The Worlds Wit and Humor: An Encyclopedia in 15 Volumes. 1906. Vols. VIIX: British
Pot-Luck at the Vatican
By Francis Sylvester Mahony (Father Prout) (18041866)
From Father Tom and the Pope
WHEN his rivrence was in Room, ov coorse the pope axed him to take pot-look wid him. More be token, it was on a Friday; but, for all that, there was plenty of mate; for the pope gev himself an absolution from the fast on account of the great company that was in itat laste so Im towld. Howandiver, theres no fast on the dhrink, anyhowglory be to God!and so, as they wor sitting, afther dinner, taking their sup together, says the pope, says he, Thomausfor the pope, you know, spakes that away, all as one as one ov uzThomaus a lanna, says he, Im towld you welt them English heretics out ov the face.
Well, his holiness laughed like to split; for you know, Pope was the great Prodesan that Father Tom put down upon purgathory; and ov coorse they knew all the ins and outs of the conthravarsy at Room. Faix, Thomaus, says he, smiling across the table at him mighty agreeable, its no lie what they tell me, that yourself is the pleasant man over the dhrop ov good liquor.
Ah, then, your holiness, says his rivrence, mighty eager, maybe youd have a dhrop ov the native in your cellar? Sure its all one throuble, says he, and, troth, I dunna how it is, but brandy always plays the puck wid my inthrails.
Pon my conscience, then, says the pope, its very sorry I am, Misther Maguire, says he, that it isnt in my power to plase you; for Im sure and certaint that theres not as much whisky in Room this blessed minit as ud blind the eye ov a midge.
Well, in troth, your holiness, says Father Tom, I knewn there was no use in axing; only, says he, I didnt know how else to exqueeze the liberty I tuck, says he, of bringing a small taste, says he, of the real stuff, says he, hauling out an imperil quart bottle out ov his coat-pocket; that never seen the face ov a guager, says he, setting it down on the table fornenst the pope; and if youll jist thry the full ov a thimble ov it, and it doesnt rise the cockles ov your holinesss heart, why then, my name, says he, isnt Tom Maguire! and wid that he outs wid the cork.
Well, the pope at first was going to get vexed at Father Tom for fetching dhrink thataway in his pocket, as if there wasnt lashins in the house: so says he, Misther Maguire, says he, Id have you to comprehind the differ betuxt an inwitation to dinner from the succissor of Saint Pether, and from a common mayur or a Prodesan squireen that maybe hasnt liquor enough in his cupboard to wet more nor his own heretical whistle. That may be the way wid them that you wisit in Leithrim, says he, and in Roscommon; and Id let you know the differ in the prisint case, says he, only that youre a champion ov the Church and entitled to laniency. So, says he, as the liquors come, let it stay. And in troth Im curis myself, says he, getting mighty soft when he found the delightful smell ov the putteen, in inwistigating the composition ov distilled liquors; its a branch ov natural philosophy, says he, taking up the bottle and putting it to his blessed nose.
Well, sure enough, its the blessed liquor now, says his rivrence, and so there can be no harm any way in mixing a dandy of punch; and, says he, stirring up the materils wid his goolden muddlarfor everything at the popes table, to the very shcrew for drawing the corks, was ov vergin gooldif I might make bowld, says he, to spake on so deep a subjic afore your holiness, I think it ud considherably whacilitate the inwestigation ov its chemisthry and phwarmaceutics, if youd jist thry the laste sup in life ov it inwardly.
Now, your holiness, says Father Tom, this bein the first time you ever dispinsed them chymicals, says he, Ill jist make bowld to lay down one rule ov orthography, says he, for conwhounding them, secundum mortem.
Glory be to God! says the pope, not minding a word Father Tom was saying. Glory be to God! says he, smacking his lips. I never knewn what dhrink was afore, says he. It bates the Lachrymalchrystal out ov the face! says heits Necthar itself, it is, so it is! says he, wiping his epistolical mouth wid the cuff ov his coat.
Pon my secret honour, says his rivrence, Im raally glad to see your holiness set so much to your satiswhaction; especially, says he, as, for fear ov accidents, I tuck the liberty of fetching the fellow ov that small vesshel, says he, in my other coat-pocket. So devil a fear ov our running dhry till the butt-end of the evening, anyhow, says he.
Dhraw your stool in to the fire, Misther Maguire, says the pope, for faix, says he, Im bent on analising the metaphwysics ov this phinomenon. Come, man alive, clear off, says he, youre not dhrinking at all.