« PreviousContinue »
uneasiness, and the like bitter ingredients of | beseech thee, that thou thyself wilt sort them the left-hand vessel. Whereas, to their great out for the future, as in thy wisdom thou shalt surprise, they discovered content, cheerful. think fit. For we acknowledge, that there is ness, health, innocence, and other the most none besides thee that can judge what will ucsubstantial blessings of life, in cottages, shades, casion grief or joy in the heart of a human and solitudes.
creature, and what will prove a blessing or a There was another circumstance no less un calamity to the person on whom it is bestowed. expected than the former, and which gave them very great perplexity in the discharge of the trust which Jupiter bad committed to them. No. 147.] Saturday, March 18, 1709.10. They observed, that several blessings bad de. generated into calamities and that several ca.
Ut ameris, amabilis esto.
Ovid. lamities had improved into blessings, according
Be lovely, that you may be lov'd. as they fell into the possession of wise or foolish men. They often found power, with so much
From my own Apartment, March 17. insolence and impatience cleaving to it, that READING is to the mind, what exercise is to it became a misfortune to the person on whom the body. As by the one, health is preserved, it was conferred. Youth had often distempers strengthened, and invigorated; by the other, growing about it, worse than the infirmities virtue, which is the health of the mind, is kept of old age. Wealth was often united to such alive, cherished, and confirmed. But as exera sordid avarice, as made it the most uncom- cise becomes tedious and painful, when we fortable and painful kind of poverty. On the make use of it only as the means of health, contrary, they often found pain made glorious so reading is apt to grow uneasy and burdenhy fortitude, poverty lost in content, deformity some, when we apply ourselves to it only for beautified with virtue. In a word, the blessings our improvement in virtue. For this reason, were often like good fruits planted in a bad the virtue which we gather from a fable, or an soil, that by degrees fall off from their natural allegory, is like the health we get by hunting; relish, into tastes altogeiher josipid or as we are engaged in an agreeable pursuit that wholesome; and the calamities, like harsh draws us on with pleasure, and makes us infruits, cultivated in a good soil, and enriched sensible of the fatigues that accompany it. hy proper grafts and inoculations, until they After this preface, I shall set down a very swell with generous and delightful juices. beautiful allegorical fable of the great poet
There was still a third circumstance that whom I mentioned in my last paper, and whom occasioned as great a surprise to the three sis- it is very difficult to lay aside when one is enters as either of the foregoing, when they dis-gaged in the reading of him. And this I par. covered several blessings and calamities which ticularly design for the use of several of my had never been in either of the tuns that stood fair correspondents, who, in their letters, have by the throne of Jupiter, and were nevertheless complained to me, that they bave lost the as great oecasions of happiness or misery as affections of their husbands, and desire my any there. These were that spurious crop of advice how to recover them. plessings and calamities whieh were never sown Juno, says Homer, seeing her Jupiter seated by the hand of the deity, but grow of them on the top of mount Ida, and knowing that he selves out of the fancies and dispositions of bad conceived an aversion to her, begav to study human creatures. Such are dress, titles, place, how she should regain bis affections, and make equipage, false shame, and groundless fear, herself amiable to bim.* With this thought with the like vain imaginations, that shoot up she immediately retired into her chamber, m trifling, weak, and irresolute minds. where she bathed herself in ambrosia ; which
The destinies, finding themselves in so great gave her person all its beauty, and diffused so A perplexity, concluded that it would be im- divine an odour, as refreshed all nature, and possible for them to execute the commands sweetened both beaven and earth. She let her that had been given them, according to their immortal tresses Aow in the most graceful first intention; for which reason they agreed manner, and took a particular care to dress .o throw all the blessings and calamities toge- herself in several ornaments, which the poet ther into one large vessel, and in that manner describes at length, ard which the goddess offer them up at the feet of Jupiter.
chose out as the most proper to set off her This was performed accordingly; the cldest person to the best advantage. lo the next sister presenting berself before the vessel, place, she made a visit to Venus, the deity and introducing it with an apology for what who presides over Inve, and begged of her, as they had done : “O Jupiter,' says she,' we have gathered to.
resolv'd to prove gether all the good and evil, the comforts and The old, yet still successful cheats of love; distresses of buman life, which we thus present
Against his wisdom to oppose her charms before thee in one droniscuous leap. We
Pope's !buin. ll. xiv. ver. 187.
