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terwards added by Tarquinius Priscus, incontinence, in violating the voit of one of his fucceffors, and that number chastity. continued unaltered.
In the first case, which was looked Numa committed to these virgins upon as the fign of some great calamithe keeping of the immortal fire, and ty to the ftate, the guilty veltal was the palladium, with the care of certain punished as a lave, that is with scoursécret sacrifices in the worship of the ging : covered only with a veil, the goddess Ve.ta. They vowed chastity was whipped with rods by the pontiduring the space of thirty years that fex maximus, or chief prieft. One of they attended on the service of the god- the veftals spent the whole night by dess; the age of admission was above the sacred fire, to prevent its extincfix and under ten, and they were to be tion, and they watched thus each in turo. without any corporal blemish.
When the fire was out, it was to be The ten first years were a kind of rekindled by the rays of the fan, the noviciate or probation, when they were manner of which is variously related. instructed in all the sacred mysteries ; The great crime of the veftals was the next ten were passed in the practice the violation of their vow of chastity; of them, and the last ten in teaching and this was punished in a manner not the novices.
to be described without horror. They This term being expired, they were were buried alive. ---** Near the Col. free to quit the order, to lay aside the line-Gate," says Plutarch, “ there is distinctions of it, and to marry ; but a little vault, with a hole to go down very few, it is said, made use of this li- to it; in the vault there is a bed, a berty, terrified with frequent examples lighted lamp, and a small quantity of of the unhappy end attending those who provisions, consisting of a loaf, a pitcher changed their condition.
of water, a vial of oil, and a pot of Very great privileges and marks of milk: these are provided for the cridistinction were, at several times, minal, that religion may not be woundgranted to the vestals. They had a ed by starving to death a person conright to make a will during their fa. secrated with the most august and fa. ther's life, and to dispose of their for. cred ceremonies.--Strange scruple ! tunes without a truitee ; for the Ro- they feared to starve her whom they man women were always under guar buried alive!” dianship; they were forbid to take an The offender was put into a close oath, and in course of justice their evi- and covered litter, that her piercing dence was admitted upon their bare af- thrieks might not be heard, and carfirmation.
ried in that manner through crouds of When they appeared in public, a lic- people across the Forum. At the tor attended them with the fasces; and light of the litter, all made way for it if a veltal in her walks happened to to pass, and followed it in awful fimeet a criminal leading to execution, lence, and all the marks of the deepest he was pardoned upon her declaring sorrow. There could not be a more that the meeting was acciderital. They borrible spectacle, nor a more dreadful had a distinguished rank and place of or melancholy day for Rome, than honour assigned them in the Circus, that on which a vestal was carried to ard at other public shews, and were e execution. dncated and maintained at the expence When the litter was come to the of the common-wealth.
place of punishment, the lictors took But if high honours were paid to the off the covering, and opened it; then dignity and virtue of the veftals, their the pontifex maximus, after some prifaults were also punished with extreme vate prayer3, with hands and
lift severity. The faults thus punishable ed up to heaven, took out the unhap. were either negligence of their duty in py criminal, all clofely veiled, and fet suffering the sacred fire to go out, or her on the ladder by which she was to
Account of the Vestal Virgins.
efcend to the vault; after which he | her, the contagion foon spread, and turned with the other priests, and two other vestals, Licinia and Marcia, e wretched vestal was no sooner followed the example of their comown, but the ladder was removed, panion. id the hole filled up with earth till Marcia, however, less criminal than le ground was even, and no sign of a the other two, admitted only one loave remained, to intimate that the ver ; but Emilia and Licinia, who iminal was deemed unworthy to ap were become great friends, (if such :ar either among the dead or the li- leagues which the wicked form with ng.
