Imatges de pÓgina


of sense, or one who before had not been sufficiently used to a mixed conversation, generally takes the true turn. The court has in all ages been allowed to be the standard of good-breeding; and I believe there is not a juster observation in Monsieur Rochefoucault, than that a man who has been bred up wholly to business can never get the air of a courtier at court, but will immediately catch it in the camp." The reason of this most certainly is, that the very essence of good breeding and politeness consists in several niceties, which are so minute that they escape his observation, and he falls short of the original he would copy after; but when he sees the same things charged and aggravated to a fault, he no sooner endeavours to come up to the pattern which is set before him, than, though he stops somewhat short of that, he naturally rests where in reality he ought. I was, two or three days ago, mightily pleased with the observation of an humourous gentleman upon one of his friends, who was in other respects every way an accomplished person, that he wanted nothing but a dash of the coxcomb in him; by which he understood a little of that alertness and unconcern in the common actions of life, which is usually so visible among gentlemen of the army, and which a campaign or two would infallibly have given him.

You will easily guess, sir, by this my panegyric upon a military education, that I am myself a soldier; and indeed I am so. I remember, within three years after I had been in the army, I was ordered into the country a recruiting. I had very particular success in this part of the service, and was over and above assured, at my going away, that I might have taken a young lady, who was the most considerable fortune in the country, along with me. I preferred the pursuit of fame at that time to all

other considerations; and, though I was not absolutely bent on a wooden leg, resolved at least to get a scar or two for the good of Europe. I have at present as much as I desire of this sort of honour; and if you could recommend me effectually, should be well enough contented to pass the remainder of my days in the arms of some dear kind creature, and upon a pretty estate in the country. This, as I take it, would be following the example of Lucius Cincinnatus, the old Roman dictator, who, at the end of a war, left the camp to follow the plough. I am, sir, with all imaginable respect,

Your most obedient,
humble servant,



'I AM an half-pay officer, and am at present with a friend in the country. Here is a rich widow in the neighbourhood, who has made fools of all the foxhunters within fifty miles of her. She declares she intends to marry, but has not yet been asked by the man she could like. She usually admits her humble admirers to an audience or two; but after she has once given them denial, will never see them more. I am assured by a female relation shat I shall have fair play at her; but as my whole success depends on my first approaches, I desire your advice, whether I had best storm, or proceed by way of sap.

I am, sir,
Yours, &c.

'P. S. I had forgot to tell you that I have already carried one of her outworks, that is, secured her maid.'


I HAVE assisted in several sieges in the Low Countries, and being still willing to employ my talents as a soldier and engineer, lay down this morning at seven o'clock before the door of an obstinate female, who had for some time refused me admittance. I made a lodgment in an outer parlour about twelve: the enemy retired to her bed-chamber, yet I still pursued, and about two o'clock this afternoon she thought fit to capitulate. Her demands are indeed somewhat high, in relation to the settlement of her fortune. But, being in possession of the house, I intend to insist upon carte blanche, and am in hopes, by keeping off all other pretenders for the space of twenty-four hours, to starve her into a compliance. I beg your speedy advice, and am,

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From my camp in Red-lion-square, Saturday, four in the afternoon.'


G. Woodfall, Printer, Paternoster-row, London.

in several sieges
still willing to
engineer, lay dom
fore the door of
some time refie

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bout two o'cod
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to insist upon
eping off all

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beg your

ours, PETER P are, Satur


'Mr. SPE

Low Countries, my talents as a morning at seve stinate female, v admittance. I ma about twelve: the ber, yet I still pu afternoon she tho mands are indeed s settlement of her session of the house blanche, and am in 1 pretenders for the sp starve her into a com advice, and am,

From my camp in Re four in the afternoon.'


G. Woodfall, Printer, Paternoster-row, London.

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