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All but the throne itself of God

Homer afterwards describes Vulcan as pour Istance) shows the fil consequence of such ing down a storm of fire upon the river prepossessions. What I mean is the art, Xanthus, and Minerva as throwing a rock skill, accomplishment, or whatever you will at Mars; who, he tells us, covered seven call it, of dancing. I knew a gentleman of acres in his fall.

great abilities, who bewailed the want of As Homer has introduced into his battle this part of his education to the end of a of the gods every thing that is great and very honourable life. He observed that terrible in nature, Milton has filled his fight there was not occasion for the common use of good and bad angels with all the like cir- of great talents; that they are but seldom in cumstances of horror. The shout of armies, demand; and that these very great talents the rattling of brazen chariots, the hurling were often rendered useless to a man for of rocks and mountains, the earthquake, want of small attainments. A good mien the fire, the thunder, are all of them em-|(a becoming motion, gesture, and aspect) ployed to lift up the reader's imagination, is natural to some men; but even these and give him a suitable idea of so great an would be highly more graceful in their caraction. With what art has the poet repre- riage, if what they do from the force of nasented the whole body of the earth trem- ture were confirmed and heightened from bling, even before it was created!

the force of reason, Toone who has not at all

considered it, to mention the force of reason All heav'n resounded; and had earth been then, All earth had to its centre shook

on such a subject will appear fantastical; In how sublime and just a manner does but when you have a little attended to it, an he afterwards describe the whole heaven assembly of men will have quite another shaking under the wheels

of the Messiah's view; and they will tell you, it is evident chariot, with that exception to the throne from plain and infallible rules, why this of God!

man, with those beautiful features, and a

well-fashioned person, is not so agreeable as -Under his burning wheels The steadfast empyrean shook throughout,

he who sits by him without any of those ad

vantages. When we read, we do it without Notwithstanding the Messiah appears the shape of the letters; but habit makes us

any exerted act of memory that presents clothed with so much terror and majesty, the poet has still found means to make his do it mechanically, without staying, like readers conceive an idea of him beyond A man who has not had the regard of his

children, to recollect and join those letters. what he himself is able to describe:

gesture in any part of his education, will Yet half his strength he put not forth, but check'd find himself unable to act with freedom beHis thunder in mid volley; for he meant Not to destroy, but root them out of heaven.

fore new company, as a child that is but now In a word, Milton's genius, which was so It is for the advancement of the pleasure

learning would be to read without hesitation. great in itself, and so strengthened by all the helps of learning, appears in this book we receive in being agreeable to each other

in ordinary life, that one would wish dancing every way equal to his subject, which was the most sublime that could enter into the it really is, to a proper deportment in mat

were generally understood, as conducive, as thoughts of a poet. As

he knew all the arts ters that appear the most remote from it. of affecting the mind, he has given it cer- A man of learning and sense is distinguished tain resting-places and opportunities of recovering itself from time to time; several from others as he is such, though he never speeches, reflections, similitudes, and the runs upon points too difficult for the rest of like reliefs, being interspersed to diversify of the arm, and the most ordinary motion,

the world; in like manner the reaching out his narration, and ease the attention of the discovers whether a man ever learnt to reader.


know what is the true harmony and composure of his limbs and countenance. Who

ever has seen Booth in the character of No. 334.] Monday, March 24, 1711-12. Pyrrhus, march to his throne to receive

Orestes, is convinced that majestic and great -Voluisti, in suo genere, unumquemque nostrum conceptions are expressed in the very step; quasi quendam esse Roscium, dixistique non tam ea quæ recta essent probari, quam quæ prava sunt fastidiis but, perhaps, though no other man could

perform that incident as well as he does, he You would have each of us be a kind of Roscius in his himself would do it with a yet greater elevaway; and you have said, that fastidious men are not so tion were he a dancer. This is so dangerous a much pleased with what is right, as disgusted at what subject to treat with gravity, that I shall not

at present enter into it any further: but the It is very natural to take for our whole author of the following letter has treated it lives a light impression of a thing, which at in the essay he speaks of in such a manner, first fell into contempt with us for want of that I am beholden to him for a resolution, consideration. The real use of a certain that I will never hereafter think meanly of qualification (which the wiser part of man- any thing, till I have heard what they who kind look upon as at the best an indifferent have another opinion of it have to say in its thing, and generally a frivolous circum-defence


Cic. de Gestu.

is wrong.


