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people, there were not above five-and-twenty
servants altogether! They were so lofty
about it, too, that instead of discussing
whether they should hire themselves as
servants to Prince Bull, they turned things
topsy-turvy, and considered whether, as a favour,
they should hire Prince Bull to be their
master! While they were arguing this
point among themselves quite at their
leisure, the wicked old red Fairy was
incessantly going up and down, knocking at the
doors of twelve of the oldest of the five-
and-twenty, who were the oldest inhabitants
in all that country, and whose united
ages amounted to one thousand, saying,
"Will you hire Prince Bull for your master?
Will you hire Prince Ball for your master?"
'To which, one answered, " I will, if next
door will;" and another, " I won't, if over the
way does;" and another, " I can't, if he, she,
or they, might, could, would, or should."
And all this time Prince Bull's affairs were
.going to rack and ruin.

At last, Prince Bull in the height of his
perplexity assumed a thoughtful face, as if he were
struck by an entirely new idea. The wicked
old Fairy, seeing this, was at his elbow directly,
and said, "How do you do, my Prince, and what
are you thinking of?"—"I am thinking,
godmother," says he, " that among all the seven-
and-twenty millions of my subjects who have
never been in service, there are men of intellect
and business who have made me very famous
both among my friends and enemies."—" Aye,
truly? " says the Fairy.—" Aye, truly," says
the  Prince.—" And what then? " says the
Fairy.—" Why, then," says he, "since the
regular old class of servants do so ill, are so
hard to get, and carry it with so high a hand,
perhaps I might try to make good servants
of some of these." The words had no sooner
passed his lips than she returned, chuckling,
"You think so, do you? Indeed, my Prince?
Tape! " Thereupon he directly forgot
what he was thinking of, and cried out
lamentably to the old servants, " O, do come
and hire your poor old master! Pray do!
On any terms!"

And this, for the present, finishes the story
of Prince Bull. I wish I could wind it up by
saying that he lived happy ever afterwards,
but I cannot in my conscience do so; for,
with Tape at his elbow, and his estranged
children fatally repelled by her from coming
near him, I do not, to tell you the plain
truth, believe in the possibility of such an
end to it.


IN childhood we have all of us revelled in
tales about magical vases and marvellous
bottles, whence issued irritated genii or
facetious devils-on-two-sticks; and our
wonder was, and still remains, how they
managed to get into them. In manhood, and
sometimes too soon in youth, our attention
has been occasionally riveted by the wonders
performed by a bottle of champagne; but I
venture to assert that not one person in a
hundred has the least idea of how much
there is inside one of these mystic phials, nor
by what elaborate and cabalistic incantations
the imprisoned sprites were confined therein.
With some amount of perseverance and
courage, I have penetrated to the subterranean
laboratories, and have witnessed how the
reluctant demons are thrust, and kept fast
prisoners, within the glass walls of a
cylindro-conical dungeon. I have stalked
through part of the six English miles of
cellar, and traversed sundry of the fifty-five
galleries, the longest extending about four
hundred yards; I have stared at some
thousands of the three million bottles that are
waiting to get out and be drunk from the bright,
barrack-like establishments of Messieurs
Jacquesson et Fils, of Châlons-sur-Marne; I
have descended, like a second Æneas, to the
lowest deep of the Tartarean grottoes
possessed by Messrs. Moët and Chandon, of
Epernay; I have gone down the steps beside which
a black marble tablet, with letters of gold,
informs the visitor that Napoleon the Grand
did exactly the same thing, in I did not
think it necessary to note what year; I
dived through stories of thrice-triple caves;
I reached an ancient portion of catacomb-like
cellar no longer in use, which they
call Siberia: I tapped at the door where-in
ice is treasured, not only to chill the
sample wines of entertainment for the
proprietor's table, but for more important
purposes, as you shall hear; and I have emerged
by the stairs where another gilt tablet
informed me that Jerome Bonaparte, ex-king
of Westphalia, had had the honour of
preceding me. After a good hour-and-half's
scientific ramble in the bowels of the earth,
the air and sunshine were a delicious treat,
worth all the bottles of champagne in the
world; but still it appeared to me that a
few details might be useful to the public,
if only to help housekeepers to make and
manage their gooseberry wine.

To begin with the province of Champagne
itself: there is poor Champagne and
rich Champagne. If you traverse the former
from south to north, you have a series of
tiresome plains, which are not exactly flat,
but slightly hollow and undulating The
face of the country, even where abundantly
rich, is far from being prepossessing in its
appearance, unlike its rival Burgundy. The
land puts you in mind of an enormous sheet
held out to catch some giant Garagantua,
who is expected soon to jump down from the
skies and display his traditional powers of
consumption. With patience, you at last
reach the city of Troyes, an old-fashioned
town, a hundred years behindhand, with but
rare foot-pavements and with plenty of open
wells in the streets. Many of the houses are
built of wood framework, filled up with plaster,