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These two rivals for the reputation of beauty, were in their stature, countenance, and mien so very much alike, that if you were speaking of them in their absence, the words in which you described the one must give you an idea of the other. They were hardly distinguishable, you would think, when they were apart, though extremely different when together. What made their enmity the more entertaining to all the rest of their sex was, that in detraction from each other, neither could fall upon terms which did not hit herself as much as her adversary. Their nights grew restless with meditation of new dresses to outvie each other, and inventing new devices to recal admirers, who observed the charms of the one rather than those of the other, on the last meeting. Their colours failed at each other's appearance, flushed with pleasure at the report of a disadvantage, and their countenances withered upon instances of applause. The decencies to which women are obliged, made these virgins stifle their resentment so far as not to break into open violences, while they equally suffered the torments of a regulated anger. Their mothers, as it is usual, engaged in the quarrel, and supported the several pretensions of their daughters with all that ill-chosen sort of expence which is common with people of plentiful fortunes and mean taste. The girls preceded their parents like queens of May, in all the gaudy colours imaginable, on every Sunday to church, and were exposed to the examination of the audience for superiority of beauty.
During this constant struggle it happened, that Phillis one day at public prayers smote the heart of a gay West Indian, who appeared in all the colours which can affect an eye that could not distinguish between being fine and tawdry. This American, in a summerisland suit, was too shining and too gay to be resisted by Phillis, and too intent upon her charms to be diverted by any of the laboured attractions of Brunetta.
Soon after, Brunetta had the mortification to see her rival disposed of in a wealthy marriage, while she was only addressed to in a manner that shewed she was the admiration of all men, but the choice of none. Phillis was carried to the habitation of her spouse in Barbadoes. Brunetta had the ill-nature to enquire for her by every opportunity, and had the misfortune to hear of her being attended by numerous slaves, fanned into slumbers by successive bands of them, and carried from place to place in all the pomp of barbarous
magnificence. Brunetta could not endure these repeated advices, but employed all her arts and charms in laying baits for any of condition of the same island, out of a mere ambition to confront her once more before she died. She at last succeeded in her design, and was taken to wife by a gentleman whose estate was contiguous to that of her enemy's husband. It would be endless to enumerate the many occasions on which these irreconcilable beauties laboured to excel each other; but in process of time it happened, that a ship put into the island consigned to a friend of Phillis, who had directions to give her the refusal of all goods for apparel, before Brunetta could be alarmed of their arrival. He did so, and Phillis was dressed in a few days in a brocade more gorgeous and costly than had ever before appeared in that latitude. Brunetta languished at the sight, and could by no means come up to the bravery of her antagonist. She communicated her anguish of mind to a faithful friend, who by an interest in the wife of Phillis's merchant, procured a remnant of the same silk for Brunetta. Phillis took pains to appear in all public places where she was sure to meet Brunetta ; Brunetta was now prepared for the insult, and came to a public ball in a plain black silk mantua, attended by a beautiful negro girl in a petticoat of the same brocade with which Phillis was attired. This drew the attention of the whole company,
upon which the unhappy Phillis swooned away, and was immediately conveyed to her house. As soon as she came to herself, she fled from her husband's house, went on board a ship in the road, and is now landed in inconsolable despair at Plymouth.
TO MR, SPECTATOR.
• THOUGH I deny not the petition of Mr. WHO and WHICH, yet you should not suffer them to be rude, and to call honest people names : for that bears very hard on some of those rules of decency which you are justly famous for establishing. They may find fault, and correct speeches in the senate, and at the bar, but let then try to get themselves so often and with so much eloquence repeated in a sentence, as a great orator doth frequently introduce me.
My lords ! (says he) with humble submission, That That I
say is this ; That, That That gentleman has advanced, is not That, That he should have proved to your lordships. Let these two questionary petitioners try to do this with their Who's and their Whiches.
What great advantage was I of to Mr. Dryden in his Indian Emperor,
“ You force me still to answer you in That," to furnish out a rhyme to Morat ? and what a poor figure would Mr. Bayes have made without his “ Égad and all That ?" How can a judicious man distinguish one thing from another, without saying “ This here,” or “ That there?" And how can a sober man, without using the expletives of oaths, in which indeed the
rakes and bullies have a great advantage over others) make a discourse of any tolerable length, without “ That is ;” and if he be a very grave man indeed, without “ That is to say,” And how instructive as well as entertaining are those usual expressions in the mouths of great men, “ Such things as That,” and “ The like of That."
· I am not against reforming the corruptions of speech you mention, and owu there are proper seasons for the introduction of other words besides That; but I scorn as much to supply the place of a Who or a Which at every turn, as they are unequal always to fill mine and I expect good language and civil treatment, and hope to receive it for the future : That, That I shall only add is, That I am,
N° 81. SATURDAY, JUNE 2, 1711.
Qualis ubi audito venantům murmure tigris
STAT. Theb. ii. 128.
ABOUT the middle of last winter I went to see an opera at the theatre in the Hay-market, where I could not but take notice of two parties of very
fine women, that had placed themselves in the opposite side-boxes, and seemed drawn up in a kind of battlearray one against another. After a short
of them, I found they were patched differently; the faces on one hand being spotted on the right side of the forehead, and those upon the other on the left. I quickly perceived that they cast hostile glances upon one another; and that their patches were placed in those different situations, as party-signals to distinguish friends from foes. In the middle-boxes, between these two opposite bodies, were several ladies who patched indifferently on both sides of their faces, and seemed to sit there with no other intention but to see the opera. Upon inquiry I found that the body of Amazons on my right hand, were whigs, and those on my left, tories; and that those who had placed themselves in the middle boxes were a neutral party, whose faces had not yet declared themselves. These last, however, as I afterwards found, diminished daily, and took their party with one side or the other; insomuch that I observed, in several of them, the patches which were before dispersed equally, are now