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I can call neither ancient nor modern, that I dare fay will be no lefs furprifing to my reader than it was to myself; for which reafon I fhall communicate it to the public as one of the greateft curiofities in its kind.
A friend of mine complaining of a tradesman who is related to him, after having reprefented him as a very idle worthlefs fellow, who neglected his family, and spent most of his time over a bottle, told me, to conclude his character, that he was a member of the everlafting Club. So very odd a title raifed my curiofity to inquire into the nature of a club that had fuch a founding name; upon which my friend gave me the following ac
HE Everlasting Club confifts of an hundred four hours among them in fuch a manner, that the club fits day and night from one end of the year to another; no party prefuming to rife till they are relieved by those who are in courfe to fucceed them. By this means a member of the Everlafting Club never wants company; for tho' he is not upon duty himself, he is fure to find fome who are; fo that if he be difpofed to take a whet, a nooning, an evening's draught, or a bottle after midnight, he goes to the club, and finds a knot of friends to his mind.
It is a maxim in this club, that the fteward never dies; for as they fucceed one another by way cf rotation, no man is to quit the great elbow. chair which ftands at the upper end of the table, 'till his fucceffor is in a readiness to fill it; infomuch that there has not been a Sede vacante in the memory of man.
This club was inftituted towards the end, or, as fome of them fay, about the middle, of the civil wars, and continued without interruption till the time of the Great Fire, which burnt them out, and
always kept in, focus perennis efto, las well for the convenience of lighting their pipes, as to cure the dampnefs of the club-room. They have an old woman in the nature of a veftal, whose business it is to cherish and perpetuate the fire which burns from generation to generation, and has feen the glafs-houfe fires in and out above an hundred times.
The Everlasting Club treats all other clubs with an eye of contempt, and talks even of the Kit-Cat and October as of a couple of upftarts. Their ordinary difcourfe, as much as I have been able to learn of it, turns altogether upon fuch adventures as have paffed in their own affembly; of members who have taken the glafs in their turns for a week together, without ftirring out of the club; of others who have not miffed their morning's
twenty years together;
they fpeak in raptures of a run of ale in king Charles's reign; and fometimes reflect with aftonifhment upon games at whift, which have been miraculously recovered by members of the fociety, when in all human probability the case was defperate.
They delight in several old catches, which they fing at all hours, to encourage one another to moisten their clay, and grow immortal by drinking; with many other edifying exhortations of the like nature.
There are four general clubs held in a year, at which times they fill up vacancies, appoint waiters, confirm the old fire-maker, or elect a new one, fettle contributions for coals, pipes, tobacco, and other neceffaries.
The fenior member has out-lived the whole club twice over, and has been drunk with the grandfathers of fome of the present sitting members.
-0 Dea certè!
VIRG. Æn. i. 332.
O Goddess! for no less you feem.
difperfed them for feveral weeks. The steward at No. 3. THURSDAY, MAY 24. that time maintained his poft till he had like to have been blown up with a neighbouring houfe, which was demolished in order to stop the fire; and would rot leave the chair at laft, till he had emptied all the bottles upon the table, and re ceived repeated directions from the club to withdraw himself. This fteward is frequently talked of in the club, and looked upon by every member of it as a greater man than the famous captain mentioned in my lord Clarendon, who was burnt in his fhip because he would not quit it without orders. It is faid that towards the close of 1700, being the great year of jubilee, the club had it under confideration whether they should break up or continue their feffion; but after many speeches and debates, it was at length agreed to fit out the other century. This refolution paffed in a general club nemine contradicente.
T is very ftrange to confider, that a creature like man, who is fenfible of so many weakneffes and imperfections, should be actuated by a love of fame that vice and ignorance, imperfection and mifery, fhould contend for praise, and endeavour as much as poffible to make themselves objects of admiration.
Having given this short account of the inftitution and continuation of the Everlasting Club, I fhould here endeavour to fay fomething of the manners and characters of its feveral members, which I shall do according to the best lights I have received in this matter.
It appears by their books in general, that, fince their first institution, they have fmoked fifty tun of tobacco, drank thirty thousand butts of ale, one thousand hegheads of red port, two hundred barrels of brandy, and a kilderkin of fmall-beer. There had been likewife a great confumption of cards. It is alfo faid, that they obferve the law in ben Jonfon's club, which orders the fire to be
But notwithstanding man's effential perfection is but very little, his comparative perfection may be very confiderable. If he looks upon himself in an abftracted light, he has not much to boast of; but if he confiders himself with regard to others, he may find occafion of glorying, if not in his own virtues, at leaft in the abfence of another's imperfections. This gives a different turn to the reAlexions of the wife man and the fool. The first endeavours to fhine in himself, and the laft to outshine others. The first is humbled by the fenfe of his own infirmities, the last is lifted up by the difcovery of thofe which he obferves in other men. The wife man confiders what he wants, and the fool what he abounds in. The wife man is happy when he gains his own approbation, and the fool when he recommends himself to the applaufe of thofe about him.
