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flict; and, with respect to Damon, to perform my duty, by rescuing him from the danger he incurred by his generosity to me.

Dion. And now, Damon, let me address myself to thee. Didst thou not really fear, that Pythias would never return; and that thou wouldst be put to death on his account?

Damon. I was but too well assured, that Pythias would punctually return; and that he would be more solicitous to keep his promise, than to preserve his life. Would to heaven, that his relations and friends had forcibly detained him! He would then have lived for the comfort and benefit of good men; and I should have the satisfaction of dying for him!

Dion. What! Does life displease thee?

Damon. Yes; it displeases me, when I see and feel the power of a tyrant.

Dion. It is well! Thou shalt see him no more. I will order thee to be put to death immediately.

Pyth. Pardon the feelings of a man who sympathizes with his dying friend. But remember it was Pythias who was devoted by thee to destruction. I come to submit to it, that I may redeem my friend. Do not refuse me this consolation in my last hour.

Dion. I cannot endure men, who despise death, and set my power at defiance.

Damon. Thou canst not, then, endure virtue.

Dion. No: I cannot endure that proud, disdainful virtue, which contemns life; which dreads no punishment; and which is insensible to the charms of riches and pleasure.

Damon. Thou seest, however, that it is a virtue,

which is not insensible to the dictates of honour, justice, and friendship.

Dion. Guards, take Pythias to execution. We shall see whether Damon will continue to despise my authority.

Damon. Pythias, by returning to submit himself to thy pleasure, has merited his life, and deserved thy favour; but I have excited thy indignation, by resigning myself to thy power, in order to save him; be satisfied, then, with this sacrifice, and put me to death.

Pyth. Hold, Dionysius! remember, it was Pythias alone who offended thee: Damon could not

Dion. Alas! what do I see and hear! where am I? How miserable; and how worthy to be so! I have hitherto known nothing of true virtue. I have spent my life in darkness and errour. All my power and honours are insufficient to produce love. I cannot boast of having acquired a single friend, in the course of a reign of thirty years. And yet these two persons, in a private condition, love one another tenderly, unreservedly confide in each other, are mutually happy, and ready to die for each other's preservation.

Pyth. How couldst thou, who hast never loved any person, expect to have friends? If thou hadst loved and respected men, thou wouldst have secured their love and respect. Thou hast feared mankind; and they fear thee; they detest thee.

Dion. Damon, Pythias, condescend to admit me as a third friend, in a connection so perfect. I give you your lives; and I will load you with riches.:

Damon. We have no desire to be enriched by thee; and, in regard to thy friendship, we cannot accept or enjoy it, till thou become good and just. Without these qualities, thou canst be connected with none but trembling slaves and base flatterers. To be loved and esteemed by men of free and generous minds, thou must be virtuous, affectionate, disinterested, beneficent; and know how to live in a sort of equality with those who share and deserve thy friendship. Fenelon.

IMPORTANCE OF LITERATURE.

CADMUS AND HERCULES.

Her. Do you pretend to sit as high on Olympus as Hercules? Did you kill the Nemean lion, the Erymanthian boar, the Lernean serpent, and Stymphalian birds? Did you destroy tyrants and robbers? You value yourself greatly on subduing one serpent: I did as much as that while I lay in my cradle.

Cad. It is not on account of the serpent, that I boast myself a greater benefactor to Greece than you. Actions should be valued by their utility, rather than their splendour. I taught Greece the art of writing, to which laws owe their precision and permanency. You subdued monsters; I civilized men. It is from untamed passions, not from wild beasts, that the greatest evils arise to human society. By wisdom, by art, by the united strength of civil community, men have been enabled to subdue the whole race of lions, bears, and serpents; and, what is more, to bind by laws and

wholesome regulations, the ferocious violence and dangerous treachery of the human disposition. Had lions been destroyed only in single combat, men had had but a bad time of it; and what but. laws could awe the men who killed the lions? The genuine glory, the proper distinction of the rational species, arise from the perfection of the mental powers. Courage is apt to be fierce, and strength is often exerted in acts of oppression; but wisdom is the associate of justice. It assists her to form equal laws, to pursue. right measures, to correct power, protect weakness, and to unite individuals in a common interest and general welfare. Heroes may kill tyrants; but it is wisdom and laws that prevent tyranny and oppression.. The operations of policy far surpass the labours of Hercules, preventing many evils which valour and might cannot even redress. You heroes regard nothing but glory; and scarcely consider whether the conquests which raise your fame, are really beneficial to your country. Unhappy are the people who are governed by valour not directed by prudence, and not mitigated by the gentle

arts!

Her. I do not expect to find an admirer of my strenuous life, in the man who taught his countrymen to sit still and read; and to lose the hours of youth and action in idle speculation and the sport of words.

Cad. An ambition to have a place in the registers of fame, is the Eurystheus which imposes heroic labours on mankind. The Muses incite to action, as well as entertain the hours of repose; and I think you should honour them for presenting

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to heroes such a noble recreation, as may prevent their taking up the distaff, when they lay down the club.

Her. Wits as well as heroes can take up the distaff. What think you of their thin-spun systems of philosophy, or lascivious poems, or Milesian fables? Nay, what is still worse, are there not panegyrics on tyrants, and books that blaspheme the gods, and perplex the natural sense of right and wrong? I believe if Eurystheus were to set me to work again, he would find me a worse task than any he imposed; he would make me read over a great library; and I would serve it as I did the Hydra, I would burn as I went on, that one chimera might not rise from another, to plague mankind. I should have valued myself more on clearing the library, than on cleansing the Augean stables.

Cad. It is in those libraries only that the memory of your labours exists. The heroes of Marathon, the patriots of Thermopyla owe their fame to me. All the wise institutions of lawgivers, and all the doctrines of sages, had perished in the ear, like a dream related, if letters had not preserved them. O Hercules! it is not for the man who preferred virtue to pleasure, to be an enemy to the muses. Let Sardanapalus and the silken sons of luxury, who have wasted life in inglorious ease, despise the records of action, which bear no honourable testimony to their lives: but true merit, heroic virtue, should respect the sacred source of lasting honour.

Her. Indeed, if writers employed themselves only in recording the acts of great men, much

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