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that very morning; and that he presented it | his guest discovered at sight of the good old with his service to him, and intended to knight. After the first salutes were over, come and dine with him. At the same time Will desired Sir Roger to lend him one of he delivered a letter, which my friend read his servants to carry a set of shuttlecocks to me as soon as the messenger left him. he had with him in a little box, to a lady that lived about a mile off, to whom it seems he had promised such a present for above this half year. Sir Roger's back was no sooner turned but honest Will began to tell me of a large cock pheasant that he had sprung in one of the neighbouring woods, with two or three other adventures of the same nature. Odd and uncommon characters are the game that I look for, and most delight in; for which reason I was as much pleased with the novelty of the person that talked to me, as he could be for his life with the springing of a pheasant, and therefore listened to him with more than ordinary attention.
SIR ROGER, I desire you to accept of a jack, which is the best I have caught this season. I intend to come and stay with you a week, and see how the perch bite in the Black river. I observed with some concern, the last time I saw you upon the bowling-green, that your whip wanted a lash to it: I will bring half a dozen with me that I twisted last week, which I hope will serve you all the time you are in the country. I have not been out of the saddle for six days last past, having been at Eton with Sir John's eldest son. He takes to his learning hugely.-I am sir, your humble
This extraordinary letter, and message that accompanied it, made me very curious to know the character and quality of the gentleman who sent them; which I found to be as follows. Will Wimble is younger brother to a baronet, and descended of the ancient family of the Wimbles. He is now between forty and fifty; but being bred to no business, and born to no estate, he generally lives with his elder brother as superintendent of his game. He hunts a pack of dogs better than any man in the country, and is very famous for finding out a hare. He is extremely well versed in all the little handicrafts of an idle man. He makes a May-fly to a miracle; and furnishes the whole country with angle-rods. As he is a good-natured officious fellow, and very much esteemed upon account of his family, he is a welcome guest at every house, and keeps up a good correspondence among all the gentlemen about him. He carries a tulip root in his pocket from one to another, or exchanges a puppy between a couple of friends that live perhaps in the opposite sides of the country. Will is a particular favourite of all the young heirs, whom he frequently obliges with a net that he has weaved, or a setting-dog that he has made himself. He now and then presents a pair of garters of his own knitting to their mothers or sisters; and raises a great deal of mirth among them, by enquiring, as often as he meets them, how they wear!" These gentleman-like manufactures and obliging little humours make Will the dar
ling of the country.
In the midst of this discourse the bell rung to dinner, where the gentleman I have been speaking of had the pleasure of seeing the huge jack he had caught, served up for the first dish in a most sumptuous manner. Upon our sitting down to it he gave us a long account how he had hooked it, played with it, foiled it, and at length drew it out upon the bank, with several other particulars that lasted all the first course. A dish of wild fowl that came afterwards furnished conversation for the rest of the dinner, which concluded with a late invention of Will's for improving the quail-pipe.
Upon withdrawing into my room after dinner, I was secretly touched with compassion towards the honest gentleman that had dined with us; and could not but consider with a great deal of concern, how so good a heart and such busy hands were wholly employed in trifles; that so much humanity should be so little beneficial to others, and so much industry so little advantageous to himself. The same temper of mind and application to affairs might have recommended him to the public esteem, and have raised his fortune in another station of life. What good to his country or himself might not a trader or a merchant have done with such useful though ordinary qualifications?
Will Wimble's is the case of many a younger brother of a great family, who had rather see their children starve like gentlemen, than thrive in a trade or profession that is beneath their quality. This humour fills several parts of Europe with pride and beggary. It is the happiness of a trading nation like ours, that the younger sons,
Sir Roger was proceeding in the charac- though incapable of any liberal art or proter of him, when he saw him make up to fession, may be placed in such a way of us with two or three hazle twigs in his life, as may perhaps enable them to vie hand that he had cut in Sir Roger's woods, with the best of their family. Accordingly as he came through them, in his way to the we find several citizens that were launched house. I was very much pleased to ob- into the world with narrow fortunes, rising serve on one side the hearty and sincere by an honest industry to greater estates welcome with which Sir Roger received than those of their elder brothers. It is him, and on the other, the secret joy which not improbable but Will was formerly tried
at divinity, law, or physic; and that finding him on the pummel of his saddle, he in his genius did not lie that way, his parents that manner rid the tournament over, with gave him up at length to his own inven- an air that showed he did it rather to pertions. But certainly, however improper form the rule of the lists, than expose his he might have been for studies of a higher enemy; however, it appeared he knew how nature, he was perfectly well turned for to make use of a victory, and with a gentle the occupations of trade and commerce. trot he marched up to a gallery, where As I think this a point which cannot be too their mistress sat, (for they were rivals,) much inculcated, I shall desire my reader and let him down with laudable courtesy to compare what I have here written with and pardonable insolence. I do not know what I have said in my twenty-first specu- but it might be exactly where the coffeelation. L. house is now.
