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One small book holds essential history
when names and dates dissolve and facts escape,
and though the current world's a mystery
this yellowing Penguin keeps the past in shape.

Flora McNightingown; the Wapentake;
Charge of the Fire Brigade; the Wave of Pitts;
where Beau Brocade fits in; Alfred the Cake;
The Spanish Armadillo shot to bits.

Wrong but Wromantic (such were Cavaliers)
Right and Repulsive (those of Roundhead creed);
Victoria's Jamboree; the Egg-King years;
Williamanmary, and the Venomous Bead.

Two men nailed text-books and exams, and gave
a handy name for every sort of King
until the full-stop that marks history's grave.
Dear Sellar, dearest Yeatman: A Good Thing.