Page images
PDF
EPUB

priesthood, which is now become the scorn of world is in the right in this natural judgment, fools. That a numerous order of men should it is not generally so in the distribution of par. be consecrated to the study of the most sublime ticular persons under their respective denomi. and beneficial truths, with a design to propagate nations. It is a clear settled point, that the them by their discourses and writings, to in- gentleman should be preferred to the mechanic. form their fellow-creatures of the being and But who is the gentleman, and who the mechaattributes of the Deity, to possess their minds nic, wants to be explained. with the sense of a future state, and not only The philosophers distinguish two parts in to explain the nature of every virtue and mo- human nature; the rational, and the animal

. ral duty, but likewise to persuade mankind to Now, if we attend to the reason of the thing, the practice of them by the most powerful and we shall find it difficult to assign a more just engaging motives, is a thing so excellent and and adequate idea of these distinct species, than necessary to the well-being of the world, that by defining the gentleman to be him whose ocnobody but a modern free-thinker could have cupation lies in the exertion of his rational fa. the forehead or folly to turn it into ridicule. culties; and the mechanic, him who is employed

The light in which these points should be in the use of his animal parts, or the organic exposed to the view of one who is prejudiced parts of his body. against the names, religion, church, priest, and The concurring assent of the world, in pre. the like, is to consider the clergy as so many ferring gentlemen to mechanics, seems founded philosophers, the churches as schools, and their in that preference which the rational part of sermons as lectures, for the information and our nature is entitled to above the animal; when improvement of the audience. How would the we consider it in itself, as it is the seat of wis. heart of Socrates or Tully have rejoiced, had dom and understanding, as it is pure and imthey lived in a nation where the law had made mortal, and as it is that which, of all the known provision for philosophers to read lectures of works of the creation, bears the brightest im. morality and theology every seventh day, in press of the Deity. several thousands of schools erected at the pub. It claims the same dignity and pre-eminence, lic charge throughout the whole country; at if we consider it with respect to its object. Mewhich lectures all ranks and sexes, without dis-chanical motives or operations are confined to a tinction, were obliged to be present for their narrow circle of low and little things : whereas, general improvement ! And what wicked reason inquires concerning the nature of intelwretches yould they think those men who lectual beings, the great Author of our existence, would endeavour to defeat the purpose of so its end, and the proper methods of attaining it. divine an institution ?

Or, in case that noble faculty submit itself to It is indeed usual with that low tribe of wri- nearer objects, it is not, like the organic powers, ters, to pretend their design is only to reform confined to a slow and painful manner of action; the church, and expose the vices, and not the but shifts the scenes, and applies itself to the order of the clergy. The author of a pamphlet most distant objects with incredible ease and printed the other day, (which, without my men-despatch. Neither are the operations of the tioning the title, will, on this occasion, occur to mind, like those of the hands, limited to one the thoughts of those who have read it) hopes individual object, but at once extended to a to insinuate by that artifice what he is afraid whole species. or ashamed openly to maintain. But there are And as we have shown the intellectual powers two points which clearly show what it is he to be nobler than those of motion, both in their aims at. The first is, that he constantly uses own nature, and in regard to their object, the the word priests in such a manner, as that his same will still hold if we consider their ofreader cannot but observe he means to throw fice. It is the province of the former to preside an odium on the clergy of the church of Eng- and direct; of the latter, to execute and obey. land, from their being called by a name which Those who apply their hands to the materials

, they enjoy in common with heathens and im- appear the immediate builders of an edifice; postors. The other is, his raking together and but the beauty and proportion of it is owing to exaggerating, with great spleen and industry, the architect, who designed the plan in his cloall those actions of churchmen, which, either set. And in like manner, whatever there is by their own illness, or the bad light in which either in art or nature of use or regularity, will he places them, tend to give men an ill impres- be found to proceed from the superior principle sion of the dispensers of the gospel; all which of reason and understanding. These reflec. he pathetically addresses to the consideration tions, how obvious soever, do nevertheless, seem. of his wise and honest countrymen of the laity. not sufficiently attended to by those who, being The sophistry and ill-breeding of these pro- at great.pains to improve the figure and motions ceedings are so obvious to men who have any pf the body, neglect the culture of the mind. pretence to that oharacter, that I need say no From the premises it follows, that a man may more either of them or their author.

