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should esteem virtue, though in a foe, and abhor vice, though in a friend.
I speak this with an eye to those cruel treatments which men of all sides are apt to give the characters of those who do not agree with them. How many persons of undoubted probity, and exemplary virtue, on either side, are blackened and defamed ? how many men of honour exposed to public obloquy and reproach? Those therefore who are either the instruments or abettors in such infernal dealings, ought to be looked upon as persons who make use of religion to promote their cause, not of their cause to promote religion.
Covent-Garden, Dec. 7. Mr. Spectator, • I CANNOT, without a double injustice, forbear expressing to you the satisfaction which a whole clan of virtuosos have received from those hints which you have lately given the town on the Cartons of the inimitable Raphael. It should be, methinks, the bu(siness of a Spectator to improve the pleasures of sight, and there cannot be a more immediate way to
it than recommending the study and observation of 'excellent drawings and pictures. When I first went ( to view those of Raphael which you have celebrat(ed, I must confess I was, but barely pleased ; the ! next time I liked them better, but at last, as I grew
better acquainted with them, I fell deeply in love (with them, like wise speeches they sunk deep into
my heart ; for you know, Mr. Spectator, that a man • of wit may extremely affect one for the present, but • if he has not discretion, his merit soon vanishes
away; while a wise man that has not so great a stock • of wit, shall nevertheless give you a far greater and (more lasting satisfaction: just so it is in a picture " that is smartly touched out not well studied ; one
may call it a witty picture, though the painter in the • mean time may be in danger of being called a fool. « On the other hand, a picture that is thoroughly un• derstood in the whole, and well performed in the
particulars, that is, begun on the foundation of geo• metry, carried on by the rules of perspective, ar(chitecture, and anatomy, and perfected by a good • harmony, a just and natural colouring, and such * passions, and expressions of the mind as are almost • peculiar to Raphael; this is what you may justly
style a wise picture, and which seldom fails to strike us dumb, until we can assemble all our faculties to • make but a tolerable judgment upon it. Other pic• tures are made for the eyes only, as rattles are made • for children's ears; and certainly that picture • that only pleases the eye, without representing some 'well-chosen part of nature or other, does but shew « what fine colours are to be sold at the colour-shop, ( and mocks the works of the Creator. If the best • imitator of nature, is not to be esteemed the best
painter, but he that makes the greatest show and glare of colours, it will necessarily follow, that he who can array himself in the most gaudy draperies ! is best dressed, and he that can speak loudest the • best orator. Every man, when he looks on a picture • should examine it according to that share of reason
he is master of, or he will be in danger of making a
wrong judgment. If men as they walk abroad would • make more frequent observations on those beauties
6 of nature which every moment present themselves 6 to their view, they would be better judges when they 6 saw her well imitated at home : this would help tự
correct those errors which most pretenders fall into; • who are over-hasty in their judgments, and will not
stay to let reason come in for a share in the decision, • It was for want of this that men mistake in this case, 6 and in common life, a wild extravagant pencil for
one that is truly bold and great, an impudent fellow • for a man of true courage and bravery, hasty and 6 unreasonable actions for enterprises of spirit and re! solution, gaudy colouring for that which is truly beautiful, a false and insinuating discourse for simple truth elegantly recommended. The parallel will hold through all the parts of life and painting too; 6 and the virtuosos abovementioned will be glad to see
you draw it with your terms of art. As the shadows • in a picture represent the serious or melancholy, so • the lights do the bright and lively thoughts: as (there should be but one forcible light in a picture, ! which should catch the eye and fall on the hero; so
there should be but one object of our love, even the (author of nature. These and the like reflections, • well improved, might very much contribute to open • the beauty of that art, and prevent young people from being poisoned by the ill gusto of any extravagant workman that should be imposed upon us.
. I am, Sir,
• Your most humble servant.'
• Mr. Spectator, • THOUGH I am a woman, yet I am one of those who confess themselves highly pleased with a spe"culation you obliged the world with some time ago, • from an cld Greek poet you call Simonides, in rela
tion to the several natures and distinctions of our own 'sex. I could not but admire how justly the characters of women in this age, fall in with the times of
• Simonides, there being no one of those sorts I have * not at some time or other of my life met with a sam
ple of. But, Sir, the subjects of this present address are a set of women comprehended, I think, in the: . ninth species of that speculation, called the apes ; • the description of whom I find to be, “ That they
are such as are both ugly and ill-natured, who have
nothing beautiful themselves, and endeavour to de. “ tract from or ridicule every thing that appears so « in others.” Now, Sir, this sect, as I have been told, • is very frequent in the great town where you live; • but as my circumstance of life obliges me to reside • altogether in the country, though not many miles
from London, I cannot have met with a great num• ber of them, nor indeed is it a desirable acquaintance,
as I have lately found by experience. You must know, • Sir, that at the beginning of this summer, a family • of these apes came and settled for the season not far • from the place where I live. As they were strangers . in the country, they were visited by the ladies about
them, of whom I was one, with an humanity usual • in those that pass most of their time in solitude. • The apes lived with us very agreeably our own way, • until towards the end of the summer, when they be
gan to bethink themselves of returning to town; then • it was, Mr. Spectator, that they began to set them• selves about the proper and distinguishing business • of their character; and, as it is said of evil spirits, • that they are apt to carry away a piece of the house • they are about to leave, the apes, without regard to
common mercy, civility, or gratitude, thought fit to • mimic, and fall foul on the faces, dress, and beha
viour of their innocent neighbours, bestowing abo• minable censures and disgraceful appellations, com• monly called nick-names, on all of them; and, in • short, like true fine ladies, made their honest plain• ness and sincerity matter of ridicule. I could not but . acquaint you with these grievances, as well at the
desire of all the parties injured, as from my own in• clination. I hope, Sir, if you cannot propose entirely
to reform this evil, you will take such notice of it in • some of your future speculations, as may put the de
serving part of our sex on their guard against these creatures : and, at the same time, the apes may be sensible, that this sort of mirth is so far from an innocent diversion, that it is in the highest degree that vice which is said to comprehend all others. • I am, Sir, your humble servant,
. CONSTANTIA FIELD.'
No. CCXLV, TUESDAY, DECEMBER 11.
Ficta voluptatis causâ sint proxima veris.
Fictions, to please, should wear the face of truth.
THERE is nothing which one regards so much with an eye of mirth and pity as innocence, when it has in it a dash of folly. At the same time that one esteems the virtue, one is tempted to laugh at the simplicity which accompanies it. When a man is made up wholiy of the dove, without the least grain of the serpent in his composition, he becomes ridiculous in many circumstances of life, and very often discredits his best actions. The Cordeliers tell a story of their founder St. Francis, that as he passed the streets in the dusk of the evening, he discovered а
fellow with a maid in a corner; upon which the good man, say they, lifted up his hands to heaven with a secret thanksgiving, that there was still so much Christian charity in the world. The innocence of the saint made him mistake the kiss of a lover for a salute