[Ads-l] Origin of term curate's egg

Mark Mandel mark.a.mandel at GMAIL.COM
Wed Aug 1 10:44:30 EDT 2018

Tangentially, I have to ask: What's the relationship between *Punch* and
*Judy* (the publications)?

Mark Mandel

On Tue, Jul 31, 2018, 9:32 PM ADSGarson O'Toole <adsgarsonotoole at gmail.com>

> > Thanks, Garson!  Very nice!  But remember that for optimists like
> >Punch's curate, the egg at that breakfast-table was half good.
> Yes, in "Punch" the curate proclaims "parts of it are excellent!"
> In Judy "some parts of it are very good".
> Date: 21 May 1895
> Newspaper: Huddersfield Chronicle
> Newspaper Location: Yorkshire, England
> Quote Page 4, Column 4
> Database: British Newspaper Archive
> [Begin excerpt]
> Scene: Bishop's breakfast table.— Bishop (to timid curate on a visit):
> Dear me, I'm afraid your egg's not good. Timid Curate: Oh, yes, my
> lord, really—er—some parts of it are very good.
> [End excerpt]
> Google Books contains issues of "Judy", but I have not yet found the
> matching text directly in "Judy". The issue might be missing in GB, or
> the OCR might defective.
> Below is the 1875 precursor:
> Date: July 26, 1875
> Periodical: The Academy
> Start Page 651, Quote Page 652, Column 2
> Book Review of: "Our Bishops and Deans" by the Rev. F. Arnold (late of
> Christ Church Oxford)
> [Begin excerpt]
> Without pledging our credence, we could afford a grin to the story of
> the "young Levite" who at a bishop's breakfast-table, was so "umble as
> to decline the replacement of a bad egg by a good one with a "No thank
> you, my Lord, it's good enough for me;" . . .
> [End excerpt]
> Garson

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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