'You are to know this my ancestor was not only a military genius, but fit also for No. 109.] Thursday, July 5, 1711. the arts of peace, for he played on the baseviol as well as any gentleman at court; you Abnormis sapiens- Hor. Lib. 2. Sat. ii. 3. see where his viol hangs by his basket-hilt sword. The action at the Tilt-yard you Of plain good sense, untutor'd in the schools. may be sure won the fair lady, who was a I was this morning walking in the gal- maid of honour, and the greatest beauty of lery, when sir Roger entered at the end her time; here she stands, the next picture. opposite to me, and advancing towards You see, sir, my great great great grandme, said he was glad to meet me among mother has on the new-fashioned petticoat, his relations the De Coverleys, and hoped except that the modern is gathered at the I liked the conversation of so much good waist; my grandmother appears as if she company, who were as silent as myself. I stood in a large drum, whereas the ladies knew he alluded to the pictures, and as he now walk as if they were in a go-cart. For is a gentleman who does not a little value all this lady was bred at court, she be himself upon his ancient descent, I expect-came an excellent country wife, she brought ed he would give me some account of them. ten children, and when I show you the We were now arrived at the upper end of the gallery, when the knight faced towards one of the pictures, and as we stood before it, he entered into the matter, after his blunt way of saying things, as they occur to his imagination, without regular introduction, or care to preserve the appearance of a chain of thought.
"It is,' said he, 'worth while to consider the force of dress; and how the persons of one age differ from those of another, merely by that only. One may observe, also, that the general fashion of one age has been followed by one particular set of people in another, and by them preserved from one generation to another. Thus the vast jetting coat and small bonnet, which was the habit in Henry the Seventh's time, is kept on in the yeoman of the guard; not without a good and politic view, because they look a foot taller, and a foot and a half broader: besides, that the cap leaves the face expanded, and consequently more terrible, and fitter to stand at the entrance of palaces.
This predecessor of ours you see is dressed after this manner, and his cheeks would be no larger than mine, were he in a hat as I am. He was the last man that won a prize in the Tilt-yard (which is now a common street before Whitehall.) You see the broken lance that lies there by his right foot. He shivered that lance of his adversary all to pieces: and bearing himself, look you, sir, in this manner, at the same time he came within the target of the gentleman who rode against him, and taking him with incredible force before
library, you shall see in her own hand (allowing for the difference of the language) the best receipt now in England both for a hasty-pudding and a white-pot.
'If you please to fall back a little, because it is necessary to look at the three next pictures at one view; these are three sisters. She on the right hand who is so very beautiful, died a maid; the next to her, still handsomer, had the same fate, against her will; this homely thing in the middle had both their portions added to her own, and was stolen by a neighbouring gentleman, a man of stratagem and resolution, for he poisoned three mastiffs to come at her, and knocked down two deer-stealers in carry ing her off. Misfortunes happen in all families. The theft of this romp, and so much money, was no great matter to our estate. But the next heir that possessed it was this soft gentleman, whom you see there. Observe the small buttons, the little boots, the laces, the slashes about his clothes, and above all the posture he is drawn in, (which to be sure was his own choosing,) you see he sits with one hand on a desk writing, and looking as it were another way, like an easy writer, or a sonnetteer. He was one of those that had too much wit to know how to live in the world; he was a man of no justice, but great good manners; he ruined every body that had any thing to do with him, but never said a rude thing in his life; the most indolent person in the world; he would sign a deed that passed away half his estate with his gloves on, but would not put on his hat before a lady if it were to save his country. He is
Friday, July 6, 1711.
Horror ubique animos, simul ipsa silentia terrent.
All things are full of horror and affright,
said to be the first that made love by | No. 110.]
