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of higher quality new ways of being uneasy and displeased; and this happens for no reason in the world, but that poor Liddy knows she has no such thing as a certain negligence that is so becoming; that there is not I know not what in her air; and that if she talks like a fool, there is no one will say, "Well! I know not what it is, but everything pleases when she speaks it."

Ask any of the husbands of your great beauties, and they will tell you that they hate their wives nine hours of every day they pass together. There is such a particularity forever affected by them that they are encumbered with their charms in all they say or do. They pray at public devotions as they are beauties. They converse on ordinary occasions as they are beauties. Ask Belinda what it is o'clock, and she is at a stand whether so great a beauty should answer you. In a word, I think, instead of offering to administer consolation to Parthenissa, I should congratulate her metamorphosis; and however she thinks she was not the least insolent in the prosperity of her charms, she was enough so to find she may make herself a much more agreeable creature in her present adversity. The endeavor to please is highly promoted by a consciousness that the approbation of the person you would be agreeable to, is a favor you do not deserve; for in this case assurance of success is the most certain way to disappointment. Good-nature will always supply the absence of beauty, but beauty cannot long supply the absence of good-nature.

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namely, that the loss which the commonwealth suffered by the destruction of its youth, was like the loss which the year would suffer by the destruction of the spring. The prejudice which the public sustains from a wrong education of children, is an evil of the same nature, as it in a manner starves posterity, and defrauds our country of those persons, who, with due care, might make an eminent figure in their respective posts of life. "I have seen a book written by Juan Huartes, a Spanish physician, entitled Examen de Ingenios, wherein he lays it down as one of his first positions, that nothing but nature can qualify a man for learning; and that without a proper temperament for the particular art or science which he studies, his utmost pains and application, assisted by the ablest masters, will be to no purpose. "He illustrates this by the example of Tully's son Marcus.

'Cicero, in order to accomplish his son in that sort of learning which he designed him for, sent him to Athens, the most celebrated academy at that time in the world, and where a vast concourse, out of the most polite nations, could not but furnish the young gentleman with a multitude of great examples and accidents that might ineensibly have instructed him in his designed studies. He placed him under the care of Cratippus, who was one of the greatest philosophers of the age, and as if all the books which were at that time written had not been sufficient for his use, he composed others on purpose for him: notwithstanding all this, history informs us that Marcus proved a mere blockhead, and that nature (who, it seems, father) rendered him incapable of improving by was even with the son for her prodigality to the all the rules of eloquence, the precepts of philosophy, his own endeavors, and the most refined conversation in Athens. This author therefore proposes, that there should be certain triers or examiners appointed by the state, to inspect the genius of every particular boy, and to allot him the part that is most suitable to his natural

No. 307.] THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 21, 1711-12, talents.

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"I have a long time expected with great impatience that you would enlarge upon the ordinary mistakes which are committed in the education of our children. I the more easily flattered myself that you would one time or other resume this consideration, because you tell us that your 168th paper was only composed of a few broken hints; but finding myself hitherto disappointed, I have ventured to send you my own thoughts on this subject.

"Plato in one of his dialogues tells us, that Socrates, who was the son of a midwife, used to say, that as his mother, though she was very skillful in her profession, could not deliver a woman unless she was first with child, so neither could he himself raise knowledge out of a mind where nature had not planted it.

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Accordingly, the method this philosopher took, of instructing his scholars by several interrogatories or questions, was only helping the birth, and bringing their own thoughts to light.

The Spanish doctor above-mentioned, as his speculations grew more refined, asserts that every kind of wit has a particular science corresponding to it, and in which alone it can be truly excellent. As to those geniuses, which may seem to have an equal aptitude for several things, he regards them as so many unfinished pieces of nature wrought off in haste.

"There are indeed but very few to whom nature

has been so unkind, that they are not capable of shining in some science or other. There is a certain bias toward knowledge in every mind, which may be strengthened and improved by proper applications.

"The story of Clavius is very well known. He was entered in a college of Jesuits, and after having been tried at several parts of learning, was upon the point of being dismissed as a hopeless

Christopher Clavius, a geometrician and astronomer

"I remember Pericles, in his famous oration at the funeral of those Athenian young men who perished in the Samian expedition, has a thought author of five volumes in folio, who died at Rome in 1612, very much celebrated by several ancient critics, aged 75.

blockhead, until one of the fathers took it into his head to make an essay of his arts in geometry, which, it seems, hit his genius so luckily, that he afterward became one of the greatest mathematicians of the age. It is commonly thought that the sagacity of these fathers, in discovering the talent of a young student, has not a little contributed to the figure which their order has made in the world.

several companies, and disciplined by the public. The old men were spectators of their performances, who often raised quarrels among them, and set them at strife with one another, that by those early discoveries they might see how their several talents lay, and, without any regard to their quality, disposed of them accordingly, for the service of the commonwealth. By this means, Sparta soon became the mistress of Greece, and famous through the whole world for her civil and military discipline.

If you think this letter deserves a place among your speculations, I may perhaps trouble you with some other thoughts on the same subject. X. "I am," etc.

"How different from this manner of education is that which prevails in our own country! where nothing is more usual than to see forty or fifty boys of several ages, tempers, and inclinations, ranged together in the same class, employed upon the same authors, and enjoined the same tasks! Whatever their natural genius may be, they are all to be made poets, historians, and orators alike. They are all obliged to have the same capacity, to No. 308.] FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 22, 1711-12 bring in the same tale of verse, and to furnish out the same portion of prose. Every boy is bound to have as good a memory as the captain of the form. To be brief, instead of adapting studies to the particular genius of a youth, we expect from the young man, that he should adapt his genius to his studies. This, I must confess, is not so much to be imputed to the instructor as to the parent, who will never be brought to believe, that his son is not capable of performing as much as his neighbor's, and that he may not make him

whatever he has a mind to.

"If the present age is more laudable than those which have gone before it in any single particular, it is in that generous care which several welldisposed persons have taken in the education of poor children: and as in these charity-schools there is no place left for the overweening fondness of a parent, the directors of them would make them beneficial to the public, if they considered the precept which I have been thus long inculcating. They might easily, by well examining the parts of those under their inspection, make a just distribution of them into proper classes and divisions, and allot to them this or that particular study, as their genius qualifies them for professions, trades, handicrafts, or service, by sea or land.

"How is this kind of regulation wanting in the three great professions!

"Dr. South, complaining of persons who took upon them holy orders, though altogether unqualified for the sacred function, says somewhere, that many a man runs his head against a pulpit, who might have done his country excellent service at the plow-tail.

"In like manner many a lawyer, who makes but an indifferent figure at the bar, might have made a very elegant waterman, and have shone at the Temple stairs, though he can get no business in the house.

"I have known a corn-cutter, who with a right education would have been an excellent physi


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To descend lower, are not our streets filled with sagacious draymen, and politicians in liveries? We have several tailors of six feet high, and meet with many a broad pair of shoulders that are thrown away upon a barber, when perhaps at the same time we see a pigmy porter reeling under a burden, who might have managed a needle with much dexterity, or have snapped his fingers with geat ease to himself, and advantage to the public. "The Spartans, though they acted with the spirit which I am here speaking of, carried it much further than what I propose. Among them it was not lawful for the father himself to bring up his children after his own fancy. As soon as they were seven years old, they were all listed in

Jam proterva

Fronte petet Lalage maritum.

HOR. 1 Od. 5, lib. ii, ver. 16.

-Lalage will soon proclaim

Her love, nor blush to own her flame.-CREECH.


"I GIVE you this trouble in order to propose myself to you as an assistant in the weighty cares which you have thought fit to undergo for the public good. I am a very great lover of women, that is to say, honestly; and as it is natural to study what one likes, I have industriously applied myself to understand them. The present circumstance relating to them is, that I think there wants under you, as Spectator, a person to be distinguished and vested in the power and quality of a censor on marriages. I lodge at the Temple, and know, by seeing women come hither, and afterward observing them conducted by their counsel to judges' chambers, that there is a custom in case of making conveyance of a wife's estate, that she is carried to a judge's apartment, and left alone with him, to be examined in private, whether she has not been frightened or sweetened by her spouse into the act she is going to do, or whether it is of her own free will. Now, if this be a method founded upon reason and equity, why should there not be also a proper officer for examining such as are entering into the state of matrimony, whether they are forced by parents on one side, or moved by interest only on the other, to come together, and bring forth such awkward heirs as are the product of half love and coustrained compliances? There is nobody, though I say it myself, would be fitter for this office than I am: for I am an ugly fellow, of great wit and sagacity. My father was a hale country 'squire, my mother a witty beauty of no fortune. The match was made by consent of my mother's parents against her own, and I am the child of the rape on the wedding night; so that I am as healthy and as homely as my father, but as sprightly and agreeable as my mother. It would be of great ease to you, if you would use me under you, that matches might be better regulated for the future, and we might have no more children of squabbles. I shall not reveal all my pretensions until I receive your answer: and am, Sir,

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Your most humble Servant

"I am one of those unfortunate men within the city-walls, who am married to a woman of quality, but her temper is somewhat different from that of Lady Anvil. My lady's whole time and thoughts are spent in keeping up to the node both to ap parel and furniture. All the goods in my house

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have been changed three times in seven years. I
have had seven children by her: and by our mar-
riage-articles she was to have her apartment new
furnished as often as she lay in. Nothing in our
house is useful but that which is fashionable; my
pewter holds out generally half a year, my plate
a full twelvemonth; chairs are not fit to sit in that
were made two years since, nor beds fit for any-
thing but to sleep in, that have stood up above
that time. My dear is of opinion that an old
fashioned grate consumes coals, but gives no heat.
If she drinks out of glasses of last year she can
not distinguish wine from small-beer. Oh, dear
Sir, you may guess all the rest.

"P. S. I could bear even all this, if I were not obliged also to eat fashionably. I have a plain stomach, and have a constant loathing of whatever comes to my own table; for which reason I dine at the chop-house three days in the week; where the good company wonders they never see you of late. I am sure, by your unprejudiced discourses, you love broth better than soup."


Will's, Feb. 19. "You may believe you are a person as much talked of as any man in town. I am one of your best friends in this house, and have laid a wager, you are so candid a man, and so honest a fellow, that you will print this letter, though it is in recommendation of a newspaper called The Historian. I have read it carefully, and find it written with skill, good-sense, modesty, and fire. You must allow the town is kinder to you than you deserve; and I doubt not but you have so much sense of the world's change of humor, and instability of all human things, as to understand, that the only way to preserve favor is to communicate it to others with good-nature and judgment. You are so generally read, that what you speak of will be read. This, with men of sense and taste, is all that is wanting to recommend The Historian. "I am, Sir, your daily Advocate,


I was very much surprised this morning that any one should find out my lodging, and know it so well as to come directly to my closet-door, and knock at it, to give me the following letter. When I came out I opened it, and saw, by a very strong pair of shoes and a warm coat the bearer had on, that he walked all the way to bring it me, though dated from York. My misfortune is that I cannot talk, and I found the messenger had so much of me, that he could think better than speak. had, I observed, a polite discerning, hid under a shrewd rusticity. He delivered the paper with a Yorkshire tone and a town leer.

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that unless we break all rules of government, it
must redound to the utter subversion of the brag-
table, the discreet members of which value time,
as Fribble's wife does her pin-money. We are
pretty well assured that your indulgence to Trot
was only in relation to country dances; however,
we have deferred issuing an order of council upon
the premises, hoping to get you to join with us,
that Trot, nor any of his clan, presume for the
future to dance any but country dances, unless a
hornpipe upon a festival day. If you will do
this, you will oblige a great many ladies, and
particularly your most humble Servant,
"York, Feb. 16.


"I never meant any other than that Mr. Trot should confine himself to country dances. And I further direct, that he shall take out none but his own relations according to their nearness of blood, but any gentlewoman may take out him. "London, Feb. 21. "THE SPECTATOR."


No. 309.] SATURDAY, FEB. 23, 1711-12.
Di, quibus imperium est Animarum, Umbræque silentes
Et Chaos, et Phlegethon, loca nocte silentia late:
Sit mihi fas audita loqui! sit numine vestro
Pandere res alta terra et caligine mersas.

VIRG. Æn. vi, ver. 264.

Ye realms, yet unreveal'd to human sight,
Ye gods, who rule the regions of the night,
Ye gliding ghosts, permit me to relate

The mystic wonders of your silent state.-DRYDEN.
I HAVE before observed in general, that the per-
sons whom Milton introduces into his poem always
discover such sentiments and behavior as are
in a peculiar manner conformable to their respec-
tive characters. Every circumstance in their
speeches and actions is with great justice and
delicacy adapted to the persons who speak and
act. As the poet very much excels in this con-
sistency of his characters, I shall beg leave to
consider several passages of the second book in
this light. That superior greatness and mock-
majesty which is ascribed to the prince of the fallen
angels, is admirably preserved in the beginning
of this book. His opening and closing the debate;
his taking on himself that great enterprise, at the
thought of which the whole infernal assembly
trembled; his encountering the hideous phantom
who guarded the gates of hell, and appeared to
him in all his terrors; are instances of that proud
and daring mind which could not brook submis-
sion, even to Omnipotence!

Satan was now at hand, and from his seat
The monster, moving onward, came as fast
With horrid strides; hell trembled as he strode.
Th' undaunted fiend what this might be admir'd,
Admir'd, not fear'd

The same boldness and intrepidity of behavior discovers itself in the several adventures which he meets with, during his passage through the regions of unformed matter, and particularly in his address to those tremendous powers who are described as presiding over it.

"The privilege you have indulged John Trot has proved of very bad consequence to our illustrious assembly, which, beside the many excellent maxims it is founded upon, is remarkable for the extraordinary decorum observed in it. One in- The part of Moloch is likewise, in all its circumstance of which is, that the carders (who are stances, full of that fire and fury which distinguish always of the first quality) never begin to play this spirit from the rest of the fallen angels. He until the French dances are finished, and the is described in the first book as besmeared with country dances begin; but John Trot having now the blood of human sacrifices, and delighted with got your commission in his pocket (which every the tears of parents, and the cries of children. In one here has a profound respect for) has the as- the second book he is marked out as the fiercest surance to set up for a minuet-dancer. Not only spirit that fought in heaven; and if we consider so, but he has brought down upon us the whole the figure which he makes in the sixth book, body of the Trots, which are very numerous, where the battle of the angels is described, we find with their auxiliaries the hobblers and the skip it every way answerable to the same furious, pers, by which means the time is so much wasted, enraged character:

-Where the might of Gabriel fought,
And with fierce ensigns pierc'd the deep array
Of Moloch, furious king, who him defied.
And at his chariot-wheels to drag him bound
Threaten'd, nor from the Holy One of heav'n
Refrain'd his tongue blasphemous: but anon,
Down cloven to the waist, with shatter'd arms
And uncouth pain fled bellowing.

It may be worth while to observe, that Milton has represented this violent impetuous spirit, who is hurried on by such precipitate passions, as the first that rises in the assembly to give his opinion upon their present posture of affairs. Accordingly he declares himself abruptly for war, and appears incensed at his companions for losing so much time as even to deliberate upon it. All his senti ments are rash, audacious and desperate. Such as that of arming themselves with their tortures, and turning their punishments upon him who inflicted them

No, let us rather choose,

Arm'd with hell flames and fury, all at once
O'er heaven's high tow'rs to force resistless way,
Turning our tortures into horrid arms
Against the tort'rer; when to meet the noise
Of his almighty engine he shall hear

Infernal thunder, and for lightning see
Black fire and horror shot with equal rage

Among his angels; and his throne itself

Mix'd with Tartarian sulphur, and strange fire, His own invented torments.

His preferring annihilation to shame or misery is also highly suitable to his character; as the comfort he draws from their disturbing the peace of heaven, that if it be not victory it is revenge, is a sentiment truly diabolical, and becoming the bitterness of this implacable spirit.

Belial is described in the first book as the idol of the lewd and luxurious. He is in the second book, pursuant to that description, characterized as timorous and slothful; and if we look into the sixth book, we find him celebrated in the battle of angels for nothing but that scoffing speech which he makes to Satan, on their supposed advantage over the enemy. As his appearance is uniform, and of a-piece, in these three several views, we find his sentiments in the infernal assembly every way conformable to his character. Such are his apprehensions of a second battle, his horrors of annihilation, his preferring to be miserable rather than "not to be." I need not observe, that the contrast of thought in this speech, and that which precedes it, gives an agreeable variety to the debate.

Mammon's character is so fully drawn in the first book, that the poet adds nothing to it in the second. We were before told, that he was the first who taught mankind to ransack the earth for gold and silver, and that he was the architect of Pandemonium, or the infernal palace, where the evil spirits were to meet in council. His speech in this book is every way suitable to so depraved a character. How proper is that reflection of their being unable to taste the happiness of heaven, were they actually there, in the mouth of one, who, while he was in heaven, is said to have had his mind dazzled with the outward pomps and glories of the place, and to have been more intent on the riches of the pavement than on the beatific vision. I shall also leave the reader to judge how agreeable the following sentiments are to the same character:

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Imitate when we please? This desert soil Wants not her hidden luster, gems and gold; Nor want we skill or art, from whence to raise Magnificence; and what can heav'n show more?

Beelzebub, who is reckoned the second in dignity that fell, and is, in the first book, the second that awakens out of the trance, and confers with Satan upon the situation of their affairs, maintains his rank in the book now before us. There is a wonderful majesty described in his rising up to speak. He acts as a kind of moderator between the two opposite parties, and proposes a third undertaking, which the whole assembly gives into. The motion he makes of detaching one of their body in search of a new world, is grounded upon a project devised by Satan, and cursorily propos ed by him in the following lines of the first book: Space may produce new worlds, whereof so rife There went a fame in heav'n, that he ere long Intended to create, and therein plant A generation, whom his choice regard Should favor equal to the sons of heav'n: Thither, if but to pry, shall be perhaps Our first eruption, thither or elsewhere: For this infernal pit shall never hold Celestial spirits in bondage, nor th' abyss Long under darkness cover. But these thoughts Full counsel must mature:

It is on this project that Beelzebub grounds his proposal:

What if we find

Some easier enterprise? There is a place
(If ancient and prophetic fame in heav'n
Err not), another world, the happy seat
Of some new race call'd man, about this time
To be created like to us, though less
In pow'r and excellence, but favor'd more
Of him who rules above; so was his will
Pronounc'd among the gods, and by an oath,
That shook heav'n's whole circumference, confirm'd.

The reader may observe how just it was, not to omit in the first book the project upon which the whole poem turns; as also that the prince of the fallen angels was the only proper person give it birth, and that the next to him in dignity was the fittest to second and support it.



There is beside, I think, something wonderfully beautiful, and very apt to affect the reader's imagination, in this ancient prophesy or report heaven, concerning the creation of man. Nothing could show more the dignity of the species, than this tradition which ran of them before their exis tence. They are represented to have been the talk of heaven before they were created. Virgil, in compliment to the Roman commonwealth, makes the heroes of it appear in their state of pre-existence; but Milton does a far greater honor to mankind in general, as he gives us a glimpse of them even before they are in being.

The rising of this great assembly is described in a very sublime and poetical manner.

Their rising all at once was as the sound
Of thunder heard remote-

The diversions of the fallen angels, with the particular account of their place of habitation, are de scribed with great pregnancy of thought, and copi ousness of invention. The diversions are every way suitable to beings who had nothing left them but strength and knowledge misapplied. Such are their contentions at the race, and in feats of arms, with their entertainment in the following lines:

Others with vast Typhæan rage more fell
Rend up both rocks and hills, and ride the air
In whirlwind; hell scarce holds the wild uproar.

Their music is employed in celebrating their own criminal exploits, and their discourse in

sounding the unfathomable depths of fate, freewill, and foreknowledge.

The several circumstances in the description of hell are finely imagined; as the four rivers which disgorge themselves into the sea of fire, the extremes of cold and heat, and the river of oblivion. The monstrous animals produced in that infernal world are represented by a single line, which gives us a more horrid idea of them, than a much longer description would have done:

Nature breeds,

Perverse, all monstrous, all prodigious things,
Abominable, inutterable, and worse

Than fables yet have feign'd, or fear conceiv'd,
Gorgons and hydras, and chimeras dire.

This episode of the fallen spirits, and their place of habitation, comes in very happily to unbend the mind of the reader from its attention to the debate. An ordinary poet would indeed have spun out so many circumstances to a great length, and by that means have weakened, instead of illustrated, the principal fable.

The flight of Satan to the gates of hell is finely imagined.

I have already declared my opinion of the alle gory concerning sin and death, which is, however, a very finished piece in its kind, when it is not considered as a part of an epic poem. The genealogy of the several persons is contrived with great delicacy. Sin is the daughter of Satau, and Death

With horse and chariots rank'd in loose array; So wide they stood, and like a furnace mouth Cast forth redounding smoke and ruddy flame. In Satan's voyage through the chaos there are several imaginary persons described, as residing in that immense waste of matter. This may, perhaps, be conformable to the taste of those critics who are pleased with nothing in a poet which has not life and manners ascribed to it: but for my own part, I am pleased most with those passages in this description which carry in them a greater measure of probability, and are such as might possibly have happened. Of this kind is his first mounting in the smoke that rises from the infernal pit, his falling into a cloud of niter, and the like combustible materials, that by their explosion still hurried him forward in his voyage: his springing upward like a pyramid of fire, with his laborious passage through that confusion of elements which the poet calls

The womb of nature, and perhaps her grave.

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the offspring of Sin. The incestuous mixture be- No. 310.] MONDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 1711-12.

tween Sin and Death produces those monsters and hell-hounds which from time to time enter into their mother, and tear the bowels of her who gave them birth.

These are the terrors of an evil conscience, and the proper fruits of sin, which naturally rise from the apprehensions of death. This last beautiful moral is, I think, clearly intimated in the speech of Sin, where, complaining of this her dreadful

issue, she adds,

Before mine eyes in opposition sits

Grim Death, my son and foe, who sets them on,
And me his parent would full soon devour
For want of other prey, but that he knows
His end with mine involv'd.-

I need not mention to the reader the beautiful circumstance in the last part of this quotation. He will likewise observe how naturally the three persons concerned in this allegory are tempted by one common interest to enter into a confederacy together, and how properly Sin is made the portress of hell, and the only being that can open the gates to that world of tortures.

The descriptive part of this allegory is likewise very strong, and full of sublime ideas. The figure of Death, the regal crown upon his head, his menace of Satan, his advancing to the combat, the outery at his birth, are circumstances too noble to be passed over in silence, and extremely suitable to this king of terrors. I need not mention the justness of thought which is observed in the generation of these several symbolical persons; that Sin was produced upon the first revolt of Satan, that Death appeared soon after he was cast into hell, and that the terrors of conscience were conceived at the gate of this place of torments. The description of the gates is very poetical, as the opening of them is full of Milton's spirit:

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Connubio jungam stabili.

VIRG. Æn., i, 77. I'll tie the indissoluble marriage-knot.


tain young man very heartily; and my father and "I AM a certain young woman that love a cermother were for it a great while, but now they say I can do better, but I think I cannot. They bid me not love him, and I cannot unlove him. What must I do? Speak quickly.



Feb. 19, 1712. "I have loved a lady entirely for this year and a half, though for a great part of the time (which has contributed not a little to my pain) I have been debarred the liberty of conversing with her. The ground of our difference was this; that when we had inquired into each other's circumstances, we found that at our first setting out in the world, we should owe five hundred pounds more than her fortune would pay off. My estate is seven hundred pounds a-year, beside the benefit of tin mines. Now, dear Spec., upon this state of the case, and the lady's positive declaration that there is still no other objection, I beg you will not fail to insert this, with your opinion, as soon as possible, whether this ought to be esteemed a just cause or impediment why we should not be joined, and you will forever oblige yours sincerely,

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"I have the misfortune to be one of those unhappy men who are distinguished by the name of discarded lovers; but I am the less mortified at my disgrace, because the young lady is one of those creatures who set up for negligence of men, are forsooth the most rigidly virtuous in the world, and yet their nicety will permit them at the command of parents to go to bed to the most utter

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