Miscellanies

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The Siege of Gibraltar and Miscellaneous Pieces
MISCELLANIES
[PRICE TWO SHILLINGS.]
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MISCELLANEOUS PIECES
IN
PROSE AND VERSE;
BY
Mrs. UPTON,
AUTHORESS
OF THE
SIEGE OF GIBRALTAR,
AND
GOVERNESS OF THE LADIES ACADEMY,
No. 43, Bartholomew Close.

LONDON:

Printed for and Sold by the Authoress;
T. and G. Egerton, Charing-Cross, and G. Robinson, Paternoster-row.
M DCC LXXXIV.
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TO
HIS EXCELLENCY
GENERAL BOYD
Lieut. Governor of Gibraltar, &c. [1] 

SIR,

PERMIT me to solicit your patronage for the following trifles. Though unknown to you when I lived in Gibraltar, I was no stranger to the excellency of your private character. As a Commander I need not enlarge on your courage, prudence or fortitude: the World and his Majesty are convinced you possess every requisite that can form the General, or exalt the Gentleman. The grateful

people of England look anxiously forward to that period, when the King [2]  will confer on you rewards adequate to your merits.

May added years of glory and domestic felicity crown the arduous labours of your former life, is the sincere prayer of

Your Excellency’s
Most devoted,
And most obedient Servant,
Catherine Upton

PREFACE. —

It was not my intention to introduce the Miscellanies to the world by a Preface; but some Critics finding fault with my Poem intitled The Siege of Gibraltar, induces me to say a few words in my own defence.

One gentleman said it was not English; another avowed the versification was bad, as one line in it was a syllable too long. I take the liberty to present these able judges with a couplet from one of the greatest Poets England ever produced, where the first line contains ten syllables, and the second thirteen. Dryden, in his translation of Juvenal’s Codrus, says—

“Where mice and rats devour poetic bread, And on heroic verse luxuriously were fed.” [3] 

I shall subjoin two more lines from Mr. Pope, in which he takes the same liberty.

“So spirits ending their terrestrial race, “Ascend and recognize their native place.” [4] 

Errors like these, (if they can be called such) are forgiven in great Poets and learned men, but not in a woman, who pretends to no learning at all. Their observations put me in mind of what Dean Swift says of Critics, whose utmost ingenuity lies in scanning the verses of others on their finger ends, without ever being able to make a tolerable rhyme themselves during the course of their lives.

If my accusers expect me to write better than Dryden or Pope, they assign me a strange talk indeed! But I have done with these, and with much more pleasure address myself to the candid part of mankind. Far be such vanity from me to suppose that my Miscellany contains no faults; but my avocations as a Governess, will, I hope, plead my excuse! I have but little time to write, or correct what I write, and shall ingenuously confess, that I send the following sheets into the world, with a view to support my children, not to extend my own fame.

MISCELLANIES.

The SIEGE
of GIBRALTAR.

My Muse awake, and sing that awful day,
When Spain determin’d with tyrannic sway
To crush this rock! which proudly has withstood
The raging torrents of Bellona’s flood! [5] 
But, stop, my hand! the cannons dreadful roar
Still rend my ears, and sound from shore to shore!
Each bursting shell with horror strews the way,
And all is uproar, terror, and dismay!
Now tottering buildings from their centre shake,
And falling houses makes old Cybelle [6]  quake!
Now curling flames ascend the vaulted sky,
And cots, and churches, in one ruin lie!
Struck dumb with fear! made senseless by surprise,
To Heaven I scarce can turn my suppliant eyes!
Not so the vet’ran, who, with dauntless pace,
Wishes to meet the Spaniards, face to face,
Defies their thunder! challenges their power,
And fiercely hopes for battle in an hour.
My Muse proceed! Paint that terrific fight,
When Bourbon’s force, array’d in warlike plight,
Rush’d on the waves, and cover’d all the bay,
To hurl destruction on their foes that day.
Whole years were spent to frame this mighty force,
All efforts strain’d—untry’d left no resource
To build these ships; which castles might be nam’d,
So vast their strength, so marvelously fram’d;
The Spanish king’s [7]  impenetrable boast,
Not to be conquer’d by an earthly host!
This dread Armada, with majestic sweep,
Came bravely on, and anchor’d in the deep;
Then with a pompous and a proud display
Arrang’d themselves, as certain of the day!
Harsh thunder now from each contending power
Astonish’d all, and form’d a direful shower
Of shot and shells—the air seem’d quite convuls’d,
But still the foe was not to be repuls’d;
Till British soldiers, burning balls discharg’d,
Then death, and slaughter, in the fleet appear’d!
Who can describe Morano’s [8]  grief and care,
When all his hopes were ended in despair!
Consuming flames with rapid rage devour
His fated vessels; and no earthly power
Could succor bring, for his Armada burst
In one bright blaze!—of his human ills the worst!
The lofty hills, the vast explosion shake,
The shores re-echo to the falling wreck!
In spiral flames their bat’ries all were found,
Their mighty thunders neighb-ring rocks resound.
Ambition, here—behold thy barb-rous sway!
See thousands bleed, thy empire to obey!
The dying groans of proud Iberia’s race,
From thee their deaths and sad destruction trace!
The shrieks of numbers, perishing in flame,
Too late their folly, and thy madness blame!
Ye distant Multitudes, [9]  who anxious gaze,
How great your terror, and your wild amaze!
To see the battle end in certain death,
To those who near you drew their kindred breath:
Perhaps a wife, a mother, or a son,
In this engagement saw themselves undone;
Some dear relation into atoms blown,
Or in the sea with headlong fury thrown.
The combin’d fleets, an awful distance keep,
And view their batteries burning on the deep.
What were your orders; your instructions tell?
Came ye to witness how your country fell?
Back to your shores, the fatal news relate,
Proclaim you’re vanquish’d by the foe you hate!
ELIOTT and BOYD your nation’s hopes destroy’d,
Your machinations and your skill defy’d.
O! names to freedom and to Britain dear,
Permit the Muse to drop a grateful tear,
For all your exploits, cares, and grand designs,
To you the laurel France and Spain resigns;
Glorious in arms, in goodness, and in fame,
The’ admiring world your triumphs shall proclaim.
Ye sons of Britain, safe within your ports,
Immers’d in pleasure, luxury, and sports;
Small your ideas of the soldier’s toils,
Who fights your causes in all climes and soils;
Patient in dangers; firm, tho’ in want of food,
And only anxious for his country’s good.
These! These! Britannia! are thy sure support,
Make strong thy walls, magnificent thy court.
But for their valour, would Iberia join,
Thy Gallic foes, and lay thy towers supine;
Ransack thy towns, lay waste thy peaceful plains,
And into deserts turn thy wide domains.
If a maim’d soldier meets thy wand’ring eye,
Ne’er turn disgusted, but his wants supply;
Think how he lost his limbs, his health, his home;
Perhaps his children, to secure thy own!
Could there be found on earth a soul so poor
To turn the crippled vet’ran from his door;
Or think a tear of gratitude too much,
I’d blush that armies ever bled for such.
And here, great BOYD, permit my artless muse
To speak thy worth; nor timorously refuse
To own thy valour, and experience join’d,
Are equal’d only by thy noble mind:
Humane, and gen’rous, affable, and just,
Mild, though in power, and faithful to thy trust.
Welcome! thrice welcome! to thy native land,
Honour and fame with thee go hand in hand;
The vict’ry gain’d—no mean or selfish ways
Detain’d thee absent from thy country’s praise:
Rich in thyself—go end as thou began,
Admir’d a Heroe! and belov’d a Man!


Wrote at Gibraltar, on General Ross being appointed Colonel of the Royal Manchester Volunteers. [10] 

For once Æolus hear a female Muse,
And be propitious—when a Woman sues;
O! speed the Fleet from Britain to this Port,
Fill all their sails, and waft them to this fort!
They bring for ROSS, whose Merits well demand
His Sovereign’s Mandate for a new command.
Each Volunteer will glory to obey,
And dare the Foe, when ROSS shall lead the Way.
Dispatch the Fleet, for, ah! the battle roars,
Already wag’d on proud Iberia’s shores!
Her crafty Sons strain every Nerve to gain
Their ancient Rock; but all their works are vain.
Firm as this Rock is ELIOTT’s steady Soul;
Watchful he guards, and wisely guides the whole.
Alike he hates the sycophant and slave,
And gives his favours only to the brave.
May ROSS’s Regiment, and ev’ry corps
Deserve their praise should reach from shore to shore.
Vet’rans, proceed; ensure a martial name,
And gather laurels in the fields of fame!
Despising death, and firm in Albion’s cause,
Make haughty Spain submit to British laws;
Applauding senates shall reward your toil,
And honours wait you in your native soil.

Epistle to a Friend who had offered to go to Market for the Authoress.

FRIEND Joseph, I gladly accept of your offer,
‘Tis really a useful, agreeable proffer.
Imprimis. Pray buy me a fine leg of mutton,
So nice as to please both the dainty and glutton;
Or a sirloin of beef, not more than ten pounds,
And of a Scotch heifer the sweetest of rounds;
Four fowls, somewhat younger, but fat as yourself;
And in ev’ry bargain be careful of pelf  [11] :
For search where you will, or survey where you can,
‘Tis money alone which enhances the man.
Nay, Heaven preserve us! e’en beauties are plain,
If they lack but this bauble, this lucre of gain.
Lawyers, parsons, physicians, court ladies son fine,
All grasp at this phantom, and bow at its shrine.
Sure this money, my friend, is the devil’s own rod,
If you doubt my remark, recollect Dr. D**d  [12] ;
Who, far above want, and in no fear of need,
Yet for empty parade he could forge a base deed:
But peace to his manes, his penitent end
Deserves commendation from foe and from friend!

A Letter from the Authoress in London to her Father in Nottingham.

BELIEVE, dear Sir, when I the truth declare,
Your silence is a grief I cannot bear;
How can you thus so soon forget your lass?
Is all I fear’d and dream’d of come to pass?
Is there no corner of your gen’rous heart,
Which I may now with justice call my part?
Yes, yes, there is;—a truce then to my tears,
None but the bad anticipate their fears.
Now twelve revolving moons their course have spent,
Since first I left the charming banks of Trent;
Delightful Nottingham! Admir’d retreat!
At once the Painter’s and the Poet’s feat;
“Where e’er I rove, whatever towns I see,
“My heart untravell’d, still returns to thee.”
Thy flow’ry meads and verdant lawns invite,
Park, forest, castle, Clifton’s woody height;
Each grateful wild, each sweet romantic view,
Where truly happy, a selected few
Enjoy thy shades, and wish for nothing new:
These taste Content and Pleasure at their ease,
Strangers to Vice, that parent of disease.
I change these scenes for smoke, and anxious care,
For empty churches and unwholesome air;
Immers’d in business, and made dull by noise,
No wonder how the Muse far from me flies
But nature will be nature ev’ry where,
My love for scribbling still torments me here.
Though rattling coaches stun my ears with noise,
Whilst louder chimney-sweep discordant cries;
Though various objects rush upon my sight;
The loaded porter, and the garter’d knight;
Yet spight of these, my fancy fain would join
The flowing numbers of the tuneful Nine!  [13] 
Perhaps I’m tedious, as no new debates
Adorn my Poem from the busy States:
Oh! could I write with politician skill,
And in the cause of Stamp Act [14]  [14b] —draw my quill,
My verse might please, and serve as news for friends,
Who meet on Wedn’sday nights for social ends.
I’ve heard them oft decide the fate of kings,
Unite great empires, and do stranger things;
Rehearse the times that grac’d good Anna’s reign,
Then drink and with such golden times again.
But since, alas! my sex will not admit
To rail at B***, or praise more worthy P***,
Accept this verse, devoid of ev’ry art,
But such as may engage a parent’s heart.
Whether in London doom’d to lead my life,
A hapless maid, or more important wife;
Whether condemn’d in cities large to roam,
Far from my kindred, friends, and native home;
Whether Repeals, or more unwelcome things,
Spring from the Councils of the best of Kings,
My mind shall still enjoy it’s wonted rest;
And think, with Pope, “Whatever is, is best.” [15] 


A SONG.

Ye mortals who search for Content,
And yet the sweet path never find;
Come learn how your cares to prevent,
And give trouble and spleen to the wind.
They tell me no girl ere was bless’d
With spirits so even before,
The grief has no place in my breast,
I am happy, and cannot have more.
‘Tis true, and I’ll tell you the cause
Which makes me thus joyous appear;
Though my plan may not meet with applause,
‘Tis useful, and I am sincere.
My bliss is not founded in wealth,
For that would my pleasure destroy;
The great are but happy by stealth,
And few are the sweets they enjoy.
It is not from love that I boast,
A life that’s unclouded with woe;
Ah! that is a dangerous coast,
And love is felicity’s foe!
Hygiea, sweet goddess [16] , from thee
Our delights are made firm and secure;
Yet thousands are healthy as me,
Who lament what they all might ensure.
Employment’s the charm that will please,
Embrace it and ever be glad,
For surely that mind is at ease
Which never has time to be sad.


Epitaph, by desire of a Young Lady, on the Death of her Canary Bird.

This simple urn contains within
A beauteous form, that knew no sin:
Contented in his narrow sphere,
He fought no crimes, nor knew a care;
His gentle suit was ne’er deny’d,
A bounteous hand his wants supply’d;
He wish’d no wealth, nor fear’d a wrong,
And all his bus’ness was—a song.
Ye sons of Care contract your plan,
For life itself is but a span.

On hearing Doctor D**d as committed for Forgery. [17] 

ALAS! how fall’n, how chang’d, how vile is D**d,
Since he forsook his only stay—his God!
Does rectitude no more with learning dwell?
Then erudition, wit, and fame, farewell!

From Mrs. Upton in the School Room to Miss W— in the Parlour.

FROM this dull region, I presume to send,
And hope Maria will stand forth my friend:
No sprightly converse to beguile the day;
I sit, and almost muse myself to clay!
The News I’ve read, but that no joy imparts,
While N***h and R*****d act such treacherous parts:
In vain my husband wields a valiant sword,
While Boreas rules, and S********’s made a Lord!
But from such subjects let me turn my pen,
I hate such measures, and detest such men!
Your charming study is well stor’d with books,
Which oft I view with eager, longing looks;
I read their titles, and admire the binding,
See Pope and Swift, yet no way can I find in;
Still the firm locks my pleasure still denies,
Damp all my hopes, and disappoint my joys.
Thus Tantalus of old, the poets say,
‘Twixt fruit and water hung the live-long day;
In vain the cherries shew’d their tempting hue,
To look and long was all he now could do:
In vain the water bubbled at his chin,
No friendly hand to dip his noddle in!
But you, dear maid, will save me from this fate,
And lend a book to bless my humble state;
My little Anna shall not touch or soil it,
And Master John is much too good to spoil it.


Wrote for, and spoken by a Child of Six Years Old.

FROM copy-books and grammar, her I come,
In that fam’d character of old—Tom Thumb!
Tom Thumb! methinks you cry: Off! off! for shame!
Nor on such trifles think to build your fame!
Hold, hold good Critics, pray suspend your rage,
Small characters best suit this trifling age.
What are your Statesmen doing? All trifling;
Whilst France and Spain our settlements are—rifling:
Or else disputing for the loaves and fishes,
Whilst hungry Poets beg to lick the dishes!
Since such disputes our Ministers engage,
What can you hope for at my boish age?
Just turn’d of six, and vastly fond of play,
Yet grammar get, and read and write each day.
Pappa declares I ne’er shall make a man,
Unless I study Education’s plan:
Store well my mind with ev’ry useful science,
Then fools, and blockheads, I may bid defiance!
Well, I must try, and do my best to please,
For my own welfare, and my parents ease;
In this resolve, I sure am doing well,
My truth and learning future days will tell.

To a Young Lady at Richmond Boarding School.

FORGIVE me, dear Fanny, nor call me absurd,
Though I own I’ve been guilty of breaking my word;
But since coming from Clapham, that seat of the Nine,
My spirits are fled, and I can’t write a line.
The books, which I promis’d, I sent by your brother,
But you neither said thank her, nor this, that, nor t’other;
Such trifling omissions I freely look o’er,
And am certain, my Fanny, will do so no more.
You have heard, I suppose, that we live in Queen’s Square,
Which is pleasant, clean, light, and a very good air,
The house is convenient, large, handsome, and neat,
With a garden behind it, to make it complete:
But of the dimensions, I say not a tittle,
From whence you’ll infer that it is very little.
With all these delights you will wonder to hear,
That I sigh for Old Clapham, and long to be there!
In that beautiful garden how oft have I sat!
With my pupils around me in innocent chat:
Or, when dear mamma was uncommonly kind,
How happy to stray to the valley behind!
But since, my dear girl, there’s no permanent bliss,
Like the Stoics of old, I will yield up all this.
Thank Heaven, my temper in ev’ry state,
Inclines me to value the good sent by fate;
And as for those joys which are not in my pow’r,
Like the fox in the fable, will say they are four.
I dare venture a wager you’re counting the days
Which will bring you to town, to your friends and due praise.
At school, my dear girl, ‘tis a very great crime,
To waste what will never revisit you—Time!
It’s no matter how slightly this subject I touch,
Your improvements remind me I need not say much.
Papa’s and Mamma’s, and Grandmamma’s blessing,
I’m commission’d to send, which are well worth possessing;
‘Tis time my epistle should draw to an end,
I am, dear Miss Fanny, your servant and friend.

A Dialogue wrote for Two Children.

Harry.
HOW close to books are we confin’d all day,
We really have no time at all for play;
I’m sick of getting such long talks in grammar,
‘Tis fit for nothing but to make one stammer;
And am so puzzled with these moods and tenses,
I should not wonder if I lost my senses!
Then when we write—our governess is so cross,
That what to do I’m really at a loss;
About my writing such a life I’m led,
Sometimes I think she’ll surely break my head.
Kitty.
Hold! hold dear brother! what a rout you make!
Do you, or I, most pains in learning take?
Besides our lessons, don’t I work all day?
Whilst you are minding nothing but your play.
Close to my sampler I am kept till dinner,
And really work till I shall grow much thinner!
My lovely doll must now lie quite neglected,
And that’s a grief I really ne’er expected.
Harry.
Nay, Kitty, that I’m certain is not true,
Pray recollect, you only work till two:
Goodlack! you’ll make a very pretty wife,
If you with dolls and playthings spend your life!
Would you be thought a fashionable flirt,
And not know how to make your husband’s shirt?
Kitty.
Upon my word, you talk profoundly wise,
And, to be plain, some doubts begin to rise
That we are wrong, in thus disliking learning,
Which all agree’s a treasure well worth earning.
What paultry figures we in life should make,
If to no science, or right views we take;
In vain a lady’s dress’d with nicest care,
If truth and learning fall not to her share!
In vain that man assumes a pompous gait,
Who gain’d no knowledge in his youthful state.
Since things are so, let you and I improve,
‘Twill please our parents, and secure their love.
Harry.
Well said, dear Kitty!—I’ll take your advice,
And con my lessons over in a trice.
I’d better now comply with ev’ry rule,
Than be in future deem’d an errant fool!
The youth who scorns an academic plan,
Will never make a good ingenious man!
Kitty.
And she who spends her life in dress and play,
Will find too late the error of her way.


Written to a Friend, in a blank Leaf of Young’s Night Thoughts. [18] 

THIS be thy guide—these scared truths explore,
Spight of ourselves, they make us God adore!
Oh! may thy genius and thy wit aspire,
To soar with Young, and catch celestial fire!
With virtuous rage to shun the paths of Vice,
And Reason’s empire be thy nobler choice!
Thus, by thy conduct prove, from Wisdom’s school,
The man that’s bad most surely is a fool!


Extempore. To a Gentleman rudely drawing his Fingers over the Strings of a Guitar.

OH! stop thy hand, and that discordant noise,
Such grating sounds almost offend the skies!
When touch’d with art, that small machine contains
Harmonious numbers, and delightful strains;
Such as are heard from Philomela’s nest, [19] 
Or sung to pardon’d sinners when they rest.


To Mr. Upton, at the House of Rendezvous, at the time of raising the Manchester Regiment.

YOU promis’d, dear Jack, and I hope it is true,
To buy me a gown that is pretty and new.
But lest Captains and soldiers should make you forget,
Accept of this hint, from your well-meaning Pet:
Let the ground be quite black, and the springs red and green,
With the sweetest of patterns that ever was seen;
Be sure you too mind that the cotton is strong,
Then like a good wife I will make it last long.—
Oh! madam, your orders your spouse will regard,
And for all this indulgence, pray what’s my reward?—
Good lack, honest friend! do not be in a passion;
‘Tis best let alone, though so often in fashion:
Your shirts I will finish with work that is nice,
And to please you still more, they’ll be done in a trice.—
And is this the temptation to part with my cash?
Do not wives in all countries cook, sew, and wash?—
Lord love you, dear Jack! do but hear me quite out,
And don’t, like a blockhead, delight in a rout.
As a further inducement, I promise you this,
A grateful, a warm, and benevolent kiss!
So here I will finish my whimsical ditty,
Conclude me your constant, affectionate Kitty.

By the Authoress to her Brother, who had some very fine Ale.

YE Muses descend and inspire my verse,
The praises of Nottingham malt to rehearse;
And you, gentle Ceres, your aid I emplore,
The best of all liquors to honour once more.
Ye topers of Burgundy, punch, and red port,
Who in crouds to the tavern so often resort;
Ye drinkers of claret, why make such a rout?
When all your gay ev’nings must end in the gout.
But Ale! smiling Ale! no such torture imparts,
It raises our spirits, and gladdens our hearts!
To Gallia’s coast let us banish their wines,
There’s poison in there, and in all their designs:
What is true English growth must with Britons suit best,
If you’re hard of belief, put my theme to the test;
Then fill up a bumper, and let it go round,
For better than C*******’s will never be found.

An Epistle to a Friend who had borrowed Prior’s Works.

MY very good friend,
I desire you’ll send,
By my maid, without further delay,
Facetious Mat. Prior, [20] 
Whose wit is much higher,
Than ought that my Muse can now say.
What in open defiance
Of all laws or alliance,
Keep my books, and still say not a word?
Such usage I swear,
My spirits can’t bear,
And, believe me, looks very absurd.
Don’t frame an excuse,
‘Twill be of no use;
Though you say you’re enamour’d of Emma; [21]   [21b] 
If you wait till you find
So much truth in one mind,
You’ll be left in a foolish dilemma.
I wonder you men,
No better should ken,
Than yet hope such perfection to gain;
We inherit from Eve,
Our arts to deceive,
And your folly will still make us vain.
Nor presume to aspire
To find fault with your fire,
And Adams [22]  are still to be found;
For us there’s been such,
Who did not think much,
To measure Hell’s [23]  deepest profound.
I need not here quote,
Old stories in rote,
As the Classics you’ve read o’er so often;
This compliment sure,
Your thanks will secure,
As applause can our anger quite soften.
Old Seneca said,
More wise is that head
Which keeps silence, while others talk long;
So now I avoid
Explanations to hide,
That my learning is not very strong.
But do not conclude,
I would be so rude,
As to say this for your admonition;
Mediocrity guides,
And Reason presides,
To make your’s an envious condition.

The following is a Dialogue between Whitely, (late Manager of a Company of Comedians, and Proprietor of the Old Theatre in Manchester) and Harry Owen, Comedian, who was Confidant to Whitely, and had a remarkable bad Voice. Wrote by the Authoress at the time a Bill had passed the House of Commons for licensing a new Playhouse.

WITH solemn step and downcast look, appears
Owen, the confidant of Whitely’s fears;
He saw that rage began his eye to roll,
And thus bespake the tempest of his soul.
Owen.
Say, my good Sir! what new vexation now?
What carking care thus lords it o’er your brow?
Whitely.
Hast thou not heard then—heard my dire disgrace?
Or are thy ears as senseless as thy face?
Does no compassion, Hal. thy breast invade,
For thy loft patron, thus distress’d, betrayed?
Oh! for a thunderbolt to fire the town,
Or some new plague, to bring these upstarts down:
I’d teach those proud mechanics thus to spurn
Their worn-out slave, just ready for his urn!
Oh! could I crush them as I break this glass,
I would not spare one trading, groveling ass!
Owen.
Alas! my friend, thy grief I understand,
And Younger triumphs in a new command.
The Bill has pass’d—My fears foretell it all,
And we may quit this base terrestrial ball!
Manchester has deserted me and you;
Our kings may beg, our queens may learn to sew.
But fears avaunt! and black despair adieu!
Courage and constancy may wonders do.
Our happiness is not yet circumscrib’d
To one proud spot; that never would be brib’d
With decorations and expensive painting,
And curtains too, to keep the fair from fainting:
But Stamford, Nottingham, and Derby too,
Shall claim our praise, and well reward our crew.
Whitely.
Cease babbling blockhead! cease thy aukward aim,
Alike I’m dead to profit and to fame!
No Paulet there, with comic pen to write,
And bring applauding multitudes each night!
Will Codrus’s author deign again to draw
His quill, and give my benefit a law?
How shall I keep my strolling rogues in awe?
In every order they will find a flaw.
While Manchester received me every year,
Each son of tragedy I held in fear.
Owen.
This love of rule in thee has been the lure
Of ev’ry evil that we now endure:
Despotic sway has led you to engage
A set of wretches, who disgrace the stage!
Oh! fatal error!—Could thou not thee foresee,
Mancunium’s sons would not be gull’d by thee?
Bus’ness, or pleasure, calls them oft to town,
To see performers of the first renown.
Whitely.
Reptile be dumb!—Nor further seek to vex,
Him, who thyself has aided to perplex:
Has not thy croaking weary’d ev’ry ear,
And call’d forth hisses which thou couldst not bear?
If this is all the comfort thou canst give,
Cease to repeat it, or I’ll cease to live!
Lead me to some inhospitable shore,
Where winds and waves keep one perpetual roar!
Othello’s rage shall there be all my own,
While trees shall weep, and rocks shall learn to moan.
Such scenes as those best suit my wretched mind,
Peace, joy, and happiness, I give the wind.
[An embellishment appears here.]

