A "Somewhat" may inhabit in the human breast that resembles the "famous Trunkmaker in the Playhouse"

— Fielding, Henry (1707-1754)

Place of Publication
Printed for A. Millar
A "Somewhat" may inhabit in the human breast that resembles the "famous Trunkmaker in the Playhouse"
Metaphor in Context
Mr. Jones had Somewhat about him, which, though I think Writers are not thoroughly agreed in its Name, doth certainly inhabit some human Breasts; whose Use is not so properly to distinguish Right from Wrong, as to prompt and incite them to the former, and to restrain and with-hold them from the latter.

This Somewhat may be indeed resembled to the famous Trunk-maker in the Playhouse: for whenever the Person who is possessed of it doth what is right, no ravished or friendly Spectator is so eager, or so loud in his Applause; on the contrary, when he doth wrong, no Critic is so apt to hiss and explode him.

To give a higher Idea of the Principle I mean, as well as one more familiar to the present Age; it may be considered as sitting on its Throne in the Mind, like the Lord High Chancellor of this Kingdom in his Court; where it presides, governs, directs, judges, acquits and condemns according to Merit and Justice; with a Knowledge which nothing escapes, a Penetration which nothing can deceive, and an Integrity which nothing can corrupt.

This active Principle may perhaps be said to constitute the most essential Barrier between us, and our Neighbours the Brutes; for if there be some in the human Shape, who are not under any such Dominion, I chuse rather to consider them as Deserters from us to our Neighbours; among whom they will have the Fate of Deserters, and not be placed in the first Rank.
(pp. 39-40)
Over 75 entries in the ESTC (1749, 1750, 1751, 1759, 1763, 1764, 1765, 1766, 1767, 1768, 1769, 1770, 1771, 1773, 1774, 1775, 1776, 1777, 1780, 1782, 1783, 1784, 1786, 1787, 1789, 1791, 1792, 1794, 1795, 1797, 1800).

See The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling. In Six Volumes. By Henry Fielding. (London: Printed for A. Millar, 1749). <Link to ECCO><Link to LION>

See also three-volume Dublin edition in ECCO-TCP <Link to Vol. I in ECCO-TCP><Vol. II><Vol. III>

Reading The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling. Norton Critical Edition, ed. Sheridan W. Baker. (New York: W. W. Norton and Company, Inc., 1973).

Also reading Henry Fielding, Tom Jones, eds. John Bender and Simon Stern (Oxford: OUP, 1996).
Date of Entry

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