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several petty enormities you yourself cannot attend | several pieces of wit in this kind. A man of your to; and finding daily absurdities hung out upon reading must know, that Abel Drugger gained the sign-posts of this city, to the great scandal of great applause by it in the time of Ben Jonson. foreigners, as well as those of our own country, Our apocryphal heathen god is also represented who are curious spectators of the same: I do hum- by this figure; which in conjunction with the bly propose that you would be pleased to make dragon, makes a very handsome picture in several me your superintendent of all such figures and of our streets. As for the bell-savage, which is devices as are or shall be made use of on this occa- the sign of a savage man standing by a bell, I was sion; with full powers to rectify or expunge what- formerly very much puzzled upon the conceit of ever I shall find irregular or defective. For want it, till I accidentally fell into the reading of an of such an officer, there is nothing like sound lite-old romance translated out of the French; which rature and good sense to be met with in those gives an account of a very beautiful woman who was objects that are everywhere thrusting themselves found in a wilderness, and is called in the French out to the eye, and endeavoring to become visible. La belle Sauvage; and is everywhere translated by Our streets are filled with blue boars, black swans, our countrymen the bell-savage. This piece of and red lions; not to mention flying pigs, and philosophy will, I hope, convince you that I have hogs in armor, with many other creatures more made sign-posts my study, and consequently extraordinary than any in the deserts of Africa. qualified myself for the employment which I Strange! that one who has all the birds and beasts solicit at your hands. But before I conclude my in nature to choose out of, should live at the sign letter, I must communicate to you another remark, of an Ens Rationis! which I have made upon the subject with which I am now entertaining you, namely, that I can give a shrewd guess at the humor of the inhabitant by the sign that hangs before his door. A surly choleric fellow generally makes choice of a bear; as men of milder dispositions frequently live at the sign of the lamb. Seeing a punch-bowl painted upon a sign near Charing-cross, and very curiously garnished with a couple of angels hovering over it, and squeezing a femon into it, I had the curiosity to ask after the master of the house, and found upon inquiry, as I had guessed by the little agrémens upon his sign, that he was a Frenchman. I know, Sir, it is not requisite for me to enlarge upon these hints to a gentleman of your great abilities; so, humbly recommending myself to your favor and patronage, "I remain, etc."
"My first task therefore should be, like that of Hercules, to clear the city from monsters. In the second place, I would forbid that creatures of jarring and incongruous natures should be joined together in the same sign; such as the bell and the neat's tongue, the dog and the gridiron. The fox and the goose may be supposed to have met, but what has the fox and the seven stars to do together? And when did the lamb and the dolphin ever meet, except upon a sign-post? As for the cat and fiddle, there is a conceit in it; and therefore I do not intend that anything I have here said should affect it. I must, however, observe to you upon this subject, that it is usual for a young tradesman, at his first setting up, to add to his own sign that of the master whom he served; as the husband, after marriage, gives a place to his mistress's arms in his own coat. This I take to have given rise to many of those absurdities which are committed over our heads; and, as I am informed, first occasioned the three nuns and a hare, which we see so frequently joined together. I would therefore establish certain rules, for the determining how far one tradesman may give the sign of another, and in what cases he may be allowed to quarter it with his own.
"In the third place, I would enjoin every shop to make use of a sign which bears some affinity to the wares in which it deals. What can be more inconsistent than to see a bawd at the sign of the angel, or a tailor at the lion? A cook should not live at the boot, nor a shoemaker at the roasted pig; and yet for want of this regulation, I have seen a goat set up before the door of a perfumer, and the French king's head at a sword-cutler's.
"An ingenious foreigner observes, that several of those gentlemen who value themselves upon their families, and overlook such as are bred to trade, bear the tools of their forefathers in their coats of arms. I will not examine how true this is in fact. But though it may not be necessary for posterity thus to set up the sign of their forefathers, I think it highly proper for those who actually profess the trade to show some such marks of it before their doors.
I shall add to the foregoing letter another, which came to me by the penny-post.
"From my own apartment near Charing-cross. "HONORED SIR,
"Having heard that this nation is a great encourager of ingenuity, I have brought with me a rope-dancer that was caught in one of the woods belonging to the Great Mogul. He is by birth a monkey; but swings upon a rope, takes a pipe of tobacco, and drinks a glass of ale like any reasonable creature. He gives great satisfaction to the quality; and if they will make a subscription for him, I will send for a brother of his out of Holland, that is a very good tumbler; and also for another of the same family whom I design for my merry-andrew, as being an excellent mimic, and the greatest droll in the country where he now is. I hope to have this entertainment in readiness for the next winter; and doubt not but it will please more than the opera or puppet-show. I will not say that a monkey is a better man than some of the opera heroes; but certainly he is a better representative of a man than the most artificial composition of wood and wire. If you will be pleased to give me a good word in your paper, you shall be every night a spectator at my show for nothing.. C. "I am, etc."
No. 29.] TUESDAY, APRIL 3, 1711.
"When the name gives an occasion for an ingenious sign-post, I would likewise advise the owner to take that opportunity of letting the world know who he is. It would have been ridiculous for the ingenious Mrs. Salmon to have lived at the sign of the trout; for which reason she has erected before her house the figure of the fish that is her namesake. Mr. Bell has likewise distinguished himself by a device of the same nature: and here, Sir, I must beg leave to observe to you, that this English audience, than the Italian recitativo at its
particular figure of a bell has given occasion to
* St. George.
first entrance upon the stage. People were won-
own country learn to sweeten their vo
But however this Italian method of acting in recitativo might appear at first hearing, I cannot but think it much more just than that which prevailed in our English opera before this innovation; the transition from an air to recitative music being more natural than the passing from a song to plain and ordinary speaking, which was the common method in Purcell's operas.
A composer should fit his music to t of the people, and consider that the d hearing and taste of harmony, has bee upon those sounds which every country with. In short, that music is of a relati and what is harmony to one ear, may nance to another.
The same observations which I have n the recitative part of music, may be app our songs and airs in general.
Signior Baptist Lully acted like a ma The only fault I find in our present practice, is in this particular. He found the French the making use of the Italian recitativo with Eng-tremely defective, and very often barbard lish words.
To go to the bottom of this matter, I must observe that the tone, or (as the French call it) the accent of every nation in their ordinary speech, is altogether different from that of every other people; as we may see even in the Welsh and Scotch who border so near upon us. By the tone or accent, I do not mean the pronunciation of each particular word, but the sound of the whole sentence. Thus it is very common for an English gentleman when he hears a French tragedy, to complain that the actors all of them speak in one tone: and therefore he very wisely prefers his own countrymen, not considering that a foreigner complains of the same tone in an English actor.
For this reason, the recitative music, in every language, should be as different as the tone or accent of each language; for otherwise, what may properly express a passion in one language will not do it in another. Every one who has been long in Italy, knows very well that the cadences in the recitativo bear a remote affinity to the tone of their voices in ordinary conversation-or, to speak more properly, are only the accents of their language made more musical and tuneful.
Thus the notes of interrogation, or admiration, in the Italian music (if one may so call them) which resemble their accents in discourse on such occasions, are not unlike the ordinary tones of an English voice when we are angry; insomuch that I have often seen our audiences extremely mistaken as to what has been doing on the stage, and expecting to see the hero knock down his messenger, when he has been asking him a question; or fancying that he quarrels with his friend when he only bids him good morrow.
For this reason the Italian artists cannot agree with our English musicians in admiring Purcell's compositions, and thinking his tunes so wonderfully adapted to his words; because both nations do not always express the same passions by the same sounds.
