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me more like a dog than any woman I ever made advances to. This way of talking of his very much enlivens the conversation among us of a more sedate turn; and I find there is not one of the company, but myself, who rarely speak at all, but speaks of him as of that sort of man, who is usually called a well-bred fine gentleman. To conclude his character, where women are not concerned, he is an honest worthy man.

I cannot tell whether I am to account him, whom I am next to speak of, as one of our company; for he visits us but seldom, but when he does, it adds to every man else a new enjoyment of himself. He is a clergyman, a very philosophic man, of general learning, great sanctity of life, and the most exact good breeding. He has the misfortune to be of a very weak constitution, and consequently cannot accept of such cares and business as preferments in his function would oblige him to; he is therefore among divines, what a chamber-counsellor is among lawyers. The probity of his mind, and the integrity of his life, create him followers, as being eloquent or loud advances others. He seldom introduces the subject he speaks upon; but we are so far gone in years, that he observes when he is among us, an earnestness to have him fall on some divine topic, which he always treats with much authority, as one who has no interests in this world, as one who is hastening to the object of all his wishes, and conceives hope from his decays and infirmities. These are my ordinary companions.



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What studies please, what most delight, And fill men's thoughts, they dream them o'er at night. CREECH.

IN one of my late rambles, or rather speculations, I looked into the great hall where the Bank is kept, and was not a little pleased to see the directors, secretaries, and clerks, with all the other members of that wealthy corporation, ranged in their several stations, according to the parts they act in that just and regular economy. This revived in my memory the many discourses which I had both read and heard, concerning the decay of public credit, with the methods of restoring it, and which, in my opinion, have always been defective, because they have always been made with an eye to separate interests, and party principles.

were hung with many acts of parliament written in golden letters. At the upper end of the hall was the magna charta, with the act of uniformity on the right hand, and the act of toleration on the left. At the lower end of the hall was the act of settlement, which was placed full in the eye of the virgin that sat upon the throne. Both the sides of the hall were covered with such acts of parliament as had been made for the establishment of public funds. The lady seemed to set an unspeakable value upon these several pieces of furniture, insomuch that she often refreshed her eye with them, and often smiled with a secret pleasure, as she looked upon them; but, at the same time, showed a very particular uneasiness, if she saw any thing approaching that might hurt them. She appeared, indeed, infinitely timorous in all her behaviour: and whether it was from the delicacy of her constitution, or that she was troubled with the vapours, as I was afterwards told by one, who I found was none of her well-wishers, she changed colour, and startled at every thing she heard. She was likewise (as I afterwards found) a greater valetudinarian than any I had ever met with, even in her own sex, and subject to such momentary consumptions, that, in the twinkling of an eye, she would fall away from the most florid complexion, and most healthful state of body, and wither into a skeleton. Her recoveries were often as sudden as her decays, insomuch that she would revive in a moment out of a wasting distemper, into a babit of the highest health and vigour.

I had very soon an opportunity of observing these quick turns and changes in her constitution. There sat at her feet a couple of secretaries, who received every hour letters from all parts of the world, which the one or the other of them was perpetually reading to her; and according to the news she heard, to which she was exceedingly attentive, she changed colour, and discovered many symptoms of health or sickness.

Behind the throne was a prodigious heap of bags of money, which were piled upon one another so high that they touched the ceiling. The floor on her right hand, and on her left, was covered with vast sums of gold that rose up in pyramids on either side of her. But this I did not so much wonder at, when I heard, upon inquiry, that she had the same virtue in her touch, which the poets tell us a Lydian king was formerly possessed of; and that she could convert whatever she pleased into that precious metal.

After a little dizziness, and confused hurry of thought, which a man often meets with in a dream, methought the hall was alarmed, the doors flew open, and there entered half a dozen of the most

The thoughts of the day gave my mind employ-hideous phantoms that I had ever seen (even in a ment for the whole night, so that I fell insensibly into a kind of methodical dream, which disposed all my contemplations into a vision or allegory, or what else the reader shall please to call it.

Methought I returned to the great hall, where I had been the morning before, but to my surprise, instead of the company that I left there, I saw, towards the upper end of the hall, a beautiful virgin, seated on a throne of gold. Her name (as they told me) was Public Credit. The walls, instead of being adorned with pictures and maps, * His papers in the Spectator are signed either with an R, an L, or a T; which distinctions have been thus inter. preted: R (the initial of his christian name) is thought to mark the paper as of his own writing; L, perhaps, composed from hints dropped into the Letter-box; and T, his editorial mark, signifying Transcribed from anonymous communicalions.

dream) before that time. They came in two by two, though matched in the most dissociable manner, and mingled together in a kind of dance. It would be tedious to describe their habits and persons; for which reason I shall only inform my reader, that the first couple were Tyranny and Anarchy, the second were Bigotry and Atheism, the third the Genius of a commonwealth, and a young man of about twenty-two years of age*, whose name I could not learn. He had a sword in his right hand, which in the dance he often brandished at the act of settlement; and a citizen, who stood by me, whispered in my ear, that he saw a spunge in his left hand. The dance of so many jarring natures put me in mind of the sun, moon,

James Stuart, the pretended Prince of Wales.

the Rehearsal, that danced together
id but to eclipse one another.
vill easily suppose by what has been
the lady on the throne would have
ighted to distraction, had she seen
of these spectres; what then must
condition when she saw them all in
ainted and died away at the sight.
I color est misto candore rubori;
t vires, et quæ modo visa placebant ;


OVID. Met. iii. 491.

- Her spirits faint, ng cheeks assume a pallid teint, her form remains.'

great a change in the hill of moneyeaps of money, the former shrinking to so many empty bags, that I now ve a tenth part of them had been


t took up the same space, and made , as the bags that were ready filled had been blown up with air, and memory the bags full of wind, which his hero received as a present from reat heaps of gold on either side the red to be only heaps of paper, or otched sticks, bound up together-in Bath faggots.

is lamenting this sudden desolation made before me, the whole scene the room of the frightful spectres, red a second dance of apparitions matched together, and made up of phantoms. The first pair was Linarchy at her right hand. The seration leading in Religion; and the whom I had never seen *, with the at Britain. At the first entrance d, the bags swelled to their former of faggots and heaps of paper pyramids of guineas: and, for my as so transported with joy, that I h, I must confess, I would fain have gain to have closed my vision, if I he it.

ONDAY, MARCH 5, 1710-11.


Egregii mortalem altique silentii ?
HOR. 2 Sat. vi. 58.
ncommon silence and reserve.

incapacity of others. These are mortals who have a certain curiosity without power of reflection, and perused my papers like spectators rather than readers. But there is so little pleasure in inquiries that so nearly concern ourselves (it being the worst way in the world to fame, to be too anxious about it), that upon the whole I resolved for the future, to go on in my ordinary way; and without too much fear or hope about the business of reputation, to be very careful of the design of my actions, but very negligent of the consequences of. them.

It is an endless and frivolous pursuit to act by any other rule, than the care of satisfying our own minds in what we do. One would think a silent man, who concerned himself with no one breathing, should be very little liable to misinterpretations; and yet I remember I was once taken up for a jesuit, for no other reason but my profound taciturnity. It is from this misfortune that, to be out of harm's way, I have ever since affected crowd. He who comes into assemblies only to gratify his curiosity, and not to make a figure, enjoys the pleasures of retirement in a more exquisite degree, than he possibly could in his closet; the lover, the ambitious, and the miser, are followed thither by a worse crowd than any they can withdraw from. To be exempt from the passions with which others are tormented, is the only pleasing solitude. I can very justly say with the ancient sage, I am never less alone than when alone.'

As I am insignificant to the company in public places, and as it is visible I do not come thither, as most do, to show myself, I gratify the vanity of all who pretend to make an appearance, and have often as kind looks from well-dressed gentlemen and ladies, as a poet would bestow upon one of his audience. There are so many gratifications attend this public sort of obscurity, that some little distastes I daily receive have lost their anguish ; and I did the other day, without the least displeasure, overhear one say of me, that strange fellow; and another answer, I have known the fellow's face these twelve years, and so must you; but I believe you are the first ever asked who he was. There are, I must confess, many to whom my person is as well known as that of their nearest relations, who give themselves no further trouble about calling me by my name or quality, but speak of me very currently by the appellation of Mr. What d'ye call him.

