« ПретходнаНастави »
complaining. We find the studious ani- endeavours seem calculated to undeceive mated with a strong passion for the great the superstitious and instruct the ignorant, virtues, as they are mistakenly called, -I mean the celebrated Padre Feyjoo. and utterly forgetful of the ordinary ones. In unravelling the mysteries of nature, The declamations of philosophy are gene- and explaining physical experiments, he rally rather exhausted on these superero. takes an opportunity of displaying the gatory duties, than on such as are indis- concurrence of second causes, in those pensably necessary: A man, therefore, very wonders which the vulgar ascribe to who has taken his ideas of mankind from supernatural influence. study alone, generally comes into the An example of this kind happened a world with a heart melting at every fic few years ago in a small town of the titious distress. Thus he is induced, by kingdom of Valencia. Passing through misplaced liberality, to put himself into at the hour of mass, he alighted from his the indigent circumstances of the person mule, and proceeded to the parish church, he relieves.
which he found extremely crowded, and I shall conclude this paper with the there appeared on the faces of the faithful advice of one of the ancients to a young a more than usual alacrity. The sun, it man whom he saw giving away all his seems, which had been for some minutes substance to pretended distress. “It is under a cloud, had begun to shine on a possible that the person you relieve may large crucifix, that stood on the middle be an honest man; and I know that you of the altar, studded with several precious who relieve him are such. You see, then, stones. The reflection from these, and by your generosity, you only rob a man from the diamond eyes of some silver who is certainly deserving, to bestow it on saints, so dazzled the multitude, that they one who may possibly be a rogue; and, unanimously cried out, “A miracle! á while you are unjust in rewarding un- miracle !” whilst the priest at the altar, certain merit, you are doubly guilty by with seeming consternation, continued stripping yourself.”
his heavenly conversation. Padre Feyjoo
soon dissipated the charm, by tying his SOME PARTICULARS RELATING TO handkerchief round the head of one of FATHER FEYJOO.
the statues, for which he was arraigned by Primus mortales tollere contra
the Inquisition; whose flames, however, Est oculos ausus, primusque assurgere contra. he has had the good fortune hitherto to
escape. The Spanish nation has, for many centuries past, been remarkable for the grossest No. IV.-Saturday, October 27, 1759. ignorance in polite literature, especially in
MISCELLANEOUS. point of natural philosophy—a science so useful to mankind, that her neighbours WERE I to measure the merit of my have ever esteemed it a matter of the present undertaking by its success or the greatest importance to endeavour, by re- rapidity of its sale, I might be led to form peated experiments, to strike a light out conclusions by no means favourable to of the chaos in which truth seemed to be the pride of an author. Should I estimate confounded. Their curiosity in this respect my fame by its extent, every newspaper was so indifferent, that though they had and magazine would leave me far behind. discovered new worlds, they were at a loss Their fame is diffused in a very wide to explain the phenomena of their own, circle—that of some as far as Islington, and their pride so unaccountable, that they and some yet farther still; while mine, I disdained to borrow from others that sincerely believe, has hardly travelled instruction which their natural indolence beyond the sound of Bow-Bell; and while permitted them not to acquire.
the works of others fly like unpinioned It gives me, however, a secret satisfac- swans, I find my own move as heavily as tion to behold an extraordinary genius a new-plucked goose. now existing in that nation, whose studious Still, however, I have as much pride
as they who have ten times as many to write on, if it were only to spite them. readers. It is impossible to repeat all If the present generation will not hear the agreeable delusions in which a dis- my voice, hearken, 0 Posterity,--to you appointed author is apt to find comfort. I call, and from you I expect redress ! I conclude, that what my reputation wants What rapture will it not give to have in extent, is made up by its solidity. the Scaligers, Daciers, and Warburtons of Minus juvat gloria lata quam magna. I future times commenting with admiration have great satisfaction in considering the upon every line I now write, working delicacy and discernment of those readers away those ignorant creatures who offer I have, and in ascribing my want of popu. to arraign my merit with all the virulence larity to the ignorance or inattention of of learned reproach. Ay, my friends, those I have not. All the world may let them feel it : call names, never spare forsake an author, but vanity will never them; they deserve it all, and ten times forsake him.
