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adds to him the greatest grace is, that the pleasant thief, as they call him, is the most inconstant creature living, has a wonderful deal of wit and humour, and never wants something to say; besides all which, he has a most spiteful dangerous tongue if you should provoke him.

To make a woman's man, he must not be a man of sense, or a fool; the business is to entertain, and it is much better to have a faculty of arguing, than a capacity of judging right. But the pleasantest of all the women's equipage are your regular visitants; these are volunteers in their service, without hopes of pay or preferment. It is enough that they can lead out from a public place, that they are admitted on a public day, and can be allowed to pass away part of that heavy load, their time, in the company of the fair. But commend me above all others to those who are known for your ruiners of ladies; these are the choicest spirits which our age produces. We have several of these irresistible gentlemen among us when the company is in town. These fellows are accomplished with the knowledge of the ordinary occurrences about court and town, have that sort of good-breeding which is exclusive of all morality, and consists only in being publicly decent, privately dissolute.

It is wonderful how far a fond opinion of herself can carry a woman, to make her have the least regard to a professed known woman's man; but as scarce one of all the women who are in the tour of gallantries ever hears any thing of what is the common sense of sober minds, but are entertained with a continual round of flatteries, they cannot be mistresses of themselves enough to make arguments for their own conduct from the behaviour of these men to others. It is so far otherwise, that a general fame for falsehood in this kind, is a recommenda

tion; and the coxcomb, loaded with the favours of many others, is recived like a victor that disdains his trophies, to be a victim to the present charmer.

If you see a man more full of gesture than ordinary in a public assembly, if loud upon no occasion, if negligent of the company round him, and yet laying wait for destroying by that negligence, you may take it for granted that he has ruined many a fair one. The woman's man expresses himself wholly in that motion which we call strutting. An elevated chest, a pinched hat, a measurable step, and a sly surveying eye, are the marks of him. Now and then you see a gentleman with all these accomplishments; but, alas, any one of them is enough to undo thousands: when a gentleman with such perfections adds to it suitable learning, there should be public warning of his residence in town, that we may remove our wives and daughters. It happens sometimes that such a fine man has read all the miscellany poems, a few of our comedies, and has the translation of Ovid's Epistles by heart. Oh if it were possible that such a one could be as true as he is charming! but that is too much, the women will share such a dear false man: a little gallantry to hear him talk one would indulge one's self in, let him reckon the sticks of one's fan, say something of the Cupids in it; and then call one so many soft names which a man of his learning has at his fingers'-ends. There sure is some excuse for frailty, when attacked by such force against a weak woman. Such is the soliloquy of many a lady one might name, at the sight of one of those who makes it no iniquity to go on from day to day in the sin of woman-slaughter."


It is certain that people are got into a way of affectation, with a manner of overlooking the most solid virtues, and admiring the most trivial excellencies. The woman is so far from expecting to be con

temned for being a very injudicious silly animal, that while she can preserve her features and her mien, she knows she is still the object of desire; and there is a sort of secret ambition, from reading frivolous books, and keeping as frivolous company, each side to be amiable in perfection, and arrive at the characters of the Dear Deceiver and the Perjured Fair. T.

N° 157. THURSDAY, AUGUST 30, 1711.

Genius, natale comes qui temperat astrum,

Natura Deus humanæ, mortalis in unum

Quodque caput


HOR. 2 Ep. ii. 187,

That directing pow'r,

Who forms the genius in the natal hour:
That God of nature, who, within us still,
Inclines our action, not constrains our will.


I AM very much at a loss to express by any word that occurs to me in our language that which is understood by indoles in Latin. The natural disposition to any particular art, science, profession, or trade, is very much to be consulted in the care of youth, and studied by men for their own conduct when they form to themselves any scheme of life. It is wonderfully hard indeed for a man to judge of his own capacity impartially. That may look great to me which may appear little to another; and I may be carried by fondness towards myself so far, as to attempt things too high for my talents and ac

complishments. But it is not methinks so very difficult a matter to make a judgment of the abilities of others, especially of those who are in their infancy. My common-place book directs me on this occasion to mention the dawning of greatness in Alexander, who being asked in his youth to contend for a prize in the Olympic games, answered he would, if he had kings to run against him. Cassius, who was one of the conspirators against Cæsar, gave as great a proof of his temper, when in his childhood he struck a play-fellow, the son of Sylla, for saying his father was master of the Roman people. Scipio is reported to have answered (when some flatterers at supper were asking him what the Romans should do for a general after his death) 'Take Marius.' Marius was then a very boy, and had given no instances of his valour; but it was visible to Scipio from the manners of the youth, that he had a soul formed for the attempt and execution of great undertakings. I must confess I have very often with much sorrow bewailed the misfortune of the children of Great Britain, when I consider the ignorance and undiscerning of the generality of schoolmasters. The boasted liberty we talk of is but a mean reward for the long servitude, the many heart-aches and terrors, to which our childhood is, exposed in going through a grammar-school. Many of these stupid tyrants exercise their cruelty without any manner of distinction of the capacities of children, or the intention of parents in their behalf. There are many excellent tempers which are worthy to be nourished and cultivated with all possible diligence and care, that were never designed to be acquainted with Aristotle, Tully, or Virgil; and there are as many who have capacities for understanding every word those great persons have writ, and yet were not born to have any relish of their

writings. For want of this common and obvious discerning in those who have the care of youth, we have so many hundred unaccountable creatures every age whipped up into great scholars, that are for ever near a right understanding, and will never arrive at it. These are the scandal of letters, and these are generally the men who are to teach others. The sense of shame and honour is enough to keep the world itself in order without corporal punishment, much more to train the minds of uncorrupted and innocent children. It happens, I doubt not, more than once in a year, that a lad is chastised for a blockhead, when it is good apprehension that makes him incapable of knowing what his teacher means. A brisk imagination very often may suggest an error, which a lad could not have fallen into, if he had been as heavy in conjecturing as his master in explaining. But there is no mercy even towards a wrong interpretation of his meaning, the sufferings of the scholar's body are to rectify the mistakes of his mind.

I am confident that no boy, who will not be allured to letters without blows, will ever be brought to any thing with them. A great or good mind must necessarily be the worse for such indignities; and it is a sad change, to lose of its virtue for the improvement of its knowledge. No one who has gone through what they call a great school, but must remember to have seen children of excellent and ingenuous natures (as has afterwards appeared in their manhood); I say no man has passed through this way of education, but must have seen an ingenuous creature expiring with shame, with pale looks, beseeching sorrow, and silent tears, throw up its honest eyes, and kneel on its tender knees to an inexorable blockhead to be forgiven the false quan

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