페이지 이미지

dignity, he must be of very great quality, in masquerade, for some years last past to be exempt from raillery; the best ex have associated themselves together, and pedient therefore is to be pleasant upon assumed the name of the Ugly Club., himself. Prince Harry and Falstaff, in This ill-favoured fraternity confifts of Shakespeare, have carried the ridicule a President and twelve Fellows; the upon fat and lean as far as it will go. choice of which is not confined by paFalstaff is humorously called Wool tent to any particular foundation, (as fack, Bedpreiler, and Hill of Hell; St. John's men would have the world Harry, a Starveling, an Elves-íkin, a believe, and have therefore erected a Sheath, a Bow-cale, and a Tuck. fepainte society within themselves) but There is, in several inciłents of the liberty is left to ele&t from any school conversation between themişthe jest still in Great Britain, provided the candikept up upon the person. Great ten dates be within the rules of the Club, derness and sensibility in this point is as set forth in a table, intituled, The one of the greatest weaknesses of self A&t of Deformity.' A clause or two love. For my own part, I am a little of which I shall transmit to you. unhappy in the mould of my face, which 1. That no person whatsoever shall be is not quite 1o long as it is broad: whe- admitted without a visible queerity in ther this might not partly arise from my his aspect, or peculiar cast of countepening my mouth much seldomer than

nance; of which the president and offiother people, and by consequence not cers for the time being are to determine, lo rauch lengthening the fibres of my and the pretident to have the casting vilige, I am not at leisure to determine. voice. However it he, I have been often put 11. That a singular regard be had, out of countenance by the shortness of upen examination, to the gibbosity of my face, and was formerly at great the gentlemen that offer themselves as pains in concealing it by wearing a pe- founders kinsmen; or to the obliquity riwig with an high foretop, and letting of their figure, in what sort foever. my beard giow. But now I have tho. II. That if the quantity of any Torgniy got over this delicacy, and man's nose be eminently miscalculated, could be contented with a much shorter, whether as to length or breadth, he pružiled it might qualify me for a shall have a just pretence to be elected. member of the Merry Club, which the Lastly, That if there shall be two or following letter gives me an account of. more competitors for the same vacancy, I have received it from Oxford; and as cæteris paribus, he that has the thickest it abounds with the spirit of mirth and skin to have the preference. good-hunour which is natural to that

Every fresh member, upon his first place, I fall set it down word for word night, is to entertain the company with as it came to me.

a dith of cod-fish, and a speech in praise

of ZEfop; whose portraiture they have MOET PROTOUND SIR,

in full proportion, or rather disproporHAVING been very well entertained ţion, over the chimney; and their design

in the last of your Speculations is, as soon as their funds are sufficient, Lat I have yet feen, by your specimen to purchase the heads of Therfites, Duns upon Clubs, which I therefore hope you Scotus, Scaron, Hudibras, and the Old wil continue, I thall take the liberty to Gentleman in Oldham, with all the cefurnith you with a brief account of lebrated ill faces of antiquity, as furnisuch a one as perhaps you have not seen ture for the Club-room. in all your travels, unless it was your As they have always been professed fortune to touch upon some of the admirers of the other sex, so they unawoody parts of the African continent, nimously declare that they will give all in your voyage to or from Grand Cairo. possible encouragement to such as will There have arose in this university iake the benefit of the statute, though (long since you left us without saying none yet have appeared to do it. any thing) several of these inferior heb. The worthy president, who is their domadai focietis, as the Punning Club, most devoted champion, has lately shewn the Witty Club, and, amongst the rest, me two copies of verses composed by a the Handsome Club; as a burlesque gentleman of this fociety; the first, a upon which, a certain merry fpecies, congratulatory ode inscribed to Mrs. Hund kein to have come into the world Touchwood. upon the loss of her two


