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he is sure to find some who are; so that if he be disposed to take a whet, a nooning, an evening’s draught, or a bottle after midnight, he goes to the club, and finds a knot of friends to his mind. It is a maxim in this club, that the steward never dies; for as they succeed one another by way of rotation, no man is to quit the great elbow-chair which stands at the upper-end of the table, till his successor is in readiness to fill it: insomuch that there has not been a sede vacante in the memory of man. This club was instituted towards the end (or as some of them say, about the middle) of the civil wars, and continued without interruption till the time of the great fire,” which burnt them out, and dispersed them for several weeks. The steward at that time maintained his post till he had like to have been blown up with a neighbouring house, (which was demolished in order to stop the fire;), and would not leave the chair at last, till he had emptied all the bottles upon the table, and received repeated directions from the Club to withdraw himself. This steward is frequently talked of in the club, and looked upon by everv member of it as a greater man than the famous captain mentioned, in my lord Clarendon, who was burnt in his ship because he would not quit it without orders. It is said, that towards the close of 1700, being the great year of jubilee, the club had it under consideration whether they should break up or continue their session; but after many speeches, and debates, it was at length agreed to sit out the other century. This resolution was passed in a general club nemine contradicente. Having given this short account of the institution and continuation of the Everlasting Club, I should here endeavour to say something of the manners and characters of its several members, which I shall do according to the best lights I have received in this matter. It appears by their books in general, that since their first institution, they have smoked fifty tons of tobacco, drank, thirty thousand butts of ale, one thousand hogsheads of red port, two hundred barrels of brandy, and a kilderkin of small beer. There has been likewise a †. consumption of cards. It is also said, that they observe the law in Ben Jonson's club,f which orders the fire to be always kept in (focus ferennis esto) as well for the convenience of lighting their pipes, as to cure the dam ness of the club-room. They have an old woman in the nature of a vestal, whose business it is to cherish and perpetuate the fire, which burns from generation to generation, and has seen the glass-house fires in and out above an hundred times. The Everlasting Club treats all other
* Anno 1656. - 1 see the Leges Convivales of this club, in Langbaine's Lives of English Poets, &c. Art. Ben Jonson.
clubs with an eye of contempt, and talks even of the Kit-Cat and October as of a couple of upstarts. Their ordinary discourse, (as much as I have been able to learn of it) turns altogether upon such adventures as have passed in their own assembly; of members who have taken the glass in their turns for a week together, without stirring out of the club; of others who have smoked an hundred pipes at a sitting; of others, who have not missed their morning’s draught for twenty years together. Sometimes they speak in raptures of a run of ale in king Charles's reign; and sometimes reflect with astonishment upon games at whist, which have been miraculously recovered by members of the society, when in all human probability the case was desperate. They delight in several old catches, which they sing at all hours, to encourage one another to moisten their clay, and grow immortal by drinking; with many other edifying exhortations of the like nature. There are four general clubs held in a year, at which times they fill up vacancies, appoint waiters, confirm the old firemaker, or elect a new one, settle contributions for coals, pipes, tobacco, and other necessaries. The senior member has outlived the whole club twice over, and has been drunk with the grandfathers of some of the present sitting members.
It is very strange to consider, that a creature like man, who is sensible of so many weaknesses and imperfections, should be actuated by a love of fame: that vice and ignorance, imperfection and misery, should contend for praise, and endeavour as much as possible to make themselves objects of admiration. ut notwithstanding man's essential perfection is but very little, his comparative rfection may be very considerable. If he |. upon himself in an abstracted light, he has not much to boast of; but if he considers himself with regard to others, he may find occasion of glorying, if not in his own virtues, at least in the absence of another's imperfections. This gives a different turn to the reflections of the wise man and the fool. The first endeavours to shine in himself, and the last to outshine others. The first is humbled by the sense of his own infirmities, the last is lifted up by the discovery of those which he observes in other men. The wise man considers what he wants, and the fool what he abounds in. The wise man is happy when he gains his own approbation, and the fool when he recommends himself to the applause of those about him.
