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epic poetry that the tale should be taken from “ Ye mountains of Gilboa, let there be no the history of that country to which it is writ- dew, neither let there be rain upon you, nor ten, or at farthest from their distant ancestors. fields of offerings : For there the shield of the Thus Homer sung Achilles to the descendants mighty is vilely cast away, the shield of Saul, of Achilles; and Virgil to Augustus that hero's as though he had not been anointed with oil. voyage,
“ Saul and Jonathan were lovely and pleasant -Genus unde Latinum
in their lives, and in their deaths they were not Albanique patres, atque altæ monia Romæ. divided : they were swifter than eagles, they
Æn. i. 6.
were stronger than lions. From whence the race of Alban fathers come,
“Ye daughters of Israel, weep over Saul, And the long glories of majestic Rome. Dryden. Had they changed subjects, they had certainly who put on ornaments of gold upon your apbeen worse poets at Greece and Rome, whatever parel." they had been esteemed by the rest of mankind; • How beautiful is the more amiable and noble and in what subjects have we the greatest con. parts of Saul's character, represented by a man cern, but in those at the very thought of which whom that very Saul pursued to death! But • This world grows less and less, and all its when he comes to mention Jonathan, the subli. glories fade away ?'
mity ceases, and not able to mention his gene. All other poesy must be dropt at the gate of rous friendship, and the most noble instances death, this alone can enter with us into immor
ever given by man, he sinks into a fondness tality; it will admit of an improvement only, that will not admit of high language or allunot (strictly speaking) an entire alteration, from sions to the greater circumstances of their life, the converse of cherubim and seraphim. It and turns only upon their familiar converse. shall not be forgotten when the sun and moon “I am distressed for thee, my brother Jona. are remembered no more; it shall never die, than; very pleasant hast thou been unto me: but (if I may so express myself) be the mea: thy love to me was wonderful, passing the love sure of eternity, and the laudable ambition of of women.' heaven.
• In the mind of this admirable man, grandeur How then can any other poesy come in com- majesty, and worldly power were despicable petition with it?
considerations, when he cast his eye upon the
merit of him who was so suddenly snatched Whatever great or dreadful has been done, Within the view of conscious stars or sun,
from them: And when he began to think of the Is far beneath my daring! I look down
great friendship of Jonathan, his panegyric is On all the splendours of the British crown;
uttered only in broken exclamations, and tender This globe is for my verse a narrow bound: Attend me, all ye glorious worlds around;
expressions of how much they both loved, not Oh all ye spirits, howsoe'er disjoin'd,
how much Jonathan deserved. Of every various order, place, and kind,
‘Pray pardon this, which was to hint only Hear and assist a feeble mortal's lays: 'Tis your Eternal King I strive to praise.
that the virtue, not the elegance of fine writing,
is the thing principally to be considered by a These verses, and those quoted above, are Guardian. I am, sir, your humble servant, taken out of a manuscript poem on the Last
*C. F. Day, which will shortly appear in public. "To the Guardian.
No. 52.] "Sir,-When you speak of the good which
Monday, May 11, 1713. would arise from the labours of ingenious men, if they could be prevailed upon to turn their
Lucan. thoughts upon the sublime subjects of religion, Cæsar alone, of all mankind, is free. it should, methinks, be an attractive to them, if you would please to lay before them, that noble I SHALL not assume to myself the merit of ideas aggrandise the soul of him who writes every thing in these papers. Wheresoever in with a true taste of virtue. I was just now reading or conversation, I observe any thing reading David's lamentation over Saul and Jo- that is curious and uncommon, useful or enter. nathan, and that divine piece was peculiarly taining, I resolve to give it to the public. The pleasing to me, in that there was such an ex- greatest part of this very paper is an extraet quisite sorrow expressed in it without the least from a French manuscript, which was lent me allusion to the difficulties from whence David by my good friend Mr. Charwell. He tells me was extricated by the fall of those great men he has had it about these twenty years in his in his way to empire. When he received the possession; and he seems to me to have taken tidings of Saul's death, his generous mind has from it very many of the maxims he has pur. in it no reflection upon the merit of the unhappy sued in the new settlement, I have heretofore man who was taken out of his way, but what spoken of, upon his lands. He has given me raises his sorrow, instead of giving him conso- full liberty to make what use of it I shall think lation.
