« PreviousContinue »
Pers. Sat. 5. v. 64.
Jam cras hesternum consumpsimus; ecce aliud cras of two and twenty, and dodged with me
above thirty years. I have loved her till Vertentem sese frustra sectabere canthum.
she is grown as grey as a cat, and am with
much ado become the master of her perPers. From thee both old and young, with profit learn son, such as it is at present. She is however The bounds of good and evil to discern.
in my eye a very charming old woman. Corn. Unhappy he who does this work adjourn, We often lament that we did not marry And to to-morrow would the search delay: His lazy morrow will be like to-day.
sooner, but she has nobody to blame for it Pers. But is one day of ease too much to borrow? but herself. You know very well that she Corn. Yes, sure; for yesterday was once to-morrow. would never think of me whilst she had a That yesterday is gone, and nothing gain'd; And all thy fruitless days will thus be drain'd:
tooth in her head. I have put the date of For thou hast more to-morrows yet to ask,
my passion, anno amoris trigesimo primo, And wilt be ever to begin thy task;
instead of a posy on my wedding ring. I Who, like the hindmost chariot wheels, art curst, Still to be near, but ne'er to reach the first.–Dryden.
expect you should send me a congratulatory
letter, or, if you please, an epithalamium As my correspondents upon the subject upon this occasion. Mrs. Martha's and of love are very numerous, it is my design, yours eternally, SAM HOPEWELL.' if possible, to range them under several heads, and address myself to them at dif
In order to banish an evil out of the ferent times. The first branch of them, to world, that does not only produce great unwhose service I shall dedicate this paper, easiness to private persons, but has also a are those that have to do with women of very bad influence on the public, I shall dilatory tempers, who are for spinning out endeavour to show the folly of demurrage, the time of courtship to an immoderate from two or three reflections which I earnlength; without being able either to close estly recommend to the thoughts of my fair with their lovers, or to dismiss them. I readers. have many letters by me filled with com
First of all, I would have them seriously plaints against this sort of women. In one think on the shortness of their time. Life of them no less a man than a brother of the is not long enough for a coquette to play all coif tells me, that he began his suit vicesimo her tricks in. A timorous woman drops into nono Caroli secundi, before he had been a her grave before she has done deliberating. twelve-month at the Temple; that he pro-Were the age of man the same that it was secuted it for many years after he was called before the flood, a lady might sacrifice half to the bar; that at present he is a sergeant a century to a scruple, and be two or three at law; and notwithstanding he hoped that ages in demurring: Had she nine hundred matters would have been long since brought years good, she might hold out to the conto an issue, the fair one still demurs.--I version of the Jews before she thought fit am so well pleased with this gentleman's to be prevailed upon. But, alas! she ought phrase, that I shall distinguish this sect of to play her part in haste, when she conwomen by the title of Demurrers. I find by siders that she is suddenly to quit the stage, another letter from one that calls himself and make room for others. Thyrsis, that his mistress has been demur- In the second place, I would desire my ring above these seven years. But among female readers to consider, that as the term all my plaintiffs of this nature, I most pity of life is short, that of beauty is much the unfortunate Philander, a man of a con- shorter. The finest skin wrinkles in a few stant passion and plentiful fortune, who sets years, and loses the strength of its colourforth that the timorous and irresolute Syl- ings so soon, that we have scarce time to via has demurred till she is past child- admire it. I might embellish this subject bearing. Strephon appears by his letter to with roses and rainbows, and several other be a very choleric lover, and irrecoverably ingenious conceits, which I may possibly smitten with one that demurs out of self- reserve for another opportunity: interest. He tells me with great passion
There is a third consideration which I that she has bubbled him out of his youth; would likewise recommend to a demurrer, that she drilled him on to five and fifty, and and that is the great danger of her falling that he verily believes she will drop him in love when she is about threescore, if she in his old age, if she can find her account in cannot satisfy her doubts and scruples beanother. I shall conclude this narrative fore that time. There is a kind of latter with a letter from honest Sam Hopewell, a spring, that sometimes gets into the blood very pleasant fellow, who it seems has at of an old woman, and turns her into a very last married a demurrer. I must only pre-odd sort of an animal. . I would therefore mise, that Sam, who is a very good bottle- have the demurrer consider what a strange companion, has been the diversion of his figure she will make, if she chances to get friends, upon account of his passion, ever over all difficulties, and comes to a final since the year one thousand six hundred resolution in that unseasonable part of her and eighty-one.
