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“to you, not without some consusion, that I have “thought on nothing else for these two long years, “but the happy life we should lead together, and the “means I should use to make myself still more “dearer to him. My fortune was indeed much be“yond his ; and as I was always in the company of “my relations, he was forced to discover his inclina“tions, and declare himself to me by stories of other “persons, kind looks and many ways which he knew “too well that I understood. Oh Mr. Bickerstaff, it “is impossible to tell you, how industrious I have been “to make him appear lovely in my thoughts. I made “it a point of conscience to think well of him and of “no man else: but he has since had an estate fallen “to him, and makes love to another of a greater for“tune than mine. I could not believe the report of “this at first ; but about a fortnight ago I was convin“ced of the truth of it by his own behaviour. He “came to give our family a formal visit, when, as “there were several in company, and things talked “of the discourse fell upon some unhappy woman “Who was in my own circumstances. It was said “by one in the room, that they could not believe the “story could be true, because they did not believe any “man could be so false. Upon which I stole a look “upon him with an anguish not to be expressed. He “saw my eyes full of tears, yet had the cruelty to say “that he could see no falsehood in alterations of this “nature, where there had been no contracts or vows “interchanged. Pray do not make a jest of misery, “but tell me seriously your opinion of his behaviour; “and if you can have any pity for my condition, pub“lish this in your next paper, that being the only way “I have of complaining of his unkindness, and shew“ing him the injustice he has done me. I am, * Your humble servant, “The unfortunate, 4. STATIR.A.”
The name my correspondent gives herself, puts me in mind of my old reading in romances, and brings into my thoughts a speech of the renowned Don Bellianis, who, upon a complaint made to him of a discourteous knight, that had left his injured paramour in the same manner, dries up her tears with a promise of rerelief. “Disconsolate damsel, quoth he, a foul disgrace “it were to all right worthy professors of chivalry, if “ such a blot to knighthood should pass unchastised. “Give me to know the abode of this recreant lover, “ and I will give him as a feast to the fowls of the “ air, or drag him bound before you at my horse's “ tail.”
I am not ashamed to own myself a champion of distressed damsels, and would venture as far to relieve them as Don Bellianis; for which reason, I do invite this lady to me let know the name of the traitor who has deceived her; and do promise, not only her, but the fair ones of Great-Britain, who lie under the same calamity, to employ my right-hand for their redress, and serve them to my last drop of ink.
No. CXXIX. SATURDAY, FEBRUABY 4.
WHEN my paper for to-morrow was prepared for the press, there came in this morning a mail from Holland, which brought me several advices from foreign parts, and took my thoughts off domestic affairs. Among others, I have a letter from a burgher of Amsterdam, who makes me his compliments, and tells me he has sent me several draughts of humorous and
satirical pictures by the best hands of the Dutch nation. They are a trading people, and in their very minds mechanics. They express their wit in manufacture, as we do in manuscript. He informs me, that a very witty hand has lately represented the present posture of public affairs in a landscape, or rather sea-piece, wherein the potentates of the alliance are figured as their interest correspond with, or affect each other, under the appearance of commanders of ships. These vessels carry the colours of the respective nations concerned in the present war. The whole design seems to tend to one point, which is, that several Squadrons of British and Dutch ships are batttering a French man of war, in order to make her deliver up a long-boat with Spanish colours. My correspondent informs me, that a man must understand the compass perfectly well, to be able to comprehend the beauty and invention of this piece, which is so skilfully drawn, that the particular views of every prince in Europe, are seen according as the ships lie to the main figure in the picture, and as that figure may help or retard their sailing. It seems this curiosity is now on board a ship bound for England, and, with other rarities, made a present to me. As soon as it arrives, I design to expose it to public view at my secretary Mr. Lillie's, who shall have an explication of all the terms of art; and I doubt not but it will give as good content as the moving-picture in Fleet-street. But above all the honours I have received from the learned world abroad, I am most delighted with the following epistle from Rome:
Pasquin of Rome to Isaac Bickerstaff of Great Britain, - greeting. “SIR, “YOUR reputation has passed the Alps, and “would have come to my ears by this time, if I had “any. In short, Sir, you are looked on here as a
northern droll, and the greatest virtuoso among the Tramontanes. Some, indeed, say, that Mr. Bickerstaff and Pasquin are only names invented, to father compositions which the natural parent does not care for owning. But however that is, all agree, that there are several persons, who, if they durst attack you, would endeavour to leave you no more limbs than I have. I need not tell you that my adversaries have joined in a confederacy with time to demolish me, and that, if I were not a very great wit, I should make the worst figure in Europe, being abridged of my legs, arms, nose, and ears. If you think fit to accept of the correspondence of so facetious a cripple, I shall from time to time send you an account of what happens at Rome. You have only heard of it from Latin and Greek authors; nay, perhaps, have read no accounts from hence, but of a triumph, ovation, or apotheosis, and will, doubtless, be surprised to see the description of a procession, jubilee, or canonization. I shall, however, send you what the place affords, in return to what I shall receive from you. If you will acquaint me with your next promotion of general officers, I will send you an account of our next advancement of saints. If you will let me know who is reckoned the bravest warrior in Great-Britain, I will tell you who is the best fiddler in Rome. If you will favour me with an inventory of the riches that were brought into your nation by Admiral Wager, I will not fail giving you an account of a pot of medals that has been lately dug up here, and are now under the examination of our ministers of State.
“There is one thing, in which I desire you would be very particular. What I mean, is an exact list of all the religions in Great-Britain, as likewise the habits, which are said here to be the great points of conscience in England, whether they are made of
“Serge or broad-cloth, of silk or linen. I should be