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The Rape of the Whisker and Fuzwhiskiana: regrooming Pope's Rape of the Lock in early nineteenth-century Cambridge.

WHEN, IN 1712, John Caryll asked Alexander Pope to write a poem to settle a private dispute enacted in public between two high-society families he hoped to '"laugh them together again.'" (1) Robert, Lord Petre had, famously, cut off one of Arabella Fermors prized twin locks of hair, "which graceful hung behind / In equal curls, and well conspird to deck / With shining ringlets her smooth iv'ry neck" (2.20-22). (2) He thereby visibly damaged her comportment to the outside world, and potentially initiated scandalous insinuations about the level of intimacy which had made such a breach of decorum possible. In a world that valued reputation as an accomplishment, and even as a necessity for women to be deemed eligible spouses, visible virtue was all. In The Rape of the Lock (1714) Arabella Fermor turns into "Belinda," Lord Petre into "The Baron" within a heightened, luxuriant world of beaux and belles, fripperies and fans, captured in seemingly elevated heroic couplets which comically dignify superficial actions and actors so as to expose their triviality in a comically exaggerated way. (3) Pope perfects his use of mock-heroic to achieve his dual satiric purpose of simultaneous admiration and critique: (4) for Maynard Mack, he "represents the absurdities of the fashionable world with affection," while never letting us "forget that in such a world ethical judgments have reached a sad disarray" when so much value is placed on "trifles." (5)

A strikingly similar set of parallels exists between The Rape of the Lock and two of its early nineteenth-century adaptations, which participate in a varied sequence of creative afterlives experienced by Pope's poem. Like their predecessor, The Rape of the Whisker by "Whiskerando Squib" and the anonymous Fuzwhiskiana (both 1838) were inspired by a real-life event involving the scandalous theft of its protagonist's hair; now, however, both victim and perpetrator are male; a whisker, not a lock, is stolen; and the setting shifts from the rarefied social entourage of Hampton Court to the self-enclosed cloisters of Trinity College, Cambridge. (6) These two poems deploy overtly literary techniques, such as parody and allusion (to Pope and to other literary sources), but also those belonging to the wider operations of adaptation defined by Linda Hutcheon, as "both a product and a process of creation and reception." (7) These whisker poems are a "product" of The Rape of the Lock's evolving reception history; and yet, in responding to a different, if comparable event, which takes place in a distinctive time and place, they also reprocess Pope's satiric purpose, to observe with dual attachment and comic contempt "absurdities" and "trifles" characterizing the context of their own production. As such, they cast an intriguing light both on the workings of literary adaptation more generally, centering upon the enduring legacy of The Rape of the Lock, and on undergraduate life at Cambridge University in the early nineteenth century.

However, the intertextual relationships The Rape of the Whisker and Fuzwhiskiana establish with Pope's poem expand further than parodic reworking or, indeed, recontextualization. They suggest a capacity for its central conceit to exercise a powerful hold on the creative imagination: it is a critical commonplace that The Rape of the Lock's focus on hair goes far beyond its significance to Belinda, or indeed to Arabella Fermor, to gesture towards the poetic act itself. Pope both introduces a brutal act and undermines its violence in the poem's very title: "rape," then as now, connoted sexual violation, but also (the sense invoked here) a more restrained notion of theft, of "something snatched away" (Johnson). (8) It positions hair's central role as a metonym for the body and, more specifically, sexuality ("hairs less in sight"), which transforms its tangible physicality into a more potent symbolic function that identifies the poem itself as both act and artefact: the Baron's "glittering forfex" may perform the deed, but it is Pope who finally appropriates the lock by sublimating it to the celestial spheres where it acquires an immortal fame contingent with its memorialization in these lines: "The lock, the Muse shall consecrate to fame, / And 'midst the stars inscribe Belinda's name" (5.191-92). (9) Pope thus complicates the fascinating ensnarement of Belinda's hirsute attractions:
   Love in these labyrinths his slaves detains,
   And mighty hearts are held in slender chains.
   With hairy springes we the birds betray,
   Slight lines of hair surprise the finny prey,
   Fair tresses man's imperial race ensnare,
   And beauty draws us with a single hair. (2.23-28)

"Beauty" is passive, Love's "slaves" (not Belinda's) are only detained, not permanently imprisoned, their "slender chains" barely holding them; she is at once the predator who captures fish and fowl alike, and the prey "ensnared" by her irresistibility--her own "springe" violently snaps back upon her. The empowerment of Diana the Huntress is implicitly undermined by the "imperial race" of "us" who will simultaneously persecute her--the Baron--and offer her deified salvation--Pope. (10)

The strands of what Dwight Codr calls Belinda's "stellified lock" are "dispersed" into "hairs" subsequently recollected in the "mazy ringlets" (2.139) of Pope's lines. (11) In turn, they are rewoven in the new literary and artistic creations inspired by The Rape of the Lock which also adopt hair as their central theme, as if further to enmesh the intertextual strands linking these works. It is perhaps the suppleness of Pope's lines--their "snatching away" and regrooming of a real-life event to suit poetic above and beyond personal purposes--which have ensured the enduring appeal of what John Barnard calls "Pope's most universally admired poem in all periods" to these adaptive processes. (12) Some of these reimaginings coax the poem's contours into harmonious new forms--among them its numerous illustrations, stretching from Louis Du Guernier and Claude Du Bose, to Henry Fuseli, C. R. Leslie, and Aubrey Beardsley. (13) Others perform a more vigorous act of breaking and remaking that mirrors the vandalism perpetrated on the smoothly neoclassical sculpture of Belinda's "iv'ry" physique, as if to expose how coy the most perfect statuary is about "hairs less in sight." It is both hooligan insult and recognition of worth: there is surely greater kudos in graffitiing the most statuesque monuments that acquires a fame (or infamy) of its own. The whisker poems demonstrate with particular bravado how The Rape of the Lock's adaptations perform an act of sabotage upon it that is at once a shocking desecration, but one consonant with how Pope appropriates Belinda's loss to enrich his poem's status as a talisman more potent than the tangible lock of hair itself.

Moreso than the poem's narrative content, such reworkings foreground the ability of the combined denotative and connotative qualities of its central conceit to comment on persistent preoccupations--about gender, society, sexuality, social performance--pertinent to the new contexts of time, place, and medium in which the adaptation appears. (14) Pieces such as Jacob Hildebrand's The Rape of the Smock (1717) and the more tangentially related The Thimble (1744), for instance, parody Pope to foreground similar concerns with affected virtue and appearance, especially regarding women. However, those adaptations which focus specifically on hair (rather than smocks or thimbles) regroom the poem's central motif to emphasize its wider significance to contemporary awareness of the codes of conduct and, above all, of appearance which stage fashionability as a type of performance.

