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Contremuit domus

The house astonish'd trembles at the sound.


speare calls a fellow of no mark or likeli- very well, that musical Instruments took hood, which makes me understand the their first rise from the notes of birds, and more fully that since the regular methods other melodious animals; and what,' says of making friends and a fortune by the he, was more natural than for the first mere force of a profession is so very slow ages of mankind to imitate the voice of a and uncertain, a man should take all rea-cat, that lived under the same roof with sonable opportunities, by enlarging a good them?' He added, that the cat had conacquaintance, to court that time and chance tributed more to harmony than any other which is said to happen to every man. animal; as we are not only beholden to her

T. for this wind instrument, but for our string

music in general.

Another virtuoso of my acquaintance will No. 361.] Thursday, April 24, 1712. not allow the cat-call to be older than ThesTartaream intendit vocem, qua protinus omnis

pis, and is apt to think it appeared in the Virg. Æn. vii. 514.

world soon after the ancient comedy; for

which reason it has still a place in our draThe blast Tartarean spreads its notes around;

matic entertainments. Nor must I here

omit what a very curious gentleman, who is I have lately received the following letter lately returned from his travels, has more from a country gentleman:

than once assured me; namely, that there •MR. SPECTATOR,—The night before I was lately dug up at Rome the statue of a left London I went to see a play called The Momus, who holds an instrument in his Humourous Lieutenant. Úpon the rising right hand, very much resembling our of the curtain I was very much surprised modern cat-call. with the great concert of cat-calls which There are others who ascribe this invenwas exhibited that evening, and began to tion to Orpheus, and look upon the cat-call think with myself that I had made a mis- to be one of those instruments which that take, and gone to a music-meeting instead famous musician made use of to draw the of the play-house. It appeared indeed a beasts about him. It is certain that the little odd to me, to see so many persons of roasting of a cat does not call together a quality, of both sexes, assembled together greater audience of that species than this at a kind of caterwauling, for I cannot look instrument, if dexterously played upon in upon that performance to have been any proper time and place. thing better, whatever the musicians them- But, notwithstanding these various and selves might think of it. As I had no ac- learned conjectures, I cannot forbear thinkquaintance in the house to ask questions of, ing that the cat-call is originally a piece and was forced to go out of town early the of English music. Its resemblance to the next morning, I could not learn the secret voice of some of our British songsters, as of this matter, What I would therefore well as the use of it, which is peculiar to desire of you, is, to give me some account our nation, confirms me in this opinion. It of this strange instrument, which I found has at least received great improvements the company called a cat-call; and parti- among us, whether we consider the instrucularly to let me know whether it be a ment itself, or those several quavers and piece of music lately come from Italy. For graces which are thrown into the playing my own part to be free with you, I would of it. Every one might be sensible of this rather hear an English fiddle; though I who heard that remarkable overgrown catdurst not show my dislike whilst I was in call which was placed in the centre of the the play-house, it being my chance to sit pit, and presided over all the rest at the the

very next man to one of the performers. celebrated performance lately exhibited at I am, sir, your most affectionate friend and Drury-lane. servant, JOHN SHALLOW, Esq.' Having said thus much concerning the

origin of the cat-call, we are in the next In compliance with Squire Shallow's re- place to consider the use of it. The catquest, I design this paper as a dissertation call exerts itself to most advantage in the upon the cat-call. In order to make myself British theatre. It very much improves a master of the subject, I purchased one the the sound of nonsense, and often goes along beginning of last week, though not without with the voice of the actor who pronounces great difficulty, being informed at two or it, as the violin or harpsichord accompathree toy-shops that the players had lately nies the Italian recitativo. bought them all up. I have since consulted It has often supplied the place of the many learned antiquaries in relation to its ancient chorus, in the words of Mr. ***. In original, and find them very much divided short, a bad poet has as great an antipathy among themselves upon that particular. A to a cat-call as many people have to a real fellow of the Royal Society who is my good cat. friend, and a great proficient in the mathe

Mr. Collier in his ingenious essay upon matical part of music, concludes, from the music, has the following passage: simplicity of its make, and the uniformity “I believe it is possible to invent an inof its sound, that the cat-call is older than strument that shall have a quite contrary any of the inventions of Jubal. He observes effect to those martial ones now in use; an

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instrument that shall sink the spirits and of private families, or the clubs of honest shake the nerves, and curdle the blood, fellows. I cannot imagine how a Spectator and inspire despair, and cowardice, and can be supposed to do his duty, without consternation, at a surprising rate. 'Tis frequent resumption of such subjects as probable the roaring of lions, the warbling concern our health, the first thing to be of cats and screech-owls, together with a regarded, if we have a mind to relish any mixture of the howling of dogs, judiciously thing else. It would, therefore, very well imitated and compounded, might go a great become your spectatorial vigilance, to give way in this invention. Whether such anti- it in orders to your officer for inspecting music as this might not be of service in a signs, that in his march he would look into camp, I shall leave to the military men to the itinerants who deal in provisions, and consider.'

inquire where they buy their several wares. What this learned gentleman supposes in Ever since the decease of Colly-Molly-Puff, speculation, I have known actually verified of agreeable and noisy memory, I cannot in practice. The cat-call has struck a damp say I have observed any thing sold in carts, into generals, and frighted heroes off the or carried by horse, or ass, or, in fine, in stage. At the first sound of it I have seen any moving market, which is not perished a crowned head tremble, and a princess or putrefied; witness the wheel-barrows of fall into fits. The humourous lieutenant rotten raisins, almonds, figs, and currants, himself could not stand it; nay, I am told which you see vended by a merchant that even Almanzor looked like a mouse, dressed in a second-hand suit of a foot and trembled at the voice of this terrifying soldier. You should consider that a child instrument.


be poisoned for the worth of a farthing; As it is of a dramatic nature, and pecu. but except his poor parents send him to one liarly appropriated to the stage, I can by certain doctor in town, they can have no no means approve the thought of that angry advice for him under a guinea. When poilover, who, after an unsuccessful pursuit of sons are thus cheap, and medicines thus some years, took leave of his mistress in a dear, how can you be negligent in inspectserenade of cat-calls.

ing what we eat and drink, or take no I must conclude this paper with the ac- notice of such as the above-mentioned citicount I have lately received of an ingenious zens, who have been so serviceable to us artist, who has long studied this instrument, of late in that particular? It was a custom and is very well versed in all the rules of among the old Romans, to do him particuthe drama. He teaches to play on it by lar honours who had saved the life of a book, and to express by it the whole art of citizen. How much more does the world criticism. He has his bass and his treble owe to those who prevent the death of mulcat-call; the former for tragedy, the latter titudes! As these men deserve well of your for comedy; only in tragi-comedies they office, so such as act to the detriment of may both play together in concert. He has our health, you ought to represent to thema particular squeak, to denote the violation selves and their fellow-subjects in the colours of each of the unities, and has different which they deserve to wear. I think it sounds to show whether he aims at the poet would be for the public good, that all who or the player. In short, he teaches the vend wines should be under oath in that smut-note, the fustian-note, the stupid-note, behalf. The chairman at the quarter-sesand has composed a kind of air that may sions should inform the country, that the serve as an act-tune to an incorrigible play, vintner who mixes wine to his customers, and which takes in the whole compass of shall (upon proof that the drinker thereof the cat-call.

L. died within a year and a day after taking

it,) be deemed guilty of wilful murder, and

the jury shall be instructed to inquire and No. 352.] Friday, April 25, 1712.

present such delinquents accordingly. It

is no mitigation of the crime, nor will it be Laudibus arguitur vini vinosus

conceived that it can be brought in chanceHor. Ep. xix. Lib. 1. 6.

medley, or man-slaughter, upon proof that He praises wine; and we conclude from thence,

it shall appear wine joined to wine, or right He lik'd his glass, on his own evidence.

Herefordshire poured into Port O Port: but “Temple, April 24. his selling it for one thing, knowing it to be 'MR. SPECTATOR,--Several of my friends another, must justly bear the foresaid guilt were this morning got over a dish of tea in of wilful murder: for that he, the said very good health, though we had celebrated vintner, did an unlawful act willingly in the yesterday with more glasses that we could false mixture, and is therefore with equity have dispensed with, had we not been be liable to all the pains to which a man would holden to Brooke and Hellier. In gratitude, be, if it were proved that he designed only therefore, to those citizens, I am, in the to run a man through the arm whom he name of the company, to accuse you of great whipped through the lungs. This is my negligence in overlooking their merit, who third year at the Temple, and this is, or have imported true and generous wine, and should be, law. An ill intention, well proved, taken care that it should not be adulterated should meet with no alleviation, because it by the retailers before it comes to the tables / outran itself. There cannot be too great

severity used against the injustice as well | has from a great wit, governed by as great as cruelty of those who play with mer's prudence, and both adorned with innocence, lives, by preparing liquors whose nature, the happiness of always being ready to disfor aught they know, may be noxious when cover her real thoughts. She has many of mixed, though innocent when apart: and us, who now are her admirers; but her Brooke and Hellier, who have insured our treatment of us is so just and proportioned safety at our meals, and driven jealousy to our merit towards her, and what we are from our cups in conversation, deserve the in ourselves, that I protest to you I have custom and thanks of the whole town; and neither jealousy nor hatred towards my it is your duty to remind them of the obli- rivals. Such is her goodness, and the acgation. I am, sir, your humble servant, knowledgment of every man who admires •TOM POTTLE.' her, that he thinks he ought to believe she

