Home  »  The World’s Wit and Humor  »  The Ten Lost Tribes of Israel

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

Robert Southey (1774–1843)

The Ten Lost Tribes of Israel

From “The Doctor”

THAT the lost ten tribes of Israel may be found in London, is a discovery which any person may suppose he has made, when he walks for the first time from the city to Wapping. That the tribes of Judah and Benjamin flourish there is known to all mankind; and from them have sprung the Scripites, and the Omniumites, and the Threepercentites.

But it is not so well known that many other tribes noticed in the Old Testament are to be found in this island of Great Britain.

There are the Hittites, who excel in one branch of gymnastics. And there are the Amorites, who are to be found in town and country; and there are the Gadites, who frequent watering-places, and take picturesque tours.

Among the Gadites I shall have some of my best readers, who being in good humour with themselves and with everything else, except on a rainy day, will even then be in good humour with me. There will be the Amorites in their company; and among the Amorites, too, there will be some who, in the overflowing of their love, will have some liking to spare for the doctor and his faithful memorialist.

The poets, those especially who deal in erotics, lyrics, sentimentals, or sonnets, are the Ah-oh-ites.

The gentlemen who speculate in chapels are the Puhites.

The chief seat of the Simeonites is at Cambridge; but they are spread over the land. So are the Man-ass-ites, of whom the finest specimens are to be seen in St. James’s Street, at the fashionable time of day for exhibiting the dress and the person upon the pavement.

The freemasons are of the family of the Jachinites.

The female Haggites are to be seen, in low life wheeling barrows, and in high life seated at card-tables.

The Shuhamites are the cordwainers.

The Teamanites attend the sales of the East India Company.

Sir James Mackintosh, and Sir James Scarlett, and Sir James Graham belong to the Jim-nites.

Who are the Gazathites, if the people of London are not, where anything is to be seen? All of them are the Gettites when they can, all would be Havites if they could.

The journalists should be Geshurites, if they answered to their profession; instead of this they generally turn out to be Geshuwrongs.

There are, however, three tribes in England, not named in the Old Testament, who considerably outnumber all the rest. These are the High Vulgarites, who are the children of Rahank and Phashan, the Middle Vulgarites, who are the children of Mammon and Terade, and the Low Vulgarites, who are the children of Tahag, Rahag, and Bohobtay-il.