Theatrical adaptation provides a particularly apt location for such projections; and yet, even in an age when popular works frequently encountered such treatment (witness Pamelas numerous dramatic appearances), the high drama of Pope's poem and its demonstrably performative characters did not appear in such guise until the nineteenth century. (15) John Oxenford's Rape of the Lock: A Burletta in Two Acts was "First performed at the Royal Olympic Theatre, Monday, March 27, 1837," a purposely ephemeral piece designed to fit the afterpiece space of a theatrical programme. It keeps the central crux of Pope's poem and its main protagonists intact, but adds new characters and subplots. Frank Cecil, an admirer of Belinda's, vocalizes critique of the "vortex of folly and pleasure" and "frivolity" in which she now swirls. (16) Pope's Thalestris, meanwhile, foregrounds the complex relationship between blame and victimhood surrounding Belinda's ensnarement of the men who will be the instruments of her shame. She also indicates the simultaneous flattery of a beauty's immortalization in poetry, and the potentially suspect nature of such homage: "there's not a wit at Will's who does not pen stanzas in honour of Belinda and her fascinating locks. Your golden locks catch the men as hair springes birds." (17) Now it is "Lord Moonbeam" who "springs" Belinda's snare upon her: he "clips the lock, Belinda shrieks. Umbriel stands over her triumphant. Tableau" She falls into a bout of "regular female ill-humour"; according to Umbriel, "A nice compound of pouting, fainting, raving, and hysterics, both laughing and crying." (18) By bringing the "frivolity" of Belinda's social world to the performative arena of the stage, Oxenford's burletta injects fresh vigor into the melodramatic qualities belonging to The Rape of the Lock's narrative and characters, but also to how an act of appropriation and adaptation can literally re-perform Pope's poem as at once quaintly historical--filled with Augustan beaux and belles--and modishly prescient. The eighteenth-century fop becomes the 1830s dandy in Dapperwit and Moonbeam, compared with honest Frank Cecil: the theatrical squib reenacts concerns prevalent in Pope's poem but updates them within early nineteenth-century social and gender discourses.

Similar impulses are evident in The Rape of the Whisker and Fuzwhiskiana. Now, however, the overplayed fantasy of Oxenford's stagepiece found a real-life equivalent among a group of individuals who literally acted out the drama underpinning Pope's poem. Both pieces center upon a comparable "rape" which similarly foregrounds hair's representative role in symbolizing a person's physicality and their sexuality, but also how such outward signs construct a social identity performed within specific loci owning set codes and expectations. Now, however, the act is perpetrated by men upon men; the motives lie less in sexual frustration than in the crass sense of humor distorted by heavy drinking; and its immediate repercussions remain within a sufficiently closed and introspective community in which both frivolous antics and their flippant versification provides a self-validating mode of social cohesion.

Both The Rape of the Whisker and Fuzwhiskiana were printed and sold in Cambridge in 1838 and ran into two editions. As Charles Whibley writes, "There is much to encourage the production of ephemeral literature" in such a university environment: "The thousand incidents of college life, [and] the eccentricities of dons ... all afford themes of interest." (19) Like Pope's, this was a culture in which petty matters might find their way into print among an appreciative and knowing audience. In some respects Trinity College thus provides a fitting parallel to Pope's Hampton Court, given the rigidly hierarchized structure of Tutors, Fellows, and Master upon which it operated, with its ritualized social practices of attending chapel, dining in Hall, and--of course--taking tea. The college "played a leading part in the life of the university" during this period, because of its "sheer size," the scholarly clout of its Fellows, and its emphasis on rigorous academic standards through tough examinations at both student and Fellowship levels. Its credentials as Isaac Newton's place of study laid particular emphasis on mathematics, alongside the Classical Tripos (founded in 1822). (20)

The students depicted in these two poems suggest a less worthy and decorous side to Trinity life reflected in The Rape of the Whisker and Fuzwhiskiana's scurrility: they dramatize a dispute between two undergraduates after a night's heavy drinking, the climax of which was reached when one student shaved off his antagonist's cherished whiskers whilst he slept: "Those whiskers, once, alas! the boast of Trinity, / On which their owner doated to infinity" (5). Whiskerando Squib describes the wild revelries that encouraged the unfortunate but foolish "Stiggins" ("S." in Fuzwhiskiana) to "taunt" this "Giant while he played at cards" (6). A series of mock-epic similes depict how the goaded protagonist dangerously sulked with potent, animalistic rage:
   Like bull at bay, while baiting bull-dogs bark,
   Like crouching tiger, or like hungry shark,
   Like dark volcano smouldering till the hour
   Arrive to show the world its hidden power. (6)

Stiggins "never dreamt of battle," but the "Giant" bided his time before enacting his revenge:
   ... Sleep brought Stiggins into destitution.
   Buried in wine and sleep--so Virgil sung--So
   Stiggins lay with snore-resounding lung.
   Now, all good tipples, take a timely warning,
   Remember that Repentance comes with Morning.
   For morning came, and sadly from his bed
   Poor Stiggins crawled, and cursed his aching head:
   But still he stept, as usual, to the glass
   To see the Whiskers, but a loud--, Alas!
   Was all he uttered, as he looked again,
   And yet once more he looked, and looked in vain. (6-7)

Both the chasm in the text and the censored oath behind "--" hint at unspeakable words and deeds, whilst a footnote alerts the reader to the comic possibilities of such ellipses: "Whether a passage has been lost here, or whether the Poet left something for his reader's imagination to conceive, is uncertain." Stigginss despair recalls Belindas grief--the "chagrin" (3.77) rising to "mortal ire" (3.93) which cascades into despondency as "the nymph in beauteous grief appears, / Her eyes half-languishing, half-drowned in tears" (3.143-44)--a splenetic sequence comically condensed by Oxenford. Stiggins, pathetically emulating his literary forbear, desperately wanders the streets of Cambridge, acquires a doctor's note exempting him from his studies so as to hide his shame, and stokes the sympathy of his peers. The whisker's fate grubbily parallels the apotheosis of Belinda's lock; whilst that ascends to the heavens and "adds new glory to the shining sphere" (5.184) as a star, the fate of Stiggins's whisker is more bathetic: it floats down the river Cam surrounded by filthy detritus. Fuzwhiskianas author similarly inverts Pope's ascendency--"But trust the Muse--she saw it upward rise" (5.123); he urges the reader, '"But trust the Muse, she saw it' downward" go (8).

The general parallels between the narrative scenario of these poems and that of The Rape of the Lock are, indeed, reinforced by more overtly parodied passages, situated within an array of self-reflexive paratexts whereby these authors draw attention to their source. Both pieces tighten intertextual strands that expose difference as much as reveal similarity--whisker for lock--and which further secures the mock-heroic balancing of trifles and weightier matter, and that of The Rape of the Lock against its two bewhiskered offspring. Fuzwhiskianas author teasingly points to the paper trail linking these works together as much as the hirsute element binding them:

The following Poem (of course) has been lately discovered among a heap of MS. papers, the remainder of which, being totally obliterated by time or other causes, we are sorry we are not able to communicate to the public. (3)

Beyond the ironically parenthetic assurance of "authenticity" via the recovered manuscript--itself a well-established parodic conceit--the author cements the texts' connection by flagging up their common ground:

As regards the subject of the composition, we may observe that the circumstances which called for its appearance seem to have a striking resemblance to those on which Popes Rape of the Lock is founded. The object of this poem appears, if possible, to have taken the matter more to heart than the fair Belinda, though we must take into consideration that the loss of the hero of the present poem must be much greater than that of his great prototype, if we may use this term of a lady. (3)

The suggestion that this "hero" suffers a greater "loss" than Belinda hyperbolizes the splenetic fit that she endures, for all the "striking resemblance" of surface-level details; again, the familiar and strange converge as Pope's "matter" is reshaped to fit new contexts, and to sharpen the critical focus on a hero implicitly likened to a "lady."

