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assemblies, that I must be forced to deal with the predictions of this author, which are written them as Evander did with his triple-lived ad-in a true protestant spirit of prophecy, and a versary; who, according to Virgil, was forced particular zeal against the French king, I have to kill him thrice over, before he could despatch some thoughts of sending for him from the him. banks of Styx, and reinstating him in his own house, at the sign of the Globe in Salisburystreet. For the encouragement of him and others, I shall offer to their consideration a letter, which gives me an account of the revival of one of their brethren.
Ter letho sternendus erat.——
--Thrice I sent him to the Stygian shore.
I am likewise informed, that several wives of my dead men have, since the decease of their husbands, been seen in many public places, without mourning or regard to common decency.
I am further advised, that several of the defunct, contrary to the woollen act, presume to dress themselves in lace, embroidery, silks, muslins, and other ornaments forbidden to persons in their condition. These and other the like informations moving me thereunto, I must desire, for distinction sake, and to conclude this subject for ever, that when any of these posthumous persons appear, or are spoken of, that their wives may be called widows; their houses, sepulchres; their chariots, hearses; and their garments, flannel: on which condition, they shall be allowed all the conveniencies that dead men can in reason desire.
'I have perusea your Tatler of this day, and have wept over it with great pleasure; I wish you would be more frequent in your familypieces. For, as I consider you under the notion of a great designer, I think these are not your least valuable performances. I am glad to find you have given over your face-painting for some time, because I think you have employed yourself more in grotesque figures than in beauties; for which reason I would rather see you work upon history-pieces, than on single portraits. Your several draughts of dead men appear to me as pictures of still-life, and have done great good in the place where I live. The esquire of a neighbouring village, who had been a long time in the number of non-entities, is entirely
As I was writing this morning on this sub- recovered by them. For these several years ject, I received the following letter: past, there was not a hare in the county that could be at rest for him; and I think, the greatest exploit he ever boasted of was, that when he was high-sheriff of the county, he hunted a fox so far, that he could not follow him any farther by the laws of the land. All the hours he spent at home, were in swelling* himself with October, and rehearsing the wonders he did in the field. Upon reading your papers, he has sold his dogs, shook off his dead companions, looked into his estate, got the multiplication-table by heart, paid his tithes, and intends to take upon him the office of church-warden next year. I wish the same success with your other patients, and am, &c.'
• MR. BICKERSTAFF, From the banks of Styx. 'I must confess, 1 treated you very scurrilously when you first sent me hither; but you have despatched, such multitudes after me to keep me in countenance, that I am very well reconciled both to you and my condition. We live very lovingly together; for, as death makes us all equal, it makes us very much delight in one another's company. Our time passes away much after the same manner as it did when we were among you eating, drinking, and sleeping, are our chief diversions. Our Quid nuncs between whiles go to a coffee-house, where they have several warm liquors made of the waters of Lethe, with very good poppy-tea. We that are the sprightly geniuses of the place refresh ourselves frequently with a bottle of mum, and tell stories until we fall asleep. You would do well to send among us Mr. Dodwell's book against the immortality of the soul, which would be of great consolation to our whole fraternity, who would be very glad to find that they are dead for good and all, and would, in particular, make me rest for ever
Ditto, January 9.
When I came home this evening, a very tight middle-aged woman presented to me the following petition :
The foregoing letter was the more pleasing to me, because I perceive some little symptoms in it of a resuscitation; and having lately seen
To the worshipful Isaac Bickerstaff, Esquire,
The humble petition of Penelope Prim, widow;
'That your petitioner was bred a clearstarcher and sempstress, and for many years worked to the Exchange, and to several alder
'P. S. Sir James is just arrived here in good men's wives, lawyers' clerks, and merchants'
That through the scarcity caused by re
* Q. Swilling
grators of bread corn, of which starch is made,
That your petitioner is informed, that in
above her instep. This convinces me of the
Your petitioner, therefore, most bumbly prays, that you would restore the ruff to the fardingal, which in their nature ought to be as inseparable as the two Hungarian twins.* And your petitioner shall ever pray.'
