MoboReader > Literature > Tales from Many Sources / Vol. V

   Chapter 3 HOW FATHER TOM WENT TO TAKE POT-LUCK AT THE VATICAN.

Tales from Many Sources / Vol. V By Various Characters: 6947

Updated: 2017-12-01 00:03


When his Riv'rence 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 ov the great company that was in it-at laste so I'm tould. Howandiver, there's no fast on the dhrink, anyhow-glory be to God!-and so, as they wor sitting, afther dinner, taking their sup together, says the Pope, says he, "Thomaus"-for the Pope, you know, spakes that away, all as one as one ov uz-"Thomaus a lanna," says he, "I'm tould you welt them English heretics out ov the face."

"You may say that," says his Riv'rence to him again. "Be my sowl," says he, "if I put your Holiness undher the table, you won't be the first Pope I floored."

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 knewn all the ins and outs of the conthravarsy at Room. "Faix, Thomaus," says he, smiling across the table at him mighty agreeable-"it's no lie what they tell me, that yourself is the pleasant man over the dhrop ov good liquor."

"Would you like to thry?" says his Riv'rence.

"Sure, and amn't I thrying all I can?" says the Pope. "Sorra betther bottle ov wine's betuxt this and Salamancha, nor's there fornenst you on the table; it's raal Lachrymalchrystal, every spudh ov it."

"It's mortial could," says Father Tom.

"Well, man alive," says the Pope, "sure and here's the best ov good claret in the cut decanther."

"Not maning to make little ov the claret, your Holiness," says his Riv'rence, "I would prefir some hot wather and sugar, wid a glass ov spirits through it, if convanient."

"Hand me over the bottle of brandy," says the Pope to his head butler, "and fetch up the materi'ls," says he.

"Ah, then, your Holiness," says his Riv'rence, mighty eager, "maybe you'd have a dhrop ov the native in your cellar? Sure it's 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, "it's very sorry I am, Misther Maguire," says he, "that it isn't in my power to plase you; for I'm sure and certaint that there's 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 didn't 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 imperi'l quart bottle out ov his coat-pocket; "that never seen the face of a gauger," says he, setting it down on the table fornenst the Pope: "and if you'll jist thry the full ov a thimble ov it, and it doesn't rise the cockles of your Holiness's heart, why then, my name," says he, "isn't 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 that a way in his pocket, as if there wasn't lashins in the house: so says he, "Misther Maguire," says he, "I'd have you to comprehind the differ betuxt an inwitation to dinner from the succissor of Saint Pether, and from a common nagur ov a Prodesan squireen that maybe hasn't 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 I'd let you know t

he differ in the prisint case," says he, "only that you're a champion ov the Church and entitled to laniency. So," says he, "as the liquor's come, let it stay. And in throth I'm curis myself," says he, getting mighty soft when he found the delightful smell ov the putteen, "in inwestigating the composition ov distilled liquors; it's a branch ov natural philosophy," says he, taking up the bottle and putting it to his blessed nose. Ah! my dear, the very first snuff he got ov it, he cried out, the dear man, "Blessed Vargin, but it has the divine smell!" and crossed himself and the bottle half-a-dozen times running.

"Well, sure enough, it's the blessed liquor now," says his Riv'rence, "and so there can be no harm any way in mixing a dandy of punch; and," says he, stirring up the materi'ls wid his goolden muddler-for everything at the Pope's table, to the very shcrew for drawing the corks, was ov vargin goold-"if I might make bould," says he, "to spake on so deep a subjec afore your Holiness, I think it 'ud considherably whacilitate the inwestigation ov its chemisthry and phwarmaceutics, if you'd jist thry the laste sup in life ov it in wardly."

"Well, then, suppose I do make the same expiriment," says the Pope, in a much more condescinding way nor you'd have expected-and wid that he mixes himself a real stiff facer.

"Now, your Holiness," says Father Tom, "this bein' the first time you ever dispinsed them chymicals," says he, "I'll just make bould to lay down one rule ov orthography," says he, "for conwhounding them, secundum mortem."

"What's that?" says the Pope.

"Put in the sperits first," says his Riv'rence; "and then put in the sugar; and remember, every dhrop ov wather you put in after that spoils the punch."

"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 he-"it's 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 Riv'rence, "I'm 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 but-end of the evening, anyhow," says he.

"Dhraw your stool in to the fire, Misther Maguire," says the Pope, "for faix," says he, "I'm bent on analizing the metaphwysics ov this phinomenon. Come, man alive, clear off," says he, "you're not dhrinking at all."

"Is it dhrink?" says his Riv'rence; "by Gorra, your Holiness," says he, "I'd dhrink wid you till the cows 'ud be coming home in the morning."

So wid that they tackled to, to the second fugee a-piece, and fell into larned discourse. But it's time for me now to be off to the lecthir at the Boord. Oh my sorra light upon you, Docther Whateley, wid your pilitical econimy and your hydherastatics! What the dioul use has a poor hedge-master like me wid sich deep larning as is only fit for the likes ov them two that I left over their second tumbler? Howandiver, wishing I was like them, in regard ov the sup ov dhrink, anyhow, I must brake off my norration for the prisint; but when I see you again, I'll tell you how Father Tom made a hare ov the Pope that evening, both in theology and the cube root.

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