I would not however be understood, by • DEAR SIR,-You know very well my any thing I have here said, to discourage passion for Mrs. Martha, and what a dance that natural modesty in the sex, which renshe has led me. She took me out at the age ders a retreat from the first approaches of
a lover both fashionable and graceful. All after the body is cast off and thrown aside. that I intend is, to advise them, when they As an argument to confirm this their docare prompted by reason and inclination, to trine, they observe, that a lewd youth who demur only out of form, and so far as de- goes on in a continued course of voluptuouscency requireś. A virtuous woman should ness, advances by degrees into a libidinous reject the first offer of marriage, as a good old man; and that the passion survives in man does that of a bishopric; but I would the mind when it is altogether dead in the advise neither the one nor the other to per- body; nay, that the desire grows more sist in refusing what they secretly approve. violent, and (like all other habits) gathers I would in this particular propose the ex- strength by age at the same time that it ample of Eve to all her daughters, as Mil- has no power of executing its own purton has represented her in the following poses. If, say they, the soul is the most passage, which I cannot forbear transcrib- subject to these passions at a time when it ing entire, though only the twelve last lines has the least instigations from the body, are to my present purpose.
we may well suppose she will still retain
them when she is entirely divested of it. The rib he form'd and fashion'd with his hands: Under his forming hands a creature grew,
The very substance of the soul is festered Man-like, but diff'rent sex; so lovely fair,
with them, the gangrene is gone too far to That what seem'd fair in all the world, seem'd now be ever cured; the inflammation will rage Mean, or in her summ'd up, in her contain'd, And in her looks; which from that time infusid
to all eternity Sweetness into my heart, unfelt before;
In this therefore, (say the Platonists,) And into all things from her air inspir'd
consists the punishment of a voluptuous The spirit of love and amorous delight. She disappeard, and left me dark: I wak'd
man after death. He is tormented with To find her, or for ever to deplore
desires which it is impossible for him to Her loss, and other pleasures all abjure;
gratify; solicited by a passion that has neiWhen out of hope, behold her, not far off, Such as I saw her in my dream, adorn'd
ther objects nor organs adapted to it. He With what all earth or heaven could bestow
lives in a state of invincible desire and imTo make her amiable. On she came
potence, and always burns in the pursuit Led by her heav'nly Maker, though unseen, of what he always despairs to possess. It And guided by his voice, nor uninform'd of nuptial sanctity and marriage rites:
is for this reason (says Plato) that the souls Grace was in all her steps, heaven in her eye, of the dead appear frequently in cemeIn every gesture dignity and love. I. overjoy'd, could not forbear aloud:
teries, and hover about the places where This turn hath made amends: thou hast fulfill'd
their bodies are buried, as still hankering Thy words, Creator, bounteous and benign!
after their old brutal pleasures, and deGiver of all things fair; but fairest this
siring again to enter the body that gave Of all thy gifts, nor enviest. I now see Bone of my bone, flesh of my flesh, myself."- them an opportunity of fulfilling them.
