Find this Story

Print, a form you can hold

Wireless download to your Amazon Kindle

Look for a summary or analysis of this Story.

Enjoy this? Share it!

"Oh, I’m Wat, Wat!"
by [?]

The father of the Rev. Mr. Steven of Largs, was the son of a farmer, who lived next farm to Mossgiel. When a boy of eight, he found “Robbie” who was a great friend of his, and of all the children, engaged digging a large trench in a field, Gilbert, his brother, with him. The boy pausing on the edge of the trench, and looking down upon Burns, said, “Robbie, what’s that ye’re doin’?” “Howkin’ a muckle hole, Tammie.” “What for?” “To bury the Deil in, Tammie!” (one can fancy how those eyes would glow.) “A’but, Robbie,” said the logical Tammie, “hoo’re ye to get him in?” “Ay” said Burns, “that’s it, hoo are we to get Him in!” and went off into shouts of laughter; and every now and then during that summer day shouts would come from that hole, as the idea came over him. If one could only have daguerreotyped his day’s fancies!

“What is love, Mary?” said Seventeen to Thirteen, who was busy with her English lessons.

“Love! what do you mean, John?”

“I mean, what’s love?”

“Love’s just love, I suppose.”

(Yes, Mary, you are right to keep by the concrete; analysis kills love as well as other things. I once asked a useful-information young lady what her mother was. ‘Oh, mamma’s a biped!’ I turned in dismay to her younger sister, and said, What do you say? ‘Oh, my mother’s just my mother.’)

“But what part of speech is it?”

“It’s a substantive or a verb.” (Young Horne Tooke didn’t ask her if it was an active or passive, an irregular or defective verb; an inceptive, as calesco, I grow warm, or dulcesco, I grow sweet; a frequentative or a desiderative, as nupturio, I desire to marry.)

“I think it is a verb,” said John, who was deep in other diversions, besides those of Purley; “and I think it must have been originally the Perfect of Live, like thrive throve, strive strove.”

“Capital, John!” suddenly growled Uncle Oldbuck, who was supposed to be asleep in his arm-chair by the fireside, and who snubbed and supported the entire household. “It was that originally, and it will be our own faults, children, if it is not that at last, as well as, ay, and more than at first. What does Richardson say, John? read him out.” John reads–

LOVE, v. s. To prefer, to desire, as an
-LESS. object of possession or enjoyment
-LY, ad. av. to delight in, to be
-LILY. pleased or gratified with, to
-LINESS. take pleasure or gratification
-ER. in, delight in.
-ING. Love, the s is app. emph. to
-INGLY. the passion between the sexes.
-INGNESS. Lover is, by old writers, app. as
-ABLE.[A] friend--by male to male.
-SOME.[B] Love is much used--pref.
ERED.[C] [A] Wiclif. [B] Chaucer. [C] Shak.