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first wits of that age. But because ridicule is not so delicate as compassion, and because the objects that make us laugh are infinitely more numerous than those that make us weep, there is a much greater latitude for comic than tragic artifices, and by consequence a much greater indulgence to be allowed them. C.

No. 45.] Saturday, Ahril 21, 1711.

Natio comoeda est Juv. Sat. iii. 100. The nation is a company of players.

THERE is nothing which I desire more than a safe and honourable peace, though at the same time I am very apprehensive of many ill consequences that may attend it. I do not mean in regard to our politics, but to our manners. hat an inundation of ribands and brocades will break in upon us? What peals of laughter and impertinence shall we be exposed to ? For the o of those great evils, I could eartily wish that there was an act of parliament for prohibiting the importation of French fopperies. The female inhabitants of our island have already received very strong impressions from this ludicrous nation, though by the length of the war (as there is no evil which has not some good attending it) they are pretty well worn out and forgotten. I remember the time when some of our wellbred country-women kept their valet de chambre; because, forsooth, a man was much more handy about them than one of their own sex. I myself have seen one of these male Abigails tripping about the room with a looking-glass in his hand, and combing his lady’s hair a whole morning together. Whether or no there was an truth in the story of a lady’s being got wit child by one of these her hand-maids, I cannot tell; but I think at present the whole race of them is extinct in our own country. About the time that several of our sex were taken into this kind of service, the ladies likewise brought up the fashion of receiving visits in their beds. It was then looked upon as a piece of ill-breeding for a woman to refuse to see a man because she was not stirring; and a porter would have been thought unfit for his place, that could have made so awkward an excuse. As I love to see every thing that is new, I once prevailed upon my friend Will Honeycomb to carry me along with him to one of these travelled ladies, desiring him at the same time to present me as a foreigner who could not speak English, that so I might not be obliged to bear a part in the discourse. The lady, though willing to appear undrest, had put on her best looks, and painted herself for our reception. Her hair appeared in a very nice disorder, as the night-gown which was thrown upon her shoulders was ruffled with great care. For my part, I am so shocked with everything

which looks immodest in the fair sex, that I could not forbear taking off my eye from her when she moved in bed, and was in the greatest confusion imaginable every time she stirred a leg, or an arm. As de co§. who introduced this custom grew old, they left it off by degrees; well knowing that a woman of threescore may kick and tumble her heart out, without making any impression. mpronia is at present the most professed admirer of the French nation, but is so modest as to admit her visitants no further than her toilet. It is a very odd sight that beautiful creature makes, when she is talking politics, with her tresses flowing about her shoulders, and examining that face in the glass, which does such execution upon all the male standers-by. How prettily does she divide her discourse between her women and her visitants! What sprightly transitions does she make from an opera or a sermon, to an ivory comb or a pin-cushion! How have I been pleased to see her interrupted in an account of her travels, by a message to her footman; and holding her tongue in the midst of a moral reflection, by applying the tip of it to a patch. here is nothing which exposes a woman to greater dangers, than that gayety and airiness of temper, which are natural to most of the sex. It should be therefore the concern of every wise, and virtuous woman to keep this sprightliness from degenerating into levity. On the contrary, the whole discourse and behaviour of the French is to make the sex more fantastical, or (as they are pleased to term it) more awakened, than is consistent either with virtue or discretion. To speak loud in public assemblies, to let every one hear you talk of things that should only be mentioned in private, or in whisper, are looked upon as parts of a refined education. At the same time, a blush is unfashionable, and silence more ill-bred than any thing that can be spoken. In short, discretion and modesty, which in all other ages and countries have been regarded as the greatest ornaments of the fair sex, are considered as the ingredients of narrow conversation, and family behaviour. Some years ago I was at the tragedy of Macbeth, and unfortunately placed myself under a woman of quality that is since dead; who as I found by the noise she made was newly returned from France. A little before the rising of the curtain, she broke out into a loud soliloquy, “When will the dear witches enter?” and immediately upon their first appearance, asked a lady that sat three boxes from her on her right hand, if those witches were not charming creatures. A little after, as Betterton was in one of the finest speeches of the play, she shook her fan at another lady, who sat as far on her left hand, and told her with a whisper that might be heard all over the pit, “We must not expect to see Balloon to-night.” Not

long after, calling out to a young baronet by his name, who sat three seats before me, she asked him whether Macbeth’s wife was still alive; and before he could give an answer, fell a talking of the ghost of Banquo. She had by this time formed a little audience to herself, and fixed the attention of all about her. But as I had a mind to hear the play, I got out of the sphere of her impertinence, and planted myself in one of the remotest corners of the pit. This pretty childishness of behaviour is one of the most refined parts of coquetry, and is not to be .." in perfection by ladies that do not travel for their improvement. A natural and unconstrained behaviour has something in it so agreeable, that it is no wonder to see people endeavouring after it. But at the same time it is so very hard to hit, when it is not born with us, that people often make themselves ridiculous in attempting it. A very ingenious French author tells us, that the ladies of the court of France, in his time, thought it ill-breeding, and a kind of female A. , to pronounce a hard word right: for which reason they took frequent occasion to use hard words, that they might show a politeness in murdering them. He further adds, that a lady of some quality at court having accidently made use of a hard word in a proper place, and pronounced it right, the whole assembly was out of countenance for her. I must however be so just as to own that there are many ladies who have travelled several thousands of miles without being the worse for it, and have brought home with them all the modesty, discretion, and good sense, that they went abroad with. As on the cont , there are great numbers of travelled ladies who have lived all their days within the smoke of London. I have known a woman that never was out of the parish of St. James’s betray as many foreign fopperies in her carriage, as she could have gleaned up in half the countries of Europe. - C.

No.46.] Monday, Ahril 23, 1711.

Non bene junctarum discordia semina rerum.
Ovid, JMet. Lib. i. ver, 8.

The jarring seeds of ill-concerted things.

WHEN I want materials for this paper, it is my custom to go abroad in quest of

me; and when I meet any proper subject, I take the first opportunity of setting down a hint upon paper. At the same time I look into the letters of my corres

ndents, and if I find any thing suggested in them that may afford matter of speculation, I likewise enter a minute of it in m collection of materials. By this means frequently carry about me a whole sheetful of hints, that would look like a rha sody of nonsense to any body but myself. There is nothing in them but obscurity and

confusion, raving and inconsistency. In short, they are my speculations in the first principles, that §. the world in its chaos) are void of all fight, distinction, and order.

About a week since there happened to .

me a very odd accident, by reason of one of these my papers of minutes which I had accidentally dropped at Lloyd’s coffee-house, where the auctions are usually kept. Before I missed it, there were a cluster of people who had found it, and were diverting themselves with it at one end of the coffee-house. It had raised so much laughter among them before I had observed what they were about, that I had not the courage to own it. The boy of the coffee-house, when they had done with it, carried it about in his hand, asking every body if they had dropE. a written paper; but nobody chalenging it, he was ordered by those merry gentlemen who had perused it, to get up

into the auction pulpit, and read it to the .

whole room, that if any one would own it, they might. The boy accordingly mounted the pulpit, and with a very ... voice read as follows:

MINUTES,

Sir Roger de Coverley's country-seat— Yes, for §. long speeches—Query, if a §. Christian may be a conjurer–Chil

ermas-day, saltseller, house-dog, screechowl, cricket—Mr. Thomas Inkle of London, in the good ship called the Achilles. Yarico—Aegrescitgue medendo—Ghosts— The Lady’s Library—Lion }. trade a tailor—Dromedary ğı Bucephalus—Equipage the lady's summum bonum—Charles Lillie to be taken notice of Short face a relief to envy—Redundancies in the three professions—King Latinus a recruit—Jew devouring a ham of bacon—Westminsterabbey—Grand Cairo–Procrastination— April fools—Blue boars, red lions, hogs in armour—Enter a King and two Fiddlers solus—Admission into the Ugly Club— Beauty how improveable—Families of true and false humour—The parrot's schoolmistress—Face half Pict half British—No man to be a hero of a tragedy under six feet—Club of sighers—Letters from flowerpots, elbow-chairs, tapestry, figures, lion, thunder—The bell rings to the puppetshow—Old woman with a beard married to a smock-faced boy—My next coat to be turned up with blue—Fable of tongs and gridiron-Flower dyers—The Soldier’s prayer—Thank ye for nothing, says the galley-pot—Pactolus in stockings with golden clocks to them—Bamboos, cudgels, drum-sticks—Slip of my lady’s eldest daughter—The black mare with a star in her forehead—The barber’s pole—Will Honeycomb's coat-pocket—Caesar's behaviour and my own in parallel circumstances —Poem in patch-work—Mulli gravis est

fiercussus Achilles—The female conventi

cler—The ogle-master.