I am therefore humbly of opinion, that an English composer should not follow the Italian recitative too servilely, but make use of many gentle deviations from it, in compliance with his own native language. He may copy out of it all the lulling softness and "dying falls" (as Shakspeare calls them), but should still remember that he ought to accommodate himself to an English audience; and by humoring the tone of our voices in ordinary conversation, have the same regard to the accent of his own language, as those persons had to theirs whom he professes to imitate. It is observed, that several of the singing birds of our
ever, knowing the genius of the people, of their language, and the predjudiced e to deal with, he did not pretend to ex French music and plant the Italian in but only to cultivate and civilize it wi rable graces and modulations which he from the Italians. By this means the sic is now perfect in its kind'; and whe it is not so good as the Italian, you only it does not please you so well; for there Frenchman who would not wonder t give the Italian such a preference. Th the French is indeed very properly adap pronunciation and accent, as their w wonderfully favors the genius of such people. The chorus, in which that ope gives the parterre frequent opportunitie in concert with the stage. This inclin audience to sing along with the actors with them, that I have sometimes kno former on the stage do no more in song than the clerk of a parish church, only to raise the psalm, and is afterwa in the music of the congregation. that comes on the stage is a beau. and heroines are so painted, that the ruddy and cherry-cheeked as milk-r shepherds are all embroidered, and a selves in a ball better than our Engli masters. I have seen a couple of rive red stockings; and Alpheus, instead o head covered with sedge and bulrus love in a full-bottom periwig and a plu ers; but with a voice so full of shak vers, that I should have thought t of a country brook the much mor music.
I remember the last opera I saw i nation was the Rape of Proserpine, to make the more tempting figure, pu a French equipage, and brings Ascal with him as his valet de chambre. we call folly and impertinence; b French look upon as gay and polite.
I shall add no more to what I have than that music, architecture, and well as poetry and oratory, are to dedy and rules from the general sense and kind, and not from the principles themselves; or, in other words, the ta conform to the art, but the art to the is not designed to please only chrom all that are capable of distinguishing disagreeable notes. A man of an or a judge whether a passion is expres
If nothing, as Mimnermus strives to prove,
Lesbia a thousand years ago. But as far as I can learn, the patron of the club is the renowned Don Quixote. The adventures of that gentle knight are frequently mentioned in the society, under the color of laughing at the passion and themselves: but at the same time, though they are sensible of the extravagances of that unhappy warrior, they do not observe, that to turn all the reading of the best and wisest writings into rhapsodies of love, is a frenzy no less diverting than that of the aforesaid accomplished Spaniard. A gentleman, who, I hope, will continue his correspondence, is lately admitted into the fraternity, and sent me the following letter:
"Since I find you take notice of clubs, I beg ONE common calamity makes men extremely af- leave to give you an account of one in Oxford, fect each other, though they differ in every other which you have nowhere mentioned, and perhaps particular. The passion of love is the most gene- never heard of. We distinguish ourselves by the ral concern among men; and I am glad to hear by title of the Amorous Club, are all votaries of Cumy last advices from Oxford, that there are a set pid, and admirers of the fair sex. The reason that of sighers in that university, who have erected we are so little known in the world, is the secrecy themselves into a society in honor of that tender which we are obliged to live under in the univerpassion. These gentlemen are of that sort of ina- sity. Our constitution runs counter to that of the moratos, who are not so very much lost to common place wherein we live: for in love there are no sense, but that they understand the folly they are doctors, and we all profess so high a passion, that guilty of; and for that reason separate themselves we admit of no graduates in it. Our presidentship from all other company, because they will enjoy is bestowed according to the dignity of passion; the pleasure of talking incoherently, without being our number is unlimited; and our statutes are like ridiculous to any but each other. When a man those of the Druids, recorded in our own breasts comes into the club, he is not obliged to make any only, and explained by the majority of the comintroduction to his discourse, but at once, as he is pany. A mistress, and a poem in her praise, will seating himself in his chair, speaks in the thread introduce any candidate. Without the latter no of his own thoughts: "She gave me a very oblig- one can be admitted; for he that is not in love ing glance, she never looked so well in her life as enough to rhyme, is unqualified for our society. this evening," or the like reflection, without re- To speak disrespectfully of a woman is expulsion gard to any other member of the society; for in from our gentle society. As we are at present all this assembly they do not meet to talk to each of us gownsmen, instead of dueling when we are other, but every man claims the full liberty of talk- rivals, we drink together the health of our mising to himself. Instead of snuff-boxes and canes, tress. The manner of doing this, sometimes inwhich are the usual helps to discourse with other deed creates debates; on such occasions we have young fellows, these have each some piece of rib-recourse to the rules of love among the ancients. bon. a broken fan, or an old girdle, which they play with while they talk of the fair person remembered by each respective token. According to the representation of the matter from my letters, the company appear like so many players rehearsing behind the scenes; one is sighing and lamenting his destiny in beseeching terms, another declaiming he will break his chain, and another, in dumbshow, striving to express his passion by his gesture. It is very ordinary in the assembly for one of a sudden to rise and make a discourse concerning his passion in general, and describe the temper of his mind in such a manner, as that the whole company shall join in the description, and feel the force of it. In this case, if any man has declared the violence of his flame in more pathetic terms, he is made president for that night, out of respect to his superior passion.