fit: either to publish it entire, or to retail it out “ The beauty of Israel is slain upon thy high by pennyworths. I have determined to retail places : how are the mighty fallen!
it, and for that end I have translated divers pas. “ Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in the sages, rendering the words livre, sous, and many streets of Askelon : Lest the daughters of the others of known signification in France, into Philistines rejoice, lest the daughters of the un. their equivalent sense, that I may the better be circumcised triumph.
understood by my English readers. The book
toto solus in orbe Cæsar liber erit
contains several memoirs concerning monsieur • In what one article are you able to raise Colbert, who had the honour to be secretary of twice as much from your subjects as the states state to his most christian majesty, and super. can do from theirs ? Can you take twice as intendant or chief director of the arts and ma- much from the rents of the lands and houses ? nufactures of his kingdom. The passage for What are the yearly rents of your whole kingto-day is as follows:
dom ? and how much of these will your majesty It happened that the king was one day ex- be able to take without ruining the landed in. pressing his wonder to this minister, that the terest? You have, sir, above a hundred millions United Provinces should give him so much of acres, and not above thirteen millions of subtrouble, that so great a monarch as he was, jects, eight acres to every subject; how incon. should not be able to reduce so small a state, siderable must be the value of land, where so with half the power of his whole dominions. many acres are to provide for a single person ! To which monsieur Colbert is said to have made where a single person is the whole market for the following answer :
the product of so much land! And what sort "Sir, I presume upon your indulgence to of customers are your subjects to these lands ? speak what I have thought upon this subject, what clothes is it that they wear ? what provi. with that freedom which becomes a faithful ser- sions do they consume? Black bread, onions, vant, and one who has nothing more at heart and other roots, are the usual diet of the genethan your majesty's glory and the prosperity rality of your people; their common drink the of your whole people. Your territories are pure element; they are dressed in canvass and vastly greater than the United Netherlands; wooden shoes, I mean such of them as are not but, sir, it is not land that fights against land, bare-foot, and half-naked. How very mean must but the strength and riches of one nation, against be the eight acres which will afford no better the strength and riches of another. I should subsistence to a single person! Yet so many have said only riches, since it is money that of your people live in this despicable manner, feeds and clothes the soldier, furnishes the ma- that four pounds will be easily believed to exceed gazine, provides the train of artillery, and an. the annual expenses of every one of them at a swers the charge of all other military prepara- medium. And how little of this expense will tions. Now the riches of a prince, or state, are be coming to the land-owner for his rent? or, just so much as they can levy upon their sub. which is the same thing, for the mere product jects, still leaving them sufficient for their sub- of his land? Of every thing that is consumed, sistence. If this shall not be left, they will de. the greatest part of the value is the price of sert to other countries for better usage; and I labour that is bestowed upon it; and it is not a am sorry to say it, that too many of your ma very small part of their price that is paid to jesty's subjects are already among your neigh- your majesty in your excises. Of the four bours, in the condition of footmen and valets for pounds expense of every subject, it can hardly their daily bread; many of your artisans too be thought that more than four-and-twenty are fled from the severity of your collectors,- shillings are paid for the mere product of the they are at this time improving the manufac- land. Then if there are eight acres to every tures of your enemies. France has lost the be subject, and every subject for his consumption nefit of their hands for ever, and your majesty pays no more than four-and-twenty shillings to all hopes of any future excises by their con- the land, three shillings at a medium must be sumption. For the extraordinary sums of one the full yearly value of every acre in your king. year, you have parted with an inheritance. I dom. Your lands, separated from the buildings, am never able, without the utmost indignation, cannot be valued higher, to think of that minister, who had the confi. • And what then shall be thought the yearly dence to tell your father, his subjects were but value of the houses, or, which is the same thing, too happy, that they were not yet reduced to of the lodgings of your thirteen millions of eat grass ; as if starving his people were the subjects ? What numbers of these are begging only way to free himself from their seditions. their bread throughout your kingdom ? If your But people will not starve in France, as long as majesty were to walk incognito through the bread is to be had in any other country. How very streets of your capital, and would give a much more worthy of a prince was that saying farthing to every beggar that asks you alms in of your grandfather of glorious memory, that a walk of one hour, you would have nothing he hoped to see that day, when every house left of a pistole, How miserable must be the keeper in his dominions should able to allow lodgings of these wretches ! even those that will his family a capon for their Sunday's supper? not ask your charity, are huddled together, four I lay down this therefore as my first principle, or five families in a house. Such is the lodging that your taxes upon your subjects must leave in your capital. That of your other towns is them sufficient for their subsistence, at least as yet of less value ; but nothing can be more comfortable a subsistenoe as they will find ruinous than the cottages in the villages. Six among your neighbours,
shillings for the lodging of every one of your Upon this principle. I shall be able to make thirteen millions of subjects, at a medium, must some comparison between the revenues of your needs be the full yearly valụe of all the houses. majesty, and those of the States-general. Your So that at four shillings for every acre, and six territories are near thirty times as great, your shillings for the lodging of every subject, the people more than four times as many, yet your rents of your whole kingdom will be less than revenues are not thirty, no, nor four times as twenty millions, and yet a great deal more than great, nor indeed as great again, as those of the they were ever yet found to be by the most ex. United Netherlands,'
act survey that has been taken.
• The next question then is, how much of the half-starved, and half-naked beggars in your these rents your majesty will think fit to take streets ? How great a part of the price of all to your own use ? Six of the twenty millions that is eat, or drunk, or consumed by those are in the hands of the clergy; and little wretched creatures ? How great a part of the enough for the support of three hundred thou. price of canvas cloth and wooden shoes, that sand ecclesiastics, with all their necessary at are every where worn throughout the country? tendants ; it is no more than twenty pounds a How great a part of the price of their water, or year for every one of the masters. These, sir, their black bread and onions, the general diet are your best guards ; they keep your subjects of your people? If your majesty were to receive loyal in the midst of all their misery. Your the whole price of those things, your exchequer majesty will not think it your interest to take would hardly run over. Yet so much the any thing from the church. From that which greatest part of your subjects live in this despiremains in the hands of your lay subjects, will cable manner, that the annual expense of every you be able to take more than five millions to one at a medium, can be no more than I have your own use? This is more than seven shillings mentioned. One would almost think they starve in the pound; and then, after necessary repara- themselves to defraud your majesty of your retions, together with losses by the failing of venues. It is impossible to conceive that more tenants, how very little will be left to the owners. than an eighth part can be excised from the These are gentlemen who have never been bred expenses of your subjects, who live so very either to trade or manufactures, they have no poorly, and then, for thirteen millions of people, other way of living than by their rents; and your whole revenue by excises will amount to when these shall be taken from them, they must no more than six millions and a half. fly to your armies, as to an hospital, for their And how much less than this sum will the daily bread.
