Hard Times Book 2 Chapter 1 Page 11

Mrs. Sparsit’s tea was just set for her on a pert little table, with its tripod of legs in an attitude, which she insinuated after office-hours, into the company of the stern, leathern-topped, long board-table that bestrode the middle of the room. The light porter placed the tea-tray on it, knuckling his forehead as a form of homage.

‘Thank you, Bitzer,’ said Mrs. Sparsit.

‘Thank you, ma’am,’ returned the light porter. He was a very light porter indeed; as light as in the days when he blinkingly defined a horse, for girl number twenty.

‘All is shut up, Bitzer?’ said Mrs. Sparsit.

‘All is shut up, ma’am.’