But however unreasonable and abfurd this paffion for admiration may appear in fuch a creature as man, it is not wholly to be discouraged; fince
it often produces very good effects, not only as it I must here obferve, that thofe idolaters, who dereftrains him from doing any thing which is mean vote themfelves to the Idols I am here ipeaking of, and contemptible, but as it pushes him to actions differ very much from all other kinds of idolaters. which are great and glorious. The principle may For as others fall out because they worship different be defective or faulty; but the confequences it pro-Idols, thefe idolaters quarrel because they worship duces are fo good, that, for the benent of mankind, the fame. it ought not to be diftinguished.
It is obferved by Cicero, that men of the greateft and the mot shining parts are the moit actuated by ambition; and if we look into the two fexes, I believe we shall find this principle of action ftronger in women than in men.
The pation for pra fe, which is fo very vehement in the fair fex, produces excellent effects in women of fenfe, who defire to be admired for that only which deferves admiration: and I think we may obferve, without a compliment to them, that many of them do not only live in a more uniform courie of virtue, but with an infinitely greater regard to their honour, than what we find in the generality of our own fex. How many inftances have we of chaflity, fidelity, devotion? How many ladies diftinguish themselves by the education of their chil. dren, care of their families, and love of their hufbands, which are the great qualities and atchievements of woman-kind: as the making war, the carrying on of traffic, the adminiftration of juftice, are those by which men grow famous, and get themfelves a name?
But as this paffion for admiration, when it works according to reafon, improves the beautiful part of our fpecies in every thing that is laudable: fo nothing is more deftructive to them when it is governed by vanity and folly. What I have therefore here to fay, only regards the vain part of the fex, whom for certain reafons, which the reader will bereafter fee at large, I fall diftinguish by the name of Idols. An idol is wholly taken up in the adorning of her perfon. You fee in every pofture of her body, air of her face, and motion of her head, that it is her bufinefs and employment to gain adorers. For this reafon your Idols appear in all public places and affemblies, in order to feduce men to their worship. The play-house is very frequently filled with Idols; feveral of them are carried in proceflion every evening about the Ring, and several of them fet up their worship even in churches. They are to be accofted in the langaage proper to the Deity. Life and death are in their powers, joys of heaven and pains of hell are at their difpotal: paradife is in their arms; and eternity in every moment that you are prefent with them. Raptures, tranfports, and ecftafies, are the rewards which they confer: fighs and tears, prayers and broken hearts, are the offerings which are paid to them. Their fmiles make men happy; their frowns drive them to defpair. I fall only add under this head, that Ovid's book of the Art of Love is a kind of heathen ritual, which contains all the forms of worship which are made ufe of to an Idol.
It would be as difficult a task to reckon up these different kinds of Idols, as Milton's was to number thofe that were known in Canaan, and the lands adjoining. Most of them are worshipped, like Moloch, in fire and flames. Some of them like Baal, love to fee their votaries cut and flashed, and, fhedd
ing their blood for them like the Idol in the Apocrypha, must have treats and collations prepared for them every night. It has indeed been known, that fome of them have been ufed by their incenfed worhippers like the Chinese Idols, who are whipped and fcourged when they refufe to comply with the prayers that are offered to them,
The intention therefore of the Idol is quite contrary to the withers of the idolater: as the one defires to confine the idol to himielf, the whole bufinefs and ambition of the other is to multiply adorers. This humour of an Idol is prettily defcribed in a tale of Chaucer: he reprefents one of them fitting at a table with three of her votaries about her, who are all of them courting her favour, and paying their adorations: fhe fmiled upon one, drank to another, and trod upon the other's foot which was under the table. Now which of thofe three, lays the old bard, do you think was the favourite? În troth, fays he, not one of all the three.
