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lawyers, who some hundred years ago gave their that pays them all for watching; it puts me in mind opinions on cases similar to mine; these opinions of a Chinese fable, which is entitled Five Animals which make for me my lawyer is to cite; and those at a Meal. opinions which look another way are cited by the “A grasshopper, filled with dew, was merrily lawyer employed by my antagonist : as I observed, singing under a shade; a whangam, that eate I have Salkeld and Ventris for me, he has Coke grasshoppers, had marked it for its prey, and was and Hale for him; and he that has most opinions just stretching forth to devour it; a serpent, that is most likely to carry his cause."—" But where is had for a long time fed only on whangams, was the necessity,” cried I, "of prolonging a suit by coiled up to fasten on the whangam; a yellow bird citing the opinions and reports of others, since the was just upon the wing to dart upon the serpent ; same good sense which determined lawyers in for- a hawk had just stooped from above to seize the mer ages may serve to guide your judges at this yellow bird; all were intent on their prey, and unday? They at that time gave their opinions only mindful of their danger; so the whangham ate the from the light of reason; your judges have the grasshopper, the serpent ate the whangam, the yelsame light at present to direct them; let me even low bird the serpent, and the hawk the yellow add, a greater, as in former ages there were many bird; when, sousing from on high, a vulture gobprejudices from which the present is happily free. bled up the hawk, grasshopper, whangam, and all, If arguing from authorities be exploded from every in a moment.” other branch of learning, why should it be par- I had scarcely finished my fable, when the law. ticularly adhered to in this ? I plain!y foresee how yer came to inform my friend, that his cause was such a method of investigation must embarrass put off till another term, that money was wanting every suit, and even perplex the student; ceremo- to retain, and that all the world was of opinion, nies will be multiplied, formalities must increase, that the very next hearing would bring him off and more time will thus be spent in learning victorious. "If so, then," cries my friend, "I bethe arts of litigation than in the discovery of lieve it will be my wisest way to continue the cause right.”
for another term; and, in the mean time, my friend “ I see,” cries my friend, "that you are for a here and I will go and see Bedlam.” Adieu. speedy administration of justice; but all the world will grant, that the more time that is taken up in considering any subject, the better it will be un
LETTER XCIX. derstood. Besides, it is the boast of an English. man, that his property is secure, and all the world
From the Same. will grant that a deliberate administration of justice is the best way to secure his property. Why have I LATELY received a visit from the little beau, we so many lawyers, but to secure our property? who, I found, had assumed a new flow of spirits why so many formalities, but to secure our proper- with a new suit of clothes. Our discourse bapty? Not less than one hundred thousand families pened to turn upon the different treatment of the live in opulence, elegance, and ease, merely by se- fair sex here and in Asia, with the influence of curing our property."
beauty in refining our manners, and improving our “ To embarrass justice," returned I, "by a mul.. conversation. tiplicity of laws, or to hazard it by a confidence in I soon perceived he was strongly prejudiced in our judges, are, I grant, the opposite rocks on favour of the Asiatic method of treating the sex, which legislative wisdom has ever split: in one and that it was impossible to persuade him but case, the client resembles that emperor, who is said that a man was happier who had four wives at his to have been suffocated with the bed-clothes which command, than he who had only one." It is true," were only designed to keep him warm; in the cries he, "your men of fashion in the East are other, to that town which let the enemy take pos- slaves, and under some terrors of having their session of its walls, in order to show the world how throats squeezed by a bow-string; but what then? little they depended upon aught but courage for they can find ample consolation in a seraglio: they safety.-But, bless me! what numbers do I see make, indeed, an indifferent figure in conversation here-all in black !-how is it possible that half abroad, but then they have a seraglio to console this multitude can find einployment ?"-"Nothing them at home. I am told they have no balls, so easily conceived,” returned my companion; drums, nor operas, but then they have got a se"they live by watching each other. For instance, raglio; they may be deprived of wine and French the catchpole watches the man in de!it, the attorney cookery, but they have a seraglio: a seraglio watches the catchpole, the counsellor watches the 'seraglio, my dear creature, wipes off every inconuttorney, the solicitor the counsellor, and all find venience in the world! sufficient employment.”_"I conceive you," inter- “Besides, I am told your Asiatic beauties are rupted 1, "they watch each other, but it is the client the most convenient women alive, for they have no
rouls ; positively there is nothing in nature I should der creature's reply? Only that she detested my like so much as ladies without souls; soul, here, is pig-tail wig, high-heeled shoes, and sallow comthe utter ruin of half the sex. A girl of eighteen plexion ! That is all. Nothing more !—Yes, by the shall have soul enough to spend a hundred pounds Heavens, though she was more ugly than an un. in-the turning of a trump. Her mother shall have painted actress, I found her more insolent than a soul enough to ride a sweepstake match at a horse- thorough-bred woman of quality !” race; her maiden aunt shall have soul enough to He was proceeding in this wild manner, when purchase the furniture of a whole toy-shop; and his invective was interrupted by the man in black, others shall have soul enough to behave as if they who entered the apartment, introducing his niece, had no souls at all.”
a young lady of exquisite beauty. Her very ap"With respect to the soul,” interrupted I, “the pearance was sufficient to silence the severest satiAsiatics are much kinder to the fair sex than you rist of the sex: easy without pride, and free withimagine: instead of one soul, Fohi, the idol of out impudence, she seemed capable of supplying China, gives every woman three; the Brahnins every sense with pleasure; her looks, her convergive them fifteen; and even Mahomet himself sation, were natural and unconstrained; she had nowhere excludes the sex from Paradise. Abulfoda neither been taught to languish nor ogle, to laugh reports, that an old woman one day importuning him without a jest, or sigh without sorrow. I found to know what she ought to do in order to gain that she had just returned from abroad, and had Paradise ?—“My good lady,” answered the pro- been conversant in the manners of the world. phet, "old women never get there.”—“What ! Curiosity prompted me to ask several questions, never get to Paradise !" returned the matron in a but she declined them all. I own I never found fury. “Never,” says he, "for they always grow myself so strongly prejudiced in favour of appayoung by the way.”
rent merit before; and could willingly have pro“No, sir,” continued I, "the men of Asia be- longed our conversation, but the company after have with more deference to the sex than you seem some time withdrew. Just, however, before the to imagine. As you of Europe say grace upon little beau took his leave, he called me aside, and sitting down to dinner, so it is the custom in China requested I would change him a twenty pound bill; to say grace when a man goes to bed to his wife.” which, as I was incapable of doing, he was con_"And may I die,” returned my companion, tented with borrowing half-a-crown. Adieu. "but it is a very pretty ceremony! for, seriously, sir, I see no reason why a man should not be as grateful in one situation as in the other. Upon honour, I always find myself much more disposed
LETTER C. to gratitude on the couch of a fine woman, than From Lien Chi Altangt to Hingpo, by the way of Moscow. upon sitting down to a sirloin of beef.”
“Another ceremony,” said I, resuming the con- Few virtues have been more praised by moralversation, "in favour of the sex, amongst us, is ists than generosity; every practical treatise of the bride's being allowed, after marriage, her three ethics tends to increase our sensibility of the dis. days of freedom. During this interval, a thousand tresses of others, and to relax the grasp of fru. extravagancies are practised by either sex, The gality. Philosophers that are poor, praise it belady is placed upon the nuptial bed, and number- cause they are gainers by its effects; and the less monkey-tricks are played round to divert her. opulent Seneca himself has written a treatise on One gentleman smells her perfumed handkerchief, benefits, though he was known to give nothing another attempts to untie her garters, a third pulls away. off her shoe to play hunt the slipper, another pre- But among many who have enforced the duty tends to be an ideot, and endeavours to raise a of giving, I am surprised there are none to incullaugh by grimacing; in the mean time, the glass cate the ignominy of receiving; to show that by gocs briskly about, till ladies, gentlemen, wife, hus- every favour we accept, we in some measure forband, and all, are mixed together in one inunda- feit our native freedom; and that a state of contion of arrack punch."
tinual dependance on the generosity of others, is a “Strike me dumb, deaf, and blind,” cried my life of gradual debasement. companion, “but that's very pretty! there's some Were men taught to despise the receiving obli. sense in your Chinese ladies' condescensions! but, gations with the same force of reasoning and deamong us, you shall scarce find one of the whole clamation that they are instructed to confer them, sex that shall hold her good humour for three days we might then see every person in society filling together. No later than yesterday, I happened to up the requisite duties of his station with cheerful say some civil things to a citizen's wife of my ac- industry, neither relaxed by hope, nor sullen from quaintance, not because I loved her, but because I disappointment. had charity; and what do you think was the ten- Every favour a man receives in some measuro sinks him below his dignity; and in proportion to cle of those whom hope or gratitude has gathered the value of the benefit, or the frequency of its ac- round him; their unceasing humiliations must neceptance, he gives up so much of his natural inde. cessarily increase his comparative magnitude, for all pendence. He, therefore, who thrives upon the men measure their own abilities by those of their unmerited bounty of another, if he has any sensi- company; thus being taught to over-rate his merit, bility, suffers the worst of servitude; the shackled he in reality lessens it; increasing in confidence, slave may murmur without reproach, but the hum- but not in power, his professions end in empty ble dependant is taxed with ingratitude upon every boast, bis undertakings in shameful disappointsymptom of discontent; the one may rave round ment. the walls of his cell, but the other lingers in all the It is, perhaps, one of the severest misfortunes of silence of mental confinement. To increase his the great, that they are, in general, obliged to live distress, every new obligation but adds to the former among men whose real value is lessened by dependload which kept the vigorous mind from rising; ence, and whose minds are enslaved by obligation. till, at last, elastic no longer, it shapes itself to con- The humble companion may have at first accepted straint, and puts on habitual servility.
patronage with generous views; but soon he feels It is thus with a feeling mind; but there are the mortifying influence of conscious inferiority, some who, born without any share of sensibility, by degrees sinks into a flatterer, and from flattery receive favour after favour, and still cringe for at last degenerates into stupid veneration. To more; who accept the offer of generosity with as remedy this, the great often dismiss their old delittle reluctance as the wages of merit, and even pendants, and take new. Such changes are falsely make thanks for past benetits an indirect petition imputed to levity, falsehood, or caprice, in the pafor new; such, 1 grant, can suffer no debasement tron, since they may be more justly ascribed to the from dependence, since they were originally as vile client's gradual deterioration. as it was possible to be ; dependence degrades only No, my son, a life of independence is generally a the ingenuous, but leaves the sordid mind in pris- life of virtue. It is that which fits the soul for every tine meanness. In this manner, therefore, long generous flight of humanity, freedom, and friend. continued generosity is misplaced, or it is injurious; ship. To give should be our pleasure, but to re it either finds a man worthless, or it makes him so; ceive, our shame; serenity, health, and affluence, and true it is, that the person who is contented to be attend the desire of rising by labour; misery, reoften obliged, ought not to have been obliged at all. pentance, and disrespect, that of succeeding by ex.
Yet, while I describe the meanness of a life of torted benevolence; the man who can thank himcontinued dependence, I would not be thought to self alone for the happiness he enjoys is truly include those natural or political subordinations blessed ; and lovely, far more lovely, the sturdy which subsist in every society; for in such, though gloom of laborious indigence, than the fawning dependence is exacted from the inferior, yet the simper of thriving adulation. Adieu. obligation on either side is mutual. The son must rely upon his parent for support, but the parent lies under the same obligations to give, that the other has to expect; the subordinate officer must
LETTER CI. receive the commands of his superior, but for this obedience the former has a right to demand an in- From Llen Chi Ahangi, to Fum Hoam, First President of
the Ceremonial Academy at Pekin, in China. tercourse of favour. Such is not the dependence I would depreciate, but that where every expected In every society some men are born to teach, and favour must be the result of mere benevolence in others to receive instruction; some to work, and the giver, where the benefit can be kept without others to enjoy in idleness the fruits of their indusremorse, or transferred without injustice. The try, some to govern, and others to obey. Every character of'a legacy hunter, for instance, is detesta- people, how free soever, must be contented to give ble in some countries, and despicable in all; this up part of their liberty and judgment to those who universal contempt of a man who infringes upon govern, in exchange for their hopes of security; and none of the laws of society, some moralists have the motives which first influenced their choice in arraigned as a popular and unjust prejudice; never the election of their governors should ever be weighconsidering the necessary degradations a wretched against the succeeding apparent inconsistencies must undergo, who previously expects to grow rich of their conduct. All can not be rulers, and men by benefits, without having either natural or social are generally best governed by a few. In making claims to enforce his petitions.
