BOOK THE FIRST: THE CUP AND THE LIP
Chapter 5: Boffin's Bower (continued)
'Is it indeed, sir? And it would be hard, sir, to name the pie that is
a better pie than a weal and hammer,' said Mr Wegg, nodding his
'Have some, Wegg?'
'Thank you, Mr Boffin, I think I will, at your invitation. I wouldn't
at any other party's, at the present juncture; but at yours, sir!--And
meaty jelly too, especially when a little salt, which is the case
where there's ham, is mellering to the organ, is very mellering to
the organ.' Mr Wegg did not say what organ, but spoke with a
So, the pie was brought down, and the worthy Mr Boffin exercised
his patience until Wegg, in the exercise of his knife and fork, had
finished the dish: only profiting by the opportunity to inform Wegg
that although it was not strictly Fashionable to keep the contents of
a larder thus exposed to view, he (Mr Boffin) considered it
hospitable; for the reason, that instead of saying, in a
comparatively unmeaning manner, to a visitor, 'There are such and
such edibles down stairs; will you have anything up?' you took the
bold practical course of saying, 'Cast your eye along the shelves,
and, if you see anything you like there, have it down.'
And now, Mr Wegg at length pushed away his plate and put on his
spectacles, and Mr Boffin lighted his pipe and looked with
beaming eyes into the opening world before him, and Mrs Boffin
reclined in a fashionable manner on her sofa: as one who would be
part of the audience if she found she could, and would go to sleep
if she found she couldn't.
'Hem!' began Wegg, 'This, Mr Boffin and Lady, is the first chapter
of the first wollume of the Decline and Fall off--' here he looked
hard at the book, and stopped.
'What's the matter, Wegg?'
'Why, it comes into my mind, do you know, sir,' said Wegg with
an air of insinuating frankness (having first again looked hard at
the book), 'that you made a little mistake this morning, which I had
meant to set you right in, only something put it out of my head. I
think you said Rooshan Empire, sir?'