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well with herself. A little spite is natural
I Do not think any thing could make a
It is wonderful how far a fond opinion of herself can carry a woman, to make her have the least regard to a professed known woman's man; but as scarce one of all women who are in the tour of gallantries ever hears any thing of what is the common sense of sober minds, but are entertained with a continual round of flatteries, they cannot be mistresses of themselves enough to make arguments for their own conduct from the behaviour of these men to others. It is so far otherwise, that a general fame for falsehood in this kind, is a recommendation; and the coxcomb, loaded with favours of many others, is received like a victor that disdains his trophies, to be a victim to the present charmer.
If you see a man more full of gesture than ordinary in a public assembly, if loud upon no occasion, if negligent of the company around him, and yet laying wait for destroy ing by that negligence, you may take it for granted that he has ruined many a fair one. The woman's man expresses himself
Wednesday, August 29, 1711.
-Sed tu simul obligasti
When once thou hast broke some tender vow,
and accomplishments. But it is not, methinks, so very difficult a matter to make a judgment of the abilities of others, especially of those who are in their infancy. My common-place book directs me on this occasion to mention the dawning of greatness in Alexander, who being asked in his youth to contend for a prize in the Olympic games, answered he would, if he had kings to run against him. Cassius, who was one of the conspirators against Cæsar, gave as great a proof of his temper, when in his childhood he struck a play-fellow, the son of Sylla, for saying his father was master of the Roman people. Scipio is reported to have answered, (when some flatterers at supper were asking him what the Romans would do for a general after his death,)
wholly in that motion which we call strutting. An elevated chest, a pinched hat, a measurable step, and a sly surveying eye, are the marks of him. Now and then you see a gentleman with all these accomplishments; but, alas, any one of them is enough to undo thousands; when a gentleman with such perfections adds to it suitable learning, there should be public warning of his residence in town, that we may remove our wives and daughters. It happens some times that such a fine man has read all the miscellany poems, a few of our comedies, and has the translation of Ovid's Epistles by heart. Oh if it were possible that such a one could be as true as he is charming! But that is too much, the women will share such a dear false man: a little gallantry to hear him talk one would indulge one's selfTake Marius,' Marius was then a very in, let him reckon the sticks of one's fan, boy, and had given no instances of his say something of the Cupids in it; and then valour; but it was visible to Scipio from the call one so many soft names which a man manners of the youth, that he had a soul of his learning has at his fingers'-ends. formed for the attempt and execution of There sure is some excuse for frailty, when great undertakings. I must confess I have attacked by such a force against a weak very often with much sorrow bewailed the woman.' Such is the soliloquy of many a misfortune of the children of Great Britain, lady one might name, at the sight of one when I consider the ignorance and undisof those who make it no iniquity to go on cerning of the generality of schoolmasters. from day to day in the sin of woman- The boasted liberty we talk of is but a mean slaughter. reward for the long servitude, the many It is certain, that people are got into a heart-aches and terrors, to which our childway of affectation, with a manner of over-hood is exposed in going through a gramlooking the most solid virtues, and admiring mar-school. Many of these stupid tyrants the most trivial excellences. The woman exercise their cruelty without any manner is so far from expecting to be contemned of distinction of the capacities of children, for being a very injudicious silly animal, or the intention of parents in their behalf. that while she can preserve her features There are many excellent tempers which and her mien, she knows she is still the are worthy to be nourished and cultivated object of desire; and there is a sort of secret with all possible diligence and care, that ambition, from reading frivolous books, and were never designed to be acquainted with keeping as frivolous company, each side to Aristotle, Tully, or Virgil; and there are as be amiable in perfection, and arrive at the many who have capacities for understandcharacters of the Dear Deceiver and the ing every word those great persons have Perjured Fair. C. writ, and yet were not born to have any relish of their writings. For want of this common and obvious discerning in those who have the care of youth, we have so many hundred unaccountable creatures every age whipped up into great scholars, that are for ever near a right understanding, and will never arrive at it. These are the scandal of letters, and these are generally the men who are to teach others. The sense of shame and honour is enough to keep the world itself in order without corporal punishment, much more to train the minds of uncorrupted and innocent children. It happens, I doubt not, more than once in a year, that a lad is chastised for a blockhead, when it is a good apprehension that makes him incapable of knowing what his teacher means. A brisk imagination very often may suggest an error, which a lad could not have fallen into, if he had been as heavy in conjecturing as his master in explaining. But there is no mercy even towards a wrong interpretation of his meaning, the sufferings of the scholar's body are to rectify the mistakes of his mind.
