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Mr. Busy-Body, They that call me af- and Cleopatra, among other captives who acfected are greatly mistaken, for I don't know companied them, brought to Rome a priest of that I ever refused to kiss any body but a about sixty years old; the senate being infool.-Mr. Brief will understand me.
formed that this man had never been detected KIT CANDOUR. in a falsehood, and was believed never to have FRIEND Busy-Body, I am not at all dis- told a lie, not only restored him to liberty, but pleased at being accused of affectation ; thou made him a high priest, and caused a statue knowest the vain people call decency of be to be erected to his honour. The priest thus haviour and simplicity of manners by that honoured was an Egyptian, and an enemy to Thy friend, DORCAS DAISY. Rome, but his virtue removed all obstacles.
Pamphilius was a Roman citizen whose bo
dy upon his death was forbidden sepulture, No. X.
his estate was confiscated, his house razed, Veritas luce clarior.
and his wife and children banished the RoA FRIEND of mine was the other day cheap- man territories wholly for his having been a ening some trifles at a shopkeepers, and af- notorious and inveterate liar. ter a few words they agreed on a price. At Could there be greater demonstrations of rethe tying up of the parcels he had purchased, spect for truth than these of the Romans, who the mistress of the shop told him that, people elevated an enemy to the greatest honours, were growing very hard, for she actually lost and exposed the family of a citizen to the by every thing she sold. How then is it pos- greatest contumely? sible, said my friend, that you can keep on There can be no excuse for lying, neither your business. Indeed, sir, answered she, is there any thing equally despicable and danI must of necessity shut my doors, had I not gerous as a liar, no man being safe who assoa very great trade. The reason said my friend ciates with him; for he who will lie, will (with a sneer) is admirable.
swear to it, says the proverb, and such a one There are a great many retailers who false- may endanger my life, turn my family out of ly imagine, that being historical (the modern doors, and ruin my reputation, whenever he phrase for lying) is much for their advantage; shall find it his interest ; and if a man will lie and some of them have a saying, that it is a and swear to it in his shop to obtain a trifle, pity lying is a sin, it is so useful in trade; why should we doubt his doing so when he though if they would examine into the reason may hope to make a fortune by his perjury? why a number of shopkeepers raise consider. The crime is in itself so mean, that to call a able estates, while others who have set out man a liar is esteemed every where an affront with better fortunes have become bankrupts, not to be forgiven. they would find, that the former made up with If any have lenity enough to allow the dealtruth, diligence, and probity, what they were ers an excuse for this bad practice, I believe deficient of in stock; while the latter have they will allow none for the gentleman who is been guilty of imposing on such customers as addicted to this vice; and must look upon him they found had no skill in the quality of their with contempt. That the world does so is vigoods.
sible by the derision with which his name is The former character raises a credit which treated whenever it is mentioned. supplies the want of fortune, and their fair The philosopher Epimenides gave the Rhodealing brings them customers; whereas none dians this description of Truth.-She is the will return to buy of him by whom he has companion of the gods, the joy of heaven, the been once imposed upon. If people in trade light of the earth, the pedestal of justice, and would judge rightly, we might buy blindfold- the basis of good policy. ed and they would save both to themselves Eschines told the same people, that truth and customers the unpleasantness of hag- was a virtue, without which force was engling.
feebled, justice corrupted; humility became Though there are numbers of shopkeepers dissimulation, patience intolerable, chastity who scorn the mean vice of lying, and whose a dissembler, liberty lost, and pity superfluword may very safely be relied on, yet there ous. are too many who will endeavour, and back Pharmanes the philosopher told the Romans ing their falsities with asseverations, pawn that Truth was the centre on wbich all things their salvation to raise their prices. rested: a chart to sail by, a remedy for all
As example works more than precept, and evils, and a light to the whole world. my sole view being the good and interest of Anaxarchus, speaking of Truth, said, it was my countrymen, whom I could wish to see health incapable of sickness, life not subject without any vice or folly, I shall offer an ex- to death, an elixir that healeth all, a sun not ainple of the veneration bestowed on truth to be obscured, a moon without eclipse, an and abhorrence of falsehood among the an- herb which never withereth, a gate that is cients.
never closed, and a path which never fatigues Augustus triumphing over Mark Antony the traveller.
But if we are blind to the beauties of truth, | tice of lying by the shopkeepers in selling it is astonishing that we should not open our their goods; but the charge has been only eyes to the inconvenience of falsity. A man half made; no notice is taken of their lying given to romance must be always on his guard when they come to the stores to buy. I believe for fear of contradicting and exposing himself they think lying full as convenient in buying to derision; for the most historical would their goods as in selling them; and to my avoid the odious character, though it is impos- knowledge some of them are most egregious sible with the utmost circumspection to travel ly guilty in this particular.--Yours, long on this route without detection, and shame
MERCATOR. and confusion follow. Whereas he who is a votary of truth never hesitates for an answer, has never to rack his invention to make the
No. XII. sequel quadrate with the beginning of his SIR,—Being old and lame in my hands, and story, nor obliged to burden his memory with thereby incapable of assisting my fellow-citiminute circumstances, since truth speaks ea zens when their houses are on fire, I have sily what it recollects, and repeats openly and thought it my duty to offer in return for the frequently without varying facts, which liars safety and aid I derive in common with others, cannot always do, even though gifted with a to do what I can in the only way I am able; good memory
and I must beg my fellow-townsmen to take in good part, the following hints on the subject
of fires. No. XI.
