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on the other hand, every happiness imported from abroad. Commerce has therefore its bounds; and
A REVERIE. every new import, instead of receiving encouragement, should be first examined whether it be con
SCARCELY a day passes in which we do not hear ducive to the interest of society.
compliments paid to Dryden, Pope, and other Among the many publications with which the writers of the last age, while not a mouth comes press is every day burdened, I have often wondered forward that is not loaded with invectives against why we never had, as in other countries, an
the writers of this. Strange, that our critics should Economical Journal, which might at once direct to be fond of giving their favours to those who are all the useful discoveries in other countries, and insensible of the obligation, and their dislike to spread those of our own. As other journals serve
those, who, of all mankind, are most apt to retaliate to amuse the learned, or, what is more often the
the injury. case, to make them quarrel, while they only serve
Even though our present writers had not equal to give us the history of the mischievous world, for merit with their predecessors
, it would be politic to i call our warriors; or the idle world, for so may them would be more agreeable, in proportion as
use them with ceremony. Every compliment paid the learned be called; they never trouble their heads about the most useful part of mankind, our
they least deserved it. Tell a lady with a handpeasants and our artisans ;-were such a work car
some face that she is pretty, she only thinks it her ried into execution, with proper management, and due; it is what she has heard a thousand times bejust direction, it might serve as a repository for fore from others
, and disregards the compliment : every useful improvement, and increase that know. but assure a lady, the cut of whose visage is soteledge which learning often serves to confound.
thing more plain, that she looks killing today, she Sweden seems the only country where the sci- instantly bridles up, and feels the force of the wellence of economy seems to have fixed its empire
. which we think are deserved, we accept only as
timed flattery the whole day after. Compliments In other countries, it is cultivated only by a few admirers, or by societies which have not received debts, with indifference; but those which consufficient sanction to become completely useful;
science informs us we do not merit, we receive with but here there is founded a royal academy destined
the same gratitude that we do favours given away, to this purpose only, composed of the most learned
Our gentlemen, however, who preside at the dis and powerful members of the state; an academy
tribution of literary fame, seem resolved to part with which declines every thing which only terminates praise neither from motives of justice nor generosiin amusement, erudition, or curiosity; and admits ty: one would think, when they take pen in hand, only of observations tending to illustrate husbandry, their seals to the packet which consigns every new
that it was only to blot reputations, and to put agriculture, and every real physical improvement. born effort to oblivion. In this country nothing is left to private rapacity; but every improvement is immediately diffused,
Yet, notwithstanding the republic of letters and its inventor immediately recompensed by the hangs at present so feebly together; though those state. Happy were it so in other countries; by friendships which once promoted literary fame seem this means, every impostor would be prevented from now to be discontinued; though every writer who ruining or deceiving the public with pretended dis- now draws the quill seems to aim at profit, as well coveries or nostrums, and every real inventor would as applause; many among them are probably laying not, by this means, suffer the inconveniencies of in stores for immortality, and are provided with a suspicion.
sufficient stock of reputation to last the whole In short, the economy equally unknown to the journey. prodigal and avaricious, seems to be a just mean
As I was indulging these reflections, in order to between both extremes; and to a transgression of eke out the present page, I could not avoid purthis at present decried virtue it is that we are to at- suing the metaphor of going a journey in my imatribute a great part of the evils which infest society. gination, and formed the following Reverie
, too A taste for superfluity, amusement, and pleasure, wild for allegory and too regular for a dream. bring effeminacy, idleness, and expense in their
I fancied myself placed in the yard of a large train. But a thirst of riches is always proportion- inn, in which there were an infinite number of ed to our debauchery, and the greatest prodigal is wagons and stage-coaches, attended by fellows who too frequently found to be the greatest miser; so either invited the company to take their places, or that the vices which seem the most opposite, are were busied in packing their baggage. Each vehicle frequently found to produce each other; and to had its inscription, showing the place of its destiavoid both, it is only necessary to be frugal.
nation. On one I could read, The pleasure stage
coach; on another, The wagon of industry; on a Virtus est medium vitiorum et utrinque reductum.-- Hor. third, The vanity whim; and on a fourth, The
landau of riches. I had some inclination to step by your bulk you seem loaded for a West India into each of these, one after another; but I know voyage. You are big enough with all your papers not by what means, I passed them by, and at last to crack twenty stage-coaches. Excuse me, infixed my eye upon a small carriage, Berlin fashion, deed, sir, for you must not enter.” Our figure now which seemed the most convenient vehicle at a dis- began to expostulate: he assured the coachman, tance in the world; and upon my nearer approach that though his baggage seemed so bulky, it was found it to be The fame machine.
perfectly light, and that he would be contented I instantly made up to the coachman, whom I with the smallest corner of room. But Jehu was found to be an affable and seemingly good-natured inflexible, and the carrier of the Inspectors was fellow. He informed me, that he had but a few sent to dance back again with all his papers flutdays ago returned from the Teniple of Fame, to tering in the wind. We expected to have no more which he had been carrying Addison, Swift, Pope, trouble from this quarter, when in a few minutes Steele, Congreve, and Colley Cibber. That they the same figure changed his appearance, like harmade but indifferent company by the way, that he lequin upon the stage, and with the same confionce or twice was going to empty his berlin of the dence again made his approaches, dressed in lace, whole cargo: however, says he, I got them all and carrying nothing but a nosegay. Upon comsafe home, with no other damage than a black eye, ing nearer, he thrust the nosegay to the coachwhich Colley gave Mr. Pope, and am now return- man's nose, grasped the brass, and seemed now reed for another coachful. "If that be all, friend,” | solved to enter by violence. I found the struggle said I, "and if you are in want of company, I'll soon begin to grow hot, and the coachman, who make one with all my heart. Open the door; I was a little old, unable to continue the contest ; so, hope the machine rides easy.” “Oh, for that, sir, in order to ingratiate myself, I stepped in to his extremely easy." But still keeping the door shut, assistance, and our united efforts sent our literary and measuring me with his eye, " Pray, sir, have Proteus, though worsted, unconquered still, clear you no luggage? You seem to be a good-natured off, dancing a rigadoon, and smelling to his own sort of a gentleman; but I don't find you have got nosegay. any luggage, and I never permit any to travel with The person who after him appeared as candidate joe but such as have something valuable to pay for for a place in the stage, came up with an air not quite coach-hire.” Examining my pockets, I own I was so confident, but somewhat however theatrical ; not a little disconcerted at this unexpected rebuff; and, instead of entering, made the coachman a very but considering that I carried a number of the Bee low bow, which the other returned and desired to under my arm, I was resolved to open it in his see his baggage; upon which he instantly produced eyes, and dazzle him with the splendour of the some farces, a tragedy, and other miscellany propage. He read the title and contents, however, ductions. The coachman, casting his eye upon without any emotion, and assured me he had the cargo, assured him at present he could not posnever heard of it before. "In short, friend," said sibly have a place, but hoped in time he might ashe, now losing all his former respect, "you must pire to one, as he seemed to have read in the book not come in: I expect better passengers; but as of nature, without a careful perusal of which, none you seem a harmless creature, perhaps, if there be ever found entrace at the Temple of Fame. room left, I may let you ride a while for charity.” “What!" replied the disappointed poet, “shall
I now took my stand by the coachman at the my tragedy, in which I have vindicated the cause door; and since I could not command a seat, was of liberty and virtue—""Follow nature," reresolved to be as useful as possible, and earn by my turned the other, "and never expect to find lasting assiduity what I could not by my merit. fame by topics which only please from their popu
The next that presented for a place was a most larity. Had you been first in the cause of freedom whimsical figure indeed. He was hung round or praised in virtue more than an empty name, it with papers of his own composing, not unlike those is possible you might have gained admittance ; who sing ballads in the streets, and came dancing but at present I beg sir, you will stand aside for up to the door with all the confidence of instant another gentleman whom I see approaching." admittance. The volubility of his motion and ad- This was a very grave personage, whom at some dress prevented my being able to read more of his distance I took for one of the most reserved, and cargo than the word Inspector, which was written even disagreeable figures I had seen; but as he in great letters at the top of some of the papers. He approached, his appearance improved, and when I opened the coach-door himself without any cere- could distinguish him thoroughly, I perceived that, mony, and was just slipping in, when the coach- in spite of the severity of his brow, he had one of man, with as little ceremony, pulled him back. Our the most good-natured countenances that could be figure seemed perfectly angry at this repulse, and imagined. Upon coming to open the stage door, demanded gentleman's satisfaction. “Lord, sir!" he lifted a parcel of folios into the seat before him, replied the coachman, "instead of proper luggage, but our inquisitorial coachman at once shoved them
