Wales Inupiaq Sea Ice Dictionary.

Kifikmi Sigum Qanuq Ilitaavut/Wales Inupiaq Sea Ice Dictionary (pdf, Google cache) is an impressive document of a bit over a hundred pages. Igor Krupnik, in his introductory essay, says “In the community of Kifigin, also known as Wales, Alaska, over 120 words have been documented for various types of sea ice (sigu) and associated phenomena in the local Kifikmiut dialect of the Inupiaq language,” and the book documents them with both verbal explanations and pictures. It begins with a summary in Inupiaq and continues with “Qanuq Ilitaavut: How We Learned What We Know” by Winton (Utuktaaq) Weyapuk, Jr.; some excerpts:

People often intersperse Inupiaq into their everyday conversations. Exclamations, endearments and teasing in Inupiaq can be heard among young adults. The few Elders still carry on their conversations totally in Inupiaq. The Inupiaq language in Wales has been severely impacted, but it survives. […]

The people of Wales have continued to hunt and use other subsistence resources even as the changes described above have taken place. The animals, plants, invertebrates, and environmental conditions remain the same. Global warming may have changed the timing of sigu, or sea ice arrival, the formation, departure and the thickness of the ice, but basically the environmental conditions are unchanged.

Scientifically there are many words and phrases, in English, to describe sea ice conditions. There are just as many, perhaps more words in Inupiaq for sigu, the sea ice. On St. Lawrence Island, hunters use more than one hundred words in their Yupik language to describe various forms of sea ice in their area. In Wainwright, over eighty words have been documented. The number of Inupiaq words for sea ice in Wales is, perhaps, comparable to that in Wainwright. […]

It is our hope that our Inupiaq words for sea ice and the English translations we collected here can help young hunters supplement what they have learned in English about sea ice in our area. Using the English translations they may begin to understand the changing conditions as they are affected by winds and currents. It is also our hope that they can learn and begin to use some of the Inupiaq words as a way to teach those younger than themselves.

The explanations are in both languages, e.g.:

Ikalitaq – Puktaaq ikaliruaq immami isruvaufituami.
A grounded floe berg that is in a shallow part of the ocean.

I approve of this sort of thing. (Thanks, Yoram!)

Comments

  1. David Eddyshaw says:

    For one glorious moment I thought this might refer to our Cymric Eskimo community (yr Inwpiaig.)
    Alas …

  2. John Cowan says:

    And I thought it was a dictionary explaining to the Welsh how to say Mae fy hofrenfad yn llawn llyswennod! in Iñupiaq.

  3. January First-of-May says:

    For one glorious moment I thought this might refer to our Cymric Eskimo community (yr Inwpiaig.)
    Alas …

    Yeah, for a moment I thought “wait, since when are there Eskimos in Wales?” but then, sadly, realized that the article is talking about the village of Wales in Alaska, probably named for nearby Cape Prince of Wales (in turn named for the respective title of the British monarchy; the title’s holder at the time of the naming, and thus the probable intended referent, ultimately became George IV).

    At least this is finally going to give us a definite list of the famed 57 Eskimo words for snow… well, for ice, anyway. (Not sure if anyone ever compiled a similar list of snow vocabulary.)

  4. To avoid confusion, they should have renamed it to New North Wales or something

  5. Dmitry Pruss says:

    The snow list sounds meager, it sounds like even Russian has more. Where, for example, are sastrougi / заструги, where are слякоть or поземка or куржак?

  6. David Eddyshaw says:

    New Very North Wales.

  7. David Marjanović says:

    Not as very as New South Wales is south!

  8. Wiki article on Wales, Alaska, provided some amusing demographic statistics:

    As of the census[10] of 2000, there were 152 people, 50 households, and 28 families residing in the city. The racial makeup of the city was 8.55% White, 0.66% Black or African American, 83.55% (127 people) Native American, 0.66% from other races, and 6.58% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.66% of the population.

    0.657894736842105263157894736842% Black, maybe.

  9. Clearly this list must have been fabricated in a misguided attempt to exoticise the community, as the latest frighteningly elaborate stage in the conspiracy to perpetuate the Great Eskimo Vocabulary Hoax. After all, we all know that differences in what language has words for what are nonexistent or, if they stubbornly insist on existing despite our best efforts to explain them away, at least meaningless.

  10. And another, for Iñupiaq. More evidence of the snow words deep state (starting page 10 of the PDF)!

  11. “amusing demographic statistics” — a bot generates the demographics paragraphs on U.S. place articles from the raw census data. A bot written by a human who believes that it’s always better to present information as prose rather than in a table. Oh well, at least they don’t spell out the numbers.

  12. January First-of-May says:

    IIRC, this particular bot, Rambot, went around all the way back in 2002, and is responsible for the proportionally largest single growth spurt of English Wikipedia’s article count since at least February 2001.

    I guess Wikipedia’s writing standards were a lot less developed in 2002 than they are today…

  13. Jen in Edinburgh says:

    It had never occurred to me before that NSW might be a new Wales in the south, rather than a new iteration of South Wales.

    But I think it may be a case of right the first time, as the original New South Wales was a) in Hudson’s Bay, which isn’t south by many people’s standards, and b) formally called the ‘New Principality of South Wales’. Does anyone know for sure?

    Not as very as New South Wales is south!

    Nothing in the south is nearly as south as things in the north are north! (Except Antarctica, to be fair.)

  14. One hundred Russian words for snow. (That’s from 2010; there may well be more by now.)

  15. ‘Iceberg’ may have become a Russian word, but ‘blizzard’ surely hasn’t.

  16. There is exactly one Russian word for snow. How many words are even tangentially related to anything having connection with a solid phase of water, is a different question. After all, we don’t think that “construction site” is another word for house or “hurricane” is another word for air.

  17. David Marjanović says:

    It had never occurred to me before that NSW might be a new Wales in the south, rather than a new iteration of South Wales.

    It’s definitely a new iteration of South Wales.

    Nothing in the south is nearly as south as things in the north are north!

    Yes, but I meant that Alaska is closer in latitude to Wales than southern Australia is.

  18. David Eddyshaw says:

    One of those “cor, fancy that!” factoids that appeals to my schoolboy inner self is that Europe is a lot farther north than you think. Britain, for example, is more or less on a level with Hudson’s bay and Kamchatka, and the south of France with Vladivostok.

    Europe is really only habitable because of the Gulf Stream.

  19. It had never occurred to me before that NSW might be a new Wales in the south, rather than a new iteration of South Wales.

    It’s definitely a new iteration of South Wales.

    It’s not at all clear to me, David, but perhaps you have different sources. Wiki says in an article on Thomas James that he named the southern coast of Hudson Bay the “New Principality of South Wales”, after his native land. Fine. But even if he were thinking of Thomas James’s naming there’s nothing to say that Cook had the same intention in Australia, as far as I know. According to Thomas Keneally’s book on the founding of Australia The Commonwealth of Thieves, [the Dutch had made many landings in W. Australia, called ‘New Holland’…]
    Discovering Vanuatu in 1606, Pedro Fernandez de Quiros had posited a southern continent named Australia de Espiritu Santo or Australia Incognito [Australia, meaning Southland, he says is from Mercator and Ortellius in the mid-16C]. Throughout the 16C & 17C the terms Australia and Australis appeared on maps as an ill-defined given. Cook, finding this eastern coast in 1770, thought of it as part of New Holland but did not know if it was a continent or an archipelago stretching away to the west. So he named this East coast New Wales and New South Wales.* As a result, in [Arthur] Phillip’s [first Gov.’r] commission, the name New South Wales was used, not Australia, which would not then have had international meaning. But the terms New Holland, Botany Bay and New South Wales soon [this is 1788] became interchangeable in the mind of the British public…

    *The name, “New South Wales,” was not bestowed without much consideration, and apparently at one stage New Wales was the appellation fixed upon, for in Mr. Corner’s copy [of this, Captain Cook’s Journal] it is so called throughout, whereas the Admiralty copy has “New South Wales.” It would therefore seem that about the period of the discrepant accounts Mr. Corner’s copy was first made, and that Cook, in the Admiralty copy, which for this part is fuller, revised the wording of his description of this very critical portion of the voyage.

    I’m sort of interested in the founding of Australia because my gt gt grandfather and his young brother were transported to NSW from Somerset 200 yrs ago in 1819 (the year of Peterloo) for appropriating some local git’s six chickens.

  20. Stu Clayton says:

    for appropriating some local git’s six chickens.

    And then hawking them !

  21. AJP Crown says:

    Yes, exactly, yes.

  22. David Marjanović says:

    Sounds like “Wales” was narrowed down to “South Wales”…?

    Yes, exactly, yes.

    *blink*
    *blink*
    And I thought I got British humour.

  23. AJP Crown says:

    And I thought I got British humour.

    I’m quite sure you do, but it’s moved on a bit from Yes you did, you invaded Poland, however brilliant that was in 1973. You have to watch all three – I think – series of W1A. (The title is the postcode of the BBC.) . One character, Anna Rampton, says Yes, exactly, yes quite a lot.

  24. Funny as W1A* was, “Yes you did! You invaded Poland!” is still the funniest quote I’ve seen on a British telly programme. The only competition is, “Oh my God, it’s the cheese police!”

    *I was once part of a service organization, section W-1A.

  25. “Yes you did! You invaded Poland,” as timed by John Cleese, is my favourite joke of all time. W1A is more of a cumulative experience (see Curb Your Enthusiasm). Chef! was written by Jane Birkin’s cousin (little-known fact).

  26. John Cowan says:

    Teh True Humor does not date; Aristophanes’s “topical” jokes are still good after 2500 years. But it is a long, long time between James Thurbers, as my father said to me once. More than a century of life between us, and I’m still waiting for the next.

  27. @John Cowan: While experts on Classical Greece may often consider Aristophanes’s extant plays that are directly about the Peloponnesian War, Peace, The Acharnians, and Lysistrata, to be his best work, only the last is well known today*. I found Peace and The Acharnians underwhelming, personally. And The Clouds may be what TV Tropes** would call the ur-example of a shallow parody.

    * When I was an undergraduate, my dormitory floor (known as The BEAΣT From the East) would usually buy the heavyweight boxing title fights on pay-per-view. The fight purchase always came with free Showtime for two months. However, they also advertised that we would get an extra month of Showtime if the fight was over in three rounds or less. And apparently, if the fight was ended early due to excessive ear biting, we got permanent Showtime. This led to a lot of people sitting in the floor lounge watching late night showings of such “hard R” cinematic gems as Cell Block Sisters. However, the most explicit film we ever saw on Showtime was an exploitation film version of Lysistrata. It was shot in black and white, with rock bottom production values. However, it was remarkable that the quality if Aristophanes’s script really rescued it from being a terrible low-budget nudie flick. It somehow managed to successfully combine cheap erotic thrills with hilarious sociopolitical humor.

  28. David Eddyshaw says:

    My own feeling is that while Aristophanes is indeed still funny, his fart jokes have lasted better than the topical humour.

    Some things just never go out of fashion.

  29. AJP Crown says:

    True Humor does not date

    Define true, then. Charlie Chaplin had certainly dated by the time I showed up and yet my grandparents’ generation were telling me he was terrific; the same with Harold Lloyd and Laurel & Hardy but not Buster Keaton, nor W.C. Fields. I think custard pies only lasted until 1945. You needed verbal humor for a laugh after that.

  30. AJP Crown says:

    Fart jokes work well with the acoustics of the Greek amphitheatre.

  31. AJP Crown says:

    Thucydides provides black humour in Britain though Pericles’s conduct of the Peloponnesian war and the relation of this to brexit. There’s a professor on the Twitter who cites chunks. I’ll remember his name eventually.

