Edward Lear's Nonsense Books

Edward Lear's nonsense books complete set - online version

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The seven young Guinea Pigs went into a garden full of goose-berry-bushes and tiggory-trees, under one of which they fell asleep. When they awoke, they saw a large lettuce, which had grown out of the ground while they had been sleeping, and which had an immense number of green leaves. At which they all exclaimed,
"Lettuce! O lettuce
Let us, O let us,
O lettuce-leaves,
O let us leave this tree, and eat
Lettuce, O let us, lettuce-leaves!"
And instantly the seven young Guinea Pigs rushed with such extreme force against the lettuce-plant, and hit their heads so vividly against its stalk, that the concussion brought on directly an incipient transitional inflammation of their noses, which grew worse and worse and worse and worse, till it incidentally killed them all seven.
And that was the end of the seven young Guinea Pigs.
The seven young Cats set off on their travels with great delight and rapacity. But, on coming to the top of a high hill, they perceived at a long distance off a Clangle-Wangle (or, as it is more properly written, Clangel-Wangel); and, in spite of the warning they had had, they ran straight up to it.
(Now, the Clangle-Wangle is a most dangerous and delusive beast, and by no means commonly to be met with. They live in the water as well as on land, using their long tail as a sail when in the former element. Their speed is extreme; but their habits of life are domestic and superfluous, and their general demeanor pensive and pellucid. On summer evenings, they may sometimes be observed near the Lake Pipple-Popple, standing on their heads, and humming their national melodies. They subsist entirely on vegetables, excepting when they eat veal or mutton or pork or beef or fish or saltpetre.)
The moment the Clangle-Wangle saw the seven young Cats approach, he ran away; and as he ran straight on for four months, and the Cats, though they continued to run, could never overtake him, they all gradually died of fatigue and exhaustion, and never afterwards recovered.
And this was the end of the seven young Cats.