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A History of the Cries of London by Hindley

And walk about merrily crying my muffins


"The

constable of the night gave orders for him to be protected to the public-house opposite the west end of St. Giles's Church, where he then lodged. Sir Harry, hearing a noise in the street, muttered, 'I shall catch it; I know I shall.' (_Cries without_,) 'See the conquering hero comes.' 'Ay, they always use that tune when I gain my election at Garratt.'

"There are several portraits of this singular little object, by some called 'Honey-juice.' Flaxman, the sculptor, and Mrs. Mathews, of blue-stocking memory, equipped him as a hardware man, and as such I made two etchings of him."

THE MUFFIN MAN.

(_T. Dibden._)

While you opera-squallers fine verses are singing, Of heroes, and poets, and such like humguffins; While the world's running round, like a mill in a sail, I'll ne'er bother my head with what other folks ail, But careless and frisky, my bell I keep ringing, And walk about merrily crying my muffins.

CHORUS.

Lily-white muffins, O, rare crumpets smoking, Hot Yorkshire cakes, hot loaves and charming cakes, _One-a-penny, two-a-penny, Yorkshire cakes_.

What matters to me if great folks run a gadding, For politics, fashions, or such botheration; Let them drink as they brew, while I merrily bake;

For though I sell muffins, I'm not such a cake-- To let other fools' fancies e'er set me a gadding, Or burthen my thoughts with the cares of the nation.

SPOKEN.--What have I to do with politicians? And for your _Parliament cakes_. Why! everybody knows they are _bought_ and _sold_, and often _done brown_, and made _crusty_ all over the nation. No, no, its enough for me to cry--

Lily-white muffins, &c.

Let soldiers and sailors, contending for glory, Delight in the rattle of drums and of trumpets; Undertakers get living by other folks dying, While actors make money by laughing or crying; Let lawyers with quizzels and quiddities bore ye, It's nothing to me, while I'm crying my crumpets.

SPOKEN.--What do I care for lawyers? A'nt I a baker, and consequently, Master of the Rolls:--Droll enough, too, for a Master of the Rolls to be crying--

Lily-white muffins, &c.

[Illustration: THE MUFFIN MAN.

"Muffins, oh! crumpets, oh! Come buy, come buy of me. Muffins and crumpets, muffins, For breakfast or for tea."]

The ringing of the muffin-man's bell--attached to which the pleasant associations are not a few--is prohibited by a ponderous Act of Parliament, but the prohibition has been all but inoperative, for the muffin bell still tinkles along the streets, and is rung vigorously in the suburbs, and just at the time when City gents, at winter's eve, are comfortably enveloped in fancy-patterned dressing gowns, prettily-worked smoking-caps, and easy-going and highly-coloured slippers, and saying within themselves or aloud:--


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