« НазадПродовжити »
that very morning; and that he presented its his guest discovered at sight of the good old with his service to him, and intended to knight. After the first salutes were over, come and dine with him. At the same time Will desired Sir Roger to lend him one of he delivered a letter, which my friend read his servants to carry a set of shuttlecocks to me as soon as the messenger left him. he had with him in a little box, to a lady that
lived about a mile off, to whom it seems he SIR ROGER,- I desire you to accept of had promised such a present for above this a jack, which is the best I have caught half year. Sir Roger's back was no sooner this season. I intend to come and stay with turned but honest Will began to tell me of you a week, and see how the perch bite in a large cock pheasant that he had sprung the Black river. I observed with some in one of the neighbouring woods, with two concern, the last time I saw you upon the or three other adventures of the same nabowling-green, that your whip wanted a ture. Odd and uncommon characters are lash to it: I will bring half a dozen with me the game that I look for, and most delight that I twisted last week, which I hope will in; for which reason I was as much pleased serve you all the time you are in the country. with the novelty of the person that talked I have not been out of the saddle for six to me, as he could be for his life with days last past, having been at Eton with the springing of a pheasant, and therefore Sir John's eldest son. He takes to his listened to him with more than ordinary learning hugely.--I am sir, your humble attention. servant,
In the midst of this discourse the bell « WILL WIMBLE.' rung to dinner, where the gentleman I
have been speaking of had the pleasure of This extraordinary letter, and message seeing the huge jack he had caught, served that accompanied it, made me very curious up for the first dish in a most sumptuous to know the character and quality of the gen- manner. Upon our sitting down to it he tleman who sent them; which I found to be gave us a long accrunt how he had hooked as follows.-Will Wimble is younger bro- it, played with it, foiled it, and at length ther to a baronet, and descended of the an- drew it out upon the bank, with several cient family of the Wimbles. He is now other particulars that lasted all the first between forty and fifty; but being bred to course. A dish of wild fowl that came Do business, and born to no estate, he gene- afterwards furnished conversation for the rally lives with his elder brother as su- rest of the dinner, which concluded with perintendent of his game. He hunts a pack a late invention of Will's for improving the of dogs better than any man in the country, quail-pipe. and is very famous for finding out a hare. Upon withdrawing into my room after He is extremely well versed in all the little dinner, I was secretly touched with comhandicrafts of an idle man. He makes a passion towards the honest gentleman that May-fly to a miracle; and furnishes the had dined with us; and could not but conwhole country with angle-rods. As he is sider with a great deal of concern, how so a good-natured officious fellow, and very good a heart and such busy hands were much esteemed upon account of his fa- wholly employed in trifles; that so much mily, he is a welcome guest at every house, humanity should be so little beneficial to and keeps up a good correspondence among others, and so much industry so little adall the gentlemen about him. He carries vantageous to himself. The same temper a tulip root in his pocket from one to an- of mind and application to affairs might other, or exchanges a puppy between a have recommended him to the public couple of friends that live perhaps in the esteem, and have raised his fortune in anopposite sides of the country. Willis a parti- other station of life. What good to his cular favourite of all the young heirs, whom country or himself might not a trader or a he frequently obliges with a net that he merchant have done with such useful has weaved, or a setting-dog that he has though ordinary qualifications? made himself. He now and then presents Will Wimble's is the case of many a a pair of garters of his own knitting to their younger brother of a great family, who had mothers or sisters; and raises a great deal | rather see their children starve like gentleof mirth among them, by enquiring, as often men, than thrive in a trade or profession as he meets them, “ how they wear!" that is beneath their quality. This humour These gentleman-like manufactures and fills several parts of Europe with pride and obliging little humours make Will the dar- beggary. It is the happiness of a trading ling of the country.
