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woven with great beauty into the body of the fable. Of this kind is that paffage in the prefent book, where defcribing Sin and Death as marching though the works of Nature, he adds,
-Behind her Death
Clofe following pace for pace, not mounted yet On his pale horfe
Which alludes to that paffage in Scripture fo won derfully poetical, and terrifying to the imagination. And I looked, and behold a pale horfe, ‹ and his name that fat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him: and power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with fword, and with hunger, and with fickness, and with the beafts of the carth.' Under this first head of celeftial perfons we muft likewife take notice of the command which the angels received, to produce the feveral changes in nature, and fully the beauty of the creation. Acsordingly they are reprefented as infecting the ftars and planets with malignant influences, weakening the light of the fun, bringing down the winter into the milder regions of nature, planting winds and ftorms in feveral quarters of the sky, ftoring the clouds with thunder, and in fhort, perverting the whole frame of the univerfe to the condition of its criminal inhabitants. As this is a noble incident in the poem, the following lines, in which we fee the angels heaving up the earth, and placing it in a different pofture to the fun from what it had before the fall of man, is conceived with that fublime imagination which was fo peculiar to this great author.
Some fay he bid his angels turn afcance
We are in the fecond place to confider the infernal agents under the view which Milton has given us of them in this book. It is obferved by thofe who would fet forth the greatnefs of Virgil's plan, that he conducts his reader through all the parts of the earth which were difcovered in his time. Afia, Africa, and Europe are the feveral fcenes of his fable. The plan of Milton's poem is of an infinitely greater extent, and fills the mind with many more aftonishing circumstances, Satan having furrounded the earth feven times, departs at length from Paradife. We then fee him fteering his courfe among the conftellations, and after having traverfed the whole creation, purfuing his voyage through the chaos, and entering into his own infernal dominions.
His first appearance in the affembly of fallen angels, is worked up with circumftances which give a delightful furprife to the reader: but there is no incident in the whole which does this poem more than the transformation of the whole au
dience, that follows the account their reader gives them of his expedition. The gradual change of Satan himself is defcribed after Ovid's manner, and may vie with any of thofe celebrated transformations which are looked upon as the most beautiful parts in that poet's works. Milton never fails of improving his own hints, and bestowing his last finishing touches to every incident which is admitted into his poem. The unexpected blifs which arifes in this epifode, the dimenfions and bulk of Satan fo much fuperior to thofe of the internal fpirits who lay under the fame transfortion, with the annual change which they are
fuppofed to fuffer, are inftances of this kind. The beauty of the diction very remarkable in this whole epifode, as I have obferved in the fixth paper of thefe remarks, the great judgment with which it was contrived,
The parts of Adam and Eve, or the human perfons, come next under our confideration. Milton's art is no where more fhewn than in his conducting the parts of thefe our first parents. The reprefentation he gives of them, without falfifying the story, is wonderfully contrived to influence the reader with pity and compaffion towards them. Though Adam involves the whole fpecies in mifery, his crime proceeds from a weakness which every man is inclined to pardon and commiferate, as it seems rather a frailty of human nature, than of the perfon who offended. Every one is apt to excufe a fault which he himself might have fallen into. It was the excefs of love for Eve that ruined Adam and his pofterity. I need not add, that the author is juftified in this particular by many of the fathers, and the inoft orthodox writers. Milton has by this means filled a great part of his poem with that kind of writing which the French crities call the tender, and which is in a particular manner engaging to all forts of readers.
Adam and Eve, in the book we are now confidering, are likewife drawn with fuck fentiments as do not only intereft the reader in their afflic tions, but raife in him the most melting paffions of humanity and commiferation. When Adam fees the feveral changes of nature produced about him, he appears in a diforder of mind fuitable to one who had forfeited both his innocence and his happiness; he is filled with horror, remorse, defpair; in the anguish of his heart he expoftulates with his Creator for having given him an unasked existence.
Did I request thee, Maker, from my clay
To mould me man? Did I folicit thee
From darkness to promote me or here place
He immediately after recovers from his pre fumption, owns his doom to be juft, and begs that the death which is threatened him may be inflicted on him.
