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He is the very model of a modern Major General….

December 22, 2004 Leave a comment

Just because I can, I present “The Modern Major General”, annotated by the Newnan Community Theatre Company.

GENERAL: 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;
         I'm very well acquainted, too, with matters mathematical,
         I understand equations, both the simple and quadratical,
         About binomial theorem I'm teeming with a lot o' news,
         With many cheerful facts about the square of the hypotenuse.
 
ALL: 		With many cheerful facts, etc.
 
GENERAL: I'm very good at integral and differential calculus;
         I know the scientific names of beings animalculous:
         In short, in matters vegetable, animal, and mineral,
         I am the very model of a modern Major-General.
 
ALL: 		In short, in matters vegetable, animal, and mineral,
       He is the very model of a modern Major-General.
 

GENERAL: I know our mythic history, King Arthur's and Sir Caradoc's;
         I answer hard acrostics, I've a pretty taste for paradox,
         I quote in elegiacs all the crimes of Heliogabalus,
         In conics I can floor peculiarities parabolous;
         I can tell undoubted Raphaels from Gerard Dows and Zoffanies,
         I know the croaking chorus from the Frogs of Aristophanes!
         Then I can hum a fugue of which I've heard the music's din afore,
         And whistle all the airs from that infernal nonsense Pinafore.
 
ALL: 		And whistle all the airs, etc.
 
GENERAL: Then I can write a washing bill in Babylonic cuneiform,
         And tell you ev'ry detail of Caractacus's uniform:
         In short, in matters vegetable, animal, and mineral,
         I am the very model of a modern Major-General.
 
ALL: 		In short, in matters vegetable, animal, and mineral,
       He is the very model of a modern Major-General.
 

GENERAL: In fact, when I know what is meant by "mamelon" and "ravelin",
         When I can tell at sight a Mauser rifle from a javelin,
         When such affairs as sorties and surprises I'm more wary at,
         And when I know precisely what is meant by "commissariat,"
         When I have learnt what progress has been made in modern gunnery,
         When I know more of tactics than a novice in a nunnery--
         In short, when I've a smattering of elemental strategy,
         You'll say a better Major-General has never sat a gee.
 
ALL: 		You'll say a better Major-General, etc.
 
GENERAL: For my military knowledge, though I'm plucky and adventury,
         Has only been brought down to the beginning of the century;
         But still, in matters vegetable, animal, and mineral,
         I am the very model of a modern Major-General.
 
ALL: 		But still, in matters vegetable, animal, and mineral,
	     	He is the very model of a modern Major-General.
 
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