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mention me to my father, for fear of provoking him. About a month ago he lay sick upon his bed, and in great danger of his life; I was pierced to the heart at the news, and could not forbear going to inquire after his health. My mother took this opportunity of speaking in my behalf: she told him, with abundance of tears, that I was come to see him, that I could not speak to her for weeping, and that I should certainly break my heart if he refused at that time to give me his blessing, and be reconciled to me. He was so far from relenting toward me, that he bid her speak no more of me, unless she had a mind to disturb him in his last moments; for, Sir, you must know that he has the reputation of an honest and religious man, which makes my misfortune so much the greater. God be thanked he has since recovered: but his severe usage has given me such a blow that I shall soon sink under it, unless I may be relieved by any impressions which the reading of this in your paper may make upon him. "I am," etc.
Of all hardnesses of heart there is none so inexcusable as that of parents toward their children. An obstinate, inflexible, unforgiving temper is odious upon all occasions; but here it is unnatural. The love, tenderness, and compassion which are apt to arise in us toward those who depend upon us, is that by which the whole world of life is upheld. The supreme Being, by the transcendent excellency and goodness of his nature, extends his mercy toward all his works; and because his creatures have not such a spontaneous benevolence and compassion toward those who are under their care and protection, he has implanted in them an instinct, that supplies the place of this inherent goodness. I have illustrated this kind of instinct in former papers, and have shown how it runs through all the species of brute creatures, as indeed the whole animal creation subsists by it.
This instinct in man is more general and uncircumscribed than in brutes, as being enlarged by the dictates of reason and duty. For if we consider ourselves attentively, we shall find that we are not only inclined to love those who descend from us, but that we bear a kind of natural affection to everything which relies upon us for its good and preservation. Dependence is a perpetual call upon humanity, and a greater incitement to tenderness and pity, than any other motive whatsoever.
The man, therefore, who, notwithstanding any passion or resentment, can overcome this powerful instinct, and extinguish natural affection, debases his mind even below brutality, frustrates, as much as in him lies, the great design of Providence, and strikes out of his nature one of the most divine principles that is planted in it.
Among innumerable arguments which might be brought against such an unreasonable proceeding, I shall only insist on one. We make it the condition of our forgiveness that we forgive others. In our very prayers we desire no more than to be treated by this kind of retaliation. The case therefore before us seems to be what they call a "case in point;" the relation between the child and father, being what comes nearest to that between a creature and its Creator. If the father is inexorable to the child who has offended, let the offense be of never so high a nature, how will he address himself to the supreme Being, under the tender appellation of a father, and desire of him such a forgiveness as he himself refuses to grant ?
To this I might add many other religious, as well as many prudential considerations; but if the last mentioned motive does not prevail, I despair
of succeeding by any other, and shall therefore conclude my paper with a very remarkable story, which is recorded in an old chronicle published by Freher, among the writers of the German history.
Eginhart, who was secretary to Charles the Great, became exceedingly popular by his behavior in that post. His great abilities gained him the favor of his master, and the esteem of the whole court. Imma, the daughter of the emperor, was so pleased with his person and conversation, that she fell in love with him. As she was one of the greatest beauties of the age, Eginhart answered her with a more than equal return of passion. They stifled their flames for some time, under the apprehension of the fatal consequences that might ensue. Eginhart at length resolving to hazard all rather than live deprived of one whom his heart was so much set upon, conveyed himself one night into the princess's apartment, and knocking gently at the door, was admitted as a person who had something to communicate to her from the emperor. He was with her in private most part of the night; but upon his preparing to go away about break of day, he observed that there had fallen a great snow during his stay with the princess. This very much perplexed him, lest the prints of his feet in the snow might make discoveries to the king, who often used to visit his daughter in the morning. He acquainted the Princess Imma with his fears: who after some consultations upon the matter, prevailed upon him to let her carry him through the snow upon her own shoulders. It happened that the emperor, not being able to sleep, was at that time up and walking in his chamber, when upon looking through the window he perceived his daughter tottering under her burden and carrying his first minister across the snow; which she had no sooner done, but she returned again with the utmost speed to her own apartment. The emperor was exceedingly troubled and astonished at this accident; but resolved to speak nothing of it until a proper opportunity. In the meantime, Eginhart knowing that what he had done could not be long a secret, determined to retire from court; and in order to it begged the emperor that he would be pleased to dismiss him, pretending a kind of discontent at his not having been rewarded for his long services. The emperor would not give a direct answer to his petition, but told him he would think of it, and appointed a certain day when he would let him know his pleasure. He then called together the most faithful of his counselors, and acquainting them with his secretary's crime, asked them their advice in so delicate an affair. They most of them gave their opinion, that the person could not be too severely punished, who had thus dishonored his master. Upon the whole debate, the emperor declared it was his opinion, that Eginhart's punishment would rather increase than diminish the shame of his family, and that therefore he thought it the most advisable to wear out the memory of the fact, by marrying him to his daughter. Accordingly Eginhart was called in, and acquainted by the emperor, that he should no longer have any pretense of complaining his services were not rewarded, for that the Princess Imma should be given him in marriage, with a dower suitable to her quality; which was soon after performed accordingly.-L.
No. 182.] FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 28, 1711. Plus aloes quam mellis habet-Juv., Sat. vi, 180. The bitter overbalances the sweet.
AS ALL parts of human life come under my observation, my reader must not make uncharitable inferences from my speaking knowingly of that sort of crime which is at present treated of. He will, I hope, suppose I know it only from the letters of correspondents, two of which you shall have as follow:
"It is wonderful to me, that among the many enormities which you have treated of, you have not mentioned that of wenching, and particularly the ensnaring part. I mean that it is a thing very fit for your pen, to expose the villany of the practice of deluding women. You are to know, Sir, that I myself am a woman who have been one of the unhappy that have fallen into this misfortune, and that by the insinuation of a very worthless fellow, who served others in the same manner, both before my ruin and since that time. I had, as soon as the rascal left me, so much indignation and resolution as not to go upon the town, as the phrase is, but took to work for my living in an obscure place, out of the knowledge of all with whom I was before acquainted.
"It is the ordinary practice and business of life with a set of idle fellows about this town to write letters, send messages, and form appointments with little raw unthinking girls, and leave them after possession of them, without any mercy, to shame, infamy, poverty, and disease. Were you to read the nauseous impertinences which are written on these occasions, and to see the silly creatures sighing over them, it could not but be matter of mirth as well as pity. A little 'prentice girl of mine has been for some time applied to by an Irish fellow, who dresses very fine, and struts in a lace coat, and is the admiration of seamstresses, who are under age in town. Ever since I had some knowledge of the matter, I have debarred my 'prentice from pen, ink, and paper. But the other day he bespoke some cravats of me: I went out of the shop, and left his mistress to put them up in a band-box in order to be sent to him when his man called. When I came into the shop again, I took occasion to send her away, and found in the bottom of the box written these words, Why would you ruin a harmless creature that loves you?' then in the lid, There is no resisting Strephon :' I searched a little further, and found in the rim of the box, 'At eleven o'clock at night come in a hackney-coach at the end of our street.' This was enough to alarm me; I sent away the things, and took my measures accordingly. An hour or two before the appointed time, I examined my young lady, and found her trunk stuffed with impertinent letters and an old scroll of parchment in Latin, which her lover had sent her as a settlement of fifty pounds a year. Among other things, there was also the best lace I had
be carried off, to her lover s man, who came wit the signal to receive them. Thus I followed afte to the coach, where when I saw his master tak them in, I cried out, thieves! thieves! and th constable with his attendants seized my expectin lover. I kept myself unobserved until I saw t crowd sufficiently increased, and then appeared declare the goods to be mine; and had the sati faction to see my man of mode put into th round-house, with the stolen wares by him, to produced in evidence against him the next mor ing. This matter is notoriously known to be fac and I have been contented to save my 'prentic and take a year's rent of this mortified lover, n to appear further in the matter. This was so penance; but, Sir, is this enough for a villany much more pernicious consequence than the trif for which he was to have been indicted? Shou not you, and all men of any parts or honor, p things upon so right a foot, as that such a rasc should not laugh at the imputation of what was really guilty, and dread being accused of th for which he was arrested.
In a word, Sir, it is in the power of you, a such as I hope you are, to make it as infamous rob a poor creature of her honor as her clothes. leave this to your consideration, only take lea (which I cannot do without sighing) to remark you that if this had been the sense of manki thirty years ago, I should have avoided a life spe in poverty and shame.