Mr. SPECTATOR—Since there are scarce | some observations on modern dancing, both any of the arts and sciences that have not as to the stage, and that part of it so absolutebeen recommended to the world by the pens ly necessary for the qualification of gentleof some of the professors, masters, or lovers men and ladies; and have concluded with of them, whereby the usefulness, excel- some short remarks on the origin and prolence, and benefit arising from them, both as gress of the character by which dances are to the speculative and practical part, have writ down, and communicated to one masbeen made public, to the great advantage ter from another. If some great genius afand improvement of such arts and sciences; ter this would arise, and advance this art to why should dancing, an art celebrated by that perfection it seems capable of receiving, the ancients in so extraordinary a manner, what might not be expected from it? For, be totally neglected by the moderns, and if we consider the origin of arts and sciences, left destitute of any pen to recommend its we shall find that some of them took rise various excellencies and substantial merit to from beginnings so mean and unpromising, mankind?

that it is very wonderful to think that ever •The low ebb to which dancing is now such surprising structures should have been fallen, is altogether owing to this silence. raised upon such ordinary foundations. But The art is esteemed only as an amusing what cannot a great genius effect? Who trifle; it lies altogether uncultivated, and is would have thought that the clangorous unhappily fallen under the imputation of il- noise of smiths' hammers should have given literate and mechanic. As Terence, in one the first rise to music? Yet Macrobius in of his prologues, complains of the rope- his second book relates, that Pythagoras, in dancers drawing all the spectators from his passing by a smith's shop, found that the play, so we may well say, that capering and sounds proceeding from the hammers were tumbling is now preferred to, and supplies either more grave or acute, according to the the place of, just and regular dancing on our different weights of the hammers. The theatres. It is, therefore, in my opinion, philosopher, to improve this hint, suspends high time that some one should come to its different weights by strings of the same bigassistance, and relieve it from the many ness, and found in like manner that the gross and growing errors that have crept into sounds answered to the weights. This beit, and overcast its real beauties; and to set ing discovered, he finds out those numbers dancing in its true light, would show the which produced sounds that were consonant: usefulness and elegance of it, with the plea- as that two strings of the same substance and sure and instruction produced from it; and tension, the one being double the length of also lay down some fundamental rules, that the other, gave that interval which is callmight so tend to the improvement of its pro-ed diapason, or an eighth; the same was also fessors, and information of the spectators, effected from two strings of the same length that the first might be the better enabled to and size, the one having four times the tenperform, and the latter rendered more ca- sion of the other. By these steps, from so pable of judging what is (if there be any mean a beginning, did this great man rething) valuable in this art.

duce, what was only before noise to one of “Toencourage, therefore, some ingenious the most delightful sciences, by marrying pen capable of so generous an undertaking, it to the mathematics; and by that means and in some measure to relieve dancing from caused it to be one of the most abstract and the disadvantages it at present lies under, I, demonstrative of sciences. Who knows, who teach to dance, * have attempted a therefore, but motion, whether decorous or small treatise as an Essay towards a History representative, may not (as it seems highly of Dancing: in which I have inquired into probable it may,) be taken into consideraits antiquity, origin, and use, and shown tion by some person capable of reducing it what esteem the ancients had for it. I have into a regular science, though not so demonlikewise considered the nature and perfec- strative as that proceeding from sounds, yet tion of all its several parts, and how benefi- sufficient to entitle it to a place among the cial and delightful it is, both as a qualifica- magnified arts? tion and an exercise; and endeavoured to Now, Mr. Spectator, as you have declaranswer all objections that have been mali- ed yourself visitor of dancing-schools, and ciously raised against it. I have proceeded this being an undertaking which more imto give an account of the particular dances mediately respects them, I think myself inof the Greeks and Romans, whether reli- dispensably obliged, before I proceed to the gious, warlike, or civil: and taken particu- publication of this my essay, to ask your lar notice of that part of dancing relating to advice; and hold it absolutely necessary to the ancient stage, in which the pantomimes have your approbation, in order to recomhad so great a share. Nor have I been mend my treatise to the perusal of the pawanting in giving an historical account of rents of such as learn to dance, as well as to some particular masters excellent in that the young ladies, to whom as visitor you surprising art; after which I have advanced ought to be a guardian.

•I am, sir, * An Essay towards the History of Dancing, &c. By

*Your most humble servant. John Weaver, 12mo. 1712.

*Salop, March 10, 1711-12.'

