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much concerned at the obftinate refufal of his daughter; and did not find it very difficult to excufe himself upon that account to his intended fon-in-law, who had all along regarded this alliance rather as a marriage of convenience than of love. Conftantia had now no relief but in her devotions and exercises of religion, to which her afflictions had so entirely subjected her mind, that after fome years had abated the violence of her forrows, and settled her thoughts in a kind of tranquillity, the refolved to pafs the remainder of her days in a convent. Her father was not difpleafed with a refolution, which would fave money in his family, and readily complied with his daughter's intentions. Accordingly in the twenty-fifth year of her age, while her beauty was yet in all its height and bloom, he carried her to a neighbouring city, in order to look out a fifterhood of nuns among whom to place his daughter. There was in this place a father of a convent who was very much renowned for his piety and exemplary life; and as it is ufual in the Romish church for those who are under any great affliction, or trouble of mind, to apply themselves to the most eminent confeffors for pardon and confolation, our beautiful votary took the opportunity of confeffing herfelf to this celebrated father.
We must now return to Theodofius, who, the very morning that the above-mentioned inquiries had been made after him, arrived at a religious house in the city, where now Conftantia refided; and defiring that fecrecy and concealment of the fathers of the convent, which is very ufual upon any extraordinary occafion, he made himself one of the order, with a private vow never to enquire after Conftantia; whom he looked upon as given away to his rival upon the day on which, according to common fame, their marriage was to have been folemnized. Having in his youth made a good progrefs in learning, that he might dedicate himself more entirely to religion, he entered into holy orders, and in a few years became renowned for his fanctity of life, and thofe pious fentiments which he infpired into all who converfed with him. It was this holy man to whom Conftantia, had determined to apply herself in confeffion, though neither she nor any other, befides the prior of the convent, knew any thing of his name or family. The gay, the amiable Theodofius had now taken upon him the name of Father Francis, and was fo far concealed in a long beard, a fhaven head, and a religious habit, that it was impoffible to difcover the man of the world in the venerable conventual.
As he was one morning fhut up in his confeffional, Conftantia kneeling by him, opened the ftate of her foul to him; and after having given him the hiftory of a life full of innocence, the burst out in tears, and entered upon that part of her story in which he himself had fo great a fhare. My behaviour, fays fhe, has I fear been the death of a man who had no other fault but that of loving me too much. Heaven only knows how dear he was to me whilft he lived, and how bitter the remembrance of him has been to me fince his death. She here paufed and lifted up her eyes that ftreamed with tears towards the father; who was fo moved with the fense of her forrows, that he could only command his voice, which was broke with fighs and fobbings, fo far as to bid her proceed. She-followed his direc
tions, and in a flood of tears poured out her heart before him. The father could not forbear weeping aloud, infomuch that in the agonies of his grief the feat fhook under him. Constantia, who thought the good man was thus moved by his compaffion towards her, and by the horror of her guilt, proceeded with the utmost contrition to acquaint him with that vow of virginity in which the was going to engage herfelf, as the proper atonement for her fins, and the only sacrifice fhe could make to the memory of Theodofius. The father, who by this time had pretty well compofed himself, burft out again in tears upon hearing that name to which he had been fo long difufed, and upon receiving this inftance of an unparalleled fidelity from one who he thought had several years fince given herself up to the poffeffion of another. Amidst the interruptions of his forrow, feeing his penitent overwhelmed with grief, he was only able to bid her from time to time be comforted to tell her that her fins were forgiven her- that her guilt was not fo great as fhe apprehended that the fhould not fuffer herself to be afflicted above meafure. After which he recovered himself enough to give her the abfolution in form; directing her at the fame time to repair to him again the next day, that he might encourage her in the pious refolutions fhe had taken, and give her fuitable exhortations for her behaviour in it. Conftantia retired, and the next morning renewed her applications. Theodofius having manned his foul with proper thoughts and reflections, exerted himfelf on this occafion in the best manner he could to animate his penitent in the courfe of life the was entered upon, and wear out of her mind thofe groundless fears and apprehenfions which had taken poffeffion of it; concluding, with a promise to her, that he would from time to time continue his admonitions when the should have taken upon her the holy veil. The rules of our refpective orders, fays he, will not permit that I fhould fee you, but you may affure yourfelf not only of having a place in my prayers, but of receiving fuch frequent inftructions as I can convey to you by letters. Go on chearfully in the glorious courfe you have undertaken, and you will quickly find fuch a peace and fatisfaction in your mind, which it is not in the power of the world to give.
Conftantia's heart was fo elevated with the difcourfe of father Francis, that the very next day fhe entered upon her vow. As foon as the folemnities of her reception were over, fhe retired, as it is ufual, with the abbefs into her own apartment.
The abbefs had been informed the night before of all that had paffed between her noviciate and father Francis: from whom she now delivered to her the following letter:
S the firft-fruits of thofe joys and confolations which you may expect from the life you are now engaged in, I must acquaint
you that Theodofius, whofe death fits so heavy
upon your thoughts, is ftill alive: and that the
father, to whom you have confeffed yourself, was once that Theodofius whom you fo much lament. The love which we have had for one ' another will make us more happy in its difap'pointment than it could have done in its fuccefs. Providence has difpofed of us for our D d 2 advantage,
Conftantia faw that the hand-writing agreed with the contents of the letter: and upon reflecting on the voice of the perfon, the behaviour, and above all the extreme forrow of the father during her confeffion, the difcovered Theodofius in every particular. After having wept with tears of joy, It is enough, fays fhe, Theodofius is ftill in being: I fhall live with comfort and die in peace.
The letters which the father fent her afterwards are yet extant in the nunnery where the refided; and are often read to the young religious, in order to infpire them with good refolutions and fentiments of virtue. It fo happened, that after Conftantia had lived about ten years in the cloifter, a violent fever broke out in the place, which fwept away great multitudes, and among others Theodofius. Upon his death-bed he fent his benediction in a very moving manncr to Conftantia, who at that time was herself fo far gone in the fame fatal distemper, that she lay delirious. Upon the interval which generally precodes death in fickneffes of this nature, the Abbefs, finding that the physicians had given her over, told her that Theodofius was just gone before her, and that he had fent her his benediction in his last moments, Conftantia received it with pleafure: and now, fays the, if I do not afk any thing improper, let me be buried by Theodofius. My vow reaches no farther than the grave. What I afk is, I hope, no violation of it-She died foon after, and was interred according to her request.
Their tombs are ftill to be feen, with a fhort Latin infcription over them to the following purpose. Here lie the bodies of father Francis and "fifter Conftance. "They were lovely in their "lives, and in their deaths they were not divi"ded."
N° 165. SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER S.
-If you would unheard of things exprefs, Invent new words; we can indulge a mufe, Until the licence rife to an abuse.
Pagating the French language, at the fame time that they are fo gloriously fuccefsful in beating down their power. Our foldiers are men of ftrong heads for action, and perform fuch feats as they are not able to exprefs. They want words in their own tongue to tell us what it is they atchieve, and therefore fend us over accounts of their performance in a jargon of phrafes, which they learn among their conquered enemies. They ought however to be provided with fecretaries, and affifted by our foreign ministers, to tell their ftory for them in plain English, and to let us know in our mother-tongue what it is our brave countrymen are about. The French would indeed be in the right to publish the news of the prefent war in English phrafes, and make their campaigns unintelligible. Their people might flatter themfelves that things are not fo bad as they really are, were they thus palliated with foreign terms and thrown into fhades and obfcurity: but the English cannot be too clear in their narrative of those actions, which have raifed their country to a higher pitch of glory than it ever yet arrived at, and which will be ftill the more admired the better they are explained.
For my part, by that time a fiege is carried on two or three days, I am altogether loft and bewildered in it, and meet with fo many inexplicable difficulties, that I fcarce know which fide has the better of it, until I am informed by the Tower-guns that the place is furrendered. I do indeed make fome allowances for this part of the war, fortifications having been foreign inventions, and upon that account abounding in foreign terms. But when we have won battles which may be defcribed in our own language, why are our papers filled with fo many unintelligible exploits, and the French obliged to lend us a part of their tongue before we can know how they are conquered? They must be made acceffary to their own difgrace, as the Britons were formerly fo artificially wrought in the curtain of the Roman theatre, that they feemed to draw it up in order to give the fpectators an opportunity of feeing their own defeat celebrated upon the ftage: for fo Mr. Dryden has tranflated that verfe in Virgil.
