I once saw a pocket trumpet miraculously transformed by a car into something vaguely resembling a plate, but back in 1753 James Hanson and his father were condemned to transportation for trying to achieve the opposite without paying for the raw materials. This text is from the online proceedings of the Old Bailey:
(M.) James Hanson , was indicted for stealing two pewter plates, value 1 s. one brass candlestick, value 6 d. one copper sauce-pan, value 6 d. the goods of Steven Scott ; and John Hanson for receiving the same, well knowing them to have been stolen, Feb. 23. ++
Stephen Scott . I keep a publick house; James Hanson the lad lived servant with me some time.
Q. How old is he?
Scott. He is about 16 years of age. I sent him to look for pots, he did not return at all. I sent my servant after him, who saw my two plates, and a brass candlestick in his room: I went and found them in a box. I took the boy before the justice, there he confess’d he took away these things for his father’s use. and that he had caus’d him to take a copper sauce-pan which I had missed, and that it was pawn’d in Wild-street; I went to the pawnbroker, and found it accordingly. The goods produced in Court, and deposed to. The father was taken up, he confessed he had the saucepan to beat out a bruise, and the boy said his father ordered him to take these things from me.
Margaret Richardson . I went up into John Hanson’s room, and found the two plates and candlesticks in a box, these the daughter said she would give me, if I would not make a noise.
John Hanson ‘s Defence.
I am a French-horn and Trumpet maker, I only had these things to beat the bruises out: I have work’d for several Lords, Dukes and Knights.
To his Character.
John Wilcox . I have known John Hanson several years, and have trusted him to take money for me no longer since than when the fireworks were in the park. He never wrong’d me.
Both guilty [and sentenced to transportation].
Q: Why did Pauline Hanson choke on her yoghurt?
A: Someone told her it grew out of a foreign culture.
Q: What’s the difference between Pauline Hanson and a bucket of sludge?
A: The bucket.
I like subtle humour.
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The proceedings of the Old Bailey are now searchable to 1913. Apart from anything else they are an interesting source of
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