She heard me thus, and though divinely brought, Some of our most eminent divines have Yet innocence and virgin modesty,
made use of this Platonic notion, so far as Her virtue, and the conscience of her worth, That would be woo'd, and not unsought be won,
it regards the subsistence of our passions Not obvious, not obtrusive, but retird
after death, with great beauty and strength The more desirable; or, to say all, Nature herself, though pure of sinful thought,
of reason. Plato indeed carries the thought Wrought in her so, thai seeing me she turn'd.
very far when he grafts upon it his opinion I follow'd her: she what was honour knew, of ghosts appearing in places of burial. And with obxequious majesty approv'd
Though I must confess, if one did believe My pleaded reason. To the nuptial bower I led her blushing like the morn
that the departed souls of men and women Paradise Lost, viii. 469-511. wandered up and down these lower re
gions, and entertained themselves with the
sight of their species, one could not deNo. 90.] Wednesday, June 13, 1711,
vise a more proper hell for an impure
spirit than that which Plato has touched Magnus sine viribus ignis
upon. Incassum furit
Virg. Georg. jii. 99.
The ancients seem to have drawn such "In all the rage of impotent desire,
a state of torments in the description of They feel a quenchless flame, a fruitless fire.'
Tantalus, who was punished with the rage THERE is not, in my opinion, a consi- of an eternal thirst, and set up to the chin deration more effectual to extinguish inor- in water that fled from his lips whenever dinate desires in the soul of man, than the heattempted to drink it. notions of Plato and his followers upon that Virgil who has cast the whole system of subject. They tell us, that every passion Platonic philosophy, so far as it relates to which has been contracted by the soul the soul of man, into beautiful allegories, during her residence in the body, remains in the sixth book of his Æneid gives us with her in a separate state; and that the the punishment of a voluptuary after death, soul in the body, or out of the body, differs not unlike that which we are here speak-, no more than the man does from himself ing of: when he is in his house, or in open air.
-Lucent genealibus altis When therefore the obscene passions in Aurea fulcra toris, epulæque ante ora paratæ particular have once taken root, and spread Regifico luxu: furiarum maxima juxta themselves in the soul, they cleave to her
Accubat, et manibus probibet contingere mensas:
Exurgitque facem attollens, atque intonat ore. inseparably, and remain in her for ever,
Æn. vi. 604.
They lie below on golden beds display'd,
sheets, with my head (which was indeed And genial feasts with regal pomp are made : The queen of furies by their side is set,
the only part I could move) upon a very And snatches from their mouths the untasted meat; high pillow: this was no sooner done, but Which, if they touch, her hissing snakes she rears, my two female friends came into bed to me Tossing her torch and thundering in their ears.
in their finest night-clothes. You may Dryden.
easily guess at the condition of a man that That I may a little alleviate the severity saw a couple of the most beautiful women of this my speculation (which otherwise in the world undrest and abed with him, may lose me several of my polite readers,)I without being able to stir hand or foot. Í shall translate a story that has been quoted begged them to release me, and struggled upon another occasion by one of the most all I could to get loose, which I did with so learned men of the present age, as I find it much violence, that about midnight they in the original. The reader will see it is not both leaped out of the bed, crying out foreign to my present subject, and I dare they were undone. But seeing me safe, say will think it a lively representation of they took their posts again, and renewed a person lying under the torments of such a their raillery. Finding
all my prayers and kind of tantalism, or Platonic hell, as that endeavours were lost, I composed myself which we have now under consideration. as well as I could, and told them, that if Monsieur Pontignan, speaking of a love they would not unbind me, I would fall adventure that happened to him in the asleep between them, and by that means country, gives the following account of it.* disgrace them for ever. But alas! this
•When I was in the country last sum- was impossible; could I have been disposed mer, I was often in company with a couple to it, they would have prevented me by of charming women, who had all the wit several little ill-natured caresses and enand beauty one could desire in female com- dearments which they bestowed upon me. panions, with a dash of coquetry, that from As much devoted as I am to woman-kind, time to time gave me a great many agree- I would not pass such another night to be able torments. I was, after my way, in love master of the whole sex. My reader will with botlı of them, and had such frequent doubtless be curious to know what became of opportunities of pleading my passions to me the next morning. Why truly my bedthem when they were asunder, that I had fellows left me an hour before day, and told reason to hope for particular favours from me, if I would be good and lie still, they each of them. As I was walking one even- would send somebody to take me up as soon ing in my chamber with nothing about me as it was time for me to rise. Accordingly out my night-gown, they both came into about nine o'clock in the morning an old my room, and told me they had a very woman came to unswathe me. I bore all this pleasant trick to put upon a gentleman that very patiently, being resolved to take my was in the same house, provided I would revenge of my tormentors, and to keep no bear a part in it. Upon this they told me measures with them as soon as I was at such a plausible story, that I laughed at their liberty; but upon asking my old woman contrivance, and agreed to do whatever what was become of the two ladies, she they should require of me. They imme- told me she believed they were by that diately began to swaddle me up in my night time within sight of Paris, for that they gown, with long pieces of linen, which they went away in a coach and six before five folded about me till they had wrapt me in o'clock in the morning.'
L. above an hundred yards of swathe. My arms were pressed to my sides, and my legs closed together by so many wrappers one over another, that I looked like an No. 91.) Thursday, June 14, 1711. Ægyptian mummy. As I stood bolt up
In furias ignemque ruunt: amor omnibus idem. right upon one end in this antique figure,
Virg. Georg. üj. 244. one of the ladies burst out a laughing.
- They rush into the flame; “And now, Pontignan,” says she, "we For love is lord of all, and is in all the same. intend to perform the promise that we find
Dryden. you have extorted from each of us. You
Though the subject I am now going have often asked the favour of us, and upon would be much more properly the I dare say you are a better bred cava- foundation of a comedy, I cannot forbear lier than to refuse to go to bed with two inserting the circumstance which pleased ladies that desire it of you.” After having me in the account a young lady gave me stood a fit of laughter, I begged them to of the loves of a family in town, which uncase me, and do with me what they shall be nameless; or rather, for the better pleased. “No, no," said they, “we like sound and elevation of the history, instead you very well as you are;” and upon that of Mr. and Mrs. Such-a-one, I shall call ordered me to be carried to one of their them by feigned names.
Without further houses, and put to bed in all my swaddles, preface, you are to know, that within the The room was lighted up on all sides: and liberties of the city of Westminster lives I was laid very decently between a pair of the Lady Honoria, a widow about the age
• This is a paraphrase of a story in the Academie of forty, of a healthy constitution, gay temGalante," a little book printed at Paris in 1682. per, and elegant person. She dresses a
little too much like a girl, affects a childish surviving beau of the last age, and Tom alfondness in the tone of her voice, sometimes most the only one that keeps up that order a pretty sullenness in the leaning of her of men in this. head, and now and then a downcast of her I wish I could repeat the little circumeyes on her fan. Neither her imagination stances of a conversation of the four lovers nor her health would ever give her to know with the spirit in which the young lady I that she is turned of twenty; but that in the had my account from, represented it at a midst of these pretty softnesses, and airs of visit where I had the honour to be present; delicacy and attraction, she has a tall but it seems Dick Crastin, the admirer of daughter within a fortnight of fifteen, who Honoria, and Tom Tulip, the pretender to im pertinently comes into the room, and Flavia, were purposely admitted together towers so much towards woman, that her by the ladies, that each might show the mother is always checked by her presence, other that her lover had the superiority in and every charm of Honoria droops at the the accomplishments of that sort of creaentrance of Flavia. The agreeable Flavia ture whom the sillier part of women call a would be what she is not, as well as her fine gentleman. As this age has a much mother Honoria; but all their beholders are more gross taste in courtship, as well as in more partial to an affectation of what a per- every thing else, than the last had, these son is growing up to, than of what has been gentlemen are instances of it in their diffealready enjoyed, and is gone for ever. It rent manner of application. Tulip is ever is therefore allowed to Flavia to look for- making allusions to the vigour of his perward, but not to Honoria to look back. son, the sinewy force of his make; while Flavia is no way dependent on her mother Crastin professes a wary observation of the with relation to her fortune, for which rea- turns of his mistress's mind.–Tulip gives son they live almost upon an equality in con- himself the air of a resistless ravisher, versation; and as Honoria has given Flavia Crastin practises that of a skilful lover. to understand, that it is ill-bred to be al- Poetry is the inseparable property of every ways calling mother, Flavia is as well man in love; and as men of wit write verses pleased never to be called child. It hap- on those occasions, the rest of the world repens by this means, that these ladies are peat the verses of others. These servants generally rivals in all places where they of the ladies were used to imitate their appear; and the words mother and daugh- manner of conversation, and allude to one ter never pass between them but out of another, rather than interchange discourse spite. Flavia one night at a play observing in what they said when they met., Tulip Honoria draw the eyes of several in the the other day seized his mistress's hand, pit, called to a lady who sat by her, and and repeated out of Ovid's Art of Love, bid her ask her mother to lend her her
""Tis I can in soft battles pass the night, snuff-box for a moment. Another time, Yet rise next morning vigorous for the fight, when, a lover of Honoria was on his knees Fresh as the day, and active as the light.' beseeching the favour to kiss her hand, Flavia rushing into the room, kneeled down of deference, played with Honoria’s fan,
Upon hearing this, Crastin, with an air by him and asked her blessing. Several and repeated, of these contradictory acts of duty have raised between them such a coldness, that
Sedley has that prevailing gentle art,
That can with a resistless charm impart they generally converse when they are in mixed company by way of talking at one Raise such a conflict, kindle such a fire, another, and not to one another. Honoria Between declining virtue and desire,
Till the poor vanquish'd maid dissolves away, is ever complaining of a certain sufficiency
In dreams all night, in sighs and tears all day.'* in the young women of this age, who assume to themselves an authority of carry- When Crastin had uttered these verses ing all things before them, as if they were with a tenderness which at once spoke paspossessors of the esteem of mankind, and all sion and respect, Honoria cast a triumphwho were but a year before them in the ant glance at Flavia, as exulting in the eleworld, were neglected or deceased. Flavia gance of Crastin's courtship, and upbraidupon such provocation, is sure to observe, ing her with the homeliness of Tulip's. that there are people who can resign no- Tulip understood the reproach, and in rething, and know not how to give up what turn began to applaud the wisdom of old they know they cannot hold; that there amorous gentlemen, who turned their misare those who will not allow youth their tress's imagination as far as possible from follies, not because they are themselves what they had long themselves forgot, and past them, but because they love to con- ended his discourse with a sly commendatinue in them. These beauties rival each tion of the doctrine of Platonic love; at the other on all occasions; not that they have same time he ran over, with a laughing always had the same lovers, but each has eye, Crastin's thin legs, meagre looks, and kept up a vanity to show the other the spare body. The old gentleman immecharms of her lover. Dick Crastin and diately left the room with some disorder, Tom Tulip, among many others, have of late been pretenders in this family: Dick
* Lord Rochester's Imitation of the first Satire of to Honoria, Tom to Flavia. Dick is the only 'Horace.
The loosest wishes to the chastest heart:
and the conversation fell upon untimely | In answer to my fair disciple, whom I passion, after-love, and unseasonable youth. am very proud of, I must acquaint her and Tulip sung, danced, moved before the glass, the rest of my readers, that since I have led his mistress half a minuet, hummed called out for help in my catalogue of a Celia the fair, in the bloom of fifteen!'