nation like ours, that the younger sons, Sir Roger was proceeding in the charac- though incapable of any liberal art or proter of him, when he saw him make up to fession, may be placed in such a way of us with two or three hazle twigs in his life, as may perhaps enable them to vie hand that he had cut in Sir Roger's woods, with the best of their family. Accordingly as he came through them, in his way to the we find several citizens that were launched house. I was very much pleased to ob- into the world with narrow fortunes, rising serve on one side the hearty and sincere by an honest industry to greater estates Welcome with which Sir Roger received than those of their elder brothers. It is him, and on the other, the secret joy which not improbable but Will was formerly tried
Hor. Lib. 2. Sat. ii. 3,
at divinity, law, or physic; and that finding hin on the pummel of his saddle, he in his genius did not lie that way, his parents that manner rid the tournament over, with gave him up at length to his own inven- an air that showed he did it rather to pertions. But certainly, however improper form the rule of the lists, than expose his he might have been for studies of a higher enemy; however, it appeared he knew how nature, he was perfectly well turned for to make use of a victory, and with a gentle the occupations of trade and commerce. trot he marched up to a gallery, where As I think this a point which cannot be too their mistress sat, (for they were rivals,) much inculcated, I shall desire my reader and let him down with laudable courtesy to compare what I have here written with and pardonable insolence. I do not know what I have said in my twenty-first specu- but it might be exactly where the coffeelation.
L. house is now,
You are to know this my ancestor was
not only a military genius, but fit also for No. 109.) Thursday, July 5, 1711.
the arts of peace, for he played on the base
viol as well as any gentleman at court; you Abnormis sapiens
see where his viol hangs by his basket-hilt
sword. The action at the Tilt-yard you of plain good sense, untutor'd in the schools.
may be sure won the fair lady, who was a I was this morning walking in the gal- maid of honour, and the greatest beauty of lery, when sir Roger entered at the end her time; here she stands, the next picture. opposite to me, and advancing towards You see, sir, my great great great grandme, said he was glad to meet me among mother has on the new-fashioned petticoat, his relations the De Coverleys, and hoped except that the modern is gathered at the I liked the conversation of so much good waist; my grandmother appears as if she company, who were as silent as myself
. I stood in a large drum, whereas the ladies knew he alluded to the pictures, and as he now walk as if they were in a go-cart. For is a gentleman who does not a little value all this lady was' bred at court, she behimself upon his ancient descent, I expect- came an excellent country wife, she brought ed he would give me some account of them. ten children, and when I show you the We were now arrived at the upper end of library, you shall see in her own hand (althe gallery, when the knight faced towards lowing for the difference of the language) one of the pictures, and as we stood before the best receipt now in England both for a it, he entered into the matter, after his hasty-pudding and a white-pot. blunt way of saying things, as they occur to If you please to fall back a little, because his imagination, without regular 'introduc- it is necessary to look at the three next tion, or care to preserve the appearance of pictures at one view; these are three sisters, a chain of thought.
She on the right hand who is so very beau• It is,' said he, worth while to consider tiful, died a maid; the next to her, still the force of dress; and how the persons handsomer, had the same fate, against her of one age differ from those of another, will; this homely thing in the middle had merely by that only. One may observe, both their portions added to her own, and also, that the general fashion of one age was stolen by a neighbouring gentleman, a has been followed by one particular set of man of stratagem and resolution, for he people in another, and by them preserved poisoned three mastiffs to come at her, and from one generation to another. Thus the knocked down two deer-stealers in carryvast jetting coat and small bonnet, which ing her off, Misfortunes happen in all was the habit in Henry the Seventh's time, families. The theft of this romp, and so is kept on in the yeoman of the guard; not much money, was no great matter to our without a good and politic view, because estate. But the next heir that possessed it they look a foot taller, and a foot and a was this soft gentleman, whom you see there. half broader: besides, that the cap leaves Observe the small buttons, the little boots, the face expanded, and consequently more the laces, the slashes about his clothes, terrible, and fitter to stand at the entrance and above all the posture he is drawn in, of palaces.
(which to be sure was his own choosing,) • This predecessor of ours you see is you see he sits with one hand on a desk dressed after this manner, and his cheeks writing, and looking as it were another would be no larger than mine, were he in a way, like an easy writer, or a sonnetteer: hat as I am. He was the last man that He was one of those that had too much wit won a prize in the Tilt-yard (which is now to know how to live in the world; he was a common street before Whitehall.) You a man of no justice, but great good mansee the broken lance that lies there by his ners; he ruined every body that had any right foot. He shivered that lance of his thing to do with him, but never said a rude adversary all to pieces: and bearing him- thing in his life; the most indolent person self, look you, sir, in this manner, at the in the world; he would sign a deed that same time he came within the target of passed away half his estate with his gloves the gentleman who rode against him, and on, but would not put on his hat before a taking him with incredible force before I lady if it were to save his country. He is
said to be the first that made love by | No. 110.] Friday, July 6, 1711.