Aud lull the lord of thunder in her arms.
a particular favour, that she would lend her | ledge of others, is taught in the pretended visit for a wbile those charms with wbich she sub- to Tethys, in the speech where Juno addresses ped the hearts both of gods and men. 'For,' herself to Venus; as the chaste and prudent ays the goddess, ‘I would make use of them management of a wife's charms is intimated by W reconcile the two deities, who took care of the same pretence for her appearing before Jume in my infancy, and who at present are at piter, and by the conoealment of the cestus in so great a variance, that they are estranged her bosom. from each other's bed. Venus was proud of I shall leave this tale to the consideration of an opportunity of obliging so great a goddess,* such good housewives who are never well dressed and therefore made ber a present of the cestus but when they are abroad, and think it neceswhich she used to wear about her own waist, sary to appear more agreeable to all men living with advice to hide it in her bosom until she than their husbands : as also to those prudent bad accomplished her intention. This cest us ladies, who, to avoid the appearance of being was a fine party.coloured girdle, which, as overfond, entertain their husbands with inHomer tells us, had all the attractions of the difference, aversion, sullen silence, or exaspesex wrought into it. The four principal figures rating language. in the embroidery were love, desire, fondness of speech, and conversation, filled with that sweetness and complacency, which, says the
Sheer-lane, March 17. poet, insensibly steal away the hearts of the Upon my coming home last night, I found a wisest men.
very handsome present of wine left for me, as Juno, after having made these necessary
a tasie ‘ of two hundred and sixteen hogsheads, preparations, came, as by accident, into the which are to be put to sale at twenty pounds presence of Jupiter, who is said to have heen a hogshead, at Garraway's coffee-house in Exas much inflamed with her beauty, as when he change-alley, on the twenty-second instant, at first stole to her embraces without the consent three in the afternoon, and to be tasted in of their parents. Juno, to cover her real major Long's vault's from the tweutieth instant thoughts, told him, as she had told Venus, that until the time of sale.' This having been sent she was going to make a visit to Oceanus and to me with a desire that I would give my Tethys. He prevailed upon her to stay with judgment upon it, I immediately einpanelled him, protesting to her, that she appeared more a jury of men of nice palates, and strong beads, amiable in his eye, than ever any mortal, god-who, being all of them very scrupulous, and dess, or even berself, had appeared to him until unwilling to proceed rashly in a matter of so that day.
The poet then represents him in so great importance, refused to bring in their great an ardour, that, without going up to the verdict until three in the morning; at which house which had been built by the bands of time the foreman pronounced, as well as he Vulcan according to Juno's direction, he threw was able, 'Extra-a-ordinary French claret.' a golden cloud over their heads as they sat For my own part, as I love to consult my pillow upon the top of mount Ida, while the earth in all points of moment, I slept upon it before beneath them sprung up in lotuses, saffrons, I would give my sentence, and this morning hyacinths, and a bed of ihe softest flowers for confirmed the verdict. their repose.
Having mentioned this tribute of wine, I This close translation of one of the finest must give notice to my correspondents for the passages in Homer, may suggest abundance of future, who shall apply to me on this occasion, instruction to a woman, who has a mind to that, as I shall decide nothing unadvisedly in preserve, or recall the affection of her husband. matters of this nature, I cannot pretend to The care of the person, and the dress, with the give judgment of a right good liquor, without particular blandishments woven in the cestus, examining at least three dozen bottles of it. are so plainly recommended by this fable, and I must, at the same time, do myself the justice so indispensably necessary in every female who to let the world know, that I have resisted desires to please, that they need no further great temptations in this kivd; as it is well explanation. The discretion likewise in co. known to a butcher in Clare-market, who envering all matrimonial quarrels from the know.deavoured to corrupt me with a dozen add a
half of marrow-bopes. I had likewise a bribe
sent me by a fisbmonger, consisting of a collar - with awe divine the qneen of Love Obey'd the sister and the wife of Jove:
of brawn, and a jole of salmon; but not finding And from her fragrant hear the zone anbracid,
them excelle:t in their kinds, I had the inteWith varions skill, and high embroidery grac'd. grity to eat larm buth up, without speaking In this was every art, and every charm,
one word of them. However, for the future, To win the wisest, and the coldest warın : Fond love, the gentle vow, the gay desire,
I shall bave an eye to the diet of this great city, he kind deceit, the still reviving fire,
and will recommend the best and most wholel'ersuasive speech, and more persuasive sighs,
some food to them, if I receive these proper Sidence that spoke, and cloquence of eyes.
Pepe's Hom. II. xiv, ver. 113. and respectful notices from the sellers ; that it
Jur. Sat. xi. 14.
may not be said hereafter, that my readers ple of this kingdom do still keep up the taste were better taught than fed.
of their ancestors; and it is to this that we, in a great measure, owe the unparalleled vic
tories that have been gained in tbis reign : for No. 148.] Tuesday, March 21, 1709.10.
I would desire my reader to consider, what work
our countrymen would have made at Blenheim -Gastus elementa per omnia quærunt,
and Ramilies, if they had been fed with fricas. Nunquam animo pretiis obstantibus
sees and ragouts. They ransack ev'ry element for choice
For this reason, we at present see the florid o ev'ry fish and fowl, at any price. Congreve. complexion, the strong limb, and the hale con
stitutivo, are to be found chiefly among the From my own Apartment, March 20.
meaner sort of people, or in the wild gentry Having intimated in my last paper, that I who have been educated among the wouds or design to take under my inspection the diet of mountains. Whereas many great families are this great city, I shall begin with a very earnest insensibly fallen off from the athletic constitu. and serious exhortation to all my well-disposed tion of their progenitors, and are dwindled away readers, that they would return to the food into a pale, sickly, spindle-legged generation of their forefathers, and reconcile themselves of valetudinarians. to beef and mutton. This was the diet which I may perhaps be thought extravagant in bred that hardy race of mortals who won the my notion; but, I must confess, I am apt to fields of Cressy and Agincourt. I need not go impute the dishonours that sometimes happen up so high as the history of Guy earl of War- in great families, to the inflaming kind of diet wick, who is well kuown to have eaten up a which is so much in fashion. Many dishes can dun cow of his own killing. The renowned excite desire without giving strength, and heat king Arthur is generally looked upon as the the body without nourishing it; as plysicians first who ever sat down to a whole roasted ox, observe, that the poorest and most dispirited which was certainly the best way to preserve blood is most subject to fevers. I look upon a the gravy; and it is further added, that he and French ragout to be as pernicious to the stohis knights sat about it at his round table, and mach as a glass of spirits ; and when I have usually consumed it to the very bones before seen a young lady swallow all the instigations they would enter upon any debate of moment. of high soups, seasoned sauces, and forced The Black Prince was a professed lover of the meats, I have wondered at the despair or tedious brisket; not to mentiou the history of the sighing of her lovers. surloin, or the institution of the order of Beef- The rules among these false delicates are eaters; which are all so many evident and un- to be as contradictory as they can be to nature. deniable marks of the great respect, which our Without expecting the return of bunger, warlike predecessors have paid to this excellent they eat for an appetite, and prepare dishes, food. The tables of the aucient gentry of this not to allay, but to excite it. iration were covered thrice a-day with hot roast They admit of nothing at their tables in its heef; and I am credibly informed, by an an- natural furm, or without some disguise. riquary who has searched the registers in which They are to eat every thing before it comes the bills of fare of the court are recorded, that in season, and to leave it off as soon as it is good! instead of tea and bread and butter, which to be eaten. have prevailed of late years, the maids of They are not to approve any thing that is honour in queen Elizabeth's time were allowed agreeable to ordinary palates ; and nothing is three rumps of beef for their breakfast. Mutton to gratify their senses, but what would offend has likewise been in great repute among our those of their inferiors. valiant countrymen ; but was formerly observed I remember I was last summer invited to a to be the food rather of men of nice and deli- friend's house, who is a great admirer of the cate appetites, than those of strong and robust French cookery, and, as the phrase is, ' eats constitutions. For which reason, even to this well.' At our sitting down, I found the table day, we use the word Sheep-biter as a term of covered with a great variety of unknown dishes. reproach, as we do Beef-eater in a respectful 1 was mightily at a loss to learn what they and honourable sense. As for the flesh of lamb, were, and therefore did not know where to veal, chicken, and other animals under age, help myself. That which stood before me, I they were the invention of sickly and degene-took to be a roasted porcupine, however did rate palates, according to that wholesome re. not care for asking questions; and have since mark of Daniel the historian; who takes notice, been informed, that it was only a larded turkey. that in all taxes upon provisions during the 1 afterwards passed-iny eye over several hashes, reigns of several of our kings, there is nothing which I do not know the names of to this day ; inentioned besides the flesh of such fowl and adil, hearing that they were delicacies, did nue eattle as were arrived at their full growth, au think fit to meddle with them. were mature lor slaughter. The common rec. Among other dainties, I saw something like
a pheasant, and therefore desired to be helped that there are still crowds of private tyrants,
me alone with the eldest daughter; who was. banished in so ignominious a manner, to make but a visitant there as well as myself, and is way for French kickshaws.
the wife of a gentleman of a very fair character The dessert was brought up at last, which in in the world. As soon as we were alone, I saw truth was as extraordinary as any thing that her eyes full of tears, and methought she had had come before it. The whole, when ranged much to say to me, for which she wanted en in its proper order, looked like a very beautiful couragement. Madam,' said I, ' you know winter-piece. There were several pyramids of I wish you all as well as any friend you have : candied sweetmeats, that bung like icicles, speak freely what I see you are oppressed with; with fruits scattered up and down, and hid in and you may be sure, if I cannot relieve your an artificial kind of frost. At the same time distress, you may at least reap so much present there were great quantities of cream beaten up advantage, as safely to give yourself the ease into a snow, and near them little plates of su.
of uttering it.' She immediately assumed the gar-plums, disposed like so many heaps of bail-most becoming composure of countenance, and stones, with a multitude of congelations in spoke as follows: It is an aggravation of jellies of various colours. I was indeed su affliction in a married life, that there is a sort pleased with the several objects which lay be of guilt in communicating it: for which reason fore me, that I did not care for displacing any
it is, that a lady of your and my acquaintance, of them; and was half angry with the rest of instead of speaking to you herself, desired me,
that, for the sake of a piece of the next time I saw you, as you are a professed emon-peel, or a sugar-plum, would spoil so
friend to our sex, to turn your thoughts upon pleasing a picture. Indeed, I could not but the reciprocal complaisance which is the duty smile to see several of them cooling their of a married state. mouths with lumps of ice, which they had just
‘My friend was neither in birth, fortune, before been burning with salts and peppers.
nor education below the gentleman whom she As soon as this show was over, I took my married. Her person, her age, and her chaleave, that I might finish my dinner at my own
racter, are also such as he can make no ex house. For as I in every ihing love what is ception to. But so it is, that from the moment simple and natural, so particularly in my food; the marriage ceremony was over, the obsequitwo plain dishes, with two or three good-na- ousness of a lover was turned into the haughtured, cheerful, ingenious friends, would make tiness of a master. All the kind endeavours. me more pleased and vain, than all that pomp which she uses to please him, are at best but and luxury can bestow. For it is my maxim, so many instances of her duty. This insolence that ' he keeps the greatest table who has the takes away that secret satisfaction, wbich does most valuable company at it.'
not only excite to virtue, but also rewards it. It abates the fire of a free and generous love,
and embitters all the pleasures of a social life." No. 149.] Thursday, March 23, 1709-10. The young lady spoke all this with such an air
of resentinent, as discovered bow nearly sl.e From my own Aparlment, March 22.
was concerned in the distress. It has often been a solid grief to me, when When I observed she had dove speaking, I have reflected on this glorious nation, which Madam,' said I, 'the alliction you mention is the scene of public happiness and liberty. | is the greatest that can happen in human lise :
and I know but ove consolation in it, if that whom we passionately love. I am not only in be a consolation, that the calamity is a pretty pain for your absense, but also for your indis. general one. There is vothing so common as position. I am afraid of every thing, fancy for men to enter iuto marriage, without so every thing, and, as it is the nature of man in much as expecting to be happy in it. They fear, I fancy those things most, which I am seem to propose to themselves a few holidays most afraid of. Let me, therefore, earnestly in the beginning of it; after which they are to desire you to favour me, under these my apprereturn at best to the usual course of their life; hensions, with one letter every day, or, if posand, for aught they know, to constant misery sible, with two; for I shall be a little at ease and uneasiness. From this false sense of the while I am reading your letters, and grow state they are going into, proceed the imme- anxious again as soon as I have read them.' diate coldness and indifference, or hatred and
SECOND LETTER. aversion, which attend ordinary marriages, or rather bargains to cohabit. Our conversation Aicted at my absence, and that you have no
You tell me, that you are very much afwas here interrupted by company which came
satisfaction in any thing but my writings, in upon us.
The humour of affecting a superior carriage, which you often lay by you upou my pillow. generally rises from a false notion of the weak? You oblige me very much in wishing to see me, ness of a female understanding in general, or
and making me your comforter in my ahsence, an over-weening opinion that we have of our
In returu, I must let you know, I am no less own ; for when it proceeds from a natural rug. and read them over a thousand times with new
pleased with the letters which you writ to me, gedness and brutality of temper, it is altogether incorrigible, and not to be amended by admo- pleasure. If your letters are capable of giving tion. Sir Francis Bacon, as I remember, lays
me so much pleasure, what would your conit down as a maxim, that no marriage ean be versation do! Let me beg of you to write to happy in which the wife has no opinion of her confess, your letters give me anguish whilst
ine often; though, at the same time, I must husband's wisdom; but, without offence to so great an authority, I may venture to say, that they give me pleasure.' a sullen wise man is as bad as a good-natured fool. Knowledge, softened with complacency 'It is impossible to conceive how much I and good-breeding, will make a man equally languish for you in your absence; the tender heloved and respected; but when joined with love I bear you is the chief cause of this my a severe, distant, and unsociable temper, it uncasiness; which is still the more insupport. creates rather fear than love. I, who am a able, because absence is wholly a new thing to bachelor, have no other notions of conjugal
us. I lie awake most part of the night in tenderness but what I learn from books; and thinking of you, and several times of the day shall therefore produce three letters of Pliny, who was not only one of the greatest, but go as naturally to your apartment as if you
were there to receive me; but when I miss you, the most learned man in the whole Roman I come away dejected, out of humour, and like empire. At the same time I am very much
a man that had suffered a repulse. There is ashamed, that on such occasions I am obliged but one part of the day in which I am relieved to have recourse to heathen authors; and shall from this anx-ty, and that is when I am enappeal to my readers, if they would not think gaged in public affairs. it a mark of a narrow education in a man of quality, to write such passionate letters to any
You may guess at the uneasy condition of woman but a mistress. They were all three one who has no rest but in business, no conso. written at a time when she was at a distance, lation but in trouble.' from him. The first of them puts me in mind
I shall conclude this paper with a beautiful of a married friend of mine, who said, “Sickness itself is pleasant to a man that is attended passage out of Milton, and leave it as a lec
ture to those of my own sex, who have a mind an it by one whom he dearly loves.
to make their conversation agreeable, as well • Pliny to Calphurnia.
as instructive, to the sair partners who are fal
len into their care. Eve having observed that I never was so much offended at business, Adam was entering into some deep disquisitions us when it hindered me from going with you with the angel, who was sent to visit him, is nto the country, or following you thither ; for described as retiring froin their company, with
more particularly wish to be with you at .resent, that I might be sensible of the pro- from her husband,
a design of learning what should pass there gress you make in the recovery of your strength and health ; as also of the entertainment and . So spake our sire, and by his count'nance secm'a diversions you can meet within your retirement.
Entering on studions thonghts abstrase, which Eve
l'erceiving where she sat retir'd in sight, Believe me, it is an anxious state of mind to
With low liness majestic from her seat live in ignorance of what bappens to those Rose, and went forth among her frnits and howers,