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ground in such a manner that I, who sat upon one look upon it as filling up the place of of the lowest benches, saw farther above her shoe tisement:
than I can think fit to acquaint you with. I could From the Three Chairs, in the Piazzas, Cove no longer endure those enormities; wherefore, just as my girl was going to be made a whirligig, I ran in, seized on the child, and carried her home.
"Sir, I am not yet old enough to be a fool. I suppose this diversion might be first invented to keep up a good understanding between young men and women, and so far I am not against it; but I shall never allow of these things. I know not what you will say to this case at present, but am sure, had you been with me, you would have seen matter of great speculation.
"I am, yours," etc.
I must confess I am afraid that my correspondent had too much reason to be a little out of humor at the treatment of his daughter, but I conclude that he would have been much more so, had he seen one of those kissing dances in which Will Honeycomb assures me they are obliged to dwell almost a minute on the fair one's lips or they will be too quick for the music, and dance quite out of time.
I am not able, however, to give my final sentence against this diversion; and am of Mr. Cowley's opinion, that so much of dancing, at least, as belongs to the behavior and a handsome carriage of the body, is extremely useful, if not absolutely
We generally form such ideas of people at first sight, as we are hardly ever persuaded to lay aside afterward; for this reason, a man would wish to have nothing disagreeable or uncomely in his ap. proaches, and to be able to enter a room with a good grace.
I might add, that a moderate knowledge in the little rules of good breeding, gives a man some assurance, and makes him easy in all companies. For want of this, I have seen a professor of a liberal science at a loss to salute a lady; and a most excellent mathematician not able to determine whether he should stand or sit while my lord drank to him.
It is the proper business of a dancing-master to regulate these matters; though I take it to be a just observation, that unless you add something of your own to what these fine gentlemen teach you, and which they are wholly ignorant of themselves, you will much sooner get the character of an affected fop than a well-bred man.
As for country dancing, it must indeed be confessed that the great familiarities between the two sexes on this occasion may sometimes produce very dangerous consequences; and I have often thought that few ladies' hearts are so obdurate as not to be melted by the charms of music, the force of motion, and a handsome young fellow, who is continually playing before their eyes, and convincing them that he has the perfect use of all his limbs.
But as this kind of dance is the particular invention of our own country, and as every one is more or less a proficient in it, I would not discountenance it; but rather suppose it may be practiced innocently by others as well as myself, who am often partner to my landlady's eldest daughter.
Having heard a good character of the collection of pictures which is to be exposed for sale on Friday next; and concluding from the following letter, that the person who collected them is a man of no inelegant taste, I will be so much his friend as to publish it, provided the reader will only
"As you are a spectator, I think we it our business to exhibit anything to pu ought to apply ourselves to you for yo bation. I have traveled Europe to fur show for you, and have brought with me been admired in every country through passed. You have declared in many pa your greatest delights are those of the ey do not doubt but I shall gratify with as objects as yours ever beheld. If castle ruins, fine women, and graceful men, you, I dare promise you much satisfacti will appear at my auction on Friday sight is, I suppose, as grateful to a Spe treat to another person, and therefore I will pardon this invitation from, "Your most obedient, humble se
No. 68.] FRIDAY, MAY 18, 1
ONE would think that the larger the co in which we are engaged, the greater thoughts and subjects would be starte course; but instead of this, we find that tion is never so much straitened and co in numerous assemblies. When a multi together on any subject of discourse, bates are taken up chiefly with forms a positions; nay, if we come into a more assembly of men and women, the talk runs upon the weather, fashion, news, an public topics. In proportion as convers into clubs and knots of friends, it desc particulars, and grows more free and cative: but the most open, instructive, served discourse, is that which passes two persons who are familiar and intima On these occasions, a man gives a loose passion and every thought that is upper covers his most retired opinions of pe things, tries the beauty and strength of ments, and exposes his whole soul to the
tion of his friend.
Tully was the first who observed, th ship improves happiness and abates m the doubling of our joy, and dividing of a thought in which he hath been follow the essayers upon friendship that hav since his time. Sir Francis Bacon has scribed other advantages, or as he ca fruits of friendship; and, indeed, there ject of morality which has been better and more exhausted than this. Among fine things which have been spoken of beg leave to quote some out of a ver author, whose book would be regarde modern wits as one of the most shining morality that is extant, if it appeared name of a Confucius, or of any celebrate philosopher: I mean the little apocrypha entitled The Wisdom of the Son of Sira finely has he described the art of makin by an obliging and affable behavior!— down that precept, which a late excelle has delivered as his own, That we sho many well-wishers, but few friends. language will multiply friends; and a fa ing tougue will increase kind greeting
peace with many, nevertheless have but one coun- | there may be a reconciliation; but he that beselor of a thousand." With what prudence wrayeth secrets is without hope."* does he caution us in the choice of our friends!
And with what strokes of nature (I could almost say of humor) has he described the behavior of a treacherous and self-interested friend! "If thou wouldst get a friend, prove him first, and be not hasty to credit him: for some man is a friend for his own occasion, and will not abide in the day of thy trouble. And there is a friend, who being turned to enmity and strife, will discover thy reproach." Again, "Some friend is a companion at the table, and will not continue in the day of thy affliction: but in thy prosperity he will be as thyself, and will be bold over thy servants. If thou be brought low he will be against thee, and hide himself from thy face."+ What can be more strong and pointed than the following verse? "Separate thyself from thine enemies, and take heed of thy friends." In the next words he particularizes one of those fruits of friendship which is described at length by the two famous authors above-mentioned, and falls into a gencral eulogium of friendship, which is very just as well as very sublime. "A faithful friend is a strong defense; and he that hath found such a one hath found a treasure. Nothing doth countervail a faithful friend, and his excellency is invaluable. A faithful friend is the medicine of life; and they that fear the Lord shall find him. Whoso feareth the Lord shall direct his friendship aright; for as he is, so shall his neighbor (that is his friend) be also." I do not remember to have met with any saying that has pleased me more than that of a friend's being the medicine of life, to express the efficacy of friendship in healing the pains and anguish which naturally cleave to our existence in this world; and am wonderfully pleased with the turn in the last sentence, that a virtuous man shall as a blessing meet with a friend who is as virtuous as himself. There is another saying in the same author, which would have been very much admired in a heathen writer: "Forsake not an old friend, for the new is not comparable to him: a new friend is as new wine; when it is old thou shalt drink it with pleasure." With what strength of allusion, and force of thought, has he described the breaches and violations of friendship?-"Whoso casteth a stone at the birds frayeth them away; and he that upbraideth his friend, breaketh friendship. Though thou drawest a sword at a friend, yet despair not, for there may be a returning to favor. If thou hast opened thy mouth against thy friend, fear not, for there may be a reconciliation; except for upbraiding, or pride, or disclosing of secrets, or a treacherous wound; for, for these things every friend will depart."|| We may observe in this and several other precepts in this author, those little familiar instances and illustrations which are so much admired in the moral writings of Horace and Epictetus. There are very beautiful instances of this nature in the following passages, which are likewise written on the same subject: "Whoso discovereth secrets loseth his credit, and shall never find a friend to his mind. Love thy friend and be faithful to him; but if thou bewrayeth his secret, follow no more after him: for as a man hath destroyed his enemy, so hast thou lost the love of thy friend; as one that letteth a bird go out of his hand, so hast thou let thy friend go, and shall not get him again: follow after him no more, for he is too far off; he is as a roe escaped out of the snare. As for a Wound it may be bound up, and after reviling
Among the several qualifications of a good friend, this wise man has very justly singled out constancy and faithfulness, as the principal: to these, others have added virtue, knowledge, discretion, equality in age and fortune, and, as Cicero calls it, Morum comitas, "a pleasantness of temper." If I were to give opinion upon such an exhausted subject, I should join to these other qualifications, a certain equability or evenness of behavior. A man often contracts a friendship with one whom perhaps he does not find out till after a year's conversation; when on a sudden some latent ill humor breaks out upon him, which he never discovered or suspected at his first entering into an intimacy with him. There are several persons who in some certain periods of their lives are inexpressibly agreeable, and in others as odious and detestable. Martial has given us a very pretty picture of one of this species, in the following epigram:
Difficilis, facilis, jucundus, acerbus es idem,
Nec tecum possum vivere, nec sine te.-Epig. xii, 47.
It is very unlucky for a man to be entangled in a
No. 69.] SATURDAY, MAY 19, 1711.
VIRG. Georg., i, 54.
This ground with Bacchus, that with Ceres suits;
(In hopes of palms) a race of running steeds.
