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No. 049 [from The Spectator]
by [?]

The Coffee-house is the Place of Rendezvous to all that live near it, who are thus turned to relish calm and ordinary Life. Eubulus presides over the middle Hours of the Day, when this Assembly of Men meet together. He enjoys a great Fortune handsomely, without launching into Expence; and exerts many noble and useful Qualities, without appearing in any publick Employment. His Wisdom and Knowledge are serviceable to all that think fit to make use of them; and he does the office of a Council, a Judge, an Executor, and a Friend to all his Acquaintance, not only without the Profits which attend such Offices, but also without the Deference and Homage which are usually paid to them. The giving of Thanks is displeasing to him. The greatest Gratitude you can shew him is to let him see you are the better Man for his Services; and that you are as ready to oblige others, as he is to oblige you.

In the private Exigencies of his Friends he lends, at legal Value, considerable Sums, which he might highly increase by rolling in the Publick Stocks. He does not consider in whose Hands his Mony will improve most, but where it will do most Good.

Eubulus has so great an Authority in his little Diurnal Audience, that when he shakes his Head at any Piece of publick News, they all of them appear dejected; and on the contrary, go home to their Dinners with a good Stomach and cheerful Aspect, when Eubulus seems to intimate that Things go well. Nay, their Veneration towards him is so great, that when they are in other Company they speak and act after him; are Wise in his Sentences, and are no sooner sat down at their own Tables, but they hope or fear, rejoice or despond as they saw him do at the Coffee-house. In a word, every Man is Eubulus as soon as his Back is turned.

Having here given an Account of the several Reigns that succeed each other from Day-break till Dinner-time, I shall mention the Monarchs of the Afternoon on another Occasion, and shut up the whole Series of them with the History of Tom the Tyrant; who, as first Minister of the Coffee-house, takes the Government upon him between the Hours of Eleven and Twelve at Night, and gives his Orders in the most Arbitrary manner to the Servants below him, as to the Disposition of Liquors, Coal and Cinders.


[Footnote 1: The ‘Grecian’ (see note [Footnote 10 of No. 1], p. 7, ‘ante’,) was by the Temple; ‘Squire’s’, by Gray’s Inn; ‘Serle’s’, by Lincoln’s Inn. ‘Squire’s’, a roomy, red-brick house, adjoined the gate of Gray’s Inn, in Fulwood’s Rents, Holborn, then leading to Gray’s Inn Walks, which lay open to the country. Squire, the establisher of this coffee-house, died in 1717. ‘Serle’s’ was near Will’s, which stood at the corner of Serle Street and Portugal Street, Lincoln’s Inn.