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glad to find you have given over your face-paint
ing for some time, because I think you have
employed yourself more in grotesque figures than in beauties; for which reason I would rather see you work upon history-pieces, than on single portraits. Your several draughts of dead men appear to me as pictures of still-life, and have done great good in the place where I live. The esquire of a neighbouring village, who had been a long time in the number of non-entities, is entirely recovered by them. For these several years past, there was not a hare in the county that could be at rest for him; and I think, the greatest exploit he ever boasted of was, that when he was high-sheriff of the county, he hunted a fox so far, that he could not follow him any farther by the laws of the land. All the hours he spent at home, were in swelling" himself with October, and rehearsing the wonders he did in the field. Upon reading your papers, he has sold his dogs, shook off his dead companions, looked into his estate, got the multiplication-table by heart, paid his tithes, and intends to take upon him the office of church-warden next year. I wish the same success with your other patients, and am, &c."
Ditto, January 9.
When I came home this evening, a very tight middle-aged woman presented to me the following petition: • To the worshipful Isaac Bickerstaff, Esquire, Censor of Great-Britain. “The humble petition of Penelope Prim, widow ; showeth, “That your petitioner was bred a clearstarcher and sempstress, and for many years worked to the Exchange, and to several aldermen's wives, lawyers' clerks, and merchants' apprentices. ‘That through the scarcity caused by regrators of bread corn, of which starch is made, and the gentry's immoderate frequenting the operas, the ladies, to save charges, have their heads washed at home, and the beaux put out their linen to common laundresses. So that your petitioner has little or no work at her trade; for want of which, she is reduced to such necessity, that she and her seven fatherless children must inevitably perish, unless relieved by your worship. ‘'That your petitioner is informed, that in contempt of your judgment pronounced on Tuesday the third instant against the new. fashioned petticoat, or old-fashioned furdingal, the ladies design to go on in that dress. And since it is presumed your worship will not suppress them by force, your petitioner humbly desires you would order, that ruffs may be added to the dress; and that she may be heard by her counsel, who has assured your petitioner, he has such cogent reasons to offer to your court, that ruffs and fardingals are inseparable, that he questions not but two-thirds of the greatest beauties about town will have cambric
collars on their necks before the end of Easter
term next. He further says, that the design of our great grandmothers in this petticoat, was
to appear much bigger than the life; for which reason they had false shoulder blades, like wings, and the ruff above mentioned, to make the upper and lower parts of their bodies appear proportionable; whereas the figure of a woman in the present dress bears, as he calls it, the figure of a cone, which, as he advises, is the same with that of an extinguisher, with a little knob at the upper end, and widening downward, until it ends in a basis of a most enormous circumference. ‘Your petitioner, therefore, most humbly prays, that you would restore the ruff to the fardingal, which in their nature ought to be as inseparable as the two Hungarian twins.” “And your petitioner shall ever pray.” I have examined into the allegations of this petition, and find, by several ancient pictures of my own predecessors, particularly that of dame Deborah Bickerstaff, my great grandmother, that the ruff and sardingal are made use of as absolutely necessary to preserve the symmetry of the figure; and Mrs. Pyramid Bickerstaff, her second sister, is recorded in our family book, with some observations to her disadvantage, as the first female of our house that discovered, to any besides her nurse and her husband, an inch below her chin, or above her instep. This convinces me of the reasonableness of Mrs. Prim's demand; and, therefore, I shall not allow the reviving of any one part of that ancient mode, except the whole is complied with. Mrs. Prim is therefore hereby empowered to carry home ruffs to such as she shall see in the above mentioned petticoats, and require payment on demand. *...* Mr. Bickerstaff has under consideration the offer from the corporation of Colchester of four hundred pounds per annum, to be paid quarterly, provided that all his dead persons shall be obliged to wear the baize of that place.
No. 119.] Thursday, January 12, 1709-10.
In tenui labor Pirg, Georg. lib. iv. 6.
