Page images
PDF
EPUB

-Modo vir, modo fœmina.
Virg.
Sometimes a man, sometimes a woman.

THE journal with which I presented my reader on Tuesday last has brought me in several letters, with accounts of many private lives cast into that form. I have the 'Rake's Journal,' the 'Sot's Journal,' the Whoremaster's Journal,' and, among several others, a very curious piece, entitled,

vered of a daughter, who died within a few myself; let him remember how awkward I hours after her birth. This accident, and was in my dissembled indifference towards the retired manner of life I led, gave cri- him before company; ask him how I, who minal hopes to a neighbouring brute of a could never conceal my love for him, at his country gentleman, whose folly was the own request can part with him for ever? Oh, source of all my affliction. This rustic is Mr. Spectator, sensible spirits know no inone of those rich clowns who supply the difference in marriage: what then do you want of all manner of breeding by the think is my piercing affliction?—I leave neglect of it, and with noisy mirth, half un- you to represent my distress your own way, derstanding and ample fortune, force them-in which I desire you to be speedy, if you selves upon persons and things, without any have compassion for innocence exposed to sense of time or place. The poor ignorant infamy. OCTAVIA.' people where I lay concealed, and now passed for a widow, wondered I could be so shy and strange, as they called it, to the No. 323.] Tuesday, March 11, 1711-12. 'squire; and were bribed by him to admit him whenever he thought fit: I happened to be sitting in a little parlour which belonged to my own part of the house, and musing over one of the fondest of my husband's letters, in which I always kept the certificate of my marriage, when this rude fellow came in, and with the nauseous familiarity of such unbred brutes snatched the papers out of my hand. I was immediately under so great a concern, that I threw my-The Journal of a Mohock. By these inself at his feet, and begged of him to return stances, I find that the intention of my last them. He, with the same odious pretence Tuesday's paper has been mistaken by to freedom and gaiety, swore he would read many of my readers. I did not design so them. I grew more importunate, he more much to expose vice as idleness, and aimed curious, till at last, with an indignation at those persons who passed away their arising from a passion I then first disco- time rather in trifles and impertinence, vered in him, he threw the papers into the than in crimes and immoralities. Offences fire, swearing that since he was not to read of this latter kind are not to be dallied with, them, the man who writ them should never or treated in so ludicrous a manner. In be so happy as to have me read them over short, my journal only holds up folly to the again. It is insignificant to tell you my tears light, and shows the disagreeableness of and reproaches made the boisterous calf such actions as are indifferent in themleave the room ashamed and out of coun-selves, and blameable only as they proceed tenance, when I had leisure to ruminate on from creatures endowed with reason. this accident with more than ordinary sorrow. However, such was then my confidence in my husband, that I writ to him the misfortune, and desired another paper of the same kind. He deferred writing two or three posts, and at last answered me in general, that he could not then send me what I asked for; but when he could find a proper conveyance, I should be sure to have it. From this time his letters were more cold every day than other, and, as he grew indifferent I grew jealous. This has at last brought me to town, where I find both the witnesses of my marriage dead, and that my husband, after three month's cohabitation, has buried a young lady whom he married in obedience to his father. In a word he shuns and disowns me. Should I come to the house and confront him, the father would join in supporting him against me, though he believed my story; should I talk it to the world, what reparation can I expect for an injury I cannot make out? I believe he means to bring me, through necessity, to resign my pretensions to him for some provision for my life; but I will die first. Pray bid him remember what he said, and how he was charmed when he laughed at the heedless discovery I often made of

My following correspondent, who calls herself Clarinda, is such a journalist as I require. She seems by her letter to be placed in a modish state of indifference between vice and virtue, and to be susceptible of either, were there proper pains taken with her. Had her journal been filled with gallantries, or such occurrences as had shown her wholly divested of her natural innocence, notwithstanding it might have been more pleasing to the generality of readers, I should not have published it: but as it is only the picture of a life filled with a fashionable kind of gaiety and laziness, I shall set down five days of it, as I have received it from the hand of my fair correspondent.