The part of Eve in this book is no lefs paffionate, and apt to fway the reader in her favour. She is reprefented with great tenderness as approaching Adam, but is fpurned from him with a fpirit of upbraiding and indignation, conformable to the nature of man, whole paffions had now gained the dominion over him, The following paffage wherein the is defcribed as renewing her addreffes to him, with the whole fpeech that follows it have fomething in them exquifitely moving and pathetic : He added not, and from her turn'd: but Eve Not fo repuls'd, with tears that ceas'd not flowing, And treffes all diforder'd, at his feet Fell humble; and embracing them beforght His peace, and thus proceeded in her plaint.
refolution to bear them, and fubmit to the difpenfations of Providence. Our author has therefore with great delicacy, reprefented Eve as entertaining this thought, and Adam as difapproving it.
We are, in the last place; to confider the imagi nary perfons, or Death and Sin, who act a large part in this book. Such beautiful extended allegories are certainly fome of the finest compofitions of genius; but as I have before obferved, are not agreeable to the nature of an heroic poem. This of Sin and Death is very exquifite in its kind, if not confidered as a part of fuch a work. truths contained in it are fo clear and open, that I fhall not lofe time in explaining them; but fhall only obferve, that a reader who knows the ftrength of the English tongue, will be amazed to think how the poet could find fuch apt words and phrafos to defcribe the actions of thofe two imaginary perexhibited as forming a bridge over the Chaos; a fons, and particularly in that part where Death is work fuitable to the genius of Milton.
Adam's reconcilement to her is worked up in the fame spirit of tenderness. Eve afterwards propofes to her husband, in the blindnets of her defpair, that to prevent their guilt from defcending upon pofterity, they thould live childless; or, if that could not be done, they fhould feek their own deaths by violent methods. As thofe fentiments naturally engage the reader to regard the mother of mankind with more than ordinary commiferation, they likewife contain a very fine moThe refolution of dying to end our miferies, does not fhew fuck a degree of magnanimity as a
Since the fubject I am upon gives me an oppor tunity of fpeaking more at large of fuch thadowy and imaginary perfons as may be introduced into heroic poems, I thall beg leave to explain myself in a matter which is curious in its kind, and which none of the critics have treated of. It is certain Homer and Virgil are full of imaginary perfons, who are very beautiful in poetry when they are juft fhewn without being engaged in any feries of action. Homer indeed reprefents Sleep as a perfon, and afcribes a fhort part to him in his Iliad; but we must confider, that though we now regard fuch a perfon as entirely shadowy and unfubftantial, the heathens made ftatues of him, placed him in their temples, and looked upon him as a real deity. When Homer makes ufe of other fuch allegorical perfons, it is only in short expreffions, which convey an ordinary thought to the mind in the most pleafing manner, and may rather be looked upon as poetical phrafes, than allegorical defcriptions. Inflead of telling us that men naturally fly when they are terrified, he introduces the perfons of Flight and Fear, who, he tells us, are infeparable companions. Instead of faying have received his recompence, he tells us, that that the time was come when Apollo ought to the Hours brought him his reward. Inftead of deferibing the effects which Minerva's gis produced in battle, he tells us that the brims of it were encompaffed by Terror, Riot, Difcord, Fury, Purfuit, Masacre, and Death. In the fame gure of fpeaking, he reprefents Victory as following Diomedes; Difcord as the mother of funerals and mourning; Venus as dreffed by the Graces; Bellona as wearing terror and confternation like a garment. I might give feveral other inftances out of Homer, as well as a great many out of Virg. Milton has likewife very often made ufe of the fame way of fpeaking, as where he tells us, that victory fat on the right hand of the Meffiah, when he marched forth against the rebel angels; that at the rifing of the fun, the Hours unbarred the gates of light; that Difcord was the daughter of Sin. Of the fame nature are thofe expreffions where defcribing the finging of the nightingale, he adds, Silence was pleased;' and and upon the Meffiah's bidding peace to the chaos, Confufion heard his voice.' I might add innumerable inftances of our poet's writing in this beautiful figure. It is plain that thefe I have mentioned, in which perfons of an imaginary nature are introduced, are fuck fhort allegories as are not defigned
defigned to be taken in the literal fenfe, but only to convey particular circumftances to the reader, after an unusual and entertaining manner. But when fuch perfons are introduced as principal actors, and engaged in a series of adventures, they take too much upon them, and are by no means proper for an heroic poem, which ought to appear credible in its principal parts. I cannot forbear therefore thinking that Sin and Death are as improper agents in a work of this nature, as Strength and Neceffity in one of the tragedies of Æfchylus, who reprefented thofe two perfons nailing down Prometheus to a rock, for which he has been justly cenfured by the greatest critics. I do not know any imaginary perfon made ufe of in a more fublime manner of thinking than that in one of the prophets, who, defcribing God as defcending from Heaven and vifiting the fins of mankind, adds that dreadful circumftance, Before him went the Peftilence.' It is certain this imaginary perfon might have been defcribed in all her purple fpots. The Fever might have marched before her, Pain might have ftood at her right hand, Phrenzy on her left, and Death in her rear. She might have been introduced as gliding down from the tail of a comet, or darted upon the earth in a flash of lightning: he might have tainted the atmosphere with her breath; the very glaring of her eyes might have scattered infection, But I believe every reader will think, that in fuch fublime writings the mentioning of her, as it is done in Scripture, has fomething in it more juft, as well as great, than all that the most fanciful poet could have bestowed upon her in the richness of his imagination. L
