The English Gipsies And Their Language

The English Gipsies And Their Language

by Charles Godfrey Leland
     
 

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Many of the earliest books, particularly those dating back to the 1900s and before, are now extremely scarce and increasingly expensive. We are republishing these classic works in affordable, high quality, modern editions, using the original text and artwork.See more details below

Overview

Many of the earliest books, particularly those dating back to the 1900s and before, are now extremely scarce and increasingly expensive. We are republishing these classic works in affordable, high quality, modern editions, using the original text and artwork.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781446025215
Publisher:
Read Books Design
Publication date:
07/01/2010
Pages:
270
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.61(d)

Read an Excerpt


CHAPTER III. THE GIPSY TINKER. Difficulty of coming to an Understanding with Gipsies.—The Cabman.—Rommany for French.—"Wanderlust."—Gipsy Politeness.—The Tinker and the Painting.—Secrets of Rat- catching.—The Piper of Hamelin, and the Tinker's Opinion of the Story.—The Walloon Tinker of Spa.—Argot. One summer day in London, in 1871, I was seated alone in an artist's studio. Suddenly I heard without, beneath the window, the murmur of two voices, and the sleepy, hissing, grating sound of a scissors- grinder's wheel. By me lay a few tools, one of which, a chisel, was broken. I took it, went softly to the window, and looked down. There was the wheel, including all the apparatus of a travelling tinker. I looked to see if I could discover in the two men who stood by it any trace of the Eommany. One, a fat, short, mind-his-owu- business, ragged son of the roads, who looked, however, as if a sturdy drinker might be hidden in his shell, was evidently not my " affair." He seemed to be the " Co." of the firm. But by him, and officiating at the wheeling smithy, stood a taller figure—the face to me invisible—whichI scrutinised more nearly. And the instant I observed his hat I said to myself, " This looks like it." For dilapidated, worn, wretched as that hat was, there was in it an attempt, though indescribably humble, to be something melo-dramatic, foreign, Bohemian, and poetic. It was the mere blind, dull, dead germ of an effort—not even life—only the ciliary movement of an antecedent embryo—and yet it had got beyond Anglo - Saxondom. No costermonger, or common cad, or true Englishman, ever yet had that indefinable touch ofthe opera-supernumerary in the streets. It was a sombrero. " That 'a the man for me," I said. So I called him, and gave him the chisel, and after a...

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