Monday, November 10, 2008

GKC cartoon via Faith Mouse


  1. Excellent! Full marks for precision in quoting the "toucan" line, the most difficult of all GKC's famous quotes!

    And a special bonus for a stupendous piece of humour! (GKC seems to inspire all kinds of good "fat" jokes...)

    But why is the Pope drinking tea from a BEER mug? Hee hee. But really, what a great looking mug... I wonder if that obelisk is the one in the Piazza of Santa Maria del Populo - the one GKC saw, with the "iron hat" to "keep it quiet". (See The Resurrection of Rome CW21:359) More on that soon, I hope.

    Speaking of more - I'd love to hear more from the Pope about GKC. (Hint, hint.)

    --Dr. Thursday

  2. Great cartoon. My guess, Doc, is that it's the obelisk in St Peter's Square viewed from the front steps of St. Peter's. I say that because of the uniform flanking structures. Seems like a logical representation of something Vaticany.


  3. Oddly, no one has commented on the Pope's slippers here . . . not yet anyway.

  4. I'm not supposed to tell, but he was playing a game. There's a picture around of Chesterton in slippers, playing that same game - the Dover edition of Tremendous Trifles uses it. The game is called "Hunt the Slipper".

    If the poor in the past could get fun out of these cheap and obvious things, so can we. If our fathers could make a great game out of a stool or a slipper, so can we. These, like all the higher pleasures of the intellect, are comparatively independent of expenditure.
    [ILN Dec 29 1917 CW31:223]

    Why, you may ask, does the Pope play such games? Chesterton answers that too:

    "You'll hardly believe it," Petersen said, slapping the table, as they sat at tea, "but it's five weeks since I've had a game at Hunt-the-Slipper."
    "I shall believe with comparatively little effort," said Norman, "in my case it is about fifteen years."
    "Then let's have one after tea," said Petersen, beaming and addressing Willis Hope, who nearly fell off his chair.
    "Better have Oranges and Lemons," said Muriel Hope, taking the matter as a joke.
    "Pardon me," said Petersen, turning upon her, "I do not think the comparison can be maintained. Oranges and Lemons is ceremonial in its nature: it does not give the many-coloured excitement: the comedy of personalities, the thrilling stratagems, the unexpected escapes of Hunt-the-Slipper. A still stronger case, of course, is to be found in Hide and Seek, a pure game of adventure, in which every hiding-place is a poem, a legend of the old Earth who is always the ally of the crafty, and whose never-ending fairy-tale, of Ulysses and Brer Rabbit, gains a new page with every game."
    There was a silence. Petersen imagined himself surrounded with a ring of the offended adherents of Oranges and Lemons. Addressing himself to Willis Hope, apparently the chief priest of the pastime, he added: "Do not mistake me. I have no desire to underrate the noble ritual of Oranges and Lemons, a pageant as beautiful as its orchard name. Those really do it harm who seek unwisely to force upon it a comparison that it will not bear. Hunt-the-Slipper is essentially dramatic."
    "I think a clergyman might be better employed," said Marion, acidly.
    "Miss Dent," said Petersen, turning upon her with a flush, "it was probably the rules of Hunt-the-Slipper that the child taught the wise men in the Temple."

    Marion was speechless.

    Oh yes.

    --Dr. Thursday


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