way through the intricacies of business, the smalles But this intercourse of benefaction and acknow- obstacles are apt to retard the execution of what i ledgment, is often injurious even to the giver as to be planned by a multiplicity of coupsels; the well as the receiver. A man can gain but little judgment of one alone being always fit:est for knowledge of himself, or of the world, amidst a cir-winding through the labyrinths of intrigue, and thu obstructions of disappointment. A serpent which, and for that reason such monuments sho Jd be as the fable observes, is furnished with one head held sacred, and suffered gradually to decay. and many tails, is much more capable of subsistence "The last witness now appeared. This was a and expedition than another which is furnished widow, who had laudably attempted to burn herwith but one tail and many heads.
self upon her husband's funeral pile. But the inObvious as those truths are, the people of this novating minister had prevented the execution of country seem insensible of their force. Not satis- her design, and was insensible to her tears, protesfied with the advantages of internal peace and opu- tations, and entreaties. lence, they still murmur at their governors and in- "The queen could have pardoned the two former terfere in the execution of their designs, as if they offences; but this last was considered as so gross wanted to be something more than happy. But as an injury to the sex, and so directly contrary to all the Europeans instruct by argument, and the the customs of antiquity, that it called for immediAsiatics mostly by narration, were I to address ate justice. "What!' cried the queen, 'not suffer them, I should convey my sentiments in the follow- a woman to burn herself when she thinks proper? ing story.
The sex are to be very prettily tutored, no doubt "Takupi had long been prime minister of Ti- if they must be restrained from entertaining their partala, a fertile country that stretehes along the female friends now and then with a fried wife, or western confines of China. During his, adminis-roasted acquaintance. 1 sentence the criminal to tration, whatever advantages could be derived from be banished my presence for ever, for his injurious arts, learning, and commerce, were seen to bless treatment of the sex.' the people; nor were the necessary precautions of * Takupi had been hitherto silent, and spoke providing for the security of the state forgotten. It only to show the sincerity of his resignation. often happens, however, that when men are pos- 'Great queen,' cried he, “Iacknowledge my crime; sessed of all they want, they then begin to find and since I am to be banished, I beg it may be to torment from imaginary afflictions, and lessen their some ruined town, or desolate village in the counpresent enjoyments by foreboding that those en-try I have governed. I shall find some pleasure joyments are to have an end. The people now, I in improving the soil, and bringing back a spirit of therefore, endeavoured to find out grievances ; and industry among the inhabitants.' His request apafter soine search, actually began to think them- pearing reasonable, it was immediately complied selves aggrieved. A petition against the enormi-with; and a courtier had orders to fix upon a place ties of Takupi was carried to the throne in due of banishment answering the minister's descripform; and the queen who governed the country, tion. After some months' search, however, the willing to satisfy her subjects, appointed a day in inquiry proved fruitless; neither a desolate village which his accusers should be heard, and the minis- nor a ruined town was found in the whole kingter should stand upon his defence.
dom. 'Alas,' said Takupi then to the queen, 'how "The day beirig arrived, and the minister can that country be ill governed which has neither brought before the tribunal, a carrier, who supplied a desolate village nor a ruined town in it?' The the city with fish, appeared among the number of queen perceived the justice of his expostulation, his accusers. He exclaimed, that it was the cus- and the minister was received into more than tom time immemorial for carriers to bring their fish former favour.” upon a horse in a hamper ; which being placed on one side, and balanced by a stone on the other, was thus conveyed with ease and safety; but that the prisoner, moved either by a spirit of innovation, or
LETTER CII. perhaps bribed by the hamper-makers, had obliged
From the Same. all carriers to use the stone no longer, but balance one hamper with another; an order entirely repug- The ladies here are by no means such ardent nant to the customs of all antiquity, and those of gamesters as the women of Asia. In this respect the kingdom of Tipartala in particular.
I must do the English justice ; for I love to praise “The carrier finished, and the whole court shook where applause is justly merited. Nothing is more their heads at the innovating minister; when a common in China than to see two women of fashion second witness appeared. He was inspector of continue gaming till one has won all the other's the city buildings, and accused the disgraced fa- clothes, and stripped her quite naked; the winner vourite of having given orders for the demolition of thus marching off in a double suit of finery, and an ancient ruin, which obstructed the passage the loser shrinking behind in the primitive simplicithrough one of the principal streets. He observed, ty of nature. that such buildings were noble monuments of bar- No doubt, you remember when Shang, our barous antiquity; contributed finely to show how maiden aunt, played with a sharper. First her little their ancestors understood of archictecture: money went; then her trinkets were produced
her clothes followed piece by piece soon after; when she had thus played herself quite naked, being a
LETTER CIII. woman of spirit, and willing to pursue her own, she staked her teeth : fortune was against her even
From Lien Chi Altangi to ***, Merchans in Ameterdam here, and her teeth followed her clothes. At last
I Have just received a letter from my son, is she played for her left eye; and, oh, hard fate ! this which he informs me of the fruitlessness of his entoo she lost : however, she had the consolation of deavours to recover the lady with whom he fled biting the sharper, for he never perceived that it from Persia. Ho strives to cover, under the apwas made of glass till it became his own.