Hescend from an ancient family, wear fine The inhabitants of the earth may properly clothes, and be master of what is commonly be ranged under the two general heads of gen called good-breeding, and yet not merit the tlemen and mechanics. This distinction arises name of gentleman. All those whose principal from the different occupations wherein they accomplishments consist in the exertion of the exert themselves. The former of these species mechanic powers, whether the organ made use is universally acknowledged to be more honour of be the eye, the

muscles of the face, the fingers, able than the other, who are looked upon as a feet, or any other part, are in the eye of reason base and inferior order of men. But if the I to be esteemed mechanics.

I do therefore, by these presents, declare, that THERE are two sorts of persons within the all men and women, by what title soever dis- consideration of my frontispiece; the first are tinguished, whose occupation it is either to ogle the mighty body of lingerers, persons who do with the eye, flirt with the fan, dress, cringe, not indeed employ their time criminally, but are adjust the muscles of the face, or other parts of such pretty innocents, who, as the poet says, the body, are degraded from the rank of gentry;

waste away which is from this time forward appropriated

In gentle inactivity the day. to those who employ the talents of the mind in The others being something more vivacious, the pursuit of knowledge and practice of virtue, are such as do not only omit to spend their time and are content to take their places as they are well, but are in the constant pursuit of criminal distinguished by moral and intellectual accom- satisfactions. Whatever the divine may think, plishments.

the case of the first seems to be the most de. The rest of the human species come under plorable, as the habit of sloth is more invincible the appellation of mechanics, with this differ. ihan that of vice. The first is preferred, even ence, that the professed mechanics, who, not when the man is fully possessed of himself, and pretending to be gentlemen, contain themselves submitted to with constant deliberation and cool within their proper sphere, are necessary to the thought. The other we are driven into genewell-being of mankind, and consequently should rally through the heat of wine, or youth, which be more respected in a well-regulated common- Mr. Hobbes calls a natural drunkenness; and wealth, than those mechanics who make a merit therefore consequently are more excusable for of being useless.

any errors committed during the deprivation or Having hitherto considered the human species suspension of our reason, than in the possession as distinguished into gentlemen and mechanics, of it. The irregular starts of vicious appetites I come now to treat of the machines ; a sort of are in time destroyed by the gratification of beings that have the outside or appearance of them; but a well-ordered life of sloth receives men, without being really such. The free daily strength from its continuance. 'I went thinkers have often declared to the world, that (says Solomon) by the field of the slothful, and they are not actuated by any incorporeal being the vineyard of the man void of understanding; or spirit; but that all the operations they exert, and lo! it was all grown over with thorns, and proceed from the collision of certain corpuscles, nettles had covered the face thereof, and the endued with proper figures and motions. It is stone wall thereof was broken down.' To raise now a considerable time that I have been their the image of this person, the same author adds, proselyte in this point. I am even so far con- · The slothful man hideth his hand in his bovinced that they are in the right, that I shall som, and it grieveth him to bring it again to his attempt proving it to others.

mouth.' If there were no future account exThe mind being itself invisible, there is no pected of spending our time, the immediate in. other way to discern its existence, than by the convenience that attends a life of idleness should effects which it produceth. Where design, of itself be persuasion enough to the men of order, and symmetry, are visible in the effects, sense to avoid it. I say to the men of sense, we conclude the cause to be an intelligent being; because there are of these that give in to it, and but where nothing of these can be found, we for these chiefly is this paper designed. Arguascribe the effect to hazard, necessity, or the ments drawn from future rewards and punishlike. Now I appeal to any one who is conver- ments, are things too remote for the considerasant in the modern productions of our free- tion of stubborn sanguine youth. They are af. thinkers, if they do not look rather like effects fected by such only as propose immediate pleaof chance, or at best of mechanism, than of a sure or pain; as the strongest persuasive to the thinking principle, and consequently, whether children of Israel was a land flowing with milk the authors of those rhapsodies are not mere and honey. I believe I may say there is more machines.

toil, fatigue, and uneasiness in sloth, than can The same point is likewise evident from their be found in any employment a man will put own assertion; it being plain that no one could himself upon. When a thoughtful man is once mistake thought for motion, who knew what fixed this way, spleen is the necessary conse. thought was. For these reasons, I do hereby quence. This directs him instantly to the congive it in charge to all Christians, that here. templation of his health or circumstances, which after they speak of free-thinkers in the neuter must ever be found extremely bad upon these gender, using the term it for him. They are to melancholy inquiries. be considered as automata, made up of bones If he has any common business upon his and muscles, nerves, arteries, and animal spi. hands, numberless objections arise, that make rits; not so innocent, indeed, but as destitute of the despatch of it impossible; and he cries out thought and reason, as those little machines with Solomon, •There is a lion in the way, a which the excellent author from whom I take lion in the streets;' that is, there is some diffithe motto of this paper, has so elegantly de culty or other, which to his imagination is as scribed.

invincible as a lion really would be. The man, on the contrary, that applies himself to books,

or business, contracts a cheerful confidence in No. 131.]

Tuesday, August 11, 1713. all his undertakings, from the daily improveIter pigrorum quasi sepes spinarum.

ments of his knowledge or fortune, and instead

Er. Latin. Prov. of giving himself up to The way of the slothful man is a hedge of thorns. *Thick-ey'd musing cursed melancholy, | Proverbs, XV. 19.

Shakspeare. Z

has that constant life in his visage and conver- of the above-mentioned misfortunes, employs sation, which the idle splenetic man borrows himself with much alacrity in the following sometimes from the sunshine, exercise, or an method. Being vehemently disposed to loquaagreeable friend. A recluse idle sobriety must city, he has a person constantly with him, to be attended with more bitter remorse, than the whom he gives an annual pension for no other most active debauchery can at any intervals be merit but being very attentive, and never intermolested with. The rake, if he is a cautious rupting him by question and answer, whatever manager, will allow himself very little time to he may utter that may seemingly require it

. examine his own conduct, and will bestow as To secure to himself discourse, his fundamental few reflections upon himself, as the lingerer maxim seems to be, by no means to consider does upon any thing else, unless he has the what he is going to say. He delivers therefore misfortune to repent. repeat, the misfortune every thought as it first intrudes itself upon to repent, because I have put the great day of him, and then, with all the freedom you could account out of the present case, and am now in- wish, will examine it, and rally the impertiquiring, not whose life is most irreligious, but nence, or evince the truth of it. In short, he most inconvenient. A gentleman that has for. took the same pleasure in confuting himself, as merly been a very eminent lingerer, and some he could have done in discomfiting an opponent: thing splenetic, informs me, that in one winter and his discourse was as that of two persons at. he drank six hampers of Spa water, several gal tacking each other with exceeding warmth, inlons of chalybeate tincture, two hogsheads of coherence, and good-nature. There is another, bitters, at the rate of sixty pounds a hogshead, whom I have seen in the park, employing him. laid one hundred and fifty infallible schemes, in self with the same industry, though not with every one of which he was disappointed, re- the same innocence. He is very dexterous in ceived a thousand affronts during the north- taking flies, and fixing one at each end of a easterly winds, and in short, run through more horse hair, which his perriwig supplies him misery and expense than the most meritorious with. He hangs them over a little stick, which bravo could boast of. Another tells me, that he suspension inclines them immediately to war fell into this way at the university, where the upon each other, there being no possibility of youth are too apt to be lulled into a state of such retreat. From the frequent attention of his eyes tranquillity as prejudices them against the bus to these combats, he perceives the several turns tle of that worldly business, for which this part and advantages of the battle, which are altoge. of their education should prepare them. As he ther invisible to a common spectator. I the could with the utmost secrecy be idle in his other day found him in the enjoyment of a colown chamber, he says he was for some years ple of gigantic blue-bottles, which were hung irrecoverably sunk, and immersed in the luxury out and embattled in the aforesaid warlike apof an easy.chair, though at the same time, in pointments. That I might enter into the secret the general opinion, he passed for a hard stu- shocks of this conflict, he lent me a magnifying dent. During this lethargy, he had some inter- glass, which presented me with an engagement vals of application to books, which rather aggra- between two of the most rueful monsters I have vated than suspended the painful thoughts of a

ever read of even in romance. misspent life. Thus his supposed relief became If we cannot bring ourselves to appoint and his punishment, and, like the damned in Mil. perform such tasks as would be of considerable ton, upon their conveyance at certain revolu- advantage to us, let us resolve upon some other, tions from fire to ice,

however trifling, to be performed at appointed - He felt by turns the bitter change

times. By this we may gain a victory over a Of fierce extremes, extremes by change more fierce.' wandering unsettled mind, and by this regula

When he had a mind to go out, he was so tion of the impulse of our wills, may in time scrupulous as to form some excuse or other, make them obedient to the dictates of our rea. which the idle are ever provided with, and could son. not satisfy himself without this ridiculous ap When I am disposed to treat of the irreligion pearance of justice. Sometimes by his own con- of an idle life, it shall be under this head, pere. trivance and insinuation, the woman that look-unt et imputantur: which is an inscription upon ed after his chamber would convince him of the a sun-dial in one of the inns of court, and is necessity of washing his room, or any other with great propriety placed to public view in matter of the like joyous import, to which he such a place, where the inhabitants being in an always submitted, after having decently opposed everlasting hurry of business or pleasure, the it, and made his exit with much seeming reluc- busy may receive an innocent admonition to tance and inward delight. Thus did he pass the keep their appointments, and the idle a dreadnoon of his life in the solitude of a monk, and ful one not to keep theirs. the guilt of a libertine. He is since awakened, by application, out of slumber; has no more

August 10, 1713. spleen than a Dutchman, who, as sir W. Tem. • MR. IRONSIDE,—I am obliged to you for inple observes, is not delicate or idle enough to serting my letter concerning the demolition of suffer from this enemy, but is always well Dunkirk in your paper of the seventh instant: when he is not ill, always pleased when he is but you will find, upon perusal, that you have not angry:

printed the word three where you should have There is a gentleman I have seen at a coffee printed the word two; which I desire you

would house, near the place of my abode, who having amend by inserting the whole paragraph, and a pretty good estate, and a disinclination to that which immediately follows it, in your very books or business, to secure himself from some next paper. The paragraph runs thus :

" The very common people know, that within “ When a smart fit of sickness tells me this two months after the signing of the peace, the scurvy tenement of my body will fall in a little works towards the sea were to be demolished, time, I am even as unconcerned as was that hoand within three months after it, the works to nest Hibernian, who (being in bed in the great wards the land.

storm some years ago, and told the house would “That the said peace was signed the last of tumble over his head) made answer, What March, O. S.”

care I for the house? I am only a lodger. I I beg pardon for giving you so much trouble, fancy it is the best time to die, when one is in which was only to avoid mistakes, having been the best humour : and so excessively weak as I very much abused by some whiggish senseless now am, I may say with conscience, that I am fellows, that give out I am for the Pretender. not at all uneasy at the thought that many men, Your most humble servant,

whom I never had any esteem for, are likely to • ENGLISH TORY.' enjoy this world after me. When I reflect

what an inconsiderable little atom every single man is, with respect to the whole creation, me.

thinks it is a shame to be concerned at the reNo. 132.] Wednesday, August 12, 1713.

moval of such a trivial animal as I am. The Quisque suos patimur manes

morning after my exit, the sun will arise as

Virg. Æn. vi. 743. bright as ever, the flowers smell as sweet, the All have their manes.

Dryden.

plants spring as green, the world will proceed

in its old course, people will laugh as heartily, "MR. IRONSIDE,—The following letter was and marry as fast, as they were used to do. really written by a young gentleman in a lan • The memory of man,' as it is elegantly exguishing illness, which both himself, and those pressed in the Wisdom of Solomon, passeth who attended him, thought it impossible for him away as the remembrance of a guest that tarrito outlive. If you think such an image of the eth but one day. There are reasons enough, in state of a man's mind in that circumstance be the fourth chapter of the same book, to make worth publishing, it is at your service, and take any young man contented with the prospect of it as follows:

death. *For honourable age is not that which

standeth in length of time, or is measured by “Dear Sir,—You formerly observed to me, number of years. But wisdom is the gray hair that nothing made a more ridiculous figure in a to men, and an unspotted life is old age.' He man's life, than the disparity we often find in was taken away speedily, lest that “wickedness him, sick and well. Thus one of an unfortu- should alter his understanding, or deceit beguile nate constitution is perpetually exhibiting a

his soul.'

I am, yours." miserable example of the weakness of his mind, To Nestor Ironside, Esq. greeting. or of his body, in their turns. I have had fre. quent opportunities of late to consider myself band of a woman that never is in the wrong,

OLD Dad,-I am so happy as to be the hus. in these different views, and hope I have received some advantage by it. If what Mr. Wal- and yet is at continual war with every body, ler says be true, that,

especially with all her servants, and myself. As

to her maids, she never fails of having at least a *The soul's dark cottage, battered and decayed,

dozen or fourteen in each year, yet never has Lets in new light throchinks that time has made:'

above one at a time, and the last that comes is " Then surely sickness, contributing no less always the worst that ever she had in her life; than old age to the shaking down this scaffold- although they have given very good content in ing of the body, may discover the inclosed struc- better families than mine for several years to ture more plainly. Sickness is a sort of early gether. Not that she has the pleasure of turnold age ; it teaches us a diffidence in our earthly ing them away, but she does so ferrit them state, and inspires us with the thoughts of a fu- about, “Forsooth” and “Mistress” them up, ture, better than a thousand volumes of philoso- and so find fault with every thing they do, and phers and divines. It gives so warning a con- talks to them so loud and so long, that they cussion to those props of our vanity, our strength either give her immediate warning, or march and youth, that we think of fortifying ourselves off without any wages at all. So that through within, when there is so little dependence on her great zeal and care to make them better our outworks. Youth at the very best, is but a servants than any in the world, and their ob. betrayer of human life in a gentler and smoother stinacy in being no better than they can, our manner than age. It is like a stream that house is a sort of Bedlam, and nothing in order ; nourishes a plant upon its bank, and causes it for by that time a maid comes to know where to flourish and blossom to the sight, but at the things stand, whip, she is gone, and so we have same time is undermining it at the root in se. not another in four or five days, and this all the eret. My youth has dealt more fairly and year round. As to myself, all the world believes openly with me. It has afforded several pros. me to be one of the best of husbands, and I am of pects of my danger, and given me an advantage the world's mind, until my dear Patient Grizzle not very common to young men, that the attrac- comes to give her opinion about me, and then tions of the world have not dazzled me very you would believe I am as bad as her maids. much; and I began where most people end, Oh, Mr. Ironside, never was a woman used as with a full conviction of the emptiness of all she is. The world does not think how unhappy sorts of ambition, and the unsatisfactory nature she is! I am a wolf in sheep's clothing. And of all human pleasures.

then her neighbours are so ill-natured, that they

refuse to suffer her to say what she pleases of handsome !" Upon this we parted, and I re. their families, without either returning her com solved to take a little more air in the garden, pliments, or withdrawing from her oratory; so yet avoid the danger, by casting my eyes down that the poor woman has scarcely any society wards: but to my unspeakable surprise, I disabroad, nor any comfort at home, and all through covered in the same fair creature, the finest an the sauciness of servants, and the unkindness of kle and prettiest foot that ever fancy imagined. a husband that is so cruel to her, as to desire If the petticoats, as well as the stays, thus diher to be quiet. But she is coming. I am in minish, what shall we do, dear Nestor ? If it haste, sir, your humble servant,

is neither safe to look at the head nor the feet NICHOLAS EARRING.' of the charmer, whither shall we direct our

eyes? I need not trouble you with any further "Sir, I hope you will not endure this dumb description of her, but I beg you would consider club, for I am the unlucky spouse of one of those that your wards are frail and mortal. Your gentlemen : and when my dear comes from this most obedient servant, EPIMETRIUS.' joyless society, I am an impertinent, noisy rattle-snake, my maid is a saucy sow, the man is a thick-skull puppy, and founders like a horse; my cook is a 'tasteless ass; and if a child cry,

No. 133.]

Thursday, August 13, 1713. the maid is a careless bear: If I have company,

Oh, fatal love of fame! Oh, glorious heat, they are a parcel of chattering magpies: if Only destructive to the brave and great. abroad, I am a gaggling goose ; when I return,

Addison's Campaign. you are a fine galloper ; women, like cats, should keep the house. This is a frequent sentence

The letters which I published in the Guardian with him. Consider some remedy against a of Saturday last, are written with such spirit temper that seldom speaks, and then speaks only and greatness of mind, that they had excited a unkindness. This will be a relief to all those great curiosity in my lady Lizard's family, to miserable women who are married to the worst know what occasioned a quarrel betwixt the of tempers, the sullen, more especially to your two brave men who wrote them; and what was distressed appellant,

GOODY DUMP.: the event of their combat. I found the family

the other day listening in a circle to Mr. Wil. *FRIEND NESTOR,–Our brother Tremble hav. liam, the templar, who was informing the ladies ing lately given thee wholesome advice con- of the ceremonies used in the single combat, cerning tuckers, I send thee a word of counsel when the kings of England permitted such trials touching thyself. Verily thou hast found great to be performed in their presence. He took oc. favour with the godly sisters. I have read in casion from the chance of such judicial pro. that mysterious book called Æsop's Fables, how ceedings, to relate a custom used in a certain once upon a time an ass arrayed himself in the part of India, to determine lawsuits, which he skin of a lion, thereby designing to appear as produced as a parallel to the single combat. The one of the mighty. But behold the vanity of custom is, “That the plaintiff and defendant are this world was found light, the spirit of untruth thrown into a river, where each endeavours to became altogether naked. When the vainglo- keep under water as long as he is able ; and he rious animal opened his jaws to roar, the lewd who comes up first loses the cause.' The author voice of an ass braying was heard in the moun- adds, that if they had no other way of deciding tains. Friend, friend, let the moral of this sink controversies in Europe, the lawyers might e'en deep into thy mind; the more thou ponderest throw themselves in after them.' thereon, the fitter thou wilt become for the fel. The mirth occasioned by this Indian law did lowship of the faithful. We have every day not hinder the ladies from reflecting still more more and more hopes of thee; but between thee upon the above-named letters. I found they and me, when thou art converted thou must take had agreed, that it must be a mistress which to thee a scripture name. One of thy writing caused the duel; and Mrs. Cornelia had already brethren bore a very good name, he was enti. settled in her mind the fashion of their arms, tled Isaac, but now sleepeth. Jacob suiteth thy their colours, and devices. My lady only asked bookseller well. Verily Nestor soundeth Baby- with a sigh, if either of the combatants had a lonish in the ears of thy well-wisher and con- wife and children. stant reader,

RUTH PRIM. In order to give them what satisfaction I “The third day of the week, profanely called Tuesday.' could, I looked over my papers; and though I

could not find the occasion of the difference, I "Sir,---Notwithstanding your grave advice to shall present the world with an authentic acthe fair sex not to lay the beauties of their necks count of the fight, written by the survivor to a 50 open, I find they mind you so little, that we courtier. The gallant behaviour of the comyoung men are in as much danger as ever. batants may serve to raise in our minds a yet Yesterday, about seven in the evening, I took a higher detestation of that false honour which turn with a gentleman just come to town, in a robs our country of men so fitted to support and public walk. We had not walked above two adorn it. rounds, when the spark on a sudden pretended weariness, and as I importuned him to stay Sir Edward Sackville's relation of the fight belonger, he turned short, and pointing to a cele.

twixt him and the lord Bruce. brated beauty : “ What,” said he, “ do you think • Worthy SIR, -As I am not ignorant, so I am made of, that I should bear the sight of ought I to be sensible of the false aspersions such snowy breasts! Oh, she is intolerably some authorless tongues have laid upon me, in

« PreviousContinue »