will take him who best deserves her. I •MR. SPECTATOR-I am a person who will not say that this peace among us is not was long immured in a college, read much, owing to self-love, which prompts each to saw little; so that I knew no more of the think himself the best deserver. I think world than what a lecture or view of the there is something uncommon and worthy map taught me. By this means I improved of imitation in this lady's character. If you in my study, but became unpleasant in con- will please to print my letter, you will versation. By conversing generally with oblige the little fraternity of happy rivals, the dead, I grew almost unfit for the society and in a more particular manner, sir, your

I of the living; so by a long confinement 1 most humble servant, contracted an ungainly aversion to conver

WILL CYMON.' sation, and ever discoursed with pain to myself, and little entertainment to others. At last I was in some measure made sensi- No. 363.] Saturday, April 26, 1712. ble of my failing, and the mortification of

-Crudelis ubique never being spoken to, or speaking, unless the discourse ran upon books, put me upon

Luctus, ubique pavor, et plurima mortis imago.

Virg. Æn. ii. 368. forcing myself among men. I immediately

All parts resound with tumults, plaints, and fears, affected the politest company, by the fre- And grisly Death in sundry shapes appears.--Dryder. quent use of which, I hoped to wear off the

Milton has shown a wonderful art in rust I had contracted: but, by an uncouth imitation of men, used to act in public, I describing that variety of passions which got no further than to discover I had a mind of the commandment that had been given

arise in our first parents upon the breach to appear a finer thing than I really was. Such I was, and such was my condition, the triumph of their guilt, through remorse,

them. We see them gradually passing from when I became an ardent lover, and pas- shame, despair, contrition, prayer and hope, sionate admirer of the beauteous Belinda. Then it was that I really began to improve the end of the tenth book they are repre

to a perfect and complete repentance. At This passion changed all my fears and diffidences in my general behaviour to the sole sented as prostrating themselves upon the concern of pleasing her. I had not now to ground, and watering the earth with their study the action of a gentleman; but love tears: to which the poet joins this beautiful possessing all my thoughts, made me truly

, penitential prayers on the very place where

circumstance, that they offered up their be the thing I had a mind to appear. My their judge appeared to them when he prothoughts grew free and generous; and the

nounced their sentence: ambition to be agreeable to her I admired, produced in my carriage a faint similitude - They forthwith to the place of that disengaged manner of my Belinda.

Repairing where he judg‘d them, prostrate fell

Before him reverent, and both confess'd The way we are in at present is, that she Humbly their faults, and pardon begg'd, with tears sees my passion, and sees I at present for Watering the ground. bear speaking of it through prudential re- There is a beauty of the same kind in a gards. This respect to her she returns with tragedy of Sophocles, where Edipus, after much civility, and makes my value for her having put out his own eyes, instead of as little misfortune to me as is consistent breaking his neck from the palace battlewith discretion. She sings very charmingly, ments, (which furnishes so elegant an enand is readier to do so at my request, be- tertainment for our English audience) decause she knows I love her. She will dance sires that he may be conducted to Mount with me rather than another for the same Cithæron, in order to end his life in that reason. My fortune must alter from what very place where he was exposed in his it is, before I can speak my heart to her: infancy, and where he should then have and her circumstances are not considerable died, had the will of his parents been exeenough to make up for the narrowness of cuted. * mine. But I write to you now, only to give As the author never fails to give a poetical you the character of Belinda, as a woman that has address enough to demonstrate a gratitude to her lover, without giving him folio, hut added on the republication of the papers in

* This paragraph was not in the original paper in hopes of success in his passion, Belinda volumes.



turn to his sentiments, he describes in the eclipse, a bright cloud descends in the beginning of this book the acceptance which western quarter of the heavens, filled with these their prayers met with, in a short a host of angels, and more luminous than allegory formed upon that beautiful passage the sun itself. The whole theatre of nature in holy writ, “And another angel came and is darkened, that this glorious machine may stood at the altar, having a golden censer; appear with all its lustre and magnificence. and there was given unto him much incense,

-Why in the east that he should offer it with the prayers of Darkness ere day's mid-course ? and morning light all saints upon the golden altar, which was More orient in that western cloud that draws before the throne: and the smoke of the

O'er the blue firmament a radiant white,

And slow descends with something heavenly fraught?" incense, which came with the prayers of He err'd not, for by this the heavenly bands the saints, ascended up before God."'* Down from a sky of jasper lighted now

In Paradise, and on a hill made halt;
-To heaven their prayer

A glorious apparition.-
Flew up, nor miss'd the way, by envious winds
Blown vagabond or frustrate; in they pass'd

I need not observe how properly this auDimensionless through heav'nly doors, then clad thor, who always suits his parts to the With incense, where the golden altar fum'd

actors whom he introduces, has employed By their great Intercessor, came in sight Before the Father's throne.

Michael in the expulsion of our first parents We have the same thought expressed a from Paradise. The archangel on this ocsecond time in the intercession of the Mes- casion neither appears in his proper shape,

nor in the familiar manner with which Řasiah, which is conceived in very emphatical phael

, the sociable

spirit, entertained the sentiments and expressions.

father of mankind before the fall. His perAmong the poetical parts of Scripture, which Milton has so finely wrought into son, his port, and behaviour, are suitable to this part of his narration, I must not omit a spirit of the highest rank, and exquisitely

described in the following passage: that wherein Ezekiel, speaking of the an

Th' archangel soon drew nigh, gels who appeared to him in a vision adds,

Not in his shape celestial; but as man that every one had four faces, and that

Clad to meet man: over his lucid arms their whole bodies, and their backs, and A military vest of purple flow'd, their hands, and their wings, were full of

Livelier than Melibaan, or the grain

Of Sarra, worn by kings and heroes old, eyes round about:

In time of truce: Iris had dipt the woof:
-The cohort bright

His starry helm, unbuckled, show'd him prime
Or watchful cherubim, four faces each

In manhood where youth ended; by his side, Had, like a double Janus, all their shape

As in a glist'ring zodiac, hung the sword, Spangled with eyes.

Satan's dire dread, and in his hand the spear.

Adam bowd low; he kingly from his state The assembling of all the angels of hea- Inclin'd not, but his coming thus declared. ven, to hear the solemn decree passed upon Eve's complaint, upon hearing that she man, is represented in very lively ideas. was to be removed from the garden of ParaThe Almighty is here described as remem- dise, is wonderfully beautiful. The sentibering mercy in the midst of judgment, and ments are not only proper to the subject, commanding Michael to deliver his mes but have something in them particularly sage in the mildest terms, lest the spirit of soft and womanish: man, which was already broken with the

• Must I then leave thee, Paradise ? Thus leave sense of his guilt and misery, should fail Thee, native soil, these happy walks and shades before him:

Fit haunt of gods, where I had hope to spend

Quiet, though sad, the respite of that day
-Yet lest they fain

That must be mortal to us both? O flowers,
At the sad sentence rigorously urg'd,

That never will in other climate grow, For I behold them softend, and with tears

My early visitation, and my last Bewailing their excess, all terror hide.'

At even, which I bred up with tender hand

From the first opening bud, and gave you names ! The conference of Adam and Eve is full

Who now shall rear you to the sun, or rank of moving sentiments. Upon their going Your tribes, and water from th' ambrosial fount? abroad, after the melancholy night which

Thee, lastly, nuptial bower, by me adorn'd

With whai to sight or smell was sweet: from thee they had passed together, they discover the How shall I part ? and whither wander down lion and the eagle, each of them pursuing Into a lower world, to this, obscure their prey towards the eastern gates of

And wild ? How shall we breathe in other air

accustomed to immortal fruits ?' Paradíse. There is a double beauty in this incident, not only as it presents great and

Adam's speech abounds with thoughts just omens, which are always agreeable in which are equally moving, but of a more poetry, but as it expresses that enmity masculine and elevated turn. Nothing can which was now produced in the animal be conceived more sublime and poetical creation. The poet, to show the like changes than the following passage in it: in nature, as well as to grace his fable with This most afflicts me, that departing hence

As from his face I shall be hid, deprived a noble prodigy, represents the sun in an

His blessed count'nance; here I could frequent, eclipse. This particular incident has like

With worship, place by place, where he vouchsar'd wise a fine effect upon the imagination of Presence divine; and to my sons relate, the reader, in regard to what follows; for

On this mount he appear'd, under this tree

Stood visible, among these pines bis voice at the same time that the sun is under an

I heard; here with him at this fountain talk'd;

So many grateful altars I would rear * Rev. viii. 3, 4.