I have been told of a critic who Yet, notwithstanding so sincere a con- was crucified at the command of another fession, I was once induced to show my to the reputation of Homer. That, no indignation against the public, by discon- doubt, was more than poetical justice, tinuing my endeavours to please; and was and I shall be perfectly content if those bravely resolved, like Raleigh, to vex them who criticise me are only clapped in the by burning my manuscript in a passion. Pillory, kept fifteen days upon bread and Upon recollection, however, I considered water, and obliged to run the gauntlet what set or body of people would be dis- through Paternoster Row. The truth is, pleased at my rashness. The sun, after I can expect happiness from Posterity so sad an accident, might shine next either way. If I write ill, happy in being morning as bright as usual; men might forgotten; if well, happy in being rememlaugh and sing the next day, and transact bered with respect. business as before, and not a single Yet, considering things in a prudential creature feel any regret but myself. light, perhaps I was mistaken in designing
I reflected upon the story of a minister my paper as an agreeable relaxation to who, in the reign of Charles II., upon a the studious, or an help to conversation certain occasion resigned all his posts, among the gay; instead of addressing it and retired into the country in a fit o to such, I should have written down to resentment. But as he had not given the taste and apprehension of the many, the world entirely up with his ambition, and sought for reputation on the broad he sent a messenger to town, to see how road. Literary fame, I now find, like the courtiers would bear his resignation. religious, generally begins among the Upon the messenger's return he was vulgar. As for the polite, they are so asked, whether there appeared any com- very polite as never to applaud upon motion at court? To which he replied, any account. One of these, with a face there were very great ones. “Ay," says screwed up into affectation, tells you, the minister, “I knew my friends would that fools may admire, but men of sense make a bustle; all petitioning the king only approve. Thus, lest he should rise for my restoration, I presume?”—“No, in rapture at anything new, he keeps sir," replied the messenger ; they are down every passion but pride and selfonly petitioning his majesty to be put in importance; approves with phlegm; and your place.” In the same manner, should the poor author is damned in the taking Í retire in indignation, instead of having a pinch of snuff. Another has written a Apollo in mourning, or the Muses in a book himself, and being condemned for a fit of the spleen; instead of having the dunce, he turns a sort of king's evidence learned world apostrophizing at my un- in criticism, and now becomes the terror timely decease; perhaps all Grub Street of every offender. A third, possessed of might laugh at my fall, and self-approving full-grown reputation, shades off every dignity might never be able to shield me beam of favour from those who endeavour from ridicule. In short, I am resolved to grow beneath him, and keeps down that merit which, but for his influence, One gentleman assures me, he intends might rise into equal eminence. While to throw away no more threepences in others, still worse, peruse old books for purchasing the BEE; and what is still their amusement, and new books only to more dismal, he will not recommend me condemn; so that the public seem heartily as a poor author wanting encouragement sick of all but the business of the day, to his neighbourhood, which, it seems, is and read everything now with as little very numerous. Were my soul set upon attention as they examine the faces of threepences, what anxiety might not such a the passing crowd.
denunciation produce! But such does not From these considerations, I was once happen to be the present motive of publidetermined to throw off all connexions cation : I write partly to show my good with taste, and fairly address my country- nature, and partly to show my vanity; men in the same engaging style and nor will I lay down the pen till I am manner with other periodical pamphlets satisfied one way or another. much more in vogue than probably mine Others have disliked the title and the shall ever be. To effect this, I had motto of my paper ; point out a mistake thoughts of changing the title into that in the one, and assure me the other has of the ROYAL BEE, the ANTIGALLICAN been consigned to dulness by anticipation. BEE, or the BEE'S MAGAZINE. I had All this may be true ; but what is that to laid in a proper stock of popular topics, me? Titles and mottoes to books are like such as encomiums on the King of Prussia, escutcheons and dignities in the hands of invectives against the Queen of Hungary a king: the wise sometimes condescend and the French, the necessity of a militia, to accept of them, but none but a fool our undoubted sovereignty of the seas, will imagine them of any real importance. reflections upon the present state of af. We ought to depend upon intrinsic merit, fairs, a dissertation upon liberty, some and not the slender helps of title. Nam seasonable thoughts upon the intended quæ non fecimus ipsi, vix ea nostra voco. bridge of Blackfriars, and an address to For my part, I am ever ready to misBritons; the history of an old woman, trust a promising title, and have, at some whose teeth grew three inches long, an expense, been instructed not to hearken ode upon our victories, a rebus, an acrostic to the voice of an advertisement, let it upon Miss Peggy P., and a journal of the plead never so loudly or never so long. weather. All this, together with four A countryman coming one day to Smithextraordinary pages of letter-press, a field, in order to take a slice of Bartholobeautiful map of England, and two prints' mew Fair, found a perfect show before curiously coloured from nature, I fancied every booth. The drummer, the fire-eater, might touch their very souls.
