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N° 96. WEDNESDAY, JUNE 20.
• Mr. Spectator,
Have frequently read your difcourfe upon fervants, and, as I am one myfelf, have been much offended, that in that variety of forms wherein you confidered the bad, you found no place to mention the good. There is however " one obfervation of yours I approve, which is, that there are men of wit and good fenfe among all orders of men, and that fervants report mot of the good or ill which is fpoken of their mafters. That there are men of fenfe who live in fervitude, I have the vanity to say I have felt to my woful experience. You attribute very juftly the fource of our general iniquity to board-wages, and the < manner of living out of a domeftic way; but I cannot give you my thoughts on this fubject any C fo well, as by a fhort account of my own life way to this the forty-fifth year of my age; that is to fay, from my being first a footboy at fourteen, to my present station of a nobleman's porter in the year of my age above-mentioned.
Know then, that my father was a poor tenant to the family of Sir Stephen Rackrent. Sir Stephen put me to fchool, or rather made me follow his fon Harry to fchocl, from my ninth year; and there, though Sir Stephen paid fomething for my < learning, I was ufed like a fervant, and was forced to get what scraps of learning I could by my own industry, for the fchoolmafler took very little notice of me. My young mafter was a lad of very fprightly parts; and my being conftantly about him, and loving him, was no small advantage to me. My mafter loved me extremely, and has often been whipped for not keeping me at a diftance. He used always to fay, that when he came to his eftate I fhould have a leafe of my father's tenement for nothing. I came up to town with him to Westminster-school; at which time he taught me at night all he learnt; and put me to find cut words in the dictionary when he was about his exercife. It was the will of providence that mafter Harry was taken very ill of a fever, of which he died within ten days after his firft falling fick. Here was the first forrow I ever knew; and I affure you, Mr. Spectator, I remember the beauti ful action of the fweet youth in his fever, as fresh
as if it were yesterday. If he wanted any thing it must be given him by Tom: when I let any thing fall through the grief I was under, he would cry, do not beat the poor boy: give him fome more julep for me, no body elfe fhall give it me. He would ftrive to hide his being fo bad, when he faw I could not bear his being in fo much danger, and comforted me, faying, " Tom, Tom, have a "good heart." When I was holding a cup at his mouth, he fell into convulfions; and at this very time I hear my dear master's laft groan. I was quickly turned out of the room, and left to fob and beat my head against the wall at my leisure. The grief I was in was inexpreffible; and every body thought it would have coft me my life. In a few days my old lady, who was one of the house.
wives of the world, thought of turning me out of doors, because I put her in mind of her fon. Sir Stephen propofed putting me to prentice; but my lady being an excellent manager, would not let her husband throw away his money in acts of charity. I had fenfe enough to be under the utmost indignation, to fee her difcard with fo little concern, one her fon had loved fo much; and 'went out of the houfe to ramble wherever my feet would carry me.
The third day after I left Sir Stephen's family, I was ftrolling up and down the walks in the Temple. A young gentleman of the house, who, as I heard him fay afterwards, feeing me half-ftarved and well-dreffed, thought me an equi6 page ready to his hand, after very little enquiry C more than "Did I want a mafter?" bid me follow him; I did fo, and in a very little while thought myfelf the happieft creature in this world. My time was taken up in carrying letters to wenches, or meffages to young ladies of my mafter's acquaintance. We rambled from tavern to tavern, to the play-houfe, the mulberry-garden, and all places of refort; where my mafter engaged every night in fome new amour, in which and drinking, he spent all his time when he had money. During thefe extravagancies I had the pleafure of lying on the ftairs of a tavern half a night, playing at dice with other fervants, and the like idleneffes, When my mafter was moneylefs, I was generally employed in tranfcribing amorous pieces of poetry, old fongs, and new lampoons. This life held until my mafter married, and he had then the prudence to turn me off, because I " was in the fecret of his intrigues.
