Изображения страниц






describe a right woman in a laudable sense, she should have gentle softness, tender fear, and all those parts of life which distinguish her from the other sex; with some subordination to it, but such an inferiority that makes her still more lovely. Eucratia is that creature, she is all over woman, kindness is all her art, and beauty all her arms. Her look, her voice, her gesture, and whole behaviour is truly feminine. A ergoodness mixed with fear gives a tincture to all her behaviour. It would be savage to offend her, and cruelty to use art to gain her. Others are beautiful, but, Eucratia, thou art beauty!


[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

Omniamante is made for deceit, she has an aspect as innocent as the famed Lucrece, but a mind as wild as the more famed Cleopatra. Her face speaks a vestal, but her heart a Messalina. Who that beheld Omniamante's negligent unobserving air, would believe that she hid under that regardless manner the witty prostitute, the rapacious wench, the prodigal courtesan? She can, when she pleases, adorn those eyes with tears like an infant that is chid; she can cast down that pretty face in confusion, while you rage with jealousy, and storm at her perfidiousness; she can wipe her eyes, tremble and look frighted, until you think yourself a brute for your rage, own yourself an offender, beg pardon, and make her new presents.

yourself more usefully than in adjusting the laws of disputation in coffee-houses and accidental companies, as well as in more formal debates. Among many other things which your own experience must suggest to you, it will be very obliging if you please to take notice of wagerers. I will not here repeat what Hudibras says of such disputants, which is so true, that it is almost proverbial; but shall only acquaint you with a set of young fellows of the inns of court, whose fathers have provided for them so plentifully, that they need not be very anxious to get law into their heads for the service of their country at the bar; but are of those who are sent (as the phrase of parents is,) to the Temple to know how to keep their own. One of these gentlemen is very loud and captious at a coffee-house which I frequent, and being in his nature troubled with a humour of contradiction, though withal excessively ignorant, he has found a way to indulge this temper, go on in idleness and ignorance, and yet still give himself the air of a very learned and knowing man, by the strength of his pocket. The misfortune of the thing is, I have, as it happens sometimes, a greater stock of learning than of money. The gentleman I am speaking of takes advantage of the narrowness of my circumstances in such a manner, that he has read all that I can pretend to, and runs me down with such a positive air, and with such powerful arguments, that from a very learned person I am thought a mere pretender. Not long ago I was relating that I had read such a passage in Tacitus, up starts my young gentleman in a full company, and pulling out his purse offered to lay me ten guineas, to be staked immediately in that gentleman's hands, (pointing to one smoking at another table,) that I was utterly mistaken. I was dumb for want of ten guineas; he went on unmercifully to triumph over my ignorance how to take him up, and told the whole room he had read Tacitus twenty times over, and such a remarkable incident as that could not escape him. He has at this time three considerable wagers depending between him and some of his companions, who are rich enough to hold an argument with him. He has five guineas upon questions in geography, two Hor. Lib. 1. Ep. xviii. 29. that the Isle of Wight is a peninsula, and Their folly pleads the privilege of wealth. three guineas to one that the world is Ir the following enormities are not round. We have a gentleman comes to our amended upon the first mentioning, I de-coffee-house, who deals mightily in ansire further notice from my correspon

1 his own

[ocr errors]

But I go too far in reporting only the dangers in beholding the beauteous, which I design for the instruction of the fair as well as their beholders; and shall end this rhapsody with mentioning what I thought was well enough said of an ancient sage to a beautiful youth, whom he saw admiring figure in brass. What,' said the philosopher, could that image of yours say for itself if it could speak? It might say, (answered the youth,) that it is very beautiful.And are not you ashamed,' replied the cynic, to value yourself upon that only of which a piece of brass is capable?'

[ocr errors]


No. 145.] Thursday, August 16, 1711.

Stultitiam patiuntur opes


[blocks in formation]

tique scandal; my disputant has laid him twenty pieces upon a point of history, to wit, that Cæsar never lay with Cato's sister, as is scandalously reported by some people.

There are several of this sort of fellows

in town, who wager themselves into statesmen, historians, geographers, mathematicians, and every other art, when the persons with whom they talk have not wealth equal to their learning. I beg of you to prevent, in these youngsters, this compendious way to wisdom, which costs other


people so much time and pains: and you will | wire, to increase and sustain the bunch of oblige your humble servant."

