Изображения страниц
[ocr errors]

breeding, if nothing were to pass amongst | were suddenly called from these inanima us for agreeable which was the least trans- objects by a little party of horsemen I sa gression against the rule of life called de- passing the road. The greater part of the corum, or a regard to decency. This would escaped my particular observation, by re command the respect of mankind, because son that my whole attention was fixed on it carries in it deference to their good opi- very fair youth who rode in the midst nion, as humility lodged in a worthy mind them, and seemed to have been dressed b is always attended with a certain homage, some description in a romance. His fe which no haughty soul, with all the arts tures, complexion, and habit, had a r imaginable, will ever be able to purchase. markable effeminacy, and a certain la Tully says, Virtue and decency are so nearly guishing vanity appeared in his air. H related, that it is difficult to separate them hair, well curled and powdered, hung to from each other but in our imagination. considerable length on his shoulders, an As the beauty of the body always accom- was wantonly tied, as if by the hands of h panies the health of it, so certainly is de- mistress, in a scarlet riband, which playe cency concomitant to virtue. As beauty of like a streamer behind him; he had a co body, with an agreeable carriage, pleases and waistcoat of blue camblet, trimme the eye, and that pleasure consists in that and embroidered with silver; a cravat we observe all the parts with a certain ele- the finest lace; and wore, in a smart cock gance are proportioned to each other; so a little beaver hat edged with silver, an does decency of behaviour which appears made more sprightly by a feather. H in our lives obtain the approbation of all horse, too, which was a pacer, was adorne with whom we converse, from the order, after the same airy manner, and seemed consistency, and moderation of our words share in the vanity of the rider. As I wa and actions. This flows from the reverence pitying the luxury of this young person we bear towards every good man, and to who appeared to me to have been educate the world in general; for to be negligent of only as an object of sight, I perceived o what any one thinks of you, does not only my nearer approach, and as I turned m show you arrogant but abandoned. In all eyes downward, a part of the equipage these considerations we are to distinguish had not observed before, which was a pe how one virtue differs from another. As it ticoat of the same with the coat and waist is the part of justice never to do violence, it coat. After this discovery, I looked agai is of modesty never to commit offence. In on the face of the fair Amazon who ha this last particular lies the whole force of thus deceived me, and thought those fea what is called decency; to this purpose that tures which had before offended me b excellent moralist above-mentioned talks their softness, were now strengthened int of decency; but this quality is more easily as improper a boldness; and though he comprehended by an ordinary capacity, eyes, nose, and mouth seemed to be forme than expressed with all his eloquence. This with perfect symmetry, I am not certai decency of behaviour is generally trans- whether she, who in appearance was gressed among all orders of men; nay, the very handsome youth, may not be in realit very women, though themselves created as a very indifferent woman. it were for an ornament, are often very much mistaken in this ornamental part of life. It would methinks be a short rule for behaviour, if every young lady, in her dress, words, and actions, were only to recommend herself as a sister, daughter, or wife, and make herself the more esteemed in one of those characters. The care of themselves, with regard to the families in which women are born, is the best motive for their being courted to come into the alliance of other houses. Nothing can promote this end more than a strict preservation of decency. I should be glad if a certain equestrian order of ladies, some of whom one meets in an evening at every outlet of the town, would take this subject into their serious consideration. In order thereunto, the following letter may not be wholly unworthy their perusal.

"There is an objection which naturall presents itself against these occasional per plexities and mixtures of dress, which that they seem to break in upon that pro priety and distinction of appearance which the beauty of different characters preserved; and if they should be more fre quent than they are at present, would loo like turning our public assemblies into general masquerade. The model of th Amazonian hunting-habit for ladies, was as I take it, first imported from France and well enough expresses the gayety of people who are taught to do any thing, so be with an assurance: but I cannot hel thinking it sits awkwardly yet on our En glish modesty. The petticoat is a kind incumbrance upon it, and if the Amazon should think fit to go on in this plunder our sex's ornaments, they ought to add t their spoils, and complete their triump over us, by wearing the breeches. *

'MR. SPECTATOR,-Going lately to take the air in one of the most beautiful evenings this season has produced; as I was admiring *On this passage Mr. Drake observes, 'At a perio the serenity of the sky, the lively colours when the riding-habit has become as familiar as an of the fields, and the variety of the land-bly smile at the reproof and apprehensions of the Spe other mode of female dress, my fair readers will proba scape every where around me, my eyes tator; time has ascertained its utility as a travellin

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

'If it be natural to contract insensibly the manners of those we imitate, the ladies who are pleased with assuming our dresses will do us more honour than we deserve, but they will do it at their own expence. Why should the lovely Camilla deceive us in more shapes than her own, and affect to be represented in her picture with a gun and a spaniel; while her elder brother, the heir of a worthy family, is drawn in silks like his sister? The dress and air of a man are not well to be divided; and those who would not be content with the latter ought never to think of assuming the former. There is so large a portion of natural agreeableness among the fair sex of our island, that they seem betrayed into these romantic habits without having the same occasion for them with their inventors: all that needs to be desired of them is, that they would be themselves, that is, what nature designed them. And to see their mistake when they depart from this, let them look upon a man who affects the softness and effeminacy of a woman, to learn how their sex must appear to us, when approaching to the resemblance of a man. I am, sir, your most humble


No. 105.] Saturday, June 30, 1711.


Eng. Prov.

and regards all other kinds of science as the
accomplishments of one whom he calls a
scholar, a bookish-man, or a philosopher.

For these reasons Will shines in mixed
company, where he has the discretion not
to go out of his depth, and has often a cer-
tain way of making his real ignorance ap-
pear a seeming one. Our club however has
frequently caught him tripping, at which
times they never spare him. For as Will
often insults us with his knowledge of the
town, we sometimes take our revenge upon
him by our knowledge of books.

He was last week producing two or three letters which he writ in his youth to a coquette lady. The raillery of them was natural, and well enough for a mere man of the town; but, very unluckily, several of the words were wrong spelt. Will laughed this off at first as well as he could; but finding himself pushed on all sides, and especially by the Templar, he told us with a little passion, that he never liked pedantry in spelling, and that he spelt like a gentleman, and not like a scholar: upon this Will had recourse to his old topic of showing the narrow-spiritedness, the pride and ignorance of pedants; which he carried so far, that upon my retiring to my lodgings, I could not forbear throwing together such reflections as occurred to me upon that subject.

-Id arbitror Adprime in vita esse utile, ne quid nimis. Ter. Andr. Act 1. Sc. 1. I take it to be a principal rule of life, not to be too much addicted to any one thing. Too much of any thing is good for nothing. My friend Will Honeycomb values himself very much upon what he calls the What is a greater pedant than a mere knowledge of mankind, which has cost him man of the town? Bar him the play-houses, many disasters in his youth: for Will reca catalogue of the reigning beauties, and an kons every misfortune that he has met with account of a few fashionable distempers among the women, and every rencounter that have befallen him, and you strike him among the men, as parts of his education; dumb. How many a pretty gentleman's and fancies he should never have been the knowledge lies all within the verge of the man he is, had he not broke windows, court! He will tell you the names of the knocked down constables, disturbed honest principal favourites, repeat the shrewd saypeople with his midnight serenades, and ings of a man of quality, whisper an intrigue beat up a lewd woman's quarters, when he that is not yet blown upon by common fame: was a young fellow. The engaging in ad- or, if the sphere of his observations is a ventures of this nature Will calls the study- little larger than ordinary, will perhaps ing of mankind; and terms this knowledge enter into all the incidents, turns and revoof the town, the knowledge of the world. lutions in a game of ombre. When he has Will ingenuously confesses that for half his gone thus far he has shown you the whole life his head ached every morning with circle of his accomplishments, his parts are reading of men overnight; and at present drained, and he is disabled from any farther somforts himself under certain pains which conversation. What are these but rank e endures from time to time, that without pedants? and yet these are the men who hem he could not have been acquainted value themselves most on their exemption with the gallantries of the age. This Will from the pedantry of colleges. ooks upon as the learning of a gentleman,

A man who has been brought up among books, and is able to talk of nothing else, is a very indifferent companion, and what we call a pedant. But, methinks, we should enlarge the title, and give it to every one that does not know how to think out of his profession and particular way of life.