Intended for the Lady’s Magazine. [24] 

AS Mr. Addison [25]  and other ingenious authors, have communicated their thoughts under the similitude of a dream; I hope I shall not be altogether condemned for conveying my opinions in the same way.

One evening, ruminating on the vicissitudes of human life, I was pained to reflect on the glitter which villainy sometimes enjoys, and the affluence in which numbers of worthless beings flutter through this sublunary world. I contrasted these situations to my own, and was hurt by reflecting, that though I had ever endeavoured to secure a competency, by the utmost exertion of honest industry, I was still oppressed with the iron hand of misfortune. With these thoughts, I fell into a profound sleep. Methought a messenger from Plutus [26]  stood before me, and addressed me in the following words:

“Thy complaints, O daughter of Discontent, have reached the God of Wealth, and he has dispatched me to heal thy distresses. Thou mayest now accumulate to thyself more riches than are to be found in the mines of Golconda and Peru; see if thou canst find felicity in abundance.
From this time, whatever metal thou touchest shall immediately be converted into Gold.”

In concluding these words, he vanished from my sight. Transported with the view of my approaching grandeur, I failed not instantly to try the new power I was invested with, and found my most sanguine wishes completed.

After filling numberless coffers with this precious metal, I began to deliberate how to dispose of it, and where to lodge it in safety. Not to display my wealth, was not to enjoy it; and to emerge from obscurity, into the glare of pomp, and the bustle of parade, would be subjecting myself to such enquiries, as would with difficulty be surmounted. At last, I determined, (as fancy knows no bounds) to leave my native land: I thought myself transported to one of those islands known by the name of Laputa. [27]  Here I fixed my residence, and became the envy of the inhabitants.

In order, however, to ingratiate myself into the esteem of the people, I failed not to distribute large sums to the needy. The fame of my wealth and generosity reached the ear of the Prince of the island, and I was ordered into his presence, to give an account of my wealth and origin.

Tell me,” said he, with a severe aspect, “who it is that furnishes thee with those vast sums thou expendest in thy mode of living. Thy life depends on thy veracity; no subterfuge shall save thee.” Awed by his menaces, and terrified by the brightness of his scymetar, [28]  which he waved over my head, I instantly declared the truth.

Retaining this person in my Court,” said he, turning to his Prime Minister, “will infallibly secure me a conquest over my enemies. The vast armies I shall be able to raise, with the sums she can furnish me with, will at once secure me victory, and extend my fame. But care must be taken that she escapes not from us, lest she should render my foes those services I am determined to exact from her.”

“Am I then to be a prisoner,” said I, “great Prince? restore to me my freedom! for what is state or wealth, or even life, without liberty? O Plutus, give me back my humble lot! Let me steal along the vale of life unnoticed and unknown! Take away thy dangerous gift; I know not how to use it with safety.”

The agitations of my mind were so great at this instant, that sleep forsook me, and I awoke corrected! convinced how presumptuous it is for Finite to arraign Infinite!

Thoughts on Love and Marriage.

ROCHEFOCAULT [29]  says, “There are convenient marriages, but no happy ones.” I think this observation should be confined to the French, who have more urbanity than sincerity, or constancy. But the fashionable English outstrip the satire of that severe Moralist and do not seem to have even conveniency in view; for to be false, and to separate, is now the consequence of marriage. Sad depravity! to subvert the noblest and most probable scheme of happiness ever formed in this or any other government! That the married state may be productive of felicity, will be allowed by every candid person, and therefore easily demonstrated.

Love and friendship are the most rational and delightful passions of the heart; but as that love must be dangerous, and unsatisfactory, which is placed on an object that one would not chuse for a friend; and as disappointments in friendship hurt the happiness of society, I will venture to give my opinion of a proper choice, both of a lover and a friend.

First, then, I affirm that friendships between men, are often short and disgustful, as they are the most part divested of that early

complaisance, and agreeable assiduity, which is ever observed between persons of good sense, and different sexes: and to prove that the pleasures arising from these connections, are not the most reasonable that can be had; I need but mention how often they call in tavern excesses, and midnight revellings, as auxiliaries to their happiness. If these sentiments are not unreasonable; it must follow then, that a female mind, rightly formed, is capable of giving and receiving the most permanent and social delight. When a man of taste and generosity is joined, by an indissoluble band, to a woman of this cast, he can return to her conversation, from evenings spent in the most convivial manner, and consider her sense, sprightliness, and discretion, as pleasures higher than those he left.

Far be it from the writer’s design, (in placing the merits of her own sex in a proper light,) either to extenuate or exaggerate, the faults of those unthinking fair ones, who deviate from the road of Virtue in conjugal life; the first were base, as no female character is more detestable than an inconstant wife: the latter needless, as the loss of Fame and Peace, is the consequence of their crimes. But there are cases, in which the Lords of the Creation expect a conduct from us, that they cannot persevere in themselves; namely, that of reclaiming an unfaithful husband. When a wife offends in point of chastity, every act of temerity, nay, even insanity from her injured partner is justified.

