Opening lines of some classic G&S patter songs
NEW YORK (AP) — How some of Gilbert and Sullivan’s best-known patter songs begin:
From “The Sorcerer”
Oh, my name is John Wellington Wells
I’m a dealer in magic and spells
In blessings and curses
And ever-filled purses
In prophecies, witches, and knells.
From “H.M.S. Pinafore”
When I was a lad I served a term
As office boy to an Attorney’s firm.
I cleaned the windows and I swept the floor,
And I polished up the handle of the big front door.
I polished up that handle so carefullee
That now I am the Ruler of the Queen’s Navee!
From “The Pirates of Penzance”
I am the very model of a modern Major-General,
I’ve information vegetable, animal and mineral,
I know the kings of England and I quote the fights historical
From Marathon to Waterloo, in order categorical.
When you’re lying awake with a dismal headache
And repose is taboo’d by anxiety
I conceive you may use any language
You choose to indulge in, without impropriety ...
From “The Mikado”
As some day it may happen that a victim must be found,
I’ve got a little list — I’ve got a little list
Of society offenders who might well be underground,
And who never would be missed — who never would be missed!