No. 157.] Thursday, August 30, 1711.
I AM very much at a loss to express by any word that occurs to me in our language that which is understood by indoles in Latin. The natural disposition to any particular art, science, profession, or trade, is very much to be consulted in the care of youth, and studied by men for their own conduct when they form to themselves any scheme of life. It is wonderfully hard indeed for a man to judge of his own capacity impartially. That may look great to me which may appear little to another, and I may be carried by fondness towards myself so far, as to attempt things too high for my talents
I am confident that no boy, who will not | thing as killing a man to cure him of a disbe allured to letters without blows, will temper; when he comes to suffer punishever be brought to any thing with them.ment in that one circumstance, he is brought A great or good mind must necessarily be below the existence of a rational creature, the worse for such indignities; and it is a and is in the state of a brute that moves sad change, to lose of its virtue for the im- only by the admonition of stripes. But since provement of its knowledge. No one who this custom of educating youth by the lash has gone through what they call a great is suffered by the gentry of Great Britain, school, but must remember to have seen I would prevail only that honest heavy lads children of excellent and ingenuous natures, may be dismissed from slavery sooner than (as has afterwards appeared in their man- they are at present, and not whipped on to hood;) I say no man has passed through their fourteenth or fifteenth year, whether this way of education, but must have seen they expect any progress from them or an ingenuous creature expiring with shame, not. Let the child's capacity be forthwith with pale looks, beseeching sorrow, and examined, and he sent to some mechanic silent tears, throw up its honest eyes, and way of life, without respect to his birth, if kneel on its tender knees to an inexorable nature designed him for nothing higher: let blockhead, to be forgiven the false quantity him go before he has innocently suffered, of a word in making a Latin verse. The and is debased into a dereliction of mind child is punished, and the next day he for being what it is no guilt to be, a plain commits à like crime, and so a third with man. a I would not here be supposed to the same consequence. I would fain ask have said, that our learned men of either any reasonable man, whether this lad, in robe, who have been whipped at school, the simplicity of his native innocence, full are not still men of noble and liberal mind's; of shame, and capable of any impression but I am sure they had been much more from that grace of soul, was not fitter for so than they are, had they never suffered any purpose in this life, than after that that infamy. spark of virtue is extinguished in him, though he is able to write twenty verses in an evening?
But though there is so little care, as I have observed, taken, or observation made of the natural strain of men, it is no small Seneca says, after his exalted way of comfort to me, as a Spectator, that there is talking, 'As the immortal gods never learnt any right value set upon the bona indoles any virtue, though they are endued with of other animals: as appears by the followall that is good; so there are some men ing advertisement handed about the county who have so natural a propensity to what of Lincoln, and subscribed by Enos Thomas, they should follow, that they learn it al-a person whom I have not the honour to most as soon as they hear it. Plants and know, but suppose to be profoundly learned vegetables are cultivated into the production in horseflesh: of finer fruits than they would yield without that care; and yet we cannot entertain hopes of producing a tender conscious spirit into acts of virtue, without the same methods as are used to cut timber, or give new shape to a piece of stone.
It is wholly to this dreadful practice that we may attribute a certain hardiness and ferocity which some men, though liberally educated, carry about them in all their behaviour. To be bred like a gentleman, and punished like a malefactor, must, as we see it does, produce that illiberal sauciness which we see sometimes in men of letters.
The Spartan boy who suffered the fox (which he had stolen and hid under his coat,) to eat into his bowels, I dare say had not half the wit or petulance which we learn at great schools among us: but the glorious sense of honour, or rather fear of shame, which he demonstrated in that action, was worth all the learning in the world without it.
It is, methinks, a very melancholy consideration, that a little negligence can spoil us, but great industry is necessary to improve us; the most excellent natures are soon depreciated, but evil tempers are long before they are exalted into good habits. To help this by punishments, is the same
A chesnut horse called Cæsar, bred by James Darcy, esquire, at Sedbury, near Richmond, in the county of York; his granddam was his old royal mare, and got by Blunderbuss, which was got by HemslyTurk, and he got by Mr. Courant's Arabian, which got Mr. Minshul's Jew's-Trump. Mr. Cæsar sold him to a nobleman (coming five years old, when he had but one sweat,) for three hundred guineas. A guinea a leap and trial, and a shilling the man. T. 'ENOS THOMAS.”
No. 158.] Friday, August 31, 1711.
-Nos hæc novimus esse nihil.—Martial, xiii. 2.
OUT of a firm regard to impartiality, 1 print these letters, let them make for me
'MR. SPECTATOR,-I have observed through the whole course of your rhap sodies (as you once very well called them,) you are very industrious to overthrow all that many of your superiors, who have gone before you, have made their rule of writing. I am now between fifty and sixty, and had the honour to be well with the first men of taste and gallantry in the joyous
reign of Charles the Second. We then had, solitude is an unnatural being to us. If the I humbly presume, as good understandings men of good understanding would forget a among us as any now can pretend to. As little of their severity, they would find their for yourself, Mr. Spectator, you seem with account in it: and their wisdom would have the utmost arrogance to undermine the a pleasure in it, to which they are now very fundamentals upon which we con- strangers. It is natural among us when ducted ourselves. It is monstrous to set up men have a true relish of our company and for a man of wit, and yet deny that honour our value, to say every thing with a better in a woman is any thing else but peevish- grace: and there is, without designing it, ness, that inclination is not** the best rule something ornamental in what men utter of life, or virtue and vice any thing else but before women, which is lost or neglected in health and disease. We had no more to do conversations of men only. Give me leave but to put a lady in a good humour, and all to tell you, sir, it would do you no great we could wish followed of course. Then, harm if you yourself came a little more into again, your Tully, and your discourses of our company: it would certainly cure you another life, are the very bane of mirth and of a certain positive and determining mangood-humour. Pr'ythee do not value thy-ner in which you talk sometimes. In hopes self on thy reason at that exorbitant rate, of your amendment, I am, sir, your gentle and the dignity of human nature; take my reader.' word for it, a setting-dog has as good reason as any man in England. Had you (as by your diurnals one would think you do,) set up for being in vogue in town, you should have fallen in with the bent of passion and appetite; your songs had then been in every pretty mouth in England, and your little distichs had been the maxims of the fair and the witty to walk by: but, alas, sir, what can you hope for, from entertaining people with what must needs make them like themselves worse than they did before behaviour at church. On Sunday last a they read you? Had you made it your grave and reverend man preached at our business to describe Corinna charming, church. There was something particular though inconstant, to find something in hu- in his accent; but without any manner of man nature itself to make Zoilus excuse affectation. This particularity a set of gighimself for being fond of her; and to make glers thought the most necessary thing to every man in good commerce with his own be taken notice of in his whole discourse, reflections, you had done something worthy and made it an occasion of mirth during our applause; but indeed, sir, we shall not the whole time of sermon. You should see commend you for disapproving us. I have one of them ready to burst behind a fan, a great deal more to say to you, but I shall another pointing to a companion in another sum it all up in this one remark. In short, seat, and a third with an arch composure, sir, you do not write like a gentleman. I as if she would if possible stifle her laugham, sir, your most humble servant.' ter. There were many gentlemen who looked at them steadfastly, but this they took for ogling and admiring them. There was one of the merry ones in particular, that found out but just then that she had but five fingers, for she fell a reckoning the pretty pieces of ivory over and over again, to find herself employment and not laugh out. Would it not be expedient, Mr. Spectator, that the church-warden should hold up his wand on these occasions, and keep the decency of the place, as a magistrate does the peace in a tumult elsewhere?'
'MR. SPECTATOR,-Your professed regard to the fair sex, may perhaps make them value your admonitions when they will not those of other men. I desire you, sir, to repeat some lectures upon subjects you have now and then in a cursory manner only just touched. I would have a Spectator wholly write upon good-breeding: and after you have asserted that time and place are to be very much considered in all our actions, it will be proper to dwell upon
'MR. SPECTATOR,-The other day we were several of us at a tea-table, and according to custom and your own advice had the Spectator read among us. It was that paper wherein you are pleased to treat with great freedom that character which you call a woman's man. We gave up all the kinds you have mentioned, except those who, you say, are our constant visitants. I was upon the occasion commissioned by the company to write to you and tell you, "that we shall not part with the men we have at present, until the men of sense think fit to relieve them, and give us their company in their stead." You cannot imagine but that we love to hear reason and good sense bet
'MR. SPECTATOR,-I am a woman's man, and read with a very fine lady your paper, wherein you fall upon us whom you envy: what do you think I did? You must
ter than the ribaldry we are at present en-know she was dressing, and I read the
'Give me but what this riband bound,
*Spect. in folio. In the 8vo. edition of 1712, 'not' was left out.
and affability that familiarized him to my imagination, and at once dispelled all the fears and apprehensions with which I approached him. He lifted me from the ground, and taking me by the hand, "Mirza," said he, "I have heard thee in thy soliloquies; follow me.
