Imágenes de páginas

Mr. FRANCIS, my friend any countryman, translates this very calmly,

6. The merchant praises his retreat,
“ The quiet of his rural feat.”

And most of the other interpreters and commentators would have the OPPIDI RURA to mean the intermingled trees and gardens, which are generally to be met with in country towns. But Dr. BENTLEY, very sensible that there were no two words in the Latin language more opposite than OPPIDUM and Rus, alters the word RURA into TUTA, and by that means (according to custom) spoils one of the finest passages in the book.

It is notorious, that in Horace's time the Romans had arrived to the highest pitch of extravagancy with regard to their buildings, especially their villas, which were so many little towns and peopled with innumerable slaves : nay the land was not sufficient, the very sea was encroach'd upon to contribute to the grandeur of their retirements; as HORACE in another place observes :-Contracta pifces æquora sentiunt.

This being premised, we shall find the passage before us to contain perhaps as good an irony as any in Horace, which irony is ftrongly heighten’d by the contrast of RurA and OPPIDI. It is not, I conceive, practicable to translate this pafiage literally :-But please to accept of this paraphrase.

The merchant, by his toil-bought wealth grown great,
Builds a metropolis for a retreat,
And, 'midst the dust of crouds and hum of men,
Praises the stillness of the rural scene.

July 16, 1750.

G. W,


ANECDOTE concerning the ExecuTIONER

of King CHARLE S.

Communicated by Dr. RAW LIN SO N.

HE histories of England being altogether filent as to any

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

to the decollation of CHARLES I. (that glorious king and martyr) the following short account (undoubtedly true) muft be highly acceptable to the publick.

RICHARD BRANDON, common executioner or hangman at that time, dyed upon Wednesday, June 20, 1649. (within five months after the king's martyrdom.) The funday before BRANDON died, a young man of his 'acquaintance, being to visit him, ask'd him how he did, and whether he was not troubled in conscience for cutting off the king's head ? BRANDON reply'd, yes, because he was at the king's trial, and heard the sentence denounced against him; which caused the faid BRANDON to make this solemn vow or protestation, viz. wishing God to perish his body and soul, if ever he appear'd on the scaffold to do the act or lift up his hand against him. And he farther declared, that he was no sooner enter'd upon the scaffold (to do that wicked act) but immediately he fell a trembling, and hath (ever since) to his death continued in the like agony. He likewise confess'd that he had 30 1. for his pains, all paid him in half crowns, within an hour after the blow was struck: and that he had an orange

stuck full of cloves, and an handkerchief out of the king's pocket, As soon as he was carried off from the scaffold, he was proffer'd 20 s. for that orange by a gentleman in Whitehall but refus’d the fame, but afterwards sold it for ros. in Rosemary-lane. About fix o'clock that night he return'd home to his wife living in Rosemary-lane, and gave her the money saying it was the dearest money that ever he earn'd in his life? which prophetical words were soon made manifefto About three days before he died (as above mentioned) he lay speechless, uttering many a sigh as heavy groan, and in a moft deplorable manner departed from his bed of forrow. For his burial great store of wine was sent in by the sheriff of the city of London, and a great multitude of people stood waiting to see his corps carried to the church-yard, some crying out, hang him, rogue, bury him in a dunghill, others preffing upon him, saying they would quarter him for executing the king, insomuch that the church-wardens and masters of the parish were fain to come for the suppressing of them; and with great difficulty he was at last carried to White-chapel church-yard, having a bunch of rosemary at each end of the coffin and on the top thereof, with a rope tied a-cross from one end to the other.


O 02

The man, that waited upon this executioner when he gave the fatal blow, was a ragman in Rosemary-lane.



An improper DIVERSION for the FAIR SE X,

Unmanly courage, unbeseeming skill,
To spring the fence, to rein the prancing steed,
The cap, the whip, the masculine attire,
In which they roughen to the sense, and all
The winning softness of the sex is loft.



HE following letter will explain to my readers the reason

of my handling a subject likely to gain me fo many fair enemies : but when they consider I cenfure only to amend, their good fenfe, I doubt not, will readily pardon me.

[ocr errors]

S you have promis’d to take the Ladies into your

protection, I can no where apply myself fo properly, “ for the amendment of any abuse that regards the fair sex.

“ Unluckily


« Unluckily for me, I am very short-lighted ; and have not yet

arriv'd to the fashionable arance of wearing spectacles. “ Happening t'other day to dine at a friend's in the country, " I sat opposite to a very smart spruce-looking young fellow. " His hair was tied up behind; his coat was adorn'd “ with a blue fatin cape and cuffs ; his wastcoat of the same; « in short, his whole dress and appearance exactly resembled 66 that of our modern Beau-monde.- -Upon my addressing “ him on fome occasion with the appellation of Sir," my young spark, I observ'd, applied a white handkerchief

immediately to his face, while a sort of simpering or grin“ ing went round the table. I did not then comprehend the “ mystery: but soon after wanting something that stood next

my gentleman, I desir’d his help, concluding with “ There's enough Sir !-- Sir! --Sir, I thank you.-- This set the « table into commotion; the men at once burst into a loud “ horse-laugh; the females titter'd ; and I-look'd serious. At length the good lady of the family, pitying my confu“ fion, told me, she fancied the lady's drefs had deceiv'd me; “ for she was just come from hunting. -My mistake, you

may imagine, was the cause of much mirth and wit among “ the company. In truth I had reason to regret my being fo “ near-fighted, or the pretty face of my fair huntress would “ have easily inform’d me of her sex. I determin'd however “ to write to your worship (whose advice, I find, is very " much esteem'd by the LADIES) to desire your opinion of " a dress, which in that sex appears to me highly prepos66 terous and absurd. I am, Sir, your humble servant


My correspondent is very unlucky, as he observes, in being fo short-fighted; or, I dare say, such a dress and appearance had been nothing new to him : for as to the face, that might not have been so infallible a mark, fince so many of our delicate-complexion’d Petit-maitres have encroach'd on that branch of the female prerogative

I cannot

I cannot, indeed, but highly disapprove not only the habit, but also the cause of it. Hufting is an exercise very improper for the fair sex. It makes them appear rough and manlike : it robs them of all the endearing softness, all the alluring tenderness, that so captivates and charms the heart. As pity and a certain degree of timorousness are essentially woven into their constitution, do they not pervert the very end of their creation, who daringly tempt the perils of the chace, or exult in the prosecution and death of a poor harmless animal ? If the laws of decency are not broke thro' by such an unbecoming practice, I am sure, those of delicacy are, which above all things 'tis the business of the fair to keep up.

Miss PEGGY ATALL is the only child of an honest country 'squire in this neighbourhood, whom I sometimes visit. Her mother dying when she was young, her education was left solely to the care of her father, who being very fond of her, out of his particular affection, brought her up and inur'd her to all the laborious sports of the field. But HUNTING is her favourite diversion : she was reckon'd the boldest rider in the county : and as she is an heiress, many a young fox-hunter, whose love has been greater than his prudence, has hazarded his neck and cheaply come off with a dislocated limb or so, in following her thro' the various perils and hairbreadth 'scapes of the chase. Her whole conversation turns on that topick: I have often heard her charm a large circle of gaping fellow-sportsmen with a recapitulation of the feats of the day: she would descant a whole hour on the virtues of Dreadnought, her own horse, who had brought her in at the death of a stag, with Tom the huntsman, when every gentleman on the field was thrown out; concluding with the most exulting expressions of barbarous joy at feeing the poor beast torn to pieces, when, as Mr. Thomson elegantly describes it,

The big round tears run down his dappled neck,
He groans in an cuifh; while the growling pack


« AnteriorContinuar »