Joe Miller's Jests



A Gentleman asked Nanny Rochford, why all the Whigs, in their Mourning for Queen Anne, all wore Silk Stockings: Because, said she, the Tories were worsted.


A Counsellor pleading at the Bar with Spectacles on, who was blind with one Eye, said, he would produce nothing but what was ad Rem, then said one of the adverse Party, You must take out one Glass of your Spectacles, which I am sure is of no Use.


The famous Tom Thynn, who was remarkable for his good Housekeeping and Hospitality, standing one Day at his Gate in the Country, a Beggar coming up to him, cry’d, he begg’d his Worship would give him a Mugg of his Small Beer: Why how now, said he, what Times are these! when Beggars must be Choosers. I say, bring this Fellow a Mugg of Strong Beer.


It was said of a Person, who always eat at other Peoples Tables, and was a great Railer, that he never opened his Mouth but to some Body’s Cost.


Pope Sixtus Quintus, who was a poor Man’s Son, and his Father’s House ill thatched, so that the Sun came in at many Places of it, would himself make a Jest of his Birth, and say, that he was, Nato di Casa illustre, Sun of an illustrious House.


Diogenes begging, as was the Custom among many Philosophers, asked a prodigal Man for more than any one else: Whereupon one said to him, I see your Business, that when you find a liberal Mind, you will take most of him: No, said Diogenes, but I mean to beg of the rest again.


Dr. Sewel, and two or three Gentlemen, walking towards Hampstead on a Summer’s Day, were met by the famous Daniel Purcel, who was very importunate with them to know upon what Account they were going there; the Doctor merrily answering him, to make Hay; Very well, reply’d the other, you’ll be there at a very convenient Season, the Country wants Rakes.


A Gentleman speaking of his Servant, said, I believe I command more than any Man, for before my Servant will obey me in one Thing, I must command him ten Times over.


A poor Fellow that was carrying to Execution had a Reprieve just as he came to the gallows, and was carried back by a Sheriff’s Officer, who told him, he was a happy Fellow, and asked him, if he knew nothing of the Reprieve before-hand; no, reply’d the Fellow, nor thought any more of it, than I did of my Dying-Day.


A Spanish Lady reading, in a French Romance, a long Conversation betwixt two Lovers; What a deal of Wit, said she, is here thrown away, when two Lovers are got together, and no Body by?

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