« VorigeDoorgaan »
at each other's appearance, flushed with pleasure at the report of a disadvantage, and their countenances withered upon instances of applause. The decencies to which women are obliged, made these virgins stifle their resentment so far as not to break into open violences, while they equally suffered the torments of a regulated anger. Their mothers, as it is usual, engaged in the quarrel, and supported the several pretensions of the daughters with all that ill-chosen sort of expense which is common with people of plentiful fortunes and mean taste. girls preceded their parents like Queens of May, in all the gaudy colours imaginable, on every Sunday to church, and were exposed to the examination of the audience for superiority of beauty.
During this constant struggle it happened that Phillis one day at public prayers smote the heart of a gay West Indian, who appeared in all the colours which can affect an eye that could not distinguish between being fine and tawdry. This American in a Summer Island' suit was too shining and too gay to be resisted by Phillis, and too intent upon her charms to be diverted by any of the laboured attractions of Brunetta. Soon after, Brunetta had the mortification to see her rival disposed of in a wealthy marriage, while she was only addressed to in a manner that showed she was the admiration of all men, but the choice of none. Phillis was carried to the habitation of her spouse in Barbados. Brunetta had the ill nature to inquire for her by every opportunity, and had the misfortune to hear of her being attended by numerous slaves, fanned into slumbers by successive bands of them, and car
1 Strictly speaking, the Summer Islands is another name for the Bermudas. Here the phrase appears to mean only West Indian.
ried from place to place in all the pomp of barbarous magnificence. Brunetta could not endure these repeated advices, but employed all her arts and charms in laying baits for any of condition of the same island, out of a mere ambition to confront her once more before she died. She at last succeeded in her design, and was taken to wife by a gentleman whose estate was contiguous to that of her enemy's husband. It would be endless to enumerate the many occasions on which these irreconcilable beauties laboured to excel each other; but in process of time it happened that a ship put into the island consigned to a friend of Phillis, who had directions to give her the refusal of all goods for apparel before Brunetta could be alarmed1 of their arrival. He did so, and Phillis was dressed in a few days in a brocade more gorgeous and costly than had ever before appeared in that latitude. Brunetta languished at the sight, and could by no means come up to the bravery of her antagonist. She communicated her anguish of mind to a faithful friend, who by an interest in the wife of Phillis' merchant procured a remnant of the same silk for Brunetta. Phillis took pains to appear in all public places where she was sure to meet Brunetta; Brunetta was now prepared for the insult, and came to a public ball in a plain black silk mantua,3 at1 Notified, informed. 2 Display, magnificence. 3 The mantua or manteau was a loose gown. Gay (Trivia,' i. 100) says
'And a long trailing manteau sweeps the ground.' Swift made a clever pun on this word (Delany's Observations on Lord Orrery's Remarks, &c.,' 212-3): Being in a company where a lady, whisking about her long train (long trains were then in fashion), swept down a fine fiddle and broke it, Swift cried out, "Mantua ve misera nimium vicina Cremona (Dobson).
tended by a beautiful negro girl in a petticoat of the same brocade with which Phillis was attired. This drew the attention of the whole company; upon which the unhappy Phillis swooned away, and was immediately conveyed to her house. As soon as she came to herself she fled from her husband's house, went on board a ship in the road, and is now landed in inconsolable despair at Plymouth.
After the above melancholy narration, it may perhaps be a relief to the reader to peruse the following expostulation :
'To Mr. SPECTATOR.
• The Just Remonstrance of affronted THAT. "THOUGH I deny not the petition of Mr. Who and Which, yet you should not suffer them. to be rude and to call honest people names, for that bears very hard on some of those rules of decency which you are justly famous for establishing. They may find fault, and correct speeches in the Senate and at the Bar; but let them try to get themselves so often and with so much eloquence repeated in a sentence, as a great orator doth frequently introduce me.
My lords," says he, with humble submission, "That that I say is this: that, that that that gentleman has advanced is not that that he should have
3 See No. 78.
proved to your lordships." Let these two questionary petitioners try to do thus with their Whos and their Whiches.
'What great advantage was I of to Mr. Dryden in his "Indian Emperor,"
You force me still to answer you in That,
to furnish out a rhyme to Morat? And what a poor figure would Mr. Bayes have made without his Egad and all that "! How can a judicious man distinguish one thing from another without saying "This here," or "That there"? That there"? And how can a sober man, without using the expletives of oaths (in which indeed the rakes and bullies have a great advantage over others), make a discourse of any tolerable length without "That is;" and if he be a very grave man indeed, without "That is to say"? And how instructive as well as entertaining are those usual expressions in the mouths of great men, "Such things as that," and "The like of that."
'I am not against reforming the corruptions of speech you mention, and own there are proper seasons for the introduction of other words besides That; but I scorn as much to supply the place
1 It is in Morat appears.
Aureng-Zebe,' not The Indian Emperor,' that
Morat, Morat, Morat! You love the name
2 Thus, in Act i. of The Rehearsal,' Bayes says: A sort of envious persons that... think to build their fame by calumniating of persons that, egad, to my knowledge, of all persons in the world. are, in nature, the persons that do as much despise all that, as—a— In fine, I'll say no more of 'em.'
of a Who or a Which at every turn, as they are unequal always to fill mine; and I expect good language and civil treatment, and hope to receive it for the future: That, that I shall only add is, that I am, Yours,
1 Another petition from That,' with a letter from What,' will bs found in Lillie's Original and Genuine Letters sent to the Tatler and Spectator,' i. 308-311.
THE END OF THE FIRST VOLUME
Printed by BALLANTYNE, HANSON & Co.