In The Rape of the Whisker, Squib declares his sources with sardonic honesty by providing annotations that indicate certain imitated lines. A footnote appended to "And came there as of old from realms of air, / Some hostile Sylph, to violate the hair?" tells us that "This happened either in Popes time, or in his 'Rape of the Lock."' (5). Its vagueness indicates the deliberately misleading nature of source citation in poems of this kind, rather like the goose-chase invited by the ancient "manuscript" on which Fuzwhiskiana claims to be based. Repetition first alerts readers to the presence of recognizable material, and then to the distortion whereby each poem displays how, and how supposedly cleverly, it has transformed its appropriations. (21) Fuzwhiskiana's narrative crux exhibits--and visibly so, with its use of quotation marks--a dependency on, yet liberality with The Rape of the Lock as a storehouse of imitable possibilities;
                                      "The meeting point the 'curled'
                                         hairs dissever,"
                                      "From" S.... s's "head for ever
                                         and for ever.
1. Rape of the Lock Canto III. 153.   "The sister lock now is uncouth,
                                      "And in its fellows fate forsees
                                         its own.
                                      "O, hadst though [sic], cruel,
                                         been content to seize
2. R.L. Canto IV. end.                "Hairs less in sight--on [sic]
                                         any hairs but these!" (6)

The marginal references direct the reader to the actual location of these lines in Pope's text to demonstrate how they have been restyled within the present text. The author entwines two separate moments in The Rape of the Lock, the crucial point at which the Baron cuts Belinda's hair and her subsequent lament for its loss:
   The meeting points the sacred hair dissever
   From the fair head, for ever and for ever!    (3.153-54)
   The sister lock now sits uncouth, alone,
   And in its fellows fate foresees its own .... (4.171-72)
   Oh hadst thou, cruel! been content to seize
   Hairs less in sight, or any hairs but these!  (4.175-76)

Fuzwhiskiana's transformations are slight, but nonetheless revealing: the italicized "any," for one, provokes the lewd connotations these lines hold in Pope's poem. Meanwhile, visibly altering "sacred" to "curled"' emphasizes how more fallibly mortal and imperfect "S." is compared to Belinda, just as this squib's printing errors and misquotations unintentionally highlight the distance between the carefully polished Rape of the Lock and the cheaply produced, hastily composed piece churned out on the spur of the moment of the "ephemeral" and spontaneous kind that Whibley describes. Fuzwhiskiana's author indicates as much in his preface:

In conclusion, if it is necessary in the following poem to make an apology for the too free use of Pope's poem, we have only to say that in numerous poems which have of late appeared in this place, as free, if not a more liberal use has been made of our ancestors in the art of poetry. (3)

The role that textual play exerts in Cambridge college life more generally in this period parallels the "liberal use" these poems make of their Popean predecessor, and a host of "ancestors" besides: The Rape of the Lock provides the fulcrum, but both poems leverage much more than a close connection with this text alone. Throughout The Rape of the Whisker, Squib mimics the apparatus whereby the scholar demonstrates the breadth of his knowledge and his perceptiveness--or, of course, as Pope ruthlessly satirizes in The Dunciad, the pedant exposes his ignorance. (22) The Rape of the Whiskers dense mesh of footnotes elucidates certain aspects of the poem by citing various literary sources, yet their suspect nature positions such practices within a double game: the "authority" of scholarly method is rendered questionable, while the supposedly learned reader is invited to appreciate the difference between a true source, its manipulation, and plain error, as with the hybrid convergence of Julius Caesar and Pope: "Why this last stroke, 'the unkindest cut of all,' / Which bade the duly-cherished whiskers fall?" (5).

Fuzwhiskiana entwines its literary snippets more densely than The Rape of the Whisker, from the epigraph taken from A Midsummer Night's Dream, to its glance towards Job 5:7 with the closing remark that "man's born to misery and woe," to its final reference to Dunbar. Its pseudoscholarly bravura displays the undergraduate's easy wealth of knowledge, perhaps carelessly invested, but none moreso than with his "free" use of the preeminent figure of the literary canon: the author drops in quotations from Hamlet, Macbeth, Lear, and Othello. These jostle alongside allusions to other sources, as the description of his hero displays with particular parodic bravado:
   Wine, which made thee a Samson, made thy hap
   Luckless as his; and, in Dalilah's lap
   (A strange Dalilah!) laid thy sleepy pate,
   Alas! unwitting of its hapless fate.
   (What! S.... s a Samson! the idea is fine,
   "Hyperion to a"--psha!--you know the line--
   But, I beg pardon, for I wrong him there,
   A Satyrs hairy--he has lost his hair.) (5)

The absence of marginal references here suggests that the poet's knowledge of Shakespeare is so intimate that he unthinkingly blends well-known words and phrases with a familiar Old Testament tale, not to mention its Miltonic retelling. The reader is made complicit in this allusive game: "you" can complete "the line" from Hamlet with only a mere hint, as well as feel its inappropriateness to this subject. The author appeals to a shared pool of textual knowledge that, on the one hand, bespeaks a particular kind of education appropriate to the target audience of male undergraduates. It might nevertheless also exert wider appeal; Hamlet's "O, that this too too solid flesh would melt" soliloquy was, after all, consistently performed on stage. It also featured in popular anthologies of Shakespearean extracts from the later eighteenth century onwards (23)--the type of volume that might lead to "rote" recitation of famous passages, as the author suggests in boasting about his knowledge of Macbeth:
   I'll read it to thee, though I'd rather quote,
   For Pope and Shakespeare I have quite by rote. (7)

The derision of repetitious but unthinking "rote" learning, reinforced by the clunking meter and, perhaps, the reader's awareness of the poem's multiple misquotations, suggests the parodist's dual perspective of inhabiting a voice which it simultaneously mocks, whilst using it as a mouthpiece to mock others.

This catalyzes parody's ability to serve as a satirical tool: the target is not necessarily the parodied text(s) itself, but the new subjects to which both narrative themes and specific phrases are applied--and, crucially in this instance, the contexts in which they emerge. (24) Like The Rape of the Lock, both whisker authors reach beyond the immediate scope of Pope's poem, and other literary sources, to mobilize the satirical thrust of their handling of this parochial episode. Just as Pope mocks the superficiality of eighteenth-century society, its "beaux" and "belles" and those trivial things which they prize, so these two writers use the whisker central to this student dispute as a cipher that speaks of contemporary preoccupations and mores: early nineteenth-century university life and, beyond it, the social norms and expectations placed upon young men of this class and period.

Central to these social practices, and a chief protagonist in the events unfurled in these poems, is heavy drinking. In a lengthy dedication addressed "To all Gentlemen who wear Whiskers," Squib announces that The Rape of the Whiskers apparent "object" is to salve the present animosity amongst his peers (just as Caryll sought to do via Pope), but also to "prevent a recurrence of the calamity" by encouraging his readers to refrain from indulging in "such alcoholic liquors as may render us liable to expose ourselves" (3). The opening lines of both poems transform Pope's pseudoromantic "amorous causes" and "trivial things" (1.1-2) within an altogether more brutal and indecorous world of drunken antics. The Rape of the Whisker makes a mock-epic invocation to "alcoholic liquors:"
   Wine and the Man I sing, who woke at morn,
   And found, by some stern fate, his whisker shorn. (5)

Drink and drinker are elided, as Squib partly shifts the responsibility for the "stern fate" that will befall his hero onto the "Wine" that dictates his actions. Fuzwhiskiana opens with a similar declaration, but forgets "the Man" to focus on the drink which leads him astray:
   O WINE! of what great ills art thou the cause!
   Thou breakest every bond of social laws;
   Thou makest men speak truth--sometimes--what more?
   Thou mak'st them greater liars than before. ...
   And often, as I'll shew, when friend meets friend,
   Wine causes war, and friendship is at an end. (5)

The labored rhyme scheme and the uneven meter nonetheless emphasize the connection between wine and "great ills;" wine, rather than the drinker, is chiefly responsible for the evil effects that turn comedy of (bad) manners into revenge tragedy: "Wine gave the insult, and wine paved the way" (6).

The belligerent agency that wine acquires mimics the role that coffee, an exotic and potent beverage for Pope's audience, assumes in bringing about Belinda's crisis; (25) it intoxicates the Baron and incites him to attempt the "rape:"
   Coffee, (which makes the politician wise,
   And see thro' all things with his half-shut eyes)
   Sent up in vapours to the Barons brain
   New stratagems, the radiant Lock to gain. (3.117-20)

Coffee's identity as a noxious stimulant here complements other early eighteenth-century mock-heroic poems whose substance-abuse parallels the focus on wine found in The Rape of the Whisker and Fuzwhiskiana. (26) John Gay's Wine (1708), for instance, extols the "Happiness Terrestrial" of its chosen theme, but also humorously hints at some of its less welcome effects: amongst them, at the end of an evening's drinking we are of "Coin bereft." (27)

How typical was this heavy-drinking, jape-filled culture at Trinity, and in Cambridge more generally? The enjoyment of and overindulgence in wine, of course, is nothing new; but that drunkenness was rife in Cambridge in this period is well documented in contemporary accounts. (28) In 1818 the unfortunate Lawrence Dundas, an undergraduate at Trinity, "after a drunken orgy in Bridge Street, was making his way to Barnwell when he fell into a ditch on Parker's Piece and, being too drunk to extricate himself, was found dead from exposure the next morning." (29) This incident led the Reverend F. H. Maberly to publish a pamphlet entitled The Melancholy and Awful Death of Lawrence Dundas, undergraduate of Trinity College, in which he laments that '"Drunkenness is making gigantic strides in the University.'" (30) Other records suggest that undergraduates were not alone in indulging their love of wine to excess. As D. H. Winstanley writes of Joseph Romilly, Tutor at Trinity and later Registrar of the University, his diaries frequently note episodes of inebriation in the 1830s: "It was by no means unknown for Fellows to become intoxicated in the Combination Room or at private parties." For instance, "On the eve of 17 January 1833 [Romilly] gave wine to eight friends ... and as they finished off nine bottles of port, he can be excused for saying that 'they drank like fishes.'" (31) Romilly's diaries provide a colorful account of Trinity life in this period, in which both scholarly responsibilities and lighter social activities converge for students and academics alike. We find less virtuous undergraduates reprimanded by the college authorities--one "Elsegood," for instance, was put on "trial" for "taking a Prostitute into his lodgings in mens clothes." (32) Frequent feasts and feasting often led to inevitable consequences. At one end-of-term celebration in April 1832, Romilly records a "Magnif. supper with profusion of little nosegays 8cc. I never saw people drink so much champagne, they drank 14 bottles of it.--A select party of 13 ... staid till 3:--I wished them somewhere ..." (33)

The very different experiences recorded in a firsthand account contemporaneous with Romilly's diaries and the whisker poems, however, suggest just how small, and how very different, the worlds within this already self-enclosed bubble could be. Alexander Gooden, who joined Trinity as an undergraduate in 1836, kept a frequent correspondence detailing daily life in the college until his untimely death in 1841. He exemplifies the model student as one prominent "type" among Cambridge undergraduates: he is engrossed in and dedicated to his studies in what seems to be a perpetual and unrelenting cycle of challenging examinations. Gooden is temperate and well behaved; he writes regularly to his family about his work, his finances, and his friendships, seeming to enjoy a convivial but moderate social life. Whilst claiming that "events are very 'rare birds' here indeed," nevertheless local disturbances were not unheard of: among them, the arrest and temporary imprisonment of a group of students: "It was of course the finish of a quiet supper party." (34) Gooden passingly observes the prevalence of a drinking culture--the University's "boat-races" typically "excite much interest, many bets and considerable quantity of swearing in general, and drunkenness in particular." (35) And yet this is a world in which he himself plays little part. Instead, he describes the ongoing drudgery of his undergraduate life: "Hall chapel and walk in alternate monotony--plucks freshmen and supper parties are the literature philosophy and science of a Cambridge continuation, I do not call it life." (36)

This seems a far cry from the unruly ribaldry described in the whisker poems; and yet, whilst neither Gooden nor Romilly mentions this incident, their picture of an enclosed and introspective society, in which small groups of individuals formed tight bonds between themselves, suggests the type of intense friendships which--among less conscientious, more dissipated students--could lead to the high jinks pictured by Squib and Fuzwhiskiana's author. As Gooden writes, "Cambridge has no society but that of undergraduates; there is no home, and you must make your acquaintance help to pass the time which is in general spent without your own family. I am pretty well reconciled to it now, but at first felt the hours hang heavy and uncomfortable." (37) It is within such a context--and with those predisposed towards pastimes designed to pass the hours in less salubrious ways than Gooden favors--that Pope's lines obtained new significance.

The undergraduates involved in the whisker affair displayed the behavioral patterns characterizing the type of student whom Gooden deplores. The "Belinda" of these two poems was Charles [Samuel] Stokes, who matriculated as an undergraduate at Trinity College in 1837 and became a member of the Cambridge Apostles in 1838. (38) Fuzwhiskiana refers to "'sad Charley'" and twice laments "Poor Charles!" in the poem's closing lines. The "Baron" and perpetrator of this crime was Temple Frere, a belabored pun in the same poem revealing his identity:
   None will deny, altho' his name fve hid it,
   Free was his weapon, freer--he who did it. (6-8)

Frere, who came from minor gentry, joined Downing College in 1835 before "migrating" to Trinity later that year, matriculating (like Stokes) in 1837. (39) He was Secretary to the Cambridge Union in Michaelmas Term 1838, a fact perhaps reflected in these poems' mention of this student body: (40) The Rape of the Whisker tells how "The sons of John's and Trinity deplore, / And all the Union echoes with the roar" (8), references repeated in Fuzwhiskiana. Tragically, the twenty-two-year-old Frere died the following year, "accidentally, in endeavoring to save a fellow-collegian from drowning," despite being "an excellent swimmer." (41)

