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whom she is angry with! But alas ! when she pleases to be gone, thou wilt also vanish — yet let me talk to thee while thou dost stay. Tell
my dearest Betty thou dost not more depend upon her than does her William ; her absence will make away with me as well as thee. If 5 she offers to remove thee, I will jump into these waves to lay hold on thee herself, her own dear person, I must never embrace again. Still do you hear me without one smile — it is too much to bear." He had no sooner spoke these words, but he made an offer of throwing 10 himself into the water : at which his mistress started up, and at the next instant he jumped across the fountain, and met her in an embrace. She, half recovering from her fright, said in the most charming voice imaginable, and with a tone of complaint, “I thought how well you would 15 drown yourself. No, no, you will not drown yourself till you have taken your leave of Susan Holiday.” • The huntsman, with a tenderness that spoke the most passionate love, and with his cheek close to hers, whispered the softest vows of fidelity in her ear, and cried, “Do 20 not, my dear, believe a word Kate Willow says; she is spiteful, and makes stories, because she loves to hear me talk to herself for your sake.” “Look you there," quoth Sir Roger, “ do you see there, all mischief comes from confidantes ! But let us not interrupt them; the maid is 25 honest, and the man dares not be otherwise, for he knows I loved her father : I will interpose in this matter, and hasten the wedding. Kate Willow is a witty mischievous wench in the neighbourhood, who was a beauty; and makes me hope I shall see the perverse widow in her 30 condition, She was
lippant in her answers to all
the honest fellows that came near her, and so very vain of her beauty, that she has valued herself upon her charms till they are ceased. She therefore now makes it her business to prevent other young women from being 5 more discreet than she was herself: however, the saucy thing said the other day well enough, Sir Roger and I must make a match, for we are both despised by those we loved. The hussy has a great deal of power wherever she comes, and has her share of cunning.
However, when I reflect upon this woman, I do not know whether in the main I am the worse for having loved her: whenever she is recalled to my imagination, my youth returns, and I feel forgotten warmth in my
veins. This affliction in my life has streaked all my 15 conduct with a softness, of which I should otherwise
have been incapable. It is owing, perhaps, to this dear image in my heart that I am apt to relent, that I easily forgive, and that many desirable things are grown into
my temper, which I should not have arrived at by better 20 motives than the thought of being one day hers. I am
pretty well satisfied such a passion as I have had is never well cured ; and between you and me, I am often apt to imagine it has had some whimsical effect upon my
brain : for I frequently find, that in my most serious 25 discourse I let fall some comical familiarity of speech
or odd phrase that makes the company laugh. However, I cannot but allow she is a most excellent woman. When she is in the country, I warrant she does not run
into dairies, but reads upon the nature of plants ; she 30 has a glass beehive, and comes into the garden out of
books to see them work, and observe the policies of their commonwealth. She understands every thing. I would give ten pounds to hear her argue with my friend Sir Andrew Freeport about trade. No, no, for all she looks so innocent as it were, take my word for it she is no fool.”
COUNTRY MANNERS. [ADDISON.]
No. 119. — TUESDAY, JULY 17, 1711.
URBEM quam dicunt Romam, Melibee, putavi
The first and most obvious reflexions which arise in a man who changes the city for the country, are upon the different manners of the people whom he meets with in those two different scenes of life. By manners I do 5 not mean morals, but behaviour and good breeding, as they shew themselves in the town and in the country.
And here, in the first place, I must observe a very great revolution that has happened in this article of
good breeding. Several obliging deferences, condescen10 sions, and submissions, with many outward forms and cere
monies that accompany them, were first of all brought up among the politer part of mankind, who lived in courts and cities, and distinguished themselves from the rustic
part of the species (who on all occasions acted bluntly 15 and naturally) by such a mutual complaisance and inter
course of civilities. These forms of conversation by degrees multiplied and grew troublesome; the modish world found too great a constraint in them, and have therefore thrown most of them aside. Conversation,
like the Romish religion, was so encumbered with shew and ceremony, that it stood in need of a reformation to retrench its superfluities, and restore it to its natural good sense and beauty. At present, therefore, an unconstrained carriage and a certain openness of behaviour 5 are the height of good breeding. The fashionable world is grown free and easy ; our manners sit more loose upon us; nothing is so modish as an agreeable negligence. In a word, good breeding shews itself most where to an ordinary eye it appears the least.
If after this we look on the people of mode in the country, we find in them the manners of the last age. They have no sooner fetched themselves up to the fashion of the polite world, but the town has dropped them, and are nearer to the first state of nature than to 15 those refinements which formerly reigned in the court, and still prevail in the country. One may now know a man that never conversed in the world, by his excess of good breeding. A polite country 'squire shall make you as many bows in half an hour as would serve a 20 courtier for a week. There is infinitely more to do about place and precedency in a meeting of justices' wives than in an assembly of duchesses.
This rural politeness is very troublesome to a man of my temper, who generally take the chair that is next 25 me, and walk first or last, in the front or in the rear, as chance directs. I have known my friend Sir Roger's dinner almost cold before the company could adjust the ceremonial, and be prevailed upon to sit down ; and have heartily pitied my old friend, when I have seen 30 him forced to pick and cull his guests, as they sat at