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from one another: the one consisted of abject, low-minded people, that always hunting after immediate enjoyment, were wholly incapable of self-denial, and without regard to the good of others, had no higher aim than their private advantage; such as being enslaved by voluptuousness, yielded without resistance to every gross desire, and make no use of their rational faculties but to heighten their sensual pleasure. These vile grovelling wretches, they said, were the dross of their kind, and having only the shape of men, differed from brutes in nothing but their outward figure. But the other class was made up of lofty high-spirited creatures, that free from sordid selfishness, esteemed the improvements of the mind to be their fairest possessions ; and setting a true value upon themselves, took no delight but in embellishing that part in which their excellency consisted; such as despising whatever they had in common with irrational creatures, opposed by the help of reason their most violent inclinations, and making a continual war with themselves to promote the peace of others, aimed at no less than the public welfare and the conquest of their own passion.
Fortior est qui se quam qui fortissima vincit
Mania! These they called the true representatives of their sublime species, exceeding in worth the first class by more degrees, than that itself was superior to the beasts of the field.
As in all animals that are not too imperfect to discover pride, we find, that the finest and such as are the most beautiful and valuable of their kind, have generally the greatest share of it; so in man, the most perfect of animals, it is so inseparable from his very essence (how cunningly soever some may learn to hide or disguise it) that without it the compound he is made of would want one of the chiefest ingredients: which, if we consider, it is hardly to be doubted but lessons and remonstrances, so skilfully adapted to the good opinion man has of himself, as those I have mentioned, must, if scattered amongst a multitude not only gain the assent of most of them, as to the speculative part, but likewise induce several, especially the fiercest, most resolute, and best among them, to endure a thousand inconveniences, and undergo as many hardships, that they may have the pleasure of counting themselves men of the second class, and con. sequently appropriating to themselves all the excellences they have heard of it.
From what has been said, we ought to expect in the first place that the heroes who took such extraordinary pains to master some of their natural appetites, and preferred the good of others to any visible interest of their own, would not recede an inch from the fine notions they had received concerning the dignity of rational creatures; and having ever the authority of the government on their side, with all imaginable vigour assert the esteem that was due to those of the second class, as well as their superiority over the rest of their kind. In the second, that those who wanted a sufficient stock of either pride or resolution to buoy them up in mortifying of what was dearest to them, followed the sensual dictates of nature, would yet be ashamed of confessing themselves to be those despicable wretches that belonged to the inferior class, and were generally reckoned to be so little removed from brutes; and that therefore in their own defence they would say, as others did, and hiding their own imperfections as well as they could, cry up self-denial and public-spiritedness as much as any: for it is highly probable, that some of them, convinced by the real proofs of fortitude and self-conquest they had seen, would admire in others what
they found wanting in themselves; others be afraid of the resolution and prowess of those of the second class, and that all of them were kept in awe by the power of their rulers; wherefore it is reasonable to think, that none of them (whatever they thought in themselves) would dare openly contradict, what by every body else was thought criminal to doubt of.
This was (or at least might have been) the manner after which savage man was broke ; from whence it is evident, that the first rudiments of morality, broached by skilful politicians, to render men useful to each other as well as tractable, were chiefly contrived that the ambitious might reap the more benefit from, and govern vast numbers of them with the greater ease and security. This foundation of politics being once laid, it is impossible that man should long remain uncivilised : for even those who only strove to gratify their appetites, being continually crossed by others of the same stamp, could not but observe, that whenever they checked their inclinations or but followed them with more circumspection, they avoided a world of troubles, and often escaped many of the calamities that generally attended the too eager pursuit after pleasure.
First, they received, as well as others, the benefit of those actions that were done for the good of the whole society, and consequently could not forbear wishing well to those of the superior class that performed them. Secondly, the more intent they were in seeking their own advantage, without regard to others, the more they were hourly convinced, that none stood so much in their way as those that were most like themselves.
It being the interest then of the very worst of them, more than any, to preach up public-spiritedness, that they might reap the fruits of the labour and self-denial of others, and at the same time indulge their own appetites with less disturbance, they agreed with the rest, to call everything, which, without regard to the public, man should commit to gratify any of his appetites, vice; if in that action there could be observed the least prospect, that it might either be injurious to any of the society, or ever rendered himself less serviceable to others: and to give the name of virtue to every performance, by which man, contrary to the impulse of nature, should endeavour the benefit of others, or the conquest of his own passions out of a rational ambition of being good.
It shall be objected, that no society was ever any ways civilised before the major part had agreed upon some worship or other of an over-ruling power, and consequently that the notions of good and evil, and the dist:ction between virtue and vice, were never the contrivance of politicians, but the pure effect of religion. Before I answer this objection, I must repeat what I have said already, that in this enquiry into the origin of moral virtue, I speak neither of Jews or Christians, but man in his state of nature and ignorance of the true deity; and then I affirm, that the idolatrous superstitions of all other nations, and the pitiful notions they had of the supreme being, were incapable of exciting man to virtue, and good for nothing but to awe and amuse a rude and unthinking multitude. It is evident from history, that in all considerable societies, how stupid or ridiculous soever people's received notions have been, as to the deities they worshipped, human nature has ever exerted itself in all its branches, and that there is no earthly wisdom or moral virtue, but at one time or other men have excelled in it in all monarchies and commonwealths, that for riches and power have been any ways remarkable.
The Egyptians, not satisfied with having deified all tho ugly | monsters they could think on, were so silly as to adore the
1 More strength has he who self can overthrow
Than he who lays the strongest towers low.
onions of their own sowing; yet at the same time their country was the most famous nursery of arts and sciences in the world, and themselves more eminently skilled in the deepest mysteries of nature than any nation has been since.
No states or kingdoms under heaven have yielded more or greater patterns in all sorts of moral virtues than the Greek and Roman empires, more especially the latter; and yet how loose, absurd and ridiculous were their sentiments as to sacred matters ? For without reflecting on the extravagant number of their deities, if we only consider the infamous stories they fathered upon them, it is not to be denied but that their religion, far from teaching men the conquest of their passions, and the way to virtue, seemed rather contrived to justify their appetites, and encourage their vices. But if we would know what made them excel in fortitude, courage and magnanimity, we must cast our eyes on the pomp of their triumphs, the magnificence of their monuments and arches; their trophies, statues, and inscriptions; the variety of their military crowns, their honours decreed to the dead, public encomiums on the living, and other imaginary rewards they bestowed on men of merit; and we shall find, that what carried so many of them to the utmost pitch of self-denial, was nothing but their policy in making use of the most effectual means that human pride could be flattered with.
It is visible then that it was not any heathen religion or other idolatrous superstition, that first put man upon crossing his appetites and subduing his dearest inclinations, but the skilful management of wary politicians; and the nearer we search into human nature, the more we shall be convinced, that the moral virtues are the political offspring which flattery begot upon pride.
There is no man of what capacity or penetration soever, that is wholly proof against the witchcraft of flattery, if artfully performed, and suited to his abilites. Children and fools will swallow personal praise, but those that are more cunning, must be managed with greater circumspection ; and the more general the flattery is, the less it is suspected by those it is levelled at. What you say in commendation of a whole town is received with pleasure by all the inhabitants : Speak in commendation of letters in general, and every man of learning will think himself in particular obliged to you. You may safely praise the employment a man is of, or the country he was born in; because you give him an opportunity of screening the joy he feels upon his own account, under the esteem which he pretends to have for others.
It is common among cunning men, that understand the power which flattery has upon pride, when they are afraid they shall be imposed upon, to enlarge, though much against their conscience, upon the honour, fair dealing and integrity of the family, country, or sometimes the profession of him they suspect; because they know that men often will change their resolution, and act against their inclination, that they may have the pleasure of continuing to appear in the opinion of some, what they are conscious not to be in reality. Thus sagacious moralists draw men like angels, in hopes that the pride at least of some will put them upon copying after the beautiful originals which they are represented to be.
When the incomparable Sir Richard Steele, in the usual elegance of his easy style, dwells on the praises of his sublime species, and with all the embellishments of rhetoric sets forth the excellency of human nature, it is impossible not to be charmed with his happy turns of thought, and the politeness of his expressions. But though I have been often moved by the force of his eloquence, and ready to swallow the ingenious sophistry with pleasure, yet I could never be so serious, but reflecting on his artful encomiums I thought on the tricks made use of by the women that would teach
children to be mannerly. When an awkward girl, before she can either speak or go, begins after many entreaties to make the first rude essays of curtsying, the nurse falls in an ecstacy of praise. There's a delicate curtsy! ( fine miss ! there's a pretty lady! Mamma ! miss can make a better curtsy than her sister Molly! The same is echoed over by the maids, whilst mamma almost hugs the child to pieces ; only Miss Molly, who being four years older, knows how to make a very handsome curtsy, wonders at the perverseness of their judgment, and swelling with indignation, is ready to cry at the injustice that is done her, till, being whispered in the ear that it is only to please the baby, and that she is a woman, she grows proud at being let into the secret, and rejoicing at the superiority of her understanding, repeats what has been said with large additions, and insults over the weakness of her sister, whom all this while she fancies to be the only bubble among them. These extravagant praises would by any one, above the capacity of an infant, be called fulsome flatteries, and, if you will, abominable lies; yet experience teaches us, that by the help of such gross en. comiums, young misses will be brought to make pretty curtsies, and behave themselves womanly much sooner, and with less trouble, than they would without them. 'Tis the same with boys, whom they'll strive to persuade, that all fine gentlemen do as they are bid, and that none but beggar boys are rude, or dirty their clothes; nay, as soon as the wild brat with his untaught fist begins to fumble for his hat, the mother, to make him pull it off, tells him before he is two years old, that he is a man; if he repeats that action when she desires him, he's presently a captain, a lord mayor, a king, or something higher if she can think of it, till egg'd on by the force of praise, the little urchin endeavours to imitate man as well as he can, and strains all his faculties to appear what his shallow noddle imagines he is believed to be.
The meanest wretch puts an inestimable value upon him. self, and the highest wish of the ambitious man is to have all the world, as to that particular, of his opinion: so that the most insatiable thirst after fame that ever hero was inspired with, was never more than an ungovernable greediness to engross the esteem and admiration of others in future ages as well as his own; and (what mortification soever this truth might be to the second thoughts of an Alexander or a Cæsar) the great recompense in view, for which the most exalted minds have with so much alacrity sacrificed their quiet health, sensual pleasures, and every inch of themselves, has never been anything else but the breath of man, the aerial coin of praise. Who can forbear laughing when he thinks on all the great men that have been so serious on the subject of that Macedonian madman, his capacious soul, that mighty heart, in one corner of which, according to Lorenzo Gratian, the world was so commodiously lodged, that in the whole there was room for six more? Who can forbear laughing, I say, when he compares the fine things that have been said of Alexander, with the end he proposed to himself from his vast exploits, to be proved from his own mouth : when the vast pains he took to pass the Hydaspes forced him to cry out: Oh ye Athenians, could you believe what dangers I expose myself to, to be praised by you! To define then the reward of glory in the amplest manner, the most that can be said of it, is, that it consists in a superlative felicity which a man, who is conscious of having performed a noble action, enjoys in self-love, whilst he is thinking on the applause he expects of others.
But here I shall be told, that besides the noisy toils of war and public bustle of the ambitious, there are noble and generous actions that are performed in silence; that virtue being its own reward, those who are really good have a
satisfaction in their consciousness of being so, which is all against man by his corrupt use of power. Boling. the recompense they expect from the most worthy perform- | broke, who had fallen at the death of Anne. never ances; that among the heathens there have been men, who, again to rise to political power himself, was pursuing when they did good to others, were so far from coveting
| Walpole with such feud as he condemned, and Sir thanks and applause, that they took all imaginable care to be for ever concealed from those on whom they bestowed their benefits, and consequently that pride has no hand in spurring man on to the highest pitch of self-denial.
In answer to this I say, that it is impossible to judge of a man's performance, unless we are thoroughly acquainted with the principle and motive from which he acts. Pity, though it is the most gentle and the least mischievous of all our passions, is yet as much a frailty of our nature, as anger, pride, or fear. The weakest minds have generally the greatest share of it, for which reason none are more compassionate than women and children. It must be owned, that of all our weaknesses it is the most amiable, and bears the greatest resemblance to virtue; nay, without a consider. able mixture of it the society could hardly subsist : but as it is an impulse of nature, that consults neither the public interest nor our own reason, it may produce evil as well as good. It has helped to destroy the honour of virgins, and corrupted the integrity of judges; and whoever acts from it as a principle, what good soever he may bring to the society, has nothing to boast of but that he has indulged a passion that has happened to be beneficial to the public. There is no merit in saving an innocent babe ready to drop into the fire : the action is neither good nor bad, and what benefit soever the infant received, we only obliged ourselves; for to have seen it fall, and not strove to hinder it, would have caused a pain, which self-preservation compelled us to prevent : Nor has a rich prodigal, that happens to be of a commiserating temper, and loves to gratify his passions, greater virtue to boast of when he relieres an object of compassion with what to himself is a trifle.
But such men, as without complying with any weakness of their own, can part from what they value themselves, and, from no other motive but their love to goodness, perform a worthy action in silence : Such men, I confess, have acquired more refined notions of virtue than those I have hitherto spoke of; yet even in these (with which the world has yet never swarmed) we may discover no small symptoms of pride, and the humblest man alive must confess, that the reward of a virtuous action, which is the satisfaction that ensues upon it, consists in a certain
OLYMPIAN WALPOLE. pleasure he procures to himself by contemplating on his Frontispiece to Bolingbroke's " Dissertations upon Parties." own worth: Which pleasure, together with the occasion of it, are as certain signs of pride, as looking pale and trem
Robert Walpole was not a dishonest man. But the bling at any imminent danger, are the symptoms of fear.
tide ran strongly in favour of that form of attack, If the too scrupulous reader should at first view condemn
and there was much in public life that justified it. these notions concerning the origin of moral virtue, and think them perhaps offensive to Christianity, I hope he'll
The Craftsman was a paper established by William forbear his censures, when he shall consider that nothing
Pulteney, who had been a zealous Whig and a colcan render the unsearchable depth of the divine wisdom
league of Walpole's. On the accession of George I. more conspicuous, than that man, whom providence had
he was made Privy Councillor and Secretary at War. designed for society, should not only by his own frailties
When Walpole returned to office in 1721, Pulteney, and imperfections be led into the road to temporal happiness,
dissatisfied with the arrangements that concerned but likewise receive, from a seeming necessity of natural
himself, went into Opposition. As Walpole's percauses, a tincture of that knowledge, in which he was after sonal ascendancy increased, Pulteney, aided quietly wards to be made perfect by the true religion, to his eternal
by Bolingbroke, became leader of the Opposition. welfare.
Bolingbroke, ill-used by the Pretender, whom he had
desired to serve, could, in his forced retirement from In his attacks upon Sir Robert Walpole, Boling political life, put the lost cause aside, and aid a new broke was unsparing in his suggestions of corruption. cry led by a disaffected Whig against the Minister His “Dissertations upon Parties," republished from whom he accused of governing by a corrupt use of The Craftsman, had a frontispiece which represented money, and whom he hoped in good time to supplant. Walpole as the all-powerful Minister setting man | Bolingbroke led the attacks on the Minister in the name of public virtue, won young Whigs to share such an height, that, like most other animosities, they have his philosophical aspiration towards patriotic purity, almost brought that mighty state itself into contempt. We and was indeed, as far as he knew, honestly swim
have seen it dwindle by degrees for a year or two past, till ming with the stream, while hoping to profit in it is, at length, in a manner deserted even by its greatest good time by the reaction in which he took a fore
quondam admirers, subscribers, and directors. 0! tempora ! most place. There was power in his pen, and when
0! mores ! that ever the theatre in the Haymarket should Pulteney began, under the name of Caleb D'Anvers,
be obliged to yield to that in Lincoln's Inn Fields! that the of Gray's Inn, Esquire, his series of periodical papers
coarse ribaldry and vulgar catches of a Newgate hero should called The Craftsman, chiefly levelled against Wal
prevail over the melodious enchantments of Senesino! whilst
the once celebrated Cuzzoni and Faustina lay aside their pole, Bolingbroke became the writer of its most
former emulation, and, with united resentment, behold the vigorous essays. The first number of The Craftsman
| palm of precedence given to pretty Miss Polly Peachumwas published on the 5th of December, 1726, and it
with a P!3 appeared every Monday and Friday until the 17th
I hope the beaumonde will give me leave to observe, which of April, 1736. From among its essays I take one
nothing but the present melancholy occasion could extort that looks at the political side of the “Beggar's
from me, that this is an undeniable mark of a vitiated taste Opera,” which was first produced on the 29th of
and a degenerate licentious age, which delights in seeing January, 1728, and of which Gay himself said, when
things of the greatest importance turned to ridicule. Who publishing its sequel, “Polly," that he meant to
can help being surprised to find two of his Majesty's theatres express through it his sense of the corruption of
prostituted in this manner, and made the popular engines society. A year or two earlier the same note had
for conveying not only scandal and scurrility, but even been struck more forcibly, with a wit that had so
sedition and treason through the kingdom ? Have we not much in it of kindly playfulness as to make it to lately seen the awful solemnity of a coronation openly this day dear to a child, by Swift in his “Gulliver's burlesqued at both theatrès? Have not the nobles, the Travels." For the state of innocence Swift did not prelates, the judges and magistrates of the land been pergo back even to the state of nature, man in a state sonated by Miller, Johnson, and Harper at one house, and of nature was a Yahoo ; for innocence and honest by Harlequin and his associates at the other ? Have not life one must go farther back yet. They might be some persons in a certain honourable assembly been traduced found among brute beasts, but not in man.
for almost thirty nights together in the character of a
wrong-headed country knight, of mean intellects and a broken No. 85.
fortune? And lastly, is not the opera state itself become SATURDAY, February 17, 1727-8.
the subject of mirth and derision to crowded and clapping Totus mundus agit Histrionem.
audiences ? Anglicè.
Though I am a constant spectator of the “Beggar's The stage turns all the world to ridicule.
Opera,” which affords me a nightly entertainment, and
have always had a great respect for Mr. R—-ch, yet I am To CALEB D'ANVERS, Esq.
surprised at the late unprecedented insolence and audaciousI sent you, some months ago, an account of the declining
ness of that gentleman, and have often wondered that such state of the Royal British Academy, occasioned by the dis
entertainments are suffered to be exhibited night after night putes between the two famous rival queens and their con
to the whole town with impunity. How could it enter into tending factions, whether the first part in the opera belonged
his head to turn the fine songs of the opera into such high to Cuzzoni or Faustina;? which have been since carried to
ridicule? He knows very well who goes to and takes delight
in those diversions. It was impossible to think that all the i See in this Library “ English Plays," pages 416, 417.
disappointments in the world could have transported him to 2 Cuzzoni or Faustina. From 1714 to 1724, when the Earl of Peter. this degree; but as the best actions are liable to malicious borough married her and took her from the stage, the prima donna in and invidious turns, this innocent amusement of the k-g Handel's operas was Anastasia Robinson. Handel had begun his must not escape the ridicule of righteous Mr. R--ch. Did career in London with “Rinaldo" in 1711, in the days of Steele and Addison's Spectator. In 1723, Francesca Cuzzoni, of Parma, made
he mean to insinuate by this that nothing but sing-song, her first appearance in London, in Handel's opera “Ottone." Her
empty sound and gesticulation, please and recommend at an success was so great on the first night that she was engaged for opera ? Or did he hope that other harsh inferences would the season at a salary of two thousand guineas, and on her second be made by the disaffected, which I detest, and he dares not appearance the price of each ticket was raised to four guineas. The lady's voice was exquisite, but she was ill-looking, freakish, and
name? impertinent. Handel wrote some of his best airs to display her
It will, I know, be said by these libertine stage-players voice, but suffered so much worry from the airs she gave herself
that the satire is general, and that it discovers a consciousthat it was a satisfaction to him when a Venetian singer of high ness of guilt for any particular man to apply it to himself. repute abroad, Faustina Bardoni, made her first appearance in his “Alexander" in May, 1726. Faustina had beauty, prudence, and good of their own making. Cuzzoni married a harpsichord maker, whom temper in her favour. As a singer she excelled in brilliant articulate she was afterwards said to have poisoned, and she died miserably execution; while Cuzzoni's voice had a tone so soft and sympathetic in a hospital in 1770; and Faustina married a harpsichord player, to that she could in a touching passage move her audience to tears. whom she was first drawn by his music, and lived a long and happy But her character was not soft. She looked on the new-comer as a life with her husband, dying in the same year with him when one rival, and hated her. Each singer had a party following, the Countess was 83, the other 84 years old. of Pembroke leading the one, and the Countess of Burlington the 3 Penchum with a P, for the more aristocratic Beauchamp with a other. The house of the premier was divided against itself, for as B. The original Polly was Lavinia Fenton, who achieved a conquest Sir Robert Walpole favoured Faustina, his lady patronised Cuzzoni. of the Duke of Bolton, and became his second Duchess, twenty-three On the 20th of June, 1727, the two prime donne were to be upon the years after he had eloped with her. stage together. When they appeared, the partisans of each gave The Coronation procession of George II. in 1727 was produced at loose to their spirit of faction, and there was a riot in the house. Drury Lane as an incident to Banks's play of “Anna Bullen," and Not long afterwards Cazzoni assaulted her rival, and the ladies tried added as a show when other plays were acted. Rich, at Lincoln's Inn their nails upon each other's faces. The after lives of the ladies were | Fields, then set up "Harlequin Anna Bullen."
But they seem to forget that there are such things as before called a great man, amongst the lower people. But innuendos, a never-failing method of explaining libels, and this, perhaps, might be done for a blind; and then, no doubt, that when all the town sees through their design, it is un- | the reprieve was brought in to inculcate the same moral in reasonable to suppose those persons only incapable of under a stronger manner, viz., by an example of a great man and standing it to whom it belongs to punish such enormities. a notorious offender, who escapes with impunity. Nay, the very title of this piece and the principal character, His satirical strokes upon ministers, courtiers, and great which is that of an highwayman, sufficiently discover the men in general abound in every part of this most insolent mischievous design of it, since by this character everybody performance. In one place, where Polly Peachum acknow. will understand one who makes it his business arbitrarily to ledges her match with Captain Macheath, her father breaks levy and collect money on the people for his own use, of out in a passion with these words: What, marry an highwhich he always dreads to give any account. Is not this wayman! why he'll make as bad a husband as a lordsquinting with a vengeance, and wounding persons in authority inquendo, that all lords make bad husbands. Soon after, through the sides of a common malefactor?
when Miss Polly questions her spouse's constancy, he tells But I shall go still deeper into this affair, and undertake her that you might sooner tear a pension out of the hands to prove, beyond all dispute, that the “Beggar's Opera” is of a courtier than tear him from her-innuendo, that all the most venomous allegorical libel against the Government courtiers have pensions. In the very first song the employthat hath appeared for many years past.
ment of a statesman is, by innuendo, made as bad or worse There are some persons who esteem Lockit, the keeper or than that of Jonathan Wild, represented under the character prime minister of Newgate, to be the hero of the piece ;' to of Peachum, which he introduces by a general libel on men justify which opinion, they take notice that he is set forth of all professions, even the most sacred, in order to make on the stage in the person of Mr. Hall as a very corpulent that of a statesman more black and vile :bulky man, and that he hath a brother named Peachum, a who, as represented by Mr. Hippesly, appears to be a little,
Through all the employments of life,
Each neighbour abuses his brother, awkward, slovenly fellow. They observe farther, that these
Whore and rogue they call husband and wife; two brothers have a numerous gang of thieves and pick
All professions be-rogue one another. pockets under their direction, with whom they divide the
The priest calls the lawyer a cheat, plunder, and whom they either screen or tuck up, as their
The lawyer be-knaves the divine ;
And the statesman, because he's so great, own interest and the present occasion requires. But I am
Thinks his trade as bonest as mine. obliged to reject this interpretation as erroneous, however plausible it may be, and to embrace another, which is more The second act begins with a scene of highwaymen drinkgenerally received, viz., that Captain Macheath, who hath ing together, who solemnly promise never to betray one also a goodly presence, and hath a tolerable bronze upon another for interest or any other motive, upon which one his face, is designed for the principal character, and drawn of them gets up and says, Shew me a gang of courtiers to asperse somebody in authority. He is represented at the who can say as much-innuendo, that courtiers have less head of a gang of robbers, who promise to stand by him honesty than highwaymen. In another place it is said that against all the enquiries and coercive force of the law. He our gang can't trust one another any more than other people is often called a great man, particularly in the two following -innuendo passages, viz., “It grieves one's heart to take off a great In a scene between Peachum and his brother Lockit, man.” “What a moving thing it is to see a great man in Peachum takes upon him to say that he does not like these distress ;” which, by-the-bye, seems to be an innuendo that long arrears of the Government–innuendo, that the Governsome great man will speedily fall into distress.
ment is in arrear. Again, says he, Can it be expected that Soon after his first appearance on the stage he is taken up we should hang our acquaintance for nothing, when our and confined for a certain slippery prank on the road, but betters will hardly save theirs without being paid for ithath the good fortune to escape that time by the help of a | innuendo, that some persons have been well paid for saving trusty friend. He is afterwards retaken in much better or screening their former acquaintance. He says farther, plight and apparel than before, and ordered for execution, that unless the people in employment pay better innuendo, which is prevented for no other reason that I can see, than that they pay very badly), he shall let other rogues live that the poet is afraid of offending the critics, by making an
besides theirs-innuendo, that there are other rogues. opera end with a tragical catastrophe, for he plainly tells
He goes on with observing that, in one respect, their us that this observance of dramatic rules in one point hath employment may be reckoned dishonest, because, like great made him violate poetical justice in another, and spoil a very statesmen, they encourage those who betray their friends, good moral, viz., that the lower people have their vices in which contains, by innuendo, a confirmation of that ridicua degree as well as the rich, and are punished for them, lous as well as scandalous vulgar error, that great statesmen innuendo, that rich people never are.
frequently betray their friends. But herein, I confess, the author seems to be somewhat Upon this Lockit advises him to be more guarded, and inconsistent, by ranking his hero Macheath, whom he had | sings the following air :
When you censure the age 1 Lockit's song, "When you Censure the Age,” was encored
Be cautious and sage, vociferously on the first night as a hit at the premier, Sir Robert
Lest the courtiers offended should be. Walpole. Walpole, who was present, followed its repetition with
If you mention vice or bribe, a loud “encore" of his own, and had a round of applause for his
'Tis so pat to all the tribe, good humour. The Craftsman here amuses its readers by identifying
Each cries—That was levell'd at me. Walpole with Macheath.
* Lord Townshend, Walpole's brother-in-law, was joined with him I submit it, whether this is not a plain innuendo that in the administration until 1730, when they quarrelled, Townshend
every courtier is corrupted either with vice or a bribe, or resigned, and Walpole became sole master. The dates, of course, contradict those who have found a reference to the quarrel between
with both? The same infamous design is carried on in the Walpole and Townshend in Gay's quarrel scene between Lockit and two following songs, the first of which is sung by Lockit, Peachum.
and the second by Macheath.