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PURGANAX (his heart is seen to beat through his waistcoat)

Gods! What would ye be at?


Purganax has plainly shown a
Cloven foot and jackdaw feather.


I vote Swellfoot and Iona
Try the magic test together;
Whenever royal spouses bicker,
Both should try the magic liquor.

AN OLD BOAR (aside)
A miserable state is that of Pigs,
For if their drivers would tear


and wigs, The Swine must bite each other's ear therefor.

AN OLD Sow (aside) A wretched lot Jove has assigned to Swine, Squabbling makes Pig-herds hungry, and they

dine On bacon, and whip sucking Pigs the more.


Hog-wash has been ta’en away ;

If the Bull-Queen is divested,
We shall be in every way

Hunted, stripped, exposed, molested;
Let us do whate'er we may,

That she shall not be arrested.

Queen, we entrench you with walls of brawn,

And palisades of tusks, sharp as a bayonet. Place your most Sacred Person here. We pawn Our lives that none a finger dare to lay on it.

Those who wrong you, wrong us ;
Those who hate you, hate us ;
Those who sting you, sting us;
Those who bait


The oracle is now about to be

Fulfilled by circumvolving destiny, Which

says: Thebes, choose reform or civil war, When through your streets, instead of hare

with dogs, A Consort-Queen shall hunt a King with hogs, Riding upon the Ionian Minotaur.”


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IONA TAURINA (coming forward) Gentlemen Swine, and gentle Lady-Pigs, The tender heart of every Boar acquits Their Queen of any act incongruous With native Piggishness, and she reposing With confidence upon the grunting nation, Has thrown herself, her cause, her life, her all, Her innocence, into their Hoggish arms; Nor has the expectation been deceived Of finding shelter there. Yet know, great Boars, (For such whoever lives among you finds you, And so do I) the innocent are proud ! I have accepted your protection only In compliment of your kind love and care, Not for necessity. The innocent Are safest there where trials and dangers wait;

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Innocent queens o'er white-hot ploughshares tread
Unsinged; and ladies, Erin's laureate sings it,
Decked with rare gems, and beauty rarer still,
Walked from Killarney to the Giant's Causeway
Through rebels, smugglers, troops of yeomanry,
White-boys, and Orange-boys, and constables,
Tithe-proctors, and excise people, uninjured !
Thus I!-
Lord Purganax, I do commit myself
Into your custody, and am prepared
To stand the test, whatever it may be!


This magnanimity in your sacred Majesty
Must please the Pigs. You cannot fail of being
A heavenly angel. Smoke your bits of glass,
Ye loyal Swine, or her transfiguration
Will blind your wondering eyes.

AN OLD BOAR (aside)

Take care, my Lord, They do not smoke you first.


At the approaching feast Of Famine let the expiation be.


Content! content!


I, most content of all, Know that

foes even thus

prepare their fall!

[Exeunt omnes.

SCENE II. The interior of the Temple of Famine. The statue of

the Goddess, a skeleton clothed in party-colored rags, seated upon a heap of skulls and loaves intermingled. A number of exceedingly fat Priests in black garments arrayed on each side, with marrow-bones and cleavers in their hands. A flourish of trumpets.


LAOCTONOS, followed by IonA TAURINA guarded. On the other side enter the Swine.

CHORUS OF PRIESTS (accompanied by the Court Porkman on

marrow-bones and cleavers) Goddess bare, and gaunt, and pale, Empress of the world, all hail ! What though Cretans old called thee City-crested Cybele ?

We call thee Famine ! Goddess of fasts and feasts, starving and cram

ming; Through thee, for emperors, kings and priests and

lords, Who rule by viziers, sceptres, bank-notes, words,

The earth pours forth its plenteous fruits,

Corn, wool, linen, flesh, and roots. Those who consume these fruits through thee

grow fat,

Those who produce these fruits through thee

grow lean,

Whatever change takes place, oh, stick to that,

And let things be as they have ever been;
At least while we remain thy priests,

And proclaim thy fasts and feasts!
Through thee the sacred Swellfoot dynasty

Is based upon a rock amid that sea
Whose waves are Swine so let it ever be !

[SWELLFOOT, etc., seat themselves at a table, magnificently covered,

at the upper end of the temple. Attendants pass over the stage with hog-wash in pails. A number of Pigs, exceedingly lean, follow them, licking up the wash.


I fear your sacred Majesty has lost
The appetite which you were used to have.
Allow me now to recommend this dish
A simple kickshaw by your Persian cook,
Such as is served at the great King's second table.
The price and pains which its ingredients cost
Might have maintained some dozen families
A winter or two - - not more —

so plain a dish Could scarcely disagree.


After the trial,
And these fastidious Pigs are gone, perhaps
I may recover my lost appetite.
I feel the gout flying about my stomach ;
Give me a glass of Maraschino punch.

PURGANAX (filling his glass, and standing up) The glorious constitution of the Pigs !


A toast ! a toast! stand up, and three times three!


No heel-taps - darken day-lights !

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