Purpurea intexti tollunt aulæa Britanni.
"Which interwoven Britons seem to raise,
Have often wished, that as in our conftitution there are several perfons whofe business it is to watch over our laws, our liberties and commerce, certain men might be fet apart as fuperintendents of our language, to hinder any words of a foreign coin from paffing among us; and in particular to prohibit any French phrafes from becoming current in this kingdom, when thofe of our own ftamp are altogether as valuable. The prefent war has fo adulterated our tongue with frange words, that it would be impoffible for one of our great grandfathers to know what his pofterity have been doing, were he to read their exploits in a modern news-paper. Our warriors are very industrious in pro
The hiftories of all our former wars are tranfmitted to us in our vernacular idicm, to use the phrase of a great modern critic. I do not find in any of the chronicles, that Edward the third ever reconnoitred our enemy, though he often difcovered the pofture of the French, and as often vanquished them in battle. The Black Prince paffed many a river without the help of pontoons, and filled a ditch with faggots as fuccefsfully as the generals of our times do it with fafcines. Our commanders lofe half their praise, and our people half the joy, by means of those hard words and dark expreffions in which our news papers do fo much abound. I have seen many a prudent citizen, after having read every article, enquire of his next neighbour what news the mail had brought. I remem
I remember in that remarkable year when our country was delivered from the greateft fears and apprehenfions, and raised to the greatest height of gladness it had ever felt fince it was a nation, I mean the year of Blenheim, I had the copy of a letter fent me out of the country, which was written from a young gentleman in the army to his father, a man of a good estate and plain fenfe: as the letter was very modifhly chequered with this modern military eloquence, I fhall prefent my reader with a copy of it.
feen all the prints about three days after filled with the fame terms of art, and that Charles only writ like other men. L
TPON the junction of the French and Bavarian armies they took poft behind a 6 great morafs which they thought impracticable. Our general the next day fent a party of horfe to reconnoitre them from a little hauteur, at about a quarter of an hour's distance from the army, who returned again to the camp unobferved through feveral defiles, in one of which they met with a party of French that had been marauding, and made them all prisoners at difcretion. The day after a drum arrived at our camp, with a meffage which he ⚫ would communicate to none but the general; he was followed by a trumpet, who they fay behaved himself very faucily, with a meffage from the Duke of Bavaria. The next morning our army being divided into two corps, made a movement towards the enemy, you will hear in the public prints how we treated them, with the other circumftances of that glorious day. I had the good-fortune to be in that ' regiment that pushed the Gens d'Armes. Se'veral French battalions, whom fome fay were · a corps de referve, made a fhew of refiftance; but it only proved a gafconade, for upon our ' preparing to fill up a little foffé, in order to attack them, they beat the chamade, and sent us carte blanche. Their commandant, with · a great many other general officers, and troops without number, are made prifonerr of war, and will, I believe, give you a vifit in England, the cartel not being yet fettled. Not queftion⚫ing.but these particulars will be very welcome to you, I congratulate you upon them, and am " your moft dutiful fon, &c.'
The father of the young gentleman upon the perufal of the letter found it contained great news, but could not guess what it was. He immediately communicated it to the curate of the parish, who upon the reading of it, being vexed to fee any thing he could not understand, fell into a kind of passion, and told him, that his fon had fent him a letter that was neither fifh, flesh, nor good red-herring. I wifh, fays he, the captain may be compos mentis, he talks of a faucy trumpet, and a drum that carries meffages; then who is this carte blanche? He muft either banter us or he is out of his fenfes. The father, who always looked upon the curate as a learned man, began to fret inwardly at his fon's ufage, and producing a letter which he had written to him about three pofts before, you see here, fays he, when he writes for money he knows how to Ipeak intelligibly enough; there is no man in England can exprefs himself clearcr, when he wants a new furniture for his horfe. In fhort, the old man was fo puzzled upon the point, that it might have fared ill with his fun, had he not
No 166. MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 10.