'Coffee-house near the Temple, Aug. 12, 1711.


fold that hangs down on each side; and the hat, I perceive is decreased in just propor 'MR. SPECTATOR,-Here is a young tion to our head-dresses. We make a regugentleman that sings opera-tunes or whis-lar figure, but I defy your mathematics to tles in a full house. Pray let him know give name to the form you appear in. Your that he has no right to act here as if he architecture is mere gothic, and betrays a were in an empty room. Be pleased to worse genius than ours; therefore if you are divide the spaces of a public room, and cer- partial to your own sex, I shall be less than tify whistlers, singers, and common orators, am now, your humble servant.' that are heard farther than their portion of the room comes to, that the law is open, and that there is an equity which will relieve us from such as interrupt us in our lawful discourse, as much as against such who stop us on the road. I take these persons, Mr. Spectator, to be such trespassers as the officer in your stage-coach, and am of the same sentiment with counsellor Ephraim. It is true the young man is rich, and, as the vulgar say, needs not care for any body; but sure that is no authority for him to go whistle where he pleases. I am, sir, your most humble servant.

P. S. I have chambers in the Temple, and here are students that learn upon the hautboy: pray desire the benchers that all lawyers who are proficients in wind-music may lodge to the Thames.'

No. 146.] Friday, August 17, 1711.


Nemo vir magnus sine aliquo afflatu divino unquam fuit.
No man was ever great without some degree of inspi

WE know the highest pleasure our minds are capable of enjoying with composure, when we read sublime thoughts communicated to us by men of great genius and eloquence. Such is the entertainment we meet with in the philosophic parts of Cicero's writings. Truth and good sense have there so charming a dress, that they could hardly be more agreeably represented with the of numbers. This ancient author, and a addition of poetical fiction, and the power modern one, have fallen into my hands MR. SPECTATOR,-We are a company within these few days; and the impressions of young women who pass our time very they have left upon me have at the present much together, and obliged by the merce- quite spoiled me for a merry fellow. The nary humour of the men to be as merce-modern is that admirable writer the author narily inclined as they are. There visits of the Theory of the Earth. The subjects among us an old bachelor whom each of with which I have lately been entertained us has a mind to. The fellow is rich, and in them both bear a near affinity; they knows he may have any of us, therefore are upon inquiries into hereafter, and the is particular to none, but excessively ill-thoughts of the latter seem to me to be bred. His pleasantry consists in romping, he snatches kisses by surprise, puts his hands in our necks, tears our fans, robs us of ribands, forces letters out of our hands, looks into any of our papers, and a thou sand other rudenesses. Now what I will desire of you is, to acquaint him, by printing this, that if he does not marry one of us very suddenly, we have all agreed, the next time he pretends to be merry, to affront him, and use him like a clown as he is. In the name of the sisterhood I take my leave of you, and am, as they all are, your constant reader and well-wisher.'

MR. SPECTATOR,-I and several others of your female readers have conformed ourselves to your rules, even to our very dress. There is not one of us but has reduced our outward petticoat to its ancient sizeable circumference, though indeed we retain still a quilted one underneath; which makes us not altogether unconformable to the fashion; but it is on condition Mr. Spectator extends not his censure too far. But we find you men secretly approve our practice, by imitating our pyramidical form. The skirt of your fashionable coats forms as large a circumference as our petticoats; as these are set out with whalebone, so are those with

raised above those of the former, in propor tion to his advantages, Scripture and revela tion. If I had a mind to it, I could not at present talk of any thing else; therefore! shall translate a passage in the one, and transcribe a paragraph out of the other, for the speculation of this day. Cicero tells us, that Plato reports Socrates, upon receiving his sentence, to have spoken to his judges in the following manner:

I have great hopes, O my judges, that it is infinitely to my advantage that I am sent to death: for it must of necessity be, that one of these two things must be the consequence. Death must take away all these senses, or convey me to another life. If all sense is to be taken away, and death is no more than that profound sleep without dreams in which we are sometimes buried, oh, heavens! how desirable it is to die! How many days do we know in life pre ferable to such a state? But if it be true that death is but a passage to places which they who lived before us do now inhabit, how much still happier is it to go those who call themselves judges to appear before those who are really such; before Minos, Rhadamanthus, acus, and Trip

Tusculan. Quæstion. lib. 1.


