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deity whom he blindly worshipped, than the great person I am speaking of, in several occurrences of his life, but particularly in the following one which I shall relate out of Plutarch.
Three persons had entered into a conspiracy to assassinate Timoleon as he was offering up his devotions in a certain temple. In order to it, they took their several stands in the most convenient places for their purpose. As they were waiting for an oppor- . tunity to put their design in execution, a stranger having observed one of the conspirators, fell upon him and slew him, Upon which the other two, thinking their plot had been discovered, threw themselves at Timoleon's feet, and confessed the whole matter. This stranger, upon examination, was found to have understood nothing of the intended assassination, but baring several years before had a brother killed by the conspirator whom he here put to death, and having till now sought in vain for an opportunity of revenge, he chanced to meet the murderer in the temple, who had planted himself there for the above-mentioned purpose. Plutarch cannot forbear, on this occasion, speaking with a kind of rapture on the schemes of Providence, which, in this particular, had so contrived it, that the stranger should, for so great a space of time, be debarred the means of doing justice to his brother, until, by the same blow that revenged the death of one innocent man, he preserved the life of another.
For my own part, I cannot wonder that a man of Timoleon's religion should have his intrepidity and firmness of mind, or that he should be distinguished by such a deliverance as I have here related.
- A man of Timoleon's religion. Ambiguously, and therefore ill expressed: for a man of Timoleon's religion, may as well mean a pagan as a pious man. He should have said-a man of "80 much religion as l'imoleon, dc.
I am very well pleased to find that my lion has given such universal content to all that have seen him. He has had a greater number of visitants than any of his brotherhood in the Tower. I this morning examined his maw, where among much other food, I found the following delicious morsels.
To Nestor Ironside, Esq.
I have read over and over your discourse concerning the tucker; as likewise your paper of Thursday the 16th instant, in which you say it is your intention to keep a watchful eye over every part of the female sex, and to regulate them from head to foot. Now, sir, being by profession a mantua-maker, who am employed by the most fashionable ladies about town, I am admitted to them freely at all hours, and seeing them both dressed and undressed, I think there is no person better qualified than myself to serve you (if your honour pleases) in the nature of a lioness. I am in the whole secret of their fashion, and if you think fit to entertain me in this character, I will have a constant watch over them, and doubt not I shall send you, from time to time, such private intelligence, as you will find of use to you
papers. “Sir, this being a new proposal, I hope you will not let me lose the benefit of it: but that you will first hear me roar, before you treat with any body else. As a sample of my intended services, I give you this timely notice of an improvement you will shortly see in the exposing of the female chest, which, in defiance of your gravity, is going to be uncovered yet more and
more so that to tell you truly, Mr. Ironside, I am in some fear lest my profession should, in a little, become wholly unnecessary. I must here explain to you a small covering, if I may call it so, or rather an ornament for the neck, which you have not yet taken notice of. This consists of a narrow lace, or a small skirt of fine ruffled linen, which runs along the upper part of the stays before, and crosses the breasts, without rising to the shoulders; and being, as it were, a part of the tucker, yet kept in use, is, there. fore, by a particular name, called the modesty-piece. Now, sir, what I have to communicate to you at present is, that at a late meeting of the stripping ladies, in which were present several eminent toasts and beauties, it was resolved for the future to lay the modesty-piece wholly aside. It is intended, at the same time, to lower the stays considerably before, and nothing but the unsettled weather has hindered this design from being already put in execution. Some few, indeed, objected to this last improvement, but were over-ruled by the rest, who alledged it was their intention, as they ingeniously expressed it, to level their breast-works entirely, and to trust to no defence but their own virtue.
"I am, sir,
" (if you please,) your secret servant,
1 LEONILLA FIGLEAF."
DEAR SIR, “ As by name, and duty bound, I yesterday brought in a prey of paper for my patron's dinner, but, by the forwardness of his paws, he seemed ready to put it into his own mouth, which does not enough resemble its prototypes, whose throats are open sepulchres. I assure you, sir, unless he gapes wider, he will sooner be felt than heard. Witness my hand,
TO NESTOR IRONSIDE ESQ.
“SagĘ NESTOR, " Lions being esteemed by naturalists the most generous of beasts, the noble and majestic appearance they make in poetry, wherein they so often represent the hero himself, made me always think that name very ill applied to a profligate set of men, at present going about seeking whom to devour ; and though I cannot but acquiesce in your account of the derivation of that title to them, it is with great satisfaction I hear you are about to restore them to their former dignity, by producing one of that species so public spirited, as to roar for reformation of manners. I will roar (says the clown in Shakespear) that it will do any man's heart good to hear me; I will roar, that I will make the duke say, let him roar again, let him roar again.
Such success and such applause I do not question but your lion will meet with, whilst, like that of Sampson, his strength shall bring forth sweetness, and his entrails abound with honey.
“At the same time that I congratulate with the republic of beasts upon this honour done to their king, I must condole with us poor mortals, who, by distance of place, are rendered incapable of paying our respects to him, with the same assiduity as those who are ushered into his presence by the discreet Mr. Button. Upon this account, Mr. Ironside, I am become a suitor to you, to constitue an out-riding lion; or if you please, a jackall or two, to receive and remit our homage in a more particular manner than is hitherto provided. As it is, our tenders of duty every now and then miscarry by the way, at least the natural self-love that makes us unwilling to think any thing that comes from us worthy of contempt, inclines us to believe so. Methinks it were likewise necessary to specify, by what means a present from a fair hand may reach his brindled majesty, the place
of his residence being very unfit for a lady's personal appear
“I am your most constant reader and admirer,
« N. R."
DEAR NESTOR, “ It is a well-known proverb, in a certain part of this king. dom, ' Love me, love my dog;' and I hope you will take it as a mark of my respect for your person, that I here bring a bit for your lion."
What follows being secret history, it will be printed in other papers; wherein the lion will publish his private intelligence.
No. 119. TUESDAY, JULY 28.
-poetarum veniet manus, auxilio que Sit mibi
There is nothing which more shows the want of taste and discernment in a writer, than the decrying of any author in gross, especially of an author who has been the admiration of multitudes, and that too in several ages of the world. This, however, is the general practice of all illiterate and undistinguishing critics. Because Homer, and Virgil, and Sophocles have been commended by the learned of all times, every scribbler, who has no relish of their beauties, gives himself an air of rapture when he speaks of them. But as he praises these he knows not why, there are others whom he depreciates with the same vehemence and upon the same account. We may see after what a different manner Strada proceeds in his judgment on the Latin poets ; for I intend to publish, in this paper, a continuation of that Prolusion