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advantage of my countrymen, I shall take the li. berty to make an humble proposal, that whenever the trunk-maker shall depart this life, or whenever he shall have lost the spring of his arm by tickness, old age, infirinity, or the like, fome able-bodied critick Thould be advanced to this post, and have a competent salary settled on him for life, to be furnished with bamboos for operas, crabtree-cudgels för comedies, and oaken plants for tragedy, at the publick expence. And, to the end that this place hould be always disposed of according to merit, I would have none preferred to it, who has not given convincing proofs both of a sound judgment and in strong arol, and who could not, upon occadion, either knock down an ox, or write a comment upon loráce's art of poetry. In short, I would have him a due composition of Hercules and Apollo, and fo rightly qualified for this important office, that the trunk-maker may not be missed by
by our posterity.
NO 236. FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 30.
Dare jura maritis. Hor. Ars Poet. ver.398.
upon the subject of marriage as that importsant cafe deferves. It would not be iinproper to 6 observe upon the peculiarity in the youth of Great . Britain, of railing and laughing at that institu* tion; and when they fall into it, from a profli
gate habit of mind, and being insensible of the • fatisfaction in that way of life, and treating their ' wives with the most barbarous disrespect... · Particular circumstances and cast of temper,
· must teach a man the probability of mighty un"calineffes in that state, (for unquestionably fome there are whole very dispositions are strangely • averse to conjugal friendship ;) but no one, I bc• lieve, is by his own natural complexion prompted • to teaze and torment one another for no reafon .. but being nearly allied to himn : And can there be
any thing more base, or serve to link a inan fo • much below his own distinguishing characteristick,
(I mean seafon) than returning evil for good in. ' so open a manner, as that of treating an helple!s,
creature with unkindness, who has had so good. an opinion of him as to believe what he Liid relating to one of the greatest concerns of life, by
delivering her happiness in this world to his caro ' and protection ? Must not that man be abandon• ed even to all manner of humanity, who can de
ceive a woman with appearances of affection and. kindness, for no other end but to torment her
with more ease and authority? Is any thing more • unlike a gentleman, than when his honour is en'gaged for the performing his promifes, because • nothing but that can oblige him to it, to become • afterwards falle to his word, and be alone the oc• casion of misery to one whose happiness he buc lately pretended was dearer to him than his own?
Ought such a one to be trusted in his common. • affairs ? or treated but as one whose honesty con• Gifted only in his incapacity of being otherwise ?
* There is one cause of this usage no less ab urd • than common, which takes place among the more ! unthinking men; and that is the desire to ap
pear to their friends free and at liberty, and • without those crammels they have so much ridi. • culed. To avoid this they fly into the other ex• treme, and grow tyrants that they may seem mas
Because an uncontrolable command of their own. actions is a certain sign of intire domi. 6 nion, they will not so much as. recede from the
• government even in one muscle of their faces.
A kind look they believe would be fawning, and
a civil answer yielding the fuperiority. To this · must we attribute an aufterity they betray in eve'ry action': What but this can put a man out of i humour in his wife's company, though he is so
dilinguishingly pleasant every where else? The bitterness of his replies, and the severity of his frowns to the tendereft of wives, clearly demonfirate, that an ill-grounded fear of being thought
too fubmiffivè, is at the bottom of this, as I am "willing to call it, affected moroseness ; but if it · be fuch only, put on to convince his acquaintance " of his intire dominion, let him take care of the * confequence, which will be certain and worse than
the prefent evil; his seeming indifference will by degrees grow into real contempt, and if it doth not wholly alicnate the affections of his wife for ever from him, make both him and her niore miferable than if it really did so. · Ilowever inconsistent it may appear, to be thought a well-bred person has no small share in this clownish behaviour : A discourse therefore relating to good-breeding towards a loving and a tender wife, would be of great use to this fort
of gentlemen. Could you but once convince ithein, that to be civil at least is not beneath the á character of a gentleman, por even tender affecosion towards one who would make it reciprocal,
betrays any softnefs of effeminacy that the most innfculine difpofition'need be ashamed of; could you fatisfy them of the generofity of voluntary civility, and the greatness of foul that is confpicuons in benevolence without immediate obligations; could you recommend to peoples practice the saying of the gentleinen guoted in one of your speculations, That he thought it incumbent upon him to make the inclinations of a woman of merit go nlong with ber duty: Could you, I say, perfuade
these men of the beauty and reasonablene's of this fort of behaviour, I bave fo much charity
state in its truest, and consequently its most agree"able colours; and the gentlemen who have for
any time been such professed enemies to it, when
ried him, I could have had any one of several
But, alas, my spouse has cunning and suspicion,
every attempt I make to divert, by putting on a
No 276 THE SPECTATOR.
for some of them at least, to believe you would convince them of a thing they are only ashamed to allow : Belides you
would recommend that
occasion hould ferve, would return
A defire of being agreeable in the lover would be
which, I am apt to believe we thould find the
kinder, and the affection of their parents would
Am a woman who left the admiration of this
whole town, to throw myself (for love of wealth) into the arms of a fool. When I marmen of sense who languished for me, but my
• viour, he looks upon as the first act towards an • insurrection against his undeserved dominion over
Let every one who is still to chuse, and hopes to govern a fool, remember
Mr. SPECTATOR, St. Martin's, November 25. "His is to complain of an evil practice which I
think very well deserves a redress, though you have not as yet taken any notice of it : If you mention it in your paper, it may perhaps
have a very good effect. What I mean is the • disturbance iome people give to others at church,
by their repetition of the prayers after the minister,
and that not only in the prayers, but also the ab. • folution and the commandments fare no better, • which are in a particular manner the priest's office:
This I have known done in fo audible a manner, • that sometimes their voices have been as loud as ' his. As little as you would think it, this is fre
quently done by people seemingly derout. This
irreligious inadvertency is a thing extremely offen• five But I do not recommend it as a thing I give
you liberty to ridicule, but hope it may be amended by the bare mention.
Your very humble ferrant, T.S.'
NO 237. SATURDAY, DECEMBER 1.
Visu garentein magna pari veri latet.
SENECA in CEDIP. The blind fce truth by halves. IT is very reafonable to believe, that part of the
pleasure which happy minds shall enjoy in a fu, ture tate, will arise from an eplarged contempla