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IN the mean while, I cannot but take notice of the great Use it is to an Audience, that a Person should thus, preside over their Heads like the Director of a Confort, in order to awaken their Attention, and beat time to their Applauses; or, to raise my Simile, I have sometimes fancied the Trunk-maker in the upper Gallery to be like Virgil's Ruler of the Winds, feated upon the Top of a Mountain, who,when he struck his Scepter upon the side of it, roused an Hurricane, and set the whole Cavern in an Uproar.
IT is certain, the Trunk-maker has saved many a good Play, and brought many a graceful A&tor into Reputation, who would not otherwise have been taken notice of. It is very visible, as the Audience is not a little abashed, if they find themselves betrayed into aClap,when their Friend in the upper Gallery does not come into it; so the Actors do. not value themselves upon the Clap, but regard it as a meer Brutum fulmen, or empty Noise, when it has not the Sound of the Oaken Plant in it. I know it has been given out by those who are Enemies to the Trunk-maker, that he has sometimes been bribed to be in the Interest of a bad Poet, or a vieious Player ; but this is a Surmise which has no Foundation ; his Strokes are always just, and his Admonitions seasonable; he does not deal about his Blowa at Random, but always hits the right Nail upon the Head. The inexpressible Force wherewith he lays them on, sufficiently thews the Evidence and Strength of his Conviction. His Zeal for a good Author is indeed outrageous, and breaks down every Fence and Partition, every Board and Plank,that stands within theExpression of his Applause.
AS I do not care for terminating my Thoughts in barren Speculations, or in Reports of pure Matter of Fact, without drawing something from them for the Advantage of my Countrymen, I thall take the Liberty to make an humble Proposal, that whenever the Trunkmaker shall depart this Life, or whenever he shall have loft the Spring of his Arm by Sickness, old Age, Infir. mity, or the like, fome able bodied Critick should be ad. vanced to this post, and have a competent Salary fettled on him for Life, to be furnished with Bamboos for Ope. ras, Crabtrec-Cudgels for Comedies, and Oaken Plants for Tragedy, at the publick Expence. And to the End that this place lould be always disposed of according to
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Merit, Merit, I would have none preferred to it, who has not given convincing Proofs both of a found Judgment and a itrong Arm, and who could not, upon Occasion, either knock down an Ox, or write a Comment upon Horace's Art of Poetry. In short, I would have him a due Composition of Hercules and Apollo, and so rightly qualified for this important Office, that the Trunk-maker may not be missed by our Posterity.
No. 236. Friday, Noveniber 30.
Dare Jura maritis. Hor. Ars Poet. V. 398. With Laws connubial Tyrants to reftrain,
Mr. SPECTATOR, • VOU have not spoken in fo direct a manner upon • 1 the Subject of Marriage as that important Case « deserves. It would not be improper to observe upon
the Peculiarity in the Youth of Great-Britain, of rail+ ing and laughing at that Institution; and when they • fall into it, from a profligate Habit of Mind, being in• senfible of the Satisfaction in that Way of Life, and • ereating their Wives with the most barbarous Disrespect.
• PARTICULAR Circumstances and Caft of Temį per,must teach'a Man the Probability of mighty Uneafi.
neffes in that State, (for unquestionably fome there are · whose very Dispositions are ftrangely averse to conjugal • Friendship ;) but no one, I believe, is by his own natu• ral Complexion prompted to teaze and torment anoa
ther for no Reason but being nearly allied to him : And • can there be any thing more base, or serve to fink a • Man so much below his own distinguishing Characteri• stick, (I mean Reason) than returning Evil for Good in • fo open a Manner, as that of treating an helpless Crea. • ture with Unkindness, who has had to good an Opinion • of him as to believe what he said relating to one of the « greatest Concerns of Life, by delivering her Happiness • in this World to his Care and Protection? Must not that • Man be abandoned even to all manner of Humanity,
• who can deceive a Woman with Appearances of Affecti* on and Kindness, for no other End but to torment her * with more Ease 'and Authority ? Is any thing more un• like a Gentleman, than when his Honour is engaged for • the performing his Promises, because nothing but that
can oblige him to it, to become afterwards false to his "Word,and be alone the Occasion of Misery to one whose
Happiness he but 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 .. confifted only in his Incapacity of being otherwise ?
