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'We, Jobu --, having | think two thousand pounds a-year sufficient, estates for life, resolve to take each other. I make no difference between that and three. John will venture my life to enrich thee Mary; I easily believe him less conversant in those and I Mary will consult my health to nurse affairs, the knowledge of which she so much thee John. To which we have interchangeably commends in Silvius; but I think them neiset our hands, hearts, and seals, this 17th of ther so necessary, or becoming a gentleman, July, 1710. as the accomplishments of Philander. It is no great character of a man to say, He rides in his coach and six, and understands as much as he who follows the plough. Add to this, that the conversation of these sort of men seems so disagreeable to me, that though they make good bailiffs, I can hardly be persuaded they can be good companions. It is possible I may seem to have odd notions, when I say, I am not fond of a mau only for being of, what is called, a thriving temper. To conclude, I own I am at a loss to conceive, how good sense should make a man an ill husband, or conversing with books less complaisant.
No. 200.] Thursday, July 20, 1710.
From my own Apartment, July 19. HAVING devoted the greater part of my time to the service of the fair sex; I must ask pardon of my men correspondents, if I postpone their commands, when I have any from the ladies which lie unanswered. That which follows is of importance.
'You cannot think it strange if I, who know little of the world, apply to you for advice in the weighty affair of matrimony; since you yourself have often declared it to be of that consequence as to require the utmost deliberation. Without further preface, therefore, give me leave to tell you, that my father at his death left me a fortune sufficient to make me a match for any gentleman. My mother, for she is still alive, is very pressing with me to marry; and I am apt to think, to gratify her, I shall venture upon one of two gentlemen, who at this time make their addresses to me. request that you would direct me in my choice; which, that you may the better do, I shall give you their characters; and, to avoid confusion, desire you to call them by the names of Philander and Silvius. Philander is young, and has a good estate; Silvius is as young, and has a better. The former has had a liberal education, has seen the town, is retired from thence to 'This comes to you from one of those virgins his estate in the country, is a man of few words, of twenty-five years old and upwards, that you, and much given to books. The latter was like a patron of the distressed, promised to brought up under his father's eye, who gave provide for; who makes it her humble request, him just learning enough to enable him to keep that no occasional stories or subjects may, as his accounts; but made him withal very expert they have for three or four of your last days, in country business, such as ploughing, sowing, prevent your publishing the scheme you have buying, selling, and the like. They are both communicated to Amanda; for every day and very sober men, neither of their persons is dis-hour is of the greatest consequence to damsels agreeable, nor did I know which to prefer until of so advanced an age. Be quick then, if you I had heard them discourse; when the conver- intend to do any service for your admirer, sation of Philander so much prevailed, as to give him the advantage with me, in all other respects. My mother pleads strongly for Silvius; and uses these arguments: That he not only has the larger estate at present, but by his good husbandry and management increases it daily: that his little knowledge in other affairs will make him easy and tractable; whereas, according to her, men of letters know too much to make good husbands. To part of this, II only desire to enlarge his plan; for which imagine, I answer effectually, by saying, Phi-purpose I lay it before the town, as well for lander's estate is large enough; that they who the improvement as the encouragement of it.
In this important affair, I have not neglected the proposals of others. Among them is the following sketch of a lottery for persons. The author of it has proposed very ample encouragement, not only to myself, but also to Charles Lillie and John Morphew. If the matter bears, I shall not be unjust to his merit:
The resolution which this lady is going to take, she may very well say, is founded on reason: for, after the necessities of life are served, there is no manner of competition between a man of a liberal education and an illiterate. Men are not altered by their circumstances, but as they give them opportunities of exerting what they are in themselves; and a powerful clown is a tyrant in the most ugly form he can possibly appear. There lies a seeming objection in the thoughtful manner of Philander: but let her consider, which she shall oftener have occasion to wish, that Philander would speak, or Silvius hold his tongue.
The train of my discourse is prevented by the urgent haste of another correspondent.
The amicable contribution for raising the for-women both in the common and important
Imprimis, It is proposed to raise one hun-
privileges, which are allowed them, do no way
man shall, before he receives the money thus
ence at the best, and commonly with reproach and scorn. He that is past the power of beauty may talk of this matter with the same unconcern, as of any other subject: therefore I shall within rules, and as they transgress them. The take upon me to consider the sex, as they live ordinary class of the good or the ill have very little influence upon the actions of others; lead the world below. The ill are employed in but the eminent, in either kind, are those who' communicating scandal, infamy, and disease liberal education, between fifteen and twenty-friendship, and health, like angels. The ill like furies; the good distribute benevolence, three; all genteel, witty, and of unblameable characters.
