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in the pit together at a comedy, where they |ings many descriptions given of ill persons
break off their commerce with one another father, whose life is bound up in hers. This therefore writ a letter in a feigned hand to with all the tenderness imaginable, and has
Stint, according to custom, seized and
partiality of a parent, that soon
opened it, and was not a little surprised to her accomplished above the children of all
satisfaction at the expense of doing a very
very happy effects upon his own
other men, but never thought she was com to the utmost improvement of which she herself was capable. This fondness has had 'MR. STINT,-You have gained a slight for she reads, she dances, she sings, uses heinous crime. At the price of a faithful her spinet and lute to the utmost perfection; friend you have obtained an inconstant mis- and the lady's use of all these excellences tress. I rejoice in this expedient I have is to divert the old man in his easy chair, thought of to break my mind to you, and when he is out of the pangs of a chronical distemper. Fidelia is now in the twentywhich does not expose you to the affront/third year of her age; but the application except you deserve it. I know, sir, as of many lovers, her vigorous time of life, criminal as you are, you have still shame her quick sense of all that is truly gallant enough to avenge yourself against the hardi- and elegant in the enjoyment of a plentiful
tell you, you are a base fellow, by a means
ness of any one that should publicly tell fortune, are not able to draw her from the
you of being guilty of the basest practice thing that passes about a man is accom-
while you yourself cannot in your own con-hazard, both as to fortune and innocence,
No. 449.] Tuesday, August 5, 1712.
-Tibi scriptus, matrona, libellus.
Mart. iii. 68.
that there is perhaps a new cause of fond ness arising from that consideration also,
None but fathers can have a true sense of these sort of pleasures and sensations; but my familiarity with the father of Fideli makes me let drop the words which I have heard him speak, and observe upon tenderness towards her.
Fidelia, on her part, as I was going to say, as accomplished as she is, with her beauty WHEN I reflect upon my labours for the wit, air, and mien, employs her whole public, I cannot but observe, that part of time in care and attendance her fa the species, of which I profess myself a ther. How have I been charmed to see one friend and guardian, is sometimes treated of the most beautiful women the age has with severity; that is, there are in my writ-produced, on her knees, helping o
man's slipper! Her filial regard to him is astonished to hear that, in those intervals what she makes her diversion, her busi- when the old gentleman is at ease, and can ess, and her glory. When she was asked bear company, there are at his house, in by a friend of her deceased mother to ad- the most regular order, assemblies of peonit of the courtship of her son, she answer-ple of the highest merit; where there is ed that she had a great respect and grati- conversation without mention of the faults ude to her for the overture in behalf of one of the absent, benevolence between men o dear to her, but that during her father's and women without passion, and the highife she would admit into her heart no value est subjects of morality treated of as natural or any thing that should interfere with her and accidental discourse; all which is owing ndeavour to make his remains of life as to the genius of Fidelia; who at once happy and easy as could be expected in his makes her father's way to another world ircumstances. The lady admonished her easy, and herself capable of being an hoof the prime of life with a smile; which nour to his name in this.ilen ¶ Fidelia answered with a frankness that al-MR. SPECTATOR,-I was the other day vays attends unfeigned virtue: It is true, at the Bear-garden, in hopes to have seen nadam, there are to be sure very great your short face: but not being so fortunate, atisfactions to be expected in the comnerce of a man of honour whom one tendery loves; but I find so much satisfaction, in he reflection, how much I mitigate a good man's pains, whose welfare depends upon ay assiduity about him, that I willingly exJude the loose gratifications of passion for he solid reflections of duty. I know not whether any man's wife would be allowed, nd (what I still more fear) I know not hether I, a wife, should be willing to be so ficious as I am at present about my paent.' The happy father has her declaration at she will not marry during his life, and he pleasure of seeing that resolution not easy to her. Were one to paint filial affecon in its utmost beauty, he could not have more lively idea of it than in beholding delia serving her father at his hours of sing, meals, and rest.
When the general crowd of female youth e consulting their glasses, preparing for lls, assemblies, or plays; for a young
I must tell you, by way of letter, that there
Quærenda pecunia primum,
dy, who could be regarded among the No. 450.] Wednesday, August 6, 1712. remost in those places, either for her pern, wit, fortune, or conversation, and yet ntemn all these entertainments, to sweetthe heavy hours of a decrepid parent, is esignation truly heroic. Fidelia performs eduty of a nurse with all the beauty of a de; nor does she neglect her person, beuse of her attendance on him, when he oo ill to receive company, to whom she -y make an appearance.
