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The Prince and the Pauper
by Mark Twain

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{1} For Mark Twain's note see below under the relevant chapter heading.

{2} He refers to the order of baronets, or baronettes; the

barones minores, as distinct from the parliamentary barons--not,

it need hardly be said, to the baronets of later creation.

{3} The lords of Kingsale, descendants of De Courcy, still enjoy

this curious privilege.

{4} Hume.

{5} Ib.

{6} Leigh Hunt's 'The Town,' p.408, quotation from an early tourist.

{7} Canting terms for various kinds of thieves, beggars and

vagabonds, and their female companions.

{8} From 'The English Rogue.' London, 1665.

{9} Hume's England.

{10} See Dr. J. Hammond Trumbull's Blue Laws, True and False, p.11.

NOTE 1, Chapter IV. Christ's Hospital Costume.

It is most reasonable to regard the dress as copied from the

costume of the citizens of London of that period, when long blue

coats were the common habit of apprentices and serving-men, and

yellow stockings were generally worn; the coat fits closely to the

body, but has loose sleeves, and beneath is worn a sleeveless

yellow under-coat; around the waist is a red leathern girdle; a

clerical band around the neck, and a small flat black cap, about

the size of a saucer, completes the costume.--Timbs' Curiosities

of London.

NOTE 2, Chapter IV.

It appears that Christ's Hospital was not originally founded as a

SCHOOL; its object was to rescue children from the streets, to

shelter, feed, clothe them.

--Timbs' Curiosities of London.

NOTE 3, Chapter V. The Duke of Norfolk's Condemnation commanded.

The King was now approaching fast towards his end; and fearing

lest Norfolk should escape him, he sent a message to the Commons,

by which he desired them to hasten the Bill, on pretence that

Norfolk enjoyed the dignity of Earl Marshal, and it was necessary

to appoint another, who might officiate at the ensuing ceremony of

installing his son Prince of Wales.--Hume's History of England,

vol. iii. p. 307.

NOTE 4, Chapter VII.

It was not till the end of this reign (Henry VIII.) that any

salads, carrots, turnips, or other edible roots were produced in

England. The little of these vegetables that was used was

formerly imported from Holland and Flanders. Queen Catherine,

when she wanted a salad, was obliged to despatch a messenger

thither on purpose.--Hume's History of England, vol. iii. p. 314.

NOTE 5, Chapter VIII. Attainder of Norfolk.

The House of Peers, without examining the prisoner, without trial

or evidence, passed a Bill of Attainder against him and sent it

down to the Commons . . . The obsequious Commons obeyed his (the

King's) directions; and the King, having affixed the Royal assent

to the Bill by commissioners, issued orders for the execution of

Norfolk on the morning of January 29 (the next day).--Hume's

History of England, vol iii. p 306.

NOTE 6, Chapter X. The Loving-cup.

The loving-cup, and the peculiar ceremonies observed in drinking

from it, are older than English history. It is thought that both

are Danish importations. As far back as knowledge goes, the

loving-cup has always been drunk at English banquets. Tradition

explains the ceremonies in this way. In the rude ancient times it

was deemed a wise precaution to have both hands of both drinkers

employed, lest while the pledger pledged his love and fidelity to

the pledgee, the pledgee take that opportunity to slip a dirk into


NOTE 7, Chapter XI. The Duke of Norfolk's narrow Escape.

Had Henry VIII. survived a few hours longer, his order for the

duke's execution would have been carried into effect. 'But news

being carried to the Tower that the King himself had expired that

night, the lieutenant deferred obeying the warrant; and it was not

thought advisable by the Council to begin a new reign by the death

of the greatest nobleman in the kingdom, who had been condemned by

a sentence so unjust and tyrannical.'--Hume's History of England,

vol. iii, p. 307.

NOTE 8, Chapter XIV. The Whipping-boy.

James I. and Charles II. had whipping-boys, when they were little

fellows, to take their punishment for them when they fell short in

their lessons; so I have ventured to furnish my small prince with

one, for my own purposes.

NOTES to Chapter XV.

Character of Hertford.

The young King discovered an extreme attachment to his uncle, who

was, in the main, a man of moderation and probity.--Hume's History

of England, vol. iii.p324.