Note: Each party shall have three months' time to consider, after an interview had, which shall be within ten days after the lots are drawn.
Note also, the name and place of abode of the prize shall be placed on a proper ticket. Item, they shall be ladies that have had a
are damped with pain and anguish at the sight
The money to be raised shall be kept in an iron box; and when there shall be two thou-wards the guilty, the disagreeable, and the sand subscriptions, which amounts to five hundred pounds, it shall be taken out and put into a goldsmith's hand, and the note made payable to the proper lady, or her assigns, with a clause therein to hinder her from receiving it, until the fortunate person that draws her shall first sign the note, and so on until the whole sum is subscribed for; and as soon as one hundred thousand subscriptions are completed, and two hundred crowns more to pay the charges, the lottery shall be drawn at a proper place, to be appointed a fortnight before the drawing.
Note, Mr. Bickerstaff objects to the marriageable years here mentioned; and is of opinion, they should not commence until after twenty-three. But he appeals to the learned, both of Warwick-lane and Bishopsgate-street,* on this subject.'
innocent of their own sex, and solicit the lewd
The way to have a greater number of the amiable part of womankind, and lessen the crowd of the other sort, is to contribute what and therefore I comply with the request of an we can to the success of well-grounded passions; enamoured man, in inserting the following
" Mr. Bickerstaff you always read, though me you will never hear. I am obliged therefore to his compassion for the opportunity of imploring yours-I sigh for the most accomplished of her sex. That is so just a distinction of her, to whom I write, that the owning I think so is no distinction of me, who write. Your good qualities are peculiar to you; my admiration is common with thousands. I shall
*The College of Physicians met at Warwick-lane, and
the Royal Society at Gresham-college in Bishopsgate-strect. be present when you read this; but fear every
woman will take it for her character, sooner tban she who deserves it.'
If the next letter, which presents itself, should come from the mistress of this modest lover, and I make them break through the oppression of their passions, I shall expect gloves at their nuptials.
You, that are a philosopher, know very well the make of the mind of women, and can best instruct me in the conduct of an affair which highly concerns me. I never can admit my lover to speak to me of love; yet think him impertinent when he offers to talk of any thing else. What shall I do with a man that always believes me? It is a strange thing, this distance in men of sense! why do not they always urge their fate? If we are sincere in our severity, you lose nothing by attempting. If we are hypocrites, you certainly succeed.'
When I had indulged the loquacity of an old man for some time, in such loose hints, I took my leave of Mr. Mills; and was told, Mr. Elwith me. His business was to desire I would, liot of Saint James's coffee-house would speak as I am an astrologer, let him know beforehand, who were to have the benefit tickets in the ensuing lottery; which knowledge, he was of opinion, he could turn to great account, as he was concerned in news.
I granted his request, upon an oath of secrecy, that he would only make his own use of it, and not let it be publicly known until after they were drawn. I had not done speaking, when he produced to me a plan which he had formed of keeping books, with the names of all such adventurers, and the numbers of their tickets, as should come to him; in order to give an hourly account of what tickets shall come up during the whole time of the lottery, the drawing of which is to begin on Wednesday next. I liked his method of disguising the secret I had told him; and pronounced him a thriving man, who could so well watch the motion of things, and profit by a prevailing bumour and impatience so aptly, as to make his honest industry agreeable to his customers, as it is to be the messenger of their good fortune.
From my own Apartment, July 21.
Before I withdraw from business for the night, it is my custom to receive all addresses to me, that others may go to rest as well as myself, at least as far as I can contribute to it. When I called to know if any would speak with me, I was informed that Mr. Mills, the player, desired to be admitted. He was so; and with much modesty acquainted me, as he did other people of note,' that Hamlet was to be acted on Wednesday next for his benefit.' I had long wanted to speak with this person; because I thought I could admonish him of many things, which would tend to his improve-sembly beyond Smithfield-bars, and one of the ment. In the general I observed to him, that order of story-tellers in Holborn, may meet though action was his business, the way to that and exchange stale matter, and report the same action was not to study gesture; for the beba- to their principals. viour would follow the sentiments of the mind.
From the Trumpet in Sheer-lane, July 20. Ordered, that for the improvement of the pleasures of society, a member of this house, one of the most wakeful of the soporific as
There is a fault also in the audience, which interrupts their satisfaction very much; that is, the figuring to themselves the actor in some part wherein they formerly particularly liked him, and not attending to the part he is at that time performing. Thus, whatever Wilks, who is the strictest follower of nature, is acting, the vulgar spectators turn their thoughts upon Sir Harry Wildair.
