Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

then all

upon; as als , may cha

is son, or he att entiments and clation and

IR, irer and

ble servant

CTOBER

'MADAM,

'BELINDA.'

I

nfession; atte has not the effect this letter seems to aim at, you that I must part with you. But let it be a comfort are to understand that I had a mind to be rid of to you, that I have no guilt hangs upon me, no unerein shall te you, and took the readiest way to pall you with an repented folly that retards me; but I pass away offer of what you would never desist pursuing my last hours in reflection upon the happiness we while you received ill usage. Be a true man; be have lived in together, and in sorrow that it is so and bowimy slave while you doubt me, and neglect me soon to have an end. This is a frailty which I hope when you think I love you. I defy you to find out is so far from criminal, that methinks there is a what is your present circumstance with me; but kind of piety in being so unwilling to be separated know while I can keep this suspense, from a state which is the institution of heaven, and 'I am your admired in which we have lived according to its laws. As we know no more of the next life, but that it will be an happy one to the good, and miserable to the 'Ir is a strange state of mind a man is in, when the wicked, why may we not please ourselves at least, very imperfections of a woman he loves turn into to alleviate the difficulty of resigning this being, excellencies and advantages. I do assure you, I in imagining that we shall have a sense of what am very much afraid of venturing upon you. I now passes below, and may possibly be employed in like you in spite of my reason, and think it an ill guiding the steps of those with whom we walked circumstance to owe one's happiness to nothing with innocence when mortal? Why may not I but infatuation. I can see you ogle all the young hope to go on in my usual work, and, though unfellows who look at you, and observe your eye known to you, be assistant in all the conflicts of wander after new conquests every moment you are your mind? Give me leave to say to you, O best in a public place; and yet there is such a beauty of men, that I cannot figure to myself a greater in all your looks and gestures, that I cannot but happiness than in such an employment. To be admire you in the very act of endeavouring to gain present at all the adventures to which human life the hearts of others. My condition is the same is exposed, to administer slumber to thy eyelids in with that of the lover in The Way of the World.* the agonies of a fever, to cover thy beloved face in I have studied your faults so long, that they are be- the day of battle, to go with thee a guardian angel I am become as familiar to me, and I like them as well as incapable of wound or pain, where I have longed distressed I do my own. Look to it, madam, and consider to attend thee when a weak, a fearful woman: whether you think this gay behaviour will appear these, my dear, are the thoughts with which I to me as amiable when an husband, as it does now warm my poor languid heart. But indeed I am to me a lover. Things are so far advanced, that not capable under my present weakness of bearwe must proceed; and I hope you will lay to ing the strong agonies of mind I fall into, when I heart, that it will be becoming in me to appear form to myself the grief you will be in, upon your still your lover, but not in you to be still my mis- first hearing of my departure. I will not dwell tress. Gaiety in the matrimonial life is graceful upon this, because your kind and generous heart in one sex, but exceptionable in the other. As will be but the more afflicted, the more the peryou improve these little hints, you will ascertain son for whom you lament offers you consolation. the happiness or uneasiness of, My last breath will, if I am myself, expire in a prayer for you. I shall never see thy face again. Farewell for ever.'

[ocr errors]

disarms: ayy;

ywhle in GREVE

5 to each s have l

r place with

entert

g such

volous,

he highes with the p

de to

to be

t the p

[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors]

MADAM,

'Your most obedient,
'most humble servant,

'T. D.'

'WHEN I sat at the window, and you at the other
end of the room by my cousin, I saw you catch me
looking at you. Since you have the secret at last,
which I am sure you should never have known but
by inadvertency, what my eyes said was true. But
it is too soon to confirm it with my hand, therefore
shall not subscribe my name.'

[ocr errors]

THERE were other gentlemen nearer, and I know no necessity you were under to take up that flippant creature's fan last night; but you shall never touch a stick of mine more, that's pos.

'PHILLIS.'

[blocks in formation]

Decipimur specie recti-
HOR. Ars Poet. ver. 25.
Deluded by a seeming excellence.
ROSCOMMON.

WHEN I meet with any vicious character that is not generally known, in order to prevent its doing mischief, I draw it at length, and set it up as a scarecrow; by which means I do not only make an example of the person to whom it belongs, but give warning to all her majesty's subjects, that they may not suffer by it. Thus, to change the allusion, I have marked out several of the shoals and quicksands of life, and am continually employed in discovering those which are still concealed, in order to keep the ignorant and unwary from running upon them. It is with this intention that publish the following letter, which brings to light some secrets of this nature.

I

'TO COLONEL RS, IN SPAIN.t BEFORE this can reach the best of husbands and the fondest lover, those tender names will be of no more concern to me. The indisposition in which you, to obey the dictates of your honour and duty, left me, has increased upon me; and I am acquainted by my physicians I cannot live a week longer. At this time my spirits fail me; and it is the ardent love I have for you that carries me be-read over with greater delight, than those which THERE are none of your speculations which I yond my strength, and enables me to tell you, the most painful thing in the prospect of death is,

bell speaking of Millamant.
Congreve's comedy under that title. See act i, c. 3, Mira

+ Supposed to have been Colonel Rivers.

MR. SPECTATOR,

have endeavoured to correct our unreasonable fears are designed for the improvement of our sex. You pers; our fancy for equipage, in your fifteenth; and superstitions, in your seventh and twelfth paour love of puppet-shows, in your thirty-first; our

notions of beauty, in your thirty-third; our incli- another artifice out of which she often raises monation for romances, in your thirty-seventh; our ney. The foreigner sighs after some British beauty, passion for French fopperies, in your forty-fifth; whom he only knows by fame; upon which she our manhood and party-zeal, in your fifty-seventh; promises, if he can be secret, to procure him a our abuse of dancing, in your sixty-sixth and sixty-meeting. The stranger, ravished at his good for seventh; our levity, in your hundred and twenty. tune, gives her a present, and in a little time is eighth; our love of coxcombs, in your hundred and introduced to some imaginary title; for you must fifty-fourth, and hundred and fifty-seventh; our know that this cunning purveyor has her represen tyranny over the hen-peckt, in your hundred and tatives, upon this occasion, of some of the finest seventy-sixth. You have described the Pict, in ladies in the kingdom. By this means, as I am your forty-first; the Idol, in your seventy-third; informed, it is usual enough to meet with a Gerthe Demurrer, in your eighty-ninth; the Sala- man count in foreign countries, that shall make his mander, in your hundred and ninety-eighth. You boasts of favours he has received from women of have likewise taken to pieces our dress, and re- the highest ranks, and the most unblemished chapresented to us the extravagancies we are often racters. Now, sir, what safety is there for a wo guilty of in that particular. You have fallen upon man's reputation, when a lady may be thus prosti our patches, in your fiftieth and eighty-first; our tuted as it were by proxy, and be reputed an uncommodes, in your ninety-eighth; our fans, in your chaste woman; as the hero in the ninth book of hundred and second; our riding-habits, in your Dryden's Virgil is looked upon as a coward, be hundred and fourth; our hoop-petticoats, in your cause the phantom which appeared in his likeness hundred and twenty-seventh; besides a great many ran away from Turnus? You may depend upon little blemishes which you have touched upon in what I relate to you to be matter of fact, and the your several other papers, and in those many let-practice of more than one of these female panters that are scattered up and down your works. ders. If you print this letter, I may give you At the same time we must own, that the compli- some further accounts of this vicious race of wo ments you pay our sex are innumerable, and that men. those very faults which you represent in us, are neither black in themselves, nor, as you own, universal among us. But, sir, it is plain that these your discourses are calculated for none but the fashionable part of womankind, and for the use of those who are rather indiscreet than vicious. But,

sir, there is a sort of prostitutes in the lower part of our sex, who are a scandal to us, and very well deserve to fall under your censure. I know it would debase your paper too much to enter into the behaviour of these female libertines; but as your remarks on some part of it would be a doing of justice to several women of virtue and honour, whose reputations suffer by it, I hope you will not think it improper to give the public some accounts of this nature. You must know, sir, I am provoked to write you this letter, by the behaviour

'Your humble servant,

BELVIDERA,'

I shall add two other letters on different subjects to fill up my paper.

[ocr errors]

MR. SPECTATOR,

I AM a country clergyman, and hope you will lend me your assistance in ridiculing some little indecencies which cannot so properly be exposed from the pulpit.

'A widow lady, who straggled this summer from London into my parish for the benefit of the air, as she says, appears every Sunday at church with many fashionable extravagancies, to the great astonishment of my congregation.