We had some years ago in this town, a set of people who met and dressed like lovers, and were distinguished by the name of the Fringe-glove club; but they were persons of such moderate intellects, even before they were impaired by their passion, that their irregularities could not furnish sufficient variety of folly to afford daily new impertinences; by which means that institution dropped. These fellows could express their passion by nothing but their dress, but the Oxonians are fantastical now they are lovers, in proportion to their learning and understanding before they became such. The thoughts of the ancient poets on this agreeable frenzy are translated in honor of some modern beauty; and Chloris is won to-day by the same compliment that was made to
Nævia sex cyathis, septem Justina bibatur.
MAKT., Epig. i, 72.
Six cups to Nævia, to Justina seven. This method of a glass to every letter of her name, occasioned the other night a dispute of some warmth. A young student who is in love with Mrs. Elizabeth Dimple, was so unreasonable as to which so exasperated the club, that by common begin her health under the name of Elizabethea ; consent we retrenched it to Betty. We look upon a man as no company that does not sigh five times in a quarter of an hour; and look upon a member as very absurd, that is so much himself as to make a direct answer to a question. In fine, the whole such persons as have lost their locality, and whose assembly is made up of absent menminds and bodies never keep company with one another. As I am an unfortunate member of this lar account of it; for which reason I hope you will distracted society, you cannot expect a very regupardon me that I so abruptly subscribe myself,
that is, of
"Sir, your most obedient humble servant,
"T. B. "I forgot to tell you, that Albina, who has six votaries in this club, is one of readers."- R. your
No. 31.] THURSDAY, APRIL 5, 1711.
LAST night, upon my going into a coffee-house not far from the Haymarket Theater, I diverted
myself for above half-an-hour with overhearing the discourse of one, who, by the shabbiness of his dress, the extravagance of his conceptions, and the hurry of his speech, I discovered to be of that species who are generally distinguished by the title of projectors. This gentleman, for I found he was treated as such by his audience, was entertaining a whole table of listeners with the project of an opera, which he told us had not cost him above two or three mornings in the contrivance, and which he was ready to put in execution provided he might find his account in it. He said, that he had observed the great trouble and inconvenience which ladies were at, in traveling up and down the several shows that are exhibited in different quarters of the town. The dancing monkeys are in one place; the puppet-show in another; the opera in a third; not to mention the lions, that are almost a whole day's journey from the politer part of the town. By this means people of figure are forced to lose half the winter after their coming to town, before they have seen all the strange sights about it. In order to remedy this great inconvenience, our projector drew out of his pocket the scheme of an opera, entitled, The Expedition of Alexander the Great; in which he had disposed all the remarkable shows about town among the scenes and decorations of his piece, the thought, he confessed, was not originally his own, but that he had taken the hint of it from several performances which he had seen upon our stage; in one of which there was a raree-show; in another a ladder-dance; and in others a posture-man, a moving picture, with many curiosities of the like
version of two monarchs. Some at 1 urged, that a puppet-show was not a sui tertainment for Alexander the Great; an might be introduced more properly, if w the conqueror touched upon that part which is said to be inhabited by the But this objection was looked upon as and the proposal immediately overrul projector farther added, that after the r tion of these two kings, they might i another to dinner, and either of them ent guest with the German artist, Mr. Pinl heathen gods, or any of the like diversi shall then chance to be in vogue.
This project was received with very plause by the whole table. Upon v undertaker told us, that he had not yet cated to us above half his design; for ander being a Greek, it was his intentio whole opera should be acted in that which was a tongue he was sure would w please the ladies, especially when it w raised and rounded by the Ionic dialect; not but be acceptable to the whole audien there are fewer of them who underst than Italian. The only difficulty that was how to get performers, unless we suade some gentlemen of the universiti to sing, in order to qualify themselves fo but this objection soon vanished when tor informed us that the Greeks were the only musicians in the Turkish er that it would be very easy for our Smyrna to furnish us every year with a musicians, by the opportunity of the T beside, says he, if we want any singl any lower part in the opera, Lawrence to speak Greek, as well as he does It fortnight's time.
This expedition of Alexander opens with his consulting the oracle of Delphos, in which the dumb conjurer who has been visited by so many persons of quality of late years, is to be introduced as telling his fortune. At the same time The projector having thus settled ma Clinch of Barnet is represented in another corner good-liking of all that heard him, he l of the temple, as ringing the bells of Delphos, for at the table, and planted himself befo joy of his arrival. The tent of Darius is to be where I had unluckily taken my stand peopled by the ingenious Mrs. Salmon, where venience of overhearing what he said. Alexander is to fall in love with a piece of wax- he had observed me to be more attentive work, that represents the beautiful Statira. When nary, I cannot tell, but he had not st Alexander comes into that country, in which above a quarter of a minute, but he tu Quintus Curtius tells us the dogs were so exceed-upon me on a sudden, and catching m ing fierce that they would not lose their hold, ton of my coat, attacked me very abr though they were cut to pieces limb by limb, and the following manner. that they would hang upon their prey by their teeth Beside, Sir, I have heard of a very when they had nothing but a mouth left, there is nary genius for music that lives in S to be a scene of Hockley in the Hole, in which is who has so strong a spring in his finge to be represented all the diversions of that place, can make the board of an organ so the bull-baiting only excepted, which cannot drum, and if I could but procure a s possibly be exhibited in the theater, by reason of of about ten thousand pounds every the lowness of the roof. The several woods in would undertake to fetch him over, Asia, which Alexander must be supposed to pass him by articles to set everything that through, will give the audience a sight of mon- sung upon the English stage."' keys dancing upon ropes, with many other plea- looked full in my face, expecting I w santries of that ludicrous species. At the same an answer, when, by good luck, a gent time, if there chance to be any strange animals in had entered the coffee-house since th town, whether birds or beasts, they may be either applied himself to me, hearing him let loose among the woods, or driven across the Swiss compositions, cried out in a kin stage by some of the country people of Asia. In "Is our music then to receive farthe the last great battle, Pinkethman is to personate ments from Switzerland?" This alarn King Porus upon an elephant, and is to be encounjector, who immediately let go my tered by Powell, representing Alexander the Great, turned about to answer him. I took t upon a dromedary, which nevertheless Mr. Powell nity of diversion which seemed to b is desired to call by the name of Bucephalus. favor of me, and laying down my pen Upon the close of this great decisive battle, when bar, retired with some precipitation.the two kings are thoroughly reconciled, to show the mutual friendship and good correspondence that reigns between them, they both of them go together to a puppet-show, in which the ingenious Mr. Powell, junior, may have an opportunity of displaying his whole art of machinery, for the di
No. 32.] FRIDAY, APRIL 6, 1711.
He wants no tragic vizor to increase
siness and misery of human life, especially among those of distinction, arises from nothing in the world else, but too severe a contemplation of an indefeasible contexture of our external parts, or certain natural and invincible dispositions to be fat THE late discourse concerning the statutes of or lean?-when a little more of Mr. Spectator's the Ugly Club, having been so well received at philosophy would take off all this. In the meanOxford, that, contrary to the strict rules of the time let them observe, that there is not one of their society, they have been so partial as to take my sort, but perhaps, in some age of the world, has own testimonial, and admit me into that select been highly in vogue, and may be so again; nay, body; I could not restrain my vanity of publish- in some country or another, ten to one, is so at ing to the world the honor which is done me. this day. My Lady Ample is the most miserable is no small satisfaction that I have given occasion woman in the world, purely of her own making. for the President's showing both his invention She even grudges herself meat and drink for fear and reading to such advantage as my correspon- she should thrive by them; and is constantly dent reports he did: but it is not to be doubted crying out, In a quarter of a year more I shall be there were many very proper hums and pauses in quite out of all manner of shape! Now the lady's his harangue, which lose their ugliness in the misfortune seems to be only this, that she is narration, and which my correspondent (begging planted in a wrong soil; for go but to the other his pardon) has no very good talent at represent-side of the water, it is a jest at Haerlem to talk of ing. I very much approve of the contempt the a shape under eighteen stone. These wise traders society has of beauty. Nothing ought to be laud-regulate their beauties as they do their butter, by able in a man, in which his will is not concerned; the pound; and Miss Cross, when she first arrived therefore our society can follow nature, and where she has thought fit, as it were, to mock herself, we can do so too, and be merry upon the occa
