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who, having a vast turn for invention, and an extraordinary share of patriotism, is determined to devote the remainder of his days to the public service. He is therefore always on the watch for some new discovery,
any way to the honour and happiness of his countrymen. I introduce him to my readers, not as a temporary acquaintance, but as a person they will often encounter in the course of these papers. As he was determined not to be behindhand in manifesting his regard for his old friend, he no sooner heard of my undertaking than he sent to me the advertisement of an eminent stationer, whose patron he declared himself to be, and whom I suspect to be indebted to him for most of his inventions,
“Mr. Wright gives notice, that there may be had, " at his library in the Strand, pocket-books for
writing in the dark. These books are so contrived, “ that a person may, with great ease,
any posture, “ write any thing thereon, beginning where he left “ off. He is not even obliged to take his hand from “ beneath the bed-clothes. This way of writing may “ be as swift, lineal, and legible, as the operations of “ day-light, and must be exceedingly useful to phi“ losophers and poets. The copper instrument is “ neat and handy."
As my task, however, is such as to require more alleviation than even these honourable assistances supply, I must still invite those who have the means and the leisure, to afford me their aid. The Greek proverb, εις ανηρ εδεις ανηρ, applies to my present undertaking; for one man cannot well act a sufficient number of parts to suit so many tastes and complexions. I will therefore adopt any thing that I think will conduce to the ends of my work, which is to encourage innocent mirth, and to administer religion, morality, and criticism, in the most palatable forms.
It is my design, after the example of the most venerable of those who have preceded me in this undertaking, to set up for a redresser, or an avenger of ordinary grievances, in the commerce of society; and I invite particularly the ladies to make application to me, when they deign to think that an old man can be of
any use to them. If they have children that torment them, or husbands that neglect them, or lovers that deceive them, they may depend upon my assistance, the mode of which they themselves may prescribe. I promise also to attend to the complaints of my own sex, when they do not originate in their own misconduct, and upon undoubted proofs being given that every thing has been done on their part towards the cure of the evil.
I shall now give my reasons for not taking notice of some requisitions which have already been made to me on the score of grievances, &c.
The lamentation of Mr. T--, the tall Irishman, on his being disappointed of his new liveries on his marriage with old Mrs. Ogleby, I considered as a very heavy charge, till upon inquiry I discovered, that there was a bill upon him ever since he wore his first pair of callimanco breeches, and turned his pepper-and-salt coat to walk in the procession on St. Patrick's day. When my Irish client has paid off his arrears, if his tailor continue to disappoint him, I promise to keep no measures with the delinquent.
The gentleman who complains to me that his Sunday's dinner is commonly spoiled by the length of Dr. Her's sermons, may at any time remove the grievance by begging the Doctor's company to dinner.
A married lady makes affidavit to me, that she scarcely ever goes into public, but a man of fashion attacks her with indecent conversation. She complains very bitterly of this outrage upon decorum, and this cowardly assassination of virtue and modesty ; but declares that she cannot be so singularly ill-bred as to take umbrage at any thing that is offered her by so fine a gentleman. This lady is yet to learn, that to be fine gentlemen we must begin with being men of honour. She has either forgotten, or never knew, that Sir Philip Sidney, who was esteemed the most accomplished cavalier in Christendom, was no less conspicuous for the spotless integrity of his life; that the same man wrote and felt elegantly on the subject of love, produced a version of the Psalms, and perished in battle at the age of thirty-two, brightening his last moments with a well-known act of Christian heroism. I would advise
my fair client to improve her ideas of good breeding by some truer model than the one she has before her, and to try a little of her husband's company, who perhaps may be nearer the mark. I can assure her that the true gentleman is of much nobler metal than any of our swaggering youths about town; and, to borrow the phrase of that gallant Englishman whose name has been mentioned above, he must be distinguished by "high-erected thoughts, seated in a heart of courtesy."
The cheesemonger who takes it so ill that he cannot obtain a gentlemanly satisfaction of Mr. Holiday, the hatter, may apply to Sir Lucius O'Trotter, who lodges with a widow on Snow-hill, and who will be very glad to pay his bill to Mr. H. by discharging the contents of his pistol at him.
The Welsh gentleman who thinks it so hard that his jokes are never regarded, must send for a fresh pipe of Madeira, add another dish to his table, and one story more to his chin.
The young nobleman who complains that my papers are not merry enough, may interleave them with some scenes out of our latest tragedies.
The discerning part of my readers will enter into my reasons for not listening to such kind of complaints, while they cannot but applaud my design of embarking in so laudable a career as that of an avenger of wrongs. The allegations I hope to receive from different quarters, will greatly enrich my stock of temporary matter, and bring me acquainted with the various shapes of folly and infamy, as they start up with a rank and fungous luxuriance in the walks of business and pleasure.
N° 8. TUESDAY, APRIL 3.
Αναχωρησεις αυτοις ζητεσιν, αγροικίας και αιγιαλες
και ορη ειωθας δε και συ τα τοιαυτα μαλισα ποθειν, όλον δε τοτο ιδιωτικωτατον εςιν, εξον ής αν ωρας εθελησης εις εαυτον αναχωρειν. Ουδαμε γαρ οτε ησυχιωτερον 8τε απραγμoνεςερον ανθρωπος αναχωρει, η εις τον εαυτ8 ψυχην μαλισθ' οσις, εχει ενδον τοιαυτα, εις α εγχυψας, εν παση ευμάρεια ευθυς γινεται: Την δε ευμάρειαν λεγω εδεν αλλο η ευκοσμιαν. συνεκως 8ν διδε σεαυτω ταυτην την αναχωρησιν, και ανανεε σεαυτον.
MARC. ANTON. iv. 3. There are those who look out for solitary retreats, such as ham
lets, shores, and mountains: you yourself discover a vast inclination for such abodes. All this, however, is a vulgar resource, since in fact you carry this retreat about you, to enjoy it whenever you please; for no where will a man find a more tranquil and abstracted refuge than in the recesses of his own soul --- especially if he possess within himself a fund for that sober contemplation, which begets serenity of mind. By serenity I mean that internal repose of the spirits, which implies a certain mental equilibrium and economy. Court, as it becomes you, this true retirement, and thus renew, from time to time, your acquaintance with yourself. Last night, after a day's close application in my study, I resolved to give my thoughts a little stretch; and for that purpose took a walk into the fields of my neighbour Blunt. As the reader is already acquainted with the transformation that has been wrought in this gentleman's character, he will not be surprised to hear that I am at present free to range where I please over his grounds; and that he