Horror ubique animos, simul ipsa silentia terrent.
Virg. Æn. ii. 755. however by all hands I have been informed
All things are full of horror and affright, that he was every way the finest gentle- And dreadful ev'n the silence of the night. man in the world. That debt lay heavy
Dryden. on our house for one generation, but it was At a little distance from Sir Roger's retrieved by a gift from that honest man house, among the ruins of an old abbey, you see there, a citizen of our name, but there is a long walk of aged elms; which nothing at all akin to us. I know Sir An- are shot up so very high, that when one drew Freeport has said behind my back, passes under them, the rooks and crows that this man was descended from one that rest upon the tops of them seem to be of the ten children of the maid of honour cawing in another region. I am very much I showed you above; but it was never delighted with this sort of noise, which I made out. We winked at the thing, in- consider as a kind of natural prayer to that deed, because money was wanting at that Being who supplies the wants of his whole time.'
creation, and who, in the beautiful language Here I saw my friend a little embarrass- of the Psalms,* feedeth the young ravens ed, and turned my face to the next por- that call upon him. I like this retirement traiture.
the better, because of an ill report it lies Sir Roger went on with his account of the under of being haunted; for which reason gallery in the following manner: This (as I have been told in the family) no living man (pointing to him I looked at) I take to creature ever walks in it besides the chapbe the honour of our house. Sir Humphrey lain. My good friend the butler desired de Coverley; he was in his dealings as punc- me with a very grave face not to venture tual as a tradesman, and as generous as a myself in it after sunset, for that one of the gentleman. He would have thought him- footmen had been almost frightened out of self as much undone by breaking his word, his wits by a spirit that appeared to him in as if it were to be followed by bankruptcy. the shape of a black horse without a head; He served liis country as a knight of the to which he added, that about a month ago shire to his dying day. He found it one of the maids coming home late that no easy matter to maintain. an integrity way with a pail of milk upon her head, in his words and actions, even in things heard such a rustling among the bushes that regarded the offices which were in that she let it fall. cumbent upon him, in the care of his own I was taking a walk in this place last affairs and relations of life, and therefore night between the hours of nine and ten, dreaded (though he had great talents) to and could not but fancy it one of the most go into employments of state, where he proper scenes in the world for a ghost to must be exposed to the snares of ambition. appear in. The ruins of the abbey are Innocence of life and great ability were the scattered up and down on every side, and distinguishing parts of his character; the half covered with ivy and elder-bushes, the latter, he had often observed, had led to the harbours of several solitary birds which destruction of the former, and he used fre- seldom make their appearance till the dusk quently to lament that great and good had of the evening. The place was formerly a not the same signification. He was an church-yard, and has still several marks in excellent husbandman, but had resolved it of graves and burying-places. There is not to exceed such a degree of wealth; all such an echo among the old ruins and above it he bestowed in secret bounties vaults, that if you stamp but a little louder many years after the sum he aimed at for than ordinary, you hear the sound repeated. his own use was attained. Yet he did not At the same time the walk of elms, with slacken his industry, but to a decent old age the croaking of the ravens which from time spent the life and fortune which was super- time are heard from the tops of them, fluous to himself, in the service of his looks exceeding solemn and venerable. The friends and neighbours.'
objects naturally raise seriousness and atHere we were called to dinner, and Sir tention; and when night heightens the Roger ended the discourse of this gentle- awfulness of the place, and pours out her man, by telling me, as we followed the supernumerary horrors upon every thing servant, that this his ancestor was a brave in it, I do not at all wonder that weak minds man, and narrowly escaped being killed fill it with spectres and apparitions. in the civil wars; "For,' said he, he was Mr. Locke, in his chapter of the Assosent out of the field upon a private message, ciation of Ideas, has very curious remarks the day before the battle of Worcester.' to show how, by the prejudice of educaThe whim of narrowly escaping by having tion, one idea often introduces into the mind been within a day of danger, with other a whole set that bear no resemblance to matters above-mentioned, mixed with good one another in the nature of things. Among sense, left me at a loss whether I was more several examples of this kind, he produces delighted with my friend's wisdom or simplicity.
