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kind, instead of being pleasing. Witty men | cause he just now saw her. But I think I are apt to imagine they are agreeable as need not dwell on this subject, since I have such, and by that means grow the worst acknowledged there can be no rules made companions imaginable; they deride the for excelling this way; and precepts of this absent or rally the present in a wrong man- kind fare like rules for writing poetry, not knowing that if you pinch or tickle which, it is said, may have prevented ill a man till he is uneasy in his seat, or un- poets, but never made good ones. gracefully distinguished from the rest of the
company, you equally hurt him.
Quid pure tranquillet
Hor. Ep. xviii. Lib. 102 What calms the breast and makes the mind serene.
I was going to say, the true art of being No. 387.] Saturday, May 24, 1712. agreeable in company (but there can be no such thing as art in it) is to appear well pleased with those you are engaged with, and rather to seem well entertained, than to bring entertainment to others. A man In my last Saturday's paper, I spoke of thus disposed is not indeed what we ordi- cheerfulness as it is a moral habit of the narily call a good companion, but essentially mind, and accordingly mentioned such mois such, and in all the parts of his conversa- ral motives as are apt to cherish and keep tion has something friendly in his behaviour, alive this happy temper in the soul of man. which conciliate men's minds more than the I shall now consider cheerfulness in its nahighest sallies of wit or starts of humour can tural state, and reflect on those motives to possibly do. The feebleness of age in a man it which are indifferent either as to virtue of this turn has something which should be or vice. treated with respect even in a man no otherwise venerable. The forwardness of youth, when it proceeds from alacrity and not insolence, has also its allowances. The companion who is formed for such by nature, gives to every character of life its due regards, and is ready to account for their imperfections, and receive their accomplishments as if they were his own. It must appear that you receive law from, and not give it to, your company, to make you agreeable.
I remember Tully, speaking, I think, of Antony, says, that, In eo facetiæ erant, quæ nulla arte tradi possunt: He had a witty mirth, which could be acquired by no art.' This quality must be of the kind of which I am now speaking; for all sorts of behaviour which depend upon observation and knowledge of life are to be acquired; but that which no one can describe, and is apparently the act of nature, must be every where prevalent, because every thing it meets is a fit occasion to exert it; for he who follows nature can never be improper or unseasonable.
Cheerfulness is, in the first place, the best promoter of health. Repinings, and secret murmurs of heart, give impercepti ble strokes to those delicate fibres of which the vital parts are composed, and wear out the machine insensibly; not to mention those violent ferments which they stir up in the blood, and those irregular disturbed motions which they raise in the animal spirits. I scarce remember, in my own observation, to have met with many old men, or with such, who (to use our English phrase,) wear well, that had not at least a certain indolence in their humour, if not a more than ordinary gayety and cheerfulness of heart. The truth of it is, health and cheerfulness mutually beget each other, with this difference, that we seldom meet with a great degree of health which is not attended with a certain cheerfulness, but very often see cheerfulness where there is no great degree of health.
