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my friends who frequent his shop, used the force of magical powers to add value to his wares. By my knowledge in the secret operations of nature, I have made his powders, perfumed and plain, have the same effect as lovepowder, to all who are too much enamoured to do more than dress at their mistresses. His amber, orange-flower, musk, and civet-violet, put only into a handkerchief, shall have the same effect towards an honourable lover's wishes, as if he had been wrapped in his mo. ther's smock. Wash-balls perfumed, camphired and plain, shall restore complexions to that degree, that a country fox-hunter, who uses them, shall, in a week's time, look with a courtly and affable paleness, without using the bagnio or cupping.
N. B. Mr. Lillie has snuffs, Barcelona, Seville, musty, plain, and Spanish, which may be taken by a young beginner without danger of sneezing.
Sheer-lane, November 30.
Whereas several walking dead persons arrived within the bills of mortality, before and since the fifteenth instant, having been informed of my warrant given to the company of Upholders and being terrified thereat, it not having been advertised that privilege or protection would be allowed, have resolved forth with to retire to their several respective abodes in the country, hoping thereby to elude any commission of interment that may issue out against them; and being informed of such their fallacious designs, I do hereby give notice, as well for the good of the public, as for the great veneration I have for the before mentioned useful society, that a process is gone out against them; and that, in case of contempt, they may be found, or heard of, at most coffee-houses in and about Westminster.
I must desire my readers to help me out from time to time in the correction of these my Essays; for, as a shaking hand does not always write legibly, the press sometimes prints one word for another; and when my paper is to be revised, I am perhaps so busy in observing the spots of the moon, that I have not time to find out the errata that are crept into my lucubrations.
No. 102.] Saturday, December 3, 1709.
From my own Apartment, December 2.
A CONTINUATION OF THE VISION.
THE male world were dismissed by the god. dess of justice, and disappeared; when, on a sudden, the whole plain was covered with wo. men. So charming a multitude filled my heart with unspeakable pleasure; and as the celestial light of the mirror shone upon their faces, several of them seemed rather persons that descended in the train of the goddess, than such who were brought before her to their trial. The clack of tongues, and confusion of voices, in this new assembly, were so very great, that the god. dess was forced to command silence several times, and with some severity, before she could
make them attentive to her edicts. They were all sensible that the most important affair among womankind was then to be settled, which every one knows to be the point of place. This had raised innumerable disputes among them, and put the whole sex into a tumult. Every one produced her claim, and pleaded her pretensions. Birth, beauty, wit, or wealth, were words that rung in my ears from all parts of the plain. Some boasted of the merit of their husbands; others of their own power in governing them. Some pleaded their unspotted virginity; others their numerous issue. Some valued themselves as they were the mothers, and others as they were the daughters, of considerable persons. There was not a single accomplishment unmentioned, or unpractised. The whole congregation was full of singing, dancing, tossing, ogling, squeaking, smiling, sighing, fanning, frowning, and all those irresistible arts which women put in practice, to captivate the hearts of reasonable creatures. The goddess, to end this dispute, caused it to be proclaimed, ‘that every one should take place according as she was more or less beautiful." This declaration gave great satisfaction to the whole assembly, which im. mediately bridled up, and appeared in all its beauties. Such as believed themselves graceful in their motion found an occcasion of falling back, advancing forward, or making a false step, that they might show their persons in the most becoming air. Such as had fine necks and bosoms were wonderfully curious to look over the heads of the multitude, and observe the most distant parts of the assembly. Several clapt their hands on their foreheads, as helping their sight to look upon the glories that surrounded the goddess, but in reality to show fine hands and arms. The ladies were yet better pleased, when they heard ‘that, in the decision of this great controversy, each of them should be her own judge, and take her place according to her own opinion of herself, when she consulted her looking-glass.’ The goddess then let down the mirror of truth in a golden chain, which appeared larger in proportion as it descended, and approached nearer to the eyes of the beholders. It was the particular property of this looking-glass, to banish all false appearances, and show people what they are. The whole woman was represented, without regard to the usual external features, which were made entirely conformable to their real characters. In short, the most accomplished, taking in the whole circle of female perfections, were the most beautiful; and the most defective, the most deformed. The goddess so varied the motion of the glass, and placed it in so many different lights, that each had an opportunity of seeing herself in it. It is impossible to describe the rage, the pleasure, or astonishment, that appeared in each face upon its representation in the mirror; multitudes startled at their own form, and would have broke the glass if they could have reached it. Many saw their blooming features wither as they looked upon them, and their self-admiration turned into a loathing and abhorrence. The lady who was thought so agreeable in her anger,
