How a Beauty Was Waked and Her Suitor Was Suited


How a Beauty Was waked and her suitor was suited

by Guy Wetmore Carryl



How a Beauty Was Waked and Her Suitor Was Suited

Albeit wholly penniless,

Prince Charming wasn’t any less

Conceited than a Croesus or a modern millionaire:

Though often in necessity,

No one would ever guess it. He

Was candidly insolvent, and he frankly didn’t care!

Of the many debts he made

Not a one was ever paid,

But no one ever pressed him to refund the borrowed gold:

While he recklessly kept spending,

People gladly kept on lending,

For the fact they knew a title

Was requital


(He lived in sixteen sixty-three,

This smooth unblushing article,

Since when, as far as I can see,

Men haven’t changed a particle!)



In Charming’s principality

There was a wild locality,

Composed of sombre forest, and of steep and frowning crags,

Of pheasant and of rabbit, too;

And here it was his habit to

Go hunting with his courtiers in the keen pursuit of stags.

But the charger that he rode

So mercurially strode

That the prince on one occasion left the others in the lurch,

And the falling darkness found him,

With no vassals left around him,

Near a building like an abbey,

Or a shabby

Ruined church.

His Highness said: “I’ll ring the bell

And stay till morning in it!” (He

Took Hobson’s choice, for no hotel

There was in the vicinity.)


His ringing was so vehement

That any one could see he meant

To suffer no refusal, but, in spite of all the din,

There was no answer audible,

And so, with courage laudable,

His Royal Highness turned the knob, and stoutly entered in.

Then he strode across the court,

But he suddenly stopped short

When he passed within the castle by a massive oaken door:

There were courtiers without number,

But they all were plunged in slumber,

The prince’s ear delighting

By uniting

In a snore.


The prince remarked: “This must be Philadelphia, Pennsylvania!”

(And so was born the jest that’s still

The comic journal’s mania!)


This shows how the prince won the princess’s heart,

And the end of her sleeping was simply a start.


With torpor reprehensible,

Numb, comatose, insensible,

The flunkeys and the chamberlains all slumbered like the dead,

And snored so loud and mournfully,

That Charming passed them scornfully

And came to where a princess lay asleep upon a bed.

She was so extremely fair

That His Highness didn’t care

For the risk, and so he kissed her ere a single word he spoke:—

In a jiffy maids and pages,

Ushers, lackeys, squires, and sages,

As fresh as if they’d been at least

A week awake,



And hastened, bustled, dashed and ran

Up stairways and through galleries:

In brief, they one and all began

Again to earn their salaries!


Aroused from her paralysis,

As if in deep analysis

Of him who had awakened her, the princess met his eye:

Her glance at first was critical,

And sternly analytical.

And then she dropped her lashes and she gave a little sigh.

As he watched her, wholly dumb,

She observed: “You doubtless come

For one of two good reasons, and I’m going to ask you which.

Do you mean my house to harry, Or do you propose to marry?”

He answered: “I may rue it,

But I’ll do it,

If you’re rich!”


The princess murmured with a smile:

“I’ve millions, at the least, to come!”

The prince cried: “Please excuse me, while

I go and get the priest to come!”


The Moral: When affairs go ill

The sleeping partner foots the bill.


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