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for he is really a very sensible gentleman. My enquirer's desires were made known to him; and Harry, who never parts with a man but he leaves him a plausible prospect of effecting his designs, laid down such assurances upon promises made in his favour, that my gentleman began to believe at such a day he might enter into pay or salary; but, before he parted, Harry had nicely examined, though at a distance, how his stock was, either to bribe or purchase, and, in a day or two, was to give my enquirer a positive answer. But I had almost forgot to tell you, that, just at parting, Harry bore up to him, and told him, that, though he would serve a gentleman gratis with his labour, yet there would be expences; to defray which, he expected he should bring him ten guineas the next morning. My enquirer, buoyed up with hopes, came the next morning with ready rhino in his pocket, had immediately admittance into a room spread with old carpets, that the man at the Three Roses had refused to stitch cards on. Presently honest Harry, who, like the hungry Jew, watched the falling manna, came in, and accosted him with, Sir, I have done your business, for I was with my lord last night, and, to serve you, spent my own interest, so effectually, that I had his promise on your behalf:' Upon these words the manna dropped into his hand, which Harry never kept till the following day, for fear it should turn sowre. My enquirer's moving hand having reached ten, at which number Harry's alarm stood, it immediately rung a peal in division about places, for half an hour together, That he that wrote the present state of England, in the year 1694, was a blockhead, compared to him; for he has not mentioned a quarter of the places and employs that Harry named to my enquirer, and gave him the choice of any of them. He, that put an advertisement for the sale of horses, cannot in a month's time name so many horses to be sold, as he pretended to know employs. My enquirer, amongst the many texts this parson quoted, pitched upon two or three which served to his liking; and, when Mr. Harry had done talking, he told him, such or such would suit his education, and agreed with his humour. Oh, says Harry, those are not as yet vacant, but they will be, perhaps, before the parliament rises; for they are resolved to suffer very few members of the house to be in employs, wherein any branch of the revenue is to be managed; and, since it is certain some will part with their places rather than be turned out of the house, your study must be how to get into one of those they abdicate; to effect which, you must try to ingratiate yourself with a S -,with three of the L of the Tat least: And the thoughtful gentleman, who, by much labour of his brain, hammers out things in a great perfection, to be known and well-recommended to the PC; for some employs must be granted in C——. Now, the fittest man upon earth, to be your sollicitor there, is W. F. who, though he is foundered in his feet, has a natural assurance to tell a story plausibly to any nobleman, though it is seldom minded; he is old dog with the ladies and boys, and their constant sollicitor:
Besides, he may be, from his own interest, very serviceable to you;. for I know, the other day, he helped a footman to a place, and took but half a crown for his labour.
It will also be requisite for you to learn decimals and guaging, and make application to the Cof E; or to the L of the A: Or to the C of the C. But you must not neglect making application to several particular persons, who always seem in a hurry, as if they had the whole concerns of the nation to manage: Amongst which there is honest Tony, who seldom gives the C of P, and E, much trouble to draw up a report; A. R. is not duly elected.' I must beg pardon when I say, it is hard, that so understanding a gentleman, one that knows how to take all advantages, should not be in the house, - no man being fitter to caution against deceits than theHe has been serviceable to the nation by the project of packing of hay; by the manage of which, horses eat less than usual, and their bellies were taken up, without belly-cloaths, the smell did their business; yet Tony had but 37. a load for what cost him
His principles may be guessed by his practice, and he has declared his sentiments, how people, that would thrive, should manage themselves; and designs, if he may be believed, to instil the same principles into his children; for he told an honest gentleman, that, if he had a son, he would advise him to flatter and dissemble with all mankind, never to speak truth but when it was for his advantage. With this worthy gentleman it will be necessary to be acquainted, if you have money to purchase an employ under the M of the H-; for every one of them, that were in his reach, he has either sold, or been a broker in the matter. You need make no interest to him by intercession of friends; for he has no respect to persons, principles, or qualities; but, like a late deceased knight, whose wit (by mistake so called) lay in bold examinations of scripture passages, buffoonly ridiculing what was beyond his shallow capacity to understand, has regard only to the money, let it come from Williamite, Jacobite, or devil. Besides him, there is another you should be acquainted with, that is, a blinking fellow, a mere pretender to the law, who could scarce read (allowing breviations) at the Exchequer bar: He, by his pretensions, one would think had the disposal of forty considerable places; indeed, he has most of the gentry at his beck, though it is a shame to see how poor-spirited some of them are, to cringe and creep to him, whom most men avoid; though there is a broad mixture in this man of knave and fool, yet he so manages, by tricks and lyes, a certain person, in whose power it is to make you one extraordinary, that a trial ought to be made of his interest: And sure, by some of these, with my assistance (which you shall never want) a man of your birth, education, and ingenuity, cannot miss of some employ or other. Now, Sir, I have told you what is to be done, use your endeavour; and, when you have fixed upon your particular, come again to me, and I (as Mr.
Houghton says) can help. My enquirer, with his head full of this counsel, takes leave, resolving to meditate on it, and put it in practice; but, going down stairs, he saw a written paper which Harry's servant had dropped; and, being curious, took it up, and put it in his pocket to read at leisure. The first opportunity he had, he opened the paper, and found as follows: "Answers, excuses, and observations, to be got by heart, and used, as occasion offers, by my servant Robin.'
If a man knocks hard early in a morning, with a cane in his hand, believe him to be a creditor, and the first time answer him, that I am not well, and you dare not disturb me; to countenance which, be sure, two or three days in a month, tie a rag upon the knocker of the door. The second time, I was sent for about earnest business, to any busy nobleman you first think of. Afterwards say for me as you would have others say for you to whom you owe money; but be sure you be not catched in a lye, for people are too apt to believe that courtiers servants lye, though they speak truth, if their desires be not complied with. If it be one that wears a sword, it is ten to one but it is either some body I am in combination withal to cheat another, or that he himself is to be cheated; him presently admit, for from such, corn comes to the mill. If it be one whose company I have shunned, send him to some tavern or coffee-house out of the verge of the court, where, to be sure, I never go but on a Sunday.'
Some part of the paper had been torn off, but one may be certain, he had learned the whole lesson by the variety of shams and excuses he had constantly ready. Bless me! how was my enquirer surprised at the reading it? And began to conceive that he was fallen into the hands of a tongue-padding cheating courtier; but, finding his counsel, in some measure, ought to be followed, he was resolved to make applications as he was directed. In a short time, by friends or money, he was little or much recommended to almost all fortune's darlings, that had the disposal of any employs; one or other of them he was almost continually waiting on with the recommendation of my Lord such an one, Sir such an one, or honest Mr. such an one; and every one to whom he was recommended, like true courtiers, spoke him fair. One promised the next thing that fell; another promised to take care of him; a third, out of kindness, would have h m qualify himself, that, upon any opportunity, he might jump in a fourth took money in part; and, a fifth invited him to dinner, which gentleman, it must be said of him, did him more kindness than all the rest; for, after he had waited half a year, he found their promises to be only air; for, when the first had power by a vacancy, to be sure he said, he was pre-engaged. The second's care was to avoid him. The third gentleman would not give him an opportunity to jump, continually selling reversions. The fourth did his business but in part, for he could never get all his money again. Thus shuffled off from one to another, by fair words and
promises, he spent a great deal of time, and all his money, to no purpose. Meeting with so many disappointments, and really wanting necessaries, and reflecting on the usage he had met withal, and dreading the poverty he saw approaching, he had fallen into despair, but that he had still the happiness to carry in his mind the thoughts of futurity, from which he resolved as much as possible to be content; and, to strengthen him in his acquaintance and resignation to a Supreme Will, he often went to church; but, one day going into St. Martin's, though early, the surly clark refused him admittance into a pew, which so mightily concerned him, that he went to his lodging, and, whilst the thought continued, he wrote the following verses.
To what extremities am I driven,
When parish-clarks bar my converse with heav'n,
Who, by the face, the pocket do descry,
Having long racked his brains, and spent his money and time in vain, his peery landlord, by a writ, secured him a safe place in the Marshalsea, durante vita, unless a compassionate parliament release him by an act of grace.
Fed up with hope by such, his money's spent,
If, if they draw the lot;
But hit, or miss, there's profit still to them.
THE APPARENT DANGER OF AN INVASION,
BRIEFLY REPRESENTED IN A LETTER TO A MINISTER OF STATE. BY A KENTISH GENTLEMAN. MDCCI.
THE present posture of publick affairs abroad has such a terrible aspect upon the liberties of Europe in general, that France will have no reason to wonder, if all the princes and states of Europe, which are its neighbours, should take the alarum at her late conduct since the treaty of Reswick *. I am sure it would be a very great wonder with me, and posterity too, if, after so late and notorious a violation of a solemn treaty, we should take her word again, and trust to her engagements, unless we can oblige her to perform them t.
She has, undoubtedly, her envoys and her instruments in all countries, especially here, who, with great artifice and subtle insinuations, will tempt the easy and the ignorant by colours and pretences of her good meaning, that she has no farther design than maintaining the Duke of Anjou's succession §, and all her neighbours, that will own him, shall be, if they please, her dear friends and confederates.
But what wise man can be found? Nay, one may venture to say, where can you shew me that blockhead that has brains little enough to believe her? And yet a Frenchman has so much confidence in the folly of all other nations, and in his own dexterity to play the knave, that with very great assurance he obtrudes his flattery, and expresses his friendship and esteem for you, when his own conscience gives him the lye, and he is carrying on a design at the same time to cut your throat.
Every body knows it was but in October last, that all the courts of Europe were, in show at least, earnestly sollicited to enter into the treaty of partition; and all the huffing and sneaking arguments were used by your Guis-ds and your Amel-ts, for two or three months together, to prevail upon the Italians and Germans ||, great and little; but, in the midst of all this banter and grimace, arrives an express with the king of Spain's death and Anjou's
The same may justly be remarked of the French behaviour since the treaty of Utrecht.
+ By first reducing her to so low a condition, as to oblige her to an honourable peace, and so to watch her intrigues, and check her illegal aspirings in time of peace, as to prevent her capacity ever to become troublesome to the liberties of her neighbours any more.
See Vol. I. p. 23, 24.
To the crown of Spain, by which union France promised herself to gain a power to give laws to all Europe, as her attempts from that time will prove.
Was not this the very method taken by France, to deprive the empire of its liber
ties, and to ruin the house of Austria, before this war broke out?