To make up for these trivial disadvantages, I have the high satisfaction of beholding all nature with an unprejudiced eye; and having nothing to do with men's passions or interests, I can, with the greater sagacity, consider their talents, manners, failings, and merits.

hen he first appears in the world, believe it has nothing to think of but It is remarkable, that those who want any one es. With a good share of this va-sense, possess the others with greater force and rt, I made it my business these three vivacity. Thus my want of, or rather resignation after my own fame; and as I have of speech, gives me all the advantages of a dumb t with circumstances which did not man. I have, methinks, a more than ordinary peI have been encountered by others, netration in seeing; and flatter myself that I have much mortification. It is incredible looked into the highest and lowest of mankind; empty I have in this time observed and make shrewd guesses, without being admitted the species to be, what mere blanks to their conversation, at the inmost thoughts and they first come abroad in the morn- reflections of all whom I behold. It is from hence ly they are at a stand, until they are that good or ill fortune has no manner of force some paragraph in a newspaper. towards affecting my judgment. I see men flouIs are very acceptable to a young rishing in courts, and languishing in jails, without ey desire no more in any thing but being prejudiced, from their circumstances, to their be agreeable. If I found consola- favour or disadvantage; but, from their inward ch, I was as much disquieted by the manner of bearing their condition, often pity the prosperous, and admire the unhappy.

r of Hanover, afterwards King George I.

Those who converse with the dumb, know from

the turn of their eyes, and the changes of their treat on matters which relate to females, as they countenance, their sentiments of the objects before are concerned to approach or fly from the other them. I have indulged my silence to such an ex-sex, or as they are tied to them by blood, interest, travagance, that the few who are intimate with me, or affection. Upon this occasion I think it but answer my smiles with concurrent sentences, and reasonable to declare, that whatever skill I may argue to the very point I shaked my head at, with-have in speculation, I shall never betray what the out my speaking. Will Honeycomb was very en-eyes of lovers say to each other in my presence. tertaining the other night at a play, to a gentleman At the same time I shall not think myself obliged who sat on his right hand, while I was at his left. by this promise to conceal any false protestations The gentleman believing Will was talking to him- which I observe made by glances in public assemself, when upon my looking with great approba- blies; but endeavour to make both sexes appear tion at a young thing in a box before us, he said, in their conduct what they are in their hearts. By 'I am quite of another opinion. She has, I will this means, love, during the time of my speculaallow, a very pleasing aspect, but, methinks, that tions, shall be carried on with the same sincerity simplicity in her countenance is rather childish as any other affair of less consideration. As this is than innocent.' When I observed her a second the greatest concern, men shall be from henceforth time, he said, I grant her dress is very becoming, liable to the greatest reproach for misbehaviour in but perhaps the merit of that choice is owing to it. Falsehood in love shall hereafter bear a blacker her mother; for though,' continued he, I allow a aspect than infidelity in friendship, or villany in beauty to be as much to be commended for the business. For this great and good end, all breaches elegance of her dress, as a wit for that of his lan- against that noble passion, the cement of society, guage; yet if she has stolen the colour of her ri- shall be severely examined. But this, and all other bands from another, or had advice about her trim- matters loosely hinted at now, and in my former mings, I shall not allow her the praise of dress, papers, shall have their proper place in my followany more than I would call a plagiary an author.'ing discourses. The present writing is only to adWhen I threw my eye towards the next woman monish the world, that they shall not find me an to her, Will spoke what I looked, according to his idle, but a busy Spectator. romantic imagination, in the following manner : STEELE.

'Behold, you who dare, that charming virgin; behold the beauty of her person chastised by the innocence of her thoughts. Chastity, good-nature, and affability, are the graces that play in her countenance; she knows she is handsome, but she knows she is good. Conscious beauty adorned with conscious virtue! What a spirit is there in those eyes! What a bloom in that person! How is the whole woman expressed in her appearance! Her air has the beauty of motion, and her look the force of language.'

It was prudence to turn away my eyes from this object, and therefore I turned them to the thoughtless creatures who make up the lump of that sex, and move a knowing eye no more than the portraiture of insignificant people by ordinary painters, which are but pictures of pictures.

N° 5. TUESDAY, MARCH 6, 1710-11.

Spectatum admissi ricum teneatis?


HOR. Ars Poet. ver. 5.

Admitted to the sight, would you not laugh!