THERE is no place in the town which I so much love to frequent as the Royal Exchange. It gives me a secret satisfaction, and in some measure gratifies my vanity, as I am an Englishman, to see so rich an assembly of countrymen and foreigners, consulting together upon the private business of mankind, and making this metropolis a kind of emporium for the whole earth. I must confess 1 look upon high-change to be a great council, in which all considerable nations have their representatives. Factors in the trading world are what ambassadors are in the politic world; they negotiate affairs, conclude treaties, and maintain a good correspondence between those wealthy societies of men that are divided from one another by seas and oceans, or live on the different extremities of a continent. I have often been pleased to hear disputes adjusted between an inhabitant of Japan
* Ecclus., xxvii, 16, et seq.
and an alderman of London; or to see a subject of the Great Mogul entering into a league with one of the Czar of Muscovy. I am infinitely delighted in mixing with these several ministers of commerce, as they are distinguished by their different walks and different languages. Sometimes I am jostled among a body of Armenians; sometimes I am lost in a crowd of Jews; and sometimes make one in a group of Dutchmen. I am a Dane, Swede, or Frenchman, at different times; or rather fancy myself, like the old philosopher, who upon being asked what countryman he was, replied, that he was a citizen of the world.
of nature among us. Our ships are the harvest of every climate. Our stored with spices, and oils, and rooms are filled with pyramids of adorned with the workmanship of J morning's draught comes to us from t corners of the earth. We repair our b drugs of America, and repose ourselve dian canopies. My friend, Sir Andre vineyards of France our gardens; islands our hot-beds; the Persians weavers, and the Chinese our potte indeed, furnishes us with the bare ne
useful, and at the same time suppl everything that is convenient and Nor is it the least part of this our hap while we enjoy the remotest products and south, we are free from those ex weather which give them birth: that refreshed with the green fields of Bri the same time that our palates are fruits that rise between the tropics.
Though I very frequently visit this busy multi-life, but traffic gives us a great variet tude of people, I am known to nobody there but my friend Sir Andrew, who often smiles upon me as he sees me bustling in the crowd, but at the same time connives at my presence without taking farther notice of me. There is indeed a merchant of Egypt, who just knows me by sight, having formerly remitted me some money to Grand Cairo; but as I am not versed in modern Coptic, our conferences go no farther than a bow and a grimace. This grand scene of business gives me an infinite variety of solid and substantial entertainments. As I am a great lover of mankind, my heart naturally overflows with pleasure at the sight of a prosperous and happy multitude, insomuch that at many public solemnities I cannot forbear expressing my joy with tears that have stolen down my cheeks. For this reason I am wonderfully delighted to see such a body of men thriving in their own private fortunes, and at the same time pro moting the public stock; or, in other words, raising estates for their own families, by bringing into their country whatever is wanting, and carrying out of it whatever is superfluous.
Nature seems to have taken a particular care to disseminate her blessings among the different regions of the world, with an eye to this mutual intercourse and traffic among mankind, that the natives of the several parts of the globe might have a kind of dependence upon one another, and be united together by their common interest. Almost every degree produces something peculiar to it. The food often grows in one country, and the sauce in another. The fruits of Portugal are corrected by the produce of Barbadoes, and the infusion of a China plant is sweetened by the pith of an Indian cane. The Phillipic Islands give a flavor to our European bowls. The single dress of a woman of quality is often the product of a hundred climates. The muff and the fan come together from different ends of the earth. The scarf is sent from the torrid zone, and the tippet from beneath the pole. The brocade petticoat rises out of the mines of Peru, and the diamond necklace out of the bowels of Indostan.
If we consider our own country in its natural prospect, without any of the benefits and advantages of commerce, what a barren uncomfortable spot of earth falls to our share! Natural historians tell us, that no fruit grows originally among us, beside hips and haws, acorns and pig-nuts, with other delicacies of the like nature; that our climate of itself, and without the assistance of art, can make no farther advances toward a plum than to a sloe, and carries an apple to no greater perfection than a crab: that our melons, our peaches, our figs, our apricots, and cherries, are strangers among us, imported in different ages, and naturalized in our English gardens; and that they would all degenerate and fall away into the trash of our own country, if they were wholly neglected by the planter, and left to the mercy of our sun and soil. Nor has traffic more enriched our vegetable world, than it has improved the whole face
For these reasons there are not members in a commonwealth than r They knit mankind together in a m course of good offices, distribute the ture, find work for the poor, add w rich, and magnificence to the great. merchant converts the tin of his own gold, and exchanges its wool for rubie hometans are clothed in our British and the inhabitants of the frozen z with the fleeces of our sheep.
When I have been upon the 'Cha often fancied one of our old kings person, where he is represented in looking down upon the wealthy conc ple with which that place is every da this case, how would he be surprised the languages of Europe spoken in th of his former dominions, and to see s vate men, who in his time would ha vassals of some powerful baron, nego princes for greater sums of money th merly to be met with in the royal Trade, without enlarging the British has given us a kind of additional em multiplied the number of the rich landed estates infinitely more valuabl were formerly, and added to them a of other estates as valuable as the selves.-C.
No. 70.] MONDAY, MAY 21, Interdum vulgus rectum vidit.-HOR., Sometimes the vulgar see and judge ar WHEN I traveled, I took a particula hearing the songs and fables that ar father to son, and are most in vogue common people of the countries thro passed; for it is impossible that anyt be universally tasted and approved tude, though they are only the rabble which hath not in it some peculiar please and gratify the mind of man. ture is the same in all reasonable cre whatever falls in with it, will meet w among readers of all qualities and Moliere, as we are told by Monsieur E to read all his comedies to an old wor his housekeeper, as she sat with him by the chimney-corner; and could success of his play in the theater, fro tion it met at his fire-side-for he
audience always followed the old woman, and never failed to laugh in the same place.
God save the king, and bless the land
And grant henceforth that foul debate
The next point observed by the greatest heroic poets, hath been to celebrate persons and actions which do honor to their country: thus Virgil's hero was the founder of Rome, Homer's a prince of Greece; and for this reason Valerius Flaccus and Statius, who were both Romans, might be justly derided for having chosen the expedition of the Golden Fleece, and the wars of Thebes, for the subjects of their epic writings.
I know nothing which more shows the essential and inherent perfection of simplicity of thought, above that which I call the Gothic manner in writing, than this-that the first pleases all kinds of palates, and the latter only such as have formed to themselves a wrong artificial taste upon little fanciful authors and writers of epigram. Homer, Virgil, or Milton, so far as the language of their poems is understood, will please a reader of plain common sense, who would neither relish nor comprehend an epigram of Martial, or a poem of Cowley; so, on the contrary, an ordinary song or The poet before us has not only found out a ballad that is the delight of the common people, hero in his own country, but raises the reputation cannot fail to please all such readers as are not of it by several incidents. The English are the unqualified for the entertainment by their affecta-first who take the field, and the last who quit it. tion or ignorance; and the reason is plain-because the same paintings of nature which recommend it to the most ordinary reader will appear beautiful to the most refined.
The old song of Chevy-Chase is the favorite ballad of the common people of England; and Ben Jonson used to say, he had rather have been the author of it than of all his works. Sir Philip Sydney, in his discourse of Poetry, speaks of it in the following words: "I never heard the old song of Percy and Douglas, that I found not my heart more moved than with a trumpet: and yet it is sung by some blind crowder with no rougher voice than rude style; which being so evil appareled in the dust and cobweb of that uncivil age, what would it work trimmed in the gorgeous quence of Pindar?" For my own part, I am so professed an admirer of this antiquated song, that I shall give my reader a critique upon it, without any farther apology for so doing.
The greatest modern critics have laid it down as a rule, that a heroic poem should be founded upon some important precept of morality, adapted to the constitution of the country in which the poet writes. Homer and Virgil have formed their plans in this view. As Greece was a collection of many governments who suffered very much among themselves, and gave the Persian emperor, who was their common enemy, many advantages over them by their mutual jealousies and animosities, Homer, in order to establish among them a union which was so necessary for their safety, grounds his poem upon the discords of the several Grecian princes who were engaged in a confederacy against an Asiatic prince, and the several advantages which the enemy gained by such discords. At the time the poem we are now treating of was written, the dissensions of the barons,† who were then so many petty princes, ran very high, whether they quarreled among themselves, or with their neighbors, and produced unspeakable calamities to the country. The poet, to deter men from such unnatural contentions, describes a bloody battle and dreadful scene of death, occasioned by the mutual fends which reigned in the families of an English and Scottish nobleman. That he designed this for the instruction of his poem, we may learn from his four last lines, in which, after the example of the modern tragedians, he draws from it a precept for the benefit of his readers:
*This supposition is strangely incorrect. At the time IIomer wrote, the Persian government (most probably) did not exist. In his days there was a jealousy among the Greeks and Asiatics, not between Greeks and Persians. Not. Herod., lib. I. cap. i, et seq.-L.
+ The battle of Otterburn, usually called Chevy Chase, was bught A. D., 1388, in the reigns of Richard II, of England, Bad Robert II, of Scotland. Others, with less probability, have brought down the action to the reigns of Henry IV, of England, and James I, of Scotland.
The English bring only fifteen hundred to the
This news was brought to Edinburgh,
O heavy news, King James did say,
I have not any captain more
Like tidings to King Henry came
Now God be with him, saith our king,
I trust I have within my realm
Yet shall not Scot or Scotland say,
For brave Lord Percy's sake.
This vow full well the king perform'd
In one day fifty knights were slain,
And of the rest of small account
At the same time that our poet shows a laudable
Earl Douglas on a milk-white steed, Most like a baron bold, Rode foremost of the company, Whose armor shone like gold. His sentiments and actions are every way suitable to a hero. One of us two, says he, must die: I am an earl as well as yourself, so that you can have no pretense for refusing the combat: how ever, says he, it is pity, and indeed would be a sin, that so many innocent men should perish for our sakes; rather let you and I end our quarrel in a single fight:
Ere thus I will out-braved be,
I know thee well, an earl thou art,
But trust me, Percy, pity it were
*Impossible! for it was more than three times the distance.
When these brave men had distinguished themselves in the battle, and in single combat with each other, in the midst of a generous parley, full of heroic sentiments, the Scottish earl falls; and with his dying words encourages his men to revenge his death, representing to them, as the most bitter circumstance of it, that his rival saw him fall:
With that there came an arrow keen
Out of an English bow,
Who never spoke more words than these,
Merry-men, in the language of those times, is no
Tum sic expirans, etc.-Æn., xi, 820.
A gathering mist o'erclouds her cheerful eyes,
Turnus did not die in so heroic a manner, though our poet seems to have had his eye upon Turnus's speech in the last verse :
Lord Percy sees my fall.
Vicisti, et victum tendere palmas
Ausonii videre.-En., xii, 936.
The Latin chiefs have seen me beg my life.
Earl Percy's lamentation over his enemy is generous, beautiful, and passionate; I must only caution the reader not to let the simplicity of the style, which one may well pardon in so old a poet, prejudice him against the greatness of the thought
Then leaving life, Earl Percy took
The dead man by the hand,
O Christ! my very heart doth bleed
The beautiful line, "Taking the dead man by the
TUESDAY, MAY 22,
Scribere jussit amor.-OVID. Epist., iv,
Love bade me write.
cult a work, that they who despair of THE entire conquest of our passions think of a less difficult task, and only regulate them. But there is a third th the pleasure of our life; and that is r may contribute not only to the ease, passions to a greater elegance than them from nature. When the passion work is performed in innocent, though uncultivated minds, by the mere force a of the object. There are forms which create respect in the beholders, and at o and chastise the imagination. Such ion as this giving an immediate amb serve, in order to please. This cause fable of Cymon and Iphigenia. After are beautifully described by Mr. Dry presented Cymon so stupid, that
He whistled as he went, for want of the
He makes him fall into the following it appears as natural as wonderful— shows its influence upon him so exce
It happened on a summer's holiday,
That to the greenwood shade he took his wa
By chance conducted, or by thirst constra
The fool of nature stood with stupid eye
But lest this fine description shou against, as the creation of that gre Dryden, and not an account of wh ever happened in the world, I sh verbatim the epistle of an enamore the country to his mistress. Their not be inserted, because their passi greater respect than is due to their g is servant in a great family, and É miles off her lover. James, bef upon the daughter of one as Betty, was vain of his strength, a r and quarrelsome cudgel-player; 1 dancer at may-poles, a romp at always following idle women, she the peasants: he a country bully, coquette. But love has made her her mistress's chamber, where th gratifies a secret passion of her ov
I shall take another opportunity to consider the Betty talk of James; and James is other parts of this old song.-C.
stant waiter near his master's apar