Here I saw my friend a little embarrassed, and turned my face to the next por
Sir Roger went on with his account of the gallery in the following manner: This man (pointing to him I looked at) I take to be the honour of our house. Sir Humphrey de Coverley; he was in his dealings as punctual as a tradesman, and as generous as a gentleman. He would have thought himself as much undone by breaking his word, as if it were to be followed by bankruptcy. He served his country as a knight of the shire to his dying day. He found it no easy matter to maintain an integrity in his words and actions, even in things that regarded the offices which were incumbent upon him, in the care of his own affairs and relations of life, and therefore dreaded (though he had great talents) to go into employments of state, where he must be exposed to the snares of ambition. Innocence of life and great ability were the distinguishing parts of his character; the latter, he had often observed, had led to the destruction of the former, and he used frequently to lament that great and good had not the same signification. He was an excellent husbandman, but had resolved not to exceed such a degree of wealth; all above it he bestowed in secret bounties many years after the sum he aimed at for his own use was attained. Yet he did not slacken his industry, but to a decent old age spent the life and fortune which was superAuous to himself, in the service of his friends and neighbours.'
AT a little distance from Sir Roger's house, among the ruins of an old abbey, there is a long walk of aged elms; which are shot up so very high, that when one passes under them, the rooks and crows that rest upon the tops of them seem to be cawing in another region. I am very much delighted with this sort of noise, which I consider as a kind of natural prayer to that Being who supplies the wants of his whole. creation, and who, in the beautiful language of the Psalms,* feedeth the young ravens that call upon him. I like this retirement the better, because of an ill report it lies under of being haunted; for which reason (as I have been told in the family) no living creature ever walks in it besides the chaplain. My good friend the butler desired me with a very grave face not to venture myself in it after sunset, for that one of the footmen had been almost frightened out of his wits by a spirit that appeared to him in the shape of a black horse without a head; to which he added, that about a month ago one of the maids coming home late that way with a pail of milk upon her head, heard such a rustling among the bushes that she let it fall.
I was taking a walk in this place last night between the hours of nine and ten, and could not but fancy it one of the most proper scenes in the world for a ghost to appear in. The ruins of the abbey are scattered up and down on every side, and half covered with ivy and elder-bushes, the harbours of several solitary birds which seldom make their appearance till the dusk of the evening. The place was formerly a church-yard, and has still several marks in it of graves and burying-places. There is such an echo among the old ruins and vaults, that if you stamp but a little louder than ordinary, you hear the sound repeated. At the same time the walk of elms, with the croaking of the ravens which from time time are heard from the tops of them, looks exceeding solemn and venerable. The objects naturally raise seriousness and atHere we were called to dinner, and Sir tention; and when night heightens the Roger ended the discourse of this gentle- awfulness of the place, and pours out her man, by telling me, as we followed the supernumerary horrors upon every thing servant, that this his ancestor was a brave in it, I do not at all wonder that weak minds man, and narrowly escaped being killed fill it with spectres and apparitions. in the civil wars; For,' said he, he was Mr. Locke, in his chapter of the Assosent out of the field upon a private message, ciation of Ideas, has very curious remarks the day before the battle of Worcester.' to show how, by the prejudice of educaThe whim of narrowly escaping by having tion, one idea often introduces into the mind been within a day of danger, with other a whole set that bear no resemblance to matters above-mentioned, mixed with good one another in the nature of things. Among sense, left me at a loss whether I was more several examples of this kind, he produces delighted with my friend's wisdom or sim
Psal. cxlvii. 9.
the following instance. The ideas of gob- | think very remarkable: he was so pressed lins and sprites have really no more to do with the matter of fact, which he could not with darkness than light; yet let but a have the confidence to deny, that he was foolish maid inculcate these often on the forced to account for it by one of the most mind of a child, and raise them there to- absurd unphilosophical notions that was gether, possibly he shall never be able to ever started. He tells us that the surfaces separate them again so long as he lives; of all bodies are perpetually flying off from but darkness shall ever afterwards bring their respective bodies, one after another; with it those frightful ideas, and they shall and that these surfaces or thin cases that be so joined, that he can no more bear the included each other whilst they were joined one than the other.' in the body, like the coats of an onion, are sometimes seen entire when they are separated from it; by which means we often behold the shapes and shadows of persons who are either dead or absent.*
As I was walking in this solitude, where the dusk of the evening conspired with so many other occasions of terror, I observed a cow grazing not far from me, which an imagination that was apt to startle might easily have construed into a black horse without a head: and I dare say the poor footman lost his wits upon some such trivial occasion.
