by
enriching the undertaker, and strengthen our grief by an expenditure
that deepens our groans and doubles our tears.

    The savage dies -- they sacrifice a horse
    To bear to happy hunting-grounds the corse.
    Our friends expire -- we make the money fly
    In hope their souls will chase it to the sky.
                                                            Jex Wopley


** FUTURE

FUTURE, n.  That period of time in which our affairs prosper, our
friends are true and our happiness is assured.


                                  G



** GALLOWS

GALLOWS, n.  A stage for the performance of miracle plays, in which
the leading actor is translated to heaven.  In this country the
gallows is chiefly remarkable for the number of persons who escape it.

    Whether on the gallows high
        Or where blood flows the reddest,
    The noblest place for man to die --
        Is where he died the deadest.
                                                            (Old play)


** GARGOYLE

GARGOYLE, n.  A rain-spout projecting from the eaves of mediaeval
buildings, commonly fashioned into a grotesque caricature of some
personal enemy of the architect or owner of the building.  This was
especially the case in churches and ecclesiastical structures
generally, in which the gargoyles presented a perfect rogues' gallery
of local heretics and controversialists.  Sometimes when a new dean
and chapter were installed the old gargoyles were removed and others
substituted having a closer relation to the private animosities of the
new incumbents.


** GARTHER

GARTHER, n.  An elastic band intended to keep a woman from coming out
of her stockings and desolating the country.


** GENEROUS

GENEROUS, adj.  Originally this word meant noble by birth and was
rightly applied to a great multitude of persons.  It now means noble
by nature and is taking a bit of a rest.


** GENEALOGY

GENEALOGY, n.  An account of one's descent from an ancestor who did
not particularly care to trace his own.


** GENTEEL

GENTEEL, adj.  Refined, after the fashion of a gent.

    Observe with care, my son, the distinction I reveal:
    A gentleman is gentle and a gent genteel.
    Heed not the definitions your "Unabridged" presents,
    For dictionary makers are generally gents.
                                                                  G.J.


** GEOGRAPHER

GEOGRAPHER, n.  A chap who can tell you offhand the difference between
the outside of the world and the inside.

    Habeam, geographer of wide reknown,
    Native of Abu-Keber's ancient town,
    In passing thence along the river Zam
    To the adjacent village of Xelam,
    Bewildered by the multitude of roads,
    Got lost, lived long on migratory toads,
    Then from exposure miserably died,
    And grateful travelers bewailed their guide.
                                                        Henry Haukhorn


** GEOLOGY

GEOLOGY, n.  The science of the earth's crust -- to which, doubtless,
will be added that of its interior whenever a man shall come up
garrulous out of a well.  The geological formations of the globe
already noted are catalogued thus:  The Primary, or lower one,
consists of rocks, bones or mired mules, gas-pipes, miners' tools,
antique statues minus the nose, Spanish doubloons and ancestors.  The
Secondary is largely made up of red worms and moles.  The Tertiary
comprises railway tracks, patent pavements, grass, snakes, mouldy
boots, beer bottles, tomato cans, intoxicated citizens, garbage,
anarchists, snap-dogs and fools.


** GHOST

GHOST, n.  The outward and visible sign of an inward fear.

            He saw a ghost.
    It occupied -- that dismal thing! --
    The path that he was following.
    Before he'd time to stop and fly,
    An earthquake trifled with the eye
            That saw a ghost.
    He fell as fall the early good;
    Unmoved that awful vision stood.
    The stars that danced before his ken
    He wildly brushed away, and then
            He saw a post.
                                                      Jared Macphester

    Accounting for the uncommon behavior of ghosts, Heine mentions
somebody's ingenious theory to the effect that they are as much
afraid of us as we of them.  Not quite, if I may judge from such
tables of comparative speed as I am able to compile from memories of
my own experience.
    There is one insuperable obstacle to a belief in ghosts.  A ghost
never comes naked:  he appears either in a winding-sheet or "in his
habit as he lived."  To believe in him, then, is to believe that not
only have the dead the power to make themselves visible after there is
nothing left of them, but that the same power inheres in textile
fabrics.  Supposing the products of the loom to have this ability,
what object would they have in exercising it?  And why does not the
apparition of a suit of clothes sometimes walk abroad without a ghost
in it?  These be riddles of significance.  They reach away down and
get a convulsive grip on the very tap-root of this flourishing faith.


** GHOUL

GHOUL, n.  A demon addicted to the reprehensible habit of devouring
the dead.  The existence of ghouls has been disputed by that class of
controversialists who are more concerned to deprive the world of
comforting beliefs than to give it anything good in their place.  In
1640 Father Secchi saw one in a cemetery near Florence and frightened
it away with the sign of the cross.  He describes it as gifted with
many heads an an uncommon allowance of limbs, and he saw it in more
than one place at a time.  The good man was coming away from dinner at
the time and explains that if he had not been "heavy with eating" he
would have seized the demon at all hazards.  Atholston relates that a
ghoul was caught by some sturdy peasants in a churchyard at Sudbury
and ducked in a horsepond.  (He appears to think that so distinguished
a criminal should have been ducked in a tank of rosewater.)  The water
turned at once to blood "and so contynues unto ys daye."  The pond has
since been bled with a ditch.  As late as the beginning of the
fourteenth century a ghoul was cornered in the crypt of the cathedral
at Amiens and the whole population surrounded the place.  Twenty armed
men with a priest at their head, bearing a crucifix, entered and
captured the ghoul, which, thinking to escape by the stratagem, had
transformed itself to the semblance of a well known citizen, but was
nevertheless hanged, drawn and quartered in the midst of hideous
popular orgies.  The citizen whose shape the demon had assumed was so
affected by the sinister occurrence that he never again showed himself
in Amiens and his fate remains a mystery.


** GLUTTON

GLUTTON, n.  A person who escapes the evils of moderation by
committing dyspepsia.


** GNOME

GNOME, n.  In North-European mythology, a dwarfish imp inhabiting the
interior parts of the earth and having special custody of mineral
treasures.  Bjorsen, who died in 1765, says gnomes were common enough
in the southern parts of Sweden in his boyhood, and he frequently saw
them scampering on the hills in the evening twilight.  Ludwig
Binkerhoof saw three as recently as 1792, in the Black Forest, and
Sneddeker avers that in 1803 they drove a party of miners out of a
Silesian mine.  Basing our computations upon data supplied by these
statements, we find that the gnomes were probably extinct as early as
1764.


** GNOSTICS

GNOSTICS, n.  A sect of philosophers who tried to engineer a fusion
between the early Christians and the Platonists.  The former would not
go into the caucus and the combination failed, greatly to the chagrin
of the fusion managers.


** GNU

GNU, n.  An animal of South Africa, which in its domesticated state
resembles a horse, a buffalo and a stag.  In its wild condition it is
something like a thunderbolt, an earthquake and a cyclone.

    A hunter from Kew caught a distant view
        Of a peacefully meditative gnu,
    And he said:  "I'll pursue, and my hands imbrue
        In its blood at a closer interview."
    But that beast did ensue and the hunter it threw
        O'er the top of a palm that adjacent grew;
    And he said as he flew:  "It is well I withdrew
        Ere, losing my temper, I wickedly slew
        That really meritorious gnu."
                                                           Jarn Leffer


** GOOD

GOOD, adj.  Sensible, madam, to the worth of this present writer. 
Alive, sir, to the advantages of letting him alone.


** GOOSE

GOOSE, n.  A bird that supplies quills for writing.  These, by some
occult process of nature, are penetrated and suffused with various
degrees of the bird's intellectual energies and emotional character,
so that when inked and drawn mechanically across paper by a person
called an "author," there results a very fair and accurate transcript
of the fowl's thought and feeling.  The difference in geese, as
discovered by this ingenious method, is considerable:  many are found
to have only trivial and insignificant powers, but some are seen to be
very great geese indeed.


** GORGON

GORGON, n.

    The Gorgon was a maiden bold
    Who turned to stone the Greeks of old
    That looked upon her awful brow.
    We dig them out of ruins now,
    And swear that workmanship so bad
    Proves all the ancient sculptors mad.


** GOUT

GOUT, n.  A physician's name for the rheumatism of a rich patient.


** GRACES

GRACES, n.  Three beautiful goddesses, Aglaia, Thalia and Euphrosyne,
who attended upon Venus, serving without salary.  They were at no
expense for board and clothing, for they ate nothing to speak of and
dressed according to the weather, wearing whatever breeze happened to
be blowing.


** GRAMMAR

GRAMMAR, n.  A system of pitfalls thoughtfully prepared for the feet
for the self-made man, along the path by which he advances to
distinction.


** GRAPE

GRAPE, n.

    Hail noble fruit! -- by Homer sung,
        Anacreon and Khayyam;
    Thy praise is ever on the tongue
        Of better men than I am.

    The lyre in my hand has never swept,
        The song I cannot offer:
    My humbler service pray accept --
        I'll help to kill the scoffer.

    The water-drinkers and the cranks
        Who load their skins with liquor --
    I'll gladly bear their belly-tanks
        And tap them with my sticker.

    Fill up, fill up, for wisdom cools
        When e'er we let the wine rest.
    Here's death to Prohibition's fools,
        And every kind of vine-pest!
                                                       Jamrach Holobom


** GRAPESHOT

GRAPESHOT, n.  An argument which the future is preparing in answer to
the demands of American Socialism.


** GRAVE

GRAVE, n.  A place in which the dead are laid to await the coming of
the medical student.

    Beside a lonely grave I stood --
        With brambles 'twas encumbered;
    The winds were moaning in the wood,
        Unheard by him who slumbered,

    A rustic standing near, I said:
        "He cannot hear it blowing!"
    "'Course not," said he:  "the feller's dead --
        He can't hear nowt [sic] that's going."

    "Too true," I said; "alas, too true --
        No sound his sense can quicken!"
    "Well, mister, wot is that to you? --
        The deadster ain't a-kickin'."

    I knelt and prayed:  "O Father, smile
        On him, and mercy show him!"
    That countryman looked on the while,
        And said:  "Ye didn't know him."
                                                         Pobeter Dunko


** GRAVITATION

GRAVITATION, n.  The tendency of all bodies to approach one another
with a strength proportion to the quantity of matter they contain --
the quantity of matter they contain being ascertained by the strength
of their tendency to approach one another.  This is a lovely and
edifying illustration of how science, having made A the proof of B,
makes B the proof of A.


** GREAT

GREAT, adj.

    "I'm great," the Lion said -- "I reign
    The monarch of the wood and plain!"

    The Elephant replied:  "I'm great --
    No quadruped can match my weight!"

    "I'm great -- no animal has half
    So long a neck!" said the Giraffe.

    "I'm great," the Kangaroo said -- "see
    My femoral muscularity!"

    The 'Possum said:  "I'm great -- behold,
    My tail is lithe and bald and cold!"

    An Oyster fried was understood
    To say:  "I'm great because I'm good!"

    Each reckons greatness to consist
    In that in which he heads the list,

    And Vierick thinks he tops his class
    Because he is the greatest ass.
                                                      Arion Spurl Doke


** GUILLOTINE

GUILLOTINE, n.  A machine which makes a Frenchman shrug his shoulders
with good reason.
    In his great work on _Divergent Lines of Racial Evolution_, the
learned Professor Brayfugle argues from the prevalence of this gesture
-- the shrug -- among Frenchmen, that they are descended from turtles
and it is simply a survival of the habit of retracing the head inside
the shell.  It is with reluctance that I differ with so eminent an
authority, but in my judgment (as more elaborately set forth and
enforced in my work entitled _Hereditary Emotions_ -- lib. II, c. XI)
the shrug is a poor foundation upon which to build so important a
theory, for previously to the Revolution the gesture was unknown.  I
have not a doubt that it is directly referable to the terror inspired
by the guillotine during the period of that instrument's activity.


** GUNPOWDER

GUNPOWDER, n.  An agency employed by civilized nations for the
settlement of disputes which might become troublesome if left
unadjusted.  By most writers the invention of gunpowder is ascribed to
the Chinese, but not upon very convincing evidence.  Milton says it
was invented by the devil to dispel angels with, and this opinion
seems to derive some support from the scarcity of angels.  Moreover,
it has the hearty concurrence of the Hon. James Wilson, Secretary of
Agriculture.
    Secretary Wilson became interested in gunpowder through an event
that occurred on the Government experimental farm in the District of
Columbia.  One day, several years ago, a rogue imperfectly reverent of
the Secretary's profound attainments and personal character presented
him with a sack of gunpowder, representing it as the sed of the
_Flashawful flabbergastor_, a Patagonian cereal of great commercial
value, admirably adapted to this climate.  The good Secretary was
instructed to spill it along in a furrow and afterward inhume it with
soil.  This he at once proceeded to do, and had made a continuous line
of it all the way across a ten-acre field, when he was made to look
backward by a shout from the generous donor, who at once dropped a
lighted match into the furrow at the starting-point.  Contact with the
earth had somewhat dampened the powder, but the startled functionary
saw himself pursued by a tall moving pillar of fire and smoke and
fierce evolution.  He stood for a moment paralyzed and speechless,
then he recollected an engagement and, dropping all, absented himself
thence with such surprising celerity that to the eyes of spectators
along the route selected he appeared like a long, dim streak
prolonging itself with inconceivable rapidity through seven villages,
and audibly refusing to be comforted.  "Great Scott! what is that?"
cried a surveyor's chainman, shading his eyes and gazing at the fading
line of agriculturist which bisected his visible horizon.  "That,"
said the surveyor, carelessly glancing at the phenomenon and again
centering his attention upon his instrument, "is the Meridian of
Washington."


                                  H



** HABEAS

HABEAS :CORPUS:.  A writ by which a man may be taken out of jail when
confined for the wrong crime.


