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of a duty or tax, a new temple, seaport, or higliway, were transmitted to posterity after this man
“ The greatest variety of devices are on their copper money, which have most of the designs that are to be met with on the gold and silver, and several peculiar to that metal only. By this means they were dispersed into the remotest corners of the empire, came into the possession of the poor as well as rich, and were in no danger of perishing in the hands of those that might have melted down coins of a more valuable metal.
“ Add to all this, that the designs were invented by men of genius, and executed by a decree of the senate.
“ It is therefore proposed :
“ 1. That the English farthings and halfpence be recoined upon the union of the two nations.
“ 2. That they bear devices and inscriptions alluding to all the most remarkable parts of her majesty's reign.
“ 3. That there be a society established, for the finding out of proper subjects, inscriptions, and devices.
“ That no subject, inscription, or device, be stamped without the approbation of this society ; nor, if it be thought proper, without the authority of privy council.
By this means, niedals, that are at present only a dead treasure, or mere curiosities, will be of use in the ordinary commerce of life, and, at the same time, perpetuate the glories of her majesty's reign, reward the labours of her greatest subjects, keep
alive in the people a gratitude for publick services, and excite the emulation of posterity. To these generous purposes nothing can so much contribute as medals of this kind, which are of undoubted authority, of necessary use and observation, not perishable by time, nor confined to any certain place; properties not to be found in books, statues, pictures, buildings, or any other monuments of illustrious actions *."
* It has been ingeniously proposed, by Mr. Granger, to supply the defect of English medals, by collections of engraved portraits, which, however useful in themselves, have lain under the same prejudices with ancient coins, and have been generally esteemed as little more than empty amusements. For want of regularity, the poetaster frequently takes place of the poet, and the pedant of the man of genius: John Ogilby is exalted above Mr. Dryden, and Alexander Ross (the continuator of Raleigh's History) has the precedence of sir Walter, because engraved by a better hand, Mr. Evelyn, in his “ Numismata,” has recommended such a collection. N,
THE INTELLIGENCER*. N° I.
may be said, without offence to other cities of much greater consequence to the world, that our town of Dublin does not want its due proportion of folly and vice, both native and imported; and as to those imported, we have the advantage to receive then last, and consequently, after our happy manner, to improve and refine upon them.
But because there are many effects of folly and vice among us, whereof some are general, others confined to smaller numbers, and others again perhaps to a few individuals; there is a society lately established, who at great expense have erected an office of intelligence, from which they are to receive weekly information of all important events and singularities, which this famous metropolis can furnish. Strict injunctions are given to have the truest information ; in order to which, certain qualified persons are employed to attend upon duty in their several posts ; some at the playhouse, others in churches; some at balls, assemblies, coffeehouses, and meetings for quadrille ;
* This periodical paper was published at Dublin, in 1728-9 by the Dean, in conjunction with Dr. Sheridan; and was extended to twenty numbers. N.
some at the several courts of justice, both spiritual and temporal; some at the college, some upon my lord mayor and aldermen in their publick affairs; lastly, some to converse with favourite chanı bermaids, and to frequent those alehouses and brandyshops where the footmen of great families meet in a morning; only the barracks and parliament house are excepted; because we have yet found no enfans perdus bold enough to venture their persons at either. Out of these and some other storehouses, we hope to gather materials enough to inform, or divert, or correct, or vex the town.
But as facts, passages, and adventures of all kinds are likely to have the greatest share in our paper, whereof we cannot always answer for the truth; due care shall be taken to have them applied to feigned names, whereby all just offence will be removed; for if none be guilty, none will have cause to blush or be angry; if otherwise, then the guilty person is safe for the future upon his present amendment, and safe for the present from all but his own conscience.
There is another resolution taken among us, which I fear will give a greater and more general discontent, and is of so singular a nature that I have hardly confidence enough to mention it, although it be absolutely necessary by way of apology for so bold and unpopular an attempt. But so it is, that we have taken a desperate counsel, to produce into the world every distinguished action either of justice, prudence, generosity, charity, friendship, or publick spirit, which comes well attested to us. And although we shall neither
here be so daring as to assign names, yet we shall hardly forbear to give some hints, that perhaps to the great displeasure of such deserving persons, may endanger a discovery. For we think that
. even virtue itself should submit to such a mortification, as by its visibility and example will render it more useful to the world. But however, the readers of these papers need not be in pain of being overcharged with so dull and ungrateful a subject. And yet who knows, but such an occasion may be offered to us once in a year or two, after we have settled a correspondence round the kingdom.
But, after all our boast of materials sent us by our several emissaries, we may probably soon fall short, if the town will not be pleased to lend us farther assistance toward entertaining itself. The world best knows its own faults and virtues, and whatever is sent shall be faithfully returned back, only a little embellished according to the custom of authors. We do therefore demand and expect continual advertisements in great numbers to be sent to the printer of this paper, who has employed
, a judicious secretary to collect such as may be most useful for the publick.
And although we do not intend to expose our own persons by mentioning names, yet we are so far from requiring the same caution in our correspondents, that, on the contrary, we expressly charge and command them, in all the facts they send us, to set down the names, titles, and places of abode at length; together with a very particular description of the persons, dresses, disposiţions of the several lords, ladies, 'squires, madams,