But shift the scene, and make him the offender; if she falls into those transports of rage, the world wonders more at her violence than at his inconstancy. Did you ever hear of a man, who thought it worth his while to reform a wife who had once swerved from Virtue’s rule? Yet this advice is poured upon us by every author who has wrote on the social duties. What makes this step so very improper and inconvenient, but the difficulty of it? Certain it is that such a step requires all that can be called amiable, brave, and steady. The soldier, who meets death in the field of battle; meets only that, which to her would be a relief from all her sad distresses, injuries, and cares! It follows then, from what has been said, that men expect from us (how circumscribed soever our educations may be) what all their philosophy and firmness cannot teach them.

[An embellishment appears here.]

Thoughts on Bankruptcies.

I THINK it scarcely admits of a doubt, whether or no the superior degree of knowledge, the English have been attaining these two centuries, contributes in the least to their emolument or rectitude.

Almost every man you meet is a slave to Ambition, and scorns the road marked out for him by Providence. Merchants would be ennobled! retailers of muslin would be merchants! and pennyless clerks would be respectable drapers! “Ambition stalks the land,” end every man is ashamed of his character!

Domestic happiness is out of the question; and to figure away, seems the end and aim of the whole world. From this cause, marriages without affection take place; and the tenderest connections are suppressed, for convenient bargains. Women of small experience and large fortunes, are addressed by Men who cannot support their own extravagance; but with the pecuniary assistance of a wife’s fortune, they, in time, become eminent bankrupts.

Price induces us to quit our own spheres, but is the most wretched companion in the world under misfortunes. It magnifies our merits,

makes us despise kind advisers, and still throws us at a distance from that happiness we are falsely pursuing. It is amazing how few people consider, that getting, and squandering money, are two different things. If every tradesman will expend the yearly profits of this business, what is to become of his offspring? or how can he arrive at the character of a wealthy trader, or the man of consequence, which he would fain be thought?

The Writer of this is not so ignorant of the commercial world, as to suppose, that every failure in trade is the result of thoughtless luxury; but when the prudent, the careful, and industrious, are involved in calamities which belong only to the dissipated part of mankind; the guilt of the latter becomes double, by entailing misery on the worthy.

The road to avoid these inconveniences, is so plain and easy, that it is perfectly astonishing how few strike into it. If every one would have the wisdom and humility to trade, and appear agreeable to his fate and fortune; how small would be the number of those unhappy mortals, who exchange safety for shew, and competence for wretchedness.

On Female Education.

NOTHING that is so commonly practiced, is perhaps less understood than the Education of Children. I have long been of opinion, that it would vastly encrease the wisdom and happiness of this state, if the Legislature was to prohibit those from forming the minds of Youth, who by nature, or want of education, are unfit for that important office. This, by some, will be thought a strange assertion; but let him or her, who is of this opinion, stop a moment, and ask themselves, what employment can be of more importance, than that which is to form the minds and manners of the people of the next age?

Lycurgus went farther than this: the Lacedemonians were not suffered to educate their own children. [30]  That great lawgiver, who studied human nature as well as politics; undoubtedly knew, that fond parents do not always see what is for the real advantage of their children.

Let it not be inferred from hence, that I think a public education now invariably necessary; in my opinion it is of no consequence, whether children are instructed at home or abroad, provided they are not suffered to neglect what their parents intend they should learn,

and that they who are intrusted with the care of teaching them, are qualified for the undertaking.

Reading, when justly performed, is one of those graces which every one is charmed with, and few attain to. The committing the rudiments of this branch to persons who are unacquainted with the powers of the human voice, even in speaking, is one of those errors, which parents should carefully avoid. For as there is a better and a worse method of inculcating every thing, so I would recommend this to be much attended to.

Children should be accustomed to declame as soon as they can speak. Let them learn by rote some interesting stories or short fables, adapted to their capacities; but never suffer them to repeat a line, but in the tones you judge to be proper and elegant.

Some people, who have not attended to the capacities of children, may think this impracticable: on the contrary; nothing is more easy. Almost every person has had an opportunity of observing, that a child of five or six years old, with a musical ear, will learn a tune with great exactness, without the smallest knowledge of the principles of music. Why should the former be thought more difficult than this? The proper cadence at a note of admiration, and a period, with the raising of the voice at a note of interrogation, are

all used in the most common conversation, even amongst children. It is but telling them the names of these tones as soon as they begin to read, and they will readily know when to use them.

I have always found the most difficulty in teaching the proper variation at a colon and semicolon. The former is so nearly allied to the fall at a period, and the latter to raising the voice at a note of interrogation, that it has been only by frequently repeating these sounds, I could make myself understood. They may be compared to the half tones in music, which many voices are unable to make, and many ears incapable of distinguishing. When in this case I have labored long without effect, I have generally had recourse to some of my boarders, and desired them to instruct the new pupils. This has generally answered my end; for every child thinks it very possible for her to learn what seems so easy to another, or from a desirable emulation, is determined to accomplish, what appears so acceptable in a school-fellow.

Would every parent who has leisure, attend to this, or see that their offspring are placed with those who make it a rule to do it, they would find their children better readers at seven years of age, than those who are neglected in those points are at fourteen.

In the course of my practice as a Governess, out of many scores committed to my care, from five years old to twenty, I cannot recollect that I have had ten, who knew the use of stops or pauses, in reading, when they came to me, and the older they were, the more difficult I found it to mellow their voices to proper cadences.

I have always endeavoured to remove, as much as possible, at proper seasons, that unnecessary and painful diffidence, which pupils are too apt to feel in the presence of an instructor. Children do not know how to separate the ideas of a teacher and a tyrant. This is owing to the inconsiderateness of those parents, who draw comparisons between what their children enjoy while in their own houses, and the mortification they must suffer when placed at a boarding school. Every meal, perhaps, for a few preceding weeks, they are reminded what plenty they are indulged with to what they will find at school. Alas! how silly and impolitic is this! to fill their tender minds with terror, and draw on that backwardness to enter upon a course of education, which is the grand barrier to all improvement!

Would parents pursue a different conduct, and teach their daughters, to consider a governess as a kind of substituted mother, whose tenderness will be extended to them in all that relates to their real

advantage; what difference would this make in the happiness and improvement of their children! She would not appear to them like a brow-beating pedagogue; but as a person interested in, and delighted with every thing that concerns their improvement and real welfare. Not that I would venture to affirm, that every mind is to be wrought into obedience by love alone; some children are too indolent and thoughtless to obey from motives of affection: neither can it be supposed that they can see, in all respects, what is for their real advantage. This, and many other reasons, make it necessary that an instructor should be both feared and loved, which is very possible to be done.

The ridicule my sex has long borne for their incorrect writing, makes me very desirous to cultivate a knowledge of English grammar. In general, girls are required to learn such a variety of things, in a little time, and to send home such a quantity of fine needle work, as leaves but few opportunities for the improvement of their mental abilities. I never found the most copious grammars the most useful; for when young minds are once tired with the tediousness of any thing they are pursuing, nothing is so fatal a bar to their proficiency. Fenning’s and Dilworth’s short grammars may be repeated many times in a few weeks. [31]  These well understood and retained, with frequently giving talks of false English to turn into good grammar, I have found sufficient to make my pupils

write correctly. I am not unconscious, that this method will by some be thought superficial; but experience has long convinced me of its utility.

The taking this fatiguing part of my scholar’s education upon myself, was not any emolument to me: a reading master, (as he is generally called) attends a boarding school so short a time, as leaves me very much in doubt, whether young ladies are much the better for his portion of instruction. What, in the name of common sense, can one hour or two in a day do for thirty, forty, or fifty scholars?

WRITING.

THIS is esteemed so common and easy a part of education, that many people would think it almost impossible to advance any thing new upon the subject; but as I have taught Writing myself, and have attended the errors and improvements of my pupils with a motherly anxiety, I shall venture to mention my opinion in this matter.

I think it a fatal mistake to suffer children to write too long at a time. Writing, when properly pursued, is as much a work of imitation as drawing; and as no person can copy or imitate in a true and masterly manner when the fancy is weary, it follows, con-

sequently, that to write a little at a time, and frequently, is by far the best method. One hour every day I have always found answer better than any other proportion of time for this employment; nor would I permit more than ten lines to be wrote in that hour. When a young lady is never allowed to be tired of writing, she always returns to it with a glee and a pleasure which is invariably attended with improvement. I have kept those ladies whom I have taught to write at least a month in capitals; it is astonishing what a difference this makes in the freedom of the writing.

This method opens the fingers, and gives the hand that proper scope which is certain to form a free and masterly hand. When a young beginner is permitted to write joining hand, it should be very large for six months; this manner of instructing will most assuredly enable the learner to avoid a crampt and confined hand, which is so much complained of in female writing.

Letter writing is another branch of education, in which young people can never be taken too much pains with. I was always happy when my boarders friends required frequent letters, for nothing but constant practice can make a person perfect in orthography. Neither do I think a mere filial correspondence enough for a young lady while at school; I have never failed to desire a further exertion of my pupils talents in this way, by giving them a

a subject once a week, and insisting on a letter being addressed to myself, from a theme which I thought adapted to their years and capacities.

From this practice, much entertainment has accrued to myself: it was a continual source of delight to me, to encourage the timid, and praise the ingenious. By these means I am certain I have called forth many latent sparks of genius, which would have lain dormant and unknown, even to the possessor.

FRENCH.

WITH respect to young ladies learning French, it has ever been my opinion, that they should be allowed three or four years for the attainment of it. I do not mean to insinuate that they should have no other employment during that time; but amongst other avocations, their French should be carefully attended to for some years. How many young ladies do we meet with who pretend to speak French, and yet do not know what a verb is in that or their native language! Would it not be more eligible to be a proficient in one language, than a blunderer in two? I think I shall have every one of good common sense on my side, when I aver, that a woman who writes her mother tongue with elegance and correctness, is a more agreeable and estimable character, than she who knows

both but superficially, and would blush at having her orthography examined.

Nothing raises us from the cares and anxieties of this sublunary world, more than a knowledge of Astronomy. When we consider what an amazing body that immense globe of fire the sun is, how many worlds he enlightens, what an astonishing force it requires to protrude each planet in its orbit, how probable it is that each fixed star is a sun, warming and chearing other world imperceptible to us, we are lost in the contemplation of that Divine Being who is the grand Artificer of these works, and the eternal Father of the Universe!

It is a very easy matter for a young lady to gain such a knowledge of this, as to exalt her ideas of the Deity, and give her a competent understanding of the Solar system, the situation of our earth and her neighbouring planets, without searching too deeply into the scientific parts, or spending half her life with a pair of globes before her.

MUSIC.

MUSIC is now become a science, and is to those who have naturally a fine ear, the most pleasing and entertaining part of Education; it rewards us as we go on, by a delightful assemblage of

sounds, which, agreeable to Milton's mode of expression, “takes the wrapt soul, and laps it in Elysium!” [32]  For those who have fortune and leisure, there cannot be a more rational and innocent amusement. Though I have taught the guitar many years, yet I think the harpsichord is an instrument which every lady should prefer to it, whose friends are willing to be at the expence of a music master three or four years. But a young lady may have a musical year, and an agreeable voice, who has not so much time to spare for this purpose; in this case, I think the guitar not only proper but desirable, as it is very possible, with a good ear and due attention, to learn to play well in three or four months. I have not said thus much in favour of the guitar, from a supposition that any emolument will ever arise to myself, as I teach it gratis to my pupils.

DANCING.

DANCING I scarcely need enlarge upon, as it is almost impossible to be either graceful or genteel without some instruction in this art; but care should be taken that too much time should not be expended in it by those pupils who are to continue but a few years at school. It is not necessary that every lady should dance like Madam Heinel, or Simonette. [33]  To dance a minuet with ease, or join in a cotillion or country dance with facility, is sufficient for most ladies both before and after marriage. This

occasions me to mention a thought that has often occurred to me. When a fond and tender mother brings her child to be educated by a governess, whose morals and abilities she entertains a high opinion of, would it be improper or impertinent for the latter to ask the former this plain and useful question: Would you have your daughter, Madam, an accomplished fine lady; or do you wish her to be an excellent housewife, and a useful member of society? It will take a great deal more time and money to form the first than the second character. If every parent would be candid enough to own their views in life for their children, time and expence would not be thrown away, which is sometimes the case, for want of such an ingenuous conduct as I have here recommended.

FINIS.

[An embellishment appears here.]