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The reading of this paper made the whole coffee-house very merry; some of them concluded it was written by a madman; and others by somebody that had been taking notes out of the Spectator. One who had the appearance of a very substantial citizen, told us, with several political winks and nods, that he wished there was no more in the paper than was expressed in it: that for his part, he looked upon the dromedary, the gridiron, and the barber’s pole to signify something more than what was usually meant by those words: and that he thought the coffee-man could not do better than to carry the paper to one of the secretaries of state. He further added, that he did not like the name of the outlandish man with the golden clock in his stockings. A young Oxford scholar, who chanced to be with ń. uncle at the coffeehouse, discovered to us who this Pactolus was; and by that means turned the whole scheme of this worthy citizen into ridicule. While they were making their several conjectures upon this innocent paper, I reached out my arm to the boy as he was coming out of the pulpit, to give it me; which he did accordingly. This drew the eyes of the whole company upon me; but after havin

cast a cursory glance over it, and shoo

my head twice or thrice at the reading of it, I twisted it into a kind of match, and lighted my pipe with it. My profound silence, together with the steadiness of my countenance, and the gravity of my behaviour during this whole transaction, raised a }:{ loud laugh on all sides of me; but as I escaped all suspicion of being the author, I was very well satisfied, and ap

ing myself to my pipe and the Postman, took no further notice of anything that had passed about me.

My reader will find, that I have already made use of above half the contents of the foregoing j and will easily suppose, that those subjects which are yet untouched, were such provisions as I had made for his future entertainment. But as I have been unluckily prevented by this accident, I shall only give him the letters which related to the two last hints. The first of them I should not have published, were I not informed that there is many a husband who suffers very much in his private affairs by the indiscreet zeal of such a partner as is hereafter mentioned; to whom I may apply the barbarous inscription quoted by the Bishop of Salisbury in his travels; * Dum mimis fia est facta est implia:’--“Through too much piety she became impious.”

*SIR,--I am one of those unhappy men that are plagued with a gospel-gossip, so common among dissenters (especially friends.) Lectures in the morning, churchmeetings at noon, and preparation sermons at night, take up so much of her time, it is very rare she knows what we have for din

ner, unless when the preacher is to be at it. With him come a tribe, all brothers and sisters it seems; while others really such, are deemed no relations. If at any time I have her company alone, she is a mere sermon pop-gun, repeating and discharging texts, proofs, and applications, so perF. that however weary I may go to

, the noise in my head will not let me sleep till towards morning. The mise of my case, and great numbers of such sufferers, plead your pity and speedy relief; otherwise must expect, in a little time, to be lectured, preached, and E. into want, unless the happiness of being sooner talked to death preventit. I am, ; G.”

&

The second letter, relating to the oglingmaster, runs thus:

“MR. SPECTAtoR,--I am an Irish gentleman that have travelled many years for my improvement; during which time I have accomplished myself in the whole art of ogling, as it is at present practised in the polite nations of Europe. Being thus

ualified, I intend, by the advice of m

iends, to set up for an ogling-master. teach the church-ogle in the morning, and the play-house, ogle by candle-light. ... I have also brought over with me a new flying ogle fit for the ring; which I teach in the dusk of the evening, or in any hour of the day, by darkening one of my windows. I have a o: by me called The Complete Ogler, which I shall be ready to show you on any occasion. In the mean time I beg you will publish the substance of this letter in an advertisement, and you will very much oblige, Yours, &c.” C.

No. 47.] Tuesday, Ahril 24, 1711. Ride si sapis— Mart. Laugh, if you are wise. MR. Hobbs,” in his Discourse of Human Nature, which, in my humble opinion, is much the best of all his works, after some very curious observations upon laughter, concludes thus: “The o of laughter is nothing else but sudden glory arising from some sudden conception of some eminency in ourselves, by comparison with the infirmity of others, or with our own formerly; for men laugh at the follies of themselves past, when they come suddenl to remembrance, except they bring wi them any present dishonour.” According to this author, therefore, when we hear a man laugh excessively, instead of saying he is very merry, we ought to tell him he is very proud. And indeed, if we look into the bottom of this matter, we shall meet with many observations to confirm us in this opinion. Every one laughs at somebody that is in an inferior state of folly to himself. It was formerly the custom for every great house in England to keep a o dressed in petticoats, that the Their of the family might have an oportunity of joking upon him, and diverting É. with his absurdities. For the same reason, idiots are still in request in most of the courts of Germany, where there is not a prince of any great magnificence, who has not two or three dressed, distinguished, undisputed fools in his retinue, whom the rest of the courtiers are always breaking their jests upon. The Dutch, who are more famous for their industry and application, than for wit and humour, hang P in several of their streets what they call the sign of the Gaper, that is, the head of an idiot dressed in a cap and bells, and gaping in a most immoderate manner. This is a standing jest at Amsterdam. Thus every one diverts himself with some person or other that is below him in point of understanding, and triumphs in the superiority of his genius, whilst he has such objects of derision before his eyes. Mr. Dennis has very well expressed this in a couple of humorous lines, which are art of a translation of a satire in Monsieur oileau: *Thus one fool lolls his tongue out at another, And shakes his empty noddle at his brother.’ Mr. Hobbs’s reflection gives us the reason why the insignificant people abovementioned are stirrers-up of laughter among men of a gross taste: but as the more understanding part of mankind do not find their risibility affected by such ordinary objects, it may be worth the while to examine into the several provocatives of laughter, in men of superior sense and knowledge. In the first place I must observe, that there is a set of merry drolls, whom the common people of all countries admire, and seem to love so well, “that they could eat them;’ according to the old proverb: I mean those circumforaneous wits whom every nation calls by the name of that dish of meat which it loves best: in Holland they are termed Pickled Herrings; in France, Jean Pottage; in Italy, Macaronies; and in Great Britain, Jack Puddings. These merry wags, from whatsoever food they receive their titles, that they may make their audiences laugh, always appear in a fool's coat, and commit such blunders and mistakes in every step they take, and every word they utter, as those who listen to them would be ashamed of. But this little triumph of the understanding under the disguise of laughter, is no where more visible than in that custom which prevails every where among us on the first day of the present month, when

* Thomas Hobbs of Malmsbury. “He is commonly re nted,” says Granger, “as a sceptic in religion, and a dogmatist in philosophy; but he was a dogmatist in both. The main principles of his Leviathan are as little founded in moral or evangelical truth, as the rules he has laid down for squaring the circle are in mathematical demonstration.” He died in 1679, at

the advanced age of 92.

every body takes it into his head to make as many fools as he can. In proportion as there are more follies discovered, so there is more laughter raised on this day than on any other in the whole year. A neighbour of mine, who is a haberdasher by trade, and a very shallow conceited fellow, makes his boast that for these ten years successively, he has not made less than a hundred April fools. My landlady had a falling out with him about a fortnight ago, for sending every one of her children upon some sleeveless errand, as she terms it. Her eldest son went to buy a half-pennyworth of inkle at a shoemaker's; the eldest daughter was despatched half a mile to see a monster, and, in short, the whole family of innocent children made April fools. Nay, #. herself did not escape him. This empty fellow has laughed upon these conceits ever since. This art of wit is well enough, when confined to one day in a twelvemonth: but there is an ingenious tribe of men sprun up of late years, who are for making Å; fools every day in the year. These gentlemen are commonly distinguished by the name of Biters: a race of men that are perpetually employed in laughing at those mistakes which are of their own production. Thus we see, in proportion as one man is more refined than another, he chooses his fool out of a lower or higher class of mankind, or to speak in a more philosophical language, that secret elation or pride of heart, which is generally called laughter, arises in him, from his comparing himself with an object below him, whether it so happens that it be a natural or an artificial fool. It is, indeed, very possible, that the persons we laugh at may in the main of their characters be much wiser men than ourselves; but if they would have us laugh at them, they must fall short of us in those respects which stir up this passion. I am afraid I shall #P. too abstracted in my speculations, if I show, that when a man of wit makes us '. it is by betraying some oddness or infirmity in his own character, or in the representation which he makes of others; and that when we laugh at a brute, or even at an inanimate thing, it is at some action or incident that bears a remote analogy to any blunder or absurdity in reasonable creatures. But to come into common life: I shall pass by the consideration of those stage coxcombs that are able to shake a whole audience, and take notice of a particular sort of men who are such provokers of mirth in conversation, that it is impossible for a club or merry meeting to subsist without them; I mean those honest gentlemen that are always exposed to the wit and raillery of their well-wishers and companions; that are pelted by men, women, and children, friends and foes, and, in a word, stand as butts in conversation, for every

