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? allowed them to set Clod in the Tree, to have scared the
Sportsmen, plagued the Justice, and employed honest • Teague with his holy Water. This was the proper Use ' of them in Comedy, if the Author had stopped here; but "I cannot conceive what Relation the Sacrifice of the • Black Lamb, and the Ceremonies of their Worship to
the Devil, have to the Business of Mirth and Humour. i TO THE Gentleman who writ this play, and has drawn. * some Characters in it very juftly, appears to have been i mil-led in his Witchcraft by an unwary following the in
jinitable Shakespear. The Incantations in Mackleth bave. ia Solemnity admirably adapted to the Occasion of that
Tragedy, and fill the Mind with a suitable Horror; be. fides, that the Witches are a part of the Story it self, as we find it very particularly related in Hector Boetius,from · whom he seems to have taken it. This therefore is a . proper Machine where the Business is dark, horrid and : · bloody; but is extremely foreign from the Affair of Com ? medy. Subjects of this kind, which are in themselves : I disagreeable, can at no time become entertaining, but ! by passing thro'an Imagination like Shakespear's to forma ,
them; for which Reason Mr. Dryden would not allow eyen Beaumont and Fletcher capable of imitating him. 5 A9 But Shakespear's Magick cou'd not copy'd be,
Within that Circle none durft-Walk but He.'. * . I should not, however, have troubled you with thefe • Remarks, if there were not something else in this co• medy, which wants to be exercised more than the Wit• ches: I mean the Freedom of some Passages, which I • should have overlooked, if I had not observed that those • Jests can raise the loudest Mirth, though they are painful • to right Sense, and an Outrage upon Modestý.
" W E must attribute such Liberties to the Tafte of that • Age, but indeed by such Representations a Poet facri. ofices the best part of his Audience to the worst; and, as i one would think, neglects the Boxes, to write to the ! Orange-Wenches.
• I must not conclude till I have taken notice of the • Moral with which this Comedy ends. The two young
Ladies having given a notable Example of outwitting I those who had a Right in the Disposal of them, and mars
• rying without Consent of Parents, one of the injur'd • Parties, who is easily reconcild, winds up all with this Remark,
Design whate'er we will, . There is a Fate, which' over-rules-us ftill. . We are to suppose that the Gallants are Men of Merit, * but if they had been Rakes the Excuse might have sery'd • as well. Han's Carvel's Wife was of the fame Principle, • but has exprefs'd it with à Delicacy which shews she is • not serious in her Excuse, but in a fort of Humorous Phi. • losophy turns off the Thought of her Guilt, and says,
That if weak Women go astray,
Their Stars are more in fault than they. • THIS, no doubt, is a full Reparation, and dismisses the Audience with very edifying Impressions. ...THESE things fall under a Province you have parte <ly pursu'd already, and therefore demand your Animad. • version, for the regulating fo Noble an Entertainment • as that of the Stage. It were to be wished, that all who • write for it hereafter would raise their Genius, by the • Ambition of pleasing People of the beft Understanding; • and leave others who, thew nothing of the Human • Species but Risibility, to seek their Diversion at the Bear. « Garden, or some other Privileg!d Place, where Reason • and good Manners have no Right to disturb them. . , Auguft, 8, 1711.
I am, &c.
NOVOLETNEWS N° 142. Monday, August 13.
Irrupta tenet Copula
Hor. THE following Letters being Genuine, and the Ima. T ges of a Worthy Passion, I am willing to give the
old Lady's Admonition to my self, and the Reprefentation of her own Happiness, a Place in my Writings.
: Mr. SPECTATOR,
August 9, 3717, • I Am now in the Sixty seventh Year of my Age, and "I read you with Approbation; but methịnks you do
nor strike at the Root of the greatest Evil in Life, which is the false Notion of Gallantry in Love. It is,
and has long been, upon a very ill Foot; but I who have ve been a Wife Forty Years, and was bred in a way that *S has made me ever since very happy, see through the “ Folly of it. In a Word, Sir, when I was a young Wo. * man, all who avoided the Vices of the Age were very • carefully educated, and all Phantastical Objects were I turned out of our Sight. The Tapetry Hangings, with e the great and venerable Simplicity of the Scripture Sto. * ries, had better Effects than now the Loves of Venus and • Adonis, or Bacchus and Ariadne in your fine present ? Prints. The Gentleman I am Married to made Love to
me in Rapture, but it was the Rapture of a Chriftian and • a Man of Honour, not a Romantick Hero, or a Whining • Cońcoinb: This put our Life upon a right Biass. To ? give you an Idea of our Regard one to another, I en. • close to you several of his Letters writ Forty Years ago, • when my Lover; and one writ t'other Day, after so • many Years Cohabitation.