vals of foft notes to fongs of love and wine, fufpended the cares of human life, and made a festival of mutual kindness. Such parties of pleasure as these, and the reports of the agreeable paffages in their jollities, have in all ages awakened the dull part of mankind to pretend to mirth and good humour, without capacity for fuch entertainments; for if I may be allowed to say so, there are an hundred men fit for any employment, to one who is capable of paffing a night in company of the first tafte, without shocking any member of the fociety, over-rating his own part of the converfation, but equally receiving and contributing to the pleasure of the whole company. When one confiders fuch collections of companions in past times, and fuch as one might name in the prefent age, with how much spleen must a man needs reflect upon the awkward gaiety of thofe who affect the frolic with an ill grace? I have a letter from a correfpondent of mine, who defires me to admonith all loud, mischievous, airy, dull companions, that they are mistaken in what they call a frolic. Irregularity in itself is not what creates pleasure and mirth; but to fee a man who knows what rule and decency are, defcend from them agreeably in our company, is what denominates him a pleasant companion. Inftead of that, you find many whofe mirth confises only in doing things which do not become them, with a fecret confcioufnefs that all the world knows they know better: to this is always added fomething mifchievous to themselves or others. I have heard of fome very merry fellows among whom the frolic was started, and paffed by a great majority, that every man should immediately draw a tooth; after which they have gone in a body and fimoaked a cobler. The fame company at another night has each man burned his cravat: and one perhaps, whofe eftate would bear it, has thrown a long wig and laced hat into the fame fire. Thus they have jefted themselves ftark naked, and ran into the streets, and frightened women very fuccefsfully. There is no inhabitant of any standing in Covent Garden, but can tell you an hundred good humours, where people have come off with little bloodshed, and yet fcoured all the witty hours of the night. I know a gentleman that has feveral wounds in the head by watchpoles, and has been thrice run through the body to carry on a good jeft: he is very old for a man of fo much good humour; but to this day he is feldom, but he has occafion to be valiant at the fame time. But by the favour of these gentlemen, I am humbly of opinion, that a man may be a very witty man, and never offend one statute of this kingdom, not excepting even that of ftabbing.
The writers of plays have what they call unity of time and place to give a juftness to their reprefentation; and it would not be amifs if all who pretend to be companions, would confine their actions to the place of meeting for a frolic carried farther may be better performed by other animals than men. It is not to rid much ground, or do much mischief, that should denominate a pleafant fellow; but that is truly frolic which is the play of the mind, and confifts of various and unforced fallies of imagination. Feftivity of fpirit is a very uncommon talent, and muft proceed from an affemblage of agreeable qualities in the fame perfon. There are fome few whom I think pe. culiarly happy in it; but it is a talent one cannot name in a man, especially when one confiders G that
MONDAY, APRIL 21.
HOR. Od. 12. l. 4, v. ult. 'Tis wifdom's part fometimes to play the fool. HARLES Lilly attended me the other day, and made me a prefent of a large fheet of paper, on which is delineated a pavement in Mofaic work, lately difcovered at Stunsfield near Woodstock. A perfon who has fo much the gift of fpeech as Mr. Lilly, and can carry on a difcourfe without reply, had great opportunity on that occafion to expatiate upon fo fine a piece of antiquity. Among other things, I remember he gave ine his opinion, which he drew from the ornaments of the work, that this was the floor of a room dedicated to mirth and concord. Viewing this work, made my fancy run over the many gay expreffions, I have read in ancient authors, which contained invitations to lay afide care and anxiety, and give a loofe to that pleafing forgetfulness wherein men put off their characters of business, and enjoy their very felves. Thefe hours were generally paffed in rooms adorned for that purpofe, and fet out in fuch a manner, as the objects all around the company gladdened their hearts; which, joined to the chearful looks of well-chofen and agreeable friends, gave new vigour to the airy, produced the latent fire of the modeft, and gave grace to the flow humour of the referved. A judicious mixture of fuch company, crowned with chaplets of flowers, and the whole apartment glittering with gay lights, cheared with a profufion of roses, artificial falls of water, and inter
that it is never very graceful but where it is re-
No. 359. TUESDAY, APRIL 22.
