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in it, which he may not meet with in Αriftotle, Λάαν άνω άθεσκε ποτί λόφον, αλλ' ότε μέλλον and which were not commonly known by all the
"Ακρον υπερβαλέειν, τότ' αποτρέψασκεKραίαιίς, poets of the Augustan age. His way of exprefling and applying them, not his invention of Aύτις έπεία πέδονδε κυλίνδειο λάας αναιδής.
Odyff. 1, II. them, is what we are chiefly to admire.
“ I turn'd my eye, and as I turn’d survey'd For this reason I think there is nothing in the
« A mournful vision! the Sisyphian shade: world so tiresome as the works of those critics
“ With many a weary step, and many a gioan, who write in a positive dogmatic way, without
Up the high hill he heaves a huge round stone: either language, genius, or imagination. If the
"? The huge round stone, resulting with a bound, reader would see how the best of the Latin critics
« Thunders impetuous down, and smokes along writ, he may find their manner very beautifully
" the ground.”
Pore. described in the characters of Horace, Petro. nius, Quintillian, and Longinus, as they are It would be endless to quote verscs out of Virdrawn in the essay of which I am now speaking. gil which have this particular kind of beauty in
Since I have mentioned Longinus, who in his the numbers; but I may take an occasion in a reflexions has given us the same kind of sublime, future paper to thew several of them which have which he observes in the several passages that oc- escaped the observation of others. cafioned them; I cannot but take notice, that I cannot conclude this paper without taking our Fnglish author has after the same manner notice that we have three poems in our tongue, exemplified several of his precepts in the very which are of the same nature, and each of them a precepts themselves. I shall produce two or master-piece in its kind; the essay on translated three instances of this kind. Speaking of the in- verse, the essay on the art of poetry, and the essay fipid smoothness which some readers are so much upon criticism. in love with, he has the following verses. “ These equal syllables alone require, « Tho' oft the ear the open vowels tire; N° 254, FRIDAY, DECEMBER 21. « While expletives their feeble aid do join, « And ten Iow words oft creep in one dull Σεμνός έρως αρετής, ο δε κυπρίδος άσχος οφέλλει. « line."
On love of virtue reverence attends, The gaping of the vowels in the second line, But sensual pleasure in our ruin ends. the expletive do in the third, and the ten mono
HEN I consider the falfe impressions syllables in the fourth, give such a beauty to this
which are received by the generality of paffage, as would have been very much admired the world, I am troubled at none more than a in an ancient poet. The reader may observe the certain levity of thought, which many young following lines in the same view.
women of quality have entertained, to the hazard " A needless Alexandrine ends the song,
of their characters, and the certain misfortune of “ That like a wounded snake drags its flow length their lives. The first of the following letters « along."
may best represent the faults I would now point
at, and the answer to it the temper of mind in a And afterwards,
contrary character. “ 'Tis not enough no harsness gives offence,
? My dear Harriot, « The found must seem an echo to the sense. “ Soft is the strain when Zephyr gently blows,
F thou art the, but oh how fallen, low And the smooth stream in smoother numbers
that is gay and agreeable! To be married I find ó But when loud surges'lash the founding shore,
is to be buried alive; I cannot conceive it more " The hoarse rough verse ihou'd like the torrent
dismal to be shut up in a vault to converse with
the shades of my ancestors, than to be carried * When Ajax ítrives some rock's vast weight to
down to an old manor-house in the country, "I throw,
r and confined to the conversation of a cober hur.
band and an aukward chamber-maid. For " The line too labours, and the words move
« variety I suppose you may entertain yourself " Not so, when swift Camilla scours the plain,
(with madam in her grogram gown, the spouse « Flies b'er th' unbending corn, and skims along
of your parith vicar, who has by this time I ani " the main,"
fure well furnished you with receipts for mak
ring salves and poflets, distilling cordial-waters, The beautiful distich upon Ajax in the forego- ' making syrups, and applying poultices. ing lines, puts me in mind of a description in Bleft folitude ! I wish thee joy, my dear, Homer's Odyssey, which none of the critics have of thy loved retirement, which indeed you taken notice of. It is where Sisyphus is repre. • would persuade me is very agreeable, and difsented listing his stone up the hill, which is no ? ferent enough from what I have hcre described : sooner carried to the top of it, but it immediately "but, child, I am afraid thy brains are a little tumbles to the bottom. This double motion of disordered with romances and novels : after fix the stone is admirably described in the numbers ' months marriage to hear thee talk of love, and of these verses; as in the four first it is heaved up paint the country scenes fo fortly, is a little by several Spondecs intermixed with proper extravagant; one would think you lived the breathing places, and at lait trundles down in a "lives of fylvan deities, or roved among the walks concinual line of Dactyis.
of paradisex like the first happy pair. But Και μην Σίσυφον, είσειδον, κρατέρ' άλγε' έχουλα,
prýthee leave these whimsies, and come to
town in order to live and talk like other more Λάαν βασάζoνια πελώριον αμφοτέρησιν. . " tals. However, as I am cxtremely interested *Ητοι ο μεν στηρι πιόμενος χερσίν τε τοσίν τε, in your reputation, I would willingly give you
a little good advice at your first appearance, ' pious woman; I wish Me had the handling of ' under the character of a married woman : it is you and Mrs. Modif ; you would find, if you
a little infolent in me perhaps to advise a ma were too free with her, she would soon make tron;
but I am so afraid you will make fo filly you as charming as ever you were, the would a figure as a fond wife, that I cannot help warn • make you blush as much as if you never had ing you not to appear in any public places with 6 been fine ladies. The vicar, madam, is so kind your husband, and never to faunter about St. as to visit my husband, and his agreeable conJames's Park together: if you presume to en ( versation has brought him to enjoy many sober ter the ring at Hyde Park together, you are happy hours when even I am Thut out, and ruined for ever; nor must you take the least my dear master is entertained only with his notice of one another at the play-house or own thoughts, These things, dear madam, opera, unless you would be laughed at for a I will be lasting satisfactions, when the fine lavery loving couple most happily, paired in the • dies, and the coxcombs by whom they form yoke of wedlock. I would recommend the themselves, are irreparably ridiculous, ridicu. example of an acquaintance of ours to your • lous in old age. I am, madam, imitation; the is the most negligent and fa
• Your most humble servant, * fhionable wife in the world ; Me is hardly ever
' Mary Home.' seen in the fame place with her husband, and if they happen to meet, you would think them
Dear Mr. Spectator, perfect strangers : the never was heard to name OU have no goodness in the world, and him in his absence, and takes care he shall never
are not in earnest in any thing you say be the subject of any discourse she has a share that is serious, if you do not send me a plain in. I hope you will propose this lady as a o answer to this : 1 happened some days past to
pattern, though I am very much afraid you be at the play, where during the time of per• will be fo filly to think Portia, &c, Sabine ( formance, I could not keep my eyes off from 6 and Roman wives much b.ighter examples. a beautiful young creature who sat just before
I wish it may never come into your head to me, and who I have been fince informed has • imitate those antiquated creatures so far, as to
no fortune. It would utterly ruin my repucome into public in the habit as well as air of a tation for discretion to marry such-a-one, and « Roman matron. You make already the enter by what I can learn she has a character of great "tainment at Mrs. Modish's tea-table; she says, - modesty, so that there is nothing to be thought she always thought you a discreet person, and on any other way. My mind has ever since
qualified to manage a family with admirable been so wholly bent on her, that I am much in • prudence: me des to see what demure and se • danger of doing something very extravagant crious airs wedlock has given you, but she says, ' without your speedy advice to, Sir, " she shall never forgive your choice of so gallant
• Your most humble servant,' a mai as Bellamour to transform him to a mere « sober husband; it was unpardonable: you see, tleman, but by another question.
I am sorry I cannot answer this impatient genmy dear, we all envý your happiness, and no • person more than
Dear Correspondent, - Your humble servant,
OULD you marry to please other peoLydia.' ple, or yourself?
E not in. pain, good madam, for my ap
pearance in town; I shall frequent no N° 255. SATURDAY, DECEMBER 22. public places, or make any visits where the
character of a modest wife is ridiculous.. AS Laudis amore tumos ? sunt certa piacula, qua te * for your wild raillery on matrimony, it is all Ter purè leéto poterunt recreare libello. - hypocrisy: you, and all the handsome young
Hor. Ep. d. lib. 1. vet. 36. women of your acquaintance, shew yourselves to no other purpose than to gain a conquest
IMIT A T E D. cover some man of worth, in order to bestow Know, there are rhymes, which (fresh and fresh your charms and fortune on him.