out again. “What! not take in my Dictionary?" | might be the conversation that passed upon this er. exclaimed the other in a rage. “Be patient, sir,” traordinary occasion ; when, instead of agreeable replied the coachman, “I have drove a coach, man or entertaining dialogue, I found them grumbling and boy, these two thousand years; but I do not at each other, and each seemed discontented with remember to have carried above one dictionary his companions. Strange! thought I to myself, during the whole time. That little book which I that they who are thus born to enlighten the world, perceive peeping from one of your pockets, may should still preserve the narrow prejudices of childI presume to ask what it contains ?" "A mere hood, and, by disagreeing, make even the highest trifle," replied the author ; "it is called The Ram-merit ridiculous. Were the learned and the wise bler." "The Rambler!" says the coachman, "I to unite against the dunces of society, instead of beg, sir, you will take your place; I have heard our sometimes siding into opposite parties with them, ladies in the court of Apollo frequently mention they might throw a lustre upon each other's repuit with rapture: and Clio, who happens to be a tation, and teach every rank of subordination me little grave, has been heard to prefer it to the Spec- rit, if not to admire, at least not to avow dislike. tator; though others have observed, that the re- In the midst of these reflections, 1 perceived the flections, by being refined, sometimes become mi-coachman, unmindful of me, had now mounted nute."
the box. Several were approaching to be taken in, This grave gentleman was scarcely seated, when whose pretensions, I was sensible, were very just; another, whose appearance was something more I therefore desired him to stop, and take in more modern, seemed willing to enter, yet afraid to ask. passengers ; but he replied, as he had now mountHe carried in his hand a bundle of essays, of ed the box, it would be improper to come down; which the coachman was curious enough to inquire but that he should take them all, one after the the contents. These," replied the gentleman, other, when he should return. So he drore "are rhapsodies against the religion of my coun- away; and for myself, as I could not get in, I try." And how can you expect to come into my mounted behind, in order to hear the conversation coach, after thus choosing the wrong side of the on the way. question ?" "Ay, but I am right,” replied the
(To be continued.) other; " and if you give me leave I shall in a few minutes state the argument.” “Right or wrong," said the coachman, "he who disturbs religion is a
A WORD OR TWO ON THE LATE blockhead, and he shall never travel in a coach of
FARCE, CALLED "HIGH LIFE BEmine." "If, then," said the gentleman, mustering
LOW STAIRS." up all his courage, “if I am not to have admit- Just as I had expected, before I saw this faree, tance as an essayist, I hope I shall not be repulsed I found it formed on two narrow a plan to afford a as an historian ; the last volume of my history met pleasing variety. The sameness of the humour in with applause." “Yes,” replied the coachman, cvery scene could not but at last sail of being disu“but I have heard only the first approved at the greeable. Ths poor, affecting the manners of the Temple of Fame; and as I see you have it about rich, might be carried on through one character, or you, enter without further ceremony." My atten- two at the most, with great propriety: but to have tion was now diverted to a crowd who were push-almost every personage on the scene almost of the ing forward a person that seemed more inclined to same character, and reflecting the follies of each the stage-coach of riches; but by their means he other, was unartful in the poet to the last degree. was driven forward to the same machine, which he, The scene was almost a continuation of the however, seemed heartily to despise. Impelled, same absurdity, and my Lord Duke and Sir Harhowever, by their solicitations, he steps up, flourish- ry (two footmen who assume these characters) ing a voluminous history, and demanding admit- have nothing else to do but to talk like their mastance. "Sir, I have formerly heard your name ters, and are only introduced to speak, and to show mentioned,” says the coachman,“ but never as an themselves. Thus, as there is a sameness of chahistorian. Is there no other work upon which you racter, there is a barrenness of incident, which, by may claim a place ?" None,” replied the other, a very small share of address, the poet might have "except a romance; but this is a work of too tri- easily avoided. fling a nature to claim future attention. “You From a conformity to critic rules, which permistake,” says the inquisitor, "a well-written ro- haps on the whole have done more harm than mance is no such easy task as is generally imagin- good, our author has sacrificed all the vivacity of ed. I remember formerly to have carried Cervan- the dialogue to nature ; and though he makes his tes and Segrais; and, if you think fit, you may characters talk like servants, they are seldom abenter."
surd enough, or lively enough to make us merry. Upon our three literary travellers coming into Though he is always natural, he happens seldum the same coach, I listened attentively to hear what to be humorous.