'DEAR MR. SPECTATOR,-You having set your readers an exercise in one of your last week's papers, I have performed mine according to your orders, and herewith send it you enclosed. You must know, Mr. Spectator, that I am a maiden lady of a good fortune, who have had several matches offered me for these ten years last past, and have at present warm applications made to me by a very pretty fellow.' As I am at my own disposal, I come up to town every winter, and pass my time in it

after the manner you will find in the follow-flowered handkerchief. Worked half a vio ing journal, which I began to write the very let leaf in it. Eyes ached and head out of day after your Spectator upon that subject.' order. Threw by my work, and read over the remaining part of Aurengzebe. From three to four. Dined.

TUESDAY night. Could not go to sleep till one in the morning for thinking of my journal.

WEDNESDAY. From eight till ten. Drank two dishes of chocolate in bed, and fell asleep after them.

From ten to eleven. Eat a slice of bread and butter, drank a dish of bohea, and read the Spectator.

From eleven to one. At my toilette; tried a new hood. Gave orders for Veny to be combed and washed. Mem. I look best in blue.

From one till half an hour after two. Drove to the 'Change. Cheapened a couple of fans.

Till four. At dinner. Mem. Mr. Froth passed by in his new liveries.

From four to six. Dressed: paid a visit to old lady Blithe and her sister, having before heard they were gone out of town that day. From six to eleven. At basset. Mem. Never set again upon the ace of diamonds. THURSDAY. From eleven at night to eight in the morning. Dreamed that I punted to Mr. Froth.

Sent Frank to know how my lady Hectic rested after her monkey's leaping out at window. Looked pale. Fontange tells me my glass is not true. Dressed by three.

From three to four. Dinner cold before I sat down,

From four to eleven. Saw company. Mr. Froth's opinion of Milton. His account of the Mohocks. His fancy of a pin-cushion. Picture in the lid of his snuff-box. Old lady Faddle promises me her woman to cut my hair. Lost five guineas at crimp.

Twelve o'clock at night. Went to bed. FRIDAY. Eight in the morning. A-bed. Read over all Mr. Froth's letters. Cupid and Veny.

Ten o'clock. Stayed within all day, not at home.

From ten to twelve. In conference with my mantua-maker. Sorted a suit of ribands. Broke my blue china cup.

From eight to ten. Chocolate. Read two acts in Aurengzebe a-bed.

From ten to eleven. Tea-table. Sent to borrow lady Faddle's Cupid for Veny. Read the play-bills. Received a letter from Mr. Froth. Mem. Locked it up in my strong box.

From dinner to six. Drank tea. Turned off a footman for being rude to Veny.

Six o'clock. Went to the opera. I did not see Mr. Froth till the beginning of the

Rest of the morning. Fontange, the tire-second act. Mr. Froth talked to a gentlewoman, her account of my lady Blithe's man in a black wig; bowed to a lady in the wash. Broke a tooth in my little tortoise- front box. Mr. Froth and his friend clapshell comb. ped Nicolini in the third act. Mr. Froth cried out Ancora.' Mr. Froth led me to my chair. I think he squeezed my hand.

Eleven at night. Went to bed. Melancholy dreams. Methought Nicolini said he was Mr. Froth.

From twelve to one. Shut myself up in my chamber, practised lady Betty Modely's skuttle.f

One in the afternoon.

Called for my

* A term in the game of basset.
† A pace of affected precipitation
3

From four to twelve. Changed my mind, dressed, went abroad, and played at crimp till midnight. Found Mrs. Spitely at home. Conversation: Mrs. Brilliant's necklace false stones. Old lady Love-day going to be married to a young fellow that is not worth a groat. Miss Prue gone into the country. Tom Townly has red hair. Mem. Mrs. Spitely whispered in my ear, that she had something to tell me about Mr. Froth; I am sure it is not true.

Between twelve and one. Dreamed that Mr. Froth lay at my feet, and called me Indamora.