My friend, Sir Roger, has often told me with a great deal of mirth, that at his first coming to his estate he found three parts of his house altogether useless; that the best room in it had the reputation of being haunted, and by that means was locked up; that noises had been heard in his long gallery, so that he could not get a servant to enter it after eight o'clock at night; that the door of one of his chambers was nailed up, because there went a story in the family that a butler had formerly hanged himself in it; and that his mother, who lived to a great age, had shut up half the rooms in the house, in which either her husband, a son, or daughter had died. The knight seeing his habitation reduced to so small a compass, and himself in a manner shut out of his own house, upon the death of his mother ordered all the apartments to be flung open, and exorcised by his chaplain, who lay in every room one after another, and by that means dissipated the fears which had so long reigned in the family.
I shall dismiss this paper with a story out of Josephus,† not so much for the sake of the story itself as for the moral reflections with which the author concludes it, and which I shall here set down in his own words. Glaphyra, the daughter of king Archelaus, after the death of her two first husbands, (being married to a third, who was brother to her first husband, and so passionately in love with her, that he turned off his former wife to make room for this marriage,) had a very odd kind of dream. She fancied that she saw her first husband coming towards her, and that she embraced him with great tenderness; when in the midst of the pleasure which she expressed at the sight of him, he reproached her after the following manner; "Glaphyra," says he, "thou hast made good the old saying, that women are not to be trusted. Was not I the husband of thy virginity? Have I not children by thee? How couldst thou forget our loves so far as to enter into a second marriage, and after that into a third, nay to take for thy husband a man who has so shamelessly crept into the bed of his brother? However, for the sake of our past loves, I shall free thee from thy present reproach, and make thee mine for ever." Glaphyra told this dream to several women of her acquaintance, and died soon after. I thought this story might not be impertinent in this place, wherein I speak of those kings. Besides that, the example deserves to be taken notice of, as it contains a most certain proof of the immortality of the soul, and of Divine Providence. If any man thinks these facts incredible, let him enjoy his own opinion to himself, but let him not endeavour to disturb the belief of others, who by instances of this nature are excited
I should not have been thus particular upon these ridiculous horrors, did not I find them so very much prevail in all parts of the country. At the same time I think a person who is thus terrified with the imagination of ghosts and spectres much more reasonable than one who, contrary to the reports of all historians, sacred and profane, ancient and modern, and to the traditions of all nations, thinks the appearance of spirits fabulous and groundless. Could not I give myself up to this general testimony of mankind, I should to the re-to the study of virtue.' lations of particular persons who are now living, and whom I cannot distrust in other
-Inter silvas academi quærere verum.
matters of fact. I might here add, that No. 111.] Saturday, July 7, 1711.
THE Course of my last speculation led me insensibly into a subject upon which I always meditate with great delight, I mean
*Lucret. iv. 34, &c.
† Antiquit. Jud. lib. xvii. cap. 15. sect. 4, 5.
First, From the nature of the soul itself, and particularly its immateriality, which though not absolutely necessary to the eternity of its duration, has, I think, been evinced to almost a demonstration.
the immortality of the soul. I was yester- He does not seem born to enjoy life, but
through all his works, in the formation of
of her inquiries?
A man, considered only in his present state, seems only sent into the world to propagate his kind. He provides himself with a successor, and immediately quits his post to make room for him...
Hæredem alterius, velut unda supervenit undam.
-Heir crowds heir, as in a rolling floodbout
Wave urges wave.
There is not, in my opinion, a more pleasing and triumphant consideration in religion than this, of the perpetual progress which the soul makes towards the perfection of its nature, without ever arriving at a period in it. To look upon the soul as going on from strength to strength; to consider that she is to shine for ever with new accessions of glory, and brighten to all eternity; that she will be still adding virtue to virtue, and knowledge to knowledge; carries in it something wonderfully agreeable to that ambition which is natural to the mind of man. Nay, it must be a prospect pleasing to God himself, to see his creation for ever beautifying in his eyes, and drawing nearer to him by greater degrees of resemblance.
With what astonishment and veneration may we look into our own souls, where there are such hidden stores of virtue and knowledge, such inexhausted sources of