« AnteriorContinuar »
state of mind, that cannot be pleased but so well as this old lady does to disperse it. by what is the subject of lamentation. This She does not know the author of any thing temper has ever been, in the highest de- that is told her, but can readily repeat the gree, odious to gallant spirits. The Persian matter itself; therefore, though she exposes soldier, who was heard reviling Alexander all the whole town, she offends no one body the Great, was well admonished by his of- in it. She is so exquisitely restless and ficer, “Sir, you are paid to fight against peevish, that she quarrels with all about Alexander, and not to rail at him.' Ther, and sometimes in a freak will instantly
Cicero, in one of his pleadings, defend change her habitation, To indulge this ing his client from general scandal, says humour, she is led about the grounds bevery handsomely, and with much reason, longing to the same house she is in; and the • There are many who have particular en persons to whom she is to remove being in gagements to the prosecutor; there are the plot, are ready to receive her at her many who are known to have ill-will to him own chamber again. At stated times the for whom I appear; there are many who are gentlewoman at whose house she supposes naturally addicted to defamation, and en- she is at the time, is sent for to quarrel with, vious of any good to any man, who may according to her common custom. When have contributed to spread reports of this they have a mind to drive the jest, she is kind; for nothing is so swift as scandal, no- immediately urged to that degree, that she thing is more easily set abroad, nothing re-will board in a family with which she has ceived with more welcome, nothing diffuses never yet been; and away she will go this itself so universally. I shall not desire, instant, and tell them all that the rest have that if any report to our disadvantage has been saying of them. By this means she has any ground for it, you would overlook or been an inhabitant of every house in the extenuate it: but if there be any thing ad-place, without stirring from the same habivanced, without a person who can say tation: and the many stories which every whence he had it, or which is attested by body furnishes her with, to favour the deone who forgot who told him it, or who had ceit, make her the general intelligencer of it from one of so little consideration that he the town of all that can be said by one wodid not think it worth his notice, all such man against another. Thus groundless testimonies as these, I know, you will think stories die away, and sometimes truths are too slight to have any credit against the in-smothered under the general word, when nocence and honour of your fellow citizens.' they have a mind to discountenance a When an ill report is traced, it very often thing, “Oh! that is in my lady Bluemantle's vanishes among such as the orator has here Memoirs.' recited. And how despicable a creature Whoever receives impressions to the dismust that be, who is in pain for what passes advantage of others, without examination, is among so frivolous a people! There is a to be had in no other credit for intelligence town in Warwickshire, of good note, and than this good lady Bluemantle, who is subformerly pretty famous for much animosity jected to have her ears imposed upon for and disscntion, the chief families of which want of other helps to better information. have now turned all their whispers, back- Add to this, that other scandal-bearers bitings, envies, and private malices, into suspend the use of these faculties which mirth and entertainment, by means of a she has lost, rather than apply them to do peevish old gentlewoman, known by the title justice to their neighbours: and I think, for of the lady Bluemantle. This heroine had, the service of my fair readers, to acquaint for many years together outdone the whole them, that there is a voluntary lady Bluesisterhood of gossips in invention, quick mantle at every visit in town.
T. utterance, and unprovoked malice. This good body is of a lasting constitution, though extremely decayed in her eyes, and de
No. 428.] Friday, July 11, 1712. crepid in her feet. The two circumstances Occupet extremum scabies. of being always at home, from her lame
Hor Ars Poet. ver. 417 ness, and very attentive from her blind
The devil take the hindmost !- English Proverbs, ness, make her lodgings the receptacle. It is an impertinent and unreasonable of all that passes in town. good or bad: fault in conversation, for one man to take but for the latter she seems to have the up all the discourse. It may possibly be better memory. There is another thing to objected to me myself, that I am guilty in be noted of her, which is, that, as it is this kind, in entertaining the town every usual with old people, she has a livelier day, and not giving so many able persons, memory of things which passed when she who have it more in their power, and as was very young than of late years. Add to much in their inclination, an opportunity to all this, that she does not only not love any oblige mankind with their thoughts. 'Bebody, but she hates every body. The statue sides,' said one whom I overheard the other in Rome* does not serve to vent malice half day, 'why must this paper turn altogether
upon topics of learning and morality? Why * A statue of Pasquin in that city, on which sarcas.
should it pretend only to wit, huinour, tic remarks were pasted, and thence called Pasquinades. or the like things which are useful only VOL. II.
to men of literature, and superior educa-, what tracts of land have been purchased tion? I would have it consist also of all by a constant attendance within a walk of things which may be necessary or useful to thirty foot. If it could also be noted in the any part of society; and the mechanic arts equipage of those who are ascended from should have their place as well as the libe- the successful trade of their ancestors into ral. The ways of gain, husbandry, and figure and equipage, such accounts would thrift, will serve a greater number of peo- quicken industry in the pursuit of such acple than discourses upon what was well quisitions, and discountenance luxury in the said or done by such a philosopher, hero, enjoyment of them. general, or poet.'--I no sooner heard this To diversify these kinds of information, critic talk of my works, but I minuted what the industry of the female world is not to be he had said; and from that instant resolved unobserved. She to whose household virto enlarge the plan of my speculations, by tues it is owing, that men do honour to her giving notice to all persons of all orders, husband, should be recorded with veneraand each sex, that if they are pleased to tion; she who has wasted his labours, with send me discourses, with their names and infamy. When we are come into domestic places of abode to them, so that I can be life in this manner, to awaken caution and satisfied the writings are authentic, such attendance to the main point, it would not be their labours shall be faithfully inserted in amiss to give now and then a touch of trathis paper. It will be of much more conse-gedy, and describe that most dreadful of quence to a youth, in his apprenticeship, all human conditions, the case of bankto know by what rules and arts such-a-one ruptcy: how plenty, credit, cheerfulness, became sheriff of the city of London, than to full hopes, and easy possessions, are in an see the sign of one of his own quality with instant turned into penury, feint aspects, a lion's heart in each hand. The world, diffidence, sorrow, and misery; how the indeed, is enchanted with romantic and man, who with an open hand the day beimprobable achievements, when the plain fore could administer to the extremities of path to respective greatness and success, others is shunned to-day by the friend of in the way of life a man is in, is wholly his bosom. It would be useful to show how overlooked. Is it possible that a young man just this is on the negligent, how lamentat present could pass his time better than able on the industrious. A paper written in reading the history of stocks, and know-by a merchant might give this island a true ing by what secret springs they have had sense of the worth and importance of his such 'sudden ascents and falls in the same character, it might be visible from what he day! Could he be better conducted in his could say, that no soldier entering a breach way to wealth, which is the great article adventures more for honour, than the trader of life, than in a treaties dated from does for wealth to his country. In both 'Change-alley by an able proficient there? cases, the adventurers have their own adNothing certainly could be more useful, vantage; but I know no cases wherein every than to be well instructed in his hopes and body else is a sharer in the success. fears; to be diffident when others exult; It is objected by readers of history, that and with a secret joy buy when others the battles in those narrations are scarce think it their interest to sell. I invite all ever to be understood. This misfortune is persons who have any thing to say for the to be ascribed to the ignorance of historians profitable information of the public, to take in the methods of drawing up, changing their turns in my paper: they are welcome the forms of a battalia, and the enemy refrom the late noble inventor of the longi- treating from, as well as approaching to, tude, to the humble author of straps for ra- the charge. But in the discourses from the zors. If to carry ships in safety, to give correspondents, whom I now invite, the help to a people tossed in a troubled sea, danger will be of another kind; and it is newithout knowing to what shores they bear, cessary to caution them only against using what rocks to avoid, or what coast to pray terms of art, and describing things that are for in their extremity, be a worthy labour, familiar to them in words unknown to the and an invention that deserves a statue; at reader. I promise myself a great harvest the same time, he who has found a means of new circumstances, persons, and things, to let the instrument which is to make your from this proposal; and a world, which visage less horrible, and your person more many think they are well acquainted with, snug, easy in the operation, is worthy of discovered as wholly new. This sort of insome kind of good reception. If things of telligence will give a lively image of the high moment meet with renown, those of chain and mutual dependance of human little consideration, since of any considera- society, take off impertinent prejudices, tion, are not to be despised. In order that enlarge the minds of those whose views are no merit may lie hid, and no art unim-confined to their own circumstances; and, proved, I repeat it, that I call artificers, as in short, if the knowing in several arts, well as philosophers, to my assistance in the professions, and trades, will exert thempublic service. It would be of great use if selves, it cannot but produce a new field of we had an exact history of the successes diversion and instruction, more agreeable of every great shop within the city walls, than has yet appeared.
No. 429.] Saturday, July 12, 1712. 1 “That they would please to make merry
| with their equals. Populumque falsis dedocet uti Vocibus
Hor. Od. ii. Lib. 2. 19. | “That Mr. Loller might stay with them From cheats of words the crowd she brings
if he thought fit.” To real estimate of things.-Creech.
| It was immediately resolved, that lady Mr. SPECTATOR,-Since I gave an ac- Lydia was still at London, count of an agreeable set of company which as the home
|« The humble Memorial of Thomas Sudwere gone down into the country, I have received advices from thence, that the in
den, Esq. of the Inner Temple, stitution of an infirmary for those who
“Showeth, should be out of humour has had very good).
“That Mr. Sudden is conscious that he effects. My letters mention particular cir- / is too much given to argumentation, cumstances of two or three persons, whol "That he talks loud. had the good sense to retire of their own
“That he is apt to think all things matter accord, and notified that they were with-of debate. drawn, with the reasons of it to the com “That he stayed behind in Westminsterpany in their respective memorials.' hall, when the late shake of the roof hap• The humble Memorial of Mrs. Mary
pened, only because a counsel of the other
side asserted it was coming down. Dainty, Spinster,
“That he cannot for his life consent to « Showeth,
any thing. " That conscious of her own want of “ That he stays in the infirmary to forget merit, accompanied with a vanity of being himself. admired, she had gone into exile of her “That as soon as he has forgot himself, own accord.
he will wait on the company." "She is sensible, that a vain person is the most insufferable creature living in a well
ing in a well-l His indisposition was allowed to be suffibred assembly.
cient to require a cessation from company.' “That she desired, before she appeared
“ The Memorial of Frank Jolly, in public again, she might have assurances,
"Showeth, that though she might be thought handsome, there might not more address of com
" That he hath put himself into the inpliment be paid to her than to the rest of
| firmary, in regard he is sensible of a certain the company.
rustic 'mirth, which renders him unfit for "That she conceived it a kind of superi
polite conversation. ority, that one person should take upon him
“That he intends to prepare himself, by to commend another.
abstinence and thin diet, to be one of the "Lastly, that she went into the infirmary,
company. to avoid a particular person, who took upon
| “That at present he comes into a room him to profess an admiration of her. as if he were an express from abroad. "She therefore prayed, that to applaud
“That he has chosen an apartment with out of due place might be declared an of
a matted antechamber, to practise motion fence, and punished in the same manner
without being heard. with detraction, in that the latter did but
“That he bows, talks, drinks, eats, and report persons defective, and the former
helps himself before a glass, to learn to act made them so.
with moderation. ' “All which is submitted, &c."
“That by reason of his luxuriant health
The is oppressive to persons of composed • There appeared a delicacy and sincerity behaviour. in this memorial very uncommon; but my “That he is endeavouring to forget the friend informs me, that the allegations of it word 'pshaw, pshaw.' were groundless, insomuch that this decla- “That he is also weaning himself from ration of an aversion to being praised was his cane. understood to be no other than a secret trap “ 'That when he has learnt to live without to purchase it, for which reason it lies still his said cane, he will wait on the company, on the table unanswered.' “ The humble Memorial of the Lady Lydia “ The Memorial of John Rhubarb, Esq. Loller,
“That your petitioner has retired to the “That the lady Lydia is a woman of infirmary, but that he is in perfect good quality; married to a private gentleman health, except that he has by long use, and “That she finds herself neither well nor for want of discourse, contracted an habit
of complaint that he is sick. “ That her husband is a clown.
"That he wants for nothing under the “That the lady Lydia cannot see com- sun, but what to say, and therefore has pany,
fallen into this unhappy malady of com“That she desires the infirmary may plaining that he is sick. be her apartment during her stay in the “That this custom of his makes him, by country.