[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

tolemus, and to meet inen who have lived | All that we admired and adored before as with justice and truth? Is this, do you great and magnificent, is obliterated or vanthink, no happy journey? Do you think it ished; and another form and face of things, nothing to speak with Orpheus, Museus, plain, simple, and every where the same, Homer, and Hesiod? I would, indeed, suf- overspreads the whole earth. Where are fer many deaths to enjoy these things. With now the great empires of the world, and what particular delight should I talk to their great imperial cities? their pillars, Palamedes, Ajax, and others who like me trophies, and monuments of glory? show have suffered by the iniquity of their judges. me where they stood, read the inscription, I should examine the wisdom of that great tell me the victor's name. What remains, prince, who carried such mighty forces what impressions, what difference or disagainst Troy; and argue with Ulysses and tinction do you see in this mass of fire? Sisyphus upon difficult points, as I have in Rome itself, eternal Rome, the great city, conversation here, without being in danger the empress of the world, whose dominaof being condemned. But let not those tion and superstition, ancient and modern, among you who have pronounced me an make a great part of the history of the innocent man be afraid of death. No harm earth, what is become of her now? She laid can arrive at a good man, whether dead or her foundations deep, and her palaces were living; his affairs are always under the strong and sumptuous. "She glorified herdirection of the gods; nor will I believe the self, and lived deliciously, and said in her fate which is allotted to me myself this day heart, I sit a queen, and shall see no sorto have arrived by chance; nor have I aught row:' "But her hour is come, she is wiped to say either against my judges or accusers, away from the face of the earth, and buried but that they thought they did me an in- in everlasting oblivion. But it is not cities jury. But I detain you too long, it is only, and works of men's hands, but the time that I retire to death, and you to your everlasting hills, the mountains and rocks affairs of life; which of us has the better is of the earth are melted as wax before the known to the gods, but to no mortal man.' sun, and "their place is no where found." The divine Socrates is here represented Here stood the Alps, the load of the earth, in a figure worthy his great wisdom and that covered many countries, and reached philosophy, worthy the greatest mere man their arms from the ocean to the Black Sea; that ever breathed. But the modern dis- this huge mass of stone is softened and discourse is written upon a subject no less than solved as a tender cloud into rain. the dissolution of nature itself. Oh how stood the African mountains, and Atlas with glorious is the old age of that great man, his top above the clouds; there was frozen who has spent his time in such contempla- Caucasus, and Taurus, and Imaus, and the tions as has made this being, what only it mountains of Asia; and yonder towards the should be, an education for heaven! He north, stood the Riphæan hills clothed in has, according to the lights of reason and ice and snow. All these are vanished, revelation, which seemed to him clearest, dropt away as the snow upon their heads. traced the steps of Omnipotence. He has "Great and marvellous are thy works, just with a celestial ambition, as far as it is and true are thy ways, thou King of saints! consistent with humility and devotion, ex- Hallelujah. amined the ways of Providence, from the creation to the dissolution of the visible world. How pleasing must have been the No. 147.] Saturday, August 18, 1711. speculation, to observe Nature and Providence move together, the physical and moral world march the same pace: to observe paradise and eternal spring the seat of innocence, troubled seasons and angry skies the portion of wickedness and vice. 'MR. SPECTATOR,-The well reading of When this admirable author has reviewed the Common Prayer is of so great imporall that has past, or is to come, which re-tance, and so much neglected, that I take lates to the habitable world, and run through the liberty to offer to your consideration the whole face of it, how could a guardian some particulars on that subject. And what angel, that had attended it through all its more worthy your observation than this? Courses or changes, speak more emphatically at the end of his charge, than does our author when he makes, as it were, a funeral oration over this globe, looking to the point where it once stood?

[merged small][ocr errors]



Pronunciatio est vocis, et vultus et gestus moderatio cum venustate.


Good delivery is a graceful management of the voice, countenance, and gesture.

A thing so public, and of so high consequence. It is indeed wonderful, that the frequent exercise of it should not make the performers of that duty more expert in it. This inability, as I conceive, proceeds from the little care that is taken of their reading, while boys and at school, where, when they are got into Latin, they are looked upon as above English, the reading of which is

Let us only, if you please, to take leave of this subject, reflect upon this occasion on the vanity and transient glory of this habitable world. How by the force of one element breaking loose upon the rest, all the varieties of nature, all the works of art, all *Burnet's Theory of the Earth, 1684. fol. Book III. the labours of men are reduced to nothing. Chap. 12. p. 110, 111.

