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In short, Mr. Spectator, I am so much | pleasantry; and hope you will show these out of my natural element, that, to recover people that at least they are not witty: in my old way of life, I would be content to which you will save from many a blush a begin the world again, and be plain Jack daily sufferer, who is very much your most Anvil; but, alas! I am in for life, and am humble servant, bound to subscribe myself, with great sorrow of heart, your humble servant, L.
JOHN ENVILLE, KNT.'
'MR. SPECTATOR,-In yours of Wednesday the 30th past, you and your corres No. 300.] Wednesday, Feb. 13, 1711-12. whom you call male coquettes; but without pondents are very severe on a sort of men,
-Diversum vitio vitium prope majus.
any other reason, in my apprehension, than that of paying a shallow compliment to the fair sex, by accusing some men of imaginary faults, that the women may not seem MR. SPECTATOR,-When you talk of to be the more faulty sex; though at the the subject of love, and the relations arising same time you suppose there are some so from it, methinks you should take care to weak as to be imposed upon by fine things leave no fault unobserved which concerns and false addresses. I cannot persuade the state of marriage. The great vexation myself that your design is to debar the sexes that I have observed in it is, that the wed- the benefit of each other's conversation ded couple seem to want opportunities of within the rules of honour; nor will you, being often enough alone together, and are I dare say, recommend to them, or e forced to quarrel and be fond before com- courage the common tea-table talk, much pany. Mr. Hotspur and his lady, in a less that of politics and matters of state: room full of their friends, are ever saying and if these are forbidden subjects of dissomething so smart to each other, and course, then, as long as there are any that but just within rules, that the whole women in the world who take a pleasure company stand in the utmost anxiety and in hearing themselves praised, and can suspense, for fear of their falling into ex-bear the sight of a man prostrate at their tremities which they could not be present
feet, so long I shall make no wonder, that On the other side, Tom Faddle and there are those of the other sex who will his pretty spouse, wherever they come, pay them those impertinent humiliations are billing at such a rate, as they think We should have few people such fools as must do our hearts good to behold them. to practise flattery, if all were so wise as Cannot you possibly propose a mean be- to despise it. I do not deny but you would tween being wasps and doves in public? do a meritorious act, if you could prevent I should think, if you advised to hate or all impositions on the simplicity of young love sincerely, it would be better: for if they women; but I must confess, I do not appre would be so discreet as to hate from the hend you have laid the fault on the proper very bottom of their hearts, their aversion persons; and if I trouble you with my would be too strong for little gibes every thoughts upon it, I promise myself your moment; and if they loved with that calm pardon. Such of the sex as are raw and and noble valour which dwells in the heart, innocent, and most exposed to these at with a warmth like that of life-blood, they tacks, have, or their parents are much t would not be so impatient of their pas- blame if they have not, one to advise and sions as to fall into observable fondness. guard them, and are obliged themselves This method, in each case, would save ap- to take care of them; but if these, who pearances: but as those who offend on the ought to hinder men from all opportunities fond side are by much the fewer, I would of this sort of conversation, instead of that have you begin with them, and go on to encourage and promote it, the suspicioni take notice of a most impertinent licence very just that there are some private reasons married women take, not only to be very for it; and I will leave it to you to determine loving to their spouses in public, but also on which side a part is then acted. Some make nauseous allusions to private fami- women there are who are arrived at years liarities and the like. Lucina is a lady of discretion, I mean are got out of the hand the greatest discretion, you must know, in of their parents and governors, and are st the world; and withal very much a physi- up for themselves, who are yet liable cian. Upon the strength of those two quali- these attempts; but if these are prevailed ties there is nothing she will not speak of upon, you must excuse me if I lay the faul Defore us virgins; and she every day talks upon them, that their wisdom is not grow with a very grave air in such a manner as is with their years. My client, Mr. Strephon very improper so much as to be hinted whom you summoned to declare himself at, but to obviate the greatest extremity. gives you thanks, however, for your wan Those whom they call good bodies, notable ing, and begs the favour only to enlarge his people, hearty neighbours, and the purest time for a week, or to the last day of the
goodest company in the world, are the term, and then he will appear gratis, and
great offenders in this kind. Here I think pray no day over.
MR. SPECTATOR,-I was last night to visit a lady whom I much esteem, and always took for my friend; but met with Canidia, a lady of this latter species, So very different a reception from what I passed by me yesterday in a coach. Canidia expected, that I cannot help applying my-was a haughty beauty of the last age, and self to you on this occasion. In the room of that civility and familiarity I used to be treated with by her, an affected strangeness in her looks, and coldness in her behaviour, plainly told me I was not the welcome guest which the regard and tenderness she has often expressed for me gave me reason to flatter myself to think I was. Sir, this is certainly a great fault, and I assure you a very common one; herefore I hope you will think it a fit subject for some part of a Spectator. Be pleased to acquaint us how we must behave ourselves towards this valetudinary Friendship, subject to so many heats and colds; and you will oblige, sir, your humble servant, MIRANDA.'
in a word, which fills the town with elderly fops and superannuated coquettes.
WE are generally so much pleased with y little accomplishments, either of body mind, which have once made us rearkable in the world, that we endeavour persuade ourselves it is not in the power time to rob us of them. We are eterally pursuing the same methods which st procured us the applauses of mankind. is from this notion that an author writes ,though he is come to dotage; without er considering that his memory is imired, and that he hath lost that life, and ose spirits, which formerly raised his cy, and fired his imagination. The same ly hinders a man from submitting his beviour to his age, and makes Clodius, o was a celebrated dancer at five-andenty, still love to hobble in a minuet, ugh he is past threescore. It is this, A tragedy, by William Alexander, Earl of Stirling,
ated in 1629.
was followed by crowds of adorers, whose passions only pleased her, as they gave her opportunities of playing the tyrant. She then contracted that awful cast of the eye and forbidding frown, which she has not yet laid aside, and has still all the insolence of beauty without its charms. If she now attracts the eyes of any beholders, it is only by being remarkably ridiculous; even her own sex laugh at her affectation; and the men, who always enjoy an ill-natured pleasure in seeing an imperious beauty humbled and neglected, regard her with the same satisfaction that a free nation sees a tyrant in disgrace.
Will Honeycomb, who is a great admirer of the gallantries in King Charles the Seletter written by a wit of that age to his cond's reign, lately communicated to me a dia's humour; and though I do not always mistress, who it seems was a lady of Canithis letter so well, that I took a copy of it, approve of my friend Will's taste, I liked with which I shall here present my reader:
'MADAM,-Since my waking thoughts have never been able to influence you in my favour, I am resolved to try whether my dreams can make any impression on you. To this end I shall give you an account of a very odd one which my fancy presented to me last night, within a few hours after I left you.
'Methought I was unaccountably conveyed into the most delicious place mine eyes ever beheld: it was a large valley divided by a river of the purest water I had ever seen. The ground on each side of it rose by an easy ascent, and was covered with flowers of an infinite variety, which, as they were reflected in the water, doubled the beauties of the place, or rather formed an imaginary scene more beautiful than the real. On each side of the river was a range of lofty trees, whose boughs were loaded with almost as many birds as leaves. Every tree was full of harmony.
'I had not gone far in this pleasant valley, when I perceived that it was terminated by was ancient and regular. On the top of it a most magnificent temple. The structure was figured the god Saturn, in the same shape and dress that the poets usually re
'As I was advancing to satisfy my curiosity by a nearer view, I was stopped by before discovered in the whole place. I an object far more beautiful than any I had fancy, madam, you will easily guess that this could hardly be any thing but yourself; in reality it was so; you lay extended on the flowers by the side of the river, so that your hands, which were thrown in a negligent
posture, almost touched the water. Your which seems too extraordinary to be with-
are open. I could not but admire the tran
quillity you slept in, especially when I con- No. 302.] Friday, February 15, 1711-12
'While I was wholly taken up in these
After a short time, Youth, (displaying a pair of wings, which I had not before taken notice of,) flew off. Love still remained, and holding the torch which he had in his hand before your face, you still appeared as beautiful as ever. The glaring of the light in your eyes at length awakened you, when to my great surprise, instead of acknowledging the favour of the deity, you frowned upon him, and struck the torch out of his hand into the river. The god, after having regarded you with a look that spoke at once his pity and displeasure, flew away. Immediately a kind of gloom overspread the whole place. At the same time I saw a hideous spectre enter at one end of the valley. His eyes were sunk into his head, his face was pale and withered, and his skin puckered up in wrinkles. As he walked on the sides of the bank the river froze, the flowers faded, the trees shed their blossoms, the birds dropped from off the boughs, and fell dead at his feet. By these marks I knew him to be Old Age. You were seized with the utmost horror
-Lachrymæque decore, Gratior et pulchro veniens in corpore virtus. Virg. En. v. 343 Becoming sorrows, and a virtuous mind More lovely, in a beauteous form enshrin'd. I READ what I give for the entertainment of this day with a great deal of plea sure, and publish it just as it came to my hands. I shall be very glad to find there are many guessed at for Emilia.
