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trious as any of the noblest of the old Greeks or Romans. The cunning some have used to do handsome and worthy actions, the address to do men services, and escape their notice, has produced so many surprizing incidents, (which have been laid before me during my censorship,) as, in the opinion of posterity, would absolve this age of all its crimes and follies. I know no way to deal with such delicate : minds as these, but by assuring them, that when they cease to do good, I shall tell all the good they have done already. Let therefore the benefactor to the youths above mentioned, continue such bounties, upon pain of being publicly praised. But there is no probability of his running into that hazard; for a strong habit of virtue can make men suspend the receiving acknowledgments due to their merit, till they are out of a capacity of receiving them. I am so very much charmed with accidents of this kind, that I have made a collection of all the memorable handsome things done by private men in my time. As a specimen of my manner of noting such actions, take the following fragment out of much more which is written in my year book on the remarkable will of a gentleman, whom I shall here call Celamico.
“ This day died that plain and excellent man, my much honoured friend Celamico, who bequeathed his whole estate to a gentleman no way related to him, and to whom he had given no such expectation in his life-time.”
He was a person of a very enlarged soul, and thought the nearest relation among men to be the resemblance of their minds and sentiments. He was not mistaken in the worth of his successor, who received the news of this unexpected good fortune, with an air that showed him less moved with the benefit, than the loss of the benefactor,
Notice is hereby given, that on Monday, the 11th instant, the case of the visit comes on, between the hours of ten and' eleven, at the Court of Honour; where both persons are to attend, the meeting there not being to be understood as a visit, and the right of the next visit being then to be wholly settled, according to the prayer of the plaintiff.
No. 262. TUESDAY, DECEMBER 12, 1710.
Verba togæ sequeris, juncturá callidus acri,
PERS. SAT. 5.
Journal of the Court of Honour, &c. Timothy
IMOTHY TREATALL, Gent. was indicted by several ladies of his sister's acquaintance, for a very rude affront offered to them at an entertainment, to which he had invited them on Tuesday the 7th of November last past, between the hours of eight and nine in the evening. The indictment set forth, that the said Mr. Treatall, upon the serving up of the supper, desired the ladies to take their places according to their different age and seniority, for that it was the way always at his table to pay respect to years. The indictment added, that this produced an unspeakable 'confusion in the company; for that the ladies, who before had pressed VOL. III.
together for a place at the upper end of the table, immediately crowded with the same disorder towards the end that was quite opposite; that Mrs. Frontly had the insolence to clap herself down at the very lowest place of the table; that the Widow Partlett seated herself on the right hand of Mrs. Frontly, alledging for her excuse, that no ceremony was to be used at a round table; that Mrs. Fidget and Mrs. Fescue disputed above half an hour for the same chair, and that the latter would not give up
the cause till it was decided by the parish register, which happened to be kept hard by. The indictment further said, that the rest of the company who sat down, did it with a reserve to their right, which they were at liberty to assert on another occasion: and that Mrs. Mary Pippe, an old maid, was placed by the unanimous vote of the whole company at the upper end of the table, from whence she had the confusion to behold several mothers of families among her inferiors. The criminal alledged in his defence, that what he had done, was to raise mirth, and avoid ceremony, and that the ladies did not complain of his rudeness till the next morning, having eaten up what he had provided for them with great readiness and alacrity. The censor frowning upon him, told him that he ought not to discover so much levity in matters of a serious nature, and (upon the jury's bringing him in guilty) sentenced him to treat the whole assembly of ladies over again, and to take care that he did it with the decorum which was due to persons of their quality.
Rebecca Shapely, spinster, was indicted by Mrs. Sarah Smack, for speaking many words reflecting upon her reputation, and the heels of her silk slippers, which the prisoner had maliciously suggested to be two inches higher than they really were. The prosecutor urged, as an aggravation of her guilt, that the prisoner was herself guilty of the same kind of forgery which she had laid to the prosecutor's charge, for that she the said Rebecca Shapely did always wear a pair of steel bodice, and a false rump. The censor ordered the slippers to be produced in open court, where the heels were adjudged to be of the statutable size. He then ordered the grand jury to search the criminal, who, after some time spent therein, acquitted her of the bodice, but found her guilty of the rump; upon which she received sentence as is usual in such cases.
William Trippit, Esq. of the Middle Temple, brought his action against the Lady Elizabeth Prudely, for having refused him her hand, as he offered to lead her to her coach from the opera. The plaintiff set forth, that he had entered himself into the list of those volunteers who officiate every night behind the boxes as gentlemen-ushers of the playhouse ; that he had been at a considerable charge in white gloves, periwigs, and snuffboxes, in order to qualify himself for that employment, and in hopes of making his fortune by it. The council for the defendant replied, that the plaintiff had given out that he was within a month of wedding their client, and that she had refused her hand to him in ceremony, lest he should in. terpret it as a promise that she would give it him in marriage. As soon as the pleadings on both sides were finished, the censor ordered the plaintiff to be cashiered from his office of gentleman-usher to the play-house, since it was too plain that he had undertaken it with an ill design; and at the same time ordered the defendant either to marry the said plaintiff, or to pay him half-acrown for the new pair of gloves and coach-hire that he was at the expence of in her service.
- The Lady Townly brought an action of debt against Mrs. Flambeau, for that Mrs. Flambeau had not been to see the said Lady Townly, and wish her joy, since her marriage with Sir Ralph, notwithstanding she the said Lady Townly had paid Mrs. Flambeau a visit upon her first coming to town. It was urged in the behalf of the defendant, that the plaintiff had never given her any regular notice of her being in town; that the visit she alledged had been made on a Monday, which she knew was a day on which Mrs. Flambeau was always abroad, having set aside that only day in the week to mind the affairs of her family; that the servant who enquired whether she was at home, did not give the visiting knock; that it was not between the hours of five and eight in the evening; that there was no candles lighted up; that it was not on Mrs. Flambeau's day; and, in short, that there was not one of the essential points observed that constitute a visit. She further proved by her porter's book, which was produced in court, that she had paid the Lady Townly a visit on the twenty-fourth day of March, just before her leaving the town, in the year 1709-10, for which she was still creditor to the said Lady Townly. To this the plaintiff only replied, that she was now under covert, and not liable to any debts contracted when she was a single woman. Mr. Bickerstaffe finding the cause to be very intricate, and that several points of honour were likely to arise in it, he deferred giving judgment upon it till the next session day, at which time he ordered the ladies on his left hand to present to the court a table of all the laws relating to visits.
Winifred Leer brought her action against Richard Sly, for having broken a marriage contract, and wedded another woman, after he had engaged himself to marry the said Winifred Leer. She alledged,