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wit, which he might retail as his own.
For the Monthly Magazine.
SUPERSTITION OF JUSTUS LIPSIUS.
A fhrine and image had been there confecrated to the Holy Virgin, by a pious countess of Brabant. Many votive offerings had been afterwards added. Lipfius, from his very infancy a devout votary of the Virgin, in preference to all the other faints, had often, as he relates, experienced her favour upon his ftudies; had become a member of a fociety of which the was the facred patronefs; was excited by motives of pious veneration and gratitude, to visit her famous fhrine at Halle. While he offered his devotions before the facred fhrine, he felt an inward emotion of extraordinary joy and piety, which prompted him to vow to the virgin, to compose a work in her praife. An ode, the compofition of that very time, recorded his yow. He fulfilled it, by writing, at his firft fubfequent leifure, a panegyrical account of the origin of the fhrine and chapel of Halle, of the honours which had been devoutly paid to them, of the miracles which the Virgin had graciously per
formed at the request of perfons ftipulating votive offerings to be, in return, dedieated at her fhrine at Halle. The miracles which he celebrates, are fuch as thefe: the mutilation of a foldier's nose, who, coming on to the affault of the town of Halle in a fiege, had impioufly threatened to cut off the nofe from the image of the Virgin; the reftoration of a loft hawk, at the prayer of the falconer by whom it had been loft, and whom his cruel lord was about to hang for the lofs; the prefervation of a man from perifhing by a flood that fuddenly filled his houfe,-who, by the aid of the Virgin, had been enabled to climb among the rafters, above the reach of the waters, while his wife and children were drowned below; the deliverance of an innocent perfon that had been feized by mistake, as an accomplice with thieves; the prefervation of a 'taylor from dying by his needle, which he had unwittingly fwallowed; the faving of a thievith foldier from death on the gallows, by the breaking of the rope on which he was fufpended; and others of a fimilar caft and complexion. The narrative of Lipfius is written in a style of admirably elegant Latinity. Here and there he rifes into poetry, and imitates with great felicity the Iambics of Phædrus: he evidently wrote it con amore. He concludes the whole with a pious prayer, and with the formal confecration of a filver pen, to be, in his name, fufpended as a votive offering, before the image of the Virgin, in the temple,
Lipfius, thus celebrating as miracles, merely natural and ordinary incidents in life; Socrates, amid the agonics of expiration, anxiously providing a facrifice to Efculapius; Julian, from the heights of philofophy, and of political wifdom, proftrating himfelf before Jupiter, Apollo, and Venus; Pafcal, for the fake of the most abject afcetic fuperftition, deferting the illuftrious career of fcience, literature, and active virtue; are among thofe intances of mingled weakness and excellence, in which the imperfection of humanity is the moft ftrikingly confpicuous; and which we cannot contemplate without being moved to figh over the character of man, and with the poet to regard him as
"The glory, jeft, and riddle of the world." POPE. To the Editor of the Monthly Magazine.
Tvoltaice and his bookfeller, as given HE whole of the ftory, relative to in the " Extracts from the Port-felio of a Man of Letters," must be unintelligible to the greater part of your readers, further
than its being intended to throw fome dirt on Voltaire. I will tell you this truth, because I venerate truth, and because it involves a very extraordinary circumstance in the hiftory of princes.
In the tender intercourfe of letters between the Prince of Pruffia, in 1739 (his father, the king, being then alive), the prince writes to Voltaire, Auguft 15th, 1739-"It has been told me, that Machiavel's defeat may be found in the political notes of Amelot de la Houffaie, and in the tranflation of Gordon. I have feen both thefe works-judicious and excellent in their kind, and rejoiced to find that my plan is totally different from theirs you fhall be the first to fee it when I finish it, but the public never, unless you shall recommend it: I have worked as hard as the interruptions of a journey will admit." On the 6th of November, the prince writes from Remersberg, that the "AntiMachiavel" is complete, and fends the first five chapters to Voltaire, together with fome powders proper for his cholics: "I quit you to go on with polishing my work, and blacken the infamous and villainous character of the advocate for vice.
As you speak of my feeble productions, neglecting your own immortal works, I ought to give you an account of my ftudies; the approbation you bestow on the first five chapters, encourages me to finish as quickly as I can; if I had leifure you fhould have had it all before now, with additions and corrections, but interruptions prevent me.
On the 23d of Feb. 1740, Voltaire fends the prince fome ftrictures on his manner of writing, and a preface. "I am continually expecting your last orders concerning Machiavel; I fuppofe you will order La Houffaie's tranflation to be printed by the fide of your refutation. *The more you refute Machiavel by your conduct, the more you will be difpofed to publish the antidote you have prepared." On the 6th of June, 1740, he writes from Charlottenberg as king, his father being dead, a very fenfible and philofophi-, cal letter, which does him great honour.
In June 1740, Voltaire writes" If you did but know, Sire, how much your work is above that of Machiavel, were it only for ftyle, you would not have the cruelty to fupprefs it."
* It must be noted that this reflection burit from Voltaire's heart, then fwelling with the pride of thinking himself the friend of a prince, another Titus or Antoninus, the friendly and virtuous incenfe, foon wore the feverity of
Hague, 20th July, 1740.
Voltaire writes-"The firft thing I did after coming here, was to go to the most cunning and impudent bookfellers in this country, who had undertaken the thing in queftion; I repeat it again to your majefty, that I had not left one word in the manufcript that any perfon in Europe could complain of; but in fpite of all that, as your majefty has it at heart to withdraw the edition, I had no longer any other will or defire.
"I had this impudent rafcal, John Vanduren, founded by a man I fent, to procure, under plaufible pretext, fome fheets of the manufcript, which was not half printed, for I knew that my Dutchman would not liften to any proposition.
"I arrived in good time; the rascal had already refused to give up even one page of the manufcript: I fent for him, and founded him, and turned him about in every fenfe: he gave me to understand, that being miafter of the manufcript, 'he never would give it up on any advantage whatever, that he had began the impreffion and would finish it.
"When I faw that I had to do with a Dutchman, who made an improper use of the liberty of his country, and with a bookfeller, who pushed his right of perfecuting authors to excefs, not daring to truft any one with my fecret, nor implore the help of authority, I remembered what your majefty fays in one of the chapters of the "Anti-Machiavel," that it is right to employ decent fineffe in the way of negotiation. I told John Vanduren, then, that I came only to correct fome pages of the manufcript; "With all my heart, Sir," fays he, "if you will come into my houfe, I will truft you generously leaf by leaf; you fhall correct it as you like beft, hut up in my chamber, in the prefence of my family and fervants.
"I accepted his cordial offer,and went to his house and corrected fome leaves, which he retook and read them to fee that I did not deceive him; having, by these means, inspired him with lefs miftruft, I returned this day into the fame prifon where he fhut me up as before, and having obtained fix chapters at a time to confront them, I erafed them in fuch a way, and wrote in the interlineations fuch horrible nonienfe, and ridiculous ftuff, that it no longer refembled the original work; this is what may be called blowing up one's ship to prevent being taken by the enemy; I was in despair at the facrifice of fuch a work; but, in fine, I obeyed the king, whom I idolize, and anfwer for it to you that it
was done with all my heart; my rafcal now was confounded and aitonifhed, I hope to-morrow to make a handsome bargain with him, and make him give the whole up, both what is printed and the manufcript, of which I will give an account to your majetty."
By thefe means the "Anti-Machiavel" of the Prince of Pruffia did never appear, which would have taken place if his father had lived a few weeks longer. It is curious to obferve how foon his fituation made him think it unneceffary to clog his purfuits in life, with the moral refutation of this advocate for vice.
Thirty years ago it was common to hear ftories of Voltaire's meannefs, and cheating his book fellers.
The world is naturally averfe To all the truth it fees and hears; But fwallows nonfenfe and a lie, With greedinefs and gluttony. It was faid, that befides his printing in France and Geneva, he fold the copy in Germany, then in Holland, and finally in London; and yet the truth is authenticated fo as to fatisfy the moft incredulous, that he is, perhaps, the only inftance in the wide hiftory of literature, of an author of any note, who never raifed a fhilling by his writings. Mr. Pope created a handfome independance, reputably, by his publications, and if Voltaire had wifhed to have availed himself, fuppofe at three different eras of his life, he might have received many thousands of pounds more for his works than any man that ever lived, which he always refufed to all bookfellers, and other applications.
Poetry and poverty are fo generally allied, that the difficulty to many is to believe that they are ever feparate. Voltaire had a decent income from early time, and was never in diftrefs. When I was in France in 1770, he was reputed worth 40,000l. was hofpitable and generous, and elegantly entertained the first quality in Europe, in feveral houses.
Once the flander was, that he had purloined from the vaft fubfcription he procured for an establishment of Corneille's niece; he had no temptation to a deed fo mean and horrid ;-he got her a hufband, to whom of courfe he rendered a faithful
His plays he generally gave to the players, but often to any young man recommended to him as fond of literature, to help him in his income; all his finall works were difpofed of in the fame way, for he was rich`and liberal, even to his calumniators.
The "Henriade" was published in London by Thiriot, an humble friend, who had the profits.
It is not unaccountable that he was rich, he confeffes that he was a dealer in the funds; whether he began in the time of the regent is not eafy to know, but it is unneceflary to feek further than that he was well with Madame Pompadour, and was fometimes employed in confidential cabals in foreign courts by Louis XV.
No man ever faw his name to give countenance to any publication of his works. B. J.
For the Monthly Magazine. HE following pieces are tranflated TH from a work, entitled," Memoires pour fervir à l'Hiftoire de la Féte des Fous, qui ce faifoit autres Fois dans plufieurs Eglifes, par M. du Tilliot, à Laufanne et à Genéve, quarto, 1741." They relate to a subject which has excited confiderable enquiry among men of literature and antiquarians, and may therefore afford fatisfaction to various perfons who may not have happened to have feen the work from which they are taken. Indeed it appears from many ancient records, that, though during the barbarous ages the dramatic art was funken and degraded to the most vulgar, ignorant, and offenfive buffooneries, it never was entirely loft.
The Feast of Affes; a folemn piece of buffoonery, confifting of a proceffion of the prophets and perfons, facred and profane, who had foretold the coming of Chrift.Balaam rode first on his afs; after him the prophets, Ifaiah, Zachariah, and the holy Elizabeth, John the Baptift, Simeon, the Erythrean Sybil, Virgil, Nebuchadnezzar, with Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and the fiery furnace. Quitting the cloifter, the proceffion entered the church, and ftopped between two rows of people, fuppofed to be one Jews, the other Gentiles, to whom the chanters addreffed themselves. They then called forth the prophets who had mentioned the Meffiah. Questions and anfwers were repeated, confifting of verfes from the old Teftament on this fubje&t; the fiery furnace was exhibited; Nebuchadnezzar made a fpeech; the Sybil afterward did the fame; then came the prophets, and all in chorus fung a mottet, which ended the ceremony.
The feast of Fools; or in fome places called the feaft of innocents; or the feaft of drunken deacons, deans, and priests, is fuppofed to have been in imitation of the faturnalia of the ancients, and of great antiquity.
antiquity. A bishop or archbishop of
his fhoulders, and a pillow on his head, instead of a bonnet, he went and feated himself in the epifcopal chair, affifted at divine fervice and received the customary honours. The fervice over, the almoner called aloud, " Silete, filete, filentium habete:" to which the chorus replied, "Deo gratias." The bishop of fools, after having pronounced the adjutorium, &c. gave his benediction; which was immediately followed by mock indulgences, thus diftributed, with affumed gravity, by his almoner.
"In behalf of the lord bifhop, may God grant you the liver difeafe, with a basket full of pardons, fcurf on your fkin, and an itching beard! His lordship further beftows on you the tooth ache in all plenty, and to his other bounties, adds the gift of a red tail."
We further learn that they had four forts of dances; the dance of the deacons, the dance of the priests, the dance of the clerks, and the dance of the fubdeacons. They fung too, what they called the profe of the afs, or the profe of the fools. They had likewife the profe of the ox. The profe of the afs ftill exifts: it was fung by a double choir; that, at intervals, and by way of fymphony, imitated the braying of an ass.
At the feaft of innocents, which was a kind of branch or imitation of the feast of fools, the Francifcan Friars, at Antibes, used to be guilty of every kind of extravagance, and abfurdity. The lay-brothers affumed the power and the functions of the initiated; and the profeffed friars performed their menial offices. The former clothed themfelves in the facerdotal habits, but all in rags, if they could find them fo, and turned infide out; holding books the wrong fide upward, and pretending to read them with large fpectacles, that inftead of glafs, were of orange peel. They fang neither hymns, pfalms, nor maffes, but muttered certain confufed founds, and occafionally fent forth the moft difcordant howlings, accompanied with every kind of grinning and contortion.
