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great ornaments. I am convinced it is from hence that
Yet I fear our ideas of beauty are too obftinately fixed, to be easily reconciled to these acquired goters, be the practice ever fo univerfal, and that it will be difficult to bring us to perceive that graceful ease refulting from this attitude, which the acuter view of the ladies can difcern. On the contrary, it appears to us to be the moft laboured and constrained pofition that can well be imagined. A gentleman of my acquaintance, whofe fimiles are ftrong but coarfe, fays, that a lady of fashionable carriage, gives him the very fame idea of ease, with a man in the pillory, a truffed fowl, or a skewered rabbet. The truth is, we have not been accustomed to fee the words eafy and natural difunited. All the imitative arts, and every fpecies of compofition, feem to regard them as infeparable. From this theory, (be it true or falfe) we are induced to fancy, that the neck, when left in the erect ftate of nature, is more at liberty, and capable of more grace, than when stiffened into a state of protrusion; and that the face has a greater power and variety of expreffion when the head is permitted to play freely on it's natural pivot, than when it is forced forward, and rivetted down on the breast. Our feelings confefs a line of beauty (and a bewitching one!) in a fine flowing neck and fwelling bofom but Hogarth himself could not fhew it to us in a hump; nor can we be perfuaded but that (to adopt a thought of COWLEY'S) a woman's perfon will do infinitely more execution in the fhape of Cupid's arrow than his bow.
My fair readers fhould confider, that, tho' fome little affectations may be inoffenfive, nay perhaps, in fome few hands, may even please, yet where they tend, as in this case to fix a real imperfection, they become dangerous. Fashions are fluctuating; and if flat shoulders should again come into vogue, fome of them may be fairly taken in. The celeftial Goddess may, in her monthly progrefs, repair her gibbous form, but our mortal ones will infallibly carry theirs to the grave.
The intellect in ruins is a painful fight, and next to it is the human form debafed. The blemishes of nature, and the effects of accident, demand our pity; the confequences of inattention may be viewed with indulgence; but a ftudied depravation of fhape, arifiag from affectation, will generally, I fear, excite lefs favourable fentiments. The effect cannot fail to difgult, nor the cause to be despised.
-Tentanda via eft qua me quoque poffim
Monday, April 30, 1770.
To Mr. FLYN,
AM by profeffion a critic, and have had the honour of an intimacy with the greateft wits of both fexes in the kingdom. On coming to this city, I was a good deal furprised at the neglect with which some of our great
modern writers have been treated, and the little tafte which generally prevails here for those peculiar beauties of ftile and fentiinent, for which those extraordinary geniuses are in other places so much celebrated. I therefore hope my time will not be mifemployed, if I lay myself out to improve the public, through the channel of your paper, by pointing out the fpecific excellences of our most eminent authors, and fhewing clearly their fuperiority to thofe antients, for whom, from the prejudice of education, too many ftill retain a blind implicit affection and respect. For let your pedants fay what they will, is Thucydides to be compared to Dr. Smollet, Euripides to Mr. Home, or Mr. Murphy; Homer to Macpherson; or Plato to the divine author of the Rambler ?
As a fpecimen of my abilities, I shall firft indulge my fair readers with a letter in the Richardfonian, or, novel stile: the principal requifites in which are, an easy flowing chit chat, fuch as people of fashion talk, with now and then a ftroke of the pathetic or fentimental, and an utter neglect of ftops, the idle diftinctions of which it would be unpolite to trouble them with, but in their place, dafhes, which alone ferve for them all.
Mifs HARRIET SELWYN to LUCY Mifs THOMPSON.
Half an hour after Ten.
'MY DEAR GIRL,
I am just preparing for the feast and ball Sir Harry is is to give to day to the whole country--I am dreffed in the flowered lutefiring you fay becomes me fo well-It really is a genteel thingMolly has tiffed me out to great advantage-I like French night-caps prodigiously-Don't you-They
fet off a long lank yellow vifage wonderfully⚫ My mamma and I go in the chaife and Mr. O'Flaherty escorts us-Rap-Rap-Rap-Here he comes.
'No-he is not come-'Twas a falfe alarm-Don't 'take it into your head now that I am in love with ✦ the man-To be fare I feel something of a fluttera'tion about me when he fqueezes my hand
Quarter paft Eleven "He is come indeed-And with him Mifs Manly riding fingle-fhe pretends towit but tis only pertnessLord how she looks in her blue cloth habit-The 'fight of it is enough to stiffle one this hot weather.
There's Mifs Taunton-conceited thing-She 'thinks he's handsome-In her old fashioned brown 'filk and green flounces-What a fright
I tell you who's to be there-Lady Betty and the two Mifs Grevilles and Mifs Meredith and Mrs. Reeves and Mifs Pomfret and Mifs Jervis ' and my cousin Dixon and Mr. Bramber and Mr. Watfon How I run on-Ought'nt I to be 'afhamed of myself-So you ought-And so I am my dear-My grandmamma calls me—
Ten o'clock at night.
What a fright I am in-O my dear dear girl-! 'fhall never forget it-O men! men! what fad crea• tures you are
Sir Harry's a very fenfible man-He made me 'feveral compliments at dinner and I coud'nt you 'know avoid paying all my attention to him-This made Mr. O'Flaherty quite jealous and he was fo
• much out of temper that he fnuffed and fnubbed every body and was particularly fnappish to Mr. Mc. Gregor an excifeman that fat oppofite to him they began their nafty politicks before we left the room---My mind niif gave me that they'd quarrel and just so it happened, for we had hardly fweetened our tea when we heard high words and prodigious noises in the next room-We all went to fee what was the matter when-horrid fight-poor • Mr. O'Flaherty had one of his eyes almost beat out ' of his head and Mr. Mc. Gregor lay ftretched on the floor just for all the world like a corpfe
Pity me my dear creature-I fainted away-and 'don't know how I get home→→
The next fpecies of writing is the Macphersonic, and is the inft difficult of all. Yet let none defpair,, for I am poffffed of certain rules, which will enable any perfon, without the leaft genius, to write a whole epic poem in the pace of a week befides fragments; while fipping a difh of coffee. Here I can't help confuting a vulgar error, that poetry fhould be intelligible. It thould be quite the contrary, for nothing adds fo much to the terrific and fublime as not knowing what the poet would be at. But this I fhall prove beyond contradiction in a New Art of Poetry, which I intend to publish, and to which I must re er you for the receipt of making night-cenes, moon-light fcenes, love fcenes, ghoft-fcenes, death-scenes, compound epithets, fimiles and battles. And in the mean time I fhall take part of the above story and turn it into a fragment of Gallic Poetry, calling Mc. Gregor by his own name, and changing O'Flaherty into Der
The gates of the Eaft are barred on the fun's