Fidelia, who gives him up her youth, es not think it any great sacrifice to add t the spoiling of her dress. Her care I exactness in her habit convince her far of the alacrity of her mind; and she of all women the best foundation for cting the praise of a seeming negligence. at adds to the entertainment of the d old man is, that Fidelia, where merit fortune cannot be overlooked by epistolovers, reads over the accounts of her quests, plays on her spinet the gayest (and while she is doing so you would k her formed only for gallantry) to inte to him the pleasures she despises his sake.
hose who think themselves the pattern ood-breeding and gallantry would be
Hor. Ep. i. Lib. 1. 53. -Get money, money still; And then let virtue follow, if she will.-Pope. 'MR. SPECTATOR,-All men through different paths, make at the same common thing, money: and it is to her we owe the politician, the merchant, and the lawyer; nay, to be free with you, I believe to that also we are beholden for our Spectator. I am apt to think, that could we look into our own hearts, we should see money engraved in them in more lively and moving characters than self-preservation; for who can reflect upon the merchant hoisting sail in a doubtful pursuit of her, and all mankind sacrificing their quiet to her, but must perceive that the characters of self-preservation (which were doubtless originally the brightest) are sullied, if not wholly defaced; and that those of money (which at first was only valuable as a mean to security) are of late so brightened, that the charac ters of self-preservation, like a less light set by a greater, are become almost imperceptible? Thus has money got the upperhand of what all mankind formerly thought most dear, viz. security: and I wish I could
roused myself, and found means to alle viate, and at last conquer, my affliction, by reflecting how that she and her children having been no great expense to me, the best part of her fortune was still left; that my charge being reduced to myself, a journeyman, and a maid, I might live far cheaper than before; and that being now a childless widower, I might perhaps marry a no less deserving woman, and with a much better fortune than she brought, which was but 800. And, to convince my readers that such considerations as these were proper and apt to produce such an affect, I remember it was the constant ob servation at that deplorable time, when so many hundreds were swept away daily, that the rich ever bore the loss of their families and relations far better than the poor; the latter having little or nothing beforehand, and living from hand to mouth, placed the whole comfort and satisfaction of their lives in their wives and children, and were therefore inconsolable.
say she had here put a stop to her victo- | men do their wives and children, and thereries; but, alas! common honesty fell a sa- fore could not resist the first impulses of crifice to her. This is the way scholastic nature on so wounding a loss; but I quickly men talk of the greatest good in the world: but I, a tradesman, shall give you another account of this matter in the plain narrative of my own life. I think it proper, in the first place, to acquaint my readers, that since my setting out in the world, which was in the year 1660, I never wanted money, having begun with an indifferent good stock in the tobacco-trade, to which I was bred; and by the continual successes it has pleased Providence to bless my endeavours with, I am at last arrived at what they call a plum. To uphold my discourse in the manner of your wits or philosophers, by speaking fine things, or drawing inferences, as they pretend, from the nature of the subject, I account it vain; having never found any thing in the writings of such men, that did not savour more of the invention of the brain, or what is styled speculation, than of sound judgment or profitable observation. I will readily grant indeed, that there is what the wits call natural in their talk; which is the utmost those curious authors can assume to themselves, and is indeed all they endeavour at, for they are but lamentable teachers. And what, I pray, is natural? That which is pleasing and easy. And what are pleasing and easy? For sooth, a new thought, or conceit dressed up in smooth quaint language, to make you smile and wag your head, as being what you never imagined before, and yet wonder why you had not; mere frothy amusements, fit only for boys or silly women to be caught with.
The following year happened the fire: at which time, by good providence, it was my fortune to have converted the greatest part of my effects into ready money, on the prospect of an extraordinary advantage which I was preparing to lay hold on. This calamity was very terrible and astonishing, the fury of the flames being such, that whole streets, at several distant places, were destroyed at one and the same time, so that (as it is well known) almost all our citizens were burnt out of what they had 'It is not my present intention to instruct But what did I then do? I did not stand my readers in the method of acquiring gazing on the ruins of our noble metropolis; riches; that may be the work of another I did not shake my head, wring my hands, essay; but to exhibit the real and solid ad- sigh and shed tears; I considered with my vantages I have found by them in my long self what could this avail; I fell a plodding and manifold experience; nor yet all the ad- what advantages might be made of the vantages of so worthy and valuable a bless-ready cash I had; and immediately be ing, (for who does not know or imagine the thought myself that wonderful pennyworths comforts of being warm or living at ease, and might be bought of the goods that were that power and pre-eminence are their in- saved out of the fire. In short, with about separable attendants?) but only to instance 2000. and a little credit, I bought as much the great supports they afford us under the tobacco as raised my estate to the value of severest calamities and misfortune; to show 10,000l. I then "looked on the ashes of our that the love of them is a special antidote city, and the misery of its late inhabitants, against immorality and vice; and that the as an effect of the just wrath and indignasame does likewise naturally dispose mention of heaven towards a sinful and perverse to actions of piety and devotion. All which people.' I can make out by my own experience, who think myself no ways particular from the rest of mankind, nor better nor worse by nature than generally other men are.
After this I married again; and that wife dying, I took another; but both proved to be idle baggages: the first gave me great deal of plague and vexation by her In the year 1665, when the sickness extravagances, and I became one of the was, I lost by it my wife and two children, by-words of the city. I knew it would be to which were all my stock. Probably I might no manner of purpose to go about to curb have had more, considering I was married the fancies and inclinations of women, which between four and five years; but finding her fly out the more for being restrained; but to be a teeming woman, I was careful, as what I could I did; I watched her nar having then little above a brace of thou- rowly, and by good luck found her in the sand pounds to carry on my trade and main-embraces (for which I had two witnesse tain a family with. I loved them as usually with me) of a wealthy spark of the court
nd of the town; of whom I recovered 5,000 which made me amends for what he had idly squandered, and put a silence all my neighbours, taking off my reroach by the gain they saw I had by it, The last died about two years after I mared her, in labour of three children. I onjecture they were begot by a country insman of hers, whom, at her recommenation, I took into my family, and gave ages to as a journeyman. What this crea re expended in delicacies and high diet ith her kinsman (as well as I could comute by the poulterer's, fishmonger's, and ocer's bills,) amounted in the said two ears to one hundred eighty-six pounds four illings and five-pence half-penny. The fine parel, bracelets, lockets, and treats, &c. the other, according to the best calculaon, came, in three years and about three arters, to seven hundred-forty four pounds even shillings and nine pence. After this resolved never to marry more, and found had been a gainer by my marriages, and e damages granted me for the abuses of y bed (all charges deducted) eight thou- 'I have, I. hope, here proved, that the nd three hundred pounds, within a trifle. love of money prevents all immorality and I come now to show the good effects of vice; which if you will not allow, you e love of money on the lives of men, to- must, that the pursuit of it obliges men to ards rendering them honest, sober, and the same kind of life as they would follow ligious. When I was a young man, I had if they were really virtuous; which is all I mind to make the best of my wits, and have to say at present, only recommending er-reached a country chap in a parcel of to you, that you would think of it, and turn sound goods; to whom, upon his upbraid-ready wit into ready money as fast as you g, and threatening to expose me for it, I can. I conclude, your servant,
enough to employ his thoughts on every moment of the day; so that I cannot call to mind, that in all the time I was a husband, which, off and on, was above twelve years, I ever once thought of my wives but in bed. And, lastly, for religion, I have ever been a constant churchman, both forenoons and afternoons on Sundays, never forgetting to be thankful for any gain or advantage I had had that day; and on Saturday nights, upon casting up my accounts, I always was grateful for the sum of my week's profits, and at Christmas for that of the whole year. It is true, perhaps, that my devotion has not been the most fervent; which, I think, ought to be imputed to the evenness and sedateness of my temper, which never would admit of any impetuosities of any sort: and I can remember, that in my youth and prime of manhood, when my blood ran brisker, I took greater pleasure in religious exercises than at present, or many years past, and that my devotion sensibly declined as age, which is dull and unwieldy, came upon me.
turned the equivalent of his loss; and
Don his good advice, wherein he clearly monstrated the folly of such artifices,
Jam sævus apertam
In rabiam cæpit verti jocus, et per honestas
GoHor. Ep.si. Lib. 2. 148.43
Times corrupt, and nature ill inclin'd,
Till, friend with friend, and families at strife,
hich can never end but in shame, and the No. 451.] Thursday, August 7, 1712. in of all correspondence, I never after ansgressed. Can your courtiers, who take ibes, or your lawyers or physicians in eir practice, or even the divines who ermeddle in worldly affairs, boast of aking but one slip in their lives, and of ch a thorough and lasting reformation? ace my coming into the world I do not member I was ever overtaken in drink, THERE is nothing so scandalous to a gove nine times, once at the christening of vernment, and detestable in the eyes of all first child, thrice at our city feasts, and good men, as defamatory papers and pame times at driving of bargains. My re- phlets; but at the same time there is nomation I can attribute to nothing so thing so difficult to tame as a satirical ch as the love and esteem of money, for author. An angry writer who cannot apfound myself to be extravagant in my pear in print, naturally vents his spleen in ink, and apt to turn projector, and make libels and lampoons. A gay old woman, h bargains. As for women, I never says the fable, seeing all her wrinkles reew any except my wives: for my reader presented in a large looking-glass, threw st know, and it is what he may confide it upon the ground in a passion, and broke as an excellent recipe, that the love of it in a thousand pieces; but as she was siness and money is the greatest mortifier afterwards surveying the fragments with a inordinate desires imaginable, as em- spiteful kind of pleasure, she could not forying the mind continually in the careful bear uttering herself in the following solirsight of what one has in the eager quest loquy: What have I got by this revengeful er more, in looking after the negligences blow of mine? I have only multiplied my deceits of servants, in the due entering deformity, and see a hundred ugly faces, stating of accounts, in hunting after where before I saw but one.' ps, and in the exact knowledge of the e of markets; which things whoever roughly attends to, will find enough and
It has been proposed, to oblige every person that, writes a book, or a paper, to swear himself the author of it, and enter
down in a public register his name and
This indeed would have effectually sup-
punishments, is under the direction and distribution of the magistrate, and not of any private person. Accordingly we leam, from a fragment of Cicero, that though there were very few capital punishments in the twelve tables, a libel or lampom, which took away the good name of another, was to be punished by death. But this is far from being our case. Our satire is nothing but ribaldry and billingsgate. Scurrility passes for wit; and he who can call names in the greatest variety of phrases, is looked upon to have the shrewdest pen. By this means the honour of families is ruined; the highest posts and the greatest titles are rendered cheap and vile in the sight of the people; the noblest virtues and most exalted parts exposed to the contempt of the vicious and the igno rant. Should a foreigner, who knows nothing of our private factions, or one who is to act his part in the world when our pre sent heats and animosities are forgot should, I say, such a one form to himself a notion of the greatest men of all sides in the British nation, who are now living, from the characters which are given them in some or other of those abominable writ ings which are daily published among us what a nation of monsters must we appear!
That which makes it particularly difficult to restrain these sons of calumny and defamation is, that all sides are equally guilty of it, and that every dirty scribbler is countenanced by great names, whose in- As this cruel practice tends to the utter terests he propagates by such vile and subversion of all truth and humanity among infamous methods. I have never yet heard us, it deserves the utmost detestation and of a ministry who have inflicted an exem- discouragement of all who have either the plary punishment on an author that has love of their country, or the honour of their supported their cause with falsehood and religion at heart. I would therefore ear scandal, and treated, in a most cruel man-estly recommend it to the consideration of ner, the names of those who have been looked upon as their rivals and antagonists. Would a government set an everlasting mark of their displeasure upon one of those infamous writers, who makes his court to them by tearing to pieces the reputation of a competitor, we should quickly see an end put to this race of vermin, that are a scandal to government, and a reproach to human nature. Such a proceeding would make a minister of state shine in history, and would fill all mankind with a just abhorrence of persons who should treat him unworthily, and employ against him those arms which he scorned to make use of against his enemies.
I cannot think that any one will be so unjust as to imagine, what I have here said is spoken with respect to any party or faction. Every one who has in him the sentiments either of a Christian or a gentleman, cannot but be highly offended at this wicked and ungenerous practice, which is so much in use among us at present, that it is become a kind of national crime, and distinguishes us from all the governments that lie about us. I cannot but look upon the finest strokes of satire which are aimed at particular persons, and which are supported even with the appearances of truth, to be the marks of an evil mind, and highly criminal in themselves. Infamy, like other
those who deal in these pernicious arts of writing, and of those who take pleasure in the reading of them. As for the first, have spoken of them in former papers, and have not stuck to rank them with the mur derer and assassin. Every honest man sets as high a value upon a good name, as upon life itself: and I cannot but think that those who privily assault the one, would destroy the other, might they do it with the same security and impunity.
As for persons who take pleasure in the reading and dispersing such detestable li bels, I am afraid they fall very little short of the guilt of the first composers. law of the emperors Valentinian and Va lens, it was made death for any person no only to write a libel, but, if he met with one by chance, not to tear or burn it. But be cause I would not be thought singular in my opinion of this matter, I shall conclude m paper with the words of Monsieur Bayle who was a man of great freedom of thought as well as of exquisite learning and judg ment.
I cannot imagine that a man who dis perses a libel, is less desirous of doing mischief than the author himself. Bu what shall we say of the pleasure which man takes in the reading of a defamator libel? Is it not a heinous sin in the sigh of God? We must distinguish in this poin