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precautions are not observed, the man often degenerates into à cynic, the woman into a coquette; the man grows sullen and morose, the woman impertinent and fantastical.

By what I have said we may conclude, men and women were made as counterparts to one another, that the pains and anxieties of the husband might be relieved by the sprightliness and good humour of the wife. When these are rightly tempered, care and cheerfulness go hand in hand; and the family, like a ship that is duly trimmed, wants neither sail nor ballast.

Natural historians observe (for whilst I am in the country I must fetch my allusions from thence) that only the male birds have voices; that their songs begin a little before breeding-time, and end a little after; that whilst the hen is covering her eggs, the male generally takes his stand upon a neighbouring bough within her hearing; and by that means amuses and diverts her with his songs during the whole time of her sitting.

This contract among birds lasts no longer than till a brood of young ones arises from it; so that in the feathered kind, the cares and fatigues of the married state, if I may so call it, lie principally upon the female. On the contrary, as in our species, the man and the woman are joined together for life, and the main burden rests upon the former. Nature has given all the little arts of soothing and blandishment to the female, that she may cheer and animate her companion in a constant and assiduous application to the making a provision for his family, and the educating of their common children. This, however, is not to be taken so strictly, as if the same duties were not often reciprocal, and incumbent on both parties; but only to set forth what seems to have been the general intention of nature, in the different inclinations and endowments which are bestowed on the different sexes.

But whatever was the reason that man and woman were made with this variety of temper, if we observe the conduct of the fair sex, we find that they choose rather to associate themselves with a person who resembles them in that light and volatile humour which is natural to them, than to such as are qualified to moderate and counterbalance it. It has been an old complaint, that the coxcomb carries it with them before the man of sense. When we see a fellow loud and talkative, full of insipid life and laughter, we may venture to pronounce

him a female favourite: noise and flutter are such accomplishments as they cannot withstand. To be short, the passion of an ordinary woman for a man, is nothing else but self-love diverted upon another object; she would have the lover a woman in everything but the sex. I do not know a finer piece of satire on this part of womankind, than those lines of Mr. Dryden:

Our thoughtless sex is caught by outward form

And empty noise, and loves itself in man. This is a source of infinite calamities to the sex, as it frequently joins them to men who in their own thoughts are as fine creatures as themselves; or if they chance to be goodhumoured, serve only to dissipate their fortunes, inflame their follies, and aggravate their indiscretions.

The same female levity is no less fatal to them after marriage than before: it represents to their imaginations the faithful, prudent husband, as an honest, tractable, and domestic animal; and turns their thoughts upon the fine gay gentleman, that laughs, and sings, and dresses so much more agreeably.

As this irregular vivacity of temper leads astray the hearts of ordinary women in the choice of their lovers, and the treatment of their husbands, it operates with the same pernicious influence towards their children, who are taught to accomplish themselves in all those sublime perfections that appear captivating in the eye of their mother. She admires in her son what she loved in her gallant; and by that means contributes all she can to perpetuate herself in a worthless progeny. The

younger Faustina was a lively instance of this sort of women. Notwithstanding she was married to Marcus Aurelius, one of the greatest, wisest, and best of the Roman emperors, she thought a common gladiator much the prettier gentleman; and had taken such care to accomplish her son Commodus according to her own notions of a fine man, that when he ascended the throne of his father, he became the most foolish and abandoned tyrant that was ever placed at the head of the Roman empire, signalizing himself in nothing but the fighting of prizes, and knocking out men's brains. As he had no taste of true glory, we see him in several medals and statues which are still extant of him, equipped like an Hercules with a club and a lion's skin.

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I have been led into this speculation by the characters I have heard of a country gentleman and his lady, who do not live many miles from Sir Roger. The wife is an old coquette, that is always hankering after the diversions of the town; the husband a morose rustic, that frowns and frets at the name of it. The wife is over-run with affectation, the husband sunk into brutality: the lady cannot bear the noise of the larks and nightingales, hates

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tedious summer days, and is sick at the sight of shady woods and purling streams; the husband wonders how any one can be pleased with the fooleries of plays and operas, and rails from morning to night at essenced fops and tawdry courtiers. The children are educated in these different notions of their parents. The sons follow the father about his grounds, while the daughters read volumes of love-letters and romances to their mother. By this means it comes to pass

that the girls look upon their father as a clown, and the boys think their mother no better than she should be.

