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< with your sweet person, I beg the favour of you to ac
cept of this my fecret mind and thoughts, which hath • so long lodged in my breast; the which if you do not • accept, I believe will go nigh to break my heart.
• For indeed, my dear, I love you above all the beau• ties I ever law in all my life,
· The young gentleman, and my master's daughter, o the Londoner that is come down to marry her, fat in • the arbour most part of last night. 0 ! dear Betty,
mult the nightingales fing to those who marry for money, and not to us true lovers! Oh my dear Betty, that
we could meet this night where we used to do in the 6 wood !
• Now, my dear, if I may not have the blessing of • kissing your sweet lips, I beg I may have the happiness 5 of killing your fair hand, with a few lines from your
dear self, prcsented by whom you please or think fit. • I believe, if time would permit me, I could write all day; • but the time being short, and paper little, no more from your never-failing lover till death,
• James -
Poor James ! since his time and paper were fo fhort; I, that have more than I can use well of both, will put the sentiments of his kind letter, the stile of which seems to be confused with scraps he had got in hearir g and reading what he did not understand, into what he meant to express.
creations and enjoyments to pine away his life in thinking of you? When I do so, you appear more amiable to me than Venus docs in the most beautiful defcrip. tion that ever was made of her. All this kindness you return with an accusation, that I do not love you : but the contrary is so manifett, that I cannot think you in earnest. But the certainty given me in your message by Molly, that you do not love me, is what robs me of all comfort. She says you will not see me : if you can have
so much cruelty, at least write to me, that I may kiss the impression made by your fair hand. I love you
above all things, and, in my condition, what
with indifference is to me the most exquisite pleasure or pain. Our young lady, and a fine gentleman from London, who are to marry for mercenary ends, walk about our gardens, and hear the voice of evening nightingales, as if for fashion fake they courted those solitudes, because they have heard lovers do so. Oh Betty! could I hear thote rivulets murmur, and birds sing while you stood near me, how little sensible should I be that we are both servants, that there is any thing on carth above us. Oh! I could write to you as long as I love you, till death itself.
N. B. By the words Ill-Conditions, James means in a woman Coquetry, in a man Tnconstancy.
No. LXXII. WEDNESDAY, MAY 23.
-Genus immortale manet, multosque per annos
already given my reader an account of seve, ral extraordinary clubs both ancient and modern, 1 did not design to have troubled him with any more narratives of this nature; but I have lately received information of a club which I can call neither ancient nor modern, that I dare say will be no less surprising to my reader than it was to myself; for which reason I thall communicate it to the public as one of the greatest curiosities in its kind.
A friend of mine complaining of a tradesman who is related to him, after having represented him as a very idle worthless fellow, who neglected his family, and spent
most of his time over a bottle, told me, to conclude his
bers, who divide the whole twenty-four hours among them in such a manner, that the club fits day and night from one end of the year to another; no party presuming to rise till they are relieved by those who are in course to succeed them. By this means a member of the everlasting club never wants company; for though he is not upon duty himself, he is sure to find some who are ; so that if he be disposed to take a whet, a nooning, an evening's draught, or a bottle after midnight, he goes to the club, and finds a knot of friends to his mind.
It is a maxim in this club, that the steward never dies; for as they succeed one another by way of rotation, no man is to quit the great elbow-chair which stands at the upper end of the table, 'till his successor is in a readiness to fill it; insomuch that there has not been a Sede vacante in the memory
of man. This club was instituted towards the end, or, as some of them say, about the middle, of the civil wars, and continued without interruption till the time of the Great Fire, which burnt them out, and dispersed them for feveral weeks. The steward at that time maintained his post till he had like to have been blown up with a neighbouring house, which was demolished in order to stop the fire; and would not leave the chair at last, till he had emptied all the bottles upon the table, and received repeated directions from the club to withdraw himself. This steward is frequently talked of in the club, and looked upon by every member of it as a greater man than the famous captain mentioned in my lord Clarendon, who was burnt in his ship because he would not quit it without orders. It is said that towards the close of 1700, being the great year of jubilee, the club had it under consideration whether they should break up or continue
their session ; but after many speeches and debates, it was at length agreed to sit out the other century. This resolution passed in a general club nemine contradicente.
Having given this short account of the institution and continuation of the Everlasting Club, I should here endeavour to say something of the manners and characters of its several members, which I shall do according to the best lights I have received in this matter.
It appears by their books in general, that, since their first institution, they have smoked fifty tun of tobacco, drank thirty thousand butts of ale, one thousand hogsheads of red port, two hundred barrels of brandy, and a kilderkin of small-beer. There had been likewise a great consumption of cards. It is also faid, that they oblerve the law in Ben Jonson's club, which orders the fire to be always kept in, focus perennis efto, as well for the convenience of lighting their pipes, as to cure the dampness of the club room. They have an old woman in the nature of a vestal, whose business is to cherish and perpetuate the fire which burns from generation to generation, and has seen the glass-house fires in and out above an hundred times,
The Everlasting Club treats all other clubs with an eye of contempt, and talks even of the Kit-Cat and O&tober as of a couple of upstarts. Their ordinary discourse, as much as I have been able to learn of it, turns altogether upon such adventures as have passed in their own assem. bly; of members who have taken the glass in their turns for a week together, without stirring out of the club; of others who have not missed their morning's draught for twenty years together; sometimes they speak in raptures of a run of ale in king Charles's reign, and sometimes reflect with astonishment upon games at whist, which have been miraculously recovered by members of the fociety, when in all human probability the case was despea
They delight in several old catches, which they sing at all hours, to encourage one another to moisten their clay, and grow immortal by drinking; with many other edi. fying cxhortations of the like naturc.
There are four general clubs held in a year, at which time they fill up vacancies, appoint waiters, confirm the old fire-maker or elect a new one, settle contributions for coals, pipes, tobacco, and other necessaries.
The senior member has out-lived the whole club twice over, and has been drunk with the grandfathers of some of the present fitting members.
'T is very strange to consider, that a creature like man,
who is sensible of so many weaknesses and imperfections, should be actuated by a love of fame ; that vice and ignorance, imperfection and misery, should contend for praile, and endeavour as much as possible to make themselves objects of admiration.
But notwithstanding man's essential perfection is but very little, his comparative perfection may be very confiderable. If he looks upon himself in an abstracted light, he has not much to boast of; but if he considers himself with regard to others, he may find occasion of glorying, if not in his own virtues, at least in the absence of another's imperfections. This gives a different turn to the reflections of the wise man and the fool. The first endeavours to shine in himself, and the last to outshine others. The first is humbled by the sense of his own infirmities, the last is lifted up by the discovery of thote which he observes in other men. The wise man confi. ders what he wants, and the fool what he abounds in. The wise man is happy when he gains his own approba tion, and the fool when he recommends himself to the applause of those about him.
But however unreasonable and absurd this passion for admiration may appear in such a creature as man, it is not wholly to be discouraged; since it often produces