In the first place, as an ounce of prevention stones, so doth sin stick close also between buying and says, I would advise every one to take care
As the nail sticketh fast between the joinings of the is worth a pound of cure, as Poor Richard selling.–Apocrypha.
how they suffer living brands, or coals in a full We have received the two following letters, shovel, to be carried out of one room into ano the first from a shopkeeper, and the other from ther, or up or down stairs, unless in a covered a merchant.
warming pan, or some such close incombustiTo the Busy-Body.
ble vessel ; our houses are at present comSir,- I am a shopkeeper in this city, and posed mostly of wooden materials, and sparks suppose I am the person at whom some re- or flakes of fire may fall into chinks or corners flections have been aimed in a late paper. It where they may not inflame around them and is an easy matter for gentlemen that can make no appearance till midnight, when your write, to say a great deal upon any subject, stairs being in flames, you may be forced, as and to censure matters as faults of which I was, to leap out of a window and hazard they are as guilty as other people. I cannot my neck to avoid the alternative of being help thinking that those remarks are written roasted. with much partiality, and give a very unfair And now we talk of prevention, where would representation of things. Shopkeepers are be the damage if to the act for preventing fires, accused of lying, as if they were the only by the regulation of bake-houses and coopers' persons culpable in that way, and without the shops, a clause were added to regulate all least notice being taken of the general prac. other houses in the particular of too shallow tice of their customers. “I am sure it is very hearths, and the reprehensible practice of orordinary at that price,” says one, “I have namenting fire-places with wooden cbimney bought much better at such a one's shop for pieces and mouldings, which being commonly less money,” says another, and the like dispa- made of heart-pine, abounds with turpentine, raging expressions, are very common, so as to and always stands ready for a blaze, as soon be almost worn threadbare; some have even as a live coal or brand may come in contact the confidence to aver, that they have bought with it. cheaper of me, when I know the price they Again, if chimneys were more frequently mention is less than the goods cost me. In and more carefully cleaned, some fires might short, they will tell a hundred lies, to under- thereby be prevented; for I have known foul value our goods, and make our demands ap- chimneys burn most furiously a few days after pear extravagant. So that the blame of all they had been swept, people in confidence of the lying, properly belongs to the customers their being cleansed making large fires. Evethat come to buy, because if the shopkeepers ry body among us that pleases may undertake strain the truth a little now and then, it is be- the business of chimney sweeping, but if a cause they are forced to do it in their own de- chimney takes fire after the owner has carefence. In hopes you will do us justice in this fully caused it to be swept, the owner is obligaffair, I remain, your friend and servant, ed to pay the fine, and the sweeper goes free.
BETTY DILIGENT. This is not right. Those who undertake the Mr. Busy-Body,--Some notice has been sweeping of chimneys, and employ assistants lately taken of a prevailing vice, and very for that purpose, ought to be licensed by the justly censured; that is the too common prac- mayor, and if any chimney takes fire and
blazes out within fifteen days after the sweep- dry season, high winds, narrow streets, and ing, the fine should be paid by the licensed little or low water, which tends perhaps to sweeper for his default, for no chimney will make us more secure in our own minds; but fire if there be not soot left to harbour the if a fire with those circumstances should ocsparks.
cur, which God forbid, we should afterwards We have at present got engines enough in learn to be more careful. the town (1734,) but I question whether in One thought more and I have done. I many parts of the town water enough can be would wish that tiles or slates could be brought had to keep them going for half an hour to into use as covering to buildings; and that gether : it seems to me some public pumps the roofs were not of so sharp a pitch as to are wanting; but that I submit to better judg- prevent walking on them in safety. ments.
Let others communicate their thoughts As to our conduct in the affair of extin- freely, and perhaps some good may grow out guishing fires, though we do not want hands of it.
