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WE have the glorious privilege of being
always in hot water if we like. We are a
shareholder in a Great Parochial British
Joint Stock Bank of Balderdash. We have
a Vestry in our borough, and can vote for a
vestrymanmight even be a vestryman, mayhap,
if we were inspired by a lofty and noble
ambition. Which we are not.

Our Vestry is a deliberative assembly of
the utmost dignity and importance. Like the
Senate of ancient Rome, its awful gravity
overpowers (or ought to overpower) barbarian
visitors. It sits in the Capitol (we mean in
the capital building erected for it), chiefly on
Saturdays, and shakes the earth to its centre
with the echoes of its thundering eloquence, in
a Sunday paper.

To get into this Vestry in the eminent
capacity of Vestryman, gigantic efforts are
made, and Herculean exertions used. It is
made manifest to the dullest capacity at every
election, that if we reject Snozzle we are
done for, and that if we fail to bring in
Blunderbooze at the top of the poll, we are
unworthy of the dearest rights of Britons.
Flaming placards are rife on all the dead
walls in the borough, public-houses hang out
banners, hackney-cabs burst into full-grown
flowers of type, and everybody is, or should
be, in a paroxysm of anxiety.

At these momentous crises of the national
fate, we are much assisted in our deliberations
by two eminent volunteers; one of whom
subscribes himself A Fellow Parishioner,
the other, A Rate-Payer. Who they are,
or what they are, or where they are, nobody
knows; but, whatever one asserts, the other
contradicts. They are both voluminous writers,
inditing more epistles than Lord Chesterfield
in a single week; and the greater part of their
feelings are too big for utterance in anything
less than capital letters. They require the
additional aid of whole rows of notes of
admiration, like balloons, to point their generous
indignation; and they sometimes communicate
a crushing severity to stars. As thus:


Is it, or is it not, a * * * to saddle the
parish with a debt of £2,745 6s. 9d., yet
claim to be a RIGID ECONOMIST?

Is it, or is it not, a * * * to state as a fact
what is proved to be both a moral and a

Is it, or is it not, a * * * to call £2,745 6s. 9d.
nothing; and nothing, something?

Do you, or do you not want a * * * * TO


Your consideration of these questions is
recommended to you by


It was to this important public document
that one of our first orators, MR. MAGG
(of Little Winkling Street), adverted, when he
opened the great debate of the fourteenth of
November by saying, “Sir, I hold in my
hand an anonymous slander”—and when the
interruption, with which he was at that point
assailed by the opposite faction, gave rise to
that memorable discussion on a point of order
which will ever be remembered with interest
by constitutional assemblies. In the animated
debate to which we refer, no fewer than
thirty-seven gentlemen, many of them of
great eminence, including MR. WIGSBY (of
Chumbledon Square), were seen upon their
legs at one time; and it was on the same
great occasion that DOGGINSONregarded in
our Vestry as " a regular John Bull:" we
believe, in consequence of his having always
made up his mind on every subject without
knowing anything about itinformed another
gentleman of similar principles on the opposite
side, that if he " cheek'd him," he would resort
to the extreme measure of knocking his
blessed head off.

This was a great occasion. But, our Vestry
shines habitually. In asserting its own pre-
eminence, for instance, it is very strong. On
the least provocation, or on none, it will be
clamorous to know whether it is to be
"dictated to," or "trampled on," or "ridden
over rough-shod." Its great watchword is
Self-government. That is to say, supposing
our Vestry to favor any little harmless
disorder like Typhus Fever, and supposing
the Government of the country to be, by
any accident, in such ridiculous hands, as
that any of its authorities should consider it
a duty to object to Typhus Feverobviously
an unconstitutional objectionthen, our
Vestry cuts in with a terrible manifesto about
Self-government, and claims its independent