"I am, Sir, your most humble servant, "ALICE THREADNEEDLE.' Round House, Sept. 9 "I am a man of pleasure about town, but the stupidity of a dull rogue of a justice of pea and an insolent constable, upon the oath of an harridan, am imprisoned here for theft, wher designed only fornication. The midnight mag trate, as he conveyed me along, had you in mouth, and said this would make a pure story the Spectator. I hope, Sir, you won't pretend wit, and take the part of dull rogues of busine The world is so altered of late years, that th was not a man who would knock down a wat man in my behalf, but I was carried off with much triumph as if I had been a pickpocket. this rate there is an end of all the wit and hun in the world. The time was, when all the hon whoremasters in the neighborhood would h rose against the cuckolds in my rescue. If for cation is to be scandalous, half the fine things t have been written by most of the wits of the last may be burned by the common hangman. Hark Mr. Spec., do not be queer: after having d some things pretty well, don't begin to write that rate that no gentleman can read thee. true to love, and burn your Seneca. You do expect me to write my name from hence, but I a T. "Your unknown, humble servant," etc
in my shop to make him a present for cravats. I No. 183.] SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 17 was very glad of this latter circumstance, because I could very conscientiously swear against him that he had enticed my servant away, and was her accomplice in robbing me: I procured a warrant against him accordingly. Everything was now prepared, and the tender hour of love approaching, I who had acted for myself in my youth the same senseless part, knew how to manage accordingly; therefore, after having locked up my maid, and not being so much unlike her in height and shape, as in a huddled way not to pass for her, I delivered the bundle designed to
Sometimes fair truth in fiction we disguise;
their appearance in the world, and have been s FABLES were the first pieces of wit that ma highly valued, not only in times of the great simplicity, but among the most polite ages mankind. Jotham's fable of the trees is the est that is extant, and as beautiful as any wh have been made since that time. Nathan's fa
*Judges ix, 8-15.
of the poor man and his lamb is likewise more ancient than any that is extant, beside the abovementioned, and had so good an effect, as to convey instruction to the ear of a king, without offending it, and to bring a man after God's own heart to a right sense of his guilt and his duty. We find Esop in the most distant ages of Greece; and if we look into the very beginnings of the commonwealth of Rome,† we see a mutiny among the common people appeased by a fable of the belly and the limbs, which was indeed very proper to gain the attention of an incensed rabble, at a time when perhaps they would have torn to pieces any man who had preached the same doctrine to them in an open and direct manner. As fables took their birth in the very infancy of learning, they never flourished more than when learning was at its greatest height. To justify this assertion, I shall put my reader in mind of Horace, the greatest wit and critic in the Augustan age; and of Boileau, the most correct poet among the moderns; not to mention La Fontaine, who by this way of writing is come more into vogue than any other author of our times.
The fables I have here mentioned are raised altogether upon brutes and vegetables, with some of our own species mixed among them, when the moral hath so required. But beside this kind of fable, there is another in which the actors are passions, virtues, vices, and other imaginary persons of the like nature. Some of the ancient critics will have it, that the Iliad and Odyssey of Homer, are fables of this nature: and that the several names of gods and heroes are nothing else but the affections of the mind in a visible shape and character. Thus they tell us, that Achilles, in the first Iliad, represents anger, or the irascible part of human nature; that upon drawing his sword against his superior in a full assembly, Pallas is only another name for reason, which checks and advises him upon that occasion; and at her first appearance touches him upon the head, that part of the man being looked upon as the seat of reason. And thus of the rest of the poem. As for the Odyssey, I think it is plain that Horace considered it as one of these allegorical fables, by the moral which he has given us of several parts of it, The greatest Italian wits have applied themselves to the writing of this latter kind of fables. Spenser's Fairy-Queen is one continued series of them from the beginning to the end of that admirable work. If we look into the finest prose authors of antiquity, such as Cicero, Plato, Xenophon, and many others, we shall find that this was likewise their favorite kind of fable. I shall only further observe upon it, that the first of this sort that made any considerable figure in the world, was that of Hercules meeting with Pleasure and Virtue which was invented by Prodicus, who lived before Socrates, and in the first dawnings of philosophy. He used to travel through Greece by virtue of this fable, which procured him a kind reception in all the market towns, where he never failed telling it as soon as he had gathered an audience about him.
