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be imposed upon by cheats, I would desire cay readers, when they meet with this pretender, to look into his parentage, and to examine him strictly, whether or no he be remotely allied to Truth, and lineally descended from Good Sense; if not, they may conclude him a counterfeit. They may likewise distinguish bim by a loud and excessive laughter, in which he seldom gets his company to join with him. For as True Humour generally looks serious, while every body laughs about him; False Humour is always laughing, whilst every body about him looks serious. shall only add, if he has not in him a mixture of both parents, that is, if he would pass for the offspring of Wit without Mirth, or Mirth without Wit, you may conclude him to be altogether spurious and a cheat.
The impostor of whom I am speaking, descends originally from Falsehood, who was the mother of Nonsense, who was brought to bed of a son called Frenzy, who married one of the daughters of Folly, commonly known by the name of Laughter, on whom he begot that monstrous infant of which I have been here speaking. I shall set down at length the genealogical table of False Humour, and, at the same time, place under it the genealogy of True Humour, that the reader may at one view behold their different pedigrees and relations.
I might extend the allegory, by mentioning several of the children of False Humour, who are more in number than the sands of the sea, and might in particular enumerate the many sons and daughters which he has begot in this island. But as this would be a very invidious task, I shall only observe in general, that False Humour differs from the True, as a monkey does from a
First of all, He is exceedingly given to little apish tricks and buffooneries.
Secondly, He so much delights in mimicry, that it is all one to him whether he exposes by it vice and folly, luxury and avarice; or, on the contrary, virtue and wisdom, pain and poverty.
Thirdly, He is wonderfully unlucky, insomuch that he will bite the hand that feeds him, and endeavour to ridicule both friends and foes indifferently. For having but small talents, he must be merry where he can, not where he should.
Fourthly, Being intirely void of reason, he pursues no point either of morality or instruction, but is ludicrous only for the sake of being so.
Fifthly, Being incapable of any thing but mock representations, his ridicule is always personal, and aimed at the vicious man, or the writer; not at the vice, or at the writing.
I have here only pointed at the whole species of false humourists; but as one of my principal designs in this paper is to heat down that malignant spirit which discovers itself in the writings of the present age, I shall not scruple, for the future, to single out any of the small wits that infest the world with such compositions as are ill-natured, immoral, and absurd. This is the only exception which I shall make to the general rule I have prescribed myself, of attacking multitudes; since every honest man ought to look upon himself as in a natural state of war with the libeller and lampooner, and to annoy them whorever they fall in his way. This is but retaliating upon them, and treating them as they treat others.
No. 37. THURSDAY, APRIL 12.
Non illa colo calathisve Minerva
VIRG. Æn, 7. v. 805.
SomĘ months ago, my friend Sir Roger, being in the country enclosed a letter to me, directed to a certain lady whom I shall here call by the name of Leonora,' and, as it contained matters of consequence, desired me to deliver it to her with my own hand. Accordingly I waited upon her ladyship pretty early in the morning, and was desired by her woman to walk into her lady's library, till such time as she was in a readiness to receive
The very sound of a Lady's Library gave me a great curiosity to see it; and, as it was some time before the lady came to me, I had an opportunity of turning over a great many of her books, which were ranged together in a very beautiful order. At the end of the folios (which were finely bound and gilt) were great jars of China placed one above another in a very noble piece of architecture. The quartos were separated from the octavos by a pile of smaller vessels, which rose in a delightful pyramid. The octavos were bounded by tea-dishes of all shapes, colours, and sizes, which were so disposed on a wooden frame, that they looked like one continued pillar indented with tbe fineet strokes of sculpture, and stained with the greatest variety of dyes That part of the library which was designed for the reception of plays and pamphlets, and other loose papers, was enclosed in a kind of square, consisting of one of the prettiest grotesque works that ever I saw, and made up of scaramouches, lions, monkies, mandarines, trees, shells, and a thousand other odd figures in China ware. In the midst of the room was a little Japan table, with a quire of gilt paper upon it, and on the paper a silver snuff-box made in the shape of a little book. I found there were several other counterfeit books upon
1 V. Nos. 92, 140, 163, and notes on Leonora, and Miss Shepheard, whose name by marriage became Mrs. Perry, the lady here alluded +0.-C.
* V. Tatler, No. 23; Lover, No. 10, and Swift's Works, vol. xxii. in 8vo., p. 55.-C.
upper shelves, which were carved in wood, and served only to fill up the numbers, like fagots in the muster of a regiment. I was wonderfully pleased with such a mixt kind of furniture, as seemed very suitable to both the lady and the scholar, and did not know at first whether I should fancy myself in a grotto, or in a library.
Upon my looking into the books, I found there were some few which the lady had bought for her own use, but that most of them had been got together, either because she had heard them praised, or because she had seen the authors of them Among several that I examined, I very well remember these that follow.
Father Malbranche’s Search after Truth, translated into English.
si book of Novels.
Tale in Verse by Mr. Durfey : bound in red leather, gilt on the back and doubled down in several places.
All tha: Classic Authors, in wood.
Clelia which opened of itself in the place that describes two lovers in a Sower.
A Prayer-book; with a bottle of Hungary water by the side of it.
Dr. Sacheverell's Speech.
I was taking a catalogue in my pocket-book of these, and