The behaviour of this old Idol in Chaucer, puts me in mind of the beautiful Clarinda, one of the greatest Idols among the moderns. She is worshiped once a week by candlelight, in the midst of a large congregation, generally called an aflembly. Some of the gayeft youths in the nation endeavour to plant themselves in her eye, while the fits in form with multitudes of tapers burning about her, To encourage the zeal of idolaters, fhe bestows a mark of her favour upon every one of them, before they go out of her prefence. She asks a queftion of one, tells a story to another, glances an ogle upon a third, takes a pinch of inuff from the fourth, lets her fan drop by accident to give the fifth an occafion of taking it up. In fhort, every one goes away fatisfied with his fuccels, and encouraged to renew his devotions on the fame canonical hour that day fevennight,
An Idol may be undeified by many accidental caufes. Marriage in particula is a kind of Counter-Apotheofis, or a deification inverted. When a man becomes familiar with his goddefs, the quickly finks into a woman.
Old age is likewife a great decayer of your Idol. The truth of it is, there is not a more unhappy being than a fuperannuated Idol, especially when the has contracted fuch airs and behaviour as are only graceful when her worshippers are about her.
. Confidering therefore that in thefe and many other cafes the Woman generally outlives the Idol; I must return to the moral of this paper, and defire my fair readers to give a proper direction to their paffion for being admired: in order to which, they muft endeavour to make themselves the objects of a reafonable and lasting admiration. This is not to be hoped-for from beauty, or drefs, or fafnion, but from thofe inward ornaments which are not to be defaced by time or fickness, and which appear moft amiable to those who are moft acquainted with them.
my last Monday's paper I gave fome general inftances of thofe beautiful ftrokes which pleate the reader in the old fong of Chevy-Chafe: Ifball here, according to my promife, be more particular and fhew that the fentiments in that ballad are extremely natural and poetical, and full of the majef
tic fimplicity which we admire in the greatest of the ancient poets, for which reafon I fhall quote feveral paffages of it, in which the thought is altogether the fame with what we meet in feveral paffages of the Eneid; not that I would infer from thence, that the poet, whoever he was, propofed to himself any imitation of thofe paffages, but that he was directed to them in-general by the fame kind of poetical genius, and by the fame copyings after nature.
Had this old fong been filled with epigrammatical turns and points of wit, it might perhaps have pleafed the wrong tafte of fome readers; but it would never have become the delight of the common people, nor have warmed the heart of Sir Philip Sidney like the found of a trumpet; it is only nature that can have this effect, and please thofe taftes which are the most unprejudiced or the most refined. I must however beg leave to diffent from fo great an authority as that of Sir Philip Sidney, in the judgment which he has paffed as to the rude ftile and evil apparel of this antiquated fong; for there are feveral parts in it where not only the thought but the language is majestic, and the numbers fonorous; at least, the apparel is much more gorgeous than many of the poets made ufe of in Queen Elizabeth's time, as the reader will fee in feveral of the following quotations.
What can be greater than either the thought or the expreffion in that ftanza,
To drive the deer with hound and horn
The hunting of that day!'
This way of confidering the misfortunes which this battle would bring upon pofterity, not only on those who were born immediately after the battle, and loft their fathers in it, but on thofe alfo who perished in future battles which took their rife from this quarrel of the two earls, is wonderfully beautiful, and conformable to the way of thinking among the ancient poets.
Audiet pugnas, vitio parentum
The ftout earl of Northumberland
The hounds ran fwiftly thro' the woods,
And with their cries the hills and dales
-Vocat ingenti clamore Citharon
Taygetique canes, domitrixque Epidaurus equorum a Et vox affenfu nemorum ingeminata remugit
GEORG. ii. 43.
Citharon loudly calls me to my way;
High Epidaurus urges on my speed,
Lo, yonder doth earl Douglas come.
Faft by the river Tweed, &c.
The country of the Scotch warriors, defcribed in these two laft verfes, has a fine romantic fituation, and affords a couple of fmooth words for verfe. If the reader compares the foregoing fix lines of the fong with the following Latin verfes, he will fee how much they are written in the spirit of Virgil,
Adverfi campo apparent, baftafque reductis Protendunt longe dextris; & fpicula vibrant— Quique altum Prænefte viri, quique arva Gabinæ Junonis, gelidumque Anienem, & rofcida rivis Hernica faxa colunt :
- qui rojea rura Velini, Qui Tetrica borrentes rupes, montemque Severum, Cafperiamque colunt, Forulafque & flumen Himellæ Qui Tiberim Fabarimque bibuntEN. xi. 605-7. 682. 712.
Advancing in a line, they couch their spears-
With thofe who plow Saturnia's Gabine land:
But to proceed,
Earl Douglas on a milk white fteed, Moft like a baron bold,
Rode foremost of the company,
Whofe armour fhone like gold.' Turnus ut antevolans tardum præcefferat agmen, &c. Vidifti, quo Turnus equo, quibus ibat in armis
Our English archers bent their bows,
Lay gafping on the ground.
With that there came an arrow keen
Which struck earl Douglas to the heart
Eneas was wounded after the fame manner by an unknown hand in the midst of a parley.
Has inter voces, media inter talia verba,
But of all the defcriptive parts of this fong, there are none more beautiful than the four following stanzas, which have a great force and spirit in them, and are filled with very natural circumftances. The thought in the third stanza was never touched by any other poet, and is fuch an one as would have fhined in Homer or Virgil,
So thus did both those nobles die,
He had a bow bent in his hand,
An arrow of a cloth-yard long
Against Sir Hugh Montgomery
The gray-goofe wing that was thereon
This fight did last from break of day
One may observe likewise, that in the catalogue of the flain the author has followed the example of the greatest ancient poet, not only in giving a long lift of the dead, but by diverfifying it with little characters of particular persons.
And with earl Douglas there was flain
Sir Charles Carrel, that from the field
Sir Charles Murrel of Ratcliff too,
Sir David Lamb, fo well efteem'd,
Yet faved could not be.'
The familiar found in these names deftroys the majesty of the defcription; for this reafon I do not mention this part of the poem but to fhew the natural cast of thought which appears in it, as the two laft verfes look almost like a tranflation of Virgil.
-Cadit & Ripheus, justissimus unus
We meet with the fame heroic fentiments in Virgil:
Non pudet, O Rutuli, cunctis pro talibus unam
For shame, Rutilians, can you bear the fight
What can be more natural or more moving, than the circumstances in which he defcribes the behaviour of those women who had lost their husbands on this fatal day?
Next day did many widows come
Their husbands to bewail;
They wash'd their wounds in brinish tears,
* Their bodies bath'd in purple blood,
They kifs'd them dead a thousand times,
Thus we fee how the thoughts of this poem, which naturally arise from the fubject, are always fimple, and fometimes exquifitely noble; that the language is often very founding; and that the whole is written with a true poetical fpirit.
If this fong had been written in the Gothic manner, which is the delight of all our little wits, whether writers or readers, it would not have hit the taste of fo many ages, and have pleased the readers of all ranks and conditions. I fhall only beg pardon for fuch a profufion of Latin quotations which I fhould not have made ufe of, but that I feared my own judgment would have looked too fingular on fuch a fubject, had not I fupported it by the practice and authority of Virgil.
N° 75. SATURDAY, MAY 26.
All fortune fitted Aristippus well. CREECH. T was with fome mortification that I fuffered the raillery of a fine lady of my acquaintance, for calling, in one of my papers, Dorimant a clown. N. ii. 426. She was fo unmerciful as to take advantage of my invincible taciturnity, and on that occafion, with great freedom to confider the air, the height, the face, the gefture of him who could pretend to judge fo arrogantly of gallantry. She is full of motion, janty, and lively in her impertinence, and one of thofe that commonly pafs, among the ignorant, for perfons who have a great deal of humour. She had the play of Sir Fopling in her hand, and after she had faid it was happy for her
Then Ripheus fell in the unequal fight, Juft of his word, obfervant of the right: Heav'n thought not fo.'
In the catalogue of the English who fell, Witherington's behaviour is in the fame manner particularized very artfully, as the reader is prepared for it by that account which is given of him in the beginning of the battle; though I am fatisfied your little buffoon readers, who have feen that paffage ridiculed in Hudibras, will not be able to take the beauty of it; for which reafon I dare not fo much as quote it.
Then stept a gallant 'fquire forth,
Witherington was his name,
here was not fo charming a creature as Dorimant now living, she began with a theatrical air and tone of voice to read, by way of triumph over me. fome of his fpeeches. 'Tis fhe, that lovely air,
that eafy shape, thofe wanton eyes, and all thofe 'melting charms about her mouth, which Medley spoke of; I'll follow the lottery, and put in for a prize with my friend Bellair.'
In love the victors from the vanquish'd fly; They fly that wound, and they pursue that die.' Then
Then turning over the leaves, the reads alter- formed himself upon thofe principles among us, nately, and ipeaks, which are agreeable to the dictates of honour and religion, would make in the familiar and ordinary Occurrences of life?
And you and Loveit to her cost shall find
Oh the fine gentleman! But here, continues fhe,
I that I may fuccefsful prove,
I hardly have obferved any one fill his feveral duties of life better than Ignotus, All the under parts of his behaviour, and fuch as are expofed to common obfervation, have their rife in him from great and noble motives. A firm and unfhaken expectation of another life, makes him become this. Humanity and good-nature, fortified by the fenfe of virtue, has the fame effect upon him, as the neglect of all goodnefs has upon many others. Being firmly established in all matters
Then how like a man of the town, fo wild and of importance, that certain inattention which gay is that!
