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Miss Kitty must excuse me. : The gentleman who sent me a copy of verses on his mistress's dancing, is, I believe, too thoroughly in love to compose correctly.
I have too great a respect for both the univerfi. ties to praise one at the expence of the other.
Tom Nimble is a very honest fellow, and I defire him to present my humble service to his cousin Fill Bumper.
I am obliged for the letter upon prejudice.
may in due time animadvert on the case of Grace Grumble.
The petition of P. S. granted.
My friend at Woodstock is a bold man, to undertake for all within ten miles of him.
I am afraid the entertainment of Tom Turnover will hardly be relished by the good cities of London and Westminster,
I must consider farther of it, before I indulge W. F. in those freedoms he takes with the Ladies stockings.
I am obliged to the ingenious gentleman, who sent me an ode on the subject of the late SpecTATOR, and shall take particular notice of his last letter.
When the Lady who wrote me a letter, dated July the 20th, in relation to some paffages in a Lover, will be more particular in her directions, I shall be so in my answer.
The poor gentleman, who fancies my writings could reclaim an husband who can abuse such a wife as he describes, has, I am afraid, too great an opinion of my skill.
Philanthropos is, I dare say, a very well-meaning man, but a little too prolix in his compofitions.
Constantius himself must be the best judge in the affair he mentions.
The letter dated from Lincoln is received.
Arethuja and her friend may hear farther from me.
Celia is a little too hasty.
Harriot is a good girl, but must not courtsey to folks she does not know.
I must ingeniously confess, my friend Sampson Bentstaff has quite puzzled me, and writ me a long letter which I cannot comprehend one word of.
Collidan must also explain what he means by his Drigelling
I think it beneath my Spectatorial dignity, to concern myself in the affair of the boiled dumpling.
I shall consult fome Litterati on the project sent me for the discovery of the longitude.
I know not how to conclude this paper better, than by inserting a couple of letters which are really genuine, and which I look upon to be two of the smartest pieces I have received from my correfpondents of either sex.
• Brother SPEC, :WHILE you are furveying every object that
falls in your way, I am wholly taken up with one.
Had that fage, who demanded what beauty was, lived to see the dear angel I love, he
would not have asked such a question. Had an• other seen her, he would himself have loved the
person in whom heaven has made virtue visible; ? and were you yourself to be in her company,
you would never, with all your loquacity, say e
nough of her good-humour and sense. I fend q you
the outlines of a picture, which I can no more : finish than I can sufficiently admire the dear original. I am "Your most affectionate brother,
« Good Mr. PERT, :I WILL allow you nothing until you refolve me
the following question. Pray what is the rea• fon that while you only talk now upon Wednesa days, Fridays, and Mondays, you pretend to be a greater tatler than when you fpoke every day, as you formerly used to do? If this be your :plunging out of your taciturnity, pray let the :
length of your speeches compensate for the scarce. 6 nels of them.
« Good Mr. PERT,
. AMANDA LOVELENGTH..
NO 582. WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 18.
Tenet infanabile multos Scribendi Gacoethes
Juv. Sat. vii. ver. 51. The curse of writing is an endless itch.
CH. DRYDEN, THERE IS a certain distemper, which is mention
ed neither by Galen nor Hippocrates; nor to be met with in the London Difpenfatory.. Juvenal, in the motto of my paper, terms it a Gacoethes; which : is a hard word for a discafe called in plain English, The itch of writing. This Gacoethes is as epidemical as the small pox; there being very few who are not seized with it fome time or other in their lives. There is, however, this difference in these two distempers, that the first, after having indifpofed you for a time, never returns again ; whereas this I am speaking of, when it is once got into the blood, feldom comes out of it. The Britis nation is very much afflicted with this malady, and though
very many remedies have been applied to persons infected with it, few of them have ever proved successful. Some have been cauterized with fatires and lampoons, but have received little or no benefit from thein ; others have had their heads fastened for an hour together between a cleft board, which is made use of as a cure for the disease when it appears in its greatest malignity. There is indeed one kind of this malady which has been sometimes removed like the biting of a Tarantula, with the found of a musical instrument, which is commonly known by the name of a Cat-call. But it you have a patient of this kind under your care, you may affure yourself there is no other way of recovering him effectually, but by forbidding him the use of pen, ink, and paper.
But to drop the allegory before I have tired it out, there is no species of scribblers more offensive and more incurable than your periodical writers, whose works return upon the publick on certain days, and at stated times. We have not the confor lation, in the perusal of these authors, which we find at the reading of all others, (namely) that we are sure, if we have but patience, we may come to the end of their labours. I have often admired an humourous saying of Diogenes, who reading a dull auihor to several of his friends, when every one began to be tired, finding he was almost come to a blank leaf at the end of it, cried, Courage lads, I see land.
On the contrary, our progress through that kind of writers I am now speaking of is never at an end. One day makes work for another, we do : ot know when to promise ourselves rest.
It is a melancholy thing to consider, that the art of printing, which might be the greatest blessing to mankind, should prove detrimental to us, and that it should be made use of to scatter prejudice and ignorance through a people, instead of conveying to them truth and knowledge.
I was lately reading a very whimsical treatife, in titled, William Ramjay's Vindication of Astrology. This profound author, among many mystical parsages, has the following one : The absence of the . fun is not the cause of night, forafinuch as his ' light is so great that it may illuminate the earth all "
over at once, as clear as broad day; but there are tenebrificous and dark stars, by whose influence night is brought on, and which do ray all
our darkness and obfcurity upon the earth, as the • fun does light.
I consider writers in the same view this fage a. ftrologer does the heavenly bodies. Some of them are stars that featter light as others do darkness. I could mention several authors who are tenebrificous: stars of the first magnitude, and point out a knot of gentlemen, who have been dull in confort, and may be looked upon as a dark constellation. The nation has been a great while benighted with several of these antiluminaries. I suffered them to. ray out their darkness as long as I was able to en.. dure it, until at length I came to a resolution of rifing upon them, and hope, in a little time, to drive them quite out of the Britis hemiz fphere..