This own confession, fit only for the infirmary,
and therefore he has not waited for being you may with authority censure whatever sentenced to it.
looks ill, and is offensive to the sight; the "That he is conscious there is nothing worst nuisance of which kind, methinks, is more improper than such a complaint in the scandalous appearance of poor in all good company, in that they must pity, parts of this wealthy city. Such miserable whether they think the lamenter ill or not; objects affect the compassionate beholder and that the complainant must make a silly with dismal ideas, discompose the cheerfigure, whether he is pitied or not. | fulness of his mind, and deprive him of the
“Your petitioner humbly prays that he pleasure he might otherwise take in surmay have people to know how he does, and veying the grandeur of our metropolis. he will make his appearance."
Who can without remorse see a disabled «The valetudinarian was likewise easily sailor, the purveyor of our luxury, destitute excused: and the society, being resolved
of necessaries? Who can behold the honest not only to make it their business to pass
soldier that bravely withstood the enemy, their time agreeably for the present season,
prostrate and in want among friends? It but also to commence such habits in them
were endless to mention all the variety of selves as may be of use in their future con
wretchedness, and the numberless poor that duct in general, are very ready to give into
| not only singly, but in companies, implore a fancied or real incapacity to join with your charity. Spectacles of this nature their measures, in order to have no hu- everywhere occur; and it is unaccountable mourist, proud man, impertinent or suffi-| that amongst the many lamentable cries cient fellow, break in upon their happiness.
S. that infest this town, your comptrollerGreat evils seldom happen to disturb com- / general should not take notice of the most pany; but indulgence in particularities of shocking, viz. those of the needy and afhumour is the seed of making half our time
Aicted. I cannot but think he waived it hang in suspense, or waste away under real merely out of good breeding, choosing radiscomposures.
ther to waive his resentment than upbraid *Among other things, it is carefully pro
his countrymen with inhumanity: however, vided that there may not be disagreeable | let not charity be sacrificed to popularity: familiarities. No one is to appear in the and if his ears were deaf to their complaint, public rooms undressed, or enter abruptly let not your eyes overlook their persons. into each other's apartment without inti-There are, I know, many impostors among mation. Every one has hitherto been so them. Lameness and blindness are cercareful in his behaviour, that there has but tainly very often acted; but can those who one offender. in ten days' time. been sent have their sight and limbs employ them into the infirmary, and that was for throw
better than in knowing whether they are ing away his cards at whist.
counterfeited or not? I know not which of He has offered his submission in the
the two misapplies his senses most, he who following terms:
pretends himself blind to move compassion,
or he who beholds a miserable object with“ The humble Petition of Jeoffry Hotspur,
out pitying it. But in order to remove such Esq.
impediments, I wish, Mr. Spectator, you “Showeth,
would give us a discourse upon beggars, « Though the petitioner swore, stamped, I that we may not pass by true objects of and threw down his cards, he has all ima- I charity, or give to impostors. I looked out ginable respect for the ladies, and the whole of my window the other morning earlier company.
than ordinary, and saw a blind beggar, an “That he humbly desires it may be con- l hour before the passage he stands in is sidered, in the case of gaming, there are frequented, with a needle and a thread many motives which provoke the disorder. I thriftily mending his stockings. My asto
“That the desire of gain, and the desire nishment was still greater, when I beheld a of victory, are both thwarted in losing.
lame fellow, whose legs were too big to “That all conversations in the world walk within an hour after, bring him a pot have indulged human infirmity in this case. I of ale. I will not mention the shakings,
“Your petitioner therefore most humbly distortions, and convulsions, which many prays, that he may be restored to the com- l of them practise to gain an alms; but sure pany: and he hopes to bear ill-fortune with
I am they ought to be taken care of in this a good grace for the future, and to demean
condition, either by the beadle or the mahimself so as to be no more than cheerful
gistrate. They, it seems, relieve their posts, when he wins, than grave when he loses,”
according to their talents. There is the voice of an old woman never begins to beg till nine in the evening; and then she is
destitute of lodging, turned out for want of No. 430.] Monday, July 14, 1712.
rent, and has the same ill fortune every Quære peregrinum, vicinia rauca reclamat. night in the year. You should employ an
Hor. Ep. xvii. Lib. I. 6 officer to hear the distress of each beggar The crowd replies,
that is constant at a particular place, who Go seek a stranger to believe thy lieg.--Creech.
is ever in the same tone, and succeeds be'SIR, -As you are a Spectator-general, cause his audience is continually changing, .
though he does not alter his lamentation. I "For higher of the genial bed by far,..
THOMAS MEANWELL.' vigilance; and I am, sir, your most humble servant.'
