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a profound tranquillity. Upon the mantle-tree (for I am a pretty curious observer) stood a pot of lambative electuary, with a stick of liquorice, and near it a phial of rose-water and powder of tutty. Upon the table lay a pipe filled with betony and colt's-foot, a roll of wax-candle, a silver spitting-pot, and a Seville orange. The lady was placed in a large wicker chair, and her feet wrapped up in Aannel, supported by cushions; and in this attitude, would you believe it, Ifaac, The was reading a romance with spectacles on. The first compliments over, as she was industrioully endeavouring to enter upon conversation, a violent fit of coughing seized her. This awaked Shock, and in a trice the whole room was in an uproar, for the dog barked, the squirrel squealed, the monkey chattered, the parrot screamed, and Ursula, to appease them, was more clamorous than all the rest. You, Isaac, who know how any harsh noise affects my head, may guess what I suffered from the hideous din of these discordant sounds. At length all was appeased and quiet restored, a chair was drawn for me, where I was no sooner feated but the

parrot

fixed his horny beak, as sharp as a pair of shears, in one of my heels, just above the shoe. I sprung from the place with an unusual agility, and fo, being within the monkey's reach, he snatches off my new bob-wig, and throws it upon two apples that were roasting by a sullen sea-coal fire. I was nimble enough to save it from any further damage than singeing the fore top. I put it on, and composing myself as well as I could, I drew my chair towards the other side of the chimney. The good lady, as soon as she had recovered breath, employed it in making a thousand apologies, and with great eloquence, and a numerous train of words, lamented my misfortune. In the middle of her harangue I felt something scratching near my knee, and feeling what it should be, found the squirrel had got into my coat-pocket. As I endeavoured to remove him from his burrow, he made his teeth meet through the fleshy part of my fore-finger. This gave me an inexpressible pain. The Hungary water was immediately brought to bathe it, and gold-beaters skin applied to stop the blood.

The lady

renewed her excuses; but being now out of all patience, I abruptly took my leave, and bobbing down stairs with heedless haste, I set my foot full in a pail of water, and down we came to the bottom together." Here my friend concluded his narrative, and with a composed countenance I began to make him compliments of condolence; but he started from his chair, and said, “Ifaac, you may spare your fpeeches, I expect no reply. When I told you this, I knew you would laugh at me; but the next woman that makes me ridiculous shall be a

young one."

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MR. BICKERSTAFF RECEIVED AT THE THEATRE WITH EXTRA

ORDINARY CIVILITY.

MART.

Cur in theatrum, Cato severe, venifti ?
What business had grave Cato in the theatre ?

FIND it is thought necessary that I (who have taken upon me to censure the irregularities of the age) Mould give an account of my own actions when they appear doubtful or subject to misconstruction. My appear

ing at the play on Monday last, is looked upon as a step in my conduct, which I ought to explain, that others may not be milled by my example. It is true, in matter of fact, I was present at the ingenious entertainment of that day, and placed myself in a box which was prepared for me with great civility and distinction. It is said of Virgil, when he entered a Roman theatre, where there were many thousands of spectators present, that the whole assembly rose up to do him honour, a respect which was never before paid to any but the emperor. I must consess, that universal clap, and other testimonies of applause with which I was received at my first appearance in the theatre of Great Britain, gave me as sensible a delight as the above-mentioned reception could give to that immortal poet. I should be ungrateful at the same time if I did not take this opportunity of acknowledging the great civilities that were shewn me by Mr. Thomas Dogget, who made his compliments to me between the acts, after a moft ingenuous and discreet manner, and at the same time communicated to me that the Company of Upholders desired to receive me at their door at the end of the Haymarket, and to light me home to my lodgings. That part of the ceremony I forbad, and took particular care during the whole play to observe the conduct of the drama, and give no offence by own behaviour. Here, I think, it will not be foreign to my character to lay down the proper duties of an audience, and what is incumbent upon each individual spectator in publick diversions of this nature. Every one should on these occasions shew his attention, understanding, and virtue. I would undertake to find out all the persons of sense and breeding by the effect of a single sentence, and to distinguish a gentleman as much by his laugh as his bow. When we see the footman and his lord diverted by the fame jest, it very much turns to the diminution of the one or the honour of the other. But though a man's quality may appear in his understanding and taste, the regard to virtue ought to be the same in all ranks and conditions of men, however they make a profession of it under the name of honour, religion, or morality. When, therefore, we see anything divert an audience, either in tragedy or comedy, that strikes at ther duties of civil life, or exposes what the best men in all ages have looked upon as sacred and inviolable, it is the certain sign of a profligate race of men, who are fallen from the virtue of their forefathers, and will be contemptible in the eyes of their posterity. For this reason I took great delight in seeing the generous and disinterested passion of the lovers in this comedy (which stood so many trials, and was proved by such a variety of diverting incidents), received with a universal approbation. This brings to my mind a passage in Cicero, which I could never read without being in love with the virtue of a Roman audience. He there describes the shouts and applauses which the people gave to the persons who acted the parts of Pilades and Orestes, in the noblest occasion that a poet could invent to shew friendship in perfection. One of them had forfeited his life by an action which he had committed, and as they stood in judgment before the

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