I am at present sitting with a Heap of Letters before me, which I have received under the Character of SPECTATOR; I have Complaints from Lovers, Schemes from Projectors, Scandal from Ladies, Congratulations, Compliments, and Advice in abundance.
I have not been thus long an Author, to be insensible of the natural Fondness every Person must have for their own Productions; and I begin to think I have treated my Correspondents a little too uncivilly in Stringing them all together on a File, and letting them lye so long unregarded. I shall therefore, for the future, think my self at least obliged to take some Notice of such Letters as I receive, and may possibly do it at the end of every Month.
In the mean time, I intend my present Paper as a short Answer to most of those which have been already sent me.
The Publick however is not to expect I should let them into all my Secrets; and though I appear abstruse to most People, it is sufficient if I am understood by my particular Correspondents.
My Well-wisher Van Nath is very arch, but not quite enough so to appear in Print.
Philadelphus will, in a little time, see his Query fully answered by a Treatise which is now in the Press.
It was very improper at that time to comply with Mr. G.
Miss Kitty must excuse me.
The Gentleman who sent me a Copy of Verses on his Mistress's Dancing, is I believe too thoroughly in Love to compose correctly.
I have too great a Respect for both the Universities to praise one at the Expence of the other.
Tom Nimble is a very honest Fellow, and I desire him to present my humble Service to his Cousin Fill Bumper.
I am obliged for the Letter upon Prejudice.
I may in due time animadvert on the Case of Grace Grumble.
The Petition of P. S. granted.
That of Sarah Loveit, refused.
The Papers of A. S. are returned.
I thank Aristippus for his kind Invitation.
My Friend at Woodstock is a bold Man, to undertake for all within Ten Miles of him.
I am afraid the Entertainment of Tom Turnover will hardly be relished by the good Cities of London and Westminster.
I must consider further of it, before I indulge W. F. in those Freedoms he takes with the Ladies Stockings.
I am obliged to the ingenious Gentleman, who sent me an Ode on the Subject of a late SPECTATOR, and shall take particular Notice of his last Letter.
When the Lady who wrote me a Letter, dated July the 20th, in relation to some Passages in a Lover, will be more particular in her Directions, I shall be so in my Answer.
The poor Gentleman, who fancies my Writings could reclaim an Husband who can abuse such a Wife as he describes, has I am afraid too great an Opinion of my Skill.
Philanthropos is, I dare say, a very well-meaning Man, but a little too prolix in his Compositions.
Constantius himself must be the best Judge in the Affair he mentions.
The Letter dated from Lincoln is received.
Arethusa and her Friend may hear further from me.
Celia is a little too hasty.
Harriot is a good Girl, but must not Curtsie to Folks she does not know.
I must ingeniously confess my Friend Sampson Bentstaff has quite puzzled me, and writ me a long Letter which I cannot comprehend one Word of.
Collidan must also explain what he means by his Drigelling.
I think it beneath my Spectatorial Dignity, to concern my self in the Affair of the boiled Dumpling.
I shall consult some Litterati on the Project sent me for the Discovery of the Longitude.
I know not how to conclude this Paper better, than by inserting a Couple of Letters which are really genuine, and which I look upon to be two of the smartest Pieces I have received from my Correspondents of either Sex.
'While you are surveying every Object that falls in your way, I am wholly taken up with one. Had that Sage, who demanded what Beauty was, lived to see the dear Angel I love, he would not have asked such a Question. Had another seen her, he would himself have loved the Person in whom Heaven has made Virtue visible; and were you your self to be in her ompany, you could never, with all your Loquacity, say enough of her good Humour and Sense. I send you the Outlines of a Picture, which I can no more finish than I can sufficiently admire the dear Original. I am
Your most Affectionate Brother, Constantio Spec.
Good Mr. Pert,
'I will allow you nothing till you resolve me the following Question. Pray what's the Reason that while you only talk now upon Wednesdays, Fridays, and Mondays, you pretend to be a greater Tatler, than when you spoke every Day as you formerly used to do? If this be your plunging out of your Taciturnity, pray let the Length of your Speeches compensate for the Scarceness of them.
_Good Mr_. Pert,
Your Admirer, if you will be long enough for Me, Amanda Lovelength.Translation of motto: