William Schwenck Gilbert

(1836 - 1911 / London / England)

Anglicised Utopia


Society has quite forsaken all her wicked courses,
Which empties our police courts, and abolishes divorces.
(Divorce is nearly obsolete in England.)
No tolerance we show to undeserving rank and splendour;
For the higher his position is, the greater the offender.
(That's a maxim that is prevalent in England.)
No Peeress at our Drawing-Room before the Presence passes
Who wouldn't be accepted by the lower-middle classes;
Each shady dame, whatever be her rank, is bowed out neatly.
In short, this happy country has been Anglicised completely!
It really is surprising
What a thorough Anglicising
We've brought about - Utopia's quite another land;
In her enterprising movements,
She is England - with improvements,
Which we dutifully offer to our mother-land!

Our city we have beautified - we've done it willy-nilly -
And all that isn't Belgrave Square is Strand and Piccadilly.
(They haven't any slummeries in England.)
We have solved the labour question with discrimination polished,
So poverty is obsolete and hunger is abolished -
(They are going to abolish it in England.)
The Chamberlain our native stage has purged, beyond a question,
Of "risky" situation and indelicate suggestion;
No piece is tolerated if it's costumed indiscreetly -
In short, this happy country has been Anglicised completely!
It really is surprising
What a thorough Anglicising
We've brought about - Utopia's quite another land;
In her enterprising movements,
She is England - with improvements,
Which we dutifully offer to our mother-land!

Our Peerage we've remodelled on an intellectual basis,
Which certainly is rough on our hereditary races -
(They are going to remodel it in England.)
The Brewers and the Cotton Lords no longer seek admission,
And Literary Merit meets with proper recognition -
(As Literary Merit does in England!)
Who knows but we may count among our intellectual chickens
Like them an Earl of Thackeray and p'raps a Duke of Dickens -
Lord Fildes and Viscount Millais (when they come) we'll welcome
sweetly -
And then, this happy country will be Anglicised completely!
It really is surprising
What a thorough Anglicising
We've brought about - Utopia's quite another land;
In her enterprising movements,
She is England - with improvements,
Which we dutifully offer to our mother-land!

Submitted: Thursday, January 01, 2004

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