I was utterly at a lofs what courfe to take next; when at laft I applied myself to a fellowfufferer, one of his miftreffes, a woman of the town. She happening at that time to be pretty full of money, clothed me from head to foot; and knowing me to be a fharp fellow, employed me accordingly. Sometimes I was to go abroad with her, and when fhe had pitched upon a young fellow, fhe thought for her turn, I was to be dropped as one fhe could not truft. She would often cheapen goods at the New-Exchange, and when fhe had a mind to be attacked, fhe would fend me 6 away on an errand. When an humble fervant and fhe were beginning a parley, I came immediately, and told her Sir John was come home then he would order another coach to prevent being dogged. The lover makes figns to me as I get behind the coach, I shake my head; it was impoffible: I leave my lady at the next turning, and follow the cully to know how to fall in his way on another occafion. Befides good offices of this nature, I writ all my miftrefs's love-letters; fome from a lady that faw fuch a gentleman at fuch a place in fuch a coloured coat, fome fhewing the terror she was in of a jealous old husband, others explaining that the feverity of her parents was fuch, though her fortune was fettled, that fle was willing to run away with fuch a one, though fhe knew he was but a younger brother. In a word, my half education and love of idle books made me outwrite all that made love to her by way of epiftle; and as fhe was extremely cunning, 'fhe did well enough in company by a skilful affec-. tation of the greatest modefty. In the midst of all this I was furprized with a letter from her and a ten pound note.
OU will never fee me more. I am married to a cunning country gentleman, who might poffibly guess something if I kept you ftill; "therefore farewell."
When this place was loft alfo in marriage, I was refolved to go among quite another people for the future; and got in butler to one of thofe families where there is a coach kept, three or four fervants, a clean house and a good general outfide upon a fmall eftate. Here I lived very comfortably for fome time, until I unfortunately found my maiter, the very graveft man alive, in the garret with the chambermaid. I knew the world too <well to think of staying there; and the next day pretended to have received a letter out of the country that my father was dying, and got my difcharge with a bounty for my difcretion.
The next I lived with was a peevifh fingle man, whom I ftayed with for a year and a half. Moft part of the time I pafled very eafily; for when I began to know him, I minded no more than he meant what he faid; so that one day in good humour he faid, I was the best man he ever had, by my want of refpect to him.
Thefe, Sir, are the chief occurrences of my life, and I will not dwell upon very many other places I have been in, where I have been the • Itrangeft fellow in the world, where no body in the world had fuch fervants as they, where fure they were the unluckieft people in the world in fervants, and fo forth, All I mean by this reprefentation, is, to fhew you that we poor fervants are not, what you called us too generally, all rogues; but that we are what we are, according to the example of our fuperiors. In the family I am now in, I am guilty of no one fin but lying; which I do with a grave face in my gown and staff every day I live, and almost all day long, in denying my Lord to impertinent fuitors, and my Lady to unwelcome vifitants. But, Sir, I am to let you know, that I am, when I can get abroad, a leader of the fervants; I am he that keeps time with beating my cudgel against the boards in the lery at an Opera; I am he that am touched fo properly at a tragedy, when the people of quality" are staring at one another during the most important incidents; when you hear in a crowd a cry in the right place, an hum where the point is touched in a speech, or an huzza fet up where it is the voice of the peopie; you may conclude it is begun, or joined by, Sir,
prevailed, and was fo firmly fixed in the opinion of
oppose my bounty, or prescribe rules for my fa"vour. While I can, as I pleafe, reward the good, "I am under no pain that I cannot pardon the "wicked; for which reafon, continued Pharagal-mond, I will effectually put a stop to this evil, "by expofing no more the tenderness of my nature
to the importunity of having the fame respect to thofe who are miferable by their fault, and those "who are fo by their misfortune. Flatterers, "concluded the king fmiling, repeat to us princes,
that we are Heaven's vicegerents; let us be so, and let the only thing out of power be to do << ill."
Your more thau humble fervant,
Soon after the evening wherein Pharamond and Eucrate had this converfarion, the following Edict was published,
"Pharamond's Edict against Duels.
"Pharamond, King of the Gauls, to all his loving "fubjects fendeth greeting.
HEREAS it has come to our royal notice and obfervation, that in con"tempt of all laws divine and human, it is of late become a custom among the nobility and "gentry of this our kingdom, upon fight and trivial, as well as great and urgent provocations, to invite each other into the field, there by their own hands, and of their own autho"rity, to decide their controverfies by combat; "we have thought fit to take the faid custom
into our royal confideration, and find, upon inquiry into the ufual caufes whereon fuch fatal
"fatal decifions have arifen, that by this wick"ed cuftom, maugre all the precepts of our holy religion, and the rules of right reafon, the greatest act of the human mind, forgivenefs of injuries, is become vile and fhameful; that the rules of good fociety and virtuous "converfation are hereby inverted; that the loofe, the vain, and the impudent, infult the careful, the difcreet, and the modeft; that all "virtue is fuppreffed, and all vice fupported, "in the one act of being capable to dare to the "death. We have alfo further, with great for66 row of mind, obferved, that this dreadful ac❝tion, by long impunity (our royal attention "being employed upon matters of more gene❝ral concern) is become honourable, and the "refufal to engage in it ignominious. In these our royal cares and inquiries we are yet far"ther made to understand, that the perfons of "moft eminent worth, and moft hopeful abilities, accompanied with the strongest paffion "for true glory, are fuch as are moft liable to "be involved in the dangers arifing from this "licence. Now taking the faid premises into "our ferious confideration, and well weighing "that all fuch emergencies (wherein the mind "is incapable of commanding itself, and where "the injury is too fudden or too exquifite to be "borne) are particularly provided for by laws ❝heretofore enacted; and that the qualities of "lefs injuries, like thofe of ingratitude, are too "nice and delicate to come under general rules; we do refolve to blot this fashion, or wanton"nefs of anger, out of the minds of our fub"jects, by our royal refolutions declared in this "edict as follows.
"No perfon who either fends or accepts a "challenge, or the pofterity of either, though "no death enfues thereupon, fhall be, after the "publication of this our edit, capable of bear"ing office in thefe our dominions.
"The perfon who fhall prove the fending or "receiving a challenge, fhall receive to his own "ufe and property, the whole perfonal eftate "of both parties; and their real estate fhall be "immediately vefted in the next heir of the of"fenders in as ample manner as if the faid of "fenders were actually deceased.
"In cafes where the laws, which we have al"ready granted to our fubjects, admit of an ap"peal for blood; when the criminal is con"demned, by the faid appeal, he shall not only "fuffer death, but his whole eftate, real, mix"ed, and perfonal, fhall from the hour of his "death be vested in the next heir of the perfon "whofe blood he spilt.
"That it fhall not hereafter be in our royal 66 power, or that of our fucceffers, to pardon "the faid offences, or reftore the offenders in "their eftates, honour, or blood for ever."
"Given at our Court at Blois, the 8th of Fe"bruary, 420, in the fecond year of our reign.”
N° 98. FRIDAY, JUNE 22,
-Tanta eft quærendi cura decoris.
Juv. Sat, 6. v. 500. So ftudioufly their perfons they adorn. HERE is not fo variable a thing in nature as a lady's head-drefs: within my own memory I have known it rife and fall above
thirty degrees. About ten years ago it hot up to a very great height, infomuch that the female part of our fpecies were much taller than the men. The women were of fuch an enormous ftature, that we appeared as grafhoppers before them:' at prefent the whole fex is in a manner dwarfed and fhrunk into a raco of beauties that feem almoft another. fpecies. I remember feveral ladies who were once very near seven feet high, that at prefent want fome inches of five: How they came to be thus curtailed I cannot learn; whether the whole sex be at prefent under any penance which we know nothing of, or whether they have caft their head-dreffs in order to surprise us with something in that kind which fhall be entirely new; or whether some of the tallest of the fex, being too cunning for the reft, have contrived this method to make themfelves appear fizeable, is still a fecret; though I find moft are of opinion, they are at prefent like trees new lopped and pruned, that will certainly fprout up and flourish with greater heads than before. For my own part, as I do not love to be infulted by women who are taller than myfelf, I admire the fex much more in their prefent humiliation, which has reduced them to their natural dimenfions, that when they had extended their perfons and lengthened themselves out into formidable and gigantic figures. I am not for adding to the beautiful edifices of nature, nor fer raifing any whimsical fuperftructure upon her plans: I must therefore repeat it, that I am highly pleafed with the coiffure now in fashion, and think it thews the good fense which at prefent very much reigns among the valuable part of the fex. One may obferve that women in all ages have taken more pains than men to adorn the outfide of their heads; and indeed I very much admire, that thofe female architects, who raife fuch wonderful ftructures out of ribbands, lace, and wire, have not been recorded for their respective inventions. It is certain there have been as many orders in these kinds of building, as in thofe which have been made of marble; fometimes they rife in the fhape of a pyramid, fometimes like a tower, and fometimes like a freeple. In Juvenal's time the building grew by feveral orders and stories, as he has very humorously described it.
Tot premit ordinibus, tot adhuc compagibus altum Edificat caput: Andromachen à fronte videbis ; Poft minor eft: aliam credas
Juv. Sat. 6. v. 501. "With curls on curls they build her head before, "And mount it with a formidable tow'r: "A giantess the fecms; but look behind, "And then the dwindles to the pigmy kind."
Dryden, But I do not remember in any part of my reading, that the head-drefs afpired to fo great an extravagance as in the fourteenth century; when it was built up in a couple of cones or fpires, which stood fo exceffively high on each fide of the head, that a woman, who was but a Pigmy without her head-drefs, appeared like a Coloffus upon putting it on. Monfieur Paradin fays, "that thefe old-fashioned fontanges rofe an ell "above the head; that they were pointed like
fteeples, and had long loofe pieces of crape "faftened to the tops of them, which were cu"riouf" fringed, and hung down their backs like ftreamers."
The women might poffibly have carried this gothic building much higher, had not a famous monk, Thomas Conecte by name, attacked it with great zeal and refolution. This holy man travelled from place to place to preach down this mcnftrous commode: and fuccecded fo well in it, that as the magicians facrificed their books to the flames upon the preaching of an apostle, many of the women threw down their head-dreffes in the middle of his fermon, and made a bonfire of them within fight of the pulpit. He was fo renowned as well for the fanctity of his life as his manner of preaching, that he had often a congregation of twenty thousand people; the men placing themselves on the one fide of his pulpit, and the women on the other, that appeared, to ufe the fimilitude of an ingenious writer, like a foreft of cedars with their heads reaching to the clouds. He fo warmed and animated the people againit this monftrous ornament, that it lay under a kind of perfecution; and whenever it appeared in public was pelted down by the rabble, who flung ftones at the perfons that wore it. But notwithftanding this prodigy vanished, while the preacher was among them, it began to appear again fome months after his departure, or to tell it in Monfieur Paradin's own words, "The women that, "like fnails in a fight, had drawn in their "horns, hot them out again as foon as the "danger was over." This extravagance of the womens head-dreffes in that age is taken notice of by Monfieur d'Argentré in the hiftory of Bretagne, and by other hiftorians as well as the perfon I have here quoted.
It is ufually obferved, that a good reign is the only proper time for the making of laws against the exorbitance of power; in the fame manner an exceflive head drefs may be attacked the most effectually when the fashion is against it. I do therefore recommend this paper to my female readers by way of prevention.
I would defire the fair fex to confider how impoffible it is for them to add any thing that can be ornamental to what is already the mafter-piece of nature. The head has the most beautiful appearance, as well as the highest ftation, in a human figure. Nature has laid out all her art in beautifying the face; fhe has touched it with vermilion, planted in it a double row of ivory, made it the feat of fmiles and blushes, lighted it up and enlivened it with the brightnefs of the eyes, hung it on each fide with curious organs of fenfe, given it airs and graces that cannot be defcribed, and furrounded it with fuch a flowing fhade of hair as fets all its beauties in the most agreeable light: in short, she seems to have defigned the head as the cupola to the moft glorious of her works; and when we load it with fuch a pile of fupernumerary ornaments, we deftroy the fymmetry of the human figure, and foolishly contrive to call off the eye from great and real beauties, to childifh gewgaws, ribbands and bone-lace.
ftarted a great many hints upon the subject, which thought were entirely new: I fhall therefore methodize the feveral reflections that arcfc upon this occafion, and prefent my reader with them for the fpeculation of this day; after having premifed, that if there is any thing in this paper which feems to differ with any paffage of last Thurfday's, the reader will confider this as the fentiments of the club, and the other as my own private thoughts, or rather thofe of Pharamond.
The great point of honour in men is courage, and in women chastity. If a man lofes his honour in one rencounter,it is not impofiible for him to regain it in another; a flip in a woman's honour is irrecoverable. I can give no reafon for fixing the point of honour to thefe two qualities, unless it be that each fex fets the greatest value on the qualification which renders them the moft amiable in the eyes of the contrary fex. Had men chofen for themfelves, without regard to the opinions of the fair fex, I fhould believe the choice would have fallen on wifdom or virtue; or had women determined their own point of honour, it is probable that wit or good nature would have carried it against chastity.
N° 99. SATURDAY, JUNE 23.
HOR. Sat. 6. 1. 1. v. 63. You know to fix the bounds of right and wrong. T HE club, of which I have often declared my felf a member, were last night engaged in a difcourfe upon that which paties for the chief roint of honour among men and women; and
Nothing recommends a man more to the female fex than courage; whether it be that they are pleafed to fee one who is a terror to others fall like a flave at their feet, or that this quality fup. plies their own principal defect, in guarding ther from infults, and avenging their quarrels, or that courage is a natural indication of a frong and fprightly conftitution. On the other fide, nothing makes a woman more efteemed by the oppofite fex than chastity: whether it be that we always prize thofe most who are hardest to come at, or that nothing befides chastity with its collateral attendants, truth, fidelity and conftancy, gives the man a property in the perfon he loves, and confequently endears her to him above all things.
I am very much pleased with a paffage in the infcription on a monument erected in Westmins ter-Abbey to the late duke and duchefs of Newcaftle: "Her name was Margaret Lucas, young"eft fifter to the lord Lucas of Colchefter; a no"ble family, for all the brothers were valiant, and "all the fitters virtuous.
In books of chivalry, where the point of honour is ftrained to madness, the whole story runs on chastity and courage. The damfel is mounted on a white palfrey, as an emblem of her innocence; and, to avoid fcandal, must have a dwarf for her page. She is not to think of a man, until fome misfortune has brought a Knight-errant to her relief. The Knight falls in love, and, did not gratitude reftrain her from murdering her deliver. er, would die at her feet by her difdain. However, he must wait fome years in the defert, before her virgin heart can think of a furrender. The Knight goes off, attacks every thing he meets that is bigger and ftronger than himfelf, feeks all opLportunities of being knocked on the head, and af
ter feven years rambling returns to his mistress, whofe chastity has been attacked in the mean time by giants and tyrants, and undergone as many trials as her lover's valour.
In Spain, where there are ftill great remains of this romantic humour, it is a transporting falover from a window, though it be two or three vour for a lady to caft an accidental glance on her ftories high; as it is ufual for the lover to affert his paffion for his mistress, in single combat with a mad bull,
and enjoyment, excluding all parts which were
It is a wonderful thing that fo many, and they not reckoned abfurd, fhall entertain those with whom they converfe by giving them the history of their pains and aches; and imagine fuch nar rations their quota of the converfation. This is of all others the meaneft help to difcourfe, and a man must not think at all, or think himself very infignificant, when he finds an account of his head-ach anfwered by another asking what news in the last mail? Mutual good-humour is a drefs we ought to appear in wherever we meet, and we fhould make no mention of what concerns ourfelves, without it be of matters wherein our friends ought to rejoice; but indeed there are crowds of people who put themselves in no method of pleafing themselves or others; fuch are thofe whom we ufually call indolent perfons. Indolence is, methinks, an intermediate ftate between pleasure and pain, and very much unbecoming any part of our life after we are out of the nurfe's arms. Such an averfion to labour creates a conftant weariness, and one would think should make existence itfelf a burden. The indolent man defcends from the dignity of his nature, and makes that being which was rational, merely vegetative; his life confifts only in the mere increase and decay of a body, which, with relation to the reft of the world, might as well have been uninformed, as the habitation of a reasonable mind.
Of this kind is the life of that extraordinary couple, Harry Terfett and his lady. Harry was in the days of his celibacy one of thofe pert crea tures who have much vivacity and little understanding; Mrs. Rebecca Quickly, whom he married, had all that the fire of youth and a lively manner could do towards making an agreeable woman. These two people of feeming merit fell into each others arms; and paffion being fated, and no reafon or good fenfe in either to fucceed it, their life is now at a stand; their meals are infipid, and their time tedious; their fortune has Hor. Sat. 5. 1. 1. v. 44. duced them below diversion, When we talk of placed them above care, and their lofs of taste re
The great violation of the point of honour from man to man, is giving the lie. One may tell another he whores, drinks, blafphemes, and it may pafs unrefented; but to fay he lies, though but in jeft, is an affront that nothing but blood can expiate. The reafon perhaps may be, becaufe no other vice implies a want of courage fo much as the making of a lie; and therefore telling a man he lies, is touching him in the moft fenfible part of honour, and indirectly calling him a coward. 1 cannot omit under this head what Herodotus tells us of the ancient Perfians, that from the age of five years to twenty they inftruct their fons only in three things, to manage the horfe, to make ufe of the bow, and to speak truth..
The placing the point of honour in this falfe kind of courage, has given occafion to the very refuse of mankind, who have neither virtue nor common fenfe, to fet up for men of honour. An English Peer, who has not been long dead, used to tell a pleasant ftory of a French gentleman that vifited him early one morning at Paris, and after great profeffions of refpect, let him know that he had it in his power to oblige him; which, in fhort, amounted to this, that he believed he could tell his Lordship the perfon's name who juftled him as he came out from the opera; but before he would proceed, he begged his Lordship that he would not deny him the honour of making him his fecond. The English Lord, to avoid being drawn into a very foolish affair, told him that he was under engagements for his two next duels to a couple of particular friends. Upon which the gentleman immediately withdrew, hoping his Lordship would not take it ill if he meddled no further in an affair from whence he himself was to receive no advantage.
The beating down this falfe notion of honour, in fo vain and lively a people as thofe of France, is defervedly looked upon as one of the moft glorious parts of their prefent king's reign. It is pity but the punishment of thefe mifchievous notions fhould have in it fome particular circumstances of shame and infamy; that those who are flaves to them may fee, that instead of advancing their reputations, they lead them to ignominy and difhonour.
Death is not fufficient to deter men who make it their glory to defpife it; but if every one that fought a duel were to stand in the pillory, it would quickly leffen the number of thefe imaginary men of honour, and put an end to fo abfurd a practice.
When honour is a fupport to virtuous principles, and runs parallel with the laws of God and our country, it cannot be too much cherished and encouraged but when the dictates of honour are contrary to thofe of religion and equity, they are the greatest depravations of human nature, by giving wrong ambitions and falfe ideas of what is good and laudable; and should therefore be exploded by all governments, and driven cut as the bane and plague of human fociety.
N° 100. MONDAY, JUNE 25.
The greatest bleffing is a pleasant friend.
Man advanced in years that thinks fit to look back upon his former life, and calls that only life which was paffed with fatisfaction
thefe as inftances of inexistence, we do not mean, that in order to live it is neceffary we fhould always be in jovial crews, or crowned with chaplets of rofes, as the merry fellows among the an