States be able to levy by the same tax upon • Now sir, your majesty will give me leave their subjects ? There are no beggars in that
2 to examine what are the rents of the United country. The people of their great towns live at Netherlands, and how great a part of these vastly greater charge than yours. And even their governors may take to themselves, with those in their villages are better fed and clothed out oppression of the owners. There are in than the people of your towns. At a medium, those provinces three millions of acres, and as every one of their subjects live at twice the many millions of subjects, a subject for every cost of those of France. Trade and manufacacre. Why should not then the single acre tures are the things that furnish them with there, be as valuable as the eight acres in money for this expense. Therefore, if thrice France, since it is to provide for as many as much shall be excised from the expense of mouths? Or if great part of the provisions of the Hollanders, yet still they will have more the people are fetched in by their trade from left than the subjects of your majesty, though the sea or foreign countries, they will end at you should take nothing at all from them. I last in the improvement of their lands. I have must believe therefore that it will be as easy to often heard, and am ready to believe, that thirty levy thrice as much by excises upon the Dutch shillings, one with another, is less than the subject as the French, thirty shillings upon the yoarly value of every acre in those provinces. former, as easily as ten upon the latter, and
* And how much less than this will be the consequently four millions and a half of pounds yearly value of lodging for every one of their upon their three millions of subjects ; so that in subjects ? There are no beggars in their streets, the whole, by rents and excises, they will be scarce a single one in a whole province. Their able to raise nine millions within the year. If families in great towns are lodged in palaces, of this sum, for the maintenance of their clergy, in comparison with those of Paris. Even the which are not so numerous as in France, the houses in their villages are more costly than in charge of their civil list, and the preservation many of your cities. If such is the value of of their dikes, one million is to be deducted; their three millions of acres, and of lodging for yet still they will have eight for their defence, as many millions of subjects, the yearly rents a revenue equal to two thirds of your majesty's. of lands and houses are nine millions in those Your majesty will now no longer wonder provinces.
that you have not been able to reduce these “Then how much of this may the States provinces with half the power of your whole take without ruining the land owners, for the dominions, yet half is as much as you will be defence of their people? Their lands there, by ever able to employ against them; Spain and the custom of descending in equal shares to all Germany will be always ready to espouse their the children, are distributed into so many hands, quarrel, their forces will be sufficient to cut out that few or no persons are subsisted by their work for the other half; and I wish too you rents ; land-owners, as well as others, are chiefly could be quiet on the side of Italy and England. subsisted by trade and manufactures; and they • What then is the advice I would presume to can therefore with as much ease part with half give your majesty ? To disband the greatest of their whole rents, as your majesty's subjects part of your forces, and save so many taxes to can a quarter. The States-general may as well your people. Your very dominions make you take four millions and a half from their rents, too powerful to fear any insult from your neighas your majesty can five from those of your bours. To turn your thoughts from war, and subjects.
cultivate the arts of peace, the trade and manu• It remains now only to compare the excises factures of your people; this shall make yor of both countries. And what excises can your the most powerful prince, and at the same time majesty hope to receive by the consumption of your subjects the richest of all other subjects
In the space of twenty years they will be able upon the characters of those who publicly anto give your majesty greater sums with ease, swer for what they have produced. The Exthan you can now draw from them with the aminer and the Guardian might have disputed greatest difficulty. You have abundant mate. upon any particular they had thought fit, without rials in your kingdom to employ your people, having introduced any third person, or making and they do not want capacity to be employed. any allusions to matters foreign to the subject Peace and trade shall carry out their labour to before them. But since he has thought fit, in all the parts of Europe, and bring back yearly his paper of May the eighth, to defend himself treasures to your subjects. There will be al. by my example, I shall beg leave to say to the ways fools enough to purchase the manufactures town (by your favour to me, Mr. Ironside) that of France, though France should be prohibited our conduct would still be very widely different to purchase those of other countries. In the though I should allow that there were particumean time your majesty shall never want suffi. lar persons pointed at in the places which he cient sums to buy now and then an important mentions in the Tatlers. When a satirist feigns fortress from one or other of your indigent a name, it must be the guilt of the person atneighbours. But, above all, peace shall ingra- tacked, or his being notoriously understood tiate your majesty with the Spanish nation, du. guilty before the satire was written, that can ring the life of their crazy king; and after his make him liable to come under the fictitious death a few seasonable presents among his appellation. But when the licence of printing courtiers shall purchase the reversion of his letters of people's real names is used, things crowns, with all the treasures of the Indies, and may be affixed to men's characters which are then the world must be your own.'
in the utmost degree remote from them. Thus This was the substance of what was then it happens in the case of the earl of Nottingsaid by monsieur Colbert. The king was not ham, whom that gentleman asserts to have left at all offended with this liberty of his minister. the church ; though nothing is more evident He knew the value of the man, and soon after than that he deserves better of all men in holy made him the chief director of the trade and orders, or those who have any respect for them manufactures of his people.
or religion itself, than any man in England can pretend to. But as to the instances he gives
against me : Old Downes is a fine piece of rail. No. 53.] Tuesday, May 12, 1713,
lery, of which I wish I had been author. All I had to do in it, was to strike out what related
to a gentlewoman about the queen, whom I Maledicere, malefacta ne noscant sua.
thought a woman free from ambition, and I did Ter. Prol. ad. Andr.
it out of regard to innocence. Powel of the Let them cease to speak ill of others, lest they hear Bath is reconciled to me, and has made me free
of his show. Tun, Gun, and Pistol from Wap:
ping, laughed at the representation which was It happens that the letter, which was in one
made of them, and were observed to be more of my papers concerning a lady ill treated by regular in their conduct afterwards. The cha. the Examiner, and to which he replies by tax-racter of lord Timon is no odious one; and to ing the Tatler with the like practice, was writ- tell you the truth, Mr. Ironside, when I writ it
, ten by one Steele, who put his name to the col. I thought it more like me myself, than any other lection of papers called lucubrations. It was a wrong thing in the Examiner to go any farther man; and if I had in my eye any illustrious than the Guardian for what is said in the Guar: person who had the same faults with myself
, it dian; but since Steele owns the letter, it is the ourselves, that what weaknesses we have, we have
is no new, nor very criminal self-love to flatter same thing. I apprehend, by reading the Ex. in common with great men. For the exaltation aminer over a second time, that he insinuates; of style, and embellishing the character, I made by the words close to the royal stamp, he would Timon a lord, and he may be a very worthy one have the man turned out of his office. Consi- for all that I have said of him. I do not re. dering he is so malicious, I cannot but think member the mention of don Diego; nor do I Steele has treated him very mercifully in his remember that ever I thought of lord N. -m, answer, which follows. This Steele is certainly in any character drawn in any one paper of a very good sort of a man, and it is a thousand
Bickerstaff. pities he does not understand politics ; but if he it as the most odious image I could paint of am
Now as to Polypragmon, I drew is turned out, my lady Lizard will invite him bition; and Poly pragmon is to men of business down to our country-house. I shall be very what sir Fopling Flutter is to men of fashion. glad of his company, and I'll certainly leave" He's knight of the shire and represents you, something to one of his children.
all.” Whosoever seeks employment for his own • To Nestor Ironside, Esq.
private interest, vanity, or pride, and not for the
good of his prince and country, has his share “Sir, I am obliged to fly to you for refuge in the picture of Polypragmon; and let this be from severe usage, which a very great author, the rule in examining that description, and I bethe Examiner, has been pleased to give me for lieve the Examiner will find others to whom he what you have lately published in defence of a would rather give a part of it, than to the per. young lady.* He does not put his name to his son on whom believe he bestows it, because writings, and therefore he ought not to reflect he thinks he is the most capable of having his
vengeance on me. But I say not this from ter. * See Guardian, No. 41.
rors of whạt any man living can do to me: I
of their own misdeeds.
speak it only to show, that I have not, like him, ' exercises worthy the spirit of a man, and you fixed odious images on persons, but on vices. ought to contemn all the wit in the world Alas, what occasion have I to draw people whom against you, when you have the consolation that I think ill of, under feigned names? I have you act upon these honest motives. If you ever wanted and abounded, and I neither fear poverty shrink from them, get Bat Pigeon to comb your nor desire riches; if that be true, why should noddle, and write sonnets on the smiles of the I be afraid, whenever I see occasion to examine Sparkler; but never call yourself Guardian the conduct of any of my fellow-subjects ? I more, in a nation full of the sentiments of ho. should scorn to do it but from plain facts, and nour and liberty. I am, sir, your most humble at my own peril, and from instances as clear as servant.
RICHARD STEELE. the day. Thus would I, and I will (whenever I think it my duty) inquire into the behaviour
P.S. I know nothing of the letter at Mor. of any man in England, if he is so posted, as
phew's.' that his errors may hurt my country. This kind of zeal will expose him who is prompted by it to a great deal of ill-will; and I could
Wednesday, May 13, 1713. carry any points I aim at for the improvement of my own little affairs, without making myself Neque ita porro aut adulatus aut admiratus sum fo. obnoxious to the resentment of any person or
tunam alterius, ut me meæ pæniteret. party. But, alas ! what is there in all the grati.
I never flattered, or admired, another man's fortune,
so as to be dissatisfied with my own. fications of sense, the accommodations of vanity, or any thing that fortune can give to please a
It has been observed very often, in authors human soul, when they are put in competition divine and profane, that we are all equal after with the interests of truth and liberty ? Mr. death, and this by way of consolation for that Ironside, I confess I writ to you that letter con- deplorable superiority which some among us cerning the young lady of quality, and am glad seem to have over others; but it would be a that my awkward apology (as the Examiner doctrine of much more comfortable import, to calls it) has produced in him so much remorse establish an equality among the living; for the as to make "any reparation to offended beauty.” propagation of which paradox I shall hazard Though, by the way, the phrase of “offended the following conceits. beauty” is romantic, and has little of the com- I must here lay it down, that I do not prepunction which should arise in a man that is tend to satisfy every barren reader, that all begging pardon of a woman for saying of her persons that have hitherto apprehended themunjustly, that she had affronted “her God and selves extremely miserable shall have imme. her sovereign.” However, I will not bear hard diate succour from the publication of this paupon his contrition; but am now heartily sorry per ; but shall endeavour to show that the disI called him a miscreant, that word I think cerning shall be fully convinced of the truth of signifies an unbeliever. Mescroyant, I take this assertion, and thereby obviate all the im. it, is the old French word. I will give myself pertinent accusations of Providence for the no manner of liberty to make guesses at him, unequal distribution of good and evil. if I may say him: for though sometimes I If all men had reflection enough to be sensi. have been told by familiar friends, that they ble of this equality of happiness; if they were saw me such a time talking to the Examiner; not made uneasy by appearances of superiority; others, who have rallied me upon the sins of there would be none of that subordination and my youth, tell me it is credibly reported that subjection, of those that think themselves less I have formerly lain with the Examiner. I happy, to those they think more so, which is have carried my point, and rescued innocence so very necessary for the support of business from calumny; and it is nothing to me, whether and pleasure. the Examiner writes against me in the charac;
The common turn of human application may ter of an estranged friend* or an exasperated be divided into love, ambition, and avarice, and mistress.t
whatever victories we gain in these our particu. He is welcome from henceforward to treat lar pursuits, there will always be some one or me as he pleases: but as you have begun to other in the paths we tread, whose superior oppose him, never let innocence or merit be happiness will create new uneasiness, and em. traduced by him. In particular, I beg of you, ploy us in new contrivances; and so through all never let the glory of our nation,t who made degrees there will still remain the insatiable France tremble, and yet has that gentleness to be desire of some seeming unacquired good, to able to bear opposition from the meanest of his embitter the possession of whatever others we own countrymen, be calumniated in so impu, are accommodated with. And if we suppose a dent a manner, as in the insinuation that he man perfectly accommodated, and trace him affected a perpetual dictatorship. Let not a set through all the gradations betwixt necessity of brave, wise, and honest men, who did all that and superfluity, we shall find that the slavery has been done to place their queen in so great a which occasioned his first activity, is not abated, figure, as to show mercy to the highest
poten. but only diversified, tate in Europe, be treated by ungenerous men
Those that are distressed upon such causes as traitors and betrayers. To prevent such as the world allows to warrant the keenest afevils is a care worthy'a Guardian. These are fiction, are too apt, in the comparison of them
selves with others, to conclude, that where there † Mrs. Manley.
is not a similitude of causes, there cannot be of The duke of Marlborough,
affliction, and forget to relieve themselves with
* Mr. Swift.