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where all the other beauties are present, | the work appears dry and insipid, if this single one be wanting. It has something in it like creation. It bestows a kind of existence, and draws up to the reader's view several objects which are not to be found in being. It makes additions to nature, and gives greater variety to God's works. In a word, it is able to beautify and adorn the most illustrious scenes in the universe, or to fill the mind with more glorious shows and apparitions than can be found in any part of it.
We have now discovered the several
ture the soul through this single faculty, as might suffice to make the whole heaven or hell of any finite being.
[This essay on the Pleasures of the Inagination having been published in separate papers, I shall conclude it with a table of the principal contents of each paper.*] 0.
No. 422.] Friday, July 4, 1712.
Hæc scripsi non otii abundantia, sed amoris ergate.
I have written this not out of the abundance of lei
sure, but of my affection towards you.
originals of those pleasures that gratify the fancy; and here, perhaps, it would not be very difficult to cast under their proper I Do not know any thing which gives heads those contrary objects, which are apt greater disturbance to conversation, than to fill it with distaste and terror; for the the false notion which people have of railimagination is as liable to pain as pleasure.lery. It ought certainly to be the first point When the brain is hurt by any accident, or the mind disordered by dreams or sickness, the fancy is overrun with wild dismal ideas, and terrified with a thousand hideous monsters of its own framing.
to be aimed at in society, to gain the goodwill of those with whom you converse; the way to that is, to show you are well inclined towards them. What then can be more absurd, than to set up for being extremely sharp and biting, as the term is, in your expressions to your familiars? A man who has no good quality but courage, is in a very ill way towards making an agreeable figure in the world, because that which he has superior to other people cannot be exerted without raising himself an enemy. Your gentleman of a satirical vein is in the like condition. To say a thing which perplexes the heart of him you speak to, or brings blushes into his face, is a degree of murder; and it is, I think, an unpardonable offence to show a man you do not care whether he
There is not a sight in nature so mortify-is pleased or displeased. But won't you ing as that of a distracted person, when his imagination is troubled, and his whole soul disordered and confused. Babylon in ruins is not so melancholy a spectacle. But to quit so disagreeable a subject, I shall only Consider, by way of conclusion, what an infinite advantage this faculty gives an almighty Being over the soul of man, and how great a measure of happiness or misery we are capable of receiving from the imagi
then take a jest?-Yes: but pray let it be a jest. It is no jest to put me, who am so unhappy as to have an utter aversion to speaking to more than one man at a time, under a necessity to explain myself in much company, and reducing me to shame and derision, except I perform what my infirmity of silence disables me to do.
with that quality without which a man can Callisthenes had great wit accompanied We have already seen the influence that have no wit at all—a sound judgment. This one man has over the fancy of another, and gentleman rallies the best of any man I with what ease he conveys into it a variety know: for he forms his ridicule upon of imagery: how great a power then may cumstance which you are in your heart not we suppose lodged in Him who knows all unwilling to grant him; to wit, that you are the ways of affecting the imagination, who guilty of an excess in something which is can infuse what ideas he pleases, and fill in itself laudable. He very well understands those ideas with terror and delight to what what you would be, and needs not fear your degree he thinks fit! He can excite images anger for declaring you are a little too much in the mind without the help of words, and that thing. The generous will bear being make scenes rise up before us, and seem reproached as lavish, and the valiant as present to the eye, without the assistance rash, without being provoked to resentof bodies or exterior objects. He can trans-ment against their monitor. What has been port the imagination with such beautiful said to be a mark of a good writer will fall and glorious visions as cannot possibly enter in with the character of a good companion. into our present conceptions, or haunt it The good writer makes his reader better with such ghastly spectres and apparitions as would make us hope for annihilation, and * These contents are printed all together in the origithink existence no better than a curse. In nal folio, at the end of No. 421; but are in this edition arranged in their proper places, and placed at the be short, he can so exquisitely ravish or tor-ginnings of the several papers. VOL. II.
pleased with himself, and the agreeable | Allusions to past follies, hints which revive man makes his friends enjoy themselves, what a man has a mind to forget for ever, rather than him, while he is in their com- and desires that all the rest of the world pany. Callisthenes does this with inimita- should, are commonly brought forth even ble pleasantry. He whispered a friend the in company of men of distinction. They do other day, so as to be overheard by a young not thrust with the skill of fencers, but cut officer, who gave symptoms of cocking upon up with the barbarity of butchers. It is, the company, That gentleman has very methinks, below the character of men of much the air of a general officer.' The humanity and good manners to be capable youth immediately put on a composed be- of mirth while there is any of the company haviour, and behaved himself suitably to in pain and disorder. They who have the the conceptions he believed the company true taste of conversation, enjoy themselves had of him. It is to be allowed that Cal-in communication of each other's excellisthenes will make a man run into imper-lencies, and not in a triumph over their tinent relations to his own advantage, and imperfections. Fortius would have been express the satisfaction he has in his own reckoned a wit, if there had never been a dear self, till he is very ridiculous: but in fool in the world: he wants not foils to be a this case the man is made a fool by his own beauty, but has that natural pleasure in consent, and not exposed as such whether observing perfection in others, that his own he will or no. I take it, therefore, that to faults are overlooked out of gratitude by all make raillery agreeable, a man must either his acquaintance. not know he is rallied, or think never the worse of himself if he sees he is.
Acetus is of a quite contrary genius, and is more generally admired than Callisthenes, but not with justice. Acetus has no regard to the modesty or weakness of the person he rallies; but if his quality or humility gives him any superiority to the man he would fall upon, he has no mercy in making the onset. He can be pleased to see his best friends out of countenance, while the laugh is loud in his own applause. His raillery always puts the company into little divisions and separate interests, while that of Callisthenes cements it, and makes every man not only better pleased with himself, but also with all the rest in the conversation.
To rally well, it is absolutely necessary that kindness must run through all you say; and you must ever preserve the character of a friend to support your pretensions to be free with a man. Acetus ought to be banished human society, because he raises his mirth upon giving pain to the person upon whom he is pleasant. Nothing but the malevolence which is too general towards those who excel could make his company tolerated; but they with whom he converses are sure to see some man sa
After these several characters of men who succeed or fail in raillery, it may not be amiss to reflect a little farther what one takes to be the most agreeable kind of it; and that to me appears when the satire is directed against vice, with an air of contempt of the fault, but no ill-will to the criminal. Mr. Congreve's Doris is a masterpiece of this kind. It is the character of a woman utterly abandoned; but her impudence, by the finest piece of raillery, is made only generosity.
'Peculiar therefore is her way,
'For who o'ernight obtain'd her grace,
And stare upon the strange man's face,
'So well she can the truth disguise,
Or thinks 'twas all a dream.
'Some censure this as lewd or low,
crificed wherever he is admitted; and all No. 423.] Saturday, July 5, 1712.
Minutius has a wit that conciliates a man's love, at the same time that it is exerted against his faults. He has an art of keeping the person he rallies in countenance, by insinuating that he himself is guilty of the same imperfection. This he does with so much address, that he seems rather to bewail himself, than fall upon his friend.
Once fit myself.
Hor. Od. xxvi. Lib. 3. 1.
I LOOK upon myself as a kind of guardian to the fair, and am always watchful to observe any thing which concerns their interest. The present paper shall be employed in the service of a very fine young woman; and the admonitions I give her may not be unuseful to the rest of her sex. Gloriana shall be the name of the heroine in to-day's It is really monstrous to see how unac-entertainment; and when I have told you countably it prevails among men, to take that she is rich, witty, young, and beautithe liberty of displeasing each other. One ful, you will believe she does not want adwould think sometimes that the conten-mirers. She has had, since she came to tion is, who shall be most disagreeable. town, about twenty-five of those lovers who
made their addresses by way of jointure | to you the other day was a contrivance to and settlement: these come and go with remark your resentment. When you saw great indifference on both sides; and as the billet subscribed Damon, and turned Beautiful as she is, a line in a deed has had away with a scornful air, and cried "imexception enough against it to outweigh the pertinence!" you gave hopes to him that Justre of her eyes, the readiness of her un- shuns you, without mortifying him that derstanding, and the merit of her general languishes for you. character. But among the crowd of such What I am concerned for, madam, is, cool adorers, she has two who are very that in the disposal of your heart, you assiduous in their attendance. There is should know what you are doing, and ex something so extraordinary and artful in amine it before it is lost. Strephon contratheir manner of application, that I think it dicts you in discourse with the civility of but common justice to alarm her in it. I one who has a value for you, but gives up have done it in the following letter: nothing like one that loves you. This seem ing unconcern gives his behaviour the advantage of sincerity, and insensibly obtains your good opinion by appearing disinterested in the purchase of it. If you watch these correspondents hereafter, you will find that Strephon makes his visit of civility immediately after Damon has tired you with one of love. Though you are very discreet, you will find it no easy matter to escape the toils so well laid; as, when one studies to be disagreeable in passion, the other to be pleasing without it. All the turns of your temper are carefully watched, and their quick and faithful intelligence gives your lovers irresistible advantage. You will please, madam, to be upon your guard, and take all the necessary precautions against one who is amiable to you before you know he is enamoured. I am, madam, your most obedient servant.'
'MADAM,-I have for some time taken notice of two young gentlemen who attend you in all public places, both of whom have also easy access to you at your own house. The matter is adjusted between them; and Damon, who so passionately addresses you, has no design upon you; but Strephon, who seems to be indifferent to you, is the man who is, as they have settled it, to have you. The plot was laid over a bottle of wine; and Strephon, when he first thought of you, proposed to Damon to be his rival. The manner of his breaking of it to him, I was so placed at a tavern, that I could not avoid hearing. 'Damon," said he, with a deep sigh, "I have long languished for that miracle of beauty, Gloriana; and if you will be very steadfastly my rival, I shall certainly obtain her. Do not,' continued he, "be offended at this overture; for I go upon the knowledge of the temper Strephon makes great progress in this of the woman, rather than any vanity that lady's good graces; for most women being I should profit by any opposition of your actuated by some little spirit of pride and pretensions to those of your humble ser- contradiction, he has the good effects of both those motives by this covert way of Gloriana has very good sense, a quick relish of the satisfactions of life, and courtship. He received a message yesterwill not give herself, as the crowd of wo-day from Damon in the following words, men do, to the arms of a man to whom she superscribed With speed.' is indifferent. As she is a sensible woman, expressions of rapture and adoration will not move her neither; but he that has her must be the object of her desire, not her pity. The way to this end I take to be, The comparison of Strephon's gaiety to that a man's general conduct should be Damon's languishment strikes her imaginaagreeable, without addressing in particular tion with a prospect of very agreeable to the woman he loves. Now, sir, if you hours with such a man as the former, and will be so kind as to sigh and die for Glo- abhorrence of the insipid prospect with one riana, I will carry it with great respect to- like the latter. To know when a lady is wards her, but seem void of any thoughts displeased with another, is to know the as a lover. By this means I shall be in the best time of advancing yourself. This memost amiable light of which I am capable; thod of two persons playing into each I shall be received with freedom, you with other's hand is so dangerous, that I cannot reserve. Damon who has himself no de- tell how a woman could be able to withsigns of marriage at all, easily fell into the stand such a siege. The condition of Gloscheme; and you may observe, that wher-riana I am afraid is irretrievable; for ever you are, Damon appears also. You see he carries on an unaffected exactness in his dress and manner, and strives always to be the very contrary of Strephon. They have already succeeded so far, that your eyes are ever in search of Strephon, and turn themselves of course from Damon. They meet and compare notes upon your carriage; and the letter which was brought
'All goes well; she is very angry at me, and I dare say hates me in earnest. It is a good time to visit. Yours.'
Strephon has had so many opportunities of pleasing without suspicion, that all which is left for her to do is to bring him, now she is advised, to an explanation of his passion, and beginning again, if she can conquer the kind sentiments she has conceived for him. When one shows himself a creature to be avoided, the other proper to be fled to for succour, they have the whole woman be
tween them, and can occasionally rebound her love and hatred from one to the other, in such a manner as to keep her at a distance from all the rest of the world, and cast lots for the conquest.
N. B. I have many other secrets which concern the empire of love; but I consider, that, while I alarm my women, I instruct my men.
No. 424.] Monday, July 7, 1712.
Hor. Ep. xi. Lib. 1. 30.
'Tis not the place disgust or pleasure brings: From our own mind our satisfaction springs.
'London, June 24.
'MR. SPECTATOR,-A man who has it in his power to choose his own company, would certainly be much to blame, should he not, to the best of his judgment, take such as are of a temper most suitable to his own; and where that choice is wanting, or where a man is mistaken in his choice, and yet under a necessity of continuing in the same company, it will certainly be his interest to carry himself as easily as possible.
with which he treats his neighbours, and every one, even the meanest of his own family! and yet how seldom imitated! Instead of which we commonly meet with ill-natured expostulations, noise, and chidings.-And this I hinted, because the humour and disposition of the head is what chiefly influences all the other parts of a family.
'An agreement and kind correspondence between friends and acquaintance is the greatest pleasure of life. This is an undoubted truth; and yet any man who judges from the practice of the world will be almost persuaded to believe the contrary; for how can we suppose people should be so industrious to make themselves uneasy? What can engage them to entertain and foment jealousies of one another upon every or the least occasion? Yet so it is, there are people who (as it should seem) delight in being troublesome and vexatious, who (as Tully speaks) Mira sunt alacritate ad litigandum, have a certain cheerfulness in wrangling.' And thus it happens, that there are very few families in which there are not feuds and animosities; though it is every one's interest, there more particularly, to avoid them, because there (as I In this I am sensible I do but repeat would willingly hope) no one gives another what has been said a thousand times, at uneasiness without feeling some share of which however I think nobody has any it. But I am gone beyond what I designed, title to take exception, but they who never and had almost forgot what I chiefly profailed to put this in practice.-Not to use posed: which was, barely to tell you how any longer preface, this being the season hardly we, who pass most of our time in of the year in which great numbers of all town, dispense with a long vacation in the sorts of people retire from this place of country, how uneasy we grow to ourselves, business and pleasure to country solitude, and to one another, when our conversation I think it not improper to advise them to is confined; insomuch that, by Michaeltake with them as great a stock of good-mas, it is odds but we come to downright humour as they can; for though a country life is described as the most pleasant of all others, and though it may in truth be so, yet it is so only to those who know how to enjoy leisure and retirement.
As for those who cannot live without the constant helps of business or company, let them consider, that in the country there is no Exchange, there are no playhouses, no variety of coffee-houses, nor many of those other amusements which serve here as so many reliefs from the repeated occurrences in their own families; but that there the greatest part of their time must be spent within themselves, and consequently it behoves them to consider how agreeable it will be to them before they leave this dear town.
'I remember, Mr. Spectator, we were very well entertained last year with the advices you gave us from Sir Roger's country-seat; which I the rather mention, because it is almost impossible not to live pleasantly, where the master of the family is such a one as you there describe your friend, who cannot therefore (I mean as to his domestic character,) be too often recommended to the imitation of others. How amiable is that affability and benevolence
squabbling, and make as free with one another to our faces as we do with the rest of the world behind their backs. After I have told you this, I am to desire that you would now and then give us a lesson of good-humour, a family-piece, which, since we are all very fond of you, I hope may have some influence upon us.
