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dishonest spirit) was reading a newspaper.
Calmed and composed, I resumed my musing
way through the many rooms.

Please to leave your umbrella. Of all the
Powers that get your umbrella from you,
Taste is the most encroaching and insatiate.
Please to put into your umbrella, to be
deposited in the hall until you come out again,
all your powers of comparison, all your
experience, all your individual opinions. Please
to accept with this ticket for your umbrella
the individual opinions of some other
personage whose name is Somebody, or Nobody,
or Anybody, and to swallow the same without
a word of demur. Be so good as to leave
your eyes with your umbrellas, gentlemen,
and to deliver up your private judgment with
your walking-sticks. Apply this ointment,
compounded by the learned Dervish, and you
shall see no end of camels going with the
greatest ease through needles' eyes. Leave
your umbrella full of property which is not
by any means to be poked at this collection,
with the police, and you shall acknowledge,
whether you will or no, this hideous
porcelain-ware to be beautiful, these wearisomely
stiff and unimaginative forms to be graceful,
these coarse daubs to be masterpieces. Leave
your umbrella and take up your gentility.
Taste proclaims to you what is the genteel
thing; receive it and be genteel! Think
no more of your umbrellasbe they the
care of the Police of Scotland Yard! Think
no more for yourselvesbe you the care of the
Police of Taste!

I protest that the very Tax-gatherer does
not demand so much of me as the Powers
who demand my umbrella. The Tax-gatherer
will not allow me to wear hair-powder
unmolested; but the Umbrella-gatherer will
not allow me to wear my head. The
Tax-gatherer takes toll of my spade; but the
Umbrella-gatherer will not permit me to
call my spade, a spade. Longinus, Aristotle,
Doctor Waagen, and the Musical Glasses,
Parliamentary Commissions, the Lord-
Knows-Who, Marlborough House, and the
Brompton Boilers, have declared my spade to
be a mop-stick. And I must please to give
up my umbrella, and believe in the

Again. The moral distinctions, and the
many remembrances, and balances of This
and That, which I am required by other
authorities to put into my so-often demanded
umbrella and to leave in the lobby, are as
numerous as the Barnacle family. It was
but a sessions or two ago, that I went to the
gallery at the Old Bailey, to hear a trial.
Was my umbrella all that I was called upon
to leave behind me, previous to taking my
seat? Certainly not. I was requested to
put so many things into it that it became,
though of itself a neat umbrella, more bulgy
than Mrs. Gamp's. I found it insisted upon,
that I should cram into this unfortunate
article all the weighty comparisons I had
ever made in my life between the guilt of
laying hands upon a pound of scrag of mutton,
and upon hundreds of thousands of pounds of
sterling money. I found it insisted upon,
that I should leave with my umbrella before
I went into Court, any suspicions I had about
me (and I happened to have a good many),
that distortion and perversion of the truth,
plainly for the purpose of so much gain, and
for the enhancement of a professional
reputation, were to be observed there, outside the
dock and beyond the prisoner. I found
myself required to take a ticket, conventionally
used in that place, in exchange for my natural
perception of many painfully ludicrous things
that should have become obsolete long ago.
Not that I complain of this particular demand
at the door; for otherwise how could I have
borne the fearful absurdity of the Judge;
being unable to discharge the last awful duty
of his office without putting on a strange
little comical hat, only used for the dismissal
of a blood-stained soul into eternity? Or
how could I have withheld myself from
bursting out into a fit of laughter, which
would have been contempt of court, when
the same exalted functionary and two
virtuous Counsel (I never in my life had the
pleasure of hearing two gentlemen talk so
much virtue) were grimly pleasant on the
dressing-up in woollen wigs of certain Negro
Singers whose place of entertainment had
been innocently the scene of a manslaughter.
While the exalted functionary himself, and
the two virtuous counsel themselves, were
at that very moment dressed up in woolly
wigs, to the full as false and ridiculous as any
theatrical wigs in the world, only they were
not of the negro colour!

But, when I went to the Strangers'
Gallery of the House of Commons, I had a
greater load to leave with my umbrella than
Christian had to lay down, in the Pilgrim's
Progress. The difference between Black and
White, which is really a very large one and
enough to burst any Umbrella, was the first
thing I had to force into mine. And it was
well for me that this was insisted on by the
Police, or how could I have escaped the
Serjeant-at-Arms, when the very same
Member who on the last occasion of my going to
the very same place I had with my own ears
heard announce with the profoundest
emotion that he came down to that house
expressly to lay his hand upon his heart and
declare that Black was White and there was
no such thing as Black, now announced with
the profoundest emotion that he came down
to that house expressly to lay his hand upon
his heart and declare that White was Black
and there was no such thing as White? If
you have such an article about you (said the
Umbrella-taker to me in effect) as the
distinction between very ill-constructed common
places, and sound patriotic facts, you are
requested to leave it at the door here.—By
all means, said I.—You have there a Noun