But what gives us the most offence is, her theof an infamous woman, who, having passed her atrical manner of singing the psalms. She intro. youth in a most shameless state of prostitution, is duces above fifty Italian airs into the hundredth now one of those who gain their livelihood by sepsalm; and whilst we begin "All people" in the ducing others that are younger than themselves, old solemn tune of our forefathers, she in a quite and by establishing a criminal commerce between different key runs divisions on the vowels, and the two sexes. Among several of her artifices to adorns them with the graces of Nicolini: if she get money, she frequently persuades a vain young in the metre of Hopkins and Sternhold, we are meets with "eke" or "aye," which are frequent fellow, that such a woman of quality, or such a celebrated toast, entertains a secret passion for certain to hear her quavering them half a minute' him, and wants nothing but an opportunity of re- after us, to some sprightly airs of the opera. vealing it. Nay, she has gone so far as to write) I am very far from being an enemy to church letters in the name of a woman of figure, to bor-music; but fear this abuse of it may make my row money of one of these foolish Roderigo's, parish ridiculous, who already look on the singing which she has afterwards appropriated to her own psalms as an entertainment, and not part of their use. In the mean time, the person who has lent devotion: besides, I am apprehensive that the inthe money, has thought a lady under obligations fection may spread; for 'Squire Squeekum, who to him, who scarce knew his name; and wondered by his voice seems (if I may use the expression) at her ingratitude when he has been with her, that to be cut out for an Italian singer, was last Sun she has not owned the favour, though at the same day practising the same airs. time he was too much a man of honour to put her in mind of it.

[ocr errors]

I know the lady's principles, and that she will plead the toleration, which (as she fancies) allows When this abandoned baggage meets with a her nonconformity in this particular; but I beg man who has vanity enough to give credit to rela- you to acquaint her, that singing the psalms in a tions of this nature, she turns him to very good different tune from the rest of the congregation, is account by repeating praises that were never ut-a sort of schism not tolerated by that act.

tered, and delivering messages that were never sent. As the house of this shameless creature is frequented by several foreigners, I have heard of

'I am, SIR,

"Your very humble servant,

MR. SPECTATOR,

[ocr errors]

The character so named in Shakspeare's tragedy of Othello, IN your paper upon temperance,* you prescribe

and who is the silly dupe of Iago's villany.

* No. 195.

[blocks in formation]

le se

to us a rule of drinking, out of Sir William Tem- inimitably unforced and diverting in his manner of
ple, in the following words: "The first glass for delivering all his sentiments in his conversation,
myself, the second for my friends, the third for if he were able to conceal the strong desire of
good-humour, and the fourth for mine enemies." applause which he betrays in every syllable he
Now, sir, you must know, that I have read this utters. But they who converse with him, see that
your Spectator, in a club whereof I am a member; all the civilities they could do to him, or the kind
when our president told us there was certainly an things they could say to him, would fall short of
error in the print, and that the word glass should what he expects; and, therefore, instead of show-
be bottle; and therefore has ordered me to informing him the esteem they have for his merit, their
you of this mistake, and to desire you to publish reflections turn only upon that they observe he has
the following erratum: In the paper of Saturday, of it himself.
October 13, col. 3, line 11, for "glass," read
"bottle."

[blocks in formation]

CREECH.

If you go among the women, and behold Gloriana trip into a room with that theatrical ostentation of her charms, Mirtilla with that soft regularity in her motion, Chloe with such an indifferent familiarity, Corinna with such a fond approach, and Roxana with such a demand of respect in the great gravity of her entrance; you find all the sex, who understand themselves and act naturally, wait only for their absence, to tell you that all these ladies would impose themselves upon you; and each of them carry in their behaviour a consciousness of so much more than they should pretend to, that they lose what would otherwise be given them.

I remember the last time I saw Macbeth, I was THERE is a call upon mankind to value and esteem wonderfully taken with the skill of the poet, in BID those who set a moderate price upon their own making the murderer form fears to himself from merit; and self-denial is frequently attended with the moderation of the prince whose life he was fferent unexpected blessings, which in the end abundantly going to take away. He says of the king: 'He recompense such losses as the modest seem to suf- bore his faculties so meekly;' and justly inferred fer in the ordinary occurrences of life. The curious from thence, that all divine and human power tell us, a determination in our favour or to our would join to avenge his death, who had made disadvantage is made upon our first appearance, such an abstinent use of dominion. All that is in a even before they know any thing of our characters, man's power to do to advance his own pomp and but from the intimations men gather from our as- glory, and forbears, is so much laid up against the pect. A man, they say, wears the picture of his day of distress; and pity will always be his pormind in his countenance; and one man's eyes are tion in adversity, who acted with gentleness in spectacles to his who looks at him, to read his prosperity.