The wife will find a diff'rence in our fate,
It would have been a very wild endeavour for a man of my temper to offer any oppofition to fo nimble a speaker as my fair enemy is; but her difcourfe gave me very many reflections, when I had left her company. Among others, I could not but confider, with fome attention, the falfe impreffions the generality, the fair fex more efpecially, have of what should be intended, when they fay a Fine Gentleman; and could not help revolving that fubject in my thoughts, and fettling, as it were, an idea of that character in my own imaginatior.
makes mens actions look eafy appears in him with greater beauty: by a thorough contempt of little excellences, he is perfectly matter of them. This temper of mind leaves him under no neceffity of ftudying his air, and he has this peculiar distinction, that his negligence is unaffected.
He that can work himself into a pleasure in confidering this being as an uncertain one, and think to reap an advantage by its difcontinuance, is in a fair way of doing all things with a graceful unconcern, and gentleman-like eafe. Such a one does not behold his life as a short, tranfient, perplexing ftate, made up of trifling pleasures, and great anxieties; but fees it in quite another light; his griefs are momentary, and his joys immortal. Reflexion upon death is not a gloomy and fad thought of refigning every thing that he delights in, but it is a fhort night followed by an endless day. What I would here contend for is, that the more virtuous the man is, the nearer he will na turally be to the character of genteel and agreeable. A man whofe fortune is plentiful, fhews an eafe in his countenance, and confidence in his behaviour, which he that is under wants and difficulties cannot affume. It is thus with the state of the mind; he that governs his thoughts with the everlasting rules of reafon and fenfe, must have fomething fo inexpreffibly graceful in his words and actions, that every circumftance muit become him. The change of perfons or things around him do not at all alter his fituation, but he looks difinterested in the occurrences with which others are distracted, because the greatest purpofe of his life is to maintain an indifference both to it and all its enjoyments. In a word, to be a fine gentleman is to be a generous and a brave man. What can make a man fo much in conftant good-humour, and fhine, as we call it, than to be fupported by what can never fail him, and to believe that whatever happens to him was the best thing that could poffibly befal him, or else he on whom it depends would not have permitted it to have befallen him at all?
No man ought to have the esteem of the rest of the world, for any actions which are difagreeable to thofe maxims w ich prevail, as the ftandards of behaviour, in the country wherein he lives. What is oppetite to the eternal rules of reafon and good fenfe, must be excluded from any place in the car. riage of a well-bred man. I did not, I confefs, explain myfell enough on this fubject, when I call ed Dorimant a clown, and made it an inftance of it, that he called the Orange Wench, Double Tripe: I should have fhewed, that humarity obliges a gentleman to give no part of human-kind reproach, for what they, whom they reproach, may poffibly have in common with the most virtuous and worthy among us. When a gentleman fpeaks coarfly, he has dreffed himself clean to no purpofe: the clothing of our minds certainly ought to be regarded before that of our bodies. To be tray in a man's talk a corrupted imagination, is a much greater offence against the converfation of a gentleman, than any negligence of drefs imaginabie. But this fenfe of the matter is fo far from being received among people even of condition, that Vocifer paffes for a fine gentleman. He is loud, haughty, gentle, foft, lewd, and obfequious by turns, juft as a little understanding and great impudence prompt him at the prefent moment. He paifes among the filly part of our women for a man of wit, because he is generally in doubt. He contradicts with a fhrug, and confutes with a certain fufficiency, in profeffing fuch and fuch a thing i above his capacity. What makes his charter the plenfanter is, that he is a profeffed dcluder of women; and becaufe the empty coxcomb has no regard to any thing that is of itself As you your fortune bear, we will bear you.
facred and iny olable, I have heard an unmarried lady of fortune fay, it is pity fo fine a gentleman as Vogter is to great an atheist. The crowds of fuch inconsiderable creatures, that infeft all places of affembling, every reader will have in his eye from his own obfervation; but would it not be worth confidering what fort of figure a man who
No 6. MONDAY, MAY 28.
HOR. Ep. I. viii. 17.
HERE is nothing fo common, as to find a man whom in the gencral obfervation of his carriage you take to be of an uniform temper, fubject to fuch unaccountable starts of humour and paffion, that he is as much unlike himfelf, and differs as much from the man you at first