Ask Nicely for that Glass of Beer


Elizabeth Turner (? – 1846)

Good little boys should never say
“I will,” and “Give me these;”
O, no! that never is the way,
But “Mother, if you please.”

And “If you please,” to Sister Ann
Good boys to say are ready;
And, “Yes, sir,” to a Gentleman,
And, “Yes, ma’am,” to a Lady.

Mason City Globe Gazette (Mason City, Iowa) Jun 5, 1929

This poem from another of Mrs. Turner’s (books not the one linked below) cautions the child to ask politely for a glass of BEER. It must have been common for children to drink beer with their meals in 1811, England.


“Give me some beer!” cried little Jane,
At dinner-table as she sat.
Her mother said, “Pray ask again,
And in a prettier way than that.

“For ‘give me that,’ and ‘give me this,’
Is not the best way to be heard:
To make Ann hear, a little Miss
Must add another little word.”

“Pray, give me, Ann, a glass of beer,”
Jane blushing said—her mother smiled:
“Now Ann will quickly bring it here,
For you ask properly, my child.”

You little Misses, Masters too,
Who wish to have a share of praise,
Pray copy Jane, and always do
Directly what your mother says.

Title: The Cowslip, or, More Cautionary Stories, in Verse
Author: Mrs. Turner (Elizabeth)
Publisher: J. Harris, 1811 (google book link)

*     *     *     *     *

It seems nothing much is known about this prolific author:

This is all I could find on Elizabeth Turner, other than her poems/verses.

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