A very "fine old English gentleman," was my grand-uncle Rumgudgeon, but unlike him of the song, he had his weak points. He was a little, pursy, pompous, passionate semicircular somebody, with a red nose, a thick scull, [sic] a long purse, and a strong sense of his own consequence. With the best heart in the world, he contrived, through a predominant whim of contradiction, to earn for himself, among those who only knew him superficially, the character of a curmudgeon. Like many excellent people, he seemed possessed with a spirit of tantalization, which might easily, at a casual glance, have been mistaken for malevolence. To every request, a positive "No!" was his immediate answer, but in the end -- in the long, long end -- there were exceedingly few requests which he refused. Against all attacks upon his purse he made the most sturdy defence; but the amount extorted from him, at last, was generally in direct ratio with the length of the siege and the stubbornness of the resistance. In charity no one gave more liberally or with a worse grace.
This is the description that we are given of the author's uncle and guardian. The young man (20 years old) wants to marry his cousin (15 years old) but the uncle says he can marry her only in a week with three Sundays. Of course, this seems impossible but the youngsters want to get married so much that they find a way to make this happen.
This was a rather short and uneventful story. I believe it was meant to be humorous and witty but I don't think it translates very well to modern times. Some of the word play was amusing but the ending of the story was anti-climatic. And as we can expect from Poe, we get the somewhat disturbing young bride scenario again.
Next week's Poe Friday selection will be the strangely titled short story, Why the Little Frenchman Wears His Hand in a Sling. I can't wait to find out!
Annoyed by ornery guardians,