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No. 335.] Tuesday, March 25, 1711-12. | head of his footmen in the rear, we convoyRespicere exemplar vitæ morumque jubebo

ed him in safety to the playhouse, where Doctum imitatorum et veras hinc ducere voces. after having marched up the entry in good

Hor. Ars Poet. v. 327.

order, the captain and I went in with him, Keep nature's great original in view,

and seated him betwixt us in the pit. As And thence the living images pursue.-Francis.

soon as the house was full, and the candles My friend, Sir Roger de Coverley, when lighted, my old friend stood up, and looked we last met together at the club, told me about him with that pleasure which a mind that he had a great mind to see the new seasoned with humanity naturally feels in tragedy* with me, assuring me at the same itself, at the sight of a multitude of people time, that he had not been at a play these who seem pleased with one another, and twenty years. The last I saw,' said Sir partake of the same common entertainment. Roger, was The Committee, which I I could not but fancy to myself, as the old should not have gone to neither, had not Iman stood up in the middle of the pit, that been told beforehand that it was a good he made a very proper centre to a tragic church of England comedy.' He then pro- audience. Upon the entering of Pyrrhus, ceeded to inquire of me who this distrest the knight told me, that he did not believe the mother was; and upon hearing that she was king of France himself had a better strut. I Hector's widow, he told me that her hus- was indeed very attentive to my old friend's band was a brave man, and that when he remarks, because I looked upon them as a was a schoolboy he had read his life at the piece of natural criticism, and was well end of the dictionary. My friend asked me pleased to hear him, at the conclusion of in the next place, if there would not be some almost every scene telling me that he could danger in coming home late, in case the not imagine how the play would end. One Mohocks should be abroad. I assure you,' while he appeared much concerned for Ansays he, “I thought I had fallen into their dromache; and a little while after as much hands last night; for I observed two or three for Hermione; and was extremely puzzled lusty black men that followed me half way to think what would become of Pyrrhus. up Fleet-street, and mended their pace be- When Sir Roger saw Andromache's obhind me, in proportion as I put on to get stinate refusal to her lover's importunities, away from them. You must know,' conti- he whispered me in the ear, that he was nued the knight with a smile, 'I fancied sure she would never have him; to which they had a mind to hunt me; for I remem- he added, with a more than ordinary veber an honest gentleman in my neighbour- hemence, ‘You can't imagine, sir, what it hood, who was served such a trick in King is to have to do with a widow.' Upon Charles the Second's time, for which reason Pyrrhus's threatening afterwards to leave he has not ventured himself in town ever her, the knight shook his head, and mutsince. I might have shown them very good tered to himself, Ay, do if you can.' This sport, had this been their design; for, as I part dwelt so much upon my friend's imagiam an old fox-hunter, I should have turned nation, that at the close of the third act, as and dodged, and have played them a thou- I was thinking of something else, he whissand tricks they had never seen in their pered me in my ear, 'These widows, sir, lives before.' Sir Roger added that if these are the most perverse creatures in the gentlemen had any such intention, they did world. But pray,' says he, 'you that are not succeed very well in it, for I threw them a critic, is the play according to your draout,' says he, at the end of Norfolk-street, matic rules, as you call them? Should your where I doubled the corner, and got shelter people in tragedy always talk to be underin my lodgings before they could imagine stood? Why, there is not a single sentence what was become of me. 'However,' says in this play that I do not know the meanthe knight, ‘if Captain Sentry will make one ing of.' with us to-morrow night, and you will both The fourth act very luckily began before of you call upon me about four o'clock, that I had time to give the old gentleman an anwe may be at the house before it is full, I swer. Well,' says the knight, sitting down will have my own coach in readiness to at- with great satisfaction, 'I suppose we are tend you, for John tells me he has got the now to see Hector's ghost.' 'He then refore-wheels mended.'

newed his attention, and, from time to time The captain, who did not fail to meet me fell a-praising the widow. He made, inthere at the appointed hour, bid Sir Roger deed, a little mistake as to one of her pages, fear nothing, for that he had put on the whom at his first entering he took for As same sword which he made use of at the tyanax; but quickly set himself right in that battle of Steenkirk. Sir Roger's servants, particular, though, at the same time, he and among the rest my old friend the butler, owned he should have been very glad to had, I found, provided themselves with good have seen the little boy, who, says he, must oaken plants, to attend their master upon needs be a very fine child by the account this occasion. When we had placed him that is given of him. Upon Hermione's in his coach, with myself at his left hand, going off with a menace to Pyrrhus, the the captain before him, and his butler at the audience gave a loud clap, to which Sir

Roger added, On my word, a notable • The Distreet Mother.

young baggage!"