Sheer-lane, January 11.
I have lately applied myself with much satisfaction to the curious discoveries that have been made by the help of microscopes, as they are related by authors of our own and other nations. There is a great deal of pleasure in prying into this world of wonders, which nature has laid out of sight, and seems industrious to conceal from us. Philosophy had ranged over all the visible creation, and began to want objects for her inquiries, when the present age, by the invention of glasses, opened a new and inexhaustible magazine of rarities, more wonderful and amazing than any of those which aston
* Q. Swilling.
* Helen and Judith, two united twin-sisters, were born at Tzoni, in Hungary, Oct. 25, 1701; lived to the age of twenty-one, and died in a convent at Petersburg, Feb. 23, 1723. The mother, it is said, survived their birth. bore another child afterwards, and was alive when her singular twins were shown here, at a house in the Strand, near Charing cross, in 1798.
ished our forefathers. I was yesterday amusing myself with speculations of this kind, and reflecting upon myriads of animals that swim in those little seas of juices that are contained in the several vessels of a human body. While my mind was thus filled with that secret wonder and delight, I could not but look upon myself as in an act of devotion, and am very well pleased with the thought of the great heathen anatomist,” who calls his description of the parts of a human body, “A hymn to the Supreme Being.” The reading of the day produced in my imagination an agreeable morning's dream, if I may call it such ; for I am still in doubt whether it passed in my sleeping or waking thoughts. However it was, I fancied that my good genius stood at my bed's head, and entertained me with the following discourse; for, upon my rising, it dwelt so strongly upon me, that I writ down the substance of it, if not the very words. “If,' said he, “you can be so transported with those productions of nature which are discovered to you by those artificial eyes that are the works of human invention, how great will your surprise be, when you shall have it in your power to model your own eye as you please, and adapt it to the bulk of objects which, with all these helps, are by infinite degrees too minute for your perception. We who are unbodied spirits can sharpen our sight to what degree we think fit, and make the least work of the creation distinct and visible. This gives us such ideas as cannot possibly enter into your present conceptions. There is not the least particle of matter which may not furnish one of us sufficient employment for a whole eternity. We can still divide it, and still open it, and still discover new wonders of providence, as we look into the different tex. ture of its parts, and meet with beds of vegetables, minerals, and metallic mixtures, and several kinds of animals that lie hid, and, as it were, lost in such an endless fund of matter. I find you are surprised at this discourse; but as your reason tells you there are infinite parts in the smallest portion of matter, it will likewise convince you that there is as great a variety of secrets, and as much room for discoveries, in a particle no bigger than the point of a pin, as in the globe of the whole earth. Your microscopes bring to sight shoals of living creatures in a spoonful of vinegar; but we who can distinguish them in their different magnitudes, see among them several huge leviathans that terrify the little fry of animals about them, and take their pastime as in an ocean, or the great deep.” I could not but smile at this part of his relation, and told him, ‘I doubted not but he could give me the history of several invisible giants, accompanied with their respective dwarfs, in case that any of these little beings are of a human shape.’ ‘You may assure yourself,’ said he, “that we see in these little animals different natures, instincts, and modes of life, which correspond to what you observe in creatures of bigger dimensions. We descry millions of species subsisting on a green leaf, which your glasses represent only in crowds and swarms. What