“THERE is one Cause of this Usage no less absurd than common, which takes place among the more un. thinking Men ; and that is the Desire to appear to their
Friends free and at Liberty, and without those Tram• mels they have so much ridiculed. To avoid this they < fly into the other Extreme, and grow Tyrants that they
may seem Masters. Because an uncontroulable Com• mand of their own Actions is a certain Sign of intire · Dominion, they won't fo much as recede from the Go. *vernment even in one Muscle of their faces. A kind @ Look they believe would be fawning, and a civil An• fwer yielding the Superiority. To this must we attri
bute an Austerity they betray in every A&ion: What , but this can put a Man out of Humour in his Wife's • Company, tho he is so distinguishingly pleasant every where elle ? The Bitterness of his Replies, and the Sea
verity of his Frowns to the tenderest of Wives, clearly * demonftrate, that an ill-grounded Fear of being thought • too submissive, is at the Bottom of this, as I am wil.
ling to call it, affected Morofenefs; but if it be such only, • put on to convince his Acquaintance of his intire Do• minion, let him take care of the Consequence, which • will be certain, and worse than the present Evil ; his
feeming Indifference will by Degrees grow into real • Contempt, and, if it doth not wholly alienate the Af. • fections of his Wife for ever from him, make both him 6 and her more miserable than if it really did so..
HOWEVER 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 lovingand a tender Wife,would
.be • be of great Use to this sort of Gentlemen. Could you * but once convince then, that to be civil at least is not • beneath the Character of a Gentleman, nor even tender • Affection towards one who would make it reciprocal, • betrays any Softness or Effeminacy that the most mar.
culine Disposition need be ashamed of; could you fatisfy • them of the Generosity of voluntary Civility, and the • Greatness of Soul that is conspicuous in Benevolence * without immediate Obligations ; could you recommend • to People's Practice theSaying of the Gentleman quoted • in one of your Speculations, That he thought it incumbent • upon him to make the Inclinations of a Woman of Merit go
along with her Duty : Could you, I say, persuade these · Men of the Beauty and Reasonableness of this sort of • Behaviour, I have so much Charity for some of them ! at least, to believe you would convince them of a · Thing they are only alhamed to allow : Besides, you • would recommend that State in its truest, and confe
quently its most agreeable Colours; and the Gentlemen • who have for any Time been such professed Enemies to • it, when Occasion should serve, would return you their • Thanks for alifting their Interest in prevailing over • their Prejudices. Marriage in general would by this • Means be a more easy and comfortable Condition ; the • Husband would be no where so well satisfied as in his
own Parlour, nor the Wife so pleasant as in the Com. • pany of her Husband : A Desire of being agreeable in
the Lover would be increased in the Husband, and the • Mistress be more amiable by becoming the Wife. Besides - all which, I am apt to believe we should find the Race • of Men grow wiser as their Progenitors grew kinder, • and the Affection of the Parents would be conspicuous • in the Wisdom of their Children ; in short, Men would o in general be much better Humoured than they are, did
not they so frequently exercise the worft Turns of their • Temper where they ought to exert the best.
Mr. SPECTATOR, * I AM a Woman who left the Admiration of this
I whole Town, to throw myself (for Love of Wealth) • into the Arms of a Fool. When I married him, I could • bave had any one of feveralMen of Sense wholanguished
• for me ; but my Case is just. I believed my superior Un• derstanding would form him into a tractable Creature. * But, alas, my Spouse has Cunning and Suspicion, the
inseparable Companions of little Minds; and every At• tempt I make to divert, by putting on an agreeable Air, • a sudden Chearfulness, or kind Behaviour,he looks upon
as the first Acts towards an Insurrection against his un• deserved Dominion over me. Let every one who is still • to choose, and hopes to govern a Fool, remember
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 fome People give to o. • thers at Church, by their Repetition of the Prayers after • the Minister, and that not only in the Prayers, but also • the Absolution and the Commandments fare no better,
which are in a particular manner the Priest's Office : • This I have known done in so audible a manner, that • sometimes their Voices have been as loud as his. As • little as you would think it, this is frequently done by • People seemingly devout. This irreligious Inadvertency
is a Thing extremely offensive : But I do not recomend • it as a Thing I give you Liberty to ridicule, but hope it • may be amended by the bare Mention.
SÍR, Your very humble Servant, T. S.
No. 237. Saturday, December 1.
Visu carentem magna pars veri latet. Seneca in OEdip, • The Blind see Truth by halves. TT is very reasonable to believe, that Part of the Plea.
I sure which happy Minds shall enjoy in a future State, will arise from an enlarged Contemplation of the Divine. Wisdom in the Government of the World, and a i M5