How different are the lives of Aristus and Aspatia! The innocent vivacity of the one is tempered and composed by the cheerful gravity of the other. The wife grows wise by the discourses of the husband, and the husband good-humoured by the conversations of the wife. Aristus would not be so amiable were it not for his Aspatia, nor Aspatia so much to be esteemed were it not for her Aristus. Their virtues are blended in their children, and diffuse through the whole family a perpetual spirit of benevolence, complacency, and satisfaction.

No. 129. SATURDAY, JULY 28.

Vertentem sese frustra sectabere canthum,

Cum rota posterior curras et in axe secundo. Pers. GREAT masters in painting never care for drawing people in the fashion; as very well knowing that the head-dress, or periwig, that now prevails, and gives a grace to their portraitures at present, will make a very odd figure, and perhaps look monstrous in the eyes of posterity. For this reason they often represent an illustrious person in a Roman habit, or in some other dress that never varies. I could wish, for the sake of my country friends, that there was such a kind

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of everlasting drapery to be made use of by all who live at a certain distance from the town, and that they would agree upon such fashions as should never be liable to changes and innovations. For want of this standing dress, a man who takes a journey into the country, is as much surprised as one who walks in a gallery of old family pictures ; and finds as great a variety of garbs and habits in the

persons he verses with.

Did they keep to one constant dress, they would sometimes be in the fashion, which they never are as matters are managed at present. If instead of running after the mode, they would continue fixed in one certain habit, the mode would some time or other overtake them, as a clock that stands still is sure to point right once in twelve hours: in this case, therefore, I would advise them, as a gentleman did his friend who was hunting about the whole town after a rambling fellow: If you follow him, you will never find him; but if you plant yourself at the corner of any one street, I'll engage it will not be long before you see him.

I have already touched upon this subject, in a speculation which shows how cruelly the country are led astray in following the town; and equipped in a ridiculous habit, when they fancy themselves in the height of the mode. Since that speculation, I have received a letter (which I there hinted at) from a gentleman who is now in the western circuit.

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“ Mr. SPECTATOR,

Being a lawyer of the Middle Temple, a Cornish man by birth, I generally ride the western circuit for my health, and as I am not interrupted by clients, have leisure to make many observations that escape the notice of my fellow-travellers.

66 One of the most fashionable women I met with in all the circuit, was my landlady at Staines, where I chanced to be on a holiday Her commode was not half a foot high, and her petticoat within some yards of a modish circumference. In the same place I observed a young fellow with a tolerable periwig, had it not been covered with a hat that was shaped in the Ramillie cock. As I proceeded on my journey, I observed the petticoat grew scantier and scantier, and about threescore miles from London was so very unfashionable, that a woman might walk in it without any manner of inconvenience.

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“Not far from Salisbury I took notice of a justice of peace’s lady, who was at least ten years behind-hand in her dress, but at the same time as fine as hands could make her. She was flounced and furbelowed from head to foot; every ribbon was wrinkled, and every part of her garments in curl, so that she looked like one of those animals which in the country we call a Friezeland hen.

Not many miles beyond this place, I was informed, that one of the last year's little muffs had by some means or other straggled into those parts, and that all the women of fashion were cutting their old muffs in two, or retrenching them, according to the little model which was got among them. I connot believe the report they have there, that it was sent down franked by a parliament-man in a little packet; but probably by next winter this fashion will be at the height in the country, when it is quite out at London.

“ The greatest beau at our next country sessions was dressed in a most monstrous flaxen periwig, that was made in King William's reign. The wearer of it goes,

it his own hair, when he is at home, and lets his wig lie in buckle for a whole half year, that he may put it on upon occasion to meet the judges in it.

“I must not here omit an adventure which happened to us in a country church upon the frontiers of Cornwall. As we were in the midst of the service, a lady, who is the chief woman of the place, and had passed the winter at London with her husband, entered the congregation in a little head-dress and a hooped petticoat. The people, who were wonderfully startled at such a sight, all of them rose up. Some stared at the prodigious bottom, and some at the little top of this strange dress. In the mean time the lady of the manor filled the area of the church, and walked up to her pew with an unspeakable satisfaction, amidst the whispers, conjectures, and astonishments of the whole congregation.

Upon our way from hence we saw a young fellow riding towards us full gallop, with a bob-wig, and a black silken bag tied to it. He stopt short at the coach, to ask us how far the judges were behind us. His stay was so very short, that we had only time to observe his new silk waistcoat, which was unbuttoned in several places to let us see that he had a clean shirt on, which was ruffled down to his middle.

"From this place, during our progress through the most

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