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mimick Sir Fopling : On the pretty Sa. tyr, in his resolving to be a Coxcomb to please, since Noise and Nonsense have such powerful Charms.
I, that I may successful prove,
Transform my self to what you Love. Then how like a Man of the Town, so Wild and Gay is that !
The Wife will find a Difference in our Fate, You wed a Woman, I a good Estate.
IT would have been a very wild Endeavour for a Man of my Temper to of. fer any Opposition to so nimble a Speaker as my Fair Enemy is; but her Dircourse gave me very many Reflections, when I had left her Company. Among others, I could not but consider, with fome Attention, the false Impressions the generality (the fair Sex more espe. cially) have of what should be intended, when they say a Fine Gentleman; and could not help revolving that Subject in my Thoughts, and settling, as it were, an Idea of that Character in my own L. magination.
NO Man ought to have the Efteem of the rest of the World, for any, A. étions which are disagreeable to thofe
Maxims which prevail, as the Standards of Behaviour, in the Country wherein he lives. What is opposite to the eternal Rules of Reason and good Sense, must be excluded from any Place in the Carriage of a Well-bred Man. I did not, I confess, explain my self enough on this Subject, when I called Dorimant a Clown, and made it an Instance of it, that he called the Orange Wench, Double Tripe: I should have thewed, that Humanity obliges a Gentleman to give no Part of Humankind Reproach, for what they, whom they reproach, may possibly have in common with the most virtuous and worthy amongst us. When a Gentleman speaks Coarsly, he has dressed himself Clean to no purpose: The Cloathing of our Minds certainly ought to be regarded before that of our Bodies. To betray in a Man's Talk a corrupted Imagination, is á much greater Offence against the Conversation of Gentlemen, than any Negligence of Dress imaginable. But this Sense of the Matter is so far from being received among People, even of Condition, that Vocifer passes for a fine Gentleman. He is Loud, Haughty, Gentle, Soft, Lewd, and Obsequious
by turns, just as a little Understanding and great Impudence prompt him at the present Moment. He passes among the Silly Part of our Women for a Man of Wit, because he is generally in Doubt. He contradicts with a Shrug, and confutes with a certain Sufficiency, in profefsing such'or such a Thing is above his Capacity. What makes his Character the pleasanter is, that he is a professed Deluder of Women; and because the empty Coxcomb has no Regard to any thing that is of it self Sacred and Inviolable, I have heard an unmarried Lady of Fortune fay, It is a Pity so fine a Gentleman as Vocifer is so great an Atheist. The Crowds of such inconsiderable Creatures, that infeft all Places of Assembling, every Reader will have in his Eye from his own Observation; but would it not be worth considering what Sort of Figure a Man who formed himfelf upon those Principles among us, which are agreeable to the Dictates of Honour and Religion, would make in the familiar and ordinary Occurrences of Life?
I hardly have observed any one fill his several Duties of Life better than Ignotus. All the Under-parts of his
Behaviour, and such as are expofed to common Observation, have their Rife in him from great and noble Motives. A firm and unshaken Expectation of another Life, makes him become this; Humanity and good Nature, fortified by the Senfe of Virtue, has the fame Effect upon him, as the Neglect of all Goodness has upon many others. Being firmly Established in all Matters of Importance, that certain Inattention which makes Mens Actions look easie, appears in him with greater Beauty: By a thorough Contempt of little Excellencies, he is perfectly Master of them. This Temper of Mind leaves him under no necessity of Studying his Air, and he has this peculiar Distinction, that his Negligence is unaffected.
HE that can work himself into a Pleasure in considering this Being as an uncertain one, and think to reap an Advantage by its Discontinuance, is in a fair way of doing all things with a graceful Unconcern, and Gentlemanlike Ease. Such a one does not behold his Life as a short, tranfient, perplexing State; made up of trifting Pleafures and great Anxieties; but sees it in quite another Light ; his Griets are momenta
ry, and his Joys immortal. Reflection upon Death is not a gloomy and fad Thought of resigning every Thing that he delights in, but it is a short Night followed by an endless Day. What I would here contend for is, that the more Virtuous the Man is, the nearer he will naturally be to the Character of Genteel and Agreeable. A Man whofe Fortune is plentiful, shews an Eafe in his Countenance, and Confidence in his Behaviour, which he that is under Wants and Difficulties cannot affume. It is thus with the State of the Mind; he that governs his Thoughts with the everlasting Rules of Reason and Senfe, must have fomething so inexpressibly Graceful in his Words and Actions, that every Circumstance must become him. The Change of Persons or Things ao round him do not at all alter his Situation, but he looks difinterested in the Occurrences with which others are diItracted, becaufe the greatest Purpose of his Life is to maintain an Indifference both to it and all its Enjoyments. In a word, to be a Fine Gentleman, is to be a Generous and a Brave Man. What can make a Man fo much in constant good Humour and Shine, as we call it,