An opera may be allowed to be extravagantly lavish in its decorations, as its only design is to gratify the senses, and keep up an indolent attention in the audience. Common sense however requires, that there should be nothing in the scenes and machines which may appear childish and absurd. How would the wits of King Charles's time have laughed, to have seen Nicolini exposed to a Thus the working of my own mind is the gene- tempest in robes of ermine, and sailing in an open ral entertainment of my life; I never enter into boat upon a sea of pasteboard? What a field of the commerce of discourse with any but my parti- raillery would they have been led into, had they cular friends, and not in public even with them. been entertained with painted dragons spitting Such an habit has perhaps raised in me uncommon wild-fire, enchanted chariots drawn by Flanders reflections; but this effect I cannot communicate mares, and real cascades in artificial landscapes ? but by my writings. As my pleasures are almost A little skill in criticism would inform us, that shawholly confined to those of the sight, I take it for dows and realities ought not to be mixed together a peculiar happiness, that I have always had an in the same piece; and that the scenes which are easy and familiar admittance to the fair sex. If designed as the representations of nature should be I never praised or flattered, I never belied or con- filled with resemblances, and not with the things tradicted them. As these compose half the world, themselves. If one would represent a wide chamand are, by the just complaisance and gallantry ofpaign country filled with herds and flocks, it would our nation, the more powerful part of our people, I shall dedicate a considerable share of these my speculations to their service, and shall lead the young through all the becoming duties of virginity, marriage, and widowhood. When it is a woman's day, in my works, I shall endeavour at a style and air suitable to their understanding. When I say this, I must be understood to mean, that I shall not lower but exalt the subjects I treat upon. Discourse for their entertainment, is not to be debased, but refined. A man may appear learned without talking sentences, as in his ordinary gesture he discovers he can dance, though he does not cut capers. In a word, I shall take it for the greatest glory of my work, if among reasonable women this paper may furnish tea-table talk. In order to it, I shall

be ridiculous to draw the country only upon the scenes, and to crowd several parts of the stage with sheep and oxen. This is joining together inconsistencies, and making the decoration partly real, and partly imaginary. I would recommend what I have here said to the directors, as well as to the admirers, of our modern opera,

As I was walking in the streets about a fortnight ago, I saw an ordinary fellow carrying a cage full of little birds upon his shoulder; and, as I was wondering with myself what use he would put them to, he was met very luckily by an acquaintance, who had the same curiosity. Upon his asking him what he had upon his shoulder, he told him that he had been buying sparrows for the opera. Sparrows for the opera, says his friend, licking his lips,

to be roasted? No, no, says the to enter towards the end of the first about the stage. dialogue awakened my curiosity so ediately bought the opera, by which ived the sparrows were to act the -birds in a delightful grove; though, inquiry, I found the sparrows put upon the audience, that Sir Martin tised upon his mistress; for though ht, the music proceeded from a cons and bird-calls, which were planted bes. At the same time I made this bund, by the discourse of the actors, e great designs on foot for the imthe opera; that it had been proposed a part of the wall, and to surprise with a party of an hundred horse, But to return to the sparrows: there have been was actually a project of bringing so many flights of them let loose in this opera, that r into the house, to be employed in it is feared the house will never get rid of them; ater-works. This project, as I have and that in other plays they may make their enpostponed till the summer season; trance in very wrong and improper scenes, so as ight the coolness that proceeds from to be seen flying in a lady's bed-chamber, or perchcascades will be more acceptable ing upon a king's throne; besides the inconveto people of quality. In the mean niences which the heads of the audience may someat a more agreeable entertainment times suffer from them. I am credibly informed, r season, the opera of Rinaldo is that there was once a design of casting into an nder and lightning, illuminations and opera the story of Whittington and his Cat+, and hich the audience may look upon that in order to it, there had been got together a ng cold, and indeed without much great quantity of mice; but Mr. Rich, the prong burnt; for there are several en-prietor of the playhouse, very prudently considered ith water, and ready to play at a that it would be impossible for the cat to kill them ing, in case any such accident should all, and that consequently the princes of the stage owever, as I have a very great friend- might be as much infested with mice, as the prince wner of this theatre, I hope that he of the island was before the cat's arrival upon it; enough to insure his house before he for which reason he would not permit it to be acted opera be acted in it. in his house. And indeed I cannot blame him: for, as he said very well upon that occasion, I do not hear that any of the performers in our opera pretend to equal the famous pied piper‡, who made all the mice of a great town in Germany follow his music, and by that means cleared the place of those little noxious animals.