'MR. SPECTATOR,-If this paper has the your writings, I shall be the more pleased, good fortune to be honoured with a place in because the character of Emilia is not an I have indus imaginary but a real one. of one or two circumstances of no conse triously obscured the whole by the addition
quence, that the person it is drawn from of it might not be in the least suspected, and might still be concealed; and that the writer for some other reasons, I chose not to give it in the form of a letter; but if, besides the faults of the composition, there be any thing in it more proper for a correspondent than the Spectator himself to write, I submit it
other model you think fit. I am, sir, your to your better judgment, to receive any very humble servant.'
There is nothing which gives one so pleasing a prospect of human nature, as the contemplation of wisdom and beauty: the latter is the peculiar portion of that sex which is therefore called fair: but the hap py concurrence of both these excellences in the same person, is a character too ce lestial to be frequently met with. Beauty is an over-weening self-sufficient thing, careless of providing itself any more substantial ornaments; nay, so little does it consult its own interests, that it too often defeats itself, by betraying that innocence which renders it lovely and desirable. As therefore virtue makes a beautiful woman appear more beautiful, so beauty makes a virtuous woman really more virtuous Whilst I am considering these two perfections gloriously united in one person, I callnot help representing to my mind the image of Emilia.
Who ever beheld the charming Emilia and amazement at his approach. You en- without feeling in his breast at once the deavoured to have fled, but the phantom glow of love, and the tenderness of virtuous caught you in his arms. You may easily friendship? The unstudied graces of her guess at the change you suffered in this behaviour, and the pleasing accents embrace. For my own part, though I am tongue, insensibly draw you on to wish for still too full of the dreadful idea, I will not a nearer enjoyment of them, but even her shock you with a description of it. I was smiles carry in them a silent reproof of the so startled at the sight, that my sleep im- impulses of licentious love. Thus, though mediately left me, and I found myself the attractives of her beauty play almost awake, at leisure to consider of a dream irresistibly upon you, and create desire, you
immediately stand corrected not by the severity, but the decency of her virtue. That sweetness and good-humour, which is so visible in her face, naturally diffuses itself into every word and action: a man must be a savage, who, at the sight of Emilia, is not more inclined to do her good, than gratify himself. Her person as it is thus studiously embellished by nature, thus adorned with unpremeditated graces, is a fit lodging for a mind so fair and lovely: there dwell rational piety, modest hope, and cheerful resignation.
Many of the prevailing passions of mankind do undeservedly pass under the name of religion; which is thus made to express itself in action, according to the nature of the constitution in which it resides; so that were we to make a judgment from appearFances, one would imagine religion in some is little better than sullenness and reserve, in many fear, in others the despondings of a melancholy complexion, in others the formality of insignificant unaffecting observances, in others severity, in others ostentation. In Emilia it is a principle founded in reason, and enlivened with hope; it does not break forth into irregular fits and sallies of devotion, but is a uniform and consistent tenour of action: it is strict without severity, compassionate without weakness; it is the perfection of that good-humour which proceeds from the understanding, not the effect of an easy constitution.
me by the prevailing brightness of her yir-
Honoria's disposition is of a very different turn: her thoughts are wholly bent upon conquests and arbitrary power. That she has some wit and beauty nobody denies, and therefore has the esteem of all her acquaintance as a woman of an agreeable person and conversation; but (whatever her husband may think of it) that is not suffi cient for Honoria: she waives that title to respect as a mean acquisition, and demands veneration in the right of an idol; for this reason her natural desire of life is continually checked with an inconsistent fear of wrinkles and old age.
