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N° XLVII. TUESDAY, APRIL 24.
RIDE, SI SAPIS.
human nature, which in my lines, which are part of a translation of
Thus one fool lolls his tongue out at another, thus: “ The passion of laughter is nothing else but sudden glory arising Mr. Hobbes's reflection gives us the fram fome sudden conception of some reason why the insignificant people aboveeminency in ourselves, by comparison mentioned are stirrers-up of laughter with the infirmity of others, or with among men of a gross taste; but as the our own formerly; for men laugh at more understanding part of mankind the follies of themselves past, when do not find their risibility affected by they come fuddenly to remembrance, such ordinary objects, it may be worth except they bring with them any pre- the while to examine into the several sent difhonour.'
provocatives of laughter in men of fuAccording to this author therefore, perior sense and knowledge.
when we hear a man laugh excessively, In the first place I must observe, that Bi inftead of saying he is very merry, we
there is a set of merry drolls, whom the ought to tell him he is very proud. common people of all countries admire, And indeed, if we look into the bottom and seem to love so well,' that they of this matter
, we shall meet with many could eat them, according to the old observations to confirm us in his opi- proverb; I mean those circumforaneous tion. Every one laughs at somebody wits whoin every nation calls by the that is in an inferior state of folly to name of that dish of meat which it loves bimself
. It was formerly the custom beft. In Holland they are termed Pickled for every great house in England to keep Herrings; in France, Jean Pottages; in
tame fool dressed in petticoats, that Italy, Maccaronies; and, in Great Bri. the heir of the family might have an tain, Jack-Puddings. These merry opportunity of joking upon him and di- wags, from whatsoever food they receive verting himself with his absurdities. their titles, that they may make their For the same reason idiots are still in audiences laugh, always appear in a fequeft in most of the courts of Ger- fool's coat, and commit such blunders mahy, where there is not a prince of and mistakes in every step they take, any great magnificence, who has not and every word they utter, as those who two or three dressed, distinguished, un listen to them would be ashamed of. disputed fools in his retinde, whom the But this little triumph of the underret of the courtiers are always breaking standing, under the disguise of laughter,
is no where more visible than in that The Dutch, who are more famous custom which prevails every where for their industry and application, than among us on the firft day of the present for wit and humour, hang up in several month, when every body takes it in his of their Atreets what they call the sign of head to make as many fools as he can. the Gaper, that is, the head of an idiot In proportion as there are more follies defled in a cap and bells, and gaping discovered, fo there is more laughter in a molt immoderate manner: this is a raised on this day than on any other in standing jest at Amsterdam.
the whole year. A neighbour of mine, Thus every one diverts himself with who is a haberdasher by trade, and á Some person or other that is below him very thallow conceited fellow, makes
in point of understanding, and triumphs his boasts that for these ten years fuc"! in the fuperiority of his genius, whilft ceffively he has not made less than a
he bas such obje&ts of derifion before hundred April fools. My landlady his eyes. Mr. Dennis has very weli had a falling out with him about a fort
their jelts upon.
night ago, for sending every one of her tion or incident that bears a remote children upon some sleeveleis errand, as analogy to any blunder or absurdity in The terms it. Her eldest son went to reasonable creatures. buy an halfpenny worthy of incle at a But to come into common life; I fhall fhoemaker's; the eldeit daughter was pass by the confideration of those stage dispatched half a mile to see a monster; coxcombs that are able to shake a whole and in fhort, the whole family of inno- audience, and take notice of a particucent children made April fools. Nay, lar fort of men who are such provokers my landlady herself did not escape him. of mirth in conversation, that it is imThis empty fellow has laughed upon possible for a club or merry meeting to these conceits ever lince.
sublift without them; I mean those hoThis art of wit is well enough, when nest gentlemen that are always expoled confined to one day in a twelvemonth; to the wit and raillery of their well
. but there is an ingenious tribe of men wishers and companions; that are pelted sprung up of late years, who are for by men, women, and children, friends making April foolsevery day in the year. and foes, and, in a word, stand as Butts Thele gentlemen are commonly diftin. in conversation, for every one to shoot
guished by the name of Biters; a race of at that pleafes. I know several of these men tirat are perpetually employed in Butts who are men of wit and sense, laughing at thole miltakes which are of though by some odd turn of humour, their own production.