the wicked may be called by the name By this terrible execution is seen of friendship) not chuling to confine hat notions the heathens themselves themselves to their first gällants, each itertained concerning the breach of introduced her brother to her friend, saitity, and their fear of its drawing and managed each other's interviews. Own the curse and vengeance of the Having once began to extend their ods upon the whole state, if it re- criminal amours, they soon had occalained unpunished. To avoid such a
To avoid such a fion to observe that their secret took ital calamity, the veftals were exhort-air; to engage those, therefore, to fid, not only to Ay with horror from lence, whom they apprehended would very temptation to guilt, but to a inform againft them, they made all'acoid, with the utmost care, whatever complices in the guilt. ould caft the least blemish on their This scene of infamy, after having eputation.
been long acted in fecrét, was at length Pofthumia, a vestal, having subjected brought to light by a slave named Maerself to unfavourable suspicions, on nius, whose master was one of Emilia's ccount of her too great folicitude in gallants. (ress, and gaiety of manners, unbe This fellow had been employed by oming the sacred purity of a virgin, Licinia and her to carry on their invas called to her trial. After a long trigues with several" young Romans, xamination, she was pronounced in. and had for some time acquitted himiocent ; but the pontifex maximus self very faithfully in their infamous commanded her to quit those gay airs service; but being disappointed in the or the future, and to thew in her dress rewards they had promised bim, and nore wisdom and modesty, than ele in his expectations of liberty from his sance and taste.
master, he made a full discovery, and The 638th year of Rome gives us the guilty vestals were immediately an example of corruption among the brought to trial. restals never heard of before. In
pre The college of pontiffs, which, by ceding times it rarely happened that a the constitution of Numa, were the reltal violated her vow of chastity, and proper judges of this affair, acted with the day of her punishment was a day great lenity, and condemned only Eof universal mourning at Rome. But milia ; a favourable sentence was para this year, of the fix vestals, three were sed upon Marcia and Licinia, for proved criminal, two of which losing which the former was, probably, in, all sense of fear as well as shame, had debted to her having been less crimialmost publicly abandoned themselves nal, and the latter to the eloquence of to diffolute pra&ices.
the celebrated L. Crassus, her kinsman, The mischief was begun by a Ro. who being then twenty-seven years of man knight named Butætius Barrus, age, defended her in an oration, of a professed libertine, who being tired which Cicero speaks with praise. of too eafy conquests, fought to vary The whole Roman people exclaimed his infamous pleasures by the charm against the lenity of the pontiffs, on an of difficulty and danger. He there occasion when the crime was equally fore attacked a vestal called Emilia, evident and odious; and the tribune and when he had fucceeded in feducing Sextus Peduceus having put himfelf at VOL. X.
the head of those who murmured at , ing but that your benevolent and bus the sentence, caused an extraordinary mane dispolition will prompt you to commission to be voted by the people sympathise with a fellow-creature of for rehearing the cause of Marcia and your own sex, who is really in a very Licinia ; and at the head of that com embarrassed and deplorable condition. mission placed L. Caffius, who for that I will endeavour to be as concise and purpose was created prætor a second explicit as possible, and hope to claim time, after having been consul and cen your attention, and to recommend myfor.
self so far to your favour, as to merit He was a person of rigid virtue and your advice, which will be ever grateinflexible severity, and one who, as Ci- fully remembered by me. cero observes, had rendered himself a. “ Some years ago a young gentlegreeable to the people, not by polite- man paid his addresses to me. As he ness, and a popular behaviour, but by assured me, in the warmest manner, an austerity of manners, which acquired that he had a great regard for me, that him refpect.
his views were honourable, and that if Caffius fully answered the expecta- I would permit him to interest himself son of those who had chosen him, for in my favour, his sole ambition should be not only condemned the two ver- be to make me happy, I did not refuse cals, who were punished in the same his visits, Meeting with a favourable manner as Emilia, but also a great reception, he did not fail to renew his number of other persons, so that his addresses, and as his intentions seemed tribunal was called the rock of the fincere and well grounded, as his affecaccused,
tion appeared to be ardent, as his person was not disagreeable, and as his
circumstances were equal, if not supeTHE M AT RON.
rior to my own, I encouraged him to
proceed. Though he refides at a great By Mrs, Grey.