But however unreasonable and absurd this passion for admiration may appear in such a creature as man, it is not wholly to be discouraged; since it often produces very effects, not only as it restrains him rom doing any thing which is mean and contemptible, but as it pushes him to actions which are great and glorious. The principle may be defective or faulty, but the consequences it produces are so good, that for the benefit of mankind, it ought not to be extinguished. It is observed by Cicero, that men of the greatest and the most shining parts are the most actuated by ambition; and if we look into the two sexes, I believe we shall find this principle of action stronger in women than in men. The passion for praise, which is so very vehement in the fair sex, produces excellent effects in women of sense, who desire to be admired for that only which deserves admiration; and I think we may observe, without a compliment to them, that many of them do not only live in a more uniform course of virtue, but with an infinitely greater regard to their honour, than what we find in the generality of our own sex. How many instances have we of chastity, fidelity, devotion! How many ladies distinguish themselves by the education of their children, care of their families, and love of their husbands, which are the great qualities and achievements of womankind! as the making of war, the carrying on of traffic, the administration of justice, are those by which men grow famous, and get themselves a name. But as this passion for admiration, when it works according to reason, improves the beautiful part of our species in everything that is laudable; so nothing is more destructive to them when it is governed by vanity and folly. What I have therefore here to say, only regards the vain part of the sex, whom for certain reasons, which the reader will hereafter see at large, I shall distinguish by the name of idols. An idol is wholly taken up in the adorning of her person. You see in every posture of her body, air of her face, and motion of her head, that it is her business and employment to gain adorers. For this reason your idols appear in all public places and assemblies, in order to seduce men to their worship. The playhouse is very frequently filled with idols; several of them are carried in procession every evening about the ring, and several of them set up their worship even in churches. They are to be accosted in the language proper to the deity. , Life and death are in their power: joys of heaven and pains of hell, are at their disposal; paradise is in their arms, and eternity in every moment that you are present with them. Raptures, transports, and ecstacies are the rewards which they confer; sighs and tears, prayers and broken hearts, are the offerings which are paid to them. Their
smiles make men happy; their frowns drive them to despair. shall only add under this head, that Ovid's book of the Art of Love is a kind of heathen ritual, which contains all the forms of worship which are made use of to an idol. It would be as difficult a task to reckon up these different kinds of idols, as Milton's was to number those that were known in Canaan, and the lands adjoining. Most of them are worshipped like Moloch in fires and flames. Some of them, like Baal, love to see their votaries cut and slashed, and shedding their blood for them. Some of them, like the idol in the Apocrypha, must have treats and collations prepared for them every night. . It has indeed been known, that some of them have been used by their incensed worshippers like the Chinese idols, who are whipped and scourged when they refuse to comply with the prayers that are offered to them. I must here observe that those idolaters who devote themselves to the idols I am here speaking of, differ very much from all other kinds of idolaters. For as others fall out because they worship different idols, these idolaters quarrel because they worship the same. 'F', intention therefore of the idol is quite contrary to the wishes of the idolater: as the one desires to confine the idol to himself, the whole business and ambition of the other is to multiply adorers. This humour of an idol is prettily described in a tale of Chaucer. He represents one of them sitting at a table with three of her votaries about her, who are all of them courting her favour, and paying their adorations. . She smiled upon one, drank to another, and trod upon the other's foot which was under the table. Now which of these three, says the old bard, do you think was the favourite? In troth, says he, not one of all the three. The behaviour of this old idolin Chaucer, puts me in mind of the beautiful Clarinda, one of the greatest idols among the moderns. She is worshipped once a week by candlelight, in the midst of a large congregation, generally called an assembly. Some of the gayest youths in the nation endeavour to plant themselves in her eye, while she sits in form with multitudes of tapers burning about her. To encourage the zeal of her idolaters, she bestows a mark of her favour upon every one of them, before they go out of her presence. She asks a question of one, tells a story to another, glances an ogle upon a third, takes a pinch of snuff from the fourth, lets her fan drop by accident to give the fifth an occasion of taking it up. In short, every one goes away satisfied with his success, and encouraged to renew his devotions on the same canonical hour that day seven-night. An idol may be undeified by many accidental causes. Marriage in particular is a kind of counter-apotheosis, or a deification inverted.—When a man becomes familiar with his goddess, she quickly sinks into a Woman. Old age is likewise a great decayer of your idol. The truth of it is, there is not a more unhappy being than a superannuated idol, especially when she has contracted such airs and behaviour as are only graceful when her worshippers are about her. Considering therefore that in these and many other cases the woman generally outlives the idol, I must return to the moral of this paper, and desire my fair readers to ive a proper direction to their passion for eing admired; in order to which, they must endeavour to make themselves the objects of a reasonable and lasting admiration. This is not to be hoped for from beauty, or dress, or fashion, but from those inward ornaments which are not to be defaced by time or sickness, and which appear most amiable to those who are most acquainted with them. C.