As for the authors who capitalized on the comic potential of this dispute, Charles Tindal ("Whiskerando Squib") pursued a more illustrious academic trajectory than his two younger peers: (42) he proceeded to the MA and a future successful career in Law, and served as President of Cambridge Union in Lent Term, 1838. (43) Fuzwhiskianas author remains anonymous, although in a culture of ready squibbing another undergraduate may easily have been swayed to imitate Tindal's clearly popular effort, considering that it went into two editions; or perhaps even that author himself wrote a second version of the story: he seemed inclined towards such frivolous ventures, after all. Tindal formed a clandestine student group at Trinity College in 1838, "The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Undergraduates," founded in response to a new rule imposed by the Master (Christopher Wordsworth, the poet's brother) requiring students to attend at least eight chapel services a week; the undergraduates considered this to be unreasonable and were, moreover, perhaps understandably incensed by the Fellows' slack attendance. (44) Numerous scurrilous "epigrams and lampoons" were subsequently "scattered broadcast in the University," Tindal being among the authors. (45) Gooden disapproved: "Placards and bills containing satirical verses on the aforesaid enactment have been extensively posted up and circulated in the college," and he names as "worst of all" the Society's formation. (46) According to W. W. Rouse Ball's disapproving summary, these were "poor stuff as literary productions" and even "highly improper:" "their value consists entirely in giving us stories then current about dons and things academic"--nevertheless a useful value in the present case. (47) Romilly is somewhat more forgiving about the "violent philippics" generated in response to these "very obnoxious" new regulations. (48)

However, whilst these whisker poems seem to capture a taste both for lampooning and for wine as the most prominent aspects caricaturing student life in this period, the whisker is key to why this might be deemed such a (mock) tragedy at all, just as Belinda's lock remains Pope's central theme. It is the enduring fascination of this hirsute motif, after all, which binds these texts together, as they re-collect dispersed textual strands to restyle hair's potency as both bodily and poetic sign. As such, it acts as an indicator of the wider social expectations that so significantly shape this most supple emblem of fashionability. Belinda is both a victim of her own vanity and of the norms which require the investment in superficial appearances (of person and of virtue) embodied in her prized locks of hair. (49) Similarly, Stokes betrays a narcissistic self-fascination that brings about his own downfall by "doating to infinity" on his whiskers, whilst they belong to a physical look seemingly demanded by a prevalent rhetoric of male grooming from whose ensnarement it is difficult to escape.

The whisker poems thus adopt a similarly dual perspective in addressing their subjects position within wider societal demands on self-presentation. Now, however, ironic sympathy carries the added luster of empathy via firsthand experience. The preface to The Rape of the Whiskers second edition announces that the author himself proudly possesses that trophy of manly pride, "a pair of whiskers," which apparently tightens a bond with his hero:

Now, my Chief reason for sympathy with Mr. Stiggins was, a proud consciousness that a day or two ago we might have boasted in common the honour of a pair of whiskers.

However, despite such comradely "respect for whiskers in general," Squib only partially aligns himself with a victim for whom his pity, like Pope's for Belinda, is double-edged: Stiggins pays for his "boastfulness." Similarly, whilst Fuzwhiskiana laments that "Low were you lying--therefore base the deed, / Which made my heart, if not thy cheeks, to bleed" (6), its author detrimentally aligns S. with Pope's heroine:
   Say, did thine high ambition make thee hope,
   In tableau vivant, with Fermor to cope,
   And illustrate, so naturally, Pope?
   To act Belinda, too,--thy manly heart
   Must sure disdain to play a womans part. (6)

By not "acting" in an inappropriate manner, S. has performed a role whose tragic outcome was inevitable: he "play[s] a woman's part," the indelicate innuendo ironic in the context of his emasculation, and as such pity for his fate is limited. He is guilty not only of heedless drunkenness, but also of such pride in his physical appearance that his "manly" dignity is supplanted by a feminine vanity. This is compounded by Fuzwhiskiana's mocking and densely allusive encomium upon the departed hairs:
   But whither, whither is the whisker gone,
   Which left its weeping sister all alone,
   Dropping like Niobe--not pearly tears,
   But oil from Rowlands, or from Truefitt's bears?
   The Union rings with the lost whiskers [sic] fame,
   And all its members consecrate its name. (7)

Hamlet's "too too solid flesh" soliloquy once again supplies a source, now for Niobes tears, but they are swiftly replaced with the gentleman's grooming ointments; her tragically resonant name is juxtaposed with those of Rowland (a Cambridge chemist) and Truefitt (the London barbers) to create a disjointed connection between scholarly learning, commercial outlets for vanity, and the Union's debating chamber--spaces which demarcate social performativity through physical self-fashioning and rhetorical posturing alike. The whisker swims "past St. Johns" as "Cam's waters linger slow," the effeminacy of dressing one's hair implicitly besmirched by the detritus surrounding it: "Papers, like curl papers, about it float," scholarly papers replaced by those used for curling hair, and which recall Dryden's MacFlecknoe: "About thy boat the little fishes throng, / As at the morning toast, that floats along," whilst "Thou wield'st thy papers in thy threshing hand." (50) Another allusion to Hamlet secures the whisker's ridiculously grandiose fate: "Sweets to the sweet--fair may its passage be, / Swimming with such meet company to sea" (8).

The Rape of the Whisker similarly mentions contemporary male grooming practices to enrich the poem's ties with Pope and its contextual resonances, and to heighten Stiggins as a willing victim whose vanity makes him culpably susceptible to such fashions:
   Sadly he mused on all the anxious toil.
   The frequent shaving, and the fragrant oil,
   Now all bestowed in vain. What precious plaster
   Would quickest serve to heal the sore disaster?
   Not all Macassar could prevent alarm,
   Nor all Circassia's cream, Columbia's balm.
      Two sores were now to heal,--the wounded/ace,
      And wounded honour. (7)

Stiggins's visibly "wounded face" is conflated with his "wounded honour" echoing Thalestriss claim that the ruptured symmetry of Belinda's curls may make "all your honour in a whisper lost" (4.110). Her description of the "constant care" involved in the laborious and excruciating process of a lady's toilet, with its "bodkin, comb, and essence," the "locks in paper durance bound" and "with tort'ring irons wreath'd around," resonates in Squib's parody. Stiggins, too, regrets the wasted effort and "anxious toil" expended on his whiskers, Pope's "essence" and "lead" now applying to contemporary cosmetics (4.97-102): Macassar Oil was a compound made principally with coconut or palm oil and applied to the hair, while "Columbia's balm" refers to the ointment sold by London-based firm Oldridge's; one newspaper advertisement of 1841 promised that it "causes whiskers and eyebrows to grow ... and ... causes [hair] to curl beautifully." (51) Publications such as Alexander Ross's Arf and Science of Personal Beauty (1888) reflect back on the rituals surrounding male grooming in which Charles Stokes's care for his whiskers is firmly planted. His manual offers advice on such important arts as "how to stiffen, curl, and position small pieces of hair, such as the moustache and pieces of hair at the sides of the face," for "Every man is desirous, and most desirous, to possess the manly appendage of hair." (52) However, the borderline between Ross's "manly appendage" and a womanly obsession with "adornment" is precariously trodden by figures such as Stokes, raising questions about the inherently ambiguous role that hair plays in constructing gendered identities.