Helen and Judith, two united twin-sisters, were born
at Tzoni, in Hungary, Oct. 26, 1701; lived to the age of twenty-one, and died in a convent at Petersburg, Feb. 23, 1723. The mother, it is said, survived their birth, bore another child afterwards, and was alive when her singular twins were shown here, at a house in the Strand, near Charing-cross, in 1708.
Mr. Bickerstaff has under consideration the offer from the corporation of Colchester of four hundred pounds per annum, to be paid quarterly, provided that all his dead persons shall be obliged to wear the baize of that place.
Thursday, January 12, 1709-10.
Virg. Georg. lib. iv. 6.
In tenui labor
In wisdom hast thon made them all!'
Sheer lane, January 11.
I HAVE lately applied myself with much satisfaction to the curious discoveries that have been made by the help of microscopes, as they are related by authors of our own and other nations. There is a great deal of pleasure in prying into this world of wonders, which nature has laid out of sight, and seems industrious to conceal from us. Philosophy had ranged over all the visible creation, and began to want objects for her enquiries, when the present age, by the invention of glasses, opened a new and inexhaustible magazine of rarities, more wonderful and amazing than any of those which astonished our forefathers. I was yesterday amusing myself with speculations of this kind, and reflecting upon myriads of animals that swim in those little seas of juices that are contained in the several vessels of a human body. While my mind was thus filled with that secret wonder and delight, I could not but look upon myself as in an act of devotion, and am very well pleased with the thought of the great heathen anatomist, who calls his description of the parts of a human body, An hymn to the Supreme Being.' The reading of the day produced in my imagination an agreeable
I have examined into the allegations of this petition, and find, by several ancient pictures of my own predecessors, particularly that of dame Deborah Bickerstaff, my great grand-morning's dream, if I may call it such; for I mother, that the ruff and fardingal are made am still in doubt whether it passed in my sleepuse of as absolutely necessary to preserve the ing or waking thoughts. However it was, I symmetry of the figure; and Mrs. Pyramid fancied that my good genius stood at my bed's Bickerstaff, her second sister, is recorded in head, and entertained me with the following our family-book, with some observations to discourse; for, upon my rising, it dwelt so her disadvantage, as the first female of our strongly upon me, that I writ down the subhouse that discovered, to any besides her nurse stance of it, if not the very words. and her husband, an inch below her chin, or
'If,' said he,' you can be so transported with those productions of nature which are discovered to you by those artificial eyes that are the works of human invention, how great will your surprise be, when you shall have it in your power to model your own eye as you please,
Psalm civ. 24.
Galen, de Uso Partium.
247 and adapt it to the bulk of objects, which, with the skeleton of a flea. I have been shown a all these helps, are by infinite degrees too mi- forest of numberless trees, which has been nute for your perception. We who are un-picked out of an acorn. Your microscope can bodied spirits can sharpen our sight to what show you in it a complete oak in miniature; degree we think fit, and make the least work and could you suit all your organs as we do, you of the creation distinct and visible. This gives might pluck an acorn from this little oak, us such ideas as cannot possibly enter into your which contains another tree; and so proceed present conceptions. There is not the least from tree to tree, as long as you would think particle of matter which may not furnish one fit to continue your disquisitions. It is almost of us sufficient employment for a whole eter-impossible,' added he, to talk of things so remote from common life, and the ordinary notions which mankind receive from blunt and gross organs of sense, without appearing extravagant and ridiculous. You have often seen a dog opened, to observe the circulation of the blood, or make any other useful enquiry; and yet would be tempted to laugh if I should tell you, that a circle of much greater philosophers than any of the Royal Society, were present at the cutting up of one of those little animals which we find in the blue of a plum: that it was tied down alive before them; and that they observed the palpitations of the heart, the course of the blood, the working of the muscles, and the convulsions in the several limbs, with great accuracy and improvement.' 'I must confess,' said I, for my own part, I go along with you in all your discoveries with great plea.
nity. We can still divide it, and still open it, and still discover new wonders of providence, as we look into the different texture of its parts, and meet with beds of vegetables, minerals, and metallic mixtures, and several kinds of animals that lie hid, and, as it were, lost in such an endless fund of matter. I find you are surprised at this discourse; but as your reason tells you there are infinite parts in the smallest portion of matter, it will likewise convince you, that there is as great a variety of secrets, and as much room for discoveries, in a particle no bigger than the point of a pin, as in the globe of the whole earth. Your miscroscopes bring to sight shoals of living creatures in a spoonful of vinegar; but we who can distinguish them in their different magnitudes, see among them several huge leviathaus that terrify the little fry of animals about them, and take their past-sure: but it is certain, they are too fine for time as in an ocean, or the great deep.' I could the gross of mankind, who are more struck not but smile at this part of his relation, and with the description of every thing that is great told him, 'I doubted not but he could give and bulky. Accordingly we find the best judge me the history of several invisible giants, ac- of human nature setting forth his wisdom, not companied with their respective dwarfs, in case in the formation of these minute animals, that any of these little beings are of a human though indeed no less wonderful than the other, shape.' 'You may assure yourself,' said he, but in that of the leviathan and behemoth," that we see in these little animals different the horse, and the crocodile.' Your obsernatures, instincts, and modes of life, which vation,' said he, ‘is very just; and I must accorrespond to what you observe in creatures of knowledge, for my own part, that although it bigger dimensions. We descry millions of is with much delight that I see the traces of prospecies subsisting on a green leaf, which your vidence in these instances, I still take greater glasses represent only in crowds and swarms. pleasure in considering the works of the creation What appears to your eye but as hair or down in their immensity, than in their minuteness. rising on the surface of it, we find to be woods For this reason, I rejoice when I strengthen and forests, inhabited by beasts of prey, that my sight so as to make it pierce into the most are as dreadful in those their little haunts, as remote spaces, and take a view of those heavenly lions and tigers in the deserts of Lybia.' I was bodies which lie out of the reach of buman much delighted with his discourse, and could eyes, though assisted by telescopes. What you not forbear telling him, that I should be won- look upon as one confused white in the milky derfully pleased to see a natural history of im- way, appears to me a long track of heavens, perceptibles, containing a true account of such distinguished by stars that are ranged in proper vegetables and animals as grow and live out of figures and constellations. While you are adsight. Such disquisitions,' answered he,' are miring the sky in a starry night, I am entervery suitable to reasonable creatures; and, you tained with a variety of worlds and suns placed may be sure, there are many curious spirits one above another, and rising up to such an among us who employ themselves in such immense distance, that no created eye can see amusements. For, as our hands and all our an end of them.' senses may be formed to what degree of strength and delicacy we please, in the same manner as our sight, we can make what experiments we are inclined to, how small soever the matter be in which we make them. I have been present at the dissection of a mite, and have seen
The latter part of his discourse flung me into such an astonishment, that he had been silent for some time before I took notice of
See Job, chap. xxxix. xl. xli.
avarice; though both made a very ridiculous figure, and were as much laughed at by those they joined, as by those they forsook. The walk which we marched up, for thickness of shades, embroidery of flowers, and melody of birds, with the distant purling of streams, and falls of water, was so wonderfully delightful, that it charmed our senses, and intoxicated our minds with pleasure. We had not been long here, before every man singled out some woman, to whom he offered his addresses, and professed himself a lover; when, on a sudden, we perceived this delicious walk to grow more narrow as we advanced in it, until it ended in many intricate thickets, mazes, and labyrinths, that were so mixed with roses and brambles, brakes of thorns and beds of flowers, rocky paths and pleasing grottos, that it was hard to say, whether it gave greater delight or perplexity to those who travelled in it.
Sheer-lane, January 13.
