« PreviousContinue »
THE MEDICINE. A TALE-FOR THE LADIES.
Miss Molly, a fam'd Toast, was fair and young,
Sir John was smitten, and confess’d his flame,
Though he and all the world allow'd her wit,
Oft as the watchful bellman marched his round,
My lady with her tongue was still prepard,
Hey! hoop! d’ye hear my damn'd obstreperous spouse ;
Long this uncomfortable life they led,
Old Wisewood smok'd the matter as it was : “ Cheer up!” cry'd he, “ and I'll remove the cause.
A wondrous spring within my garden flows,
A water bottle 's brought for her relief;
The bonny knight reels home exceeding clear,
Nay, kiss me, Molly-for I'm much inclin'd.”
For many days these fond endearments past,
“ Why, niece,” says he, “I prythee apprehend,
St. James's Coffee-house, April 13. Letters from Venice say, the disappointment of their expectation to see his Danish Majesty has very much disquieted the Court of Rome. Our last advices from Germany inform us, that the Minister of Hanover has urged the Council at Ratisbonne to exert themselves in behalf of the common cause, and taken the liberty to say, That the dignity, the virtue, the prudence of his Electorial Highness, his master, were called to the head of their affairs in vain, if they thought fit to leave him naked of the proper means, to make those excellencies useful for the honour and safety of the empire. They write from Berlin of the thirteenth, 0. S. That the true design of General Fleming's visit to that Court was, to insinuate that it will be for the mutual interest of the King of Prussia and King Augustus to enter into a new alliance; but that the Ministers of Prussia are not inclined to his sentiments. We hear from Vienna, that his Imperial Majesty has expressed great satisfaction in their High Mightinesses having communicated to him the whole that has passed in the affair of a peace. Though there have been practices used by the agents of France, in all the Courts of Europe, to break the good understanding of the allies, they have had no other effect, but to make all the members concerned in the alliance more doubtful of their safety from the great offers of the enemy. The Emperor is roused by this alarm, and the frontiers of all the French dominions are in danger of being insulted the ensuing campaign. Advices from all parts confirm, that it is impossible for France to find a way to obtain so much credit, as to gain any one potentate of the allies, or conceive any hope for safety from other prospects.
From my own Apartment, April 13. I find it of very great use, now I am setting up for a writer of news, that I am an adept in astrological speculations : by which means I avoid speaking of things which may offend great persons. But, at the same time, I must not prostitute the liberal sciences so far, as not to utter the truth in cases which do not immediately concern the good of my native country. I must therefore contradict what has been so assuredly reported by the news-writers of England, That France is in the most deplorable condition, and that their people die in great multitudes. I will therefore let the world know, that my correspondent, by the way of Brussels, informs me upon his honour, That the gentleman who writes the Gazette of Paris, and ought to know as well as any man, has told him, that ever since the King has been past his sixty-third year, or grand climacteric, there has not died one man of the French nation who was younger than his Majesty, except a very few, who were taken suddenly near the village of Hockstet in Germany; and some more, who were straitened for lodging at a place called Ramilies, and died on the road to Ghent and Bruges. There are also other things given out by the allies, which are shifts below a conquering nation to make use of. Among others it is said, There is a general murmuring among the people of France, though at the same time all my letters agree, that there is so good an understanding among them, that there is not one morsel carried out of any market in the kingdom, but what is delivered
N° 3. SATURDAY, APRIL 16, 1709.
Quicquid agunt homines,
nostri est farrago libelli.
Juv. Sat. i. 85, 86.
P. Will's Coffee-house, April 14. This evening the comedy called the Country Wife was acted in Drury-lane, for the benefit of Mrs. Bignell. The part which gives name to the play was performed by herself. Through the whole action she made a very pretty figure, and exactly entered into the nature of the part.
Her husband in the drama, is represented to be one of those debauchees who run through the vices of the town, and believe when they think fit, they can marry and settle at their ease.
His own knowledge of the iniquity of the age makes him choose a wife wholly ignorant of it, and place his security in her want of skill to abuse him. The poet, on many occasions, where the propriety of the character will admit of it, insinuates, that there is no defence against vice but the contempt of it; and has, in the natural ideas of an untainted innocent, shown the gradual steps to ruin and destruction which persons of condition run into, without the help of a good education to form their conduct. The torment of a jealous coxcomb, which arises from his own false maxims, and the aggravation of his pain by the
words in which he sees her innocence, makes a very pleasant and instructive satire. The character of Horner, and the design of it, is a good representation of the age in which that comedy was written; at which time love and wenching were the business of life, and the gallant manner of