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that they actually think themselves never belt cooks in the world, if they had but old; a gentle Miss shall prepare for new meat; as it is, they can dress you out conquests at fixty; fall hobble a riga. five different dishes from a nettle-top, doon when she can scarce walk without seven from a dock-leaf, and twice as a crutch; the thall affect the girl, play many from a frog's haunches ; these eat her fan and her eyes, and talk of fenti- prettily enough when one is a little used ments, bleeding hearts, and expiring to them, are easy of digestion, and fel. for love, when actually dying with age. dom overload the stomach with crudities, Like a departing philosopher, the at- They feldom dine under seven hot dithes; tempts to make her last moments the it is true, indeed, with all this magnifintoft brilliant of her life.
cence, they feldom spread a cloth beTheir civility to ftrangers is what fore the guelts; but in that I cannot be they are chiefly proud of; and to con- angry with them ; fince those who have fels fincerely, their beggars are the very got no linen on their backs, may very politeit beggars I ever knew : in other well be excused for wanting it upon their piaces, a traveller is addressed with api- tables. ieous wbine, or a fturdy folemnity; but Even religion itself loses it's solema French beggar shall ask your charity nity among them. Upon their roads, with a very genteel bow, and thank you at about every five miles distance, you for it with a smile and a shrug.
see an image of the Virgin Mary, dress. Another instance of this people's ed up in grim head-cloaths, painted breeding I must not forget. An Eng. cheeks, and an old red petticoat; before Jishman would not speak his native her a lamp is often kept burning, language in a company of foreigners, which, with the Saint's permiffion, I where he was sure that none understood have frequently lighted my pipe. Inhim; a travelling Hottentot himself stead of the Virgin, you are sometimes would be silent, if acquainted only with presented with a Crucifix, at other times the language of his country: but a with a wooden Saviour, fitted out in Frenchman mall talk to you whether compleat garniture, with sponge, spear, you understand his language or not; nails, pincers, hammer, bees-wax and never troubling his head whether you vinegar-bottle. Some of these images, have learned French, fill he keeps up I have been told, came down from beathe conversation, fixes his eye full in ven; if so, in heaven they have but your face, and asks a thousand ques- bungling workmen. tions, which he answers himself for want In palling through their towns, you of a more fatisfactory reply:
frequently see the men fitting at the But their civility to foreigners is not doors knitting stockings, while the care half fo great as their admiration of of cultivating the ground and pruning themselves. Every thing that belong the vines fall to the women. This is to them and their nation is great; mag. perhaps the reason why the fair-lex are nificent beyond expression; quite roman- granted some peculiar privileges in this tic! every garden is a paradise, every country; particularly, when they can hovel a palace, and every woman an get horses, of riding without a fideangel. They shut their eyes close, laddle. throw their mouths wide open, and cry But I begin to think you may
find out in rapture: Sacre! What beauty! this description pert and dull enough; • o Ciel!-what taste! Mort de ma vie! perhaps it is so, yet in general, it is the • —what grandeur! was ever any peo- manner in which the French usually de• ple like ourlelves? We are the nation scribe foreigners; and it is but just to • of men, and all the rest no better than force a pari of that ridicule back upon two-legged barbarians.'
them, which they attempt to lavish on I fancy the French would make the others. Adieu.
FROM THE SAME.
amuse the citizens here, are again ed as well as amused; I lile to hear op ned for the winter. The mimetic the assertion. If I ever go to one of their troops, different from those of the state, play-houses, what with trumpets, halbegin their campaign when all the others looing behind the itage, and bawling quit the field; and at a time when the upon it, I am quite dizzy before the Europeans cease to destroy each other in performance is over. If I enter the reality, they are entertained with mock house with any sentiments in my head, battles upon the stage.
I am sure to have none going away, the The dancing-master once more Makes whole mind being filled with a dead his quivering feet; the carpenter pre- march, a funeral procession, a cat-call, pares his paradise of pasteboard; the a jig, or a tempeít. hero resolves to cover his forehead with There is, perhaps, nothing more easy brass, and the heroine begins to scour than to write properly for the English up her copper tail, preparative to future theatre; I am amazed that none are apoperations ; in short, all are in motion, prenticed to the trade. The author, from the theatrical letter-carrier in yel- when well acquainted with the value of low cloaths, to Alexander the Great thunder and lightning; when versed in that stands on a stool.
all the mystery of scene-shifting, and Both houses have already commenc- trap-doors; when skilled in the proper ed hoftilities. War, open war! and no periods to introduce a wire-walker, or a quarter received or given! Two singing water-fall; when instructed in every women, like heralds, have begun the actor's peculiar talent, and capable of conteit; the whole town is divided on adapting his speeches to the supposed exthis folemn occasion; one has the finest cellence; when thus initructed, knows pipe, the other the finest manner; one all that can give a modern audience pleacurtesies to tlie ground, the other fa. fure. One player thines in an excla, lutes the audience with a smile; one nation, another in a groar, a third in comes on with modesty which alks, the a horror, a fourth in a tart, a fifth in a other with boldness which extorts ap- smile, a sixth faints, and a feventh figets plause; one wears powder, the other has round the stage with peculiar vivacity; none; one has the longeit waist, but the that piece, therefore, will succeed beit, other appears molt ealy: all, all is im- where each has a proper opportunity of portant and serious.
The town as yet thining; the actor's business is not so perseveres in it's neutrality; a cause of much to adapt himself to the poet, as the Iuch moment demands the mott mature poet's to adapt himself to the actor. deliberation; they continue to exhibit; The great secret, therefore, of trageand it is very pollibie this conteit may dy-writing, at present, is a perfect accontinue to please to the end of the sea- quaintance with theatrical ah's and oh’s; fon.
a certain number of these intersperred But the Generals of either army with gods! tortures! racks! and damnahave, as I am told, several reinforce- tion! thall distort every actor almoti into ments to lend occasional assistance. If convulsions, and draw lears froin every they produce a pair of diamond buckles spectator ; a proper use of these will inat one house, we have a pair of eye- fallibly fill the whole house with apbrows that can match them at the other. plaule. Büt, above all, a whining scene If we out-do them in our attitude, they must trike mot forcibly. I would adcan overcome us by a Ilirug; if we can vise, from my present knowledge of the bring more children on the stage, they audience, the two favourite players of can bring more guards in red cloaths, the town to introduce a scene of this who strut and shoulder their swords to sort in every play. Towards the midthe altonilliment of every spectator. dle of the lait aci, I would have them They tell me here, that people fre- enter with wild looks, and out-spread
arms; there is no necessity for speaking; All modern plays that would keep they are only to groan at each other; the audience alive, must be conceived in they must vary the tones of exclamation this manner; and, indeed, many a moand despair through the whole theatrical dern play is made up on no other plan. gamut, wring their figures into every This is the merit-that lifts up the heart, ihape of diftreis; and when their calaini- like opium, into a rapture of infenfibities have drawn a proper quantity of lity, and can dismiss the mind from all tears from the sympathetic spectators, the fatigue of thinking: this is the elothey may go off in dumb folemnity at quence that shines in many a long fordifferent doors, clalping their bands, or gotten scene, which has been reckoned flapping their pocket-holes: this, which excessive fine upon acting; this the lightmay be called a tragic pantomime, will ning that flashes no less in the Hyperanswer every purpose of moving the par bolical tyrant, who breakfafts on the fions, as well as words could have done, wind,' than in little Norval, ' as and it must save those expences which hamless as the babe unborn.' Adieu. go to reward an author,
FROM THE SAME.
Have always regarded the spirit of It is very possible thus for a people to
mercy which appears in the Chinese ' become Naves to laws of their own enlaws with admiration. An order for acting, as the Athenians were to those of The execution of a criminal is carried Draco. It might first happen,' says from court by flow journeys of six miles the historian, that men, with peculiar a day, but a pardon is fent down with • talents for villainy, attempted to evade the most rapid dupatch. If five sons of • the ordinances already established; the same father be guilty of the same • their practices, therefore, foon brought offence, one of them is forgiven, in or- on a new law levelled against them; der to continue the family, and comfort • but the fame degree of cunning which his aged parents in their decline. I had taught the knave to evade the for
Similar to this, there is a fpirit of mer statutes, taught him to evade the mercy breathes through the laws of Eng- • latter also; he flew to new shifts, while land, which fome erroneously endeavour • justice pursued with new ordinances; to fuppress; the laws, however, seem • atill, however, he kept his proper dirunwilling to punish the offender, or to • tance; and whenever ore crime was. furnith the officers of justice with every judged penal by the state, he left commeans of acting with severity. Those mitting it, in order to practise some who arreft debtors are denied the use of ' unforbidden species of villainy. Thus arms; the nightly watch is permitted to • the criminal, against whom the threatrepress the disorders of the drunken ci- 'enings were denounced, always escaptizens only with clubs; justice, in such a • ed free; while the simple rogue alone case, feeins to hide her terrors, and per- • felt the rigour of justice. In the mean mits some offenders to escape, rather than time, penal laws became numerous ; luad any with a punishment dispropor- almost every person in the state, un, tioned to the criine.
knowingly, at different times offendThus it is the glory of an English- ed, and was every moment subject to man, that he is not only governed by a malicious prosecution.' In fact, laws, but that these are also tempered penal laws, instead of preventing crimes, by mercy. A country restrained by fe. are generally enacted after the commisvere laws, and those too executed with fion; instead of repressing the growth severity, (as in Japan) is under the most of ingenious villainy, only multiply de, terrible fpecies of lyianny: a royal ty- ceit, by putting it upon new shifts and rant is, generally dreadful to the greai, expedients of practiling with impunity. but numerous penal laws grind every Such laws, therefore, resemble the rank of people, and chiefly those leait guards which are sometimes imposed able to relitt oppreffion, the poor, . upon tributary princes, apparently in.
deed to secure them from danger, buted character, or he will lean on the side in reality to confirm their captivity. of cruelty; and when once the work of
Penal laws, it must be allowed, fe- injustice is begun, it is impossible to tell cure property in a state, but they also how far it will proceed. It is said of the diminish personal security in the fame Hyena, that, naturally, it is no way raproportion: there is no positive law, venous; but when once it has tasted huhow equitable foever, that may not man Resh, it becomes the most voraci. be sometimes capable of injustice. When ous animal of the forest, and continues a law enacted to make theft punilhable to perfecute mankind ever after. A with death, happens to be equitably corrupt magistrate may be considered as executed, it can at best only guard our a human Hyena; he begins, perhaps, by possessions; but when by favour or ig- a private inap, he goes on to a morsel norance justice pronounces a wrong ver- among friends, he proceeds to a meal in diet, it then attacks our lives, since, in public, from a me:1 he advances to a such a case, the whole community sufo- surfeit, and at last sucks blood like a fers with the innocent victim; if there. vampyre. fore, in order to secure the effects of one · Not into such hands should the ad. man, I should make a law which may miniftration of juttice be eptrusted, but take away the life of another, in such to those who know how to reward as a case, to attain a smaller good, I am well as to punish. It was a fine saying of guilty of a greater evil; to secure society Nangfu the emperor, who, being told in the poffeflion of a bauble, I render a that his enemies had raised an insurrecreal and valuable poffeffion precarious: tion in one of the distant provinces and, indeed, the experience of every • Come, then, my friends,' said he, age may serve to vindicate the assertion. • follow me, and I promise you that we No law could be more just than that ' Mall quickly destroy them. He marchcalled Leja Majeftatis, when Rome was ed forward, and the rebels submitted governed by einperors. It was but rea- upon his approach. All now thought sonable, that every conspiracy against that he would take the most signal re. the administration should be detected venge, but were surprized to see tbe and punished; yet what terrible llaugh- captives treated with inildness and huters succeeded in consequence of it's manity. • How!' cries his first minienaĉting; proscriptions, stranglings, fter, is this the manner in which you poisonings, in almost every family of ' fulfil your promise? Your royal word distinction; yet all done in a legal way, was given that your enemies should every criminal had his trial, and loft his 'be destroyed, and behold, you have life by a majority of witnesses.