INSTEAD of considering any particular passion or character in any one set of men, my thoughts were last night employed on the contemplation of human life in general; and truly it appears to me, that the whole species are hurried on It was here that the lovers began to be eager by the same desires, and engaged in the same in their pursuits. Some of their mistresses, pursuits, according to the different stages and who only seemed to retire for the sake of form divisions of life. Youth is devoted to lust, and decency, led them into plantations that middle age to ambition, old age to avarice. were disposed into regular walks; where, after These are the three general motives and prin- they had wheeled about in some turns and ciples of action both in good and bad men; windings, they suffered themselves to be overthough it must be acknowledged, that they taken, and gave their hands to those who pur& change their names, and refine their natures, sued them. Others withdrew from their folaccording to the temper of the person whom lowers into little wildernesses, where there were they direct and animate. For, with the good, so many paths interwoven with each other in lust becomes virtuous love; ambition, true so much confusion and irregularity, that several honour; and avarice, the care of posterity. of the lovers quitted the pursuit, or broke their This scheme of thought amused me very agree-hearts in the chase. It was sometimes very odd ably until I retired to rest, and afterwards to see a man pursuing a fine woman that was formed itself into a pleasing and regular vision, following another, whose eye was fixed upon a which I shall describe in all its circumstances, fourth, that had her own game in view in some as the objects presented themselves, whether other quarter of the wilderness. I could not in a serious or ridiculous manner. but observe two things in this place which I thought very particular. That several persons, who stood only at the end of the avenues, and cast a careless eye upon the nymphs during their whole flight, often catched them; when those who pressed them the most warmly, through all their turns and doubles, were wholly unsuccessful; and that some of my own age, who were at first looked upon with aversion and contempt, by being well acquainted with the wilderness, and by dodging their women in the particular corners and alleys of it, catched them in their arms, and took them from those whom they really loved and admired. There was a particular grove, which was called the labyrinth of coquettes, where many were enticed to the chase, but few returned with purchase. It was pleasant enough to see a celebrated beauty, by smiling upon one, casting a glance upon another, beckoning to a third, and adapting her charms and graces to the several follies of those that admired her, drawing into the labyrinth a whole pack of lovers, that lost themselves in the maze, and never could find their way out of it. However, it was some
it; when on a sudden I started up and drew my curtains, to look if any one was near me, but saw nobody, and cannot tell to this moment whether it was my good genius or a dream that left me.
No. 120.] Saturday, January 14, 1709-10.
---Velat silvis, ubi passim
Palantes error certo de tramite peilit;
Hor. ii. Sat. iii. 48.
I dreamed that I was in a wood, of so prodigious an extent, and cut into such a variety of walks and alleys, that all mankind were lost and bewildered in it. After having wandered up and down some time, I came into the centre of it, which opened into a wide plain filled with multitudes of both sexes. I here discovered three great roads, very wide and long, that led into three different parts of the forest. On a sudden, the whole multitude broke into three parts, according to their different ages, and marched in their respective bodies into the three great roads that lay before them. As I had a mind to know how each of these roads terminated, and whither they would lead those who passed through them, I joined mvself with the assembly that were in the flower and vigour of their age, and called themselves the band of lovers.' I found, to my great surprise, that several old men besides myself had intruded into this agreeable company; as I had before observed, there were some young men who had united themselves to 6 the band of misers,' and were walking up the path of
The eldest of the sisters, who seemed to have a haughty and imperious air, was always accompanied with a tawny cupid, who generally marched before her with a little mace on his shoulder, the end of which was fashioned into the horns of a stag. Her garments were yel
satisfaction to me, to see many of the fair-ones,
a prodigious number of dark corners and apart-
occasioned most of their miseries. The youngest of the sisters was known by the name of Levity, who, with the innocence of a virgin, had the dress and behaviour of a harlot. The name of the second was Contention, who bore on her right arm a muff made of the skin of a porcupine; and on her left carried a little lap-dog, that barked and snapped at every one that passed by her.