pearance of fortitude, a heart torn with anxiety How happy, my friend, are the English ladics, and disappointment. I have offered little consolawho never rise to such an inordinance of passion !tion, since that but two frequently feeds the sozThough the sex here are generally fond of games row which it pretends to deplore, and strengthens of chance, and are taught to manage games of skill the impression, which nothing but the external from their infancy, yet they never pursue ill-fortune rubs of time and accident can thoroughly efface. with such amazing intrepidity. Indeed, I may en- He informs me of his intentions of quitting tirely acquit them of ever playing -I mean of play- Moscow the first opportunity, and travelling by ing for their eyes or their teeth.
land to Amsterdam. I must, therefore, upon his It is true, they often stake their fortune, their arrival
, entreat the continuance of your friendship, beauty, health, and reputation, at a gaming-table. and beg of you to provide him with proper direcIt even sometimes happens, that they play their tions for finding me in London. You can scarcehusbands into a gaol; yet still they preserve a de- ly be sensible of the joy I expect upon seeing corum unknown to our wives and daughters in him once more; the ties between the father and China. I have been present at a rout in this the son among us of China, are much more closecountry, where a woman of fashion, after losing ly drawn than with you of Europe. her money, has sat writhing in all the agonies of The remittances sent me from Argun to Moscow bad luck; and yet, after all, never once attempted came in safety. I can not sufficiently admire that to strip a single petticoat, or cover the board, as spirit of honesty which prevails through the whole her last stake, with her head-clothes.
country of Siberia : perhaps the savages of that However, though I praise their moderation at desolate region are the only untutored people of play, I must not conceal their assiduity. In China, the globe that cultivate the moral virtues, even our women, except upon some great days, are never without knowing that their actions merit praise. I permitted to finger a dice-box; but here every day have been told surprising things of their goodness, seems to be a festival, and night itself, which gives benevolence, and generosity; and the uninterruptothers rest, only serves to increase the female ed commerce between China and Russia serves as gamester's industry. I have been told of an old
a collateral confirmation. lady in the country, who, being given over by the
“Let us,” says the Chinese lawgiver, "admire physicians, played with the curate of her parish to the rude virtues of the ignorant, but rather imitate pass the time away: having won all his money, the delicate morals of the polite.” In the country she next proposed playing for her funeral charges ; where I reside, though honesty and benevolence. her proposal was accepted; but unfortunately the be not so congenial, yet art supplies the place of lady expired just as she had taken in her game.
nature. Though here every vice is carried to exThere are some passions which, though different- cess, yet every virtue is practised also with unexly pursued, are attended with equal consequences ampled superiority. A city like this is the soil for in every country: here they game with more per- great virtues and great vices; the villain can soon severance, there with greater fury; here they strip improve himself in the deepest mysteries of detheir families, there they strip themselves naked. ceiving; and the practical philosopher can every A lady in China who indulges a passion for gaming, day meet new incitements to mend his honest inoften becomes a drunkard; and by flourishing a tentions. There are no pleasures, sensual or sendice-box in one hand, she generally comes to brand-timental, which this city does not produce; yet, I ish a dram-cup in the other. Far be it from me know not how, I could not be content to reside to say there are any who drink drams in England; here for life. There is something so seducing in but it is natural to suppose, that when a lady has that spot in which we first had existence, that no lust every thing else but her honour, she will be thing but it can please. Whatever vicissitudes apt to toss that into the bargain; and, grown in- we experience in life, however we toil, or wheresosensitle to nicer feelings, behave like the Spaniard. ever we wander, our fatigued wishes still recur to who, when all his money was gone, endeavoured home for trat:quillity: we long to die in that spot to bonow more, by offering to pawn his whiskers. wuich gave us birth, and in that pleasing expecta. Adieu.
Itiçn opiate every calamity.