There is s no indecency in the confeffion, the delign is Will cure the arrant'st puppy of his pride.
apply'd) " modest and honourable, and all your affecta
Pope. otion cannot disguise it.
"I am married, and have no other concern but H E soul, considered abstractedly from its " to pleas: the man I love; he is the end of every
care I have; if I dress it is for him; if I read a ture, now in its resolves, and languishing in its poem 'or a play, it is to qualify myself for a con executions. The use therefore of the passions is versation agreeable to his taste: he is almost to stir it up, and to put it upon action, to awaken the end of my devotions; half my prayers are
the understanding, to enforce the will, and to for his happiness I love to talk of him, and make the whole man more vigorous and attennever hear him named but with pleasure and tive in the prosecution of his designs.
As this is * emotion. I am your friend, and wish you hap- the end of the passions in general, so it is parti• piness, but am sorry to tee by the air of your cularly of ambition, which 'pushes the soul to
letter that there are a set of women who are got such actions as are apt to procure honour and re' into the common-place raillery of every thing putation to the actor. But if we carry our rethat is fober, decent, and proper: matrimony flexions higher, we may discover farther ends
and the clergy are the topics of people of little of Providence in implanting this passion in man(wit and no understanding. I own to you, I kind. i have learned of the vicar's wife all you tax me It was necessary for the world, that arts Mould * with : Sie is a diforest, ingenious, pleasant be invented and improved, books written and
transmitted to posterity, nations conquered and But farther, this desire of fame naturally be. civilized : now since the proper and genuine mo trays the ambitious man into such indecencies, tives to these and the like great actions, would as are a lessening to his reputation. He is still only influence virtuous minds; there would be afraid left any of his actions should be thrown but small improvements in the world, were there away in private, left his deserts mould be connot some common principle of action working cealed from the notice of the world, or receive equally with all men. And such a principle is any disadvantage from the reports which others ambition or a desire of fame, by which great en
make of them. This often lets him on empty dowments are not suffered to lie idle and useless boaits and oftentations of himself, and betrays to the public, and many vicious men, over-reach- him into vain fantastical recitals of his own pered, as it were, and engaged contrary to their na- formances : his discourse generally leans one way, tural inclinations in a glorious and laudable. and, whatever is the subject of it, tends obliquely course of action. For we may farther observe, either to the detracting from others, or to the exa that men of the greatest abilities are most fired tolling of himself. Vanity is the natural weakwith ambition : and that on the contrary, mean
ness of an ambitious man, which exposes him to and narrow minds are the least actuated by it : the secret scorn and derision of those he converses whether it be that a man's sense of his own inca- with, and ruins the character he is fo industrious pacities makes him despair of coming at fame, or to advance by it. For though his actions are that he has not enough range of thought to look never so glorious, they lose their luftre when they out for any good which does not more imme are drawn at large, and set to show by his own diately relate to his interest or convenience, or hand; and as the world is more apt to find faule that Providence, in the very frame of his soul, than to commend, the boast will probably be would not subject him to such a paflion as censured when the great action that occasioned it would be useless to the world, and a torment to is forgotten. himself.
Besides, this very desire of fame is looked on Were not this defire of fame very strong, as a meanness and imperfection in the greatest the difficulty of obtaining it, and the danger of character. A folid and substantial greatness of Josing it when obtained, would be sufficient to foul looks down with a generous neglect on the deter a man from so vain a pursuit.
censures and applauses of the multitude, and How few are there who are furnished with places a man beyond the little noise and itrife of abilities sufficient to recommend their actions to tongues. Accordingly we find in ourielves a fethe admiration of the world, and to distinguith cret awe and veneration for the character of one themselves from the rest of mankind ? Providence who moves about us in a regular and illustrious for the most part sets us upon a level, and ob- course of virtue, without any regard to our good serves a kind of proportion in its dispensation to. or ill opinions of him, to our reproaches or comwards us. If it renders us perfect in one accom
mendations. As on the contrary it is usual for plishment, it generally leaves us defective in ano us, when we would take off from the fame and ther, and seems careful rather of preserving every reputation of an action, to afcribe it to vain-gloperson from being mean and deficient in his ry, and a desire of fame in the actor, Nor is this qualifications, than of making any single one
common judgment and opinion of mankind illeminent or extraordinary.
