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any practical part in life. I am very well versed in the theory of an husband or a father, and can discern the errors in the economy, business, and diversion of others, better than those who are engaged in them: as standers-by discover blots, which are apt to escape 5 those who are in the game. I never espoused any party with violence, and am resolved to observe an exact neutrality between the Whigs and Tories, unless I shall be forced to declare myself by the hostilities of either side. In short, I have acted in all the parts 10 of my life as a looker-on, which is the character I intend to preserve in this paper.
I have given the reader just so much of my history and character, as to let him see I am not altogether unqualified for the business I have undertaken. As 15 for other particulars in my life and adventures, I shall insert them in following papers, as I shall see occasion. In the mean time, when I consider how much I have seen, read, and heard, I begin to blame my own taciturnity ; and since I have neither time nor 20 inclination to communicate the fulness of my heart in speech, I am resolved to do it in writing, and to printo myself out, if possible, before I die. I have been often told by my friends, that it is pity so many useful discoveries which I have made should be in 25 the possession of a silent man. For this reason, therefore, I shall publish a sheet full of thoughts every morning, for the benefit of my contemporaries; and
if I can any way contribute to the diversion or imi provement of the country in which I live, I shall leave
it when I am summoned out of it, with the secret satisfaction of thinking that I have not lived in vain.
There are three very material points which I have 10 not spoken to in this paper, and which, for several
important reasons, I must keep to myself, at least for some time : I mean, an account of my name, my age, and my lodgings. I must confess I would gratify my
reader in anything that is reasonable; but as for :5 these three particulars, though I am sensible they
might tend very much to the embellishment of my paper, I cannot yet come to a resolution of communicating them to the public. They would indeed draw
me out of that obscurity which I have enjoyed for 20 many years, and expose me in public places to several
salutes and civilities, which have been always very disagreeable to me; for the greatest pain I can suffer is the being talked to and being stared at. It is for
this reason likewise that I keep my complexion and 25 dress as very great secrets; though it is not impossi. ble but I may make discoveries of both in the progress of the work I have undertaken.
After having been thus particular upon myself, I shall in to-morrow's paper give an account of those gentlemen who are concerned with me in this work for, as I have before intimated, a plan of it is laid and concerted (as all other matters of importance are) in a club. However, as my friends have engaged me to stand in the front, those who have a mind to correspond with me may direct their letters to the SPEC- 10 TATOR, at Mr. Buckley's, in Little Britain.° For I must further acquaint the reader, that though our club meets only on Tuesdays and Thursdays, we have appointed a committee to sit every night, for the inspection of all such papers as may contribute to the 15 advancement of the public weal.
II. DESCRIPTION OF CLUB MEMBERS.
The first of our society is a gentleman of Worcestershire, of ancient descent, a baronet, his name Sir Roger de Coverley. His great-grandfather was inventor of that famous country-danceo which is called 20 after him. All who know that shire are very well acquainted with the parts and merits of Sir Roger. He is a gentleman that is very singular in his behav.
ior, but his singularities proceed from his good sense, and are contradictions to the manners of the world oniy as he thinks the worlı is in the wrong. How
ever, this humor creates him no enemies, for he does s nothing with sourness or obstinacy; and his being
unconfined to modes and forms makes him but the readier and more capable to please and oblige all who know him. When he is in town, he lives in Soho
Square. It is said he keeps himself a bachelor by 10 reason he was crossed in love by a perverse beautiful
widow of the next county to him. Before this disappointment, Sir Roger was what you call a fine gentleman, had often supped with my Lord Rochester and
Sir George Etherege, fought a duel upon his first com15 ing to town, and kicked Bully Dawsono in a public
coffee-house for calling him "youngster.” But being ill used by the above-mentioned widow, he was very serious for a year and a half; and though, his temper
being naturally jovial, he at last got over it, he grew 2c careless of himself, and never dressed afterwards.
He continues to wear a coat and doublet of the same cut that were in fashion at the time of his repulse, which, in his merry humors, he tells us, has been in
and out twelve times since he first wore it. He is 25 now in his fifty-sixth year, cheerful, gay, and hearty; keeps a good house in both town and country; a great lover of mankind; but there is such a mirthful cast in his behavior, that he is rather beloved than esteemed. His tenants grow rich, his servants look satisfied, all the young women profess love to him, ; g and the young men are glad of his company: when he comes into a house he calls the servants by their names, and talks all the way up stairs to a visit. I must not omit that Sir Roger is a justice of the quorum; that he fills the chair at a quarter-session with 10 great abilities; and, three months ago, gained universal applause by explaining a passage in the GameAct.o
The gentleman next in esteem and authority among us is another bachelor, who is a member of the Inner 15 Temple;' a man of great probity, wit, and understanding; but he has chosen his place of residence rather to obey the direction of an old humorsome father, than in pursuit of his own inclinations. He was placed there to study the laws of the land, and is the most 20 learned of any of the house in those of the stage. Aristotleo and Longinus are much better understood by him than Littletono or Coke. The father sends up every post questions relating to marriage-articles, leases, and tenures, in the neighborhood; all which 25