Our hero becomes a dog of the town, and shines in high-life.
POMPEY was now grown up to maturity and dog's estate, when he came to live with Lady Tempest; who soon ushered him into all the joys and vanities of the town.
As he attended his mistress to all routs, drums, hurricanes, hurly-burlies and earthquakes, he soon established an acquaintance and friendship with the most noted dogs of quality, and of course affected a most hearty contempt for all of inferior station, whom he would never vouchsafe to play with, or pay them the least regard. He seemed to know at first sight, whether a dog had received a good education, by his manner of coming into a room, and was extremely ambitious to show his collar at court; in which again he resembled certain other dogs, who are equally vain of their finery, and happy to be distinguished in their respective orders.
If he could have spoken, I am persuaded he would have used the phrases so much in fashion, 'nobody one knows, wretches dropped out of the moon, creatures sprung from a dunghill;' by which are signified all those who are not born to a title, or have not impudence and dishonesty enough to run in debt with their tailors for laced clothes.
Again, had he been to write a letter from Bath or Tunbridge, he would have told his correspondent 'there was not a soul in the place,' though at the same time he knew there were above two thousand; because perhaps none of the men wore stars and garters, and none of the women were bold enough to impoverish their families by playing at the noble and illustrious game of brag.
As he was now become a dog of the town, and perfectly well-bred, of course he gave himself up to intrigue, and had seldom less than two or three amours at a time with bitches of the highest fashion: In which circumstances he again lamented the want of speech, being by that means debarred from the pleasure of boasting of the favours he received. But his gallantries were soon divulged by the consequences of them; and as several very pretty puppies had been the offspring of his loves, it was usual for all the acquaintance of Lady Tempest to solicit and cultivate his breed. And here I shall beg leave to insert two little billets of a very extraordinary nature, as a specimen of what it is that engages the attention of ladies of quality in this refined and accomplished age. Lady Tempest was sitting at her toilette one morning, when her maid brought her the following little scroll, from another lady, whose name whose name will be seen at the bottom of her letter.
My favourite little Veny is at present troubled with certain amorous infirmities of nature, and would not be displeased with the addresses of a lover. Be so good therefore to send little Pompey by my servant who brings this note, for I fancy it will make a very pretty breed, and when the lovers have transacted their affairs, he shall be sent home incontinently. Believe me, dear Tempest,
Lady Tempest, as soon as she had read this curious epistle, called for pen and ink, and immediately wrote the following answer, which likewise we beg leave to insert.
'Infirmities of nature we are all subject to, and therefore I have sent master Pompey to wait upon miss Veny, begging the favour of you to return him as soon as his gallantries are over. Consider, my dear, no modern love can, in the nature of things, last above three days, and therefore I hope to see my little friend again very soon.
Your affectionate friend,
In consequence of these letters, our hero was conducted to Mrs. Racket's house, where he was received with the civility due to his station in life, and treated on the footing of a gentleman who came a courting in the family. Mrs. Racket had two daughters, who had greatly improved their natural relish for pleasure in the warm climate of a town education, and were extremely solicitous to inform themselves of all the mysteries of love. These young ladies no sooner heard of Pompey's arrival, than they went downstairs into the parlour, and undertook themselves to introduce him to Miss Veny: for love so much engrossed their thoughts, that they could not suffer a lap-dog in the house to have an amour without their privity. Here, while they were solacing themselves with innocent speculation, a young gentleman, who visited on a familiar footing in the family, was introduced somewhat abruptly to them. They no sooner found themselves surprised, than they ran tittering to a corner of the parlour, and hid their faces behind their fans; while their visitor, not happening to observe the Hymeneal rites that were celebrating, begged to know the cause of their mirth. This redoubled their diversion, and they burst out afresh into such immoderate fits of laughter, that the poor man began to look exceedingly foolish, imagining himself to be the object of their ridicule. In vain he renewed his entreaties to be let into the secret of their laughter; the ladies had not the power of utterance, and he would still have continued ignorant, had he not accidentally cast his eye aside, and there beheld Master Pompey with the most prevailing solicitation making love to his four-footed mistress. This at once satisfied his curiosity, and he was no longer at a loss to know the reason of that uncommon joy and rapture which the ladies had expressed.
Thus was our hero permitted to riot in all the luxuries of life, and treated everywhere, both at home and abroad, with the greatest indulgence. He fed every day upon chicken, partridges, ragouts, fricassees, and all the rarities in season; which so pampered him up with luxurious notions, as made some future scenes of life the more grievous to him, when fortune obliged him to undergo the hardships that will hereafter be recorded.