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those of the revolters out of the market, and
if for a battle, and both armies soon engage in
Much might be said for the improvement of this system; which, for its style and invention, may instruct generals and their historians, both in fighting a battle, and describing it when it is over. These elegant expressions, ditto-and so-but soon-but having-but could not-but are-but they-finds the party to have found,' &c. do certainly give great life and spirit to the relation.
Indeed, I am extremely concerned for the lieutenant-general, who, by his overthrow and defeat, is made a deplorable instance of the fortune of war, and vicissitudes of human af fairs. He, alas! has lost, in Beech-lane and Chiswell-street, all the glory he lately gained
in and about Holborn and St Giles's. The art
of subdividing first, and dividing afterwards,
Ili motus animorum, atque hæc certamina tanta
Yet all those dreadful deeds, this doubtful fray,
Will's Coffee-house, July 13.
it. He went on in asserting, that there are
There is nothing so frequent as this way of application for offices. It is not that you are fit for the place, but because the place would be convenient for you, that you claim a merit to it. But commend me to the great Kirlieus
A man hanged for the murder of his sweetheart.
who has lately set up for midwifery, and to help child-birth, for no other reason, but that he is himself the Unborn Doctor.' The way is, to hit upon something that puts the vulgar upon the stare, or touches their compassion, which is often the weakest part about us. I know a good lady, who has taken her daughters from their old dancing-master to placeę them with another, for no other reason but because the new man has broke his leg, which is so ill set, that he can never dance more.
From my own Apartment, July 13.
As it is a frequent mortification to me to receive letters, wherein people tell me, without a name, they know I meant them in such and such a passage; so that very accusation is an argument, that there are such beings in human life, as fall under our description, and that our discourse is not altogether fantastical and groundless. But in this case I am treated as I saw a boy was the other day, who gave out pocky bills every plain fellow took it that passed by, and went on his way without further notice and at last came one with his nose a little abridged; who knocks the lad down, with a' Why, you son of we, do you think I am p-d?' But Shakspeare has made the best apology for this way of talking against the public errors: he makes Jacques, in the play called 'As you like it,' express himself
Why, who cries out on pride,
That can therein tax any private party?
Thinking that I mean him, but therein suits
Will's Coffee-house, July 15.
The discourse happened this evening to fall upon characters drawn in plays; and a gentleman remarked, that there was no method in the world of knowing the taste of an age, or period of time, so good, as by the observations of the persons represented in their comedies. There were several instances produced, as Ben Jonson's bringing in a fellow smoking, as a piece of foppery; but," said the gentleman who entertained us on this subject, this matter is no where so observable as in the difference of the characters of women on the stage in the last age and in this. It is not to be supposed that it was a poverty of genius in Shakspeare that his women made so small a figure in his dialogues; but it certainly is, that he drew women as they then were in life for that sex had not in those days that freedom in conversation; and their characters were only, that they were mothers, sisters, daughters, and wives. There were not then among the ladies, shining wits, politicians, virtuosæ, free-thinkers, and disputants; nay, there was then hardly such a creature even as a coquette: but vanity had quite another turn, and the most conspicuous woman at that time of day was only the best housewife. [Were it possible to bring into life an assembly of matrons of that age, and introduce the learned lady Woodby into their company, they would not believe the same nation could produce a creature so unlike any thing they ever saw in it.
