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cipitate passions, as the first that rises in that assembly to give his opinion upon their present posture of affairs. Accordingly, he declares himself abruptly for war, and appears incensed at his companions for losing so much time as even to deliberate upon it. All his sentiments are rash, audacious, and desperate. Such is that of arming themselves with their tortures, and turning their punishments upon him who inflicted them: No, let us rather choose, Arm'd with hell flames and fury, all at once O'er heav'n's high tow’rs to force resistless way, Turning our tortures into horrid arms Against the tort’rer; when to meet the noise Of his almighty engine he shall hear Infernal thunder, and for lightning see Black fire and horror shot with equal rage Among his angels: and his throne itself Mix'd with Tartarian sulphur, and strange fire, His own invented torments. His preferring annihilation to shame or misery is also highly suitable to his character; as the comfort he draws from their disturbing the peace of heaven, that if it be not victory it is revenge, is a sentiment truly diabolical, and becoming the bitterness of this implacable spirit. Belial is described in the first book as the idol of the lewd and luxurious. He is in the second book, pursuant to that description, characterized as timorous and slothful; and if we look into the sixth book, we find him celebrated in the battle of angels for nothing but that scoffing speech which he makes to Satan, on their supposed advantage over the enemy. As his appearance is uniform, and of a piece in these three several views, we find his sentiments in the infernal assembly every way conformable to his character. §§ ate his apprehensions of a second battle, his horrors of annihilation, his preferring to be iniserable, rather than ‘not to be.’ I need not observe, that the contrast of thought in this speech, and that which precedes it, gives an agreeable variety to the debate. Mammon's character is so fully drawn in the first book, that the poet adds nothing to it in the second. We were before told, that he was the first who taught mankind to ransack the earth for gold and silver, and that he was the architect of Pandæmonium, or the infernal palace, where the evil spirits were to meet in council. this book is every wa praved a character. #
His speech in suitable to so deow proper is that reflection of their being unable to taste the happiness, of heaven, were they actually there, in the mouth of one, who, while he was in heaven, is said to have had his mind dazzled with the outward pomps and glories of the place, and to have been more intent
on the riches of the pavement than on the I shall also leave the reader
And with the majesty of darkness round
Beelzebub, who is reckoned the second in dignity that fell, and is, in the first book, the second that awakens out of the trance, and confers with Satan upon the situation of their affairs, maintains his rank in the book now before us. There is a wonderful majesty described in his rising up to speak. He acts as a kind of moderator between the two opposite parties, and proposes a third undertaking, which the whole assembly gives into. The motion he makes of detaching one of their body in search of a new world is grounded upon a project devised by Satan, and cursorily proposed by him in the following lines of the first book:
The reader may observe how just it was, not to omit in the first book the project upon which the whole poem turns; as also that the prince of the fallen angels was the only proper person to give it birth, and that the next to him in dignity was the fittest to second and support it. o There is besides, I think, something wonderfully beautiful, and very apt to affect the reader's imagination, in this ancient prophecy or report in heaven, concerning the creation of man. Nothing could more show the dignity of the species, than this tradition which ran of them before their existence. They are represented to have been the talk of heaven before they were created. . Virgil, in compliment to the Roman commonwealth, makes the heroes of it appear in their state of pre-existence; but Milton does a far greater honour to mankind in general, as he gives us a glimpse of them even before they are in being.
The rising of this great assembly is described in a very sublime and poetical inallilei’:
ments are to the same character: This deep world
Their rising all at once was as the sound
Of darkness do we dread? How ost amidst
Of thunder heard remote.