'After these plain observations, give me leave to give you a hint of what a set of company of my acquaintance, who are now gone into the country, and have the use of an absent nobleman's seat, have settled among themselves, to avoid the inconveniences above mentioned. They are a collection of ten or twelve of the same good inclination towards each other, but of very different talents and inclinations: from hence they hope that the variety of their tempers will only create variety of pleasures. But as there always will arise, among the same people, either for want of diversity of objects, or the like causes, a certain satiety, which may grow into ill-humour or discontent, there is a large wing of the house which they design to employ in the nature of an infirmary. Whoever says a peevish thing, or acts any thing which betrays a sourness or indisposition to company, is im
cover a thousand pleasing objects, and at the same time divested of all power of heat. The reflection of it in the water, the fanning of the wind rustling on the leaves, the singing of the thrush and nightingale, and the coolness of the walks, all conspired to make me lay aside all displeasing thoughts, and brought me into such a tranquillity of mind, as is, I believe, the next happiness to that of hereafter. In this sweet retirement I naturally fell into the repetition of some lines out of a poem of Milton's, which he entitles Il Penseroso, the ideas of which were exquisitely suited to my present wanderings of thought.
mediately to be conveyed to his chambers | with as much light as was necessary to disin the infirmary; from whence he is not to be relieved, till by his manner of submission, and the sentiments expressed in his petition for that purpose, he appears to the majority of the company to be again fit for society. You are to understand, that all ill-natured words or uneasy gestures are sufficient cause for banishment; speaking impatiently to servants, making a man repeat what he says, or any thing that betrays inattention or dishumour, are also criminal without reprieve. But it is provided, that whoever observes the ill-natured fit coming upon himself, and voluntarily retires, shall be received at his return from the infirmary with the highest marks of esteem. By these and other wholesome methods, it is expected that if they cannot cure one another, yet at least they have taken care that the ill-humour of one shall not be troublesome to the rest of the company. There are many other rules which the society have established for the preservation of their ease and tranquillity, the effects of which, with the incidents that arise among them, shall be communicated to you from time to time, for the public good, by, sir, your most humble servant, R. O.'
'MR. SPECTATOR,-There is hardly any thing gives me a more sensible delight than the enjoyment of a cool still evening after the uneasiness of a hot sultry day. Such a one I passed not long ago, which made me rejoice when the hour was come for the sun to set, that I might enjoy the freshness of the evening in my garden, which then affords me the pleasantest hours I pass in the whole four and twenty. I immediately rose from my couch, and went down into it. You descend at first by twelve stone steps into a large square divided into four grassplots, in each of which is a statue of white marble. This is separated from a large parterre by a low wall; and from thence, through a pair of iron gates, you are led into a long broad walk of the finest turf, set on each side with tall yews, and on either hand bordered by a canal, which on the right divides the walk from a wilderness parted into variety of alleys and arbours, and on the left from a kind of amphitheatre, which is the receptacle of a great number of oranges and myrtles. The moon shone bright, and seemed then most agreeably to supply the place of the sun, obliging me
"Sweet bird! that shunn'st the noise of folly,
"Then let some strange mysterious dream
And as I wake, sweet music breathe
Sent by spirits to mortals' good,
Or the unseen genius of the wood."
'I reflected then upon the sweet vicissitudes of night and day, on the charming disposition of the seasons, and their return again in a perpetual circle: and oh! said I, that I could from these my declining years return again to my first spring of youth and vigour; but that, alas! is impossible; all that remains within my power is to soften the inconveniences I feel; with an easy contented mind, and the enjoyment of such delights as this solitude affords me. In this thought I sat me down on a bank of flowers, and dropt into a slumber, which, whether it were the effect of fumes and vapours, or my present thoughts, I know not; but methought the genius of the garden stood before me, and introduced into the walk where I lay this drama and different scenes of the revolution of the year, which, whilst I then saw, even in my dream, I resolved to write down, and send to the Spectator.
'The first person whom I saw advancing towards me was a youth of a most beautiful air and shape, though he seemed not yet arrived at that exact proportion and symmetry of parts which a little more time would have given him; but, however, there was such a bloom in his countenance, such satisfaction and joy, that I thought it the most desirable form that I had ever seen. He was clothed in a flowing mantle of green silk, interwoven with flowers; he had a chaplet of roses on his head, and a narcissus in his hand; primroses and violets sprang up under his feet, and all nature was cheered at his approach. Flora was on one hand,