N. B. No man is to tell above one story in the same evening; but has liberty to tell the same the night following.
Mr. Bickerstaff desires his love-correspondents to vary the names they shall assume in their future letters; for that he is overstocked with Philanders.
Action to the player is what speech is to an orator. If the matter be well conceived, words will flow with ease: and if the actor is well possessed of the nature of his part, a proper action will necessarily follow. He informed me, that Wilks was to act Hamlet: I desired bim to request of him in my name, that be would wholly forget Mr. Betterton; for that he failed in no part of Othello, but where he No. 202.] Tuesday, July 25, 1710. had him in view. An actor's forming bimself by the carriage of another is like the trick among the widows, who lament their husbands as their neighbours did theirs, and not according to their own sentiments of the deceased,
From my own Apartment, July 24. THIS afternoon I went to visit a gentleman of my acquaintance at Mile-End; and passing through Stepney church-yard, I could not forbear entertaining myself with the inscriptions on the tombs and graves. Among others, I observed one with this notable memorial:
'Here lies the body of T. B.'
This fantastical desire of being remembered | only by the two first letters of a name, led me into the contemplation of the vanity and imperfect attainments of ambition in general. When I run back in my imagination all the men whom I have ever known and conversed with in my whole life, there are but very few who have not used their faculties in the pursuit of what it is impossible to acquire; or left the possession of what they might have been, at their setting out, masters, to search for it where it was out of their reach. In this thought it was not possible to forget the instance of Pyrrhus, who proposing to himself in discourse with a philosopher, one, and another, and another conquest, was asked, what he would do after all that? Then,' says the king, we will make merry.' He was well answered, What hinders your doing that in the condition you are already?' The restless desire of exerting themselves above the common level of mankind is not to be resisted in some tempers; and minds of this make may be observed in every condition of life. Where such men do not make to themselves, or meet with employment, the soil of their constitution runs into tares and weeds. An old friend of mine, who lost a major's post forty years ago, and quitted, has ever since studied maps, encampments, retreats, and countermarches; with no other design but to feed his spleen and ill-tempt what may tend to their reputation, it humour, and furnish himself with matter for is absolutely necessary they should form to arguing against all the successful actions of themselves an ambition, which is in every man's others. He that, at his first setting out in the power to gratify. This ambition would be inworld, was the gayest man in our regiment; dependent, and would consist only in acting ventured his life with alacrity, and enjoyed it what, to a man's own mind, appears most great with satisfaction; encouraged men below him, and laudable. It is a pursuit in the power of and was courted by men above him, has been every man, and is only a regular prosecution ever since the most froward creature breathing. of what he himself approves. It is what can His warm complexion spends itself now only be interrupted by no outward accidents; for in a general spirit of contradiction: for which no man can be robbed of his good intention. ne watches all occasions, and is in his conver- One of our society of the Trumpet* therefore sation still upon centry, treats all men like started last night a notion, which I thought enemies, with every other impertinence of a had reason in it. It is, methinks,' said he, speculative warrior. an unreasonable thing, that heroic virtue should, as it seems to be at present, be confined to a certain order of men, and be attainable by none but those whom fortune has elevated to the most conspicuous stations. I would have every thing to be esteemed as heroic, which is great and uncommon in the circumstances of the man who performs it.' Thus there would be no virtue in human life, which every one of the species would not have a pretence to arrive at, and an ardency to exert. Since fortune is not in our power, let us be as little as possible in hers. Why should it be necessary that a man should be rich, to be generous? If we measured by the quality and not the quantity of things, the particulars which accompany an action is what should
He that observes in himself this natural inquietude, should take all imaginable care to put his mind in some method of gratification; or he will soon find himself grow into the condition of this disappointed major. Instead of courting proper occasions to rise above others, he will be ever studious of pulling others down to him it being the common refuge of disappointed ambition, to ease themselves by detraction. It would be no great argument against ambition, that there are such mortal things in the disappointment of it; but it certainly is a forcible exception, that there can be no solid happiness in the success of it. If we value popular praise, it is in the power of the meanest of the people to disturb us by calumny. If the fame of being happy, we cannot look into a village, but we see crowds in actual
possession of what we seek only the appearance. To this may be added, that there is I know not what malignity in the minds of ordinary men, to oppose you in what they see you fond of; and it is a certain exception against a man's receiving applause, that he visibly courts it. However, this is not only the passion of great and undertaking spirits; but you see it in the lives of such as, one would believe, were far enough removed from the ways of ambition. The rural esquires of this nation even eat and drink out of vanity. A vain-glorious fox-hunter shall entertain half a county, for the ostentation of his beef and beer, without the least affection for any of the crowd about him. He feeds them, because he thinks it a superiority over them that he does so; and they devour him, because they know he treats them out of insolence. This indeed is ambition in grotesque; but may figure to us the condition of politer men, whose only pursuit is glory. When the superior acts out of a principle of vanity, the dependant will be sure to allow it him; because he knows it destructive of the very applause which is courted by the man who favours him, and consequently makes him nearer himself.