-Quod nec Jovis ira, nec ignis,
Nec poterit ferrum, nec edax abolere vetuftas.
-which nor dreads the rage
Of tempefts, fire, or war, or wafting age.
RISTOTLE tells us that the a
A copy or tranfcript of thofe ideas which are
in the mind of the firft Being; and that thofe ideas, which are in the mind of man, are a tranfcript of the world: to this we may add, that words are the tranfcript of thofe ideas which are in the mind of man, and that writing or printing are the tranfcript of words.
As the Supreme Being has expreffed, and as it were printed his ideas in the creation, men exprefs their ideas in books, which by this great invention of thefe latter ages may laft as long as the fun and moon, and perifh only in the general wreck of nature. Thus Cowley in his Poem on the Refurrection, mentioning the deftruction of the universe, has thofe admirable lines.
"Now all the wide extended sky,
There is no other method of fixing thofe thoughts which arife and disappear in the mind of man, and tranfmitting them to the last periods of time; no other method of giving a permanency to our ideas, and preferving the knowledge of any particular perfon, when his body is mixed with the common mafs of matter, and his foul retired into the world of fpirits. Books are the legacies that a great genius leaves to mankind, which are delivered down from generation to generation, as prefents to the pofterity of thofe who are yet unborn.
All other arts of perpetuating our ideas continue but a fhort time: ftatues can last but a few thousands of years, edifices fewer, and colours ftill fewer than edifices. Michael Angelo, Fontana, and Raphael, will hereafter be what Phidias, Vitruvius, and Apelles are at profent; the names of great ftatuaries, architects and painters, whofe works are loft. The feveral arts are expreffed in mouldering materials: nature finks under them, and is not able to fupport the ideas which are impreft upon it.
The circumftance which gives authors an advantage above all these great mafters, is this, that they can multiply their originals; or rather can make copies of their works, to what number they pleafe, which fhall be as valuable as the originals themfelves. This gives a great auther fomething like a profpect of eternity, but at the fame time deprives him of thofe other advantages which artists meet with. The artist finds greater returns in profit, as the author in fame. What an ineftimable price would a Virgil or a Homer, a Cicero or an Ariftotle bear, were their works like a ftatue, a building, or a picture, or to be confined
confined only in one place and made the property of a fingle perfon ?
If writings are thus durable, and may pafs from age to age throughout the whole course of time, how careful should an author be of committing any thing to print that may corrupt pofterity, and poifon the minds of men with vice and error? Writers of great talents, who employ their parts in propagating immorality, and feafoning vicious fentiments with wit and humour, are to be looked upon as the pefts of fociety, and the enemies of mankind: they leave books behind them, as it is faid of those who die in diftempers which breed an ill-will towards their own fpecies, to scatter infection and deftroy their pofterity. They act the counterparts of a Confucius or a Socrates; and feem to have been fent into the world to deprave human nature, and fink it into the condition of brutality.
good man, asked his friends about him, with a peevifhnefs that is natural to a fick perfon, where they had picked up such a blockhead? And whether they thought him a proper person to attend one in his condition? The curate finding that the author did not expect to be dealt with as a real and fincere penitent, but as a penitent of importance, after a fhort admonition withdrew ; not queftioning but he fhould be again fent for if the fickness grew desperate. The author however recovered, and has fince written two or three other tracts with the fame spirit, and very luckily for his poor foul with the fame fuccefs. с
I have feen fome Roman-catholic authors, who tell is that vicious writers continue in purgatory fo long as the influence of their writings continues upon pofterity: for purgatory, fay they, is nothing elfe but a cleanfing us of our fins, which cannot be faid to be done away, fo long as they continue to operate and corrupt manlind. The vicious author, fay they, fins after death, and fo long as he continues to fin, fo long muft he expect to be punished. Though the Roman-catholic nction of purgatory be indeed very ridiculous, one cannot but think that if the foul after death has any knowledge of what paffes in this world, that of an immoral writer would rective much more regret from the fenfe of corrupting, than fatisfaction from the thought of pleafing his furviving admirers.