pardoned all, and even caressed fome!' And such will ever be the case, where - I promised,' replied the emperor, punishments are numerous, and where with a generous air,' to destroy my a weak, vicious, but above all, where a ' enemies; I have fulfilled my word, mercenary magistrate is concerned in for see they are enemies no longer; I their execution; such a man desires to • have made friends of them.' see penal laws increased, since he too This, could it always succeed, were frequently has it in his power to turn the true method of destroying the enethein into instruments of extortion: in mies of a state : well it were if rewards such hands, the more laws, the wider and mercy alone could regulate the commeans, not of fatisfying justice, but of monwealth; but since punishments are satiating avarice.
sometimes necessary, let them at least be A mercenary magistrate, who is re- rendered terrible, by being executed but warded in proportion, not to his inte. feldom; and let Justice lift her sword, grity, but to the number he convicts, rather to terrify, than revenge. Adieu, muk be a person of the most unblemish,
LET TER LXXXI.
FROM THE SAME.
Have as yet given you but a short modities of the East, and is so very be
and imperfećt description of the neficial to the country in which I was Ladies of England. Woman, my born. Nothing can be better calcu. friend, is a fubject not easily under- lated to encrease the price of silk stood, even in China ; what, therefore, than the present manner of dressing. A can be expected from my knowledge of lady's train is not bought but at come the sex, in a country where they are uni- expence; and after it has swept the pubversally allowed to be riddles, and I but lic walks for a very few evenings, is fit a stranger ?
to be worn no longer : more lilk must To confess a truth, I was afraid to be bought in order to repair the breach; begin the description, left the sex should and some ladies of peculiar æconomy undergo some new revolution before it are thus found to patch up their tails was finished; and my picture should thus eight or ten times in a season. This become old, before it could well be said unnecessary consumption may introduce to have ever been new. To-day they poverty here, but then we shall be the are lifted upon itilts, to morrow they richer for it in China. lower their heels and raise their heads; The man in black, who is a profesled their cloaths at one time are bloated out enemy to this manner of ornamenting with whalebone; at present they have the tail, affures me there are numberlaid their hcops aside, and are become less inconveniencies attending it, and as sim as mermaids. All, all is in a that a lady dressed up to the fashion is state of continual fluctuation, from the as much a cripple as any in Nankin. Mandarine's wife, who rattles through But his chief indignation is levelled at the itreets in her chariot, to the humble those who dress in this manner, without sempftress, who clatters over the pave- a proper fortune to fupport it. He af. ment in iron-shod partens.
fures me, that he has known fome who What chicfly distinguishes the sex, at would have a tail, though they wanted prelent, is the train. As a lady's qua. a petticoat; and others who, without lity or falhion was once determined here any other pretensions, fancied they be. by the circumference of her hoop, both came ladies mereiy from the addition of are now measured by the length of her three fuperfluous yards of ragged lilk. tail. Women of moderate fortunes are ' I know a thrifty good woman,' concontented with tails moderately long; tinues he,who, thinking herself obbut ladies of true taste and distinction ' liged to carry a train like her betters, set no bounds to their ambition in this I never walks from home without the particular. I am told the Lady Mayor- uneasy apprehensions of wearing it out els, on days of ceremony, carries one too soon; every excursion the makes longer than a bell.wether of Bantam, gives her new anxiety; and her train whose tail, you know, is trundled along
bit as importunate, and in a wheel-barrow,
• wounds her peace as much as the bladSun of China, what contradi&tions do “'der we sometimes see tied to the tail of we find in this strange world! Not only
a cat.' the people of different countries think in Nay, he ventures to affirm, that a opposition to each other, but the inha- train may often bring a lady into the bitants of a single island are often found most critical circumstances : For should inconsistent with themselves. Would ! a rude fellow,' says he, offer to come you believe it? this very people, my ' up to ravish a kiss, and the lady atFum, who are so fond of seeing their tempt to avoid it, in retiring the women with long tails, at the same time ' muit necessarily tread upon her train, dock their horses to the very rump!!! " and thus fall fairly upon her back; by
But you may easily guess that I am which means, every one knows-her po way displeased with a fashion which ! cloaths may be spoiled.' tends to encreale a demand for the com- The ladies here make no fcruple to