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self to marry the said Winifred Leer. She alleged, that he had ogled her twice at the opera, thrice in St. James's church, and once at Powel's puppetshow, at which time he promised her marriage by a side-glance, as her friend could testify that sat by her. Mr. Bickerstaff finding that the defendant had made no further overture of love or marriage, but by looks and ocular engagement; yet at the same time considering how very apt such impudent seducers are to lead the ladies hearts astray, ordered the criminal" to stand upon the stage in the Hay-market, between each act of the next opera, there to be exposed to public view as a false ogler."

Upon the rising of the court, Mr. Bickerstaff having taken one of these counterfeits in the very fact, as he was ogling a lady of the grand jury, ordered him to be seized, and prosecuted upon the statute of ogling. He likewise directed the clerk of the court to draw up an edict against these common cheats, that make women believe they are distracted for them, by staring them out of countenance, and often blast a lady's reputation whom they never spoke to, by saucy looks and distant familia rities.

N° 263. THURSDAY, DECEMBER 14, 1710.

Minima contentos nocte Britannos.

Britons contented with the shortest night.

JUV. Sat. ii. 161.

From my own apartment, December 13,

An old friend of mine being lately come to town, I went to see him on Tuesday last about eight o'clock in the evening, with a design to sit with him an hour or two, and talk over old stories; but, upon inquiry after him, I found he was gone to bed. The next morning, as soon as I was up and dressed, and had dispatched a little business, I came again to my friend's house about eleven o'clock, with a design to renew my visit: but, upon asking for him, his ser vant told me he was just sat down to dinner. In short, I found that my old fashioned friend reli giously adhered to the example of his forefathers, and observed the same hours that had been kept in the family ever since the Conquest.

It is very plain, that the night was much longer formerly in this island than it is at present. By the night, I mean that portion of time which nature has thrown into darkness, and which the wisdom of mankind had formerly dedicated to rest and silence. This used to begin at eight o'clock in the evening, and conclude at six in the morning. The curfeu, or eight o'clock bell, was the signal throughout the nation for putting out their candles and going tobed.

Our grandmothers, though they were wont to sit up the last in the family, were all of them fast asleep at the same hours that their daughters are busy at crimp and basset. Modern statesmen are concerting schemes, and engaged in the depth of po litics, at the time when their forefathers were laid down quietly to rest, and had nothing in their heads but dreams. As we have thus thrown business and pleasure into the hours of rest, and by that means made the natural night but half as long as it should be, we are forced to piece it out with a great part of the morning; so that near two-thirds of the nation lie fast asleep for several hours in broad day-light. This irregularity is grown so very fashionable at present, that there is scarce a lady of quality in GreatBritain that ever saw the sun rise. And, if the humour increases in proportion to what it has done of late years, it is not impossible but our children may hear the bell-man going about the streets at nine o'clock in the morning, and the watch making their rounds until even. This unaccountable disposition in mankind to continue awake in the night, and sleep in the sun-shine, has made me inquire, whe ther the same change of inclination has happened to any other animals? For this reason, I desired a friend of mine in the country to let me know, whether the lark rises as early as he did formerly; and whether the cock begins to crow at his usual hour? My friend has answered me, " that his poultry are as regular as ever, and that all the birds and beasts of his neighbourhood keep the same hours that they have observed in the memory of man; and the same which, in all probability, they have kept for these five thousand years.”

If you would see the innovations that have been made among us in this particular, you may only

look into the hours of colleges, where they still dine at eleven, and sup at six, which were doubtless the hours of the whole nation at the time when those places were founded. But at present, the courts of justice are scarce opened in Westminster-hall at the time when William Rufus used to go to dinner in it. All business is driven forward. The landmarks of our fathers, if I may so call them, are removed, and planted further up into the day; insomuch, that I am afraid our clergy will be obliged, if they expect full congregations, not to look any more upon ten o'clock in the morning as a canonical hour. In my own memory, the dinner has crept by degrees from twelve o'clock to three, and where it will fix nobody knows.

I have sometimes thought to draw up a memorial in the behalf of Supper against Dinner, setting forth, that the said Dinner has made several incroachments upon the said Supper, and entered very far upon his frontiers; that he has banished him out of several families, and in all has driven him from his head quarters, and forced him to make his retreat into the hours of midnight; and, in short, that he is now in danger of being entirely confounded, and lost in a breakfast. Those who have read Lucian, and seen the complaints of the letter Tagainst S, upon account of many injuries and usurpations of the same nature, will not, I believe, think such a memorial forced and unnatural. If dinner has been thus postponed, or, if you please, kept back from time to time, you may be sure that it has been in compliance with the other business of the day, and that supper has still observed a proportionable distance. There is a venerable proverb. which we have all of us heard in our infancy, of putting the children to-bed, and laying the goose.

to the fire." This was one of the jocular sayings of our forefathers, but may be properly used in the literal sense at present. Who would not wonder at this perverted relish of those who are reckoned the most polite part of mankind, that prefer sea coals and candles to the sun, and exchange so many cheerful morning hours, for the pleasures of midnight revels and debauches? If a man was only to consult his health, he would choose to live his whole time, if possible, in day-light; and to retire out of the world into silence and sleep, while the raw damps and unwholesome vapours fly abroad, without a sun to disperse, moderate, or controul them. For my own part, I value an hour in the morning as much as common libertines do an hour at midnight. When I find myself awakened into being, and perceive my life renewed within me, and at the same time see the whole face of nature recovered out of the dark uncomfortable state in which it lay for several hours, my heart overflows with such secret sentiments of joy and gratitude, as are a kind of implicit praise to the great Author of Nature. The mind, in these early seasons of the day, is so refreshed in all its faculties, and borne up with such new supplies of animal spirits, that she finds herself in a state of youth, especially when she is entertained with the breath of flowers, the melody of birds, the dews that hang upon the plants, and all those other sweets of nature that are peculiar to the morning.

It is impossible for a man to have this relish of being, this exquisite taste of life, who does not come into the world before it is in all its noise and hurry; who loses the rising of the sun, the still hours of the day, and, immediately upon his first getting up, plunges himself into the ordinary cares or follies of the world.

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