But if he (the Protector) gave offence by assuming too much state,

he deserves great praise on account of the laws passed this

session, by which the rigour of former statutes was much

mitigated, and some security given to the freedom of the

constitution. All laws were repealed which extended the crime of

treason beyond the statute of the twenty-fifth of Edward III.; all

laws enacted during the late reign extending the crime of felony;

all the former laws against Lollardy or heresy, together with the

statute of the Six Articles. None were to be accused for words,

but within a month after they were spoken. By these repeals

several of the most rigorous laws that ever had passed in England

were annulled; and some dawn, both of civil and religious liberty,

began to appear to the people. A repeal also passed of that law,

the destruction of all laws, by which the King's proclamation was

made of equal force with a statute.--Ibid. vol. iii. p. 339.

Boiling to Death.

In the reign of Henry VIII. poisoners were, by Act of Parliament,

condemned to be BOILED TO DEATH. This Act was repealed in the

following reign.

In Germany, even in the seventeenth century, this horrible

punishment was inflicted on coiners and counterfeiters. Taylor,

the Water Poet, describes an execution he witnessed in Hamburg in

1616. The judgment pronounced against a coiner of false money was

that he should 'BE BOILED TO DEATH IN OIL; not thrown into the

vessel at once, but with a pulley or rope to be hanged under the

armpits, and then let down into the oil BY DEGREES; first the

feet, and next the legs, and so to boil his flesh from his bones

alive.'--Dr. J. Hammond Trumbull's Blue Laws, True and False, p.13.

The Famous Stocking Case.

A woman and her daughter, NINE YEARS OLD, were hanged in

Huntingdon for selling their souls to the devil, and raising a

storm by pulling off their stockings!--Dr. J. Hammond Trumbull's

Blue Laws, True and False, p. 20.

NOTE 10, Chapter XVII. Enslaving.

So young a King and so ignorant a peasant were likely to make

mistakes; and this is an instance in point. This peasant was

suffering from this law BY ANTICIPATION; the King was venting his

indignation against a law which was not yet in existence; for this

hideous statute was to have birth in this little King's OWN REIGN.

However, we know, from the humanity of his character, that it

could never have been suggested by him.

NOTES to Chapter XXIII. Death for Trifling Larcenies.

When Connecticut and New Haven were framing their first codes,

larceny above the value of twelve pence was a capital crime in

England--as it had been since the time of Henry I.--Dr. J. Hammond

Trumbull's Blue Laws, True and False, p. 17.

The curious old book called The English Rogue makes the limit

thirteen pence ha'penny: death being the portion of any who steal

a thing 'above the value of thirteen pence ha'penny.'

NOTES to Chapter XXVII.

From many descriptions of larceny the law expressly took away the

benefit of clergy: to steal a horse, or a HAWK, or woollen cloth

from the weaver, was a hanging matter. So it was to kill a deer

from the King's forest, or to export sheep from the kingdom.--Dr.

J. Hammond Trumbull's Blue Laws, True and False, p.13.

William Prynne, a learned barrister, was sentenced (long after

Edward VI.'s time) to lose both his ears in the pillory, to

degradation from the bar, a fine of 3,000 pounds, and imprisonment

for life. Three years afterwards he gave new offence to Laud by

publishing a pamphlet against the hierarchy. He was again

prosecuted, and was sentenced to lose WHAT REMAINED OF HIS EARS,

to pay a fine of 5,000 pounds, to be BRANDED ON BOTH HIS CHEEKS

with the letters S. L. (for Seditious Libeller), and to remain in

prison for life. The severity of this sentence was equalled by

the savage rigour of its execution.--Ibid. p. 12.

NOTES to Chapter XXXIII.

Christ's Hospital, or Bluecoat School, 'the noblest institution in the world.'

The ground on which the Priory of the Grey Friars stood was

conferred by Henry VIII. on the Corporation of London (who caused

the institution there of a home for poor boys and girls).

Subsequently, Edward VI. caused the old Priory to be properly

repaired, and founded within it that noble establishment called

the Bluecoat School, or Christ's Hospital, for the EDUCATION and

maintenance of orphans and the children of indigent persons . . .

Edward would not let him (Bishop Ridley) depart till the letter

was written (to the Lord Mayor), and then charged him to deliver

it himself, and signify his special request and commandment that

no time might be lost in proposing what was convenient, and

apprising him of the proceedings. The work was zealously

undertaken, Ridley himself engaging in it; and the result was the

founding of Christ's Hospital for the education of poor children.