To take off from the feverity of this fpeculation, I fhall conclude this paper with a fory of an atheistical author, who at a time when he lay dangerously fick, and had defired the affiftance of a neighbouring curate, confeffed to him with great contrition, that nothing fat more heavy at his heart than the fenfe of his having feduced the age by his writings, and that their evil influence was likely to continue even after his death. The curate upon farther examination, finding the penitent in the utin ft agonies of defpair, and being himself a man of learning, told him, that he hoped his cafe was not fo defperate as he apprehended, fince he found that he was fo very fenuble of his fault, and fo fincerely repented of it. The penitent ftill urged the evil tendency of his book to fubvert all religion, and the little ground of hope there could be for one whofe writings would continue to do mifchief when his body was laid in afhes. The curate, finding no other way to comfort him, told him, that he did well in being afflicted for the evil defign with which he published his book; but that he ought to be very thankful that there was no danger of its doing any hurt: that his caufe was fo very bad, and his arguments fo weak, that he did not apprehend any ill effects of it: in fhort, that he right reft fatisfied his book could do no more mifchief after his death, than it had done whilst he was living. To which he added, for his farther fatisfaction, that he did not believe any befides his particular friends and acquaintance had ever been at the pains of reading it, or that any body after his death would ever inquire after it. The dying man had still so much the frailty of an author in him, as to be cut to the heart with thofe confolations; and without answering the
No 167. TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER II.
·Fuit baud ignobilis argis, Qui fe credebat miros audire tragados, In vacus lætus feffor plauforque theatro; Cætera qui vitæ fervarat munia recto More; bonus fanè vicinus, amabilis hofpes, Comis in uxorem; poffet qui ignofcere fervis, Et figno leefo non infanire lagena: Poffet qui rupem & puteum vitare patentem, Hic ubi cognatorum opibus curifque refectus Expulit elleboro morbum bilemque meraco, Et redit ad fefe; pol me occidiftis, amici, Non fervaftis, ait; cui fic extorta voluptas, Et demptus per vim mentis gratiffimus error. HOR. Ep. 2. 1. 2. v. 128.
There lived in Primo Georgii, they record,
HE unhappy force of an imagination, unguided by the check of reafon and judgment, was the fubject of a former fpeculation. My reader may remember that he has feen in one of my papers a complaint of an unfortunate gentleman, who was unable to contain himself, when any ordinary matter was laid before him, from adding a few circumftances to enliven plain narrative.. That correfpondent was a perfon of tou warm a complexion to be fatisfied with things merely as they ftood in nature, and therefore formed incidents which fhould have happened to have pleafed him in the ftory, The fame ungoverned fancy which pushed that correfpondent on, in fpite of himself, to relate public and notorious falfhoods, makes the author of the fol lowing letter do the fame in private; one is a prating, the other a filent liar.
There is little purfued in the errors of either of thefe worthies, but mere present amusement ; but the folly of him who lets his fancy place him in diftant fcenes untroubled and uninterrupted, is very much preferable to that of him who is
ever forcing a belief, and defending his untruths 'fame moment I have been pulled by the fleeve, with new inventions. Lut I fhall haften to let 6 my crown has fallen from my head. The ill this liar in foliloquy, who calls himfelf a Caftle-confequence of thefe reveries is inconceivably Builder, defcribe himfelf with the fame unreC great, feeing the lofs of imaginary poffeffions fervedness as formerly appeared in my correfpon- 'makes impreffions of real woe. Befides, bad dent abovementioned. If a man were to be fe< œconomy is visible and apparent in builders of rious on this fubject, he might give very grave 'invisible manfions. My tenants advertisements admonitions to those who are following any of ruins and dilapidations often caft a damp thing in this life, on which they think to place on my fpirits, even in the inftant when the fun, their hearts, and tell them that they are really in all its fplendor, gilds my caftern palaces. Caftle-Builders. Fame, glory, wealth, honour Add to this the penfive drudgery in building, have in the profpect pleafing illufions; but they and conftant grafping aerial trowels, diftracts who come to poffefs any of them will find they ' and fhatters the mind, and the fond builder of are ingredients towards happiness, to be regarded Babels