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No. 492. keeps much within the Bounds of what is lawful, to her Wednes who goes to the utmost Verge of Innocence, and parlies day,
Brink of Vice, whether she shall be a Wife or
very Sept. 24, 1712.
a Mistress. But I must appeal to your spectatorial Wisdom, who, I find, have passed very much of your Time in the Study of Woman, whether this is not a most unreasonable Proceeding. I have read somewhere, that Hobbes of Malmesbury asserts, That continent Persons have more of what they contain, than those who give a Loose to their Desires. According to this Rule, let there be equal Age, equal Wit, and equal good Humour, in the Woman of Prudence, and her of Liberty : What Stores has he to expect who takes the former?' What Refuse must he be contented with who chuses the latter? Well, but I sate down to write to you to vent my Indignation against several pert Creatures who are address'd to and courted in this Place, while poor I, and two or three like me, are wholly unregarded.
Every one of these affect gaining the Hearts of your Sex: This is generally attempted by a particular Manner of carrying themselves with Familiarity. Glycera has a dancing Walk, and keeps Time in her ordinary Gate, Chloe, her Sister, who is unwilling to interrupt her Conquests, comes into the Room before her with a familiar Run, Dulcissa takes Advantage of the Approach of the Winter, and has introduced a very pretty Shiver, closing up her Shoulders, and shrinking as she moves. All that are in this Mode carry their Fans between both Hands before them. Dulcissa her self, who is Author of this Air, adds the pretty Run to it; and has also, when she is in very good Humour, a taking Familiarity in throwing her self into the lowest Seat in the Room, and letting her hoop'd Petticoats fall with a lucky Decency about her. I know she practises this Way of sitting down in her Chamber; and indeed she does it as well as you may have seen an Actress fall down dead in a Tragedy. Not the least Indecency in her Posture. If you have observ'd what pretty Carcasses are carry'd off at the End of a Verse at the Theatre, it will give you a Notion how Dulcissa plumps into her Chair. Here's a little Country Girl that's very cunning, that makes her Use of being young and unbred, and outdoes the
Insnarers, who are almost twice her Age. The Air that No. 492. she takes is to come into Company after a Walk, and is Wednesvery successfully out of Breath upon Occasion. Her day,
Sept. 24, Mother is in the Secret, and calls her Romp, and then looks 1712. round to see what young Men stare at her.
It would take up more than can come into one of your Papers, to enumerate all the particular Airs of the younger Company in this place. But I cannot omit Dulceorella, whose Manner is the most indolent imaginable, but still as watchful of Conquest as the busiest Virgin among us. She has a peculiar Art of staring at a young Fellow, 'till she sees she has got him, and inflamed him by so much Observation. When she sees she has him, and he begins to toss his Head upon it, she is immediately short-sighted, and labours to observe what he is at a Distance with her Eyes half shut. Thus the Captive that thought her first struck, is to make very near Approaches, or be wholly disregarded. This Artifice has done more Execution than all the Ogling of the rest of the Women here, with the utmost Variety of half Glances, attentive Heedlessnesses, childish Inadvertencies, haughty Contempts, or artificial Oversights. After I have said thus much of Ladies among us who fight thus regularly, I am to complain to you of a Set of familiar Romps, who have broken through all common Rules, and have thought of a very effectual Way of shewing more Charms than all of us. These, Mr. SPECTATOR, are the Swingers. You are to know these care less pretty Creatures are very Innocents again , and it is to be no Matter what they do, for 'tis all harmless Freedom, They get on Ropes, as you must have seen the Children, and are swung by their Men Visitants. The Jest is, that Mr. Such-arone can name the Colour of Mrs. Such-a-one's stockings, and she tells him, he is a lying Thief, so he is, and full of Roguery, and she'll lay a Wager, and her Sister shall tell the Truth if he says right, and he can't tell what Colour her Garters are of. In this Diversion there are very many pretty Shrieks, not so much for fear of falling, as that their Petticoats should unty: For there is a great Care had to avoid Improprieties; and the Lover who swings the Lady, is to tye her Cloaths very close with his Hatband before she admits him to throw up her Heels
No. 492. Now, Mr SPECTATOR, except you can note these Wanton-
Observation, there is no Help for it, we must swim with 1712.