* Psal. cxlvii. 9.
the following instance. •The ideas of gob-I think very remarkable: he was so pressed lins and sprites have really no more to do with the matter of fact, which he could not with darkness than light; yet let but a have the confidence to deny, that he was foolish maid inculcate these often on the forced to account for it by one of the most mind of a child, and raise them there to- absurd unphilosophical notions that was gether, possibly he shall never be able to ever started. He tells us that the surfaces separate them again so long as he lives; of all bodies are perpetually flying off from but darkness shall ever afterwards bring their respective bodies, one after another; with it those frightful ideas, and they shall and that these surfaces or thin cases that be so joined, that he can no more bear the included each other whilst they were joined one than the other.'
in the body, like the coats of an onion, are As I was walking in this solitude, where sometimes seen entire when they are sepathe dusk of the evening conspired with so rated from it; by which means we often many other occasions of terror, I observed behold the shapes and shadows of persons a cow grazing not far from me, which an who are either dead or absent.* imagination that was apt to startle might I shall dismiss this paper with a story easily have construed into a black horse out of Josephus, t not so much for the sake without a head: and I dare say the poor of the story itself as for the moral reflecfootman lost his wits upon some such tri- tions with which the author concludes it, vial occasion.
and which I shall here set down in his own My friend, Sir Roger, has often told me words. "Glaphyra, the daughter of king with a great deal of mirth, that at his first Archelaus, after the death of her two first coming to his estate he found three parts husbands, (being married to a third, who of his house altogether useless; that the was brother to her first husband, and so best room in it had the reputation of being passionately in love with her, that he turned haunted, and by that means was locked up; off his former wife to make room for this that noises had been heard in his long gal- marriage,) had a very odd kind of dream. lery, so that he could not get a servant She fancied that she saw her first husband to enter it after eight o'clock at night; coming towards her, and that she embraced that the door of one of his chambers washim with great tenderness; when in the nailed up, because there went a story in the midst of the pleasure which she expressed family that a butler had formerly hanged at the sight of him, he reproached her after himself in it; and that his mother, who lived the following manner; “Glaphyra,” says to a great age, had shut up half the rooms he, “thou hast made good the old saying, in the house, in which either her husband, that women are not to be trusted. Was not a son, or daughter had died. The knight I the husband of thy virginity? Have I not seeing his habitation reduced to so small a children by thee? How couldst thou forget compass, and himself in a manner shut out our loves so far as to enter into a second of his own house, upon the death of his marriage, and after that into a third, nay mother ordered all the apartments to be to take for thy husband a man who has so flung open, and exorcised by his chaplain, shamelessly crept into the bed of his browho lay in every room one after another, ther? However, for the sake of our past and by that means dissipated the fears loves, I shall free thee from thy present which had so long reigned in the family. reproach, and make thee mine for ever.
I should not have been thus particular Gsaphyra told this dream to several women upon these ridiculous horrors, did not I of her acquaintance, and died soon after. find them so very much prevail in all parts I thought this story might not be impertiof the country. At the same time I think nent in this place, wherein I speak of those a person who is thus terrified with the kings. Besides that, the example deserves imagination of ghosts and spectres much to be taken notice of, as it contains a most more reasonable than one who, contrary to certain proof of the immortality of the soul, the reports of all historians, sacred and and of Divine Providence. If any man profane, ancient and modern, and to the thinks these facts incredible, let him enjoy traditions of all nations, thinks the appear- his own opinion to himself, but let him not ance of spirits fabulous and groundless, endeavour to disturb the belief of others, Could not I give myself up to this general who by instances of this nature are excited testimony of mankind, I should to the re- to the study of virtue.'
L. lations of particular persons who are now living, and whom I cannot distrust in other matters of fact. I might here add, that No. 111.] Saturday, July 7, 1711. not only the historians, to whom we may join the poets, but likewise the philoso
Inter silvas academi quærere verum.
Hor, Lib. 2. Ep. ii. 45, phers of antiquity, have favoured this opinion. Lucretius himself, though by the
To search for truth in academic groves. course of his philosophy he was obliged to
The course of my last speculation led maintain that the soul did not exist sepa- me insensibly into a subject upon which I rate from the body, makes no doubt of the always meditate with great delight, I mean reality of apparitions, and that men liave often appeared after their death. This I † Antiquit. Jud lib. xvii. cap. 15. sect. 4, 5.
* Lucret. iv. 34, &c.
the immortality of the soul. I was yester- He does not seem born to enjoy life, but day walking alone in one of my friend's to deliver it down to others. This is not woods, and lost myself in it very agreeably, surprising to consider in animals, which are as I was running over in my mind the seve- formed for our use, and can finish their bural arguments that established this great siness in a short life. The silk-worm, after point, which is the basis of morality, and having spun her task, lays her eggs and the source of all the pleasing hopes and dies. But a man can never have taken in secret joys that can arise in the heart of a his full measure of knowledge, has not time reasonable creature. I considered those to subdue his passions, establish his soul in several proofs, drawn;
virtue, and come up to the perfection of First, From the nature of the soul itself, his nature, before he is hurried off the and particularly its immateriality, which stage. Would an infinitely wise Being make though not absolutely necessary to the such glorious creatures for so mean a pureternity of its duration, has, I think, been pose? Can he delight in the production of evinced to almost a demonstration. such abortive intelligences, such short-lived
Secondly, From its passions and senti- reasonable beings? Would he give us taments, as particularly from its love of ex- lents that are not to be exerted? Capaciistence, its horror of annihilation, and its ties that are never to be gratified? How hopes of immortality, with that secret can we find that wisdom, which shines satisfaction which it finds in the practice through all his works, in the formation of of virtue, and that uneasiness which follows man, without looking on this world as only in it upon the commission of vice.
a nursery for the next, and believing that Thirdly, From the nature of the Supreme the several generations of rational creaBeing, whose justice, goodness, wisdom, and tures, which rise up and disappear in such veracity are all concerned in this great point. quick successions, are only to receive their
But among these and other excellent ar- first rudiments of existence here, and afguments for the immortality of the soul, terwards to be transplanted into a more there is one drawn from the perpetual pro- friendly climate, where they may spread gress of the soul to its perfection, without and flourish to all eternity. a possibility of ever arriving at it: which is There is not, in my opinion, a more a hint that I do not remember to have seen pleasing and triumphant consideration in opened and improved by others who have religion than this, of the perpetual prowritten on this subject, though it seems to gress which the soul makes towards the me to carry a great weight with it. How perfection of its nature, without ever arrivcan it enter into the thoughts of man, that ing at a period in it. To look upon the soul the soul which is capable of such immense as going on from strength to strength; to perfections, and of receiving new improve consider that she is to shine for ever with ments to all eternity, shall fall away into new accessions of glory, and brighten to all nothing almost as soon as it is created? Are eternity; that she will be still adding virsuch abilities made for no purpose? A brute tue to virtue, and knowledge to knowledge; arrives at a point of perfection that he can carries in it something wonderfully agreenever pass: in a few years he has all the able to that ambition which is natural to endowments he is capable of: and were he the mind of man. Nay, it must be a prosto live ten thousand more, would be the pect pleasing to God himself, to see his same thing he is at present. Were a hu- creation for ever beautifying in his eyes, man soul thus at a stand in her accomplish- and drawing nearer to him by greater dements, were her faculties to be full blown, grees of resemblance. and incapable of further enlargements, Methinks this single consideration of the could imagine it might fall away insensi- progress of a finite spirit to perfection, will bly, and drop at once into a state of anni-| be sufficient to extinguish all envy in infehilation. But can we believe a thinking rior natures, and all contempt in superior. being, that is in a perpetual progress of im- That cherubim, which now appears as a provements, and travelling on from perfec- God to a human soul, knows very well that tion to perfection, after having just looked the period will come about in eternity, when abroad into the works of its Creator, and the human soul shall be as perfect as he made a few discoveries of his infinite good-himself now is: nay, when she shall look ness, wisdom, and power, must perish at down upon that degree of perfection, as her first setting out, and in the beginning much as she now falls short of it. It is of her inquiries?
true the higher nature still advances, and A man, considered only in his present by that means preserves his distance and state, seems only sent into the world to pro- superiority in the scale of being; but he pagate his kind. He provides himself with knows that how high soever the station is a successor, and immediately quits his post of which he stands possessed at present, the to make room for him.
inferior nature will at length mount up to it,
and shine forth in the same degree of glory. Hæredem alterius, velut unda supervenit undam. With what astonishment and veneration
Hor. Lib. 2. Ep. ii. 175. may we look into our own souls, where -Heir crowds beir, as in a rolling flood
there are such hidden stores of virtue and Wave urges wave.
knowledge, such inexhausted sources of