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“ After this I laid siege to four heiresses succes sively, and being a handsome young dog in those days, quickly made a breach in their hearts; but I don't
know how it came to pass, though I seldom failed of 5 getting the daughters' consent, I could never in my life get the old people on my side
“ I could give you an account of a thousand other unsuccessful attempts, particularly of one which I
made some years since upon an old woman, whom I 10 had certainly borne away with flying colors, if her
relations had not come pouring in to her assistance from all parts of England; nay, I believe I should have got her at last, had she not been carried off by
an hard frost." 15 As Will's transitions are extremely quick, he turned
from Sir Roger, and, applying himself to me, told me there was a passage in the book° I had considered last Saturday, which deserved to be writ in letters of
gold; and taking out a pocket Milton, read the follow20 ing lines, which are part of one of Adam's speeches
to Eve after the fall:
Of Nature, and not fill the world at once
15 Which infinite calamity shall cause
To human life, and household peace confound.o Sir Roger listened to this passage with great attention, and desiring Mr. Honeycomb to fold down a leaf at the place, and lend him his book, the Knight put 20 it
up in his pocket, and told us that he would read over those verses again before he went to bed.
SIR ROGER AT VAUXHALL GARDENS. As I was sitting in my chamber and thinking on a subject for my next “Spectator,” I heard two or three irregular bounces at my landlady's door, and upon the 23 opening of it, a loud cheerful voice inquiring whether the philosopher was at home. The child who went to the door answered very innocently, that he did not
lodge there. I immediately recollected that it was 5 my good friend Sir Roger's voice; and that I had
promised to go with him on the water to Spring Garden, in case it proved a good evening. The Knight put me in mind of my promise from the bottom of the
staircase, but told me that if I was speculating he 10 would stay below till I had done. Upon my coming
down, I found all the children of the family got about my old friend, and my landlady herself, who is a notable prating gossip, engaged in a conference with
him, being mightily pleased with his stroking her 15 little boy upon the head, and bidding him be a good child, and mind his book.
We were no sooner come to the Temple Stairs, but we were surrounded with a crowd of watermen, offer
ing us their respective services. Sir Roger, after 20 having looked about him very attentively, spied one
with a wooden leg, and immediately gave him orders to get his boat ready. As we were walking towards it, “You must know,” says Sir Roger, “I never make
use of anybody to row me, that has not either lost a 25 leg or an arm. I would rather bate him a few strokes of his oar than not employ an honest man that has been wounded in the Queen's service. If I was a lord or a bishop, and kept a barge, I would not put a fellow in my livery that had not a wooden leg."
My old friend, after having seated himself, and į trimmed the boat with his coachman, who, being a very sober man, always serves for ballast on these occasions, we made the best of our way for Vauxhall.“ Sir Roger obliged the waterman to give us the history of his right leg, and hearing that he had left it at La 10 Hogue, with many particulars which passed in that glorious action, the Knight, in the triumph of his heart, made several reflections on the greatness of the British nation; as, that one Englishman could beat three Frenchmen; that we could never be in danger 15 of Popery so long as we took care of our fleet; that the Thames was the noblest river in Europe; that London Bridge was a greater piece of work than any of the seven wonders of the world: with many other honest prejudices which naturally cleave to the heart 20 of a true Englishman.
After some short pause, the old Knight turning about his head twice or thrice, to take a survey of this great Metropolis, bid me observe how thick the city was set with churches, and that there was scarce a a single steeple on this side Temple Bar. “A most heathenish sight!” says Sir Roger; "there is no religion at this end of the town. The fifty new
churcheso will very much mend the prospect; but i church work is slow, church work is slow?”
I do not remember I have anywhere mentioned, in Sir Roger's character, his custom of saluting everybody that passes by him with a good-morrow or a
good-night. This the old man does out of the over10 flowings of his humanity, though at the same time it
renders him so popular among all his country neighbors, that it is thought to have gone a good way in making him once or twice knight of the shire.
He cannot forbear this exercise benevolence even in 15 town, when he meets with any one in his morning or
evening walk. It broke from him to several boats that passed by us upon the water; but to the Knight's great surprise, as he gave the good-night to two or
three young fellows a little before our landing, one of 30 them, instead of returning the civility, asked us what
queer old put we had in the boat, with a great deal of the like Thames ribaldry. Sir Roger seemed a little shocked at first, but at length, assuming a face of
magistracy, told us that if he were a Middlesex jus25 tice, he would make such vagrants know that Her