He then led me to the highest pinnacle of the rock, and placing me on the top of it, "Cast thy eyes eastward," said he, "and tell me what thou seest."—"I see," said I,
'On the fifth day of the moon, which, according to the custom of my forefathers, I always keep holy, after having washed myself, and offered up my morning devotions, I ascended the high hills of Bagdat, in order to pass the rest of the day in meditation and prayer. As I was here airing myself on the tops of the mountains, I fell into a profound contemplation on the vanity of human life; and passing from one thought to another, "Surely," said I, "man is but a shadow, and life a dream." Whilst I was thus musing, I cast my eyes towards the summit of a rock that was not far from me, where I discovered one in the habit of a shepherd, with a little musical instrument in his hand. As I looked upon him he applied it to his lips, and began to play upon it. The sound of it was exceeding sweet, and wrought into a variety of tunes that were inexpressibly melodious, and altogether different from any thing I had ever heard. They put me in mind of those heavenly airs that are played to the departed souls of good men upon their first arrival in Paradise, to wear out the im-innumerable trap-doors that lay concealed pressions of the last agonies, and qualify in the bridge, which the passengers no them for the pleasures of that happy place. sooner trod upon, but they fell through My heart melted away in secret raptures. them into the tide, and immediately disap
a huge valley, and a prodigious tide of water rolling through it."- "The valley that thou seest," said he, "is the Vale of Misery, and the tide of water that thou seest, is part of the great tide of eternity." "What is the reason," said I, "that the tide I see rises out of a thick mist at one end, and again loses itself in a thick mist at the other?"-"What thou seest," said he, "is that portion of eternity which is called time, measured out by the sun, and reaching from the beginning of the world to its consummation."" Examine now," said he, "this sea that is bounded with darkness at both ends, and tell me what thou discoverest in it."-"I see a bridge," said I, "standing in the midst of the tide."-"The bridge thou seest,” said he, “is human life, consider it attentively." Upon a more leisurely survey of it, I found that it consisted of three-score and ten entire arches, with several broken arches, which added to those that were entire, made up the number about an hundred. As I was counting the arches, the genius told me that this bridge consisted at first of a thousand arches: but that a great flood swept away the rest, and left the bridge in the ruinous condition I now beheld it. "But tell me farther," said he, "what thou discoverest on it.' "I see multitudes of people passing over it," said I, "and a black cloud hanging on each end of it." As I looked more attentively, I saw several of the passengers dropping through the bridge into the great tide that flowed underneath it; and upon farther examination, perceived there were
I had often been told that the rock be-peared. These hidden pit-falls were set
very thick at the entrance of the bridge, so that throngs of people no sooner broke through the cloud, but many of them fell into them. They grew thinner towards the middle, but multiplied and lay closer together towards the end of the arches that were entire.
fore me was the haunt of a Genius; and that several had been entertained with music who had passed by it, but never heard that the musician had before made himself visible. When he had raised my thoughts by those transporting airs which he played, to taste the pleasures of his conversation, as I looked upon him like one astonished, he beckoned to me, and by the waving of his hand directed me to approach the place where he sat. I drew near with that reverence which is due to a superior nature; and as my heart was entirely subdued by the captivating strains I had heard, I fell down at his feet and wept. The genius smiled upon me with a look of compassion
She smiled, sir, and said you were a pedant; so say of me what you please, read Seneca, and quote him against me if you think fit. I am, sir, your humble ser
No. 159.] Saturday, September 1, 1711.
-Omnem, quæ nunc obducta tuenti Mortales hebetat visus tibi, et humida circum Caligat, nubem eripiam.—~ Virg. Æn. ii. 604. The cloud, which, intercepting the clear light, Hangs o'er thy eyes, and blunts thy mortal sight, I will remove.
WHEN I was at Grand Cairo, I picked up several oriental manuscripts which I have still by me. Among others, I met with one entitled, The Visions of Mirza, which I have read over with great pleasure. I intend to give it to the public when I have no other entertainment for them; and shall begin with the first vision, which I have translated word for word as follows:
There were indeed some persons, but their number was very small, that continued a kind of hobbling march on the broken arches, but fell through one after another, being quite tired and spent with so long a walk.
I passed some time in the contemplation of this wonderful structure, and the great variety of objects which it presented, "My