I might here mention the military pedant who always talks in a camp, and is stormtress, and, I believe, neither the chastity nor the mo- battles from one end of the year to the ing towns, making lodgments, and fighting esty of the sex has suffered by the experiment. Could ar amiable moralist revisit the light of day, he would other. Every thing he speaks smells of ave infinitely more reason to be shocked at the present gunpowder; if you take away his artillery allic fashion of going nearly naked, than at the warm from him, he has not a word to say for vering of broadcloth usurped by the beauties of his himself. I might likewise mention the law


Drake's Essays, vol. iii. p. 42

pedant, that is perpetually putting cases, who is very well acquainted with my hu repeating the transactions of Westminster-mour, lets me rise and go to bed when hall, wrangling with you upon the most in- please, dine at his own table or in my different circumstances of life, and not to be chamber, as I think fit, sit still and say no convinced of the distance of a place, or of thing without bidding me be merry. Whe the most trivial point in conversation, but the gentlemen of the country come to se by dint of argument. The state pedant is him, he only shows me at a distance. As wrapt up in news, and lost in politics. If have been walking in his fields, I have ob you mention either of the kings of Spain or served them stealing a sight of me over Poland, he talks very notably; but if you hedge, and have heard the knight desiring go out of the Gazette, you drop him. In them not to let me see them, for that short, a mere courtier, a mere soldier, a hated to be stared at. mere scholar, a mere any thing, is an insipid pedantic character, and equally ridiculous.

I am the more at ease in Sir Roger family, because it consists of sober and staipersons; for as the knight is the best mas Of all the species of pedants, which I ter in the world, he seldom changes his ser have mentioned, the book-pedant is much vants; and as he is beloved by all abou the most supportable; he has at least an him, his servants never care for leavin exercised understanding, and a head which him: by this means his domestics are all i is full though confused, so that a man who years, and grown old with their master converses with him may often receive from You would take his valet de chambre fc him hints of things that are worth knowing, his brother, his butler is gray-headed, hi and what he may possibly turn to his own grocm is one of the gravest men that I hav advantage, though they are of little use to ever seen, and his coachman has the look the owner. The worst kind of pedants of a privy counsellor. You see the good among learned men, are such as are natu-ness of the master even in the old house rally endued with a very small share of common sense, and have read a great number of books without taste or distinction.

The truth of it is, learning, like travelling, and all other methods of improvement, as it finishes good sense, so it makes a silly man ten thousand times more insufferable, by supplying variety of matter to his impertinence, and giving him an opportunity of abounding in absurdities.

Shallow pedants cry up one another much more than men of solid and useful learning. To read the titles they give an editor, or collector of a manuscript, you would take him for the glory of the commonwealth of letters, and the wonder of his age, when perhaps upon examination you find that he has only rectified a Greek particle, or laid out a whole sentence in proper commas.

They are obliged indeed to be thus lavish of their praises, that they may keep one another in countenance; and it is no wonder if a great deal of knowledge, which is not capable of making a man wise, has a natural tendency to make him vain and arrogant.

No. 106.] Monday, July 2, 1711.

-Hinc tibi copia


Manabit ad plenum, benigno Ruris honorum opulenta cornu. Hor. Lib. 1. Od. xvii. 14. Here plenty's liberal horn shall pour Of fruits for thee a copious show'r, Rich honours of the quiet plain. HAVING often received an invitation from my friend Sir Roger de Coverley to pass away a month with him in the country, I last week accompanied him thither, and am settled with him for some time at his country-house, where I intend to form several of my ensuing speculations. Sir Roger,

dog, and in a gray pad that is kept in th stable with great care and tenderness oute regard to his past services, though he ha been useless for several years.

I could not but observe with a great de of pleasure the joy that appeared in th countenances of these ancient domestic upon my friend's arrival at his country-sea Some of them could not refrain from tea at the sight of their old master; every or of them pressed forward to do somethin for him, and seemed discouraged if the were not employed. At the same time th good old knight, with a mixture of the fa ther and the master of the family, tempere the inquiries after his own affairs with sev ral kind questions relating to themselve This humanity and good-nature engag every body to him, so that when he is ple sant upon any of them, all his family are good humour, and none so much as the pe son whom he diverts himself with: on th contrary, if he coughs, or betrays any i firmity of old age, it is easy for a stander to observe a secret concern in the looks all his servants.

My worthy friend has put me under t particular care of his butler, who is a ve prudent man, and, as well as the rest his fellow-servants, wonderfully desirous pleasing me, because they have often hea their master talk of me as of his particul friend.

My chief companion, when Sir Roger diverting himself in the woods or the field is a very venerable man who is ever wi Sir Roger, and has lived at his house in t nature of a chaplain above thirty year This gentleman is a person of good sen and some learning, of a very regular 1 and obliging conversation: he heartily low Sir Roger, and knows that he is very mu in the old knight's esteem, so that he liv

[graphic][ocr errors]

the family rather as a relation than a | Calamy, with several living authors who

have published discourses of practical di-
vinity. I no sooner saw this venerable man
in the pulpit, but I very much approved of
my friend's insisting upon the qualifications
of a good aspect and a clear voice; for I was
so charmed with the gracefulness of his
figure and delivery, as well as with the dis-
courses he pronounced, that I think I never
passed any time more to my satisfaction.
A sermon repeated after this manner, is
like the composition of a poet in the mouth
of a graceful actor.

I could heartily wish that more of our
country clergy would follow this example;
and instead of wasting their spirits in labo-
rious compositions of their own, would en-
deavour after a handsome elocution, and
all those other talents that are proper to
enforce what has been penned by greater
masters. This would not only be more easy
to themselves, but more edifying to the

107.] Tuesday, July 3, 1711.
Æsopo ingentem statuam posuere Attici,
Servumque collocarunt æterna in basi,
Patere honoris scirent ut cunctis viam.
Phædr. Ep. I. 2.

The Athenians erected a large statae to Esop, and

placed him, though a slave, on a lasting pedestal; to
show, that the way to honour lies open indifferently

to all.

I have observed in several of my papers
at my friend Sir Roger, amidst all his
od qualities, is something of a humorist;
nd that his virtues, as well as imperfec-
ons, are as it were tinged by a certain ex-
avagance, which makes them particularly
is, and distinguishes them from those of
ther men. This cast of mind, as it is gene-
ally very innocent in itself, so it renders
is conversation highly agreeable, and more
elightful than the same degree of sense
nd virtue would appear in their common
nd ordinary colours. As I was walking
with him last night, he asked me how I
iked the good man whom I have just now
nentioned? and without staying for my an-
swer told me, that he was afraid of being
nsulted with Latin and Greek at his own
able; for which reason he desired a par-
acular friend of his at the university to find
im out a clergyman rather of plain sense
han much learning, of a good aspect, a
clear voice, a sociable temper, and, if pos-
sible, a man that understood a little of back-No.
gammon. My friend,' says Sir Roger,
found me out this gentleman, who, besides
the endowments required of him, is, they
tell me, a good scholar, though he does not
show it. I have given him the parsonage of
the parish; and because I know his value,
have settled upon him a good annuity for
life. If he outlives me, he shall find that he
was higher in my esteem than perhaps he
THE reception, manner of attendance,
thinks he is. He has now been with me undisturbed freedom and quiet, which I
thirty years; and though he does not know meet with here in the country, has con-
I have taken notice of it, has never in all firmed me in the opinion I always had, that
that time asked any thing of me for him- the general corruption of manners in ser-
self, though he is every day soliciting me vants is owing to the conduct of masters.
for something in behalf of one or other of The aspect of every one in the family car-
my tenants his parishioners. There has not ries so much satisfaction, that it appears he
been a law-suit in the parish since he has knows the happy lot which has befallen
lived among them; if any dispute arises him in being a member of it. There is one
they apply themselves to him for the deci- particular which I have seldom seen but at
sion; if they do not acquiesce in his judg- Sir Roger's; it is usual in all other places,
ment, which I think never happened above that servants fly from the parts of the house
once or twice at most, they appeal to me. through which their master is passing; on
At his first settling with me, I made him a the contrary, here they industriously place
present of all the good sermons which have themselves in his way; and it is on both
been printed in English, and only begged sides, as it were, understood as a visit,
of him that every Sunday he would pro-when the servants appear without calling.
nounce one of them in the pulpit. Accord- This proceeds from the humane and equal
ingly he has digested them into such a temper of the man of the house, who also
series, that they follow one another natu- perfectly well knows how to enjoy a great
rally, and make a continued system of prac- estate with such economy as ever to be
tical divinity.'
much beforehand. This makes his own
As Sir Roger
I was going on in his story, mind untroubled, and consequently unapt
the gentleman we were talking of came up to vent peevish expressions, or give pas-
was; and upon the knight's asking him sionate or inconsistent orders to those about
day night,) told us the bishop of St. Asaph and a certain cheerfulness in performance
who preached to-morrow (for it was Satur- him. Thus respect and love go together;
noon. He then showed us his list of preach-the lower part of this family. When a ser-
ers for
great deal of pleasure, archbishop Tillot- not come with an expectation to hear him-
son, bishop Saunderson, Dr. Barrow, Dr. self rated for some trivial fault, threatened
to be stripped, or used with any other un-
becoming language, which mean masters


often give to worthy servants; but it is often | ment will make his successor be as diligent, to know, what road he took, that he came as humble, and as ready as he was. There so readily back according to order; whe- is something wonderful in the narrowness of ther he passed by such a ground; if the old those minds, which can be pleased, and be man who rents it is in good health; or whe- barren of bounty to those who please them. ther he gave Sir Roger's love to him, or the like.

A man who preserves a respect founded on his benevolence to his dependents, lives rather like a prince than a master in his family; his orders are received as favours rather than duties; and the distinction of approaching him is part of the reward for executing what is commanded by him.


There is another circumstance in which my friend excels in his management, which is, the manner of rewarding his servants. He has ever been of opinion, that giving his cast clothes to be worn by valets has a ill effect upon little minds, and creates a silly sense of equality between the parties, in persons affected only with outward things. I have heard him often pleasant on this occasion, and describe a young gentleman abusing his man in that coat, which a month or two before was the most pleasing distinction he was conscious of in himself. He would turn his discourse still more pleasantly upon the bounties of the ladies of this kind; and I have heard him say he knew a fine woman, who distributed rewards and punishments in giving becoming or unbecoming dresses to her maids.

But my good friend is above these little instances of good-will, in bestowing only trifles on his servants; a good servant to him is sure of having it in his choice very soon of being no servant at all. As I before observed, he is so good a husband, and knows so thoroughly that the skill of the purse is the cardinal virtue of this life; I say, he knows so well that frugality is the support of generosity, that he can often spare a large fine when a tenement falls, and give that settlement to a good servant who has a mind to go into the world, or make a stranger pay the fine to that servant, for his more comfortable maintenance, if he stays in his service.

A man of honour and generosity considers it would be miserable to himself to have no will but that of another, though it were of the best person breathing, and for that reason goes on as fast as he is able to put his servants into independent livelihoods. The greatest part of Sir Roger's estate is tenanted by persons who have served himself or his ancestors. It was to me extremely pleasant to observe the visitants from several parts to welcome his arrival into the country: and all the difference that I could take notice of between the late servants who came to see him, and those who staid in the family, was that these latter were looked upon as finer gentlemen and better courtiers.

This manumission and placing them in a way of livelihood, I look upon as only what is due to a good servant; which encourage

One might, on this occasion, recount the sense that great persons in all ages have had of the merit of their dependents, and the heroic services which men have done their masters in the extremity of their fortunes, and shown to their undone patrons, that fortune was all the difference between them; but as I design this my speculation only as a gentle admonition to thankless masters, I shall not go out of the occur rences of common life, but assert it as a general observation, that never saw, but in Sir Roger's family, and one or two more, good servants treated as they ought to be. Sir Roger's kindness extends to their children's children, and this very morning he sent his coachman's grandson to prentice. I shall conclude this paper with an account of a picture in his gallery, where there are many which will deserve my future observation.


At the very upper end of this handsome structure I saw the portraiture of two young men standing in a river, the one naked, the other in livery. The person supported seemed half dead, but still so much alive as to show in his face exquisite joy and love towards the other. I thought the fainting figure resembled my friend Sir Roger: and looking at the butler who stood by me, an account of it, he informed me that the person in the livery was a servant of Sir Roger's, who stood on the shore while his master was swimming, and observing him taken with some sudden illness, and sink under water, jumped in and saved him. He told me Sir Roger took off the dress he was in as soon as he came home, and by a great bounty at that time, followed by his favour ever since, had made him master of that pretty seat which we saw at a distance as we came to this house. I remembered indeed Sir Roger said, there lived a very worthy gentleman, to whom he was highly obliged, without mentioning any thing fur ther. Upon my looking a little dissatisfied at some part of the picture, my attendant informed me that it was against Sir Roger's will, and at the earnest request of the gentleman himself, that he was drawn in the habit in which he had saved his master. R.

[blocks in formation]
« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »