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and will probably be in the President's chair before she dies.
· These Ladies, upon their first institution, • resolved to give the pictures of their deceased • Husbands to the Club-room, but two of them • bringing in their dead at full length, they :' covered all the walls. Upon which they came .. to a second resolution, that every matron • should give her own picture, and set it round ' with her Husbands' in miniature. . As they have most of them the misfortune
to be troubled with the colic, they have a . noble cellar of cordials and strong waters. " When they grow maudlin, they are very apt " to commemorate their former partners with a :“ tear. But ask them which of their husbands :“ they condole, they are not able to tell you, 6 and discover plainly that they do not weep 10 .6 much for the loss of a husband as for the want of one.
"The principal rule by which the whole ' Society are to govern themselves, is this, to • cry up the pleasures of a single life upon all
occasions, in order to deter the rest of their • sex from Marriage, and engross the whole « male world to themselves.
• They are obliged, when any one makes " love to a member of the Society, to commu
nicate his name, at which time the whole ' assembly sit upon his reputation, person, for& tune, and good humour; and if they find him
qualified for a sister of the Club, they lay their heads together how to make him ture. By
• this . this means they are acquainted with all the " Widow-hunters about town, who often afford
them great diversion. There is an honest Irish “ gentleman it seems, who knows nothing of o this Society, but at different times has made love to the whole Club.
• Their conversation often turns upon their • former husbands, and it is very diverting to • hear them relate their several arts and strata• gems with which they amused the jealous, • pacified the choleric, or wheedled the good• natured man, till at last, to use the Club • phrase, “ They sent him out of the house 66 with his heels foremost.”
• The politics which are most cultivated by < this Society of She-Machiavels relate chiefly • to these two points, how to treat a Lover, and how to manage a Husband. As for the first set of artifices, they are too numerous to come
within the compass of your Paper, and shall " therefore be reserved for a second letter.
"The management of a Husband is built upon the following doctrines, which are universally • assented to by the whole Club. Not to give
him his head at first. Not to allow him too great freedoms and familiarities. Not to be treated by him like a raw girl, but as a woman that knows the world. Not to lessen any
thing of her former figure. To celebrate the • generosity, or any other virtue, of a deceased • Husband, which she would recommend to his
succeflor. To turn away all his old friends s and servants, that she may have the dear man
• to herself. To make him disinherit the un• dutiful children of any former wife. Never o to be thoroughly convinced of his affection, ' until he has made over to her all his goods cand chattels
• After so long a letter, I am, without more ceremony,
• Your humble servant, &c.'
N° 562. Friday, July 2, 1714.
Ter. Eun. Acti. Sc. 2.
Præsens, abfens ut fies.
“ IT is a hard and nice subject for a man to “ I speak of himself,” says Cowley " ; " it “ grates his own heart to say any thing of dif“ paragement, and the reader's ears to hear any “ thing of praise from him." Let the tenour of his discourse be what it will upon this subject, it generally proceeds from VANITY. An Oftentatious man will rather relate a blunder or an absurdity he has committed, than be debarred of talking of his own dear person.
Some very great writers have been guilty of this fault. It is observed of Tully in particular that his works run very much in the first person, and that he takes all occasions of doing himself
* By Addison; on the authority of Mr. Tickell. + Cowley's “ Works,” fol. Lond. 1669, Ef. II. p. 143.
justice. justice. “Does he think,” says Brutus, “ that « his Consulship deserves more applause than my " putting Cæsár to death, because I am not “ perpetually talking of the Ides of March, as “ he is of the Nones of December?” I need not acquaint my learned reader, that in the Ides of March Brutus destroyed Cælar, and that Cicero quashed the conspiracy of Catiline in the Calends of December. How shocking foever this great man's talking of himself might have been to his contemporaries, I must confess I am never better pleased than when he is on this subject. Such openings of the heart give a man a thorough insight into his personal character, and illustrate several passages in the history of his life: besides that, there is some little pleasure in discovering the infirmity of a great man, and seeing how the opinion he has of himself agrees with what the world entertains of him.
The gentlemen of Port Royal, who were more eminent for their learning and for their humility than any other in France, banished the way of speaking in the first person out of all their works, as rising from Vain-GLORY and SelfCONCEIT. To shew their particular aversion to it, they branded this form of writing with the name of an EGOTISM; a figure not to be found among the ancient rhetoricians.
The most violent Egotism which I have met with in the course of my reading, is that of Cardinal Wolsey, Egn & Rex meus, “ I and my “ king;” as perhaps the most eminent Egotist that ever appeared in the world was Montaigne, D 3
the the author of the celebrated Essays. This lively old Gascon has woven all his bodily infirmities into his works; and, after having spoken of the faults or virtues of any other men, immediately publishes to the world how it stands with himself in that particular. Had he kept his own counsel, he might have passed for a much better man, though perhaps he would not have been fo diverting an author. The title of an Effay promises perhaps a discourse upon Virgil or Julius Cælar; but, when you look into it, you are sure to meet with more upon Monsieur Montaigne than of either of them. The younger Scaliger, who seems to have been no great friend to this author, after having acquainted the world that his father fold herrings, adds these words: La grande fadaise de Montaigne, qui a ecrit qu'il aimoit mieux le vin blanc - que diable a ton à faire de sçavoir ce qu'il aime ?".For my part,” says Montaigne, “I “ am a great lover of your white wines”— " What the devil signifies it to the public,” says Scaliger, “ whether he is a lover of white 56 wines or of red wines ?”
I cannot here forbear mentioning a tribe of Egotists, for whom I have always had a mortal avertion, I mean the authors of Memoirs, who are never mentioned in any works but their own, and who raise all their productions out of this single figure of speech.
Most of our modern prefaces favour very strongly of the Egotism. Every insignificant author fancies it of importance to the world to