The diversions of the fallen angels, with the particular account of their place of habitation, are described with great pregnancy of thought, and copiousness of invention. The diversions are every wa suitable to beings who had nothing le them but strength and knowledge misapplied. Such are their contentions at the race and in feats of arms, with their entertainment in the following lines:
Others with vast Typhaean rage more fell Rend up, both rocks and hills, and ride the air In whirlwind, hell scarce holds the wild uproar. Their music is employed in celebrating their own criminal exploits, and their discourse in sounding the unfathomable depths of fate, free-will, and foreknowledge. The several circumstances in the description of hell are finely imagined; as the four rivers which disgorge themselves into the sea of fire, the extremes of cold and heat, and the river of oblivion. The monstrous animals produced in that infernal world are represented by a single line, which gives us a more horrid idea of them 3. a much longer description would have onc
—Nature breeds, l’erverse, all monstrous, all prodigious things, Abominable, inutterable, and worse Than fables yet have feign'd, or fear conceiv'd, Gorgons and hydras, and chimeras dire. This episode of the fallen spirits and their place of habitation, comes in very happily to unbend the mind of the reader from its attention to the debate. An ordinary poet would indeed have spun out so many circumstances to a great length, and by that means have weakened, instead of illustrated the principal fable. The flight of Satan to the gates of hell is finely imaged. I ho already declared my opinion of the allegory concerning Sin and Death, which is, however, a very finished piece in its kind, when it is not considered as a part of an epic poem. The genealogy of the several persons is contrived wit great delicacy. Sin is the daughter of Satan, and Death the offspring of Sin. The incestuous mixture between Sin and Death produces those monsters and hell-hounds which from time to time enter into their mother, and tear the bowels of her who gave them birth. These are the terrors of an evil conscience, and the proper fruits of Sin, which naturally rise from the apprehensions of Death. This last beautiful moral is, I think, clearly intimated in the speech of Sin, where, complaining of this her dreadful issue, she adds: Before mine eyes in opposition sits Grim Death, my son and foe, who sets them on, And me his parent would full soon devour, For want of other prey, but that he knows His end with mine involv’d. I need not mention to the reader the beautiful circumstance in the last part of
this quotation. He will likewise observe how naturally the three persons concerned in this allegory are tempted by one common interest to enter into a confederacy together, and how properly Sin is made the portress of hell, and the only being that can open the gates to that world of tortures. . The descriptive part of this allegory is likewise very strong, and full of sublime ideas. The figure of Death, the regal crown upon his head, his menace of Satan, his advancing to the combat, the outcry at his birth, are circumstances too noble to be past over in silence, and extremely suitable to this king of terrors. I need not mention the justness of thought which is observed in the generation of these several symbolical persons; that Sin was produced upon the first revolt of Satan, that Death appeared soon after he was cast into hell, and that the terrors of conscience were conceived at the gate of this place of torments. The description of , the gates is very Kä. as the opening of them is full of ilton's spirit: —On a sudden open fly With impetuous recoil and jarring sound Th’infernal doors, and on their hinges grate Harsh thunder, that the lowest bottom shook Of Erebus. She open'd, but to shut Excell'd her pow'r, the gates wide open stood, That with extended wings a banner'd host Under spread ensigns marching might pass through With horse and chariots rank'd in loose array; So wide they stood, and like a furnace mouth Cast forth redounding smoke and ruddy flame.
In Satan's voyage through the chaos there are several imaginary persons described, as residing in that immense waste of matter. This may perhaps be conformable to the taste of those critics who are pleased with nothing in a poet which has not life and manners ascribed to it; but for my own part, I am pleased most with those passages in this description which carry in them a greater measure of probability, and are such as might possibly have happened. Of this kind is his first mounting in the smoke that rises from the infernal pit, his falling into a cloud of nitre, and the like combustible materials, that by their explosion still hurried him forward in his vo . his springing upward like a pyramid of fire, with his laborious passage through that confusion of elements which the poet calls
The womb of nature, and perhaps her grave.
The glimmering light which shot into the chaos from the utmost verge of the creation, with the distant discovery of the earth that hung close by the moon, are wonderfully beautiful and poetical. 2\o L.
No. 310.] Monday, February 25, 1711-12.
Connubio jungam stabili— Pirg, JEn. i. 77. I'll tie the indissoluble marriage-knot. “MR. SPECTAtor, I am a certain young woman that love a certain young man very
heartily; and my father and mother were for it a great while, but now they say I can do better; but I think I cannot. They bid me not love him, and I cannot unlove him. What must I do? Speak quickly. “BIDDY DOW-BAKE,”
“Feb. 19, 1712.