Emilia cannot be supposed ignorant of her personal charms, though she seems to be so; but she will not hold her happiness upon so precarious a tenure, whilst her mind is adorned with beauties of a more exalted and lasting nature. When in the full bloom of youth and beauty we saw her surrounded with a crowd of adorers, she took no pleasure in slaughter and destruction, gave no false deluding hopes which might increase the torments of her disappointed lovers; but having for some time given to the decency of a virgin coyBy a generous sympathy in nature, we ness, and examined the merit of their sefeel ourselves disposed to mourn when any veral pretensions, she at length gratified of our fellow-creatures are afflicted: but her own, by resigning herself to the ardent injured innocence and beauty in distress is passion of Bromius. Bromius was then an object that carries in it something inex-master of many good qualities and a modepressibly moving: it softens the most manly rate fortune, which was soon after unexheart with the tenderest sensations of love pectedly increased to a plentiful estate. and compassion, until at length it confesses This for a good while proved his misfortune, its humanity, and flows out into tears. as it furnished his unexperienced age with Were I to relate that part of Emilia's the opportunities of evil company, and a life which has given her an opportunity of sensual life. He might have longer wanexerting the heroism of Christianity, it dered in the labyrinths of vice and folly, would make too sad, too tender a story; had not Emilia's prudent conduct won him but when I consider her alone in the midst over to the government of his reason. Her of her distresses, looking beyond this gloomy ingenuity has been constantly employed in vale of affliction and sorrow, into the joys humanizing his passions, and refining his of heaven and immortality, and when I see pleasures. She has showed him by her her in conversation thoughtless and easy, own example, that virtue is consistent with as if she were the most happy creature in decent freedoms, and good humour, or rathe world, I am transported with admira- ther that it cannot subsist without them. tion. Surely never did such a philosophic Her good sense readily instructed her, that soul inhabit such a beauteous form! For a silent example, and an easy unrepining beauty is often made a privilege against behaviour, will always be more persuasive thought and reflection; it laughs at wisdom, than the severity of lectures and admoniand will not abide the gravity of its instruc- tions; and that there is so much pride interwoven into the make of human nature, that an obstinate man must only take the hint from another, and then be left to advise and correct himself. Thus by an artful train of management, and unseen persuasions, having at first brought him not to dislike, and at length to be pleased with that which otherwise he would not have bore to hear of, she then knew how to press and secure this advantage, by approving
Were I able to represent Emilia's virtues in their proper colours, and their due proportions, love or flattery might perhaps be thought to have drawn the picture arger than life; but as this is but an imperect draught of so excellent a character, and as I cannot, I will not hope to have any interest in her person, all that I can say of her is but impartial praise, extorted from
-Some choose the clearest light,
it as his thought, and seconding it as his
Of man's first disobedience, and the fruit
These lines are, perhaps, as plain, simple, and unadorned, as any of the whole poem, in which particular the author has conformed himself to the example of Ho
mer, and the precept of Horace.
Emilia's observation teaches her, that as His invocation to a work, which turns in little inadvertencies and neglects cast aa great measure upon the creation of the blemish upon a great character; so the ne- world, is very properly made to the Muse glect of apparel, even among the most inti- who inspired Moses in those books from mate friends, does insensibly lessen their whence our author drew his subject, and regards to each other, by creating a fami- to the Holy Spirit who is therein repre liarity too low and contemptible. She un-sented as operating after a particular ma derstands the importance of those things ner in the first production of nature. This which the generality account trifles; and whole exordium rises very happily into considers every thing as a matter of conse-noble language and sentiments, as I think quence, that has the least tendency towards the transition to the fable is exquisitely keeping up or abating the affection of her beautiful and natural. husband; him she esteems as a fit object to The nine days' astonishment, in which employ her ingenuity in pleasing, because he is to be pleased for life.
the angels lay entranced after their dread ful overthrow and fall from heaven, before they could recover either the use of thought or speech, is a noble circumstance, and very finely imagined. The division of hell into seas of fire, and into firm ground impreg nated with the same furious element, with that particular circumstance of the exclu sion of Hope from those infernal regions
are instances of the same great and fruitful
By the help of these, and a thousand other nameless arts, which it is easier for her to practise than for another to express, by the obstinacy of her goodness and unprovoked submission, in spite of all her afflictions and ill usage, Bromius is become a man of sense and a kind husband, and Emilia a happy wife. Ye guardian angels, to whose care heaven invention. has intrusted its dear Emilia, guide her still The thoughts in the first speech and de forward in the paths of virtue, defend her scription of Satan, who is one of the princi from the insolence and wrongs of this un-pal actors in this poem, are wonderfully him. He no more converse with such purity on earth, pride, envy, and revenge, obstinacy, da lead her gently hence, innocent and unre-spair, and impenitence, provable, to a better place, where, by an very artfully interwoven. In short, his first easy transition from what she now is, she speech is a complication of all those per may shine forth an angel of light. sions which discover themselves separately in several other of his speeches in the poem. The whole part of this great enemy of mankind is filled with such incidents as are very apt to raise and terrify the reader's imagi nation. Of this nature, in the book now before us, is his being the first that awakens
No. 303.] Saturday, Feb. 16, 1711-12.
are all of them