'But these ancients would be as much asto- | hopes that the town will allow me the liberty nished to see in the same age so illustrious a which my brother news-writers take, in giving pattern to all who love things praise-worthy them what may be for their information in as the divine Aspasia.* Methinks I now see another kind, and indulge me in doing an act her walking in her garden like our first parent, of friendship, by publishing the following ac with unaffected charms, before beauty had count of goods and moveables. spectators, and bearing celestial conscious virtue in her aspect. Her countenance is the lively picture of her mind, which is the seat of honour, truth, compassion, knowledge, and in
This is to give notice, that a magnificent palace with great variety of gardens, statues, and water-works, may be bought cheap in Drury-lane, where there are likewise several castles to be disposed of, very delightfully situated; as also groves, woods, forests, fountains, and country seats, with very pleasant prospects on all sides of them; being the moveables of Christopher Rich, esquire, who is
'There dwells the scorn of vice, and pity too.' 'In the midst of the most ample fortune, and veneration of all that behold and know her, without the least affectation, she consults re-breaking up house-keeping, and has many cutirement, the contemplation of her own being, rious pieces of furniture to dispose of, which may be seen between the hours of six and ten and that supreme Power, which bestowed it. Without the learning of schools, or knowledge in the evening. of a long course of arguments, she goes on in a steady course of uninterrupted piety and virtue, and adds to the severity and privacy of the last age, all the freedom and ease of this. The language and mien of a court she is possessed of in the highest degree; but the simplicity and humble thoughts of a cottage are her more welcome entertainments. Aspasia is a female philosopher, who does not only live up to the resignation of the most retired lives of the ancient sages, but also to the schemes and plans which they thought beautiful, though inimitable. This lady is the most exact economist, without appearing busy; the most strictly virtuous, without tasting the praise of it; and shuns applause with as much industry as others do reproach. This character is so particular, that it will very easily be fixed on her only, by all that know her; but I dare say, she will be the last that finds it out.
But, alas! if we have one or two such ladies, how many dozens are there like the restless Poluglossa, who is acquainted with all the world but herself; who has the appearance of all, and possession of no one virtue: she has, indeed, in her practice, the absence of vice, but her discourse is the continual history of it; and it is apparent, when she speaks of the criminal gratifications of others, that her innocence is only a restraint, with a certain mixture of envy. She is so perfectly opposite to the character of Aspasia, that as vice is terrible to her only as it is the object of reproach, so virtue is agreeable only as it is attended with applause.'
St. James's Coffee-house, July 15. It is now twelve of the clock at noon, and no mail come in; therefore, I am not without
Spirits of right Nantz brandy, for lambent flames and apparitions.
Three bottles and a half of lightning.
One shower of snow in the whitest French paper.
Two showers of a browner sort.
A sea consisting of a dozen large waves; the tenth+ bigger than ordinary, and a little damaged.
A dozen and half of clouds, trimmed with black, and well-conditioned. A rainbow, a little faded.
A set of clouds after the French mode, streak
ed with lightning, and furbelowed.
A new moon, something decayed.
The character of Aspasia was written by Mr. Congreve ; and the person meant, was lady Elizabeth Hastings. See the authority for this, with an edifying account of this extraordinary lady, and her benefactions, in a book in folio, intituled Memorials and Characters, &c.' London, 1741, printed for John Wilford, p. 780.
A pint of the finest Spanish wash, being all that is left of two hogsheads sent over last winter.
A coach very finely gilt and little used, with a pair of dragons, to be sold cheap. A setting-sun, a penny-worth.
An imperial mantle, made for Cyrus the great, and worn by Julius Cæsar, Bajazet, king Harry the Eighth, and signor Valentini.
A basket hilted sword, very convenient to carry milk in.
The imperial robes of Xerxes, never worn but once.
A wild boar killed by Mrs. Tofts and Dio-. clesian.
A serpent to sting Cleopatra.
A mustard-bowl to make thunder with. Another of a bigger sort, by Mr. D―s's‡ directions, little used.
Six elbow chairs, very expert in countrydances, with six flower-pots for their partners. The whiskers of a Turkish bassa.
this kind in the case of Mr. D'Urfey, who has dedicated his inimitable comedy, called 'The Modern Prophets,' to a worthy knight, to whom, it seems, he had before communicated his plan, which was, 'To ridicule the ridiculers of our established doctrine.' I have elsewhere celebrated the contrivance of this excellent drama; but was not, until I read the dedication, wholly let into the religious design of it. I am afraid, it has suffered, discontinuance at this gay end of the town, for no other reason but the piety of the purpose. There is, however, in this epistle, the true life of panegyrical performance; and I do not doubt but if the patron would part with it, I can help him to others with good pretensions to it; viz. of ‘uncommon understanding,' who will give him as
Aurengzebe's scymitar, made by Will. Brown much as he gave for it. I know perfectly well in Piccadilly. a noble person, whom these words (which are
There are also swords, halberds, sheep-hooks, cardinals' hats, turbans, drums, gallipots, a gibbet, a cradle, a rack, a cart-wheel, an altar, a helmet, a back-piece, a breast-plate, a bell, a tub, and a jointed-baby.
