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this last winter, and is supposed to receive favours from one of the actresses.
When the day grows too busy for these gentlemen to enjoy any longer the pleasures of their dishabille, with any manner of confidence, they give place to men who have business or good sense in their faces, and come to the coffee-house either to transact affairs, or enjoy conversation. The persons to whose behaviour and discourse I have most regard, are such as are between these two sorts of men; such as have not spirits too active to be happy and well pleased in a private condition, nor complexions too warm to make them neglect the duties and relations of life. Of these sort of men consist the worthier part of mankind; of these are all good fathers, generous brothers, sincere friends, and faithful subjects. Their entertainments are derived rather from reason than imagination; which is the cause that there is no impatience or instability in their speech or action. You see in their countenances they are at home, and in quiet possession of the present instant as it passes, without desiring to quicken it by gratifying any passion, or prosecuting any new design. These are the men formed for society, and those little communities which we express by the word neighbourhood.
wise in his sentences, and are no sooner sat down at their own tables, but they hope or fear, rejoice or despond, as they saw him do at the coffee-house. In a word, every man is Eubulus as soon as his back is turned.
Having here given an account of the several reigns that succeed each other from day-break till dinner-time, I shall mention the monarchs of the afternoon on another occasion, and shut up the whole series of them with the history of Tom the Tyrant;* who, as the first minister of the coffee-house, takes the government upon him between the hours of eleven and twelve at night, and gives his orders in the most arbitrary manner to the servants below him, as to the disposition of liquors, coals, and cinders.
inquiries of their landlord the upholsterer, relating to their manners and conversation, as also concerning the remarks which they made in this country: for, next to the forming a right notion of such strangers, I should be desirous of learning what ideas they have conceived of us.
Friday, April 27, 1711. Nunquam aliud natura, aliud sapientia dixit. Juv. Sat. xiv. 321. Good taste and nature always speak the same. WHEN the four Indian kings were in this country, about a twelvemonth ago, I often mixed with the rabble and followed them a whole day together, being wonderfully struck with the sight of every thing that is new or uncommon. I have, since their deThe coffee-house is the place of ren-parture, employed a friend to make many dezvous to all that live near it, who are thus turned to relish calm and ordinary life. Eubulus presides over the middle hours of the day, when this assembly of men meet together. He enjoys a great fortune handsomely, without launching into expense; and exerts many noble and useful qualities, without appearing in any public employment. His wisdom and knowledge are serviceable to all that think fit to make use of them; and he does the office of a counsel, a judge, an executor, and a friend to all his acquaintance, not only without the profits which attend such offices, but also without the deference and homage which are usually paid to them. The giving of thanks is displeasing to him. The greatest gratitude you can show him, is to let him see you are a better man for his services; and that you are as ready to oblige others, as he is to oblige you.
In the private exigencies of his friends, he lends at legal value considerable sums which he might highly increase by rolling in the public stocks. He does not consider in whose hands his money will improve most, but where it will do most good.
The upholsterer finding my friend very inquisitive about these his lodgers, brought him some time since a little bundle of papers, which he assured him were written by king Sa Ga Yean Qua Rash Tow, and, as he supposes, left behind by some mistake. These papers are now translated, and contain abundance of very odd observations, which I find this little fraternity of kings made during their stay in the isle of Great Britain. I shall present my reader with a short specimen of them in this paper, and may perhaps communicate more to him hereafter. In the article of London are the following words, which without doubt are meant of the church of St. Paul:
"On the most rising part of the town there stands a huge house, big enough to contain the whole nation of which I am king. Our good brother E Tow O Koam, Eubulus has so great an authority in his king of the Rivers, is of opinion it was made little diurnal audience, that when he shakes by the hands of that great God to whom it his head at any piece of public news, they is consecrated. The kings of Granajah and all of them appear dejected; and on the of the Six Nations believe that it was contrary, go home to their dinners with a created with the earth, and produced_on good stomach and cheerful aspect when the same day with the sun and moon. Eubulus seems to intimate that things go for my own part, by the best information well. Nay, their veneration towards him that I could get of this matter, I am apt to is so great, that when they are in other company they speak and act after him: are
*The waiter of that coffee-house, frequently nicknamed Sir Thomas.
think that this prodigious pile was fashioned | pick out from the discourse of our interpreinto the shape it now bears by several tools ters; which we put together as well as we and instruments, of which they have a won- could, being able to understand but here derful variety in this country. It was pro-and there a word of what they said, and bably at first a huge misshapen rock, that afterwards making up the meaning of it grew upon the top of the hill, which the among ourselves. The men of the country natives of the country (after having cut it are very cunning and ingenious in handiinto a kind of regular figure) bored and craft works, but withal so very idle, that hollowed with incredible pains and indus- we often saw young, lusty, rawboned feltry, till they had wrought in it all those lows, carried up and down the streets in beautiful vaults and caverns into which it is little covered rooms, by a couple of porters, divided at this day. As soon as this rock who are hired for that service. Their dress was thus curiously scooped to their liking, is likewise very barbarous, for they almost a prodigious number of hands must have strangle themselves about the neck, and been employed in chipping the outside of bind their bodies with several ligatures, it, which is now as smooth as the surface of that we are apt to think are the occasion a pebble; and is in several places hewn out of several distempers among them, which into pillars that stand like the trunks of so our country is entirely free from. Instead many trees bound about the top with gar- of those beautiful feathers with which we lands of leaves. It is probable that when adorn our heads, they often buy up a monthis great work was begun, which must strous bush of hair, which covers their have been many hundred years ago, there heads, and falls down in a large fleece bewas some religion among this people; for low the middle of their backs; and with they give it the name of a temple, and have which they walk up and down the streets, a tradition that it was designed for men to and are as proud of it as if it was of their pay their devotions in. And indeed there own growth. are several reasons which make us think that the natives of this country had formerly among them some sort of worship; for they set apart every seventh day as sacred: but upon my going into one of these holy houses on that day, I could not observe any circumstance of devotion in their behaviour. There was indeed a man in black, who was mounted above the rest, and seemed to utter something with a great deal of vehemence; but as for those underneath him, instead of paying their worship to the deity of the place, they were most of them bowing and curtseying to one another, and a considerable number of them fast asleep.
The queen of the country appointed two men to attend us, that had enough of our language to make themselves understood in some few particulars. But we soon perceived these two were great enemies to one another, and did not always agree in the same story. We could make shift to gather out of one of them, that this island was very much infested with a monstrous kind of animals, in the shape of men, called whigs, and he often told us, that he hoped we should meet with none of them in our way, for that if we did, they would be apt to knock us down for being kings.
Our other interpreter used to talk very much of a kind of animal called a tory, that was as great a monster as the whig, and would treat us as ill for being foreigners. These two creatures, it seems are born with a secret antipathy to one another, and engage when they meet as naturally as the elephant and the rhinoceros. But as we saw none of either of these species, we are apt to think that our guides deceived us with misrepresentations and fictions, and amused us with an account of such monsters as are not really in their country.
'These particulars we made a shift to
'We were invited to one of their public diversions, where we hoped to have seen the great men of their country running down a stag, or pitching a bar, that we might have discovered who were the persons of the greatest abilities among them; but instead of that, they conveyed us into a huge room lighted up with abundance of candles, where this lazy people sat still above three hours to see several feats of ingenuity performed by others, who it seems were paid for it.
'As for the women of the country, not being able to talk with them, we could only make our remarks upon them at a distance. They let the hair of their heads grow to a great length; but as the men make a great show with heads of hair that are none of their own, the women, who they say have very fine heads of hair, tie it up in a knot, and cover it from being seen. The women look like angels, and would be more beautiful than the sun, were it not for little black spots that are apt to break out in their faces, and sometimes rise in very odd figures. I have observed that those little blemishes wear off very soon; but when they disappear in one part of the face, they are very apt to break out in another, insomuch that I have seen a spot upon the forehead in the afternoon, which was upon the chin in the morning.'
The author then proceeds to show the absurdity of breeches and petticoats, with many other curious observations, which I shall reserve for another occasion. I cannot however conclude this paper without taking notice, that amidst these wild remarks there now and then appears something very reasonable. I cannot likewise forbear observing, that we are all guilty in some measure of the same narrow way of thinking which we meet with in this abstract of the
Indian journal, when we fancy the customs, I desire of multiplying our species, and that dresses, and manners of other countries are ridiculous and extravagant, if they do not resemble those of our own.
is the polite Sir George Etheridge; if I understand what the lady would be at, in the play called She would if She could. Other poets have here and there given an intimation that there is this design, under all the disguises and affectations which a lady may put on; but no author, except this, has made sure work of it, and put the imaginations of the audience upon this one purpose from the beginning to the end of the comedy. It has always fared accordingly; for whether it be that all who go to this piece would if they could, or that the innocents go to it, to guess only what she would if she could, the play has always been well received.
No. 51.] Saturday, April 28, 1711. Torquet ab obscœnis jam nunc sermonibus aurem. Hor. Lib. 2. Ep. 1. 127. He from the taste obscene reclaims our youth.-Pope. MR. SPECTATOR,-My fortune, quality, and person, are such as render me as conspicuous as any young woman in town. It is in my power to enjoy it in all its vanities, but I have from a very careful education, contracted a great aversion to the forward air and fashion which is practised in all It lifts a heavy empty sentence, when public places and assemblies. I attribute there is added to it a lascivious gesture of this very much to the style and manner of body; and when it is too low to be raised our plays. I was last night at the Funeral,* even by that, a flat meaning is enlivened by where a confident lover in the play speak-making it a double one. Writers who want ing of his mistress, cries out "Oh that genius, never fail of keeping this secret in Harriet! to fold these arms about the waist reserve, to create a laugh or raise a clap. of that beauteous, struggling, and at last I, who know nothing of women but from yielding fair!" Such an image as this ought seeing plays, can give great guesses at the by no means to be presented to a chaste and whole structure of the fair sex, by being regular audience. I expect your opinion of innocently placed in the pit, and insulted this sentence, and recommend to your con- by the petticoats of their dancers; the adsideration, as a Spectator, the conduct of vantages of whose pretty persons are a the stage at present with relation to chas-great help to a dull play. When a poet tity and modesty. I am, Sir, your constant
reader and well-wisher.
The complaint of this young lady is so just, that the offence is gross enough to have displeased persons who cannot pretend to that delicacy and modesty, of which she is mistress. But there is a great deal to be said in behalf of an author. If the audience would but consider the difficulty of keeping up a sprightly dialogue for five acts together, they would allow a writer, when he wants wit, and cannot please any otherwise, to help it out with a little smuttiness. I will answer for the poets, that no one ever writ bawdry, for any other reason but dearth of invention. When the author cannot strike out of himself any more of that which he has superior to those who make up the bulk of his audience, his natural recourse is to that which he has in common with them; and a description which gratifies a sensual appetite will please, when the author has nothing about him to delight a refined imagination. It is to such a poverty we must impute this and all other sentences in plays, which are of this kind, and which are commonly termed luscious expressions. This expedient to supply the deficiencies of wit, has been used more or less by most
flags in writing lusciously, a pretty girl can move lasciviously, and have the same good this case use their audiences, as dull paraconsequence for the author. Dull poets in sites do their patrons; when they cannot longer divert them with their wit or huwhich is agreeable to their temper, though mour, they bait their ears with something below their understanding. Apicius cannot resist being pleased, if you give him an account of a delicious meal; or Clodius, if you describe a wanton beauty: though at the clinations in them, no men are better judges same time, if you do not awake those inof what is just and delicate in conversation. But as I have before observed, it is easier to talk to the man than to the man of sense.
It is remarkable that the writers of least
learning are best skilled in the luscious wonders in this kind; and we are obliged way. The poetesses of the age have done to the lady who writ Ibrahim,† for introtion, when the emperor throws his handducing a preparatory scene to the very ackerchief as a signal for his mistress to follow him into the most retired part of the seraglio. It must be confessed his Turkish majesty went off with a good air, but mewaited without. This ingenious gentlewothought we made but a sad figure who man, in this piece of bawdry, refined upon an author of the same sex, who, in the Rover, makes a country 'squire strip to his Holland drawers. For Blunt is disappoint* The Funeral, or Grief Alamode, a comedy by Sired, and the emperor is understood to go on to the utmost. The pleasantry of stripping
of the authors who have succeeded on the stage; though I know but one who has professedly writ a play upon the basis of the
Richard Steele.-Much to the honour of Sir Richard, he attended to the letter of his fair correspondent, and in a subsequent edition of his comedy, expunged all the obnoxious passages.
almost naked has been since practised | faithful, and honest, may, at the same time, (where indeed it should have been begun)|have wit, humour, mirth, good breeding, very successfully at Bartholomew fair.* and gallantry. While he exerts these latIt is not to be here omitted, that in one ter qualities, twenty occasions might be inof the above-mentioned female composi-vented to show he is master of the other tions, the Rover is very frequently sent on noble virtues. Such characters would smite the same errand; as I take it, above once and reprove the heart of a man of sense, every act. This is not wholly unnatural; when he is given up to his pleasures. He for, they say, the men authors draw them- would see he has been mistaken all this selves in their chief characters, and the while, and be convinced that a sound conwomen writers may be allowed the same stitution and an innocent mind, are the true liberty. Thus, as the male wit gives his ingredients for becoming and enjoying life. hero a great fortune, the female gives her All men of true taste would call a man of heroine a good gallant at the end of the wit, who should turn his ambition this way, play. But, indeed, there is hardly a play a friend and benefactor to his country; but one can go to, but the hero or fine gentle- I am at a loss what name they would give man of it struts off upon the same account, him, who makes use of his capacity for and leaves us to consider what good office he contrary purposes. has put us to, or to employ ourselves as we please. To be plain, a man who frequents plays would have a very respectful notion No. 52.] Monday, April 30, 1711. of himself, were he to recollect how often he has been used as a pimp to ravishing tyrants, or successful rakes. When the actors make their exit on this good occasion, the ladies are sure to have an examining glance from the pit, to see how they relish what passes; and a few lewd fools are very ready to employ their talents upon the composure or freedom of their looks. Such incidents as these make some ladies wholly absent themselves from the playhouse; and others never miss the first day of a play, lest it should prove too luscious to admit their going with any countenance to it on
Omnes ut tecum meritis pro talibus annos
Virg. Æn. i. 78.
AN ingenious correspondent, like a sprightly wife, will always have the last word. I did not think my last letter to the deformed fraternity would have occasioned any answer, especially since I had promised them so sudden a visit; but as they think they cannot show too great a veneration for my person, they have already sent me up an answer. As to the proposal of a marriage between myself and the match
it; which is, that all the society will expect to be acquainted with her; and who can be where she may have so much choice? I sure of keeping a woman's heart long, am the more alarmed at this, because the lady seems particularly smitten with men
of their make.