founded : for certainly it denotes no great braAnd among those who are the most richly en very of mind to be worked up to any noble dowed by nature, and accomplished by their own action by fo selfith a motive, and to do that industry, how few are there whose virtues are not out of a desire of fame, which we could not be obscured by the ignorance, prejudice or enyy of prompted to by a disinterested love to mankind, their beholders ? Some men cannot discern be or by a generous paffion for the glory of him that tween a noble and a mean action : others are
madeus. apt to attribute them to some false end or inten
Thus is fame a thing difficult to be obtained by tion; or others purposely misrepresent, or put a all, but particularly by those who thirst after it, wrong interpretation on them.
since most men have so much either of ill-nature, But the more to enforce this consideration, we or of wariness, as not to gratify or footh the may observe that those are generally moft unsuc- vanity of the ambitious man; and since this cessful in their pursuit after fame, who are moft very thirst after fame naturally betrays him into desirous of obtaining it. It is Salluft's remark such indecencies as are a lessening to his reputaupon Cato, that the less he coveted glory the tion, and is itself looked upon as a weakness in more he acquired it.
the greatest characters. Men take an ill-natured pleasure in crossing
In the next place, fame is easily loft, and our inclinations, and disappointing us in what
as difficult to be preserved as it was at first our hearts are most set apon. When therefore to be acquired. But this I shall make the they have discovered the passionate defire of fame subject of a following paper. in the ambitious man, as no temper of mind is
с more apt to shew itself, they become sparing and reserved in their commendations, they envy him No 256. MONDAY, DECEMBER 24. the satisfaction of an applause, and look on their onun yés te xaxs célelase xson pèr ásãęzı praites rather as a kindnefs done to his perion, Ρεία μάλ', αργαλέη δε φέρειν.than as a tribute paid to his merit. Others who
Hef. are free from this natural perverseness of temper grow wary in their praises of one, who fets Desire of fame by various ways is crost, too great a value on them, left they should raise Hard to be gain'd, and easy to be loft him too high in his own imagination, and by son. HERE are many passions and tempers of sequence remove him to a greater distance from themselves,
and vilify the merit of one rising in the esteem of Tt2
mankind. All those who made their entrance actions of a great man, who is not, always, the into the world with the same advantages, and were best prepared for so narrow an inspection. For once looked on as his equals, are apt to think the we may generally observe, that our admiration of fm of his merits a reflexion on their own inde a famous man lesiens upon our nearer acquaintance forts; and will therefore take care to reproach with him: and that we seldom hear the descriphim with the scandal of some past action, or dero- tion of a celebrated person, without a catalogue of gate from the worth of the present, that they may fome notorious weaknesses and infirmities. The till keep him on the same level with themselves. reason may be, because any little slip is more conThe like kind of confideration often ftirs up the fpicuous and observable in his conduct than in envy of such as were once his superiors, who think another's, as it is not of a piece with the rest of it a detraction from their merit to see another get his character, or because it is impossible for a man ground upon them and overtake them in the pur at the same time to be attentive to the more imfuits of glory; and will therefore endeavour to portant part of his life, and to keep a watchful fink his reputation, that they may the better pre- eye over all the inconsiderable circumstances of his terve their own. Thore who were once his equals behaviour and conversation; or because, as we envy and defame him, because they now see him have before observed, the same temper of mind their superior; and those who were once his supe- which inclines us to a desire of fame, naturally periors, because they looked upon him as their betrays us into fuch nips and unwearinesses as are equal.
not incident to men of a contrary disposition. But farther, a man whose extraordinary reputa After all it must be confessed, that a noble and tion thus lifts him up to the notice and observation triumphant merit often breaks through and dissiof mankind, draws a multitude of eyes upon him pates these little spots and fullies in its reputathat will narrowly infpect every part of him, con- tion; but if by a mistaken pursuit after fame, or fider him nicely in all views, and not be a little through human infirmity, any false step be made pleased when they have taken him in the worst in the more momentous concerns of life, the whole and moít disadvantageous light. There are many scheme of ambitious designs is broken and disapwho find a pleasure in contradicting the common pointed. The smaller stains and blemishes may, reports of fame, and in spreading abroad the weak- gie away and disappear amidst the brightness that neffes of an exalted character. They publish their surrounds them ; but a blot of a deeper nature ill-natured discoveries with a secret pride, and ap- casts a shade on all the other beauties, and darkplaud them!elves for the fingularity of their judg- ens the whole character. How difficult therefore ment which has searched deeper than others, de- is it to preserve a great name, when he that has tected what the rest of the world have overlooked, acquired it is so obnoxious to such little weak, and found a fiaw in what the generality of man neiles and infirmities that are no small diminution kind ajmired. Others there are, who proclaim to it when discovered, especially when they are so the errors and intirmities of a great man with an industriously proclaimed, and aggravated by such as inward satisfaction and complacency, if they dis were once his superiors or equals ; by such as cover none of the like errors and infirmities in would set to thew their judgment or their wit, themselves; for while they are exposing another's and by such as are guilty or innocent of the same weaknesses, they are tacitly aiming at their own flips or misconducts in their own behaviour! commendations, who are not subject to the like But were there none of these dispositions in infirmities, and are apt to be transported with a others to censure a famous man, nor any such missecret kind of vanity to see themselves superior in carriages in himself, yet would he meet with no fome respects to one of a sublime and celebrated small trouble in keeping up his reputation in all reputation. Nay, it very often happens, that none its height and splendor. There must be always a are more industrious in publishing the blemishes of noble train of actions to preserve his fame in life an extraordinary reputation, than such as lie open and motion. For when it is once at a stand, it to the fame cenfures in their own characters, as naturally flags and larguishes. Admiration is a either hoping to excuse their own defects by the very short-lived passion, that immediately decays authority of so high an example, or raising an upon growing familiar with its object, unless it be imaginary applause to themselves for resembling a still fed with fresh discoveries, and kept alive by a person of an exalted reputation, though in the new perpetual succession of miracles rifing ap to blameable parts of his character. If all these fe- its view. And even the greatest actions of a celetret springs of detraction fail, yet very often a vaia brated person labour under this disadvantage, that oftentation of wit sets a man on attacking an efta- however surprising and extraordinary thele may be, blished name, and facrificing it to the mirth and they are no more than what are expected from Jaughter of those about him. A fatire or a libel him; but on the contrary, if they fall any thing on one of the common ftamp, never meets with below the opinion that is conceived of him, tho? that reception and approbation among its readers they might raise the reputation of another, they as what is aimed at a person whose merit places are a diminution to his. hiin upon an eminence, and gives him a more con One would think there should be something fpicuous figure among men. Whether it be that wonderfully pleasing in the possession of fame, we think it shews greater art to expose and turn that, notwithitanding all these mortifying confito ridicule a man whose character seeins so im- derations, can engage a man in so desperate a purproper a subject for it, or that we are pleased by suit;* and yet if we consider the littie happiness iome implicit kind of revenge to see him taken that attends a great character, and the multitude down and humbled in his reputation, and in some of disquietudes to which the desire of it subjęcie measure reduced to our own rank, who had Yo far an ambitious mind, one would be still the more raised himself above us in the reports and opinions surprised to see fo many restless candidates for of mankind.
glory. Thus we see how many dark and intricate mo Ambition raises a secret tumult in the foul, it tives there are to detraction and defamation, and inflames the mind, and puts it into a violent how many malicious spies are searching into the hurry of thought; it is kill reaching after an
empty imaginary good, that has not in it the desired. The enjoyment of it brings but very
litpower to abate or satisfy it. Most other things tle pleasure, though the loss or want of it be very we long for can allay the cravings of their proper fenfible and afflicting; and even this little happisense, and for a while set the appetite at reít: but nefs is so very precarious, that it wholly depends fame is a good so wholly foreign to our natures, on the will of others. We are not only tortured that we have no faculty in the soul adapted to it, by the reproaches which are offered us, but are difnor any organ in the body to relish it; an object appointed by the filence of men when it is unexof desire placed out of the poffibility of fruition. pected ; and humbled even by their praises. It may indeed fill the mind for a while with a
с giddy kind of pleasure, but it is such a pleasure as makes a man restless and uneasy under it; and
N° which does not to much satisfy the present thirst,
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 25. as it excites fresh defires, and lets the soul on new enterprises. For how few ambitious men are
--0υχ’ εύδει Διός there, who have got as much fame as they desired, 'Oplands érywę do Psv xai nagulo aóvo. and whose thirst after it has not been as eager in
Incert. ex. Stob. the very height of their reputation, as it was be No Number seals the eye of Providence, fore they became known and eminent among men? Present to ev'ry action we commence. 'There is not any circumstance in Cæsar's character
I ing which Cicero tells us he frequently made use of in private conversation, " That he was fatis treated it in a particular order and method. I have “ find with his share of life and fame." Se fatis first of all considered the reasons why providence wel ad nataram, vel ad gloriam vixise. Many in- may have implanted in our mind such a principle deed have given over their pursuits after fame, but of action. I have in the next place thewn from that has proceeded either from the disappointments many considerations, first, that fame is a thing difthey have met in it, or from their experience of ficult to be obtained, and easily loft; fecondly, the little pleasure which attends it, or from the that it brings the ambitious man very little happiþetter informations or natural coldness of old age; ness, but subjects him to much uneasiness and difbut seldom from a full satisfaction and acquiescence satisfaction. I thall in the last place few, that it in their present enjoyments of it.
hinders us from obtaining an end which we have Nor is fame only unsatisfying in itself, but the abilities to acquire, and which is accompanied with desire of it lays us open to many accidental trou
fulness of satisfaction. I need not tell my reader, bles which those are free from who have not such a that I mean by this end that happiness which is tender regard for it. How often is the ambitious reserved for us in another world, which every one man cast down and disappointed, if he receives no has abilities to procure, and which will bring along praise where he expected it? Náy how often is he with it “ fulness of joy and pleasures' for evermortified with the very praises he receives, if they " more.” do not rise so high as he thinks they ought, which How the pursuit after fame may hinder us in they feldorn do unless increased by flattery, since the attainment of this great end, I shall leave the few men have so good an opinion of us as we have reader to collect from the three following confiderof ourselves ? But if the ambitious man can be fo ations. much grieved even with praise itself, how will he First, Because the strong defire of fame breeds be able to bear up under scandal and defamation ? several vicious habits in the mind. For the same temper of mind which makes him Secondly, Because many of those actions, which defire fame, makes him hate reproach. If he can are apt to procure fame, are not in their nature be transported with the extraordinary praises of conducive to this our ultimate happiness. men, he will be as much dejected by their cen Thirdly, Because if we should allow the same sures. How little therefore is the happiness of an actions to be the proper instruments, both of ac,ambitious man, who gives every one a dominion quiring fame, and of procuring this happiness, over it, who thus subjects himself to the good or they would nevertheless fail in the attainment of ill speeches of others, and puts it in the power of this last end, if they proceeded from a desire of the every malicious tongue to throw him into a fit of firit. melancholy, and destroy his natural reft and repose These three propositions are self-evident to of mind? especially when we consider that the those who are versed in speculations of morality, world is more apt to censure than applaud, and For which reason I shall not enlarge upon them, himself fuller of imperfections than virtues. but proceed to a point of the same nature, which
We may farther observe, that such a man will may open to us a more uncommog field of spcculabe more grieved for the loss of fame, than he could tion. have been pleased with the enjoyment of it. For From what has been already observed, I think though the presence of this imaginary good cannot we may make a natural conclufion, that it is the make us happy, the absence of it may make us greatest fully to seek the praise or approbation of miserable; because in the enjoyment of an object any being, besides the Supreme, and that for these we only find that share of pleasure which it is ca two reasons ; because no other being can make a pable of giving us, but in the lofs of it we do not right judgment of us, and esteem us according to proportion our grief to the real value it bears, but our merits; and because we can procure no confito the value our fancies and imaginations set upon derable benefit or advantage from the esteem and it.
approbation of any other being. So inconfiderable is the satisfaction that fame In the first place, no other being can make a brings along with it, and so great the disquietudes right judgment of us, and efteem us according to to which it makes us liable. The desire of it stirs our merits. Created beings see nothing but our up very uneasy motions in the mind, and is rather outside, and can therefore only frame a judgment inflamed than satisfied by the prelease of the thing of us from our exterior actions and behaviour; but