fore-teeth; the other, a panegyric upon than when he has got (as he calls 'em) Mrs. Andiron's left-Thoulder. Mrs. his dear Mummers about him; and he Vizard, he says, fince the imall-pox, is often protests it does him good to meet grown tolerably ugly, and a top coat a fellow with a right genuine grimace in the club; but I never heard him so in his air (which is so agreeable in the lavish of liis fine things, as upon old generality of the French nation;) and, Nell Trot, who conftantly officiates at as an instance of his fincerity in this their cable; her he even adores and ex particular, he gave me a light of a litt tols as the very counter-part of Mother in his pocket-hook of all of this class, Shipton. “In short, Nel,' says he, “is who for these five years have fallen una

one of the extraordinary works of na der his observation, with himself at the • ture;' but as for complexion, thape, head of 'em, and in the rear (as one of and features, fo valued by others, they a promising and improving aspect,) Sir, are all mere outside and symmetry, your obliged and humble servant, which is his averfion. Give me leave

ALEXANDER CARBUNCLE. to add, that the president is a facetious,

OXFORD, plealant gentleman, and never more lo,

MARCH 12, 1710.


[ocr errors]



Hor. Ep. II. v.

. 187



[ocr errors]

T is my design in this paper to des extraordinary pieces, our authors would

often make words of their own, which count of the Italian opera, and of the were entirely foreign to the meaning of gradual progress which it has made the passages they pretended to translate; upon the English stage; for there is no their chief care being to make the numquestion but our great grand.children bers of the English verse answer to those will be very curious to know the reason of the Italian, that both of them might why their forefathers used to sit together go to the fame tune. Thus the famous like an audience of foreigners in their long in Camillaown country, and to hear whole plays acted before them in a tongue which Barbara fi i'intendo, &c. they did not understand.

Barbarous woman, yes, I knowyour mea Arsinoe was the firit opera that gave ingus a taste of Italian music. The great success this opera met with produced which expresses the resentments of an fome attempts of forming pieces upon angry lover, was trantlated into that Italian plans, which should give a more English lamentationnatural and reasonable entertainment than what can be met with in the elabo, Frail are lover's hopes, &c. rate trifles of that nation. This alarn)ed the poetafters and fiddlers of the And it was pleasant enough to see the town, who were used to deal in a more most refined persons of the British naordinary kind of ware; and therefore tion dying away and languishing to laid down an establimed rule, which is notes that were filled with a spirit of rage received as such to this day, That nos and indignation. It happened also very thing is capable of being well-set to frequentiy, where the sense was rightly music, that is not nonsense.

tranilated, the necessary transposition of This maxim was no sooner received, words, which were drawn out of the hur we immediately fell to translating phrase of one tongue into that of anothe Italian operas; and as there was no ther, made the music appear very absurd wreat danger of hurting the sense of those in one tongue that was very natural in


[ocr errors][ocr errors]

the other. I remember an Italian verse writes two or three hundred years hence, that runs thus, word for word

and does not know the taste of his wife And turn'd my rage into pity;

forefathers, will make the following

reflection: 'In the beginning of the which the English for rhyme sake trans eighteenth century, the Italian tongue lated

was so well understood in England, And into pity turn'd my rage.

that the operas were acted on thc pube

• lic stage in that language.' By this means the soft notes, that were One scarce knows how to be serious adapted to Pity in the Italian, fell upon in the confutation of an absurdity that the word Rage in the Englith; and the shews itself at the first fight. It does angry founds, that were tuned to rage not want any great meature of sense to in the original, were made to express see the ridicule of this monttrous pracpity in the translation. It oftentimes tice; but, what makes it more attonithhappened likewise, that the finest notes ing, it is not the taste of the rabble, but in the air fell upon the inoft insignificant of persons of the greatest politeness, words in the sentence. I have known which has establithed it. the word And pursued through the If the Italians have a genius for mufic whole gamut, have been entertained above the English, the English have a with many a melodious The, and have genitis for other performances of a much heard the most beautiful graces, quavers, higher nature, and capable of giving and divisions bestowed upon Then, For, the mind a much nobler entertainment. and From; to the eterral honour of our Would one think it was possible (at a English particles.

time when an author lived that was able The next step to our refinement, was to write the Phedra and Hippolitus) the introducing of Italian A&ors into for a people to be so stupidly fond of the our opera; who sung their parts in their Italian opera, as scarce to give a third own language, at the same time, that day's hearing to that admirable tragedy? our countrymen performed theirs in our Music is certainly a very agreeable ennative tongue. The king or hero of tertainment; but if it would take the the play generally spoke in Italian, and entire poffeffion of our ears, if it would his ilaves answered him in English: the make us incapable of hearing fenfe, if lover frequently made his court, and it would cxclude arts that have a much gained the heart of his princess, in a greater tendency to the refinement of language which she did not understand. human nature; I must confess I would One would have thought it very diti. allow it no better quarter than Plato has cult to have carried on dialogue after done, who banishes it out of his comthis manner, without an interpreter be monwealth. tween the persons that converted toge At present, our notions of music are ther; but this was the state of the Eng- so very uncertain, that we do not know Lish ftage for about three years.

what it is we like; only, in general, we At length the audience grew tired of are transported with any thing that is understanding half the opera; and there not English; so be it of a foreign growth, fore, to ease themselves entirely of the let it be Italian, French, or High-Dutch, fatigue of thinking, have so ordered it it is the same thing. In thort, our Engat present, that the whole opera is per lish music is quite rooted out, and nu-, formed in an unknown tongue. We thing yet planted in it’s Itead. no longer understand the language of When a royal palace is turnt to the cur own stage; insomuch that I have ground, every man is at liberty to preoften been afraid, when I have seen our fent his plan for a new one; and though Italian performers chattering in the ve it be but indifferently put together, it hemence of action, that they have been may furnith several bints that may be of calling us names, and abusing us among use to a good architect. I thall take the themielves; but I hope, since we do put fame liberty, in a following paper, of such an entire confidence in them, they giving my opinion upon the fubject of will not talk against us before our faces, music; which I shall lay down only in though they may do it with the same a problematical manner, to be consider- ! fafety as if it were behind our hacks. ed by thote who are masters in the art. In the mean time, I cannot forbear

с thinking how naturally an hiftorian who


[ocr errors]



Hor. SAT. IV. I. 13.

[ocr errors]



another, who was an utter stranger mankind are in a plot against his quiet, to him, with a cast of his eye, which, by Itudying their own happiness and methought, expressed an emotion of advantage. Will Prosper is an honeft heart very different from what could be tale-bearer; he makes it his business to raised by an object fo agreeable as the join in conversation with envious men. gentleman he looked at, I began to con He points to such an handsome young lider, not without some secret sorrow, fellow, and whispers that he is secretly the condition of an Envious Man. Some married to a great fortune; when they have fancied that envy has a certain doubt, he adds circumstances to prove magical force in it, and that the eyes of it; and never fails to aggravate their the envious have by their fascination dittress, by assuring them, that, to his blasted the enjoyments of the happy. knowledge, he has an uncle will leave Sir Francis Bacon says, fome have been him fome thousands. Will has many so curious as to remark the times and arts of this kind to torture this fort of seasons when the stroke of an envious temper, and delights in it. When he eye is most effectually pernicious, and finds them change colour, and say fainthave observed that it has been when the ly they wish fuch a piece of news is true, perfon envied has been in any circum- he has the malice to speak some good or Itance of glory and triumph. At luch other of every man of their acquainta time the mind of the prosperous man goes, as it were, abroad, among things The reliefs of the envious man are without him, and is more exposed to those little blemishes and imperfections the malignity. But I fall not dwell that discover themselves in an illustrious upon speculations fo abstracted as this, character. It is matter of great confoor repeat the many excellent things lation to an envious person, when a which one might collect out of authors man of known honour does a thing unupon this miferable affection; but, keep worthy himself; or when any action ing in the road of common life, con which was well executed, upon better fider the envious man with relation to information appears so altered in it's these three heads, his pains, his reliefs, circumitances, that the fame of it is diand his happiness.

vided among many, instead of being atThe envious man is in pain upon all

tributed to one. This is a secret fatisoccasions which ought to give him plta- faction to these malignants; for the perfure. The relish of his life is inverted; fon, whom they before could not but and the objects which adıninilter the admire, they fancy is nearer their own highest satisfaction to those who are ex condition as soon as his merit is shared empt from this pailion, give the quickest among others. I remember fome years pangs to persons who are subje to it.

ago there came out an excellent poem All the perfections of their fellow-crea- without the name of the author. The tures are odious; youth, beauty, va. little wits, who were incapable of writlour, and wisdom, are provocations of ing it, began to pull in pieces the suptheir displeasure. What a wretched and poled writer. When that would not apostate state is this! To be offended do, they took great pains to suppress with excellence, and to hate a man be the opinion that it was his. That again cause we approve him! The condition failed. The next refuge was to say it of the envious man is the most emphati was overlooked by one man, and many cally miserable; he is not only incapable pages wholly written by another. An of rejoicing in another's merit or luce honest fellow, who fát among a cluster


of them in debate on this subject, cried have upon an honest ambition for the eut— Gentlemen,'if you are lure none future.

of you yourlelves had an hand in it, Having thoroughly considered the na'you are but where you were, whoever ture of this passion, I have made it my

writ it. But the most usual succour study to avoid the envy that inay accrue to the envious, in cases of nameless to me from these my ipeculations; and merit in this kind, is to keep the pro- if I am not mistaken in myself, I think perty, if poffible, unfixed, and by that I have a genius to escape it. Upon means to hinder the reputation of it hearing in a coffee-house one of my pafrom falling upon any particular person, pers commended, I immediately appreYou see an envious man clear up his hended the envy that would spring from countenance, if, in the relation of any that applause; and therefore gave a deman's great happiness in one point, you scription of niy face the next day; being mention his uneasinets in another. Wien resolved, as I grow in reputation for he hears such a one is very rich he turns wit, to resign my pretensions to beauty. pale, but recovers when you add that This, I hope, may give some ease to he has many children. In a word, the those unhappy gentlemen, who do me only sure way to an envious man's fa- the honour to torment themselves upon vour, is not to deserve it.

the account of this my paper. As their But if we consider the envious man in case is very deplorable, and deserves delight, it is like reading the seat of a compaflion, I shall sometimes be dull, in giant in a romance, the magnificence of pity to them, and will from time to his house confitts in the many limbs of time adminiter confolations to them by men whom he has flain. If any who further discoveries on my person. In promised themselves success in any un. the mean while, if any one lays the common undertaking miscarry in the Spectator has wit, it may be some relief attempt, or he that aimed at what would to them to think that he does not thew have been useful and laudable, meets it in company. And if any one praises with contempt and derision, the envious his morality, they may comfort themman, under the colour of hating vain- felves by confidering that his face is glory, can smile with an inward wan none of the longeit, conness of heart at the ill effect it may


[ocr errors]
[blocks in formation]





can make of them, even looking up to takings which I have propoled to Heaven. myself, that of the correction of Inpudence is what I have very much at heart. This in a particular manner is my poTHERE never was, I believe, an acvince as Spectator; for it is generally ceptable man but had foine aukan offence committed by the eyes, and ward imitators. Ever since the Spectathat againit such as the offenders would tor appeared, have I remarked a kind perhaps never have an opportuniy of of men, whom I chute to call Starers; injuring any other way: The follow- that, without any regard to time, place, ing letter is a complaint of a young or inodcity, dillub a large company lady, who sets forth a trespass of this with their i:npertinent eyes. Spectators kind, with that command of herself as make up a proper allembly for a puppetbefits beauty and innocence, and yet thow or a bear-garden; but devout fupwith so much {pirit as sufficiently ex. plicants and attentive hearers are the preffes her indignation. The whole audienceone ought to expect in churches. transaction is performed with the eyes; I am, Sir, meniher of a mall pious and the crime is no less than employing congregation near one of the north them in such a manner, as to divert the gates of this city; much the greater Eyes of others from the best use they part of us indeed are fenalcs, and ufu

F 2

« 이전계속 »