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their frecholds, they would be able to carry moft of the elections in England.

The body of the law is no lefs incumbered with fuperfluous members, that are like Virgil's army, which he tells us, was fe crowded, many of them had not room to ufe their weapons. This prodigious fociety of men may be divided into the litigious and peaceable. Under the first are comprehended all those who are carried down in 'coach-fulls to Westminster-hall, every morning in termtime. Martial's defcription of this fpecies of lawyers is full of humour:

Iras & verba locant.

"Men that hire out their words and anger;" that are more or lefs paffionate according as they are paid for it, and allow their client a quantity of wrath proportionable to the fee which they receive from him. I muft however obferve to the reader, that above three parts of those whom I reckon among the litigious, are fuch as are only quarrelfome in their hearts, and have no opportunity of fhewing their paffion at the bar: neverthelefs, as they do not know what ftrifes may arife, they appear at the hall every day, that they may fhew themfelves in readinefs to enter the lifts whenever there fhall be occafion for them.

The peaceable lawyers are, in the first place, many of the benchers of the feveral inns of court, who feem to be the dignitaries of the law; and are endowed with thofe qualifications of mind that accomplish a man rather for a ruler than a pleader. These men live peaceably in their habitations, eating once a day, and dancing once a year, for the honour of their respective societies.

Another numberless branch of peaceable lawyers are thofe young men who, being placed at the inns of court in order to study the laws of their country, frequent the play-houfe more than Westminster-hall, and are seen in all public affemblies, except in a court of juftice. Ifhall fay nothing of those filent and bufy multitudes that are employed within doors in the drawing up of writings

and

and conveyances; nor of thofe greater numbers that palliate their want of bufinefs with a pretence to fuch chamber-practice.

If, in the third place, we look into the profeffion of phyfic, we fhall find a moft formidable body of men; the fight of them is enough to make a man ferious; for we may lay it down as a maxim, that when a nation abounds in phyficians, it grows thin of people. Sir William Temple is very much puzzled to find out a rea-* fon why the northern hive, as he calls it, does not fend out fuch prodigious swarms, and overrun the world with Goths and Vandals, as it did formerly; but had that excellent author obferved that there were no ftudents in phyfic among the fubjects of Thor and Woden, and that this fcience very much flourishes in the north at prefent, he might have found a better folution for this difficulty than any of thofe he has made ufe of. This body of men in our own country may be described like the British army in Cæfar's time, fome of them flay in chariots, and fome on foot. If the infantry do lefs execution than the charioteers, it is because they cannot be carried fo foon into all quarters of the town, and difpatch fo much bufinefs in fo fhort a time. Befides this body of regular troops there are ftragglers, who, without being duly lifted and enrolled, do infinite mifchief to those who are fo unlucky as to fall into their hands.

There are, befides the abovementioned, innumerable retainers to phyfic, who, for want of other patients, amuse themselves with the ftifling of cats in an air-pump, cutting up dogs alive, or impaling of infects upon the point of a needle for microfcopical obfervations; befides thofe that are employed in the gathering of weeds, and the chace of butterflies; not to mention the cocklefhellmerchants and spider-catchers.

When I confider how each of thefe profeffions are crowded with multitudes that feek their livelihood in them, and how many men of merit there are in each of them, who may be rather faid to be of the science than the profeffion, I very much wonder at the humour of

parents,

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parents, who will not rather chofe to place their fons in a way of life where an honeft industry cannot but thrive, than in stations where the greatest probity, learning, and good fenfe may mifcarry. How many men are country-curates, that might have made themfelves aldermen of London, by a right improvement of a finaller fun of money than what is ufually laid out upon a learned education! A fober frugal perfon, of flender parts and a flow apprehenfion, might have thrived in trade, though he starves upon phyfic; as a man would be well enough pleafed to buy filks of one whom he would not venture to feel his pulfe. Vagellius is careful, ftudious, and obliging, but withal a little thick fkull'd: he has not a fingle client but might have had abundance of customers. The misfortune is, that parents take a liking to a particular profeffion, and therefore defire their fons may be of it; whereas, in fo great an affair of life, they fhould confider the genius and abilities of their children more than their own inclinations.

It is the great advantage of a trading nation that there are very few in it fo dull and heavy who may not be placed in ftations of life which may give them an opportunity of making their fortunes. A well-regulated commerce is not like law, phyfic, or divinity, to be overstocked with hands; but, on the contrary, flourishes by multitudes, and gives employment to all its profeffors. Fleets of merchantmen are fo many fquadrons of floating fhops, that vend our wares and manufactures in all the markets of the world, and find out chapmen under both the tropics.

C.

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ROSCOMMON.

THE word Spectator being most usually understood as one of the audience at public reprefentations in our theatres, I feldom fail of many letters relating to plays and operas. But indeed there are fuch monftrous things done in both, that if one had not been an eye-witness of them, one could not believe that fuch matters had been really exhibited. There is very little which concerns human life, or is a picture of nature, that is regarded by the greater part of the company. The understanding is difmiffed from our entertainments: our mirth is the laughter of fools, and our admiration the wonder of idiots; elfe, fuch improbable, monstrous, and incoherent dreams could not go off as they do, not only without the utmoft fcorn and contempt, but even with the Joudeft applause and approbation. But the letters of my correfpondents will reprefent this affair in a more lively manner than any difcourfe of my own; I shall therefore give them to my reader with only this preparation, that they all come from players, and that the business of playing is now fo managed, that you are not to be furprifed when I fay one or two of them are rational, others fenfitive and vegetative actors, and others wholly inanimate. I fhall not place these as I have named them, but as they have precedence in the opinion of their audience.

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No. XXII. MONDAY, MARCH 26.

Quodcunque oftendis mihi fic, incredulus odi. HOR.

Whatever contradicts my fenfe
I hate to fee, and never can believe.

• Mr. Spectator,

YOUR having been fo humble as to take notice of the epiftles of other animals, emboldens me, who the wild boar that was killed by Mrs. Tofts, to reprefent to you that I think I was hardly used in not having the part of the lion in Hydafpes given to me.

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It would have been but a natural step for me to have performed that noble creature, after having behaved myfelf to fatisfaction in the part above-mentioned; but that of a lion is too great a character for one that never trod the stage before but upon two legs. As for the little refiftance which I made, I hope it may be excufed, when it is confidered that the dart was thrown at me by fo fair an hand. I must confess I had but just put on my brutality; and Camilla's charms were fuch, that beholding her erect mien, hearing her charming voice, and astonished with her graceful motion, I could not keep up to my affumed fiercenefs, but died like a

6

man.

• I am, Şir,

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• Mr. Spectator,

C

THIS is to let you understand, that the play-house is a representation of the world in nothing fo much as in this particular, that no one rifes in it according to • his merit. I have acted several parts of houfhold-stuff with great applaufe for many years: I am one of the • men in the hangings in the Emperor of the Moon; I have twice performed the third chair in an English 6 opera; and have rehearsed the pump in the FortuneHunters. I am now grown old, and hope you will recommend me fo effectually, as that I may fay fomething before I go off the stage: in which you will do a great act of charity to

Your moft humble fervant,

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Your most humble fervant,

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THOMAS PRONE.'

WM. SCRENE.'

• Mr. Spectator,

• UNDERSTANDING that Mr. Screne has writ to you, and defired to be raifed from dumb and still

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parts,

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