“DEAR SPEc,-I have loved a lady entirely for this year and a half, though for a §. part of the time (which has contri
uted not a little to my Po) I have been debarred the liberty of conversing with her. The grounds of our difference was this; that wo we had enquired into each other's circumstances, we found that at our first setting out into the world, we should owe five hundred pounds more than her fortune would pay off. My estate is seven hundred pounds a-year, besides the benefit of tin mines. Now, dear Spec, upon this state of the case, and the lady’s positive declaration that there is still no other objection, I beg you will not fail to insert this, with your opinion, as soon as possible, whether this ought to be esteemed a just cause or impediment why we should not be joined; and you will for ever oblige yours sincerely, DICK LOVESICK.”
* PostsCRIPT. ‘Sir, if I marry this lady by the assistance of your opinion, you may expect a favour for it.”
“MR. SPECTAtoR,--I have the misfortune to be one of those unhappy men who are distinguished by the name of discarded lovers; but I am the less mortified at my disgrace, because the young lady is one of those creatures who set up for negligence of men, are forsooth the most rigidly virtuous in the world, and yet their nicety will permit them at the command of parents to go to bed to the most utter stranger that can be proposed to them. As to me myself, I was introduced by the father of my mistress; but find I owe my being at first received to a comparison of my estate with that of a former lover, and that I am now in like manner turned off to give way to an humble servant still richer than I am. What makes this treatment the more extravagant is, that the young lady is in the management of this way of fraud, and §: her father's orders on those occasions without any manner of reluctance, but does it with the same air that one of your men of the world would signify the necessity of affairs for turning another out of office. When I came home last night, I found this letter from my mistress:
‘SIR,--I hope you will not think it is any manner of disrespect to your person or merit, that the intended nuptials between us are interrupted. My father says he has a much better offer for me than you can make, and has ordered me to break off the treaty between us. If it had proceeded, I should have behaved myself with all suit
able regard to you, but as it is, I beg we may be strangers for the future. Adieu. * LYDIA.”
‘This great indifference on this subject, and the mercenary motives for making alliances, is what I think lies naturally before you, and I beg of you to give me your o: upon it. My answer to Lydia was as follows, which I hope you will approve; for you are to know the woman's family affect a wonderful ease on these occasions, though they expect it should be painfully received on the man’s side.
‘MADAM,-I have received yours, and knew the prudence of your house so well, that I always took care to be ready to obey your commands, though they should be to see you no more, Pray give my service to all the good family. Adieu.
• CLITOPHON. “The opera subscription is full.”
- MEMORAN DUM.
The censor of marriage to consider this letter and report the common usages on such treaties, with how many#: or acres are generally esteemed sufficient reason for preferring a new to an old pretender; with his opinion what is proper to be determined in such cases for the future. See No. 308, let. 1.
‘MR, SPECTAtoR,—There is an elderly person lately left off business and settled in our town, in order, as he thinks, to retire from the world; but he has brought with him such an inclination to tale-bearing, that he disturbs both himself and all our neighbourhood. Notwithstanding this frailty, the honest gentleman is so happy as to have no enemy: at the same time he has not one friend who will venture to acquaint him with his weakness. It is not to be doubted, but if this failing were set in a proper light, he would quickly perceive the indecency and evil consequences of it. Now, sir, this being an infirmity which I hope may be corrected, and knowing that he pays much deference to you, I beg that when you are at leisure to give us a speculation on go you would think of my neighbour. You will hereby oblige several who will be glad to find a reformation in their grey-haired friend; and how becoming will it be for him, instead of pouring forth words at all adventures, to set a watch before the door of his mouth, to refrain his tongue, to check its impetuosity, and guard against the sallies of that little pert, forward, busy person; which, under a sober conduct, might prove a useful member of society! In compliance with those intimations, I have taken the liberty to make this address to you. I am, sir, your most obscure servant,
“MR, SPECTAtoR,-This is to petition you in behalf of myself, and many more of
your gentle readers, that at any time when you may have private reasons against letting us know what you think yourself, you ould be pleased to pardon us such letters of your correspondents as seem to be of no use but to the printer. “It is further our humble request, that you would substitute advertisements in the F. of such epistles; and that in order ereunto Mr. Buckley may be authorized to take up of your zealous friend, Mr. Charles Lillie, any quantity of words he shall from time to time have occasion for. “The many useful parts of knowledge which may be communicated to the public this way, will, we hope, be a consideration in favour of your petitioners. And your petitioners, &c.’
