I and several others of your Female Readers, have conformed our selves to your Rules, even to our very Dress. There is not one of us but has reduced our outward Petticoat to its ancient Sizable Circumference, tho’ indeed we retain still a Quilted one underneath, which makes us not altogether unconformable to the Fashion; but ’tis on Condition, Mr. SPECTATOR extends not his Censure so far. But we find you Men secretly approve our Practice, by imitating our Pyramidical Form. The Skirt of your fashionable Coats forms as large a Circumference as our Petticoats; as these are set out with Whalebone, so are those with Wire, to encrease and sustain the Bunch of Fold that hangs down on each Side; and the Hat, I perceive, is decreased in just proportion to our Head-dresses. We make a regular Figure, but I defy your Mathematicks to give Name to the Form you appear in. Your Architecture is mere Gothick, and betrays a worse Genius than ours; therefore if you are partial to your own Sex, I shall be less than I am now
Your Humble Servant.
I have heard old cunning Stagers
Say Fools for Arguments lay Wagers.
Hudibras, Part II. c. i.]
[Footnote 2: need]
* * * * *
No. 146. Friday, August 17, 1711. Steele.
‘Nemo Vir Magnus sine aliquo Afflatu divino unquam fuit.’
We know the highest Pleasure our Minds are capable of enjoying with Composure, when we read Sublime Thoughts communicated to us by Men of great Genius and Eloquence. Such is the Entertainment we meet with in the Philosophick Parts of Cicero’s Writings. Truth and good Sense have there so charming a Dress, that they could hardly be more agreeably represented with the Addition of Poetical Fiction and the Power of Numbers. This ancient Author, and a modern one, had fallen into my Hands within these few Days; and the Impressions they have left upon me, have at the present quite spoiled me for a merry Fellow. The Modern is that admirable Writer the Author of The Theory of the Earth. The Subjects with which I have lately been entertained in them both bear a near Affinity; they are upon Enquiries into Hereafter, and the Thoughts of the latter seem to me to be raised above those of the former in proportion to his Advantages of Scripture and Revelation. If I had a Mind to it, I could not at present talk of any thing else; therefore I shall translate a Passage in the one, and transcribe a Paragraph out of the other, for the Speculation of this Day. Cicero tells us,  that Plato reports Socrates, upon receiving his Sentence, to have spoken to his Judges in the following manner.