Wednesday 22 May 2013

The Bellman 'served out some grog' from The Hunting of the Snark

The Bellman 'served out some grog', an illustration by JVL in Lewis Carroll's 
The Hunting of the Snark, Artists' Choice Editions, 2009, page 21.

Here is the relevant extract from the poem:

The Bellman perceived that their spirits were low,
 And repeated in musical tone
 Some jokes he had kept for a season of woe--
 But the crew would do nothing but groan.

He served out some grog with a liberal hand,
 And bade them sit down on the beach:
 And they could not but own that their Captain looked grand,
 As he stood and delivered his speech.

"Friends, Romans, and countrymen, lend me your ears!"
 (They were all of them fond of quotations:
 So they drank to his health, and they gave him three cheers,
 While he served out additional rations).

"We have sailed many months, we have sailed many weeks,
 (Four weeks to the month you may mark),
 But never as yet ('tis your Captain who speaks)
 Have we caught the least glimpse of a Snark!

"We have sailed many weeks, we have sailed many days,
 (Seven days to the week I allow),
 But a Snark, on the which we might lovingly gaze,
 We have never beheld till now!

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