hope

lings

[ocr errors]

at cha

to tac

[ocr errors]

he

app

It

heart. But though that way of raising an opinion The great officer who foregoes the advantages he of those we behold in public is very fallacious, might take to himself, and renounces all prudencertain it is, that those, who by their words and tial regards to his own person in danger, has so far actions take as much upon themselves, as they can the merit of a volunteer; and all his honours and but barely demand in the strict scrutiny of their glories are unenvied, for sharing the common fate deserts, will find their account lessen every day. with the same frankness as they do who have no A modest man preserves his character, as a frugal such endearing circumstances to part with. But man does his fortune; if either of them live to the if there were no such considerations as the good height of either, one will find losses, the other er-effect which self-denial has upon the sense of other rors, which he has not stock by him to make up. men towards us, it is of all qualities the most dewere therefore a just rule, to keep your desires, sirable for the agreeable disposition in which it your words and actions, within the regard you ob- places our own minds. I cannot tell what better serve your friends have for you; and never, if it to say of it, than that it is the very contrary of were in a man's power, to take as much as he pos- ambition; and that modesty allays all those passibly might, either in preferment or reputation. sions and inquietudes to which that vice exposes us. My walks have lately been among the mercantile He that is moderate in his wishes from reason and part of the world; and one gets phrases naturally choice, and not resigned from sourness, distaste, from those with whom one converses. I say, then, or disappointment, doubles all the pleasures of his he that in his air, his treatment of others, or an life. The air, the season, a sun-shiny day, or a fair habitual arrogance to himself, gives himself credit prospect, are instances of happiness, and that which for the least article of more wit, wisdom, goodness, he enjoys in common with all the world, (by his or valour, than he can possibly produce if he is exemption from the enchantments by which all the called upon, will find the world break in upon world are bewitched) are to him uncommon behim, and consider him as one who has cheated nefits and new acquisitions. Health is not eaten them of all the esteem they had before allowed up with care, nor pleasure interrupted by envy. him. This brings a commission of bankruptcy It is not to him of any consequence what this man upon him; and he that might have gone on to his is famed for, or for what the other is preferred. He life's end in a prosperous way, by aiming at more knows there is in such a place an uninterrupted than he should, is no longer proprietor of what he walk; he can meet in such a company an agreereally had before, but his pretensions fare as able conversation. He has no emulation, he is no all things do which are torn instead of being di-man's rival, but every man's well-wisher; can look vided. at a prosperous man, with a pleasure in reflecting

There is no one living would deny Cinna the that he hopes he is as happy as himself; and has applause of an agreeable and facetious wit; or his mind and his fortune (as far as prudence will could possibly pretend that there is not something allow) open to the unhappy and to the stranger.

Lucceius has learning, wit, humour, eloquence, sure he should make an ill use of it? To both but no ambitious prospects to pursue with these which questions Alcibiades answers in the negative advantages; therefore to the ordinary world he is Socrates then shows him, from the examples of perhaps thought to want spirit, but known among others, how these might very probably be the ef his friends to have a mind of the most consummate fects of such a blessing. He then adds, that other greatness. He wants no man's admiration, is in no reputed pieces of good-fortune, as that of having need of pomp. His clothes please him if they are a son, or procuring the highest post in a governfashionable and warm; his companions are agreement, are subject to the like fatal consequences; able if they are civil and well-natured. There is which nevertheless, says he, men ardently desire, with him no occasion for superfluity at meals, or and would not fail to pray for, if they thought jollity in company, in a word, for any thing ex- their prayers might be effectual for the obtaining traordinary to administer delight to him. Want of of them.

prejudice, and command of appetite, are the com. Having established this great point, that all the panions which make his journey of life so easy, most apparent blessings in this life are obnoxious that he in all places meets with more wit, more to such dreadful consequences, and that no man good cheer, and more good-humour, than is neces- knows what in its events would prove to him a sary to make him enjoy himself with pleasure and blessing or a curse, he teaches Alcibiades after satisfaction. what manner he ought to pray.

[blocks in formation]

In the first place, he recommends to him, as the model of his devotions, a short prayer which a Greek poet composed for the use of his friends, in the following words; O Jupiter, give us those things which are good for us, whether they are such things as we pray for, or such things as we do not pray for; and remove from us those things which are hurtful, though they are such things as we pray for.'

In the second place, that his disciple may ask such things as are expedient for him, he shows him, that it is absolutely necessary to apply himself to the study of true wisdom, and to the knowledge of that which is his chief good, and the most suitable to the excellency of his nature.

