many, many tickle a parson

The Hand-Writing upon the Wall (1803), James Gillray's caricature of Napoleon in the role of Belshazzar the feast-loving King of Babylon. In Gillray's etching, Napoleon, Josephine, French soldiers and women are seated at a feast-table. Napoleon looks in horror at the hand of Jehovah pointing to words in the sky. In the original Biblical story, on a wall in Belshazzar's palace, god's hand writes a mysterious message: mene, mene, tekel, upharsin. The King asks Daniel to interpret the words. Daniel says:
The Hand-Writing upon the Wall (1803), James Gillray's caricature of Napoleon as Belshazzar, King of Babylon. Napoleon, Josephine, French soldiers and women are at the feast-table. Napoleon looks in horror at Jehovah pointing to words in the sky. In the Biblical story, on a wall in Belshazzar's palace god's hand writes the message: mene, mene, tekel, upharsin. Daniel interprets for the King: "God has numbered the days of your kingdom and brought it to an end. You have been weighed and found wanting. The kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians." In 539 BCE the Persian conqueror Cyrus the Great invades Babylon.
In Babylon flowed the rivers of wine
'til one fateful day god put up a sign

The anger of god was expressed on a wall
but Belshazzar didn't get it at all

The King's main pursuits were eating and drinking
but the words on the wall really got him to thinking

He couldn't make sense of what god had in mind
so turning to Daniel said “please be so kind

as to look at that writing and try and explain
the words on the wall that are hurting my brain.”

Now Daniel was sober, he had a clear head
he knew what to say and here's what he said:

“The finger that writes having writ then moves on
here come the Medes and the Persians: you're gone!

“God's run out of patience, he really can't wait
he's given your kingdom to Cyrus the great

“So don't ask a priest or even a parson
too mene mene and tekel upharsin

“For as it is written and so shall it be
Jehovah is jealous and wrathful you see

“He'll smite you and bite you and strike without warning
so swallow ten tablets and call in the morning!”

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