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The Anecdotage of Glasgow
Lament for Captain Paton


BY JOHN GiBSON LOCKHART.

Touch once more a sober measure,
And let punch and tears be shed,
For a prince of good old fellows,
That, alack-a-day! is dead;
For a prince of worthy fellows,
And a pretty man also,
That has left the Saltmarket,
In sorrow, grief, and wo’!
Oh! we ne’er shall see the like of Captain Paton no mo’!

His waistcoat and breeches
Were all cut off the same web,
Of a beautiful snuff-colour,
Or a modest gentle drab;
The blue stripe in his stocking,
Round his neat slim leg did go,
And his ruffles of the cambric fine,
They were whiter than the snow.
Oh! we ne’er shall see the like of Captain Paton no mo’!

His hair was curl’d in order,
At the rising of the sun,
In comely rows and buckles smart,
That about his ears did run;
And before there was a toupee
That some inches up did go,
And behind there was a long queue
That did o’er his shoulders flow.
Oh! we ne’er shall see the like of Captain Paton no mo’!

And whenever we foregathered,
He took off his wee
three-cockit,
And he proffered you his snuff-box,
Which he drew from his side pocket;
And on Burdett or Bonaparte
He would make a remark or so,
And then along the plainstanes
Like a provost he would go.
Oh! we ne’er shall see the like of Captain Paton no mo’!

In dirty days he picked well
His footsteps with his rattan;
Oh! you ne’er could see the least speck
On the shoes of Captain Paton;
And on entering the
coffee-room
About two, all men did know
They would see him with his
Courier
In the middle of the row.
Oh! we ne’er shall see the like of Captain Paton no mo’!

Now and then upon a Sunday
He invited me to dine
On a herring and a mutton chop,
Which his maid dressed very fine;
There was also a little Malmsey,
And a bottle of Bordeaux,
Which between me and the Captain
Pass’d nimbly to and fro.
Oh! I ne’er shall take pot-luck with Captain Paton no mo’ !

Or if a bowl was mentioned,
The Captain he would ring,
And bid Nelly to the West Port,
And a stoup of water bring;
Then would he mix the genuine stuff,
As they made it long ago,
With limes that on his property
In Trinidad did grow.
Oh! we ne’er shall taste the like of Captain Paton’s punch no mo’!

And then all the time he would discourse
So sensible and courteous;
Perhaps talking of the last sermon
He had heard from Dr. Porteous,
Or some little bit of scandal
About Mrs. So-and-so,
Which he scarce could credit,
having heard The con but not the
pro.
Oh ! we ne’er shall hear the like of Captain Paton no mo’!

Or when the candles were brought forth,
And the night was fairly setting in,
He would tell some fine old stories
About Minden-field or Dettingen—
How he fought with a French major,
And despatched him at a blow,
While his blood ran out like water
On the soft grass below.
Oh! we ne’er shall hear the like of Captain Paton no mo’!

But at last the Captain sickened
And grew worse from day to day,
And all missed him in the coffee-room
From which now he stayed away;
On Sabbaths, too, the Wee Kirk
Made a melancholy show,
All for wanting of the presence
Of a venerable beau.
Oh! we ne’er shall see the like of Captain Paton no mo’!

And in spite of all that Cleghorn
And Corkindale could do,
It was plain from twenty symptoms
That death was in his view;
So the Captain made his testament
And submitted to his foe,
And we laid him by the Ramshorn Kirk—.
‘Tis the way we all must go.
Oh! we ne’er shall see the like of Captain Paton no mo’!

Join all in chorus, jolly boys,
And let punch and tears be shed,
For this, the prince of all good fellows,
That, alack-a-day! is dead:
For this, the prince of worthy fellows,
And a pretty man also,
That has left the Saitmarket
In sorrow, grief, and wo’!
For it ne’er shall see the like of Captain Paton no mo’!


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