Imagens da página

a decent well looking man, of a middle stature, long flaxen hair, and a florid complexion*. On Saturdays, he is somewhat of the shortest, and may be known from others of that size by talking in a low voice, and passing through the streets without much precipitation.

*** Having copied those Tatlers which could properly be ascribed to the dean: it is but justice to mention FOUR, which (having been said to be his) he has thus disclaimed.-" The Tatler [237] upon “ Milton's Spear is not mine." · Journal to Stella, Nov. 1, 1710.—56 The Tatler of the shilling [249] " was not mine, more than the hints and two or three general heads for it. I have much more im

portant business on my hands.” Nov. 8.-“ You “ are mistaken in your guesses about Tatlers : I “ did neither write that on Noses [260] nor Re“ ligion [257]; nor do I send him of late any hints 6 at all.” Jan. 1, 1710-11.


« Melius non tangere clamo," W HEN a general has conquered an army, and reduced a country to obedience, he often finds it

necessary * Perhaps Mr. Henley

+ In Vol. III, p. 249, this Examiner is referród to as No. 45, in conformity to the numbers there used; but it should certainly have been called, as it originally was, No. 46.

necessary to send out small bodies, in order to take in petty castles and forts, and beat little straggling


deployed, entlemen Wand&c.

On the third of August 1710, appeared the first number of The Examiner, the ablest vindication of the measures of the queen and her new ministry. “ About a dozen of these papers," Dr. Swift tells us, “ written with much spirit and sharpness, some by secretary St. John, since lord Bolingbroke; others by Dr. Atterbury, since bishop of Rochester ; and others again by Mr. Prior, Dr. Freind, &c. were published with gteat applause. But these gentlemen being grown weary of the work, or otherwise employed, the determination was, that I should continue it; which I did accordingly eight months. But, my style being soon disco. vered, and having contracted a great number of enemies, I let it fall into other hands, who held it up in some manner until her ma. jesty's death." The original institutors are supposed to have employed Dr. King as their publisher, or ostensible author, before they prevailed on their great champion to undertake that task. Mr. Oldmixon thought that Mr. Prior had a principal hand in the early numbers ; and it is well known that he wrote No. 6, professedly against Dr. Garth. Dr. King was the author of No. 11, October 12: and of No. 12, October 19. Who was the author of No. 13, does not appear; but it is remarkable that, when the Examiners were first collected by Mr. Barber into a volume, No. 13 was omitted; the original 14 being then marked 13; and so on to 45 inclusive, which is marked 44 ; and this misarrangement has of course been continued by Dr. Hawkesworth and Mr. Sheridan. No. 14, which was published Nov. 2, was written by Dr. Swift, who aided in writing a part of No. 46, when Mrs. Manley took it up, and finished the first volume. Mr. Prior, however, was by many still considered as the author, as appears by the Journal to Stella, Feb. 9, 1710-11.-In a subse. quent letter, Nov. 3, 1711, Swift' says “ The first thirteen Examiners were written by several hands, some good, some bad; the next three and thirty were all by one hand; that makes fortysix: then the author, whoever he was, laid it down, on purpose to confound guessers; and the last six were written by a woman. The printer is going to print them in a small volume ; it seems the author is too proud to have them printed by subscription, though his frierids offered, they say, to make it worth five hundred pounds parties, which are otherwise apt to make head, and infest the neighbourhood. This case exactly resembles mine. I count the main body of the whigs entirely subdued ; at least, till they appear with new reinforcements, I shall reckon them as such ; and therefore do now find myself at leisure to examine inferiour abuses, The business I have left is, to fall on those wretches that will be still keeping the war on foot, when they have no country to defend, no forces to bring into the field, nor any thing remaining, but their bare good will toward faction and mischief: I mean the present set of writers, whom I' have suffered, without molestation, so long to infest the town. Were there not a concurrence from prejudice, party, weak understanding, and misrepresen- tation, I should think them too inconsiderable in themselves to deserve correction. But as my endeavour has been to expose the gross impositions of the fallen party, I will give a taste, in the following petition, of the sincerity of these their factors, to show how little those writers for the whigs were

to him.” In a note on this passage, Mr. Deane Swift has observed, « that the doctor's memory failed him a little ; and that he should have said, the first twelve were written by several hands, and the next thirty-two by one person."-The dean, however, was right. The original volume of Examiners consists of fifty-two numbers. It appears above, the last six were written by a woman (Mrs. Manley]; consequently Dr. Swift ended with No. 46. Our author, in the Journal of July 15, says, “ I do not like any thing in the Exami. “ ner after the 45th, except the first part of the 46th.” And on the 22d of June (the day after No. 47 was published) he says, " Yesterday's was a sad Examiner; and last week's was very indifferent, though some scraps of the old spirit, as if he had given hints."-But, as that paper will best speak for itself, we shall not apologize for copying the first part of No. 46, to complete those which have been inserted in our third volume. 'P 3


guided by conscience or honour, their business being only to gratify a prevailing interest.

66 To the right honourable the present ministry; the

“ humble petition of the party writers to the late 66 ministry,


« HUMBLY SHOWETH, - That your petitioners have served their time to " the trade of writing pamphlets and weekly papers, “ in defence of the whigs, against the church of “ England, and the christian religion, and her ma" jesty's prerogative, and her title to the crown : “ That, since the late change of ministry, and meet'« ing of this parliament, the said trade is mightily “ fallen off, and the call for the said pamphlets and ” papers much less than formerly ; and it is feared,

to our farther prejudice, that the Examiner may “ discontinue writing, whereby some of your peti« tioners will be brought to utter distress, forasmuch 6 as, through false quotations, noted absurdities, and “ other legal abuses, many of your petitioners, to " their great comfort and support, were enabled to 5 pick up a weekly subsistance out of the said “ Examiner.

“ That your said poor petitioners did humbly

offer your honours to write in defence of the late “ change of ministry and parliament, much cheaper “ than they did for your predecessors; which your " honours were pleased to refuse. .“ Notwithstanding which offer, your petitioners " are under daily apprehension, that your honours “ will forbid them to follow the said trade any o longer ; by which your petitioners, to the num

" ber

“ ber of fourscore, with their wives and families, “ will inevitably starve, having been bound to no' “ other calling..! ; , Your petitioners desire your honours will ten

“ derly consider the premises, and suffer your “ said petitioners to continue their trade (those “ who set them at work being still willing to “ employ them, though at lower rates ;) and “ your said petitioners will give security to “ make use of the same stuff, and dress in - the same manner, as they always did, and “ no other. “ And your petitioners, &c.”



In the Spectator, No. 575, August 2, 1714, the following article was proposed by Dr. Swift :

The following question is started by one of the schoolmen : Supposing the whole body of the earth were a great ball or mass of the finest sand, and that a single grain or particle of this sand should be annihilated every thousand years. Supposing then that you had it in your choice to be happy all the while this prodigious mass of sand was consuming by this slow method, until there was not a grain of it left, on condition you were to be miserable for ever after ; or supposing that you might be happy for ever after, on condition you would be miserable until the whole mass of sand were thus annihilated at the rate of one sand in a thousand years : which of these two cases would you make your choice ?"

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][merged small]
« AnteriorContinuar »