« AnteriorContinuar »
may find he is but ripe for destruction and that there may be in the womb of time great incidents, which may make the catastrophe of a prosperous life as un. fortunate as the particular scenes of it were successful! For there does not want a skilful eye and resolute arm to observe and grasp the occasion: a prince, who from
Fuit Ilium et ingens
Troy is no more, and Ilinm was a town. T.
AN HUMANE MASTER AND AFFEC
PHÆDR. Epilog. 1. 2.
and placed him, though a slave, on a lasting pe. destal ; to show that the way to honour lies open
indifferently to all." THE reception, manner of attendance, undistarbed
freedom and quiet, which I meet with here in the country, has coufirmed me in the opinion I always bad, that the general corruption of manners in ser: vants is owing to the condnct of masters. of every one in the family carries so much satisfaction, that it appears he knows the happy lot which has be fallen him iu being a member of it.
There is one particular which I have seldom seen but at Sir it is usual in all other places, that servants ny from the parts of the house tbrough which their master is passing; on the contrary, here they industriously place
themselves in his way; and it is on both sides, as it 7 Were, understood as a visit, when the servants appear
without calling. This proceeds from the humane and equal temper of the man of the house, who also per. ' fectly well knows how to enjoy a great estate, with such
economy as ever to be much before-hand. This makes his own mind untroubled, and consequently un. apt to vent peevish expressions, or give passionate or inconsistent orders to those about him. Thus respect
and love go together; and a certain cheerfulness in ड the performance of their duty is the particular distinc
tion of the lower part of this family. When a servant
is called before his master, he does not come with an $ expectation to hear bimself rated for some trivial
fault, threatened to be stripped, or used with any other unbecoming language, wbich mean masters often give to worthy servants; but it is often to know, what road he took that he came so readily back according to order; whether he passed by such a ground; if the old man who rents it is in good health ; or whether he gave Sir's love to him, or the like.
A man who preserves a respect founded on his bepevolence to his dependants, lives rather like a prince than a master in his family; his orders are received as favours rather than duties; and the distinction of approaching him is part of the reward for executing what is commanded by him.
There is another circumstance in which my friend excels in his management, which is the manner of rewarding his servants. He has ever been of opinion, that giving his cast clothes to be worn by valets has a very ill effect upon little minds, and creates a silly sense of equality between the parties, in persons affected only with outward things. I have heard him often pleasant on this occasion, and describe a young gentle. man abusing his man in that coat, which a month or two before was the most pleasing distinction he was conscious of in himself. He would turn bis discourse
the difference as speculation on wasters, 1 st semon life, bu
I never saw TO THOTE, good
in, and this
Levant of a as which wil
At the very us the portrait
TX, the one
208 AN HUMANE MASTER AND still more pleasantly upon the bounties of the ladies in endants, and the woman, who distributed rewards and punishments in two to the this kind; and I have heard him say he knew a fine masters giving becoming or unbecoming dresses to her maids.
But my good friend is above these little instances of good-will, in bestowing only trifles on his servants ; a good servant to him is sure of having it in his choice very soon of being no servant at all. As I before observed, he is so good a husband and knows so thoroughly that the skill of the purse is the cardinal virtue of this life; I say, he knows so well that frugality is the support of generosity, that he can often spare a Fiction to large fine when a tenen:ent falls, and give that settlement to a good servant who bas a mind to go into the world, or make a stranger pay the fine to that servant, for his more comfortable maintenance, if he stays in his service.
A man of honour and generosity considers it would be miserable to bimself to have no will but that of alb other, though it were of the best person breathing, and for that reason goes on as fast as he is able to Servants into independent livelihoods. The greatest i teler who 8t00 part of Sir - - estate is tenanted by persons who have served himself or his ancestors. It was to me extremely pleasant to observe the visitants from several parts to welcome his arrival into the country: and all The difference that I could take notice of between the late servants who came to see him, and those who staid in the family, was, that these latter were looked upon as finer gentlemen and better courtiers.
of This manumission, and placing them in a way livelihood, I look upon as only what is due to a good servant; which enconragement will make bis successer be as diligent, as bumble, and as ready as he was
of There is something wonderful in the narrownese those minds, which can be pleased, and be barren of bounty to those who please them.
One might, on this occasion, recount the sense that great persons in all ages have had of the merit of their
ho to sho wards the of ambled my
ched me that
sue, bad mia How at ad embered in vorby gentle
a little di tendant in will, and a well, that saved his
dependants, and the heroic services which men have done their masters in the extremity of their fortunes : and shown to their undone patrons, that fortune was all the difference between them; but as I design this my speculation only as a gentle admonition to thankless masters, I shall not go out of the occurrences of common life, but assert it as a general observation, that I never saw, but in Sir's family and one or two more, good servants treated as they ought to be. Sir ma's kindness extends to their children's chil. dren, and this very morning he sent his coachman's grandson to prentice. I shall conclude this essay with an account of a picture in his gallery, where there are many which will deserve iny future observation. At the
very upper end of this handsome structure I saw the portraiture of two young men standing in a river, the one naked, the other in a livery. The person supported seemed half dead, but still so much alive as to show in his face exquisite joy and love towards the other. I thought the fainting tigure resembled my friend Sir ; and looking at the butler who stood by me, for an account of it, he informed me that the person in the livery was a servant of Sir 's, who stood on the shore while his master was swimming, and observing him taken with some sudden illness, and sink under water, jumped in and saved him. Ile told me Sir - took off the dress he was in as soon as he came home, and by a great bounty at that time, followed by his favour ever since, had made him master of that pretty seat which we saw at a distance as we came to this house. I remembered indeed Sir said, there lived a very worthy gentleman, to whom he was highly obliged, without mentioning any thing further. Upon my looking a little dissatisfied at some part of the picture, my attendant informed me that it was against Sir --'s will, and at the earuest request of the gentleman himself, that he was drawn in the habit in which he had saved his master.
TOMBS OF WESTMINSTER ABBEY.
Pallida mors aquo pulsat pede pauperum tabernas
Regumque turres, o beate Serti. Vite summa brevis spem nos vetut inchoare longam,
Jam te premit nox, fabulaque manes, Et domus erilis Plutonia
HOR. With equal foot, rich friend, impartial fate, Knocks at the cottage, and the palace gate: Life's span forbids thee to extend thy cares, And stretch thy hopes beyond thy destin'd years: Night will soon seize, and you must quickly go To story'd ghosts, and Pluto's house below. Ire tamen restat, Numa qua devenit, et Ancus.
HOR. With Ancus, and with Numa, kings of Rome, We must descend into the silent tomb.
MY friend Sir Roger told me t'other night that he
should be glad to go and see the tombs of Westmiuster Abbey with me, not having visited them since he bad read history. I could not at first imagine bow this came into the knight's head, till I recollected that he had been very busy all last summer upon Baker's Chronicle, which he has quoted several times in bis (lisputes with Sir Andrew Freeport, since his last com. ing to town. Accordingly I promised to call npon him the next morning, that we might go together to the Abbey.
I found the knight under his butler's hands, who always shaves him. He was no sooner dressed, than he bid one of his servants, who stood bebind him, to call a hackney.coach, and take care it was an elderly man that drove it. · His man returned soon, telling him he badl called a coach. Upon our going to it, after having cast bis eje