distance from the place of my abode,
he constantly visits me two or three NUMBER LXXV.
times a week, and never fails to declare
the fincerity of his paflion in the strongRS. Grey having received two eft and most moving terms imaginable.
letters pretty nearly at the same He is a man of great sense and learntime, one of them from a lady, the other froin a gentleman, cannot but be and his character is unexceptionable,
ing ; he iz polite and accomplished; of opinion that the preference should To be plain, indeed, he has so far getbe given to the correspondent of her ten pofleffion of my heart, that I have own fex, supposing the nature of the promised to accompany him to the alcale did not require a speedy publica- tar of Hymen, and the nuptiat cerea tion. d. Z. however, may depend mony was to have been celebrated at upon having his care considered in a
the expiration of a few weeks--but it future Number,
is now, by a particular incident, unTo Mrs, GREY.
fortunately set aside. ---My father,
prompted by avarice, has prohibited • Madam,
our union, by compelling me to re"Convinced of your kindness, com ceive the addresses of another gentle. passion, and good-nature, and fill more man, who is far more opulent than the encouraged by the monthly addresses former, and is enabled (as he tries to of your numerous correspondents, to persuade me) to make a larger settlewhom
have condescended to give ment on me, to place me in a higher your advice, I am induced to commu- sphere of life, and make me more rich nieate my own unhappy case, and to and more happy than I can otherwise acquaint you with the distressful situa- be.' But my sentiments do not con. tion in which I find myself, not doubt-cur with his riches cannot purchase
The Matron. No. LXXV.
523 felicity, neither can ensure it.-Be
- Be- with a weight which will render me fides, must I break all
wretched for ever. To reject my first and protestations :-Can I be so bafe, lover, a man every way agreeable to so treacherous, and so ungrateful as me, a man to whom I have vowed eto renounce the man whom I love ? ternal constancy- to cast him off, who who lives for me ;-who adores me?- has really the greatest share of No, I cannot !-Heaven forbids ! Ne teem and affection-Nature shudders ver can I consent to such a violation ! at the idea of such a conduct, and
“ As to circumstances, it is indif- Reason forbids it. putable that my second lover has the “Can you, my dear Mrs. Gre, inpreference ; but wealth is not sufi-form me how I shall act with uiscreciently attractive, without other qua- tion in this affair ? -- You are the prolifications inherent in the poffeffor. pereft person I know to inform me, as
“ My father's favourite, Mr. you have long distinguished yourself by visits me every day, behaves to me in your laudable counsels and admonithe most obliging manner, and does e tions. Your speedy answer to this revery thing to infinuate himself into my quest will be esteemed a considerable favour. He will not take a denial : favour, by he declares that his affection for me is Your sincere admirer, and excessive and fincere, and that it can
Very humble servant, not be cqualled. These are the words
HENRIETTA SL," which he addressed to me not many hours ago—“ Dearest of women! give Agreeably to the request of Henri. one spark of hope! A smile from you etia S Mrs. Grey makes hafte to will make me blest! Suffer me not to inform her, that she looks'upon her fi. be driven to despair ! My regard, my tuation to be extremely critical.--It esteem, my love for you cannot be ex- must, certainly, give her exquisite ceeded-cannot be expressed ! Do not pain, either to Ay in the face of an inencourage the addresles of Mr. - ! dulgent father, or to be faithless to the He cannot feel so ardent an affection man who, according to her defcripfor you as I do-he is not in a situation of him, not only merits a return tion to render you so happy as you of affection from her, but is absolure. ought to be. For heaven's fake gively entitled to it in consequence of the him up! Listen no longer to his foli. solemnity with which me vowed to be citations !- But if you are fixed-if his for ever. There are, however, o. you are determined to enter into ma ther queltions to be answered-Did trimonial connections with him, let me Henrietta's father app one of her forf tell you I am undone for ever !--The engagement ? - Is the of age, and, of day of your marriage with him will be course, at liberty to dispose of her perfatal to me!-I mult, I shall be com- fon? If she had her father's sanction, pelled to rid myself of a life not to be whether he is of age or not, she is, I supported, if I am deserted by you." think, bound to keep her sacred vow,
“ Such, my dear Madain, was my and her father ought not to infiit upon new lover's address to me this morn- the violation of it, and attempt to force ing:-it was delivered in a manner her to leave her first lover for a second, which evidently shewed the disturb- merely because lae is a richer man ance of his mind, and it was accompa-Riches, Henrietta very juftly observes, nied with tears. I am in a very per- cannot ensure felicity. A competence plexed condition : I know not what to with the man whom she loves (provided do in so trying a situation. To act a his character is unexceptionable) mutt gainst the itrict commands of a good surely be preferable to the most extenand indulgent father, and at the same live influence with him for whom ihe time to be accessary to the death of cannot feel any tender sensations, in another, will be to load my conscience consequence of being pre engaged to
another, and strongly prepossessed in SELECT ESSAYS relating to the Ge-, bis favour: another highly deserving NIUS and WRITINGS of SHAKE of all her esteem, and fully enjoying SPEARE. all her love. With regard to Hen.
