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place the supposed cynic inveighs against the drama, and describes the audience at a theatre-
“The audience in the upper gallery is composed of lawyers, clerks, valets-de-chambre, exchange girls, chambermaids, and skip-kennels, who at the last act are let in gratis in favour to their masters being benefactors to the devil's servants. The middle gallery is taken up by the middling sort of people, as citizens, their wives and daughters, and other jilts. The boxes are filled with lords aud ladies, who give money to see their follies exposed by fellows as wicked as themselves. And the pit, which lively represents the pit of hell, is crammed with those insignificant animals called beaux, whose character nothing but wonder and shame can compose ; for a modern beau, you must know, is a pretty, neat, fantastic outside of a man, a well-digested bundle of costly vanities, and you may call him a volume of methodical errata bound in a gilt cover. He's a curiously wrought cabinet full of shells and other trumpery, which were much better quite empty than so emptily filled. He's a man's skin full of profaneness, a paradise full of weeds, a heaven full of devils, a Satan's bedchamber hung with arras of God's own making. He can be thought no better than a Promethean man; at best but a lump of animated dust kneaded
into human shape, and if he has only such a thing as a soul it seems to be patched up with more vices than are patches in a poor Spaniard's coat. His general employment is to scorn all business, but the study of the modes and vices of the times, and you may look upon him as upon the painted sign of a man hung up in the air, only to be tossed to and fro with every wind of temptation and vanity.”
It would appear that servants had in his day many of the faults which characterise some of them at present. In “ Everybody's Business is Nobody's Business” we have an amusing picture of the over-dressed maid of the period.
“ The apparel,” he says, “ of our womenservants should be next regulated, that we may know the mistress from the maid. I remember I was once put very much to the blush, being at a friend's house, and by him required to salute the ladies. I kissed the chamber-jade into the bargain, for she was as well dressed as the best. Bnt I was soon undeceived by a general titter, which gave me the utmost confusion; nor can I believe myself the only person who has made such a mistake. · Again “I have been at places where the maid has been so dizzied with idle compliments that she has mistook one thing for another, and not regarded her mistress in the least, but put on all the firting airs imaginable. This behaviour is nowhere so much complained of as in taverns, coffee houses, and places of public resort, where there are handsome barkeepers, &c. These creatures being puffed up with the fulsome flattery of a set of flies, which are continually buzzing about them, carry themselves with the utmost insolence imaginable—insomuch that you must speak to them with the utmost deference, or you are sure to be affronted. Being at a coffee-house the other day, where one of these ladies kept the bar, I bespoke a dish of rice tea, but Madam was so taken up with her sparks that she quite forgot it. I spoke for it again, and with some temper, but was answered after a most taunting manner, not without a toss of the head, a contraction of the nostrils, and other impertinences, too many to enumerate. Seeing myself thus publickly insulted by such an animal, I could not choose but show my resentment. "Woman,' said I sternly, 'I want a dish of rice tea, and not what your vanity and impudence may imagine; therefore treat me as a gentleman and a customer, and serve me with what I call for. Keep your impertinent repartees and impudent behaviour for the coxcombs that swarm round your bar, and make you so vain of your blown carcass. And indeed, I believe the insolence of this The Scandalous Club.
creature will ruin her master at last, by driving away men of sobriety and business, and making the place a den of vagabonds."
In July, 1704, Defoe commenced a periodical which he called a “Review of the Affairs of France.” It appeared twice, and afterwards three times a week. From the introduction, we might conclude that the periodical, though principally containing war intelligence, would be partly of a humorous nature. He says—
“After our serious matters are over, we shall at the end of every paper present you with a little diversion, as anything occurs to make the world merry; and whether friend or foe, one party or another, if anything happens so scandalous as to require an open reproof, the world may meet with it there. Accordingly at the end of every paper we find ‘Advice for the Scandalous Club: A weekly history of Nonsense, Impertinence, Vice, and Debauchery.'” This contained a considerable amount of indelicacy, and the humour was too much connected with ephemeral circumstances of the times to be very amusing at the present day. The Scandalous Club was a kind of Court of Morals, before whom all kinds of offences were brought for judgment, and it also settled questions on love affairs in a very judicious manner. Some of the advice is prompted by
letters asking for it, but it is probable that they were mostly fictitious and written by Defoe himself. Many of the shafts in this Review were directed against magistrates, and other men in authority. Thus we read in April 18, 1704:
“ An honest country fellow made a complaint to the Club that he had been set in the stocks by the Justice of the Peace without any manner of reason. He told them that he happened to get a little drunk one night at a fair, and being somewhat quarrelsome, had beaten a man in his neighbourhood, broke his windows, and two or three such odd tricks. "Well, friend,' said the Director of the Society, and was it for this the Justice set you in the stocks ?' “Yes! replied the man. “And don't you think you deserved it?' said the Director. "Why, yes, Sir,' says the honest man; 'I had deserved it from you, if you had been the Justice, but I did not deserve it from Sir Edward—for it was not above a month before that he was so drunk that he fell into our millpond, and if I had not lugged him out he would have been drowned.' The Society told him he was a knave, and then voted that the Justice had done him no wrong in setting him in the stocks—but that he had done the