Page images
PDF
EPUB

It is yet inore absurd to be angry with a man because he does not apprehend the force of your reasons, or give'weak ones of his own. If you argue for reputation, this makes your victory the easier; he is certainly in all respects an object of your pity, rather than anger; and if he cannot comprehend what you do, you ought to thank nature for her favours, who has given you so much the clearer understanding.

You may please to add this confideration, That among your equals no one values your anger, which only preys upon its master ; and perhaps you may find it not very consistent either with prudence or your case, to punish yourself whenever you meet with a fool or a knave.

Lastly, if you propose to yourself the tiue end of argument, which is information, it may be a seasonable check to your paflion; for, if you search purely after truth, it will be almost indifferent to you where you find it. I cannot in this place omit an observation which I have often made, namely, That nothing procures a man more 'esteem and less envy from the whole company, than if he chuses the part of moderator, without engaging directly on either side in a difpute. This gives him the character of impartial, furnishes him with an opportunity of fifting things to the bottom, thew ing his judgment, and of fometimes making hand some compliments to each of the contending parties,

I shall close this subject with giving you one caution : When you have gained a victory, do not push it too far; it is sufficient to let the company and your adversary fee it is in your power, but that

X you are too generous to make use of it.

WEDNESDAY,

NO 198. WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 17.

Gervi 'luparum prreda rapacium
Seelamur ultro, quos opimus
Fullere, id effugere eft triumphus.

Hor. Od. iv. lib. iv. ver. 50.'
We, like the stag, the brinded wolf provoke,
And, when retreat is victory,

Rush on; though. sure to die. ANON THere is a species of women, whom I fhall dif

tinguish by the name of Salamanders. Nowa falamander is a kind of heroine in'chastity, that dreads upon fire, and lives in the midst of fames. without being hurt. A falamander knows no diftinction of 'fex in thofe she converfes with grows familiar with a stranger at first sight, and is not fox narrow-fpirited as to observe whether the person the talks to, be in breeches or petticoats. She ad. mits a male vifitant to her bed-fide, plays with him å whole afternoon at piquet, walks with him two or three hours by moon-light, and is extremely fcandalized at the unreasonableness of an husband, or the severity of a parent, that would debar the Sex from fuch innocent liberties. Your salamander is therefore a perpetual declaimer against jealousy, an admirer of the French good-breeding, and a stickler for freedom in conversation. In short, the salamander lives in an invincible state of fimplicity and innocence: Her constitution is preferved in a kind of natural frost ; she wonders what peo-ple mean by temptations, and defies mankind to do their worst. Her chastity is engaged in a constant crdeal, or fiery trial : Like good Queen Emma, the pretty innocent walks blindfold among burning plough-thares, without being, scorched, or finged by them.

7

It is not therefore for the use of the salamander, whether in a married or single state of life, that I design the following paper ; but for such females only as are made of flesh and blood, and find themselves subject to human frailties,

As for this part of the Fair Sex who are not of the salamander kind, I would most earnestly advise them to observe a quite different conduct in their behaviour; and to avoid as much as poffible what religion calls temptations, and the world oportunities. Did they, but know how many thousands of their sex have been gradually betrayed from innocent freedoms to ruin and infamy; and how many millions of ours have begun with flatteteries, protestations, and endearments, but ended with reproaches,, perjury, and perfidiousness; they would ihun like death the very first approaches of one that might lead them into inextricable labya rinths of guilt and misery. I must so far give up. the cause of the male world, as to exhort the female sex in the language of Chamont in the Orphan;

Trust not a man, we are by nature falje,
Disembling, subtle, cruel, and unconstant :
When a man talks of love, with caution trust himn :

But if he fwears, heill certainly deceive thee.
I might very much enlarge upon this fabject, but
shall conclude it with a story which I lately heard
from one of our Spanish officers, and which may
thew the danger a woman incurs by too great faa
miliarities with a male companion,

An inhabitant of the kingdom of Castile, being a man of more than ordinary prụdence, and of a grave composed behaviour, determined about the fiftieth year of his age to enter upon wedlock. In order to make himself cafy in it, he cast his eye upon a young woman who had nothing to recommend her but her beauty and her education, her parents having been reduced to great poverty by the wars, which for fome

years

.

years have laid that whole country waste. The Castilian having made his addresses to her and mared her, they lived together in perfect happiness for fome time : When at length the husband's affairs made it neceffary for him to take a voyage to the kingdom of Naples, where a great part of his estate lay. The wife loved him too tenderly to be left behind him. They had not been a fhipboard above a day, when they unluckily fell into the hands of an Algerine pirate, who carried the whole company on fhore, and made them flaves. The Casti*lian and his wife had the comfort to be under the fame master; who feeing how dearly they loved one another, and gafped after their liberty, demanded a most exhorbitant price for their ransom. The Castilian, though he would rather have died in flavery himfelf, than have paid such a fum as he found would go near to ruin him, was so moved with compaffion towards his wife, that he fent repeated orders to his friend in Spain, (who happened to be his next relation) to fell his eftate, and transmit the money to him. His friend hoping that the terms of his ransom might be made imore reasonable, and unwilling to sell an estate which he himself had some prospect of inheriting, form. cd so many delays, that three whole years paffedi away without any thing being done for the setting, them at liberty.

There happened to live a French renegado in the fame place where the Castilian and his wife were kept prisoners. As this fellow had in-him all the vivacity of his nation, he often entertained the captives with accounts of his own adventures ; to which he fometimes added a song or a dance, or fome other piece of mirth, to divert them during their confinement. His acquaintance with the man. ners of the Algerines, enabled him likewise to do them feveral good offices. The Castilian, as he was one day in conversation with this renegado, disco

Fered to him the negligence and treachery of his correspondent in Caftile, and at the same time alked his advice how he should behaye bimself in that exigency: He further told the renegado, that he found it would be impossible for him to raise the money, unless he himself might go over to dispose of his estate. The renegado, after having represented to him that his Algerine master would never consent to his release upon such a pretence, at length contrived a method for the Castilian to make his escape in the habit of a seaman. The Castilian fucceeded in his attempt; and having fold his eftate, being afraid left the money should miscarry by the way, and determining to perish with it rather than lose one who was much dearer to him than his life, he returned himself in a little vessel that was going to Algiers. It is impossible to describe the joy he felt on this occasion, when he considered that he Thould foon fee the wife whom he so much loved, and endear himself more to her by this uncommon piece of generosity.

The renegado, during the husband's abfence, so infinuated himself into the good graces of his young wife, and so turned her head with ftories of galan. try, that the quickly thought him the finest Gentleman she had ever conversed with. To be brief, her mind was quite alienated from the honest Castilian, whom she was taught to look upon as a formal old fellow, unworthy the poffeflion of fo charming a creature. She had been infructed by the renegado how to manage herself upon his arrival ; so that she received him with an appearance of the utmost love and gratitude, and at length persuaded him to trust their common friend the renegado with the money he had brought over for their ransom ; as not questioning but he would beat down the terms of it, and negóciate the affair more to their advantage than they themselves could do. The good man admired her prudence, and followed her

advice,

[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »