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the ladies wore coloured hoods, and ordered me to get her one of the finest blue. I am forced to comply with her demands whilst she is in her present condition, being very willing to have more of the same breed. do not know what she may produce me, but provided it be a show I shall be very well satisfied. Such novelties should not, I think, be concealed from the British Spectator; for which reason I hope you will excuse the presumption in your most dutiful, most obedient, and most humble servant, L.
"for to tell you truly," says she, "I was afraid he would have made us ashamed to show our heads." Now, sir, you must know since this unlucky accident happened to me in a company of ladies, among whom I passed for a most ingenious man, I have consulted one who is well versed in the Greek language, and he assures me upon his word, that your late quotation means no more than that "manners, not dress, are the ornaments of a woman." "If this comes to the knowledge of my female admirers, I shall be very hard put to it to bring myself off handsomely. In the mean while, I give you this account, that you No. 272.] Friday, January 11, 1711-12 may take care hereafter not to betray any of your well-wishers into the like inconveniences. It is in the number of these that I beg leave to subscribe myself,
'MR. SPECTATOR,-Your readers are so well pleased with the character of Sir Roger de Coverley, that there appeared a sensible joy in every coffee-house, upon hearing the old knight was come to town. I am now with a knot of his admirers, who make it their joint request to you, that you would give us public notice of the window or balcony where the knight intends to make his appearance. He has already given great satisfaction to several who have seen him at Squires's coffee-house. If you think fit to place your short face at Sir Roger's left elbow, we shall take the hint and gratefully acknowledge so great a favour. I am, sir, your most devoted
-Longa est injuria, longæ
'MR. SPECTATOR,-The occasion of this letter is of so great importance, and the circumstances of it such, that I know you will but think it just to insert it, in preference to all other matters that can present themselves to your consideration. I need not, after I have said this, tell you that I am in love. The circumstances of my passion I shall let you understand as well as a disordered mind will admit. cursed pick-thank, Mrs. Jane!" Alas, I am railing at one to you by her name, as familiarly as if you were acquainted with her as well as myself: but I will tell you all, as fast as the alternate interruptions of love and anger will give me leave. There is the most agreeable young woman in the humble servant, world whom I am passionately in love with and from whom I have for some space 'SIR,-Knowing that you are very in-time received as great marks of favour as quisitive after every thing that is curious were fit for her to give, or me to desire. in nature, I will wait on you if you please The successful progress of the affair, of all in the dusk of the evening, with my show others the most essential towards a man's upon my back, which I carry about with happiness, gave a new life and spirit not me in a box, as only consisting of a man, only to my behaviour and discourse, but woman, and horse.* The two first are also a certain grace to all my actions in the married, in which state the little cavalier commerce of life, in all things however re has so well acquitted himself, that his lady mote from love. You know the predomi is with child. The big-bellied woman and nant passion spreads itself through all her husband, with their whimsical palfrey, man's transactions, and exalts or depresses are so very light, that when they are put him according to the nature of such a pas together in a scale, an ordinary man may sion. But, alas! I have not yet begun my weigh down the whole family. The little story, and what is making sentences and man is a bully in his nature; but when he observations when a man is pleading for grows choleric I confine him to his box un- his life? To begin, then. This lady has til his wrath is over, by which means I have corresponded with me under the names of hitherto prevented him from doing mis- love; she my Belinda, I her Cleanthes chief. His horse is likewise very vicious, Though I am thus well got into the account for which reason I am forced to tie him of my affair, I cannot keep in the thread of close to his manger with a packthread. The it so much as to give you the character of woman is a coquette. She struts as much Mrs. Jane, whom I will not hide unders as it is possible for a lady of two feet high, borrowed name; but let you know, that and would ruin me in silks, were not the this creature has been since I knew her, quantity that goes to a large pincushion very handsome (though I will not allow sufficient to make her a gown and petticoat. her even "she has been" for the future, She told me the other day, that she heard and during the time of her bloom and beauty, was so great a tyrant to her lovers so overvalued herself and underrated all | her pretenders, that they have deserted
About the time this paper was published, there
were exhibited in London, two dwarfs (a man and his wife) and a horse of a very diminutive size.