** HABIT

HABIT, n.  A shackle for the free.


** HADES

HADES, n.  The lower world; the residence of departed spirits; the
place where the dead live.
    Among the ancients the idea of Hades was not synonymous with our
Hell, many of the most respectable men of antiquity residing there in
a very comfortable kind of way.  Indeed, the Elysian Fields themselves
were a part of Hades, though they have since been removed to Paris. 
When the Jacobean version of the New Testament was in process of
evolution the pious and learned men engaged in the work insisted by a
majority vote on translating the Greek word "Aides" as "Hell"; but a
conscientious minority member secretly possessed himself of the record
and struck out the objectional word wherever he could find it.  At the
next meeting, the Bishop of Salisbury, looking over the work, suddenly
sprang to his feet and said with considerable excitement:  "Gentlemen,
somebody has been razing 'Hell' here!"  Years afterward the good
prelate's death was made sweet by the reflection that he had been the
means (under Providence) of making an important, serviceable and
immortal addition to the phraseology of the English tongue.


** HAG

HAG, n.  An elderly lady whom you do not happen to like; sometimes
called, also, a hen, or cat.  Old witches, sorceresses, etc., were
called hags from the belief that their heads were surrounded by a kind
of baleful lumination or nimbus -- hag being the popular name of that
peculiar electrical light sometimes observed in the hair.  At one time
hag was not a word of reproach:  Drayton speaks of a "beautiful hag,
all smiles," much as Shakespeare said, "sweet wench."  It would not
now be proper to call your sweetheart a hag -- that compliment is
reserved for the use of her grandchildren.


** HALF

HALF, n.  One of two equal parts into which a thing may be divided, or
considered as divided.  In the fourteenth century a heated discussion
arose among theologists and philosophers as to whether Omniscience
could part an object into three halves; and the pious Father
Aldrovinus publicly prayed in the cathedral at Rouen that God would
demonstrate the affirmative of the proposition in some signal and
unmistakable way, and particularly (if it should please Him) upon the
body of that hardy blasphemer, Manutius Procinus, who maintained the
negative.  Procinus, however, was spared to die of the bite of a
viper.


** HALO

HALO, n.  Properly, a luminous ring encircling an astronomical body,
but not infrequently confounded with "aureola," or "nimbus," a
somewhat similar phenomenon worn as a head-dress by divinities and
saints.  The halo is a purely optical illusion, produced by moisture
in the air, in the manner of a rainbow; but the aureola is conferred
as a sign of superior sanctity, in the same way as a bishop's mitre,
or the Pope's tiara.  In the painting of the Nativity, by Szedgkin, a
pious artist of Pesth, not only do the Virgin and the Child wear the
nimbus, but an ass nibbling hay from the sacred manger is similarly
decorated and, to his lasting honor be it said, appears to bear his
unaccustomed dignity with a truly saintly grace.


** HAND

HAND, n.  A singular instrument worn at the end of the human arm and
commonly thrust into somebody's pocket.


** HANDKERCHIEF

HANDKERCHIEF, n.  A small square of silk or linen, used in various
ignoble offices about the face and especially serviceable at funerals
to conceal the lack of tears.  The handkerchief is of recent
invention; our ancestors knew nothing of it and intrusted its duties
to the sleeve.  Shakespeare's introducing it into the play of
"Othello" is an anachronism:  Desdemona dried her nose with her skirt,
as Dr. Mary Walker and other reformers have done with their coattails
in our own day -- an evidence that revolutions sometimes go backward.


** HANGMAN

HANGMAN, n.  An officer of the law charged with duties of the highest
dignity and utmost gravity, and held in hereditary disesteem by a
populace having a criminal ancestry.  In some of the American States
his functions are now performed by an electrician, as in New Jersey,
where executions by electricity have recently been ordered -- the
first instance known to this lexicographer of anybody questioning the
expediency of hanging Jerseymen.


** HAPPINESS

HAPPINESS, n.  An agreeable sensation arising from contemplating the
misery of another.


** HARANGUE

HARANGUE, n.  A speech by an opponent, who is known as an harrangue-
outang.


** HARBOR

HARBOR, n.  A place where ships taking shelter from stores are exposed
to the fury of the customs.


** HARMONISTS

HARMONISTS, n.  A sect of Protestants, now extinct, who came from
Europe in the beginning of the last century and were distinguished for
the bitterness of their internal controversies and dissensions.


** HASH

HASH, x.  There is no definition for this word -- nobody knows what
hash is.


** HATCHET

HATCHET, n.  A young axe, known among Indians as a Thomashawk.

    "O bury the hatchet, irascible Red,
    For peace is a blessing," the White Man said.
        The Savage concurred, and that weapon interred,
    With imposing rites, in the White Man's head.
                                                           John Lukkus


** HATRED

HATRED, n.  A sentiment appropriate to the occasion of another's
superiority.


** HEAD-MONEY

HEAD-MONEY, n.  A capitation tax, or poll-tax.

    In ancient times there lived a king
    Whose tax-collectors could not wring
    From all his subjects gold enough
    To make the royal way less rough.
    For pleasure's highway, like the dames
    Whose premises adjoin it, claims
    Perpetual repairing.  So
    The tax-collectors in a row
    Appeared before the throne to pray
    Their master to devise some way
    To swell the revenue.  "So great,"
    Said they, "are the demands of state
    A tithe of all that we collect
    Will scarcely meet them.  Pray reflect:
    How, if one-tenth we must resign,
    Can we exist on t'other nine?"
    The monarch asked them in reply:
    "Has it occurred to you to try
    The advantage of economy?"
    "It has," the spokesman said:  "we sold
    All of our gray garrotes of gold;
    With plated-ware we now compress
    The necks of those whom we assess.
    Plain iron forceps we employ
    To mitigate the miser's joy
    Who hoards, with greed that never tires,
    That which your Majesty requires."
    Deep lines of thought were seen to plow
    Their way across the royal brow.
    "Your state is desperate, no question;
    Pray favor me with a suggestion."
    "O King of Men," the spokesman said,
    "If you'll impose upon each head
    A tax, the augmented revenue
    We'll cheerfully divide with you."
    As flashes of the sun illume
    The parted storm-cloud's sullen gloom,
    The king smiled grimly.  "I decree
    That it be so -- and, not to be
    In generosity outdone,
    Declare you, each and every one,
    Exempted from the operation
    Of this new law of capitation.
    But lest the people censure me
    Because they're bound and you are free,
    'Twere well some clever scheme were laid
    By you this poll-tax to evade.
    I'll leave you now while you confer
    With my most trusted minister."
    The monarch from the throne-room walked
    And straightway in among them stalked
    A silent man, with brow concealed,
    Bare-armed -- his gleaming axe revealed!
                                                                  G.J.


** HEARSE

HEARSE, n.  Death's baby-carriage.


** HEART

HEART, n.  An automatic, muscular blood-pump.  Figuratively, this
useful organ is said to be the esat of emotions and sentiments -- a
very pretty fancy which, however, is nothing but a survival of a once
universal belief.  It is now known that the sentiments and emotions
reside in the stomach, being evolved from food by chemical action of
the gastric fluid.  The exact process by which a beefsteak becomes a
feeling -- tender or not, according to the age of the animal from
which it was cut; the successive stages of elaboration through which a
caviar sandwich is transmuted to a quaint fancy and reappears as a
pungent epigram; the marvelous functional methods of converting a
hard-boiled egg into religious contrition, or a cream-puff into a sigh
of sensibility -- these things have been patiently ascertained by M.
Pasteur, and by him expounded with convincing lucidity.  (See, also,
my monograph, _The Essential Identity of the Spiritual Affections and
Certain Intestinal Gases Freed in Digestion_ -- 4to, 687 pp.)  In a
scientific work entitled, I believe, _Delectatio Demonorum_ (John
Camden Hotton, London, 1873) this view of the sentiments receives a
striking illustration; and for further light consult Professor Dam's
famous treatise on _Love as a Product of Alimentary Maceration_.


** HEAT

HEAT, n.

    Heat, says Professor Tyndall, is a mode
        Of motion, but I know now how he's proving
    His point; but this I know -- hot words bestowed
        With skill will set the human fist a-moving,
    And where it stops the stars burn free and wild.
    _Crede expertum_ -- I have seen them, child.
                                                          Gorton Swope


** HEATHEN

HEATHEN, n.  A benighted creature who has the folly to worship
something that he can see and feel.  According to Professor Howison,
of the California State University, Hebrews are heathens.

    "The Hebrews are heathens!" says Howison.  He's
        A Christian philosopher.  I'm
    A scurril agnostical chap, if you please,
        Addicted too much to the crime
        Of religious discussion in my rhyme.

    Though Hebrew and Howison cannot agree
        On a _modus vivendi_ -- not they! --
    Yet Heaven has had the designing of me,
        And I haven't been reared in a way
        To joy in the thick of the fray.

    For this of my creed is the soul and the gist,
        And the truth of it I aver:
    Who differs from me in his faith is an 'ist,
        And 'ite, an 'ie, or an 'er --
        And I'm down upon him or her!

    Let Howison urge with perfunctory chin
        Toleration -- that's all very well,
    But a roast is "nuts" to his nostril thin,
        And he's running -- I know by the smell --
        A secret and personal Hell!
                                                           Bissell Gip


** HEAVEN

HEAVEN, n.  A place where the wicked cease from troubling you with
talk of their personal affairs, and the good listen with attention
while you expound your own.


** HEBREW

HEBREW, n.  A male Jew, as distinguished from the Shebrew, an
altogether superior creation.


** HELPMATE

HELPMATE, n.  A wife, or bitter half.

    "Now, why is yer wife called a helpmate, Pat?"
        Says the priest.  "Since the time 'o yer wooin'
    She's niver [sic] assisted in what ye were at --
        For it's naught ye are ever doin'."

    "That's true of yer Riverence [sic]," Patrick replies,
        And no sign of contrition envices;
    "But, bedad, it's a fact which the word implies,
        For she helps to mate the expinses [sic]!"
                                                         Marley Wottel


** HEMP

HEMP, n.  A plant from whose fibrous bark is made an article of
neckwear which is frequently put on after public speaking in the open
air and prevents the wearer from taking cold.


** HERMIT

HERMIT, n.  A person whose vices and follies are not sociable.


** HERS

HERS, pron.  His.


** HIBERNATE

HIBERNATE, v.i.  To pass the winter season in domestic seclusion. 
There have been many singular popular notions about the hibernation of
various animals.  Many believe that the bear hibernates during the
whole winter and subsists by mechanically sucking its paws.  It is
admitted that it comes out of its retirement in the spring so lean
that it had to try twice before it can cast a shadow.  Three or four
centuries ago, in England, no fact was better attested than that
swallows passed the winter months in the mud at the bottom of their
brooks, clinging together in globular masses.  They have apparently
been compelled to give up the custom and account of the foulness of
the brooks.  Sotus Ecobius discovered in Central Asia a whole nation
of people who hibernate.  By some investigators, the fasting of Lent
is supposed to have been originally a modified form of hibernation, to
which the Church gave a religious significance; but this view was
strenuously opposed by that eminent authority, Bishop Kip, who did not
wish any honors denied to the memory of the Founder of his family.


** HIPPOGRIFF

HIPPOGRIFF, n.  An animal (now extinct) which was half horse and half
griffin.  The griffin was itself a compound creature, half lion and
half eagle.  The hippogriff was actually, therefore, a one-quarter
eagle, which is two dollars and fifty cents in gold.  The study of
zoology is full of surprises.


** HISTORIAN

HISTORIAN, n.  A broad-gauge gossip.


** HISTORY

HISTORY, n.  An account mostly false, of events mostly unimportant,
which are brought about by rulers mostly knaves, and soldiers mostly
fools.

    Of Roman history, great Niebuhr's shown
    'Tis nine-tenths lying.  Faith, I wish 'twere known,
    Ere we accept great Niebuhr as a guide,
    Wherein he blundered and how much he lied.
                                                           Salder Bupp


** HOG

HOG, n.  A bird remarkable for the catholicity of its appetite and
serving to illustrate that of ours.  Among the Mahometans and Jews,
the hog is not in favor as an article of diet, but is respected for
the delicacy and the melody of its voice.  It is chiefly as a songster
that the fowl is esteemed; the cage of him in full chorus has been
known to draw tears from two persons at once.  The scientific name of
this dicky-bird is _Porcus Rockefelleri_.  Mr. Rockefeller did not
discover the hog, but it is considered his by right of resemblance.


** HOMOEOPATHIST

HOMOEOPATHIST, n.  The humorist of the medical profession.


** HOMOEOPATHY

HOMOEOPATHY, n.  A school of medicine midway between Allopathy and
Christian Science.  To the last both the others are distinctly
inferior, for Christian Science will cure imaginary diseases, and they
can not.


** HOMICIDE

HOMICIDE, n.  The slaying of one human being by another.  There are
four kinds of homocide:  felonious, excusable, justifiable, and
praiseworthy, but it makes no great difference to the person slain
whether he fell by one kind or another -- the classification is for
advantage of the lawyers.


** HOMILETICS

HOMILETICS, n.  The science of adapting sermons to the spiritual
needs, capacities and conditions of the congregation.

    So skilled the parson was in homiletics
    That all his normal purges and emetics
    To medicine the spirit were compounded
    With a most just discrimination founded
    Upon a rigorous examination
    Of tongue and pulse and heart and respiration.
    Then, having diagnosed each one's condition,
    His scriptural specifics this physician
    Administered -- his pills so efficacious
    And pukes of disposition so vivacious
    That souls afflicted with ten kinds of Adam
    Were convalescent ere they knew they had 'em.
    But Slander's tongue -- itself all coated -- uttered
    Her bilious mind and scandalously muttered
    That in the case of patients having money
    The pills were sugar and the pukes were honey.
                                          _Biography of Bishop Potter_


** HONORABLE

HONORABLE, adj.  Afflicted with an impediment in one's reach.  In
legislative bodies it is customary to mention all members as
honorable; as, "the honorable gentleman is a scurvy cur."


** HOPE

HOPE, n.  Desire and expectation rolled into one.

    Delicious Hope! when naught to man it left --
    Of fortune destitute, of friends bereft;
    When even his dog deserts him, and his goat
    With tranquil disaffection chews his coat
    While yet it hangs upon his back; then thou,
    The star far-flaming on thine angel brow,
    Descendest, radiant, from the skies to hint
    The promise of a clerkship in the Mint.
                                                       Fogarty Weffing


** HOSPITALITY

HOSPITALITY, n.  The virtue which induces us to feed and lodge certain
persons who are not in need of food and lodging.


** HOSTILITY

HOSTILITY, n.  A peculiarly sharp and specially applied sense of the
earth's overpopulation.  Hostility is classified as active and
passive; as (respectively) the feeling of a woman for her female
friends, and that which she entertains for all the rest of her sex.


** HOURI

HOURI, n.  A comely female inhabiting the Mohammedan Paradise to make
things cheery for the good Mussulman, whose belief in her existence
marks a noble discontent with his earthly spouse, whom he denies a
soul.  By that good lady the Houris are said to be held in deficient
esteem.


** HOUSE

HOUSE, n.  A hollow edifice erected for the habitation of man, rat,
mouse, beelte, cockroach, fly, mosquito, flea, bacillus and microbe. 
_House of Correction_, a place of reward for political and personal
service, and for the detention of offenders and appropriations. 
_House of God_, a building with a steeple and a mortgage on it. 
_House-dog_, a pestilent beast kept on domestic premises to insult
persons passing by and appal the hardy visitor.  _House-maid_, a
youngerly person of the opposing sex employed to be variously
disagreeable and ingeniously unclean in the station in which it has
pleased God to place her.


** HOUSELESS

HOUSELESS, adj.  Having paid all taxes on household goods.


** HOVEL

HOVEL, n.  The fruit of a flower called the Palace.

        Twaddle had a hovel,
            Twiddle had a palace;
        Twaddle said:  "I'll grovel
            Or he'll think I bear him malice" --
    A sentiment as novel
        As a castor on a chalice.

        Down upon the middle
            Of his legs fell Twaddle
        And astonished Mr. Twiddle,
            Who began to lift his noddle.
        Feed upon the fiddle-
            Faddle flummery, unswaddle
    A new-born self-sufficiency and think himself a [mockery.]
                                                                  G.J.


** HUMANITY

HUMANITY, n.  The human race, collectively, exclusive of the
anthropoid poets.


** HUMORIST

HUMORIST, n.  A plague that would have softened down the hoar
austerity of Pharaoh's heart and persuaded him to dismiss Israel with
his best wishes, cat-quick.

    Lo! the poor humorist, whose tortured mind
    See jokes in crowds, though still to gloom inclined --
    Whose simple appetite, untaught to stray,
    His brains, renewed by night, consumes by day.
    He thinks, admitted to an equal sty,
    A graceful hog would bear his company.
                                                        Alexander Poke


** HURRICANE

HURRICANE, n.  An atmospheric demonstration once very common but now
generally abandoned for the tornado and cyclone.  The hurricane is
still in popular use in the West Indies and is preferred by certain
old-fashioned sea-captains.  It is also used in the construction of
the upper decks of steamboats, but generally speaking, the hurricane's
usefulness has outlasted it.


** HURRY

HURRY, n.  The dispatch of bunglers.


** HUSBAND

HUSBAND, n.  One who, having dined, is charged with the care of the
plate.


** HYBRID

HYBRID, n.  A pooled issue.


** HYDRA

HYDRA, n.  A kind of animal that the ancients catalogued under many
heads.


** HYENA

HYENA, n.  A beast held in reverence by some oriental nations from its
habit of frequenting at night the burial-places of the dead.  But the
medical student does that.


** HYPOCHONDRIASIS

HYPOCHONDRIASIS, n.  Depression of one's own spirits.

    Some heaps of trash upon a vacant lot
    Where long the village rubbish had been shot
    Displayed a sign among the stuff and stumps --
    "Hypochondriasis."  It meant The Dumps.
                                                        Bogul S. Purvy


** HYPOCRITE

HYPOCRITE, n.  One who, profession virtues that he does not respect
secures the advantage of seeming to be what he depises.


                                  I


** I

I is the first letter of the alphabet, the first word of the language,
the first thought of the mind, the first object of affection.  In
grammar it is a pronoun of the first person and singular number.  Its
plural is said to be _We_, but how there can be more than one myself
is doubtless clearer the grammarians than it is to the author of this
incomparable dictionary.  Conception of two myselfs is difficult, but
fine.  The frank yet graceful use of "I" distinguishes a good writer
from a bad; the latter carries it with the manner of a thief trying to
cloak his loot.


** ICHOR

ICHOR, n.  A fluid that serves the gods and goddesses in place of
blood.

    Fair Venus, speared by Diomed,
    Restrained the raging chief and said:
    "Behold, rash mortal, whom you've bled --
    Your soul's stained white with ichorshed!"
                                                             Mary Doke


** ICONOCLAST

ICONOCLAST, n.  A breaker of idols, the worshipers whereof are
imperfectly gratified by the performance, and most strenuously protest
that he unbuildeth but doth not reedify, that he pulleth down but
pileth not up.  For the poor things would have other idols in place of
those he thwacketh upon the mazzard and dispelleth.  But the
iconoclast saith:  "Ye shall have none at all, for ye need them not;
and if the rebuilder fooleth round hereabout, behold I will depress
the head of him and sit thereon till he squawk it."


** IDIOT

IDIOT, n.  A member of a large and powerful tribe whose influence in
human affairs has always been dominant and controlling.  The Idiot's
activity is not confined to any special field of thought or action,
but "pervades and regulates the whole."  He has the last word in
everything; his decision is unappealable.  He sets the fashions and
opinion of taste, dictates the limitations of speech and circumscribes
conduct with a dead-line.


** IDLENESS

IDLENESS, n.  A model farm where the devil experiments with seeds of
new sins and promotes the growth of staple vices.


** IGNORAMUS

IGNORAMUS, n.  A person unacquainted with certain kinds of knowledge
familiar to yourself, and having certain other kinds that you know
nothing about.

    Dumble was an ignoramus,
    Mumble was for learning famous.
    Mumble said one day to Dumble:
    "Ignorance should be more humble.
    Not a spark have you of knowledge
    That was got in any college."
    Dumble said to Mumble:  "Truly
    You're self-satisfied unduly.
    Of things in college I'm denied
    A knowledge -- you of all beside."
                                                               Borelli


** ILLUMINATI

ILLUMINATI, n.  A sect of Spanish heretics of the latter part of the
sixteenth century; so called because they were light weights --
_cunctationes illuminati_.


** ILLUSTRIOUS

ILLUSTRIOUS, adj.  Suitably placed for the shafts of malice, envy and
detraction.


** IMAGINATION

IMAGINATION, n.  A warehouse of facts, with poet and liar in joint
ownership.


** IMBECILITY

IMBECILITY, n.  A kind of divine inspiration, or sacred fire affecting
censorious critics of this dictionary.


** IMMIGRANT

IMMIGRANT, n.  An unenlightened person who thinks one country better
than another.


** IMMODEST

IMMODEST, adj.  Having a strong sense of one's own merit, coupled with
a feeble conception of worth in others.

    There was once a man in Ispahan
        Ever and ever so long ago,
    And he had a head, the phrenologists said,
        That fitted him for a show.

    For his modesty's bump was so large a lump
        (Nature, they said, had taken a freak)
    That its summit stood far above the wood
        Of his hair, like a mountain peak.

    So modest a man in all Ispahan,
        Over and over again they swore --
    So humble and meek, you would vainly seek;
        None ever was found before.

    Meantime the hump of that awful bump
        Into the heavens contrived to get
    To so great a height that they called the wight
        The man with the minaret.

    There wasn't a man in all Ispahan
        Prouder, or louder in praise of his chump:
    With a tireless tongue and a brazen lung
        He bragged of that beautiful bump

    Till the Shah in a rage sent a trusty page
        Bearing a sack and a bow-string too,
    And that gentle child explained as he smiled:
        "A little present for you."

    The saddest man in all Ispahan,
        Sniffed at the gift, yet accepted the same.
    "If I'd lived," said he, "my humility
        Had given me deathless fame!"
                                                          Sukker Uffro


** IMMORAL

IMMORAL, adj.  Inexpedient.  Whatever in the long run and with regard
to the greater number of instances men find to be generally
inexpedient comes to be considered wrong, wicked, immoral.  If man's
notions of right and wrong have any other basis than this of
expediency; if they originated, or could have originated, in any other
way; if actions have in themselves a moral character apart from, and
nowise dependent on, their consequences -- then all philosophy is a
lie and reason a disorder of the mind.


** IMMORTALITY

IMMORTALITY, n.

    A toy which people cry for,
    And on their knees apply for,
    Dispute, contend and lie for,
        And if allowed
        Would be right proud
    Eternally to die for.
                                                                  G.J.


** IMPALE

IMPALE, v.t.  In popular usage to pierce with any weapon which remains
fixed in the wound.  This, however, is inaccurate; to imaple is,
properly, to put to death by thrusting an upright sharp stake into the
body, the victim being left in a sitting position.  This was a common
mode of punishment among many of the nations of antiquity, and is
still in high favor in China and other parts of Asia.  Down to the
beginning of the fifteenth century it was widely employed in
"churching" heretics and schismatics.  Wolecraft calls it the "stoole
of repentynge," and among the common people it was jocularly known as
"riding the one legged horse."  Ludwig Salzmann informs us that in
Thibet impalement is considered the most appropriate punishment for
crimes against religion; and although in China it is sometimes awarded
for secular offences, it is most frequently adjudged in cases of
sacrilege.  To the person in actual experience of impalement it must
be a matter of minor importance by what kind of civil or religious
dissent he was made acquainted with its discomforts; but doubtless he
would feel a certain satisfaction if able to contemplate himself in
the character of a weather-cock on the spire of the True Church.


** IMPARTIAL

IMPARTIAL, adj.  Unable to perceive any promise of personal advantage
from espousing either side of a controversy or adopting either of two
conflicting opinions.


** IMPENITENCE

IMPENITENCE, n.  A state of mind intermediate in point of time between
sin and punishment.


** IMPIETY

IMPIETY, n.  Your irreverence toward my deity.


** IMPOSITION

IMPOSITION, n.  The act of blessing or consecrating by the laying on
of hands -- a ceremony common to many ecclesiastical systems, but
performed with the frankest sincerity by the sect known as Thieves.

    "Lo! by the laying on of hands,"
        Say parson, priest and dervise,
    "We consecrate your cash and lands
        To ecclesiastical service.
    No doubt you'll swear till all is blue
    At such an imposition.  Do."
                                                          Pollo Doncas


** IMPOSTOR

IMPOSTOR n.  A rival aspirant to public honors.


** IMPROBABILITY

IMPROBABILITY, n.

    His tale he told with a solemn face
    And a tender, melancholy grace.
        Improbable 'twas, no doubt,
        When you came to think it out,
        But the fascinated crowd
        Their deep surprise avowed
    And all with a single voice averred
    'Twas the most amazing thing they'd heard --
    All save one who spake never a word,
        But sat as mum
        As if deaf and dumb,
    Serene, indifferent and unstirred.
        Then all the others turned to him
        And scrutinized him limb from limb --
        Scanned him alive;
        But he seemed to thrive
        And tranquiler grow each minute,
        As if there were nothing in it.
    "What! what!" cried one, "are you not amazed
    At what our friend has told?"  He raised
    Soberly then his eyes and gazed
        In a natural way
        And proceeded to say,
    As he crossed his feet on the mantel-shelf:
    "O no -- not at all; I'm a liar myself."


** IMPROVIDENCE

IMPROVIDENCE, n.  Provision for the needs of to-day from the revenues
of to-morrow.


** IMPUNITY

IMPUNITY, n.  Wealth.


** INADMISSIBLE

INADMISSIBLE, adj.  Not competent to be considered.  Said of certain
kinds of testimony which juries are supposed to be unfit to be
entrusted with, and which judges, therefore, rule out, even of
proceedings before themselves alone.  Hearsay evidence is inadmissible
because the person quoted was unsworn and is not before the court for
examination; yet most momentous actions, military, political,
commercial and of every other kind, are daily undertaken on hearsay
evidence.  There is no religion in the world that has any other basis
than hearsay evidence.  Revelation is hearsay evidence; that the
Scriptures are the word of God we have only the testimony of men long
dead whose identity is not clearly established and who are not known
to have been sworn in any sense.  Under the rules of evidence as they
now exist in this country, no single assertion in the Bible has in its
support any evidence admissible in a court of law.  It cannot be
proved that the battle of Blenheim ever was fought, that there was
such as person as Julius Caesar, such an empire as Assyria.
    But as records of courts of justice are admissible, it can easily
be proved that powerful and malevolent magicians once existed and were
a scourge to mankind.  The evidence (including confession) upon which
certain women were convicted of witchcraft and executed was without a
flaw; it is still unimpeachable.  The judges' decisions based on it
were sound in logic and in law.  Nothing in any existing court was
ever more thoroughly proved than the charges of witchcraft and sorcery
for which so many suffered death.  If there were no witches, human
testimony and human reason are alike destitute of value.


** INAUSPICIOUSLY

INAUSPICIOUSLY, adv.  In an unpromising manner, the auspices being
unfavorable.  Among the Romans it was customary before undertaking any
important action or enterprise to obtain from the augurs, or state
prophets, some hint of its probable outcome; and one of their favorite
and most trustworthy modes of divination consisted in observing the
flight of birds -- the omens thence derived being called _auspices_. 
Newspaper reporters and certain miscreant lexicographers have decided
that the word -- always in the plural -- shall mean "patronage" or
"management"; as, "The festivities were under the auspices of the
Ancient and Honorable Order of Body-Snatchers"; or, "The hilarities
were auspicated by the Knights of Hunger."

    A Roman slave appeared one day
    Before the Augur.  "Tell me, pray,
    If --" here the Augur, smiling, made
    A checking gesture and displayed
    His open palm, which plainly itched,
    For visibly its surface twitched.
    A _denarius_ (the Latin nickel)
    Successfully allayed the tickle,
    And then the slave proceeded:  "Please
    Inform me whether Fate decrees
    Success or failure in what I
    To-night (if it be dark) shall try.
    Its nature?  Never mind -- I think
    'Tis writ on this" -- and with a wink
    Which darkened half the earth, he drew
    Another denarius to view,
    Its shining face attentive scanned,
    Then slipped it into the good man's hand,
    Who with great gravity said:  "Wait
    While I retire to question Fate."
    That holy person then withdrew
    His scared clay and, passing through
    The temple's rearward gate, cried "Shoo!"
    Waving his robe of office.  Straight
    Each sacred peacock and its mate
    (Maintained for Juno's favor) fled
    With clamor from the trees o'erhead,
    Where they were perching for the night.
    The temple's roof received their flight,
    For thither they would always go,
    When danger threatened them below.
    Back to the slave the Augur went:
    "My son, forecasting the event
    By flight of birds, I must confess
    The auspices deny success."
    That slave retired, a sadder man,
    Abandoning his secret plan --
    Which was (as well the craft seer
    Had from the first divined) to clear
    The wall and fraudulently seize
    On Juno's poultry in the trees.
                                                                  G.J.


** INCOME

INCOME, n.  The natural and rational gauge and measure of
respectability, the commonly accepted standards being artificial,
arbitrary and fallacious; for, as "Sir Sycophas Chrysolater" in the
play has justly remarked, "the true use and function of property (in
whatsoever it consisteth -- coins, or land, or houses, or merchant-
stuff, or anything which may be named as holden of right to one's own
subservience) as also of honors, titles, preferments and place, and
all favor and acquaintance of persons of quality or ableness, are but
to get money.  Hence it followeth that all things are truly to be
rated as of worth in measure of their serviceableness to that end; and
their possessors should take rank in agreement thereto, neither the
lord of an unproducing manor, howsoever broad and ancient, nor he who
bears an unremunerate dignity, nor yet the pauper favorite of a king,
being esteemed of level excellency with him whose riches are of daily
accretion; and hardly should they whose wealth is barren claim and
rightly take more honor than the poor and unworthy."


** INCOMPATIBILITY

INCOMPATIBILITY, n.  In matrimony a similarity of tastes, particularly
the taste for domination.  Incompatibility may, however, consist of a
meek-eyed matron living just around the corner.  It has even been
known to wear a moustache.


** INCOMPOSSIBLE

INCOMPOSSIBLE, adj.  Unable to exist if something else exists.  Two
things are incompossible when the world of being has scope enough for
one of them, but not enough for both -- as Walt Whitman's poetry and
God's mercy to man.  Incompossibility, it will be seen, is only
incompatibility let loose.  Instead of such low language as "Go heel
yourself -- I mean to kill you on sight," the words, "Sir, we are
incompossible," would convey and equally significant intimation and in
stately courtesy are altogether superior.


** INCUBUS

INCUBUS, n.  One of a race of highly improper demons who, though
probably not wholly extinct, may be said to have seen their best
nights.  For a complete account of _incubi_ and _succubi_, including
_incubae_ and _succubae_, see the _Liber Demonorum_ of Protassus
(Paris, 1328), which contains much curious information that would be
out of place in a dictionary intended as a text-book for the public
schools.
    Victor Hugo relates that in the Channel Islands Satan himself --
tempted more than elsewhere by the beauty of the women, doubtless --
sometimes plays at _incubus_, greatly to the inconvenience and alarm
of the good dames who wish to be loyal to their marriage vows,
generally speaking.  A certain lady applied to the parish priest to
learn how they might, in the dark, distinguish the hardy intruder from
their husbands.  The holy man said they must feel his brown for horns;
but Hugo is ungallant enough to hint a doubt of the efficacy of the
test.


** INCUMBENT

INCUMBENT, n.  A person of the liveliest interest to the outcumbents.


** INDECISION

INDECISION, n.  The chief element of success; "for whereas," saith Sir
Thomas Brewbold, "there is but one way to do nothing and divers way to
do something, whereof, to a surety, only one is the right way, it
followeth that he who from indecision standeth still hath not so many
chances of going astray as he who pusheth forwards" -- a most clear
and satisfactory exposition on the matter.
    "Your prompt decision to attack," said Genera Grant on a certain
occasion to General Gordon Granger, "was admirable; you had but five
minutes to make up your mind in."
    "Yes, sir," answered the victorious subordinate, "it is a great
thing to be know exactly what to do in an emergency.  When in doubt
whether to attack or retreat I never hesitate a moment -- I toss us a
copper."
    "Do you mean to say that's what you did this time?"
    "Yes, General; but for Heaven's sake don't reprimand me:  I
disobeyed the coin."


** INDIFFERENT

INDIFFERENT, adj.  Imperfectly sensible to distinctions among things.

    "You tiresome man!" cried Indolentio's wife,
    "You've grown indifferent to all in life."
    "Indifferent?" he drawled with a slow smile;
    "I would be, dear, but it is not worth while."
                                                     Apuleius M. Gokul


** INDIGESTION

INDIGESTION, n.  A disease which the patient and his friends
frequently mistake for deep religious conviction and concern for the
salvation of mankind.  As the simple Red Man of the western wild put
it, with, it must be confessed, a certain force:  "Plenty well, no
pray; big bellyache, heap God."


** INDISCRETION

INDISCRETION, n.  The guilt of woman.


** INEXPEDIENT

INEXPEDIENT, adj.  Not calculated to advance one's interests.


** INFANCY

INFANCY, n.  The period of our lives when, according to Wordsworth,
"Heaven lies about us."  The world begins lying about us pretty soon
afterward.


** INFERIAE

INFERIAE,n.  [Latin]  Among the Greeks and Romans, sacrifices for
propitation of the _Dii Manes_, or souls of the dead heroes; for the
pious ancients could not invent enough gods to satisfy their spiritual
needs, and had to have a number of makeshift deities, or, as a sailor
might say, jury-gods, which they made out of the most unpromising
materials.  It was while sacrificing a bullock to the spirit of
Agamemnon that Laiaides, a priest of Aulis, was favored with an
audience of that illustrious warrior's shade, who prophetically
recounted to him the birth of Christ and the triumph of Christianity,
giving him also a rapid but tolerably complete review of events down
to the reign of Saint Louis.  The narrative ended abruptly at the
point, owing to the inconsiderate crowing of a cock, which compelled
the ghosted King of Men to scamper back to Hades.  There is a fine
mediaeval flavor to this story, and as it has not been traced back
further than Pere Brateille, a pious but obscure writer at the court
of Saint Louis, we shall probably not err on the side of presumption
in considering it apocryphal, though Monsignor Capel's judgment of the
matter might be different; and to that I bow -- wow.


** INFIDEL

INFIDEL, n.  In New York, one who does not believe in the Christian
religion; in Constantinople, one who does.  (See GIAOUR.)  A kind of
scoundrel imperfectly reverent of, and niggardly contributory to,
divines, ecclesiastics, popes, parsons, canons, monks, mollahs,
voodoos, presbyters, hierophants, prelates, obeah-men, abbes, nuns,
missionaries, exhorters, deacons, friars, hadjis, high-priests,
muezzins, brahmins, medicine-men, confessors, eminences, elders,
primates, prebendaries, pilgrims, prophets, imaums, beneficiaries,
clerks, vicars-choral, archbishops, bishops, abbots, priors,
preachers, padres, abbotesses, caloyers, palmers, curates, patriarchs,
bonezs, santons, beadsmen, canonesses, residentiaries, diocesans,
deans, subdeans, rural deans, abdals, charm-sellers, archdeacons,
hierarchs, class-leaders, incumbents, capitulars, sheiks, talapoins,
postulants, scribes, gooroos, precentors, beadles, fakeers, sextons,
reverences, revivalists, cenobites, perpetual curates, chaplains,
mudjoes, readers, novices, vicars, pastors, rabbis, ulemas, lamas,
sacristans, vergers, dervises, lectors, church wardens, cardinals,
prioresses, suffragans, acolytes, rectors, cures, sophis, mutifs and
pumpums.


** INFLUENCE

INFLUENCE, n.  In politics, a visionary _quo_ given in exchange for a
substantial _quid_.


** INFALAPSARIAN

INFALAPSARIAN, n.  One who ventures to believe that Adam need not have
sinned unless he had a mind to -- in opposition to the
Supralapsarians, who hold that that luckless person's fall was decreed
from the beginning.  Infralapsarians are sometimes called
Sublapsarians without material effect upon the importance and lucidity
of their views about Adam.

    Two theologues once, as they wended their way
    To chapel, engaged in colloquial fray --
    An earnest logomachy, bitter as gall,
    Concerning poor Adam and what made him fall.
    "'Twas Predestination," cried one -- "for the Lord
    Decreed he should fall of his own accord."
    "Not so -- 'twas Free will," the other maintained,
    "Which led him to choose what the Lord had ordained."
    So fierce and so fiery grew the debate
    That nothing but bloodshed their dudgeon could sate;
    So off flew their cassocks and caps to the ground
    And, moved by the spirit, their hands went round.
    Ere either had proved his theology right
    By winning, or even beginning, the fight,
    A gray old professor of Latin came by,
    A staff in his hand and a scowl in his eye,
    And learning the cause of their quarrel (for still
    As they clumsily sparred they disputed with skill
    Of foreordination freedom of will)
    Cried:  "Sirrahs! this reasonless warfare compose:
    Atwixt ye's no difference worthy of blows.
    The sects ye belong to -- I'm ready to swear
    Ye wrongly interpret the names that they bear.
    _You_ -- Infralapsarian son of a clown! --
    Should only contend that Adam slipped down;
    While _you_ -- you Supralapsarian pup! --
    Should nothing aver but that Adam slipped up.
    It's all the same whether up or down
    You slip on a peel of banana brown.
    Even Adam analyzed not his blunder,
    But thought he had slipped on a peal of thunder!
                                                                  G.J.


** INGRATE

INGRATE, n.  One who receives a benefit from another, or is otherwise
an object of charity.

    "All men are ingrates," sneered the cynic.  "Nay,"
        The good philanthropist replied;
    "I did great service to a man one day
    Who never since has cursed me to repay,
                Nor vilified."

    "Ho!" cried the cynic, "lead me to him straight --
        With veneration I am overcome,
    And fain would have his blessing."  "Sad your fate --
    He cannot bless you, for AI grieve to state
                This man is dumb."
                                                            Ariel Selp


** INJURY

INJURY, n.  An offense next in degree of enormity to a slight.


** INJUSTICE

INJUSTICE, n.  A burden which of all those that we load upon others
and carry ourselves is lightest in the hands and heaviest upon the
back.


** INK

INK, n.  A villainous compound of tannogallate of iron, gum-arabic and
water, chiefly used to facilitate the infection of idiocy and promote
intellectual crime.  The properties of ink are peculiar and
contradictory:  it may be used to make reputations and unmake them; to
blacken them and to make them white; but it is most generally and
acceptably employed as a mortar to bind together the stones of an
edifice of fame, and as a whitewash to conceal afterward the rascal
quality of the material.  There are men called journalists who have
established ink baths which some persons pay money to get into, others
to get out of.  Not infrequently it occurs that a person who has paid
to get in pays twice as much to get out.


** INNATE

INNATE, adj.  Natural, inherent -- as innate ideas, that is to say,
ideas that we are born with, having had them previously imparted to
us.  The doctrine of innate ideas is one of the most admirable faiths
of philosophy, being itself an innate idea and therefore inaccessible
to disproof, though Locke foolishly supposed himself to have given it
"a black eye."  Among innate ideas may be mentioned the belief in
one's ability to conduct a newspaper, in the greatness of one's
country, in the superiority of one's civilization, in the importance
of one's personal affairs and in the interesting nature of one's
diseases.


** IN'ARDS
IN'ARDS, n.  The stomach, heart, soul and other bowels.  Many eminent
investigators do not class the soul as an in'ard, but that acute
observer and renowned authority, Dr. Gunsaulus, is persuaded that the
mysterious organ known as the spleen is nothing less than our
important part.  To the contrary, Professor Garrett P. Servis holds
that man's soul is that prolongation of his spinal marrow which forms
the pith of his no tail; and for demonstration of his faith points
confidently to the fact that no tailed animals have no souls. 
Concerning these two theories, it is best to suspend judgment by
believing both.


** INSCRIPTION

INSCRIPTION, n.  Something written on another thing.  Inscriptions are
of many kinds, but mostly memorial, intended to commemorate the fame
of some illustrious person and hand down to distant ages the record of
his services and virtues.  To this class of inscriptions belongs the
name of John Smith, penciled on the Washington monument.  Following
are examples of memorial inscriptions on tombstones:  (See EPITAPH.)