some unlucky cast in their person or beThus we see, in proportion' as one haviour, they have always the misforman is more refined than another, he tune to make the company merry: The chuses his fool out of a lower or higher truth of it is, a man is not qualified for class of mankind; or, to speak in a a Butt, who has not a good deal of wit more philosophical language, that secret and vivacity, even on the ridiculous elation and pride of heart, which is ge side of his character. A stupid Butt is nerally called laughter, arises in him, only fit for the conversation of ordinary from his comparing himself with an ob- people; men of wit require one that will ject below hiin, whether it so happens give them play, and bestir himfelf in the that it be a natural or an artificial fool. absurd part of his behaviour. A Burt It is indeed very possible, that the persons with these accomplishments frequently we laugh at may
the main of their gets the laugh of his fide, and turns the characters be much wiser men than our. ridicule upon him that attacks him. felves; but if they would have us laugh Sir John Falstaff was an hero of this speat them, they must fall short of us in cies, and gives a good description of those refpects which stir up this passion. himself in his capacity of a Butt, after
I am afraid I fhall appear too abstract the following manner: • Men of all ed in my speculations, if I few that ' forts,' says that merry knight, take when a man of wit makes us laugh, it a pride to gird at me. The brain of is by betraying some oddness or infirmity 'man is not able to invent any thing in his own character, or in the repre " that tends to laughter more than I fentation which he makes of others; and «invent, or is invented on me. I am that when we laugh at a brute, or even not only witty in myself, but the cause at an inanimate thing, it is at fome ac • that wit is in other men.'
N° XLVIII. TUESDAY, APRIL 25.
PER MULTAS ADITUM SIBI SEPE FIGURAS
OvJD. MET. XIV. 652.
THRO VARIOUS SHAPES HE OFTEN FINDS ACCESS.
Y correspondents take it ill if I tant subjects; which I shall introduce
do not, from time to time, let with a letter of my own that I writ a them know I have received their letters. fortnight ago to a fraternity who thought The most effectual way will be to pub. fit to make me an honorary member. lith some of them that are upon impos
TO THE PRESIDENT AND Fellows and keep the upper end of the table. OF THE UGLY CLUB, And indeed I think they want, a carver,
which I can be after as ugly a manner MAY IT PLEASE YOUR DEFORMITIES,
as they can wish. I defire your thoughts I Have received the notification of the of my claiın as soon as you can. Add
honour you have done me, in ad.. to my features the length of my face, mitting me into your society. I ac which is full half-yard; though I never knowledge my want of merit, and for knew the reason of it till you gave one that reason shall endeavour at all times for the shortness of yours. If I knew to make up my own failures, by intro a name ugly enough to belong to the ducing and recommending to the club above-described face, I would feign perfons of more undoubted qualifica- one: but, to my unspeakable misfortions than I can pretend to. I Mall tune, my name is the only disagreeable Dext week come down in the stage- prettiness about me; fo pr’ythee make coach, in order to take my feat at the one for me that signifies all the defor. board; and shall bring with me a can- mity in the world. You understand didate of each sex. The persons I shall Latín, but be sure bring it in with my present to you, are an old Beau and a being, in the fincerity of my heart, modern Piát. If they are not so emi- your most frightful admirer, and ser. nendly gifted by nature as our allembly
vant, expeéts, give me leave to say their ac
HECATISSA, quired ugliness is greater than any that bas ever appeared before you. The Beau
MR. SPECTATOR, has varied his dress every day of his life for these thirty years lait past, and fill I Read your discourse upon affectation, added to the deformity he was born with. amined my own heart to ftrictly, that I
and from the remarks made in it exThe Piet has still greater merit toward us, and has, ever since the came to
thought I had found out it's most fecret years of discretion, deserted tre hand- avenues, with a resolution to be aware some party, and taken all possible pains Porrow I now understand, that I have
of you for the future. But alas! to my to acquire the face in which I hall pre- several follies which I do not know the fent her to your consideration and favour. I am, gentlemen, your most obliged tremely troubled with the gout: but
root of. I am an old fellow, and exhumble servant, THE SPECTATOR.
having always a strong vanity towards
being pleasing in the eyes of women, I · P.S. I desire to know whether you mounted in high-heeled shoes with a
never have a moment's ease, but I am admit people of quality.
glazed wax-leather instep. Two days
after a fevere fit I was invited to a MR. SPECTATOR,
friend's house in the city, where I beTo hew you there are among us of lieved I should fee ladies; and
with my the vain weak sex, fome that have usual complaisance crippled myself to honesty and fortitude enough to dare to wait upon them. A very sumptuous be ugly, and willing to be thought so; table, agreeable company, and kind reI apply myself to you, to beg your in- ception, were but so many importunate terest and recommendation to the Ugly additions to the torment I was in. A Club. If my own word will not be gentleman of the family observed my taken, though in this case a woman's condition; and, foon after the Queen's may, I can bring credible witness of health, he in the presence of the whole my qualifications for their company, , company, with his own hands, degrada whether they infilt upon hair, forehead, ed me into an old pair of his own shoes. eyes, cheeks, or chin; to which I must The operation, befor (fine ladies, to add, that I find it easier to lean to iny me, who am by nature a coxcomb, was left side, than my right. I hope I am suffered with the same reluctance as they in all respects agreeable; and for hu- admit the help of men in their greatest mour and mirth, I'll keep up to the prefier extremity. The return of ease made dent himself. All the favour I'll pretend me forgive the rough obligation laid to is, that as I am the first woman that upon me, which at that time relieved has appeared desirous of good company my body from a distemper, and will my and agreeable conversation, I may take mind for ever from a folly. For the
charity received, I return my thanks rants are still so wretchelly poor, that
without you can prevail to send us the Your most humble servant. furniture you forbid at the play-house,
the heroes appear only like sturdy beg. EPPING,, APRIL 18.
gars, and the heroines giplies. We We have your papers here the morn have had but one part which was per.
ing they come out, and we have formed and dressed with propriety, and been very well entertained with you that was Justice Clodpate. This was lait, upon the falle ornaments of persons fo well done, that it offended Mr. Jus: who represent heroes in a tragedy. tice Overdo, who, in the midst of our What made your speculation come very whole audience, was, like Quixote in seasonably among us is, that we have the puppet-fhow, so highly provoked, now at this place a company of strollers, that he told them, if they would move who are very far from offending in the compassion, it should be in their own impertinent' splendor of the drama. persons, and not in the characters of They are so far from falling into thefe distressed princes and potentates: he told falte gallantries, that the stage is here them, if they were so good at finding in it's original situation of a cart. Alex. the way to people's hearts, 'they should ander the Great was acted by a fellow do it at the end of bridges or churchin a paper cravat. The next day, the porches, in their proper vocation of beg. Earl of Esex seemed to have no distress garś. This, the Justice says, they mult but his poverty: and my Lord Fopping expect, since they could not be contentton the same morning wanted any better ed to act heathen warriors, and sucht fel. means to Mew himself a fop, than by lows as Alexander, but must presunie wearing itockings of different colours. to make a mockery of one of the quoIn a word, though they have had a full Your servant. barn for many days together, our itine
No XLIX. THURSDAY, APRIL 26.
HOMINEM PAGINA NOSTRA SAPIT.
MEN AND THEIR MANNERS I DESCRIBE.
T is very natural for a man, who is same passions and interests move men in
not turned for mirthful meetings of lower spheres; and I, that have nothing men, or allemblies of the fair-sex, to elle to do but make observations, see in delight in that sort of conversation every parishi, street, lane, and alley, of which we find in coffee-houses. Here this populous city, a little potentate thal a man of my temper is in his element; has his court and his fatterers, who lay for if he cannot talk, he can still be snares for his affection and favour by inore agreeable to his company, as well the same arts that are practised by met as plealid in himself, in being only an in higher stations. hearer. It is a secret known but to In the place I most usually frequent, 'few, yet of no small use in the conduct men ditter rather in the time of day in of life, that wben you fall into a man's which they make a figure, than in any 'conversation, the first thing you should real greatness above one another. 1, consider is, whether he has a greater who am at the coffee house at fix in s inclination to hear you, or that you morning, know that my friend Beaver Ihould hear hiin. The latter is the most the haberdasher has a levee of more imgeneral desire, and I know very able disembled friends and admirers, than flatterers that never speak a word in most of the courtiers or generals of Great praise of the persons from whom they Britain. Every man about hiin has, ohtain daily favours, but still practise a perhaps, a newspaper in his hand; but skilful attention to whatever is uttered none can pretend to guess what itep will by those with whom they converse. We be taken in any one court of Europe, ara very curious to ohlerve the behaviour till Mr. Beaver' has thrown down his of great men and their clients; but the pipe, and declares what measures the
Allies must enter into upon this new it passes, without defiring to quicken it posture of affairs. Our coffee-house is by gratifying any paffion, or profecutrear one of the inns of court, and Bea- ing any new design. These are the men ver has the audience and admiration of formed for society, and those little comhis neighbours from six till within a munities which we express hy the word quarter of eight, at which time he is Neighbourhoods. interrupted by the students of the house; The coffee house is the place of renfome of whom are ready-dreffed for dezvous to all that live near it, who are Wettminster, at eight in a morning, thus turned to relish calm and ordinary with faces as busy as if they were re- . life. Eubulus prefides over the middle tained in every cause there; and others hours of the day, when this assembly come in their night.gowns to faunter of men meet together. He enjoys a great away their time, as if they never design, fortune handsomely, without launching ed to go thither. I do not know that I into expence; and exerts many noble meet, in any of my walks, objects and useful qualities, without appearing which move both my spleen and laugh, in any public employment. His wilter fo effectually, as those young fellows dom and knowledige are serviceable to at the Grecian, Squire's, Seari's, and all that think fit to make use of them; all other coifee houses 'adjacent to the and he does the office of a council, a law, who rise early for no other purpose judge, an executor, and a friend, to all but to publish their laziness. One his acquaintance, not only without the would think these young virtuosos take profits which attend such offices, but a gay cap and flippers, with a scarf and also without the deference and homage party-coloured gown, to be ensigns of which are usually paid to them. The dignity; for the vain things approach giving of thanks is displeasing to him. each other with an air, which thews The greatest gratitude you can few they regard one another for their velt- hiin, is to let him fee you are the better ments. I have observed that the supe man for his services; and that you are riority among these proceeds from an as ready to oblige others, as he is to opinion of gallantry and fashion : the oblige you. gentleman in the strawberry fath, who In the private exigencies of his friends prelides so much over the rest, has, it he lends, at legal value, considerable leems, subscribed to every opera this sums, which he might highly increase lait winter, and is supposed to receive by rolling in the public stocks. He does favours from one of the actresses. not contider in whose hands his money
When the day grows too busy for will improve moít, but where it will do these gentlemen to enjoy any longer the
molt good. pleasures of their dethabillé, with any Eubulus has so great an authority in manner of confidence, they give place his little diurnal audience, that when to men who have business or good senle he makes his head at any piece of pubin their faces, and come to the coffee- lic news, they all of them appear dehouse either to transact affairs or enjoy jected; and, on the contrary, go home conversation. The persons to whole to their dinners with a good stomach behaviour and discourse I have most re and chearful aspect, when ubulus seems gard are such as are between these two to intimate that things go well. Nay, forts of men; such as have not spirits their veneration towards him is so great, too active to be happy and well pleased that when they are in other company in a private condition, nor complexions they speak and act after him; are wise too warm to make them neglect the dus in his sentences; and are no suoner sat tics and relations of life. Of these sort down at their own tables, but they hope of men consist the worthier part of man or fear, rejoice or despond, as they saw
kind; of these are all good fathers, ge him do at the coffee-house. In a word, i nerous brothers, fincere friends, and every man is Eubulus as soon as his
faithful subjects. Their entertainments back is turned. are derived rather from reason than ima Having here given an account of the gination; which is the cause that there several reigns that succeed each other is no impatier.ce or instability in their from day-break till dinner-time, I Mall speech or a&tion. You see in their mention the monarchs of the afternoon countenances they are at home, and in on another occasion, and Mut up the quiet porchion of the present initant, as whole series of them with the hiftory of