[ocr errors]


wholly neglected, or at least read to very | to place the emphasis, and give the proper little purpose, without any due observations accent to each word, and how to vary the made to them of the proper accent and voice according to the nature of the senmanner of reading; by this means they have tence. There is certainly a very great difacquired such ill habits as will not easily be ference between the reading a prayer removed. The only way that I know of to a Gazette, which I beg of you to inform a remedy this, is to propose some person of set of readers, who affect, forsooth, a cer great ability that way as a pattern for them; tain gentleman-like familiarity of tone, and example being most effectual to convince mend the language as they go on, crying, the learned, as well as instruct the ignorant. instead of pardoneth and absolveth,' par'You must know, sir, I have been a con-dons and absolves. These are often pretty stant frequenter of the service of the church classical scholars, and would think it an unof England for above these four years last pardonable sin to read Virgil or Martial past, and until Sunday was seven-night with so little taste as they do divine service. never discovered to so great a degree, the excellency of the Common Prayer. When, being at St. James's Garlick-Hill church, I heard the service read so distinctly, so emphatically, and so fervently, that it was next to an impossibility to be unattentive. My eyes and my thoughts could not wander as usual, but were confined to my prayers. I then considered I addressed myself to the Almighty, and not to a beautiful face. And when I reflected on my former performances of that duty, I found I had run it over as a matter of form, in comparison to the manner in which I then discharged it. My mind was really affected, and fervent wishes accompanied my words. The Confession was read with such a resigned humility, the Absolution with such a comfortable authority, the Thanksgivings with such a religious joy, as made me feel those affections of the mind in a manner I never did before. To remedy therefore the grievance above complained of, I humbly propose, that this excellent reader, upon the next, and every annual assembly of the clergy of Sion-college, and all other conventions, should read prayers before them. For then those that are afraid of stretching their mouths, and spoiling their soft voices, will learn to read with clearness, loudness, and strength. Others that affect a rakish, negligent air, by folding their arms and lolling on their books, will be taught a decent behaviour, and comely erection of body. Those that read so fast, as if impatient of their work, may learn to speak deliberately. There is another sort of persons, whom I call Pindaric readers, as being confined to no set measure; these pronounce five or six words with great deliberation, and the five or six subsequent ones with as great celerity: the first part of a sentence with a very exalted voice, and the latter part with a submissive one: sometimes again with one sort of a tone, and immediately after with a very different one. These gentlemen will learn of my admired reader an evenness of voice and delivery, and all who are innocent of these affectations, but read with such an indifferency as if they did not understand the language, may then be informed of the art of reading movingly and fervently, how

*The rector of this parish at that time was Mr. Philip Stubbs, afterwards archdeacon of St. Alban's

"This indifferency seems to me to rise from the endeavour of avoiding the imputation of cant, and the false notion of it. It will be proper therefore to trace the original and signification of this word. "Cant" is, by some people, derived from one Andrew Cant, who, they say, was a Presbyterian minister in some illiterate part of Scotland, who by exercise and use had obtained the faculty, alias gift, of talking in the pulpit in such a dialect, that it is said he was understood by none but his own congregation, and not by all of them. Since master Cant's time, it has been understood in a larger sense, and signifies all sudden exclamations, whinings, unusual tones, and in fine all praying and preaching, like the unlearned of the Presbyterians. But I hope a proper elevation of voice, a due emphasis and accent, are not to come within this description. So that our readers may still be as unlike the Presbyterians as they please. The dissenters (I mean such as I have heard,) do indeed elevate their voices, but it is with sudden jumps from the lower to the higher part of them; and that with so little sense or skill, that their elevation and cadence is bawling and muttering. They make use of an emphasis, but so improperly, that it is often placed on some very insignificant particle, as upon 'if' or 'and. Now if these improprieties have so great an effect on the people, as we see they have, how great an influence would the service of our church, containing the best prayers that ever were composed, and that in terms most affecting, most humble, and most expressive of our wants, and dependence on the object of our worship, disposed in most proper order, and void of all confusion; what influence, I say, would these prayers have, were they delivered with a due emphasis, and apposite rising and variation of voice, the sentence concluded with a gentle cadence, and in a word, with such an accent and turn of speech as is peculiar to prayer.

