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costs; having particularised in it the several expences he had been at in his long perplexed amour. Zelinda was so pleased with the humour of the fellow, and his frank way of dealing, that, upon the perusal of the bill, she sent him a purse of fifteen hundred guineas, by the right application of which, the lover, in less than a year, got a woman of greater fortune than her he had missed. The several articles in the bill of costs I pretty well remember, though I have forgotten the particular sum charged to each article.
Laid out in supernumerary full-buttom wigs. Fiddles for a serenade, with a speaking-trumpet. Gilt paper in letters, and billet-doux with perfumed
A ream of sonnets and love verses, purchased at different times of Mr. Triplett at a crown a sheet.
To Zelinda two sticks of May cherries.
Three porters whom I planted about her to watch her motions.
The first, who stood centry near her door.
The second, who had his stand at the stables where her coach was put up.
The third, who kept watch at the corner of the street where Ned Courtall lives, who has since married her.
Two additional porters planted over her during the whole month of May.
Five conjurers kept in pay all last winter.
Spy-money to John Trott her footman, and Mrs. Sarah Wheedle her companion.
A new Conningsmark blade to fight Ned Courtall.
To Zelinda's woman (Mrs. Abigal) an Indian fan, a dozen pair of white kid gloves, a piece of Flanders lace, and fifteen guineas in dry money.
Secret service-money to Betty at the ring.
The first who undertook to instruct the world in single papers, was Isaac Bickerstaffe, of famous memory: a man nearly related to the family of the Ironsides, We have often smoked a pipe together, for I was so much in his books, that at his decease he left me a silver standish, a pair of spectacles, and the lamp by which he used to write his Lucubrations.
The venerable Isaac was succeeded by a gentleman of the same family, very memorable for the shortness of his face and of his speeches. This ingenious author published his thoughts, and held his tongue, with great applause, for two years together.
I Nestor Ironside have now for some time undertaken to fill the place of these my two renowned kinsmen and predecessors. For it is observed of every branch of our family, that we have all of us a wonderful inclination to give good advice, though it is remarkable of some of us, that we are apt on this occasion rather to give than take.
However it be, I cannot but observe, with some secret pride, that this way of writing diurnal papers has not succeeded for any space of time in the hands of any persons who are not of our line. I believe I speak within compass, when I affirm that above a hundred different authors have endeavoured after our family-way of writing, some of which have been writers in other kinds of the greatest eminence in the kingdom; but I do not know how it has happened, they have none of them hit upon the art. Their projects have always dropped after a few unsuccessful essays. It
puts me in mind of a story which was lately told me by a pleasant friend of mine, who has a very fine hạnd on the violin. His maid servant, seeing his instrument
lying upon the table, and being sensible there was music in it, if she knew how to fetch it out, drew the bow over every part of the strings, and at last told her master she had tried the fiddle all over, but could not for her heart find whereabout the tune lay.
But though the whole burden of such a paper is only fit to rest on the shoulders of a Bickerstaffe, or an Ironside, there are several who can acquit themselves of a single day's labour in it with suitable abilities. These are gentlemen whom I have often invited to this trial of wit, and who have several of them acquitted themselves to my private emolument, as well as to their own reputation. · My paper among the republic of letters is the Ulysses his bow, in which every man of wit or learning may try his strength. One who does not care to write a book without being sure of his abilities, may see by this means if his parts and talents are to the public taste.
This I take to be of great advantage to men of the best sense, who are always diffident of their private judgment, till it receives a sanction from the public. Provoco ad populum, I appeal to the people, was the usual saying of a very excellent dramatic poet, when he had any disputes with particular persons about the juśtness and regularity of his productions. It is but a melancholy comfort for an author to be satisfied that he has written up to the rules of art, when he finds he has no admirers in the world besides himself. Common modesty should, on this occasion, make a man suspect his own judgment, and that he misapplies the rules of his art, when he finds himself singular in the applause which he bestows upon his own writings.
The public is always even with an author who has not a just deference for them. The contempt is reciprocal. I laugh at every one, said an old Cynic, who laughs at me. Do you so ? replied the philosopher; then let me tell you, you live the merriest life of any man in Athens. It is not therefore the least use of this my paper, Vol. IV.
that it gives' a' timorous writer, and such is every good one, an opportunity of putting his abilities to the proof, and of sounding the public before he launches into it. For this reason I look upon my paper as a kind of nursery for authors, and question not but some, who have made a good figure here, will hereafter flourish under their own names in more long and elaborate works.
After having thus far enlarged upon this particular, I have one favour to beg of the candid and courteous reader, that, when he meets with any thing in this paper which may appear a little dull or heavy, (though I hope this will not be often,) he will believe it is the work of some other person, and not of Nestor Ironşide.
I have, I know not how, been drawn into tattle of myself, more majorum, almost the length of a whole Guardian, I shall therefore fill up the remaining part of it with what still relates to my own person, and my correspondents. Now I would have them all know, that on the twentieth instant it is my intention to erect a lion's head in imitation of those I have described in Venice, through which all the private intelligence of that commonwealth is said to pass. This head is to open a most wide and voracious mouth, which shall take in such letters and papers as are conveyed to me by my correspondents, it being my resolution to have a particular regard to all such matters as come to my hands through the mouth of the lion. There will be under it a box, of which the key will be in my own custody, to receive such papers as are dropped into it, Whatever the lion swallows I shall digest for the use of the public. This head requires some time to finish, the workman being resolved to give it several masterly touches, "and to represent it as ravenous as possible. It will be set up in Button's coffee-house in CoventGarden, who is directed to show the way to the Lion's head, and to instruct any young author how to convey his works into the mouth of it with safety and secrecy.
No. 99. SATURDAY, JULY 4.
Justum, et tenacem propositi virum
Mente quatit solidă, neque Auster
Hor. THERE is no virtue so truly great and godlike as justice. Most of the other virtues are the virtues of crèated beings, or accommodated to our nature as we are men. Justice is that which is practised by God himself, and to be practised in its perfection by none but him. Omniscience and omnipotence are requisite for the full exertion of it. The one, to discover every degree of uprightness or iniquity in thoughts, words, and actions. The other, to measure out and impart suitable rewards and punishments.
As to be perfectly just is an attribute in the divine nature, to be so to the utmost of our abilities is the glory of a man. Such a one who has the public administration in his hands, acts like the representative of his Maker, in recompencing the virtuous, and punishing the offenders. By the extirpating of a criminal, he averts the judgments of heaven, when ready to fall upon an impious people; or, as my friend Cato expresses it much better in a sentiment conformable to his character,
When by just vengeance impious mortals perish,
And lay th' uplifted thunder-bolt aside. When a nation once loses its regard to justice; when they do not look upon it as something venerable, holy, and inviolable ; when any of them dare presume to lessen, affront, or terrify those who have the distri