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Sir Walter Scott's Parritch-pan

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IN the museum at Abbotsford there is a small Roman patera, or goblet,
in showing which Sir Walter Scott tells the following story: I
purchased this (says he) at a nobleman's roup near by, at the enormous
sum of twenty-five guineas. I would have got it for twenty-pence if an
antiquary who knew its value had not been there and opposed me. However,
I was almost consoled for the bitter price it cost by the amusement I
derived from an old woman, who had evidently come from a distance to
purchase some trifling culinary articles, and who had no taste for the
antique. At every successive guinea which we bade for the patera this
good old lady's mouth grew wider and wider with unsophisticated
astonishment, until at last I heard her mutter to herself, in a tone
which I shall never forget,--'Five-an-twenty guineas! If the
parritch-pan gangs at that, what will the kail-pan gang for!'





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