and was so often celebrated for a woman of fire and spirit, was frightened at her own image, and fancied she saw a Fury in the glass. The interested mistress beheld a Harpy, and the subtle jilt a Sphinx. I was very much troubled in my own heart, to see such a destruction of fine faces; but at the same time, had the pleasure of seeing several improved, which I had before looked upon as the greatest master-pieces of nature. I observed, that some few were so humble as to be surprised at their own charms, and that many a-one, who had lived in the retirement and severity of a vestal, shined forth in all the graces and attractions of a siren. I was ravished at the sight of a particular image in the mirror, which I think the most beautiful object that my eyes ever beheld. There was something more than human in her countenance; her eyes were so full of light, that they seemed to beautify every thing they looked upon. Her face was enlivened with such a florid bloom, as did not so properly seem the mark of health, as of immortality. Her shape, her stature, and her mien, were such as distinguished her even there, where the whole fair sex was assembled. I was impatient to see the lady represented by so divine an image, whom I found to be the person that stood at my right hand, and in the same point of view with myself. This was a little old woman, who, in her prime, had been about five feet high, though at present shrunk to about three quarters of that measure. Her natu. ral aspect was puckered up with wrinkles, and her head covered with gray hairs. I had ob. served all along an innocent cheerfulness in her face, which was now heightened into rapture, as she beheld herself in the glass. It was an odd circumstance in my dream, but I cannot forbear relating it, I conceived so great an inclination towards her that I had thoughts of discoursing her upon the point of marriage, when on a sudden she was carricq from me; for the word was now given, that all who were pleased with their own images should separate, and place themselves at the head of their sex. This detachment was afterwards divided into three bodies, consisting of maids, wives, and widows; the wives being placed in the middle, with the maids on the right, and widows on the left; though it was with difficulty that these two last bodies were hindered from falling into the centre. This separation of those who liked their real selves not having lessened the number of the main body so considerably as it might have been wished, the goddess, after having drawn up her mirror, thought fit to make new distinctions among those who did not like the figure which they saw in it. She made several wholesome edicts, which are slipped out of my mind; but there were two which dwelt upon me, as being very extraordinary in their kind, and executed with great severity. Their design was to make an example of two extremes in the female world; of those who are very severe on the conduct of others, and of those who are very regardless of their own. The first sentence, therefore, the goddess pronounced was, that all females no dicted to censoriousness and detraction should lose the use of speech; a punish
ment which would be the most gricvous to the offender, and, what should be the end of all punishments, effectual for rooting out the crime. Upon this edict, which was as soon executed as published, the noise of the assembly very considerably abated. It was a melancholy spectacle, to see so many who had the reputation of rigid virtue struck dumb. A lady who stood by me, and saw my concern, told me, “she wondered how I could be concerned for such a pack of —.' I found, by the shaking of her head, she was going to give me their characters; but, by her saying no more, I perceived she had lost the command of her tongue. This calamity fell very heavy upon that part of women who are distinguished by the name of Prudes, a courtly word for female hypocrites, who have a short way to being virtuous, by showing that others are vicious. The second sentence was then pronounced against the loose part of the sex, that all should immediately be pregnant, who, in any part of their lives, had run the hazard of it. This produced a very goodly appearance, and revealed so many misconducts, that made those who were lately struck dumb repine more than ever at their want of utterance; though, at the same time, as afflictions seldom come single, many of the mutes were also seized with this new calamity. The ladies were now in such a condition, that they would have wanted room, had not the plain becn large cnough to let them divide their ground, and extend their lines on all sides. It was a sensible ailiiction to me, to see such a multitude of fair ones, either dumb, or big-bellied. But I was something more at case, when I found that they agreed upon several regulations to cover such misfortunes. Among others, that it should be an established maxim in all nations, that a woman's first child might come into the world within six months after her acquaintance with her husband; and that grief might retard the birth of her last until fourteen months after his decease.
This vision lasted until my usual hour of waking, which I did with some surprise, to find myself alone, after having been engaged almost a whole night in so prodigious a multitude. I could not but reflect with wonder at the partiality and extravagance of my vision ; which, according to my thoughts, has not done justice to the sex. If virtue in men is more venerable, it is in women more lovely; which Milton has very finely expressed in his Paradise Lost, where Adam, speaking of Eve, after having asserted his own pre-eminence, as being first in creation and internal faculties, breaks out into the sollowing rapture:
- Yet when I approach Her loveliness, so absolute -he seems, And in herself complete, so well to know Her own, that what she wills, or do, or say, Soems wisest, virtuousest, discreetest, best. All higher knowledge in her presence falls D. graded : wisdom in discourse with her Loso, discountenanced, and like folly shows, Authority and reason on her wait, As one intented first, not after inade occasionally. And, to consuminate all, Greatinos of mind. and nobleness, their seat Pouild in her love liest, and create an awe About her, as a guard angelic placed."
No. 103.] Tuesday, December 6, 1709.
—Hae nuge seria ducunt In mala, derisum seiuel, exceptumque sinistre. - Hor. Ars Poet. ver. 452.
These toys will once to serious mischiefs fall, When he is laughed at, when he's jeered by all. Creech.
From my own Apartment, December 5.
TheRE is nothing gives a man a greater satisfaction, than the sense of having despatched a great deal of business, especially when it turns to the public emolument. I have much pleasure of this kind upon my spirits at present, occasioned by the fatigue of affairs which I went through last Saturday. It is some time since I set apart that day for examining the pretensions of several who had applied to me for canes, perspective-glasses, snuff-boxes, orangeflower waters, and the like ornaments of life. In order to adjust this matter, I had before directed Charles Lillie, of Beaufort-buildings, to prepare a great bundle of blank licences in the following words:
‘You are hereby required to permit the bearer of this cane to pass and repass through the streets and suburbs of London, or any place within ten miles of it, without let or molestation, provided that he does not walk with it under his arm, brandish it in the air, or hang it on a button: in which case it shall be forfeited; and I hereby declare it forfeited to any one who shall think it safe to take it from him.
* ISAAC BICKERSTAFF.”
The same form, differing only in the provisos, will serve for a perspective, snuff-box, or perfumed handkerchief. I had placed myself in my elbow-chair at the upper-end of my great parlour, having ordered Charles Lillie to take his place upon a joint-stool, with a writing-desk before him. John Morphew also took his station at the door; I having, for his good and faithful services, appointed him my chamberkeeper upon court-days. He let me know, that there was a great number attending without. Upon which I ordered him to give notice, that I did not intend to sit upon snuff-boxes that day ; but that those who appeared for canes might enter. The first presented me with the following petition, which I ordered Mr. Lillie to read.
* To Isaac Bickerstaff, Esquire, Censor of Great Britain.
“The humble petition of Simon Trippit, “Showeth, “That your petitioner having been bred up to a cane from his youth, it is now become as necessary to him as any other of his limbs. “That, a great part of his behaviour depending upon it, he should be reduced to the utmost necessities if he should lose the use of it. ‘That the knocking of it upon his shoe, leaning one leg upon it, or whistling with it on his mouth, are such great reliefs to him in conversation, that he does not know how to be good company without it. “That he is at present engaged in an amour,
and must despair of success if it be taken from him. ‘Your petitioner, therefore, hopes, that the premises tenderly considered, your worship will not deprive him of so useful and so necessary a support. And your petitioner shall ever, &c."
Upon the hearing of his case I was touched with some compassion, and the more so, when, upon observing him nearer, I found he was a Prig. I bid him produce his cane in court, which he had left at the door. He did so, and I finding it to be very curiously clouded, with a transparent amber head, and a blue ribband to hang upon his wrist, I immediately ordered my clerk, Lillie, to lay it up, and deliver out to him a plain joint, headed with walnut ; and then, in order to wean him from it by degrees,' ' permitted him to wear it three days in a week, and to abate proportionably until he found himself able to go alone. The second who appeared, came limping into the court: and setting forth in his petition many pretences for the use of a cane, I caused them to be examined one by one; but finding him in different stories, and confronting him with several witnesses who had seen him walk upright, I ordered Mr. Lillie to take in his cane, and rejected his petition as frivolous. A third made his entry with great difficulty, leaning upon a slight stick, and in danger of falling every step he took. I saw the weakness of his hams; and hearing that he had married a young wife about a fortnight before, I bid him leave his cane and gave him a new pair of crutches, with which he went off in great vigour and alacrity. This gentleman was succeeded by another, who seemed very much pleased while his petition was reading, in which he had represented, That he was extremely afflicted with the gout, and set his foot upon the ground with the caution and dignity which accompany that distemper. I suspected him for an impostor, and having ordered him to be searched, I committed him into the hands of doctor Thomas Smith in King-street, my own corn-cutter, who attended in an outward room, and wrought so speedy a cure upon him, that I thought fit to send him also away without his cane.' While I was thus dispensing justice, I heard a noise in my outward room; and inquiring what was the occasion of it, my door-keeper told me, that they had taken up one in the very fact as he was passing by my docr. They immediately brought in a lively fresh-coloured young man, who made great resistance with hand and foot, but did not offer to make use of his cane which hung upon his fifth button. Upon examination I found him to be an Oxford scholar, who was just entered at the Temple. He at first disputed the jurisdiction of the court; but being driven out of his little law and logic, he told me very pertly, “that he looked upon such a perpendicular creature as man to make a very imperfect figure without a cane in his hand. It is well known,” says he, “we ought, according to the natural situation of our bodies, to walk upon our hands and feet; and that the wisdom of the ancients had described man to be an animal of four legs in the morning, two at noon,
and three at night; by which they intimated, that the cane might very properly become part of us in some period of life.' Upon which I asked him, “whether he wore it at his breast to have it in readiness when that period should arrive My young lawyer immediately told me, he had a property in it, and a right to hang it where he pleased, and to make use of it as he thought fit, provided that he did not break the peace with it; and further said, ‘that he never took it off his button, unless it were to list it up at a coachman, hold it over the head of a drawer, point out the circumstances of a story, or for other scrvices of the like nature, that are all within the laws of the land.’ I did not care for discouraging a young man, who, I saw, would come to good; and, because his heart was set upon his new purchase, I only ordered him to wear it about his neck, instead of hanging it upon his button, and so dismissed him. There were several appeared in court, whose pretensions I found to be very good, and, there. fore, gave them their licences upon paying their fees; as many others had their licences renewed, who required more time for recovery of their lameness than I had before allowed them. Having despatched this set of my petitioners, there came in a well-dressed man, with a glass tube in one hand, and his petition in the other. Upon his entering the room, he threw back the right side of his wig, put forward his right leg, and advancing the glass to his right eye, aimed it directly at me. In the mean while, to make iny observations also, I put on my spectacles; in which posture we surveyed each other for some time. Upon the removal of our glasses, I desired him to read his petition, which he did very promptly and easily; though at the same time it set forth, “that he could see nothing distinctly, and was within very few degrees of being utterly blind; concluding with a prayer, that he might be permitted to strengthen and extend his sight by a glass.’ In answer to this, I told him, “he might sometimes extend it to his own destruc. tion. As you are now," said I, ‘you are out of the reach of beauty; the shafts of the finest eyes lose their force before they can come at you ; you cannot distinguish a toast from an orangewench; you can see a whole circle of beauty without any interruption from an impertinent face to discompose you. In short, what are snares for others—' My petitioner would hear no more, but told me very seriously, ‘Mr. Bickerstaff, you quite mistake your man; it is the joy, the pleasure, the employment of my life, to frequent public assemblies, and gaze upon the fair.’ In a word, I found his use of a glass was occasioned by no other infirmity but his vanity, and was not so inuch designed to make him see, as to make him be seen and distinguished by others. I, therefore, refused him a licence for a perspective, but allowed him a pair of spectacles, with full permission to use them in any public assembly, as he should think fit. He was followed by so very few of this order of men, that I have reason to hope this sort of cheats is almost at an end. The orange-flower-men appeared next with petitions, perfumed so strongly with musk that
I was almost overcome with the scent; and for
my own sake was obliged forthwith to licence their handkerchiefs, especially when I found they had sweetened them at Charles Lillie's, and that some of their persons would not be altogether inoffensive without them. John Morphew, whom I have made the general of my dead men, acquainted me, ‘that the petitioners were all of that order, and could produce certificates to prove it, if I required it.’ I was so well pleased with this way of their embalming themselves, that I commanded the abovesaid Morphew to give it in orders to his whole army, that every one, who did not surrender himself up to be disposed of by the upholders, should use the same method to keep himself sweet during his present state of putrefaction. I finished my session with great content of mind, reflecting upon the good I had done; for, however slightly men may regard these particulars, and little follies in dress and behaviour, they lead to great evils. The bearing to be laughed at for such singularities, teaches us insensibly an impertinent fortitude, and enables us to bear public censure for things which more substantially deserve it. By this means they open a gate to folly, and oftentimes render a man so ridiculous, as to discredit his virtues and capacities, and unqualify them from doing any good in the world. Besides, the giving into uncommon habits of this nature, is a want of that humble deference which is due to mankind, and, what is worst of all, the certain indication of some secret flaw in the mind of the person that commits them. When I was a young man, I remember a gentleman of great integrity and worth was very remarkable for wearing a broad belt and a hanger, instead of a fashionable sword, though in all other points a very well-bred man. I suspected him at first sight to have something wrong in him, but was not able for a long while to discover any collateral proofs of it. I watched him narrowly for six-and-thirty years, when at last, to the surprise of every body but myself who had long expected to see the folly break out, he married his own cook-maid.
No. 101.] Thursday, December 8, 1709.
Ex refabellas hor. ii. Sat. vi. 78.
He tells an old wife's tale very pertinently.
From my own Apartment, December 5.
My brother Tranquillus being gone out of town for some days, my sister Jenny sent me word she would come and dine with me, and therefore desired me to have no other company. I took care accordingly, and was not a little pleased to see her enter the room with a decent and matron-like behaviour, which I thought very much became her. I saw she had a great deal to say to me, and easily discovered in her eyes, and the air of her countenance, that she had abundance of satisfaction in her heart, which she longed to communicate. However, I was resolved to let her break into her discourse her own way, and reduced her to a thousand little devices and intimations to bring me to the mention of her husband. But finding I was resolved not to name him, she began of her own accord. “My husband,” said she, ‘gives his humble service to you,' to which I only answered, “I hope he is well;' and, without waiting for a reply, fell into other subjects. She at last was out of all patience, and said, with a smile and manner that I thought had more beauty and spirit than I had ever observed before in her, “I did not think, brother, you had been so ill-natured. You have seen, ever since I came in, that I had a mind to talk of my husband, and you will not be so kind as to give me an occasion.”