"Will's Coffee-house, Jan. 10.
er to a man; and she knows no comfort | hearing, the young lady will support what
een with her?" "No." "If Mr. Such-a-
ention me more.
ter the usual manner, to each of them a
The correspondent is desired to say which cheek the offender turned to him.
From the Parish-vestry, Jan. 9.
-Notandi sunt tibi mores.
Hor. Ars Poet. v. 156
Note well the manners.
Homer has excelled all the heroic poets that ever wrote in the multitude and variety of his characters. Every god that is admitted into his poem, acts a part which would have been suitable to no other deity. His princes are as much distinguished by their manners, as by their dominions; and even those among them, whose characters seem wholly made up of courage, differ from one another as to the particular kinds of courage in which they excel. In short there is scarce a speech or action in, the Iliad, which the reader may not ascribe to the person who speaks or acts, without seeing his name at the head of it.
Homer does not only outshine all other poets in the variety, but also in the novelty of his characters. He has introduced among his Grecian princes a person who had lived thrice the age of man, and conversed with Theseus, Hercules, Polyphemus, and the first race of heroes. His principal actor is the son of a goddess, not to mention the offspring of other deities, who have likewise a
place in his poems, and the venerable Tro- Virgil has indeed admitted Fame as an
Virgil falls infinitely short of Homer in
Another principal actor in this poem is -Fortemque Gyan, fortemque Cloanthum. the great enemy of mankind. The part of There are, indeed, several natural inci- Ulysses in Homer's Odyssey is much dents in the part of Ascanius; and that of admired by Aristotle, as perplexing that Dido cannot be sufficiently admired. I do not fable with very agreeable plots and intrica see any thing new or particular in Turnus. cies, not only by the many adventures in Pallas and Evander are remote copies of his voyage, and the subtilty of his be Hector and Priam, as Lausus and Mezen-haviour, but by the varicus concealments tius are almost parallels to Pallas and and discoveries of his person in several Evander. The characters of Nisus and parts of that poem. But the crafty being! Euryalus are beautiful, but common. We have now mentioned makes a much longer must not forget the parts of Sinon, Ca- voyage than Ulysses, puts in practice many milla, and some few others, which are fine more wiles and stratagems, and hides him improvements on the Greek poet. In short, self under a greater variety of shapes and there is neither that variety nor novelty appearances, all of which are severally de in the persons of the, Æneid, which we tected to the great delight and surprise of meet with in those of the Iliad.
If we look into the characters of Milton, we shall find that he has introduced all the variety his fable was capable of receiving. The whole species of mankind was in two persons at the time to which the subject of his poem is confined. We have, however, four distinct characters in these two persons. We see man and woman in the highest innocence and perfection, and in the most abject state of guilt and infirmity. The two last characters are, indeed, very common and obvious, but the two first are not only more magnificent, but more new than any characters either in Virgil or Homer, or indeed in the whole circle of
We may likewise observe with how much art the poet has varied several characters of the persons that speak in his infernal assembly. On the contrary, how has be represented the whole Godhead exerting itself towards man in its full benevolence under the threefold distinction of a Creator, a Redeemer, and a Comforter!
Nor must we omit the person of Raphael, who amidst his tenderness and friendship for man, shows such a dignity and condescension in all his speech and behaviour as are suitable to a superior nature. The an gels are indeed as much diversified in Milton, and distinguished by their proper parts, as the gods are in Homer or Virgil. The Milton was so sensible of this defect in reader will find nothing ascribed to Uriel, the subject of his poem, and of the few Gabriel, Michael, or Raphael, which is not characters it would afford him, that he has in a particular manner suitable to their brought into it two actors of a shadowy and respective characters.* fictitious nature, in the persons of Sin and There is another circumstance in the Death, by which means he has wrought principal actors of the Iliad and Æned, into the body of his fable a very beautiful which gives a peculiar beauty to those two and well-invented allegory. But notwith
poems, and was therefore contrived with standing the fineness of this allegory may very great judgment. I mean the authors atone for it in some measure, I cannot think having chosen for their heroes, persons
that persons of such a chimerical existence were so nearly related to the people for
annexed to them, which is requisite in
The two last sentences are not in the original
By this means their countrymen (whom parts of Milton's poem; and hope that
No. 274.] Monday, January 14, 1711-12.
Hor. Sat. ii. Lib. 1. 37.
All you, who think the city ne'er can thrive
Milton's poem is admirable in this re-occurred since I first took into my thoughts I HAVE Upon several occasions (that have pect, since it is impossible for any of its eaders, whatever nation, country, or peole he may belong to, not to be related to he persons who are the principal actors in ; but what is still infinitely more to its adantage, the principal actors in this poem re not only our progenitors, but our repreentatives. We have an actual interest in very thing they do, and no less than our tmost happiness is concerned, and lies at take in all their behaviour.
the present state of fornication) weighed with myself in behalf of guilty females, the impulses of flesh and blood, together with the arts and gallantries of crafty men; and reflect with some scorn that most part of what we in our youth think gay and polite, is nothing else but a habit of indulging a pruriency that way. It will cost some labour to bring people to so lively a sense of this, as to recover the manly modesty in I shall subjoin as a corollary to the fore- bashful grace in the faces of my women; the behaviour of my men readers, and the oing remark, an admirable observation but in all cases which come into debate, ut of Aristotle, which has been very much there are certain things previously to be misrepresented, in the quotations of some done before we can have a true light into modern critics; If a man of perfect and the subject matter: therefore it will, in the Consummate virtue falls into a misfortune, it first place, be necessary to consider the aises our pity, but not our terror, because, impotent wenchers and industrious hags, we do not fear that it may be our own case, who are supplied with, and are constantly who do not resemble the suffering person.' supplying, new sacrifices to the devil of But, as that great philosopher adds, if we lust. You are to know, then, if you are so see a man of virtue mixed with infirmities, happy as not to know it already, that the Fall into any misfortune, it does not only great havock which is made in the habitaaise our pity but our terror; because we tions of beauty and innocence, is committed are afraid that the like misfortunes may by such as can only lay waste and not enappen to ourselves, who resemble the joy the soil. When you observe the precharacter of the suffering person. 1 shall take another opportunity to ob- are such as one would think should have no sent state of vice and virtue, the offenders erve that a person of an absolute and con- impulse to what they are pursuing; as in summate virtue should never be introduced business, you see sometimes fools pretend n tragedy, and shall only remark in this to be knaves, so in pleasure, you will find place, that the foregoing observation of old men set up for wenchers. This latter Aristotle, though it may be true in other sort of men are the great basis and fund of ccasions, does not hold in this; because in iniquity in the kind we are speaking of; you he present case, though the persons who shall have an old rich man often receive all into misfortune are of the most perfect scrawls from the several quarters of the and consummate virtue, it is not to be con- town, with descriptions of the new wares idered as what may possibly be, but what in their hands, if he will please to send ctually is our own case; since we are em- word when he will be waited on. parked is must be partakers of their happiness or brought to such indecencies as from time
to time banish shame and raise desire.
In this, and some other very few in- With these preparatives the hags break tances, Aristotle's rules for epic poetry their wards by little and little, until they which he had drawn from his reflections are brought to lose all apprehensions of ate exactly with the heroic poems which younger men. It is a common postscript of pon Homer) cannot be supposed to quad- what shall befal them in the possession of ave been made since his time; since it a hag to a young fellow whom she invites plain his rules would still have been to a new woman, She has, I assure you, more perfect, could he have perused the seen none but old Mr. Such-a-one." Eneid, which was made some hundred pleases the old fellow that the nymph is In my next, I shall go through other bounty she is accommodated with enough to
ears after his death.
brought to him unadorned, and from his
dress her for other lovers. This is the most 'MY LORD, I having a great esteem for ordinary method of bringing beauty and your honour, and a better opinion of you poverty into the possession of the town: but than of any of the quality, makes me acthe particular cases of kind keepers, skilful quaint you of an affair that I hope will pimps, and all others who drive a separate oblige you to know. I have a niece that trade, and are not in the general society or came to town about a fortnight ago. Her commerce of sin, will require distinct con- parents being lately dead, she came to me sideration. At the same time that we are expecting to have found me in so good a thus severe on the abandoned, we are to condition as to set her up in a milliner's represent the case of others with that shop. Her father gave fourscore pound mitigation as the circumstances demand. with her for five years: her time is out, Calling names does no good; to speak worse and she is not sixteen: as pretty a black of any thing than it deserves, does only gentlewoman as ever you saw; a little take off from the credit of the accuser, and woman, which I know your lordship likes; has implicitly the force of an apology in the well shaped, and as fine a complexion for behalf of the person accused. We shall, red and white as ever I saw; I doubt not but therefore, according as the circumstances your lordship, will be of the same opinion differ, vary our appellations of these crimi- She designs to go down about a month nals: those who offend only against them- hence, except I can provide for her, which selves, and are not scandals to society, but I cannot at present. Her father was one out of deference to the sober part of the with whom all he had died with him, so world, have so much good left in them as there is four children left destitute: so if to be ashamed, must not be huddled in the your lordship thinks proper to make an ap common word due to the worst of women; pointment where I shall wait on you but regard is to be had to their circum- my niece, by a line or two, I stay for your stances when they fell, to the uneasy per- answer; for I have no place fitted up since plexity under which they lived under sense- I left my house, fit to entertain your honour. less and severe parents; to the importunity I told her she should go with me to see a of poverty; to the violence of a passion in its gentleman, a very good friend of mine; so beginning well grounded, and all other al-I desire you to take notice of my letter, by leviations which make unhappy women reason she is ignorant of the ways of the resign the characteristic of their sex, mo- town. My lord, I desire if you meet us to desty. To do otherwise than this, would come alone; for upon my word and honour be to act like a pedantic Stoic, who thinks you are the first that I ever mentioned her all crimes alike, and not like an impartial to. So I remain your lordship's most humSpectator, who looks upon them with all ble servant to command. the circumstances that diminish or enhance the guilt. I am in hopes, if this subject be well pursued, women will hereafter from their infancy be treated with an eye to their future state in the world; and not have their No. 275.] Tuesday, January 15, 1711-12 tempers made too untractable from an improper sourness, or pride, or too complying from familiarity or forwardness contracted at their own houses. After these hints on this subject, I shall end this paper with the following genuine letter; and desire all who think they may be concerned in future speculations on this subject, to send in what they have to say for themselves for some incidents in their lives, in order to have proper allowances made for their conduct.
Jan. 5, 1711-12. 'MR. SPECTATOR,-The subject of your yesterday's paper, is of so great importance, and the thorough handling of it may be so very useful to the preservation of many an innocent young creature, that I think every one is obliged to furnish you with what lights he can to expose the pernicious arts and practices of those unnatural women called bawds. In order to this, the enclosed is sent to you, which is verbatim the copy of a letter written by a bawd of figure in this town to a noble lord. I have concealed the names of both, my intention being not to expose the persons but the thing. I am, sir, your humble servant.'
'I beg of you to burn it when you've read it.
tribus Anticyris caput insanabile
A head, no hellebore can cure.
Hor. Ars Poet. v. 300.
I was yesterday engaged in an assembly of virtuosos, where one of them produced many curious observations which he had lately made in the anatomy of a human body. Another of the company communi cated to us several wonderful discoveries which he had also made on the same subject, by the help of very fine glasses. This gave birth to a great variety of un common remarks, and furnished discourse for the remaining part of the day.
The different opinions which were started on this occasion presented to my imagina tion so many new ideas, that by mixing with those which were already there, they employed my fancy all the last night, and composed a very wild extravagant dream. I was invited, methought, to the dissec tion of a beau's head, and a coquette's heart, which were both of them laid on a table before us. An imaginary operator opened the first with a great deal of nicety which upon a cursory and superficial view, appeared like the head of another man;