After this short preface, which I have made up of such materials as my memory does at present suggest to me, before I present my reader with a fable of this kind, which I design as the entertainment of the present paper, I must in a few Words open the occasion of it.
In the account which Plato gives us of the conversation and behavior of Socrates, the morning he was to die, he tells the following circumstance:
*2 Sam., xii, 1—4.
† Liv. Hist., lib. ii, sect. 32, eto. Florus, lib. i, c. 23.
When Socrates "his" fetters were knocked off, (as was usual to be done on the day that the condemned person was to be executed), being seated in the midst of his disciples, and laying one of his legs over the other, in a very unconcerned posture, he began to rub it where it had been galled by the iron; and whether it was to show the indifference with which he entertained the thoughts of his approaching death, or (after his usual manner), to take every occasion of philosophizing upon some useful subject, he observed the pleasure of that sensation which now arose in those very parts of his leg, that just before had been so much pained by the fetter. Upon this he reflected on the nature of pleasure and pain in general, and how constantly they succeed one another. To this he added, that if a man of a good genius for a fable were to represent the nature of pleasure and pain in that way of writing, he would probably join them together after such a manner, that it would be impossible for the one to come into any place without being followed by the other.
It is possible, that if Plato had thought it proper at such a time to describe Socrates launching out into a discourse which was not of a piece with the business of the day, he would have enlarged upon this hint, and have drawn it out into some beantiful allegory or fable. But since he has not done it, I shall attempt to write one myself in the spirit of that divine author.
"There were two families which from the beginning of the world were as opposite to each other as light and darkness. The one of them lived in heaven, and the other in hell. The youngest descendant of the first family was Pleasure, who was the daughter of Happiness, who was the child of Virtue, who was the offspring of the Gods. These, as I said before, had their habitation in heaven. The youngest of the opposite family was Pain, who was the son of Misery, who was the child of Vice, who was the offspring of the Furies. The habitation of this race of beings was in hell.
The middle station of nature between these two opposite extremes was the earth, which was inhabited by creatures of a middle kind, neither so virtuous as the one, nor so vicious as the other, but partaking of the good and bad qualities of these two opposite families. Jupiter considering that the species, commonly called man, was too virtuous to be miserable, and too vicious to be happy; that he might make a distinction between the good and the bad, ordered the two youngest of the above-mentioned families, Pleasure, who was the daughter of Happiness, and Pain, who was the son of Misery, to meet one another upon this part of nature which lay in the half-way between them, having promised to settle it upon them both, provided they could agree upon the division of it, so as to share mankind between them.
"Pleasure and Pain were no sooner met in their new habitation, but they immediately agreed upon this point, that Pleasure should take possession of the virtuous, and Pain of the vicious part of that species which was given up to them. But upon examining to which of them any individual they met with belonged, they found each of them had a right to him: for that, contrary to what they had seen in their old places of residence, there was no person so vicious who had not some good in him, nor any person so virtuous who had not in him some evil. The truth of it is, they gener ally found upon search, that in the most vicious man Pleasure might lay claim to a hundredth part, and that in the most virtuous man Pain might come in for at least two-thirds. This they
saw would occasion endless disputes between them, unless they could come to some accommodation. To this end there was a marriage proposed between them, and at length concluded. By this means it is that we find pleasure and pain are such constant yoke-fellows; and that they either make their visits together, or are never far asunder. If Pain comes into a heart, he is quickly followed by Pleasure; and if Pleasure enters, you may be sure Pain is not far off.
has undertaken to be his historiographer. I ha
No. 184.] MONDAY, OCTOBER 1, 1711.
WHEN a man has discovered a new vein of humor, it often carries him much further than he ex
"But to return to Nicholas Hart: I believe, you will think it a very extraordinary circ stance for a man to gain his livelihood by sle ing, and that rest should procure a man sustena as well as industry; yet so it is, that Nicholas month. I am likewise informed that he has last year enough to support himself for a twel year had a very comfortable nap. The poets va but I never heard they got a groat by it. On themselves very much for sleeping on Parnass contrary, our friend Nicholas gets more by sle ing than he could by working, and may be m properly said, than ever Homer was, to have golden dreams. Juvenal indeed mention following letter by the last post. I shall not pre-drowsy husband who raised an estate by snori mise anything to it further, than that it is built on matter of fact, and is as follows:
pected from it. My correspondents take the hint give them, and pursue it into speculations which I never thought of at my first starting it. This has been the fate of my paper on the match of grinning, which has already produced a second paper on parallel subjects, and brought me the
You have already obliged the world with a discourse upon grinning, and have since proceeded to whistling, from whence you at length came to yawning; from this I think you may make a very natural transition to sleeping. I therefore recommend to you for the subject of a paper the follow-mend themselves to the favors of the great ing advertisement, which about two months ago making themselves agreeable companions in was given into everybody's hands, and may be participations of luxury and pleasure. seen, with some additions, in the Daily Courant of August the 9th.:
but then he is represented to have slept w the common people call a dog's sleep; o his sleep was real, his wife was awake, about her business. Your pen, which l to moralize upon all subjects, may raise so thing, methinks, on this circumstance also, point out to us those set of men, who, inst of growing rich by an honest industry, rec
"I must further acquaint you, Sir, that one the most eminent pens in Grub-street is now ployed in writing the dream of this miracul sleeper, which I hear will be of a more than o nary length, as it must contain all the particu that are supposed to have passed in his imag tion during so long a sleep. He is said to gone already through three days and three nig of it, and to have comprised in them the most markable passages of the four first empires of world. If he can keep free from party-stro his work may be of use; but this I much do having been informed by one of his friends confidants, that he has spoken some things Nimrod with too great freedom.
"I am ever, Sir," etc.No. 185.] TUESDAY, OCT. 2, 1711. Tantæne animis cœlestibus iræ ? VIRG. Æn., 1, 15 And dwells such fury in celestial breasts? THERE is nothing in which men more dec themselves than in what the world calls a
*The time in which the parliament usually sits.
"But notwithstanding this marriage was very convenient for the two parties, it did not seem to answer the intention of Jupiter in sending them among mankind. To remedy, therefore, this inconvenience, it was stipulated between them by article, and confirmed by the consent of each family, that notwithstanding they here possessed the species indifferently; upon the death of every single person, if he was found to have in him a certain proportion of evil, he should be dispatched into the infernal regions by a passport from Pain, there to dwell with Misery, Vice, and the Furies. Or, on the contrary, if he had in him a certain proportion of good, he should be dispatched into heaven by a passport from Pleasure, there to dwell with Happiness, Virtue, and the Gods."
"Nicholas Hart, who slept last year in St. Bartholomew's Hospital, intends to sleep this year at the Cock and Bottle in Little-Britain."'
Having since inquired into the matter of fact, I find that the above-mentioned Nicholas Hart is every year seized with a periodical fit of sleeping, which begins upon the fifth of August, and ends on the eleventh of the same month: That
On the first of that month he grew dull;
On the tenth, about midnight, awaked;
"This account I have extracted out of the journal of this sleeping worthy, as it has been faithfully kept by a gentleman of Lincoln's-inn, who
There are so many passions which hide themselves under it, and so many mischiefs arising from it, that some have gone so far as to say it would have been for the benefit of mankind if it had never been reckoned in the catalogue of virtues. It is certain, where it is once laudable and prudential, it is a hundred times criminal and erroneous: nor can it be otherwise, if we consider that it operates with equal violence in all religions, however opposite they may be to one another, and in all the subdivisions of each religion in particular.
Many a good man may have a natural rancor and malice in his heart, which has been in some measure quelled and subdued by religion: but if it finds pretense of breaking out, which does not seem to him inconsistent with the duties of a Christian, it throws off all restraint, and rages in full fury. Zeal is, therefore, a great ease to a malicious man, by making him believe he does God service, while he is gratifying the bent of a perverse, revengeful temper. For this reason we find, that most of the massacres and devastations which have been in the world, have taken their rise from a furious pretended zeal.
We are told by some of the Jewish rabbins, that the first murder was occasioned by a religious controversy; and if we had the whole history of zeal from the days of Cain to our own times, we should see it filled with so many scenes of slaughter and bloodshed, as would make a wise man very careful how he suffers himself to be actuated by such a principle when it only regards matters of opinion and speculation.
I love to see a man zealous in a good matter, and especially when his zeal shows itself for advancing morality, and promoting the happiness of mankind. But when I find the instruments he works with are racks and gibbets, galleys and dungeons: when he imprisons men's persons, confiscates their estates, ruins their families, and burns the body to save the soul, I cannot stick to pronounce of such a one, that (whatever he may think of his faith and religion), his faith is vain, and his religion unprofitable.
I would have every zealous man examine his heart thoroughly, and, I believe, he will often fnd, that what he calls a zeal for his religion, is either pride, interest, or ill-nature. A man who After having treated of these false zealots in differs from another in opinion, sets himself religion, I cannot forbear mentioning a monstrous above him in his own judgment, and in several species of men, who one would not think had any particulars pretends to be the wiser person. This existence in nature, were they not to be met with is a great provocation to the proud man, and in ordinary conversation-I mean the zealots in gives a very keen edge to what he calls his zeal. atheism. One would fancy that these men, though And that this is the case very often, we may ob- they fall short, in every other respect, of those serve from the behavior of some of the most zeal-who make a profesion of religion, would at least ons for orthodoxy, who have often great friend-outshine them in this particular, and be exempt ships and intimacies with vicious, immoral men, from that single fault which seems to grow out provided they do but agree with them in the same of the imprudent fervors of religion. But so it scheme of belief. The reason is, because the is, that infidelity is propagated with as much vicious believer gives the precedency to the vir- fierceness and contention, wrath and indignation, tuous man, and allows the good Christian to be as if the safety of mankind depended upon it. the worthier person, at the same time that he There is something so ridiculous and perverse in cannot come up to his perfection. This we find this kind of zealots, that one does not know how exemplified in that trite passage which we see to set them out in their proper colors. They are quoted in almost every system of ethics, though a sort of gamesters who are eternally upon the "pon another occasion: fret, though they play for nothing. They are perpetually teasing their friends to come over to them, though at the same time they allow that neither of them shall get anything by the bargain. In short, the zeal of spreading atheism is, if possible, more absurd than atheism itself.
-Video meliora proboque, Deteriora sequorOVID. Met,, vii, 20. I see the right, and I approve it too; Condemn the wrong, and yet the wrong pursue.-TATE. On the contrary, it is certain, if our zeal were true and genuine, we should be much more angry with a sinner than a heretic; since there are several cases which may excuse the latter before his great Judge, but none which can excuse the
Since I have mentioned this unaccountable zeal
Interest is likewise a great inflamer and sets a man on persecution under the color of zeal. For this reason we find none are so forward to promote the true worship by fire and sword, as those who find their present account in it. But I shall extend the word interest to a larger meaning than what is generally given it, as it relates to our piritual safety and welfare, as well as to our temporal. A man is glad to gain numbers on his side, as they serve to strengthen him in his private opinions. Every proselyte is like a new argument for the establishment of his faith. It makes him believe that his principles carry conviction with them, and are the more likely to be true, when he finds they are conformable to the reason of others, as well as to his own. And that this temper of mind deludes a man very ften into an opinion of his zeal, may appear from the common behavior of the atheist, who maintains and spreads his opinions with as much beat as those who believe they do it only out of a passion for God's glory.
which appears in atheists and infidels, I must further observe, that they are likewise in a most particular manner possessed with the spirit of bigotry. They are wedded to opinions full of contradiction and impossibility, and at the same time look upon the smallest difficulty in an article of faith as a sufficient reason for rejecting it. Notions that fall in with the common reason of mankind, that are conformable to the sense of all ages, and all nations, not to mention their tendency for promoting the happiness of societies, or of particular persons, are exploded as errors and prejudices; and schemes erected in their stead that are altogether monstrous and irrational, and require the most extravagant credulity to embrace them. I would fain ask one of these bigoted infidels, supposing all the great points of atheism, as the casual or eternal formation of the world, the materiality of a thinking substance, the mortality of the soul, the fortuitous organization of the body, the motions and gravitation of matter, with the like particulars, were laid together and formed into a kind of creed, according to the opinions of the most celebrated atheists; I say, supposing such a creed as this were formed, and imposed upon any one people in the world, whether it would not require an infinitely greater Ill-nature is another dreadful imitator of zeal.-measure of faith, than any set of articles which