The Spectator, Volumes 1, 2 and 3 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 3,418 pages of information about The Spectator, Volumes 1, 2 and 3.

The original folio numbers have been followed also in the use of italics [shown between underscored thus] and other little details of the disposition of the type; for example, in the reproduction of those rows of single inverted commas, which distinguish what a correspondent called the parts ‘laced down the side with little c’s.’ [This last detail of formatting has not been reproduced in this file.  Text Ed.]

The translation of the mottos and Latin quotations, which Steele and Addison deliberately abstained from giving, and which, as they were since added, impede and sometimes confound and contradict the text, are here placed in a body at the end, for those who want them.  Again and again the essayists indulge in banter on the mystery of the Latin and Greek mottos; and what confusion must enter into the mind of the unwary reader who finds Pope’s Homer quoted at the head of a ‘Spectator’ long before Addison’s word of applause to the young poet’s ’Essay on Criticism.’  The mottos then are placed in an Appendix.

There is a short Appendix also of advertisements taken from the original number of the ‘Spectator’, and a few others, where they seem to illustrate some point in the text, will be found among the notes.

In the large number of notes here added to a revision of those bequeathed to us by Percy and Calder, the object has been to give information which may contribute to some nearer acquaintance with the writers of the book, and enjoyment of allusions to past manners and events.

Finally, from the ‘General Index to the Spectators, &c.,’ published as a separate volume in 1760, there has been taken what was serviceable, and additions have been made to it with a desire to secure for this edition of the ‘Spectator’ the advantages of being handy for reference as well as true to the real text.

H. M.

[Footnote 1:  “Sentences omitted, or words altered;” not, of course, the immaterial variations of spelling into which compositors slipped in the printing office.  In the ‘Athenaeum’ of May 12, 1877, is an answer to misapprehensions on this head by the editor of a Clarendon Press volume of ’Selections from Addison’.]





I should not act the Part of an impartial Spectator, if I Dedicated the following Papers to one who is not of the most consummate and most acknowledged Merit.

None but a person of a finished Character can be the proper Patron of a
Work, which endeavours to Cultivate and Polish Human Life, by promoting
Virtue and Knowledge, and by recommending whatsoever may be either
Useful or Ornamental to Society.

I know that the Homage I now pay You, is offering a kind of Violence to one who is as solicitous to shun Applause, as he is assiduous to deserve it.  But, my Lord, this is perhaps the only Particular in which your Prudence will be always disappointed.

Project Gutenberg
The Spectator, Volumes 1, 2 and 3 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
Follow Us on Facebook