Of doues I haue a dainty paire Which, when you please to take the aier, About your head shall gently houer, Your cleere browe from the sunne to couer, And with their nimble wings shall fan you That neither cold nor heate shall tan you, And like umbrellas, with their feathers Sheeld you in all sorts of weathers. Michael DraytonDavis.
Good housewives all the winters rage despise, Defended by the riding-hoods disguise; Or, underneath the umbrellas oily shade, Safe through the wet on clinking pattens tread, Let Persian dames the umbrellas ribs display, To guard their beauties from the sunny ray; Or sweating slaves support the shady load, When eastern monarchs show their state abroad; Britain in winter only knows its aid, To guard from chilling showers the walking maid. GayTrivia. Bk. I. L. 209.
It is the habitual carriage of the umbrella that is the stamp of Respectability. The umbrella has become the acknowledged index of social position . Crusoe was rather a moralist than a pietist, and his leaf-umbrella is as fine an example of the civilized mind striving to express itself under adverse circumstances as we have ever met with. StevensonPhilosophy of Umbrellas. Written in collaboration with J. W. Ferrier.
It is not for nothing, either, that the umbrella has become the very foremost badge of modern civilizationthe Urim and Thummim of respectability . So strongly do we feel on this point, indeed, that we are almost inclined to consider all who possess really well-conditioned umbrellas as worthy of the Franchise. StevensonPhilosophy of Umbrellas.
Umbrellas, like faces, acquire a certain sympathy with the individual who carries them . May it not be said of the bearers of these inappropriate umbrellas, that they go about the streets with a lie in their right hand? Except in a very few cases of hypocrisy joined to a powerful intellect, men, not by nature, umbrellarians, have tried again and again to become so by art, and yet have failedhave expended their patrimony in the purchase of umbrella after umbrella, and yet have systematically lost them, and have finally, with contrite spirits and shrunken purses, given up their vain struggle, and relied on theft and borrowing for the remainder of their lives. StevensonPhilosophy of Umbrellas.