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mona makes, betrayed in his gesture such a variety and vicissitude of passions, as would admonish a man to be afraid of his own heart; and perfectly convince him, that it is to stab it, to admit that worst of daggers, jealousy. Whoever reads in his closet this admirable scene, will find that he cannot, except he has as warm an imagination as Shakspeare himself, find any but dry, incoherent, and broken sentences ; but a reader that bas seen Betterton act it, observes, there could not be a word added; that longer speeches bad been unnatural, nay, impossible, in Othello's circumstances. The charming passage in the same tragedy, where he tells the manner of winning the affection of his mistress, was arged with so moving and graceful an energy, that, while I walked in the cloisters, I thought of him with the same concern as if I waited for the remains of a person who had in real life done all that I had seen him represent. The gloom of the place, and faint lights before the ceremony appeared, contributed to the melancholy disposition I was in: and I began to be extremely afflicted, that Brutus and Cassius had any difference; that Hotspur's gallantry was so unfortunate; and that the mirth and good humour of Falstaff could not exempt him from the grave. Nay, this occasion, in me who look upon the distinctions amongst men to be merely scenical, raised reflections upon the emptiness of
all human perfection and greatness in general; and I could not but regret, that the sacred heads which lie buried in the neighbourhood of this little portion of earth, in which my poor old friend is deposited, are returned to dust as well as he, and that there is no difference iu the grave between the imaginary and the real monarch. This made me say of human life itself, with Macbeth,
To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
The mention I have here made of Mr. Betterton, for whom I had, as long as I have known any thing, a very great esteein and gratitude for the pleasure he gave me, can do him no good; but it may possibly be of service to the unhappy woman he has left behind him, to have it known, that this great tragedian was never in a scene half so moving, as the circumstances of his affairs created at his departure. His wife, after a cohabitation of forty years in the strictest amity, has long pineal away with a sense of his decay, as well in his person as his little fortune; and, in proportion to that she has herself decayed both in her health and reason. Her husband's death, added to her age and infirmities, would certainly have determined her life, but that the greatness of her distress has been her relief, by a present deprivation of her senses. This absence of reason is her best defence against age, sorrow, poverty, and sickness. I dwell upon this account so distinctly in obedience to a certain great spirit, who hides her name, and has by letter applied to me to recommend to her some object of compassion, from whom she may be concealed.
This, I think, is a proper occasion for exerting such heroic generosity; and as there is an ingenuous shame in those who have known better fortune, to be reduced to receive obligations, as well as a becoming pain in the truly generous to receive thanks; in this case both those delicacies are preserved ; for the
person obliged is as incapable of knowing her benefactress, as her benefactress is unwilling to be known by her.
ADVERTISEMENT. Whereas it hath been signified to the Censor, that under the pretence that he has encouraged the Moving Picture, and particularly admired the Walking Statue, some persons within the liberties of Westminster have vended walking Pictures, insomuch that the said pictures have within few days after sales by auction, returned to the habitations of their first proprietors; that matter has been narrowly looked into, and orders are given to Pacolet, to take notice of all wbo are concerned in such frauds, with directions to draw their pictures, that they may be hanged in effigie, in terrorem to all auctions for the future,
SATURDAY, MAY 6, 1710.
From my own Apartment, May 5. NEVER was man so much teased, or suffered half so much uneasiness, as I have done this evening between a couple of fellows, with whom I was unfortunately engaged to sup, where there were also several others in company. One of them is the most invincibly impudent, and the other as incorrigibly absurd. Upon hearing my name, the man of audacity, as he calls himself, began to assume an awkward way of
reserve by way of ridicule upon me as a Censor, and said, “ he must have a care of his behaviour, for there would notes be writ upon all that should pass.” The man of freedom and ease, for such the other thinks himself, asked me, "whether my sister Jenny was breeding or not ?" After they had do ne with me, they were impertinent to a very smart, but well-bred man; who stood his ground very well, and let the company see they ought, but could not, be out of countenance. I look upon such a defence as a real good action; for while he received their fire, there was a modest and worthy young gentleman sat secure by him, and a lady of The family at the same time guarded against the nauseous familiarity of the one, and the more painful mirth of the other. This conversation, where there were a thousand things said, not worth repeating, made me consider with myself, how it is that men of these disagreeable characters often go great lengths in the world, and seldom fail of out-stripping men of merit; nay, succeed so well, that, with a load of imperfections on their heads, they go on in opposition to general disesteem ; while they who are every way their superiors, languish away their days, though possessed of the approbation and good-will of all who know them.
If we would examine into the secret springs of action in the impudent and the absurd, we shall find, though they bear a great resemblance in their behaviour, that they move upon very different principles. The impudent are pressing, though they know they are disagreeable: the absurd are importunate, because they think they are acceptable. Impudence is a vice, and Absurdity a folly. Sir Francis Bacon talks very agreeably upon the subject of Impudence. He takes notice, that the orator being asked, what was the first, second, and third requisite to make a fine speaker ? still answered, action. This, said be,
is the very outward form of speaking; and yet it is what with the generality has more force than the most consummate abilities. Impudence is to the rest of mankind of the same use which action is to orators.
The truth is, the gross of men are governed morc by appearances than realities; and the impudent man in his air and behaviour undertakes for himself that he has ability and merit, while the modest or diffident gives himself up as one who is possessed of neither. For this reason, men of front carry things before them with little opposition; and make so skilful an use of their talent, that tbey can grow out of humour like men of consequence, and be sour, and make their dissatisfaction do them the same service as desert. This way of thinking has often furnished me with an apology for great men who confer favours on the impudent. In carrying on the government of mankind, they are not to consider what men they themselves approve in their closets and private conversations ; but what men will extend themselves furthest, and more generally pass upon the world for such as their patrons wapt in such and such stations, and consequently take so much work off the hands of those who employ them.
Far be it that I should attempt to lessen the acceptance which men of this character meet with in the world; but I bumbly propose only, that they who have merit of a different kind would accomplish themselves in some degree with this quality, of which I am now treating. Nay, I allow these gentlemen to press as forward as they please in the advance. ment of their interests and fortunes, but not to in. trụde upon others in conversation also. Let them do what they can with the rich and the great, as far as they are suffered; but let them not interrupt the casy and agreeable. They may be useful as, servante