  32. John Cowan says:

    Well, to each his own. I find the Douglass Parker and William Arrowsmith translations of Aristophanes to be very funny (I tend to forget who did which and conflate them as “Parkersmith”). Examples from The Acharnians,:excerpt from the first scene, immediately following excerpt, and paired with a literal translation the arrival of the Boiotian bird-seller.

    I will now proceed to strain the Hat’s patience and everyone else’s with a long excerpt from Edith Hamilton’s famous comparison of W. S. Gilbert and Aristophanes from The Greek Way. The translations are hers, and I only wish she had done a full translation.

    Even in matters of technique, which is wont to vary so greatly from age to age, there are many similarities. To both men the fooling is the point, not the plot. In that subtle, individual thing, the use of metre, they are strikingly alike. The metre of a comic song is as important as its matter. No one understood that more clearly than Gilbert:

    All children who are up in dates and floor you with ’em flat,
    All persons who in shaking hands, shake hands with you like that.

    Aristophanes understood it too as none better:

    Come listen now to the good old days when the children, strange to tell,
    Were seen not heard, led a simple life, in short were brought up well.

    This jolly line is a favorite with him but he uses an endless variety. Examples will be found in the passages translated, in all of which, as I have already said, except the one indicated, I have reproduced the original metres. The effect of them is essentially that of Gilbert’s.

    A device of pure nonsense in Gilbert, which seems peculiarly his own, and which he uses, for example, in the second act of Patience, is the appeal to something utterly irrelevant that proves irresistible:

    GROSVENOR wildly
    But you would not do it — I am sure you would not. [Throwing
    himself at
    BUNTHORNE’S knees, and clinging to him.] Oh,
    reflect, reflect! You had a mother once.

    BUNTHORNE
    Never!

    GROSVENOR
    Then you had an aunt! [BUNTHORNE deeply affected.] Ah! I see
    you had! By the memory of that aunt, I implore you.

    Precisely the same nonsensical device is used by Aristophanes. In the Acharnians the magic appeal before which all opposition melts is, not to an aunt, but to a scuttle of coal, as it might have been a few years back in England. Fuel was scarce in Athens just then; war was raging. [Additionally, the men of Acharnai were charcoal-burners.]

    The scene is a street in Athens. A man, Dikæopolis by name, has said something in favor of Sparta, Athens’ enemy. The crowd is furious:

    DIKÆOPOLIS
    This I know, the men of Sparta, whom we’re cursing all day long,
    Aren’t the only ones to blame for everything that’s going wrong.

    CROWD
    Spartans not to blame, you traitor? Do you dare tell such a lie?
    At him! At him, all good people. Stone him, burn him. He shall die.

    DIKÆOPOLIS
    Won’t you hear me, my dear fellows?

    CROWD
    Never, never. Not a word.

    DIKÆOPOLIS
    Then I’ll turn on you, you villains. Would you kill a man unheard?
    I’ve a hostage for my safety, one that’s very dear to you.
    I will slaughter him before you. [Goes into house at back of stage.]

    CROWD
    What is it he’s gone to do?
    How he threatens. You don’t think he’s got a child of ours in there?

    DIKÆOPOLIS [from behind stage]
    I’ve got something. Now, you scoundrels, tremble, for I will not spare.
    Look well at my hostage. This will test your mettle, every soul.
    [He comes out lugging something behind him.]
    Which among you has true feeling for — a scuttle full of coal?

    CROWD
    Heaven save us! Oh, don’t touch it. We’ll give in. Say what you please.

    In the Lysistrata occurs the following:

    FIRST SPEAKER
    For through man’s heart there runs in flood
    A natural and a noble taste for blood.

    SECOND SPEAKER
    To form a ring and fight—

    THIRD SPEAKER
    To cut off heads at sight—

    ALL
    It is our right.

    Matter and manner are perfectly Gilbert’s. Any one not knowing the author would inevitably assign it to him, to the Princess Ida, perhaps, along with:

    We are warriors three,
    Sons of Gama Rex,
    Like most sons are we,
    Masculine in sex.
    Bold and fierce and strong, ha! ha!
    For a war we burn,
    With its right or wrong, ha! ha!
    We have no concern.

    Aristophanes was amused by grand talk that covered empty content. In the first scene of the Thesmophoriazusæ two elderly men enter, one with the lofty air that befits a Poet and Philosopher, the other an ordinary, cheerful old fellow. He speaks first:

    MNESILOCHUS
    Might I, before I’ve lost my wind entirely,
    Be told, where you are taking me, Euripides?

    EURIPIDES solemnly
    You may not hear the things which presently
    You are to see.

    MNESILOCHUS
    What’s that? Say it again.
    I’m not to hear—?

    EURIPIDES
    What you shall surely see.

    MNESILOCHUS
    And not to see—?

    EURIPIDES
    The things you must needs hear.

    MNESILOCHUS
    Oh, how you talk. Of course you’re very clever.
    You mean I must not either hear or see?

    EURIPIDES
    They two are twain and by their nature diverse,
    Each one from other.

    MNESILOCHUS
    What’s that—diverse?

    EURIPIDES
    Their elemental parts are separate.

    MNESILOCHUS
    Oh, what it is to talk to learned people!

    Gilbert was amused by the same thing. In the second act of the Princess Ida the first scene is the hall of the Women’s University. The principal has been addressing the faculty and students, and as she finishes asks:

    Who lectures in the Hall of Arts to-day?

    LADY BLANCHE
    I, madam, on Abstract Philosophy.
    There I propose considering at length
    Three points — the Is, the Might Be, and the Must.
    Whether the Is, from being actual fact,
    Is more important than the vague Might Be,
    Or the Might Be, from taking wider scope,
    Is for that reason greater than the Is:
    And lastly, how the Is and Might Be stand
    Compared with the inevitable Must!

    PRINCESS
    The subject’s deep.

    Every kind of sham is dear to Aristophanes but especially the literary sham. He is forever making fun of him. In the Birds Peisthetærus, an Athenian, is helping the birds found their new city in the clouds, which is called Cloud-cuckoo-town. To it flock the quacks and the cranks. A priest has just been chased off the stage when enter a poet, singing:

    O Cloud-cuckoo-town!
    Muse, do thou crown
    With song her fair name,
    Hymning her fame.

    PEISTHETÆRUS
    What sort of thing is this? I say,
    Who in the world are you, now, pray?

    POET
    A warbler of a song,
    Very sweet and very strong.
    Slave of the Muse am I,
    Eager and nimble and spry,
    —As Homer says.

    PEISTHETÆRUS
    Does the Muse let her servants wear
    That sort of long, untidy hair?

    POET
    Oh, we who teach the art
    Of the drama, whole or part,
    Servants of the Muse must try
    To be eager and nimble and spry,
    —As Homer says.

    PEISTHETÆRUS
    That nimbleness, no doubt is why
    You’re all in rags. You are too spry.

    POET
    Oh, I’ve been making lovely, lovely lays,
    Old and new-fashioned too, in sweetest praise
    Of your Cloud-cuckoo-town.
    . . . And won’t you see
    If you have something you can give to ME?

    Gilbert enjoyed the sham artist quite as much. In Patience the officers of the Dragoons are on the stage:

    COLONEL
    Yes, and here are the ladies.

    DUKE
    But who is the gentleman with the long hair?

    [BUNTHORNE enters, followed by the ladies, two by two.]

    BUNTHORNE aside
    Though my book I seem to scan
    In a rapt ecstatic way,
    Like a literary man
    Who despises female clay,
    I hear plainly all they say.
    Twenty love-sick maidens they!
    [Exit ladies.]

    BUNTHORNE alone
    Am I alone
    And unobserved? I am!
    Then let me own
    I’m an æsthetic sham!
    This air severe
    Is but a mere
    Veneer!
    This costume chaste
    Is but good taste
    Misplaced!

