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No. 020 [from The Spectator]
by [?]

I take an impudent Fellow to be a sort of Out-law in Good-Breeding, and therefore what is said of him no Nation or Person can be concerned for: For this Reason one may be free upon him. I have put my self to great Pains in considering this prevailing Quality which we call Impudence, and have taken Notice that it exerts it self in a different Manner, according to the different Soils wherein such Subjects of these Dominions as are Masters of it were born. Impudence in an Englishman is sullen and insolent, in a Scotchman it is untractable and rapacious, in an Irishman absurd and fawning: As the Course of the World now runs, the impudent Englishman behaves like a surly Landlord, the Scot, like an ill-received Guest, and the Irishman, like a Stranger who knows he is not welcome. There is seldom anything entertaining either in the Impudence of a South or North Briton; but that of an Irishman is always comick. A true and genuine Impudence is ever the Effect of Ignorance, without the least Sense of it. The best and most successful Starers now in this Town are of that Nation: They have usually the Advantage of the Stature mentioned in the above Letter of my Correspondent, and generally take their Stands in the Eye of Women of Fortune; insomuch that I have known one of them, three Months after he came from Plough, with a tolerable good Air lead out a Woman from a Play, which one of our own Breed, after four years at Oxford and two at the Temple, would have been afraid to look at.

I cannot tell how to account for it, but these People have usually the Preference to our own Fools, in the Opinion of the sillier Part of Womankind. Perhaps it is that an English Coxcomb is seldom so obsequious as an Irish one; and when the Design of pleasing is visible, an Absurdity in the Way toward it is easily forgiven.

But those who are downright impudent, and go on without Reflection that they are such, are more to be tolerated, than a Set of Fellows among us who profess Impudence with an Air of Humour, and think to carry off the most inexcusable of all Faults in the World, with no other Apology than saying in a gay Tone, I put an impudent Face upon the Matter. No, no Man shall be allowed the Advantages of Impudence, who is conscious that he is such: If he knows he is impudent, he may as well be otherwise; and it shall be expected that he blush, when he sees he makes another do it: For nothing can attone for the want of Modesty, without which Beauty is ungraceful, and Wit detestable.