REGALIA, n. Distinguishing insignia, jewels and costume of such ancient and honorable orders as Knights of Adam Visionaries of Detectable Bosh the Ancient Order of Modern Troglodytes the League of Holy Humbug the Golden Phalanx of Phalangers the Genteel Society of Expurgated Hoodlums the Mystic Alliances of Georgeous Regalians Knights and Ladies of the Yellow Dog the Oriental Order of Sons of the West the Blatherhood of Insufferable Stuff Warriors of the Long Bow Guardians of the Great Horn Spoon the Band of Brutes the Impenitent Order of Wife-Beaters the Sublime Legion of Flamboyant Conspicuants Worshipers at the Electroplated Shrine Shining Inaccessibles Fee-Faw-Fummers of the inimitable Grip Jannissaries of the Broad-Blown Peacock Plumed Increscencies of the Magic Temple the Grand Cabal of Able-Bodied Sedentarians Associated Deities of the Butter Trade the Garden of Galoots the Affectionate Fraternity of Men Similarly Warted the Flashing Astonishers Ladies of Horror Cooperative Association for Breaking into the Spotlight Dukes of Eden Disciples Militant of the Hidden Faith Knights-Champions of the Domestic Dog the Holy Gregarians the Resolute Optimists the Ancient Sodality of Inhospitable Hogs Associated Sovereigns of Mendacity Dukes-Guardian of the Mystic Cess-Pool the Society for Prevention of Prevalence Kings of Drink Polite Federation of Gents-Consequential the Mysterious Order of the Undecipherable Scroll Uniformed Rank of Lousy Cats Monarchs of Worth and Hunger Sons of the South Star Prelates of the Tub-and-Sword.
RICHES, n.A gift from Heaven signifying, This is my beloved son, in whom I am well pleased. --John D. RockefellerThe reward of toil and virtue. --J.P. MorganThe sayings of many in the hands of one. --Eugene DebsTo these excellent definitions the inspired lexicographer feels that he can add nothing of value.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 criedGive, 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 wideI'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 shellHo, 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.
UNCTION, n. An oiling, or greasing. The rite of extreme unction consists in touching with oil consecrated by a bishop several parts of the body of one engaged in dying. Marbury relates that after the rite had been administered to a certain wicked English nobleman it was discovered that the oil had not been properly consecrated and no other could be obtained. When informed of this the sick man said in anger Then I'll be damned if I die; My son, said the priest, this is what we fear.
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