    "In the sky my soul is found,
    And my body in the ground.
    By and by my body'll rise
    To my spirit in the skies,
    Soaring up to Heaven's gate.
            1878."

    "Sacred to the memory of Jeremiah Tree.  Cut down May 9th, 1862,
aged 27 yrs. 4 mos. and 12 ds.  Indigenous."

        "Affliction sore long time she boar,
            Phisicians was in vain,
        Till Deth released the dear deceased
            And left her a remain.
    Gone to join Ananias in the regions of bliss."

    "The clay that rests beneath this stone
    As Silas Wood was widely known.
    Now, lying here, I ask what good
    It was to let me be S. Wood.
    O Man, let not ambition trouble you,
    Is the advice of Silas W."

    "Richard Haymon, of Heaven.  Fell to Earth Jan. 20, 1807, and had
the dust brushed off him Oct. 3, 1874."


** INSECTIVORA

INSECTIVORA, n.

    "See," cries the chorus of admiring preachers,
    "How Providence provides for all His creatures!"
    "His care," the gnat said, "even the insects follows:
    For us He has provided wrens and swallows."
                                                         Sempen Railey


** INSURANCE

INSURANCE, n.  An ingenious modern game of chance in which the player
is permitted to enjoy the comfortable conviction that he is beating
the man who keeps the table.

    INSURANCE AGENT:  My dear sir, that is a fine house -- pray let me
        insure it.
    HOUSE OWNER:  With pleasure.  Please make the annual premium so
        low that by the time when, according to the tables of your
        actuary, it will probably be destroyed by fire I will have
        paid you considerably less than the face of the policy.
    INSURANCE AGENT:  O dear, no -- we could not afford to do that. 
        We must fix the premium so that you will have paid more.
    HOUSE OWNER:  How, then, can _I_ afford _that_?
    INSURANCE AGENT:  Why, your house may burn down at any time. 
        There was Smith's house, for example, which --
    HOUSE OWNER:  Spare me -- there were Brown's house, on the
        contrary, and Jones's house, and Robinson's house, which --
    INSURANCE AGENT:  Spare _me_!
    HOUSE OWNER:  Let us understand each other.  You want me to pay
        you money on the supposition that something will occur
        previously to the time set by yourself for its occurrence.  In
        other words, you expect me to bet that my house will not last
        so long as you say that it will probably last.
    INSURANCE AGENT:  But if your house burns without insurance it
        will be a total loss.
    HOUSE OWNER:  Beg your pardon -- by your own actuary's tables I
        shall probably have saved, when it burns, all the premiums I
        would otherwise have paid to you -- amounting to more than the
        face of the policy they would have bought.  But suppose it to
        burn, uninsured, before the time upon which your figures are
        based.  If I could not afford that, how could you if it were
        insured?
    INSURANCE AGENT:  O, we should make ourselves whole from our
        luckier ventures with other clients.  Virtually, they pay your
        loss.
    HOUSE OWNER:  And virtually, then, don't I help to pay their
        losses?  Are not their houses as likely as mine to burn before
        they have paid you as much as you must pay them?  The case
        stands this way:  you expect to take more money from your
        clients than you pay to them, do you not?
    INSURANCE AGENT:  Certainly; if we did not --
    HOUSE OWNER:  I would not trust you with my money.  Very well
        then.  If it is _certain_, with reference to the whole body of
        your clients, that they lose money on you it is _probable_,
        with reference to any one of them, that _he_ will.  It is
        these individual probabilities that make the aggregate
        certainty.
    INSURANCE AGENT:  I will not deny it -- but look at the figures in
        this pamph --
    HOUSE OWNER:  Heaven forbid!
    INSURANCE AGENT:  You spoke of saving the premiums which you would
        otherwise pay to me.  Will you not be more likely to squander
        them?  We offer you an incentive to thrift.
    HOUSE OWNER:  The willingness of A to take care of B's money is
        not peculiar to insurance, but as a charitable institution you
        command esteem.  Deign to accept its expression from a
        Deserving Object.


** INSURRECTION

INSURRECTION, n.  An unsuccessful revolution.  Disaffection's failure
to substitute misrule for bad government.


** INTENTION

INTENTION, n.  The mind's sense of the prevalence of one set of
influences over another set; an effect whose cause is the imminence,
immediate or remote, of the performance of an involuntary act.


** INTERPRETER

INTERPRETER, n.  One who enables two persons of different languages to
understand each other by repeating to each what it would have been to
the interpreter's advantage for the other to have said.


** INTERREGNUM

INTERREGNUM, n.  The period during which a monarchical country is
governed by a warm spot on the cushion of the throne.  The experiment
of letting the spot grow cold has commonly been attended by most
unhappy results from the zeal of many worthy persons to make it warm
again.


** INTIMACY

INTIMACY, n.  A relation into which fools are providentially drawn for
their mutual destruction.

    Two Seidlitz powders, one in blue
    And one in white, together drew
    And having each a pleasant sense
    Of t'other powder's excellence,
    Forsook their jackets for the snug
    Enjoyment of a common mug.
    So close their intimacy grew
    One paper would have held the two.
    To confidences straight they fell,
    Less anxious each to hear than tell;
    Then each remorsefully confessed
    To all the virtues he possessed,
    Acknowledging he had them in
    So high degree it was a sin.
    The more they said, the more they felt
    Their spirits with emotion melt,
    Till tears of sentiment expressed
    Their feelings.  Then they effervesced!
    So Nature executes her feats
    Of wrath on friends and sympathetes
    The good old rule who don't apply,
    That you are you and I am I.


** INTRODUCTION

INTRODUCTION, n.  A social ceremony invented by the devil for the
gratification of his servants and the plaguing of his enemies.  The
introduction attains its most malevolent development in this century,
being, indeed, closely related to our political system.  Every
American being the equal of every other American, it follows that
everybody has the right to know everybody else, which implies the
right to introduce without request or permission.  The Declaration of
Independence should have read thus:

        "We hold these truths to be self-evident:  that all men are
    created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain
    inalienable rights; that among these are life, and the right to
    make that of another miserable by thrusting upon him an
    incalculable quantity of acquaintances; liberty, particularly the
    liberty to introduce persons to one another without first
    ascertaining if they are not already acquainted as enemies; and
    the pursuit of another's happiness with a running pack of
    strangers."


** INVENTOR

INVENTOR, n.  A person who makes an ingenious arrangement of wheels,
levers and springs, and believes it civilization.


** IRRELIGION

IRRELIGION, n.  The principal one of the great faiths of the world.


** ITCH

ITCH, n.  The patriotism of a Scotchman.


                                  J


** J

J is a consonant in English, but some nations use it as a vowel --
than which nothing could be more absurd.  Its original form, which has
been but slightly modified, was that of the tail of a subdued dog, and
it was not a letter but a character, standing for a Latin verb,
_jacere_, "to throw," because when a stone is thrown at a dog the
dog's tail assumes that shape.  This is the origin of the letter, as
expounded by the renowned Dr. Jocolpus Bumer, of the University of
Belgrade, who established his conclusions on the subject in a work of
three quarto volumes and committed suicide on being reminded that the
j in the Roman alphabet had originally no curl.


** JEALOUS

JEALOUS, adj.  Unduly concerned about the preservation of that which
can be lost only if not worth keeping.


** JESTER

JESTER, n.  An officer formerly attached to a king's household, whose
business it was to amuse the court by ludicrous actions and
utterances, the absurdity being attested by his motley costume.  The
king himself being attired with dignity, it took the world some
centuries to discover that his own conduct and decrees were
sufficiently ridiculous for the amusement not only of his court but of
all mankind.  The jester was commonly called a fool, but the poets and
romancers have ever delighted to represent him as a singularly wise
and witty person.  In the circus of to-day the melancholy ghost of the
court fool effects the dejection of humbler audiences with the same
jests wherewith in life he gloomed the marble hall, panged the
patrician sense of humor and tapped the tank of royal tears.

    The widow-queen of Portugal
        Had an audacious jester
    Who entered the confessional
        Disguised, and there confessed her.

    "Father," she said, "thine ear bend down --
        My sins are more than scarlet:
    I love my fool -- blaspheming clown,
        And common, base-born varlet."

    "Daughter," the mimic priest replied,
        "That sin, indeed, is awful:
    The church's pardon is denied
        To love that is unlawful.

    "But since thy stubborn heart will be
        For him forever pleading,
    Thou'dst better make him, by decree,
        A man of birth and breeding."

    She made the fool a duke, in hope
        With Heaven's taboo to palter;
    Then told a priest, who told the Pope,
        Who damned her from the altar!
                                                            Barel Dort


** JEWS-HARP

JEWS-HARP, n.  An unmusical instrument, played by holding it fast with
the teeth and trying to brush it away with the finger.


** JOSS-STICKS

JOSS-STICKS, n.  Small sticks burned by the Chinese in their pagan
tomfoolery, in imitation of certain sacred rites of our holy religion.


** JUSTICE

JUSTICE, n.  A commodity which is a more or less adulterated condition
the State sells to the citizen as a reward for his allegiance, taxes
and personal service.


                                  K



** K

K is a consonant that we get from the Greeks, but it can be traced
away back beyond them to the Cerathians, a small commercial nation
inhabiting the peninsula of Smero.  In their tongue it was called
_Klatch_, which means "destroyed."  The form of the letter was
originally precisely that of our H, but the erudite Dr. Snedeker
explains that it was altered to its present shape to commemorate the
destruction of the great temple of Jarute by an earthquake, _circa_
730 B.C.  This building was famous for the two lofty columns of its
portico, one of which was broken in half by the catastrophe, the other
remaining intact.  As the earlier form of the letter is supposed to
have been suggested by these pillars, so, it is thought by the great
antiquary, its later was adopted as a simple and natural -- not to say
touching -- means of keeping the calamity ever in the national memory. 
It is not known if the name of the letter was altered as an additional
mnemonic, or if the name was always _Klatch_ and the destruction one
of nature's pums.  As each theory seems probable enough, I see no
objection to believing both -- and Dr. Snedeker arrayed himself on
that side of the question.


** KEEP

KEEP, v.t.

    He willed away his whole estate,
        And then in death he fell asleep,
    Murmuring:  "Well, at any rate,
        My name unblemished I shall keep."
    But when upon the tomb 'twas wrought
    Whose was it? -- for the dead keep naught.
                                                     Durang Gophel Arn


** KILL

KILL, v.t.  To create a vacancy without nominating a successor.


** KILT

KILT, n.  A costume sometimes worn by Scotchmen in America and
Americans in Scotland.


** KINDNESS

KINDNESS, n.  A brief preface to ten volumes of exaction.


** KING

KING, n.  A male person commonly known in America as a "crowned head,"
although he never wears a crown and has usually no head to speak of.

    A king, in times long, long gone by,
        Said to his lazy jester:
    "If I were you and you were I
    My moments merrily would fly --
        Nor care nor grief to pester."

    "The reason, Sire, that you would thrive,"
        The fool said -- "if you'll hear it --
    Is that of all the fools alive
    Who own you for their sovereign, I've
        The most forgiving spirit."
                                                             Oogum Bem


** KING'S EVIL

KING'S EVIL, n.  A malady that was formerly cured by the touch of the
sovereign, but has now to be treated by the physicians.  Thus 'the
most pious Edward" of England used to lay his royal hand upon the
ailing subjects and make them whole --

                    a crowd of wretched souls
    That stay his cure:  their malady convinces
    The great essay of art; but at his touch,
    Such sanctity hath Heaven given his hand,
    They presently amend,

as the "Doctor" in _Macbeth_ hath it.  This useful property of the
royal hand could, it appears, be transmitted along with other crown
properties; for according to "Malcolm,"

                            'tis spoken
    To the succeeding royalty he leaves
    The healing benediction.

    But the gift somewhere dropped out of the line of succession:  the
later sovereigns of England have not been tactual healers, and the
disease once honored with the name "king's evil" now bears the humbler
one of "scrofula," from _scrofa_, a sow.  The date and author of the
following epigram are known only to the author of this dictionary, but
it is old enough to show that the jest about Scotland's national
disorder is not a thing of yesterday.

    Ye Kynge his evill in me laye,
    Wh. he of Scottlande charmed awaye.
    He layde his hand on mine and sayd:
    "Be gone!"  Ye ill no longer stayd.
    But O ye wofull plyght in wh.
    I'm now y-pight:  I have ye itche!

    The superstition that maladies can be cured by royal taction is
dead, but like many a departed conviction it has left a monument of
custom to keep its memory green.  The practice of forming a line and
shaking the President's hand had no other origin, and when that great
dignitary bestows his healing salutation on

                        strangely visited people,
    All swoln and ulcerous, pitiful to the eye,
    The mere despair of surgery,

he and his patients are handing along an extinguished torch which once
was kindled at the altar-fire of a faith long held by all classes of
men.  It is a beautiful and edifying "survival" -- one which brings
the sainted past close home in our "business and bosoms."


** KISS

KISS, n.  A word invented by the poets as a rhyme for "bliss."  It is
supposed to signify, in a general way, some kind of rite or ceremony
appertaining to a good understanding; but the manner of its
performance is unknown to this lexicographer.


** KLEPTOMANIAC

KLEPTOMANIAC, n.  A rich thief.


** KNIGHT

KNIGHT, n.

    Once a warrior gentle of birth,
    Then a person of civic worth,
    Now a fellow to move our mirth.
    Warrior, person, and fellow -- no more:
    We must knight our dogs to get any lower.
    Brave Knights Kennelers then shall be,
    Noble Knights of the Golden Flea,
    Knights of the Order of St. Steboy,
    Knights of St. Gorge and Sir Knights Jawy.
    God speed the day when this knighting fad
    Shall go to the dogs and the dogs go mad.