Cheerfulness bears the same friendly regard to the mind as to the body. It banishes all anxious care and discontent, soothes and composes the passions, and keeps the sou How unaccountable then must their be- in a perpetual calm. But having already haviour be, who, without any manner of touched on this last consideration, I shal consideration of what the company they here take notice, that the world in which have now entered are upon, give themselves we are placed is filled with innumerabl the air of a messenger, and make as distinct objects that are proper to raise and keep relations of the occurrences they last met alive this happy temper of mind. with, as if they had been despatched from If we consider this world in its subser those they talk to, to be punctually exact viency to man, one would think it was mad in a report of those circumstances! It is for our use; but if we consider it in its natu unpardonable to those who are met to enjoy ral beauty and harmony, one would be ap one another, that a fresh man shall pop in, to conclude it was made for our pleasure and give us only the last part of his own The sun, which is as the great soul of the life, and put a stop to ours during the his- universe, and produces all the necessari tory. If such a man comes from 'Change, of life, has a particular influence in cheer whether you will or not, you must hear how ing the mind of man, and making the hear the stocks go; and, though you are never glad so intently employed on a graver subject, a young fellow of the other end of the town will take his place, and tell you, Mrs. Such-a-one is charmingly handsome, be
Those several living creatures which a made for our service or sustenance, at th same time either fill the woods with the music, furnish us with game, or raise plea
g ideas in us by the delightfulness of their
qualities, and tastes and colours, sounds
I shall not here mention the several en-
I the more inculcate this cheerfulness of temper, as it is a virtue in which our countrymen are observed to be more deficient than any other nation. Melancholy is a kind of demon that haunts our island, and To consider further this double end in the often conveys herself to us in an easterly orks of nature, and how they are at the wind. A celebrated French novelist, in opme time both useful and entertaining, we position to those who begin their romances nd that the most important parts in the with the flowery season of the year, enters egetable world are those which are the on his story thus, 'In the gloomy month of ost beautiful. These are the seeds by November, when the people of England hich the several races of plants are pro-hang and drown themselves, a disconsolate agated and continued, and which are al- lover walked out into the fields,' &c. ays lodged in the flowers or blossoms. ature seems to hide her principal design, nd to be industrious in making the earth ay and delightful, while she is carrying on er great work, and intent upon her own reservation. The husbandman, after the me manner, is employed in laying out the hole country into a kind of garden or landcape, and making every thing smile about im, whilst in reality he thinks of nothing ut of the harvest, and the increase which to arise from it.
Every one ought to fence against the temper of his climate or constitution, and frequently to indulge in himself those considerations which may give him a serenity of mind, and enable him to bear up cheerfully against those little evils and misfortunes which are common to human nature, and which, by a right improvement of them, will produce a satiety of joy, and an uninterrupted happiness.
At the same time that I would engage my reader to consider the world in its most We may further observe how Providence agreeable lights, I must own there are as taken care to keep up this cheerfulness many evils which naturally spring up the mind of man, by having formed it amidst the entertainments that are profter such a manner as to make it capable vided for us; but these, if rightly consiconceiving delight from several objects hich seem to have very little use in them; from the wildness of rocks and deserts, ad the like grotesque parts of nature. hose who are versed in philosophy may ill carry this consideration higher, by serving, that if matter had appeared to sendowed only with those real qualities hich it actually possesses, it would have ade but a very joyless and uncomfortable gure; and why has Providence given it a ower of producing in us such imaginary
Sir Isaac Newton.
dered, should be far from overcasting the
'Beyond all this, we may find another
-Tibi res antiquæ laudis et artis Ingredior; sanctos ausus recludere fontes. Virg. Georg. ii. 174. For thee, I dare unlock the sacred spring, And arts disclos'd by ancient sages sing. 'MR. SPECTATOR, -It is my custom, when I read your papers, to read over the quotations in the authors from whence you take them. As you mentioned a passage lately out of the second chapter of Solomon's Song, it occasioned my looking into it; and, upon reading it, I thought the ideas so exquisitely soft and tender, that I could not help making this paraphrase of it: which, now it is done, I can as little forbear sending to you. Some marks of your approbation, which I have already received, have given me so sensible a taste of them, that I cannot forbear endeavouring after them as often as I can with any appearance of success. I am, sir, your most obedient humble servant.'
THE SECOND CHAPTER OF SOLOMON'S SONG.
"As when in Sharon's field the blushing rose Does its chaste bosom to the morn disclose, Whilst all around the Zephyrs bear
The fragrant odours through the air,
Does o'er each flow'r with beauteous pride prevail,
-And their united charms are less than mine.
"As much as fairest lilies can surpass
"Beneath his pleasing shade
And on his fragrant boughs reclin'd my head,
"I faint! I die! my lab'ring breast
And pain convey'd to every part.
Through all my veins the passion flies,
"I charge you, nymphs of Sion, as you go
To keep off each intruding sound.