—“I did not know,” said I, “but it might be a disagreeable subject to you. You do not take me for so old-fashioned a fellow as to think of entertaining a young lady with the discourse of her husband. I know, nothing is more acceptable than to speak of one who is to be so, but to speak of one who is so indeed, Jenny, I am a better bred man than you think me." She showed a little dislike at my raillery; and, by her bridling up, I perceived she expected to be treated hereafter not as Jenny Dis. taff, but Mrs. Tranquillus. I was very well pleased with this change in her humour; and, upon talking with her on several subjects, I could not but fancy that I saw a great deal of her husband's way and manner in her remarks, her phrases, the tone of her voice, and the very air of her countenance. This gave me an unspeakable satisfaction, not only because I had found her a husband, from whom she could learn many things that were laudable, but also be. cause I looked upon her imitation of him as an infallible sign that she entirely loved him. This is an observation that I never knew fail, though I do not remember that any other has made it. The natural shyness of her sex hindered her from telling me the greatness of her own passion; but I easily collected it from the representation she gave me of his. “I have everything,' says she, ‘in Tranquilius, that I can wish for ; and enjoy in him, what indeed you have told me were to be met with in a good husband, the fondness of a lover, the tenderness of a parent, and the intimacy of a friend.’ It transported me to see her eyes swimming in tears of affection when she spoke. “And is there not, dear sister,’ said I, ‘more pleasure in the possession of such a man, than in all the little impertinences of balls, assemblies, and cquipage, which it cost me so much pains to make you contemn?" She answered, smiling, ‘Tranquillus has made me a sincere convert in a few weeks, though I am afraid you could not have done it in your whole life. To tell you truly, I have only one fear hanging upon me, which is apt to give me trouble in the midst of all my satisfactions: I am afraid, you must know, that I shall not always make the same aniable appearance in his eye that I do at present. You know, brother Bickerstaff, that you have the reputation of a conjuror; and, if you have any one secret in your art to make your sister always beautiful, I should be happier than if I were mistress of all the worlds you have shown me in a starry night. • ‘Jenny,' said I, without having recourse to magic, I shall give you one plain rule, that will not fail of making you always
amiable to a man who has so great a passion for you, and is of so equal and reasonable a temper as Tranquillus. Endeavour to please, and you must please; be always in the same disposition as you are when you ask for this secret, and you may take my word, you will never want it. An inviolable fidelity, good humour, and complacency of temper, out-live all the charms of a fine face, and make the decays of it invisible.' .
We discoursed very long upon this head, which was equally agreeable to us both ; for, I must confess, as I tenderly love her, I take as much pleasure in giving her instructions for her welfare, as she herself does in receiving them. I proceeded, therefore, to inculcate these sentiments, by relating a very particular passage, that happened within my own knowledge.
There were several of us making merry at a friend's house in a country village, when the sexton of the parish church entered the room in a sort of surprise, and told us, ‘that as he was digging a grave in the chancel, a little blow of his pick-axe opened a decayed coffin, in which there were several written papers.” Our curiosity was immediately raised, so that we went to the place where the sexton had been at work, and found a great concourse of people about the grave. Among the rest there was an old woman, who told us, the person buried there was a lady whose name I do not think fitte mention, though there is nothing in the story but what tends very much to her honour.” This lady lived several years an exemplary pattern of conjugal love, and, dying soon after her husband, who every way answered her character in virtue and affection, made it her death-bed request, ‘that all the letters which she had received from him, both before and after her marriage, should be buried in the coffin with her.” These, I found upon examination, were the papers before us. Several of them had suffered so much by time, that I could only pick out a few words; as my soul! lilies roses dearest angel ! and the like. One of them, which was legible throughout, ran thus.
‘Mapu-If you would know the greatness of my love, consider that of your own beauty. That blooming countenance, that snowy bosom, that graceful person, return every moment to my imagination: the brightness of your eyes hath hindered me from closing mine since I last saw you. You may still add to your beauty by a smile. A frown will make me the most wretched of men, as I am the most passionate of lovers.”
It filled the whole company with a deep melancholy, to compare the description of the letter with the person that occasioned it, who was now reduced to a few crumbling bones, and a little mouldering heap of earth. With much ado I decyphered another letter, which began with, “My dear, dear wife.' This gave me a curiosity to sce how the style of one written in
* A son of sir Thomas Chicheley, one of king William's admirals, assured the very respectable communicator of this note, that the lady here alluded to was lais unother, and that the letters were genuine.