The satire was well intended, if we regard it as so many of the ancients either not known or not being masters ourselves; but probably a philoso- understood. It was not reasonable to attempt new pher would rejoice in that liberty which English- conquests, while they had such an extensive region men give their domestics; and, for my own part, 1 lying waste for want of cultivation. At that pecan not avoid being pleased at the happiness of those riod, criticism and erudition were the reigning stupoor creatures, who in some measure contribute to dies of the times; and he who had only an invenmine. The Athenians, the politest and best-na- tive genius, might have languished in hopeless obtured people upon earth, were the kindest to their scurity. When the writers of antiquity were suffislaves; and if a person may judge, who has seen ciently explained and known, the learned set about the world, our English servants are the best treated, imitating them: hence proceeded the number of because the generality of our English gentlemen Latin orators, poets, and historians, in the reigns are the politest under the sun.
of Clement the Seventh and Alexander the Sixth. But not to lift my feeble voice among the pack This passion for antiquity lasted for many years, of critics, who probably have no other occupation to the utter exclusion of every other pursuit, till but that of cutting up every thing new, I must some began to find, that those works which were own, there are one or two scenes that are fine satire, imitated from nature, were more like the writings and sufficiently humorous; particularly the first in- of antiquity, than even those written in express terview between the two footmen, which at once imitation. It was then modern language began to ridicules the manners of the great, and the ab- be cultivated with assiduity, and our poets and orasurdity of their imitators.
tors poured forth their wonders upon the world. Whatever defects there might be in the composi- As writers become more numerous, it is natural tion, there were none in the action: in this the per- for readers to become more indolent; whence must formers showed more humour than I had fancied necessarily arise a desire of attaining knowledge them capable of. Mr. Palmer and Mr. King were with the greatest possible case. No science or art entirely what they desired to represent; and Mrs. offers its instruction and amusement in so obvious Clive (but what need I talk of her, since, without a manner as statuary and painting. Hence we the least exaggeration, she has more true humour see, that a desire of cultivating those arts generally than any actor or actress upon the English or any attends the decline of science. Thus the finest other stage I have seen)-she, I say, did the part statues and the most beautiful paintings of anall the justice it was capable of: and, upon the tiquity, preceded but a little the absolute decay of whole, a farce, which has only this to recommend every other science. The statues of Antoninus, it, that the author took his plan from the volume Commodus, and their contemporaries, are the finest of nature, by the sprightly manner in which it was productions of the chisel, and appeared but just beperformed, was for one night a tolerable entertain-fore learning was destroyed by comment, criticism, ment. This much may be said in its vindication, and barbarous invasions. that people of fashion seemed more pleased in the What happened in Rome may probably be tho representation than the subordinate ranks of people. case with us at home. Our nobility are now more
solicitous in patronizing painters and sculptors than those of any other polite profession; and from the
lord, who has his gallery, down to the 'prentice, UPON UNFORTUNATE MERIT. who has his twopenny copper-plate, all are ad
mirers of this art. The great, by their caresses, EVERY
age seems to have its favourite pursuits, secm insensible to all other merit but that of the which serve to amuse the idle, and to relieve the pencil ; and the vulgar buy every book rather from attention of the industrious. Happy the man who the excellence of the sculptor than the writer. is born excellent in the pursuit in vogue, and whose How happy were it now, if men of real excelgenius seems adapted to the times in which he lence in that profession were to arise! Were the lives. How many do we see, who might have ex-painters of Italy now to appear, who once wandercelled in arts or sciences, and who seem furnished ed like beggars from one city to another, and prowith talents equal to the greatest discoveries, had duce their almost breathing figures, what rewards the road not been already beaten by their prede- might they not expect! But many of them lived cessors, and nothing left for them except trifles to without rewards, and therefore rewards alone will discover, while others of very moderate abilities be- never produce their equals. We have often found come famous, because happening to be first in the the great exert themselves not only withɔut proreigning pursuit.