I believe I shall set my heart upon her; and think never the worse of my mistress for an epigram a smart fellow writ, as he thought, against her; it does but the more At the same time I cannot but discover that his malice is
If men of wit, who think fit to write for the stage, instead of this pitiful way of giv-less Hecatissa, I have but one objection to ing delight, would turn their thoughts upon raising it from such good natural impulses as are in the audience, but are choaked up by vice and luxury, they would not only please, but befriend us at the same time. If a man had a mind to be new in his way of writing, might not he who is represented as a fine gentleman, though he betrays the honour and bed of his neighbour and friend, and lies with half the women in the play, and is at last rewarded with her of the best character in it; I say, upon giving the co-recommend her to me. medy another cast, might not such a one divert the audience quite as well, if at the stolen from Martial: catastrophe he were found out for a traitor, and met with contempt accordingly? There is seldom a person devoted to above one darling vice at a time, so that there is room enough to catch at men's hearts to their good and advantage, if the poets will attempt it with the honesty which becomes their character.
'Tacta places, audita places, si non videare,
'Your letter to us we have received, as a signal mark of your favour and brotherly affection. We shall be heartily glad to see There is no man who loves his bottle or your short face in Oxford: and since the his mistress, in a manner so very aban- wisdom of our legislature has been immordoned, as not to be capable of relishing an talized in your speculations, and our persoagreeable character, that is in no way anal deformities in some sort by you recorded slave to either of those pursuits. A man that is temperate, generous, valiant, chaste, *The appearance of Lady Mary, a rope-dancer at Bartholomew fair, gave occasion to this proper animad
to all posterity; we hold ourselves in gratitude bound to receive, with the highest respect, all such persons as for their extraor dinary merit you shall think fit, from time to time, to recommend unto the board. As
for the Pictish damsel, we have an easy | face betwixt them; and this my worthy chair prepared at the upper end of the predecessor, Mr. Sergeant Chin, always table; which we doubt not but she will maintained to be no more than the true grace with a very hideous aspect, and oval proportion between man and wife. much better become the seat in the native But as this may be a new thing to you, who and unaffected uncomeliness of her person, have hitherto had no expectations from than with all the superficial airs of the women, I shall allow you what time you pencil, which (as you have very ingeniously think fit to consider on it; not without some observed) vanish with a breath, and the hope of seeing at last your thoughts heremost innocent adorer may deface the shrine upon subjoined to mine, and which is an with a salutation, and in the literal sense of honour much desired by, sir, your assured our poets, snatch and imprint his balmy friend, and most humble servant, kisses, and devour her melting lips. In short, the only faces of the Pictish kind that will endure the weather, must be of
'HUGH GOBLIN, Præses.'
The following letter has not much in it, but as it is written in my own praise, I cannot from my heart suppress it.
'SIR,-You proposed in your Spectator of last Tuesday, Mr. Hobbs's hypothesis for solving that very odd phænomenon of laughter. You have made the hypothesis valuable by espousing it yourself; for had it continued Mr. Hobbs's, nobody would have minded it. Now here this perplexed case arises. A certain company laughed very heartily upon the reading of that very paper of yours; and the truth of it is, he must be a man of more than ordinary constancy that could stand out against so much comedy, and not do as we did. Now there are few men in the world so far lost to all good sense, as to look upon you to be a man in a state of folly "inferior to himself."-Pray then how do you justify your hypothesis of laughter?
"Your most humble, Q. R.' Thursday, the 26th of the month of fools.
'SIR,-In answer to your letter, I must desire you to recollect yourself; and you will find, that when you did me the honour to be so merry over my paper, you laughed at the idiot, the German courtier, the gaper, the merry-andrew, the haberdasher, the biter, the butt, and not at
Dr. Carbuncle's die; though his, in truth,
Your humble servant,
Tuesday, May 1, 1711.
My correspondents grow so numerous, that I cannot avoid frequently inserting their applications to me.
'MR. SPECTATOR,- am glad I can in form you, that your endeavours to adorn that sex, which is the fairest part of the visible creation, are well received, and like to prove not unsuccessful. The triumph of Daphne over her sister Lætitia has been the subject of conversation at several tea-tables where I have been present; and I have observed the fair circle not a little pleased to find you considering them as reasonable creatures, and endeavouring to