Notes

[1] EDITOR'S NOTE: Sir Robert Boyd (bap. 1710, d. 1794) was a British army officer who was made Lieutenant Governor of Gibraltar in 1768. BACK

[2] EDITOR'S NOTE: That is, King George III (r. 1760-1820). BACK

[3] EDITOR'S NOTE: These lines are taken from the Third Satire of Juvenal; Dryden himself appends a footnote to the name, writing, “Codrus, or it may be Cordus: a bad poet who wrote the life and actions of Theseus.” BACK

[4] EDITOR'S NOTE: These lines are taken from Pope’s Dunciad, ll. 267-268. BACK

[5] EDITOR'S NOTE: Bellona was a Roman goddess of war. BACK

[6] EDITOR'S NOTE: Cybele was a nature goddess and the mother of the gods, whom the Greeks associated with Rhea. BACK

[7] EDITOR'S NOTE: Charles III (r. 1759-88) was the king of Spain at this time. BACK

[8] AUTHOR'S NOTE: Don Morano, admiral and commander of the ten sail of battering ships of war, destroyed before Gibraltar the 13th of September, 1782. BACK

[9] AUTHOR'S NOTE: It is supposed that there were a hundred thousand spectators upon the attack. BACK

[10] EDITOR'S NOTE: This poem is a reprint, with minor editorial changes, of the “Address to Æolus” that closes Upton’s The Siege of Gibraltar. BACK

[11] EDITOR'S NOTE: Pelf: “Chiefly depreciative. Money, riches (esp. viewed as a corrupting influence); lucre” (OED). BACK

[12] EDITOR'S NOTE: William Dodd (c. 1740-1777) was a Church of England clergyman well known for his fashionable dress (earning him the nickname “the Macaroni Parson”). Also a forger, Dodd was convicted of a capital forgery. A popular campaign to obtain mercy for Dodd was begun—among its participants was Samuel Johnson—but it was unsuccessful, and Dodd was hanged. See Rawlings. BACK

[13] EDITOR'S NOTE: That is, the nine Muses of Greek mythology. BACK

[14] AUTHOR'S NOTE: At the time this was wrote there were great disturbances in London relative to the American Stamp Act. BACK

[14b] EDITOR'S NOTE: Parliament’s unpopular Stamp Act of 1765 required a tax on every piece of paper printed in the British colonies. BACK

[15] EDITOR'S NOTE: Upton seems to conflate two lines from Pope’s “Essay on Man”: from Epistle I, “Whatever is, is right” (l. 298), and from Epistle III, “Whate’er is best administer’d, is best” (l. 304). BACK

[16] EDITOR'S NOTE: Greek goddess of health and hygiene. BACK

[17] EDITOR'S NOTE: See footnote 12, above: Dr. Dodd was a clergyman convicted of capital forgery in 1777. BACK

[18] EDITOR'S NOTE: Edward Young’s The Complaint: or, Night Thoughts (1742), a long poem in nine parts. BACK

[19] EDITOR'S NOTE: In Greek mythology, Philomela was a princess of Athens who, after her brother-in-law Tereus raped her and cut out her tongue, wove a tapestry telling her sister, Procne, what had happened to her. In revenge, Procne killed her son and served it to Tereus. Escaping from Tereus, Procne and Philomela were transformed into birds. Traditionally, Philomela is transformed into a nightingale, whose song is thus associated with sorrow. See Ovid’s Metamorphoses, Book VI. BACK

[20] EDITOR'S NOTE: Matthew Prior (1664-1721), poet and diplomat. Many women poets of the eighteenth century were strongly influenced by Prior; see Backscheider 59-62. BACK

[21] AUTHOR'S NOTE: Prior’s Nut-Brown Maid. BACK

[21b] EDITOR'S NOTE: Upton refers to Matthew Prior’s “Henry and Emma” (1709), a poem based on the ballad “The Nut-Brown Maid.” BACK

[22] AUTHOR'S NOTE: Alluding to Adam’s eating the forbidden fruit at the entreaty of Eve, though he knew she had transgressed by the same act. BACK

[23] AUTHOR'S NOTE: Orpheus. BACK

[24] EDITOR'S NOTE: The Lady’s Magazine was published between 1770 and 1847. The Dictionary of Nineteenth-century Journalism in Great Britain and Ireland indicates that it “included several of the elements which came to define ‘the woman’s magazine’ for the next century. These included fiction, articles, poetry, music, exemplary biographies (often illustrated), and dress and fashion” (Brake and Demoor 342). While the title is ambiguous, I have been unable to determine whether this piece in fact appeared in the magazine. BACK

[25] EDITOR'S NOTE: Upton refers to Joseph Addison (1672-1719), who published an account of a dream inspired by a visit to a gallery in The Spectator, no. 83, on June 5, 1711. BACK

[26] EDITOR'S NOTE: Pluto, god of wealth and ruler of the underworld in Roman mythology. BACK

[27] EDITOR'S NOTE: Laputa is the name of a flying island which Gulliver visits in Gulliver’s Travels (1726). BACK

[28] EDITOR'S NOTE: Scimitar: “A short single-edged sword with a curved blade that typically broadens before the point, used chiefly in Turkey and the Middle East” (OED). BACK

[29] EDITOR'S NOTE: François de La Rochefoucauld (1613-1680), a French writer best known for his Réflexions; ou, sentences et maximes morales or Maximes (1665), from which Upton quotes. BACK

[30] EDITOR'S NOTE: Lycurgus was a Spartan legislator in the ninth century (B.C.E.); Lacedaemon is another name for Sparta. See Xenophon’s On the Lacedemonian Republic, in The Whole Works of Xenophon. BACK

[31] EDITOR'S NOTE: Upton refers to Daniel Fenning’s A New Grammar of the English Language (1771) and Thomas Dilworth’s A New Guide to the English Tongue (1751). BACK

[32] EDITOR'S NOTE: Upton misquotes John Milton’s Comus (1634). Comus extols the power of music, recalling scenes from his childhood with his mother, Circe, the sirens, and the naiads “Culling their Potent hearbs, and balefull drugs, / Who as they sung, would take the prison’d soul, And lap it in Elysium…” (ll. 255-57). BACK

[33] EDITOR'S NOTE: Anna Heinel (1752-1808) was a well-known German ballerina. By “Simonette” lUpton probably means Madame Simonet, a “noted dramatic ballerina who performed the leading roles in many of Noverre’s ballets” and who also taught younger dancers (Eliot 31). BACK