    Both writers make the same kind of jokes about military matters and the like. In the Knights the two generals introduced were among the most famous of their time:

    DEMOSTHENES
    How goes it, poor old chap?

    NICIAS
    Badly. Like you.

    DEMOSTHENES
    Let’s sing a doleful ditty and then weep.
    [Both sing, break down and sob.]

    DEMOSTHENES
    No use in whimpering. We’d do better far
    To dry our tears and find some good way out.

    NICIAS
    What way? You tell me.

    DEMOSTHENES
    No. Do you tell me.
    If you won’t speak I’ll fight you.

    NICIAS
    No, not I.
    You say it first and then I’ll say it after.

    DEMOSTHENES
    Oh, speak for me and say what’s in my heart.

    NICIAS
    My courage fails. If only I could say it
    Neatly and sweetly, like Euripides.
    Well, then, say SERT, like that, and say it smartly.

    DEMOSTHENES
    All right. Here goes: SERT.

    NICIAS
    Good! Have courage now.
    Say first SERT and then DE, repeating fast
    The two words, very fast.

    DEMOSTHENES
    Ah, yes. I get you.
    Sert de, sert de sert, DESERT!

    NICIAS
    You have it.
    Well, doesn’t it sound nice?

    DEMOSTHENES
    It’s HEAVENLY.
    But—but—

    NICIAS
    What’s that?

    DEMOSTHENES
    They FLOG deserters.

    Gilbert’s jokes, of course, were in a lighter vein. War seemed remote to the mid-Victorian. The passage most like the one quoted from Aristophanes is the marching song of the Police in the Pirates:

    MABEL
    Go, ye heroes, go to glory,
    Though ye die in combat gory,
    Ye shall live in song and story,
    Go to immortality!

    POLICE
    Though to us it’s evident,
    Tarantara! tarantara!
    These intentions are well meant,
    Tarantara!
    Such expressions don’t appear,
    Tarantara, tarantara,
    Calculated men to cheer,
    Tarantara!
    Who are going to meet their fate
    In a highly nervous state,
    Tarantara!

    Politicians in Athens and in London seem very much the same. In the Plutus a slave, Carion, meets one. He asks:

    You’re a good man, a patriot?

    POLITICIAN
    Oh, yes,
    If ever there was one.

    CARION
    And, as I guess,
    A farmer?

    POLITICIAN
    I? Lord save us. I’m not mad.

    CARION
    A merchant then?

    POLITICIAN
    Ah, sometimes I have had
    To take that trade up—as an alibi.

    CARION
    You’ve some profession surely.

    POLITICIAN
    No, not I.

    CARION
    How do you make a living?

    POLITICIAN
    Well, there’re several
    Answers to that. I’m Supervisor General
    Of all things here, public and private too.

    CARION
    A great profession that. What did you do
    To qualify for it?

    POLITICIAN
    I WANTED it.

    So Gilbert in the song of the duke and duchess in the Gondoliers:

    To help unhappy commoners, and add to their enjoyment,
    Affords a man of noble rank congenial employment;
    Of our attempts we offer you examples illustrative:
    The work is light, and, I may add, it’s most remunerative.
    Small titles and orders
    For Mayors and Recorders
    I get — and they’re highly delighted.
    M. P.’s baronetted,
    Sham Colonels gazetted,
    And second-rate Aldermen knighted.

    In the Knights an oracle has just foretold that Athens will be ruled some day by a sausage-seller. At that moment one enters and is greeted with enthusiasm.

    DEMOSTHENES
    Dear Sausage-seller, rise, our Saviour and the State’s.

    SAUSAGE-SELLER
    What’s that you say?

    DEMOSTHENES
    O happy man and rich!
    Nothing to-day, to-morrow everything.
    O Lord of Athens, blest through you!

    SAUSAGE-SELLER
    I see, sir,
    That you must have your joke. But as for me,
    I’ve got to wash the guts and sell my sausage.