** KORAN

KORAN, n.  A book which the Mohammedans foolishly believe to have been
written by divine inspiration, but which Christians know to be a
wicked imposture, contradictory to the Holy Scriptures.


                                  L



** LABOR

LABOR, n.  One of the processes by which A acquires property for B.


** LAND

LAND, n.  A part of the earth's surface, considered as property.  The
theory that land is property subject to private ownership and control
is the foundation of modern society, and is eminently worthy of the
superstructure.  Carried to its logical conclusion, it means that some
have the right to prevent others from living; for the right to own
implies the right exclusively to occupy; and in fact laws of trespass
are enacted wherever property in land is recognized.  It follows that
if the whole area of _terra firma_ is owned by A, B and C, there will
be no place for D, E, F and G to be born, or, born as trespassers, to
exist.

    A life on the ocean wave,
        A home on the rolling deep,
    For the spark the nature gave
        I have there the right to keep.

    They give me the cat-o'-nine
        Whenever I go ashore.
    Then ho! for the flashing brine --
        I'm a natural commodore!
                                                                 Dodle


** LANGUAGE

LANGUAGE, n.  The music with which we charm the serpents guarding
another's treasure.


** LAOCOON

LAOCOON, n.  A famous piece of antique scripture representing a priest
of that name and his two sons in the folds of two enormous serpents. 
The skill and diligence with which the old man and lads support the
serpents and keep them up to their work have been justly regarded as
one of the noblest artistic illustrations of the mastery of human
intelligence over brute inertia.


** LAP

LAP, n.  One of the most important organs of the female system -- an
admirable provision of nature for the repose of infancy, but chiefly
useful in rural festivities to support plates of cold chicken and
heads of adult males.  The male of our species has a rudimentary lap,
imperfectly developed and in no way contributing to the animal's
substantial welfare.


** LAST

LAST, n.  A shoemaker's implement, named by a frowning Providence as
opportunity to the maker of puns.

    Ah, punster, would my lot were cast,
        Where the cobbler is unknown,
    So that I might forget his last
        And hear your own.
                                                          Gargo Repsky


** LAUGHTER

LAUGHTER, n.  An interior convulsion, producing a distortion of the
features and accompanied by inarticulate noises.  It is infectious
and, though intermittent, incurable.  Liability to attacks of laughter
is one of the characteristics distinguishing man from the animals --
these being not only inaccessible to the provocation of his example,
but impregnable to the microbes having original jurisdiction in
bestowal of the disease.  Whether laughter could be imparted to
animals by inoculation from the human patient is a question that has
not been answered by experimentation.  Dr. Meir Witchell holds that
the infection character of laughter is due to the instantaneous
fermentation of _sputa_ diffused in a spray.  From this peculiarity he
names the disorder _Convulsio spargens_.


** LAUREATE

LAUREATE, adj.  Crowned with leaves of the laurel.  In England the
Poet Laureate is an officer of the sovereign's court, acting as
dancing skeleton at every royal feast and singing-mute at every royal
funeral.  Of all incumbents of that high office, Robert Southey had
the most notable knack at drugging the Samson of public joy and
cutting his hair to the quick; and he had an artistic color-sense
which enabled him so to blacken a public grief as to give it the
aspect of a national crime.


** LAUREL

LAUREL, n.  The _laurus_, a vegetable dedicated to Apollo, and
formerly defoliated to wreathe the brows of victors and such poets as
had influence at court.  (_Vide supra._)


** LAW

LAW, n.

    Once Law was sitting on the bench,
        And Mercy knelt a-weeping.
    "Clear out!" he cried, "disordered wench!
        Nor come before me creeping.
    Upon your knees if you appear,
    'Tis plain your have no standing here."

    Then Justice came.  His Honor cried:
        "_Your_ status? -- devil seize you!"
    "_Amica curiae,_" she replied --
        "Friend of the court, so please you."
    "Begone!" he shouted -- "there's the door --
    I never saw your face before!"
                                                                  G.J.


** LAWFUL

LAWFUL, adj.  Compatible with the will of a judge having jurisdiction.


** LAWYER

LAWYER, n.  One skilled in circumvention of the law.


** LAZINESS

LAZINESS, n.  Unwarranted repose of manner in a person of low degree.


** LEAD

LEAD, n.  A heavy blue-gray metal much used in giving stability to
light lovers -- particularly to those who love not wisely but other
men's wives.  Lead is also of great service as a counterpoise to an
argument of such weight that it turns the scale of debate the wrong
way.  An interesting fact in the chemistry of international
controversy is that at the point of contact of two patriotisms lead is
precipitated in great quantities.

    Hail, holy Lead! -- of human feuds the great
        And universal arbiter; endowed
        With penetration to pierce any cloud
    Fogging the field of controversial hate,
    And with a sift, inevitable, straight,
        Searching precision find the unavowed
        But vital point.  Thy judgment, when allowed
    By the chirurgeon, settles the debate.
    O useful metal! -- were it not for thee
        We'd grapple one another's ears alway:
    But when we hear thee buzzing like a bee
        We, like old Muhlenberg, "care not to stay."
    And when the quick have run away like pellets
    Jack Satan smelts the dead to make new bullets.


** LEARNING

LEARNING, n.  The kind of ignorance distinguishing the studious.


** LECTURER

LECTURER, n.  One with his hand in your pocket, his tongue in your ear
and his faith in your patience.


** LEGACY

LEGACY, n.  A gift from one who is legging it out of this vale of
tears.


** LEONINE

LEONINE, adj.  Unlike a menagerie lion.  Leonine verses are those in
which a word in the middle of a line rhymes with a word at the end, as
in this famous passage from Bella Peeler Silcox:

    The electric light invades the dunnest deep of Hades.
    Cries Pluto, 'twixt his snores:  "O tempora! O mores!"

    It should be explained that Mrs. Silcox does not undertake to
teach pronunciation of the Greek and Latin tongues.  Leonine verses
are so called in honor of a poet named Leo, whom prosodists appear to
find a pleasure in believing to have been the first to discover that a
rhyming couplet could be run into a single line.


** LETTUCE

LETTUCE, n.  An herb of the genus _Lactuca_, "Wherewith," says that
pious gastronome, Hengist Pelly, "God has been pleased to reward the
good and punish the wicked.  For by his inner light the righteous man
has discerned a manner of compounding for it a dressing to the
appetency whereof a multitude of gustible condiments conspire, being
reconciled and ameliorated with profusion of oil, the entire
comestible making glad the heart of the godly and causing his face to
shine.  But the person of spiritual unworth is successfully tempted to
the Adversary to eat of lettuce with destitution of oil, mustard, egg,
salt and garlic, and with a rascal bath of vinegar polluted with
sugar.  Wherefore the person of spiritual unworth suffers an
intestinal pang of strange complexity and raises the song."


** LEVIATHAN

LEVIATHAN, n.  An enormous aquatic animal mentioned by Job.  Some
suppose it to have been the whale, but that distinguished
ichthyologer, Dr. Jordan, of Stanford University, maintains with
considerable heat that it was a species of gigantic Tadpole (_Thaddeus
Polandensis_) or Polliwig -- _Maria pseudo-hirsuta_.  For an
exhaustive description and history of the Tadpole consult the famous
monograph of Jane Potter, _Thaddeus of Warsaw_.


** LEXICOGRAPHER

LEXICOGRAPHER, n.  A pestilent fellow who, under the pretense of
recording some particular stage in the development of a language, does
what he can to arrest its growth, stiffen its flexibility and
mechanize its methods.  For your lexicographer, having written his
dictionary, comes to be considered "as one having authority," whereas
his function is only to make a record, not to give a law.  The natural
servility of the human understanding having invested him with judicial
power, surrenders its right of reason and submits itself to a
chronicle as if it were a statue.  Let the dictionary (for example)
mark a good word as "obsolete" or "obsolescent" and few men
thereafter venture to use it, whatever their need of it and however
desirable its restoration to favor -- whereby the process of
improverishment is accelerated and speech decays.  On the contrary,
recognizing the truth that language must grow by innovation if it grow
at all, makes new words and uses the old in an unfamiliar sense, has
no following and is tartly reminded that "it isn't in the dictionary"
-- although down to the time of the first lexicographer (Heaven
forgive him!) no author ever had used a word that _was_ in the
dictionary.  In the golden prime and high noon of English speech; when
from the lips of the great Elizabethans fell words that made their own
meaning and carried it in their very sound; when a Shakespeare and a
Bacon were possible, and the language now rapidly perishing at one end
and slowly renewed at the other was in vigorous growth and hardy
preservation -- sweeter than honey and stronger than a lion -- the
lexicographer was a person unknown, the dictionary a creation which
his Creator had not created him to create.

    God said:  "Let Spirit perish into Form,"
    And lexicographers arose, a swarm!
    Thought fled and left her clothing, which they took,
    And catalogued each garment in a book.
    Now, from her leafy covert when she cries:
    "Give me my clothes and I'll return," they rise
    And scan the list, and say without compassion:
    "Excuse us -- they are mostly out of fashion."
                                                       Sigismund Smith


** LIAR

LIAR, n.  A lawyer with a roving commission.


** LIBERTY

LIBERTY, n.  One of Imagination's most precious possessions.

    The rising People, hot and out of breath,
    Roared around the palace:  "Liberty or death!"
    "If death will do," the King said, "let me reign;
    You'll have, I'm sure, no reason to complain."
                                                      Martha Braymance


** LICKSPITTLE

LICKSPITTLE, n.  A useful functionary, not infrequently found editing
a newspaper.  In his character of editor he is closely allied to the
blackmailer by the tie of occasional identity; for in truth the
lickspittle is only the blackmailer under another aspect, although the
latter is frequently found as an independent species.  Lickspittling
is more detestable than blackmailing, precisely as the business of a
confidence man is more detestable than that of a highway robber; and
the parallel maintains itself throughout, for whereas few robbers will
cheat, every sneak will plunder if he dare.


** LIFE

LIFE, n.  A spiritual pickle preserving the body from decay.  We live
in daily apprehension of its loss; yet when lost it is not missed. 
The question, "Is life worth living?" has been much discussed;
particularly by those who think it is not, many of whom have written
at great length in support of their view and by careful observance of
the laws of health enjoyed for long terms of years the honors of
successful controversy.

    "Life's not worth living, and that's the truth,"
    Carelessly caroled the golden youth.
    In manhood still he maintained that view
    And held it more strongly the older he grew.
    When kicked by a jackass at eighty-three,
    "Go fetch me a surgeon at once!" cried he.
                                                             Han Soper


** LIGHTHOUSE

LIGHTHOUSE, n.  A tall building on the seashore in which the
government maintains a lamp and the friend of a politician.


** LIMB

LIMB, n.  The branch of a tree or the leg of an American woman.

    'Twas a pair of boots that the lady bought,
        And the salesman laced them tight
        To a very remarkable height --
    Higher, indeed, than I think he ought --
        Higher than _can_ be right.
    For the Bible declares -- but never mind:
        It is hardly fit
    To censure freely and fault to find
    With others for sins that I'm not inclined
        Myself to commit.
    Each has his weakness, and though my own
        Is freedom from every sin,
        It still were unfair to pitch in,
    Discharging the first censorious stone.
    Besides, the truth compels me to say,
    The boots in question were _made_ that way.
    As he drew the lace she made a grimace,
        And blushingly said to him:
    "This boot, I'm sure, is too high to endure,
    It hurts my -- hurts my -- limb."
    The salesman smiled in a manner mild,
    Like an artless, undesigning child;
    Then, checking himself, to his face he gave
    A look as sorrowful as the grave,
        Though he didn't care two figs
    For her paints and throes,
    As he stroked her toes,
    Remarking with speech and manner just
    Befitting his calling:  "Madam, I trust
        That it doesn't hurt your twigs."
                                                      B. Percival Dike


** LINEN

LINEN, n.  "A kind of cloth the making of which, when made of hemp,
entails a great waste of hemp." -- Calcraft the Hangman.


** LITIGANT

LITIGANT, n.  A person about to give up his skin for the hope of
retaining his bones.


** LITIGATION

LITIGATION, n.  A machine which you go into as a pig and come out of
as a sausage.


** LIVER

LIVER, n.  A large red organ thoughtfully provided by nature to be
bilious with.  The sentiments and emotions which every literary
anatomist now knows to haunt the heart were anciently believed to
infest the liver; and even Gascoygne, speaking of the emotional side
of human nature, calls it "our hepaticall parte."  It was at one time
considered the seat of life; hence its name -- liver, the thing we
live with.  The liver is heaven's best gift to the goose; without it
that bird would be unable to supply us with the Strasbourg _pate_.


LL.D.  Letters indicating the degree _Legumptionorum Doctor_, one
learned in laws, gifted with legal gumption.  Some suspicion is cast
upon this derivation by the fact that the title was formerly _LL.d._,
and conferred only upon gentlemen distinguished for their wealth.  At
the date of this writing Columbia University is considering the
expediency of making another degree for clergymen, in place of the old
D.D. -- _Damnator Diaboli_.  The new honor will be known as _Sanctorum
Custus_, and written _$$c_.  The name of the Rev. John Satan has been
suggested as a suitable recipient by a lover of consistency, who
points out that Professor Harry Thurston Peck has long enjoyed the
advantage of a degree.


** LOCK-AND-KEY

LOCK-AND-KEY, n.  The distinguishing device of civilization and
enlightenment.


** LODGER

LODGER, n.  A less popular name for the Second Person of that
delectable newspaper Trinity, the Roomer, the Bedder, and the Mealer.


** LOGIC

LOGIC, n.  The art of thinking and reasoning in strict accordance with
the limitations and incapacities of the human misunderstanding.  The
basic of logic is the syllogism, consisting of a major and a minor
premise and a conclusion -- thus:
    _Major Premise_:  Sixty men can do a piece of work sixty times as
quickly as one man.
    _Minor Premise_:  One man can dig a posthole in sixty seconds;
therefore --
    _Conclusion_:  Sixty men can dig a posthole in one second.
    This may be called the syllogism arithmetical, in which, by
combining logic and mathematics, we obtain a double certainty and are
twice blessed.


** LOGOMACHY

LOGOMACHY, n.  A war in which the weapons are words and the wounds
punctures in the swim-bladder of self-esteem -- a kind of contest in
which, the vanquished being unconscious of defeat, the victor is
denied the reward of success.

    'Tis said by divers of the scholar-men
    That poor Salmasius died of Milton's pen.
    Alas! we cannot know if this is true,
    For reading Milton's wit we perish too.


** LOGANIMITY

LOGANIMITY, n.  The disposition to endure injury with meek forbearance
while maturing a plan of revenge.


** LONGEVITY

LONGEVITY, n.  Uncommon extension of the fear of death.


** LOOKING-GLASS

LOOKING-GLASS, n.  A vitreous plane upon which to display a fleeting
show for man's disillusion given.
    The King of Manchuria had a magic looking-glass, whereon whoso
looked saw, not his own image, but only that of the king.  A certain
courtier who had long enjoyed the king's favor and was thereby
enriched beyond any other subject of the realm, said to the king: 
"Give me, I pray, thy wonderful mirror, so that when absent out of
thine august presence I may yet do homage before thy visible shadow,
prostrating myself night and morning in the glory of thy benign
countenance, as which nothing has so divine splendor, O Noonday Sun of
the Universe!"
    Please with the speech, the king commanded that the mirror be
conveyed to the courtier's palace; but after, having gone thither
without apprisal, he found it in an apartment where was naught but
idle lumber.  And the mirror was dimmed with dust and overlaced with
cobwebs.  This so angered him that he fisted it hard, shattering the
glass, and was sorely hurt.  Enraged all the more by this mischance,
he commanded that the ungrateful courtier be thrown into prison, and
that the glass be repaired and taken back to his own palace; and this
was done.  But when the king looked again on the mirror he saw not his
image as before, but only the figure of a crowned ass, having a bloody
bandage on one of its hinder hooves -- as the artificers and all who
had looked upon it had before discerned but feared to report.  Taught
wisdom and charity, the king restored his courtier to liberty, had the
mirror set into the back of the throne and reigned many years with
justice and humility; and one day when he fell asleep in death while
on the throne, the whole court saw in the mirror the luminous figure
of an angel, which remains to this day.


** LOQUACITY

LOQUACITY, n.  A disorder which renders the sufferer unable to curb
his tongue when you wish to talk.


** LORD

LORD, n.  In American society, an English tourist above the state of a
costermonger, as, lord 'Aberdasher, Lord Hartisan and so forth.  The
traveling Briton of lesser degree is addressed as "Sir," as, Sir 'Arry
Donkiboi, or 'Amstead 'Eath.  The word "Lord" is sometimes used, also,
as a title of the Supreme Being; but this is thought to be rather
flattery than true reverence.

    Miss Sallie Ann Splurge, of her own accord,
    Wedded a wandering English lord --
    Wedded and took him to dwell with her "paw,"
    A parent who throve by the practice of Draw.
    Lord Cadde I don't hesitate to declare
    Unworthy the father-in-legal care
    Of that elderly sport, notwithstanding the truth
    That Cadde had renounced all the follies of youth;
    For, sad to relate, he'd arrived at the stage
    Of existence that's marked by the vices of age.
    Among them, cupidity caused him to urge
    Repeated demands on the pocket of Splurge,
    Till, wrecked in his fortune, that gentleman saw
    Inadequate aid in the practice of Draw,
    And took, as a means of augmenting his pelf,
    To the business of being a lord himself.
    His neat-fitting garments he wilfully shed
    And sacked himself strangely in checks instead;
    Denuded his chin, but retained at each ear
    A whisker that looked like a blasted career.
    He painted his neck an incarnadine hue
    Each morning and varnished it all that he knew.
    The moony monocular set in his eye
    Appeared to be scanning the Sweet Bye-and-Bye.
    His head was enroofed with a billycock hat,
    And his low-necked shoes were aduncous and flat.
    In speech he eschewed his American ways,
    Denying his nose to the use of his A's
    And dulling their edge till the delicate sense
    Of a babe at their temper could take no offence.
    His H's -- 'twas most inexpressibly sweet,
    The patter they made as they fell at his feet!
    Re-outfitted thus, Mr. Splurge without fear
    Began as Lord Splurge his recouping career.
    Alas, the Divinity shaping his end
    Entertained other views and decided to send
    His lordship in horror, despair and dismay
    From the land of the nobleman's natural prey.
    For, smit with his Old World ways, Lady Cadde
    Fell -- suffering Caesar! -- in love with her dad!
                                                                  G.J.


** LORE

LORE, n.  Learning -- particularly that sort which is not derived from
a regular course of instruction but comes of the reading of occult
books, or by nature.  This latter is commonly designated as folk-lore
and embraces popularly myths and superstitions.  In Baring-Gould's
_Curious Myths of the Middle Ages_ the reader will find many of these
traced backward, through various people son converging lines, toward a
common origin in remote antiquity.  Among these are the fables of
"Teddy the Giant Killer," "The Sleeping John Sharp Williams," "Little
Red Riding Hood and the Sugar Trust," "Beauty and the Brisbane," "The
Seven Aldermen of Ephesus," "Rip Van Fairbanks," and so forth.  The
fable with Goethe so affectingly relates under the title of "The Erl-
King" was known two thousand years ago in Greece as "The Demos and the
Infant Industry."  One of the most general and ancient of these myths
is that Arabian tale of "Ali Baba and the Forty Rockefellers."


** LOSS

LOSS, n.  Privation of that which we had, or had not.  Thus, in the
latter sense, it is said of a defeated candidate that he "lost his
election"; and of that eminent man, the poet Gilder, that he has "lost
his mind."  It is in the former and more legitimate sense, that the
word is used in the famous epitaph:

    Here Huntington's ashes long have lain
    Whose loss is our eternal gain,
    For while he exercised all his powers
    Whatever he gained, the loss was ours.


** LOVE

LOVE, n.  A temporary insanity curable by marriage or by removal of
the patient from the influences under which he incurred the disorder. 
This disease, like _caries_ and many other ailments, is prevalent only
among civilized races living under artificial conditions; barbarous
nations breathing pure air and eating simple food enjoy immunity from
its ravages.  It is sometimes fatal, but more frequently to the
physician than to the patient.


** LOW-BRED

LOW-BRED, adj.  "Raised" instead of brought up.


** LUMINARY

LUMINARY, n.  One who throws light upon a subject; as an editor by not
writing about it.


** LUNARIAN

LUNARIAN, n.  An inhabitant of the moon, as distinguished from
Lunatic, one whom the moon inhabits.  The Lunarians have been
described by Lucian, Locke and other observers, but without much
agreement.  For example, Bragellos avers their anatomical identity
with Man, but Professor Newcomb says they are more like the hill
tribes of Vermont.


** LYRE

LYRE, n.  An ancient instrument of torture.  The word is now used in a
figurative sense to denote the poetic faculty, as in the following
fiery lines of our great poet, Ella Wheeler Wilcox:

    I sit astride Parnassus with my lyre,
    And pick with care the disobedient wire.
    That stupid shepherd lolling on his crook
    With deaf attention scarcely deigns to look.
    I bide my time, and it shall come at length,
    When, with a Titan's energy and strength,
    I'll grab a fistful of the strings, and O,
    The word shall suffer when I let them go!
                                                    Farquharson Harris


                                  M



** MACE

MACE, n.  A staff of office signifying authority.  Its form, that of a
heavy club, indicates its original purpose and use in dissuading from
dissent.


** MACHINATION

MACHINATION, n.  The method employed by one's opponents in baffling
one's open and honorable efforts to do the right thing.

    So plain the advantages of machination
    It constitutes a moral obligation,
    And honest wolves who think upon't with loathing
    Feel bound to don the sheep's deceptive clothing.
    So prospers still the diplomatic art,
    And Satan bows, with hand upon his heart.
                                                                R.S.K.


** MACROBIAN

MACROBIAN, n.  One forgotten of the gods and living to a great age. 
History is abundantly supplied with examples, from Methuselah to Old
Parr, but some notable instances of longevity are less well known.  A
Calabrian peasant named Coloni, born in 1753, lived so long that he
had what he considered a glimpse of the dawn of universal peace. 
Scanavius relates that he knew an archbishop who was so old that he
could remember a time when he did not deserve hanging.  In 1566 a
linen draper of Bristol, England, declared that he had lived five
hundred years, and that in all that time he had never told a lie. 
There are instances of longevity (_macrobiosis_) in our own country. 
Senator Chauncey Depew is old enough to know better.  The editor of
_The American_, a newspaper in New York City, has a memory that goes
back to the time when he was a rascal, but not to the fact.  The
President of the United States was born so long ago that many of the
friends of his youth have risen to high political and military
preferment without the assistance of personal merit.  The verses
following were written by a macrobian:

    When I was young the world was fair
        And amiable and sunny.
    A brightness was in all the air,
        In all the waters, honey.
        The jokes were fine and funny,
    The statesmen honest in their views,
        And in their lives, as well,
    And when you heard a bit of news
        'Twas true enough to tell.
    Men were not ranting, shouting, reeking,
    Nor women "generally speaking."

    The Summer then was long indeed:
        It lasted one whole season!
    The sparkling Winter gave no heed
        When ordered by Unreason
        To bring the early peas on.
    Now, where the dickens is the sense
        In calling that a year
    Which does no more than just commence
        Before the end is near?
    When I was young the year extended
    From month to month until it ended.

    I know not why the world has changed
        To something dark and dreary,
    And everything is now arranged
        To make a fellow weary.
        The Weather Man -- I fear he
    Has much to do with it, for, sure,
        The air is not the same:
    It chokes you when it is impure,
        When pure it makes you lame.
    With windows closed you are asthmatic;
    Open, neuralgic or sciatic.

    Well, I suppose this new regime
        Of dun degeneration
    Seems eviler than it would seem
        To a better observation,
        And has for compensation
    Some blessings in a deep disguise
        Which mortal sight has failed
    To pierce, although to angels' eyes
        They're visible unveiled.
    If Age is such a boon, good land!
    He's costumed by a master hand!
                                                        Venable Strigg


** MAD

MAD, adj.  Affected with a high degree of intellectual independence;
not conforming to standards of thought, speech and action derived by
the conformants from study of themselves; at odds with the majority;
in short, unusual.  It is noteworthy that persons are pronounced mad
by officials destitute of evidence that themselves are sane.  For
illustration, this present (and illustrious) lexicographer is no
firmer in the faith of his own sanity than is any inmate of any
madhouse in the land; yet for aught he knows to the contrary, instead
of the lofty occupation that seems to him to be engaging his powers he
may really be beating his hands against the window bars of an asylum
and declaring himself Noah Webster, to the innocent delight of many
thoughtless spectators.


** MAGDALENE

MAGDALENE, n.  An inhabitant of Magdala.  Popularly, a woman found
out.  This definition of the word has the authority of ignorance, Mary
of Magdala being another person than the penitent woman mentioned by
St. Luke.  It has also the official sanction of the governments of
Great Britain and the United States.  In England the word is
pronounced Maudlin, whence maudlin, adjective, unpleasantly
sentimental.  With their Maudlin for Magdalene, and their Bedlam for
Bethlehem, the English may justly boast themselves the greatest of
revisers.


** MAGIC

MAGIC, n.  An art of converting superstition into coin.  There are
other arts serving the same high purpose, but the discreet
lexicographer does not name them.


** MAGNET

MAGNET, n.  Something acted upon by magnetism.


** MAGNETISM

MAGNETISM, n.  Something acting upon a magnet.
    The two definitions immediately foregoing are condensed from the
works of one thousand eminent scientists, who have illuminated the
subject with a great white light, to the inexpressible advancement of
human knowledge.


** MAGNIFICENT

MAGNIFICENT, adj.  Having a grandeur or splendor superior to that to
which the spectator is accustomed, as the ears of an ass, to a rabbit,
or the glory of a glowworm, to a maggot.


** MAGNITUDE

MAGNITUDE, n.  Size.  Magnitude being purely relative, nothing is
large and nothing small.  If everything in the universe were increased
in bulk one thousand diameters nothing would be any larger than it was
before, but if one thing remain unchanged all the others would be
larger than they had been.  To an understanding familiar with the
relativity of magnitude and distance the spaces and masses of the
astronomer would be no more impressive than those of the microscopist. 
For anything we know to the contrary, the visible universe may be a
small part of an atom, with its component ions, floating in the life-
fluid (luminiferous ether) of some animal.  Possibly the wee creatures
peopling the corpuscles of our own blood are overcome with the proper
emotion when contemplating the unthinkable distance from one of these
to another.


** MAGPIE

MAGPIE, n.  A bird whose thievish disposition suggested to someone
that it might be taught to talk.


** MAIDEN

MAIDEN, n.  A young person of the unfair sex addicted to clewless
conduct and views that madden to crime.  The genus has a wide
geographical distribution, being found wherever sought and deplored
wherever found.  The maiden is not altogether unpleasing to the eye,
nor (without her piano and her views) insupportable to the ear, though
in respect to comeliness distinctly inferior to the rainbow, and, with
regard to the part of her that is audible, bleating out of the field
by the canary -- which, also, is more portable.

    A lovelorn maiden she sat and sang --
        This quaint, sweet song sang she;
    "It's O for a youth with a football bang
        And a muscle fair to see!
                The Captain he
                Of a team to be!
    On the gridiron he shall shine,
    A monarch by right divine,
        And never to roast on it -- me!"
                                                         Opoline Jones


** MAJESTY

MAJESTY, n.  The state and title of a king.  Regarded with a just
contempt by the Most Eminent Grand Masters, Grand Chancellors, Great
Incohonees and Imperial Potentates of the ancient and honorable orders
of republican America.


** MALE

MALE, n.  A member of the unconsidered, or negligible sex.  The male
of the human race is commonly known (to the female) as Mere Man.  The
genus has two varieties:  good providers and bad providers.


** MALEFACTOR

MALEFACTOR, n.  The chief factor in the progress of the human race.


** MALTHUSIAN

MALTHUSIAN, adj.  Pertaining to Malthus and his doctrines.  Malthus
believed in artificially limiting population, but found that it could
not be done by talking.  One of the most practical exponents of the
Malthusian idea was Herod of Judea, though all the famous soldiers
have been of the same way of thinking.


** MAMMALIA

MAMMALIA, n.pl.  A family of vertebrate animals whose females in a
state of nature suckle their young, but when civilized and enlightened
put them out to nurse, or use the bottle.


** MAMMON

MAMMON, n.  The god of the world's leading religion.  The chief temple
is in the holy city of New York.

    He swore that all other religions were gammon,
    And wore out his knees in the worship of Mammon.
                                                            Jared Oopf


** MAN

MAN, n.  An animal so lost in rapturous contemplation of what he
thinks he is as to overlook what he indubitably ought to be.  His
chief occupation is extermination of other animals and his own
species, which, however, multiplies with such insistent rapidity as to
infest the whole habitable earh and Canada.

    When the world was young and Man was new,
        And everything was pleasant,
    Distinctions Nature never drew
        'Mongst kings and priest and peasant.
        We're not that way at present,
    Save here in this Republic, where
        We have that old regime,
    For all are kings, however bare
        Their backs, howe'er extreme
    Their hunger.  And, indeed, each has a voice
    To accept the tyrant of his party's choice.

    A citizen who would not vote,
        And, therefore, was detested,
    Was one day with a tarry coat
        (With feathers backed and breasted)
        By patriots invested.
    "It is your duty," cried the crowd,
        "Your ballot true to cast
    For the man o' your choice."  He humbly bowed,
        And explained his wicked past:
    "That's what I very gladly would have done,
    Dear patriots, but he has never run."
                                                         Apperton Duke


** MANES

MANES, n.  The immortal parts of dead Greeks and Romans.  They were in
a state of dull discomfort until the bodies from which they had
exhaled were buried and burned; and they seem not to have been
particularly happy afterward.


** MANICHEISM

MANICHEISM, n.  The ancient Persian doctrine of an incessant warfare
between Good and Evil.  When Good gave up the fight the Persians
joined the victorious Opposition.


** MANNA

MANNA, n.  A food miraculously given to the Israelites in the
wilderness.  When it was no longer supplied to them they settled
down and tilled the soil, fertilizing it, as a rule, with the bodies
of the original occupants.


** MARRIAGE

MARRIAGE, n.  The state or condition of a community consisting of a
master, a mistress and two slaves, making in all, two.


** MARTYR

MARTYR, n.  One who moves along the line of least reluctance to a
desired death.


** MATERIAL

MATERIAL, adj.  Having an actual existence, as distinguished from an
imaginary one.  Important.

    Material things I know, or fell, or see;
    All else is immaterial to me.
                                                      Jamrach Holobom


** MAUSOLEUM

MAUSOLEUM, n.  The final and funniest folly of the rich.


** MAYONNAISE

MAYONNAISE, n.  One of the sauces which serve the French in place of a
state religion.


** ME

ME, pro.  The objectionable case of I.  The personal pronoun in
English has three cases, the dominative, the objectionable and the
oppressive.  Each is all three.


** MEANDER

MEANDER, n.  To proceed sinuously and aimlessly.  The word is the
ancient name of a river about one hundred and fifty miles south of
Troy, which turned and twisted in the effort to get out of hearing
when the Greeks and Trojans boasted of their prowess.


** MEDAL

MEDAL, n.  A small metal disk given as a reward for virtues,
attainments or services more or less authentic.
    It is related of Bismark, who had been awarded a medal for
gallantly rescuing a drowning person, that, being asked the meaning of
the medal, he replied:  "I save lives sometimes."  And sometimes he
didn't.


** MEDICINE

MEDICINE, n.  A stone flung down the Bowery to kill a dog in Broadway.


** MEEKNESS

MEEKNESS, n.  Uncommon patience in planning a revenge that is worth
while.

    M is for Moses,
        Who slew the Egyptian.
    As sweet as a rose is
    The meekness of Moses.
    No monument shows his
        Post-mortem inscription,
    But M is for Moses
        Who slew the Egyptian.
                                           _The Biographical Alphabet_

** MEERSCHAUM

MEERSCHAUM, n.  (Literally, seafoam, and by many erroneously supposed
to be made of it.)  A fine white clay, which for convenience in
coloring it brown is made into tobacco pipes and smoked by the workmen
engaged in that industry.  The purpose of coloring it has not been
disclosed by the manufacturers.

    There was a youth (you've heard before,
        This woeful tale, may be),
    Who bought a meerschaum pipe and swore
        That color it would he!

    He shut himself from the world away,
        Nor any soul he saw.
    He smoke by night, he smoked by day,
        As hard as he could draw.

    His dog died moaning in the wrath
        Of winds that blew aloof;
    The weeds were in the gravel path,
        The owl was on the roof.

    "He's gone afar, he'll come no more,"
        The neighbors sadly say.
    And so they batter in the door
        To take his goods away.

    Dead, pipe in mouth, the youngster lay,
        Nut-brown in face and limb.
    "That pipe's a lovely white," they say,
        "But it has colored him!"

    The moral there's small need to sing --
        'Tis plain as day to you:
    Don't play your game on any thing
        That is a gamester too.
                                                      Martin Bulstrode


** MENDACIOUS

MENDACIOUS, adj.  Addicted to rhetoric.


** MERCHANT

MERCHANT, n.  One engaged in a commercial pursuit.  A commercial
pursuit is one in which the thing pursued is a dollar.


** MERCY

MERCY, n.  An attribute beloved of detected offenders.


** MESMERISM

MESMERISM, n.  Hypnotism before it wore good clothes, kept a carriage
and asked Incredulity to dinner.


** METROPOLIS

METROPOLIS, n.  A stronghold of provincialism.


** MILLENNIUM

MILLENNIUM, n.  The period of a thousand years when the lid is to be
screwed down, with all reformers on the under side.


** MIND

MIND, n.  A mysterious form of matter secreted by the brain.  Its
chief activity consists in the endeavor to ascertain its own nature,
the futility of the attempt being due to the fact that it has nothing
but itself to know itself with.  From the Latin _mens_, a fact unknown
to that honest shoe-seller, who, observing that his learned competitor
over the way had displayed the motto "_Mens conscia recti_,"
emblazoned his own front with the words "Men's, women's and children's
conscia recti."


** MINE

MINE, adj.  Belonging to me if I can hold or seize it.


** MINISTER

MINISTER, n.  An agent of a higher power with a lower responsibility. 
In diplomacy and officer sent into a foreign country as the visible
embodiment of his sovereign's hostility.  His principal qualification
is a degree of plausible inveracity next below that of an ambassador.


** MINOR

MINOR, adj.  Less objectionable.


** MINSTREL

MINSTREL, adj.  Formerly a poet, singer or musician; now a nigger with
a color less than skin deep and a humor more than flesh and blood can
bear.


** MIRACLE

MIRACLE, n.  An act or event out of the order of nature and
unaccountable, as beating a normal hand of four kings and an ace with
four aces and a king.


** MISCREANT

MISCREANT, n.  A person of the highest degree of unworth. 
Etymologically, the word means unbeliever, and its present
signification may be regarded as theology's noblest contribution to
the development of our language.


** MISDEMEANOR

MISDEMEANOR, n.  An infraction of the law having less dignity than a
felony and constituting no claim to admittance into the best criminal
society.

    By misdemeanors he essays to climb
    Into the aristocracy of crime.
    O, woe was him! -- with manner chill and grand
    "Captains of industry" refused his hand,
    "Kings of finance" denied him recognition
    And "railway magnates" jeered his low condition.
    He robbed a bank to make himself respected.
    They still rebuffed him, for he was detected.
                                                          S.V. Hanipur


** MISERICORDE

MISERICORDE, n.  A dagger which in mediaeval warfare was used by the
foot soldier to remind an unhorsed knight that he was mortal.


** MISFORTUNE

MISFORTUNE, n.  The kind of fortune that never misses.


** MISS

MISS, n.  The title with which we brand unmarried women to indicate
that they are in the market.  Miss, Missis (Mrs.) and Mister (Mr.) are
the three most distinctly disagreeable words in the language, in sound
and sense.  Two are corruptions of Mistress, the other of Master.  In
the general abolition of social titles in this our country they
miraculously escaped to plague us.  If we must have them let us be
consistent and give one to the unmarried man.  I venture to suggest
Mush, abbreviated to Mh.


** MOLECULE

MOLECULE, n.  The ultimate, indivisible unit of matter.  It is
distinguished from the corpuscle, also the ultimate, indivisible unit
of matter, by a closer resemblance to the atom, also the ultimate,
indivisible unit of matter.  Three great scientific theories of the
structure of the universe are the molecular, the corpuscular and the
atomic.  A fourth affirms, with Haeckel, the condensation of
precipitation of matter from ether -- whose existence is proved by the
condensation of precipitation.  The present trend of scientific
thought is toward the theory of ions.  The ion differs from the
molecule, the corpuscle and the atom in that it is an ion.  A fifth
theory is held by idiots, but it is doubtful if they know any more
about the matter than the others.


** MONAD

MONAD, n.  The ultimate, indivisible unit of matter.  (See
_Molecule_.)  According to Leibnitz, as nearly as he seems willing to
be understood, the monad has body without bulk, and mind without
manifestation -- Leibnitz knows him by the innate power of
considering.  He has founded upon him a theory of the universe, which
the creature bears without resentment, for the monad is a gentlmean. 
Small as he is, the monad contains all the powers and possibilities
needful to his evolution into a German philosopher of the first class
-- altogether a very capable little fellow.  He is not to be
confounded with the microbe, or bacillus; by its inability to discern
him, a good microscope shows him to be of an entirely distinct
species.


** MONARCH

MONARCH, n.  A person engaged in reigning.  Formerly the monarch
ruled, as the derivation of the word attests, and as many subjects
have had occasion to learn.  In Russia and the Orient the monarch has
still a considerable influence in public affairs and in the
disposition of the human head, but in western Europe political
administration is mostly entrusted to his ministers, he being
somewhat preoccupied with reflections relating to the status of his
own head.


** MONARCHICAL GOVERNMENT

MONARCHICAL GOVERNMENT, n.  Government.


** MONDAY

MONDAY, n.  In Christian countries, the day after the baseball game.


** MONEY

MONEY, n.  A blessing that is of no advantage to us excepting when we
part with it.  An evidence of culture and a passport to polite
society.  Supportable property.


** MONKEY

MONKEY, n.  An arboreal animal which makes itself at home in
genealogical trees.


** MONOSYLLABIC

MONOSYLLABIC, adj.  Composed of words of one syllable, for literary
babes who never tire of testifying their delight in the vapid compound
by appropriate googoogling.  The words are commonly Saxon -- that is
to say, words of a barbarous people destitute of ideas and incapable
of any but the most elementary sentiments and emotions.

    The man who writes in Saxon
    Is the man to use an ax on
                                                              Judibras


** MONSIGNOR

MONSIGNOR, n.  A high ecclesiastical title, of which the Founder of
our religion overlooked the advantages.


** MONUMENT

MONUMENT, n.  A structure intended to commemorate something which
either needs no commemoration or cannot be commemorated.

    The bones of Agammemnon are a show,
    And ruined is his royal monument,

but Agammemnon's fame suffers no diminution in consequence.  The
monument custom has its _reductiones ad absurdum_ in monuments "to the
unknown dead" -- that is to say, monuments to perpetuate the memory of
those who have left no memory.


** MORAL

MORAL, adj.  Conforming to a local and mutable standard of right. 
Having the quality of general expediency.

        It is sayd there be a raunge of mountaynes in the Easte, on
one syde of the which certayn conducts are immorall, yet on the other
syde they are holden in good esteeme; wherebye the mountayneer is much
conveenyenced, for it is given to him to goe downe eyther way and act
as it shall suite his moode, withouten offence.
                                                 _Gooke's Meditations_


** MORE

MORE, adj.  The comparative degree of too much.


** MOUSE

MOUSE, n.  An animal which strews its path with fainting women.  As in
Rome Christians were thrown to the lions, so centuries earlier in
Otumwee, the most ancient and famous city of the world, female
heretics were thrown to the mice.  Jakak-Zotp, the historian, the only
Otumwump whose writings have descended to us, says that these martyrs
met their death with little dignity and much exertion.  He even
attempts to exculpate the mice (such is the malice of bigotry) by
declaring that the unfortunate women perished, some from exhaustion,
some of broken necks from falling over their own feet, and some from
lack of restoratives.  The mice, he avers, enjoyed the pleasures of
the chase with composure.  But if "Roman history is nine-tenths
lying," we can hardly expect a smaller proportion of that rhetorical
figure in the annals of a people capable of so incredible cruelty to a
lovely women; for a hard heart has a false tongue.


** MOUSQUETAIRE

MOUSQUETAIRE, n.