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The World’s Wit and Humor: An Encyclopedia in 15 Volumes. 1906.

Charles Godfrey Leland (1824–1903)

Breitmann in Battle

“Tunc tapfre ausführere Streitum et Rittris dignum potuere erjägere lobum”

Der Fader und der Son

From “Hans Breitmann’s Ballads”

“I DINKS I’ll go a fitin”—outspoke der Breitmann,

“It’s eighteen hoonderd fordy-eight since I kits swordt in hand;

Deese fourdeen years mit Hecker all roostin I haf been,

Boot now I kicks der Teufel oop and goes for sailin in.”

“If you go land out-ridin,” said Caspar Pickletongue,

“Foost ding you knows you cooms across some repels prave and young,

Away down Sout’ in Tixey, dey’ll split you like a clam”—

“For dat,” spoke out der Breitmann, “I doos not gare one tam!

“Who der Teufel pe’s de repels und vhere dey kits deir sass,

If dey make a run on Breitmann he’ll soon let out de gas;

I’ll shplit dem like kartoffels: I’ll slog em on de kop;

I’ll set de plackguarts roonin so dey don’t know vhere to shtop.”

Und den outshpoke der Breitmann, mit his schlaeger py his side:

“Forvarts, my pully landsmen! it’s dime to run und ride;

Will riden, will lighten—der Copitain I’ll pe,

It’s sporn und horn und saddle now—all in de Cavallrie!”

Und ash dey rode troo Winchester, so herrlich to pe seen,

Dere coomed some repel cavallrie a riden on de creen;

Mit a sassy repel Dootchman—an colonel in gommand:

Says he, “Vot Teufel makes you here in dis mein Faderland?

“You’re dressed oop like a shentleman mit your plackguard Yankee crew,

You mudsils and meganics! Der Teufel put you troo!

Old Yank you ought to shtay at home und dake your liddle horn,

Mit some oldt voomans for a noorse”—der Breitmann laugh mit shkorn.

“Und should I trink mein lager-bier und roost mine self to home?

Ife got too many dings like you to mash beneat’ my thoom:

In many a fray und fierce foray dis Deutschman will be feared

Pefore he stops dis vightin trade—’twas dere he grayed his peard.”

“I pools dat peard out by de roots—I gifes him sooch a dwist

Dill all de plood roons out, you tamned old Apolitionist!

Your creenpacks mit your swordt und watch right ofer you moost shell,

Und den you goes to Libby straight—und after dat to h—ll!”

“Mein creenpacks und mein schlaeger, I kits ’em in New York,

To gife dem up to creenhorns, young man, is not de talk;”

De heroes shtopped deir sassin’ here und grossed deir sabres dwice,

Und de vay dese Deutschers vent to vork vos von pig ding on ice.

Der younger fetch de older such a gottallmachty smack

Der Breitmann dinks he really hears his skool go shplit und crack;

Der repel choomps dwelfe paces back, und so he safe his life:

Der Breitmann says: “I guess dem choomps you learns dem of your vife.”

“If I should learn of vomans I dinks it vere a shame,

Bei Gott I am a shentleman, aristograt, and game.

My fader vos anoder—I lose him fery young—

Ter Teufel take your soul! Coom on! I’ll split your waggin’ tongue!”

A Yankee drick der Breitmann dried—dat oldt gray-pearded man—

For ash the repel raised his swordt, beneat’ dat swordt he ran.

All roundt der shlim yoong repel’s waist his arms oldt Breitmann pound,

Und shlinged him down oopon his pack und laidt him on der ground.

“Who rubs against olt kittle-pots may keep vite—if he can,

Say vot you dinks of vightin now mit dis old shentleman?

Your dime is oop; you got to die, und I your breest vill pe;

Peliev’st dou in Moral Ideas? If so I lets you free.”

“I don’t know nix apout Ideas—no more dan pout Saint Paul,

Since I peen down in Tixey I kits no books at all;

I’m greener ash de clofer-grass; I’m shtupid as a shpoon;

I’m ignoranter ash de nigs—for dey takes de Tribune.

“Mein fader’s name vas Breitmann, I heard mein mutter say,

She read de bapers dat he died after she rooned afay;

Dey say he leaf some broperty—berhaps ’twas all a sell—

If I could lay mein hands on it I likes it mighty well.”

“Und vas dy fader Breitmann? Bist du his kit und kin?

Denn know dat ich der Breitmann dein lieber Vater bin?”

Der Breitmann poolled his hand-shoe off und shooked him py de hand;

“Ve’ll hafe some crinks on strengt of dis—or else may I pe tam’d!”

“Oh! fader, how I shlog your kop,” der younger Breitmann said;

“I’d den dimes sooner had it coom right down on mine own headt!”

“Oh, never mind—dat soon dry oop—I shticks him mit a blaster;

If I had shplit you like a fish, dat vere an vorse tisasder.”

Dis fight did last all afternoon—wohl to de fesper tide,

Und droo de streeds of Vinchesder, der Breitmann he did ride.

Vot vears der Breitmann on his hat? De ploom of fictory!

Who’s dat a ridin’ py his side? “Dis here’s mein son,” says he.

How stately rode der Breitmann oop!—how lordly he kit down?

How glorious from de great pokal he drink de bier so prown!

But der Yunger bick der parrel oop and schwig him all at one.

“Bei Gott! dat settles all dis dings—I know dou art mein son!”

Der one has got a fader; de oder found a child.

Bote ride oopon one war-path now in pattle fierce und wild

It makes so glad our hearts to hear dat dey did so succeed—

Und damit hat sein’ Ende DES JUNGEN BREITMANN’S LIED.