A plume of feathers, never used but by the body of the panegyric) would fit to a bair. Dedipus and the earl of Essex. Your easiness of humour, or rather your harmonious disposition, is so admirably mixed with your composure, that the rugged cares and disturbance that public affairs bring with it, which does so vexatiously affect the heads of other great men of business, &c. does scarce ever ruffle your unclouded brow so much as with a frown. And what above all is praiseworthy, you are so far from thinking yourself better than others, that a flourishing and opulent fortune, which, by a certain natural corruption in its quality, seldom fails to infect other possessors with pride, seems in this case as if only providentially disposed to enlarge your humility.
The complexion of a murderer in a bandbox: consisting of a large piece of burnt cork, and a coal-black peruke.
A suit of cloaths for a ghost, viz. a bloody shirt, a doublet curiously pinked, and a coat with three great eyelet-holes upon the breast.
A bale of red Spanish wool.
Modern plots, commonly known by the name ef trap-doors, ladders of ropes, vizard-masques, and tables with broad carpets over them.
Three oak-cudgels, with one of crab-tree; all bought for the use of Mr. Pinkethman.
Materials for dancing; as masques, castanets, and a ladder of ten rounds.
These are the hard shifts we intelligencers are forced to; therefore our readers ought to excuse us, if a westerly wind blowing for a fortnight together, generally fills every paper with an order of battle; when we show our martial skill in every line, and according to the space we have to fill, we range our men in squadrons and battalions, or draw out company by company, and troop by troop; ever observing that no muster is to be made but when the wind is in a cross-point, which often happens at the end of a campaign, when half the men are deserted or killed. The Courant is sometimes ten deep, his ranks close: the Post-plain justice I have done you should, by my boy is generally in files, for greater exactness; proceeding, and others' mistaken judgment, be and the Postman comes down upon you rather imagined flattery, a thing the bluntness of my after the Turkish way, sword in hand, pell- nature does not care to be concerned with, and mell, without form or discipline; but sure to which I also know you abominate.' bring men enough into the field; and whereever they are raised, never to lose a battle for want of numbers.
It is wonderful to see how many judges of these fine things spring up every day by the rise of stocks and other elegant methods of abridging the way to learning and criticism. But I do hereby forbid all dedications to any persons within the city of London; except sir Francis, sir Stephen, and the Bank, will take epigrams and epistles as value received for their notes; and the East-India company accept of heroic poems for their sealed bonds. Upon which bottom our publishers have full power to treat with the city in behalf of us authors, to enable traders to become patrons and
Tuesday, July 19, 1709.
-Bene nammatum decorat snadela, Venusque.
The goddess of persuasion forms his train,
White's Chocolate-house, July 18.
I WRITE from hence at present to complain, that wit and merit are so little encouraged by people of rank and quality, that the wits of the age are obliged to run within Temple-bar for patronage. There is a deplorable instance of
But I find, sir, I am now got into a very large field, where, though I could with great ease raise a number of plants in relation to your merit of this plauditory nature; yet for fear of an author's general vice, and that the
*An extract from D'Urfey's dedication.
↑ Sir Francis and sir Stephen were evidently bankers of
the times; and, of those, the two most eminent were sir ruined, it is thought, in the South-sea year.
Francis Child and sir Stephen Evance. The latter was
fellows of the Royal Society,* as well as to re-cording to the computation of some of our ceive certain degrees of skill in the Latin and Greek tongues, according to the quantity of the commodities which they take off our hands.
greatest divines, is to be the first year of the millenium; in which blessed age all habits will be reduced to a primitive simplicity; and whoever shall be found to have persevered in a constancy of dress, in spite of all the allurements of profane and heathen habits, shall be rewarded with a never-fading doublet of a thousand years. All points in the system, which are doubted, shall be attested by the knight's extemporary oath, for the satisfaction of his readers.'
