Imágenes de páginas
[ocr errors]

of thirty. Lucia is blooming and amorous, age, than seeing young peopie entertain theinand but a little above fifteen. The mother selves in such a manner as that we can partake looks very much younger than she is, the girl of their eujoyments. On such occasions we very much older. If it were possible to fix the Aatter ourselves, that we are not quite laid girl to her sick bed, and preserve the portion, aside in the world; but that we are either the use of wbich the mother partakes, the good used with gratitude for what we were, or howidow Flavia would certainly do it. But for noured for what we are. A well-inclined young fear of Lucia's escape, the mother is forced to man, and whose good-breeding is founded upon be constantly attended with a rival that ex- the principles of nature and virtue, must needs plains ber age, and draws off the eyes of her take delight in being agreeable to his elders, admirers. The jest is, they can never he to- as we are truly delighted when we are not the Jether in strangers' company, but Lucy is jest of them. When I say this, I must confess eternally reprimanded for something very par- I cannot but think it a very lamentable thing, ticular in her behaviour; for which she has that there should be a necessity for making the malice to say, ' she hopes she shall always that a rule of life, which should be, metbiuks, obey her parents.' She carried ber passion of a mere instinct of nature. If reflection upon jealousy to that height the other day, that, a man in poverty, whom we once knew in coming suddenly into the room, and surprising riches, is an argument of commiseration with colonel Lofty speaking rapture on one knee to generous minds ; sure old age, which is a decay her mother, she clapped down by him, and from that vigour which the young possess, and asked her blessing.

must certainly, if not prevented against their I do not know whether it is so proper to tell will, arrive at, should be more forcibly the family occurrences of this nature ; but we every object of that reverence which honest spirits day see the same thing happen in public con- are inclined to, from a sense of being themversation of the world. Men cannot be con. selves liable to what they observe has already tented with what is laudable, but they must overtaken others. have all that is laudable. This affectation is My three nephews, whom, in June last was wbat decoys the familiar man into pretences twelvemonth, I disposed of according to their to take state upon him, and the contrary cba- several capacities and inclinations; the first to racter to the folly of aiming at being winning the university, the second to a mercbant, and and complaisant. But in these cases men may the third to a woman of quality as her page, easily lay aside what they are, but can never by my invitation dined with me to-day. It is arrive at what they are not.

my custom often, when I have a mind to give As to the pursuits after affection and esteem, myself a more than ordinary cheerfulness, to the fair sex are happy in this particular, that invite a certain young gentlewoman of our with them the one is much more nearly related peighbourhood to make one of the company. to the other than in men. The love of a wo- She did me that favour this day. The presence man is inseparable from some esteem of her; of a beautiful woman of honour, to minds and as she is naturally the object of affection, which are not trivially disposed, displays an the woman who has your esteem has also some alacrity which is not to be communicated by degree of your love. A man that dutes on a any other object. It was not unpleasant to woman for her beauty, will wbisper his friend, me, tu look into her thoughts of the company

that creature has a great deal of wit when she was in. She smiled at the party of pleayou are well acquainted with her.' And if you sure I had thought of for ber, which was examine the bottom of your esteem for a wo-composed of an old man and three boys. My man, you will find you have a greater opinion scholar my citizen, and myself, were very soon of her beauty than any body else. As to us neglected ; and the young courtier, by the bow men, I design to pass most of my time with he made to her at ber entrance, engaged her the facetious Harry Bickerstaff; but William observation without a rival. I observed the Bickerstaff, the most prudent man of our Oxonian not a little discomposed at this prefamily, shall be my executor.

ference, while the trader kept his eye upon his uncle. My nephew Will had a thousand secret

resolutions to break in upon the discourse of No. 207.] Saturday, August 5, 1710.

his younger brother, who gave my fair compa

njon a full account of the fashion, and what From my own Apartment, August 4. was reckoned most becoming to this comHAVING yesterday morning received a paper plexion, and what sort of habit appeared best of Latin verses, written with much elegance upon the other shape. He proceeded to acin honour of these my papers, and being in- quaint her, who of quality was well or sick formed at the same time, that they were com- within the bills of mortality, and named very posed by a youth under age, I read them with familiarly all his lady's acquaintance, not formuch delight, as an instance of his improve- getting her very words when he spoke of their mnent. There is not a greater pleasure to old i characters. Besides all this, he had a road of flattery; and upon her enquiring, what sort of sing on like a true old fellow to this purpose to woman lady Lovely was in her person, “ Really, my guests when I received the following epistle: madam,' says the Jackanapes,she is exactly of your height and slape; but as you are fair,

“SIR, she is a brown woman.' There was no endur- 'I have yours, with notice of a benefit ticket ing that this fop should outshide us all at this of four hundred pounds per annum, both in. anmerciful rate; therefore I thought fit to closed by Mr. Elliot, who had my numbers for talk to my young scholar concerning his studies; that purpose. Your philosophic advice came and because I would throw his learning into very seasonably to me with that good fortune : present service, I desired him to repeat to me but I must be so sincere with you as to acthe translation be bad made of some tender knowledge, I owe my present moderation more verses in Theocritus. He did so, with an air to my own fully than your wisdom. You will of elegance peculiar to the college to which think this strange until I inform you, that I I sent him. I made some exceptions to the had fixed my thoughts upon the thousand turn of the phrases ; which he defended with pounds a-year, and had, with that expectation, much modesty, as believing in that place the laid down so many agreeable plans for my be. matter was rather to consult the softness of a haviour towards my new lovers and old friends, swain's passion, than the strength of his express that I have received this favour of fortune sions. It soon appeared, that Will had out- with an air of disappointment. This is interstripped his brother in the opinion of our young preted, by all who know not the springs of lady. A little poetry, to one who is bred a my heart, as a wonderful piece of humility,

cholar, has the same effect that a good car- I hope my present state of mind will grow into riage of his person has on one who is to live that; but I confess my conduct to be now in courts. The favour of women is so natural owing to another cause. However, I know you a passion, that I envier both the boys their will approve my taking hold even of imperfecsuccess in the approbation of my guest; and tions to find my way towards virtue, which is I thought the only person invulnerable was so feeble in us at the best, that we are often my young trader. During the whole meal, beholden to our faults for the first appearances I could observe in the children a mutual con- of it.

'I am, Sir, tempt and scorn of each other, arising from

Your most humble servant, their different way of life and education, aud took that occasion to advertise them of such growing distates ; which might mislead them in their future life, and disappoint their friends, No. 208.] Tuesday, August 4, 1710. as well as themselves, of the advantages which

Si dixeris æstuo, sudat. might be expected from the diversity of their professions and interests.

If you complain of heat,

They rnb th' unsweating brow, and swcar they sweat. The prejudices which are growing up be.

Dryden. tween these brothers from the different ways of education, are what create the most fatal From my own Apartment, August 7. misunderstandings in life. But all distinctions An old acquaintance, who met me this mornof disparagement, merely from our circum- ng, seemed overjoyed to see me, and told me stances, are such as will not bear the exami- I looked as well as he had ksown me do these nation of reason. The courtier, the trader, forty years: 'but,' continued he, 'not quite and the scholar, should all have an equal pre- the man you were, when we visited together tension to the denomination of a gentleman. at lady Brightly's. Oh! Isaac, thuse days are Tbat tradesman wbu deals with me in a com- over. Do you think there are any such fine molity which I do not understand, with up- creatures now living as we then conversed rightness, bas much more right to that cha- with ?' He went on with a thousand incoherent racter, than the courtier that gives me false circumstances, which, in his imagination, must hopes, or the scholar who laughs at my igno- needs please me; but they had ihe quite conrance.

trary effect. The flattery with which he began, The appellation of gentleman is never to be in telling me how well I wore, was not disaffixed to a man's circumstances, but to his agreeable ; but his indiscreet mention of a set behaviour in them. For this reason I shall of acquaintance we bad out-lived, recalled ten ever, as far as I am able, give my nephews such thousand things to my memory, which made impressions as shall make them value them

me reflect upon my present condition with selves rather as they are useful to others, than regret. Had be indeed been so kind as, after as they are conscious of merit in themselves. a long absence, to felicitate me upop an indoThere are no qualities for which we ought to lent and easy old age; and mentioued how pretend to the esteem of otbers, but such as much he and I had to thank for, wbo at our render us serviceable to them: for ‘free men time of day could walk firmly, eat heartily, have no superiors but benefactors.' I was go- I and converse cheerfully, he had kept up my


Jue. Sat. ii. 103.


