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No. 033 [from The Spectator]
by [?]

When Adam is introduced by Milton describing Eve in Paradise, and relating to the Angel the Impressions he felt upon seeing her at her first Creation, he does not represent her like a Grecian Venus by her Shape or Features, but by the Lustre of her Mind which shone in them, and gave them their Power of charming.

Grace was in all her Steps, Heaven in her Eye,
In all her Gestures Dignity and Love.

Without this irradiating Power the proudest Fair One ought to know, whatever her Glass may tell her to the contrary, that her most perfect Features are Uninform’d and Dead.

I cannot better close this Moral, than by a short Epitaph written by Ben Johnson, with a Spirit which nothing could inspire but such an Object as I have been describing.

Underneath this Stone doth lie
As much Virtue as cou’d die,
Which when alive did Vigour give
To as much Beauty as cou’d live. [3]

I am, Sir,
Your most humble Servant,
R. B.


[Footnote 1: Charles de St. Denis, Sieur de St. Evremond, died in 1703, aged 95, and was buried in Westminster Abbey. His military and diplomatic career in France was closed in 1661, when his condemnations of Mazarin, although the Cardinal was then dead, obliged him to fly from the wrath of the French Court to Holland and afterwards to England, where Charles II granted him a pension of L300 a-year. At Charles’s death the pension lapsed, and St. Evremond declined the post of cabinet secretary to James II. After the Revolution he had William III for friend, and when, at last, he was invited back, in his old age, to France, he chose to stay and die among his English friends. In a second volume of ‘Miscellany Essays by Monsieur de St. Evremont,’ done into English by Mr. Brown (1694), an Essay ‘Of the Pleasure that Women take in their Beauty’ ends (p. 135) with the thought quoted by Steele.]

[Footnote 2: In ‘Don Sebastian, King of Portugal,’ act I, says Muley Moloch, Emperor of Barbary,
Ay; There look like the Workmanship of Heav’n:
This is the Porcelain Clay of Human Kind.]

[Footnote 3: The lines are in the Epitaph ‘on Elizabeth L.H.’

‘One name was Elizabeth,
The other, let it sleep in death.’

But Steele, quoting from memory, altered the words to his purpose. Ben Johnson’s lines were:
‘Underneath this stone doth lie,
As much Beauty as could die,
Which in Life did Harbour give
To more Virture than doth live.’]