"Lace and Drapery is as much a Man, as Wit and Turn is Passion."

— Steele, Sir Richard (1672-1729)

Work Title
Wednesday, April 30, 1712
"Lace and Drapery is as much a Man, as Wit and Turn is Passion."
Metaphor in Context
There are such wild Inconsistencies in the Thoughts of a Man in love, that I have often reflected there can be no reason for allowing him more Liberty than others possessed with Frenzy, but that his Distemper has no Malevolence in it to any Mortal. That Devotion to his Mistress kindles in his Mind a general Tenderness, which exerts it self towards every Object as well as his Fair-one. When this Passion is represented by Writers, it is common with them to endeavour at certain Quaintnesses and Turns of Imagination, which are apparently the Work of a Mind at ease; but the Men of true Taste can easily distinguish the Exertion of a Mind which overflows with tender Sentiments, and the Labour of one which is only describing Distress. In Performances of this kind, the most absurd of all things is to be witty; every Sentiment must grow out of the Occasion, and be suitable to the Circumstances of the Character. Where this Rule is transgressed, the humble Servant, in all the fine things he says, is but shewing his Mistress how well he can dress, instead of saying how well he loves. Lace and Drapery is as much a Man, as Wit and Turn is Passion.
(Cf. III, pp. 375-6)
Searching in Project Gutenberg (PGDP) e-text. Confirmed in Bond.
At least 80 entries in ESTC (1711, 1712, 1713, 1714, 1715, 1716, 1717, 1718, 1720, 1721, 1723, 1724, 1726, 1729, 1733, 1734, 1735, 1737, 1738, 1744, 1745, 1747, 1748, 1749, 1750, 1753, 1754, 1755, 1756, 1756, 1757, 1761, 1763, 1765, 1766, 1767, 1769, 1771, 1776, 1778, 1785, 1788, 1789, 1781, 1793, 1797, 1799, 1800).

By Steele, Addison, Budgell and others, The Spectator (London: Printed for Sam. Buckley, at the Dolphin in Little Britain; and sold by A[nn]. Baldwin in Warwick-Lane, 1711-1714). <Link to ESTC> -- No. 1 (Thursday, March 1. 1711) through No. 555 (Saturday, December 6. 1712); 2nd series, No. 556 (Friday, June 18. 1714), ceased with No. 635 (20 Dec. 1714).

Some text from The Spectator, 3 vols. Ed. Henry Morley (London: George Routledge, 1891). <Link to PGDP edition>

Reading in Donald Bond's edition: The Spectator, 5 vols. (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1965).
Date of Entry

The Mind is a Metaphor is authored by Brad Pasanek, Assistant Professor of English, University of Virginia.