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one to shoot at that pleases. I know several of these butts who are men of wit and sense, though by some odd turn of humour, some unlucky cast in their person or behaviour, they have always the misfortune to make the company merry. The truth of it is, a man is not qualified for a butt, who has not a deal of wit and vivacity, even in the ridiculous side of his character. A stupid butt is only fit for the conversation of ordinary people: men of wit require one that will give them play, and bestir himself in the absurd part of his behaviour. A butt with these accomplishments frequently gets the laugh of his side, and turns the ridicule upon him that attacks him. Sir John Falstaff was a hero of this species, and gives a good description of himself in his capacity of a butt, after the following manner: “Men of all sorts,’ says that merry knight, “take a pride to gird at me. The brain of man is not able to invent any thing that tends to laughter more than I invent, or is invented on me. I am not only witty in myself, but the cause that wit is in other men.” C.

No. 48.] Wednesday, Ahril 25, 1711.

Per multas aditum, sibisappe figuras Repperit Ovid, JMet. xiv. 652.

Through various shapes he often finds access.

MY correspondents take it ill if I do not, from time to time, let them know I have received their letters. The most effectual way will be to publish some of them that are upon important subjects; which I shall introduce with a letter of my own that I writ a fortnight ago to a fraternity who ot fit to make me an honorary memer. * To the President o: follow of the Ugly lub.

* MAY IT PLEASE You R DEForMiti Es,

*I have received the notification of the honour you have done me, in admitting me into your society. I acknowledge my want of merit, and for that reason shall endeavour at all times to make up my own failures, by introducing and recommending to the club persons of more undoubted qualifications than I can pretend to. I shall next week come down in the stage-coach, in or— der to take my seat at the board; and shall bring with me a candidate of each sex. The persons I shall present to you, are an old beau and a modern Pict. If they are not so eminently gifted by nature as our assembly expects, give me leave to say their acquired ugliness is greater than any that has ever appeared before you. The beau has varied his dress every day of his life for these thirty years past, and still added to the deformity he was born with. The Pict has still greater merit towards us, and has, ever since she came to years of discretion, deserted the handsome party, and

taken all Fo pains to acquire the face in which I shall present her to your consideration and favour. I am, gentlemen, your most obliged humble servant, “THE SPECTAtoR. ‘P. S. I desire to know whether you admit people of quality.” “April 17. ‘MR. SPECTAtoR,-To show you there are among us of the vain weak sex, some that have honesty and fortitude enough to dare to be ugly, and willing to be thought

so, I apply myself to you, to beg your interest and recommendation to the Ugly Club. If my own word will not be taken

(though in this case a woman’s may) I can bring credible witnesses of my qualifications for their company, whether they insist upon hair, forehead, eyes, cheeks, or chin; to which I must add, that I find it easier to lean to my left side, than to my right. I hope I am in all respects agreeable, and for humour and mirth, I will keep up to the president himself. All the favour I will pretend to is, that as I am the first woman who has appeared desirous of good company and agreeable conversation, I may take and keep the upper end of the table. And indeed I think they want a carver, which I can be, after as ugly a manner as they could wish. I desire your thoughts of my claim as soon as you can. Add to my features the length of my face, which is full half-yard; though I never knew the reason of it till you gave one for the shortness of yours. If I knew a name ugly enough to belong to the above described face, I would feign one; but, to my unspeakable misfortune, my name is the only disagreeable prettiness about me; so prythee make one for me that signifies all the deformity in the world. You understand. Latin, but be sure bring it in with my being, in the sincerity of my heart, your most frightful admirer, and servant, • HECATISSA.”

“MR.SPECTAtoR,-Ireadyourdiscourse upon affectation, and from the remarks made in it, examined my own heart so strictly, that I thought I had found out its most secret avenues, with a resolution to be aware of them for the future. But, alas! to my sorrow I now understand that I have scveral follies which I do not know the root of. I am an old fellow, and extremely troubled with the gout; but having always a strong vanity towards being pleasing in the eyes of women, I never have a moment’s ease,but I am mounted in high-heeled shoes, with a glazed wax-leather instep. Two days after a severe fit, I was invited to a friend's house in the city, where I believed I should see ladies; and with my usual complaisance, crippled myself to wait upon them. A very sumptuous table, agreeable company, and kind reception, were but so many importunate additions to the torments I was in. A gentleman of the family observed my condition; and soon after the

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