.Vote.—That lo regard be had to this petition; and the papers marked letter R may be carefully examined for thi future.
No. 311.] Tuesday, February 26, 1711-12.
Nec Veneris pharetris macer est, aut lampade servet:
He sighs, adores, and courts her ev'ry hour : Who would not do as much for such a dower? - Dryden.
, ‘Mr. SPECTAtoR,--I am amazed that, among all the variety of characters with which you have enriched your speculations, you have never given us a picture of those audacious young fellows among us who commonly go by the name of the fortunestealers. You must know, sir, I am one who live in a continual apprehension of this sort of people, that lie in wait, day and night for our children, and may be considered as a kind of kidnappers within the law. I am the fathcr of a young heiress, whom I begin to look upon as marriageable, and who has looked upon herself as such for above these six years. She is now in the eighteenth year of her age. The fortune-hunters have already cast their eyes upon her, and take care to plant themselves in her view whenever she appears in any public assembly. I have myself caught a young jackanapes, with a pair of silver-fringed gloves, in the very fact. You must know, Sir, I have kept her as a prisoner of state, ever since she was in her teens. Her chamber windows are cross-barred; she is not permitted to go out of the house but with her keeper, who is a staid relation of my own; I have likewise forbid her the use y pen and ink, for this twelvemonth last past, and do not suffer a band-box to be carried into her room before it has been searched. Notwithstanding these precautions, I am at my wit’s end, for fear of any sudden surprise. There were, two or three nights ago, some fiddles heard in the street, which I am afraid
ortend me no good: not to mention a tall
rishman, that has been seen walking be
fore my house more than once this winter. My kinswoman likewise informs me that the girl has talked to her twice or thrice of a gentleman in a fair wig, and that she loves to go to church more than ever, she did in her life. She gave me the slip about a week ago, upon which my whole house was in alarm. I immediately o a hue and cry after her to the 'Change, to her mantua-maker, and to the young ladies that visit her; but after above an hour's search she returned of herself, having been taking a walk, as she told me, by Rosamond’s pond. I have hereupon turned off her woman, doubled her guards, and given new instructions to my relation, who, to give her her due, keeps a watchful eye over all her motions. his, sir, keeps me in perpetual anxiety, and makes me ve often watch when my daughter sleeps, as am afraid she is even with me in her turn. Now, sir, what I would desire of you is, to represent to this fluttering tribe of young fellows, who are for making their fortunes by these indirect means, that stealing a man's daughter for the sake of her portion, is but a kind of a tolerated robbery; and that they make but a poor amends to the father, whom they plunder after this manner, by going to bed with his child. , Dear sir, be speedy in your thoughts on this subject, that, if possible, ". may appear before the disbanding of the army. I am, sir, your most humble servant, • TIM WATCHWELL.”
Themistocles, the great Athenian general, being asked whether he would rather choose to marry his daughter to an indigent man of merit, or to a worthless man of an estate, replied, that he should prefer a man without an estate to an estate without a man. The worst of it is, our modern fortune-hunters are those who turn their heads that way, because they are good for nothing else. If a young fellow finds he can make nothing of Coke and Littleton he "...'. himself with a ladder of ropes, and by that means very often enters upon the premises.
The same art of scaling has likewise been practised with §: success by many military engineers. Stratagems of this nature make parts and industry supe: fluous, and cut short the way to riches.