ESSAY IV. rietta's conduct in her distressful situation, Mrs. Grey is of opinion that General Remarks on the WRITINGS of she should endeavour to prevail on her
SHAKESPEARE. father to consent to her giving her [From the Preface to MISCELLANEOUS hand to the man who was in possession OBSERVATIONS on ibe TRAGEDY of of her heart. And it is to be hoped HAMLET, 1752.] that such a compliance with her intreaties would not be productive of
HAKESPEARE, who first reany terrible consequences to her second ad vived, or more properly formed cirer. Few men, I believe, put a pe
the stage, was the greatest dramatic riod to their existence from a disap-author this country ever produced. poinimeni in love, though a late unfor. By the force of a sound judgment, tunate affair feems to militate against most lively imagination, and a perfect my sentiments upon this occafion.- knowledge of human nature, without With regard to that affair, I may, per- the least afiiitance of art, he dispelled haps, be fingular in my opinion, but I those condense clouds of Gothic ignocannot help imagining that the desper.rance, which at that time obscured us, are lover, would not have murdered the and first caused Britain to appear a objed of his passion, and have, at- formidable rival to her learned neightempted to destroy bimself, if he had bours. Nothing but a liberal educanot been deceived by falle appeär- tion was wanting to raise this great ances, and flattered by false hopes.
man to the summit of perfection, where Jf he had not thought he had reason he would for ever have flourished unto suppose himself favoured by ber, rivalled : but the fun itself has its without whom he could not enjoy his spots, nor was any thing as yet ever existence. The man who is affured formed entirely compleat. that he is not beloved, and that ano
Had he been conversant with the ther is preferred to him, must be fran- ancient critics and tragedians, his getic indeed to form any expectations of nius, instead of being checked or desuccess. Such a man has nothing to pressed by an observance of their rules, do, as a lover, but to give up the pur- would have soared a nobler and subfuit at once, as he will, by promoting limer height: A critic of eminence the happiness of the object of his ad informs us, that “ Grand fights are miration, (that is by resigning to her never in more danger than when they the man whom she has chosen) exhibit are left to themselves, without ballait to the strongest proof of his elteem and poise, or helm to guide their course, affection for her. Upon this ground but encumbered with their own weight, Henrietta's second lover stands, and and daring without discretion." he should he told that he must never
The unities of time and place he, for expect the nightest degree of ber af- the most part, seems very little to refečtion, of her esteem, if he so far in. gard : in hiş observance of the other, fluencee her father by the weight of his he is more regular. purse, as to make him compel her to
He indeed apologizes for this abgive her hand without her heart; in surdity in his Chorus in Henry the other words, to compel her to be mi.
Vth. serable for life, with the aggravating Vouchsafe to those that have not read the story reflections arising from the infringe. That I may, prompt them; and of such as have, ment of her voluntary vows.
I humbly pray them to admit the excuse
Which can not, in their huge and proper lite,