As there was a very remarkable silence has prevailed from generation to generaand stillness in the audience during the tion, which gray hairs and tyrannical custom whole action, it was natural for them to continue to support: I hope your spectatotake the opportunity of the intervals be- rial authority will give a seasonable check tween the acts to express their opinion of to the spread of the infection; I mean old the players, and of their respective parts. men's overbearing the strongest sense of Sir Roger, hearing a cluster of them praise their juniors by the mere force of seniority; Orestes, struck in with them, and told so that, for a young man in the bloom of them, that he thought his friend Pylades life, and vigour of age, to give a reasonable was a very sensible man. As they were contradiction to his elders, is esteemed an afterwards applauding Pyrrhus, Sir Roger unpardonable insolence, and regarded as put in a second time. And let me tell reversing the decrees of nature. I am a you,' says he, though he speaks but little, young man, I confess; yet I honour the gray I like the old fellow in whiskers as well as head as much as any one; however, when, any of them.' Captain Sentry, seeing two in company with old men, I hear them or three wags who sat near us, lean with an speak obscurely, or reason preposterously, attentive ear towards Sir Roger, and fear-(into which absurdities, prejudice, pride, or ing lest they should smoke the knight, interest, will sometimes throw the wisest,) plucked him by the elbow, and whispered I count it no crime to rectify their reasomething in his ear, that lasted till the sonings, unless conscience must truckle to opening of the fifth act. The knight was ceremony, and truth fall a sacrifice to comwonderfully attentive to the account which plaisance. The strongest arguments are Orestes gives of Pyrrhus's death, and at enervated, and the brightest evidence disapthe conclusion of it, told me it was such a pears, before those tremendous reasonings bloody piece of work that he was glad it and dazzling discoveries of venerable old was not done upon the stage. Seeing after- age. “You are young, giddy-headed felwards Orestes in his raving fit, he grew lows; you have not yet had experience of the more than ordinarily serious, and took oc- world.” Thus we young folks find our amcasion to moralize (in his way,) upon an bition cramped, and our laziness indulged; evil conscience, adding, that Orestes, in his since while young we have little room to madness, looked as if he saw something. display ourselves; and, when old, the weak

As we were the first that came into the ness of nature must pass for strength of house, so we were the last that went out of sense, and we hope that hoary heads will it; being resolved to have a clear passage raise us above the attacks of contradicfor our old friend, whom we did not care to tion. Now, sir, as you would enliven our venture among the jostling of the crowd. activity in the pursuit of learning, take our Sir Roger went out fully satisfied with his case into consideration; and, with a gloss on entertainment, and we guarded him to his brave Elihu's sentiments, assert the rights lodging in the same manner that we brought of youth, and prevent the pernicious enhim to the playhouse; being highly pleased croachments of age. The generous reasonfor my own part, not only with the per- ings of that gallant youth would adorn your formance of the excellent piece which had paper; and I beg you would insert them, been presented, but with the satisfaction not doubting but that they will give good which it had given to the old man. L. entertainment to the most intelligent of

your readers.'

“So these three men ceased to answer No. 336.] Wednesday, March 26, 1711-12. Job, because he was righteous in his own

eyes. Then was kindled the wrath of Elihu, Clament periisse pudorem

Barachel the Buzite, of the kinCuncti pene patres: ea cum reprehendere coner, dred of Ram: against Job was his wrath Quæ gravis Æsopus, quæ doctus Roscius egit; Vel quia nil rectum, nisi quod placuit sibi, ducunt

kindled, because he justified himself rather Vel quia turpe putant parere minoribus, et quæ than God. Also against his three friends Imberbes didicere, senes perpenda fateri.

was his wrath kindled, because they had Hor. Ep. i Lib. 2. 80.

found no answer, and yet had condemned IMITATED.

Job. Now Elihu had waited till Job had One tragic sentence if I dare deride,


because they were elder than he. With Betterton's grave action dignified,

When Elihu saw there was no answer in Or well-mouth'd Booth with emphasis proclaims, (Though but, perhaps, a muster-roll of names,)

the mouth of these three men, then his How will our fathers rise up in a rage,

wrath was kindled. And Elihu, the son of And swear all shame is lost in George's age ? Barachel the Buzite, answered and said, I You'd think no fools disgrac'd the former reign, Did not some grave examples yet remain,

am young, and ye are very old; wherefore Who scorn a lad should teach his father skill, I was afraid and durst not show you mine And, having once been wrong, will be so still.

opinion. I said, days should speak, and Pope.

multitude of years should teach wisdom. *MR. SPECTATOR,-As you are the daily But there is a spirit in man, and the inspiendeavourer to promote learning and good ration of the Almighty giveth them undersense, I think myself obliged to suggest to standing. Great men are not always wise: your consideration whatever may promote neither do the aged understand judgment. or prejudice them. There is an evil which | Therefore I said, Hearken to me, I also

the son

unto man.