lady's library, I have received many letters
upon that head, some of which I shall give when there came a servant with a letter to an account of. him, which was as follows:
In the first class, I shall take notice of
those which come to me from eminent “SIR,-I understand very well what you booksellers, who every one of them menmeant by your mention of Platonic love. I tion with respect the authors they have shall be glad to meet you immediately in printed, and consequently have an eye to Hyde-park, or behind Montague-house, their own advantage more than to that of or attend you to Barn-elms, or any other the ladies. One tells me, that he thinks it fashionable place that's fit for a gentleman absolutely necessary for women to have to die in, that you shall appoint for, sir, true notions of right and equity, and that • Your most humble servant,
therefore they cannot peruse a better book RICHARD CRASTIN,'
than Dalton's Country Justice. Another
thinks they cannot be without The ComTulip's colour changed at the reading of plete Jockey. A third observing the cuthis epistle; for which reason his mistress riosity and desire of prying into secrets, snatched it to read the contents. While which he tells me is natural to the fair sex, she was doing so, Tulip went away; and is of opinion this female inclination, if well the ladies now agreeing in a common ca- directed, might turn very much to their adlamity, bewailed together the danger of vantage, and therefore recommends to me their lovers. They immediately undressed Mr. Mede upon the Revelations. A fourth to go out, and took hackneys to prevent lays it down as an unquestioned truth, that mischief; but, after alarming all parts of a lady cannot be thoroughly accomplished the town, Crastin was found by his widow who has not read The Secret Treaties and in his pumps at Hyde-park, which ap- Negotiations of Marshal d'Estrades. Mr. pointment Tulip never kept, but made his Jacob Tonson, junior, is of opinion, that escape into the country. Flavia tears her Bayle's Dictionary might be of very great hair for his inglorious safety, curses and use to the ladies, in order to make them despises her charmer, and is fallen into general scholars. Another, whose name I love with Crastin: which is the first part have forgotten, thinks it highly proper that of the history of the rival mother. R.
every woman with child should read Mr. Wall's History of Infant Baptism; and an
other is very importunate with me to reNo. 92.] Friday, June 15, 1711. commend to all my female readers The
finishing Stroke; being a Vindication of the Convivæ prope dissentire videntur, Poscentes vario multum diversa palato;
Patriarchal Scheme, &c. Quid dem? Quid non dem?
In the second class, I shall mention books Hor. Lib. 2. Ep. ii. 61. which are recommended by husbands, if I IMITATED.
may believe the writers of them. Whether What would you have me do,
or no they are real busbands or personated When out of twenty I can please not two ?- ones I cannot tell; but the books they reOne likes the pheasant's wing, and one the leg: commend are as follow. A Paraphrase on The vulgar boil, the learned roast an egg ; Hard task to hit the palate of such guests.
the History of Susannah. Rules to keep Pope.
Lent. The Christian's Overthrow preLooking over the late packets of let- vented. A Dissuasive from the Play-house. ters which have been sent to me, I found The Virtues of Camphire, with Directions the following:
to make Camphire Tea. The Pleasures
of a Country Life. The Government of *MR. SPECTATOR,-Your paper is a part the Tongue. A letter dated from Cheapof my tea-equipage, and my servant knows side, desires me that I would advise all my humour so well, that calling for my young wives to make themselves mistresses breakfast this morning, (it being past amoy with a postscript, that he hopes. I will not
of Wingate's Arithmetic, and concludes was not yet come in; but that the tea- forget the Countess of Kent's Receipts. kettle boiled, and she expected it every
I may reckon the ladies themselves as a moment. Having thus in part signified to third class among these my correspondents you the esteem and veneration which I and privy-counsellors. In a letter from one have for you, I must put you in mind of the of them, I am advised to place Pharamond catalogue of books which you have promis at the head of my catalogue, and, if I think ed to recommend to our sex; for I have de- proper, to give the second place to Cassanferred furnishing my closet with authors, ara. * Coquetilla begs me not to think till I receive your advice in this particular, of nailing women upon their knees with being your daily disciple and humble ser
* Two celebrated French romances, written by M. vant,