the wire-walker, and the salt-box, were actually beginning an address to the all employed to invite him in. “ Just apeople, when my pride at last overcame going; the court of the King of Prussia my prudence, and determined me to en- in all his glory; pray, gentlemen, walk in deavour to please by the goodness of and see. From people who generously my entertainment, rather than by the gave so much away the clown expected magnificence of my sign.
a monstrous bargain for his money when The Spectator and many succeeding he got in. He steps up, pays his sixpence, essayists frequently inform us of the the curtain is drawn ; when, too late, he numerous compliments paid them in the finds that he had the best part of the show course of their lucubrations-of the fre for nothing at the door. quent encouragements they meet to inspire them with ardour, and increase their eager
A FLEMISH TRADITION. ness to please. I have received my letters Every country has its traditions, which, as well as they ; but, alas ! not congratu- either too minute or not sufficiently latory ones-not assuring me of success authentic to receive historical sanction, and favour--but pregnant with bodings are handed down among the vulgar, and that might shake even fortitude itself. servę at once to instruct and amuse them.
Of this number the adventures of Robin content with condemning him to be Hood, the hunting of Chevy Chase, and publicly whipped as a vagabond. the bravery of Johnny Armstrong, among The execution of this sentence was the English; of Kaul Dereg, among the accordingly performed with the utmost Irish; and Creichton, among the Scots, rigour. Bidderman was bound to the are instances. Of all the traditions, how- post, the executioner seeming disposed ever, I remember to have heard, I do not to add to the cruelty of the sentence, as recollect any more remarkable than one he received no bribe for lenity. Whenstill current in Flanders; a story generally ever Bidderman groaned under the the first the peasants tell their children, scourge, the other, redoubling his blows, when they bid them behave like Bidder- cried out, “ Does the villain murmur?” man the wise. It is by no means, how- If Bidderman entreated but a moment's ever, a model to be set before a polite respite from torture, the other only repeople for imitation; since if, on the one peated his former exclamation, “Does hand, we perceive in it the steady influence the villain murmur?” of patriotism, we, on the other, find as From this period revenge, as well as strong a desire of revenge. But, to waive patriotism, took entire possession of his introduction, let us to the story.
soul. His fury stooped so low as to When the Saracens overran Europe with follow the executioner with unremitting their armies, and penetrated as far even resentment. But, conceiving that the as Antwerp, Bidderman was lord of a city best method to attain these ends was to which time has since swept into destruc- acquire some eminence in the city, he tion. As the inhabitants of this country laid himself out to oblige its new masters, were divided under separate leaders, the studied every art, and practised every Saracens found an easy conquest, and the meanness, that serve to promote the needy city of Bidderman, among the rest, became or render the poor pleasing; and by a prey to the victors.
these means, in a few years, he came to Thus dispossessed of his paternal city, be of some note in the city, which justly our unfortunate governor was obliged to belonged entirely to him. seek refuge from the neighbouring princes, The executioner was, therefore, the who were as yet unsubdued, and he for first object of his resentment, and he even some time lived in a state of wretched practised the lowest fraud to gratify the dependence among them.
revenge he owed him. A piece of plate, Soon, however, his love to his native which Bidderman had previously stolen country brought him back to his own city, from the Saracen governor, he privately resolved to rescue it from the enemy, or conveyed into the executioner's house, fall in the attempt: thus in disguise he and then gave information of the theft. went among the inhabitants, and endea- They who are any way acquainted with voured, but in vain, to excite them to a the rigour of the Arabian laws know that revolt. Former misfortunes lay so heavily theft is punished with immediate death. on their minds, that they rather chose to The proof was direct in this case; the suffer the most cruel bondage, than at- executioner had nothing to offer in his tempt to vindicate their former freedom. own defence; and he was therefore con
As he was thus one day employed, demned to be beheaded upon a scaffold whether by information or from suspicion in the public market-place. As there was is not known, he was apprehended by no executioner in the city but the very a Saracen soldier as a spy, and brought man who was now to suffer, Bidderman before the very tribunal at which he once himself undertook this, to him, most presided. The account he gave of him- agreeable office. The criminal was conself was by no means satisfactory. He ducted from the judgment seat, bound could produce no friends to vindicate his with cords: the scaffold was erected, and character; wherefore, as the Saracens he placed in such a manner as he might knew not their prisoner, and as they had lie most convenient for the blow. no direct proofs against him, they were But his death aļone was not sufficient
to satisfy the resentment of this extra- when man intrudes into their communities, ordinary man, unless it was aggravated they lose all their spirit of industry, and with every circumstance of cruelty. testify but a very small share of that Wherefore, coming up the scaffold, and sagacity for which, when in a social disposing everything in readiness for the state, they are so remarkable. intended blow, with the sword in his Among insects, the labours of the bee hand he approached the criminal, and, and the ant have employed the attention whispering in a low voice, assured him and admiration of the naturalist; but that he himself was the person that had their whole sagacity is lost upon sepaonce been used with so much cruelty; ration, and a single bee or ant seems that, to his knowledge, he died very inno- destitute of every degree of industry, is cently, for the plate had been stolen by the most stupid insect imaginable, lanhimself, and privately conveyed into the guishes for a time in solitude, and soon house of the other.
dies. Oh, my countrymen !” cried the Of all the solitary insects I have ever criminal, “ do you hear what this man remarked, the spider is the most saga. says?” __“ Does the villain murmur?” cious; and its actions, to me who have replied Bidderman, and immediately, at attentively considered them, seem almost one blow, severed his head from his body. to exceed belief. This insect is formed
Still, however, he was not content, till by nature for a state of war, not only he had ample vengeance of the governors upon other insects, but upon each other. of the city, who condemned him. To For this state nature seems perfectly well effect this, he hired a small house adjoin- to have formed it. Its head and breast ing to the town wall, under which he are covered with a strong natural coat every day dug, and carried out the earth of mail, which is impenetrable to the in a basket. "In this unremitting labour attempts of every other insect, and its he continued several years, every day belly is enveloped in a soft pliant skin, digging a little, and carrying the earth which eludes the sting even of a wasp. unsuspected away. By this means he at Its legs are terminated by strong claws, last made a secret communication from not unlike those of a lobster; and their the country into the city, and only wanted vast length, like spears, serves to keep the appearance of an enemy in order to every assailant at a distance. betray it. This opportunity at length Not worse furnished for observation offered: the French army came into the than for an attack or a defence, it has seveneighbourhood, but had no thoughts of ral eyes, large, transparent, and covered sitting down before a town which they with a horny substance, which, however, considered as impregnable. Bidderman, does not impede its vision. Besides this, however, soon altered their resolutions, it is furnished with a forceps above the and upon communicating his plan to mouth, which serves to kill or secure the the general, he embraced it with ardour. prey already caught in its claws or its Through the private passage above mentioned he introduced a large body of the Such are the implements of war with most resolute soldiers, who soon opened which the body is imniediately furnished; the gates for the rest, and the whole army but its net to entangle the enemy seems rushing in, put every Saracen that was what it chiefly trusts to, and what it takes found to the sword.
most pains to render as complete as pos
sible. Nature has furnished the body of THE SAGACITY OF SOME INSECTS. this little creature with a glutinous liquid, To the Author of the Bee.
which, proceeding from the anus, it spins
into thread, coarser or finer as it chooses SIR,-Animals, in general, are sagacious to contract or dilate its sphincter. In in proportion as they cultivate society. order to fix its thread, when it begins to The elephant and the beaver show the weave it emits a small drop of its liquid greatest signs of this when united; but against the wall
, which, hardening by