VOL. II.

morning. Sat down to my toilette. SATURDAY. Rose at eight o'clock in the

half an hour before I could determine it. From eight to nine. Shifted a patch for Fixed it above my left eyebrow.

From nine to twelve. Drank my tea, and dressed.

From twelve to two. At chapel. A great deal of good company. Mem. The third air in the new opera. Lady Blithe dressed frightfully.

From three to four. Dined. Miss Kitty called upon me to go to the opera before I was risen from table.

Indisposed.

SUNDAY. MONDAY. Eight o'clock. Waked by Miss Kitty. Aurengzebe lay upon the chair by me. Kitty repeated without book the eight best lines in the play. Went in our mobs to the dumb man, according to appointment. Told me that my lover's name began with a G. Mem. The conjurors was within a letter of Mr. Froth's name, &c.

Upon looking back into this my journal, I find that I am at a loss to know whether I pass my time well or ill; and indeed never thought of considering how I did it before I perused your speculation upon that subject. I scarce find a single action in these five days that I can thoroughly approve of, excepting the working upon the violet-leaf, which I am resolved to finish the first day

1 A sort of dress so named.
§ Duncan Campbell.

I am at leisure. As for Mr. Froth and required in the members. In order to exert Veny, I did not think they took up so much this principle in its full strength and perof my time and thoughts as I find they do fection, they take care to drink themselves upon my journal. The latter of them I will to a pitch, that is, beyond the possibility turn off, if you insist upon it; and if Mr. of attending to any motions of reason or Froth does not bring matters to a conclu-humanity; then make a general sally, and sion very suddenly, I will not let my life attack all that are so unfortunate as to run away in a dream. Your humble ser- walk the streets through which they pavant, CLARINDA.' trole. Some are knocked down, others

stabbed, others cut and carbonadocd. To put the watch to a total rout, and mortify some of those inoffensive militia, is reckoned a coup d'eclat. The particular talents by which these misanthropes are distinguished from one another, consist in the execute upon the prisoners. Some are cevarious kinds of barbarities which they lebrated for a happy dexterity in tipping the lion upon them; which is performed by squeezing the nose flat to the face, and bring out the eyes with their fingers. Others are called the dancing-masters, and teach their scholars to cut capers by running swords through their legs; a new invention, whether originally French I cannot tell. A third sort are the tumblers, whose office is to set women on their heads, and commit certain indecencies, or rather barbarities, on the limbs which they expose. But these I forbear to mention, because they cannot but be very shocking to the reader as well as the Spectator. In this manner

To resume one of the morals of my first paper, and to confirm Clarinda in her good inclinations, I would have her consider what a pretty figure she would make among posterity, were the history of her whole life published like these five days of it. I shall conclude my paper with an epitaph written by an uncertain author on Sir Philip Sydney's sister, a lady who seems to have been of a temper very much different from that of Clarinda. The last thought of it is so very noble, that I dare say my reader will pardon me the quotation.

ON THE COUNTESS DOWAGER OF PEM

BROKE.

Underneath this marble hearse
Lies the subject of all verse,
Sidney's sister, Pembroke's mother:
Death, ere thou hast kill'd another,
Fair and learn'd and good as she,
Time shall throw a dart at thee.

L.

No. 324.] Wednesday, March 12, 1711-12. they carry on a war against mankind; and

by the standing maxims of their policy, are to enter into no alliances but one, and that is offensive and defensive with all bawdyhouses in general, of which they have declared themselves protectors and guarantees.

O curvæ in terris animæ, et cœlestium inanes! Pers. Sat. ii. 61. O souls, in whom no heavenly fire is found, Flat minds, and ever grovelling on the ground!* Dryden. 'MR. SPECTATOR,-The materials you have collected together towards a general history of clubs, make so bright apart of your speculations, that I think it is but justice we all owe the learned world, to furnish you with such assistance as may promote that useful work. For this reason I could not forbear communicating to you some imperfect informations of a set of men (if you will allow them a place in that species of being) who have lately erected themselves into a nocturnal fraternity, under the title of the Mohock-club, a name borrowed it seems from a sort of cannibals in India, who subsist by plundering and devouring all the nations about them. The president is styled, Emperor of the Mohocks;' and his arms are a Turkish crescent, which his imperial majesty bears at present in a very extraordinary manner engraven upon his forehead. Agreeable to their name, the avowed design of their institution is mischief; and upon this foundation all their rules and orders are framed. An outrageous ambition of doing all possible hurt to their fellow-creatures, is the great cementners of Indian savages are not becoming of their assembly, and the only qualification

'I must own, sir, these are only broken, incoherent memoirs of this wonderful society; but they are the best I have been yet able to procure: for, being but of late established, it is not ripe for a just history; and, to be serious, the chief design this truble is to hinder it from ever being so. You have been pleased, out of a concern for the good of your countrymen, to act, under the character of a Spectator, not only the part of a looker-on, but an overseer of their actions; and whenever such enormities as this infest the town, we immediately fly to you for redress. I have reason to believe, that some thoughtless youngsters, out of a false notion of bravery, and an immoderate fondness to be distinguished for fellows of fire, are insensibly hurried into this senseless, scandalous project. Such will probably stand corrected by your reproofs, especially if you inform them, that it is not courage for half a score fellows, mad with wine and lust, to set upon two or three soberer than themselves; and that the man

accomplishments to an English fine gentleman. Such of them as have been bullies and scowerers of a long standing, and are grown veterans in this kind of service, arc, I fear, too hardened to receive any impres

* The motto prefixed to this paper in folio, is from

Juvenal:

Savis inter se convenit ursis.
Even bears with bears agree.

sions from your admonitions. But I beg you would recommend to their perusal your ninth speculation. They may there be taught to take warning from the club of duellists; and be put in mind, that the common fate of those men of honour was, to be hanged. I am, sir, your most humble servant, PHILANTHROPOS.

.

March 10, 1711-12.'

The following letter is of a quite contrary nature; but I add it here, that the reader may observe, at the same view, how amiable ignorance may be, when it is shown in its simplicities; and how detestable in barbarities. It is written by an honest countryman to his mistress, and came to the hands of a lady of good sense, wrapped about a thread-paper, who has long kept it by her as an image of artless love.

• To her I very much respect, Mrs. garet Clark.

No. 325.] Thursday, March 13, 1711-12.

Quid frustra simulacra fugacia captas?
Quod petis, est nusquam: quod amas avertere, perdes.
1sta repercussæ, quam cernis, imaginis umbra est,
Nil habet ista sui: tecum venitque, manetque;
Tecum discedet; si tu discedere possis.

Ovid. Met. Lib. iii. 432. [From the fable of Narcissus.]

What could, fond youth, this helpless passion move? What kindled in thee this unpitied love? Thy own warm blush within the water glows; With thee the colour'd shadow comes and goes; Its empty being on thyself relies: Step thou aside, and the frail charmer dies.-Addison. WILL HONEYCOMB diverted us last night with an account of a young fellow's first discovering his passion to his mistress. The young lady was one, it seems, who had long before conceived a favourable opinion of him, and was still in hopes that he would

some time or other make his advances. As he was one day talking with her in company of her two sisters, the conversation Mar-happening to turn upon love, each of the young ladies was, by way of raillery, recommending a wife to him; when, to the no small surprise of her who languished for him in secret, he told them, with a more than ordinary seriousness, that his heart had been long engaged to one whose name he thought himself obliged in honour to conceal; but that he could show her picture in the lid of his snuff-box. The young lady, who found herself most sensibly touched by this confession, took the first opportunity that offered of snatching his box out of his hand. He seemed desirous of recovering it; but finding her resolved to lock into the lid, begged her, that, if she should happen to know the person, she would not reveal her name. Upon carrying it to the window, she was very agreeably surprised to find there was nothing within the lid but a little looking-glass; on which, after she had viewed her own face with more pleasure than she had ever done before, she returned the box with a smile, telling him she could not but admire his choice.