motion, but in spite of opposition. We have often Thus, at the renewal of letters in Europe, the found them flourishing, like medicinal plants, in a taste was not to compose new books, but to com- region of savageness and barbarity, their excellence ment on the old ones. It was not to be expected unknown, and their virtues unheeded. that new books should be written, when there were They who have seen the paintings of Caravagio are sensible of the surprising impression they make; upon this subject, instead of indulging each his bold, swelling, terrible to the last degree; all seems particular and whimsical system, it had been much animated, and speaks him among the foremost of better if the writers on this subject had treated it his profession; yet this man's fortune and his fame in a more scientific manner, repressed all the salseemed ever in opposition to each other. lies of imagination, and given us the result of
Unknowing how to flatter the great, he was their observations with didactic simplicity. Upon driven from city to city in the utmost indigence, this subject the smallest errors are of the most danand might truly be said to paint for his bread.
gerous consequence; and the author should venHaving one day insulted a person of distinction, ture the imputation of stupidity upon a topic, who refused to pay him all the respect which he where his slightest deviations may tend to injure thought his due, he was obliged to leave Rome, the rising generation. and travel on foot, his usual method of going his I shall therefore throw out a few thoughts upon journeys down into the country, without either this subject, which have not been attended to by money or friends to subsist him.
others, and shall dismiss all attempts to please, After he had travelled in this manner as long as while I study only instruction. his strength would permit, faint with famine and The manner in which our youth of London ate fatigue, he at last called at an obscure inn by the at present educated is, some in free-schools in the way-side. The host knew, by the appearance of city, but the far greater number in boarding-schools his guest, his indifferent circumstances, and refused about town. The parent justly consults the to furnish him a dinner without previous payment. health of his child, and finds an education in the
As Caravagio was entirely destitute of money, country tends to promote this much more than a he took down the innkeeper's sign, and painted it continuance in the town. Thus far they are anew for his dinner.
right : if there were a possibility of having even Thus refreshed, he proceeded on his journey, our free-schools kept a little out of town, it would and left the innkeeper not quite satisfied with this certainly conduce to the health and vigour of permethod of payment. Some company of distinc-haps the mind, as well as of the body. It may be tion, however, coming soon after, and struck with thought whimsical, but it is truth; I have found the beauty of the new sign, bought it at an ad-by experience, that they who have spent all their vanced price, and astonished the innkeeper with lives in cities, contract not only an effeminacy of their generosity: he was resolved, therefore, to get habit, but even of thinking. as many signs as possible drawn by the same artist, But when I have said, that the boarding schools as he found he could sell them to good advantage; are preferable to free-schools, as being in the counand accordingly set out after Caravagio, in order try, this is certainly the only advantage I can allow to bring him back. It was nightfall before he came them, otherwise it is impossible to conceive the up to the place where the unfortunate Caravagio ignorance of those who take upon them the imlay dead by the roadside, overcome by fatigue, re- portant trust of education. Is any man unfit for sentment, and despair.
any of the professions ? he finds his last resource in setting up school. Do any become bankrupts in
trade? they still set up a boarding-school, and drive
a trade this way, when all others fail : nay, I have THE BEE, No. VI.
been told of butchers and barbers, who have turn ed schoolmasters; and, more surprising still
, made SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 10, 1759.
fortunes in their new profession.
Could we think ourselves in a country of civil
ized people; could it be conceived that we have ON EDUCATION.
any regard for posterity, when such are permitted
to take the charge of the morals, genius, and health TO THE AUTHOR OF THE BEE.
of those dear little pledges, who may one day be SIR,
the guardians of the liberties of Europe, and who As few subjects are more interesting to society, may serve as the honour and bulwark of their aged so few have been more frequently written upon than parents? The care of our children, is it below the the education of youth. Yet is it not a little sur- state ? is it fit to indulge the caprice of the ignoprising, that it should have been treated almost by rant with the disposal of their children in this parall in a declamatory manner? They have insisted ticular? For the state to take the charge of all its largely on the advantages that result from it, both children, as in Persia and Sparta, might at present to the individual and to society, and have expatiated be inconvenient; but surely with great ease it in the praise of what none have ever been so hardy might cast an eye to their instructors. Of all as to call in question.
members of society, I do not know a more useful, Instead of giving us fine but empty harangues or a more honourable one, than a schoolmaster;