is often curfed with an incoherent dionly in the fecond place; and that when they verfity and confufion of thoughts. I do not are valued in the firft degree they are as dif- 'know to whom I can more properly apply myappointing as any of the phantoms in the fol- 'felf for relief from this fantaftical evil, than to lowing letter. yourfelf; whom I earnestly implore to accom'modate me with a method how to fettle my head and cool my brain-pan. A differtation on 'Caftle-building may not only be ferviceable to 'myself, but all architects, who difplay their skill in the thin element. Such a favour would oblige me to make my next foliloquy not con'tain the praises of my dear felf but of the Spertators who fhall, by complying with this, make
• Mr. Spectator,
Sept, 6. 1711. AM a fellow of a very odd frame of mind, as you will find by the sequel; and think myfelf fool enough to deserve a place in your · paper. I am unhappily far gone in building, and am one of that fpecies of men who are properly denominated Castle - builders, who fcorn to be beholden to the earth for a founda" tion, or dig in the bowels of it for materials; but erect their ftructures in the most unstable ⚫ of elements, the air, fancy alone laying the line, marking the extent, and shaping the model. It would be difficult to enumerate what auguft No 168. WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 12. palaces and stately porticos have grown under my forming imagination, or what verdant meadows and fhady groves have started into being by the powerful feat of a warm fancy. A caftle⚫ builder is even just what he pleafes, and as fuch I have grafped imaginary fceptres, and delivered • uncontroulable edicts, from a throne to which conquered nations yielded obeifance. I have made I know not how many inroads into France, and ravaged the very heart of that kingdom; I have dined in the Louvre, and drank ⚫ champagne at Versailles; and I would have you take notice, I am not only able to vanquish a people already cowed and accuftomed to flight, but I could, Almonzor-like, drive the British general from the field, were I less a protestant, " or had ever been affronted by the confederates. There is no art or profeffion, whose most cele• brated masters I have not eclipsed. Wherever · I have afforded my falutary presence, fevers have ceafed to burn, and agues to shake the human fabric. When an eloquent fit has been upon me, an apt gefture and proper cadence has animated each sentence, and gazing crowds have found their paffions worked up into rage, " or foothed into a calm. I am fhort, and not "" yery well made; yet upon fight of a fine woman, I have ftretched into a proper stature, and killed with a good air and mein. These are the gay phantoms that dance before my waking eyes and compofe my day-dreams. I fhould be the moft contented happy man alive, were the chi'merical happiness which springs from the paint· ings of fancy lefs fleeting and tranfitory. But alas! it is with grief of mind I tell you, the leaft breath of wind has often demolished my magnificent edifices, fwept away my groves, and left no more trace of them than if they had never been. My exchequer has funk and va⚫ nifhed by a rap on my door, the falutation of a ⚫ friend has coft me a whole continent, and in the
-Pectus præceptis format amicis.
would be arrogance to neglect the application of my correfpondents fo far, as not fometimes to infert their animadverfions upon my paper; that of this day fhall be therefore wholly composed of the hints which they have fent me.
"His obliged, humble fervant,
Send you this to congratulate your late choice of a fubject, for treating on which you deserve public thanks; I mean that on 'thofe licensed tyrants the school-mafters. If
you can difarm them of their rods, you will certainly have your old age reverenced by all the young gentlemen of Great-Britain who are now between feven and feventeen years. You may boast that the incomparably wife Quintilian and you are of one mind in this particular. "Si cui eft," fays he, "mens tam illiberalis `ut "objurgatione non corrigatur, is etiam ad pla
gas, ut peffima quæque mancipia durabitur :" i. e. "If any child be of fo difingenuous a na"ture, as not to ftand corrected by reproof, he, "like the very worst of flaves, will be hardened " even against blows themselves." And after
wards, "Pudet dicere in quæ probra nefandi "homines ifto cædendi jure abutantur:" i e. "I blush to say how fhamefully those wicked "men abuse the power of correction."
I was bred myfelf, Sir, in a very great school, of which the mafter was a Weifhman, but ' certainly defcended from a Spanish family, as 'plainly appeared from his temper as well as his name. I leave you to judge what a fort of a school-mafter a Welshman ingrafted on a Spaniard