No. 431.] Tuesday, July 15, 1712. "Sir,-I was last Sunday highly transported at our parish-church; the gentlemanquam sui quique liberi ?
Quid dulcius hominum generi a natura datum est,
Tull. in the pulpit pleaded movingly in behalf of
What is there in nature so dear to a man as his own the poor children, and they for themselves I children? much more forcibly by singing a hymn; and
I have lately been casting in my thoughts I had the happiness of being a contributor
the several unhappinesses of life, and comto this little religious institution of inno
paring the infelicities of old age to those of cents, and am sure I never disposed of
infancy. The calamities of children are money more to my satisfaction and advan
an, due to the negligence and misconduct of tage. The inward joy I find in myself, and the good-will I bear to mankind, make me
parents; those of age to the past life which
led to it. I have here the history of a boy heartily wish those pious works may be en
and girl to their wedding-day, and I think couraged, that the present promoters may
I cannot give the reader a livelier image of reap delight, and posterity. the benefit of the insipid way in which time uncultivated them. But whilst we are building this
passes, than by entertaining him with their beautiful edifice, let not the old ruins re
authentic epistles, expressing all that was main in view to sully the prospect. Whilst we are cultivating and improving this young I their life above-mentioned.
remarkable in their lives, till the period of
The sentence hopeful offspring, let not the ancient and
at the head of this paper, which is only a helpless creatures be shamefully neglected.
cted: warm interrogation, "What is there in naThe crowds of poor, or pretended poor, in ture so dear as a man's own children to every place, are a great reproach to us, and him?' is all the reflection I shall at present eclipse the glory of all other charity. It is
i the utmost reproach to society, that there in the education of them.
s make on those who are negligent or cruel should be a poor man unrelieved, or a poor rogue unpunished. I hope you will think MR. SPECTATOR,,I am now entering no part of human life out of your considera- | into my one and twentieth year, and do not tion, but will, at your leisure, give us the know that I had one day's thorough satishistory of plenty and want, and the natural faction since I came to years of any reflecgradations towards them, calculated for tion, till the time they say others lose their the cities of London and Westminster. I liberty-the day of my marriage. I am son am, sir, your most humble servant, to a gentleman of a very great estate, who
•T. D.' resolved to keep me out of the vices of the MR. SpectaTOR, I beg you would be
age; and, in order to it, never let me see pleased to take notice of a very great inde
any thing that he thought could give me cency, which is extremely common, though,
any pleasure. At ten years old I was put to a I think, never yet under your censure. It
grammar-school, where my miaster receiv
| ed orders every post to use me very severeis, sir, the strange freedoms some ill-bred
| ly, and have no regard to my having a great married people take in company; the un
estate. At fifteen I was removed to the seasonable fondness of some husbands, and the ill-timed tenderness of some wives.
university, where I lived, out of my father's ness of some wives: I great discretion, in scandalous poverty and They talk and act as if modesty was only
hodesty, was only want, till I was big enough to be married, fit for maids and bachelors, and that too and I was sent for to see the lady who sends before both. I was once, Mr. Spectator,
tator: you the underwritten. When we were put
together, we both considered that we could grant, that (being, you must know, a very
not be worse than we were in taking one bashful fellow, and several young ladies in
another, and, out of a desire of liberty, enthe room,) I protest I was quite out of coun
tered into wedlock. My father says I am tenance. Lucina, it seems, was breeding;
now a man, and may speak to him like and she did nothing but entertain the com
another gentleman. I am, sir, your most pany with a discourse upon the difficulty of
humble servant, reckoning to a day; and said she knew those
RICHARD RENTFREE.' who were certain to an hour; then fell a laughing at a silly inexperienced creature, Mr. SPEC,- I grew tall and wild at my who was a month above her time. Upon mother's, who is a gay widow, and did not her husband's coming in, she put several care for showing me, till about two years questions to him; which he, not caring to and a half ago; at which time my guardianresolve, “Well," cries Lucina, “I shall uncle sent me to a boarding-school, with have 'em all at night."-But lest I should orders to contradict me in nothing, for I seem guilty of the very fault I write against, had been misused enough already. I had I shall only entreat Mr, Spectator to cor- not been there above a month when, being rect such misdemeanors.
Tin the kitchen, I saw some oatmeal on the