    DEMOSTHENES
    But you are going to be our greatest man.

    SAUSAGE-SELLER
    Oh, I’m not fit for that.

    DEMOSTHENES
    What’s that? Not fit?
    Is some good action weighing on your conscience?
    Don’t tell me that you come of honest folk?

    SAUSAGE-SELLER
    Oh, dear me, no sir. Bad ’uns, out and out.

    DEMOSTHENES
    You lucky man. Oh, what a start you’ve got
    For public life.

    SAUSAGE-SELLER
    But I don’t know a thing
    Except my letters.

    DEMOSTHENES
    Ah, the pity is
    That you know anything.

    A parallel passage is Sir Joseph’s song in Pinafore:

    I grew so rich that I was sent
    By a pocket borough into Parliament.
    I always voted at my party’s call,
    And I never thought of thinking for myself at all.
    I thought so little they rewarded me
    By making me the Ruler of the Queen’s Navee!

    The woman joke, of course, is well to the fore with both men. It is ever with us. Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose. Any number of passages might be selected.

    The song of the duchess in the Gondoliers is completely in the customary style:

    On the day when I was wedded
    To your admirable sire,
    I acknowledge that I dreaded
    An explosion of his ire.

    I was always very wary,
    For his fury was ecstatic—
    His refined vocabulary
    Most unpleasantly emphatic.

    Giving him the very best, and getting back the very worst —
    That is how I tried to tame your great progenitor — at first!

    But I found that a reliance on my threatening appearance,
    And a resolute defiance of marital interference,
    Was the only thing required for to make his temper supple,
    And you couldn’t have desired
    A more reciprocating couple.
    So with double-shotted guns and colours nailed unto the mast,
    I tamed your insignificant progenitor — at last!

    Aristophanes’ ladies are of quite the same kind. They form the chorus of the Thesmophoriazusæ, and they begin their address to the audience as follows:

    We now come forward and appeal to you to hear how the men all flout us,
    And the foolish abuse and the scandals let loose the silly things tell about us.
    They say all evil proceeds from us, war, battles, and murder even;
    We’re a tiresome, troublesome, quarrelsome lot, disturbers of earth and of heaven.
    Now, we ask you to put your minds on this: if we’re really the plague of your lives,
    Then tell us, please, why you’re all so keen to get us to be your wives?
    Pray, why do you like us to be at home, all ready to smile and greet you,
    And storm and sulk if your poor little wife isn’t always there to meet you?
    If we’re such a nuisance and pest, then why — we venture to put the question —
    Don’t you rather rejoice when we’re out of the way — a reasonable suggestion.
    If we stay the night at the house of a friend — I mean, the house of a lady,
    You hunt for us everywhere like mad and hint at something shady.
    Do you like to look at a plague and a pest? It seems you do, for you stare
    And ogle and give us killing looks if you see us anywhere.
    And if we think proper to blush and withdraw, as a lady, no doubt, should be doing,
    You will try to follow us all the more, and never give over pursuing.
    But we can show you up as well.
    The ways of a man we all can tell.
    Your heart’s in your stomach, every one,
    And you’ll do any one if you’re not first done.
    We know what the jokes are you love to make,
    And how you each fancy yourself a rake.

    (Whew! I hope I get the coveted HTML Award for this one.)

  33. John Cowan says:

    I wrote (or mostly copied and HTMLed, to tell the truth) a long posting that the software rejected, so I’ve mailed it to the Hat: some links to my earlier postings of Arrowsmith and Parker translations, and Edith Hamilton’s comparison with W. S. Gilbert.

  34. David Marjanović says:

    I think custard pies only lasted until 1945.

    That’s what I thought until around 2000, when protesters started pushing cream pies in the faces of xenophobic Austrian politicians while walking by. None of them has ever been caught, though the very first was promptly interviewed by a left-wing artsy snarky newspaper. We even verbed the act: torten.

    TORTE STATT WORTE

  35. AJP Crown says:

    DIE TORTEHOSEN

    Thank you, John!

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