A firm of shady outside London brokers was prosecuted for swindling. In acquitting them the court, with great severity, said:
"There is not sufficient evidence to convict you, but if anyone wishes to know my opinion of you I hope that they will refer to me."
Next day the firm's advertisement appeared in every available medium with the following, well displayed: "Reference as to probity, by special permission, the Lord Chief Justice of England."
MISTRESS—"Have you a reference?"
BRIDGET—"Foine; Oi held the poker over her till Oi got it."
There is a story of a Scotch gentleman who had to dismiss his gardener for dishonesty. For the sake of the man's wife and family, however, he gave him a "character," and framed it in this way: "I hereby certify that A. B. has been my gardener for over two years, and that during that time he got more out of the garden than any man I ever employed."
The buxom maid had been hinting that she did not think much of working out, and this in conjunction with the nightly appearance of a rather sheepish young man caused her mistress much apprehension.
"Martha, is it possible that you are thinking of getting married?"
"Yes'm," admitted Martha, blushing.
"Not that young fellow who has been calling on you lately?"
"Yes'm he's the one."
"But you have only known him a few days."
"Three weeks come Thursday," corrected Martha.
"Do you think that is long enough to know a man before taking such an important step?"
"Well," answered Martha with spirit, "'tain't 's if he was some new feller. He's well recommended; a perfectly lovely girl I know was engaged to him for a long while."
An Englishman and an Irishman went to the captain of a ship bound for America and asked permission to work their passage over. The captain consented, but asked the Irishman for references and let the Englishman go on without them. This made the Irishman angry and he planned to get even.
One day when they were washing off the deck, the Englishman leaned far over the rail, dropped the bucket, and was just about to haul it up when a huge wave came and pulled him overboard. The Irishman stopped scrubbing, went over to the rail and, seeing the Englishman had disappeared, went to the Captain and said: "Perhaps yez remember whin I shipped aboard this vessel ye asked me for riferences and let the Englishman come on widout thim?"
The Captain said: "Yes, I remember."
"Well, ye've been decaved," said the Irishman; "he's gone off wid yer pail!"