Grecian Coffee-house, July 18.
The learned have so long laboured under the imputation of dryness and dulness in their accounts of the phænomena, that an ingenious gentleman of our society has resolved to write a system of philosophy in a more lively method, both as to the matter and language, than has been hitherto attempted. He read to us the plan upon which he intends to proceed. I thought his account, by way of fable of the worlds about us, had so much vivacity in it that I could not forbear transcribing his hypothesis, to give the reader a taste of my friend's treatise, which is now in the press.
The inferior deities, having designed on a day to play a game at foot-ball, kneaded together a numberless collection of dancing atoms into the form of seven rolling globes: and, that nature might be kept from a dull inactivity, each separate particle is endued with a principle of motion, or a power of attraction, whereby all the several parcels of matter draw each other proportionably to their magnitudes and distances into such a remarkable variety of different forms, as to produce all the wonderful appearances we now observe in empire, philosophy, and religion. But to proceed:
At the beginning of the game, each of the globes, being struck forward with a vast violence, ran out of sight, and wandered in a straight line through the infinite spaces. The nimble deities pursue, breathless almost, and spent in the eager chace; each of them caught hold of one, and stamped it with his name; as Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, and so of the rest. To prevent this inconvenience for the future, the seven are condemned to a precipitation; which in our inferior style we call gravity. Thus the tangential and centripetal forces, by their counter-struggle, make the celestial bodies describe an exact elipsis.
There will be added to this an appendix, in defence of the first day of the term according to the Oxford almanack, by a learned knight of this realm, with an apology for the said knight's manner of dress; proving that his habit, according to this hypothesis, is the true modern and fashionable; and that buckles are not to be worn, by this system, until the tenth of March in the year 1714, which, ac
* Mr. Whiston, alluded to in the following part of this paper, was at this time proposed as a member of the Royal Society, and rejected. The pretended account of his hypothesis that follows is mere pleasantry, and not a quotation from his book, or any true account of his Theory.'
+ Sir William Whitlocke, knt. member for Oxon, bencher of the Middle Temple, and queen's serjeant. He is also alluded to under the name of 'Dear Shoe-strings,' which it would seem that he wore instead of buckles, Tatler, No. 38.
Will's Coffee-house, July 18.
We were upon the heroic strain this evening; and the question was, 'What is the true sublime?' Many very good discourses happened thereupon; after which a gentleman at the table, who is, it seems, writing on that subject, assumed the argument; and though he ran through many instances of sublimity from the ancient writers, said, 'he had hardly known an occasion wherein the true greatness of soul, which animates a general in action, is so well represented, with regard to the person of whom it was spoken, and the time in which it was writ, as in a few lines in a modern poem. There is,' continued he, 'nothing so forced and constrained, as what we frequently meet with in tragedies; to make a man under the weight of great sorrow, or full of meditation upon what he is soon to execute, cast about for a simile to what he himself is, or the thing which he is going to act: but there is nothing more proper and natural for a poet, whose business it is to describe, and who is spectator of one in that circumstance, when his mind is working upon a great image, and that the ideas hurry upon his imagination-I say, there is nothing so natural, as for a poet to relieve and clear himself from the burden of thought at that time, by uttering his conception in simile and metaphor. The highest act of the mind of man is to possess itself with tranquillity in imminent danger, and to have its thoughts so free, as to act at that time without perplexity. The ancient authors have compared this sedate courage to a rock that remains immoveable amidst the rage of winds and waves; but that is too stupid and inanimate a similitude, and could do no credit to the hero. At other times they are all of them wonderfully obliged to a Lybian lion which may give indeed very agreeable terrors to a description, but is no compliment to the person to whom it is applied: eagles, tigers, and wolves, are made use of on the same occasion, and very often with much beauty; but this is still an honour done to the brute rather than the hero. Mars, Pallas, Bacchus, and Hercules, have each of them furnished very good similes in their time, and made, doubtless, a greater impression on the mind of a heathen, than they