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I

Thursday, May 1.

-Perituræ parcite charta. Juv. Sat. 1. v. 18.
In mercy fpare us, when we do our best
To make as much waste paper as the rest.

Have often pleafed myself with confidering the two kinds of benefits which accrue to the public from thefe my fpeculations, and which, were I to fpeak after the manner of logicians, I would diftinguish into the material and the formal. By the latter I understand those advantages which my readers receive, as their minds are either improv'd or delighted by thefe my daily labours; but having already feveral times defcanted on my endea. vours in this light, I fhall at prefent wholly confine my felf to the confideration of the former. By the word material I mean thofe benefits which arife to the public from thefe my fpeculations, as they confume a confiderable quantity of our paper manufacture, employ our artifads in printing, and find bufinefs for great numbers. of indigent perfons.

Our paper-manufacture takes into it feveral mean materials which could be put to no other ufe, and affords work for feveral hands in the collecting of them, which are incapable of any other employment. Thofe poor retailers, whom we fee fo bufy in every street, deliver in their refpective gleanings to the merchant. The merchant carries them in loads to the paper mill, where they pafs thro' a fresh fet of hands, and give life to another trade. Thofe, who have mills on their eftates, by this means confiderably raise their rents, and the whole nation is in a great measure fupplied with a manufacture, for which formerly fhe was obliged to her neighbours.

but

The materials are no fooner wrought into paper, they are distributed among the prefles, where they again. fet innumerable artifts at work, and furnish bufinefs to. another mystery. From hence, accordingly as they are

ftain'd

ftain'd with news or politics, they fly thro' the town in Poft-Men, Poft-Boys, Daily Courants, Reviews, Medleys, and Examiners. Men, women, and children contend who fhall be the first bearers of them, and get their daily fuftenance by spreading them. In fhort, when I trace in my mind a bundle of rags to a quire of Spectators, I find fo many hands employ'd in every step they take thro' their whole progrefs, that while I am writing a Spectator, I fancy myfelf providing bread for a multitude.

If I do not take care to obviate fome of my witty readers, they will be apt to tell me, that my paper, after it is thus printed and published, is ftill beneficial to the public on feveral occafions. I must confefs I have lighted my pipe with my own works for this twelvemonth paft: My landlady often fends up her little daughter to defire fome of my old Spectators, and has frequently told me, that the paper they are printed on is the best in the world to wrap fpice in. They likewife make a good foundation for a mutton pye, as I have more than once experienced, and were very much fought for last Christmas by the whole neighbourhood.

It is pleafant enough to confider the changes that a linen fragment undergoes, by paffing thro' the feveral hands above-mentioned. The finest pieces of holland, when worn to tatters, affume a new whiteness more beautiful than their firft, and often return in the fhape of letters to their native country. A lady's fhift may be metamorphofed into billets-doux, and come into her poffeffion a fecond time. A beau may perufe his cravat after it is worn out, with greater pleasure and advantage than ever he did in a glafs. In a word, a piece of cloth, after having officiated for fome years as a towel or a napkin, may by this means be railed from a dunghil, and become the most valuable piece of furniture in a prince's

cabinet.

:

The politeft nations of Europe have endeavoured to vie with one another for the reputation of the finest printing Abfolute governments, as well as republics, have encouraged an art which feems to be the nobleft and most beneficial that ever was invented among the fons of men. The prefent King of France, in his purfuits after glory, has particularly diftinguished himself by the promoting of

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this ufeful art, infomuch that feveral books have been printed in the Louvre at his own expence, upon which he fets fo great a value, that he confiders them as the nobleft prefents he can make to foreign princes and ambaffadors. If we look into the commonwealths of Holland and Venice, we fhall find that in this particular they have made themselves the envy of the greatest monarchies. Elzevir and Aldus are more frequently mentioned than any penfioner of the one or doge of the other.

The feveral preffes which are now in England, and the great encouragement which has been given to learning for fome years last past, has made our own nation as glorious upon this account as for its late triumphs and conquests. The new edition which is given us of Cefar's Commentaries, has already been taken notice of in foreign Gazettes, and is a work that does honour to the English prefs. It is no wonder that an edition fhould be very correct, which has paffed thro' the hands of one of the molt accurate, learned, and judicious writers this age has produced. The beauty of the paper, of the character, and of the feveral cuts with which this noble work is illuftrated, makes it the finest book that I have ever seen ; and is a true inftance of the English genius, which, tho' it does not come the first into any art, generally carries it to greater heights than any other country in the world. I am particularly glad that this author comes from a British printing-houfe in fo great a magnificence, as he is the first who has given us any tolerable account of our

country.

My illiterate readers, if any fuch there are, will be furprised to hear me talk of learning as the glory of a nation, and of printing as an art that gains a reputation to a people among whom it flourishes. When mens thoughts are taken up with avarice and ambition, they cannot look upon any thing as great or valuable, which does not bring with it an extraordinary power or intereft to the perfon who is concerned in it.

But as I fhall

never fink this paper fo far as to engage with Goths and Vandals, I fhall only regard fuch kind of reafoners with that pity which is due to fo deplorable a degree of ftupidity and ignorance.

L

Friday

No 368

Friday, May 2.

Nos decebat

Lugere ubi effet aliquis in lucem editus,
Humane vite varia reputantes mala :
At qui labores morte finiffet graves,
Omnes amicos laude & latitiâ exequi.

Eurip. apud Tull.

When first an infant draws the vital air,
Officious grief fhou'd welcome him to care:
But joy thou'd life's concluding scene attend,
And mirth be kept to grace a dying friend.

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S the Spectator is in a kind a paper of news from the natural world, as others are from the bufy and politic part of mankind, 1 fhall tranflate the following letter written to an eminent French gentleman in this town from Paris, which gives us the exit of an heroine who is a pattern of patience and generofity.

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SIR,

Paris, April 18, 1712. This fo many years fince you left your native counIt try, that I am to tell you the characters of your

nearest relations as much as if you were an utter ftranger to them. The occafion of this is to give you an account of the death of Madam de Villacerfe, whofe departure out of this life I know not whether a man of + your philofophy will call unfortunate or not, fince it was attended with fome circumstances as much to be defired as to be lamented. She was her whole life happy in an uninterrupted health, and was always honoured for an evennefs of temper and greatness of mind. On the 10th instant that lady was taken with an indifpofition which confined her to her chamber, but was fuch as was too flight to make her take a fick • bed,

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bed, and yet too grievous to admit of any fatisfaction in being out of it. It is notoriously known that fome years ago Monfieur Fefeau, one of the moft confiderable furgeons in Paris, was defperately in love with this lady: Her quality placed her above any application to her on the account of his paffion: but as a woman always has fome regard to the perfon whom she ⚫ believes to be her real admirer, fhe now took it in her head (upon advice of her phyficians to lofe fome of her blood) to fend for Monfieur Fefteau on that occafion. I happened to be there at that time, and my · near relation gave me the privilege to be prefent. As foon as her arm was fripped bare, and he began to prefs it in order to raife the vein, his colour changed, ⚫ and I obferved him seized with a fudden tremor, which • made me take the liberty to speak of it to my coufin with fome apprehenfion: She fmi'd, and faid, she knew Mr. Fefteau had no inclination to do her injury. He feemed to recover himself, and fmiling alfo pro⚫ceeded in his work. Immediately after the operation ⚫he cried out, that he was the most unfortunate of all men, for that he had open'd an artery inftead of a vein. It is as impoffible to exprefs the artift's dif traction as the parient's compofure. I will not dwell on little circumftances, but go on to inform you, that • within three days time it was thought neceffary to take off her arm. She was fo far from ufing Fefleau as it would be natural for one of a lower fpirit to treat him, that she would not let him be abfent from any conful tation about her prefent condition, and on every occa fion asked whether he was fatisfied in the meafures that were taken about her. Before this laft operation fhe order'd her will to be drawn, and after having been about a quarter of an hour alone, fhe bid the furgeons,. of whom poor Fefeau was one, go on in their work. I know not how to give you the terms of art, but there appeared fuch fymptoms after the amputation of her arm, that it was vifible fhe could not live four and twenty hours. Her behaviour was fo magnanimous throughout this whole affair, that I was particularly curious in taking notice of what paffed as her fate ap proached nearer and nearer, and took notes of what

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