+ ~ -
 
Please report pronunciation problems here. Select and sample other voices. Options Pause Play
 
Report an Error
Go!
 
Go!
 
TOC
 

with a drawn sabre, guarded the entrance to
Punishment-Room, No. 1. The bolts gave
way; and, in a few moments, I was a prisoner
within.

Punishment Room, No. 1, is a chamber
some fifteen paces long by six broad, with a
tolerably high ceiling and whitened walls.
It has but two windows, and they are placed
at each end of one side of the chamber.
They are of good height, and look out upon
an enclosed gravelled space, variegated with
a few patches of verdure. The room is
tolerably light. On each side are shelves, as
in barracks, for sleeping. In one corner, by
the window, is a stone sink; in another, a
good supply of water.

Such is the prison; but the prisoners!
There were forty-eightgrey-haired men
and puny boysall ragged, and stalking with
slippered feet from end to end with listless
eyes. Some, all eagerness; some, crushed
and motionless; some, scared and stupid;
now singing, now swearing, now rushing about
playing at some mad game; now hushed or
whispering, as the loud voice of the Vater
(or father of the ward) is heard above the
uproar, calling out "Ruke!" ("Order!")

On my entrance I was instantly surrounded
by a dozen of the younger jail-birds, amid a
shout of "Ein Zuwachs! Ein Zuwachs!" which
I was not long in understanding to be the
name given to the last comer. "Was haben
sie?" (What has he done?) was the next
eager cry. "Struck a Polizerdiener!" "Ei!
das ist gut!" was the hearty exclamation;
and I was a favourite immediately. One dirty
villanous-looking fellow, with but one eye,
and very little light in that, took to handling
my clothes; then inquired if I had any money
"up above?" Upon my answering in the
affirmative my popularity immediately
increased. They soon made me understand
that I could "draw" upon the pigeon-hole
bank to indulge in any such luxuries as beer
or tobacco.

People breakfast early in Vienna; and, as I
had tasted nothing since that meal, I was very
hungry; but I was not to starve; for soon we
heard the groaning of bolts and locks, and the
police-soldier who guarded the door, appeared,
bearing in his hand a red earthen pot,
surmounted by a round flat loaf of bread "for
the Englishman." I took my portion with
thanks, and found that the pipkin contained a
thick porridge made of lentils, prepared with
meal and fat; in the midst of which was
a piece of fresh boiled beef. The cake was
of a darkish colour; but good wholesome
bread. Altogether, the meal was not
unsavoury. Many a greedy eye watched me as
I sat on the end of the hard couch, eating
my dinner. One wretched man seeing that
I did not eat all, whispered a proposal to
barter his dirty neckerchiefwhich he took
off in my presencefor half of my loaf. I
satisfied his desires, but declined the
recompense. My half-emptied pipkin was thankfully
taken by another man, under the pretence of
"cleaning it."

One of my fellow-prisoners approached me.

"It is getting late," said he; "do you know
what you have got to do?"

"No."

"You are the ' Zuwachs ' (latest accession),
and it is your business to empty and clean out
the ' Kiefel '" (the sink, &c.)

"The devil!"

"But I dare say," he added, carelessly, "if
you pay the Vater a ' mass-bier,'" (something
less than a quart of beer), "he will make some
of the boys do it for you."

"With all my heart."

"Have you a rug?"

"No."

"You must ask the Corporal, at seven
o'clock; but I dare say the Vater will find
you onefor a ' mass-bier 'if you ask
him."

I saw that a mass-bier would do a great
deal in an Austrian prison.

The Vater, who was a prisoner like the
rest, was appealed to. He was a tall, burly-
looking young man, with a frank countenance.
He had quitted his honest calling of butcher,
and had taken to smuggling tobacco into the
city. This is a heavy crime; for, the growth,,
manufacture, and sale of tobacco, is a strict
Imperial monopoly. Accordingly, his punishment
had been proportionately severetwo
years' imprisonment. The sentence was now
approaching completion; and, on account of
good conduct, he had received the appointment
of Vater to Punishment Room No. 1.
The benefits were enumerated to me with
open eyes by one of the prisoners—"Double
rations, two rugs, and a mass-bier a-day!"

The result of my application to the Vater
was the instant calling out of several young
lads, who crouched all day in the darkest end
of the rooma condemned corner, abounding
in vermin; and I heard no more of the sink
and so forth. The next day a new New-comer
occupied my position.

At about seven o'clock the bolts were
again withdrawn, the ponderous door opened,
and the Corporalwho seemed to fill the
office of ward-inspectormarched into the
chamber. He was provided with a small
note-book and a pencil, and made a general
inquiry into the wants and complaints of the
prisoners. Several of them asked for little
indulgencies. All these were duly noted
down to be complied with the next day
always supposing that the prisoner possessed
a small capital "up above." I stepped
forward, and humbly made my request for a rug.

"You?" exclaimed the Corporal, eyeing
me sharply. "Oh! you are the Englishman?
No!"

I heard some one near me mutter: "So;
struck a policeman! No mercy for him from
the other policemenany of them."

The Vater dared not help me; but two of
his most intimate friends made me lie down

Profile Information

Application afterLoad: 0.000 seconds, 0.28 MB
Application afterInitialise: 0.016 seconds, 1.00 MB
Application afterRoute: 0.020 seconds, 2.05 MB
Application afterDispatch: 0.065 seconds, 3.64 MB
Application afterRender: 0.102 seconds, 3.98 MB

Memory Usage

4201912

21 queries logged

  1. SELECT *
      FROM jos_session
      WHERE session_id = '54096a864a598a6d321b6a138ade5b2f'
  2. DELETE
      FROM jos_session
      WHERE ( TIME < '1660530005' )
  3. SELECT *
      FROM jos_session
      WHERE session_id = '54096a864a598a6d321b6a138ade5b2f'
  4. INSERT INTO `jos_session` ( `session_id`,`time`,`username`,`gid`,`guest`,`client_id` )
      VALUES ( '54096a864a598a6d321b6a138ade5b2f','1660531805','','0','1','0' )
  5. SELECT *
      FROM jos_components
      WHERE parent = 0
  6. SELECT folder AS TYPE, element AS name, params
      FROM jos_plugins
      WHERE published >= 1
      AND access <= 0
      ORDER BY ordering
  7. SELECT id
      FROM jos_toc_pages
      WHERE alias = 'page-369'
  8. SELECT id
      FROM jos_toc_pages
      WHERE alias = 'page-369'
  9. SELECT *
      FROM jos_toc_pages
      WHERE id = '430'
  10. UPDATE jos_toc_pages
      SET hits = ( hits + 1 )
      WHERE id='430'
  11. SELECT template
      FROM jos_templates_menu
      WHERE client_id = 0
      AND (menuid = 0 OR menuid = 62)
      ORDER BY menuid DESC
      LIMIT 0, 1
  12. SELECT *
      FROM jos_toc_pages
      WHERE alias = 'page-369'
      AND id_volume = 6
  13. SELECT *
      FROM jos_toc_volumes
      WHERE id = '6'
  14. SELECT *
      FROM jos_toc_magazines
      WHERE id = '100'
  15. SELECT id, title,alias
      FROM jos_toc_pages
      WHERE  id_volume = 6
      ORDER BY ordering ASC
  16. SELECT id, DATE, id_page
      FROM jos_toc_magazines
      WHERE  id_volume = 6
      ORDER BY ordering ASC
  17. SELECT *
      FROM jos_toc_parameter
      WHERE `group` = 'voice'
  18. SELECT *
      FROM jos_toc_parameter
      WHERE `group` = 'voice'
  19. SELECT id, title,alias
      FROM jos_toc_pages
      WHERE id_volume = 6
      AND ordering > 379
      ORDER BY ordering ASC
      LIMIT 1
  20. SELECT id, title,alias
      FROM jos_toc_pages
      WHERE id_volume = 6
      AND ordering < 379
      ORDER BY ordering DESC
      LIMIT 1
  21. SELECT id, title, module, POSITION, content, showtitle, control, params
      FROM jos_modules AS m
      LEFT JOIN jos_modules_menu AS mm
      ON mm.moduleid = m.id
      WHERE m.published = 1
      AND m.access <= 0
      AND m.client_id = 0
      AND ( mm.menuid = 62 OR mm.menuid = 0 )
      ORDER BY POSITION, ordering

Language Files Loaded

Untranslated Strings Diagnostic

None

Untranslated Strings Designer

None