September 30, 2005

Satire Friday

"A child will make two dishes at an entertainment for friends; and when the family dines alone, the fore or hind quarter will make a reasonable dish, and seasoned with a little pepper or salt will be very good boiled on the fourth day, especially in winter.

I have reckoned upon a medium that a child just born will weigh 12 pounds, and in a solar year, if tolerably nursed, increaseth to 28 pounds.

I grant this food will be somewhat dear, and therefore very proper for landlords, who, as they have already devoured most of the parents, seem to have the best title to the children.

Infant's flesh will be in season throughout the year, but more plentiful in March, and a little before and after; for we are told by a grave author, an eminent French physician, that fish being a prolific diet, there are more children born in Roman Catholic countries about nine months after Lent than at any other season; therefore, reckoning a year after Lent, the markets will be more glutted than usual, because the number of popish infants is at least three to one in this kingdom: and therefore it will have one other collateral advantage, by lessening the number of papists among us."--Jonathan Swift, 1729, from "A Modest Proposal"

When I read this the first time I approached this proposal as a serious thing (look at the serious format, for goodness sake), and wanted to smack Swift over the head, but upon reconsideration, I got the joke.

Can brunettes have blond moments, too? I know I do.

Posted by Amanda Cochran at September 30, 2005 11:25 AM | TrackBack
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