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The Pearl/Volume 18/A Question of Lunacy

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A lady the other day, wishing to get an imbecile son into an asylum, consulted a doctor about a certificate and he naturally enquired as to the actions of the alleged lunatic.

Lady - I must tell you that lately at Christmas he would get up at night and eat all the mince-pie in the pantry.

Doctor - That is only gluttony.

Lady - There's something awfully shocking to tell: The other day he threw the servant down the stairs and fucked her!

Doctor - Mere depravity, that's, all. Now allow me to explain the difference to you, Madame! If you had told me that your son had eaten the servant and fucked the mince-pies there could have been no doubt about the necessity of confining him in an asylum.