(The King endowed several other charities at the same time.)

"Lord God," said he, "I yield Thee most hearty thanks that Thou

hast given me life thus long to finish this work to the glory of

Thy name!" That innocent and most exemplary life was drawing

rapidly to its close, and in a few days he rendered up his spirit

to his Creator, praying God to defend the realm from Papistry.--J.

Heneage Jesse's London: its Celebrated Characters and Places.

In the Great Hall hangs a large picture of King Edward VI. seated

on his throne, in a scarlet and ermined robe, holding the sceptre

in his left hand, and presenting with the other the Charter to the

kneeling Lord Mayor. By his side stands the Chancellor, holding

the seals, and next to him are other officers of state. Bishop

Ridley kneels before him with uplifted hands, as if supplicating a

blessing on the event; whilst the Aldermen, etc., with the Lord

Mayor, kneel on both sides, occupying the middle ground of the

picture; and lastly, in front, are a double row of boys on one

side and girls on the other, from the master and matron down to

the boy and girl who have stepped forward from their respective

rows, and kneel with raised hands before the King.--Timbs'

Curiosities of London, p. 98.

Christ's Hospital, by ancient custom, possesses the privilege of

addressing the Sovereign on the occasion of his or her coming into

the City to partake of the hospitality of the Corporation of London.--Ibid.

The Dining Hall, with its lobby and organ-gallery, occupies the

entire storey, which is 187 feet long, 51 feet wide, and 47 feet

high; it is lit by nine large windows, filled with stained glass

on the south side; and is, next to Westminster Hall, the noblest

room in the metropolis. Here the boys, now about 800 in number,

dine; and here are held the 'Suppings in Public,' to which

visitors are admitted by tickets issued by the Treasurer and by

the Governors of Christ's Hospital. The tables are laid with

cheese in wooden bowls, beer in wooden piggins, poured from

leathern jacks, and bread brought in large baskets. The official

company enter; the Lord Mayor, or President, takes his seat in a

state chair made of oak from St. Catherine's Church, by the Tower;

a hymn is sung, accompanied by the organ; a 'Grecian,' or head

boy, reads the prayers from the pulpit, silence being enforced by

three drops of a wooden hammer. After prayer the supper

commences, and the visitors walk between the tables. At its close

the 'trade-boys' take up the baskets, bowls, jacks, piggins, and

candlesticks, and pass in procession, the bowing to the Governors

being curiously formal. This spectacle was witnessed by Queen

Victoria and Prince Albert in 1845.

Among the more eminent Bluecoat boys are Joshua Barnes, editor of

Anacreon and Euripides; Jeremiah Markland, the eminent critic,

particularly in Greek Literature; Camden, the antiquary; Bishop

Stillingfleet; Samuel Richardson, the novelist; Thomas Mitchell,

the translator of Aristophanes; Thomas Barnes, many years editor

of the London Times; Coleridge, Charles Lamb, and Leigh Hunt.

No boy is admitted before he is seven years old, or after he is

nine; and no boy can remain in the school after he is fifteen,

King's boys and 'Grecians' alone excepted. There are about 500

Governors, at the head of whom are the Sovereign and the Prince of

Wales. The qualification for a Governor is payment of 500 pounds.--Ibid.


One hears much about the 'hideous Blue Laws of Connecticut,' and

is accustomed to shudder piously when they are mentioned. There

are people in America--and even in England!--who imagine that they

were a very monument of malignity, pitilessness, and inhumanity;

whereas in reality they were about the first SWEEPING DEPARTURE

FROM JUDICIAL ATROCITY which the 'civilised' world had seen. This

humane and kindly Blue Law Code, of two hundred and forty years

ago, stands all by itself, with ages of bloody law on the further

side of it, and a century and three-quarters of bloody English law

on THIS side of it.

There has never been a time--under the Blue Laws or any other--

when above FOURTEEN crimes were punishable by death in

Connecticut. But in England, within the memory of men who are

still hale in body and mind, TWO HUNDRED AND TWENTY-THREE crimes

were punishable by death! {10} These facts are worth knowing--and

worth thinking about, too.



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