archyology ii (the final dig): the long lost tales of archy and mehitabel

Overview

In this second and final volume “composed” by archy, the literary cockroach, the wonderfully whimsical insect and his fractious feline friend, mehitabel, engage in misadventures large and small and comment with quirky accuracy on the common state of humanity. Previously unpublished in book form and literally recovered from a steamer trunk by editor Jeff Adams, these stories are the product of Don Marquis, a New York columnist and raconteur who was one of America's most popular humorists during the early twentieth...
See more details below
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (5) from $3.86   
  • Used (5) from $3.86   
Sending request ...

Overview

In this second and final volume “composed” by archy, the literary cockroach, the wonderfully whimsical insect and his fractious feline friend, mehitabel, engage in misadventures large and small and comment with quirky accuracy on the common state of humanity. Previously unpublished in book form and literally recovered from a steamer trunk by editor Jeff Adams, these stories are the product of Don Marquis, a New York columnist and raconteur who was one of America's most popular humorists during the early twentieth century. archy supposedly worked at Marquis’s newsroom typewriter at night, diving headfirst onto individual keys to tap out columns; unable to use the shift key, of course, archy settled for lower-case letters and dispensed with punctuation entirely.

Ungrammatical as they may be, archy's wry insights are a true delight, for, as he puts it, “one advantage of being a cockroach is that i see things from the under side.” From that unique perspective we follow the continuing saga of archy, the Cockroach Detective, a spoof on the gumshoe genre in which the six-legged private eye encounters a raja, his chorus-girl harem, Bolshevist twins, an Egyptologist, seven sister manicurists, and a set of bejeweled false teeth. In other episodes archy saves the US fleet from a German U-boat attack, muses with a spider about humanity's inhumanity to insects, stows away on a freighter to London, and climbs to the top of the Washington Monument.

In the Capitol building itself, archy says, “there is no attention paid to me because there are so many other insects around it gives you a great idea of the american people when you see some of the things they elect.” The Ku Klux Klan, he observes elsewhere, “is going strong and the national emblem will soon be the great american kleagle.” Meanwhile, mehitabel, who claims to be a reincarnation of Cleopatra, offers to hire hit-cats to clean up City Hall, not of rats but of reporters. Accompanied by the inspired drawings of cartoonist Ed Frascino, these new archy tales are, Adams writes, “classic American humor, as vivid and amusing today as they were decades ago.”

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“archy is more peripatetic than usual in these books—he moves away from his old haunts in New York in order to observe the strange goings on in Paris, though with that same jaundiced eye…Marquis's gifts as a comic satirist have often been written about. Less has been said about the fact that he was also tilting at the excesses of American writers of bad free verse when he had archy write in the way that he did…[he created] two of America's most enduring comic characters.” —The Economist
Kirkus Reviews
A slender final posthumous collection of vers libre by the most famous cockroach in American letters. Though editor Adams's scant Preface doesn't date any of the individual poems, at least one of them, in which archy stops a German U-boat from sinking an American fleet carrying wartime supplies to France, can be dated almost to the literary cockroach's debut in 1916. Others—archy visits the insects in Washington, archy goes on strike until Marquis (his "boss") changes his typeface, archy fends off the advances of jennie the cockroach—could have been written yesterday. Marquis's eye for humbug, and his ear for nonsense, achieve a comic sublimity in "the inventor's toothpick" (archy suddenly finds himself laden with a minute but lethal dose of high explosives) and "archy comes out for simplified spelling" (in which the cause finds its logical champion: a writer who perforce dispenses with capitalization and punctuation, and whose own terseness is explained by the effort it takes to leap from key to key of the typewriter). Three reservations: (1) Marquis's satires of the Ku Klux Klan (variously called"the ku klux klam" and "the krew krux krank") are toothless; (2) nearly half the book is devoted to "The Great False Teeth Mystery," whose burlesque of serial conventions, though often antically funny (its non-sequitur installments are mainly variations on the challenge of writing a cockroach detective and a set of bejewelled false teeth into the same story), is best consumed in small doses; and (3) archy's friend mehitabel, the cat who claims to be an incarnation of Cleopatra, appears more frequently in Frascino's 36 line drawings than in archy's poems. Despite the thinness,though, any new book from archy is better than no cockroach poetry at all.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780874518535
  • Publisher: University Press of New England
  • Publication date: 3/1/1998
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 131
  • Product dimensions: 5.38 (w) x 8.77 (h) x 0.66 (d)

Meet the Author

DON MARQUIS (1878 - 1937) wrote daily for the New York Sun and Herald Tribune and was author of many books. Inveterate Marquis devotee and collector JEFF ADAMS is a corporate consultant and novelist living in northern California. ED FRASCINO is a New Yorker cartoonist an illustrator of many books, including Rudyard Kipling's Elephant Child and E. B. White's Trumpet of the Swan. They previously collaborated on archyology.
Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

preface
consider 1
the inventors toothpick 2
open spaces 8
The Great False Teeth Mystery 11
a letter from mehitabel 19
archy comes out for simplified spelling 23
archys own short course on entomology 25
The Great False Teeth Mystery 27
archy visits washington 33
archy the insider 35
all for brevier 37
archyology 38
The Great False Teeth Mystery, or All For Love's Sake 39
archy del puerto rico 45
hark 47
in a stew 48
the burning question 50
the thing to do 51
The Great False Teeth Mystery: Wedded and Parted 57
please no rain 64
a seaside spectacle 66
archy declares neutrality 68
The Great False Teeth Mystery, or The Bolshevist's Bride 71
archy interjects 78
archy afloat 79
archy to the radio fans 80
tossing with a porpoise 81
back with a message 83
The Great False Teeth Mystery, or Broken Vows 85
waxing poetic 91
thanks boss 93
archy gets historical 94
archy remembers 96
The Great False Teeth Mystery, or Wooed and Descried 99
archy saves the fleet 104
eating for arts sake 107
The Great False Teeth Mystery 109
archy still treats em rough 112
meter reading 115
sport to you 116
archy says 117
a final thought 120
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)