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praise their patrons for qualities that do not belong to them,
The Bookseller to the Reader.
Tells how long he has had these papers, when they were written, and why he publishes them
The Dedication to Posterity. The author, apprehending that time will soon destroy almost all the writings of this age, complains of his malice against modern authors and their productions, in hurrying them so quickly off the scene; and therefore addresses Posterity in favour of his contemporaries; assures him they abound in wit and learning, and books; and for instance mentions Dryden, Tate, D'Urfey, Bentley, and Wotton.
Project for employing the beaux of the nation. Of modern prefaces. Modern wit how delicate. Method for penetrating into an author's thoughts.
Complaints of every writer against the multitude of writers, like the fat fellows in a crowd. Our author insists on the common privilege of writers; to be favourably explained, when not understood; and to praise himself in the modern way.
This treatise without satire; and why. Fame sooner gotten by satire than panegyric; the subject of the latter being narrow, and that of the former infinite. Difference between Athens and England, as to general and particular satire. The author designs a panegyric on the world, and a modest defence of the rabble,
Secr. I. The INTRODUCTION. A physico-mythological dissertation on the different sorts of oratorial machines. Of the bar and the bench. The author fond of the number Three ; promises a panegyric on it. Of pulpits; which are the best. Of ladders; on which the British orators surpass all others. Of the stage itinerant; the seminary of the two former. A physical reason why those machines are elevated. Of the curious contrivance of modern theatres. These three machines emblematically represent the various sorts of authors.
An apologetical dissertation for the Grub-street writers, against their revolted rivals of Gresham and Will's. Superficial readers cannot easily find out wisdom; which is compared to several pretty things. Commentaries promised on several writings of Grub-street authors; as Reynard the Fox, Tom Thumb, Dr Faustus, Whittington and his Cat, the Hind and Panther, Tommy Pots, and the Wise Men of Gotham. The author's pen and person worn out in serving the state. Multiplicity of titles and dedications.
SECT. II. TALE OF A TUB. Of a Father and his Three Sons. His will, and his legacies to them. Of the young men's carriage at the beginning: and of the genteel qualifications they acquired in town. Description of a new sect, who adored their creator the tailor. Of their idol, and their system.
The three brothers follow the mode against their father's will; and get shoulder-knots, by help of distinctions; gold-lace, by help of tradition; flame-coloured stain lining, by means of a supposed codicil ; silver fringe, by virtue of critical interpretation; and embroidery of Indian figures, by laying aside the plain literal meaning. The will at last locked up. Peter got into a
lord's house, and after his death turned out his children, and took in his own brothers in their stead.
Sect. III. A DIGRESSION concerning Critics. Three sorts of Critics; the two first sorts now extinct. The true sort of Critics' genealogy; office; definition. Antiquity of their race proved from Pausanias, who represents them by Asses browzing on vines; and Herodotus, by Asses with horns; and by an Ass that frightened a Scythian army; and Diodorus, by a Poisonous Weed ; and Ctesias, by Serpents that poison with their vomit; and Terence, by the name of Malevoli. The true Critic compared to a Tailor, and to a true Beggar. Three characteristics of a true modern Critic.
Sect. IV. TALE OF A Tus continued. Peter assumes grandeur and titles; and, to support them, turns projector. The Author's hopes of being translated into foreign languages. Peter's first invention, of Terra Australis Incognita. , The second of a remedy_for Worms. The third, a Whispering-Office. Fourth, an Insurance-Office. Fifth, an Universal Pickle. Sixth, a set of Bulls with leaden feet. Lastly, his pardons to malefactors. Peter's brains turned; he plays several tricks, and turns out his brother's wives. Gives his brothers bread for mutton and for wine. Tells huge lies : of a Cow's milk, that would fill 3000 churches; of a Sign-post as large as a man of war; of a House, that travelled 2000 leagues. The brothers steal a copy of the will; break open the cellar door; and are both kicked out of doors by Peter.
Sect. V. A DIGRESSION in the modernkind. Our author expatiates on his great pains to serve the public by instructing, and more by diverting. The Moderns having so far excelled the Ancients, the Author gives them a receipt for a complete system of all arts and sciences, in a small pocket. volume. Several defects discovered in Homer; and his ignorance in modern invention, &c. Our Author's writings fit to supply all defects. He justifies his praising his own writings, by modern examples.
Sect. VI. TALE OF A TUB continued. The Two Brothers ejected, agree in a resolution to reform, according to the will. They take different names; and are found to be of different complexions. How Martin began rudely, but proceeded more cautiously, in reforming his coat. Jack, of a different temper, and full of zeal, begins tearing all to pieces. He endeavours to kindle up Martin to the same pitch; but, not succeeding, they separate. Jack runs mad, gets many names, and founds the sect of Eolists.
SECT. VII. A DIGRESSION in praise of Digressions. Digressions suited to modern palates. A proof of depraved appetites; but necessary for modern writers. Two ways now in use to be book-learned; 1. by learning Titles; 2. by reading Indexes. Advantages of this last: and of Abstracts. The number of writers increasing above the quantity of matter, this method becomes necessary and useful. The Reader empowered to transplant this Digression.
SECT. VIII. TALE OF A TUB continued. System of the Æolists : they hold wind, or spirit, to be the origin of all things, and to bear a great part in their composition. Of the fourth and fifth animas attributed by them to man. Of their belching, or preaching. Their inspiration from Exotid. They use barrels for pulpits. Female officers used for inspiration ; and why. The notion opposite to that of a Deity, fittest to form a Devil. Two Devils dreaded by the Æolists. Their relation with a Northern nation. The Author's respect for this sect.
Sect. IX. DISSERTATION ON MADNESS. Great conquerors of empires, and founders of sects in philosophy and religion, have generally been persons whose reason was disturbed. A small vapour, mounting to the brain, may occasion great revolutions. Examples; of Henry IV., who made great preparations for war, because of his mistress's absence; and of Louis XIV., whose great actions concluded in a fistula. Extravagant notions of several great philosophers, how nice to distinguish from madness. Mr Wotton's fatal mistake, in misapplying his peculiar talents. Madness the source of conquests and systems. Advantages of fiction and delusion over truth and reality. The outside of things better than the inside. Madness, how useful. A proposal for visiting Bedlam, and employing the divers members in a way useful to the public.
Sect. X. The Author's compliments to the Readers. Great civilities practised between the Authors and Readers; and our Author's thanks to the whole nation. How well satisfied Authors and Booksellers are. To what occasions we owe most of the present writings. Of a paltry scribbler, our Author is afraid of; and therefore desires Dr Bentley's protection. He gives here his whole store at one meal. Usefulness of this treatise to different sorts of Readers; the superficial, the ignorant, and the learned. Proposal for making some ample Commentaries on this work; and of the usefulness of commentaries for dark writers. Useful hints for the Commentators of this Treatise.
Sect. XI. THE TALE OF A Tus continued. The Author, not in haste to be at home, shews the dif