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Title: The Scribbler 1822-06-20 Volume 1, Issue 52

Date of first publication: 1822

Author: Samuel Hull Wilcocke (1766-1833) (Editor)

Date first posted: June 9, 2021

Date last updated: June 9, 2021

Faded Page eBook #20210613

This eBook was produced by: Marcia Brooks, Cindy Beyer & the online Distributed Proofreaders Canada team at https://www.pgdpcanada.net


Montreal. Thursday, 20th June, 1822. No. LII.

Per varios casus, per tot discrimina rerum



In various vehicles, through various ways

We travel, as we censure give or praise.

With what new cheat the gaping town is smit

What crazy Scribbler reigns the present wit.      Churchill.

Jamque opus exegi, quod nec Jovis ira, nec igues,

Nec poterit ferrum, nec edast abolere vetustas.      Ovid.

The structure’s rear’d and roof’d, nor will the great man’s frown,

Nor oaths, nor force, nor gold, succeed to throw it down.



The mysterious disappearance, reported death, and unlooked for resuscitation, of a certain celebrated personage in this place, has afforded an inexhaustible fund of conversation, for about six weeks past. About the middle of last month Scriblerus Centesimus, Esquire, who, for a considerable time had been in the habit of making his public appearance at least once a week, and sometimes oftener, in this town, vanished from before the sight of his friends and the populace. The consternation was great and inexpressible, and though one or two persons of great credibility assured the multitude they had actually seen him embark in a steam-boat, rumours of the most incongruous description were afloat, and groups of wonderers were assembled at the corners of all the streets, in the stores, on the wharves, at the church-doors, etc. listening to the various conjectures and surmises that were started relative to this important event. Some maintained that he had been actually carried off by the demons ycleped printer’s devils, with whom it was known he had dealings; others that he had gone mad, had refused to put out his light at ten o’clock, when ordered, and most unreasonably wished to see and converse with his friends whenever they and he wanted, with other symptoms of insanity; again, it was supposed that his inveterate enemies (for like all great characters he has both many adversaries and many friends) had attempted anew to assassinate him, and had in this instance had recourse to poison, administered in the shape of a noxious and pestiferous pamphlet, compounded of the deleterious essences of malice, falsehood, perjury, and forgery; Count Oldjoseph and his clan, with a view no doubt to cover their own base intentions, maintained that he had committed suicide: in short, assertions were multiplied, and suggestions started, till all were in a maze: some few indeed conjectured the truth, namely, that his Uncle Sam had sent for him; but all was uncertainty and anxiety till the time came when he was accustomed to make his hebdomedal appearance. If our readers ever perused Tristram Shandy’s description of the eagerness with which the Strasburghers panted after the promised arrival of Don Diego’s nose on the day he had fixed to return to their city, they can form some idea of the busy bustle, the anxious faces, and unceasing enquiries, that agitated the whole town when Scriblerus was expected to return; but alas! all was that day, and for several succeeding days, disappointment and alarm: no Scriblerus shewed himself, and his friends even began to despair—they became crest-fallen, whilst his enemies began to crow and exult. At length we learnt that the vehicle he had hired for his conveyance, had broke down & stuck in the mud in a dirty Lane, which, tho’ it had a fair appearance, proved as faithless as quick-sand; and Count Oldjoseph is said to have bribed the driver to leave his customer in the lurch. In the mean time Mr. Scriblerus’ friends attempted, according to Dean Swift’s plan, to amuse the populace by throwing a Tub to the whale, but the aforesaid tub, being empty, and having no head, refused to be employed on the occasion; a Turner’s lathe was also tried to be set in motion, to make some toys to divert the attention of the town, but it would not stir an inch, for the manufactory having lately changed proprietors, it seems that it has also changed its Brown and sturdy independence and freedom of access, for very different qualities: at last a Mower undertook to cut down some of the weeds that seemed to oppose the progress of the people’s favourite; and tho’ he did but little, as no one else did any thing, that little deserves praise.—Bulletins were issued stating the progress and prospects of Mr. Scriblerus, and the city had in result the satisfaction of again beholding him after a month’s unceasing anxiety, in good health and spirits; worn down indeed and emaciated a little by the fatigues and persecution he had undergone, but from all appearance more likely to encrease both in corpulency and in popularity than decrease. His return has been hailed by equal demonstrations and expressions of joy, in all parts of the country, for, amongst his other extraordinary qualifications, the gentleman in question possesses a species of unaccountable ubiquity, by which he penetrates into the bar-rooms and back-parlours of country-places, as well as the assembly-rooms, drawing-rooms, and public and private parties, of Mount Royal and Government City, those emporia of Canadian fashion, frivolity and pride.

