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were at once delighted and amazed to hear an instrument of so simple an organization use an exact articulation of words, a just cadency in its sentences, and a wonderful pathos in its pronunciation : not that he designs to expatiate in this practice ; because he cannot, as he says, apprehend what use it may be of to mankind, whose benefit he aims at in a more particular manner : and for the same reason, he will never more instruct the feathered kind, the parrot having been his last scholar in that way. He has a wonderful faculty in making and mending echoes : and this he will perform at any time for the use of the solitary in the country ; being a man born for universal good, and for that reason recommended to your patronage by, Sir, Yours, &c.'
Another learned gentleman gives me also this encomium :
You are now got into an useful and noble subject; take care to handle it with judgment and delicacy. I wish every young divine would give yours of Saturday last a serious perusal; and now you are entered upon the action of an orator, if you would proceed to favour the world with some remarks on the mystical enchantments of pronunciation, what a secret force there is in the accents of a tunable voice, and wherefore the works of two very great men of the profession could never please so well when read as heard, I shall trouble you with no more scribble. You are now in the method of being truly profitable and delightful. If you can keep up to such great and sublime subjects, and pursue them with a suitable genius, go on and prosper. Farewell.'
• September 16.
WHITE'S CHOCOLATE-HOUSE, SEPTEMBER 19. This was left for me here, for the use of the company of the house :
• The accountd you gave lately of a certain dog-kennel in or near Suffolk-street was not so punctual, as to the list of the dogs, as might have been expected from a person of Mr. Bickerstaff's intelligence ; for, if you will despatch Pacolet thither some evening, it is ten to one but he finds, besides those you mentioned,
• Towzer, a large French mongrel, that was not long ago in a tattered condition, but has now got new hair ; is not fleet, but, when he grapples, bites even to the marrow:
• Spring, a little French greyhound, that lately made a false trip to Tunbridge:
• Sly, an old battered fox-hound, that began the game in France :
• Lightfoot, a fine-skinned Flanders dog, that belonged to a pack at Ghent; but, having lost flesh, is gone to Paris for the benefit of the air :
- With several others, that in time may be worth notice.
• Your familiar will see also how anxious the keepers are about the prey, and indeed not without very good reason, for they have their share of every thing ; nay, not so much as a poor rabbit can be run down, but these carnivorous curs swallow a quarter of it. Some mechanics in the neighbourhood that have entered into this civil society, and who furnish
d See “ Memoirs of Gamesters,' passim ; and Tatler, Nos. 56. 57. 59. 60. 62. and 65.
part of the carrion and oatmeal for the dogs, have the skin; and the bones are picked clean by a little French shock that belongs to the family, &c.
“I am, Sır, your humble servant, &c. “ September 15.
• I had almost forgot to tell you that Ringwood bites at Hampstead with false teeth ;'
No. 71. THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 22, 1709. *
Juv. Sat. i 85, 86.
Quicquid agunt homines
-nostri est farrago libelli.
FROM MY OWN APARTMENT, SEPTEMBER 21. I have long been, against my inclination, employed in satire, and that in prosecution of such persons who are below the dignity of the true spirit of it ; such who, I fear, are not to be reclaimed by making them only ridiculous. The sharpers, therefore, shall have a month's time to themselves free from the observation of this paper ; but I must not make a truce without letting them know, that, at the same time, I am preparing for a more vigorous war: for a friend of mine has promised me he will employ his time in compiling such a tract before the session of the ensuing parliament, as shall lay gaming home to the bosoms of all who love their country or their families; and he doubts not but it will create an act that shall make these rogues as scandalous as those less mischievous ones on the high road.
I have received private intimations to take care of my walks, and remember there are such things as
• False dice. * EELE's and SwIFT's.
stabs and blows ; but as there never was any thing in this design which ought to displease a man of honour, or which was not designed to offend the rascals, I shall give myself very little concern for finding what I expected, that they would be highly provoked at these lucubrations. But though I utterly despise the pack, I must confess I am at a stand at the receipt of the following letter, which seems to be written by a man of sense and worth, who has mistaken some passage that I am sure was not levelled at him. This gentleman's complaints give me compunction, when I neglect the threats of the rascals. I cannot be in jest with the rogues any longer, since they pretend to threaten. I do not know whether I shall allow them the favour of transportation'. MR. BICKERSTAFF,
• OBSERVING you are not content with lashing the many vices of the age without illustrating each with particular characters, it is thought nothing would more contribute to the impression you design by such, than always having regard to truth. In your Tatler of this day, I observe you allow that nothing is so tender as a lady's reputation ; that a stain once got in their fame is hardly ever to be washed out. This you grant even when you give yourself leave to trifle. If so, what caution is necessary in handling the reputation of a man, whose well-being in this life perhaps entirely depends on preserving it from any wound, which, once there received, too often becomes fatal and incurable ? Suppose some villanous hand, through personal prejudice, transmits materials for this purpose, which you publish to the world, and afterwards become fully convinced you were imposed on; as by this time you may be
See Tat. Nos. 56. 57. 59. 60. 62. 65. 66. 68. and 70,
of a character you have sent into the world ; I say, supposing this, I would be glad to know what reparation you think ought to be made the person so injured, admitting you stood in his place. It has always been held that a generous education is the surest mark of a generous mind. The former is indeed perspicuous in all your papers; and I am persuaded, though you affect often to show the latter, yet you would not keep any measures, even of Christianity, with those who should handle you in the “manner you do others. The application of all this is from your having very lately glanced at a man, under a character that, were he conscious to deserve, he would be the first to rid the world of himself; and would be more justifiable in it to all sorts of men, than you in your committing such a violence on his reputation, which perhaps you may be convinced of in another manner than you deserve from him.
"A man of your capacity, Mr. Bickerstaff, should have more noble views, and pursue the true spirit of satire ; but I will conclude, lest I grow out of temper, and will only beg you, for your own preservation, to remember the proverb of the pitcher. Sept. 13.
"I am yours, A. J.8"
The proverb of the pitcher I have no regard to; but it would be an insensibility not to be pardoned, if a man could be untouched at so warm an accusation, and that laid with so much seeming temper. 'All I can say to it is, that if the writer, by the same method whereby he conveyed this letter, shall give me an instance wherein I have injured any good "man, or pointed at any thing which is not the true object of raillery, I shall acknowledge the offence in
& See Tatler, Nos. 74. and 76.