Will, fancying that this story took, immediately fell into a dissertation on the usefulness of looking-glasses; and, applying himself to me, asked if there were any looking-glasses in the times of the Greeks and Romans; for that he had often obseryed, in the translations of poems out of those languages, that people generally talked of seeing themselves in wells, fountains, lakes, and rivers. Nay, says he, I remember Mr. Dryden, in his Ovid, tells us of a swinging fellow, called Polypheme, that made use of the sea for his looking-glass, and could never dress himself to advantage but in a calm.

Lovely, and oh that I could write loving, Mrs. Margaret Clark, I pray you let affection excuse presumption. Having been so happy as to enjoy the sight of your sweet countenance and comely body, sometimes when I had occasion to buy treacle or liquorish powder at the apothecary's shop, I am so enamoured with you, that I can no more keep close my flaming desires to become your servant. And I am the more bold now to write to your sweet self, because I am now my own man, and may match where I please; for my father is taken away, and now I am come to my living, which is ten yard land, and a house; and there is never a yard land, † in our field, but it is as well worth ten pounds a year as a thief is worth a halter, and all my brothers and sisters are provided for: besides, I have good household stuff, though I say it, both brass and pewter, linens and woollens; and though my house be thatched, yet, if you and I match, it shall go hard but I will have one half of it slated. If you think well of this motion, I will wait upon you as soon as my new clothes are made, and hay harvest is in. I could, though I say it, have good The rest is torn off; and posterity must be contented to know, that Mrs. Margaret Clark was very pretty; but are left in the dark as to the name of her lover.

T.

A note in Mr. Chalmers's edition of the Spectator in forms us, that this letter was really conveyed in the manner here mentioned to a Mrs. Cole, of Northamp ton: the writer was a gentleman of the name of Bullock: -the part torn off is given in the note alluded to as follows: -good matches amongst my neighbours. My mother, peace be with her soul! the good old gen

1

lewoman, has left me good store of household linen of her own spinning, a chest full. If you and I lay our means together, it shall go hard but I will pave the way to do well. Your loving servant till death, Mister Gabriel Bullock, now my father is dead. See No. 328.*

† A yard land v.rgata terra in some counties,

contains 20 acres, in some 24, and in others 20 acres of

Land-Les Termes de la Ley. Ed. 1667.

My friend Will, to show us the whole compass of his learning upon this subject, further informed us, that there were still several nations in the world so very barbarous as not to have any looking-glasses among them; and that he had lately read a voyage to the South Sea, in which it is

said that the ladies of Chili always dressed | No. 325.] Friday, March 14, 1711-12. their heads over a basin of water.

I am the more particular in my account of Will's last night's lecture on these natural mirrors, as it seems to bear some relation to the following letter, which I received the day before.

SIR,-I have read your last Saturday's observations on the fourth book of Milton with great satisfaction, and am particularly pleased with the hidden moral which you have taken notice of in several parts of the poem. The design of this letter is to desire your thoughts, whether there may not also be some moral couched under that

the

place in the same book, where the poet lets
us know, that the first woman immediately
after her creation ran to a looking-glass, and
became so enamoured of her own face, that
she had never removed to view any
other works of nature, had she not been
led off to a man? If you think fit to set
down the whole passage from Milton, your
readers will be able to judge for themselves,
and the quotation will not a little contribute
to the filling up of your paper. Your hum-

ble servant,

R. T.'

The last consideration_ urged by my querist is so strong, that I cannct forbear closing with it. The passage he alludes to is part of Eve's speech to Adam, and one of the most beautiful passages in the whole poem:

ADAPTED.

Be to her faults a little blind,
Be to her virtues very kind,
And clap your padlock on her mind.—Padlock.
dent's letter relating to fortune-hunters,
'MR. SPECTATOR, -Your correspon-
and your subsequent discourse upon it,
have given me encouragement to send you
a state of my case, by which you will see,
that the matter complained of is a common
grievance both to city and country.

Under a shade of flowers, much wond'ring where
And what I was, whence hither brought, and how.
Not distant far from thence a murmuring sound
Of waters issued from a cave, and spread
Into a liquid plain, and stood unmov'd
Pure as th' expanse of heaven: I thither went
With unexperienc'd thought, and laid me down
On the green bank, to look into the clear
Smooth lake, that to me seem'd another sky.
As I bent down to look, just opposite,
A shape within the watery gleam appear'd,
Bending to look on me; I started back,
It started back; but pleas'd I soon return'd,
Pleas'd it return'd as soon with answering looks
Of sympathy and love: there I had fix'd
Mine eyes till now, and pin'd with vain desire,
Had not a voice thus warn'd me: "What thou seest,
What there thou seest, fair creature, is thyself;
With thee it came and goes; but follow me,
And I will bring thee where no shadow stays
Thy coming and thy soft embraces; he
Whose image thou art, him thou shalt enjoy,
Inseparably thine; to him shalt bear
Multitudes like thyself, and thence be call'd
Mother of human race." What could I do,
But follow straight, invisibly thus led?
Till I espy'd thee, fair indeed and tall,
Under a plantain; yet, methought, less fair,
Less winning soft, less amiably mild,
Than that smooth watery image: back I turn'd;
Thou following cry'dst aloud, "Return, fair Eve!

five and six thousand a year. It is my misI am a country-gentleman of between fortune to have a very fine park and an only daughter; upon which account I have been so plagued with deer-stealers and fops, that for these four years past I have scarce enjoyed a moment's rest. I look upon myself to be in a state of war; and am forced to keep as constant watch in my seat, as a governor would do that commanded a town on the frontier of an enemy's country. I have indeed pretty well sccured my park, having for this purpose provided myself of four keepers, who are left-handed, and handle a quarter-staff beyond any other fellows in the country. And for the guard of my house, besides a band of pensioner matrons and an old maiden relation whom I keep on constant duty, I have blunderbusses always charged, and fox-gins planted in private places about my garden, of which I have given frequent notice in the neighbourhood; yet so it is, that in spite of all my care, I shall every now and then have a saucy rascal ride by, reconnoitering (as I think you call it) under my windows, as sprucely dressed as if he were going to a ball. I am aware of this way of attacking a mistress on horseback, having heard that it is a common practice in Spain; and have therefore taken care to remove my daughter from the road-side of the house, and to lodge her next the garden. But to cut short my story: What can a man do after all? I durst not stand for member of parliament last election, for fear of some ill consequence from my being off my post. What I would therefore desire of you is, to pro

Whom fly'st thou? Whom thou fly'st, of him thou art, mote a project I have set on foot, and upon

His flesh, his bone; to give thee being, I lent
Out of my side to thee, nearest my heart,
Substantial life, to have thee by my side,
Henceforth an individual solace dear:
Part of my soul, I seek thee, and thee claim,
My other half!"-With that thy gentle hand
Seiz'd mine; I yielded, and from that time see
How beauty is excell'd by manly grace
And wisdom, which alone is truly fair.'

which I have written to some of my friends:
and that is, that care may be taken to se-
cure our daughters by law, as well as our
deer; and that some honest gentleman, of
a public spirit, would move for leave to
bring in a bill for the better preserving of
the female game. I am, sir, your humble
servant.'

So spake our general mother

That day I oft remember, when from sleep I first awak'd, and found myself repos'd

Inclusam Danaen turris ahenea,
Robustæque fores, et vigilum canum
Tristes excubiæ munierant satis
Nocturnis ab adulteris:
Si non-

X.

Hor. Lib. iii. Od. xvi. 1.

Of watchful dogs an odious ward
Right well one hapless virgin guard,
When in a tower of brass immur'd,
By mighty bars of steel secur'd,
Although by mortal rake-hells lewd
With all their midnight arts pursu'd,
Had not-
Francis, vol. ii. p. 77.

« PreviousContinue »