pleasure in myself. But of all mankind, there j implies no more than a person that barely conare none so shocking as these injudicious civil sents; and indeed such a-one, if a man were people. They ordinarily begin upon something able to purchase or maintain him, cannot be ihat they know must be a satisfaction ; but bought too dear. Such a-one never contrathen, for fear of the imputation of flattery, diets you; but gains upon you, not by a fulibey follow it with the last thing in the world some way of commending you in brvad terms, of which you woulil be reminded. It is this but liking whatever you propose or utter ; at that perplexes civil persons. The reason that the same time, is ready to beg your pardon, there is such a general outcry among us against and gainsay you, if you chance to speak ill of Aatterers is, that there are so very few good yourself.. An old lady is very seldom without

It is the nicest art in this life, and is a such a companion as this, who can recite the part of eloquence, which does not want the uames of ail her lovers, and the matches re. preparation that is necessary to all other parts fused by her in the days when she minded such of it, that your audience should be your well. vanities, as she is pleased to call them, though wishers; for praise from an enemy is the most she so much approves the mention of them. pleasing of all commendations,

It is to be noted, that a woman's Aatterer is It is generally to be observed, that the per generally elder tbau berself; her years serving son most agreeable to a man for a constancy at once to recommend her patroness's age, and is he that has no shining qualities, but is to add weight to her complaisance in all other a certain degree above great imperfections; particulars. whom he can live with as his inferior, and who We gentlemen of small fortunes are ex. will either overlook, or not observe his little tremely necessitous in this particular. I have defects. Such an easy companion as this either indeed one who smokes with me often; but now and then throws vut a little flattery, or his parts are so low, that all the incense be lets a man silently Aatter bimself in bis supe. dues me is to fill his pipe with me, and to be riority to him. If you take notice, there is out at just as many wbiffs as I take. This is berdly a rich man in the world, who has not all the praise or assent that be is capable of; such a led friend of small consideration, who yet there are more hours when I would rather is a darling for his insignificancy. It is a great be in his company than in that of the brightest ease to have one in our own shape a species man I know. It would be a haril matter to below us, and who, without being listed in give an account of this inclination to be flat. our service, is by nature of our retinue. These tered; but if we go to the bottom of it, we dependants are of excellent use on a rainy day, shall find, that the pleasure in it is something or when a man has not a mind to dress; or to like that of receiving money which we lay out. exclude solitude, when one has neither a mind Every man thinks he has an estate of reputato that or to company. There are of this tion, and is glad to see one that will bring any good natured order, who are so kind as to of it home to him. It is no matter how dirty divide themselves, and do these good offices 10 a bag it is conveyed to him in, or by bow many. Five or six of them visit a whole quarter clownish a messenger, so the money be good. of the town, and exclude the spleen, without all that we want, to be pleased with flattery, fees, from the families they frequent. If they is to believe that the man is sincere who gives do not prescribe physic, they can be company it us. It is by this one accident, that absurd when you take it. Very great bevefactors to creatures often outrun the most skilful in this the rich, or those whom they call people at Their want of ability is here an advantheir ease, are your persons of no consequence. tage; and their bluntness, as it is the seeming I have known some of them, by the help of a effect of sincerity, is the best cover to artifice, litule cunning, make delicious flatterers. They Terence introduces a flatterer talking to a know the course of the town, and the general coxcomb, whom he cheats out of a livelihood; characters of persons; by this means they will and a third person on the stage makes un bim sometimes tell the most agreeable falsehoods this pleasant remark, ‘ This fellow bas an art imaginable. They will acquaint you, that I of making fools madmen.' The love of flattery such a-one of a quite contrary party said, is, indeed, sometimes the weakwess of a great “That though you were engaged in different mind; but you see it also in persons, who otherinterests, yet he had the greatest respect for wise discover no manner of relish of any thing your good sense and address. When one of above mere sensuality. These latter it somethese has a little cunning, be passes his time limes improves; but always de bases the former. in the utmost satisfaction to himself and his | A foul is in himself the object of pity, until he friends ; for his position is never to report or is flattered. By the force of that, bis stupidity speak a displeasing thing to his friend. As for is raised into affectation, and be becomes of letting him go on in an error, he knows, ad. dignity enough to be ridiculous. I remember vice against them is the office of persons of a droll, that upun one's saying, 'The times greater talents and less discretion.

are so ticklish, that there must great care be The Latin word for a flatterer, assentator, I taken what one says in conversation ; answered


with an air of surliness and honesty, “If people, But Philippus, the most esteemed and most will be free, let them be so in the manner that knowing of his physicians, promised, that I am, wbo never abuse a man but to bis face.' within three days' time he would prepare a He had no reputation for saying dangerous medicine for him, which would restore him truths; therefore when it was repeated,' You more expeditiously than could be imagined. abuse a man but to his face?' 'Yes,' says he | Immediately after this engagement, Alexander “I fatter bim.'

receives a letter from the most considerable o It is indeed the greatest of injuries to flatter his captains, with intelligence that Darius had any but the unhappy, or such as are displeased bribed Philippus to poison him. Every cirwith themselves for some infirmity. In this cumstance imaginable favoured this suspicion ; latter case we have a member of our club, but this monarch, who did nothing but in an who, when sir Jeffery falls asleep, wakeos him extraordinary manner, concealed the letter; with snoring This makes sir Jeffery hold up and while the medicine was preparing, spent all for some moments the longer, to see there are bis thoughts upon his behaviour in this impor. men younger than himself among us, who are tant incident. From his long soliloquy, he more lethargic than he is.

came to this resulution : ' Alexander must not When flattery is practised upon any other lie here alive to be oppressed by bis enemy. consideration, it is the most abject thing in I will not believe ny pbysician guilty; or, I nature; nay,

I cannot think of any character will perish rather by his guilt, than my own below the latterer, except he that envies diffidence.' him. You meet with fellows prepared to be At the appointed hour, Philippus enters with as mean as possible in their condescensions the potion. One cannot but form to one's self and expressions; but they want persons and on this occasion the encounter of their eyes, talents to rise up to such a baseness. As a the resolution in those of the patient, and the coxcomb is a fool of parts, so is a flatlerer a benevolence in the countenance of the physiknave of parts.

cian. The hero raised hiinself in his bed, and, The best of this order, that I know, is one bolding the letter in one hand, and the potion who disguises it under a spirit of contradiction in the other, drank the medicine. It will exur reproof. He told an arrant driveller the ercise my friend's pencil and brain to place other day, that he did not care for being in this action in its proper beauty. A prince obcompany with him, because he heard he turned serving the features of a suspected traitor, after his absent friends into ridicule. And upon baving drunk the poison be offered bim, is a Jady Autumn's disputing with him about some. circumstance su full of passion, that it will thing that happened at the Revolution, he re. require the highest strength of bis imagination plied with a very angry tone, “ Pray, madam. to conceive it, much more to express it. But give me leave to know more of a thing in as painting is eloquence and poetry in mechawhich I was actually concerned, than you who nism, I shall raise his ideas, by reading with were then in your nurse's arms.'

bim the finest dranghts of the passions concerned in this circumstance, from the most ex

cellent poets and oraturs. The confidence No. 209.] Saturday, August 10, 1710.

which Alexander assumes from the air of Phi.

lippus's face as he is reading his accusation, From my own Apartment, August 9.

and the generous disdain wbich is to rise in

the features of a falsely accused man, are prinA NOBLE painter, who has an ambition to cipally to be regarded. In this particular he draw a bistory piece, has desired me to give must heighten his thoughts, by reflecting, that bin a subject, on which he may show the ut- he is not drawing only an innocent man tramost force of his art and genius. For this duced, but a man zealously atfected to his purpose, I have pitched upon that remarkable person and safety, full of resentment for being mcident between Alexander the Great and his thought false. How shall we contrive to exphysician. This prince, in the midst of his press the highest admiration, mingled with conquests in Persia, was seized by a violent | Bisdain? How shall we in strokes of a pencil fever; and, according to the account we have say, what Philippus did to his prioce on this of his vast mind, his thoughts were more em- occasion ? “Sir, my life never depended on ployed about his recovery, as it regarded the yours more than it does now. Without knowwar, than as it concerned his own life. Heing this secret, I prepared the potion, which professed, a slow method was worse than death you have taken as what concerned Philippus to him ; because it was, what he more dreaded, no less than Alexander ; and there is nothing an interruption of his glory. He desired a new in this adventure, but that it makes me dangerous, so it might be a speedy remedy. still more admire the generosity and confidence During this impatience of the king, it is well of my master.' Alexander took him by the known that Darius had offered an immense band, and said, ' Philippus, I am contident sum to any one who should take away his life. I you had rather I had any other way to have

vate men.

manifested the faito I have in you, than a case ( drawn in red, or in armour, who never dreamed wbich so nearly concerns me: and in gratitude to destroy any thing above a fux, is a common I now assure you, I am anxious for the effect of and ordinary offence of this kind. But I shall your medicine, more for your sake than my give an account of our whole gallery on ano:her own.

occasion. My painter is employed by a man of sense and wealth to furnish him a gallery; and I shall join with my friend in the designing part. No. 210.] Saturday, August 12, 1710. It is the great use of pictures, to raise in our minds either agreeable ideas of our absent

Sheer-lane, August 10. friends, or high images of eminent personages. I DI myself the honour this day to make But the latter design is, methinks, carried on a visit to a lady of quality, who is one of those in a very improper way; for to fill a room full that are ever railing at the vices of the age, of battle-pieces, pompous histories of sieges, but mean only one vice, because it is the only and a tall bero alone in a crowd of insignificant vice they are not guilty of. She went so far figures about him, is of no consequence to pri- as to fall foul on a young woman, who has had

But to place before our eyes great imputations ; but whether they were just or and illustrious men in those parts and circum- not, no one knows but herself. However that stances of life, wherein their behaviour may is, she is in her present behaviour modest, humhave an effect upon our minds; as being such ble, pious, and discreet. I thought it became as we partake with them merely as they were me to bring this censorious lady to reason, and men ; such as these, I say, may he just and let her see, she was a much more vicious woman useful ornaments of an elegant apartment. In than the person she spoke of. this collection therefore that we are making, Madam,' said I, you are very severe to this we will not have the battles, but the sentiments poor young woman, for a trespass which I of Alexander. The affair we were just now believe Heaven has forgiven her, and for which, speaking of bas circumstances of the highest you see, she is for ever out of countenance.' nature; and yet their grandeur has little to do Nay, Mr. Bickerstaff,' she interrupted, “ if you with his fortune. If, by observing such a at this time of day contradict people of virtue, piece, as that of his taking a bowl of poison and stand up for ill women'--'No, no, with so much magnanimity, a man, the next madam,' said 1, ' not so fast; she is reclaimed, time he has a fit of the spleen, is less froward and I fear you never will be. Nay, nay, madam, to his friend or his servants; thus far is some do not be in a passion ; but let me tell you improvement.

You are indeed as good as your I have frequently thought, that if we had neigbbours ; but that is being very bad. You many draughts which were bistorical of certain are a woman at the head of a fainily, and lead passions, and had the true figure of the great a perfect town-lady's life. You go on your men we see transported by them, it would be own way, and consult nothing but your glass. of the most solid advantage imaginable. To What imperfections indeed you see there, you consider this mighty man on one occasion, immediately mend as fast as you can. You administering to the wants of a poor, soldier be- may do the same by the faults I tell you of ; numbed with cold, with the greatest huma for they are much more in your power to nity; at another barbarvusly stabbing a faith correct. ful officer; at one time, so generously chaste "You are to know, then, that you visiting and virtuous as to give his captive Statira her ladies that carry your virtue from house to liberty; at another, burning a town at the house with so much prattle in each other's instigation of Thais. These changes in the applause, and triumph over other people's same person are what would be more beneficial faults, 1 grant you, have but the speculation lessons of morality, than the several revolutions of vice in your own conversations ; but promote in a great man's fortune. There are hut one the practice of it in all others you have to do or two in an age, to whom the pompous inci- with. dents of bis life can be exemplary ; but I, or * As for you, madam, your time passes away any man, may be as sick, as good-natured, as in dressing, eating, sleeping, and praying, compassionate, and as angry, as Alexander the When you rise in a morning, I grant you an Great. My purpose in all this chat is, that hour spent very well; but you come out to so excellent a furniture may not for the future dress in so froward a humour, that the poor have so romantic a turn, but allude to inci- girl who attends you, curses ber very being in dents which come within the fortunes of the that she is your servant, for the peevish things ordinary race of men. I do not know but it you say to her. When this poor creature is is by the force of this senseless custom, that put into a way, that good or evil are regarded people are drawn in postures they would not but as they relieve ber from the hours she has for balf they are worth be surprised in. The and must pass with you ; the next you have to yo paralleled fierceness of some rural esquires do with is your coachman and footmen. They

what you are.

« AnteriorContinuar »