A. A. or good will, yet we seem to want order and method, and therefore I believe I cannot do better than to offer for our imitation the ex
No. XIII. ample of a city in a neighbouring province. Nothing is more like a fool than a drunken man. There is, as I am well informed, a club or society of active men belonging to each fire It is an old remark, that Vice always enengine, whose business is to attend all fires deavours to assume the appearance of Virtue; with the engine, whenever they happen, and thus covetousness calls itself prudence, prodito work it once a quarter of an hour, and see gality would be thought generous, and so of it kept in order. Some are assigned to handle others. This perhaps arises hence, that manthe fire-hooks; others the axes, which are al- kind naturally and universally approve virtue ways kept with the engine and in good order; in their hearts, and detest vice, therefore and for these services they are considered in whenever through temptations they fall into abatement or exemption of taxes. In time of vicious practices, they would if possible conceal fire they are commanded by officers appoint- it from themselves, as well as from others, ed according to forms prescribed by law, call- under some name which does not belong to it. ed Firewards, who are distinguished by an But drunkenness is a very unfortunate vice; external mark, or a staff having at the end a in this respect it bears no kind of similitude brass emblem of flame of about six inches with any sort of virtue, from which it might long; being men selected for their prudence possibly borrow a name; and is therefore reand invested with authority, they alone direct duced to the wretched necessity of being exthe opening and stripping of roofs by the axe pressed by round about phrases, and of permen; the pulling down burning timbers by petually varying those phrases as often as they the hook men; the playing of the engines come to be well understood plainly to signify upon proper points and places; and the open- that a man is drunk. ing of lanes among the crowds who usually Though every one may possibly recollect attend, &c.; they are impowered to require a dozen at least of these expressions, used on assistance for the removing of goods out of such occasions, yet I think' no one who has houses on fire, or in danger of fire, and to ap- not much frequented taverns could imagine point guards for securing those goods; diso- the number of them to be so great as it really bedience to these officers at any such times is. It may therefore surprise as well as diis punished by a fine of 40 shillings or ten vert the sober reader, to have a sight of a new days imprisonment. These officers, with the piece lately communicated to me, entitled, men belonging to the engine, at their quarterly
The Drinker's Dictionary. meetings, discourse of fines; of the faults committed at some; the good management at
A. others; and thus communicating their experi
He's addled. ence they become wiser, and know as well to
He's in his airs. command as to execute in the best manner
He's affected. upon emergency. Since the establishment of He's casting up his accounts. these regulations there does not appear to have
B occurred any extraordinary fire in that place, He's biggy. and I wish there never may be any here or He's bewitched. there.
He's black and black. But they suffered much before they had He's bowzed. made such regulations, and so must we; for
He's boozy. Italians say, Englishmen feel but cannot see. He's been at Barbadoes. It has pleased God, however, that in the fires He's been watering the brook. we have had hitherto, all the bad circumstan He's drunk as a wheelbarrow. ces have never happened together, such as a He's bother'd.
He has seen the devil.
He's prince Eugene.
He's entered. He has sold a march in the brewer.
He has butted both eyes. His head is full of bees.
He is cock-eyed. He has been in the bibing plot.
He has got the pole evil. He has drunk more than he has bled. He has got a brass eye. He's bungy.
He has made an example. He has been playing beggar-my-neighbour. He has ate a toad and a half for breakfast. He's drunk as a beggar.
He's in his element. He sees the beams.
F. He has kissed black Betty.
He's fishy He's had a thump over the head with
He's fox'd. Samson's jaw-bone.
He's fuddled. He has been at war with his brains.
He's soon fuddled.
He'll have frogs for supper.
He's well in front.
He's getting forward in the world.
He owes no man money.
He fears no man.
He's crump fooled.
He has been to France.
He has frozen his mouth.
He has been to a funeral.
His flag is out.
He has spoken with his friend.
.He has been at an Indian feast. He's cupsy:
G. He has heated his copper.
He's glad. He's in crocus.
He's grabable. He's catch'd.
He's great-headed. He cuts capers.
He's glazed. He has been in the cellar
He's generous. He has been in the sun.
He has boozed the gage. He's in his cups.
He's as dizzy as a goose. He's above the clouds.
He has been before George. He's non compos.
He has got the gout. He's cock'd.
He has got a kick in the guts. He's curved.
He has been at Geneva. He's cut.
He is globular, He's chippered.
He has got the glanders. He's chickenny
He's on the go. He has loaded his cart.
He's a gone man. He's been too free with the creature.
He has been to see Robin Goodfellow. Sir Richard has taken off his considering
He's half and half. He's chopfallen.
He's half seas over. He's candid.
He's top heavy. He 's disguised.
He has got by the head. is your He's got a dish.
He makes head way. He has killed a dog.
He's hiddey. He has taken his drops.
He has got on his little hat 'Tis a dark day with him.
Bluzni He's a dead man.
He's loose in the hilt. He has dipped his bill.
He knows not the way home. He sees double.
He's haunted with evil spirits. He's disfigured.
He has taken Hippocrates' grand Elixir.
He's as good conditioned as a puppy.
He's pigeon eyed.
He's pushing on.
He has salt in his headban.
He has been among the Philistines.
He's in prosperity.
He's friends with Philip.
He's contending with Pharaoh.
He has painted his nose.
He has wasted his punch.
He has learned politeness.
He has eat the pudding-bag.
He has eat too much pumpkin.
He's full of piety.
He has lost his rudder.
He has been too far with Sir Richard.
He's like a rat in trouble.
He's in the suds.
He's been in the sun.
He's as drunk as David's sow.
His skin is full.
He has burnt his shoulder.
He has got out his top-gallant sails.
He has seen the dog-star. · He's mellow.
He's stiff as a ringbolt.
He's half seas over.
The shoe pinches him.
He is staggerish.
It is star light with him.
too much sail.
He 'll soon out studding sails.
He has made too free with Sir John Straw;
berry. He's oiled.
He's right before the wind, all sails out.
He has pawned his senses.
He plays parrot.
He has made shift of his shirt.
He shines like a blanket.
He has been paying for a sign.