Nor is vanity a less motive than idleness to this kind of mercenary pursuit. A fog, who admires his person in a glass, soon enters into a resolution of making his fortune by it, not questioning but every wo— man that falls in his way will do him as much justice as he does himself. When an heiress sees a man throwing particular graces into his ogle, or talking loud within her hearing, she ought to look to herself; but if withal she observes a pair of red heels, a patch, or any other particularity in his dress, she cannot take too much care of her person. These are baits not to be trifled with, charms that have done a world of execution, and made their way into hearts which have been thought impregnable.— The force of a man with these qualifications is so well known, that I am credibly informed there are several female undertakers about the 'Change, who, upon the arrival of a likely man out of a neighbouring kingdom, will furnish him with a proper dress from head to foot, to be paid for at a double price on the day of marriage.
We must, however, distinguish between fortune-hunters and fortune-stealers. The first are those assiduous gentlemen who employ their whole lives in the chase, without ever coming to the quarry. Suffenus has combed and powdered at the ladies for thirty years together; and taken his stand in a side-box, until he has grown wrinkled under their eyes. He is now laying the same snares for the present generation of beauties, which he practised on their mothers. Cottilus, after having made his application to more than you meet with in Mr. Cowley’s ballad of mistresses, was at last smitten with a city lady of 20,000l. sterling; but died of old age before he could bring matters to bear. Nor must I here omit my worthy friend Mr. Honeycomb, who has often told us in the club, that for twenty years successively upon the death of a childless rich man, he immediately drew on his boots, called for his horse, and made up to the widow. When he is rallied upon his ill success, Will, with his usual gaiety, tells us, that he always found her pre-engaged.
Widows are indeed the great game of your fortune-hunters. There is scarce a young fellow in the town of six foot high that has not passed in review before one or other of these wealthy relicts. Hudibras's Cupid, who
is daily employed in throwing darts and kindling flames. But as for widows, they are such a subtle generation of people, that they may be left to their own conduct; or if they make a false step in it, they are answerable for it to nobody but themselves. The young innocent creatures who have no knowledge and experience of the world, are those whose safety I would principally consult in this speculation. The stealing of such an one should, in my opinion, be as punishable as a rape. Where there is no judgment there is no choice; and why the inveigling a woman before she comes to years of discretion should not be as criminal as the seducing of her before she is ten years old, I am at a loss to comprehend.
* See Grey's edit. of Hudibras, vol. 1. part i. canto iii. v. 212, 213.
It is a very melanchcly reflection, that men are usually so weak, that it is absolutely necessary for them to know sorrow and pain, to be in their right senses. Prosperous people (for happy there are none) are hurried away with a fond sense of their present condition, and thoughtless of the mutability of fortune. Fortune is a term which we must use, in such discourses as these, for what is wrought by the unseen hand of the Disposer of all things. But methinks the disposition of a mind which is truly great, is that which makes misfortunes and sorrows little when they befal ourselves, great and lamentable when they befal other men. The most unpardonable malefactor in the world going to his death, and bearing it with composure, would win the pity of those who should behold him; and this not because his calamity is deplorable, but because he seems himself not to deplore it. We suffer for him who is less sensible of his own misery, and are inclined to despise him who sinks under the weight of his distresses. On the other hand, without any touch of envy, a temperate and well-governed mind looks down on such as are exalted with success, with a certain shame for the imbecility of human nature, that can so far forget how liable it is to calamity, as to grow giddy with only the suspense of sorrow, which is the portion of all men. He therefore who turns his face from the unhappy man, who will not look again when his eye is cast upon modest sorrow, who shuns affliction like a contagion, does but pamper himself up for a sacrifice, and contract in himself a greater aptitude to misery by attempting to escape it. A gen. tleman, where I happened to be last night, fell into a discourse which I thought showed a good discerning in him. He took notice, that whenever men have looked into their heart for the idea of true excellence in human nature, they have found it to consist in suffering after a right manner, and with a good grace. Heroes are always drawn bearing sorrows, struggling with adversities, undergoing all kinds of hardships, and having, in the service of mankind, a kind of appetite to difficulties and dangers. The gentleman went on to observe, that it is from this secret sense of the high merit which there is in patience under calamities, that the writers of romances when they attempt to furnish out characters of the highest excellence, ransack nature for