the Tide, the Cocquets are too powerful a Party for us. Το look into the Merit of a regular and well-behaved Woman, is a slow Thing. A loose trivial Song gains the Affec tions, when a wise Homily is not attended to. There is no other Way but to make War upon them, or we must go over to them. As for my Part, I will show all the World it is not for Want of Charms that I stand so long unasked, and if
do not take Measures for the im mediate Redress of us Rigids, as the Fellows calls US,
I move with a speaking Mein, can look significantly, can lisp, can trip, can loll, can start, can blush, can rage, can weep, if I must do it, and can be frighted, as agreeably as any She in England. All which is humbly submitted to your spectatorial Consideration with all Humility, by
Your most humble Servant
Thursday, September 25.
the recommendatory Epistles that pass round this Town from Hand to Hand, and the Abuse People put upon one another in that Kind. It is indeed come to that Pass, that instead of being the Testimony of Merit in the Person recommended, the true Reading of a Letter of this Sort is, The Bearer hereof is so uneasie to me, that it will be an Act of Charity in you to take him off my Hands; whether you prefer him or not it is all one,
for I have no Manner of Kindness for him, or Obligation to him or his , and do what you please as to that. As negligentas Men are in this Respect, a Point of Honour is concerned in it, and there is Nothing a Man should be more ashamed of, than passing a worthless Creature into the Service or Interests of a Man who has never injured you. The Women indeed are a little too keen in
their Resentments, to trespass often this Way: But you No. 493. shall sometimes know that the Mistress and the Maid Thursday, shall quarrel, and give each other very free Language, and Sept. 25, at last the Lady shall be pacified to turn her out of Doors, and give her a very good Word to any Body else. Hence it is that you see, in a year and half's Time, the same Face a Domestick in all parts of the Town. Good-breed ing and Good nature lead People in a great Measure to this Injustice: When Suitors of no Consideration will have Confidence enough to press upon their Superiors, those in Power are tender of speaking the exceptions they have against them, and are mortgaged into Promises out of their Impatience of Importunity. In this latter Case, it would be a very useful Enquiry to know the History of Recommendations. There are, you must know, certain Abettors of this Way of Torment who make it a Profession to manage the Affairs of Candidates. These Gentlemen let out their Impudence to their clients, and supply any defective Recommendation, by informing how such and such a Man is to be attacked. They will tell you, get the least Scrap from Mr. such a one, and leave the Rest to them. When one of these Undertakers have your Business in Hand, you may be sick, absent, in Town or Country, and the Patron shall be worryed, or you prevail. I remember to have been shewn a Gentle man, some Years ago, who punish'd a whole People for their Facility in giving their Credentials. This Person had belonged to a Regiment which did Duty in the West Indies, and by the Mortality of the Place happened to be commanding Officer in the Colony. He oppressed his Subjects with great Frankness till he became sensible that he was heartily hated by every Man under his Command. When he had carried his point, to be thus detestable, in a pretended Fit of Dishumour, and feigned Uneasiness of living where he found he was so universally unacceptable, he communicated to the chief Inhabitants a Design he had to return for England, provided they would give him ample Testimonials of their Approbation. The Planters came into it to a Man, and in Proportion to his deserving the quite contrary, the Words justice, Generosity, and Courage were inserted in his Commission, not
No. 493. omitting the general Good-liking of People of all Con. Thursday, ditions in the Colony, The Gentleman returns for Sept. 25, England, and within few Months after came back to
them their Governour on the Strength of their own Testimonials.
Such a Rebuke as this cannot indeed happen to easy Recommenders, in the ordinary Course of Things from one Hand to another ; but how would a Man bear to have it said to him, The Person I took into Confidence on the Credit you gave him, has proved false, unjust, and has not answered any way the Character you gave me of him.
I cannot but conceive very good Hopes of that Rake Jack Toper of the Temple, for an honest Scrupulousness in this Point A Friend of his meeting with a Servant that had formerly lived with Jack, and having a Mind to take him, sent to him to know what Faults the Fellow had, since he could not please such a careless Fellow as he was. His answer was as follows.
because he was too good for me, You know I live in Taverns; he is an orderly sober Rascal, and thinks much to sleep in an Entry 'till Two in a MorningHe told me one Day when he was dressing me, that he wondered I was not dead before now, since I went to Dinner in the Evening, and went to Supper at two in the Morning, coming down Essex-street one Night a little flustered, and I was giving him the Word to alarm the Watch; he had the Impudence to tell me it was against the Law. You that are Married, and live one Day after another the same Way, and so on the whole Week, I dare say will like him, and he will be glad to have his Meat in due Season: The Fellow is certainly very Honest. My Service to your Lady.
Yours, J. T.' Now this was very fair Dealing. Jack knew very well
, that tho' the Love of Order made a Man very aukward in his Equipage, it was a valuable Quality among the queer