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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 heedlessness, childish inadvertencies, haughty contempts, or artificial oversights. After I have said thus much of ladies among us who fight thus regu. larly, 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 careless pretty creatures are very innocents again ; and it is to be no matter what they do, for it is 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-a-one 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 will lay a wager, and her sister shall tell the truth if he says right, and he cannot 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 untie : for there is a great care had to avoid improprieties ; and the lover who swings the lady, is to tie her clothes very close with his hatband, before sho admits him to throw up her heels.
Now, Mr. Spectator, except you can note these wantonnesses in their beginnings, and bring us sober girls into observation, there is no help for it, we must swim with the tide ; the coquettes are too powerful a party for us. To look into the merit of a regular and well-behaved woman is a slow thing. A loose trivial song gains the affections, 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 shew all the world it is not for want of charms that I stand so long unasked ; and if you do not take measures for the immediate redress of us rigids, as the fellows call us, I can move with a speaking mien, 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,
6 MATILDA MOHAIR.'
No. CCCCXCIII. THURSDAY. SEPT. 25.
Qualem commendes etiam atque etiam adspice, ne mox
Commend not 'till a man is thoroughly known;
IT is no unpleasant matter of speculation to consider 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, 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 uneasy 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 negligent as 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 shall sometimes know that the mistress and the maid shall quarrel, and give each other very free language, and 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 a half's time, the same face a domestic in all parts of the town. Good breeding 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 has your business in hạnd, you may be sick, absent in town or country, and the patron shall be worried, or you prevail. I remember to have been shewn a gentleman some years ago, who punished a whole people for their facility in giving their credentials. This person had belonged to a regiment which did duty in the WestIndies, 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 planter's 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 omitting the general good-liking of people of all condi. tions in the colony. The gentleman returns for England, and within few months after came back to them their governor, on the strength of their own testimonials.
Such a rebuke as this cannot indeed happen to casy 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 hav. ing 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.
.THOMAS that lived with me was turned away 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 until two in the morning. He 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. We were coming down Essex-street one night a little flustered, and I was giving him the word to alarm the watch ; he had the imprudence 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.
Now this was very fair dealing. Jack knew very well, that though the love of order made a man very