not knowing my name, this accident of discovered to this very day.

my life was never

I am now settled with a widow woman, who has a great many children, and complies with my humour in every thing. I do not remember that we have exchanged a word together these five years: my coffee comes into my chamber every morning without asking for it; if I want fire, I point to my chimney; if water, to my bason: upon which my landlady nods, as much as to say she takes my meaning, and immediately obeys my signals. She has likewise modelled her family so well, that when her little boy offers to pull me by the coat, or prattle in my face, his eldest sister immediately calls him off, and bids him not disturb the gentleman. At my first entering into the family, I was troubled with the civility of their rising up to me every time I came into the room; but my landlady observing that upon these occasions I always cried pish, and went out again, has forbidden any such ceremony to be used in the house; so that at present I walk into the kitchen or parlour without being taken notice of, or giving any interruption to the business or discourse of the family. The maid will ask her mistress, though I am by, whether the gentleman is ready to go to dinner; as the mistress, who is indeed an excellent housewife, scolds at the servants as heartily before my face as behind my back. In short, I move up and down the house, and enter into all companies, with the same liberty as a cat or any other domestic animal, and I am as little suspected of telling any thing that I hear or see.

I remember last winter there were several young girls of the neighbourhood sitting about the fire with my landlady's daughters, and telling stories of spirits and apparitions. Upon my opening the door, the young women broke off their discourse; but my landlady's daughters telling them that it was no body but the gentleman (for that is the name which I go by in the neighbourhood as well as in the family), they went on without minding me. I seated myself by the candle that stood on a table at one end of the room; and pretending to read a book that I took out of my pocket, heard several dreadful stories of ghosts as pale as ashes, that had stood at the feet of a bed, or walked over a church-yard by moonlight;

and of others that had been conjured into the Red Sea for disturbing people's rest, and drawing their curtains at midnight; with many other old womens fables of the like nature. As one spirit raised another, I observed that at the end of every story the whole company closed their ranks, and crowded about the fire: I took notice, in particular, of a little boy, who was so attentive to every story, that I am mistaken if he ventures to go to bed by himself this twelve-month. Indeed they talked so long, that the imaginations of the whole assembly were manifestly crazed, and, I am sure, will be the worse for it as long as they live. I heard one of the girls, that hallooked upon me over her shoulder, asking the company how long I had been in the room; and whether I did not look paler than I used to do? This put me under some apprehensions that I should be forced to explain myself if I did not retire; for which reason I took the candle in my hand, and went up into my chamber, not without wondering at this unaccountable weakness in reasonable creatures, that they should love to astonish and terrify one another. Were I a father, I chould take a particular care to preserve my children from these little horrors of imagination, which they are apt to contract when they are young, and are not able to shake off when they are in years. I have known a soldier that has entered a breach affrighted at his own shadow, and look pale upon a little scratching at his door, who, the day before, had marched up against a battery of cannon. There are instances of persons who have been terrified, even to distraction, at the figure of a tree, or the shaking of a bull-rush. The truth of it is, I look upon a sound imagination as the greatest blessing of life, next to a clear judgment and a good conscience. In the mean time, since there are very few whose minds are not more or less subject to these dreadful thoughts and apprehensions, we ought to arm ourselves against them by the dictates of reason and religion, to pull the old woman out of our hearts, as PERSIUS expresses it in the motto of my paper, and extinguish those impertinent notions which we imbibe at a time that we were not able to judge of their absurdity. Or, if we believe, as many wise and good men have done, that there are such phan

toms and apparitions as those I have been speaking of, let us endeavour to establish to ourselves an interest in HIM who holds the reins of the whole creation in his hand, and moderates them after in such a manner, that it is impossible for one being to break loose upon another without His knowledge and permission.

For my own part, I am apt to join in opinion with those who believe that all the regions of nature swarm with spirits; and that we have multitudes of spectators on all our actions, when we think ourselves most alone: but instead of terrifying myself with such a notion, I am wonderfully pleased to think that I am always engaged with such an innumerable society in searching out the wonders of the creation, and joining in the same concert of praise and adoration.

MILTON has finely described this mixed communion of men and spirits in Paradise; and had doubtless his eye upon a verse in old HESIOD, which is almost word for word the same with his third line in the following passage:

-Nor think, though men were none,

That Heav'n would want spectators, GoD want praise:
Millions of spiritual creatures walk the earth
Unseen, both when we awake and when we sleep;
All these with ceaseless praise His works behold
Both day and night. How often from the steep
Of echoing hill or thicket have we heard
Celestial voices to the midnight air,
Sole, or responsive each to other's note,
Singing their great CREATOR? Oft in bands,
While they keep watch, or nightly rounding walk,
With heav'nly touch of instrumental sounds,
In full harmonic number join'd, their songs
Divide the night, and lift our thoughts to heav'n.



NO. 13.-THURSDAY, MARCH 15. 1710-11.


Die mihi, si fueris tu leo, qualis eris?

Were you a lion, how would you behave?



THERE is nothing that of late years has afforded matter of greater amusement to the town than Signior NiCOLINI'S combat with a lion in the Hay-Market, which has been very often exhibited to the general satisfaction of most of the nobility and gentry in the kingdom of Great Britain. Upon the first rumour of this intended combat, it was confidently affirmed, and is still believed by many in both galleries, that there would be a tame lion sent from the tower every opera night, in order to be killed by HYDAS PES. This report, though altogether groundless, so universally prevailed in the upper regions of the playhouse, that some of the most refined politicians in those parts of the audience gave it out in whisper, that the lion was a cousin-german of the tiger who made his appearance in King WILLIAM's days, and that the stage would be supplied with lions at the public expence during the whole session. Many likewise were the conjectures of the treatment which this lion was to meet with from the hands of Signior NICOLINI; some supposed that he was to subdue him in recitativo, as ORPHEUS used to serve the wild beasts in his time, and afterwards to knock him on the head; some fancied that the lion would not pretend to lay his paws upon the hero, by reason of the received opinion that a lion will not hurt a virgin: several, who pretended to have seen the opera in Italy, had informed their friends that the lion was to act a part in High-Dutch, and roar twice or thrice to a thoroughbase, before he fell at the feet of HYDASPES. To clear up a matter that was so variously reported, I have made it my business to examine whether this pretended lion is really the savage he appears to be, or only a counterfeit.

But, before I communicate my discoveries, I must acquaint the reader that, upon my walking behind the scenes last winter, as I was thinking on something else, I accidentally jostled against a monstrous animal that extremely startled me, and, upon my nearer survey of it, appeared to be a lion-rampant. The lion seeing me very much surprised, told me, in a gentle voice, that I might come by him if I pleased;" for (says he), I do not intend to hurt any body." I thanked him very kind. ly, and passed by him; and in a little time after saw him leap upon the stage, and act his part with very great applause. It has been observed by several, that the lion has changed his manner of acting twice or thrice since his first appearance; which will not seem strange, when I acquaint my reader that the lion has been changed upon the audience three several times. The first lion was a candle-snuffer; who being a fellow of a testy, choleric temper, overdid his part, and would not suffer himself to be killed so easily as he ought to have done; besides, it was observed of him, that he grew more surly every time he came out of the lion; and having dropt some words in ordinary conversation, as if he had not fought his best, and that he suffered himself to be thrown upon his back in the scuffle, and that he would wrestle with MR NICOLINI for what he pleased, out of his lion's skin, it was thought proper to discard him and it is verily believed, to this day, that had he been brought upon the stage another time, he would certainly have done mischief. Besides, it was objected against the first lion, that he reared himself so high upon his hinder paws, and walked in so erect a posture, that he looked more like an old man than a lion.


The second lion was a tailor by trade, who belonged to the playhouse, and had the character of a mild and peaceable man in his profession. If the former was too furious, this was too sheepish, for his part; insomuch that, after a short modest walk upon the stage, he would fall at the first touch of HYDASPES, without grappling with him, and giving him an opportunity of shewing his variety of Italian trips: it is said, indeed, that he once gave him a rip in his flesh-coloured doublet; but this was only to make work for himself in his pri

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