Punch,  48 (1865), 96–97.

Punch's Essence of Parliament



Regular Feature, Proceedings, Drollery


Cultural Geography, Industry, Light, Exploration, Astronomy, Metrology, Pollution, Agriculture, Museums, Religious Authority, Steamships, Military Technology, Politics, Government

    Reporting on the 'debate on the condition of Ireland', Punch notes that Ireland's 'climate made her properly a pasture country', which suggests that 'until we can make her a manufacturing nation—the priests will hinder this—if they can, the Irish must emigrate'. It warns that Mr Punch can see 'all the little games' played by 'Parliament men' in this debate and 'In proof that he does, he hereby lights up this business with his Magnesium Wire, even as Piazzi Smyth has just done unto the interior of the Pyramid'. Proceeds to note the debate on sewage and the recent discovery of its great value as fertiliser, although this conversion process remains a mystery. Later describes the 'grand Museum debate', and notes that it fully 'expects to see a general onslaught upon the stuffed collection', expressing dislike of stuffed giraffes, especially when live ones can be seen. Also discusses the 'Gun debate' in which Henry J Baillie called unsuccessfully for an inquiry into the armaments on Royal Navy ships. The debate also touched on the means of rifling guns and the 'awful expense of repairing ships'. (96)

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