by the way we all knew that he was turned of threefcore). You may eafily guefs, continued Will, that I have not lived fo long in the world without having had fome thoughts of fettling in it, as the phrafe is. To tell you truly, I have feveral times tried my fortune that way, though I cannot much boaft of my fuccefs.
Will Honeycomb, who looks upon love as his particular province, interrupting our friend with a janty laugh, I thought, knight, faid he, thou hadft lived long enough in the world, not to pin thy happiness upon one that is a woman and a widow. I think that without vanity I may pretend to know as much of the female world as any man in Great Britain, though the chief of my knowledge confifts in this, that they are not to be known, Will immediately, with his ufual fluency, rambled into an account of his own amours. 1 am now, fays he, upon the verge of fifty (though
I made my first addreffes to a young lady in the country; but when I thought things were pretty well drawing to a conclufion, her father happening to hear that I had formerly boarded with a furgeon, the old Put forbid me his houfe, and within a fornight after married his daughter to a fox-hunter in the neighbourhood.
I made my next application to a widow, and attacked her fo brifkly, that I thought myself within a fortnight of her. As I waited upon her one morning, he told me, that the intended to keep her ready money and jointure in her own hand, and defired me to call upon her attorney in Lion's inn, who would adjust with me what it was proper for me to add to it. I was fo rebuffed by this overture, that I never enquired either for her or her attorney afterwards.
A few months after I addreffed myself to a young lady, who was an only daughter, and of a good family; I danced with her at feveral balls, fqueezed her by the hand, faid foft things to her, and in fhort made no doubt of her heart; and though my fortune was not equal to hers, I was in hopes that her fond father would not deny her the man she had fixed her affections upon. But as I went one day to the house, in order to break the matter to him, I found the whole family in confufion, and heard to my unfpeakable furprise, that Mifs Jenny was that very morning run away with the butler.
S we were at the club last night, I obferved that my old friend Sir Roger, contrary to his ufual cuftom, fat very filent, and instead of minding what was faid, by the company, was whistling to himself in a very thoughtful mood, and playing with a cork. I jogged Sir Andrew Freeport who fat between us; and as we were both obferving him, we faw the knight thake his head, and heard him fay to himfelf, A foolish woman! I cannot believe it.' Sir Andrew gave him a gentle pat upon the fhoulder, and offered to lay him a bottle of wine that he was thinking of the widow. My old friend started, and recovering out of his brown ftudy, told Sir Andrew that once in his life he had been in the right. In short, after fome little hesitation Sir Roger told us in the fulness of his heart, that he had just received a letter from his fteward, which acquainted him that his old rival and antagonist in the country, Sir David Dundrum, had been making a visit to the widow. However, fays Sir Roger, I can ne ver think that fhe will have a man that is half a year older than I am, and a noted republican into the bargain.
lofs to this day how I came to mifs her, for the had I then courted a fecond widow, and am at a often commended my person and behaviour. Her had faid she never saw a gentleman with such a maid indeed told me one day, that her mistress fpindle pair of legs as Mr. Honeycomb.
After this I laid feige to four heireffes fuccef
fively, and being a handfome young dog in those days, quickly made a breach in their hearts; but I do not know how it came to pafs, though I feldom failed of getting the daughter's confent, I could never in my life get the old people on my
unfaccefsful attempts, particularly of one which I could give you an account of a thousand other
made fome years fince upon an old woman,' lours, if her relations had not come pouring in to whom I had certainly borne away with flying coher affiftance from all parts of England; nay I believe I fhould have got her at last, had not the been carried off by a hard froft.
turned from Sir Roger, and applying himself to me, As Will's tranfitions are extremely quick, he confidered laft Saturday, which deferved to be told me there was a paffage in the book I had Milton, read the following lines, which are part writ in letters of gold and taking out a pocket of one of Adam's fpeeches to Eve after the fall.
Mankind? this mifchief had not then befall'n,
Sir Roger liftened to this paffage with great attention, and defiring Mr. Honeycomb to fold down a leaf at the place, and lend him his book, the knight put it up in his pocket, and told us that he would read over those verses again before he went to bed.
No 360. WEDNESDAY, APRIL 23.
-De paupertate tacentes Plus pofcente ferent.
HERE is an evil under the fun which has not yet come within your speculation, and is, the cenfure, difesteem, and contempt which fome young fellows meet with from particular perfons, for the reasonable methods they take to avoid them in general. This is by appearing in a better drefs, than may feem to a relation regularly confiftent with a fmall for'tune; and therefore may occafion a judgment of a fuitable extravagance in other particulars: but the disadvantage with which the man of narrow circumftances acts and fpeaks, is fo feelingly fet forth in a little book called The Chriftian Hero, that the appearing to be otherwife is not only pardonable but neceffary. Every one knows the hurry of conclufions that are made in contempt of a person that appears to be calamitous, which makes it very excufable to prepare one's felf for the company of thofe that are of a fuperior quality and fortune, by appearing to be in a better condition than one is, fo far as fuch appearance shall not make us really of worse.
It is a juftice due to the character of one " who fuffers hard reflections from any particular perfon upon this account, that fuch perfons would enquire into his manner of spending his time'; of which, though no further information can be had than that he remains fo many hours in his chamber, yet if this is cleared, to ima• gine that a reasonable creature wrung with a
narrow fortune does not make the beft ufe of 'this retirement, would be a conclufion ex'tremely uncharitable. From what has, or will
be faid, I hope no confequence can be extorted, implying, that I would have any young fellow 'fpend more time than the common leifure which his ftudies require, or more money than his fortune or allowance may admit of, in the purfuit of an acquaintance with his betters: for as to his time, the grofs of that ought to be facred to more fubftantial acquifitions; for ' each irrevocable moment of which he ought 'to believe he ftands religiously accountabic. And as to his drefs, I fhali engage myself no further than in the modeft defence of two plain fuits a year for being perfectly satisfied in Eutrapelus's contrivance of making a Mohoc of a man, by prefenting him with laced and ' embroidered fuits, I would by no means be 'thought to controvert the conceit, by infinuat
HOR. Epift. 17. l. 1. v. 43. The man that's filent, nor proclaims his want, Gets more than him that makes a lod complaint. CREECH. HAVE nothing to do with the bufinefs of this day, any further than affixing the piece of Latin on the head of my paper; which I think a motto not unsuitable, fince if filence of our poverty is a recommendation, ftill more commendable is his modesty who conceals it by a decent drefs.
ing the advantages of foppery. It is an affertion which admits of much proof, that a 'ftranger of tolerable fenfe, dreffed like a ' gentleman, will be better received by thofe of quality above him, than one of much better parts, whofe drefs is regulated by the rigid notions of frugality. A man's appearance falls within the cenfure of every one that fees him; his parts and learning very few are judges of; ' and even upon these few, they cannot at first 'be well intruded; for policy and good breeding 'will counsel him to be referved among strangers,
and to fupport himfelf only by the common 'fpirit of converfation. Indeed among the injudicious, the words delicacy, idiom, fine images, ftructure of periods, genius, fire, and the reft, made ufe of with a frugal and 'comely gravity, will maintain the figure of ' immense reading, and the depth of criticism.
All gentlemen of fortune, at least the young ' and middle-aged, are apt to pride themselves a little too much upon their drefs, and confequently to value others in fome meafure upon the fame confideration. With what confufion is a man of figure obliged to return the civilities of the hat to a perfon whofe air and attire hardly intitle him to it? for whom nevertheless the other has a particular efteem, though he is afhamed to have it challenged in fo public a manner. It must be allowed, that any young fellow that affects to drefs and appear genteely, might with artificial management, fave ten pounds a year; as instead of fine holland he 'might mourn in fackcloth, and in other parti'culars be proportionably shabby: but of what fervice would this fum be to avert any misfortune, whilft it would leave him deferted by the little good acquaintance he has, and prevent his gaining any other? As the appearance of eafy fortune is neceffary towards making one, I do not know but it might be of advantage fometimes to throw into one's difcourfe certain exclamations about Bank Stock, and to fhew a marvellous furprise upon its fall, as well as the most affected triumph upon its rife, The ve neration and refpect which the practice of all ages has preferved to appearances, without 'doubt fuggefted to our tradesmen that wife and politic cuftom, to apply and recommend them, felves to the public by all those decorations up, on their fign-posts and houses, which the most • eminent hands in the neighbourhood can furnish them with. What can be more attractive to a Ga man