appears to your eye but as hair or down rising on the surface of it, we find to be woods and forests, inhabited by beasts of prey, that are as dreadful in those their little haunts, as lions and tigers in the deserts of Lybia.’ I was much delighted with his discourse, and could not forbear telling him, ‘that I should be wonderfully pleased to see a natural history of imperceptibles, containing a true account of such vegetables and animals as grow and live out of sight. ‘Such disquisitions,' answered he, “are very suitable to reasonable creatures; and, you may be sure, there are many curious spirits among us who employ themselves in such amusements. For, as our hands and all our senses may be formed to what degree of strength and delicacy we please, in the same manner as our sight, we can make what experiments we are inclined to, how small soever the matter be in which we make them. I have been present at the dissection of a mite, and have seen the skeleton of a flea. I have been shown a forest of numberless trees, which has been picked out of an acorn. Your microscope can show you in it a complete oak in miniature; and could you suit all your organs as we do, you might pluck an acorn from this little oak, which contains another tree; and so proceed from tree to tree, as long as you would think fit to continue your disquisitions. It is almost impossible,” added he, “to talk of things so remote from common life, and the ordinary notions which mankind receive from blunt and gross organs of sense, without appearing extravagant and ridiculous. You have often seen a dog opened, to observe the circulation of the blood, or make any other uscful enquiry; and yet would be tempted to laugh if I should tell you, that a circle of much greater philosophers than any of the Royal Society, were present at the cutting up of one of those little animals which we find in the blue of a plum; that it was tied down alive before them ; and that they observed the palpitations of the heart, the course of the blood, the working of the muscles, and the convulsions in the several limbs, with great accuracy and improvement.” “I must confess,” said I, ‘for my own part, I go along with you in all your discoveries with great pleasure : but it is certain, they are too fine for the gross of mankind, who are more struck with the description of every thing that is great and bulky. Accordingly we find the best judge of human nature setting forth his wisdom, not in the formation of these minute animals, though indeed no less wonderful than the other, but in that of the leviathan and behemoth,” the horse, and the crocodile.’ ‘Your observation,” said he, “is very just; and I must acknowledge, for my own part, that although it is with much delight that I see the traces of providence in these instances, I still take greater pleasure in considering the works of the creation in their immensity, than in their minuteness. For this reason, I rejoice when I strengthen my sight so as to make it pierce into the most remote spaces, and take a view of those heavenly bodies which lie out of the reach of human eyes, though assisted by telescopes. What you
* Galen, de Usu Partium.
* See Job, chap. xxxix. xl. xli.
look upon as onc confused white in the milky way, appears to me a long track of heavens, distinguished by stars that are ranged in proper figures and constellations. While you are ad. miring the sky in a starry night, I am enter. tained with a variety of worlds and suns placed one above another, and rising up to such an immense distance, that no created eye can see an end of them.' The latter part of his discourse flung me into such an astonishment, that he had been silent for some time before I took notice of it; when on a sudden I started up and drew my curtains, to look if any one was near me, but saw nobody, and cannot tell to this moment whether it was my good genius or a dream that left me.
No. 120.] Saturday, January 14, 1709–10.
—Velut silvis, ubi passim
i Hor, ii. Sat. iii. 48.
When, in a wood, we leave the certain way,
One error fools us, though we various stray,
Some to the left, and solile to to other side. Francis.
Sheer-lane, January 13.
INstEAD of considering any particular passion or character in any one set of men, my thoughts were last night employed on the contemplation of human life in general ; and truly it appears to me, that the whole species are hurried on by the same desires, and engaged in the same pursuits, according to the different stages and divisions of life. Youth is devoted to lust, middle age to ambition, old age to avarice. These are the three general motives and principles of action both in good and bad men; though it must be acknowledged, that they change their names, and refine their natures, according to the temper of the person whom they direct and animate. For, with the good, lust becomes virtuous love; ambition, true honour ; and avarice, the care of posterity. This scheme of thought amused me very agreeably until I retired to rest, and afterwards formed itself into a pleasing and regular vision, which I shall describe in all its circumstances, as the objects presented themselves, whether in a serious or ridiculous manner.
I dreamed that I was in a wood, of so prodigious an extent, and cut into such a variety of walks and alleys, that all mankind were lost and bewildered in it. After having wandered up and down some time, I came into the centre of it, which opened into a wide plain filled with multitudes of both sexes. I here discovered three great roads, very wide and long, that led into three different parts of the forest. On a sudden, the whole multitude broke into three parts, according to their different ages, and marched in their respective bodies into the three great roads that lay before them. As I had a mind to know how each of these roads terminated, and whither they would lead those who passed through them, I joined myself with the assembly that were in the flower and vigour
of their age, and called themselves “the band of lovers.' I found, to my great surprise, that several old men besides myself had intruded into this agreeable company; as I had before observed, there were some young men who had united themselves to ‘the band of misers,’ and were walking up the path of avarice; though both made a very ridiculous figure, and were as much laughed at by those they joined, as by those they forsook. The walk which we marched up, for thickness of shades, embroidery of flowers, and melody of birds, with the distant purling of streams, and falls of water, was so wonderfully delightful, that it charined our senses, and intoxicated our minds with pleasure. We had not been long here, before every man singled out some woman, to whom he offered his addresses, and professed himself a lover; when, on a sudden, we perceived this delicious walk to grow more narrow as we advanced in it, until it ended in many intricate thickets, mazes, and labyrinths, that were so mixed with roses and brambles, brakes of thorns and beds of flowers, rocky paths and pleasing grottos, that it was hard to say, whether it gave greater delight or perplexity to those who travelled in it. It was here that the lovers began to be eager in their pursuits. Some of their mistresses, who only seemed to retire for the sake of form and decency, led them into plantations that were disposed into regular walks; where, after they had wheeled about in some turns and windings, they suffered themselves to be overtaken, and gave their hands to those who pursued them. Others withdrew from their followers into little wildernesses, where there were so many paths interwoven with each other in so much confusion and irregularity, that several of the lovers quitted the pursuit, or broke their hearts in the chase. It was sometimes very odd to see a man pursuing a fine woman that was following another, whose eye was fixed upon a fourth, that had her own game in view in some other quarter of the wilderness. I could not but observe two things in this place which I thought very particular. That several persons, who stood only at the end of the avenues, and cast a careless eye upon the nymphs during their whole flight, often catched them ; when those who pressed them the most warmly, through all their turns and doubles, were wholly unsuccessful; and that some of my own age, who were at first looked upon with aversion and contempt, by being well acquainted with the wilderness, and by dodging their women in the particular corners and alleys of it, catched them in their arms, and took them from those whom they really loved and admired. There was a particular grove, which was called ‘the labyrinth of coquettes; where many were enticed to the chase, but few returned with purchase. It was pleasant cnough to see a celebrated beauty, by smiling upon one, casting a glance upon another, beckoning to a third, and adapting her charms and graces to the several follies of those that admired her, drawing into the labyrinth a whole pack of lovers, that lost themselves in the maze, and never could find their way out of it. However, it was some satisfaction to me, to see many of the fair ones, who had thus deluded their
followers, and left them among the intricacies of the labyrinth, obliged, when they came out of it, to surrender to the first partner that offered himself. I now had crossed over all the difficult and perplexed passages that seemed to bound our walk, when on the other side of them I saw the same great road running on a little way until it was terminated by two beautiful temples. I stood here for some time, and saw most of the multitude, who had been dispersed amongst the thickets, coming out two by two, and marching up in pairs towards the temples that stood before us. The structure on the right hand was, as I afterwards found, consecrated to virtuous love, and could not be entered but by such as received a ring, or some other token, from a person who was placed as a guard at the gate of it. He wore a garland of roses and myrtles on his head, and on his shoulders a robe like an imperial mantle, white and unspotted all over, excepting only, that where it was clasped at his breast, there were two golden turtle-doves that buttoned it by their bills, which were wrought in rubies. He was called by the name of Hymen, and was seated near the entrance of the temple, in a delicious bower, made up of several trees, that were embraced by woodbines, jasamines, and amaranths, which were as so many emblems of marriage, and ornaments to the trunks that supported them. As I was single and unaccompanied, I was not permitted to enter the temple, and for that reason am a stranger to all the mysteries that were performed in it. I had, however, the curiosity to observe how the several couples that entered were disposed of; which was after the following manner. There were two great gates on the backside of the cdifice, at which the whole crowd was let out. At one of these gates were two women, extremely beautiful, though in a different kind, the one having a very careful and composed air, the other a sort of smile and ineffeble sweetness in her countenance. The name of the first was Discretion, and of the other Complacency. All who came out of this gate, and put themselves under the direction of these two sisters, were immediately conducted by them into gardens, groves, and meadows, which abounded in delights, and were furnished with every thing that could make them the proper seats of happiness. The second gate of this temple let out all the couples that were unhappily married, who came out linked together with chains, which each of then strove to break, but could not. Several of these were such as had never been acquainted with each other be. fore they met in the great walk, or had been too well acquainted in the thicket. The entrance to this gate was possessed by three sisters, who joined themselves with these wretches, and occasioned most of their miseries. The youngest of the sisters was known by the name of Levity, who, with the innocence of a virgin, had the drcss and behaviour of a harlot. The maine of the second was Contention, who bore on her right arm a muff made of the skin of a porcu. pine ; and on her left carried a little lap-dog, that barked and snapped at every one that passed by her.
The eldest of the sisters, who seemed to have a haughty and imperious air, was always accompanied with a tawny cupid, who generally marched before her with a little mace on his shoulder, the end of which was fashioned into the horns of a stag. Her garments were yellow, and her complexion palc. Her eyes were piercing, but had odd casts in them, and that particular distemper, which makes persons who are troubled with it, see objects double. Upon inquiry, I was informed that her name was Jealousy. "
Having finished my observations upon this temple and its votaries, I repaired to that which stood on the left hand, and was called ‘the temple of lust.'. The front of it was raised on Corinthian pillars, with all the meretricious ornaments that accompanied that order; whereas that of the other was composed of the chaste and matron-like Ionic. The sides of it were adorned with several grotesque figures of goats, sparrows, heathen gods, satyrs, and monsters made up of half men half beasts. The gates were unguarded, and open to all that had a mind to enter. Upon my going in, I found the windows were blinded, and let in only a kind of twilight, that served to discover a prodigious number of dark corners and apartments, into which the whole temple was divided. I was here stunned with a mixed noise of claumour and jollity. On one side of me I heard singing and dancing ; on the other, brawls and clashing of swords. In short I was so little pleascd with the place, that I was going out of it; but found I could not return by the gate where I entered, which was barred against all that were come in, with bolts of iron, and locks of adamant. There was no going back from this temple through the paths of pleasure which led to it. All who passcd through the ceremonics of the place, went out at an iron wicket, which was kept by a dreadful giant, called Temorse, that held a scourge of scorpions in his hand, and drove them into the only outlet from that temple. This was a passage so rugged, so uneven, and choked with so many thorns and bricrs, that it was a melancholy spectacle to behold the pains and difficultics which both sexes suffered who walked through it. The men, though in the prime of their youth, appeared weak and cnfeebled with old age. The women wrung their hands and tore their hair; and several lost their limbs before they could extricate themselves out of the perplexitics of the path in which they were engaged. The remaining part of this vision, and the adventures I met with in the two great roads of Ambition and Avarice, must be the subject of another paper. "
- • AdvKottish:MENT.
o I have this morning received the following letter from the famous Mr. Thomas Dogget.
‘Sin,_On Monday next will be acted, for my benefit, the comedy of Love for Love. If you will do me the honour to appear there, I will publish on the bills, that it is to be performed at the request of Isaac Bickerstafi, esquire, and question not that it will bring me as great an audience, as ever was at the house, since the
I was recollecting the remainder of my vision, when my maid came to me, and told me, “there was a gentlewoman below who seemed to be in great trouble, and pressed very much to see me.” When it lay in my power to remove the distress of an unhappy person, I thought I should very ill employ my time in attending to matters of speculation, and therefore desired the lady would walk in. When she entered, I saw her eyes full of tears. However, her grief was not so great as to make her omit rules; for she was very long and exact in her civilities, which gave me time to view and consider her. Her clothes were very rich, but tarnished; and her words very fine, but ill applied. These distinctions made me, without hesitation, though I had never seen her before, ask her, “is her lady had any commands for me?" She then, began to weep afresh, and with many, broken sighs told me, ‘that their family was in very great affliction.” I beseeched her ‘to compose herself, for that I might possibly be capable of assisting them.” She then cast her eye upon my little dog, and was again transported with too much passion to proceed; but, with much ado, she at last me to understand," that Cupid, her lady's lap. dog, was dangerously ill, and in so bad a condition, that her lady neither saw company, nor went abroad, for which reason she did not come herself to consult me; that, as I had mentioned with great affection my own dog,' (here she courtsied, and looking first at the curland then on me, said, “indeed I had reason, for he was very pretty) her lady sent to me other than to any other doctor, and hoped I would not laugh at her sorrow, but send her my advice.' I must confess, I had some indignation to find myself treated like something below asarrier;t yet, well
* About three years before this time, in 1706, towards the end of April, the Morocco ambassador made his o: entry into London, and was admitted to his au. ence. - - t_Yet Winchester, the surgeon, got a good estate close to Barham, for setting the leg of a gentleman's dog. - -
knowing that the best, as well as most tender way, of dealing with a woman, is to fallin with her humours, and by that means to let her see the absurdity of them; I proceeded accordingly. ‘Pray, madam,' said I, ‘can you give me any methodical account of this illness, and how Cupid was first taken " 'Sir," said she, “we have a little ignorant country girl, who is kept to tend him; she was recommended to our family by one that my lady never saw but once, at a visit; and you know persons of quality are always inclined to strangers; for I could have helped her to a cousin of my own, but’— Good madam,” said I, ‘you neglect the account of the sick body while you are complaining of this girl.’ ‘No, no, sir,’ said she, ‘begging your pardon: but it is the general fault of the physicians, they are so in haste that they never hear out the case. I say, this silly girl, after washing Cupid, let him stand half an hour in the window without his collar, where he catched cold, and in an hour after, began to bark very hoarse. He had, however, a pretty good night, and we hoped the danger was over; but for these two nights last past, neither he nor my lady have slept a wink.” “Has he,' said I, ‘taken any thing?” “No,' said she ; “but my lady says he .# take anything that you prescribe, provided you do not make use of Jesuit's powder, or the cold bath," Poor Cupid," continued she, ‘has always been phthisical; and, as he lies under something like a chin-cough, we are afraid it will end in a consumption.' I then asked her, “if she had brought any of his water to show me." Upon this, she stared me in the face, and said, ‘ I am afraid, Mr. Bickerstaff, |. are not serious; but, if you have any receipt that is proper on this occasion, pray let us have it; for my mistress is not to be comförted." Upon this I paused a little, without returning any answer, and after some short silence, I proceeded in the following manner: ‘I have considered the nature of the distemper, and the constitution of the patient; and, by the best observation that I can make on both, I think it is safest to put him into a course of kitchen physic. In the mean time, to remove his hoarseness, it will be the most natural wa
to make Cupid his own druggist; for whic
reason, I shall prescribe to him, three morn
on a groat, of that noble remedy which the apothecaries call Album Graecum." Upon hearing this advice, the young woman smiled, as if she knew how ridiculous an errand she had been employed in; and indeed I found by the sequel of her discourse, that she was an arch baggage, and of a character that is frequent enough in persons of her employment; who are so used to conform themselves in everything to the humours and passions of their mistresses, that they sacrifice superiority of sense to superiority of condition, and are insensibly betrayed into the passions and prejudices of those whom they serve, without giving themselves leave to consider that they are extravagant and
* The Perurian bark, one of the most valuable articles in the materia medica, had found its way into Europe, above half a century before this time, but it had not yet overcome prejudices and opposition.
ings successively, as much powder as will lie