IN my last Monday’s paper I %. Some general instances of those beautiful strokes which please the reader in the old song of Chevy-Chase; I shall here, according to my promise, be more particular, and show that the sentiments in that ballad are extremely natural and poetical, and full of the majestic simplicity which we admire in the greatest of the ancient poets: for which reason I shall quote several passages of it, in which the thought is altogether the same with what we meet in several passages of the HEneid; not that I would infer from thence that the poet (whoever he was) proposed to himself any imitation of those passages, but that he was directed to them in general by the same kind of poetical genius, and by the same copyings after nature. Had this old song been filled with epigrammatical turns and points of wit, it might op. have pleased the wrong taste of some readers; but it would never have become the delight of the common É. nor have warmed the heart of Sir hilip Sidney like the sound of a trumpet; it is only nature that can have this effect, and please those tastes which are the most unprejudiced, or the most refined. I must however beg leave to dissent from so great an authority as that of Sir Philip Sidney, in the judgment which he has passed as to the rude style and evil apparel of this antiquated song; for there are several parts in it where not only the thought but the language is majestic, and the numbers sonorous; at least the apparel is much more gorgeous than many of the poets made use
of in Queen Elizabeth’s time, as the reader
will see in several of the following quota
tions. What can be greater than either the
thought or the expression in that stanza,
“To drive the deer with hound and horn
The child may rue that is unborn
This way of considering the misfortunes which this battle would bring upon posterity, not only on those who were born immediately after the battle, and lost their fathers in it, but on those also who perished in future battles which took their rise from this quarrel of the two earls, is wonderfully beautiful, and conformable to the way of thinking among the ancient poets.
Audiet pugnas vitio parentum
Rara juventus. Hor. Lib. 1. Od. ii. 23. Posterity, thinn'd by their fathers' crimes, Shall read, with grief, the story of their times.
What can be more sounding and poetical, or resemble more the majestic simplicity of the ancients, than the following stanzas:
“The stout Earl of Northumberland A vow to God did make,
His pleasure in the Scottish woods Three summers' days to take.
“With fifteen hundred bowmen bold, All chosen men of might,
Who knew full well, in time of need To aim their shafts aright.
“The hounds ran swiftly through the woods
And with their cries the hills and dales
—Vocatingenti clamore Cithaeron,
“Lo yonder doth Earl Douglas come, His men in armour bright;
Full twenty hundred Scottish spears, All marching in our sight.
“All men of pleasant Tividale, Fast by the river Tweed,’ &c.
The country of the Scotch warriors, described in these two last verses, has a fine romantic situation, and affords a couple of smooth words for verse. If the reader compares the foregoing six lines of the song with the following Latin verses, he will see how much they are written in the spirit of Virgil: Adversi campo apparent, hastasque reductis Protendunt longe dextris; et spicula vibrant:— Quique altum Praeneste viri, quique arva Gabinae Junonis, gelidumque Anienem, et roscida rivis Hernica saxa colunt:—qui rosea rura Velini, Qui Tetrica horrentes rupes, montemque Severum, Casperiamdue colunt, Forulosque, et flumen Himellae: Qui Tiberim Fabarimgue bibunt. JEn. xi. 605—vii. 682, 712.
Advancing in a line, they couch their spears–
The rocks of Hernicus—besides a band,
But to proceed:
Thus while he spake, unmindful of defence, A winged arrow struck the pious prince; But whether from a human hand it came, Or hostile god, is left unknown by fame. Dryden. But of all the descriptive parts of this song, there are none more beautiful than the four following stanzas, which have a great force and spirit in them, and are filled with very natural circumstances. The thought in the third stanza was never touched by any other t, and is such a one as would have shined in Homer or Virgil: So thus did both these nobles die, Whose courage none could stain;
An English archer then perceiv'd
son I do not mention this part of the poem but to show the natural cast of thought which appears in it, as the two last verses look almost like a translation of Virgil. Cadit et Ripheus, justissimus unus Qui fuit in Teucris, et servantissimus aqui. Diis aliter visum JEn. ii. 426. Then Ripheus fell in the unequal fight, Just of his word, observant of the right; Heav'n thought not so. Dryden. In the catalogue of the English who fell, Witherington's behaviour is in the same manner particularized very artfully, as the reader is prepared for it by that account which is given of him in the beginning of the battle; though I am satisfied your little buffoon readers (who have seen that passage ridiculed in Hudibras) will not be able to take the beauty of it: for which reason I dare not so much as quote it.” “Then stept a gallant 'squire forth, Witherington was his name,
Who said, I would not have it told To Henry our king for shame,
“Their bodies bath'd in purple blood,
Thus we see how the thoughts of this poem, which naturally arise from the subject, are always simple, and sometimes exquisitely noble; that the language is often very sounding, and that the whole is written with a true poetical spirit.
If this song had been written in the Gothic manner, which is the delight of all our little wits, whether writers or readers, it would not have hit the taste of so man ages, and have pleased the readers of ranks and conditions. I shall only beg pardon for such a profusion of Latin quotations; which I should not have made use of, but that I feared my own judgment would have looked too singular on such a subject, had not I op orted it by the practice and authority of Virgil. C.
* There is nothing ludicrous in the verse alluded to, as it stands in the original ballad: “For Wetharryngton my harte is wo, That ever he slayne shulde be; For when both his legges wear hewyne in to, Yet he knuld and fought on his kne.”
No. 75.] Saturday, May 26, 1711.
Omnis Aristippum decuit color, et status, et res. Hor. Lib. 1. Ep. 23. xvii. All fortune fitted Aristippus well.—Creech.
It was with some mortification that I
suffered the raillery of a fine lady of my acqaintance, for calling, in one of my papers,” Dorimant a clown. She was so unmerciful as to take advantage of my invincible taciturnity, and on that occasion with great freedom to consider the air, the o the face, the gesture of him, who could pretend to judge so arrogantly of gallantry. She is full of motion, janty and lively in her impertinence, and one of those that commonly pass, among the ignorant, for persons who have a great deal of humour. She had the play of Sir Fopling in her hand, and after she had said it was happy for her there was not so charming a creature as Dorimant now living, she began with a theatrical air and tone of voice to read, by way of triumph over me, some of his speeches. ‘’Tis she that lovely air, that easy shape, those wanton eyes, and all those melting charms about her mouth, which Medley spoke of. I’ll follow the lottery, and put in for a prize with my friend Bellair.”
“In love the victors from the vanquish'd fly;
They fly that wound, and they pursue that die.” Then turning over the leaves, she reads alternately, and speaks,
“And you and Loveit to her cost shall find
I fathom all the depths of woman-kind.” Oh the fine gentleman! Buthere, continues she, is the passage I admire most, where he begins to tease Loveit, and mimic Sir Fopling. Oh, the pretty satire, in his resolving to be a coxcomb to please, since noise and nonsense have such powerful charms.
“I, that I may successful prove, Transform myself to what you love.”
Then how like a man of the town, so wild and gay is that! “The wise will find a diff'rence in our fate, You wed a woman, I a good estate.” It would have been a very wild endeavour for a man of my temper to offer any opposition to so nimble a speaker as my }. enemy is; but her discourse gave me very many reflections, when I had left her company. Among others, I could not but consider with some attention, the false impressions the generality (the fair sex more especially) have of what should be intended, when they say ‘a fine gentleman;’ and could not help revolving that subject in my thoughts, and settling, as it were, an idea of that character in my own imaginatlOn. No man ought to have the esteem of the rest of the world, for any actions which are disagreeable to those maxims which pre
* Spect. No. 65.
vail, as the standards of behaviour, in the country wherein he lives. What is opposite to the eternal rules of reason and good sense, must be excluded from any place in the carriage of a well-bred man. I did not, I confess, explain myself enough on this subject, when I called Dorimant a clown, and made it an instance of it, that he called the orange-wench, Double Tripe: I should have shown, that humanity obliges a gentleman to give no part of humankind reproach, for what they, whom they reproach, may possibly have in common with the most virtuous and worthy amongst us. When a gentleman speaks coarsely, he has dressed himself clean to no purpose. The clothing of our minds certainly ought to be regarded before that of our bodies. To betray in a man’s talk a corrupt imagination, is a much ... offence against the conversation of a gentleman, than any negligence of dress imaginable. But this sense of the matter is so far from being received among people even of condition, that Vocifer passes for a fine gentleman. He is loud, haughty, gentle, soft, lewd, and obsequious by turns, just as a little understanding and great impudence prompt him at the present moment. He passes among the silly part of our women for a man of wit, because he is generally in doubt. He contradicts with a shrug, and confutes with a certain sufficiency, in professing such and such a thing is above his capacity. What makes his character the pleasanter is, that he is a professed deluder of women; and because the empty coxcomb has no regard to any thing that is of itself sacred and inviolable. I have heard an unmarried lady of fortune say, It is a pity so fine a gentleman as Vocifer is so great an atheist. The crowds of such inconsiderable creatures, that infest all places of assembling, every reader will have in his eye from his own observation; but would it not be worth considering what sort of figure a man who formed himself upon those principles among us, which are agreeable to the dictates of honour and religion, would make # the familiar and ordinary occurrences of life? I hardly have observed any one fill his several duties of life better than Ignotus. All the under parts of his behaviour, and such as are exposed to common observation, have their rise in him from great and noble motives. A firm and unshaken expectation of another life makes him become this; humanity and good-nature, fortified by the sense of virtue, has the same effect upon him as the neglect of all goodness has upon many others. Being firmly established in all matters of importance, that certain inattention which makes men’s actions look easy, †. in him with greater beauty: by a thorough contempt of little, excellencies, he is perfectly master of them. This temper of mind leaves him under no necessity of studying his air, and he has this