used by none but pedants in our own country; and at the same time fill their writings with such poor imaginations and conceits, as our youths are ashamed of, before they have been two years at the university. Some may be apt to think that it is the difference of genius which produces this difference in the works of the two nations; but to show that there is nothing in this, if we look into the writings of the old Italians, such as Cicero and Virgil, we shall find that the English writers, in their way of thinking and expressing themselves, resemble those authors much more than the modern Italians pretend to do. And as for the poot himself, from whom the dreams of this opera* are taken, I must entirely agree with Monsieur Boiléau, that one verse in Virgil is worth all the clinquant or tinsel of Tasso.

der, that those scenes should be very ich were contrived by two poets of ns, and raised by two magicians of Armida (as we are told in the arin Amazonian enchantress, and poor i (as we learn from the persons reChristian conjurer (Mago Christiano.) I am very much puzzled to find on should be versed in the black art, Christian, for such is the part of the ald deal with the devil.

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the poet after the conjurers, I shall te of the Italian from the first lines ;Eccoti, benigno lettore, un parto di se ben natodi not te, non è però aborto si farà conoscere figlio d'Apollo con io di Parnasso.” Behold, gentle rth of a few evenings, which, though ring of the night, is not the abortive but will make itself known to be the >, with a certain ray of Parnassus.' is proceeds to call Mynheer Handel of our age, and to acquaint us, in the ty of style, that he composed this rtnight. Such are the wits to whose ambitiously conform ourselves. The the finest writers among the modern ess themselves in such a florid form of uch tedious circumlocutions, as are comedy of that name.

had evidently this paper in mind when he que that was spoken by Miss Farren (now by) on the opening of New Drury-lane thea44. The reader may refer to it in the Eurovol. xxv. p. 385.

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The records of Hamelen, an ancient city on the banks of the Weser, give an account of a strange accident which befel them, on the 26th of June, 1254.

Being at that time much pestered with rats, which they could by no means destroy, a stranger at last undertook it, on the promise of reward; and immediately taking a tabret and pipe, the rats followed his music to the river, where they were all drowned; but, being denied his reward, he left the town in a rage, and threatened revenge: accordingly he returned next year, and by the same music enticed most of the children of the town after him to the mouth of a great cave on the top of a neighbouring hill called Koppelberg, where he and they entered, but were never more heard of. In remembrance of this sad accident, the citizens, for many years after, dated all their public writings from the day they lost their children, as appears by many old deeds and records. They still call the street through which the children passed, Tabret Street; and at the mouth of the cave there is a monument of stone, with an inscription, in barbarous Latin verse, giving an account.of this tragical story, by which the citizens lost 130 boys.'

The queen's gardeners.

N° 6. WEDNESDAY, MARCH 7, 1710-11.

Credebant hoe grande nefas, et morte piandum,
Si juvenis vetulo non assurrexerat-

JUV. Sat. xiii. 54.
"Twas impious then (so much was age rever'd)
For youth to keep their seats when an old man appear'd.
I KNOW no evil under the sun so great as the
abuse of the understanding, and yet there is no one
vice more common. It has diffused itself through
both sexes, and all qualities of mankind; and there
is hardly that person to be found, who is no more |
concerned for the reputation of wit and sense, than
of honesty and virtue. But this unhappy affecta-
tion of being wise rather than honest, witty than
good-natured, is the source of most of the ill habits
of life. Such false impressions are owing to the
abandoned writings of men'of wit, and the awk-
ward imitation of the rest of mankind.

instead of that, you see, it is often subservient to it; and, as unaccountable as one would think it, a wise man is not always a good man.' This degeneracy is not only the guilt of particular persons, but also at some times of a whole people; and perhaps it may appear, upon examination, that the most polite ages are the least virtuous. This may be attributed to the folly of admitting wit and learning as merit in themselves, without considera ing the application of them. By this means it becomes a rule, not so much to regard what we do, as how we do it. But this false beauty will not pass upon men of honest minds, and true taste. Sir Richard Blackmore says, with as much good sense as virtue, 'It is a mighty shame and dishonour to employ excellent faculties and abundance of wit, to humour and please men in their vices and follies. The great enemy of mankind, notwithstanding his wit and angelic faculties, is the most odious being in the whole creation.' He goes on soon after to say very generously, that he undertook the For this reason Sir Roger was saying last night, writing of his poem*, to rescue the Muses out of that he was of opinion none but men of fine parts the hands of ravishers, to restore them to their sweet deserve to be hanged. The reflections of such men and chaste mansions, and to engage them in an emare so delicate upon all occurrences which they are ployment suitable to their dignity.' This certainly concerned in, that they should be exposed to more eught to be the purpose of every man who appears than ordinary infamy and punishment, for offend-in public; and whoever does not proceed upon that ing against such quick admonitions as their own foundation, injures his country as fast as he sucsouls give them, and blunting the fine edge of their ceeds in his studies. When modesty ceases to be minds in such a manner, that they are no more the chief ornament of one sex, and integrity of the shocked at vice and folly than men of slower capa- other, society is upon a wrong basis, and we shall cities. There is no greater monster in being, than be ever after without rules to guide our judgment a very ill man of great parts. He lives like a man in what is really becoming and ornamental. Nain a palsy, with one side of him dead. While per- ture and reason direct one thing, passion and huhaps he enjoys the satisfaction of luxury, of wealth, mour another. To follow the dictates of these two of ambition, he has lost the taste of good-will, of latter, is going into a road that is both endless and friendship, of innocence. Scarecrow, the beggar intricate; when we pursue the other, our passage in Lincoln's-Inn Fields, who disabled himself in is delightful, and what we aim at easily attainable. his right leg, and asks alms all day to get himself a warm supper and a trull at night, is not half so despicable a wretch as such a man of sense. The beggar has no relish above sensations; he finds rest more agreeable than motion; and while he has a warm fire and his doxy, never reflects that he deserves to be whipped. Every man who terminates his satisfactions and enjoyments within the supply of his own necessities and passions, is, says Sir Roger, in my eye, as poor a rogue as Scarecrow. But,' continued he, for the loss of public and private virtue we are beholden to your men of fine parts forsooth; it is with them no matter what is Nothing ought to be held laudable or becoming, done, so it be done with an air. But to me, who but what nature itself should prompt us to think am so whimsical in a corrupt age as to act accord-so. Respect to all kind of superiors is founded, I ing to nature and reason, a selfish man, in the most shining circumstance and equipage, appears in the same condition with the fellow above mentioned, but more contemptible in proportion to what more he robs the public of, and enjoys above him. I lay it down therefore for a rule, that the whole man is to move together; that every action of any importance, is to have a prospect of public good; and that the general tendency of our indifferent actions ought to be agreeable to the dictates of reason, of religion, of good-breeding; without this, a man, as I have before hinted, is hopping instead of walking, he is not in his entire and proper motion.'

I do not doubt but England is at present as polite a nation as any in the world; but any man who thinks can easily see, that the affectation of being gay and in fashion has very near eaten up our good sense and our religion. Is there any thing so just, as that mode and gallantry should be built upon exerting ourselves in what is proper and agreeable to the institutions of justice and piety among us? And yet is there any thing more common, than that we run in perfect contradiction to thein? All which is supported by no other pretension, than that it is done with what we call a good grace.

think, upon instinct; and yet what is so ridiculous as age? I make this abrupt transition to the mention of this vice more than any other, in order to introduce a little story, which I think a pretty instance, that the most polite age is in danger of being the most vicious.

It happened at Athens, during a public representation of some play exhibited in honour of the commonwealth, that an old gentleman came too late for a place suitable to his age and quality. Many of the young gentlemen who observed the difficulty and confusion he was in, made signs to him that they would accommodate him if he came where they sat. The good man bustled through While the honest knight was thus bewildering the crowd accordingly; but when he came to the himself in good starts, I looked attentively upon seats to which he was invited, the jest was to sit him, which made him, I thought, collect his mind a close and expose him, as he stood, out of countelittle. What I am at,' says he, is to represent,nance, to the whole audience. The frolic went that I am of opinion, to polish our understandings, and neglect our manners, is of all things the most inexcusable. Reason should govern passion, but

round the Athenian benches. But on those occasions there were also particular places assigned for

* Creation.

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