Saturday, December 11, 2010

L'Estrange: Two Travellers find an Oyster.

As Two Men were Walking by the Sea-Side, at a Low-water, they saw an Oyster, and they both Pointed at it together: The One Stoops to take it up; the other gives him a Push, and tells him, 'tis not yet Decided whether it shall be Yours or Mine. In the Interim, while they were Disputing their Title to't, comes a Passenger that way, and to him they referr'd the Matter by Consent, which of the Two had the Better Right to the Oyster. The Arbitrator very Gravely takes out his Knife, and Opens it; the Plaintiff and Defendant at the same time Gaping at the Man, to see what would come on't. He Loosens the Fish, Gulps it down, and so soon as ever the Morsel was gone the way of all Flesh, wipes his Mouth, and Pronounces Judgment. My Masters, (says he, with the Voice of Authority), The Court has Order'd each of ye a Shell, without Costs; and so pray go Home again, and Live Peaceably among your Neighbours.

Referees and Arbitrators seldom forget Themselves.


Source: L'Estrange 411.
Viatores et Ostreum

Click here for a SLIDESHOW of all the Billinghurst images. You can see that each man has received his half of the leftover shell!
M0593 (not in Perry)

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