Ire viam quam monstrat eques


will show mine opinion. Behold, I waited the better for it. Lord, what signifies one for your words; I gave ear to your reasons, poor pot of tea, considering the trouble they whilst you searched out what to say. Yea, put me to? Vapours, Mr. Spectator, are I attended unto you: and behold there was terrible things; for, though I am not posnone of you that convinced Job, or that sessed by them myself, I suffer more from answered his words: lest you should say, them than if I were. Now I must beg of We have found out wisdom: God thrusteth you to admonish all such day-goblins to him down, not man. Now he hath not di-make fewer visits, or to be less troublesome rected his words against me: neither will I when they come to one's shop; and to conanswer him with your speeches. They vince them that we honest shop-keepers were amazed: they answered no more; they have something better to do than to cure left off speaking. When I had waited (for folks of the vapours gratis. A young son of they spake not, but stood still and answered mine, a school-boy, is my secretary, so I no more,) I said, I will answer also my hope you will make allowances. I am, sir, part, I also will show mine opinion. For I your constant reader, and very humble am full of matter, the spirit within me con- servant, straineth me. Behold, my belly is as wine

REBECCA the distressed. which hath no vent, it is ready to burst like • March the 22d.'

T. new bottles. I will speak that I may be refreshed: I will open my lips and answer. Let me not, I pray you, accept any man's No. 337.] Thursday, March 27, 1712. person, neither let me give flattering titles

For I know not to give Hatter- Fingit equum tenera docilem cervice magister, ing titles: in so doing my Maker would soon

Hor. Ep. 2. Lib. 1. 64. take me away.”

The jockey trains the young and tender horse

While yet soft-mouth'd, and breeds him to the course. •MR. SPECTATOR, I have formerly read with great satisfaction your paper about idols, and the behaviour of gentle the gentleman who has already given the

I HAVE lately received a third letter from men in those coffee-houses where women officiate; and impatiently waited to see you thoughts seem to be very just and new upon

public two essays upon education. As his take India and China shops into considera- this subject, I shall communicate them to tion: but since you have passed us over in the reader. silence, either that you have not as yet thought us worth your notice, or that the 'Sir, If I had not been hindered by grievances we lie under have escaped your some extraordinary business, I should have discerning eye, I must make my complaints sent you sooner my further thoughts upon to you, and am encouraged to do it because education. You may please to remember, you seem a little at leisure at this present that in my last letter, I endeavoured to give writing. I am, dear sir, one of the top the best reasons that could be urged in China-women about town; and though I favour of a private or public education. say it, keep as good things and receive as Upon the whole, it may perhaps be thought fine company as any over this end of the that I seemed rather inclined to the latter, town, let the other be who she will. In though at the same time I confessed that short, I am in a fair way to be easy, were virtue, which ought to be our first and prinit not for a club of female rakes, who, under cipal care, was more usually acquired in pretence of taking their innocent rambles, the former. forsooth, and diverting the spleen, seldom I intended, therefore, in this letter, to fail to plague me twice or thrice a day, to offer at methods, by which I conceive boys cheapen tea, or buy a skreen. What else might be made to improve in virtue as they should they mean?' as they often repeat it. advance in letters. These rakes are your idle ladies of fashion, 'I know that in most of our public schools who, having nothing to do, employ them-vice is punished and discouraged, whenever selves in tumbling over my ware. One of it is found out: but this is far from being these no-customers (for by the way they sufficient, unless our youth are at the same seldom or never buy any thing,) calls for a time taught to form a right judgment of set of tea-dishes, another for a bason, a third things, and to know what is properly virtue. for my best green tea, and even to the punch- “To this end, whenever they read the bowl, there's scarce a piece in my shop but lives and actions of such men as have been must be displaced, and the whole agree- famous in their generation, it should not be able architecture disordered, so that I can thought enough to make them barely uncompare them to nothing but to the night- derstand so many Greek or Latin sentences; goblins that take a pleasure to overturn but they should be asked their opinion of the disposition of plates and dishes in the such an action or saying, and obliged to give kitchens of your housewifery maids. Well, their reasons why they take it to be good after all this racket and clatter, this is too or bad. By this means they would insensidear, that is their aversion; another thing bly arrive at proper notions of courage, is charming, but not wanted; the ladies are temperance, honour, and justice. cured of the spleen, but I am not a shilling •There must be great care taken how

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