Punch,  29 (1855), 212.

The Lordling's Lecture Mania



Introduction; Address, Spoof


Entomology, Ancient Authorities, Religion, Wonder, Government, Politics, Animal Behaviour

    Introduces a spoof lecture on entomology given by Lord Fitz-Mountebank to the Young Men's Mutual Instruction Society. The lecture opens by defining entomology as 'talk about insects' and proceeds to discuss the contributions of Aristotle, Pliny, and the ancient Egyptians to the subject. Notes how the Egyptians worshipped beetles and upholds the beauties of the spider's web (which he likens to 'the arts of diplomacy') and the ant's nest. Draws out social and political lessons from the behaviour of various insects, including the claim that the snail and the slug were reminiscent of 'parliamentary proceedings'. Concludes by insisting that 'No station [...] could exempt any man from the attacks of insects' and by hoping that the each of the Russians involved in the Crimean War would find himself with 'a flea in his ear'.

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