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August 19. Whereas a modesty-piece was lost at the masquerade last Monday night, being the 17th instant, between the hours of twelve and one, the author of this paper gives notice, that if any person will put it into the hands of Mr. Daniel Button, to be returned to the owner, it shall by her be acknowledged as the last favour, and no questions asked.
N. B. It is of no use but to the owner.'
N° 146. FRIDAY, AUGUST 28, 1713.
Primus hominum leonem manu tractare ausus, et ostendere mansuefactum, Hanno è clarissimis Pœnorum traditur. PLIN.
Hanno, a noble Carthagian, is reported to have been the first man who ventured to handle a lion, and bring him up tame.
THE generality of my readers, I find, are so well pleased with the story of the lion, in my paper of the twentieth instant, and with my friend's design of compiling a history of that noble species of animals; that a great many ingenious persons have promised me their assistance to bring in materials for the work, from all the storehouses of ancient and modern learning, as well as from oral tradition. For a farther encouragement of the underaking, a considerable number of virtuosi have ofred, when my collection shall swell into a reason
able bulk, to contribute very handsomely, by way of subscription, towards the printing of them in folio, on a large royal paper, curiously adorned with a variety of forests, deserts, rocks, and caves, and lions of all sorts and sizes upon copper-plates by the best hands. A rich old bachelor of Lion'sinn (who is zealous for the honour of the place in which he was educated) sends me word I may depend upon a hundred pounds from him, towards the embellishing of the work; assuring me, at the same time, that he will set his clerk to search the records, and inquire into the antiquities of that house, that there may be no stone left unturned to make the book complete. Considering the volumes that have been written upon insects and reptiles, and the vast expence and pains some philosophers have been at to discover, by the help of glasses, their almost imperceptible qualities and perfections; it will not, I hope, be thought unreasonable, if the lion (whose majestic form lies open to the naked eye) should take up a first-rate folio.
A worthy merchant, and a friend of mine, sends me the following letter, to be inserted in my commentaries upon lions.
SINCE one of your correspondents has of late entertained the public with a very remarkable and ancient piece of history, in honour of the grandees of the forest; and since it is probable you may in time collect a great many curious records and amazing circumstances, which may contribute to make these animals respected over the face of the whole earth; I am not a little ambitious to have the glory of contributing somewhat
to so generous an undertaking. If you throw your work into the form of chronicle, I am in hopes I may furnish out a page in it towards the latter end of the volume, by a narration of a modern date, which I had in the year 1700, from the gentleman to whom it happened.
About sixty years ago, when the plague raged at Naples, sir George Davis (consul there for the English nation) retired to Florence. It happened one day he went out of curiosity to see the great duke's lions. At the farther end, in one of the dens, lay a lion, which the keepers in three years time could not tame, with all the art and gentle usage imaginable. Sir George no sooner appeared at the grates of the den, but the lion ran to him with all the marks of joy and transport he was capable of expressing. He reared himself up and licked his hand, which this gentleman put in through the grates. The keeper affrighted, took him by the arm and pulled him away, begging him not to hazard his life by going so near the fiercest creature of that kind that ever entered those dens. However, nothing would satisfy sir George, notwithstanding all that could be said to dissuade him, but he must go into the den to him. The very instant he entered, the lion threw his paws upon his shoulders, and licked his face, and ran to and fro in the den, fawning, and full of joy, like a dog at the sight of his master. After several embraces and salutations exchanged on both sides, they parted very good friends. The rumour of this interview between the lion and the stranger rung immediately through the whole city, and sir George was very near passing for a saint among the people. The great duke, when he heard of it, sent for sir George, who waited upon
his highness to the den, and to satisfy his curiosity, gave him the following account of what seemed so strange to the duke and his followers.
A captain of a ship from Barbary gave me this lion when he was a young whelp. I brought him up tame; but when I thought him too large to be suffered to run about the house, I built a den for him in my court-yard; from that time he was never permitted to go loose, except when I brought him within doors to shew him to my friends. When he was five years old, in his gamesome tricks, he did some mischief by pawing and playing with people. Having griped a man one day a little too hard, I ordered him to be shot, for fear of incurring the guilt of what might happen; upon this a friend who was then at dinner with me, begged him: how he came here I know
Here sir George Davis ended, and thereupon the duke of Tuscany assured him, that he had the lion from that very friend of his.
I am, Sir,
Your most obedient servant,
and constant reader, &c.'
N° 147. SATURDAY, AUGUST 29, 1713.
Bonum est, fugienda aspicere alieno in malo.
It is a good thing to learn caution by the misfortunes of others.
HAVING in my paper of the 21st of July,* shewed my dislike of the ridiculous custom of garnishing a new-married couple, and setting a gloss upon their persons which is to last no longer than the honeymoon; I think it may be much for the emolument of my disciples of both sexes, to make them sensible in the next place, of the folly of launching out into extravagant expences, and a more magnificent way of living immediately upon marriage. If the bride and bridegroom happen to be persons of any rank, they come into all public places, and go upon all visits with so gay an equipage, and so glittering an appearance, as if they were making so many public entries. But to judicious minds, and to men of experience in this life, the gilt chariot, the coach and six, the gaudy liveries, the supernumerary train of servants, the great house, the sumptuous table, the services of plate, the embroidered clothes, the rich brocades, and the profusion of jewels, that upon this occasion break out at once, are so many symptoms of madness in the happy pair, and prognostications of their future misery.
See No. 113.