Of grassy turf, and pile up every stone

Less pure,

Of lustre from the brook, in memory

he is intent upon this vision, is imagined Or monuments to ages, and thereon Offer sweet-smelling gums and flow'rs.

with great delicacy. I must not omit the In yonder nether world, where shall I seek

description of the loose female troop, who His bright appearances, or footsteps trace?

seduced the sons of God, as they are called For though I fled him angry, yet recallid To life prolong'd and promis'd race, I now

in Scripture. Gladly behold though but his utmost skirts

“For that fair female troop thou saw'st, that seem'd of glory, and far off his steps adore.'

Of goddesses, so blythe, so smooth, so gay, The angel afterwards leads Adam to the

Yet empty of all good, wherein consists

Woman's domestic honour, and chief praise; highest mount of Paradise, and lays before Bred only and completed to the taste him a whole hemisphere, as a proper stage a

Of lustful appetence, to sing, to dance, for those visions which were to be repre

To dress, and troule the tongue, and roll the eye;

To these that sober race of men, whose lives sented on it. I have before observed how Religious titled them the sons of God, the plan of Milton's poem is in many par

Shall yield up all their virtue, all their fame, ticulars greater than that of the Iliad or

Ignobly, to the trains and to the smiles

Of those fair atheists.' Æneid. Virgil's hero, in the last of these poems, is entertained with a sight of all

The next vision is of a quite contrary those who are to descend from him; but nature, and filled with the horrors of war. though that episode is justly admired as one Adam at the sight of it melts into tears, and of the noblest designs in the whole Æneid, breaks out into that passionate speech, every one must allow that this of Milton is

-O what are these! of a much higher nature. Adam's vision is Death's ministers, not men, who thus deal death

Inhumanly to men, and multiply not confined to any particular tribe of man- Ten thousandfold the sin of him who slew kind, but extends to the whole species. His brother: for of whom such massacre In this great review which Adam takes

Make they, but of their brethren, men of men? of all his sons and daughters, the first ob- Milton to keep up an agreeable variety in jects he is presented with exhibit to him his visions, after having raised in the mind the story of Cain and Abel, which is drawn of his reader the several ideas of terror together with much closeness and propriety which are conformable to the description of expression. The curiosity and natural of war, passes on to those softer images of horror which arises in Adam at the sight triumphs and festivals, in that vision of of the first dying man is touched with great lewdness and luxury which ushers in the beauty.

flood. But have I now seen death? Is this the way

As it is visible that the poet had his eye I must return to native dust? O sight

upon Ovid's account of the universal deluge, Of terror foul, and ugly to behold!

the reader may observe with how much Horrid to think, how horrible to feel!

judgment he has avoided every thing that is The second vision sets before him the redundant or puerile in the Latin poet. We image of death in a great variety of ap- do not here see the wolf swimming among pearances. The angel, to give him a gene- the sheep, nor any of those wanton imaginaral idea of those effects which his guilt had tions which Seneca found fault with, as unbrought upon his posterity, places before becoming this great catastrophe of nature, him a large hospital, or lazar-house, filled If our poet has imitated that verse in which with persons lying under all kinds of mortal Ovid tells us that there was nothing but sea, diseases. How finely has the poet told us and that this sea had no shore to it, he has that the sick persons languished under lin- not set the thought in such a light as to ingering and incurable distempers, by an apt cur the censure which critics have passed and judicious use of such imaginary beings upon it. The latter part of that verse in as those I mentioned in my last Saturday's Ovid is idle and superfluous, but just and paper:

beautiful in Milton, Dire was the tossing, deep the groans; Despair

Jamque mare et tellus nullum discrimen habebant; Tended the sick, busy from couch to couch;

Nil nisi pontus erat; deerant quoque littora ponto. And over them triumphant Death his dart

Ovid. Met. i. 291. Shook, but delay'd to strike, tho' oft invok'd

Now seas and earth were in confusion lost; With vows, as their chief good and final hope.

A world of waters, and without a coast.-Dryden. The passion which likewise rises in

-Sea cover'd sea,
Adam on this occasion is very natural: Sea without shore.-
Sight so deform what heart of rock could long

In Milton the former part of the descripDry-ey'd behold ? Adam could not, but wept,

tion does not forestall the latter. How much Though not of woman born; compassion quell'd His best of man, and gave him up to tears.

more great and solemn on this occasion is The discourse between the angel and that which follows in our English poet, Adam which follows, abounds with noble

And in their palaces, morals.

Where luxury late reign'd, sea-monsters whelp'd

And stabled As there is nothing more delightful in poetry than a contrast and opposition of than that in Ovid, where we are told that incidents, the author, after this melancholy the sea-calf lay in those places where the prospect of death and sickness, rajses up a goats were used to browse! The reader scene of mirth, love, and jollity. The secret may find several other parallel passages in pleasure that steals into Adam's heart, as the Latin and English description of the


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