Mere Folle, Mother Folly, or Mother Madcap, was the title of a facetious fociety; which is anciently fuppofed to have taken its rife from the above feast of fools. It was most celebrated at Dijon : a country famous for its vineyards; and its antics were performed in carnival time: when perions of quality, difguifed like bacchanals, mounted on carts, and fung fongs, fatirizing the manners and follies of thofe times. The members of the fociety wore fantastic dreffes, of
green, red, and yellow; with two-pointed caps of the fame colours, garnished with bells; and holding baubles, on each of which was carved a fool's head. Mother Madcap was the principal perfonage; and held her court, and had her guards, horfe and foot, her domeftics, her magiftrates, her chancellor, her master of the horfe, and every other mock officer of the kingdom. The judgments the pronounced were without appeal. On great occafions, the fociety marched in proceffion: the foot-guards with colours flying; yellow, red, and green; painted with innumerable heads of folly. A woman was feated in the centre, clad in the fame colours; with the fame pointed cap, and holding the fame bauble; with numerous fool's heads projecting from her petticoat, round her waist. They had large carriages, or waggons; each drawn by fix horfes, caparifoned with houfings of three colours, and conducted by coachmen and poftillions clothed in the fame. Thefe carriages contained only thofe perfons who fung fatirical fongs; dreffing themfelves in imitation of the individuals they meant to fatirize. At the head of the proceffion, four heralds marched, followed by the captain of the guards: to which fucceeded the painted carriages, then Mother Madcap, preceded by two heralds, and mounted on a white horfe, attended by her waiting ladies, fix pages, and twelve footmen. Then came an enfign, followed by fixty officers, fquires, falconers, the mafter of the hunt, and others; and afterward the standard, accompanied by fifty cavaliers, the Fifcal officer, and his two counfellors, clothed in green; and finally the Swifs guards. Sometimes Mother Madcap was drawn in a prodigious carriage, by twelve horfes richly caparifoned; containing herself, and actors dreffed for the ceremony, who fung and recited their verfes, and were accompanied by a band of mufic. This generally happened when some extraordinary event had taken place: as robbery, murder, seduction, abfurd marriages, &c. which incidents were reprefented as they had occurred. The candidates, who wifhed to be members of this fociety, appeared before the Fifcal: Mother Madcap, and her principal officers, being prefent. The candidate was ftanding; the Fifcal feated. Questions were put in rhyme, which were likewife to be anfwered in rhyme. When admitted of the fraternity, they gave him the three coloured cap, and afligned him eftates in the
The following is the account of the reception of Henri de Bourbon, Prince of Condé, firft Prince of the blood, granted by the company of la Mere Folle of Dijon 1626.
We the fuperlative, miralific and fci:ntific voters of the Dijon infantry, regents of Apollo, and of the Mufes, legitimate, figurative children of the venerable Father Time-past, and of Marotte, or Fool's head, and of their children, grand children, and great, great, great grand children; red, yellow, and green, covered, uncovered, and all in rags, to all fools, arch-fools, lunatics, heteroclites, madcaps, capricious-poets, paper-skulls, and logger-heads; almanacs, old and new, past, prefent, and to come, greeting; double piftoles, ducats, and all the bad money of Portugal; new wine, without the gripes, or infurrection of the entrails: who would believe it, the High and Mighty Henri de Bourbon, Prince of Condé, firft Prince of the blood royal, houfe, and crown of France, knight every hair and inch of him, who could have thought he would have honoured, by his prefence, the greafy bearded, gutling blades of Mother Madcap, and have deigned to demand in full affembly, to be matriculated and recognizated as he has been, yea and covered with this nonpareil Fool's-cap, laying his hand on the cap and bells, and fwearing in the behalf of Folly to a league offenfive, and defenfive, thereby inviolably to maintain, guard, and fupport Folly in all points, and to aid and obey her on all occafions, requiring letters patent for this purpose, to which our redoubtable dame and mother being inclined full of our science, puiffance, and authority, without other preceding information, and in full confidence of his princely intentions, she has here with alacrity by these presents, hurly burly, with arms open and uncovered, received and impatronized, we him receiving and impatronizing in our Dijon infantry in fuch fort and manner, that he fhall remain incorporated in the intestine cabinet, and generally as long as Folly fhall endure, may, by her confent, there remain, hold, and exercife at his pleasure whatever charge it fhall please him in the honors, prerogatives, pre-eminencies, authority, and potency, which heaven, his birth, and his fword, have for him acquired; that his highnefs may manfully, and by force of arms aid Folly in eternizing herfelf, and that she may not be impeded, but with free egrefs and regrefs, may expole her merchandize, may traffic