'As the matter of worship is now ma naged, in dissenting congregations, you find insignificant words and phrases raised by a lively vehemence; in our own churches, the most exalted sense depreciated, by a dispassionate_indolencc. I remember to have heard Doctor Set say in his

† Probably Dr. Smallridge.


pulpit, of the Common Prayer, that, at | whatsoever any thing above mere necesleast, it was as perfect as any thing of hu-saries. man institution. If the gentlemen who err in this kind would please to recollect the many pleasantries, they have read upon those who recite good things with an ill grace, they would go on to think that what in that case is only ridiculous, in themselves is impious. But leaving this to their own reflections, I shall conclude this trouble with what Cæsar said upon the irregularity of tone in one who read before him. "Do you read or sing? If you sing, you sing very ill."* Your most humble servant.'


No. 148.] Monday, August 20, 1711.
-Exempta juvat spinis e pluribus una.
Hor. Lib. 2. Ep. ii. 212.
Better one thorn pluck'd out, than all remain.

As we in England are a sober people, and generally inclined rather to a certain bashfulness of behaviour in public, it is amazing whence some fellows come whom one meets with in this town; they do not at all seem to be the growth of our island; the pert, the talkative, all such as have no sense, of the observation of others, are certainly of foreign extraction. As for my part, I am as much surprised when I see a talkative Englishman, as I should be to see the Indian pine growing on one of our quickset hedges. Where these creatures get sun enough, to make them such lively animals and dull men, is above my philosophy.

There are another kind of impertinents which a man is perplexed with in mixed company, and those are your loud speakers. These treat mankind as if we were all deaf; they do not express but declare themselves. Mr correspondents assure me that the Many of these are guilty of this outrage out enormities which they lately complained of, well; or that they have their own persons of vanity, because they think all they say is and I published an account of, are so far in such veneration, that they believe nofrom being amended, that new evils arise thing which concerns them can be insignievery day to interrupt their conversation, ficant to any body else. For these people's in contempt of my reproofs. My friend who sake, I have often lamented that we cannot writes from the coffee-house near the Tem-close our ears with as much ease as we can ple, informs me that the gentleman who constantly sings a voluntary in spite of the necessarily be under persecution. Next to our eyes. It is very uneasy that we must whole company, was more musical than these bawlers, is a troublesome creature ordinary after reading my paper; and has who comes with the air of your friend and not been contented with that, but has danced up to the glass in the middle of the room, There is one of them at a coffee-house your intimate, and that is your whisperer. and practised minuet-steps to his own hum- which I myself frequent, who observing me ming. The incorrigible creature has gone to be a man pretty well made for secrets, still farther, and in the open coffee-house, gets by me, and with a whisper tells me with one hand extended as leading a lady things which all the town knows. It is no in it, he has danced both French and country-dances, and admonished his supposed this impertinence, which is nothing else but very hard matter to guess at the source of partner by smiles and nods to hold up her a method or mechanic art of being wise. head, and fall back, according to the re- You never see any frequent in it, whom you spective facings and evolutions of the dance. Before this gentleman began this his exer- to do. These persons are worse than bawcan suppose to have any thing in the world cise, he was pleased to clear his throat by lers, as much as a secret enemy is more dancoughing and spitting a full half hour; and gerous than a declared one. I wish this my as soon as he struck up, he appealed to an coffee-house friend would take this for an attorney's clerk in the room, whether he intimation, that I have not heard one word hit as he ought, Since you from death he has told me for these several years; have saved me?" and then asked the young whereas he now thinks me the most trusty fellow (pointing to a chancery-bill under repository of his secrets. The whisperers his arm, whether that was an opera-score have a pleasant way of ending the close he carried or not? Without staying for an

[ocr errors]

conversation, with saying aloud, Do not answer, he fell into the exercise aboveyou think so? Then whisper again, and mentioned, and practised his airs to the full then aloud, But you know that person; house who were turned upon him, without then whisper again. The thing would be the least shame or repentance for his for- well enough, if they whispered to keep the mer transgressions. I am to the last degree at a loss what to alas, they do it to preserve the importance folly of what they say among friends; but, do with this young fellow, except I declare of their thoughts. I am sure I could name him an outlaw, and pronounce it penal for any one to speak to him in the said house which he frequents, and direct that he be obliged to drink his tea and coffee without sugar, and not receive from any person

* Si legis, cantare si cantas, male cantas

you more than one person whom no man living ever heard talk upon any subject in nature, or ever saw in his whole life with a book in his hand, that, I know not how, can whisper something like knowledge of what has and does pass in the world: which you would think he learned from some fa

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »