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Monty Python Scripts

Burglar / Encyclopedia Salesman

The cast:

Eric Idle
John Cleese
Michael Palin

The sketch:

(Scene : A front door of a flat. A man walks up to the door and rings bell. He is dressed smartly, like a Salesman.)

Salesman: Burglar! (longish pause while he waits, he rings again) Burglar! (woman appears at other side of door)

Woman: Yes?

Salesman: Burglar, madam.

Woman: What do you want?

Salesman: I wart to come in and steal a few firings, madam.

Woman: Are you an encyclopedia salesman?

Salesman: No madam, I'm a burglar, I burgle people.

Woman: I think you're an encyclopedia salesman.

Salesman: Oh I'm not, open the door, let me in please.

Woman: lf l let you in you'll sell me encyclopedias.

Salesman: I won't, madam. I just want to come in and ransack the flat. Honestly.

Woman: Promise. No encyclopedias?

Salesman: None at all.

Woman: All right. (she opens door) You'd better come in then.

(Salesman enters tit rough door.)

Salesman: Mind you I don't know whether you've really considered the advantages of owning a really fine set of modern encyclopedias...(he pockets valuable) You know, they can really do you wonders.

(Cut back to man at desk.)

Man: That man was a successful encyclopedia salesman. But not all encyclopedia salesmen are successful. Here is an unsuccessful encyclopedia salesman.

(Cut to very tall building; a body flies out of a high window and plummets. Cut back to man at desk.)

Man: Now here are two unsuccessful encyclopedia salesmen.

(Cut to a different tall building; two bodies fly out of a high window. Cut back to man at desk.)

Man: I think there's a lesson there for all of us.

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