But as every man living has more or less of this incentive, which makes men impatient of an inactive condition, and urges men to at
The public house in Sheer-lane.
denominate it mean or great. The highest | who lead their lives in too solitary a manner, station of human life is to be attained by each to prey upon themselves, and form from their man that pretends to it: for every man can be own conceptions, beings and things which have as valiant, as generous, as wise, and as merci- no place in nature. This often makes an adept ful, as the faculties and opportunities which as much at a loss, when he comes into the ne has from heaven and fortune will permit. world, as a mere savage. To avoid therefore He that can say to himself, I do as much that ineptitude for society, which is frequently good, and am as virtuous as my most earnest the fault of us scholars, and has, to men of unendeavours will allow me,' whatever is his sta derstanding and breeding, something much tion in the world, is to himself possessed of the more shocking and untractable than rusticity highest honour. If ambition is not thus turned, itself; I take care to visit all public solemniit is no other than a continual succession of ties; and go into assemblies as often as my anxiety and vexation. But when it has this cast, studies will permit. This being therefore the it invigorates the mind; and the consciousness first day of the drawing of the lottery, I did of its own worth is a reward, which is not in not neglect spending a considerable time in the power of envy, reproach, or detraction, to the crowd: but as much a philosopher as I take from it. Thus the seat of solid honour pretend to be, I could not but look with a sort is in a man's own bosom; and no one can want of veneration upon the two boys who received support who is in possession of an honest con- the tickets from the wheels, as the impartial science, but he who would suffer the reproaches and equal dispensers of the fortunes which were of it for other greatness. to be distributed among the crowd, who all stood expecting the same chance. It seems at first thought very wonderful, that one passion should so universally have the pre-eminence of another in the possession of men's minds, as that in this case all in general have.a.secret hope of the great ticket: and yet fear in another instance, as in going into a battle, shall have so little influence, as that, though each man believes there will be many thousands slain, each is confident he himself shall escape. This certainly proceeds from our vanity; for every man sees abundance in himself that deserves reward, and nothing which should meet with mortification. But of all the adventurers that filled the hall, there was one who stood by me, who I could not but fancy expected the thousand pounds per annum, as a mere justice to his parts and industry. He had his pencil and table-book; and was, at the drawing of each lot, counting how much a man with seven tickets was now nearer the great prize, by the re-striking out another, and another competitor. This man was of the most particular constitu tion I had ever observed; his passions were so active, that he worked in the utmost stretch of hope and fear. When one rival fell before him, you might see a short gleam of triumph in his countenance; which immediately vanished at the approach of another. What added to the particularity of this man was, that he every moment cast a look either upon the commissioners, the wheels, or the boys. I gently whispered him, and asked, when he thought the thousand pounds would come up?'
Pugh,' says he, who knows that?' And then looks upon a little list of his own tickets, wnich were pretty high in their numbers, and said it would not come this ten days. This fellow will have a good chance, though not that which he has put his heart on. The man is mechanically turned, and made for getting. The simplicity and eagerness which he is in, argues
P. S. I was going on in my philosophy, when notice was brought me, that there was a great crowd in my antichamber, who expected audience. When they were admitted, I found they all met at my lodgings, each coming upon the same errand, to know whether they were of the fortunate in the lottery, which is now ready to be drawn. I was much at a loss how to extricate myself from their importunity; but observing the assembly made up of both sexes, I signified to them, that in this case it would appear Fortune is not blind, for all the lots would fall upon the wisest and the fairest. This gave so general a satisfaction, that the room was soon emptied, and the company retired with the best air, and the most pleasing grace I had any where observed. Mr. Elliot of St. James's coffee-house now stood alone before me, and signified to me, he had now not only prepared his books, but had received a very great subscription already. His design was, to advertise his subscribers at their spective places of abode, within an hour after their number is drawn, whether it was a blank or benefit, if the adventurer lives within the bills of mortality; if he dwells in the country, by the next post. I encouraged the man in his industry, and told him the ready path to good fortune was to believe there was no such thing.
No. 203.] Thursday, June 27, 1710.
Ut tu fortunam, sic nos te, Celse, feremus.
As Celsus bears this change of fortune,
Hence the origin of registering tickets; and probably
of insuring, since carried to so pernicions an excess.