Dr. Catapult Puff has resumed his sublime lectures demonstrating the necessity of connection between unconnectibles, and the connection of necessity between pedantry and imbecility, with other important and interesting researches relative to the animal, mental, and other economies. Amongst others, Scotch economy will not be forgotten; in exemplification whereof he adduces his own practice of never paying for any of his lengthy and unintelligible advertisements.

From Clarence-town[A] (which has become a place of resort of the highest fashion) intelligence has been received that on the day His Excellency Lord Viceroy arrived there, Lady Viceroy, taking an airing on horseback, was unluckily thrown from her saddle. We are happy to add that no material injury was sustained by her ladyship, but the celebrated Drs. Waggoners being summoned to attend, a preventative remedy against future accidents was immediately prescribed, and the horse was shot without delay, whence it is reasonably concluded he will never again throw his rider. This improved method of practice is intended to be inserted both in the next number of the Medical Repertory, and in the new edition of Geoffry Gambado’s Horsemanship.

[A] So called from a Duke of Clarence after whom it was re-christened, having been deprived of its original name, which was derived from the celebrated mistress of Charles the VI. of France.

In one of the warm days of this month, Watty Loverule Esq. in riding out with his mamma, displayed a rich and thick India shawl, which was wound round his neck in the most graceful style, & though seemingly smothered with heat, he most heroically bore it. It is to be lamented that the dominion of the Loverules has thus been found inadequate to turn summer into winter. Perhaps the failure of the experiment may be attributed to the operator, though a Harlequin, not being a conjuror.

To be sold by Auction. The properly of a gentleman giving up housekeeping, consisting of

Part of a loaf of bread,

The remains of a piece of salt pork,

An assortment of old shoes and boots,

With an extensive collection of rags, old cravats, etc.

May be viewed, but not touched for fear of their falling to pieces, on the morning of the sale. Apply to Mr. Wolf, near the old market.

To Mr. Cockroach of Campbelltown, we humbly suggest the expediency of carrying a lanthern with a lighted candle in it, when he returns home in the evening. If he does so he will not be long before perceiving the drift of this caution.


Nature’s Broad Hint.

    When Nature made my frame,

    She gave me a broad hint,

And if I look the proper way,

    I find there’s plenty in’t:

She gave two eyes with which to see,

    Two ears with which to hear,

    One mouth with which to speak,

    From which one might infer,

    That we should speak but little,

    And hear and see much more;

Whilst those who use their mouths the most,

    Her bounds must trespass o’er.


Printed and published by Dicky Gossip, at the sign

of the Tea-table.

Mr. Macculloh,

I am descended from a very ancient Scottish family, originally named from their cleanly and amiable disposition Muck-come-o-he, and as this is pure Scotch, in order to elucidate to your English readers the meaning of the words, they may be translated, Dung-come-he-of. But as every age is improving in taste and refinement, the name was afterwards considered to be rather vulgar, and some of my ancestors thought it prudent to alter one word of our family-name, in order to render the meaning ambiguous, & wash away the stigma, it was therefore resolved to strike out the letter m, and insert the letter n, which now makes my name Muck-cone-o-he; although it must be confessed that this alteration has not made any in our actions, manners or conduct. I am induced to give you this family anecdote in order to illustrate the following account of a near relative of mine, who, when he left Scotland, it was merely for the laudable purpose of easing the British Government of a little cash and rations, which they at that time allowed to the emigrants from the land o’ bannocks. When this kinsman of mine talks about many individuals, (who are both above his sphere and perfect strangers to him) he familiarly distinguishes them by their Christian names, and graces them with his native eloquence, such as Johnny Such-a-one, the Marchant, and Tommy Whatd’-ye-call, the lawyer are coming down to eat an egg or two at my house this evening. He is famous for enquiring very kindly into the affairs, characters, and lives of every one, and giving his own embellished versions of all he learns. He has the merit of never getting drunk at his own expense; for when he invites his brother farmers into a tavern, and calls for grog, he always, by a welltimed mistake, searches his pockets, and finds, to his utter astonishment, he has no money. Nature has gifted him with a large sensible nose, which he does not let starve for want, especially if a brother Scotchman compliments him, (after he has begged it) with a refreshing snuff. He is famous for bestowing epithets of singular vulgarity upon those he calumniates, that is upon nineteen twentieths of all he speaks of. You yourself, Mr. Scribbler, he has designated by the appellation of “awfu’ bouger!” Mem. He sold black puddings by auction, and glories in treating his friends to a haggis.

Figure nine without a tale.

To the Subscribers to, and patrons of, the Scribbler.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Having at length, by dint of exertion and perseverance, succeeded in restoring the Scribbler to circulation, in defiance of all the attempts made by its enemies to suppress and injure it, I beg leave to offer you my most grateful thanks for your patronage hitherto.

The present number completes the first volume, for which a title-page, preface, and index are preparing, to be delivered gratis to those subscribers who have had the work from the commencement; but for which, nine pence will be charged to others.

The second volume will commence with No. 53, and a weekly number, containing 16 octavo pages, and sewed in a blue cover, will be published in Montreal, distributed as usual, and sent free of postage to all parts of the British dominions in America. Price 9d. per no. or 9s. per quarter, or 17s. 6d. for 6 months, or seven dollars per annum, payable quarterly, in advance. On the blue cover it is proposed to print all such advertisements as I may be favoured with, upon the following low terms, viz.

Six lines and under, first insertion2s.
And each insertion after,6d.
Ten lines and under,3s.
Each insertion after,7 1-2d.
Above ten lines3d. per
line, and each insertion after1d.

To subscribers, only half price will be charged for


When, in addition to the low rate, it is considered that the Scribbler has at least as wide a circulation in Lower Canada as any paper, and is besides sent all over Upper Canada, and into several of the States of America, the public will perceive the advantages to be derived from advertising in it.

It is with much regret that circumstances require me to depart from the rule I had adopted of not requiring payment in advance. Had I not been deceived and betrayed by Mr. Lane in the manner already detailed to the public, and been obliged to incur considerable expense and difficulty in procuring the arrears of the work to be brought up, and in establishing an entire new connexion and plan, (for all the known printers of Montreal have proved too pusillanimous and too basely subservient to time-serving purposes to undertake it,) I should probably have been able to have gone on in the usual way. In order, however, that the work may not languish, I flatter myself my well-wishers and subscribers, will, with a well directed effort at this moment, assist me in placing it upon a firm basis, by cheerfully affording those pecuniary means I solicit: first by the payment of their subscriptions up to the end of the first vol. and secondly by an advance of the first quarter of the second.

After repeating my warm and heartfelt thanks for the distinguished and liberal support you have hitherto given me, and assuring you that my utmost endeavours shall be exerted to merit a continuation and extension of your favours, I have the honour to subscribe myself,

Ladies and gentlemen,

    Your most faithful humble servant,



Until other arrangements can be made, new subscribers will be pleased to send their orders, to L. L. Macculloh, post-office, Montreal; or to Mr. John Luckin, confectioner, Notre Dame Street; who can likewise supply the former numbers of the Scribbler to those who want them.


Misspelled words and printer errors have been corrected. Where multiple spellings occur, majority use has been employed.

Punctuation has been maintained except where obvious printer errors occur.


[The end of The Scribbler 1822-06-20 Volume 1, Issue 52 edited by Samuel Hull Wilcocke]