This sustains a contrary motion of sympathy and exposure to mockery throughout Fuzwhiskiana and The Rape of the Whisker; their ambivalence resonates with how The Rape of the Lock presents its protagonist as a major piece promoting her own vanity, and so partly complicit in her loss, but also as a pitiful pawn upon the board of societal game playing. Critical assessments of Pope's attitude towards women helpfully qualify any reductive and distasteful assumptions about victimhood and culpability, and in turn enlighten how the two whisker poems employ satirical strategies not necessarily (or only) to suggest that Stiggins deserves his fate, but to expose expectations of how gender is performed within specific social contexts to a quizzical view. (53) Richard Terry, for instance, suggests that The Rape of the Lock "articulates a pervasive male discourse of gallantry of 'fair sexing,"' whereby the "paradoxical fetishization of women" was based on the "root conception of women's lives as trivial." (54) Pope deploys the mock-heroic's comic inversions to reverse the stereotypical gender roles his subjects perform: Belinda arms herself for the "contests" of daily social interaction--pins lined like spears upon her dressing table--whilst the belles who defend her wounded honor fiercely combat foppish beaux in Canto 5's mock-battle scene.

These two whisker poems similarly invert gender-based discourses within the context of the alternative, but perhaps equally fetishizing assumptions about male sexuality espoused in the early nineteenth century. Neither poem features the typical mock-heroic battle scene. Instead, martial rhetoric ("wounds" and "honour") ironically presents the protagonist as an ineffectual Homeric warrior: in his drunken stupor Stiggins/S. remained passive throughout the crucial contest. Rather than spears, shields, and swords (or even fans and whalebones), his armory consists of oils, ointments, and pastes dedicated to perfecting the whiskers' beauty, but which are now redundant. Both the self-adorning victim and the societal practices to which he conforms come under comic scrutiny: he is subject to social mores that not only demand heavy drinking of (some) university undergraduates, but also that a gentleman will make a notable statement of his masculinity by, ironically, paying the kind of excessive attention to his facial hair typically associated with female vanity.

The clean-shaven cheeks favored in the eighteenth century had, by this period, increasingly yielded to the facial hair (beards and sideburns) popularized by the military since the Napoleonic Wars, although "whiskers" increasingly denoted the moustache grown on the upper lip. (55) These poems' descriptions of how Stiggins's/S.'s whiskers on either cheek form a pair indicate the sideburns of manly, military exploits. (56) Possessing a fine pair of whiskers was clearly a desirable, visible testament to manliness that was nevertheless couched in a counteractive discourse of suspect masculinity. The term "whisker" itself embodies such ambiguities: its sexual connotations of female genitalia blur boundaries between "manly appendages" and womanly "hairs less in sight." (57) Its synonymy with affectation further undermines any stable meaning--one of "whisker's" slang meanings is "a lie" (Grose) (58)--not least when transmuted into the belittling "Whiskerando." The OED cites as evidence of the term's adjectival form Robert Southey's resonant claim of 1838: "To ... what extravagances would the whiskerandoed macaronies of Bond Street ... proceed, if the beard ... were ... to 'make the man!"' The term easily slips into the language surrounding male fashionability, its flippant semantic origins aptly reflecting the comically derisory way in which such "macaronies" were judged by their contemporaries from the early 1800s onwards. In 1806 The Sporting Magazine describes how "Our young bucks of distinction ... with their enormous whiskers" had taken to growing moustaches, too, to the initial "dislike" of the ladies; but "as modern fashion soon reconciles the sex to any novelty, the mustachio salute is not only sanctioned now by the dowagers of the whiskerando tribe, but even voted by the young smooth-lipped belles, to be funny enough!"' (59)

Fickle fashions partly ensure that men and women will interact, no matter how initially off-putting the whiskered "salute;" but such reconciliation is projected through a distorted lens of ambiguous sexuality, which reflects a mocking concern that male grooming turns the man into a queer dandy. Whilst "dandy" is not necessarily gender-specific--as Charms of Dandyism, by Olivia Moreland, Chief of the Female Dandies (1819) no doubt ironically implies--its critique is principally focused on young men who follow the line so flamboyantly engendered by Beau Brummel, although by the time of the whisker poems he was penniless and insane. (60) An article printed in 1839 in the London journal The Odd Fellow provides a detailed sketch of "The Imitative Dandy." Behavior and appearance alike mark these "poodles" out for notice: they tend to loiter in groups of four, frequenting "public places" where they attract the derision of men and women alike: "vain gloriously" does the dandy believe himself to be "a bodily Apollo." At the theatre, the "merry knaves'" up in the "gods" "very justly consider the dandy fair game," and hurl insults directed at his physical appearance: "'Does your mother know you're out?' calls out one ... 'Go to the barber's,' says a second. 'Whiskerando,' chimes in a third." (61)

These two whisker poems do not explicitly brand their protagonists as dandies, and to some degree the self-immolating world of contemporary Cambridge suggests some protection from these metropolitan behaviors. But fashion (like young men and newspapers) travels; these students are implicitly located within an unsettled consciousness of how masculinity might be visibly displayed. Male grooming's supposed ability to establish manliness and its emasculating effects remain in quizzical tension: no matter how manly the man who bears his whiskers, overtly paying attention to them betokens an affectation that borders on the effeminately dandyish. This perhaps heralds what John Tosh describes as incipient Victorian "seriousness," whose first "casualty" was "that paragon of Regency fashion, the dandy--the man who lived for appearances." (62) Following fashionable mores risked diverting the truly "manly man" from the useful endeavor he should privilege over "the dictates of social expectation." (63)

These squibbing poets, writing upon the cusp of this apparent change, thus tap into a broader approach towards masculinity prevalent in this period that questioned the unstable identity of the useful male citizen. They illustrate Tosh's distinction between being a "gentleman" and "manliness": the former could be acquired by "Birth, breeding and education," but came second to the "moral qualities" belonging to the latter. (64) This is partly embedded in an economic context that challenges the quite literal contribution to society made by those who luxuriate in their appearance. The Rape of the Whiskers dedication reinforces how excessive expenditure on personal beauty can weaken both a man's financial stability and his stature, more even than the "coin" of which Gay's wine-drinker is "bereft;" its author glibly asserts that "After involving my poor Father to a considerable amount for Macassar Oil, I have succeeded in decking myself with a very tolerable pair of whiskers" (3). The personal, let alone social profitability of such an investment is highly questionable:

The profits of the Poem will be devoted (perhaps) to the purchase of Columbia Balm, in order to repair as soon as possible the unfortunate gentleman's vanished honours.

As the facetious author of The Gentleman's Art of Dressing with Economy. By a Lounger at the Clubs still observes in 1876, "Much money is frittered away on scents, essences, and fatty matters in perfumers' shops," which whilst excusable in "the fair sex" needlessly jeopardizes the financial stability of "the sterner sex." (65) Such an obsession with refinement is effeminizing: "Is there an object more supremely beneath contempt than a male ... pencilling his eyebrows, waxing his moustache, brillianting his beard, and trying to be a la Rachel, beautiful for ever?" Squib's proclaimed investment in his look through making such purchases provides a fitting parallel for the significance that Laura Brown observes in the "imperial" artifacts belonging to Belindas toilet: their "listing" crafts a "fable of commodification in representations of women and empire, notably in the commodity catalogues that list imperial spoils for female consumption." (66) Such a warped economy of narcissism fueled by a global commodity culture acquires new potency within the context of early nineteenth-century notions of empire, and the emergent reevaluations of masculinity which run alongside them.

One might, perhaps, therefore question whether these poems seek to exercise satires impulse not only to comment but to correct; to reestablish normative values, whether in student behavior or the performance of masculinity more generally. Squib's prefatory admonitions, however, are rendered suspect by their scantily veiled humor. He claims in a passage added to the second edition of The Rape of the Whisker that "It must be delightful to attempt to injure publicly, a person we have insulted privately"; should the aggrieved party's friends "retaliate" in print, "We may thus create considerable uproar, and perhaps a little amusement" (4). Lampooning provides a space for "injury" and "insult" alike, but above all for "amusement," in which the balance between entertainment and instruction, and serious corrective purpose, wavers indeterminately. The whisker authors capitalize on a popular taste for "scurrilous squibs," reweaving Pope's lines to joust with their contemporaries' social identities, and to invoke behaviors that typify the student population at large--whether drinking, grooming, or witty pamphleteering. Eventually, whilst reminding the reader of wider preoccupations, they belong to a self-contained world in which a minor local event might ignite the creative talents of a student who takes the opportunity to scribble a few verses upon it, and even to push them into print.

Such an impulse clearly continued to thrive in this context: one further survival of Cambridge University's less illustrious literary heritage composed some years after Stiggins's disaster displays the enduring appeal to parody Pope's poem exercised. "The Rape of the Lock" by H. W. Lord, another Trinity man, also drew inspiration from its chief source to address a comparable grievance in a similarly lighthearted way. A handwritten note appended to the text relates how

Lord appeared after the Long vacation of either 1856 or 1859 with a moustache, then forbidden. The Dean (Rev. Thos. Hedley) requested him to shave, which he did. But he dearly loved his moustache which certainly added much to the beauty of his personal appearance, so he wrote the above Latin verses and sent them to the Dean who was so delighted with them that he requested an English translation. (67)

The mustachioed student, like his predecessors, mourns the care wasted on his whiskers in a moment of self-reflexive flippancy:
   Each morn I used to dress them at the glass;
      I seemed to comb and court them as I slept.
   In one fell swoop a month's long labours pass;
      The ruthless razor o'er those lips has swept.
   Oh, what so hard, but would some pity feel?
   Save Deans and razors, and such things of steel.

Pope's "dire offence" answers a new situation whose grievance and implications nevertheless transcend the specifics of time and place to bind the textual strands of these reflections on hair and its loss together. The Rape of the Lock exerts an ongoing appeal to the "shaven, shorn and whiskerless" and to squibbing authors alike: "Oh for a Pope this vanished lock to sing!"

Wolfson College, University of Cambridge


(1) Alexander Pope, The Rape of the Lock [1714], ed. Geoffrey Tillotson, 2nd ed., rev. (London: Methuen, 1954), 83.

(2) Alexander Pope, The Rape of the Lock. Poetical Works, ed. Herbert Davis, with new intro, by Pat Rogers (Oxford U. Press, 1966; reissued 1978). Subsequent quotations are cited parenthetically in-text by canto and line number(s).

(3) Richard Terry, Mock-Heroic from Butler to Cowper: An English Genre and Discourse (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2005), 1.

(4) John Barnard, ed., Alexander Pope: The Critical Heritage (London: Routledge, repr. 1995), 106-7. Tillotson, ed., The Rape of the Lock, 94.

(5) Maynard Mack, Alexander Pope: A Life (Yale U. Press, 1985), 255. See also Terry, MockHeroic, 6.

(6) Anonymous, Fuzwhiskiana (Cambridge: W. P. Grant, 1838). Subsequent page numbers are cited parenthetically in-text. "Whiskerando Squib" [Charles Tindal], The Rape of the Whisker: An Heroic Poem; With a Dedication to all Gentlemen who wear Whiskers (Cambridge: W. P. Grant, 1838). Subsequent page numbers are cited parenthetically in-text. Both poems are listed in A. T. Bartholomew, Catalogue of the Books and Papers for the Most Part Relating to the University, Town, and County of Cambridge. Bequeathed to the University by John Willis Clark (Cambridge U. Press, 1912), 102, 202. The Rape of the Whisker features in In Cap and Gown: Three Centuries of Cambridge Wit, ed. Charles Whibley (London, 1889), which entered its third edition in 1898. Both poems are now available as part of the British Library's Historical Print Editions series. Whibley establishes the authenticity of the poems' origin: "In 1837, Temple Frere ... cut off the whiskers of C. S. Stokes, of Trinity, under circumstances which the following poem will render clear. In another lampoon on the subject, called 'Fuzwhiskiana,' the names of the actors in the tragedy are very thinly veiled ..."(154).

(7) Linda Hutcheon, A Theory of Adaptation (London: Routledge, 2006), xiv.

(8) Margaret A. Rose, Parody: Ancient, Modern, and Post-Modern (Cambridge U. Press, 1993), 29; Terry, Mock-Heroic, 1.

(9) Dwight Codr addresses some of these approaches to how "Pope grasps or achieves some kind of power in his violent transformation of the lock into star" in '"Hairs less in sight:' Meteors, Sneezes, and the Problem of Meaning in The Rape of the Lock" Studies in Eighteenth-Century Culture 45.1 (2016), 182.

(10) See Valerie Rumbold on the complex balance between the "charming" and the "questionable" in Womens Place in Pope's World (Cambridge U. Press, 1989), 71-73.

(11) Codr, '"Hairs less in sight,"' 182ff; 175.

(12) Barnard, Critical Heritage, 10.

(13) Robert Halsband, The Rape of the Lock and Its Illustrations, 1714-1896 (Oxford: Clarendon, 1980), 3, 77, 88ff.

(14) Tillotson, ed., The Rape of the Lock, 105. Ulrich Broich, The Eighteenth-Century Mock-Heroic Poem, trans. David Henry Wilson (Cambridge U. Press, 1990), 109. Donald W. Nichol summarizes some of the "repercussions" and "spin-offs" of Pope's poem in his introduction to Anniversary Essays on Alexander Popes Rape of the Lock (Toronto U. Press, 2016), xxii-xxiii, and in "Fate urg'd the Sheers: Pope's Rape of the Lock after 300 years--a mocking acknowledgement of the triumph of style over substance," TLS, 26 February 2014,

(15) Later dramatic adaptations include Richard Dehan's five-act play The Lovers Battle (1902), in which Pope himself appears as Belinda's hopeless admirer. Performances of The Rape of the Lock have recently appeared on YouTube, whilst an opera/oratorio version by Deborah Mason premiered in New York in June 2016.

(16) John Oxenford, The Rape of the Lock: A Burletta in Two Acts, Dicks' Standard Plays (London: John Dicks, 1837), 3.

(17) Ibid., 5.

(18) Ibid., 6.

(19) Whibley, In Cap and Gown, xiii.

(20) Christopher Stray, Introduction to Cambridge in the 1830s: The Letters of Alexander Chisholm Gooden, 1831-1841, ed., Johnathan Smith (Woodbridge: Boydell Press 2003), 8, 11.

(21) Rose, Parody, 46-51.

(22) Alexander Pope, ed., The Dunciad in Four Books, Valerie Rumbold (Harlow: Longman, 1999), 3-7.

(23) The soliloquy features in, for instance, The Beauties of Shakespeare (London: G. Kearsley, 1780), frequently reprinted.