in the Low Countries, was not computed to be so handsome as Madam Van Brisket by near half a ton. On the other hand, there is 'Squire Lath, a proper gentleman of 1,500l. per annum, as well as of unblamable life and conversation; yet would I not be the esquire for half his estate; for if it was as much more, he would freely part with it all for a pair of legs to his mind. Whereas, in the reign of our first Edward of glorious memory, nothing more modish than a brace of your fine taper supporters; and his majesty, without an inch of calf, managed affairs in peace or war as laudably as the bravest and most politic of his ancestors; and was as terrible to his neighbors under the royal name of Longshanks, as Coeur de Lion to the Saracens before him. If we look farther back into history, we shall find that Alexander the Great wore his head a little over his left shoulder, and then not a soul stirred out till he had adjusted his neck-bone; the whole nobility addressed the prince and each other obliquely, and all matters of importance were concerted and carried on in the Macedonian court, with their polls on one side. For about the first century nothing made more noise in the world than Roman noses, and then not a word of them till they revived again in eighty-eight. Nor is it so very long since Richard the Third set up half the backs of the nation; and high shoulders, as well as high noses, were the top of the fashion. But to come to ourselves, gentlemen, though I find by my quinquennial observations, that we shall never get ladies enough to make a party in our own country, yet might we meet with better success among some of our allies. And what think you if our board sat for a Dutch piece? Truly I am of opinion, that as odd as we appear in flesh and blood, we should be no such strange things in mezzotinto. But this project may rest till our number is complete; and this being our election night, give me leave to propose Mr. Spectator. You see his inclinations, and perhaps we may not have his fellow.'
"Your making public the late trouble I gave you, you will find to have been the occasion of this. Who should I meet at the coffee-house door the other night, but my old friend Mr. President? I saw somewhat had pleased him; and as soon as he had cast his eye upon me, 'Oho, doctor, rare news from London,' says he; 'the Spectator has made honorable mention of the club (man), and published to the world his sincere desire to be a member, with a recommendatory description of his phiz; and though our constitution has made no particular provision for short faces, yet his being an extraordinary case, I believe we shall find a hole for him to creep in at; for I assure you he is not against the cannon: and if his sides are as compact as his joles, he need not disguise himself to make one of us.' I presently called for the paper to see how you looked in print; and after we had regaled ourselves awhile upon the pleasant image of our proselyte, Mr. President told me I should be his stranger at the next night's club; where we were no sooner come, and pipes brought, but Mr. President began an harangue upon your introduction to my epistle, setting forth with no less volubility of speech than strength of reason, That a speculation of this nature was what had been long and much wanted! and that he doubted not but it would be of inestimable value to the public, in reconciling even of bodies and souls; in composing and quieting the minds of men under all corporeal redundancies, deficiencies, and irregularities whatsoever; and making every one sit down content in his own carcass, though it were not perhaps so mathematically put together as he could wish. And again, 'How that for want of a due consideration of what you first advance, viz: That our faces are not of our own choosing, people had been transported beyond all good breeding, and hurried themselves into unaccountable and fatal extravagances; as how many impartial looking-glasses had been censured and calumniated, nay, and sometimes shivered into ten thousand splinters, only for a fair representation of the truth? How many bead-strings and garters had been made accessory and actually forfeited, only because folks must needs quarrel with their own shadows? And who,' continues he, but is whom Dryden, in the plates to the translation of Virgil, had *On the accession of King William III, in compliment to deeply sensible, that one great source of the unea-Eneas always represented with a Roman nose.
"I found most of them (as is usual in all such cases) were prepared; but one of the seniors (whom by the-bye, Mr. President had taken all this pains to bring over) sat still, and cocking his chin, which seemed only to be leveled at his nose, very gravely declared, 'That in case he had had sufficient knowledge of you, no man should have been more willing to have served you; but