Home / News
CHAPTER 27 (continued)
If I know'd a donkey wot wouldn't go To see Mrs JARLEY'S wax-work show, Do you think I'd acknowledge him? Oh no no! Then run to Jarley's--
--besides several compositions in prose, purporting to be dialogues between the Emperor of China and an oyster, or the Archbishop of Canterbury and a dissenter on the subject of church-rates, but all having the same moral, namely, that the reader must make haste to Jarley's, and that children and servants were admitted at half-price. When she had brought all these testimonials of her important position in society to bear upon her young companion, Mrs Jarley rolled them up, and having put them carefully away, sat down again, and looked at the child in triumph.
'Never go into the company of a filthy Punch any more,' said Mrs Jarley, 'after this.'
'I never saw any wax-work, ma'am,' said Nell. 'Is it funnier than Punch?'
'Funnier!' said Mrs Jarley in a shrill voice. 'It is not funny at all.'
'Oh!' said Nell, with all possible humility.
'It isn't funny at all,' repeated Mrs Jarley. 'It's calm and-- what's that word again--critical? --no--classical, that's it-- it's calm and classical. No low beatings and knockings about, no jokings and squeakings like your precious Punches, but always the same, with a constantly unchanging air of coldness and gentility; and so like life, that if wax-work only spoke and walked about, you'd hardly know the difference. I won't go so far as to say, that, as it is, I've seen wax-work quite like life, but I've certainly seen some life that was exactly like wax-work.'
'Is it here, ma'am?' asked Nell, whose curiosity was awakened by this description.
'Is what here, child?'
'The wax-work, ma'am.'
This is page 222 of 618. [Mark this Page]
Mark any page to add this title to Your Bookshelf. (0 / 10 books on shelf)
Buy a copy of The Old Curiosity Shop at Amazon.com
Customize text appearance:
(c) 2003-2012 LiteraturePage.com and Michael Moncur.
For information about public domain texts appearing here, read the copyright information and disclaimer.