(24) Linda Hutcheon, A Theory of Parody: The Teachings of Twentieth-Century Art Forms (London: Methuen, 1985), 6.

(25) Markman Ellis, The Coffee House: A Cultural History (London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 2004), 119-20. See also Richard Kroll, "Pope and Drugs: The Pharmacology of'The Rape of the Lock'", ELH 67.1 (2000), 99.

(26) Kroll, "Pope and Drugs," 99.

(27) John Gay, Wine: A Poem, in John Gay: Poetry and Prose, ed. Vinton A. Dearing with Charles E. Beckwith (Oxford: Clarendon, 1974), 29.

(28) Searby, History, 66-68. D. A. Winstanley, Early Victorian Cambridge (Cambridge U. Press, 1955), 397.

(29) F. A. Reeve, Cambridge (London: Batsford, 1976), 91-92.

(30) Cited in Winstanley, Early Victorian Cambridge, 59-60.

(31) Winstanley, Early Victorian Cambridge, 397.

(32) Romilly's Cambridge Diary 1832-42: Selected Passages from the Diary of the Reverend Joseph Romilly Fellow of Trinity College and Registrary of the University of Cambridge; Chosen, Introduced and Annotated by J. P. T. Bury (Cambridge U. Press, 1987), 140.

(33) Romilly, Cambridge Diary, 11.

(34) Gooden, Letters, 97.

(35) Gooden, Letters, 68.

(36) Gooden, Letters, 132.

(37) Gooden, Letters, 58.

(38) W. W. Rouse Ball and J. A. Venn, eds., Admissions to Trinity College, Cambridge, 5 vols. (London: Macmillan, 1911-1916), 4:439; Ibid., 2:6, 50. W. C. Lubenow, The Cambridge Apostles, 1820-1914: Liberalism, Imagination, and Friendship (Cambridge U. Press, 1998), 429.

(39) Ball and Venn, Admissions, 4:422; Ibid., 2:580. On Frere's family and genealogy, see Burkes Genealogical and Heraldic History of the Landed Gentry, ed. L. G. Pine, 17th ed. (London: Burke's Peerage Ltd., 1952), 929-32.

(40) Percy Cradock, Recollections of the Cambridge Union, 1815-1939; with contributions by W. H. Harris, and others (Cambridge Union Society, 1953), 171.

(41) On Frere's death, see Ball and Venn, Admissions, 4:xiv. It is recorded in the Gentleman's Magazine (May 1840): 553; The Annual Register 82 (1841):40-41; and by Romilly, Cambridge Diary, 191.

(42) S. Halkett and J. Laing, eds., Dictionary of Anonymous and Pseudonymous English Literature, By j. Kennedy, W. A. Smith and A. F. Johnson (London: Oliver and Boyd, 1929), 5:18. Tindal perhaps borrowed his pseudonym from Don Ferolo Whiskerandos, the foolish Spaniard of Sheridan's The Critic (1779); or, perhaps, from Lord Fitzwilliam's racehorse, named "Whiskerandos," which competed at all the major courses in this period, including at York (The Morning Post, No. 16746 (21 August 1821)) and Doncaster (The Turf, Issue 1777 (25 September 1824)). "Whiskerando" also circulated widely in the popular press at this'time as a colloquialism caricaturing the Irish.

(43) Ball and Venn, Admissions, 4:409; Ibid., 2:194; Cradock, Recollections, 171.

(44) G. M. Trevelyan, Trinity College: An Historical Sketch (Cambridge: Trinity College, 1943; repr. 1972), 91-95; Peter Searby, A History of the University of Cambridge (Cambridge U. Press, 1997), 3:271.

(45) W. W. Rouse Ball, Cambridge Papers (London: Macmillan, 1918), 71-79.

(46) Gooden, Letters, 110.

(47) Rouse Ball and Venn, Cambridge Papers, 82, 76.

(48) Romilly, Cambridge Diary, 141.

(49) Although, as Kathryn Walls suggests, Belinda identifies the stolen lock as her "favourite," albeit a "sacredness" inconsistently upheld in the poem. "Belinda's Favouritism in The Rape of the Lock 11.115, IV. 148," Notes and Queries, 63.1 (2016): 69-70.

(50) Dryden: Selected Poems, ed. Paul Hammond and David Hopkins (Harlow: Pearson, 2007), 134.

(51) The Standard, Issue 5418 (November 9 1841), [1],

(52) Alexander Ross, The Art and Science of Personal Beauty (London, 1888), 13, 26.

(53) On Pope's attitude towards women, see Rumbold, Women's Place, 70-72; Helen Deutsch, Resemblance and Disgrace: Alexander Pope and the Deformation of Culture (Harvard U. Press, 1996), 46, 51; and Jennifer Keith, Poetry and the Feminine from Behn to Cowper (U, of Delaware Press, 2005), 45.

(54) Terry, Mock-Heroic, 106, 117-19.

(55) See Encyclopaedia Britannica, s.v. dress "Europe and America: The 19th Century," for an informative history of facial hair.

(56) "Sideburns" (or "burnsides") was only later coined as a term in homage to the Civil War general Ambrose Burnside. Morton S. Freeman, A New Dictionary ofEponyms (Oxford U. Press, 1997), 36-37.

(57) Edward Moore's Suffolk Words and Phrases (1823) mentions the term "whisker" as applied to labial hair. See also Lynn Festa, Sentimental Figures of Empire in Eighteenth-Century Britain and France (Baltimore, MD, 2006), 98-99.

(58) Francis Grose, Grose's Classical Dictionary of the Vulgar Tongue, 3rd ed. (London, 1823).

(59) The Sporting Magazine, October 1806, 179.

(60) Philip Carter, "Brummell, George Bryan [Beau Brummell] (1778-1840)," Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (Oxford U. Press, 2004).

(61) "The Imitative Dandy," The Odd Fellow, 16 June 1839, 93-94.

(62) John Tosh, Manliness and Masculinities in Nineteenth-Century Britain: Essays on Gender, Family and Empire (Harlow: Pearson Longman, 2005), 83.

(63) Tosh, Manliness, 87.

(64) Tosh, Manliness, 86.

(65) Anonymous, The Gentlemens Art of Dressing with Economy. By a Lounger at the Clubs (New York: Scribner, Welford and Armstrong, 1876), 96-97.

(66) Laura Brown, Fables of Modernity: Literature and Culture in the English Eighteenth Century (Cornell U. Press, 2001), 150. Brown also writes upon this topic in Alexander Pope (Oxford: Blackwell, 1985), 10, and Ends of Empire: Women and Ideology in Early Eighteenth-Century English Literature (Cornell U. Press, 1995). See also Kroll, "Pope and Drugs," 102-4; Stewart Crehan, "The Rape of the Lock' and the Economy of'Trivial Things"' Eighteenth-Century Studies 31.1 (1997):45-68; and Alex Eric Hernandez, "Commodity and Religion in Pope's 'The Rape of the Lock)" Studies in English Literature, 1500-1900,48.3 (2008):569-84.

(67) H. W Lord, "The Rape of the Lock," Cambridge University Library, MS Cam.d.918.46&47. The piece is also reprinted in Whibley's In Cap and Gown, 246-48.
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Author:Newbould, M.-C.
Publication:Philological Quarterly
Article Type:Book review
Date:Jan 1, 2016
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