No. 443. Tuesday, July 29, 1712. Steele

Sublatam ex oculis Quárimus invidi.'

Camilla to the SPECTATOR.

Venice, July 10, N. S.


'I Take it extreamly ill, that you do not reckon conspicuous Persons of your Nation are within your Cognizance, tho' out of the Dominions of Great Britain. I little thought in the green Years of my Life, that I should ever call it an Happiness to be out of dear England; but as I grew to Woman, I found my self less acceptable in Proportion to the Encrease of my Merit. Their Ears in Italy are so differently formed from the Make of yours in England, that I never come upon the Stage, but a general Satisfaction appears in every Countenance of the whole People. When I dwell upon a Note, I behold all the Men accompanying me with Heads enclining and falling of their Persons on one Side, as dying away with me. The Women too do Justice to my Merit, and no ill-natur'd worthless Creature cries, The vain Thing, when I am rapt up in the Performance of my Part, and sensibly touched with the Effect my Voice has upon all who hear me. I live here distinguished as one whom Nature has been liberal to in a graceful Person, an exalted Mein, and Heavenly Voice. These Particularities in this strange Country, are Arguments for Respect and Generosity to her who is possessed of them. The Italians see a thousand Beauties I am sensible I have no Pretence to, and abundantly make up to me the Injustice I received in my own Country, of disallowing me what I really had. The Humour of Hissing, which you have among you, I do not know any thing of; and their Applauses are uttered in Sighs, and bearing a Part at the Cadences of Voice with the Persons who are performing. I am often put in Mind of those complaisant Lines of my own Countryman, [1] when he is calling all his Faculties together to hear Arabella;

'Let all be hush'd, each softest Motion cease,
Be ev'ry loud tumultuous Thought at Peace;
And ev'ry ruder Gasp of Breath
Be calm, as in the Arms of Death:
And thou, most fickle, most uneasie Part,
Thou restless Wanderer, my Heart,
Be still; gently, ah! gently leave,
Thou busie, idle Thing, to heave.
Stir not a Pulse: and let my Blood,
That turbulent, unruly Flood,
Be softly staid;
Let me be all but my Attention dead.'

'The whole City of Venice is as still when I am singing, as this Polite Hearer was to Mrs. Hunt. But when they break that Silence, did you know the Pleasure I am in, when every Man utters his Applause, by calling me aloud the Dear Creature, the Angel, the Venus; What Attitude she moves with!--Hush, she sings again! We have no boistrous Wits who dare disturb an Audience, and break the publick Peace meerly to shew they dare. Mr. SPECTATOR, I write this to you thus in Haste, to tell you I am so very much at ease here, that I know nothing but Joy; and I will not return, but leave you in England to hiss all Merit of your own Growth off the Stage. I know, Sir, you were always my Admirer, and therefore I am yours, CAMILLA. [2]

P. S. I am ten times better dressed than ever I was in England.


'The Project in yours of the 11th Instant, of furthering the Correspondence and Knowledge of that considerable Part of Mankind, the Trading World, cannot but be highly commendable. Good Lectures to young Traders may have very good Effects on their Conduct: but beware you propagate no false Notions of Trade; let none of your Correspondents impose on the World, by putting forth base Methods in a good Light, and glazing them over with improper Terms. I would have no Means of Profit set for Copies to others, but such as are laudable in themselves. Let not Noise be called Industry, nor Impudence Courage. Let not good Fortune be imposed on the World for good Management, nor Poverty be called Folly; impute not always Bankruptcy to Extravagance, nor an Estate to Foresight; Niggardliness is not good Husbandry, nor Generosity Profusion.

'Honestus is a well-meaning and judicious Trader, hath substantial Goods, and trades with his own Stock; husbands his Money to the best Advantage, without taking all Advantages of the Necessities of his Workmen, or grinding the Face of the Poor. Fortunatus is stocked with Ignorance, and consequently with Self-Opinion; the Quality of his Goods cannot but be suitable to that of his Judgment. Honestus pleases discerning People, and keeps their Custom by good Usage; makes modest Profit by modest Means, to the decent Support of his Family: Whilst Fortunatus blustering always, pushes on, promising much, and performing little, with Obsequiousness offensive to People of Sense; strikes at all, catches much the greater Part; raises a considerable Fortune by Imposition on others, to the Disencouragement and Ruin of those who trade in the same Way.

'I give here but loose Hints, and beg you to be very circumspect in the Province you have now undertaken: If you perform it successfully, it will be a very great Good; for nothing is more wanting, than that Mechanick Industry were set forth with the Freedom and Greatness of Mind which ought always to accompany a Man of a liberal Education.

Your humble Servant,

R. C.

From my Shop under the Royal-Exchange, July 14.

July 24, 1712.


'Notwithstanding the repeated Censures that your Spectatorial Wisdom has passed upon People more remarkable for Impudence than Wit, there are yet some remaining, who pass with the giddy Part of Mankind for sufficient Sharers of the latter, who have nothing but the former Qualification to recommend them. Another timely Animadversion is absolutely necessary; be pleased therefore once for all to let these Gentlemen know, that there is neither Mirth nor Good Humour in hooting a young Fellow out of Countenance; nor that it will ever constitute a Wit, to conclude a tart Piece of Buffoonry with a what makes you blush? Pray please to inform them again, That to speak what they know is shocking, proceeds from ill Nature, and a Sterility of Brain; especially when the Subject will not admit of Raillery, and their Discourse has no Pretension to Satyr but what is in their Design to disoblige. I should be very glad too if you would take Notice, that a daily Repetition of the same over-bearing Insolence is yet more insupportable, and a Confirmation of very extraordinary Dulness. The sudden Publication of this, may have an Effect upon a notorious Offender of this Kind, whose Reformation would redound very much to the Satisfaction and Quiet of

Your most humble Servant,

F.B. [3]

[Footnote 1: William Congreve upon Arabella Hunt.]

[Footnote 2: Mrs. Tofts, see note on p. 85, vol, i. [Footnote 3 of No. 22.]

[Footnote 3: Said to be the initials of Francis Beasniffe.]

Translation of motto:
HOR. 3 Od. xxiv. 32.
'Snatch'd from our sight, we eagerly pursue,
And fondly would recall her to our view.'