"But see! he comes! with what majestic gait
Now through the lattice he appears,
"Already, see! the teeming earth
"As to its mate the constant dove
Shall damp the sound of thy melodious voice;
"As all of me, my Love, is thine,
And balmy sleep forsake thine eyes;
Remove the shades of night away;
Then when soft sleep shall from thy eyes depart, Rise like the bounding roe, or lusty hart,
Glad to behold the light again
From Bether's mountains darting o'er the plain." T.
s sold for thirty pounds. As it was writ- | brated, since our adversaries challenge all
I must confess that, happening to get a
But what has been often urged as a consideration of much more weight, is not only the opinion of the better sort, but the general consent of mankind to this great truth; which I think could not possibly have come to pass, but from one of the three following reasons: either that the idea of a God is innate and co-existent with the mind itself; or that this truth is so very obvious, that it is discovered by the first exertion of reason in persons of the most ordinary capacities; or lastly, that it has been delivered down to us through all ages by a tradition from the first man.
The atheists are equally confounded, to whichever of these three causes we assign it; they have been so pressed by this last argument from the general consent of mankind, that after great search and pains they pretend to have found out a nation of atheists, I mean that polite people the Hottentots.
I dare not shock my readers with the description of the customs and manners of these barbarians, who are in every respect scarce one degree above brutes, having no language among them but a confused gabble, which is neither well understood by themselves nor others.
It is not, however, to be imagined how much the atheists have gloried in these their good friends and allies.
If we boast of a Socrates or a Seneca, they
There are two considerations which have
Though even this point has, not without
Joseph Ames, of Sir Peter Thompson, and of M. C. et, esq. among whose books it was lately sold by tion, at Mr. Gerrard's in Litchfield-street. The auof this book, Giordano Bruno, was a native of a, in the kingdom of Naples, and burnt at Rome by er of the inquisition in 1600. Morhoff, speaking of eists, says, Jordanum tamen Brunum huic classi non amerarem, manifesto in illo atheismi vestigia non rehendo. Polyhist. i. 1. 8. 22. Bruno published many er writings said to be atheistical. The book spoken ere was printed, not at Paris, as is said in the titlee, nor in 1544. but at London, and in 1584, 12mo. cated to sir Philip Sidney. It was for some time so e regarded, that it was sold with five other books of same author, for 25 pence French, at the sale of Mr. r's library in 1706; but it is now very scarce, and been sold at the exorbitant price of 50%. Niceron. mes I'lust. tom. xvii. p. 211. There was an edition in English in 1713.
Besides these poor creatures, there have now and then been instances of a few crazy people in several nations who have denied the existence of a deity.
The catalogue of these is, however, very short; even Vanina, the most celebrated champion for the cause, professed before his judges that he believed the existence of a God: and, taking up a straw which lay before him on the ground, assured them that alone was sufficient to convince him of it: alleging several arguments to prove that it was impossible nature alone could create any thing.
I was the other day reading an account of Casimir Lyszynski, a gentleman of Poland, who was convicted and executed for this crime. The manner of his punishment was very particular. As soon as his body was
In my opinion, a solemn judicial death is too great an honour for an atheist; though I must allow the method of exploding him, as it is practised in this ludicrous kind of martyrdom, has something in it proper enough to the nature of his offence.
burnt, his ashes were put into a cannon, and their own behaviour so unhappily, that
'The best,' said he, that I can you advise,
Shun secresy, and talk in open sight;
Instead of this care over their words and actions, recommended by a poet in old queen Bess's days, the modern way is to say and do what you please, and yet be the prettiest sort of woman in the world. If fathers and brothers will defend a lady's honour, she is quite as safe as in her own innocence. Many of the distressed, who suffer under the malice of evil tongues, are so harmless, that they are every day they live asleep till twelve at noon; concem themselves with nothing but their own per sons till two; take their necessary food be tween that time and four; visit, go to the