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so humble when he speaks of himself, that you would admire. Dear sir, why should this be lying? There is nothing so instructive. He has, withal, the gravest aspect : something so very venerable and great. Another of these historians is a young man whom we would take in, though he extremely wants parts, as people send children (before they can learn anything) to school to keep them out of harm's way. He tells things which have nothing at all in them, and can neither please nor displease, but merely take up your time to no manner of purpose, no manner of delight. But he is good-natured, and does it because he loves to be saying something to you, and entertain you.

'I could name you a soldier that has done very great things without slaughter; he is prodigiously dull and slow of head, but what he can say is for ever false, so that we must have him.

'Give me leave to tell you of one more, who is a lover; he is the most afflicted creature in the world lest what happened between him and a great beauty should ever be known. Yet again, he comforts himself. "Hang the jade her woman. If money can keep [the] slut trusty I will do it, though I mortgage every acre; Anthony and Cleopatra' for that: All for love, and the world well lost.'


'Then, sir, there is my little merchant, honest Indigo of the 'Change, there's my man for loss and gain, there's tare and tret, there's lying all round the globe; he has such a prodigious intelligence he knows all the French are doing, and what we intend or ought to intend, and has it from such hands. But alas, whither am I running? While I complain, 1 These are the titles of Dryden's adaptation of Shakespeare's play.

while I remonstrate to you, even all this is a lie, and there is not one such person of quality, lover, soldier, or merchant, as I have now described in the whole world that I know of. But I will catch myself once in my life, and in spite of nature, speak one truth, to wit that I am


No. 137.

Your humble Servant, &c.'

Tuesday, August 7, 1711


At hæc etiam servis semper libera fuerunt, timerent, gauderent, dolerent, suo potius quam alterius arbitrio.TULL., Epist.

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T is no small concern to me, that I find so many complaints from that part of mankind whose portion it is to live in servitude, that those whom they depend upon will not allow them to be even as happy as their condition will admit of. There are, as these unhappy correspondents inform me, masters who are offended at a cheerful countenance, and think a servant has broke loose from them, if he does not preserve the utmost awe in their presence. There is one who says, if he looks satisfied his master asks him what makes him so pert this morning; if a little sour, 'Hark ye, sirrah, are not you paid your wages?' The poor creatures live in the most extreme misery together: the master knows not how to preserve respect, nor the servant how to give it. It seems this person is of so sullen a nature, that he knows but little satisfaction in the midst of a plentiful fortune, and secretly frets to see any appearance of content in one that lives upon the hundredth part of his income, who is unhappy in

the possession of the whole. Uneasy persons, who cannot possess their own minds, vent their spleen upon all who depend upon them; which, I think, is expressed in a lively manner in the following letters :

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'I HAVE read your Spectator of the 3rd of the last. month,' and wish I had the happiness of being preferred to serve so good a master as Sir Roger. The character of my master is the very reverse of that good and gentle knight's. All his directions are given, and his mind revealed by way of contraries as when anything is to be remembered, with a peculiar cast of face he cries, "Be sure to forget now." If I am to make haste back, "Don't come these two hours; be sure to call by the way upon some of your companions." Then another excellent way of his is, if he sets me anything to do, which he knows must necessarily take up half a day, he calls ten times in a quarter of an hour to know whether I have done yet. This is his manner, and the same perverseness runs through all his actions, according as the circumstances vary. Besides all this, he is so suspicious, that he submits himself to the drudgery of a spy. He is as unhappy himself as he makes his servants: he is constantly watching us, and we differ no more in pleasure and liberty than as a jailer and a prisoner. He lays traps for faults, and no sooner makes a discovery, but falls into such language, as I am more ashamed of for coming from him, than for being directed to me. This, sir, is a short sketch of a master I have served

1 No. 107.

upwards of nine years; and though I have never wronged him, I confess my despair of pleasing him has very much abated my endeavour to do it. If you will give me leave to steal a sentence out of my master's Clarendon," I shall tell you my case in a word, "Being used worse than I deserved, I cared less to deserve well than I had done." I am,



Your humble Servant,



I AM the next thing to a lady's woman, and am under both my lady and her woman. I am so used by them both, that I should be very glad to see them in the Specter. My lady herself is of no mind in the world, and for that reason her woman is of twenty minds in a moment. My lady is one that never knows what to do with herself; she pulls on and puts off everything she wears twenty times before she resolves upon it for that day. I stand at one end of the room, and reach things to her woman. When my lady asks for a thing, I hear and have half brought it, when the woman meets me in the middle of the room to receive it, and at that instant she says no, she will not have it. Then I go back, and her woman comes up to her, and by this time she will have that, and two or three things more, in an instant; the woman and I run to each other; I am loaded and delivering the things to her, when my lady says she wants none of all these things, and we are the dullest creatures in the world, and she the unhappiest woman living, for she shan't be dressed in any time. Thus we stand not knowing what to

do, when our good lady with all the patience in the world tells us, as plain as she can speak, that she will have temper because we have no manner of understanding, and begins again to dress, and see if we can find out of ourselves what we are to do. When she is dressed she goes to dinner, and after she has disliked everything there, she calls for the coach, then commands it in again, and then she will not go out at all, and then will go too, and orders the chariot. Now, good Mr. Specter, I desire you would, in the behalf of all who serve froward ladies, give out in your paper that nothing can be done without allowing time for it, and that one cannot be back again with what one was sent for if one is called back before one can go a step for that they want.

And if you please let them know that all mistresses are as like as all servants.

I am,

Your loving Friend,


These are great calamities; but I met the other day, in the Five Fields' towards Chelsea, a pleasanter tyrant than either of the above represented. A fat fellow was puffing on in his open waistcoat, a boy of fourteen in a livery carrying after him his cloak, upper coat, hat, wig, and sword. The poor lad was ready to sink with the weight, and could

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1 Fields through which the King's Road' ran. They are now covered by Eaton Square, Belgrave Square, and the neighbouring streets. Cf. Tatler, No. 34: I fancied I could give you an immediate description of this village [Chelsea], from the Five Fields, where the robbers lie in wait, to the coffee-house [Don Saltero's], where the literati sit in council.'

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