August 7, 1671. "JF my Vigilance and ten thousand Wishes for your
1 Welfare and Repose could have any force, you last • Night slept in Security, and had every good Angel in
your Attendance. To have my Thoughts ever fixed on • you, to live in constant Fear of every Accident to which • Human Life is liable, and to send up my hourly Prayers I to avért 'em from you; I say, Madam, thus to think, and
thus to suffer, is what I do for Her who is in Pain at my Approach, and calls all my tender Sorrow Imper• tinence. You are now before my Eyes, my Eyes thac • are ready to flow with Tenderness, but cannot give Re« lief to my gushing Heart, that dictates what I am now • Taying, and yearns to tell you all its Achings. How are
SPECTATOR No 142. 'thou, oh my Soul, stoln from thy self! How is all thy • Attention broken! My Books are blank Papers, and my • Friends Intruders.' I have no hope of Quier but from
your Pity. To grant it, would make more for your " Triumph. To give Pain is the Tyranny, to make Hap
py the true Empire of Beauty. If you would consider - äright, you'd find an agreeable Change in dismissing the • Attendance of a Slave, to receive the Complaisance of a • Companion. I bear the former in hopes of the latter • Condition : As I live in Chains without murmuring at 'the Power which inflicts 'em, so I could enjoy Freedom without forgetting the Mercy that gave it.
MADAM, I am,
Tour moft Devoted, moft obedient Servant,
Tho' I made him no Declarations in his Favour, you see he bad hopes of Me when he writ this in the Month following.
September 3, 1671. DEFORE the Light this Morning dawned upon the
D Earth I awaked, and lay in expectation of its return, not that it cou'd give any new Sense of Joy to me, but as I hoped it would bless you with its chearful Face,
after a Quiet which I wilh'd you last Night. If my * Prayers are heard, the Day appear'd with all the Influsence of a Merciful Creator upon your Person and Actie • ons. Let others, my lovely Charmer, talk of a blind Besing that difposes their Hearts, I contemn their low lma. • ges of Love. I have not a Thought which relates to you, • that I cannot with Confidence beseech the All-seeing • Power to bless me in. May He direct you in all your • Steps, and reward your Innocence, your Sanctity of • Manners, your prudent Youth, and becoming Piety, with
the Continuance of his Grace and Prote&tion. This is . an unusual Language to Ladies; but you have a Mind " elevated above the giddy Motions of a Sex insnared by • Flattery, and mis-led by a false and short Adoration into • a solid and long Contempt. Beauty, my fairelt Crea..ture, palls in the Pofleflion, but I love also your Mind; .' your Soul is as dear to me as my own; and if the Ad. i vantages of a liberal Education, fome Koowledge, and
• as much Contempt of the World, join'd with the Endea(vours towards a Life of ftriat Virtue and Religion, can • qualify me to raise new Ideas in a Breaft so well dispo. • sed as yours is, our Days will pass away with Joy; and • old Age, inftead of introducing melancholy Prospects • of Decay, give us hope of Eternal Youth' in a better
Life, I have but few Minutes from the Duty of my Emoployment to write in, and without time to read over · what I have writ, therefore beseech you to pardon the • first Hints of my Mind, which I have express'd in so little Order. : I am, Dearest Creature,
Your most obedient, most Devoted Servant. The two next were written after the Day for our Marriage was fixed.
September 25, 1671. • Tis the hardest thing in the World to be in Love, and
1 yet attend Business. As for me, all that speak « to me find me out, and I must lock my self up, or other
People will do it for me. A Gentleman asked me this • Morning what News from Holland, and I answered, & She's exquisitely handsome. Another desir'd to know • when I had been last at Windsor, I reply'd, She designs to • go with me. Pr'ythee allow me at least to kiss your Hand • before the appointed Day, that my Mind may be in some « Composure. Methinks I could write a Volume to you,
but all the Language on Earth would fail in faying how much, and with what dis-interested Pallion,
I am ever yours.
September 30, 1671. Dear Creature,
Seven in the Morning. N EXT to the Influence of Heav'n, lam ro thank o TV you that I see the returning Day with Pleasure. • To pass my Evenings in fo fweet a Conversation, and • have the Esteem of a Woman of your Merkt, has in it a « Particularity of Happiness no more to be express'd than return'd. But I am, my Lovely Creacure, contented