In my last Saturday's paper* I laid down some thoughts upon devotion in general, and shall here show what were the notions of the most refined heathens on this subject, as they are represented in In the third and last place he informs him, that Plato's dialogue upon prayer, entitled Alcibiades the best methods he could make use of to draw the Second, which doubtless gave occasion to Ju- down blessings upon himself, and to render his venal's tenth satire, and to the second satire of prayers acceptable, would be to live in a constant Persius; as the last of these authors has almost practice of his duty towards the gods, and towards transcribed the preceding dialogue, entitled Alci- men. Under this head he very much recommends biades the First, in his fourth satire. form of prayer the Lacedemonians make use of, in which they petition the gods, ' to give them all good things so long as they were virtuous.' Under this head likewise he gives a very remarkable account of an oracle to the following purpose:

The speakers in this dialogue upon prayer, are Socrates and Alcibiades; and the substance of it (when drawn together out of the intricacies and digressions) as follows:

a

Socrates meeting his pupil Alcibiades, as he was When the Athenians in the war with the Lace going to his devotions, and observing his eyes to be demonians received many defeats both by sea and xed upon the earth with great seriousness and at. land, they sent a message to the oracle of Jupiter tention, tells him, that he had reason to be thought-Ammon, to ask the reason why they who erected ful on that occasion, since it was possible for a so many temples to the gods, and adorned them man to bring down evils upon himself by his own with such costly offerings; why they who had inprayers, and that those things, which the gods send stituted so many festivals, and accompanied them him in answer to his petitions, might turn to his with such pomps and ceremonies; in short, why Jestruction. This, says he, may not only happen they who had slain so many hecatombs at their when a man prays for what he knows is mis-altars, should be less successful than the Lacede chievous in its own nature, as Edipus implored monians, who fell so short of them in all these the gods to sow dissension between his sons; but particulars? To this, says he, the oracle made the when he prays for what he believes would be for following reply: I am better pleased with the his good, and against what he believes would be prayers of the Lacedemonians, than with all the to his detriment. This the philosopher shows must oblations of the Greeks.' As this prayer implied necessarily happen among us, since most men are and encouraged virtue in those who made it; the blinded with ignorance, prejudice, or passion, which philosopher proceeds to show how the most vicious hinder them from seeing such things as are really man might be devout, so far as victims could make beneficial to them. For an instance, he asks Alci- him, but that his offerings were regarded by the biades, whether he would not be thoroughly pleased gods as bribes, and bis petitions as blasphemies, and satisfied if that god, to whom he was going to He likewise quotes on this occasion two verses out address himself, should promise to make him the of Homer, in which the poet says, that the scent sovereign of the whole earth? Alcibiades answers, of the Trojan sacrifices were carried up to heaven that he should doubtless look upon such a promise by the winds; but that it was not acceptable to as the greatest favour that could be bestowed upon the gods, who were displeased with Priam and all him. Socrates then asks him, if after receiving his people.' this great favour he would be contented to lose his The conclusion of this dialogue is very remark life? Or if he would receive it, though he was able. Socrates having deterred Alcibiades from

[blocks in formation]

1

y as that of bo

post in a

al

conseque

n ardently

if they to for the

e of it? Tom the prayers and sacrifice which he was going to leaving it with Omniscience to determine what is ers in the nea offer, by setting forth the above-mentioned diffi- really such. If we look into the first of Socrates's culties of performing that duty as he ought, adds rules of prayer, in which he recommends the abovethe examp robably be these words: We must therefore wait till such mentioned form of the ancient poet, we find that en adds, t time as we may learn how we ought to behave our form not only comprehended, but very much im. selves towards the gods and towards men.' But proved in the petition, wherein we pray to the Suwhen will that time come,' says Alcibiades, and preme Being that his will may be done: which is who is it that will instruct us? for 1 would fain of the same force with that form which our Saviour see this man, whoever he is.'-'It is one,' says Soused, when he prayed against the most painful and crates, who takes care of you; but as Homer tells most ignominious of deaths, 'Nevertheless, not my us, that Minerva removed the mist from Diomede's will, but thine be done."* This comprehensive eyes that he might plainly discover both gods and petition is the most humble, as well as the most. point, the men, so the darkness that hangs upon your mind prudent, that can be offered up from the creature must be removed before you are able to discern to his Creator; as it supposes the Supreme Being what is good, and what is evil.'-Let him remove wills nothing but what is for our good, and that from my mind,' says Alcibiades, the darkness and he knows better than ourselves what is so. what else he pleases, I am determined to refuse nothing he shall order me, whoever he is, so that I may become the better man by it.' The remaining part of this dialogue is very obscure: there is something in it that would make us think Socrates hinted at himself, when he spoke of this divine teacher who was to come into the world, did not he own that he himself was in this respect as much at a loss, and in as great distress as the rest of mankind.

ife are do and the at

i profe Alcibasa

ads to bi

prayer

of b

gre

hether i a thap

[ocr errors]

e suc

n, best

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

forms

use of

to

[ocr errors]

$, and

as

ADDISON.

No 208. MONDAY, OCTOBER 29, 1711.

Veniunt spectentur ut ipsæ.

OVID. Ars Am. 1. i. y. 99. To be themselves a spectacle they come.

L.

Some learned men look upon this conclusion I HAVE Several letters from people of good sense, a prediction of our Saviour, or at least that So-who lament the depravity or poverty of taste the crates, like the high priest,f prophesied unknow. town is fallen into with relation to plays and pubingly, and pointed at that Divine Teacher who there is such a levity in the minds of her own sex, lic spectacles. A lady in particular observes, that was to come into the world some ages after him that they seldom attend any thing but impertiHowever that may be, we find that this great phi- nences. It is indeed prodigious to observe how losopher saw, by the light of reason, that it was little notice is taken of the most exalted parts of suitable to the goodness of the Divine Nature, to the best tragedies in Shakspeare; nay, it is not send a person into the world who should instruct mankind in the duties of religion, and, in parti- only visible, that sensuality has devoured all greatcular, teach them how to pray. ness of soul, but the under-passion (as I may so Whoever reads this abstract of Plato's discourse call it) of a noble spirit, pity, seems to be a stranger on prayer, will, I believe, naturally make this reto the generality of an audience. The minds of flection, That the great Founder of our religion, reliefs from care and attention are of one sort in men are indeed very differently disposed; and the as well by his own example, as in the form of prayer which he taught his disciples, did not only The man of a great heart, and a serious complexion, a great spirit, and of another in an ordinary one. keep up to those rules which the light of nature is more pleased with instances of generosity and had suggested to this great philosopher, but in-pity, than the light and ludicrous spirit can posstructed his disciples in the whole extent of this sibly be with the highest strains of mirth and duty, as well as of all others. He directed them, laughter. It is, therefore, a melancholy prospect to the proper object of adoration, and taught them according to the third rule above-mentioned, to when we see a numerous assembly lost to all serious apply themselves to him in their closets, without entertainments, and such incidents as should move show or ostentation, and to worship him in spirit one sort of concern, excite in them a quite contrary and in truth.' As the Lacedemonians in their form when the lady who is conscious of the crime of one. In the tragedy of Macbeth, the other night, prayer implored the gods in general to give them all good things so long as they were virtuous, murdering the king seems utterly astonished at the We ask in particular that our offences may be news, and makes an exclamation at it, instead of forgiven, as we forgive those of others. If we look the indignation which is natural to the occasion. into the second rule which Socrates has prescribed, that expression is received with a loud laugh. They namely, that we should apply ourselves to the were as merry when a criminal was stabbed. It knowledge of such things as are best for us, this wicked are seized in their design; but I think it is certainly an occasion of rejoicing when the too is explained at large in the doctrines of the is not such a triumph as is exerted by laughter. gospel, where we are taught in several instances to regard those things as curses, which appear as are sooner moved than the passions. A sly expresYou may generally observe that the appetites blessings in the eye of the world; and, on the con- sion which alludes to bawdry, puts a whole row trary, to esteem those things as blessings, which to into a pleasing smirk; when a good sentence that the generality of mankind appear as curses. Thus in the form which is prescribed to us, we only pray ceived with the greatest coldness and indiffedescribes an inward sentiment of the soul, is refor that happiness which is our chief good, and the great end of our existence, when we petition therence. A correspondent of mine, upon this subject, Supreme Being for the coming of his kingdom, behas divided the female part of the audience, and ing solicitous for no other temporal blessings but sonable delight in the following manner: The accounts for their prepossessions against this reaour daily tenance. On the other side, we pray prude,' says he, as she acts always in contradicagainst nothing but sin, and against evil in general, tion, so she is gravely sullen at a comedy, and ex† Caiaphas, John xi. 49-52, travagantly gay at a tragedy. The coquette is so

of

Iliad, book v.

Matt. vi. 9, &e. Luke xi. 2.

Matt. xxvi. 39. Luke xxii. 42.

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »