Your obliged humble Servant,
[A like ] Impertinence is also very troublesome to the superior and more intelligent Part of the fair Sex. It is, it seems, a great Inconvenience, that those of the meanest Capacities will pretend to make Visits, tho’ indeed they are qualify’d rather to add to the Furniture of the House (by filling an empty Chair) than to the Conversation they come into when they visit. A Friend of mine hopes for Redress in this Case, by the Publication of her Letter in my Paper; which she thinks those she would be rid of will take to themselves. It seems to be written with an Eye to one of those pert giddy unthinking Girls, who, upon the Recommendation only of an agreeable Person and a fashionable Air, take themselves to be upon a Level with Women of the greatest Merit.
’I take this Way to acquaint you with what common Rules and Forms would never permit me to tell you otherwise; to wit, that you and I, tho’ Equals in Quality and Fortune, are by no Means suitable Companions. You are, ’tis true, very pretty, can dance, and make a very good Figure in a publick Assembly; but alass, Madam, you must go no further; Distance and Silence are your best Recommendations; therefore let me beg of you never to make me any more Visits. You come in a literal Sense to see one, for you have nothing to say. I do not say this that I would by any Means lose your Acquaintance; but I would keep it up with the Strictest Forms of good Breeding. Let us pay Visits, but never see one another: If you will be so good as to deny your self always to me, I shall return the Obligation by giving the same Orders to my Servants. When Accident makes us meet at a third Place, we may mutually lament the Misfortune of never finding one another at home, go in the same Party to a Benefit-Play, and smile at each other and put down Glasses as we pass in our Coaches. Thus we may enjoy as much of each others Friendship as we are capable: For there are some People who are to be known only by Sight, with which sort of Friendship I hope you will always honour,
Your most obedient humble Servant,
P.S. I subscribe my self by the Name
of the Day I keep, that my
supernumerary Friends may know who I am.
[Footnote 1: these People]
[Footnote 2: Clinch of Barnet, whose place of performance was at the corner of Bartholomew Lane, behind the Royal Exchange, imitated, according to his own advertisement,
’the Horses, the Huntsmen and a
Pack of Hounds, a Sham Doctor, an old
Woman, the Bells, the Flute, the Double Curtell (or bassoon) and the
Organ,—all with his own Natural Voice, to the greatest perfection.’
The price of admission was a shilling.]
[Footnote 3: This]
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